Micah’s History of Everything: Canadian Thanksgiving

Posted: November 21, 2013 by Micah in A History of Everything

(Editor’s Note: It’s well worth noting that when I originally asked Micah to write this article he tackled it seriously like a true professional… Yeah, I have no idea why, I think he was on a lot of Robitussin or something. Anyway, Micah turned in an absolutely beautiful article honoring the proud people of Canada. He talked about their glorious forests, the mystical beauty of a Alberta winters night, and the proud heritage of our neighbors to the north. He wrote a poem to the Mounties that brought a tear to my eye and laid the grounds for a whole new level of understanding between us and our fair Canadian friends. I was about to publish it with a tear in my eye and a song in my heart when something occurred to me: since when did this website care about factual journalism or world peace? This is a website that openly mocks people just because they happen to be less talented then their peers and make more money than Micah will in his whole life! So rather than writing a heartfelt ode to our loving neighbors above us why not instead use this article to reinforce various largely untrue stereotypes and offend people for no reason? Yeah, that’s what I thought.)

Micah’s History of Everything: Canadian Thanksgiving

The origins of the Holiday:

So once upon a time deep in the frozen bowels of Canada… ew… oh… man. That was a rough sentence to start with. (Editor’s note: totally not a sentence. See? This is what we’re used to, like the bottom of a mug of hot chocolate we here at Thoughts We Might Have Had pride ourselves on consistently ruining your grammatical taste buds.)  So anyway, some guy named Martin Frobisher was looking for the Northwest Passage when he accidentally bumped into the early beginnings of the Canadian border patrol. At this point the border patrol consisted only of a crazed Frenchman and his pet beaver Stan, which is different from today’s Canadian border patrol cause we’ve long since gotten rid of the person.

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“Hello there, I’ll need to see your passport and any exotic twigs you may have.”

Frobisher found a bunch of stuff he thought was gold, loaded his ships down with it and then sailed back to England where he learned it was all pretty much worthless. Needless to say this upset Frobisher significantly and (through a complex dance ritual under a spreading full moon) he cursed the land of Canada to always have to pay more for retail books.

But anyway, before Frobisher left Canada (still thinking he was going to be rich) he held a big church service or something thanking God for the eventual economic ruin that was waiting for him just around the River Bend (which is of course from an American movie.)

Years later Samuel De Champlain formed something called the “Order of Good Cheer” and put them in charge of making a TV show about  a bar in Boston. Wow—yeah that was a Cheers reference. Sheeshk, good thing I’m appealing to my audience here. Hang on “twerk” “ty (cause obviously spelling out “thank you” would be just WAY too much gratitude) “selfie” (now officially a word in Webster’s dictionary. Poor Webster.) There, we’re good.     

For a few years it seems Canada celebrated two different Thanksgiving days as the country was divided between former French colonists and former British colonists until the two halves were united and they decided to have Thanksgiving on April 5, 1872… cause that seemed like a good idea. After that the Canadians decided they wanted to switch which day they celebrated Thanksgiving, like the people of Quebec switch whether they want to be a part of Canada or not (Oh Canadian Burn!!! Did I do that right Canadians? Is the term “Canadian Burn” a thing yet? Cause I totally think it should be. I mean if an “Indian Burn” is twisting the skin on someone’s arm a “Canadian burn” is probably like… rubbing some soothing salve on someone’s arm and then apologizing right? I don’t know… I’ll get back to you on that.)

What was I saying? Oh yeah the date thing,  in 1879 Thanksgiving was declared a national holiday and they celebrated it from that moment forward on a certain Thursday in November. Then in 1957 it was officially changed to the second Monday in October because hey you’d rather have Monday off wouldn’t you? I mean… You’d rather have Monday off eh?  (how do you spell a Canadian accent? Is it “eh” or “A” or “ah” I need some Canadian help!! Captain Canada??? Can you hear me? Corporal Canada? Anyone??? Man.)

Canadian Thanksgiving traditions:

Traditionally Canadians celebrate their free healthcare by hurling themselves in front of stampeding moose and then having major surgery without having to pay for it!!

Seriously though: Canadians apparently watch something called the “Kitchener-Waterloo Oktoberfest” parade which by my best guess is a celebration of Napoleon’s defeat at the battle of Waterloo using primarily spatulas, cutlery, and other kitchen related items? Maybe?? Oh wait wait… turns out Kitchener and Waterloo are the names of two cities in Canada and there’s some kind of week-long festival featuring official Keg tappings, free pancake breakfasts, traditional beaver dances, a keg-rolling barrel race, and the traditional Canadian Moose shaving competition. You wanna know something really crazy? I only made TWO of those things up.

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The festival is apparently presided over by “Canadian Man with Hat,” some German woman, Orange Mario, and famed mascot “Yellow and Green Cup Person.”

Another big Canadian tradition is watching the Canadian Football League play Canadian football which is a lot like American football except with meters instead of yards, Zeds instead of Z’s, and very little actual football playing. You know who played in last year’s Thanksgiving double-header? That would be the Blue Bombers vs. the Alouettes and the Argonauts vs. the Tiger-cats (cause apparently we were   concerned there would be confusion with the famed Canadian Tiger-Bear.)  Also when I typed in “Alouettes” Microsoft words little misspelled thing popped up and told me to go back to Canada. Silly Microsoft, Canada is for Mounties!!

So there you have it America, all of your questions about Canadian Thanksgiving answered! Your welcome! It’s worth noting that I had two Canadian roommates in college and I treated them with nothing but respect and admiration.

Ha ha no really. I made fun of them all the time. From the minute one of them asked me to “sit on the chesterfield and go through the alphabet from A to Zed, eh?” to the moment I waved goodbye to their pet beaver Mildred. So thanks Canadians, happy late Thanksgiving, Merry Canadamiss, and a happy New Winter!

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Comments
  1. Josh P says:

    As a Canadian (one of the aforementioned Canadian roommates) I can attest to the validity of this erudite article. As a matter of fact, one my my friends asked about Canadian Thanksgiving just last night and I told them something remarkably similar. Haha I miss you my friend 🙂 You’ve done us proud…nodoubtaboutit. By the way, the Quebec joke was right on 😉

  2. Micah says:

    Hey man, good to know I wasn’t totally wrong! 🙂 Those were good times back in the old dorm room, and apparently I learned something! Good to know all that money spent on my education paid off.

  3. Adam says:

    You shoulda just given the money to me, eh? Cut out the middleman next time, and we’ll have you properly educated. You’ll be able to spell colour, favourite, saviour, honour, and other great words correctly – as well as being able to pronounce “foyer” without sounding like a complete hick.

    Thanks, though – this was great!

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