The Week — Dec. 8

Everyone deserves a cookie, to whiz, or not to whiz, the Bridge to success

Duncan Gidney has traded in his day job for a life of his three favourites: cookies, biking and wearing suits.

Everyone deserves a cookie

If you’re starting to stress about how your holiday gifting can be drastically original this year, one Victoria man has got your back — or at least your oven mitts.

Duncan Gidney started up his own business this past week, trading in his former gig as a real estate photographer for something that will keep him in his suit, in his kitchen and on his bike: and he’s already being inundated with orders.

For $10, the magic of Cookiedrop can be yours: a well-dressed man will deliver delicious cookies, on a bike. Gidney’s philosophy combines local (when possible) ingredients, environmentally-friendly travel anywhere in the CRD and beyond, and a guaranteed smile from anyone who gets a hand on those cookies.

“It all started when work was slow, and I just didn’t want to have to go through the process of looking for another job — so, I tailor-made one for myself,” says Gidney, adding that he tested out his recipes on friends and started making drops only hours after his website launched on Sunday, Nov. 27. “I really don’t know what I’m getting into, but that’s all part of the fun.”

Currently, each box comes with six big cookies: two each of Double Chocolate Bourbon Espresso, Peanut Butter Bombers and Orange Chocolate Chunk. Delivery times are between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m., Monday to Friday. While Gidney isn’t taking requests yet, he has been hearing about a lot of lesser-known favourites, like chocolate chip with black pepper.

“Everyone deserves a cookie,” Gidney says. “They’re fun.” See more at cookiedrop.ca.

To whiz, or not to whiz

Sakes alive! We almost couldn’t believe our bladders when we heard news of the city installing its second permanent, always open, downtown bathroom. And, we were bursting with excitement when we heard it wasn’t just another urinal, but an all-out unisex, wheelchair accessible, toilet facility.

Monday has a history with the downtown urinals (check out the story “When you gotta go” on our website to see just how user-friendly the city’s “public” urinals have been). But the Langley Street Loo will replace the temporary urinals that were set up each weekend by Bastion Square as part of the city’s Late Night Great Night initiative. The structure was brought in from Portland — an award-winning model that only took Victoria $90,000 to cinch, but it’s already leaving an impression.

“This is all about making the downtown more accessible and, yes, we did hear that there was a demand for more public facilities,” says Victoria Mayor Dean Fortin. “I think last time I said that ‘women are better planners than men,’ but this one will be quite successful for women. There’s even an area for hanging flowers — our version of potpourri.”

When asked if Fortin has used the toilet himself yet, he replied, “Isn’t that like asking someone what’s underneath his kilt?”

The city will clean the facility four times a day and as needed, and is considering installing future models in other prime locations around town. While some businesses have voiced concerns with the impact the loo could have on clientele, we don’t think it takes a whiz to know this is needed.

The Bridge to success

Bridges for Women has another success story this week, but this one may have an exponential impact from a woman who wants to take the program south.

Xinia Villanueva Ramirez was born in Trujillo, Peru, but came to Canada in the mid ’80s to work as a nanny until illness left her unable to work with children. She joined Bridges mentor/mentee program, and has experienced such an impact, she’s decided to take the program back with her to Peru this year.

“My mentor has given me two priceless gifts: her time and knowledge,” says Villanueva Ramirez. “I see Bridges for Women in Peru as a safe place for Peuvian women, where they can learn their rights and responsibilities.” Stay tuned for updates on her journey. M

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