Surrey, it’s probably the most misunderstood city in Greater Vancouver, maybe even in all of BC. It also happens to be where I live and somewhere I’m proud to call home. Many of you know I had a website called SurreyIsTheBomb.com, a little labour of love I used to spread the good things Surrey has to offer and try and counteract the overwhelmingly negative view outsiders have of it. It was chugging along at a manageable pace, I was enjoying exploring my city and then I was approached by a couple from Whalley. They loved the site and wanted me to join them in a new venture they were starting. It was basically going to be what I was already doing but on a larger scale. Full 3 way split of any future profits, sounded good to me!
Well, it wasn’t. It ended very badly and I had basically been used for my connections and tossed aside as they felt they no longer needed me. Looking back it was a blessing in disguise. That website, who I’d love to name but I won’t because they’re the kind of A-holes that would sue, is not doing as well as they had envisioned. There is a reason for this beyond their lack of connections, skill, flair and general sloppiness. The fact is that people from Surrey don’t care about their city.
Now I’ve done it, let the comments fly! It’s true though. There are some great people in Surrey and a lot of them care about this city but they don’t identify themselves as being from Surrey. They, as well as most other people in the lower mainland, feel they are Vancouverites. Surrey doesn’t have an identity aside from being a large suburb of Vancouver. There are people who live in Surrey that trash talk their own city just as much as outsiders do. It’s actually kind of alarming how much hate Surrey residents level upon other parts of Surrey that they deem to be “the bad part of town”.
Surrey is rapidly growing, evolving and maturing but even with a fantastic mayor and some aggressive city planning Surrey will always be on the outside looking in. In recent months I’ve actually considered moving to a community better served by transit and on the other side of the soon to be tolled Port Mann bridge. Surrey is still the bomb to me, but sometimes you see things for what they really are when you get screwed by people who claim to love the same things as you.