Canada and the United States have always had a fraught relationship, dating all the way back to the War of 1812, when the U.S. attempted to invade, failed miserably, and had their capital destroyed in retaliation.
Sure, the two countries became friends and allies in the two hundred years since, but tentions continue to occassionally simmer. In 2018, for example, leaders on both sides of the border exchanged some pretty harsh words during the long negotiation of a new trade deal.
In this period of renewed political hostility, it's worth taking a moment to point out the more lighthearted cultural exchanges between the two countries.
So, listed below are twenty things about Canada that confuse the "heck" (this is Canada, we're keeping things polite) out of Americans. These items are each accompanied by Tweets from over the years from baffled Americans and a few ironic Canadians.
Enjoy! And let's remember that it's ok, even important, to laugh at each other and ourselves once in a while!
Americans are confused...
That Canada is actually an independent country
i thought Canada was part of America? or..? i did know.... https://t.co/5XLgpaNQvR— Maja (@Planet_Maja) January 7, 2019
So Canada goes from being this weird place with Poutine and Tim Hortons to the United States' biggest rival? 2018 is weird.— Bret Spurgin (@RedDirtCyclone) June 11, 2018
To many Americans, Canada is just a quirky satellite blob to the north that keeps to itself. Even worse, many Americans just lump Canada into discussions about the United States. While only the most ignorant people actually think Canada is part of the U.S., disregard for Canada is pretty common among the American population.
That they can't just "move" here when they're sick of the U.S.
At this point,I’m ashamed to be an American and is moving to Canada. Our country is weak because of trump— Donald Duck (@RepDonaldDucks) January 10, 2019
We're all familiar with the perennial American promise to "move to Canada" when things aren't going their way.
Sorry, but Canada actually has its own immigration system. Americans can't just "move" here without applying for a permit first.
by Canadians and their syrup
Today my son asked where maple syrup comes from during breakfast. Today is also the day he learned about a magical place called Canada— Jess 🌵🌞💙 (@jessiejess1228) December 16, 2018
My cousins who live in Canada told me they pour Maple Syrup in the snow and eat it. Pretty sure we can still judge Canadians.— Gautham Srinivasan (@GauthamS_) January 6, 2015
It's actually not Canada's only export! Americans can "judge" Canadians all they want for their syrup consumption, people in Canada are still healthier than their counterparts to the south.
That Canadians aren't all clichés
i live in canada. my home is an igloo. my transit is standing on a puck while wayne gretzsky takes a slap shot. when i have a wound my doctor pours syrup in it for free. life is good buddy.— Jacob. (@dinkbalshin) December 5, 2018
Canadians are not cartoons.
That people speak French
"Why do they speak French in Canada.. Is France close?" - @leamenchaca— Tyler G. (@tyguillory) January 8, 2016
Did you know they speak French in Canada? #interesting— Donald J. Drumpf (@RealDonalDrumpf) February 13, 2017
Did you know they speak French in Canada? God, that place is a mess.— ★Spicoli★ (@blink1371) August 14, 2012
Canada has deux langues officielles.
That Canada is a monarchy
Canada has a queen?— jaberwok (@jaberwok1) December 23, 2018
CaNaDa HaS a QuEen????????— Yetti - your resident calebfucker (@drawsshits) November 12, 2018
Many Americans have absolutely no clue that Canada is a monarchy and shares a queen with dozens of other countries.
By Canadian money
A Canadian woman told me American money was weird for being all the same color while I was cashiering today. I think it’s weird that their currency looks like Monopoly money but ok. 🤷♀️ 💵— Charity © (@charityemmite) January 6, 2019
At least Canadian money isn't winkly, smelly, and a gross shade of green.
By Canadian cuisine
Poutine is just weird. Sorry, Canadians. It’s. Just. Weird. Otherwise, I love Canada. 🇨🇦— Jest Joan (@jest_joan) April 28, 2018
The fact that Canadians call kraft mac & cheese 'Kraft Dinner' is one of the few, valid reasons to hate Canada— Mαddie McCreαdy (@miss_maddiemac) July 31, 2017
Happy Canada Day why aren’t you guys calling ketchup chips ketchips?— MehGyver (@AndrewNadeau0) July 1, 2018
First two words i learned in Canada :beavertail, eh— Niyousha_Saeidi (@niyousha1997) October 15, 2013
Americans may actually have a point here...
By Canadian slang
I’m blown away by how Canada has their own slang. Idk why. It’s like finding out your sibling has a secret life.Makes me wonder if Canadians are blown away by USA slang....— ash 2019 style!! (@AshKChoi) November 29, 2018
Canadian slang was actually first invented as a secret code to fool Americans.
