Edmonton notes

The biggest surprise is how many Newfoundland accents I have heard.  There truly is backwards time travel — at least into the 1980s — and it is called the West Edmonton Mall.  The real estate bubble here has yet to pop.  It's a better place to live than to visit.  There is better dim sum than anywhere near NoVa.  I have crossed all the major bridges.  During my stay the weather has been warmer and nicer than back home.  Many new hardcover books cost $32.99 in a Chapters bookstore.  I have a theory that any Thai restaurant attached to a motel is excellent.  I had a conversation with Brad Humphreys and Jane Ruseski as to why an activity must have an intrinsically competitive aspect to qualify as a sport, thus ruling out bass fishing.  "Minus 40" is about the same in either Centigrade or Fahrenheit.  Everyone has treated me very well.

Comments

The same logic rules out golf as a sport. You only "compete" in the sense that you try to get through the course in fewer strokes than other people -- much as one might try to catch more bass than other people. But in neither case is the player strategically engaged against an intelligent adversary. Unless you count the fish.

A quick google search (thai restaurant attached motel) turns up a disproving link on Yelp:
Thai Dishes
2.5 stars (without a single 5 vote) certainly does not indicate excellence!

Ah, yes, the Newfoundlanders. They have been streaming to Alberta's far superior economy for years now. Now all the Saskatchewanians who moved to Calgary are slowly returning to Saskatchewan with the promise of a better economy. We'll see how this holds in the long term.

"But in neither case is the player strategically engaged against an intelligent adversary. Unless you count the fish.'

Why wouldn't you count the fish? I once heard someone say that people minimize fishing by pointing out that you are competing against a really dumb animal. He noted that might be true, but you are also trying to fool a few million years of evolution. Fish aren't supposed to eat platic lures. You have to convince them.

I might also suggest that Tyler spend some time researching the FLW Cup. It's a bass tour that offers a $1 million prize, both the the winner on the water and the winner of the annual fantasy league. It's the first sport of any kind to offer a cool million for the fantasy version.

"The same logic rules out golf as a sport. You only "compete" in the sense that you try to get through the course in fewer strokes than other people." Wrong - that applies only to "stroke play" golf. Real golf - "match play" - is a sport played against one or more opponents.

-40 is *exactly* the same in Celsius and Fahrenheit. No "about" about it.

So *why* are Thai restuarants attached to motels excellent?

The best time to visit Edmonton during the summer, there’s tons of great festivals, particularly the folk music and theatre festivals. Also, it doesn’t get dark until 11pm. Anyone can tell you that the WEM is interesting only because it is such a throwback. On the complete opposite end of the spectrum, Calgary's malls are, on average, better than American ones. For Thai, you should have eaten at Vaphalay, a Laos & Thai restaurant. It’s located in a crappy strip center in a not-so-good part of town (bars on the windows & ubiquitous "No Public Restrooms" sign on front door). Exactly your kind of place. http://www.viphalay.com/

The Canadian prairies didn’t really become open up to large scale settlement until about 100 years ago. In Calgary, perhaps only 30% of the population is “native†, and of most those are first generation. Edmonton is probably only slightly higher percentages. In Fort McMurray, heart of the oil sands, Newfoundlanders make up 20% of the 100k population. It is like living in a modern boom town, stuff you thought only existed in history books. A shame you didn’t take a quick flight up to Fort McMurray to see the oil sands in person. It’s an impressive sight on a scale that cannot be accurately photographed.

I thought Edmonton weirdly overengineered. It seemed they had taken the oil windfall and built some fine infrastructure, but for a much bigger city.

Re Thai/motels, isn't the rule that hotel restaurant food is generally mediocre because they have a captive audience?

"I thought Edmonton weirdly overengineered. It seemed they had taken the oil windfall and built some fine infrastructure, but for a much bigger city."

You must have been driving around at 5:30 am on a Sunday.

Canadian folk singer Stan Roger's song "The Idiot" is about easterners moving to Alberta to work (and also has a strong libertarian beat.

As a transplanted American now in Calgary, I was stunned by the book prices, beer + wine prices, and cheese prices. I'm assuming that Edmonton is the same... except, of course, worse in every way ...

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