Friday, July 1, 2011

Happy Canada Day! Defining Canuckitude: Are you Canadian too?

Canada Day Peter Mccabe/THE CANADIAN PRESS 
In honour of Canada Day, we're counting down the top 10 reasons you know you're Canadian.

I came across this slide show from the Toronto Star, Top 10 reasons you're Canadian, and thought it was a fun idea, especially as it reflects readers' contributions.

By these definitions, Canadianness, or Canuckitude, is less a question of citizenship, nationality, residence, or socio-political mindset, than certain affinities. I have reproduced the pictures and captions, and added my own Canuckitude (or lack there of) for each. See how you do!

1) You own Canadian Tire money.

Canadian Tire money is bonus "money" (like points or stamps) for purchases made at Canadian Tire Stores, which used to be automotive service centres, and sell, well tires, and other thingies, and now sell everything. I used to go with my Dad when I was very little, and he had to simultaneously buy Dad things (car stuff) and look after "the girls". Truly, truly boring, unless you like that new tire smell--a lot.

Now Canadian Tire has all sorts of garden, household, and sports items at reasonable prices, so I go there, voluntarily, and avoid the remaining car stuff.

I can't say that I actually own any Canadian Tire money, so much as bank it for my nephew. That is, I keep it in my wallet until I next see him, and hand it over, the way all the adult family members do. He is saving up for--something--but mostly seems to hoard it.

A few weeks ago, I had to return something, and needed the $0.05 (5 cents) Canadian Tire note to do so (they want the Canadian Tire money back before giving the refund). I offered my nephew $0.05 Cdn to buy one of his $0.05 CTM (which cost me $3.00+ Cdn in the first place) but he refused. His exact words were "Not from my Canadian Tire money". My sister offered $0.05 CTM she had left in her car, and so was not yet technically owned by my nephew. He allowed that to happen--grudgingly.

2) You've said "Eh" at least once.

I'm not sure I have ever said "Eh", or more precisely, "whatever whatever whatever statement, eh?", but I have certainly written it--here in posts, and maybe in comments on other blogs. Just to prove a point about Canada, eh?

Halloween Toronto Star/Carlos Osorio
3) You design your Halloween costume to fit over your winter coat.

Ah, indeed. As I wrote in Happy Hallowe'en!, my costumes (and style!) were hampered by my mother making me pile on sweaters under and over whatever design I had for myself. On particularly cold Hallowe'ens, I, like other children past and present, wore a coat over my costume, but undone as much as tolerable. My closing suggestion in that post, of going out as Inuit dancers, may indeed be the solution. The parka is the costume! (Cute Inuit child pic).

Hockey Night in Canada Andy King/AP
4) You can hum along to the Hockey Night in Canada theme song.

I can hum the old one, not the new one. The new one lacks panache. It is like the New Coke compared to the Classic Coke. It doesn't sound like Hockey Night in Canada. I'd still rather hear the old one, even as I channel surf on by. Rather like listening to hockey highlights on the BBC--just sounds wrong!

Roots Canada SUBMITTED
5) You own a piece of clothing from Roots Canada.

Hmmm. A definite maybe. I know I have been in the store. I might even have purchased something. Maybe it was for someone else, because I don't remember owning or wearing anything from Roots. Oh, I have a Roots wallet! I do have partial Roots Canuckitude!!!

Joe Fresh Toronto Star/Matthew Sherwood
6) ... and Joe Fresh.

I have never heard of Joe Fresh before! :( I am Joe Fresh-less! :( I'd have to google to find a Joe Fresh to rectify my Joe Fresh ineptitude! :(

7) You like - love - Tim Hortons.

No, but I like and love my mother, and she makes me go there.

8) ...especially Timbits.

Not really. I have, however, been in career important settings where eating Timbits was a requirement. I pick the ones with the raisins, and call them the healthiest ones.

9) You know what a toque is.

