How’s it going? Hope everything is super cool with you and yours. Everything is chaos as usual around here – the cat brought another bird into the house as her special gift for us, I’m still limping around like a drunken pirate on account of favoring my sore fasciitis heal on my left foot has now also messed up my right knee, and we’ve had enough weird wind around here that I’m convinced Mother Nature is really peeved and I’m a little bit spooked about that, to tell you the truth.
But I thought I’d drop you a quick note on your special day – it’s been, like, never since I wrote last (literally never) and I’m not really sure how to write to a country. Anyway, I just wanted you to know that we put up one of your nice big flags in the window, as we always do on your day.
I like the flag. When I was just a little reprobate at South School we used to have the old Union Jack flag which was kind of neat as far as flags go, but it really wasn’t our own, was it. I sort of remember when the Maple Leaf flag was invented, that some people around here didn’t really like it. At all. But then again some people don’t like to change anything, especially when you mess with the Queen and her flag and stuff like that. People said Alberta doesn’t have big red maple leaves but Ontario does and it was typical of how the East is, like, golden, and the West is, like, chopped liver. Except everyone wants to live here, so there. But anyway, pretty well everybody loves your flag now, Canada, as you can tell by the fact everyone and his dog is waving them around today and wearing it on their t-shirts and hats, and painting the maple leaf on their smiling faces. There are so many flags around today, you’d think we were Americans!
You got a really nice country going here, Canada, but I can’t believe you’re 150 years old. You don’t look a day over 120. Still, for a country, 150 years of age is pretty darn young – just ask your cousins. Like Britain for instance. The U.K. has beer in their pubs that is 150 years old! Heck, Bill Shakespeare was 453 years old last April. Petula Clark (look it up kids!) will be 85 this year, and I’m pretty sure at least one of the Queen’s corgis is at least 175. England has newspapers blowing down the street that are over 200 years old. So, really, Canada you’re just a young pup on this third rock from the sun.
FYI, I looked it up and your name “Canada” probably came from the Huron-Iroquois word “kanata,” meaning “village” or “settlement.” Either that or it was invented by Bob and Doug McKenzie, the two hosers from SCTV – you can never be too sure about fake news these days.
Thing is, no matter what anybody says good or bad about our Great White North, one thing is for sure: Canada, you are huuuge! So let us honor you, you great (big) country as we stand and sing your modified national anthem – the version by the infamous comedy trio, the Arrogant Worms:
Our mountains are very pointy
Our prairies are not
The rest is kinda bumpy
But man do we have a lot!
So stand up and be proud
And sing out very loud
We stand out from the crowd
‘Cause Canada’s really big!
Happy Birthday, us!
Harley Hay is a local writer and filmmaker.