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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 1:58 AM
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What are some legal differences between provinces?

So, reading about the cannabis legislation in different provinces, it made me wonder what some of the other legal differences between provinces are.

What are any and all examples you can think of?

Some I've come across...

- In NL, you only need to have a licence plate on the back of your vehicle. There are none in the front, unless they're decorative.

- In NL, depending on which neighbourhood and home you buy (in heritage areas), you have to apply to the City even to change your interior wall paint colour.

- In NL, gated communities are illegal. Also, with only a few exceptions, if you own coastal property, you must allow a public trail along the shoreline IF it is developed by a municipality or community organization. In some cases, that literally means there is a popular public hiking trail that crosses your front step:



- In NL, you can get the gender on your government identification, including birth certificate, changed without having had gender surgeries.

- In NL, hookah lounges are illegal.

- In NL, any store - corner stores, gas stations, barber shops, bakeries, basically anywhere with a cash register - can sell locally-brewed beer. That's why we still have breweries doing Canadian macros, and also why they're labelled differently here (India, Jockey Club, Dominion, Black Horse, Blue Star).

- In NL, it's illegal to catch even a single cod for yourself outside of the designated "food fishery".

- In NL, restaurants and groceries can sell wild game (here that's usually moose, seal, turr, etc.)

- In NL, the driver in the passing lane must yield to the driver in the slow lane when the passing lane ends.

That's all I can think of off the top of my head, but I'm sure there's many more. What about you?
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 2:55 AM
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^It doesn't have to be locally-made beer which can be sold at any store location. They can just sell whatever. Turns out most of what is sold is brewed locally by either Molson or Labatt, but you can buy Miller (not brewed locally) in a lot of those places too.

Stores can't sell wild game, but restaurants can prepare it. Seal isn't considered wild game though, which is why you can buy seal flipper pie at a bunch of local locations. But if you walk into a butcher shop and ask for a cut of moose or caribou they'll look at you sideways and tell you that it's illegal to sell (this happens a lot with tourists walking into Haliday's looking to try moose).

The last point you make is still a pain in my ass. Somehow this is still a thing.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 3:35 AM
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SK also makes the front license plate optional.

In BC, U-turns at major intersections are by default illegal. I don't see this in any other province.

In Ontario, left-turning vehicles also have to yield to on-coming right-turning ones. I didn't know this* until I took classes for the full license. (* I drove a little bit in B.C.)

Also, in Ontario and in Quebec, pedestrians, cyclists and all-terrain vehicles are banned from freeways, which, in the case of Ontario, can create sticky situations for those travellers (like Highway 400 between Exit 162 and Exit 189).
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 3:52 AM
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I'm not sure if this is province wide, or the same in other provinces, but in Vancouver it can be illegal basically just to cross the street.

Quote:
"Jaywalk" means to walk across a roadway, other than a lane, a minor street or a portion of a street designated by the City Engineer for the exclusive use of cyclists, at any place that is not a marked or unmarked crosswalk and is less than one block from an intersection where there are traffic control signals.
https://bylaws.vancouver.ca/2849c.PDF
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 4:08 AM
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I live in Northeastern Ontario but visit the bordering Quebec region of Abitibi-Temiscamingue so here are some differences that I know of:

-drinking age in QC is 18, and in Ontario it is 19

-Winter tires are mandatory in Quebec during certain months but not mandatory in Ontario. I always have Winter tires on from the end of October to early May. I wish Winter tires were mandatory for Northern Ontario.

-municipal parking fines are much higher in Quebec. For example, I got ticket a few years ago in Rouyn-Noranda for $25 for an expired meter which in Timmins for the same thing at the time was $8 but has since been raised to $12. Not sure if Rouyn's is still the same.

-In Ontario, you can't consume alcoholic beverages in public parks or roadside picnic parks. In Quebec you can drink beer or wine in those parks as long as you have food on the table.

-In Ontario provincial parks you can only consume alcoholic beverages on a campsite. In Quebec's national (provincial) parks you can drink beer or wine pretty much anywhere in the park.

-I think most people know the differences for beer and wine sales in Quebec and language laws so I won't explain those. Although a lot of people outside Quebec think those laws are stricter than they actually are.

-penalties for speeding are much more severe in Ontario compared to Quebec although Quebec is finally cracking down on extreme speeders unlike in the past

-retail stores in Quebec have regulated hours. Most stores have to close at 9pm from Monday to Friday and 5pm on Saturday and Sunday. Grocery stores and convenience stores don't have to follow that law. In Ontario, there are usually no regulated hours and it's up to each municipality.

