>>> Bang for Your Buck
By staff writer David Nelson
March 10, 2008

Essential New Word of the Week: wingcougars (definition hint: flying jungle cats!)


Greetings, my fellow patriots.

Jonathan Marine recently charged me with the task of debating the relative merits of Canada and America. To be honest, I never quite saw Marine as the flag-waving type, unless that flag happens to depict the Van Halen logo or the words “White Power.” But I was more than happy to step to the plate for my home and native land. That’s really what it’s all aboot.

Since I know this will hit some raw nerves, let me state clearly for the record: I like the United States. I’ve always had good times there. What other country can you go to and find entire channels devoted to naked cheerleaders using trampolines to teach us erotic lessons? What I’m trying to say is, America has everything you need to become a modern-day Caligula, and that appeals to me.

"The average American has spent most of his life strapping butter to the inside of his skin."

Nevertheless, in the spirit of comedic debate, Jonathan wanted me to trash the States and heap praise on Canada, so that’s what I did. And to be honest, it wasn’t that difficult. In my mind, the U.S. and Canada are two great tastes that taste great together, as long as America scrubs any residual Mexico off her underbelly. But for Jon’s purposes, I had to access the deepest, least booze-impaired part of my brain—the part that knows Canada is the better nation. Taxes immediately come to mind; my online accounting software can attest to that.

(Please note that my facts were cribbed from a variety of sources. I don’t know anything about history. I’m not even sure where I spent last Saturday night, let alone how I got this tattoo of Uncle Phil from Fresh Prince. My point is, if you’re an outraged history major, feel free to leave a comment telling me I’m an idiot; but instead of reading it, I’m just going to forward it to the customer service email address for Arby’s. Maybe they’ll feel sorry for me and send a coupon for a delicious roast beef sandwich.)

All-American Hero

To many Americans, war is the best thing ever. It’s CNN filming explosions, leading to the story where a soldier’s sacrifice teaches a nation about courage, starring Bruce Willis. In fact, war brings out more emotions than the Super Bowl and AIDS combined. With a good enough war, executives could put William Hung in an Uncle Sam outfit singing the National Anthem to kick off the NAACP Image Awards, and there would not be a dry eye in the house.

That said, the U.S. is 3-2-1 since its inception (not including the Civil War, which would have added a win and a loss to the record). Note that I am generously not including the current Iraq war in those statistics. Because, really, who knows how that one is gonna turn out? Meanwhile, Canada is 5-0-1 during the same period, including a 1-0 record against the Yanks (1812). Moreover, while the Americans were deciding what color panties would look best on J. Edgar Hoover, we Canucks were ass-deep in the two world wars from the very beginning, completing every lousy job the Allies could throw at us.

Perhaps more to the point, many Americans, their chief executive included, probably couldn’t pick out Canada on a map. If they tried to invade Canada, they’d end up mobilizing to Minnesota or somewhere and declaring victory after bombing the hell out of the Mall of America. Which reminds me—Canucks torched the White House once when we were passing through D.C. Hey, Marine, doesn’t this historical fact mean I totally won this stupid, dick-waving argument? Also consider, given the current political climate, lots of Americans wouldn’t mind if we did it again. Particularly if we offer to get them loaded on Alexander Keith’s.

The term “ugly American” used to refer to the kind of tourist who loudly demands ketchup for his filet mignon at a fine Paris restaurant. Now, it could refer to the majority of the country. Obesity is so out of control, I wish I’d bought stock in a stretch pants manufacturer. The average American has spent most of his life strapping butter to the inside of his skin. Canada doesn’t need a big army…within a few years, an epidemic of gravy-induced heart attacks will do the work for us. And our chicks are way hotter, because they don’t have to zoom around Wal-Mart on motorized wheelchairs.

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Then there’s the always-contentious issue of terrible Canadian musicians. Sure, Celine Dion is an international punchline, and we’ve also unleashed the terror of Bryan Adams on the world. But for every Canuck that makes you cringe, I can name ten Yanks that make me want to stab my eardrums with a Q-Tip. Seriously, I’ll listen to nothing but Canadian artists for a year if you promise to listen to nothing but Michael Bolton, Kevin Federline, and Hilary Duff. We’ll see which of us cracks first.

This is going to hurt for you to hear, but American beer is a laughingstock. I’m not trying to be a snob here, but even if I lost my sense of taste in some sort of firecracker incident, I still wouldn’t touch the questionable slop that passes for beer south of the border. There’s an old joke all Canadians are taught at a young age: How is sex in a canoe like American beer? They’re both fucking close to water.

But perhaps the most damning thing I can say is that many Americans don’t wish to be identified as such. While traveling throughout Europe, I encountered literally dozens of people with Canadian flags sewn onto their backpacks. As it turned out, just about all of them were Americans posing as Canadians. This is apparently a very common tactic of American travelers. Why are young Americans ashamed to be recognized as such? You’d never see Canadian travelers sewing the stars and stripes onto their belongings, after all.

Oh, and in case my arguments are insufficient, there is actually a scientific, internationally-acknowledged way to tell which country is better. It’s called the Human Development Index. It incorporates factors such as life expectancy, literacy rate, gross domestic product, etc. in order to determine which country should change its national motto to “We’re number 1! Woooooooo!”

Go ahead and click on that link. Tell me which country has been ranked highest 10 times. In case history’s not important to you either, check out the most recent Index. Canada ranked 4th, while the U.S. finished a dismal 12th, behind nations like Japan and France. That’s right. A bunch of midget, panty-obsessed salaryman drones and a nation of wine-sipping collaborators enjoy a higher standard of life than you. For shame, America.

Hoserdom has its advantages. We live in a climate that makes us impervious to pain, we’re better educated, and our donuts and beer are clearly superior. Seriously, have you ever tried poutine? And I haven’t even touched on Canada’s low crime rates, relaxed drug laws, or free health care. It’s just a matter of time until even the most die-hard, stars and stripes bandana types are begging to become part of the Dominion.

To summarize: America = Canada’s beard. Now roll out of bed and make us pancakes, bitch.

Continue to Why America is Better Than England »

Essential New Word of the Week:

wingcougars n [‘wIngkugerz]

As you probably know, there’s a veritable dictionary full of bar slang out there. And it’s evolving. We all know what a wingman is, even if we can’t find a decent one. And if you’re a college guy, I’ll bet you’ve had at least one close call with a cougar. Now, these terms have come together in the wingcougar. You see, just as actual cougars hunt in packs, older women have finally discovered it’s to their mutual advantage to venture out in groups, all the better to ensnare fresh meat for the pack.

The wingcougar is not the Alpha-Coug. It’s her job to run interference against undesirable infiltrators. The wingcougar is usually in charge of picking the bar, and once there, the hunting grounds for her fellow cougars to stalk their prey. A wingcougar will often be the sober one, and her friends will rely on her judgment just in case (who are we kidding?) they’re too intoxicated themselves.

So the next time you see one, raise your glass and salute the wingcougar. It’s a tough job. She’ll go home sober and alone while her friends are hopping into bed with their sons’ classmates. But at least she has her dignity, right?