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Old 08-30-2007, 09:53 AM   #31 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
It's hard to even know where to begin as there are so many, but lets try a few:

Beer can be bought pretty much anywhere in the US. Gas stations, stores, corner shops, you name it. I thought Alberta had really lax liquor laws, such as being able to buy liquor in a separate annex of a grocery store unlike a provincial run LCB outlet.
Not in every state. In Colorado you can only buy 3.2 beer in grocery stores. It sucks. The real stuff is only at liquor stores. Liqour stores are closed on Sundays. Though you can still go to the bar. While Modelo is not the strongest (Mexican) beer, I am surprised you found it that week. I wonder if it was the victim of some sort of 3.2 thing. I have no idea what Washington Liquor laws are. Even worse liquor laws are in Utah. 'nuf said about that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
Not seeing things in French. In Alberta we totally ignore the French "side" of our products but oddly enough we were conscious of it not being on your packaging.
That's cause we have Mexicans!
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Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
Energy drinks galore. Wow, I mean...you guys have A LOT of energy drinks. Even a Clamato juice energy drink (which was totally awesome), weird energy Pepsi, and Envigas. Here, all our energy drinks taste like Redbulls with the exception of Jolt colas.
No kidding. It's out of hand.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
You have a very large Latin community (Mexican?) which is really weird to see. We drove into this one town called Brewster, Washington and noticed there were no signs in English. Not one. We stopped at a gas station to grab a drink, noticed everyone was speaking Spanish in the store and were giving us odd looks, like we did not belong there. We found this absolutely fascinating as there is nothing like this back in Alberta. When we stopped in Omak, several people asked us what was going through our heads stopping in Brewster. So this was our first dose of intentional cultural segregation (with the exception of Indian reserves and Hutterite colonies, of course).
Generally the populations are not segregated like that. I live around plenty of latinos. Yeah mostly from Mexico. Of course there are towns that are mostly spanish speaking. Sounds like you found one. It's funny, often time there is no real reason for one commmunity to be predominantly of one race other than they are of that race. So be it.
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Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
I am still trying to wrap my head around American liquor laws. We figured that we would stay in Wenatchee for the day and have a good piss-up. So we went into a store with Spanish signage all over it and were quite impressed with seeing your beer beside the baby diapers, lol. Anyways, there were a lot of different brands to be had, mostly American and the odd case of import Canadian beer like Kokanee and Molson. Wanting to try something new, we asked the fellows working by the beer cooler what beer they would recommend. Their choice was Modello and so we bought a case for $10 (Wow, your beer is cheap!!!!! In Canada, my trunk AND backseat would be loaded to the nuts with beer at $10). So, we got back to the hotel room and noticed that the alcohol percentages were not labeled on the cans. This bothered us somewhat, but we drank anyways. Not so much of a buzz after drinking the case which has never happened to me before so I was upset with the fact that while the beer was cheap, it was very expensive near-beer. We were relieved to find that you had microbeers with labeled percentages and were certainly pleased with the taste and effects as such. So why do most beers not have percentage labels on them, but after a certain percentage, they do? Some law? Canadian beers use percentage points as a sales gimmick, some beers hitting 12% alcohol. So we have grown accustomed to checking alcohol content on our cans and bottles. Weird, eh?
I don't know what else to say that I haven't already said about liqour laws. It varies by state. I was all messed up when I went to New York this summer.
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Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
Dialects and mannerisms. Canadians defuse confrontations (ie accidentally bumping into someone or leaving a shopping cart in the way for example) so we are inclined to apologize and accommodate the situation. Here is an example: A Canadian bumps into another in a shopping center. A sincere apology is given which is then followed up with either another apology, or confirmation that the apology has been sincerely accepted, like "Oh, that's alright, my fault!". Both parties leave without any negative feelings. This applies even if the other person was the one that caused the initial incident; you just apologize. It is something culturally wired in us (not EVERYONE is like that, but you really stand out if your rude). In the States, If I bumped into someone or vice versa, I would sincerely apologize but I was always replied to with a lazy "Mmmmhmmmm...." (Wow, even if they caused it!!). Perhaps this is part of a local dialect (like how we can tend to accentuate with "Eh" to stress a point) but we were just horrified at what seemed quite rude. You just never hear that up here used like that. This may sound odd, but that was the absolute hardest thing to adjust to; the "mmmmhmmm".
I don't necessarily know if that was rude, or just the "it doesn't mean anything" attitude. Generally I'll say something like "excuse me" if I bump into someone. Other times, especially in crowds I just move along. Kind of an unspoken thing. Granted, plenty of rude people here. So not sure.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
Going into stores while the clerks are on the phones only to have them ignore you and continue talking. This was all so amazingly odd! One guy talked on the phone for almost 20 minutes while I stood in front of him. This seemed "normal" I guess?
Not normal at all. Sounds like a rude jerk. I would have been pissed.
