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Old 06-03-2015, 08:51 PM   #31
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Mike, you have made me even more appreciative of my last name, which is usually mangled!
Mangled is an unusual last name!
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Old 06-03-2015, 09:22 PM   #32
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It's a convenient alias.
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Old 06-03-2015, 09:34 PM   #33
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Having a common name has its advantages, as in it doesn't give away a lot, so I can use my name as a user name on a web forum, for instance. I think of it as "security through obscurity".

However, once a friend forwarded to me a mug shot of another Michael Lewis who also shared my middle name, which is not common. That guy looked like trouble. I think he was in another state though, not Florida.

If I were going to cross the border on a frequent basis I'd try to get some kind of "good guy" card from the Canadian border folks to expedite the process. I wonder if that's possible.
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Old 06-03-2015, 09:38 PM   #34
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Whatever you do, do not wear an Athletics hat when crossing into the USA to attend a Mariners game. That is begging for trouble, as my fifteen year old son found out a few years ago.
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Old 06-03-2015, 09:43 PM   #35
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If I were going to cross the border on a frequent basis I'd try to get some kind of "good guy" card from the Canadian border folks to expedite the process. I wonder if that's possible.
Washington State residents can get something like that. Forget what it's called since I knew I wasn't going to get one. I might if we plan to camp in Canada a lot (and visit ETI a bunch of times). Basically, the feds check you out, you submit your fingerprints and if they approve, you get this card that lets you in. There might be a separate lane for that when crossing, but I'm not 100% sure on that.

I'm sure other Washingtonians on the list will know more than I do. Such as what it's called so I can do some research on it.

Knock wood, the only time I had a problem was appx 30 years ago when I was coming back from Chilliwack, visiting a friend. I was driving a beat up Datsun B210 (lime green!) and we had to pull over. Go into the office and dump our purses out. I think they even put a dog around the car, but we weren't allowed to see what they were doing. I just handed them my keys. We got asked up one side and down the other other what we were doing in Canada, for how long, they wanted the address of who we stayed with and all sorts of other stuff. It was rather scary, to say the least. Oh yeah, they even called my friend to verify who we were!

I'm just glad I wasn't bringing back any 222's that trip!

(A really strong, over the counter (in Canada) pain drug that you need a prescription for in the US as it has codeine in it.)
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Old 06-03-2015, 10:05 PM   #36
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It's called a Nexus card.
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Old 06-03-2015, 10:30 PM   #37
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These talk about one's rights at the US Border under US law. But I don't know if they apply going in to Canada. If I understand Mike's post correctly, he was questioned by the Canadian authorities, and they are the ones who searched his laptop. So the issue is "what rights does a US citizen have in Canada?"
Right, those links are specific to rights under the US Constitution and so irrelevant to entering Canada... and the answer is: "nothing special, since it is not the US" (although there are rights that everyone has in Canada of course). There is some special treatment: US residents (and those of some other countries) don't need a visa to enter Canada as tourists (also true of Canadians entering the US).
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Old 06-03-2015, 10:32 PM   #38
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One of the questions I was asked by the guard at the booth was if I had any guns. I said no, expecting this, then he asked if I owned any guns in Florida. That was odd, I thought; why would he care? Then I began to wonder if Canada is sharing this answer with the U.S. government, which I think it prohibited from keeping a database of gun owners (I'm not up to speed on this)...
My guess is that it's nothing so insidiuous. Apparently to some US residents who are accustomed to state gun-carry laws and seem to forget that they are trying to enter another country "I don't have a gun with me" really means "I don't have a gun I'm going to tell you about", so the ownership question may help the border agent decide if there is a reason to go looking for a deliberately undeclared gun. As usual with border agents (at least in Canada, the U.S., etc), answering whatever is truthful works fine, as a search would not reveal a gun.
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Old 06-03-2015, 11:04 PM   #39
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My guess is that it's nothing so insidiuous. Apparently to some US residents who are accustomed to state gun-carry laws and seem to forget that they are trying to enter another country "I don't have a gun with me" really means "I don't have a gun I'm going to tell you about", so the ownership question may help the border agent decide if there is a reason to go looking for a deliberately undeclared gun. As usual with border agents (at least in Canada, the U.S., etc), answering whatever is truthful works fine, as a search would not reveal a gun.

The easy answer was the one we gave, which was the truth: "yes, we do keep guns at home, like most people there do- but we left them at home." Agent said ok and that was it.
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Old 06-03-2015, 11:12 PM   #40
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Much better answer than "go ahead, make my day".
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