2.21.2010 | Canada

Last night I went downtown with a couple of friends to bask in the craziness that is Olympic Fever. Being the patriotic Canadian that I am, I decided that I needed to ‘show my colours’, and so ventured into that most patriotic of establishments, Canadian Tire, and went about searching for a flag to wave. However, being the lazy patriotic Canadian that I am, I found that carrying a flag and waving it occasionally may prove to be just too darn taxing.

Wait! What’s this I see? Some GENIUS has created the ultimate answer to my dilemma! SCORE!

And so, I walked out of Canadian Tire with a BIG Canadian flag WITH SLEEVES. Dude! How awesome! You just put your arms through, and voila! you have Flying Squirrel-esque Flag technology right on your back. Oh, Canada. Is there anything you can’t do?

So as we walked (and walked, and walked…) around the city, weaving among the hordes, inquiring as to line wait-times, we noticed something peculiar: we walked in people-crowded streets for hours on end, and I only had my foot stepped on once. Anytime someone bumped into me, there was “excuse me” and “I’m sorry” exchanged. Lots of smiles, lots of politeness… I think Canadianism is catching! We’re infecting the world! *sniff*… it makes me so proud.

We went to Saskatchewan House for dinner (those perogies are AWESOME. Seriously.), and there was a live band playing. When the singer asked the audience if they had any requests, a number of people shouted out “Oh Canada!!”. And so, as I watched two RCMP officers in their serge uniforms get mobbed by camera-happy tourists, and saw cheek-tattooed Canadians assist the hard working waitresses in picking up garbage, there was a guitar wailing out the National Anthem, accompanied by a raucous chorus of happy (Molsonified) Canucks.

And so after we finished our beers, we donned hockey gloves, had our photo taken with a plastic fish, and made our way up to Robson Street. Along the way I decided that I needed to remember some of the overheard snippets of conversation to put in today’s blog entry. Unfortunately I only remember two (that French guy walking into a tree was so distracting that I kind of lost my train of thought)… but they’re pretty good:


“…she’s over there, getting her picture taken with the yeti”

Ahhhhh, Canada.

However, for me, the best part of the night was when I saw a young man wearing a reflective vest, picking up garbage on the street. (I guess he works for Vanoc or something, I don’t know). Anyway, as he went along Robson St, I watched as people stopped him and thanked him for “helping out”, for “keeping our city beautiful”, and for his “hard work”. I have never seen a person smile so much while picking up garbage.

I love this city. I love this country. I’m a proud Canadian and a dedicated “Syrup-Sucking Icehole”.