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Learn to Speak the Canadian Way

December 27, 2018

Should you ever find yourself in Canada and don’t understand the conversation, here’s a handy guide. (And if none of these come up…well, you just might be in the French-speaking part of Canada.)

Keener: A person who tries desperately to please others or who’s just far too enthusiastic.

Runners: Running shoes, sneakers.

Supply teacher: A substitute teacher.

Parkade: A parking garage.

Garburator: An in-sink garbage disposal.

“That’s jokes!”: “That’s hilarious!”

Two-four: A case of beer, which contains 24 (or two-four ) individual servings.

Mickey: Another drinking term, this refers to a small, flask-sized bottle of hard alcohol.

Doeskin. You’ve probably seen the stereotypical image of a lumberjack, and how they’re often depicted wearing thick red or green flannel jackets. In British Columbia, those jackets are called doeskins.

Hinky: Suspect or unreliable.

Dart: Cigarette

Whitener: Powdered nondairy creamer.

Jib: Crystal meth.

Bunny hug: A term for hooded sweatshirt (used almost entirely within Saskatchewan).

Stubble jumper: A person from the prairie provinces, particularly Alberta or Saskatchewan.

Hydro: Electricity. (A lot of Canadian power was once — and still is — hydroelectric power.)

The 6ix: Pronounced “the six,” it was coined by popular Canadian musician Drake to refer to the Toronto metropolitan area (it’s comprised of six cities) as well as the name of a restaurant he opened.

Hang a Larry: Make a left turn.

Hang a Roger: Make a right turn.

Chirp: To make fun of somebody (in western Canada).

Beak: To make fun of somebody (in Eastern Canada).

Gitch: An old pair of men’s underwear, specifically the kind that in the U.S. is colloquially known as “tighty-whities.”

Skookum: Very strong.

Squatch: An especially hairy man who also doesn’t smell very good. (It’s obviously an abbreviation of “Sasquatch.”)

Skid: A poor person.

Wheel: To try to woo and win over the object of one’s romantic fancy.

Gowdy: Awkward.

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