Stupid Canadian | Teen Ink

Stupid Canadian

July 7, 2018
By TheWritingNerd SILVER, Perry, Michigan
TheWritingNerd SILVER, Perry, Michigan
6 articles 0 photos 0 comments

Favorite Quote:
I needed a hug, but all they gave me was a box of matches and a knife.

Hard to believe less than a year ago I was a horrible student in a horrible mental state. Most students’ freshman year of high school is tolerable, a little bit challenging at first but eventually becomes easier and easier as the year goes on. My freshman year was the complete opposite of most students’ experiences. My year consisted of the first week being very easy then rapidly built up the intensity.


The first week of freshman year was tolerable, no student actually enjoys school, but I tolerated it for the most part. The first week was just syllabuses and introducing the student handbook, and introducing the curriculum. For most students it’s the easiest week of the entire year, there wasn’t any testing, no assignments with the exception of getting the syllabuses signed by a parent. The hardest part was finding my way around a relatively large high school with two floors since I had only been there a select few times before.

Half way into the second week of school I did something I now regret tremendously. I would probably still be in public school if it wasn’t for this one thing. I had decided to wear my Canadian hockey jersey I had gotten two years earlier. I wore it with confidence and went about my day, I went to my first hour which at the time was Biology. A guy that sat in the row to my left had asked me a simple question, “So are you Canadian?” I responded politely not thinking much of the question. I simply replied, “Yeah, my grandpa is from Quebec.” He didn’t respond for a few minutes so I carried on with my notes on the lab we were working on. A few minutes later he had come back mumbling to me but I didn’t really understand him so I ignored it. Second and third hour passed fairly quickly that day. I had Lunch A, which was at 11:15 if I remember correctly. At the time I didn’t really have a friend group and I also didn’t have a lunch that day, so I sat in the main hall while other students were eating lunch. The same guy that had asked me if I was Canadian came up to me with his group of friends behind him and started calling me “Stupid Canadian”, as much as I had tried to explain I’m only a quarter Canadian he ignored it and kept calling me “Stupid Canadian”.


The rest of the day I pushed it to the back of my mind not thinking much of what he had called me. I didn’t have any more classes with him that day and just focused on my assignments, then sixth hour rolled around which was Global Studies. My hair, which at the time was dyed blonde, wasn’t looking the best so I put it up in a ponytail and called it good. I went to class, sat in the back row where I was assigned to sit. That particular day was a day right before Labor Day break so not too many kids were in my row except for me and a guy I somewhat knew from elementary school. The seat next to me was empty so I used it to put my feet on since we were just going over homework from the day before. The guy that sat next to me tapped on my shoulder, I was honestly expecting him to ask what question we were on since he wasn’t exactly the student to pay attention and he had been doing it for the past week. Instead he asked, “This is America, why are you wearing that stupid Canadian hockey jersey?” I sat there in shock, then I just responded in the most emotionless voice possible,” It’s a free country isn’t it?” He looked at me astonished because of what I had just said. I returned my focus to the teacher, then he tapped my shoulder again I looked over at him and he smacked me across the face then called me, “Stupid Canadian”. I ignored the fact that he had smacked me and raised my hand to answer a question. The teacher called on me and I had answered the question but she just ignored me then said, “Why should we listen to you if you haven’t been listening to any of us?” I didn’t respond for a few seconds and she took it as a sign of defeat. I finally spoke up enough to cover the laughter of the class and everyone looked at me shocked since I was known as the quiet kid. I said, “My sincerest apologies Mrs. A, but this young man was calling me some particularly rude things and smacked me. Once again my sincerest apologies Mrs. A, I did my best to listen but this young man just prohibited me from doing that.” She looked at me astonished from how loud I spoke then simply asked, “What did he call you?” I then responded, “Stupid Canadian” Her face expression didn’t change at all and she just focused back on the lesson. The name calling carried on throughout the lesson but I just did my best to ignore it.  

After Labor Day break the name calling continued and I did my best to ignore it. Until around September 10th it had escalated so much so that another guy was screaming it across the classroom, in front of the teacher yet the teacher didn’t do anything about it. I lived being called that name and eventually somewhat tolerated it. The name eventually spread throughout the school and I was called the name by people I didn’t even know.         

Fast forward to Constitution Day 2016, in my sixth hour, Global Studies, my teacher had put together constitution jeopardy. Previously having very little knowledge of the Constitution, I was unprepared for the class. We also had no heads up about the lesson like we normally did. I went in and sat down, it was boys v. girls. I sat with all the girls and a guy I hadn’t really known at the time yelled across the class, “The girls are going to lose, they have the stupid Canadian on their team.” I sat there and kept my mouth shut. When it was my turn the girls that were on my team told the teacher to take it easy on me because I was Canadian. I’m an American citizen, I was raised in America, I live in America, and I am only a quarter Canadian. When I sat in front of the class to answer the question a guy on the boys’ team said, “Send her back to Canada she doesn’t know this crap. Deport her.” Then the entire boys’ team started chanting “Deport her”. Me being me I sat there and didn’t show any emotion even though it hurt me even more than words can describe.

 Throughout the rest of my freshman year things just got worse, my only outlet was and still is writing. My mental health went downhill. The comments got worse and worse. I had a few friends that defended me no matter what but the classes I didn’t have with them I was a fresh piece of meat and the rest of the students seemed like hungry beasts. I still took pride in the fact I’m Canadian and always will no matter what. So what? I’m a quarter Canadian and I take pride in it. Others seem to have an issue with it but I lived with it since the school wouldn’t do anything about it. That was my life, and I lived through it.

The author's comments:

Thank you to all the people that called me a Stupid Canadian. Y'all gave me some great writing fuel and made me even stronger than I already was.

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This article has 2 comments.

brandonbau22 said...
on Jan. 15 2019 at 9:40 am
brandonbau22, Lagrange, Indiana
0 articles 0 photos 1 comment
I know other Canadians so there is no problem being a Canadian in a different country. However, you did say that you are only a quarter Canadian, so that last comment wound't make sense. Wearing a Canadian hockey jersey doesn't mean your Canadian. But you are, 1/4 to be exact. It doesn't matter what other people said about you. I say to live life the way you want to live it.

on Oct. 23 2018 at 10:30 am
Malcolm_Chase PLATINUM, Madison, South Dakota
32 articles 0 photos 161 comments

Favorite Quote:
Not all those who wander are lost
- J. R. R. Tolkien

Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it
- Confucius

Believe you can and you're halfway there
- Theodore Roosevelt

Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.
- Albert Camus

It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light.
- Aristotle

Nothing is impossible, the word itself says 'I'm possible'!
- Audrey Hepburn

The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched - they must be felt with the heart.
- Helen Keller

I'm so sorry you had to endure that, @TheWritingNerd (Ev?)...people are just horrible sometimes, and that experience, though it gave you strength, is something you shouldn't have had to go through. What you wrote though, was terrific, you found the strength to express yourself and ignore the hatred, and be proud of who you are, and that's a very respectable and brave thing to do. You did a wonderful job writing this, and you did an even better job to be the better person, and that is what is very incredible. Great job :)