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Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
Adjusting to the way your currency looks was kind of hard because it all looks the same at a quick glance. I think the lady at Starbucks must have figured I got off the short bus as I was just staring at the wad of bills in my hand, lol!
No surprises there.
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Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
Fuel is dirt cheap! I actually filled my car with $20!!!! (compared to $45 in Canada).
I know. We bitch now when it gets up to $3 a gallon and we still have it good.
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Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
Getting ID'd for liquor was a blast, lol!
Glad you enjoyed it!
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Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
Your skate and snowboard shops are REALLY great!
Thanks!
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Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
[*]Walmart carries a pill called Alieve, one of the most awesome painkillers I've taken. Sadly, they do not sell them in Canada, so I bought 8 bottles of this amazing stuff!
I am an advil fan myseslf.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
[*]Food portions are HUUUUGGGE!!!! We went to Kentucky Fried Chicken and this is what your restaurants have that ours do not: mashed potatoes, fry wedges, beans, biscuits (more on that next) and this weird "bowl" concoction that had all of the above thrown in with gravy all over it. We bought a family meal, and while in Canada we would receive one bag, in the States we received three. I felt like we had left a grocery store. The chicken peices were so big portions had to be held with BOTH hands. That was a BIG F_CKING CHICKEN!!! I mean...they were HUGE peices! Awesome value but we suffered dearly for it later as it was so high in fat content (washing down greasy chicken with American microbrews makes for a story not meant to be repeated). You have very large food portions down there![/LIST]
And why does America have an obesity problem?
A friend was visiting from Vancouver this summer. She couldn't believe the portions and how inexpensive it was.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
I could go on and on about good and bad things but this post turned out much longer than it should have already. Don't think I'm slamming the States here, I'm just looking at the situation as a foreigner with likely equally odd cultural habits. To just poke my head into a couple of towns even some Americans have probably never heard of, certainly does not qualify me to say that this what all America is like, but it was noticeably different to a degree that I truly felt like an outsider there. Yet, I found that when I got back to Canada and the experiences settled in, I wanted to go back and see more of it. I'm thinking Montana next and this time I know which beer to buy, lol!
Nah, I didn't think you were slamming the US. It is what it is. There are some fantastic things about living here, and there are some problems. Just like anywhere else eh?
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Old 08-30-2007, 10:36 AM   #32 (permalink)
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Yeah, I'm really looking forward to coming back, but your Customs guards can be pretty intense, lol! Last year I "accidentally" entered the States. Here is the story: My common-law wife, my son and I had never really been in close proximity to the US/Canada border. While vacationing in Kelowna we decided to go to Penticton, and then Osoyoos and at that stage we said screw it. We wanted to see a Duty-Free shop. We had no actual intentions of heading into the US. Well, we drove up to this automatic gate which let us in without issue, checked out the shop and marvelled at the prices and went to the car to head back. Anyways, we found out very quick that the only way back to the other side of the gate was to proceed through customs. Panic set in for a couple of reasons 1) None of us share a common name, with exception of our son who has a hyphenation of both our names 2)The only supporting documents we had was a drivers licence but nothing stating our son was ours 3)Our car was really beat-up looking and 4)We were on vacation so we had about an ounce of Alberta's finest in our glovebox. Wow, brown trouser moment no less. After about 20 minutes of scrutiny and explaining to the border guard we were in the US by accident, she let us in and told us to enjoy our stay. She asked what we were going to do now so I asked her how to get back into Canada. She was pretty upset that she let us through the border so we could simply turn around and head back. The irony is I had to go through Canadian customs to get back into Canada and went through the whole nth degree again (What do you mean you accidentally entered the US??? Where were you born, how long were you in the US? Who did you visit?). Oh my god, my stomach still does sommersaults upon reflection.
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Old 08-30-2007, 10:45 AM   #33 (permalink)
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That is some funny shite man!
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Old 08-30-2007, 11:17 AM   #34 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slaughterhouse
It's hard to even know where to begin as there are so many, but lets try a few:
[*]Beer can be bought pretty much anywhere in the US. Gas stations, stores, corner shops, you name it. I thought Alberta had really lax liquor laws, such as being able to buy liquor in a separate annex of a grocery store unlike a provincial run LCB outlet.
like KC said, our laws vary by state. some states you can buy beer in gas stations, grocery stores, etc...other states you have to go to liquor stores to get beer. i think Maryland is one such state, but i could be wrong (i drink captain, not beer). and in some states (south carolina) they even have Brew-Threws...it's a drive-thru liquor store, if that isn't an oxymoron. and then beyond that, each county can also carry it's own type of liquor law...such as being a dry county, where NO alcohol can be bought!

