The Maple Leaf Lounge

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous' started by Avro Arrow, Mar 14, 2018.

  1. Owain Taggart

    Owain Taggart Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2009
    Location:
    Northern Ontario, Canada

    That must have made for an interesting story! :lol:

    Speaking of interesting CBSA stories.... My Dad is a telescope maker. He'd built a large trailer-mounted 22-Inch telescope in the early 80's, and the border officers didn't quite know what to make of it. The large tube was painted in bright colours and almost conveyed the looks of a circus canon. It's one thing to handle things that are common, but if something is unique, it completely throws them off. They'd asked him to pull off to the side so that they could figure out how to handle this case, but once they were satisfied it posed no threat, they allowed him through. When he got to his destination, ie the same place I'd been to this past week, it was one of the first telescopes to offer up views of Halley's Comet.

    That telescope can be seen here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Star_party

    Another related story featuring this telescope, featured him driving down the highway while another man in another vehicle rolled down his window to ask what it was, and after being told it was a telescope, he slowed down to get a better look, then sped back up and he had more to say. He thought it was so big it couldn't possibly be a telescope, that my Dad was pulling his leg.
     
    Avro Arrow likes this.
  2. Timewalker

    Timewalker Cat-lovin', Star Trekkin' Time Lady Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2007
    Location:
    In many different universes, simultaneously.
    Try being the King and Queen of an SCA kingdom that spans territory in both Canada and the U.S. (An Tir used to comprise Washington, Oregon, Idaho, BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and the Territories).

    The King and Queen at that time were American, and headed to an SCA tournament in Canada. Naturally the King has all his armor and weapons with him, their tent is a big fancy pavilion, and they took their thrones.

    Try explaining all this to the customs agents... you're part of a medieval re-creation organization and are the current monarchs (who change every 6 months), you've been invited to a tournament and feast, you need your thrones for ceremonial purposes and don't plan to sell them, ditto the armor and swords (fighting sword made of rattan; ceremonial sword is never used for fighting)...

    Finally the customs agents let them go, and labeled the armor and swords as "athletic equipment."

    And then they were tasked with dealing with the rest of the people from the southern reaches of An Tir who were also going to this tournament, and most of them were carrying armor, swords, etc.

    An Tir is now a completely American kingdom, as the Canadian portion spent years as the Principality of Avacal and is now a separate kingdom. So no more cross-border hassles.
     
  3. Owain Taggart

    Owain Taggart Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2009
    Location:
    Northern Ontario, Canada
    It baffles me just seeing you describe it. I can imagine the border didn't know what to do with it.
     
  4. Marc

    Marc Fleet Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2003
    Location:
    Shinning Waters
    Another CBSA story involved the great aunt with a new microwave she'd bought in the U.S.

    Told the boarder guys that her nephew had been asked to get it out the car as it was a present for some-one had failed to do.

    And they believed her.
     
  5. Timewalker

    Timewalker Cat-lovin', Star Trekkin' Time Lady Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2007
    Location:
    In many different universes, simultaneously.
    Yep. SCA culture is a bit weird if you're not used to it. I got to the point where it was no big deal at all to put on a costume and stroll down the street to the bus stop if going to a local demo, or on a quick errand if we were doing an event and ran out of something and had to go buy some real quick.

    Even if you aren't a fighter, you pick up knowledge about it, because it's one of the common topics of conversation. When I organized events I just deputized a couple of people to take care of organizing the archery and heavy fighting (the stuff done with swords), as my part of it ended with renting the venue where it was to happen. I actively participated more in feast organization, helping to work on banners, and made some of the desserts for said feasts. It's been over 20 years since I was active, but I still have my costumes and feast gear.
     
  6. Owain Taggart

    Owain Taggart Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2009
    Location:
    Northern Ontario, Canada
    This is probably where you would want to document everything you're bringing and why in order to more easily explain the intent to boarder officials and to cut down on the time needed for them to sort everything out.
     
  7. Timewalker

    Timewalker Cat-lovin', Star Trekkin' Time Lady Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2007
    Location:
    In many different universes, simultaneously.
    I'm pretty sure they started doing this after the incident I mentioned. Mind you, this was back in the '90s, before everything got so complicated and people got so suspicious of things they weren't familiar with.

    The SCA really does take safety seriously. No armor or weapon can be used in combat without being inspected by the marshals, and if there's a problem it has to be fixed immediately. Food safety is stressed, and there's a reason I took a flashlight with me to camping events: Using a candle to light the way to/from and inside an outhouse is a REALLY bad idea, as it is not at all safe. If you trip or forget that you're wearing something with fuller sleeves or longer length than you'd normally wear, you can accidentally set yourself on fire (which did happen at one event, but fortunately the guy who was stupid enough to use a candle inside an outhouse managed to put it out right away).
     
