Calgary Expo 2012 Fancy Photo Comic Part 1

“Winter Is Coming” shirts are now IN THE STORE!!! [based on this comic]

I am dead, Calgary. You killed me with your booze. Also with your meats. That bacon wrapped corn on the cob was NO JOKE. Neither was the pulled pork poutine, which A) Is an actual thing, B) Would either be illegal in the states or elected to public office and C) Is transcendently delicious. Seriously, Calgary, with your meats, meat sauces, oil derricks and cowboy hats I wasn’t entirely sure I had left Texas. I mean, sure, it was cold and the people were polite, unarmed and generally in good health, but a lot of it was like Texas. Ok, the hats were the main thing. Also, the con took place inside a rodeo arena. Luckily the two events were not happening simultaneously.

This Fancy Photo Comic features my friend and convention adventuring partner Angela, the Blind Ferret crew and a guest appearance by Josh Cagan who was at the con to do a panel about the 10th anniversary of Undergrads.

COMMENTERS: In your international travels, have you ever found little pockets that felt like home? A BBQ joint in Calgary might as well be a portal directly to Dallas except for the lack of US beers, and flagrant racism. Have you ever been pressured or otherwise encouraged to take part in a local custom while traveling? What?! Binge drinking is too a custom!

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  1. When I was young my father took a business trip to Tokyo. Apparently it's considered highly rude, and disrespectful to not drink Sake if someone has pored it for you. So the guys at the office in Tokyo took him out, and kept pouring him Sake over and over again. he called the house in the middle of the evening Tokyo time, not remembering that there was a time difference. and was confused on why i was awake at such a late hour.

    • Alcohol will do that to ya. Or maybe he thought you were in the same timezone as you. Sake has time distillation effects.

  2. I was once in Seattle for 4 days, and the whole time I was there people kept making me drink this black tar – which they called "cophee" or something.
    Certainly not any coffee I'D ever drink on purpose.

    My weak milks were no match for the blackness.

    • first off, love your name (it's my favorite cartoon ever, freakin artwork man)

      also that last sentence…….i mean i don't wanna say it because it's really worn outbut,

      that is totally what she said

  3. You can drink beer or wine at 16 in Germany, so of course we spent a lot of time at bars, when I was on a High School exchange trip. Learned quite a few drinking games, and taught them quarters. Did not like the beer (still don't) but even the wine by the glass was excellent compared to what restaurants offer in North America.

  4. I am just kinda sad that I can't contribute. But there is a tradition or custom, I guess, whenever someone comes over to visit me in my desert of a state. First, we consume delicious homemade meat stuffs in a folded and hardened tortilla. The meat is periodically drenched in ketchup during the cooking process. Anyone that visits gets this specialty. After consuming our weight in delicious cow-thigh, we load up the guns and head to the range up in the hills near the casino. We always go down to the pistol range first. The little ones will compete with their .22's, and the rest of us pop off some rounds. It's a nice range. A friend of mine who lives up in Oklahoma visited last friday and went through this custom, so to speak. It was fun, and we then headed to the rifle range, as usual. We popped off some more rounds, then we had some fun with a routine called a "mad minute." A mad minute is basically a minute of non-stop automatic gunfire. This happens every time some one comes to visit me. Afterwards, we collect the shells, which is the polite thing to do, and try to make it in the little bucket in the back of my SUV. Once we get home, I show the little ones how to clean and strip the .22's and then get to work cleaning the other guns while watching Wheel of Fortune. Then we spend the rest of the night playing poker with potato chips as poker chips.

    • Oh, and NM has this weird thing with pouring red or green chili on everything. The NM experience, I guess.

      • I have another one! My dad once told me when he was in the Navy, the ship he was serving on had gotten a new cook a month after he was stationed there. A few of the officers told the cook that they were going to pass the equator, and that it was marked by red buoys. One of the officers told him he was to wait until he saw the buoys before he could go back in. They did, in fact, cross the equator over night, but the cook never saw any buoys. This happened a lot on Naval vessels sailing in the Pacific, from what my dad told me.

        • That was all they did? My husband (along with his CO and many other crew members) was hazed to hell and back when his ship crossed the equator. Some kind of right of passage–he even has a T-shirt commemorating his initiation as a shellback.

          I should mention, my husband served on a destroyer in the Pacific Fleet; he was stationed in Pearl Harbor.

