Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Nomadic Nuts

Yesterday was the playing with cars section of our auto show experience so today we get the playing with people leg of our journey. After abusing vehicles that we would never be able to afford, we wandered inside for the rest of our day's festivities. Now for many the show is about the funky new concept cars and for others it's the classics. For us it's a chance to mess around with people as well as to pursue the ultimate Canadian pastime - the pursuit of swag.

The show has many booths and exhibits handing out all manner of freebies. Some as simple as calendars or brochures, while others handed out candies and pens. As we entered the building we were greeted by a far too cheerful girl peddling credit cards for a financial institution that shall remain nameless for reasons you will soon find out. Those of you who have been reading my stuff for a while now need therapy......I mean, will know that I have a general disdain for all things telemarketing. Well this same financial institution who was offering free toques, and other assorted goodies, have been harassing me over and over again at least once a week offering me credit card after credit card. Despite me asking for them to remove me from their lists and my constant reassurances that I want no card, they call relentlessly. It was my turn to get them. I swaggered into the booth with my best idiot face on (which by the way is standard equipment anyways) and filled out the application with various information, most of which had little to do with me. Upon completing the application I was handed a toque and a cardholder agreement. I was told to take the agreement to a lady standing at a slot machine for a chance to spin and win a prize. So I spun and won a toque. Content in the fact that I now had two of their hats I wandered around the show. It turns out that they had set up a total of three displays at which I showed my agreement and collected a grand total of 7 toques and a few discount gas cards by the end of the day. Yes I'm shameless. The funniest part was going back to the booth I started at and playing one last time with the same lady who was there when I first went.

Unfortunately for us, this set the bar for the day. We went around the building leeching whatever we could from the unsuspecting event staff. Not to be outdone by my blatant mooching from the credit card people Jodster decided to try his own tactic. His petulant whining to the prize lady in the Ford booth managed to get a pair of funky Wayne Gretzky hats to add to our already growing toque collection.

In between these acquisition attempts we actually managed to see some of the show. I got a great laugh out of the solar car exhibit. The cars themselves were the ones you see at the races with armies of University students engineering and driving them to victory. The humor came from the fact that the auto show always has signs posted to keep people off of the cars. Last year's gem was the more likely one that was cut into vinyl on the hood of a car stating
    "Unless you are naked, stay off the car. Buttons and zippers scratch!"
. These university types (read nerds) couldn't help the fact that their intellect is a little more refined which resulted in this beauty of a sign, just oozing with typical Canadian politeness (despite the fact that the car was worth $2,000,000).

After a chat with them we moved along to the military booth, where we got to play around in real SUV's. I still want to see what one of those bad boys could do in rush hour traffic. We had a talk with some of the military boys that were there and thanked them for all the good work they do. While talking we also realized that we were positively brimming with the wrong stuff. I can't imagine life in the military for the likes of me. I suppose I would be a little like the love child of Gomer Pyle and Lt. Cdr. Quinton McHale. Terrifying, to say the least.

We cooled our heels in the satellite radio only to find that they would have cooled a lot sooner if we had sat in the ice car! I'm not sure about the mileage but I have to believe that it handles terribly. The people in the booth just looked at me like I was from Mars when I was asking if they had any production data on the car, or information on it's top speed. I guess I'll just have to wait for it to come out.

I got a chuckle when I got to the Audi exhibit though. Not that I had anything to do with it, but after last year's rant about their sign, Audi Canada replaced this with this.

All in all we had fun, despite the fact that we typically behave like a group of kids whose parents have turned their backs for a moment. Just be glad we aren't coming to a festival or show near you!! It's no wonder our wives stay at home.


Blogger Hick said...

I love your auto show posts. You are just shameless...I guess I can live vicariously through your antics...stuff I would like to do but would never have the nerve.

8:52:00 AM  
Blogger Martini said...

Geez. That Toronto Auto Show sure has come a long way in the last 2 or 3 years. I'm really surprised at the variety of vehicles and activities.

I should go again - but since I can't walk around, maybe I can drive around in something tiny, like a SmartCar.

11:14:00 AM  
Blogger jon said...

I LOVE SWAG!!! The most useless object in the world takes on the value of gold when the object was obtained for free at a show!

8:16:00 PM  
Anonymous pink said...

You guys sound so much fun.

11:32:00 AM  
Blogger That Girl said...

sounds like a good time! and free pens? what could be better? haha!

8:59:00 PM  
Blogger No_Newz said...

It did sound like a good time. All this post was lacking is a picture of your finger poking that solar car. LOL! Do you get that way or is it just me? You see a sign like that and you practically have to hold yourself back. POKE! LOL!
Lois Lane
P.S. I love the photo in the post above too!

1:48:00 PM  

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