Oprah’s looking for “quintessential Canadian”
Note to readers: This is an actual form you can fill out on oprah.com. I am not making this up. If you want to participate in this contest, please follow the link, here. Otherwise read on.
We want to know what life is like in Montreal for a typical Canadian family and how it’s different from those of us in the United States. How is your daily routine different from a typical Americans? Are there customs or traditions you follow that are unique to your family, Montreal or Canada? Does your family speak French at the dinner table? Are you a hockey fanatic? How is Montreal different from say life in Cleveland, Ohio? If you or someone you know is the quintessential Canadian, we want to hear from you! Tell us your story. If we were to spend an average day with you or your family, what would we see?
Dear Ms. Winfrey: I am a Canadian citizen who lives in Ottawa, Ontario, and I believe you are much misguided by assuming that the “quintessential Canadian” lives in Montreal, is a hockey fanatic and speaks French at the dinner table.
Perhaps you have failed to visit the rest of our country, which is fabulous.
If you have not, let me fill you in.
Like the United States, Canada is a diverse country where you are more likely to hear Farzi or Italian or Greek than French. (The exception, of course, is in Quebec and some parts of Atlantic Canada.) You asked how we are different than people in Cleveland, Ohio, and I ask you whether you would dare ask a New Yorker or a Californian the same question. People in Toronto have little in common with people in, say, Whitehorse, other than being hardworking, decent folk who love their families. So I would say that Canadians are like Americans in that sense.
Not all of us like hockey, hoser! Some of us like a nice, dry glass of wine or a martini. Lots of us like to go out and listen to music and we don’t all necessarily eat poutine and drink Molson Canadian. A lot of us do smoke, though, I can say in all sincerity, most of us are trying to quit.
The difference between us and Americans is largely based on the fact that we know how to keep from defaulting on our loans and houses. That’s because we have a sound banking system and a system of government that would not allow “debt ceilings”. We also have universal access to medicare. We have our problems with it, but we like it.
Unlike the US of A, our country was founded, not by the wild west, but by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and some bureaucrats who built towns, constructed railways and paid foreigners to come here. For that reason, we are a well-managed lot who don’t get into much trouble.
Wild and west only happen in Canada when the Calgary Stampede is on.
Most Canadians don’t say much around the dinner table. The kids are too busy playing XBox and dad and mom are too busy either making up soccer schedules or working two jobs to pay the rent. We eat lots of things because we are a multicultural society, and everybody eats Greek, Italian and Chinese with the odd trip to McDonald’s or Wendy’s thrown in.
If you spent a day with my family, you’d be spending it watching me type this stupid blog while my husband and kids all go to their jobs. In other words, you’d be spending your day alone. At night we sit around, barbecue and watch some tube. I used to watch you, but now you’re gone, I’m going to have to decide between Anderson Cooper and Rosie O’Donnell (guess who wins?)
That’s all for now.
Oh yes, and don’t piss Canadians off by offering up another contest like this one. It goes to show you haven’t done your market research for OWN Canada. If you did, you’d realize that most of your viewers don’t live in Montreal.