  8. Owain Taggart

    Owain Taggart Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2009
    Location:
    Northern Ontario, Canada
    Which kind of makes you wonder how many people got burned back in the day just trying to go to the outhouse while using a candle. And yeah, the flashlight was a definite improvement over the candle! :D
     
  9. Timewalker

    Timewalker Cat-lovin', Star Trekkin' Time Lady Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2007
    Location:
    In many different universes, simultaneously.
    I would imagine that most people probably used a lantern and there would have been a hook to hang it on.

    I remember my first camping event... my friend and I were walking along a path in the dark, as we intended to go to the bardic circle (huge campfire where people sit around it in a circle and sing songs or tell stories). He berated me for using a flashlight to see the path (it was actually the penlight I normally used when I did my theatre work and had to be in the wings; there's not much light there and you can't have anything that would be visible beyond the sight lines so the audience would see).

    It's a damn good thing I had that little flashlight with me. Not half a dozen steps later we noticed that someone had pitched their tent so one of the ropes extended partway into the path. We would have tripped over it if I hadn't had the flashlight.
     
  10. Owain Taggart

    Owain Taggart Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2009
    Location:
    Northern Ontario, Canada
    Whoever set up that tent doesn't seem to have been the brightest. I'm surprised the organizers didn't do something about it. Setting up to be right in the path would constitute a violation where I go camping. Flashlights can be both a blessing and a curse though. If they are too bright, they can fall into being useless for their purposes and actually blind you with all the extra light they produce. And if you let your eyes get dark-adapted, you can train your eyes to see fairly well in the dark, not to mention enjoy the night sky.
     
  11. Timewalker

    Timewalker Cat-lovin', Star Trekkin' Time Lady Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2007
    Location:
    In many different universes, simultaneously.
    We were renting the Boy Scouts camp at Sylvan Lake for the weekend, for a Crown Tournament. It's a heavily-wooded area, and yeah, someone should have noticed that tent encroaching on the path.

    My flashlight was not that bright. As mentioned, I normally used it to see what I was doing when working in the wings in the theatre, as the light there is very dim and blue. I was a dresser for one actor in Camelot and did props and a bit of unofficial dressing help for one of the actors in The Music Man (he really did need help with one of those 30-seconds-or-less quick changes but wasn't high enough on the cast totem pole to ask for an assigned dresser; I noticed he needed help to transform from a businessman to a farmer, so I held the light so he could see what he was doing, handed him his pitchfork, and off he went to do his scene).'

    So the flashlight had to be bright enough to see what I was doing with knots and buttons and velcro, but not bright enough to interfere with the stage crew or what the audience might see. It worked fine for navigating a path at the campground. I would not dare to rely solely on night-vision to get around that place.
     
  12. Owain Taggart

    Owain Taggart Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2009
    Location:
    Northern Ontario, Canada
    The vision of transforming from a businessman to a farmer must have been a sight to behold! :D
     
  13. Timewalker

    Timewalker Cat-lovin', Star Trekkin' Time Lady Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2007
    Location:
    In many different universes, simultaneously.
    Quick change from suit & vest to coveralls, different hat, roll up the sleeves, and hand him a pitchfork, all in less than a minute (some quick changes need to happen in less than 30 seconds). There are some people who have multiple roles in some plays, as it doesn't make sense to have every tiny little thing played by a separate actor if the part is only a minute or less in one scene. The businessman character had lines. The farmer just had to stand there, beside his wife, while holding a pitchfork and had no lines.

    In this case, the actor played both one of the businessmen on the train coming into River City and a farmer, in back-to-back scenes. There wasn't time for him to go downstairs to the dressing room and change, so he had to do it in the stage right wings. There's never enough room or enough light to do this easily, as the stage crew and their notes take priority and actors get shoved aside unless they're ready to enter the scene. I learned years previously that if an actor needs a bit of extra help, they should have it as it helps avoid late entrances, dropped or forgotten props or costume pieces, or even accidents. Plus, I'd worked with this actor before, on Guys & Dolls and West Side Story. He always appreciated any extra help.

    The stage manager usually doesn't give a crap about this as it's not her department. Priority for dressers goes to the leads, and this guy was nowhere near that tier of the cast. The stage crew wouldn't help him and I have no idea who the costume crew were on that show.

