Posted on November 4th, 2015
I loathe most all politicians.
Yes, there are exceptions, but for the most part I find them to be arrogant assholes who have zero interest in actually representing the people they have been elected to represent. There's always an agenda... usually dictated by lobbyist money... and their only goal is re-election.
Which is why seeing somebody actually try to buck the system is so heartwarming.
Against my better judgement, I like this new Prime Minister of Canada...
If only the USA had anybody in our presidential race that even pretended to give this much of a shit.
Posted on October 18th, 2015
Let's get ready to rumble, because Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• Canadia. Best of luck to our friends to the Great White North on their Prime Minister election. Will ten long years of Stephen Harper douchebaggery be enough? Guess we'll find out.
• Feels. ZOMG. Kitten raised with ferrets thinks she's a ferret!
Photo by MichaelMankus.
• Future? Now incredibly sad at how badly our once-promising future has so severely missed the mark...
I can only guess that Biff Tannen has created an alternate 1985 that turned into this pile of shit.
• Fleeced. Yet another terrific article tearing down Carly Fiorina's carefully constructed (and wholly hysterical) façade that she's some kind of awesome businesswoman that's fit to be president...
Photo by Justin Sullivan and Getty Images.
All hail to Jobs!
• Duty! The Duggar clan is a never-ending fountain of wisdom that just keeps giving. Apparently men are merely sexual animals with absolutely no rational thought when it comes to getting the sex they need. Yes, NEED. They will die without it. Or cheat on you. Regardless, it's all your fault. So if you have a headache, you just need to buck up and fuck your husband before something terrible happens. If you don't, that would make you a murderer... or single... or both. It's not your man's fault that you are physically and mentally exhausted. So don't you dare put that on him. He doesn't need to deal with it and he is mentally unable to understand it. Slam a 5-Hour Energy and fuck your husband. Stabbed in the eye with a fork? Throw on an eyepatch and fuck your husband. Nine months pregnant? Fuck your husband. Get shot foiling a bank robbery? Fuck your husband. Bad hair day? Make yourself presentable THEN fuck your husband. Because men? Men simply cannot process the alternative. And shame on you for even thinking that they should have to.
• Wonder? And I thought the David E. Kelley's 2011 Wonder Woman pilot was heinous crap. This... this... has to be the most horrendous take on the character possible...
Thank God Lynda Carter came along in 1975 to give us a Wonder Woman that still holds hop even today. Lyda Carter was Wonder Woman. Still is. Probably always will be.
And... time for bed. Sundays make me sleepy.
Posted on April 21st, 2015
I had such grand ambitions this morning... my flight didn't leave until 1:15pm, after all. Plenty of time to wake up early and wander around downtown Vancouver on this beautiful day.
But instead I worked in my hotel room right up until I had to leave for the airport.
Oh well. I had some leftover Timbits for breakfast in bed, so there's that.
Unlike the horrendous ordeal I had to endure getting into Canada, getting back to the US was a piece of cake. I pre-cleared customs before I even get on the plane in Vancouver. Which meant I could just stroll off the plane to the food court at SeaTac for some Qdoba before my connecting flight home.
Which was a piece of cake.
Posted on April 20th, 2015
And so I'm leaving a place where recreational marijuana is legal to a place where it is illegal on 4/20. I'm guessing this is ironic. Except Alanis Morissette, though Canadian, doesn't actually live in Canada for me to ask (DOUBLE irony? I dunno).
The flight to Vancouver, BC was uneventful. What happened when I landed was anything but.
I'm getting ahead of myself though.
I've been to Canada many, many times. Mostly after driving across the border, which has never been a problem. I've also flown into Toronto a couple times without incident. But flying into Vancouver? I'm now four for four on getting completely screwed by immigration and customs.
After arriving at the border agent's podium, I got the usual round of questions. Why are you here? Have you been here before? Who are you meeting? Where are you going? What do you do for a living? Etc. Etc. Etc.
