An unfiltered fire hose of flaming condemnation

That bizarre woman and her rude blog

So I thought I should start this post with an email I got this morning from a Canadian reader named Tessa. Hi, Tessa!

Subject: Your Misrepresentation of Canadians Should Be Embarrassing

You are such a wonderful, wise, witty woman. And there you go making comment after comment about how backward and maladjusted Canadians are. How we need/want to catch up to our oh-so-stellar (read: arrogant) neighbors to the south. Canadians do not talk like hics, and if we do, then we are the only ones allowed to make fun of it. Stop being so rude. It makes you look ignorant.

Canada, I just want to take this opportunity to apologize for saying that you are the nicest people I have ever met. How terribly insensitive and ignorant of me. Do I think your accent is adorable? I confess, I do. I DO! Almost as adorable as my friend Carol’s midwestern accent, almost. I tell you, you cannot die happy until you have heard Carol ask for a Bacardi and coke. There’s something about the way she chews her vowels that drives me nuts, but not bad nuts. Good nuts. It’s exactly like the feeling I get when I see a chubby, bald baby, and my insides turn flips because no matter how badly I want to, I know it would be impolite to walk up to its mother and ask her if it would be okay if I ate her baby.

You want to know what’s at the top of my list of things I want to do before I die? Burping in front of the president. Some people want to hike the Himalayas or swim the English Channel, and those are noble and worthy, and they’re on my list toward the bottom behind other important things like STICKING MY TONGUE IN CHRIS MARTIN’S EAR, but one time I was in the car with Maggie when I accidentally let out a tiny, inaudible burp. And I don’t think anything is more offensive to her than actually talking out loud about feces or maybe picking your nose and showing her the booger. Whereas in my family, sometimes we can burp an entire conversation. My brother can even burp in all caps.

She shook her head and said, listen, I know you think that’s innocuous, but you keep doing that and thinking it’s not a big deal and next thing you know you’re doing it in front of the president. That’s when I knew. I knew my life would not be complete without accomplishing such a quintessentially me thing. I’m sure that when people ask Maggie what her friend Heather is like, she goes, you know, I think I could pretty much sum up Heather by saying that she is the type of person who would take great pride in burping in front of the president. The end.

And guess who was in town last night. No, just guess. And guess who wanted to drive up to Park City where this particular someone was holding a Republican fundraiser. I’d tap a secret service agent on the shoulder and say, hey! I need a HUUUUUUGE favor, k? I need 14 seconds with the president. 14. That’s it. I know this is totally out of the ordinary, but I’m slowly dying of old age, and the number one thing I want to do before I die is burp the alphabet in front of George Bush. HOW COULD HE REFUSE ME? Don’t you think he’d be all, BRING THAT WOMAN IN! And we’d bond despite our political differences. THIS IS WHAT AMERICA IS ALL ABOUT. OH-SO-STELLAR AMERICA.

  • My favorite Canadianism: Shit Hawks.

    Hope you got a chance to see some Trailer Park Boys while up north.

  • Just a thought Heather, but do you think that poor Tessa might have wandered out from the arms of Mr. Lahey in the Trailer Park (as in Trailer Park Boys)? She clearly could not spell neighboUr, hicK and she did not finish her sentences with “eh”, eh? Not to worry, Canada loves you and you may start to notice that it is us, the Canadians, once again apologizing for stepping on our own feet.

  • Marmy

    Hi Heather,
    I just had to post in response to the “whole Canadian uproar.”
    In every family, there are the losers who embarrass the rest. Most Canadians do pride themselves on being polite (except here in Toronto where they have forgotten even basic ettiquette like saying “Thank You” if you hold a door open.)

    I have to say though, you can’t say you love THE Canadian accent. Just like in the States, there are so many different accents to love. If you really want an accent to baffle, amaze and amuse, you have to hear a true Newfie accent with slang, e.g.
    “Lor’ tundering Jeezus, bye!”

  • Mo

    i LOVE the accent. every time a show comes on hgtv that has a bunch of canadians on it i totally want one of my own. they’re so cute! i love them!!!

  • I don’t think you said anything offensive about Canadians but isn’t it funny how when someone tells you not to do something, it increases the compulsion to do it.