-bars in Ontario can stay open until 2am and in Quebec 3am.

-although there are very few strip clubs left in both Ontario and Quebec...For lap dances / VIP lounge: In Ontario you cannot touch the dancer with your hands. In Quebec the dancer is allowed to let you put your hands on her/his breasts and butt but not genitals. And it is considered part of a normal lap dance.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 6:02 AM
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In NS, bars with a Cabaret Licence are allowed to serve alcohol until 3:30 am, which I think is the latest in Canada. Most alcohol (and "all" non-prescription cannabis) is sold through the NSLC, but a lot of microbreweries etc. can do offsales (bars can't, AFAIK, unless they produce their own alcohol on premises, or something). The laws around alcohol are complicated here and the legal drinking age is 19. You're not allowed to smoke on licensed patios here, which means that some bars will have smoking sections of the patio that you're not allowed to bring alcohol into.

With cannabis legalization, HRM made smoking anything in public illegal outside of about a half-dozen designated smoking spots that were mostly at suburban transit terminals (which are non-smoking). There was so much backlash that I think they just gave up (I don't even know whether the law was overturned or it just has an enforcement rate of 0). There have been little public "designated smoking area" ashtrays popping up around the inner city since then though so I imagine they'll enforce it once the infrastructure is in place. It's not uncommon for people to smoke weed openly in public (generally making an effort to avoid kids) but that's been true for the last 10 years or so and probably longer tbh. Up until legalization there was very little practical consequence to "getting caught" smoking a joint in public as long as you weren't committing any other crimes. It was fairly common for cops to ask someone to "hand over the joint", search them, then give the joint back or just leave it on the ground if they didn't find anything sketchy. There's also been a history of looking the other way when it comes to small-scale grow ops and dispensaries.

Strip clubs are legal in NS, but the last one that I know of closed recently. The only casinos that I know of are owned by the province and I think this is legally mandated. HST is 15%. Extra taxes apply on cigarettes (very expensive), alcohol (about average for Canada) and cannabis (very cheap). Conversely some staple/raw food items are not subject to HST.

There are complicated laws regarding electricity generation/distribution with now-publicly-traded former Crown Corp Emera/Nova Scotia Power vaguely at the centre of it all. Fracking is banned, and so are nuclear power plants. There's also a required distance of 1km between any large-scale wind turbine and the closest occupied residential building (at least in HRM, not sure if this is province-wide). Federal land is exempt from this (the wind stuff, not sure about the fracking/nuclear).

Every street corner legally has a crosswalk by default, even if it's unmarked. It's also legal to cross the street mid-block as long as it's safe and not disruptive to traffic.

Helmets are required when cycling, skateboarding, in-line or roller-skating, (downhill) skiing or snowboarding and you can get fined for not wearing one. They're not legally required for ice skating though.

You're supposed to honk the horn whenever you pass another vehicle but luckily this is never enforced. Winter tires aren't legally mandated but each winter there are a handful of days where it's really stupid not to have them.

Apparently it's super illegal to take home a lobster you found in the wild unless you're licensed to catch lobster. I'm not sure whether that's a provincial or federal thing.

The province is divided into politically distinct counties, although most sub-provincial government is at the Regional Municipality (Halifax and Cape Breton counties, as well as a few others), town, or village level. I think there is a separate "Regional District" level as well that is smaller than an RM but larger than a town. There are no legally incorporated cities in NS, although Halifax Regional Municipality was recently legally given permission to refer to itself as simply "Halifax" or even the "City of Halifax" as a shorthand; up until the last few years they were legally required to refer only to "Halifax Regional Municipality" or HRM for short. It was really bizarre and cumbersome and sometimes extended to stuff way beyond the Municipality's jurisdiction. Now the pendulum has swung the other way and it doesn't feel too unnatural to have stuff like the Halifax Ikea in Dartmouth; 10 years ago that might have ended up as "the HRM Ikea in HRM". The flip side is that places like Dartmouth have an increasing amount of freedom to express their identity as a "borough" (not legally a thing here, but essentially that).

I'm not sure what the language laws are here. There is are some nominally-Francophone Acadian regions in the province as well as a French-language public school board (with several schools in HRM). There are parts of the province with road signs that are bilingual English/Gailic and English/Mi'kmaq but I'm not sure if these are legally mandated or just for local interest. Most consumer products have at least basic info in French on the label, and most packaged foods have one French side and one English (I noticed this didn't seem as common in BC). There are a few businesses that would probably violate the "Richmond BC sign laws" (if those ended up coming into existence) but the cultural context is very different and this is not controversial at all here at this point in time.

