Monday, January 12, 2009

Canadian Politics 101? Not really.

We-hell. And you all said the culture shock would be minimal (I don't know who "you" is, but let's pretend I have a reason to be defensive for a minute). Obviously, you've never jumped to a third year/fourth year course in Canadian politics after coming from a school that hardly gives a damn about Canadian/any other country's governmental happenings.

I have a hard enough time hanging onto US politics as it is, but at least in an advanced course, I would understand most of the references. I was having to over-exert my attention paying skills during most of the lecture to understand anything that was going on. The professor is a Senator from New Brunswick, and also the former Lieutenant-Governor, and the guest lecturer was Dominic LeBlanc, a Liberal MP also from New Brunswick. I'm not sure what I was expecting to happen--I suppose nothing more from myself--but it was just a tiny bit overwhelming.

Granted, I do know something about the Canadian political system. I've read a bit, watched some CBC, talked to some friends. So I can give you a basic overview of how the system works and what each political party stands for. But I'm going to have to do a hell of a lot of background reading.

Just when I was thinking maybe I could quietly drop the class, the professor, after talking about our upcoming class on Barack Obama, said, "And I understand we have an American student in the class!"

I could feel the star-spangled shame rushing to my cheeks as my hand raised in spite of itself. The moment people find out I'm a student at American University (here AND in the States) they think I must be a political aficionado. I have a hard time convincing people that's NOT the case. I'm not even a poli sci student (and what I should be is a literature major). My curiosity just gets the better of me and I sign up for courses like this one, hoping to hide in the back like a silent sponge. I guess that won't be happening.

I suppose I should stop blogging...after all, it's 11 PM and I have an entire country's worth of knowledge to catch up on. Fortunately, I'm set to go for a little while from some Tim Horton's coffee. Maybe that will increase my capacity to absorb Canadianness. We'll see.

No comments:

Post a Comment