Quote:
[*]Not seeing things in French. In Alberta we totally ignore the French "side" of our products but oddly enough we were conscious of it not being on your packaging.
yeah, but we get an option to hear everything in spanish. and sometimes you have to listen to the spanish option before it gives you the option for english. plus all of our atms & such have spanish options.
Quote:
[*]You have a very large Latin community (Mexican?) which is really weird to see. We drove into this one town called Brewster, Washington and noticed there were no signs in English. Not one. We stopped at a gas station to grab a drink, noticed everyone was speaking Spanish in the store and were giving us odd looks, like we did not belong there. We found this absolutely fascinating as there is nothing like this back in Alberta. When we stopped in Omak, several people asked us what was going through our heads stopping in Brewster. So this was our first dose of intentional cultural segregation (with the exception of Indian reserves and Hutterite colonies, of course).
they're not all mexicans & won't take kindly to you generalizing them in such a manner. it's latino, to be politically correct. west coast & east coast are also very different. in the west they get the south americans & here on the east we get a lot of cubans. i hear a lot of el salvador, too.
as for the intentional communities...i could just be ignorant to their secret intentions, but from what i've noticed (aside from the reservations) it's moreso that immigrants come in & settle down in the lower-income areas & then more come & more come & they all shack up together & before you know it, the entire community (not town, but say one part of town) becomes primarily of that nationality. again though, the US is a big area & things are different everywhere you go, so i'm just speaking of how it's seemed to happen around here where i live.


Quote:
[*]Dialects and mannerisms. Canadians defuse confrontations (ie accidentally bumping into someone or leaving a shopping cart in the way for example) so we are inclined to apologize and accommodate the situation. In the States, If I bumped into someone or vice versa, I would sincerely apologize but I was always replied to with a lazy "Mmmmhmmmm...." (Wow, even if they caused it!!). Perhaps this is part of a local dialect (like how we can tend to accentuate with "Eh" to stress a point) but we were just horrified at what seemed quite rude. You just never hear that up here used like that. This may sound odd, but that was the absolute hardest thing to adjust to; the "mmmmhmmm".
remember that everyone's different...even state to state people & dialect are different.

Quote:
[*]Going into stores while the clerks are on the phones only to have them ignore you and continue talking. This was all so amazingly odd! One guy talked on the phone for almost 20 minutes while I stood in front of him. This seemed "normal" I guess?
yeah, that's not cool, nor is it "normal". it's not often that i experience times like that, but i'm not afriad to speak up when it happens & tell them to get off the phone & do their job.

Quote:
[*]Adjusting to the way your currency looks was kind of hard because it all looks the same at a quick glance. I think the lady at Starbucks must have figured I got off the short bus as I was just staring at the wad of bills in my hand, lol!
i had the same reaction to your canadian currency. all the bills were soooo super big! and the f'n amount of change i would get back was really annoying. why anyone would make a dollar into a coin is beyond me!