I'd imagine that legal relationships between each province and the First Nations communities/jurisdictions within their borders are quite different. I'm not really an expert on the specifics but it's the impression that I get.

Doesn't Quebec have its own (entirely unique) legal system?

Last edited by Hali87; Jan 28, 2019 at 6:59 AM.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 1:26 PM
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Doesn't Quebec have its own (entirely unique) legal system?
For civil law, yes.

For criminal law, the Criminal Code of Canada and various other national criminal laws apply. So, a criminal trial is similar throughout the whole country.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 1:40 PM
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For civil law, yes.

For criminal law, the Criminal Code of Canada and various other national criminal laws apply. So, a criminal trial is similar throughout the whole country.
Yeah, I am not a lawyer but from what I gather a lot of the differences are also administrative.

The most obvious one is that there are two main legal professions here. Which means that we don't have people who are a "Barrister & Solicitor".

What most people would call a lawyer or an attorney is an avocat in Quebec. This person does criminal and civil law.

There is another profession which is called a notaire which is basically a notary or a title attorney. This is the person who produces wills and stuff like deeds for property, mortgage papers, etc.

Both of them go to law school but at one point they branch off towards one or the other.

Both of them are referred to as Maître in legal proceedings, documents and sometimes in the media and other instances. Maître is abbreviated as "Me" and may appear on business cards, signage and such in the same way "Dr" does.

One big legal difference is the fact that common law relationships are not recognized as "quasi-marriages" legally here in Quebec. So if you're common law, you're not automatically "protected" in any way if your partner dies intestate. This is why they say it's really important have a will here if you're not married, though of course the reality is that many, many people don't.

All of this is a bit ironic given that we're the province with by far the most common law couples, and probably two thirds or more of kids these days are born to unmarried parents here.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 1:43 PM
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^It doesn't have to be locally-made beer which can be sold at any store location. They can just sell whatever. Turns out most of what is sold is brewed locally by either Molson or Labatt, but you can buy Miller (not brewed locally) in a lot of those places too.

Stores can't sell wild game, but restaurants can prepare it. Seal isn't considered wild game though, which is why you can buy seal flipper pie at a bunch of local locations. But if you walk into a butcher shop and ask for a cut of moose or caribou they'll look at you sideways and tell you that it's illegal to sell (this happens a lot with tourists walking into Haliday's looking to try moose).

The last point you make is still a pain in my ass. Somehow this is still a thing.
Are you sure it's not a regulation, RE the beer? I remember the brewery unions unleashing all hell every time it was raised as a possibility that corner stores could sell imported beer. Even the Alexander Keith's (Pride of Nova Scotia) has a "Made in NL" sticker. All the breakdowns I've seen of our regulations - ie this one from CBC: https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/bee...ries-1.3036387 - note it's locally-brewed beer sold at gas stations and corner stores.

I have seen Coors and MGD at gas stations though. Maybe they either have a more permissive liquor license than a normal station/store, or maybe it's something like the boxes are made in NL and that's enough to meet the regulations? Or maybe they apply for exemptions, like rural gas stations that sell wine and spirits.

That link is outdated now, obviously. We sell singles everywhere now too. They also seem to be not local for the most part. QV cans being the exception, but I've seen like Maximum Ice or whatever cans. Those imported?

EDIT: Found this from The Telegram. It's a letter so still unsure, but just to show you I'm not coming up with this on my own:

Quote:
In fact, regulation stipulates that only locally brewed beer may be sold in corner stores. This is on the chopping block in interprovincial trade talks and it’s got its beneficiaries justifiably worried. More than 100 people work at Labatt and Molson breweries in St. John’s, and their representatives have voiced opposition to lifting the provision. Their livelihoods depend on the big brewers keeping production in the province, and they fear that retail liberalization may lead to painful job cuts.
https://www.thetelegram.com/opinion/...ctions-136949/

*****

RE: wild game, ahh my mistake. I never cook. But I love flipper and moose sausages. :-D
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 1:57 PM
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I'll do what Loco101 did and Quebec with Ontario, and in many cases I think Ontario will mirror what other provinces have as rules.

In terms of driving:

Expressway and freeways on-ramps in Quebec have yield signs, which means if you can't merge safely you are supposed to stop on the on-ramp. I have never seen this anywhere else in Canada or the U.S., except certain specific circumstances. In Quebec it's systematic - every single on-ramp is like this.

