As a dual citizen of both Canada and America, the first week of July is a pretty festive time. I like to think that having two passports gives me the right to continue the patriotic celebrations from Canada Day through to the Fourth of July.
Many Americans don’t really care too much about what goes on across the border, possibly because they’re too busy chanting “U.S.A. No. 1” as they spoon-feed themselves ranch dressing. But when they do think about us Canadians, they’re usually smirking.
The concept of “Canadian football” tends to elicit eye rolling, and Steve Martin famously mocked Toronto on an episode of 30 Rock as “New York without all the stuff in it.”
And yes, the beaver is a pretty laughable national animal when compared to the far more majestic eagle and our coins sound like badly drawn cartoon characters. Loonie and toonie? Come on.
Our taxes are higher, our Netflix options are abysmal and our telecommunications monopolies have a stranglehold on our mobile-dependent citizens with their high fees.
But while the odds seem stacked in Yankee favour, this humble northern neighbour has some pretty amazing qualities.
Here are 10 of my favourite ways in which the Great White North kicks the Land of the Free’s ass (sorry to brag, it’s the American in me):
1 Two words: American beer. Here in Canada, we generally don’t like to dilute our beer with water. We also earn money when we recycle those bottles of stronger brew, so really, that’s two points for Canada.
2 Who cares what Microsoft Word has to say. Adding a “u” to words like “colour” and “favourite” is classier.
3 In this bilingual country, it’s entirely possible to teach yourself a new language just by reading a box of cereal.
4 Canada is a constitutional monarchy, which means our lame obsession with the British royal family is somewhat justified. What’s your excuse America?
5 Legalized same-sex marriage.
6 Colour-coded money. Because why on earth would you make your one-dollar bill and your one-hundred- dollar bill look almost identical?
7 Canadians were wearing plaid before it was ironic.
8 Fact: Caesar > Bloody Marys.
9 We have the most patriotic customer loyalty program: Canadian Tire money. Does Lowes have its own currency? Didn’t think so.
10 We invented the electric light bulb, basketball, the telephone, and the greatest guilty-pleasure snack of all time: A heavenly medley of cheese curds, gravy, fries.
O Canada indeed.