canadiana in action

After an evening of watching Degrassi Jr High in marathon format with Carly, we started reminiscing about Canadiana. After all, there’s nothing like an evening of hearing our former countrypeople say “aboot” and “sooory” (oh god, Wheels’ accent…!), not to mention the mere SIGHT of Pat Mastroianni to bring back Memories Of Being A Teenage Girl In Canada.

For example: it is MANDATORY, if you were a girl in your teens during their reign, to have had a crush on Trevor Hurst of Econoline Crush. I’ll admit, I followed Trevor across half of West Texas, once upon a time, when I was twenty. I even have a photo somewhere of me with him at a radio station in Amarillo, and a signed copy of Devil You Know in which he has written, “to a sexy devil, [heart], Trevor”.

And if you didn’t think Trevor Hurst was hot, was there a girl in Canada who didn’t weep when Raine Maida of OLP married Chantal Kreviazuk?

Then there’s the CanCon. There’s the Log Driver’s Waltz. There was The Big Snit. All those cheesy, poorly animated CanCon cartoons that YTV used as filler. There was the pencil crayon cartoon of Canada, from Victoria to Newfoundland, that ran as background to the CBC’s “O, Canada” signoff music. There was having to hear “Life Is A Highway” for an entire DECADE instead of the one year it was a flash hit on US radio. And I have yet to meet an American who knows who Mr Dressup, Jeff the Mannequin or the Polkaroo are.

There’s the fact that we haven’t seen dollar bills in fifteen years. There’s those damn ladders-and-ropes jungle gyms that were installed in gyms in Canada, but not the US. There’s the Canada Fitness Challenge, the Smoggies, and associating the Barenaked Ladies with “If I Had A Million Dollars”, which, might I add, is a fantastic song.

It’s a little strange to have all these things I haven’t thought of in years and years – not since I was a teenager in Canada – are pouring forth. After all, Carly and I might be Canadian, but we don’t have our accents anymore. But it’s still hilarious, and it’s also scaring the daylights out of our guy roomate. Who would have thought that all this junk we disdained at the time would eventually become the basis of a new nostalgia?

Oh, and to all the expats out there? Degrassi drinking games at our house this Friday. Bring it.

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