That's Very Canadian!
An Exceptionally Interesting Report
About All Things Canadian, by Rachel.
Maple Tree Press, 2004
That's Very Canadian!
I've been learning all about Canadian symbols and other things that
are especially Canadian. I'm now a wiz, symbolically speaking. Watch
out--you're about to find out all about these symbols, too. I'll show
you all kinds of things I've found that are "Canadian,"
from maple leaves to words like "toque." I've also put in
the things that people think are Canadian, even if they aren't, like
that all Canadians live in igloos. As if!
Ladies and gentlement, boys and girls, moose, geese, and beavers,
turn the page to enter a country where hockey-playing beavers and
maple-syrup-slurping moose live in igloos and paddle birch bark canoes
in both official languages...voici le Canada!
A Buck-Toothed Beaver Becomes a National Icon
What's short and squat, has a flat tail, buck teeth, and a big
rump? Our national symbol, that's what. Okay, maybe a beaver is
not as noble as the lion, Britain’s symbol. Or as dignified
as the United States’s bald eagle. But Canada’s beaver
is, um … cute! And busy. Yes, beavers are very hard-working,
chopping down trees to build lodges and dams.
How did beavers become a symbol of Canada? Back in the late 1600s,
European gentlemen wore fancy beaver-skin hats. These hats were
so popular in Europe that suppliers needed new sources of beaver.
And guess what—across the ocean in Canada, there lived about
six million busy beavers. To catch them, the fur traders needed
help from the locals, the aboriginal people. So French and English
traders arrived with trading goods such as blankets, guns and copper
pots. They traded these goods with the First Nations people for
canoe-loads of beaver skins.
The Fur Trade took off! Fur traders made lots of money, and beavers
became the symbol of Canada’s importance to the world. What’s
more, while they were looking for furs, Europeans explored this
vast and unknown land. Settlers arrived to start a new life here.
The aboriginal people were outnumbered by the newcomers, and their
way of life was changed forever. Over time, a railway was built
from sea to sea. A new country, “Canada,” was born.
But it started with those beaver hats.
Branding Canada: Episode 1
[a brainstorming session with Moose and Goose]
Here’s our task, Goose: we’re going to brand Canada.
That’s what they call it in the marketing biz. Branding Canada
means coming up with a nifty little phrase or logo that we can use
to advertise who we are. .
So we need to sum up what Canada is all about in just
a few words, Moose?
Right. We need a catchy slogan.
Okay, here’s one: “Land of Honking Great Geese!”
Well, certainly wildlife is part of the Canadian appeal. I’ll write
it down. What about something with beavers—Canada’s national symbol?
How about: “A Tail-Thwapping Destination!” Or “A Country
You Can Really Chew On!”
On second thought, maybe not beavers. What other animal is associated
I know, “Canada: A Million Mosquitoes Greet You!”
That's welcoming, but it might make people itchy. Let’s switch
gears. Maybe something about Canada’s natural wonders. Like, “Discover
Our True Nature.”
Say, that’s good, Moose!
But I didn’t make it up. It’s used by Canada’s tourist industry.
We need to come up with something else that captures the idea of
our vast wilderness and wide-open spaces.
I've got it: “Canada: We’ve Got Lots of It!”
Catchy. But what is the “it” that we have lots of?
Bog. We have a lot of bog in Canada. Marsh and muskeg.
I can’t see bog being a selling point for most people.
Then how about this: “Canada – Not All Bog!”
Hmmmm. Let’s take a break and come back to this. It might take
us a few sessions to come up with the perfect Canada brand.
Back to writing samples