Don't Say This When Entering The United States

When going through airport security on my way to Washington I was asked the purpose of my visit.  I hesitated and said it was to visit the historic sites.  That was true, but I would never have come to Washington just to go sight seeing this year. My visit was solely inspired by the Reason Rally.

That reply felt a bit wimpy - this visitor should be proudly proclaiming Reason Rally support at every avenue.  But,there is a little survival instinct.  The worst that could happen would be to deny me entry and all my money spent on air fare and rooms would be lost. 

I saw a good Canadian contingent down at the rally and it seems nobody got turned away.  But, one upstanding looking gentleman approached me on seeing my Canadian tee shirt and asked me about my border crossing.  He was traveling with his son in a car and his answer to the border guard referred to the Reason Rally. 

He was asked to pull over to a special spot and had his car torn apart for about 40 minutes. His theory was using the word "Rally" was objectionable.  Let's hope it wasn't the use of the word "Reason"

I'm curious what other people said when crossing the border to attend this great event.

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Comment by Loren Miller on April 18, 2012 at 8:00pm

Canadian Eh!-theists!!!  THAT is PRECIOUS!  EXCELLENT!

Comment by Lorien on April 18, 2012 at 7:53pm

We drove across with a group of 4 and the driver did say that we were going to a convention which brought up work questions and how the 4 of us were related...... I found telling the truth the best method for crossing regularly but I would have phased it a bit differently. The questions asked are usually phrased to get you to slip up.

I liked the flag in the middle there! I didn't get to meet them and thought, how did they get permission to use a pole for it - they were not allowed but maybe for flags.... I had a similar sized Canadian flag in my backpack ready to fly but felt that one up front in the middle was enough.......

I was actually the only one there wearing the Canadian CFI black T shirt "Extraordinary claims" campaign that got stalled from a year ago......  Some noticed it.......

I found a picture of the guy flying the flag - does anyone know who that was?

Comment by Richard ∑wald on March 26, 2012 at 2:50pm

Yeah, I missed my babe all day too. She had to work Saturday.

Comment by Russell Pangborn on March 26, 2012 at 2:37pm

No I was by myself for most of the day.  A few Canadians chatted me up when they saw my tee shirt, but I had to cover up with the rain and the cold.  I was looking forward to meeting you but no text ever came through. It was tough attending this by myself - my wife has trouble just going to a movie alone - I have no problem with that - but this was tough being alone at the hotel Friday and a lot of Saturday until a libertarian atheist and his wife came and sat with me at the bar and invited me to have dinner with them and go to the after party.

All borders are difficult to cross - I just got in trouble with an overbearing Canadian border guard a couple of weeks ago. 

Still I'm interested what people said or didn't say when crossing the border to this event.

Comment by Richard ∑wald on March 26, 2012 at 2:20pm

Dude, were you with the guys that had the sign, "Canadian Eh-theists", that was cool. What was uncool was whoever had that Canadian flag at the front blocking everybody's view of center-stage who was behind… that sucked (for me), I had to answer to many around me, who know I'm Canadian with all the, "I thought Canadians were polite?" stuff.

I don't know if you were with that bunch, ...Just saying' is all.

I crossed the border two years ago by bus, they have guns. The guys "guarding" the bus and inspecting luggage had M-16s. Anyway, when I was interviewed by the border guard inside, she asked me why I was visiting, …and I told them I was going to see a friend in N. Carolina. She asked how long I was staying, I told them three weeks, maybe a month. The guard (a female, ….w/a gun), smiled and said, "Ahhhh… is this friend a girlfriend?" I kinda' paused wondering what to say and then said, "yeah…". She winked and gave me my passport.

The guy inspecting my bags asked to look at my '58 strat (guitar) and asked if he could play it, I said "no problem". Then, he got to the "Anything to declare?" list, and I pulled my baggie of hand-blended tobacco out (I smoke a pipe), and said, "Just this…" His eyebrows raised and he said, that's tobacco I hope. So I stuffed a bowl and lit up, …a lovely cherry - chocolate cloud came forth and he smiled, and said, "have a great time in the US".

Compared to the horror stories I've heard about Americans (and Canadians) encountering rude Canadian Customs asshats, …that was a pleasant experience.

Not what you're looking for, but hey, …what can you do?

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