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What it means to be Canadian

November 10, 2008

This post is a bit of a departure from my usual anecdotes about my kids, but I just have to get this out of my system. I have been asked the above question many, many times and I am always at a bit of a loss as to my response. However, the other night, it all became clear to me. I was at a dinner with some Americans and the idea of getting together for breakfast came up. We started talking about what the menu would include and inevitably we got to the topic of maple syrup. All the Americans present thought it was perfectly reasonable to have Log Cabin or Aunt Jemima´s. In fact, one of my best friends brings maple essence in her suitcase when she visits the U.S. and makes some sort of homemade moon-shine maple concoction that she claims is maple syrup. That for me is simply wrong. There are no two ways about it. No real red and white blooded Canadian would ever, ever do that. My American dinner mates on the other hand could not believe my shock. That in a nutshell is the difference.  

Interesting aside:  I remember going over to my grandparents’ house for dinner and being served maple syrup in fruit dishes for dessert to be eaten with wholewheat bread.

Lesser evidence of the difference: At the same dinner I asked my the diners from Chicago if they were Blackhawks fans. They were not and they claimed they didn’t really care for hockey. What?

Further evidence of the difference: Some people I know are completely head-over-heels for Obama while others have been in a funk since last Wednesday. I simply don’t feel strongly either way.

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