The difference between English and Canadian English

has to do with which words you “ise” and which words you simply just “ize.” Sometimes I feel obsessive about ise-ing, and then things get really clever for a while, and Word’s sometimes faulty Find function gets a real going over, and if I have the opportunity to point out discrepancies in documents written by other persons near/dear to me, obythegods I will, risking intimacies and testing trust and just generally showing off (my neuroses and Poe-ish tendencies likely leading to nevermores and brokenhearted glees), but then this always proves to be a futile weedy task, like pulling dandelion and holly trees and obviously cactes, because analyse, recognise, realise, summarise, problematise, and theorise become increasingly destabilised and disorganised with the unsettling and uncompromised ongoing nature of red squiggly lines (Word). Is it really British English? To what should I give the priority of my focus, the Oxford English Dictionary‘s etymological illuminations, or that poor bruised argument that begins to appear rather spineless in the way it keeps slipping from my fingertips to fall frequently in piles of narcissistic super sticky Post Its away in the shadowy underbelly of the underworld that is, down there, I take it, the floor? Huh.

So I’ve come recently upon the realis/zation that Canadian English doesn’t require all these soft-seeming, softening, less-harshening esses, and can instead use zed in some cases, and yet maintain the sought-after distinction from those persons “below” “us” of the southern variety, but yet simultaneously affirming, politely, our independence, vitality, and of course our identity, as if such a thing really were to be.

More on that later. Promize.

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2 Responses to The difference between English and Canadian English

  1. Kate Miller says:

    Ha ha Owl! I agree(s) with you and totally identify with the obsessive overriding of the ubiquitous z in favour of the s. Sometimes life is very tiring this way, and the occasional nod to the ‘other side’ I think is very gracious.


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