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Saturday, August 20, 2005
The Americans!
Recently I drove through a part of the United States with my fiance. We drove through Indiana, Illinois, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and North Dakota. For the most part, the Midwest looks a lot like Alberta, where I live. There are some rolling hills, some forests, some prairie and some civilization.But there is something different. Something that - frankly - scares me.

Whenever we would stop somewhere I would look at the people around us and marvel that there was nothing different from them than from us.

Well, there were a few things. There are more Hispanic people in the US and more Asian people here in Canada. The washrooms were dirtier at the restaurants I stopped at... and speaking of those... I have never been talked to in the washrooms as much in the Canada as I was in the US.But I was a little scared.

These were AMERICANS. Their country has a large ARMY that would protect them. It has a Might Makes Right mentality and a Capitalistic drive. My country is soft and squishy where theirs is ripped and toned.

(Well, maybe not so much, I did notice that people were a bit heavier down there... but then again the percentage is probably the same - it's just they have ten times more people)

And the whole time I kept thinking... what would they do if they found out I was *gasp* Canadian? Because then I'd have to get all defensive and explain that we're not ALL liberals and we don't ALL say 'eh' and they would answer the way MOST answer... with laughter in their voices.Is Canada that... funny?I have learned one thing though... Canada is much colder.

Don't laugh, I know what you are thinking.

But the middle of winter is cold whether you are in Indiana or Alberta. However, the summer is where you will notice the difference.

This past week, in the middle of August, we had a frost warning at night. FROST. In AUGUST. Then it was followed the next weekend by hot, scorching, burning weather.

That is not funny.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 9:42 AM

At 10:43 AM, Anonymous Nomennovum said...


You said, "[Americans] would answer the way MOST answer... with laughter in their voices. Is Canada that... funny?"

You reminded me of my old college roommate from Oakville, Ontario. Believe me, you all say "eh," whether you realize it or not ... and, even if you don't, it's implied.

Also, I'm a bit surprised you found any dirty "washrooms" in the Midwest. Although I am from NYC, I've traveled all over the US and never saw a washroom, dirty or otherwise.

Now ... our bathrooms! THOSE things can be really disgusting exhibits. You should try one of those next time you're down here. I suggest one in the most run-down, skanky looking gas station you can find.

At 6:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm going to Canada in two days. I haven't been in ages, and I'm so excited to go. I'll look for the soft and squishy, eh?

Karen/Naked ovary

At 10:36 PM, Anonymous Cluttergirl said...

Colder in Canada? hehe, well when I was wearing shorts up here in Quebec for several weeks at least, in May, I helped drive someone moving from Detroit to San Francisco. And packed sundresses. And what did we get? FOUR DAYS OF HEAVY SNOW!!! in May. Yes. Apparently that is real normal for Colorado, Utah, Nevada, and California til we got to the coast. And then what did we need? Sundresses? Nope. Hoodies. Leather jackets. Hot drinks. I really had been hoping for at LEAST as warm in the US as in Canada. Nope.

Sorry you've been having cold weather in Alberta (must be the dearth of hotblooded (small L) liberals)... here in Quebec we have been having the most days over 30° in history. yikes.

As for "there are more Americans so of course there are most heftier ones". um. well, wish that was how it worked. We may have soft and squishy politics (though standing up to America over invading Iraq wasn't very soft or squishy) but they really beat us on numbers of soft and squishy citizens. I just looked a wee bit on the net and came up with 14% obese (BMI >30) in Canada, over 22% obese in the US. That doesn't count the number overweight. One piece i read says obesity in the US has increased by 78% 1990-2001!!

OK, have to say I am here via theNakedOvary's comments re her visit to Toronto, dying to see what an Albertan blogger has to say. I admit we are unlikely to have similar views on Canada, being as I am an ex-Sask coop/NDP sort who is now a bilingual dyke in Montreal (still of the coop/NDP sort), and I've been here so long I say euh instead of eh. Franglais, eh!

And um, I dunno about that thing about the apples on the lower limbs being rotten. Dang. I've never noticed that easy to reach fruit is less good than the ones you have to climb the tree for. Oh well. I always said I'm easy if I want the guy and impossible if I don't. Sort of goes the same for anything. If I want it I'll go for it.

Come visit Quebec sometime!

At 10:39 PM, Anonymous cluttergirl said...

Nothing to do with Americans, but I googled and THIS quote I like MUCH better than the apples one: "when life bucks you off, sometimes it's okay to stare at the sky and take stock for a while". Great motto. Glad you got into writing after being thrown!


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