International Relations

I have a complex relationship with my neighbours. No, I don’t mean my fellow condo dwellers or even the angry man across the street who yells at me from his balcony. I’m referring to my friends in the south: The United States of America. It’s complex in that I’ve got some American blood in me, but I spent many childhood years raggin’ on the Red, White and Blue. You see, my Dad is an American, and he’s pretty wonderful. But bi-annual visits to the USA as a kid meant I had to develop an extensive list as to why Canada is the superior nation. I had to convince my American cousins I was right and they were wrong. Kid logic. These conversations usually began with me and my siblings adamantly denying living in igloos.

Of course, I’ve moved beyond list-making and igloo-denying. In fact, Canada and America have more in common than they don’t. However, if I were still score-keeping, America the Brave just scored a few very major points this weekend. Most of them come from this dress.

This dress cost me ONE DOLLAR. I’m going to give you some time to let that settle in.

(…Settling time…)

Again, if you didn’t hear me the first time: ONE DOLLAR.

This one-dollar miracle came from the Salvation Army in Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA, Planet Earth. I spent last weekend in good ol’ GR, visiting my sister-in-law Magdalyn and her husband. The Salvation Army decided to throw a Cinco De Mayo sale, and declare all clothing 5/5$. This is just one of the two vintage dresses that made their way into my bag, along with some other goodies for my sister-in-law. I didn’t really realize this sale was on until we walked up to the cash register. If I had clued in sooner, I would have spent every last loonie in that store. While I still love my country dearly, this one-dollar dress has me reluctantly granting the USA a win in thrifting category. And that’s a big deal.

They also scored major culinary points on my visit. We went to a restaurant that serves nothing but breakfast. Forty different kinds of breakfast, each more delicious than the last. This is such a brilliant idea, I’ve concluded all restaurants everywhere should serve only breakfast for every meal. Wait, I revise my answer: all restaurants should just serve breakfast and hotdogs. Why? Because another big boost in points can be attributed to the restaurant that put chili, cheese, and potato chips on my hotdog. It was the stuff of dreams (wait, final answer: restaurants can serve whatever they want, so long as they put potato chips on top).

But don’t worry, my mild-mannered Canadian friends. I won’t be pledging my allegiance to Old Glory any time soon. They may have perfected thrifting and hotdogs, but we still have way prettier money, more lakes, and a shit-tonne of gold medals. Our fellow countrymen are people like Margaret Atwood, Christopher Plummer and Bryan Adams. Even our fictional peeps are pretty awesome: Anne of Green Gables, Scott Pilgrim and Robin Scherbatsky all call Canada home.

And one more point for Canada: have you ever tried listing the fifty states? People, that’s too many states. Canada has ten provinces and three territories. Much more manageable.

In the end, it really doesn’t matter if you’re an America, Canadian, or something else all together. They’re all pretty great. Plus, we can all rally behind shared interests – you share with me your cheap  dresses, and I share with you Justin Bieber. Here in Canada, that might be called a win-win…eh?

33 thoughts on “International Relations

  1. I adore this dress! Yes, America does have some pretty ballin’ thrift stores; the one near my house has a whole dollar room where all the clothes in the room are a dollar. Oh many a good times have happened in that room, such as the time when a little old lady yelled at me for spending 20 minutes in the dressing room.

    I hope to visit Canada this summer because I’m sure you guys have equally as awesome thrift stores and you have Anne of Green Gables! I can’t wait to see what other great things there are to discover.


      1. Sorry this reply is so late! I would love to be able to visit Toronto for a weekend this summer, if my schedule allows.

  2. That dress is quite a find. Go America.
    My high school self thanked Canada many times for the gift of Hayden Christensen. I have since learned to appreciate Canada’s more promising exports, like the Ryans Reynold and Gosling.

      1. And everyone in Canada would become rich, because no one could bear to part with any Ryans pics!

  3. Lovin the buck dress! I miss Canadian thrift shops – they’re way smellier than UK charity shops, but they’re also way cheaper on the whole! I’ve only ever done ‘vintaging’ in the US and it was in a West Palm Beach vintage shop – good pickings but not cheap like the thrift stores must be.

  4. You can keep Beiber…just keep sharing Carly Rae Jepsen. :) Fantastic dress…it reminds me that I must go thrifting this weekend.

  5. I live in GR! I wish I would have realized they were having a sale, I would’ve gone.
    But I hope you had a nice time here!


  6. Great dress! And for a dollar? Yes please!

    As for the 50 states thing? We are actually taught a song in elementary school.
    I can list all fifty states, in alphabetical order.

    Many of us do know our states, but sadly, some of us do not. LOL

  7. I feel like the US has an abundance of thrift stores compared to Canada (tho I can only speak for MTL and surrounding area) maybe it’s because the economy was hit a little harder there? Anyhoo, when I was in LA, there was a thrift store at every corner. I had to stop myself from hyperventilating every 10 minutes. And the pickings weren’t even that slim. I was jealous.

    And that dress is pretty awesome. Especially with the Canadian flag cape on top.

  8. We had to list the 50 states in alphabetical order in 5th grade. That was probably the first time I wished I was Canadian. Then there was the being able to go to bars at 19… Basically, I’m saying I love Canada :) What a perfect thrift find!

  9. New reader here! I CANNOT believe you got this for $1. It’s amazing. I am originally from Michigan, so I have nothing but love for the mitten state. Whenever I travel back home I find the most amazing vintage. Nice work, lady!

  10. If you like hotdogs, you’d love this restaurant called Dirty Frank’s that we have here in Columbus, Ohio! I wish they had a menu online, but I couldn’t find one. When I went, I got a hot dog with nacho cheese sauce and potato chip crumbs…so many fun options to try! :)


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