Canadian, eh?

Discussion in 'Canadian Trip Planning & Community Board' started by Debbie, May 17, 2001.

  1. Debbie

    Debbie DIScovering DIS magic-missing my colours

    Jun 28, 2000
    This is a list of sure signs that you're in Canada.

    Everything is labelled in English and French.

    Everything is measured in metric. (No, the
    temperature does not drop fifty degrees when
    you cross the border, and the speed limit
    doesn't double.)

    Milk comes in plastic bags as well as in
    cartons and jugs.

    There's hockey gear everywhere. A guy can get
    onto a bus wearing goalie pads, a helmet --
    everything but the skates -- and nobody gives
    him a second look.

    Restaurants serve vinegar with French fries.

    There are $1 and $2 coins. The paper currency
    is in different colors, and it's pretty.

    The Trans-Canada Highway -- Canada's
    analogue to the US Interstates -- is two lanes
    wide for most of its length. (There are great big
    huge wide highways around the major cities.
    The 401 north of Toronto is sixteen lanes wide
    in places.)

    There is still the occasional musical variety
    show on network TV, and such a show that
    was on until recently was hosted by a very,
    very large woman (Rita McNeil).

    The CBC's evening news anchor is bald and
    doesn't wear a toupee.

    When new coins are introduced to replace
    paper currency, people actually use the coins.

    Contests run by anyone other than the
    government have "skill-testing questions" that
    winners must answer correctly before they can
    claim a prize. These are usually math
    problems, and are administered to get around
    the law that only the government can
    administer lotteries.

    Lots of people run around in clothing from

    The following gas stations are around (and
    don't exist in the US):
    Esso (instead of Exxon -- a visitor suggests
    "Esso" comes from the "S" and the "O" of
    Standard Oil)
    Petro Canada
    Irving (only in eastern Canada, and a
    visitor advises me that there's now at
    least one in Maine)
    Canadian Tire
    Mohawk (primarily in western Canada)

    These are the biggest department stores:
    The Bay (the Hudson's Bay Company, the
    oldest company in North America and
    possibly the world -- it was incorporated
    on May 2, 1670)
    Eaton's (Toronto, Montréal, Calgary,
    Edmonton, and Vancouver are among the
    cities that have large malls called the
    Eaton Centre (Centre Eaton in French)).
    Eaton's has been having financial troubles
    for several years now, and finally closed
    a number of its stores and sold the rest to
    Sears Canada.
    Zellers -- owned by the Bay, Zellers is
    similar to KMart (which recently pulled
    out of Canada) or Target (which isn't in
    Canada at all).

    These are the big banks:
    Toronto Dominion
    Bank of Montreal
    Royal Bank
    The Bank of Nova Scotia
    Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce
    The National Bank of Canada
    The HongKong Bank of Canada

    Credit unions are also popular in Canada,
    especially in Quebec, where they're called
    caisses populaires.

    These are the most well-known Canadian
    restaurant chains:
    Harvey's -- fast food burger joint
    Mr. Sub -- similar to Subway
    The Keg (Le Keg en français) -- a big,
    high-end yet still generic steakhouse
    Pizza Pizza -- similar to Domino's
    Tim Horton's -- do(ugh)nuts! See below.
    Swiss Chalet -- sit-down chicken and ribs
    Robin's -- another do(ugh)nut chain,
    popular in western Canada.

    The big mass-market beers are Molson and
    Labatt, and they're a lot stronger than US
    beers. Molson Golden was recently
    reintroduced to the Canadian market, but I
    hardly ever see anyone drinking it -- I get the
    feeling Molson ships most of it to the States
    and tells the Americans it's good.

    The major cigarette labels are Player's, Craven
    A, DuMaurier, Matinee, and Export A.
    Canadian cigarettes are milder than American

    Mountain Dew has no caffeine.

    Coke and Pepsi use real sugar instead of corn

    Instead of seeing Barnes & Noble and Borders
    bookstores, you see Coles and SmithBooks and
    Chapters and Indigo (at least for now).