YES!!! YES!!! I do!!! Though I tend to spell it "touque", throwing me out of the Canadian Oxford Dictionnary, which prefers the spelling "tuque". Toque is from the French for a chef's hat.

I once attended a reception held by the Moroccan Embassy in the Chateau Laurier in Ottawa. It was a memorable event, not least because at the end it took a long time to retrieve winter gear from the coat check. Part of the delay was because one of the women working there was looking so hard and so long for a "chapeau". She finally was just pulling out any chapeau she could find, only to have the Moroccan fellow concerned regretfully say it was not his. Finally, she brought out a wool knit cap, with an expression of desperation and said [in French Canadian], "It's not this, is it?". He look relieved and said yes it was, and reached for it. As he walked off she said, "That's not a 'chapeau', that's a 'toque'". She obviously felt she had been sent on a wild "chapeau" chase by a newbie.

Maple Syrup Toronto Star/Craig Glover for
10) You have a bottle of maple syrup in your fridge.

Of course!!!! Doesn't everyone? What else would you put on French toast or pancakes? Something "weird" like corn syrup, or honey, or jam? I think not, eh? :D

How would you do on these parameters of Canuckitude? Are you more (or less) Canadian than you may have realized? What are the (10) things you would say reveal your national/ethnic affiliations?

Happy Canada Day!

Happy Birthday Canada!: From Colony to Constitutional Monarchy--A Model for MENA? Saudi?
Canada at 143 years young: The Presence of Saudis, Arabs, and Muslims
Canada-USA: We May Look Similar, But... (Saudis and Others--students, immigrants, and observers--take note)

People line the shore of Lake Ontario at Ashbridges Bay in Toronto to watch fireworks in 2000. (Frank Gunn / THE CANADIAN PRESS)


Wendy said...

#1 - Yes I have Canadian Tire money!
#2 - I say eh all the time!
#3 - Costume over parka upon occasion as a child.
#4 - Yes, I can hum the theme to Hockey Night ...
#5 - Don't like Roots for some political reason I can't remember. LOL!!
#6 - Don't like Joe Fresh mdse.
#7 & 8 - Love Tim Hortons and timbits.
#9 - I have owned and worn many toques in my life.
$10 - I have maple syrup - isn't it against the law to NOT have some? Maple syrup bottles are also in my suitcases when I travel to KSA and Sudan where it is also cherished.

Susanne said...

Cute list and I like seeing how you fared! In the South we call those toque things "toboggans" and I tend to wear my pink toboggan quite a lot during the winter...even inside my house. (It's cheaper than turning up the heat.)

Wendy said...

A toboggan here is a sled you slide down hills with in the winter snow. Never heard the word used for a hat though.

Add said...

Happy belated Canada day :-)

Chiara said...

Thank you all for you comments!

Wendy--impressive Canuckitude! Even politically protesting Roots and not remembering why is so Canadian! Maple syrup does make a good gift--and I never tempt fate or the law by not having some in the fridge, if only to make maple walnut muffins! :D

Susanne--glad you liked the post. Your touque gives you Canuckitude but Wendy is right about what people here would think of you wearing a "toboggan" on your head. If you do, just don't ask the hat check lady at the Chateau Laurier for your "toboggan"--the poor woman has suffered enough! LOL :D

Add--Welcome back! Your inner Canuckitude will out! I hope you comment more frequently. There is an upcoming post of particular interest to you. :D

Thank you all again for your comments!

Add said...

@Chaira - Thank you :)

I have a particularly long over due and detailed post for you my friend :) I had emailed you last week - perhaps my e-mail got lost in your spam folder? Or are you using an e-mail address other than the one listed on your about page?

Chiara said...

Add--Yes it was in the spam, probably because of the symbol in the address.

I also received many offers of money, and opportunities of charity. :D :P

I was about to email you, interestingly enough.

I shall reply to your email shortly.

Good idea to leave a comment letting me know about the email. I usually reply within a week. I'll add a note to the Contact page to warn people about the same.

Hasta pronto! :D


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