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Wordsleuth (2006, vol. 3, 3): Test Your Knowledge of Canadiana!

Katherine Barber and Robert Pontisso, Senior Lexicographer (Canadian Oxford)
(Language Update, Volume 3, Number 3, 2006, page 40)

  1. Which Canadian Prime Minister first used the word "mainstreeting" to mean political campaigning?

    a) Pierre Elliott Trudeau
    b) John A. Macdonald
    c) Arthur Meighen
    d) John Diefenbaker

  2. Which charitable social organization originated in Canada?

    a) Women’s Institute
    b) Victorian Order of Nurses
    c) Kinsmen
    d) all of the above

  3. What is the name of Canada’s spoof political party?

    a) Hippopotamus Party
    b) Albertosaurus Party
    c) Rhinoceros Party
    d) Gopher Party

  4. A Calgary red-eye is

    a) an overnight Calgary-Halifax flight
    b) a tourist who has stayed up all night partying at the Stampede
    c) a drink of beer and tomato juice
    d) a form of conjunctivitis that is common amongst workers on oil rigs

  5. Muskox wool is

    a) qiviut
    b) qallunaat
    c) qajaq
    d) qulliq

  6. The prairie crocus is

    a) a type of anemone
    b) a type of crocus
    c) a type of daisy
    d) a type of lily

  7. Which of the following words for school supplies is unique to Canada?

    a) pencil crayon
    b) Duo-Tang
    c) scribbler
    d) all of the above

  8. The Aboriginal people formerly known as the Thompson are now called the

    a) Nlaka’pamux
    b) Secwepemc
    c) Stl’atl’imx
    d) Ktunaxa Kinbasket

  9. Which is not a level of amateur sports?

    a) mosquito
    b) bantam
    c) blackfly
    d) atom

  10. A slang name for a piece of land promoted as having mining potential, which is in fact worthless, is

    a) muskox tundra
    b) moose pasture
    c) caribou ground
    d) elk meadow

  11. A slang name for a beer belly is

    a) Labatt muscle
    b) Sleeman’s muscle
    c) Kokanee muscle
    d) Molson muscle

  12. Which of the following is not a uniquely Canadian dessert?

    a) butter tart
    b) mangia-cake
    c) matrimonial cake
    d) Nanaimo bar

  13. Sludgy masses of densely packed sea ice are

    a) slob ice
    b) bum ice
    c) lazy ice
    d) messy ice

  14. The revenge of the cradle is

    a) the tendency of babies to wake up at 4 in the morning
    b) an extremely high birthrate amongst French Canadians in the 19th century
    c) retaliation by a much younger lover dumped by an older person
    d) the cost of raising a family

  15. A steamie in Quebec is

    a) a hot humid day
    b) a hot dog
    c) a pornographic movie
    d) a sauna

  16. Which of the following actually grows in Canada’s North?

    a) Arctic palm
    b) Arctic cactus
    c) Arctic cotton
    d) Arctic papaya

  17. The Newfoundland cake made from rice, pork and molasses is a

    a) lumpgut
    b) bangbelly
    c) thudpot
    d) heavytummy

  18. A hamburger found only in Canada is the

    a) Louisbourger
    b) iceberger
    c) Amherstburger
    d) banquet burger

  19. Which canoe was once paddled along Canadian waterways?

    a) jackass canoe
    b) bastard canoe
    c) scuzzball canoe
    d) doofus canoe

  20. A young harp seal is a

    a) chaoser
    b) hurlyburlier
    c) bedlamer
    d) uproarer

  21. In Saskatchewan a hooded sweatshirt is a

    a) bunny hug
    b) kangaroo cuddle
    c) dogie snuggle
    d) prairiedog squeeze

  22. A western wedding wouldn’t be complete without which dance?

    a) grasshopper
    b) cricket
    c) butterfly
    d) blackfly

  23. Which of the following is a popular Canadian drink?

    a) empress
    b) caesar
    c) seigneur
    d) czar

  24. A Newfoundland drink of spruce beer, rum and molasses is

    a) callisham
    b) calliphony
    c) callibogus
    d) callifake

  25. If you visit Atlantic Canada but are not from there, you’re a

    a) don’t-belong-here
    b) come-from-away
    c) come-in-on-the-tide
    d) wash-up-on-the-shore

  26. A clump of trees on the prairies is known as a

    a) bluff
    b) fake
    c) ruse
    d) deke

  27. A Digby chicken is a

    a) chicken
    b) seagull
    c) clam
    d) herring

  28. Newfoundland twilight is

    a) duckish
    b) gullish
    c) ternish
    d) chickenish

  29. The kinder, gentler f-word is

    a) fumble-on
    b) fuddle-duddle
    c) fussy-fit
    d) funnel-cloud

  30. A New Brunswicker is a herring _____

    a) kisser
    b) catcher
    c) choker
    d) eater

Answers :

  1. d.
  2. d.
  3. c.
  4. c.
  5. a.
  6. a.
  7. d.
  8. a.
  9. c.
  10. b.
  11. d.
  12. b.
  13. a.
  14. b.
  15. b.
  16. c.
  17. b.
  18. d.
  19. b.
  20. c.
  21. a.
  22. c.
  23. b.
  24. c.
  25. b.
  26. a.
  27. d.
  28. a.
  29. b.
  30. c.