Okay so this is not going to be an obligatory “I suck at updating this thing, lol” post. Even though that statement is totally true. Whatevah. Here’s what you’ve missed in the past four weeks (the abridged version):
- Canadian currency is weird. Instead of one dollar bills there are one and two dollar coins called loonies and toonies. That’s right, kind of like loonie toons. These are considered legal tender and this is completely normal.
- Sales tax is 13%. I knew this before I moved here but still…THIRTEEN PERCENT.
- I’m not sure that I’ll ever be able to drink American beer again because Canadian beer has spoiled me forever. I wish this were an exaggeration.
- The French spoken here is a little different from the French spoken in France and the French I’ve been taught since I was six years old. It’s the same language, obviously, but the Québécois accent is definitely taking some getting used to.
- Cooking is easy!!! (I use the term “cooking” loosely but still!!!!)
- The capital of Canada is Ottawa. I’m pretty sure I’d never even heard of Ottawa before I moved here. How can that possibly a place and how can that possibly be the capital of this country? If someone asked you the capital of Canada, wouldn’t you say Toronto? Or Vancouver at least.
- Canadians (and apparently everyone else in the free world except for good ole Americans) drink milk out of bags and it creeps me out.
- French drag queens are capital-R Rude.
- You know how everyone jokes that people from Québec are strangely and fiercely proud of Céline Dion? It’s funny because it’s TRUE. My second week here my visual and media arts in Canada lecture was devoted to Québec’s sweetheart.
- I went to the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts and ARMIE HAMMER was there and trying to be all stealth and incognito hiding under a baseball hat. No one made a fuss but he did not go unnoticed. By me and Dave, anyway. Apparently he’s in Montreal to shoot the new Snow White film with Julia Roberts and some other randoms.
- I’ve been here for a little over a month and I still don’t understand why everyone is so obsessed with Tim Horton’s. I’ve been boycotting it on principle. See also: Canadian Thanksgiving and hockey (for now).
- The free Arcade Fire show last month was crowded and smelly but also awesome and I saw a young couple with a dancing baby in a Habs onesie sporting giant headphones to block out the sound.
- I’ve tried and failed to climb the mountain twice. Partly because I almost pass out from the incline whenever I make an attempt and also partly because I keep getting lost. I plan on making it up there before it’s winter and the city becomes trapped under 400 feet of snow, Day After Tomorrow style, or whatever it is that’s supposed to happen here December through March.
- There’s this Canadian cookie called a Fudgee-o. It kind of sounds gross but it is literally the most delicious store-bought cookie I’ve ever tasted in my life. It’s kind of like an Oreo, but the cookie part is more chocolately and the filling is pure fudgey goodness. I have this theory that they’re not allowed to be sold in the states because we would all go bat shit and eat ourselves into oblivion. If you don’t believe me, believe this: I average about a box and a half per week. THEY’RE THAT GOOD.
- Things I’ve done to be the Ugly American: fist pumped at a pub, fist pumped at McDonalds, referred to Canadian Idol as Canada’s American Idol, littered, offended Canadians everywhere by stating that their national anthem sounds a whole lot like that of Genovia (you know, the fictional country ruled by Anne Hathaway in The Princess Diaries) and then proceeded to sing the Genovian national anthem over the Canadian national anthem. Smooooth.
Hey, uh, maybe if I update this regularly I won’t have to make a million bullet points that only one person is gonna read anyway (hi, lenore). Food for thought.