This is one of those ethnic humor books that can only really be appreciated (and understood for that matter) if you’ve lived in Canada for years and y...moreThis is one of those ethnic humor books that can only really be appreciated (and understood for that matter) if you’ve lived in Canada for years and years or if you’re Canadian. You have to be able to “hear” how the people talk to make sense of what’s written on the paper otherwise you’ll be having non-stop “what the*bleep* *bleep*?” moments.
Presented in dictionary form, “Canajan, Eh?” is a compilation of Canadian English pronunciations of everyday words as well as a few idiomatic expressions and their various meanings. There’s often a sentence to show the word/expression in context which makes it a lot easier to understand and have a good laugh. Some of the funnier ones I thought were:
Jock Car Chay (aka Jacques Cartier –this was the best in terms of pronunciation especially if you’ve been through the Canadian education system you can practically hear all those Anglophone teachers trying to pronounce his name in a “French” way) John Kabit/Kabott/Kabow (aka John Cabot and the 200 different ways Canadians massacre this poor guy’s last name) the Mare Cans (Americans, also pronounced as the Knighted States and the Hugh Es) Kwee Beck (Quebec) Sir John Eh (Sir John A MacDonald) quorpus (quarter past as in “it’s a quarter past two” said really fast. That was too funny!)
The absolute best and funniest piece is on the little word “eh” that can mean a ton of different things depending on when and how the speaker uses it. The author shows how to use it in just about every kind of sentence imaginable and it’s hilarious to boot. It’s the clincher really to tell if the speaker is a true blue Canadian ;)
The problem however, with the book I think is in its presentation that gets tiresome after awhile. You really feel like you’re reading a bunch of definitions so it becomes boring until you stumble on something funny like the ones listed above. Another thing is that there’s a bit too much focus on the province of Ontario with very brief mention of the rest of the country and virtually nothing about the Yukon or the Northwest Territories. There’s the odd typo which may have been intentional or not and some of the things said aren’t really pronounced that way. “Toronto” for example sounds like “Tronno” not Tronna” to people in Ontario and especially to Torontonians but maybe in other parts of the country they do say “Tronna”. The book does have a dated feel reading it now which isn’t the author’s fault of course but it did highlight issues of the day like acid rain, Quebec separatism, American domination as well as political style cartoons of the period.
Overall though it’s got its funny moments even if some may be a bit out there, overly-exaggerated or just plain weird eh ;-) (less)
This book is a total laugh-out-loud-tears-streaming-down-the-face riot ! The combination of disastrous cakes and the author’s totally hilarious, smart...moreThis book is a total laugh-out-loud-tears-streaming-down-the-face riot ! The combination of disastrous cakes and the author’s totally hilarious, smart musings/quips/captions makes for a hell of a great read. The blurbs are never mean-spirited or that annoying teenage toilet humor which makes it even funnier.
Nearly every page has a picture of a horrifying cake with some text alongside. Sometimes it’s just one sentence, maybe some internal dialog, a conversation or a few lines of “explanation”. Rarely is it too long so the humor is always at the forefront. Some cakes are just plain and simple monstrosities while others don’t jump out at you right away but when the author gets going you can’t help but go “ewwww!” or “OMG!”. Most will have you gaze in awe wondering what possessed the baker to put these out for public viewing instead of making a beeline for the trash can. You’ve got the ghastly Technicolor cakes with garish fuchsias and blinding turquoise, the frightening poor taste cakes like the military/dolphin/amo combo job for a wedding (!), the bizarre feathers in a cake as decoration (yuck) or the classic “clumps of pooh” log looking cakes –wow are those ever repulsive! Expect to see some classic examples of miscomprehension, misspellings and “unique” misunderstandings (ie the Baker was smokin’ some bad stuff that day!). My faves were the disastrous attempt at a tartan plaid for a wedding and the beautifully author titled “Vortex of Doom” cake –that was hys-ter-i-cal!!
If you’re looking for a gift for a hard to shop for person get this baby and you’ll be guaranteed some serious laughs, wheezing and near choking while you try to catch your breath and wipe your eyes as you flip through the pages –it is that good :D (less)
If you don't know your British history inside out I can't see how you'd find this book funny. A lot of things will go way over your head or you'll jus...moreIf you don't know your British history inside out I can't see how you'd find this book funny. A lot of things will go way over your head or you'll just not understand at all. What you may know history-wise just isn't all that funny I thought. The "tests" at the end of the sections provide a bit of a chuckle as they seem to poke fun at the way teachers write instructions for tests.
This book had some very hysterical family photos and the captions or little blurbs about them made them even funnier. The book is a compilation of way...moreThis book had some very hysterical family photos and the captions or little blurbs about them made them even funnier. The book is a compilation of way too hilarious pictures that most people can probably relate to from the stilted family portrait where no one looks “natural” to the freaky background wedding/graduation/big event shots. Done in all seriousness, there are some “period” pieces (80s hilarity especially), some “re-enactments” (à la Dynasty, Ma & Pa Kettle for some priceless ones), some “ouch” uncomfortable shots (kids putting their hands on body parts that only kids can get away with), vacation shots (with clothes that you wouldn’t be caught dead in otherwise) and then just the “beautifully challenged” people shots –wow! Makes you wonder what these people were thinking when they had these pictures taken, but then you stop and think of your own embarrassing family photos and there you have your answer ;) It’s a good laugh to be had from start to finish.(less)
The only thing I found funny about this book is the title. If you like 16 year old boy humor or Maxim magazine's style of humor then odds are you'll l...moreThe only thing I found funny about this book is the title. If you like 16 year old boy humor or Maxim magazine's style of humor then odds are you'll love this book. The writing style and presentation of a brief story or anecdote followed by a few quotes from the very abrasive dad are well-done but I just didn't find the content funny for the most part. The dad sounds like a horrible parent with his f- this and f- that to his kids and he comes across like a mean and miserly curmudgeon. I didn't get the ending either so it was an even bigger let-down. To me this book is a good example of media hype and not much more. (less)