Can someone please explain Canada for me?

Like most Americans, after several decades of living next door to Canada, I know practically nothing about the country, except that hockey is big, police ride horses and wear big hats, there are lots of beavers and maple sugar, fewer uptight conservatives and religious fanatics and healthcare is more affordable than in the US, and marijuana is more legal.

From time to time I wonder what life is like up there. Such thoughts passed through my mind yesterday as I viewed real property listings in Ontario, in connection with my work, and was amazed by the beautiful houses with park-like settings that one can buy for roughly half the price of California realty. But, for all I know one, Ontario may be a miserable dump and life there would be hell.

Here’s my uninformed preconceptions of the different regions in Canada (with some help from a map). Vancouver is beautiful and more than half the population is Asian, but it’s very expensive (and probably cold and wet in the winter). Newfoundland is very rugged and beautiful but only fishermen, loners and lunatics would want to live there. Toronto and Montreal are decent places to live (for Canada) and the French influence probably isn’t too annoying. Other than that, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba are vast wastelands populated by cowboys and others who don’t fit into modern society, and the Northwest Territory is fit only for eskimos and those on the lam from the law. Overall, there may be some nice places to live in Canada, but the country still seems second-rate when compared to other places one could choose to live in the world (not including Taiwan of course).

Is my understanding basically correct? Is Canada basically a second-rate country that can be a tolerable if one doesn’t have better options, or are there reasons why an otherwise competent and rational person might choose to live there? How about my regional descriptions – valid?

Thanks for enlightening me. :slight_smile:

From an equally uninformed point of view, they all really want to be Americans so you must be right! As my mum’s family come from the East coast that must be the nicest place surely?

Anyway they won’t let me have a passport so the whole stinking place smells bad to me!

Woohoo ! It’s been at least a week since the last “All Canadians suck” thread, this will be original :canada:

They have poutines. Which could be view as a good or a bad thing.

I’m not saying that Canada sucks; I’m just saying I don’t know if it does or not. Actually, that’s not even my point. My point is that I don’t really know anything about the country, and I think lots of non-Canadians don’t either. Unlike many countries, which project a very strong and unique identity with memorable places, customs, traditions that leave an impression in the minds of even people who have never visited, Canada seems much more non-descript and unknown to the outside world. Everyone has conceptions about France or Italy or Japan or Mexico, but Canada, whatever. . .

My thread wasn’t intended as a platform for Canada bashing, but hopefully as a means of trying to understand what Canada is all about – whether there is a Canadian national identity, if one can generalize about the likes, dislikes, characteristics, etc. of Canadians, at least within particular regions, and what life in those various regions is like. I’m seriously curious about the country.

Toronto’s alright–supposedly the most multicultural city on the planet–but I wouldn’t want to live there.

Montreal’s great. Kind of rundown in a lot of areas, but vibrant, sexy, never dull. COLD in winter, but blue skies nearly everyday and you get used to it. After a while, anything above -10C doesn’t require a coat.

Vancouver’s laid back, beautiful, expensive and wet.

Calgary used to a brown patch by the freeway, but has turned into halfway decent city… to me, it still feels like a community next to a mall, but it’s not bad.

Quebec City is a provincial theme park, and utterly gorgeous.

Victoria is an excessively-policed city park for the newly-wed and nearly-dead. Very laid back.

It’s a first-rate country that consistly coasts through. It’s made a virtue of middling value: everything’s pretty good. There are flashes of real excellence and incidents of abject failure, but overall, everything’s safe, better than good, and less than it could be.

How’s that? I could be more specific if you sharpen the question.

The Chinese for that is 差不多

I don’t think 差不多 also captures “better than good”, does it?

But you said “It’s made a virtue of middling value”…“middling value” doesn’t mean better than good.

Calling Cheweycorns…Mr. Cheweycorns please pick-up the red & white Maple Leaf courtesy phone!

Where’s the popcorn?

Read the blog in my sig.

Yeah, but the middle ground is pretty expansive, and the country’s staked it’s place at the upper end of it. Canada does very well without—or perhaps because–it doesn’t shoot for the moon.

If Britain had the virtues and vices of being a nation of shopkeepers, Canada has the virtues and vices of producing widespread, sufficiently-deep value. :idunno: Virtually everyone does well. Day-by-day, it’s hardly epic, but I don’t see that as anything to apologize for.

But Canadians are supposed to be more polite and less aggressive than their southern neighbors. So hurry up and apologize!

Unless you want to admit that’s just [i]another[/i] untrue stereotype. :laughing:

You’re right.
I’m sorry to disappoint you and spoil yet another stereotype.

[quote=“Jaboney”]You’re right.
I’m sorry to disappoint you and spoil yet another stereotype.[/quote]

You apologised!!!

:laughing: :laughing: :laughing:

[quote=“Jaboney”]Vancouver’s laid back, beautiful, expensive and wet.
Sounds like you’ve been cheated by the gals on East Hastings.

Not that I’d know anything about that…

East Hastings? Expensive? That would be a cheat. :noway:
That place has got to be one of the most public failures. :frowning:

[quote=“Jaboney”]East Hastings? Expensive? That would be a cheat. :noway:
That place has got to be one of the most public failures. :frowning:[/quote]

So…what’s the going rate for a short-time?

“Be nice now!”