How Canadians Act: The Five C’s

Who is a Canadian? What makes a Canadian special? Is it the cold winter months, or is it something in the water? Since I was born here and have lived in over 5 cities in Canada, I’d like to think that I know a thing or two about these creatures we call Canadians. So let’s have a look at what I have dubbed the 5 C’s of being Canadian.

1. Courteousness

How to Act like a Canadian
I’m sorry I robbed you.

Canadians are notoriously apologetic.

You may have noticed this already if you have been using the subway; we love to say “sorry”.

Perhaps owing to this, Canadians have developed somewhat of a reputation for being polite.

Check out this unbelievable story about a Canadian robber who returned to the scene of the crime to apologize!

2. Comicalness

Jim Carrey. Mike Myers. Russell Peters. There are so many famous Canadian comedians; the list goes on and on. Canadians are all over Hollywood. What is the Canadian sense of humour like? If I had to sum it up in one sentence, I would say Canadians tend to be quite a self-deprecating bunch (we often like to laugh at ourselves and don’t take ourselves too seriously). Just have a look at this satirical pie-chart detailing how Canadians spend their workday.


It’s true! Boots take a long time!

3. Communal Communication

Canadians love to talk about the weather! It could be complaining about the bitter cold (more often than not), or simply remarking how sunny it is outside. It’s the way we often make small-talk.

4. Canadian Contrast

Despite being bigger in size, Canada is a nation that is in many ways dwarfed by its neighbour to the south, the U.S.A. If you want to rattle a Canadian, tell one that you don’t see any difference between them and Americans. This is a sure way to get under a Canadian’s skin. It is undeniable that we have many similarities with Americans. Besides sharing a border we also share the same English language (though Canadian English is slightly different) and of course we are hugely influenced by American media. All that being said, Canadians are sensitive about having their own independent identity. Though Canadian culture may only have subtle differences with American culture, it’s somewhat of a national pet peeve to have the two described as indistinct. Whatever a Canadian is, it is definitely not an American!

5. Cultural Diversity

Last but certainly not least. I’m sure you have heard it being said before: Canada is one of the most multi-cultural countries in the world! This is our great strength (and of course hockey). It’s not uncommon, especially in bigger cities like Toronto and Vancouver, to be able to hear five or more languages on the subway or bus. We like to say that Canada is made up of a cultural mosaic and that it is all the different cultures interacting and respecting one another that makes Canadian culture unique and worth celebrating. At its best, Canada is a place where the whole world can mingle, learn and grow together!

There you have it! Thanks for reading and I hope you learned something about Canada and Canadian culture.

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Joshua Mover

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