Sunday, September 20, 2009

Lessons In Canuck-Speak

I must say, the more I read about other places in the world, the more partial I am to my funny, idiosyncratic country -- from poutine and beaver tails (don't ask...) to Stompin' Tom Connors. I grew up listening to CBC radio and watching CBC television, and thinking, "What a boring country I live in; nothing ever happens here." But I have come to the conclusion that I rather like it that way. When I was a teenager, all I wanted to do was to head for the bright lights of New York City. How exciting it would have been to live in the absolute centre of the world. I have since come to realize, however, that Canada is the centre of the world. Oh, yes it is. We are situated squarely between the old-world, traditional British sense and sensibilities, and the new-world, colorful and brazen jazzy American culture and way of life. Canadians have managed to extract the best of both worlds, and we have added a dash of our own to the mix.

In a few months the world will be coming to Vancouver for the 2010 Olympics, so I thought I would give everyone a crash course in speaking and understanding Canuck, otherwise known as Canajun. A couple of months ago I gave you a few examples of Canajun, and here are a few more important terms you will need to know.

Mazkidda: The national insect of Canada. A kind of gnat whose bite causes a prolonged itching sensation. Mzakidda-swatting contests are staged every spring at cottage-opening time.

Horble: Extremely unpleasant, as weather, a noise, mazkiddas, etc.

Gradge: A building for storing or repairing automobiles.

Forner: A non-Canadian. The adjective is Forn.

Chewsdy: The day after Mundy (the day after Sundy).

Tamara: The day after today.

Yesday: The day preceding today.

Inta Resting: Arousing curiosity or attention.

Egg Sellent: Very good, of considerable merit.

Egg Spurt: Someone with special skill or knowledge.

Boddum: The lowest part; the backside. Used as a toast: "Boddum Zup!"

Kenya: Are you able to? As in: "Kenya stop whatcher doon en gimmier hand?" The negative form is Kentcha.

Furn Chur: Movable articles in a room, such as tables, chairs, etc.

Swedder: A knitted woolen garment covering the upper part of the body.

Yaskt: To make all necessary enquiries, to request information, as in: "I'm awfully glad yaskt."

And here is Stompin' Tom Connors with the real national anthem of Canada.


Marguerite said...

Hi Jo, Thanks so much for the lesson in Canajun. Sure sounds like Cajun! lol Since I also have Canadian ancestors and relatives, I totally agree with you. Cheers!

ivan said...

Cajuns came from Nova Scotia and our East Coast..

Eve today, we are charmed by question in English such as "Oate you call dat t'ing dat bash his face against de tree... De woodpecker?"

heartinsanfrancisco said...

I loved this, especially the part about Canada being the center of the world, and why. Just lovely. And now that I've mastered Canuckspeak, I will really have to come to the Olympics as it would be a shame to waste my eggsspurttease.

PhilipH said...

Oh why cantchya speak proper, like wot we does in Brit?

Jus' cuz most kidz carnt pronownce a 't' da's no reezun fer yew lod to imi'ayd us, innit?

No, I no good at this Jo. I bow to your superioroddidy.

Brenda said...

Hahahah....loved Philip's comment!!! I think I may have to find out more about Canada because I have a feeling many of my ancestors migrated to Canada after leaving Scotland. I just found that out a few days ago. I have always heard that Canada is very beautiful.

The Bug said...

That was fun! I'm from the U.S. south, so we have a "different" way of speaking too - I find it all highly entertaining.

TomCat said...

Quite enjoyable, Josie. You forgot to mention that in parts of Canada the mosquitoes are bigger and more dangerous than fighter planes.

Mary said...

I'll feel more comfortable crossing the border now. I'll keep your "cheat sheet" in my duffle so I'm able to do instant translation. This was really funny :-).

Meggie said...

Much like Strine! Lovely lessons. I will have to tell you though, that New Zilland is Godzone!

Russell said...

One of my favorite lines is from Rodney Dangerfield. He said "I went to a fight once and a hockey game broke out!"

God bless Rodney..! Enjoyed the video.

Owen said...

Sounds almost like Boston American English... and let's not even get into Philadelphia American English, where yous gott get used to it slowly. Anyway, you sure seem to be an eggspurt on Canajun, did you have to take lessons ? I'd like to see that egg spurt...

JeannetteLS said...

I don't know... this Internet place seems to be letting in all kinds of Forners.

It's scaring me. Canada is not the center of the world; I am.

lovelyprism said...

I love this description of Canada! Well done. I also love it when you do these examples of Canajun, they crack me up.