Tag: words

The Friday File – Have you got two toonies and a loonie for a Fiver?

Canadian Slang

[photo courtesy of facebook.com/CHEY106] Thanks to my very good friend Michelle for providing today’s post material! What a great list, Michelle; thank you!

Several weeks ago as I sauntered on State Street, that great street (ah, an old quote from the song, “Chicago”,  best known by Frank Sinatra’s version in 1957), it lightly started to rain.  Umbrella(less) as I found myself to be at that moment, I remarked to a woman passerby, “Oh, no, it’s spitting out.”  She seemed to increase her already hurried pace and flew right past me.  I summarized it must be because, well, it was spitting out.  I posed the following question to an American friend:

“Don’t you say, “It’s spitting out” when it begins to lightly rain?”   “No”, was the response.  “What do you call it, then?” I questioned, at this point feeling I had spent utterly too much time and energy on spitting (I mean, light rain).  Here is the classic, unabridged dialogue from my fellow American: “Down here, we call it rain.”

Rain Cloud

[photo courtesy of dkimages.com]

Please have a gander *grin* at the list above.  If you are a Canadian, chances are a lot of these are included in your daily repertoire of words.  I must confess, at one time or another I have used almost every single word on the list!

I noticed that even the order of using numbers is different in Canada than it is here in the US.  For example, I might say, “I was in grade six when I wrote my first poem.”  In the US you would say, “I was in sixth grade when I wrote my first poem.”  Little subtleties, true, but different! Ah, yes, I almost forgot the one I constantly write incorrectly; I mean, correctly North of the 49th parallel, but incorrectly South of the 49th, and…………….. Okay, here it is:  To numerically write, “July 11, 2014, in Canada it is written, “11/07/14”.  In the US it is written, “07/11/14”.  Now, far be it from me to split hairs about the proper or lack of improperly using numbers in various ways.  Nonetheless, it gets pretty darned confusing when one is trying to decide whether the milk in the fridge needs to be thrown out immediately, or if all is well in dairy land.

Month Day Year[photo courtesy of newgrounds.com]

I need to stick this diagram on my fridge so I may happily make chicken without fear of salmonella poisoning!

My confusion spills into my checkbook (cheque in Canadian-speak) when I am setting myself up for a ‘friendly’ phone call from the bank asking me if I really ‘meant’ to write the check for February 11th when clearly we are meandering through the month of November!

Note my beloved Tim Hortons made the list 3 times! No surprise to me!

Let’s see if you can incorporate a few of the Canadian words and phrases into a conversation with someone (Canadians need not apply; you’ve already been, “Giv’n’r” eh).

Happy Friday! Feel free to stay in your housecoat while sitting on the Chesterfield all weekend, but make sure to go easy on using a lot of hydro for your air conditioning, or it’ll cut into your Mickey money!

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