      • Since coming here from California, I have noticed that! Not that I live in a big place, a small mountain town of about 10,000 people. I should have guessed you were from NM. The first time I saw someone come into the convenience store in which I worked with a six shooter strapped to their belt was a bit of an eye opener to a kid who'd lived in California the last dozen years.

  5. I remember traveling to Scotland and then shortly after going to Germany. People seemed very edger to be polite to me and would often offer me very…very tall glasses of beer.

    From what I remember, it was good beer.

  6. *Dusts off Ood ball*
    We will sing to you, Joel. The universe will sing you to your sleep. This song is ending. But the story never ends.

    ($5 says he regenerates into a Sohmer look alike… or something ginger.)

  7. Ugh, why people remove my comments, I will never know. Any who, when you visit New Mexico, never try their "food" when it is drenched in red or green chili. New Mexicans have a strange fascination with red or green chili. And they put it on EVERYTHING. Hamburgers, tacos, hotdogs, etc. I will never understand why.

      • Thank you! Maybe because of how long it was…. or maybe because it had a trademark name in it and thought I was advertising…

      • It IS good, but the stuff they put it on. "Waiter, I would like a hotdog. Oh, and drench it in red chili to the point where all I can see and taste is red chili. Can I have some green chile in a cup as well?" It's good, but they use it to an excess.

  8. I've never been anywhere with cool traditions. I'd love to someday though. I'd also love to tried pulled pork poutine. I'm going to hit up a Canadian friend of mine for a recipe now

  9. O.O



    also how much for some of them t-shirts man, hit me up

  10. Last summer I found a wonderful Irish pub in Montpellier, France. The staff were great, the beer incredible, and I spent every afternoon I could there. There's nothing like that at home but I felt at home there.

    The accents were fun too. When a French man learns English from the Irish it creates a lilt I'd never heard before.

  11. Thanks to going to 5ish RvBTO events, Canada is a magical place where friends drink for hours and carry cardboard tube flags around Toronto like a mini-army.

  12. Wait, you were in a Calgary BBQ joint *without* flagrant racism? You must name this mystical place so I can have a refuge if I ever visit.

  13. Though you may find it odd to find bits of home so far north, especially when you live in the south end of our mighty land, do recall that to our Canadian bretheren Calgary is in the south as well. Canadian north is hardcore stuff. Michiganders urinate in their snowmobile suits thinking of Canadian north.

  14. Joel, I'm an American living in Japan so have plenty of opportunity to partake of local customs:

    Eat weird, fishy raw things? Check!
    Eat weird, grilled things while swilling Asahi beer and sake outdoors under cherry-blossomed trees? Check!
    Drive on the wrong–er right–side of the road? Check!
    Ride the rails while packed like sardines in a can with thousands of my "closest" Japanese "friends"? Check!
    Remove my shoes upon entering someone's apartment or home? Check!
    Bathe naked with a bunch of naked strangers (male & female) in boiling hot, lava heated water? Check!

    Ah, and so much more!

    • I can never drink Asahi Extra dry again, because of that. =Þ
      Sake, fine. Shochu, extra fine. Asahi Extra Dry, I pass, please let me pass.

  15. I've had the opportunity to both travel AND to work for an international summer program in the U.S. Abroad in 2008, I got to teach Croatians to play "Never Have I Ever," and I loved visiting each and every "Heurigen," or wine bar, that my Austrian hosts saw fit to take me to. I stopped counting at 3. In one day. Here in the U.S. with my program, last summer four Germans showed us the many, MANY ways a beer bottle can be opened (for us, Coke bottles, in mixed company with high school students); I stopped counting at 15. I hope to actually visit Germany someday and learn more!

  16. Ooooh Canadian North. Even in the southern North (like…Georgian Bay) it gets cold. Below-freezing-in mid-May-evenings cold. But Joel, I'm glad you enjoyed your experience in our wonderful Mooseland we call Canada. Maybe we'll see you closer to Ontario in the future.

  17. Ah, I know where you've been, those corn cobs are good. And I imagine it was a proper place to escape from the throngs of disgruntled cosplayers turned away from your glory at the expo.
    if you go out east to the maritimes, you may be privy to the customs of rum, speaking newfie, mummering, and dipping crackers directly into butter.

  18. One time as a kid, when my family was visiting Ireland & we weren't at a brewery, distillery, or castle, we walked around Dublin & there's a little piece of America there. I think they had a big picture of Captain America there! Of course, this happened when I was 8, & my childhood memory is fuzzy in some parts.

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