Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Mayor Watson: Where are my Timbits?

City Council's swearing-in ceremony was on the evening of December 1, 2010, held at Shenkman Arts Centre in Orléans. Much ado was made about Jim Watson's decision not to have it catered, but instead to get Tim Horton's to provide free snacks.

Since it wasn't open to the public, I made sure to take lots of photos. Here are some highlights of the night:

My one time going to the suburbs and our car got into a fender bender. Remarkably, the car that hit us from behind in stop-and-go traffic had two occupants. A rare suburban non-SOV.

Shenkman isn't that bad a place, once you get there and inside.

As I took a seat, I thought I passed our not-to-be-named former mayor. Thankfully it was just a decoy.

Sally Robinson on the piano accompanying the warm-up choir.

Look, two guys with turbans! The crowd is really representative of Ottawa's vibrant multicultural fabric! Just kidding, it was mostly white guys.

Ever wondered what it would be like for a perky, hyper children's entertainer like Marie Soleil to MC an inauguration ceremony? Neither did I, but we all found out anyway.

Singing cop was hella loud. Kudos for holding that last note and all, but it hurt my ears.

Great speech by Algonquin chief. "Welcome to our territory. We'll talk."

The official mayor's robe.

Philistines in the audience laughed at the soldier's ceremonial stomping as he delivered the Mayor's chain of office. (Seen here stomping after the about-face to exit.)

Councillors sworn in all at once. Four oaths total instead of 48 (two in each language).

Egli is pronounced Keith Egg-lye (as the MC pronounced it), not Egg-lee as I'd have guessed. Didn't get a chance to ask Hubley if MC's "Hubely" was correct. [Edit: it was, as time and the commenter below confirm.]

Couldn't photograph Doug Thompson. Reflection of his white hair oversaturated every attempt.

Musical Interlude with French folk singers/dancers dragging out their set with three (albeit catchy) songs. Rick Chiarelli shows his only sign of interest the whole night; otherwise was pouty.

Jim Watson is crazy mad about Katie Holmes. No, wait. He's angry. No, I think it's just the long exposure.

New trick: Point & Shoot camera + Tripod + Binoculars = half-decent telephoto shots.

See what I mean? Pouty. And this was when everybody was supposed to be singing along to "this little light of mine." Diane and Keith have the spirit.

Jan Harder's shoes were the talk of the evening.

David Chernushenko, Maria McRae, Katherine Hobbs applauding. Peter Clark slouched the whole night, blocking any decent photos of Diane Holmes.

Congratulations, class of 2010. Katherine Hobbs salutes you. Or she's saluting the lighting techs. Ironically, of course.

The refreshment table, provided by Tim Horton's. Those flat discs, by the way, are NOT timbits. I am disappointed that Jim Watson didn't live up to this promise. Aside from coffee, everything else was sugar-based. Sorry, diabetics!

Shenkman centre has a nifty art exhibit of metal fish made of tuna can lids (and similar materials). Tempting to add the treasure label to this post.

To be honest, this actually worked better as a venue than City Hall would have. City Hall isn't big enough for this many people, and these folks will be spending enough time there. As for the catering cut, I'm not a wine-and-cheese guy, but this was pretty chintzy. Note to visiting heads-of-state: Canada's Capital is B.Y.O.B.


zoom said...

I love this post!

Lynn said...

Fabulous post, Grouchy, thanks. I live in Hubley's ward and it is "Hube-ley."

I am madly in love with Jan Harder's shoes. She's my new favourite councilor.

RealGrouchy said...

zoom - you're welcome! It's a public service I do for my closest blog visitors!

Lynn - the things I wouldn't have known if I didn't go! Thanks! Not sure what I've unleashed with the photo of Jan's shoes...

- RG>

erigami said...

I'm going to be a pooh and mention that the city's use of Timmies to cater the swearing in is a conflict of interest.

Last year Tims wanted to add more drive-throughs to some of their Ottawa locations. The city blocked it, Tims threatened to go to the OMB, and the city settled out of court.

I know it isn't quite envelopes of cash in hotel rooms, or back room deals for developers, but the new council's first act shouldn't be to mooch in on a company's largess.

They could have saved just as much money by not providing food.

RealGrouchy said...

Erigami - I also didn't remember, until the drive back, the infamous relationship our previous mayor had with Tim Horton's in the runup to his election.

- RG>