  • lindsayc

    Hee – that is a comment for the driveway. Seriously though, that is a pretty canadian response too. Polite but indignant. I should know, being a Vancouverite from BC, CANADA.

    I would have loved to meet you at Granville Island or in the park, but I live in the burbs with two babies and just couldn’t make it into “town”. I hope you loved every moment of your trip and am so glad you got to see our nice weather.

  • Theresa

    Huh??? I must’ve missed something….

    Tessa, can you please post a comment here citing the offending verbiage Heather supposedly posted? Because there are a lot of us *arrogant* Americans (and apparently a number of Canadians as well) who are puzzled about your outrage.

  • I once offended a Canadian– I asked for Canadian Bacon on my pizza while at a pizzeria in Alberta. You don’t want to piss off those Canadians.

  • ‘Becca


    I don’t know why that spelling error made me laugh so hard.

  • Burping the alphabet is truly an American institution. My children take lessons nightly. They only get in trouble if the burping is accompanied by food or spittle. We have our standards.

  • 14 seconds. 26 letters. I would think you could cover two letters a second, no? Just buying yourself a little cushion to ensure you clear the bar? That’s probably wise.

  • I laughed when you complied to my request to say CRAYON. Thank you for that. I mean? Crown = made for laughter.

    I expect to be made fun of for my “eh’s” and my “aboots”. Eh’s happen more frequently but aboots do slip out when drunk. I also am guilty of PROject and PROcess as well as a severe allergy to pronoucing decal as DEE-CAL. It’s just wrong. It’s deck-le. Ask any drunk Canadian.

    We are not the only ones allowed to make fun of it. Period. Tessa, better watch it or I’ll stick a DEE-CAL where the sun don’t shine. Your making Canadians look like rabid PMS’ing snark factories. Remember! We are supposed to be nice, polite and gracious so we don’t piss off other countries and make them decide to bomb our asses. Now just hit a Tim Horton’s for your coffee and quite being so sensitive.

    Heather, on behalf of Canada, we forgive you for saying Crown.

  • Tina from Nova Scotia Canada

    See Heather, thats why we love you in Canada!! I too would love to burp in from of the president. Only we’d eat onions first!
    Great post!
    (I’m guessing Tessa’s an import. Not a REAL Canadian!)

  • Seriously, that was a real letter from someone? And I think burping on the President is probably the nicest thing he could have happen to him.

  • NoReallyJustOne

    Someone wayyy upthread mentioned Mick Foley, and that triggered a memory of a dream I had just last night. I was in line (somewhere), waiting to use the bathroom, and some women behind me were being overly rude, for no reason, so I turned around and said “Ladies, seriously, do I have to get my parents on you?” My parents: Dooce and Mick Foley. No lie.

    P.S. There’s no way you could be my mom, as we’re just a few years apart, but the thought is kind of awesome.

  • Jeepers… # of comments jumped from 71 to 98 as I’m trying to figure out what to say… hard to keep up with this community.

    First of all I want to apologize for the hypersensitivity of my fellow Canadian. We are coming out of our winter season. We’re not at our best.

    Canadians have no reason to be sensitive about their manner of speech or any comments about it. We’re second only to U.S. Midwesterners in dominating U.S. radio and television newscasts and hosting gigs. We may talk differently, but in a manner that is more universally understood and semi-pleasing to the ear, like your midwestern friend. There’s a market for it.

    Personally, I am a big fan of America, particularly its affordable Sunbelt real estate (a relatively new phenomenon). We don’t have a Sunbelt of our own… permafrost real estate, however, is plentiful.

    Will be journeying your way after school’s out on a family vacation down I-15. Plan to show my children the similarities between Temple Square and Las Vegas Boulevard (ample parking and streets wide enough to turn a wagon train around in). Might even ponder a canyon or two along the way.

    Vistas, man. That’s what life is all about.

    Calgary, AB… Canada.

  • Adrienne

    Was it b/c you said they need a Target? That’s the only criticism I remember reading.

  • I think Canada is just so used to having fun made at their expense, they assume anytime an American says anything thing about them, it’s bad.

