The United States of America is a big place, but it's certainly a weird place, and that's the best way for us to possibly put it. Even if you live there it's hard to put into words just how unusual it is, because they seem to do things so very differently over there. From money to politics and beyond it feels like they're in their own little bubble, and you know what - we're okay with being on the outside of that looking in.
Alas, if you live in the Great White North, it may not be so easy to do so. We've all had noisy or annoying neighbours before and it's something that we all just have to learn to deal with, but when it comes to entire countries being located right next to one another, it seems as if there's more to look at and discuss than your everyday household problem.
As always, we aren't trying to detract others from wanting to visit the States because there are a lot of positives to go alongside any lingering negatives, but it's more so about the relationship between America and Canada. That's something that has always fascinated us and will continue to do so, especially given the modern day climate.
It's always important to experience new cultures and different ways of life so you shouldn't miss out on things like that, especially if you're reading this from all the way over in Europe. Either way, though, whatever the case may be, we stick by all of our points, and we'd love to see some of them being explained to us in more detail.
25 Over The Top Portions - Way Too Much
Just take a look at this burger.
This burger is known as 'The Heart Attack' and boy oh boy do we wish we were lying. This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to what you can find in restaurants up and down the United States of America, and all you need to do is go and watch Man vs Food as proof of that.
The portions are a little bit more reasonable in the Great White North which is probably why the levels of bad health aren't quite as extreme, and it's probably also why more and more folks are moving over there - but, then again, that might be the health freak in us talking.
24 Deep Fried Mayhem - On Everything!
We enjoy deep fried food as much as the next guy but goodness gracious, deep-fried Pop Tarts? Where on earth does this kind of thing begin and end? Deep frying items of food is bad for you and to be perfectly honest, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure that out.
Perhaps Americans have gone beyond the point of caring but it certainly doesn't feel like Canadians have, because while they aren't the healthiest folks in the world in their own right, they seem to be much better off in the grand scheme of health - and healthcare as a whole.
23 Tailgating - A USA Tradition
Tailgating has been a big part of US tradition ever since we can remember watching our first football (gridiron) game, mainly through the various images and videos of fans having a great time outside of the stadium.
This doesn't really happen in Canada, and it seems to be fairly exclusive to the people of America. We actually really enjoy it as a concept and think that it brings together all different kinds of fans who otherwise wouldn't have been given the chance to interact.
It's always nice to get that kind of atmosphere going, even if rival fans end up interacting over a hot dog or two.
22 Tip Central - We Aren’t Made Of Money
Tipping is silly and whoever created the initial buzz behind the idea should be ashamed of themselves. Honestly, it feels like we're paying for a whole second meal purely based on the suggested tip, when in reality, tipping someone should be an incredibly rare thing to do for waiters and waitresses who have actually earned it.
If you've got the money to throw around then be our guests, but in Canada, it feels like they'll actually go out of their way to try and get you to give them a tip. They won't say it explicitly or anything like that, but they'll put in a major effort in helping you to have a good time.
21 The Bathroom Gaps - Downright Weird
When we go into a bathroom in any given public facility, we'd expect not to be disturbed by anyone - because, you know, there's a lock on the door for a reason.
So why, in a lot of places, is there still a small crack or gap in the door? It's just really, really weird and it can only encourage bad things happening.
Yes, this is mainly found in America, too, which is why we've featured it on the list. We don't want to just go after the country for no reason, so trust us when we say that we've unfortunately experienced this for ourselves.
20 Cans Of Cheese - No, No, No
We like cheese as much as the next guy, but cans? We can understand whipped cream to an extent and we can even stretch ourselves to buying into the idea of milk in a bag (okay, on second thought we can't - what's up with that Canada?) but cheese cans? Eesh.
You'll notice how there are many, many food and drink selections in this entry and we can only apologise for that on behalf of the United States of America. If they didn't attempt to be so 'out there' all of the time, then perhaps we'd struggle to find 25 entries to discuss.
19 Sandals And Socks - Wait, What?
The trend of sandals and socks was born and raised in the United States of America and while it may seem like a bold and brave fashion statement, we tend to think it's just a little bit puzzling. Perhaps there's something that we're missing here but it feels like the 'movement' completely defeats the object of both clothing items.
We sound incredibly old here and we can appreciate that, but you aren't going to find this kind of thing going down in Canada. In fact, if only due to the freezing temperatures, you're probably more likely to run into folks who don't wear sandals at all.