    There are lots and lots of do(ugh)nut shops,
    especially ones called Tim Horton's (named
    after the hockey player who started the chain).
    (The number of Tim Horton's diminishes as
    you go further west, but I'm assured there are
    lots of them in Edmonton.)

    When you step on someone's foot, he
    apologizes. (This really happened.)

    There are billboards advertising vacations in
    Cuba, and Cuban cigars are freely available.

    Nobody worries about losing a life's savings
    or a home because of illness.

    In pharmacies, you can buy acetaminophen or
    ASA with codeine over the counter, but you
    can't buy hydrocortisone ointments or creams
    without a prescription.

    When you go to the dentist to get a cavity
    filled (or worse), she or he puts a needle in
    your mouth first to "freeze" it. (Asking for
    Novocaine (a brand name) immediately pegs
    you as an American.)

    At county fairs and the Canadian National
    Exhibition, red ribbons indicate first place and
    blue ribbons indicate second. (Canadians: it's
    the other way around in the States.)

    Any conversation will inevitably include a
    brief discussion of the weather.

    It's almost impossible to get a glass of unsweetened iced tea
    in downtown Toronto.

    Teenagers can drink legally. The drinking age
    in Quebec, Manitoba, and Alberta is 18; it's 19
    in the rest of the country.

    Potato chips come in flavo(u)rs such as salt and
    vinegar, ketchup, and "all dressed" (a
    collection of just about all possible seasonings
    -- the person who suggested this one liked it to
    a "suicide slush" in the States).

    There are "chip vans" (aka "chip trucks" or
    "chip wagons"). These are like the van driven
    by the ice cream man, only they sell French
    fries. They are most ubiquitous on the roads to
    "cottage country." (A visitor from British
    Columbia noted that "chip trucks" don't sell
    French fries in BC; they drive on logging
    roads and carry wood chips there.)

    Every weekend during the summer, southern
    Ontarians go in droves from Toronto and its
    environs to their second homes (ranging from
    campers to great big houses with all the
    amenities) in cottage country (usually
    Muskoka -- I'm told that calling it "the
    Muskokas" marks you as an outsider).

    Every weekend during the summer, southern
    Quebecers go in droves from Montréal and its
    environs to their cottage country (usually the
    Laurentians; the Eastern Townships;
    Burlington, Vermont; Lake Champlain, New
    York; or Plattsburgh, New York).

    Every weekend during the winter, the cottage
    country people go back to cottage country to
    go snowmobiling. Gas stations are just as
    likely to be filling snowmobiles as cars or

    Cars (especially on the Prairies) have electrical
    plugs sticking out from under the hoods. These
    are for block heaters, to prevent engines from
    freezing when it's -40.

    People give distances in times, not miles.

    People ask whether you'd like "a coffee" rather
    than "some coffee."

    Canadians tend to use British spelling. They
    write about "colour," "cheques," "theatres," and
    so forth. Most use the American "-ize" rather
    than the British "-ise" verb ending, however.

    People drive with their headlights on during
    the day. Since 1989, all new cars have had to
    be fitted with daytime running lights.

    In Ontario, you can buy beer only at the Beer
    Store (formerly known as "Brewers' Retail").
    The experience of going into a beer store is
    documented nicely in the 1983 film Strange

    Movie theatres have one night a week, usually
    Monday or Tuesday, where they charge
    matinee prices.

    There is no mail delivered on Saturdays.

    "Lieutenant" is pronounced "leftenant."

    Mortgage interest is not tax-deductible. The
    interest rate on most mortgages is not fixed,
    but rather, is renewed at the end of a term
    which can be as short as six months or as long
    as seven years.

    Most Canadians will tell you that the last letter
    of the alphabet is pronounced "zed." Sharon,
    Lois, and Bram, popular children's
    entertainers, make it a point in their
    performances of "The Alphabet Song" to say
    "zed" instead of "zee."

    People end sentences with "eh," eh?

