I had standoff today, a stare down, and contest of glares and and a tense atmosphere daring someone to move. Yet, unlike any standoffs, mine was exempt of hostilities or ill intent. Mine was a Canadian Standoff. That’s right. I’m writing about the “niceness” we Canadians are known so well for. And you know the most messed up part about it? None of the participants were of the same race. That’s right. I had a standoff with an Indian guy, a black lady, and a blonde. How’s that for diversity?
So on my way home from work, I came to the four-way that’s near my house. That’s where it all started, because everybody arrived and stopped at the same time. Then it begins. At first, nobody moved. All I could hear was the humming of my car engine and the howling wind outside. Who was going to move first? Well, someone does. Someone is bound to go first, we’re always in such a rush… especially in the snow (It’s like 25cm+ right now in Vancouver). I gestured to the car across from me to go ahead, but the black lady does the same. Hrmm. I gestured again, and she returned it. I frowned slightly, and she chuckled. Then we both glanced left and right – maybe someone else will move! Lo and behold, they’re doing the same thing. Oh what the heck is going on here. We’re all freezing, the road conditions are atrocious, and well… nobody seems to be in a hurry to go to where they gotta go. Uh… okay.
At least another 10 seconds pass (we’ve been there for a total of 40 seconds, none of us with cars behind us, and there’s no pedestrians on the streets), and the blonde crosses her arms, said something to her husband, and proceeded to switch the ignition off. I saw the Indian guy lean forward to really take a look at what had just happened. The black lady looked at me, and I shrugged.
Finally, the Indian guy rolled his vehicle forward. And get this part: despite the chilling cold and the snow blowing everywhere, he had all the windows rolled down, and his family (wife in front seat, 2 kids in the back) waved to all sides. I laughed my ass off, as did everyone else. The black lady went next, who I air-fived when she passed me. It was my turn, and as I passed in front of the blonde and her husband, I gave them a salute, and received a beaming smile in return.
Gosh I tell you, that was an entire minute of waiting in -2 degrees Celsius (yes I know we were in cars but still…) with road conditions getting worse every second, and everyone was just patient, courteous, and… well… Canadian. O_o. I mean, an occurrence like this, you can only call a Canadian Standoff. In terms of our behavior and diversity… it’s hard to be any more Canadian than this. And I’m proud that I got to experience it. xD
A view from my house :3