Friday, March 25, 2011


I've been getting pretty nostalgic about Winnipeg lately.

I think this is because I am coming to that point in my life where I predicted that I would've already purchased my one-way ticket outta here. I mean, school's coming to an end, I have nothing holding me back (kids, husband, mortgage...) and I've always wanted to leave.

However, now that leaving this city is becoming more and more of a feasible option, I am getting all sentimental and mushy about all things Winnipeg. In fact, I've made a list of Winnipegisms that I feel represent the people and culture of this cold, but sunny city.

1. CLEARANCE: In most cities, people buy things based on what they like. In Winnipeg people buy things based on how much it costs, whether they like it or only sort of like it. The cheaper something is, the more likely a Winnipegger is to buy it first and find a use for it second...

The icing on the clearance cake is that the Winnipegger will then they brag about how little they paid for the item to every single person that ever comments on it. Forever.

Friend: "Oh, I like your jacket!"

You: "Thanks, I got it for five dollars on clearance at Forever 21!"

Friend: "Really? When?"

An omission of an awesome deal will ALWAYS trigger another Winnipegger to ask when and where the item was purchased; even if they don't want the same sale item as you, they want, er, need to get to that store to see what other treasures they can find for a bargain.

Hell, every single one of us drives to Grand Forks or Fargo to get deals at American stores.

In an ironic twist that kind of doesn't make sense, we'll shop till we drop in the States and then stay there for 48-hours because we don't want to spend money on paying duty, yet we'll happily fork out cash for cheap hotel rooms and American buffets...

I'm just throwing this out there for everyone, but how much do you usually save on duty charges compared to the cost of hotel, food and two days worth of shopping?!...

Just sayin'...

2. We love to hate: As Winnipeggers we are taught from a young age just how shitty life in the prairies is. It's cold, we're the murder capital of Canada pretty much every single year, we don't have an Ikea (yet), other provinces and places in the world make fun of us...

Most of us develop an extremely low sense of community self esteem. We're emo.

However, on the other side of this community apathy, there is a really marred sense of civic pride. You see, if a non-Winnipegger starts making fun of our province, or the way we do things, we get defensive and downright angry. (This might be where the murder capital thing comes in, I'm not sure...)

For example:

Vancouverite: "Wow, Winnipeg is small and it's cold, and you don't have an IKEA here! -- I can't wait to go back to Vancouver where famous celebrities reside and shop at the same Whole Foods that I shop at."

Winnipegger: "Bitch please! -- Has your province ever won the title of Slurpee capital of the World?! No, didn't think so, cause we win it every single year. Booyah!"

But really, nobody but other Winnipeggers can talk shit about our province. Nobody.

3. Open-toed shoes and mini skirts in minus forty temperatures: I've got to hand it to Winnipeg girls; they're the only species out there that can rock open-toed shoes, a mini skirt and a light jacket with just a tube top underneath it in -40 degree Celsius weather for as long as it takes to get into a the bar.

Sure there might be a windchill warning in effect, and yes science has proven that bare skin freezes at a stupidly high rate when it is exposed to extreme weather conditions, but Winnipeg girls are an anomaly. They really are, because they'll shiver and complain the whole time they're waiting in line, but no matter how cold it is most of them will stay in that lineup until they get into the bar. Being cold isn't even be an after thought once they get in, cause DAMN they look good...

4. The Winnipeg Jets: Our beloved NHL team was ripped away from us 15-years ago and we still mourn as though it just happened. The team died before some of the kids who are wearing its merchandise now were even born, and every couple of months local media fuels the fire about an NHL team possibly coming back.

Sure the team wasn't what you'd call a top winning team, and yes I understand that people only started attending games regularly once it was announced that they might be taken from us, but pretty much every single Winnipegger has a little bit of Jet blood running through their veins. (Oh, and also I think Winnipeg has the highest population of Gary Bettman haters in the world...)

5. We like to give: Winnipeggers are notorious of being generous when it comes to giving to charities. We're an empathetic bunch who dig deep to help each other, and it's awesome.

that being said, we still really need to work on not being the murder capital of Canada anymore. Giving is awesome, killing is not...


  1. Love this post Shel, you really are an amazing writer and damnit, you should have taken comedy writing.

  2. Love it!!!! I wonder when Jets tickets go on sale.. :))