    So I think we should start a campaign to make that true.

    Down with Canada and all their nice people and landscaping.

    Who needs maple … uh, stuff, anyway?

  • Sandra in BC

    A-boot?? Seriously?? If you heard that in Vancouver, then that person wasn’t FROM Vancouver. The farther east you go, the stronger the “Canadian” accent. My Ontario cousins do the twangy vowel thing…My name is Sandra but they say Seyannndra. BCer’s have the blandest “un”-accent possible.

    With the HUGE ethnic diversity of the West Coast, I’m surprised you were able to pick up a “Canadian” accent.

    And I’m with you on the Target thing. Bring it on!

  • I would LOVE to see you BURP for the president!! That should make NATIONAL news!! Your great!!

  • Brianna Flynn

    You know what I think did it re: Tessa?

    The comments concerning Tivo and Target on the Daily Photo three days ago.

    Though in no way did I get what she got out of them, I can see a very overly sensitive person getting all sand+vagina-y about them. Sigh.

  • Tessa seems a bit thin-skinned… most Canadians are not that sensitive, and we definitely don’t have a monopoly on making fun of ourselves although we do it better than anyone else.

    I mean we’re talking about a country where the minister for external affairs got fired for leaving classified NATO documents in his ex-girlfriend’s apartment — the same ex-girlfriend who was romantically involved with two bikers previously including a Hell’s Angel. You can’t make this stuff up.

    Get a grip, Tessa. The rest of Canada mocks you :>

  • heathabee

    Tessa, don’t be rude. That’s not what we as Canadians are known for. :o)

    Dooce, I hope you and Jon will come to Toronto next time! :o)

  • My reply to that email would have been the lyrics to “Blame Canada” from the South Park movie just because it’s too hilarious not to quote.

  • rb

    Heather, YOU should be raising my 5 year old son, not me. I think I was born to raise girls. Last night he very earnestly asked me how to make a fart noise by putting one’s hand in one’s armpit, and I really couldn’t tell him. THIS IS SOMETHING I’M SURE YOU KNOW!

  • Vanessa

    Yeah, there’s a fair amount of seething rage under the surface here and some people will go ridiculously far out of their way to take offense to any statement about Canada made by an American–you just can’t win. I’ll take a cue from you and burp in their faces.

  • Haven’t read all the comments, but I have to say “What? What post did Tessa read?” YOu get some of the most interesting responses!!

    One thing I’d like to say, as a Canadian who has worked with people from all over the world, is that the “Canadian” accent is not the same from one area to the next, much as the “American” accent differs greatly with geography. When I hear a Canadian say “aboout” or some variation thereof, I automatically hear Ontario in their speech. Most of the Americans I’ve worked with over the years guessed Arizona or Colorado for where I was from (Saskatchewan and now Calgary in matter of fact)…

    Anyway, love your writing and LOVE the crazy exclamation point filled emails!

  • Dooce FTW! Hate mail sucks.. I admire how you handle it.

  • Tash

    I am de-lurking for the first time! Likely my comments will echo much of what has already been said and will continue to be said.

    As a Canadian, I feel like Tess has missed the boat on this one. Aside from saying ‘aboot’ (although I swear I have NEVER heard one of us say it, eh), the fact that we have an almost fetish like relationship with Maple Syrup, we like to smother perfectly good French fries with gravy & cheese curds and that we often say Sorry when we really mean F**k You….Canadians are often best known for our sense of humour and laughing at ourselves!

    You have never said anything negative about Canada (in my humble opinion) and if someone read it that way, they should understand your writing style well enough to know you would never try and offend anyone. YEESH…if we really thought you were against us, we would sick the seals on ya!

    I have been reading for about three years now Heather,and as a Canadian reader, I have to say I am DYING to hear you talk about your trip. I really hope you loved it and had a wonderful time!

    I think this is the perfect time for you to practice speaking Canadian. Simply say to Tess …..Sorry 😉

  • Kelly B.

    Wow, somebody had a bit too much coffee at Hortons this morning huh?

  • Buttercup

    I think your new BFF may have been referring to where you said, “They grow ’em civilized up there” (in re: the raccoons). She probably just misunderstood your mild self-deprecation. Or it may be Canadian self-loathing that caused her to think you were making fun of her.