    And, to keep this on topic, only Canadians will drive 24 hours solid the second Friday in March, to spend 7 days at Disney, and then drive like a bat out of h@#l back to make it home in time for the 3rd term of school.
  2. Louise-Montreal

    Louise-Montreal <font color=CC99CC>Vous parlez Francais, Tag Fairy

    Aug 18, 1999
    Got a chuckle from all the Canadianisms!

    Thanks, Debbie!;)
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  4. TimNDansMom

    TimNDansMom DIS Veteran

    Mar 23, 2000
    That was great, Debbie. Thanks. :)
  5. disneyjanet

    disneyjanet Mouseketeer

    Mar 30, 2001
    As a transplanted Candadian living in Seattle WA I thought I'd share the fact that there are Keg's here. I think it's because it is a Vancouver based company and Vancouver is so close. Here's a question for you guys: Don't you think it would be a wonderful idea to put a Tim Horton's in the Canadian pavillion in Epcot?


  6. Debbie

    Debbie DIScovering DIS magic-missing my colours

    Jun 28, 2000
    That sounds great, Janet. We only go in the summer, and I know that the kids would love an iced cappucino as we wandered-with the Boston cream! :)
  7. Tink42

    Tink42 Mouseketeer

    May 15, 2000
    A medium double double to go with a beavertail............I think my husband would go for that!
  8. from Canada

    from Canada Mouseketeer

    Feb 20, 2000
    LOL I loved this post. I second the idea of a Tims at epcot...I think thats more "canadian" than a bevertail any way. (I ve never had a beaver tail any where in canada).
  9. cotye

    cotye <font color=green>Resident Mariah Expert<br><font

    Sep 6, 2000
    LOL.. Thanks for the chuckle! ;)
  10. Snowwark

    Snowwark DIS Veteran

    Jun 8, 2000
    Thanks Debbie, that was interesting and entertaining!!

    A Tim Hortons at Epcot is a really, really, really, good idea Janet, you should start a petition! Really!

    One large double double to go please!! :D :D
  11. ChisJo

    ChisJo Cause afterall, a dream that you wish, will come t

    Jan 29, 2001
    That was great.. I am sitting in a very quite spot with a lot of people around me and they are wondering why I am laughing really loud. I am from Edmonton and can agree with the Tim Hortons - they are everywhere (I actually live 5 minutes outside Edmonton in a little city with a population of 68,000 people, it's not very big, and we have 4 of them. That and Macdonalds are on every corner, I swear. Anyways, thanks for making my day.

  12. kristas mom

    kristas mom Earning My Ears

    Dec 28, 2000
    Please please put a Tim Hortons in Epcot. I cannot believe how bad the coffee is in Florida.
  13. SeaSpray

    SeaSpray Disney World fan since 1976

    Jan 11, 2001
    That was interesting reading! LOL I actually grew up going to a boardwalk at the New Jersey shore where they served delicious homemade fries and vinegar! And they do have "Tim Horton's" here, although I think the closest one just closed here. We're planning our first trip to Canada....thanks for the "education"! :)
  14. gucci

    gucci Earning My Ears

    Apr 29, 2001
    I completely agree we are Tim Horton's addicted we have 32 in a small city some are a 3 min walk from one another, We are even bringing Tim Horton's coffee with us and a coffee maker. Does any body know if you can buy coffee cream in the US. Who do we have to talk to to put a Tim's in Epcot they could disguise it as a small victorian shop or something.
  15. Limmer

    Limmer DIS Veteran

    May 1, 2001
    Please, please tell me the Coke tastes the same. What will I do for 10 days?;)
  16. CathyCanada

    CathyCanada <font color=teal>The <b>Fluffy</b> Former Webmaste

    Apr 21, 2000
    Great post Debbie!! :)
    I recently found that they don't have Excel gum there and when I offered it to my US friends, there were like, what is this? Canadian gum? :)
  17. chessie

    chessie DIS Veteran

    Aug 25, 1999
    Thanks for your post.

    I am planning my first trip to Canada and thought I’d pop over to the Canadian board to pick up some pointers.

    I now know where I will be getting my daily coffee fix.

    Is the diet Coke the same?


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