Languages of the First Nations

Did you know? Cree, an Algonquian language, is spoken by more than 87,000 people in Canada, making it the country’s most spoken Aboriginal language.[1] According to the Statistics Canada 2006 Census, Inuktitut is the official language of Nunavut and the Northwest Territories, and it is spoken by more than 35,000 people.[2] Many of Canada’s place […]

A Tricky Expression: Tirer son Épingle du Jeu

Agir afin que nos collectivités puissent tirer leur épingle du jeu dans une économie en dents de scie. Act to ensure that communities can seize the opportunities in a volatile economy. Recently, I’ve noticed that the expression “tirer son épingle du jeu” has become very popular. I looked it up to find out what it […]

White, Pink or Purple Pachyderms?

White, Pink or Purple Pachyderms? The elephant has inspired some interesting idioms in English and French. Most English speakers know the expression a white elephant, meaning an undesirable possession that is “jumbo” size; for example, Montréal’s Olympic Stadium has often been called a white elephant. Here are some more examples of elephant idioms that are […]

The Fountain of Youth?

Lately, magazines have been claiming such things as “90 is the new 60!” In some cases, that might be true. You hear about 96-year-olds who do very well after surgery. The 88-year-old Queen is still fulfilling her official duties. Consequently, it’s time to review our use of the word elderly. Elderly is defined in several […]

As Montréal as a Two-Cheeked Kiss

We Love Québec English! All-Dressed Pizza (Instead of Deluxe Pizza) In Québec, a traditional “all-dressed pizza” is topped with cheese, green peppers, mushrooms and pepperoni. “All dressed” is usually understood by most Canadians, who also talk about all-dressed hotdogs, but not by Americans. Coordinates (Contact Information) Some Anglo-Quebecers use the word coordinates—a literal translation of […]