By bagged milk
Milk bags are fucking stupid— crackhead_31 (@yungspout) November 14, 2018
I want cereal oh dammit where did I put my milk bag holder I can’t pour my milk without my milk bag holder oh here it is now where did I put those scissors I need scissors to access the milk inside of my milk bag
Fuck milk bags and fuck canada
Happy Thanksgiving to them milk bag lovers aka Canada— Kayla (@iKaylur) October 9, 2017
top 5 worst countries— adam (@ademnia) July 14, 2018
2: syrup fiends
3: milk bag freaks
4: snow mexico
5: its fuckin canada. tgats the joke it’s just canada
There are actually dozens upon dozens of Tweets from Americans who are angry about bagged milk.
To be fair, even some Canadians are unfamiliar with it:
I've lived in Canada my whole life and never seen a milk bag, this stereotype needs to stop.— Kodi / SoaR Sausa (@SoaR_Sausa) December 17, 2015
That Canada is so huge
why is canada so big. what are you guys hiding up there— pepsi universe (@omophagos) November 16, 2018
Americans are indoctrinated with the belief that the U.S. is the "number one" country on the planet. So for some, the fact that Canada is actually bigger can be unsettling and confusing.
That not everyone has an accent
I still read anything hockey-related in a Canadian accent— Philip Arabome (@PhillyBeach93) January 11, 2019
If you have a Canadian accent... lose it immediately or else— el mago (@mr_mango1) January 10, 2019
"Really?? You're from Canada????? You don't have an accent, though..."
By Tim Hortons
Lmfao Americans barely learn about Canada .. That's why they dont know much about here. "who's the prime minister of Canada?" "Tim hortons?"— Jasminator ✿ (@OhMyVillegasx) July 13, 2011
Step 1). What the fuck is a Timbit? #OtherUsesForTimbits— ESPEZY Ation (@ESPEZY) January 9, 2019
General American ignorance of Tim Hortons became especially clear this week when Timbits, the famous Canadian donut holes, were trending on Twitter.
By the Canadian system of government
ffs some people I swear, you have the INTERNET, you can just look up who the president of canada is!! it's not hard!!— ʕ ㅇ ᴥ ㅇʔ (@_Flinch) December 14, 2018
Canada does not have a president, but it does have autonomous regions called "provinces," but, no, they're not "states."
That Canada is progressive
Life seems so good in Canada man. Weed is legal, healthcare is free. Animal testing is illegal, and the drinking age is 19 😭 this why we never see mfs from Canada wildin— Rob (@robpinkston150) July 24, 2018
Canada always seems to get it right when America gets it wrong. While so many factors prevent the United States from advancing on key issues, Canada is moving decisively forward.
By Canadian friendliness
Canadians are too friendly— Eiad (@iShabi7a) December 19, 2015
Canadians are probably friendly because they have a functional country. The truth is hard.
By the ubiquitous maple leaf
Why canada flag a leaf? that look dumb af— Jay The Model (@Jay_tml) August 8, 2012
they need to put justin bieber’s face on the canada flag. idk why they put some lame leaf lmao— lord piglet (@heeeyitsjessica) March 15, 2018
Everything in #Canada has a maple leaf on it, flags, buildings, clothes, signs and in this sushi restaurant chop sticks— Alistair MacDonald (@macdonaldajm) February 15, 2012
Well, Canadians have to do something to distinguish themselves from Americans.
By the cold
“Canada: It’s America, but cold.”— alli (@allih_15) October 22, 2018
Canada is America's penthouse but the windows are broken so it's really cold in the winter— donni saphire (@donni) January 29, 2013
Believe it or not, "cold" is not the only adjective that could possibly describe Canada. Yet, it seems to be one of the only things Americans know about their neighbour country to the north. There are actually parts of Canada that are relatively mild all year round.
Winter temperatures are generally lower, it's true. But tens of millions of Americans live in the desert and that must be equally unpleasant.
By Canadian Thanksgiving
Why in the world is Canadian Thanksgiving in early October???— Matt 💚♌️🏒⚾️ (@findmyway37) October 8, 2017
Why is the Canadian Thanksgiving in October?? Did the Pilgrims feast with the Mounties?— Chuck Conry (@chuckconry) October 10, 2010
Why do Americans care so much?
By Canadian spelling
freakin canadians spelling things weird— ☽ ✦ r a y n e ✦☽ (@CiaraTurnr) November 25, 2012
Canadian spelling is somewhere between British and American spelling and we're not apologizing for it.