Quote:
[*]Fuel is dirt cheap! I actually filled my car with $20!!!! (compared to $45 in Canada).
like KC said, and yet we bitch.

Quote:
[*]Getting ID'd for liquor was a blast, lol!
yeah, they're outta control with carding people. i get carded for buying cigarettes more often than i do for buying liquor!? i may not look 29, but i sure as hell don't look under 18!!!

Quote:
[*]Food portions are HUUUUGGGE!!!! The chicken peices were so big portions had to be held with BOTH hands. That was a BIG F_CKING CHICKEN!!! I mean...they were HUGE peices!
exactly why the US has the highest obesity rating in the world. you should see the portions my parents eat! and then they tell me that i don't eat enough!!! i'm like, umm, a portion is only supposed to be about as big as your hand, not the whole damn plate!
and the chicken...chickens don't get that huge...without growth hormones. so next time, stay away from the KFC. i can show you some reeeeally nasty videos of some of their chicken farms
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Old 08-30-2007, 11:19 AM   #35 (permalink)
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I am an advil fan myseslf.
i prefer things that are opiate in nature

for real though, OTC headache relievers don't do squat for me. sometimes they do, but taking a nice narcotic works a hell of a lot better!

that being said, don't think i'm a pharmie junkie, i just think they work better at relieving pain than typical OTC medicines
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Old 08-30-2007, 11:50 AM   #36 (permalink)
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interested in my (limited) perception of (the parts of) canada from when i visited?
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Old 08-30-2007, 12:03 PM   #37 (permalink)
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I worked on a killfloor of a slaughterhouse for 1 1/2 years (hence the name "Slaughterhouse"); I've seen it all, things "moving" when they shouldn't be, etc. We slaughtered 5000 hogs a day (five thousand, no extra zeros accidentally added) in a 9 hour shift and my arm was half cut off in the process (repaired and healed within two years). I've seen pus shoot out of what looked like an otherwise nice looking roast when poked with a knife. Guys playing catch tag with punctured abscesses and brains congeling on helmets during lunch hour. Started my shift every morning to the smell of intestines, blood and shit where, no matter how much steam pressure washing was done, the odour was always prevaled. So I have learned to disassociate with what I know to what I eat a long time ago.
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Old 08-30-2007, 12:37 PM   #38 (permalink)
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Mmmmm, I just ate my lunch. Toe nails and puss....
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Old 08-30-2007, 01:02 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by N~R~G
interested in my (limited) perception of (the parts of) canada from when i visited?
Go for it!
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Old 08-30-2007, 01:57 PM   #40 (permalink)
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Go for it!
haha, now that i think about it i'm not coming up with much. it was 9 years ago & while it's had an impact on my life, i seem to have forgotten a lot of the pertinent details. i do remember the people we encountered on the eastern side (either ottawa or toronto, can't remember which it was) weren't too friendly to us & the city was really dirty. the further west we went the cities got cleaner & the people got nicer.

it was awesome how much food & liquor i could buy with my american money & just the fact that i could buy liquor (being 20 at the time) was really cool. cigarettes were ungodly expensive though...$5 a pack at the time, 9 years ago. i can't even imagine how much they are now! and it was definitely more cost efficient to buy canadian cigarettes, as the american cigs were more expensive & smaller than the canadian ones. and the only american brands they had were marlboro or camel.

this lady in winnipeg overheard us trying to find a hostel & invited my friend & i to stay with her! she let us stay for a week, showed us around winnipeg, introduced us to her friends & just chilled with us, which i thought was really cool considering we were these young dreadlocked kids from the states & she was an older lady with a kid.

we were heading west, but decided to come back to the states after winnipeg. going through the boarder was a bitch & we got pulled aside to get searched, as opposed to going into canada in a car full of 5 people, only the driver's ID was checked with little questions asked.

so yeah, that's about it without going into the full story. it was definitely an interesting trip but i enjoyed it greatly. i'd love to go back & continue the trip where i left off!

Last edited by N~R~G; 08-30-2007 at 02:00 PM.
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