Sneaks Sans Frontieres

Aug 31, 2009 at 5:30 pm
Show: The Hangover, the caviar of immature-dudes-take-a-Vegas-roadtrip comedies, watched as late as possible in a theater in Vancouver's Chinatown to stay awake long enough to catch a red-eye flight back to the States.

Food: Andres Baby Canadian Champagne, a British Columbian wine of low alcohol content and questionable vintage.

: Surprisingly easy. Even though the movie theater had prominently placed (and polite) signs prohibiting outside food and drink, nobody looked twice at my international sneaking tote. In fact, I was one of the few people in the theater without a backpack.

This past week, I traveled to lovely Vancouver with the Doctor, my long-time mysterious gentleman caller. I was absolutely there on vacation and not, as some insidious rumormongers have suggested, laying low after realizing that the recipe for a solid-state vodka gibson is chemically identical to napalm in an unfortunate conflagration. Never happened. Those scorch marks are a natural phenomenon and should be ignored.

Whenever I go somewhere new and then try to explain it to other people, I unconsciously transcribe whatever information I'm trying to relay over the culturally indelible framework of dialogue from Pulp Fiction. Anyone reading this blog is already privy to the shameful things I do in the dark of a movie theater, so while I try to hide my inner Tarantino from people I want to think well of me, I'm free to those who already know otherwise. Unblinking electric eye: It sees all, so I hide none!
Jules: OK, now, tell me about the polite Canadians?

Vincent: What do you want to know?

Jules: Well, they're really are as polite as people joke about, right?

Vincent: Yeah, they're polite, but not a hundred percent polite. You're still going to get hassled for change on the streets, but mostly by broke American backpackers.

Jules: But the Canadians are polite?

Vincent: Yeah, it breaks down like this: servers in restaurants are always genuinely happy to see you, and when the bus is full or out of service, it actually flashes the word "sorry" on the front and back display. Everybody -- I mean everybody -- thanks the bus driver when they get off at their stop.

Jules: That did it, man -- I'm fuckin' goin' and that's all there is to it.

Vincent: You'll dig it the most. But you know what the funniest thing about Vancouver is?

Jules: What?

Vincent: It's the little differences. A lotta the same foods we got here, they got there, but there they're a little different.

Jules: Examples?

Vincent: Well, in Vancouver, all the restaurants that don't have bars close at 10 p.m., even on the weekends. They also don't seem to have a concept of Sunday brunch, even in trendy downtown areas.

Jules: They don't eat brunch at all?

Vincent: Nah, too busy hiking and being wholesome. Probably something to do with the metric system.

Jules: So what do they eat?

Vincent: Fish and chips, except they use salmon instead of cod.

Jules: Salmon and chips. How about the Asian food?

Vincent: Asian food is Asian food, except the dim sum and sushi are better because it comes fresh outta the ocean down the street.

Jules: What about the Italian food?

Vincent: I dunno, we didn't go to that neighborhood because we at two meals a day at this bakery in Chinatown.