Last Friday, my normally crisp and poetic writing style was marred by a cheap insult against Canadians. During the CDP‘s weekly “Lost Friday,” a wildly popular and hilarious roundup of the previous week’s episode of Lost, I made the following slur:
“As an aside, Kate must really want to be captured by the law. Either that, or she’s just a stone-dumb Canuck that’s attracted to trauma. I’d apologize to my Canadian fans, but I doubt I have any. Besides, they don’t read good”
This, my friends, was shameful. I deserved to be called out on it, and I was.
No less than three hours after the post went public, I received this e-mail from a woman residing in Winnipeg, Manitoba:
How could you say that about Canadians, you do have Canadians fans and I am/was one of them! Plus remember this “character” is not real and in fact made up by American writers.
The CDP normally gets about a dozen e-mails a week, but this one was especially important to me, as it was one of the very few that I got from outside of the country. Also, it was important because I not only insulted the Greatest Country in the World, I insulted a CDP fan.
I quickly replied with the following, which I am now making public for the world to see:
Boy, is my face red. A serious apology is in order.
I was joking, but you should expect better from me, and I’m sorry. I absolutely love Canada; my dream is to move to Toronto one day with the Missus. We were lucky enough to spend a few weeks in Ontario last year, and it was truly unforgettable.
Cheap laughs be damned! You have my word as an American citizen (however much weight that carries nowadays) that I will never, EVER use the wonderful country of Canada as a stepping stone for a throwaway joke again.
You also have my word that I will be making this apology public on the CDP next week. I really appreciate you taking the time to write me, and I hope that you continue to be entertained by the CDP in the future. I’m an ass, and I deserved this wake-up call far more than you deserved to be insulted by me.
Promise kept. I’m a man of my word.
A few minutes later, I got this reply from her:
Wow! Not only was that a fast response, but very genuine and sweet. I knew you were kidding, but thought I would let you know you do have Canadian fans. Thanks, I wasn’t even expecting a response. Ok, I am still a fan of your site and glad we cleared the air. Thanks so much, take care!
Who says that US/Canada relations are strained? This is how you resolve conflict! We traded a few more pleasant e-mails and called it a day, thus allowing me to sleep peacefully that evening.
Enjoy your day. Sound off in the comments section, and tell me what you’re doing to avoid International incident.
THE DEBUT OF ‘CLIFF.’