We Americans are ignorant. We're so hung up on our own weird vernaculars of "y'all" and "duck, duck, gray duck" that we don't realize how unique the language is with our neighbors to the north. There's a different set of linguistic rules out here in the Maritimes that we know nothing about. And that's unacceptable. So buckle down, kids. It's time to learn.
First of all, we have a cultural food item. It's called poutine. To make it, start with a layer of french fries, then add melted cheese and gravy. It's very popular and totally grosses me out. Open-minded travelers should try new things, but I can't make myself eat this. Sorry, Canada.
Next on the list is a simple slang term. As you know, macaroni and cheese is a staple of collegiate diets everywhere, and Cape Breton is no exception. However, the denizens of the island do not say the familiar "mac-n-cheese" of the states. They say KD. Obviously, this is an acronym for Kraft Dinner, but some Americans are dweebs who need this spelled out for them. Not me, though... ahem.
Last but not least, I've picked up bits and pieces of vocabulary in class. First of all, there are no grades here. There are marks, and they are given in percentage form. This blew my sad little ABCDF mind. It also amused my tech writing classmates, who are apparently the most common witnesses to my vernacular blunders.
Another thing I've noticed is how people reference other class periods. Instead of saying "last class," or "next time we meet," my professors all say "last day," or "next day." When assigning homework, they will say, "Please read chapter four for next day," or when referring to a previous class, they will say, "Remember the exercise we did last day?" This seems minor, but it's very noticeable and a bit startling until you get used to it.
For my Canadian readers: if you feel like I'm leaving anything out, please post suggestions in the comments!
Everyone else, I hope you feel properly educated. Keep reading, and see you next day!