I have successfully journeyed north of the Wall into the wildlands of Canada in search of adventure and fortune, having triumphed over some suspicious and generally resentful Canadian customs officers.
I’m not quite sure why it is, but on three trips to Canada I’ve been detained for additional screening twice. The first time, they asked me for a list of every place I’ve lived for the past twenty years and did background checks on me in all of them. At the time, I chalked it up to my own foolish decision to wear bunny ears through customs, but now I’m not so sure.
This time, they pulled me aside to ask me questions about how much money I was bringing into the country, who I worked for, how long I’d worked there, and who I was seeing. Then they did a Web search (“Hm. You do adult Web sites?” “Well, some of my clients do!”) and grilled me further about the folks I know here (“How did you meet? When did you meet? When was the last time you saw these people?”) They carefully wrote down my answers,and then called my sweetie Eve (who had apparently just stepped from the shower, lucky for me) and asked her the same questions.
Finally, after a delay that was just long enough to make me the most hated person on the bus, they cleared me, but only reluctantly, and I was on my way.
Polar bear saddle in hand, I went off in search of a McDonald’s hamburger, which I was unable to procure because a fraud flag had been raised on my debit card on account of some bloke who apparently was trying to use it to buy a hamburger in Canada…a problem it eventually took three phone calls and twelve hours to resolve.
That problem fixes, with polar bear saddle and computer in hand, I went off with my sweetie Eve to work, where I soon found that my Yahoo IM account was locked on account of some bloke with a Canadian IP address trying to access it, my LiveJournal was flagged on account of some bloke with a Canadian IP address trying to access it, my AOL…but you get the idea.
I’ve had to spend much of the day dealing with the fallout of some bloke with a Canadian IP address stomping all over my digital life–that is, when I haven’t been fighting off Kurgan raiders, doing battle with polar bears, treating my feet for frostbite, building igloos, or looking out over the desolate, frozen expanse of steppe beneath the floating cloud-city of Vancouver.
Anyway, I’m in Vancouver, and apparently some of the local poly crowd is hosting a get-together at The Pint, a pub located deep in the bowels of the Kurgan district. It starts at 7:30 PM on Wednesday, March 13, and anyone who happens to be local and not preparing for battle with the raiders of the North is welcome. The address is 455 Abbott Street, and I’d totally embed a Google map if I could figure out how to do it.