18 Salt And Sugar - Calm Down!
This isn't some kind of weird entry about how they like to mix the two together, but instead, it's an entry about their consumption levels. We're going to talk a great deal about food and drink in this piece, but beyond that, it's important to realise just how serious the problem is over there.
Obesity is and always will be a big issue and it's not exactly difficult to see why, with most establishments funnelling sugar and salt into their food and drink like there's no tomorrow.
Canadians can be guilty of doing the same, but nowhere near to the extent of their neighbours.
17 Refill Mania - Overly Generous?
We can appreciate the art of getting a refill at Nando's, but as always, the people in America take things to a whole new level. The option to refill your beverage is present in the majority of restaurants up and down the country, and while you could say that's a good thing, we'd stress the previous point about sugar consumption.
It's all about doing things in moderation and that doesn't seem to be the primary goal of the United States anymore, and it hasn't been for a long time now. Without sounding like too much of a broken record already, it definitely feels like progress is being made in this regard over in Canada.
16 A little too much Arrogance - It’s unfortunately True
We aren't big fans of generalising entire communities or countries, but a little bit of perspective is needed here. In Canada, there often tends to be the argument that the people over there are 'too nice' - and, for the most part, the complete opposite can be said for the United States of America.
A lot of folks are quite arrogant and won't afford you the same time of day as Canadians, and that really is a shame. Perhaps that'll change as time goes on, but given how divided the country feels right now, we wouldn't bet on it, to be honest.
15 Driving, Driving, Driving - Everywhere They Go
Every single mode of transport imaginable is available to you both in America and Canada, but we've never seen a nation be so obsessed with driving as the US of A. Hell, even when they don't seem to be able to in bad conditions they're able to pull it off, as well as in New York City where driving should be considered impossible.
Canadians will exercise their right to get around in different ways most of the time, although we obviously aren't suggesting that the idea of driving is a foreign concept to them. Instead, we're just trying to emphasise that the driving culture in the States is really intriguing.
14 ‘World’ Champions - Sigh Inducing
When you compete in a tournament like the FIFA World Cup, you have the right to call yourselves the world champions if you end up lifting the trophy in the final. If you win the Super Bowl after a long and gruelling season, you do not qualify as world champions.
Why? Because it's only teams from the USA that qualify. The Philadelphia Eagles are the current Super Bowl Champions, and thus, they're the Champions of America in the world of the gridiron. It sounds petty to try and focus on this point but it's true, and we can't emphasise this point enough.
13 Gatorade Love - So Many Flavours
You can sell a drink in another country, but that doesn't mean they obsess over it as much as the country of its origin. Case in point: Gatorade. I'm a British man who enjoys buying a Gatorade from the US aisle of my local supermarket, and even I was stunned when I travelled over to the States to discover an entire wall of rainbow-coloured Gatorade flavours.
The excess nature of this is pretty much out of control at this point and we'd be fascinated to hear anyone give any kind of thoughts on how to stop it. Sure, the Canadians seem to prefer coffee which isn't great for you either, but it certainly seems like a better alternative on the road towards coming off of caffeine altogether.
12 America's Thanksgiving - Two Peas In A Pod
America has its Thanksgiving in November, and Canada has its Thanksgiving in October. The two parties tend to laugh and criticise one another because of this, even though the whole point of Thanksgiving is to avoid situations like that. Isn't irony a beautiful thing?
We can't say that all of the items available at a US Thanksgiving appeal to us but that isn't to say that we hate them, either, and we're just kind of open-minded about the whole tradition. Either way, we're convinced this debate will continue to rage on, as pointless as it may seem to all of us.
11 Sketchy activity - Unfortunately Accurate
We don't need to be the ones to tell you about what's going on with the rates of violence over in the United States, because the facts on the news speak for themselves - and while you may not always choose to believe what you see on the television, unfortunately, the proof is in the pudding.
There is, of course, unfortunate acts committed in Canada and we aren't foolish enough to suggest to you that there aren't, but what we will say is that it's a far less regular occurrence and we're confident that the numbers will showcase that for many more years to come.
10 Celebrity Central - They Love It
Canadians appreciate their own celebrities that go on towards bigger and better things, but not quite to the same extent as USA folk. Case in point: Justin Bieber. The 24-year-old is one of the biggest stars on the face of the planet, but you don't hear Canadians shouting and screaming about him.
