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Stephen Quinn
Stephen Quinn

City Limits: A tale of two (very, very different) mayors Add to ...

Back by popular demand (not really): a fictional conversation between the mayors of Toronto and Vancouver, Rob Ford and Gregor Robertson.

SFX: PHONE RINGS

Ford: (Gruffly) Ford here …

Gregor: (Delicately, tentatively) Heeeeey, Rob. It’s Gregor. Robertson. Long time no talk to.

SILENCE

Gregor: Gregor Robertson … the Mayor of Vancouver … the greenest city in Canada … we talked last year?

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Ford: Uh, yeah. What’s up, Craig? I’m busy here.

Gregor: You know, not much. Oh! We have eight electric Zambonis in Vancouver now … kinda stoked about that. And I just signed off on a news release about the importance of hydration, ’cause it’s been, like, sunny and 26 degrees for three days in a row. Oh, and hey, the Economist says we’re still the best city to live in in Canada and number three in the world.

But nothing’s up, really. I’ve just been reading your name a lot over the past couple of weeks and, you know, thought I’d check in.

Ford: This is about the reading and driving thing isn’t it?

Gregor: No, no. Well, yeah. Yes … I mean that, and you know, you were in the hospital there for a bit. How are you feeling?

Ford: Fine. Doc says I’m as strong as a 300-pound asthmatic horse. Think it might have been something I ate.

Gregor: But yeah … that reading thing, eh? Bummer. Is it sticking?

Ford: Are you telling me you’ve never done it?

Gregor: (Laughs) Oh no, man, I couldn’t. I ride a bike to work, so no, that wouldn’t work for me. Got caught riding transit without paying a while back, but nobody really makes you pay here so it’s not like that was a big deal. Blew a red light on my bike once, but you know, no biggie there either.

But you? Geez, the cellphone thing, the streetcar, and now this. Maybe it’s time to cave and hire a driver?

Ford: That’s what the cops keep saying. Now Doug’s on me about it too. He says I need to set an example.

Gregor: Sounds like you ought to listen to them. What if you hit somebody?

Ford: I drive an Escalade. I’ll be fine.

Gregor: That’s not what I meant …

Ford: … And I am setting an example, by the way. An example of how we don’t waste taxpayers’ money around here. Can you say the same thing? I don’t think so.

Have you heard what I’ve done with garbage collection? $11-million! That’s what I’m saving taxpayers by contracting it out. And the trucks are green.

Gregor: Green? That’s awesome! What are they, biodiesel?

Ford: I dunno. They’re green. Bright green. And there are a lot of them.

Gregor: How’s that going down with the unions?

Ford: Who cares?

Hey, I heard you took a pass on the Pride Parade in Vancouver this year. What’s up with that? I thought you loved those things.

Gregor: Yeah, but I had to go to London on a “trade mission.” Heh. I did get to raise the Pride flag at city hall, though, and read a proclamation. I’m gonna guess you didn’t go to your parade?

Ford: Nah. We raised a flag too. I mean, not me, but one of my people. I had other stuff to do.

Gregor: Cottage?

Ford: Nah … you know, stuff. Couldn’t fit it in the busy schedule.

Gregor: But wait, you practically crawled out of your hospital bed to make it to Taste of the Danforth.

Ford: Yeah, that’s right.

Gregor: But I thought you had an infection or something.

Ford: Two words.

Gregor: Public relations? Poll numbers? (PAUSE) Greek community?

Ford: Deep Fried Squid.

We done?

Gregor: We’re done.

Ford: See ya, Graham!

Gregor: Namaste, Rob.

 

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