The Zip Line, pins & a give away

On my last post, Kelaine mentioned  the Zip Line. I had heard about it somewhere, so when my buddy, Catherine, asked me if I’d like to join her at lunch time to pick up some tickets (for the medal ceremonies – curiously, there are apparently some tickets left and they only cost $22.) I happily joined her. And this is where the Zip Line will start – on the Robson side of the Vancouver Art Gallery:

Just in case you’re not familiar with this area, the dome in the foreground is the same dome that covers the skating rink I visited in this post.

How do I know this big platform is the Zip Line? Because on the other side, I found this van right next to it:

See? Citizen journalism at its best. As I checked out the developments in the area, Catherine had collected her tickets and was trying to find me. I did spot her over here, waving me down:

I hustled over to meet her, and she was VERY excited. While waiting in the line up to pick up her tickets, some American tourists in the line up started talking to her. She was polite with them and then one of the men held out both his hands and told her to choose which hand she’d like him to open up. She did and he gave her a pin that he designed for the Vancouver Games. It turns out she had met The Pin Man (he gave her a card, but there was no website on it, just an email address) a pin enthusiast who travels to all the Games to collect and trade pins. Excited to get her first pin, she asked if she could have another one for “my friend who’s a photographer” and he gave her one for me!

Exciting! Pin trading! I had forgotten about that “phenomenon” from the Calgary Games in 1988. It was all the rage and I was part of that until the unthinkable happened. It’s a sad story, but I will tell you.

We all wore our pins on our winter jackets – it made for an easy way to display the pins you had for easy trading and viewing to others. The more pins you had on your jacket, the better it was. So we all marched around with our pins proudly on our lapels. I had a job working the concession stand at many of the events. We all had to check in our coats in the coat room – only accessible by our manager and the fellow staff members. I had put my jacket in the same room many times before without incident. And then, one day after my shift, I went to get my jacket. And I found it – crumpled on the floor with all the pins stolen. STOLEN. GONE. RIPPED OFF. I had no idea who did it – we all collected them, and I was friends with most of the other workers. Sadly, I picked up my jacket and tried to forget about my stolen pins. I never wanted to see any more pins ever again.

Until today. Getting this pin was exciting! I forgot about that. I emailed The Pin Man today to thank him. I hope I run into him in person.

I felt so excited by today’s small event, I decided to do my own give away today. So, I went to The Bay, picked up a pair of those official red mitts (proceeds go to the athletes) and will give them away to someone who leaves a comment. I’ll make my selection via random number generator method. So if you’d like these:

Leave me a comment! Good luck to you!


  1. Kelaine says:

    Oooooohhhhh dearest random number generator please pick me even though I have won my fair share of Carol Browne contests of awesomeness. They remind me of my maple leaf bathing suit I used to wear in Saudi and I live in a climate that requires the use of mittens far more than maple leaf bathing suits. 🙂

  2. Charmaine says:

    Carol- you’re too nice! After those heartless souls stole your pins, you’re still giving back to the community. Not me, if that was me, I’d boycott all love for tiny, colourful, collectable pins!

  3. Pamela S says:

    I’m so glad you scored some pins for this Olympics – I hope it makes up for the awful prior experience. Count me in on your giveaway – I’d love to win those great-looking gloves!

  4. michelle says:

    it’s -19c in halifax … my mittens need mittens! 😉

    i think the pin trading is so cool … they’ve probably been asked a million times, but if you contact your local mp’s or mla’s office, they should have free flag pins that you could use to trade … i remember picking up tonnes of free nova scotia swag at our provincial member’s office for a national agm when i was at the kidney foundation.

  5. Pookie says:

    What an awful story about the pins! I bet whoever stole them stuck him/herself with them by accident all the time and then regretted stealing them.

  6. Leah says:

    I am glad you know where the zip line will be. Looking forward to shots of people using it. ; )
    Well, I am convinced whoever stole your pins is suffering terribly for it. Imagine the shame of stealing something from Carol! They are probably one of those people who have to wear a hoodie shading their face and sunglasses so no one can get a good look at them.
    That is one amazing pin! Very lovely. I expect you are an amazing pin collector.
    I would love some red mittens. They would look good with my red crocs and my gortex. (Oh, I am so West Coast Stylin’.)

  7. Dianne says:

    Shame, shame on the pin stealer…what goes around, comes around!! The pin stealer is probably doing time in the big house by now. But have no fear, Berwick NS pins on their way along with a few red flag Canada pins and a couple Nova Scotia flag pins for you to trade. Also included is one very special pin for you to keep – I doubt if you would trade it anyway!
    BTW I love the red mitts!!! xoxo

Comments are closed.