You can turn right on a red anywhere in Quebec (where a sign doesn't say you can't). For many decades this was forbidden here but has been legal for a decade or more. The only exception is the entire island of Montreal, which is the only large area in Canada and the U.S. where right turns on red are banned - except for Manhattan.

Quebec autoroutes have a 60 kmh minimum speed and you can get ticketed for driving too slow.

The left lanes of Quebec autoroutes are for passing only and you can get ticketed for left-lane hogging. (Generally, though, Quebec motorists police this themselves. YaknowwhatImean.) In other provinces you do have signs that say KEEP RIGHT EXCEPT TO PASS but this is not legally enforceable by police.

You're not allowed to pass on a solid yellow line under any circumstances unless it's for a cyclist or a farm vehicle with one of those slow-moving triangle thingies. In Ontario for example, you're legally allowed to pass on a solid yellow line if you think it's safe, but it's not recommended

Public transit buses have absolute priority for merging (signs indicate this on all buses) and when they pull away from bus stops they'll cut you right off sometimes. If you hit them, it's your fault.

If you can't drive at least the speed limit you have to turn on your four-way flashers. This applies when you're in a slow-moving vehicle for whatever reason, or in a sudden downpour or whiteout when everyone slows down suddenly. In my experience this is also a "rest of the world" non-North American thing that's not very common in the other provinces or the U.S. In these instances you will notice that not everyone complies on Quebec highways but most do.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 2:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Marty_Mcfly View Post
^It doesn't have to be locally-made beer which can be sold at any store location. They can just sell whatever. Turns out most of what is sold is brewed locally by either Molson or Labatt, but you can buy Miller (not brewed locally) in a lot of those places too.

Stores can't sell wild game, but restaurants can prepare it. Seal isn't considered wild game though, which is why you can buy seal flipper pie at a bunch of local locations. But if you walk into a butcher shop and ask for a cut of moose or caribou they'll look at you sideways and tell you that it's illegal to sell (this happens a lot with tourists walking into Haliday's looking to try moose).

The last point you make is still a pain in my ass. Somehow this is still a thing.
Wild game like caribou, deer, bison, boar is found on menus in fine restaurants and in the meat section of any grocery store in Quebec, but it's not really "wild" (killed by hunters in the woods) AFAIK. It's been raised on a farm and slaughtered in an abattoir in compliance with health regulations.

It's still really good though. Especially caribou... hmmm.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 2:11 PM
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One funny addition to what Marty explained: seal isn't even considered meat here. The Catholic Church declared it a fish so it could be eaten on Fridays. We also ensured that exemption was preserved in our Terms of Union with Canada, even though it has nothing to do with government.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 2:13 PM
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Expressway and freeways on-ramps in Quebec have yield signs, which means if you can't merge safely you are supposed to stop on the on-ramp. I have never seen this anywhere else in Canada or the U.S., except certain specific circumstances. In Quebec it's systematic - every single on-ramp is like this.
Ours are mostly No U-turn signs
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 2:31 PM
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In terms of alcohol:

As Loco101 mentioned, in Quebec bars are open until 3 am.

Restaurants and bars are allowed to resume selling alcohol fairly early in the morning. Like 7 am or 8 am. I've seen people drunk in restaurants at 9 am on a Sunday morning with booze on the table with their breakfast.

Beer and wine are sold in dépanneurs and grocery stores as everyone knows. They can sell any type of beer as far as I can see but wines must be bottled in Quebec - so what some companies do is bring over wine in bulk containers on ships from France and bottle it in Montreal. If you want better wines you need to go to a government-run SAQ store.

Alcohol sales in dépanneurs must cease at 11 pm and the fridges have padlocks on them that employees lock at that time. In my experience they're stricter about this than they are about asking for ID if you look like you're 16 or 17. SAQ stores are very strict on IDs but bars and restaurants not so much. My kids were occasionally asked if they wanted a drink even when they were obviously (to us anyway) underage, and they've been fairly routinely offered empty glasses (with the assumption they're going to have some wine) in bring-your-own restaurants since they looked about 13.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 2:54 PM
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Still with alcohol, does anyone know if Ontario still restricts drinkers to fenced-off beer gardens during festivals? The assumption being that everyone in "licensed premises" must be over 19. Unless of course it's a restaurant, which most festivals cannot be presumed to be. (And there is a percentage of food sales relative to booze sales involved.)

Obviously a beer or wine festival in Toronto or Ottawa is a 19+ only event, and so you can walk around with your drink anywhere. The entire facility is "19+ licensed premises".

But for many festivals, you don't want to prevent families with kids from attending.

