I spent the week in Stowe, Vt., which you may know as the place where Canadian actor Christopher Plummer’s family opens a skiing lodge after singing their way out of the clutches of the Nazis in the film The Sound of Music. (Or something like that, I haven’t actually seen the film.) It’s also only about 90 minutes south of the Canadian border. As a Canadian, these are the only facts I needed to know about the place.
Anyhow, it’s a lovely area and I can’t recommend visiting in the spring off-season enough. You get to miss both the ski crowds and the wedding hordes. If you’re lucky, you might even get an entire hotel to yourself. (I don’t recommend bringing a copy of The Shining along with you, however.)
While there I learned our rather twee national self-identity as polite do-gooders may be nothing more than wishful myth. It turns out, according to more than a couple locals we ended up chatting with, Canadian tourists are smug jerks.
Our bartender at one point said it wasn’t uncommon for Canadians to spend time telling him, at length, how much better Canada is. Our friend was from New York, so he had some handle on rudeness, and I was inclined to take him at his word. To add insult to injury, he said he actually found tourists from Boston—Boston, for fuck sakes—were more pleasant to be around.
I also found the Canadian angle was inescapable, even dozens of miles outside the country. Ruffles is selling their all dressed chips to Americans as a limited time offer. They’re billing it as the “#1 flavor in Canada.” No word on what the #1 flavour might be, though.
Anyhow, onto your submissions:
• In what is an obvious troll job by CBC reporter Andrew Kurjata, we’re told one of the richest dudes in hip-hop has a “secret Canadian connection.” To ruin the secret: Birdman lived in Prince George, B.C. for a couple years when he was a kid. (C/o @moebius_strip, among others)
• Two world-class Toronto celebrities made cameo appearances in Beyoncé’s Lemonade “concept film,” the CBC helpfully analyzes for us. Here’s a lengthy quote, to really whet your appetite (emphasis mine): “And that’s where we find the beauty behind the madness. Not just in appearances by Toronto’s The Weeknd and Canadian model Winnie Harlow, but by a rare display of desperately raw emotion from a woman who everyone thinks is so far beyond reach.” “Not just.” Fuck me dead. (C/o @randi_beers)
• It’s fashionable in this stage of a U.S. Presidential contest for certain Americans to start making noise that they'll leave the country for Canada if the election doesn't go their way. Most recently, it's Lena Dunham to announce she's a big baby. There’s a long tradition of flinty celebrities declaring they could never live in their country if the Republican flavour-of-the-cycle wins the election. But we’ve got enough smarmy windbags of our own, thank you very much. You don’t have to go home, but you sure as hell can’t stay here. (C/o @1236)
• Canada Post is issuing a bunch of Star Trek stamps to mark the 50th anniversary of the show’s first series. The latest is of Dr. Leonard McCoy. If that doesn't interest you, fear not. The next one will have some double-secret “little known” Canadian connection, according to the CBC. Thank goodness, not sure how else you’d drum up support for something Star Trek. (C/o @Lazin_Ryder)
• Prince died, you've probably heard. Did you also know he lived in Toronto for a while? And that some of his last shows were in Toronto? Not sure how you missed that. (C/o many of you, but @keithjs was first by about two minutes)