Food and drink 

Food for thought: Kathy, the Pique and other contemplations

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The old Citizen that the late Cloudsley Hoodspith ran (bless him) was notorious for such hijinks. A thousand years ago when I had the Question , the then highers-up at Whistler Mountain Ski Corp. threatened to pull all their advertising if we ran a letter to the editor complaining about the lousy on-mountain food in general and navy bean soup in particular. They even sicked on me the late, great Dave Murray (bless him, too) to argue their point.

We ran the letter; they didn’t pull their advertising. But it was scary. The readers were the biggest customer, but the mountain was the biggest revenue source and it could break the spine of a small paper in a flash.

So don’t you just know that what you read in the Pique is free — free from influence-peddling, from pandering, from fear-mongering — and always has been? That takes guts, especially when you’re just starting out.

Another thing: it’s rare that a newspaper, even the biggest of the big boys, pays for original writing, never mind original art these days. Get this: the Globe and Mail pays less than half of what the Pique pays contributors. Unlike the Pique , they want wire copy, all rights to original work (so you can’t sell it elsewhere), all things serialized, digitized, image banked. Anything that saves costs but contributes to the overall homogeneity of, well, us.

See all those Pique covers of original art piling up every week for the past 14-ish years? That’s 728-plus pieces of art from artists who were paid fairly for their work and had the joy of seeing it featured. Then there are the original short stories, the freelance photos, the essays.

In an nutshell, freedom + creativity = character, all of which we love about Whistler and which Bob and Kathy have distilled, page by page, loonie by loonie, into the Pique .

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