Friday, January 2, 2015

Dear Canada


Dear Canada,

     Just writing to say I think you're great and to apologize for how very offensive we Americans are. Oh I know, you'd probably try to disagree with me, to make me feel better, because your country is so very polite, but it's okay, I know how it is.
     It must be embarrassing for you, to have a country full of loud, rude, gun toting people right below you. I've seen your citizens doing their shopping here, looking terrified, wondering if the wrong look or wrong syllable will get them shot. That's how friendly WE are, Canada, and it isn't very great.
     Why, on our best day, when the planets are perfectly aligned, we still aren't as kind as you are. We are still Joe Pesci to your Cary Grant. Admit it, you're kind of wonderful. Tell a Canadian they need to wait two hours and they'll tell you that's okay, more time to enjoy the nice weather. Accidentally drop a piano on top of a Canadian and they'll say, Oh how kind of you, I love music. In comparison, if someone tries to say hello to an American many of them will just growl at you or maybe even say something snide about your mother.
     On top of that, you've put up with our ridicule. All of the ABOOT jokes. Sorry. All of the EH jokes. Sorry. Teasing you that it's Maple LEAVES not LEAFS. We're sorry. Oh also the thing about the cops on horses, the Horsie Police. Sorry. Oh one last one, the teasing about the sport you do with sweeping ice with a broom. We're sorry.
     Although how anyone ever associated a broom with ice, I don't know, but that's beside the point. Teasing isn't very nice and especially when you're so nice to us.
     The thing is, you don't clean the ice with a broom. It's just confusing, that's all. And then when you add that heavy weighted thing you slide in the direction of the people sweeping...well it just seems like something you might think up while intoxicated. Not that you were.
     And the money, your all different colored money that we associate with the board game Monopoly. Love that. Except the coins. You know, in America when we get a Canadian coin we can't use it anywhere. We have to give it to a cashier with the rest of our American coins and hope he won't notice and then we snicker because we've given him a useless piece of metal. Well, useless here, that is.
     Oh and your holidays. You have a shocking amount of them, I don't know if you've noticed that. I suppose we do make a few jokes about The Queen Got Her Hair Cut Day. But of course we mean no harm.
     Actually I think we all picture Canadians in some sort of parallel world where everything is simple and people have tea with moose. Either that or maybe they put vodka in the water supply.
     Seriously, show me the grouchy Canadian. I will offer you ten dollars to do this because I know you can't. Michael J. Fox. He couldn't act angry if I set his house on fire and then stood on the sidewalk laughing about it. Martin Short. Please. He can't stop giggling. Anne Murray, she would bake me a pie. John Candy, when alive, would certainly have been happy to hand over his house, car, and wallet to anyone. I
     That's another thing. Have you noticed that every time you have a talented citizen we steal them? We're greedy that way. Sorry.
     It's nice to know we never fear you attacking us. You don't even seem to know how to insult us, so actually fighting us would seem pretty unlikely. Although I have to say I'm not sure how useful you'd be as allies, what with the horses and all. I guess it evens out.
     What am I doing, it's not my place to tell your country how to do things! Oh, the Canadian Bacon, see, that's ham. It's not bacon. It's ham.
     I promise that was the last thing. Unless I think of more things, which I know won't offend you but will somehow delight you. Because they put vodka in the water or maybe because you're just that sweet.

     Your pals to the south,


     And P.S. If anyone ever picks on you, don't worry. You can count on us. We keep Arnold Schwarzenegger here, specifically to scare off our enemies. Actually that's not really him, that's a hologram. The real Arnold moved back to Austria about nine years ago. He couldn't take America anymore. Kept saying something about Too Scary Too Scary.

Amie Ryan is the author of essay collections GREEN SHOES MEAN I LOVE YOU and STARFISH ON THURSDAY and the Marilyn Monroe biography MARILYN: LOVED BY YOU which became a #1 bestseller in its category on both Amazon US and Amazon UK. To learn more, please visit


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