  • Melanie

    First it’s all those extraneous vowels, then no TiVO? Seriously? And there’s all that snow.

    I’d be a little cranky, too. Let’s cut Tessa some slack.

  • My dog burps – if I could train her to burp the alphabet in unison with you THAT would be impressive.

  • JB

    A hic like a hiccup? :-X

  • BradleyTee

    Gimme a break you crazy Canook(is that politically correct)? She is just jealous that their government is now requiring them to get passports to visit our lovely USofA. I would think they would be flattered that the’re being watched over more closely than just by the Royal Mounted Police force.
    Imagine a Royal Mounted Police Force farting rendition of “Oh Canada”?
    THAT spells freedom on either side of the border…EH!?

  • Nat

    I thought Canadians were suppose to be the laid back ones and the Americans the uptight a-holes. Huh.

  • Hoosiermama

    If you did burp in front of Dubya, could you upchuck on him at the end? Please?

  • Miranda

    This post made me want to go lollerskating!!!

  • And when you finally do burp in front of the president you should do it with a Canadian accent.

  • Rita (rhymes with Leta)

    BTW, from Vancouver, the nearest Target is in Bellingham… less than ONE HOUR AWAY. Almost next door…

  • I just moved back to Utah after living 20 miles away from the Canadian border. The Canadians often cross it to visit our Wal Mart and fill thier large trucks up for 2 weeks of supplies. I got accustomed to seeing more Canadian license plates than American. I also enjoyed listening to them say Aye at the end of most sentences. So one day we got brave and crossed the border and my husband thought he would try to blend in, and in doing so he used Aye one to many times and the lady asked “you’re not from around here are you” which I thought was interesting because if she looked at our car she would see our Washington license plate. Got to love them Canadians.

  • Mark

    Canadians do have those disposals at McDonald’s where they open up when you just wave your hand in front of them. They’ve got us beat there.

  • When my boyfriend started burping in front of me is when I knew it was true love. I’m not sure how I feel about him so I still cover my mouth.

  • so am i to understand that burping is bad?

    too bad. i love to belch.

  • Peggy

    Oh Heather….Abooot that cranky woman from Canada… What is she talking abooot…Aaaaaye? Accents are wonderful to notice and make fun of. I was born in the Chicago area, and I know I have one. My ex-husband is from England. Tons to make fun of with the way he speaks!
    Burping, that is a second language in my family. We are all able to burp and speak. My oldest brother is unstoppable. No matter where we are or what the occasion is, he is guaranteed to burp many times and loudly and then says, “excuse me pigs, I’m a lady.”
    I’m sure he would love to visit the president with you and have a chance to burp in his face as well.

    I enjoy the “heck” out of you Heather, and I will never understand why people take the time to complain. If they don’t like what you write, why do they read it?

  • we call it backbacon.

    tessa must be an imposter. any true canadian would never spell neighbour incorrectly.
    canada loves you right back, dooce!
    come up to ontario next. we will fix mama a hot dog like nobody’s business.

  • Maiken H.

    I really must have missed some posts because I have only ever heard you praise Canada. I remember when you went so far as to commend them for their subtle use of puncuation marks. That has stuck in my head so I hesitate when the urge for multiple puncuation marks strikes me as fancy.

  • Dawn

    I didn’t even notice that “Aboot” was in the title of a previous post until Cloe mentioned that! Honestly, if that’s all that Tessa’s upset about, she needs some help. That’s got to be the most common joke about Canadian accents, and Canadians even make fun of that one ourselves! Geebus, I can’t remember the last time I actually said “out and about” without making a point of saying “oot and aboot”.

    Tessa, lighten up.

    And yes, I agree, we need Target.

  • In my dictionary, stellar is a complimentary word.
    Maybe Tessa needs to get a new dictionary – or new glasses – or… just a whole new outlook. You decide.

    I don’t want to just burp for the president. I want to fart. Yeah.. talk about satisfaction guaranteed.

  • Briana

    The President seems like the kind of person where hearing the alphabet burped would be the highlight of the week for him.

Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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