Tuesday, January 18, 2011
Recently my stand-up comedy travels took me to Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Is that how you write that? I feel like that's too many names for one place. It's kind of cocky, like Jennifer Love Hewitt or Philip Seymour Hoffman. Come on, Canada, you're supposed to be the humble one. Actually, now that I think about it, there's some pretty decent hipster actor names to be had with Canadian cities. Can you imagine being on the red carpet and seeing the sexy starlet Winnipeg Manitoba Canada saunter up? And don't forget her boy-toy for the moment: Halifax Nova Scotia Canada. The problem with this idea is that every couple would have to be married or else they'd seem inappropriately related. Which could actually help pave the way for the Randy Quaid-esque Saskatoon Saskatchewan Canada.
Oh boy, did I sidebar before I even started? Anyway, maybe it's because I live in Minnesota (and maybe Canadians don't want to hear this), but Canada seems pretty much exactly like America. The accent is a little different, but other than that it's the same landscape, same kind of people, same mood. Except something is just slightly off. Like there's a glitch in the Matrix. It's like when Neo is walking up the stairs and the same cat walks by twice. "Whoa!" That's what Canada is. One minute you're walking through Bizarro America and then DOUBLE-TAKE, is that written in French?! Coincidentally, Canada just got the Matrix as well.
And their oatmeal's weird. That's the small kind of stuff that can make you feel scared and all alone on the road, when everything else seems normal and then suddenly you're looking at the tiniest little grains of oats in a flour bag instead of the normal, America-accepted big cardboard tube. I imagine it's what the first astronauts on the Moon felt. "I am far away from home."
Here is a short list of other small things that are different about Canada that you don't notice at first glance:
1) Tim Horton's - Don't fuck with Canadians and their Tim Horton's. It's like pissing on a bald eagle in America.
2) Money - They pay with an elaborate system of conch shells and marbles in Canada. Somehow, it's still worth more than the USD right now.
3) Beer - I don't drink anymore, but something tells me I owe my recent life to that. I don't know if I'd have survived Canada. They don't drink so much as they occasionally get sober. They drink rubbing alcohol to come down. They don't mess around.
4) Health-care - Not to get political, but I asked them. They don't hate it.
5) Health FOOD - This is not a craze that has reached Canada yet. I'm not claiming to be the best eater in the world, but I'm trying. But not while in Canada. Healthy to them means a little less gravy on their poutine. I ate a live pig while I was there. The pig was eating a funnel cake. The funnel cake was eating Sour Patch Kids. It's a miracle anybody makes it over 45 in Canada, but the cold seems to preserve them like a jar of formaldehyde. Ted Williams and Walt Disney got it wrong. Instead of cryogenically freezing themselves Han Solo style, they should have changed their name to Quebec City Quebec Canada and lived forever Yukon-style.