    There's sometimes a jockeying for room that goes on with various crews, and results in a bit of arguments over what constitutes a prop and what constitutes a costume piece. In Camelot, I argued that since I was responsible for sending Lancelot out on the stage properly dressed, that should include making sure he had his dagger and sword - since there were times when they had to be sheathed or in scabbards, which were costume elements (I was literally the only person on the costume crew who had ever been part of any medieval history re-creation group; it was shocking to discover that some of my colleagues on the crew had no clue at all what the different pieces of armor were called or where they went; I'd say "hand me those greaves," and they'd go "Huh? What's that? Where does it go?" and would try to have the actor put something on his arms that were supposed to go on his legs, or the other way around.

    By that time I'd spent long enough in the SCA to know this stuff, even though I've never been a fighter. You just pick it up by listening to the people who are, and there are University of Ithra courses in how to be a marshal at the tournaments.

    Of course nowadays there are people who make YT videos about the practical everyday aspects of medieval life. My favorites are Modern History TV and Shadiversity.
     
  14. arch101

    arch101 Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    May 3, 1999
    Location:
    Quincy, MA
    Visited my girlfriends fam in Vancouver last week. WHAT a beautiful city but it's downright tragic what the real estate situation is there. People get $1.2m for an average sized house and can't afford a new one.
     
  15. Timewalker

    Timewalker Cat-lovin', Star Trekkin' Time Lady Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2007
    Location:
    In many different universes, simultaneously.
    There are dumps being sold for a million. Obviously the only valuable aspect of such sites is the land, and they plan to build a better home.

    Even the smaller cities and towns around Vancouver are becoming unaffordable.
     
  16. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    Location:
    Confederation of Earth
    Are Canadians not subject to random covid testing at the border like foreigners are?

    Look, I hate to keep harping on this, but...even though arrivecan does look a bit daunting, I would gladly fill it out if ordered to do so. But I still can't risk the random test. I mean, I love Canada and miss it terribly, but if there's even the slightest chance that I'll be pulled out of line, tested, and forced to quarantine...that's a risk I can't afford to take. If I have to isolate, what then? Where do I go? What do I do? I don't know anybody up there, there's nobody I can stay with.

    I think I will just have to wait it out until they stop the random testing. Because not only do I not want to spend my entire vacation in quarantine, I don't want to get fired when I get home because of possibly having to quarantine longer than my allotted vacation time.

    sorry about this, guys. I must apologize for derailing your thread by being a whiny tourist. Of course your country can do absolutely whatever it wants, and it's not my place to question it. But like I said, until they stop the random tests, I just can't take the risk. I will gladly use arrivecan if I have to, but the random tests...can't go down that road. :(
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2022
  17. Timewalker

    Timewalker Cat-lovin', Star Trekkin' Time Lady Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2007
    Location:
    In many different universes, simultaneously.
    This thread is for Canadian issues, so don't worry. We like you and we're happy to explain stuff, as long as we know wtf we're talking about.

    The thing is, the government keeps flip-flopping on its covid protocols. Right now I have no idea what the rules are, so all I can suggest is that you check the rules often and if you use any kind of travel agent or other kind of information page, check that often.

    Quarantine is in a hotel, at your expense. No, it's not an ideal situation, and there are horror stories of people being denied contact with their families and substandard food and medical care. But I'd hope those stories are an anomaly now, rather than common, as they've had time to work out whatever glitches there were.

    I know that I'm still not traveling - the only places I go are for essential medical reasons and banking that can't be done online. I haven't even been to the local mall in over 3 years. And that's with being triple-vaxxed and a flu shot.
     
    Mr. Laser Beam likes this.
  18. Owain Taggart

    Owain Taggart Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2009
    Location:
    Northern Ontario, Canada
    Nah, don't worry. You're always welcome in here. :)

    I understand the concern though. It was one of our worries when for when we came back through, but to be honest, I think it's a practice that they've started to phase out. I think the random testing was more of a thing when the severity was higher. On the other hand, there are some things that apply to only certain methods of entry. For example, I see that as of July 19, mandatory random testing is resuming, but it only applies to air travellers. But for the most part, I think that if you have all the necessary info submitted, I don't really think you should have an issue.
     
    Mr. Laser Beam likes this.
  19. DEWLine

    DEWLine Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2003
    Location:
    Ottawa, Canada
    I am angered more and more as the provincial government continues to relax the safety protocols. I have family in long-term care, owning/renting a car is not an option for me, so public transit is it. And the mask rules on public transit have been shut down. There's still pre-recorded PSAs playing every so often on the buses and trains recommending masking up, but that is all. All of this makes my travels more dangerous to the people at the LTC facility - residents, staff, other "designated care partners" - than it needs to be.
     
    Avro Arrow likes this.
  20. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    Location:
    Confederation of Earth
    RIP Queen Elizabeth II :(