ROCKLAND TWO

LISA HOPELESS – I can’t tell you the number of pots of herbal tea I went through weighing the arguments for and against the Absurd Properties proposal for the former site of the Truth Centre on Fort Street.

COUNCILLOR CURMUDGEON – This I gotta hear.

LISA HOPELESS – The more Victoria embraces density, the better it is for climate change.

COUNCILLOR MADDOG – Let me get this straight, Lisa. If Victoria has the same density as New York City that would be good for planet?

LISA HOPELESS – It would mean that greenhouse gas emissions per capita would be lower.

COUNCILLOR MADDOG – But surely the total greenhouse gas emissions would be much higher. It seems like a flawed argument at best, Lisa.

COUNCILLOR BULLSHIT – And what about the issue of affordable housing?

LISA HOPELESS – I think we’ve got to look at affordability through a new lens, Councillor Bullshit. In the old way of thinking, it was considered optimal if residents spent no more than thirty percent of their income on housing. But in the new way of thinking, the cost of housing and transportation are combined.

COUNCILLOR BULLSHIT – And what percentage of income should people reasonably expect to pay for housing and transportation combined?

LISA HOPELESS – Eighty percent.

COUNCILLOR BULLSHIT – But if people are paying eighty percent of their income on housing and transportation, how can they afford to eat?

LISA HOPELESS – Need I remind the councillor of the obesity epidemic we are currently facing in North America. If people can’t afford to eat, they will in all likelihood consume fewer calories.

COUNCILLOR BULLSHIT – So what you’re saying, Mayor Hopeless, is that your new approach would not only solve the housing crisis but cure the obesity epidemic as well.

LISA HOPELESS – Two birds with one stone.

COUNCILLOR BULLSHIT – But that’s completely insane!

LISA HOPELESS – No more so than most of your half-baked theories. Moving right along, Councillor Luscious it almost goes without saying that you are in favour of the Absurd Properties application?

COUNCILLOR LUSCIOUS – Don’t you know it.

LISA HOPELESS – And Councillor Alternative Reality?

COUNCILLOR ALTERNATIVE REALITY – Hell, I’d even support the application if they were putting Trump Tower on the site.

LISA HOPELESS – Councillor Maddog, I assume, as usual, that you are against the project?

COUNCILLOR MADDOG – I don’t feel that Magic Mike has properly addressed the setbacks on Building B.

LISA HOPELESS – Whatever. Councillor Coalman, am I correct in thinking the parking issue swung your vote?

COUNCILLOR COALMAN – 1.3 stalls per unit. Who can argue with that?

LISA HOPELESS – What say you, Joe Thornton?

COUNCILLOR JOE THORNTON – I’ve had the privilege to walk through the Truth Centre grounds many times over the last two years. I can understand why so many Rockland residents have a deep affection for the place. It is like a sanctuary in the fast-paced world we live in. Ideally, the property might have been turned into a park, but the truth is we don’t live in an ideal world, we live in the real world. Besides, on my last visit a seagull flew overhead and took a crap on me, which according to ancient Chinese superstition means . . .

LISA HOPELESS – You must vote in favour of the project.

COUNCILLOR JOE THORNTON – Correctomundo.

LISA HOPELESS – Councillor Loveflake?

COUNCILLOR LOVEFLAKE – The fellow from GENSQUEEZE convinced me to vote in favour of the project.

COUNCILLOR MADDOG – But he made no sense whatever.

COUNCILLOR LOVEFLAKE – And where is it written that millennials have to make sense? I mean it. Where is it written? I’d like to know.

LISA HOPELESS – Councillor Curmudgeon, as usual, I have no idea which way you come out on this one.

COUNCILLOR CURMUDGEON – How about if I mumble for ten minutes and then vote against the project?

LISA HOPELESS – Another rabbit out of the hat. You are predictable only in your unpredictability.

COUNCILLOR CURMUDGEON – Don’t forget this is an election year, Madame Mayor. And while courting the youth vote might look good on paper, it’s actually seniors who get out and put their x on the spot.

LISA HOPELESS – Councillor Bullshit, you have the final word.

COUNCILLOR BULLSHIT – Considering this development is taking place on the grounds of the former Truth Centre, perhaps it’s time council faced an ugly truth: the need for affordable housing is never going to be addressed by increasing the supply of luxury condos. It hasn’t worked in Vancouver, and it won’t work here either.

LISA HOPELESS – You think we need to come up with a new strategic plan?

COUNCILLOR BULLSHIT – Either that, or a new mayor.