Posted by: ~KC~ | March 16, 2009

Roots

Lately, I’ve been thinking about my roots.

No.

Not the ‘hair dyeing’ kind of roots.

Rather… the one that makes up Me.

 

Being Canadian is pretty amazing.

I mean – I am literally as Canadian as Canadian can be…

70% English/15% French/15% Ojbwae

Can it get any more Canadian than that??

But there is a tremendous lack of culture – unique, truly unique Culture.

And so I find myself being envious of those of different ethnicities.

Sound odd to admit really.

But it’s true.

 

I grew up in a family that one’s ethnicity, heritage wasn’t promoted.

And really – what do we have to promote?

Other than the First Nations aspect of my make-up – I have really nothing that is unique.

And because Canada treated – and still do – our First Nations lower than third class citizens, the records of my family lineage in the Ojbwae clan are non-existant.

 

Sure I speak a second language.

And growing up in Québec is a unique experience in itself… there are very few UNIQUE events that are strictly promoting my French Heritage – who just so happens to be French from Normandy, not Québec.

One of the amazing things about Canada is that we are a mixing pot of cultures.  We are absolutely and proud of our multi-culturalism.

But…

Canada’s culture is borrowed.

We don’t have anything that is ours… and ours alone.

We have an overall general sense of pride – of who we are as a Nation, a people and what we represent on the world stage.

But we don’t have a culture that is truly, uniquely Canadian.

We have amazing artists – INCREDILY food, music and wine.

We have amazing designers, creators and innovators.

 

Perhaps my dismay comes from the lack of truly UNIQUE.

And so, as we borrow from others…

I can’t help but wish to get to know the many parts that make up Me.

And perhaps I can find a tradition that is unique to that aspect of my mixed heritage.

 

And well… one can’t help but be Irish on St. Patty’s Day… regardless of one’s heritage.

And that 70% English that makes up me, consists of 35% British, 30% Irish and 5% Welch.

 

So that 30% that is unique, that has a unique celebration and is looked at by the world as a uniquely Irish festivity…

Tomorrow – I will be Irish.  And maybe one day I will understand what it means to be Irish.

And maybe it will fill in that feeling of not having something that is truly unique.

 

And until such time… I will take that borrowed tradition, and wear green.

And exclaim “Kiss Me.  I’m Deliciously Irish.”

 

 

kiss-me1 

But I still can’t help but wonder what it would be like to have a culture and heritage that is uniquely different than the borrowed one that I have.

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Responses

  1. In some degree, I could say the same about being American. Everything is borrowed. Our language is made from the roots of so many other languages. Our Native Americans were once treated as your First Nation were.

    I have no Irish to speak of, but come October, I’ll be celebrating my German roots.

    (And, since I am also French, Swedish, Finnish and Polish, I would love to find ways to celebrate that, as well.)

  2. To be fair, North America (Canada and the US in particular) truly is a melting pot – it’s such an amazing blend of cultures that it would be hard to establish anything culturally identifiable as particular to either the US or Canada. To establish a culture that is identifiable as being unique to a certain country alone requires a certain amount of isolation, whether it be geographical or enforced by socio-eco-political pressures.

    We’re singularly unique in the history of humankind in that we are so hard to define. Which is kind of cool, to me. Never before have so many cultures gotten along so well in the confines of a single geographic region without it being enforced, like Rome, for example.

    Yeah, I know, Europe proper and Britain fit in this umbrella to nearly the same degree, but you get my point.

    Oh, and forgive my manners… Howdy do!

  3. You know I often feel the same in America. Sure you can claim your national heritage but I cling to the Scottish side of my heritage, well because it seems so much more exciting. The funny thing is I have plenty of things to claim to also like being a New Mexican. Anyways I hope you had a good Irish day. March and April were too hectic, I didn’t get any blogging done. ; )


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