Then, over in the States, you've got entire channels and companies dedicated to following every move of these guys and girls who earn millions upon millions every single day.
The Hollywood Walk of Fame serves as the perfect example of their attitude towards this kind of stuff.
9 Football Obsession - Touchdown!
We tend to think that it's quite important to have a sport that you follow, regardless of whether or not you're 100% committed to the team. It doesn't matter whether or not you watch every game or only catch one every so often, because you're still a fan by definition.
In Canada, they've got ice hockey with tends to be viewed as their primary sport, and in the States, they've got the NFL. While there is, in fact, a league for the sport in Canada there's nowhere near the same kind of obsession levels, which kind of factors into our point from earlier on about the 'world champions' moniker.
8 Massive Weather Complaints - Fair Weather Fans
It's really, really cold in Canada 95% of the time, and that's not exactly some kind of startling revelation. Because of that, the natives there are used to the freezing atmospheres created by the weather and temperatures, which often surprises many foreigners who visit.
On the other hand, if someone from America isn't used to the cold weather or even hot weather, they have a tendency to moan to the point where you just want to shush in their direction. Not everyone is guilty of it but there's certainly a fair few out there - and you know who you are.
7 Age requirements - A Bit Odd
The legal age for adult beverages throughout most of Canada is 19, whereas in the USA it's 21. We aren't suggesting that the number should be lowered to a ridiculous level or anything like that, but we do believe that there are some negatives attached to having the age limit be 21.
The main point, of course, is that it encourages people to so do underage, which can then often begin a trend that leads to more and more rules and laws being broken. That sounds extreme but buying drinks when you're underage can definitely do more harm than good.
6 Boring Money - It’s SO True
Colourful money might not be viewed as a priority by many, but come on now, just take a look at the notes that you get in Canada compared to the United States. The contrast is staggering, and on top of that, US notes really do feel quite flimsy and poorly designed.
You might think that we're being picky but it's all about creating a certain state of mind, especially given how many folks actually have to get notes out and use them in their day to day lives.
We're just saying - a little bit of creativity can go a long way.
5 ‘In Your Face’ Patriotism - Take A Step Back
We get it, you guys really, really enjoy being patriotic and talking about how the United States is the best country in the world - except it really isn't, and the people themselves have even said the same thing time and time again.
Canadians are proud to be from Canada but they don't tend to shove it down our throats quite as much, as we can only be thankful for that. Perhaps a little bit of humility would help in assisting the States with their overall public image, but that's just an idea. Who knows if it would work out for them.
4 Beaches & Indoors Affection - Experience The Outdoors
Canadians love the great outdoors, and who can blame them? They've got an abundance of forests and national parks to walk around and discover, as well as some phenomenal wildlife that can't be found anywhere else on the planet.
USA folk, on the other hand, lean more towards chilling out on the beach or spending their time stuck inside watching every single television show under the sun on Netflix or Amazon Prime. They can do that if they want, but don't be surprised if the Canadians beat you to the punch in a few sporting events over the years. They're tough cookies.
3 Insane Shops - They Sell What?
The things that you can buy in Walmart confuses us, and that isn't an exaggeration. We're nervous to think how many folks have popped into their local supermarket and come out with something that could alter their lives completely.
On top of that, though, the high streets in America are just generally quite bizarre regardless of what city or town you may be in. The chains are getting bigger and bigger, whereas, in Canada, you'll often see more independent shops thriving - which could be a good or a bad thing depending on your personal preference.
2 Work Obsessed - Have A Day Off
If you're passionate about what you do then you should put everything that you have into it, and the Americans seem to push that idea to the very limits. Hell, even if you aren't passionate about what you do, a lot of people over there often work their fingers to the bone and we can only respect that fact.
Canadians do the same thing but they tend to be a bit more relaxed about it, probably realising that they also need to preserve their energy for other tasks.
But if you're working hard then that means you're earning money for your family 95 times out of 100, so fair play.
1 Cheerleaders? - Drawing In The Masses
Cheerleaders are great for sporting events but they're rarely, if ever, used outside of the United States of America. They help to warm up the crowd and get an atmosphere going, although you'd think that there should already be a pretty good atmosphere at most of these events given how many people turn up.
Even in high school being a cheerleader is viewed as being a pretty good thing, if only due to the popularity it gives you. These stereotypes don't really apply quite as much up north, though, and we're not just saying that for the sake of this piece.
At the end of the day, as we've said throughout, you need to visit both and make your own determination.