No matter how I answer, I always get routed to customs. Apparently a graphic designer who is a Hard Rock collector in town to visit a casino and have dinner with a friend is highly suspicious. It doesn't matter than I have a hotel reservation. It doesn't matter that the only thing I'm bringing into the country is a change of underwear, a fresh shirt, my laptop, and an iPhone. It doesn't matter than I have a return ticket for the next day. It doesn't even matter that my double-passport book is packed to the rafters with entry/exit stamps and a wad of visas marking me as a frequent traveler.
My entry card gets marked like this...
I have no idea what "682" means. I think it probably goes like this...
Or something like that.
And so off I go.
Despite a line of 17 people, there are only three desks open. The first is occupied by a guy from China who thought he could just show up in Canada and go to school. The officer in charge of his case makes it known in no uncertain terms that he is mistaken. "There's a right way to do this, and you've done everything wrong!" After some back in forth, the officer grows impatient and starts threatening the guy with a stay in their jail. Over an hour of questions and typing later, the Chinese man is released and allowed to spend the night in the city... but if he doesn't return by 11:00 to arrange his flight back home, a warrant will be issued for his arrest.
The third desk is occupied by a guy who apparently just wants to visit the province for a month. For this he ends up having to unpack his three large suitcases to the last sock and answer question after question after question for over an hour.
The second desk is the only one moving people through. Albeit very, very slowly.
On occasion a random officer will show up and pull somebody out of line that they consider an easy interview. This moves the line forward, but any progress is ruined by people showing up in a second line on the opposite side of the building and jumping in line ahead of people who have been waiting for 40 minutes or longer.
Eventually I was called out by a random officer... but only after an hour and fifteen minutes of waiting. I then had to explain my situation, again, and stand there for fifteen additional minutes while the officer went into another room and did whatever she had to do with my passport. It probably wouldn't have taken that long, but she had to joke around with other officers there about how long the line was. Nice.
All told, I was stuck in customs for just over and hour-and-a-half.
For an hour visit to a casino over a stay that's less than 22 hours.
I don't doubt the need for all of this drama. On the contrary, protecting your borders is a very important job that deserves a serious amount of care. The results could be catastrophic if you don't.
But the way it's handled is abysmal. Indeed, it's the worst of any country I have visited. Ever. Excessive wait times, gross understaffing for the volume of people, and unfair line-jumping is not the impression you should be making on your guests.
A 30-minute ride on the SkyTrain and I'm at my downtown hotel. An hour ride on the Expo Line followed by a bus transfer and I'm at the Hard Rock Casino Vancouver that's actually not in Vancouver, it's in Coquitlam...
By joining their Players Club, I get $10 in free slots money. It's blown through in two minutes playing a slot machine I can really plug my hair into...
Time for pins at the Rock Shop (which is very nice, by the way...
The main bar is called "Asylum," which feels kinda forced, but looks pretty...
There's a surprising amount of memorabilia awaiting you. And it's some really good stuff too. The problem is that the casino is kinda big, so the artifacts are ultimately rather sparse. The clustered memorabilia in showcases is really cool though...
There is no Hard Rock Cafe on the property. The people responsible for the place only have a license for hotels and casinos West of the Mississippi. Because of that, your Hard Rock Rewards card/points are useless. They don't even give you an AAA/CAA discount. If you sign up for the player's club (Free!) you do get a 10% discount on everything, however, which is nice.
I ended up eating at their burger joint. The veggie burger I had was a bit bland, but perfectly edible. The fries, unfortunately, were undercooked and oversalted, which meant most of them ended up in the garbage.
On the hour-ride back to town I saw the old Expo 86 dome, which looks pretty much as it did back when the World's Fair was going on...
Here it is in 1986...
After arriving back in Vancouver proper, I stopped at Tim Hortons' for some Timbits and a Coke. Because no visit to Canada is complete without Timbits!
And that was that. I'll spend the rest of my evening working, then head back home in the morning.
