Calgary Comic Con 2012 – The Good, The Bad, and the Naked

calgary comicon costumes

With the exception of He-Man, the men were masked, and the women were drenched in sexuality

You may have taken note that comic books and “entertainment” (video games, fantasy card games etc.) have changed since Superman was created back in the dirty thirties.  The level of graphic violence has skyrocketed, and the level of sexualization of the female form couldn’t be increased without comic books entering the realm of porn. It appears that the violence cannot be translated into reality, but the sexualization sure can.

Calgary Expo GirlsWhat would you conclude if you walked around a corner at a public event, one with children everywhere, and saw a woman’s buttocks bulging below pink and green camouflaged shorts? What about the 5th Element girl, with her nipples showing through the small strap of material intended to hide at least part of her breasts?

It was stunning to see how many women were dressed like the ones pictured here. We all know that comic and video game girls wear almost nothing–the market, boys and young men, clearly want it that way–but does, or better yet, should, women promote this media by imitating it in a public forum?

Yes, women have the right to dress any way they want, and we’ve all seen the naughty nurses of Hallow’s Eve, but, culturally speaking, comic conventions like this one say a lot more about our society and gender representation than one might first perceive. It’s clear that media is having a strong effect on women who dress up for conventions like this one, enough to cause a complete alteration in public persona, albeit for a weekend.

This isn’t to say that the men weren’t out posing in their garb. Before the weekend was over, He-Man and Skeletor had posed for literally hundreds of photographs.  The one at the top of this article is not unique. There was a magnificent demon costume, Scorpion and Sub-Zero from Mortal combat, and many, many other male costumes.

One gender-bending poser, a shemale Riddler, seemed to grasp what was going on and satirized the event while basking in his own moments of fame.  From his lace panties creeping downward beyond his butt crack, to his flat chest and bulging manhood, he was ready to jump inside the memory cards around him.

On departure, the men had it much easier as almost all were fully clothed, and many had masks to protect their pimpled faces from the cool Alberta winds. Cotton muscles and various shields were also of aid against the elements as the women struggled in their heels, shivering from the cold. It seemed that the roles were stripped away and that they were once again simply Calgarians rather than super heros.

What it comes down to is that the convention was filled with those looking to be desired through either masculine or feminine fantasy and those wanting to watch the spectacle. It was all in good fun, and it was a lot of fun. However, one mustn’t forget that cultural events are a great measure of culture.

According to the Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo, if we were free to do as we want, when we want, where we want, without judgement, many men would cover themselves in false, fantastical masculinity, and women would be nearly naked or worse.This one's a real lemon

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My bank has ripped me off for the last time!

Big Bank Ripoff

I’m starting to see why many people in North America are getting bitter. Each time you go outside your house, there’s something or someone there, ready to sell peddle you something.  If they don’t get you down the street, they’ll get you through the mail or the internet, where they’ll introduce a little fee here or there that you might not notice or have time to deal with. People like me, those who are economical, frugal, penny-wise, provident, sparing, stinting, thrifty or just downright cheap, have radars that go off when corporate fingers start playing pocket pool.

I was watching Russell Peters’ comedy special on NetFlix this week and saw his bit on Indians being the cheapest of the cheap, and I was disappointed that Ukranians didn’t even place.  Most of us have relatively recent connections to serfdom (where else would borscht come from?), so we know how to live on rock soup, just ask my Baba!  Here’s the clip from the special:

No mention of Ukrainians? C’mon Russell!

I’m just like the people Peters describes in the clip above: I’m so cheap that I rarely impulse buy. If I pick up an item, like the automated vacuum last week in Costco, there’s an instant debate inside my head. If the product is a want rather than a need, I start thinking of how many times I’ve put other items back and how much it would all add up to in the end. Ten automated vacuums, and I’ve got myself a Carribean Cruise!, assuming I’m willing to shell out that kind of money.  After these short battles upstairs, nine times out of ten, the product gets left in whatever isle I have made it to. *Poof.*  Gone. Done.

The banking industry is alot like that automated vacuum.  My current bank–soon to be ex-bank–is TD Canada Trust, an instituion that has been sucking up my funds since 1989. I’ve had the Value Plus Account for about ten years, which charges me $10.95 per month to use my own money.  What a great value.

  • Total charges from TD: 10.95/month x 10years (120 months) = $1314.00

Imagine if you had an extra $1314 lying around? Is your account not getting enough greens in its diet, just like mine? If it is, there’s a bandit in your midst:

Online Banking Savings

Believe it or not, you can dodge this bandit on the internet.  Really, is there anything that you can’t do on the internet these days?  You can mail people elephant crap anonymously, you can order wolf urine from Amazon, and you can comlete all the banking you do in person.  Which one sounds the better of the three? TD Canada Trust is a lemon, and this title is held by all the other big banks.

There are accounts from Ing Direct, President’s Choice and other online providers that will give you the following:

  • Free debit card and cheques
  • Free bank machine access
  • Free swipe purchases
  • Free bill payments
  • Free money transfers
  • Interest on your chequing funds!!!
  • Instant deposit withdrawl up to $1k
  • Overdraft protection

After receiving news that TD interest rates for my line of credit almost doubled yesterday, and the fact that our retirement age might be going up to 67 (see prior post), I became motivated to fight back. All accounts will be cancelled this week, and it will feel like a dog feels after a good deworming. Ahhh, nothing like riding one’s self of a parasitic infestation, especially of the corporate variety.

I’m personally going to try out the Ing Thrive account.  I’m getting all my ducks transfered to their barn this week, so we’ll see if they are in a row, fed well and survive until harvest. Hopefully we’ll be having duck next Christmas!

If you want to know how my ducks are doing, post a response below. You know I have no problem talking about being a cheap-ass. This one's a real lemon

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