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I’m Back, Eh…

I got back from a week in Toronto this morning, and am slowly getting back into the “real life” mindset. Toronto was an absolute blast. I’m not a huge fan of big cities; they always seem too, well, big for my tastes. But I could definitely see myself living in a place like Toronto. But before I do so, they better start getting more shipments of Dr. Pepper. I was jonesing for it all week and hardly any place had it. Seriously people, I thought you were more civilized than that.

Walking through some of the ethnic areas, especially Chinatown, was often a surreal experience. As soon as I got off the trolley at Spadina and Dundas, I had to remind myself that I was still in North America. I felt like a foreigner twice over. And what I experienced barely scratched the surface. I wish I would’ve had more time to go through the recesses of Chinatown, and hit some of the other ethnic areas.

We just don’t have anything like that here in Lincoln. There are certain areas that have a higher concentration of minorities, but the only telltale signs usually consist of a few more ethnic restaurants. Granted, I live in the heartland of the U.S., and it could be that by the time people make it this far inland, they’ve simply been stripped of parts of their ethnic character. Or perhaps because this area of the country tends to be a bit more conservative, people feel forced to diminish certain ethnic characteristics so they can better blend within “American” culture. I’m no sociologist, so I don’t know, but it does prove interesting food for thought.

The film festival was as great as I could’ve hoped. I caught 11 films in 5 days, with only one stinker in the bunch (that would be Goodbye Dragon Inn). The Midnight Madness screenings were huge fun, screaming and cheering and laughing along with hundreds of other movie nuts who were also up way past their bedtime.

I’ll never forget the experience of going to Save the Green Planet, a film that bombed in its native South Korea, and seeing the director be overwhelmed by the love the audience poured on him and his film. Perhaps one of the finest moviegoing experiences I’ve ever had.

I’m still in the process of putting together my thoughts on everything I saw. Hopefully, I’ll have something on the site later this week, as well as some other reviews that I wasn’t able to upload before I left. I’ve also got a stack of DVDs and CDs that I picked up while I was up north (God bless Chinatown!), and I’m going to slowly make my way through those. And of course, there are plenty of pictures.

Sheesh… I’m not even back 12 hours and I’ve already swamped myself with work.

Thanks and big love to: Chris for putting me up, showing me around the city, and explaining the intricacies of Canadian public transit; Nathan, Danny, Paul, Travis, and the rest of the K.C. kids for picking my sorry butt up from the airport, giving me a couch to crash on, and for one of the most stimulating late night discussions I’ve had in a long time; the guy at Save the Green Planet who, after hearing Chris describe Ichi the Killer as the most misogynistic film he’d ever seen, exclaimed “I’ve gotta see that!” with considerable enthusiasm; the Midnight Madness crowds, for reminding me that some movies need to be seen in the theatre with a ton of people; and all of the cool people I met while waiting in line or for the movies to start, and who I’ll probably never see again.

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