Resisting the pull of cynicism since 1969.

Friday, September 09, 2005

I am

I'm not a lumberjack or a fur trader. I don't live in an igloo, and I couldn't get my cats to pull a sled if I promised them all the turkey they could eat for the rest of their lives. (I do probably know Jimmy, Sally, and Susie from Canada, though, because when you're the sort of person who goes places and meets people, this country is nothing but a small town run amok.)

I have both a prime minister and a president (though I'd gladly trade either of them in on spiffier models). I speak English, French, and American (though I'm woefully out of practice on the latter two). And while I don't consistently Canadian-raise, I'm happy to explain to anyone who will listen that 'aboot' is merely an American mishearing of the raised variant of the diphthong in 'about', and not what anyone up here actually says.

I won't be sewing any country's flag on my backpack, but I'll always choose peacekeeping over policing and diversity over assimilation. I don't know a beaver from a badger, but I've memorized all the words to that Arrogant Worms song and can sing it on command. And while I haven't yet managed to incorporate the words 'toque' or 'chesterfield' into my vocabulary, I do say 'zed' instead of 'zee' (even when I'm in the U.S., and even when they laugh at me).

I think 'second-largest landmass' posturing is annoying, I've never seen a hockey game and don't see much reason to bother, but while I may roll my eyes when people up here wax arrogant about "cultural mosaics, not melting pots" and U.N. lists of the "best places in the world to live," I actually do think Canada is the best part of North America, and that's why I live here.

My name isn't Joe (and I won't be changing it).

And yet.


Canadian Perasma said...

You're a bold brave woman for saying Zed in the US. If you've sucessfully explained postal're the Cayank (Canuck-Yank contraction) goddess for the week at least. ;o)

Anonymous said...

But have you ever eaten moose burgers or Saskatoon berry pie, cooked maple syrup in your bacon, or used the term 'pogy' at least once in discourse? If not, those are next to come. Congrats, IP. But really, you were Canadian long before this past Friday.

Idealistic Pragmatist said...


Aww, you're sweet. But yeah, I rather agree with you. At least I don't feel any more Canadian now than I did last week.

Mike said...

Congrats IP, welcome aboard.

Joe Visionary said...

Hey, MY name's Joe ...

IP, I've been reading blogs from America, and boy does the cognoscenti have a rough time dealing with the many 'Bush-isms.' You've been spared these.

Sarah Elaine said...

Welcome to Canada, eh?

And adding to Arrogant Polyglot's list, I feel obliged as a Bluenoser to add blueberry grunt, solomon gundy and cod au gratin to the list of food to try.... all washed down with a Moosehead, of course.