Hard Rock No. 164 accomplished! It was probably mostly worth the trouble to visit.
Posted on July 1st, 2013
Ooh! Today was Canada Day!
Apparently "Canada Day" is declared as such because July 1st is the anniversary date of the day when three North American colonies were super-glued together to form "Canada" in 1867. It seems a little unfair that there's no USA Day today. Instead we get Independence Day in three days and a newspaper called USA Today. I guess that's a fair trade.
In honor of The Great White North's special day, I've decided to re-print my "Canada Travel Journal" from 2009. Which, in turn, is a re-print of a guest-post I made for my Canadian compadre, LeSombre (whose blog is apparently down right now?).
And so, without further ado, here's my trips to Canada...
So congrats to our neighbor to the north, and here's to many happy Canada Days to come.
Posted on July 1st, 2012
There's a heatwave plaguing the nation! Well, not here, really, but most places in the USA. Though it is supposed to get up to 90° next week. Guess that means it's time for my American readers to park themselves next to an air conditioner... because Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• Canada! Happy Canada Day to our lovely neighbors to the north!
• Hadia Gwaii! And speaking of Canada... one of my favorite travel blogs, Everything Everywhere, recently landed on a place I have long wanted to visit, Hadia Gwaii. Gary's 8 Things You Might Not Have Known About Hadia Gwaii just makes me want to go even more. Sure it's less than 600 miles northwest of Seattle, but getting there is not easy. There's a ferry that runs out of Prince Rupert, but you've got to drive 1000 miles to get there...
Map courtesy of Google Maps.
That's a 7-hour ferry ride after a 21-hour drive. Not really a great option for me. I'd rather fly to Vancouver, then transfer to a connecting flight to Sandspit... at a cost of about $1000. Yikes. Maybe an entire day driving wouldn't be so bad if I did a stopover in Prince George or something. But, given the price of gas, maybe the $1000 flight isn't so horrible after all? I dunno. If you want to see a little of why I want to go there, here's a Hadia Gwaii info site.
• Oatmeal! Matt Inman, creator of some of the funniest stuff on the internet you will ever see over at The Oatmeal, has been embroiled in a stupid, stupid lawsuit. What's particularly stupid is that he was first sued because somebody STOLE HIS WORK... and then again BECAUSE HE TURNED THE DUMB-FUCK LAWSUIT INTO AN OPPORTUNITY TO RAISE $220,000 FOR CHARITY. Yes, he was sued for raising money for the National Wildlife Foundation and the American Cancer Society with OPERATION BEAR LOVE GOOD, CANCER BAD...
Now, as somebody who has been threatened with absurd legal action more than once for the crazy stuff I've published on my blog, I have a low tolerance for ridiculous crap like this. If there's any justice in the world, douchebag lawyer Charles Carreon will end up paying all the legal fees for filing this bullshit in the first place... right after his lawsuits are dismissed for being STUPID. Anybody wanting to see what's going to cause the downfall of this country need look no further than our legal system's frivolous lawsuits.
• Pot! Kettle! And speaking of stupid... "Nancy Pelosi is a dingbat!" —Irony's Official Spokesperson, Sarah Palin.
This may be a true statement. Nancy Pelosi may indeed be a dingbat. But anything that comes out of the mouth of this vapid joke regarding the lack of smarts IN OTHER PEOPLE just makes her into a bigger fucking idiot than she already is. If that's even possible. It just proves that Sarah Palin isn't even self-aware. Or able to learn. As in lacking sentience. Like a rock. A stupid, stupid, stupid rock.
As much as I loathe John McCain for betraying our POW/MIAs, the fact that he unleashed this monster on us is beyond unforgivable.
Blargh. Guess I'd better stop shooting bullets and go into work since I'm running an hour late and all. This coming week is going to be a rough one...
Posted on April 24th, 2010
TequilaCon Day is here...
Posters from previous years are in an extended entry...→ Click here to continue reading this entry...