As I said, unsure if Ontario have changed their rules, but in Quebec in a festival you can buy your booze and walk around with it anywhere you want. Even if there are little kiddies around.

In downtown Montreal when big festivals are on the "festival zone" often encompasses multiple blocks, so drinking is allowed everywhere. And a bit beyond too as enforcement is lax.

Even if there are lots of little kiddies in the vicinity.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 5:56 PM
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I'll do what Loco101 did and Quebec with Ontario, and in many cases I think Ontario will mirror what other provinces have as rules.

In terms of driving:

Expressway and freeways on-ramps in Quebec have yield signs, which means if you can't merge safely you are supposed to stop on the on-ramp. I have never seen this anywhere else in Canada or the U.S., except certain specific circumstances. In Quebec it's systematic - every single on-ramp is like this.

You can turn right on a red anywhere in Quebec (where a sign doesn't say you can't). For many decades this was forbidden here but has been legal for a decade or more. The only exception is the entire island of Montreal, which is the only large area in Canada and the U.S. where right turns on red are banned - except for Manhattan.

Quebec autoroutes have a 60 kmh minimum speed and you can get ticketed for driving too slow.

The left lanes of Quebec autoroutes are for passing only and you can get ticketed for left-lane hogging. (Generally, though, Quebec motorists police this themselves. YaknowwhatImean.) In other provinces you do have signs that say KEEP RIGHT EXCEPT TO PASS but this is not legally enforceable by police.

You're not allowed to pass on a solid yellow line under any circumstances unless it's for a cyclist or a farm vehicle with one of those slow-moving triangle thingies. In Ontario for example, you're legally allowed to pass on a solid yellow line if you think it's safe, but it's not recommended

Public transit buses have absolute priority for merging (signs indicate this on all buses) and when they pull away from bus stops they'll cut you right off sometimes. If you hit them, it's your fault.

If you can't drive at least the speed limit you have to turn on your four-way flashers. This applies when you're in a slow-moving vehicle for whatever reason, or in a sudden downpour or whiteout when everyone slows down suddenly. In my experience this is also a "rest of the world" non-North American thing that's not very common in the other provinces or the U.S. In these instances you will notice that not everyone complies on Quebec highways but most do.
As I was taught, what you’re calling 4-way flashers are hazard lights, which indicate that a vehicle is a “hazard” on the road, which means that it’s stationary. Switching them on when you’re moving is unlawful, or at least it was when I learned to drive back in the Model T era.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 6:01 PM
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As I was taught, what you’re calling 4-way flashers are hazard lights, which indicate that a vehicle is a “hazard” on the road, which means that it’s stationary. Switching them on when you’re moving is unlawful, or at least it was when I learned to drive back in the Model T era.
Yes, we're talking about the same lights.

I guess there is a difference in perception and their usage.

The usage I am referring to is very common in much of the world. I've driven in lots of countries and can confirm this.

I also turn mine on if I am on a high speed highway and the traffic in front slows down very suddenly, so that the people coming behind me are alerted that something's going on and don't run into me.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 6:07 PM
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Yes, we're talking about the same lights.

I guess there is a difference in perception and their usage.

The usage I am referring to is very common in much of the world. I've driven in lots of countries and can confirm this.

I also turn mine on if I am on a high speed highway and the traffic in front slows down very suddenly, so that the people coming behind me are alerted that something's going on and don't run into me.
I do the same thing. Hazards lights when moving well below the posted speed. Also on long climbs if I drop my speed down.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 6:20 PM
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Dépanneur Wine. There are only three types of customers for dep wine, but they all share the same motivation: (1) young people who buy a bottle to get drunk, (2) poor people that buy a bottle to get drunk, (3) winos

Dép wine is terrible plonk.

Thankfully dépanneurs in Quebec often have great beer selection. Unlike the hit-or-miss selection of the recently liberalized Supermarkets (some) in Ontario. No corner stores sell any alcohol products (Except for maybe a handful in communities too small for a Beer Store or LCBO).

The LCBO may have BO but I notice more BO among the Beer Store clientele. Grizzled stink-stank-stunkmanship.
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Old Posted Jan 28, 2019, 6:24 PM
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Originally Posted by MolsonExport View Post
Dépanneur Wine. There are only three types of customers for dep wine, but they all share the same motivation: (1) young people who buy a bottle to get drunk, (2) poor people that buy a bottle to get drunk, (3) winos

Dép wine is terrible plonk.
.
Yeah, it has a pretty bad rep.

Though every once in a while there are articles about "the best dépanneur" wine. You know, in case you're stuck and you have no other choice but to buy a bottle there.
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