My love for Canada is enough on Valentine's Day, but my love for Canadian women also runs deep.
Though I have written about my favourite Canadian women in recent years, I would love to find a Canadian woman who appreciates my love for her and her native country, and she doesn't have to be famous.
While I certainly don't want to ignore beautiful Canadian women on this special day, I thought I would try a different direction to celebrate my love for Canada in 2016 from stories over the previous year. Happy Valentine's Day!!
I love Cosima and Delphine and I will miss them in Season 4 of "Orphan Black" coming this April. To be honest, there wasn't much of the pair in Season 3. Tatiana Maslany and Evelyne Brochu gave us a really cute couple of 2 smart women who were similar and opposite at the same time. Cosima was a laid-lack American scientist; Delphine was French-Canadian who was also a scientist, tough but vulnerable.
I don't consider myself attached to onscreen couples of any combination, but the way they interacted was as believable as any couple I've seen on television. Their relationship felt real and honest and very comfortable.
The fact that the show and actors are Canadian made their relationship more cool because the portrayal wasn't self-conscious like some American portrayals might be, and the mix of English and French was a nice contrast to the language conflicts in the Canadian culture.
I realize that Cosima and Shay make their own version of a cute couple: Coshay, but I will always be Team Cophine.
I had a dream that I somehow became a Canadian senator, and thought "This is the perfect job for me." I like to travel throughout Canada, talk to people, listen to them, learn, do research, and debate over potential legislation to improve the lives of Canadians.
I enjoy being a journalist and enjoy writing. But I really thought being a senator would be well-suited to my interests and talents.
I respect that being a Canadian citizen is important to being a senator and not having citizenship in another country is also crucial. Surprisingly, the United States doesn't have this requirement since Canadian citizen Ted Cruz was elected to the U.S. Senate.
Even the idea of being unelected as a Canadian senator had some appeal: you could skip right to the government part without having to worry about fundraising or posterior kissing.
I do care about Canada that much that I would truly kick tail as a senator, and I really would have been unbiased to any Canadian political party.
Newfoundland had been this mysterious land, even after visiting its Maritime cousins in New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island. The half-hour ahead time zone added to that novelty, but the attraction was going to be the warm and friendly nature of the natives from The Rock.
The people of Newfoundland turned out to be even friendlier than I had imagined. The couple that shared the dinner table in Petty Harbour. The woman who gave a tour for one of the House of Assembly, talked about the upcoming provincial election, and even offered a homemade chocolate chip cookie. The way this couple was ready to defend a pregnant lady when there was a potential fight in a restaurant. The customs officer who gave me travel tips to the province when I landed in Toronto.
The beauty and scenery, the unusual and amazing food were tremendous, but the people of Newfoundland were a true treasure. Getting to St. John's can be a bit out there in terms of travel but you will be glad you arrived.
This wasn't the best year for Canadian film. One of my favourite films from this year's Windsor International Film Festival — "Elephant Song" — came out in 2014. But the crowd at the festival and in Windsor make you feel good over being obsessed with film, especially Canadian film.
I would love to write more about Canadian film in this blog, and where I am, Canadian film doesn't come up much in discussion. In the Windsor festival, they often talk about films from other countries, including the United States. But they embrace my love for Canadian film.
The festival volunteers are always amazing and helpful. The quest for amazing film around the world grows exponentially each year. And the festival organizers and fans are spot-on in determining films that later on win Golden Globes and Oscars.
Vacationing in Windsor in November is not rational, but hanging out with these people to watch truly great films makes all the sense in the world.
So this wasn't the smoothest election in Canadian history. The 78-day journey felt a bit long, though not by American standards. And there was some concern that citizens would be denied the right to vote.
In the end, the turnout was higher than it had been, and Canada picked a new direction for the country. The increased interest, especially among young people and those from First Nations, was very hopeful for democracy everywhere. If the Liberals do make government more open and transparent, especially at the end of their run, then the 2015 election will hold even more significance.
Thanks to the Internet and C-SPAN, I saw all the debates, though we missed not having the English language consortium debate. And we hope the new Liberal government will come through with increased arts funding.
This would be more of a valentine if either a) Canada Screens was available outside Canada and b) I lived in Canada. Increasing potential eyeballs to great Canadian films is something we believe in here at CanadianCrossing.com. Access to Canadian film, even in Canada, is difficult, especially if you don't live in Toronto. The price point is higher than the Netflix or Crave TV type purchases, but the expense of going out to see a film is still more than the prices offered by Canada Screens.
We knew that when the "Colbert Report" was leave the air and Jon Stewart would leave "The Daily Show" that the comedy references about Canada would drop off significantly. Canada is still funny but fewer funnier eyes are watching.
Trevor Noah has to worry about treading water much less to try and make a joke about Canada. Hell, Noah is still learning how the United States works.
Colbert is still alive with his CBS show but opportunities to mock Canada are fewer and much farther from his show on Comedy Central. We still have the memories of Colbert, Stewart, Samantha Bee, and Jason Jones. Bee's new comedy show, "Full Frontal with Samantha Bee" makes its TBS debut this month. We'll have to wait and see if Bee can give us some Canadian humour, full frontal of course.
Part of why I started CanadianCrossing.com is that Americans don't know much about Canada. There was a reason why the 3 Jeopardy contestants waited until the end of Double Jeopardy to answer the category of Canadian cities.
The questions on the board were not easy to the average American (I did get them all correct), and Sergeant First Class Randy Pike lost $8200 in about 90 seconds.
At least Pike tried when he could, and did name other Canadian cities in his 3 wrong answers. The other 2 questions got no answer from Pike. Strategy prohibited the other contestants from answering, but chances are they didn't know either.
We know Alex Trebek knew the answers, because, well, he's Canadian.
photos credit: Orphan Black