These are a few of my favo(u)rite things…

Some of my favo(u)rite things are improv, pirates, Canada, making fun of Canada, and exposing (US)American ignorance about Canada.

This post combines them all!

Once upon a time, I was hosting some Canadian friends in Chicago. We went to see a Second City performance during their visit and, as improv shows often involve audience participation, the performers asked for audience members to shout out an occupation.

Perhaps because I was with a Saskatoonie, this music video leapt to my mind immediately. (The original song is by The Arrogant Worms, for intrepid non-Google-users who want to know.)

The sketch began: “I always wanted to be a….”

“PIRATE ON THE RIVER SASKATCHEWAN!” I screamed, somewhat unnecessarily, because I am already pretty loud by default, and we were sitting in the front damn row.

The performers reluctantly agreed to enact “a pirate on the river Sasquatch?”

The remainder of the sketch was probably only hilarious for the three of us sitting up front, as it involved the Second City folks stumbling through everything they knew about Canada, which could be summarized as: cold, Toronto, and Barenaked Ladies.

In conclusion, you should probably not invite me to live performances, and Canadian Studiers really do have their work cut out for them!

Lyrics, for those unable to watch YouTube videos because GET BACK TO WORK:

Well I used to be a farmer and I made a living fine,
I had a little stretch of land along the CP line,
But times went by and though I tried the money wasn’t there,
And bankers came and took my land and told me “Fair is Fair”.

I looked for every kind of job the answer always “No”,
“Hire you now” they’d always laugh, “We just let Twenty go!” (Haha)
The government, they promised me a measley little sum,
But I’ve got too much pride to end up just another bum!
Then I thought who gives a damn if all the jobs are gone,
I’m gonna be a pirate, on the river Saskatchewan!

Chorus:
And it’s a Heave (HO) High (HO) Comin’ down the plains,
Stealin’ Wheat and Bareley and all the other grains,
And it’s a Ho (HEY!) High (HEY!) Farmers bar yer doors,
When you see the Jolly Roger on Regina’s mighty shores.

Well you think the local farmers would know that I’m at large,
But just the other day I found an unprotected barge,
I snuck up right behind them and they were none the wiser,
I rammed the ship and sank it and I stole the Fertilizer

A Bridge outside of Moosejaw spans a mighty river,
Farmers cross in so much fear their stomach’s are a quiver,
‘Cause they know that Tractor Jack’s a-hiding in the bay,
I’ll jump the bridge and knock em cold and sail off with their Hay!

Chorus

Well Mountie Bob he chased me he was always at my throat,
He followed on the shorelines ’cause he didn’t own a boat,
But cut-backs were a comin’ and the Mountie lost his job,
So now he’s sailin’ with me and we call him Salty Bob!

A Swingin’ Sword and Skull and Bones are pleasant company,
I never pay my Income Tax and screw the GST (SCREW IT!)
Salin’ down to Saskatoon the Terror of the Sea,
If you wanna reach the Co-op boy you gotta get by me!

Chorus

Well pirate life’s appealing but you don’t just find it here,
I’ve heard that in Alberta there’s a band of Buckaneers,
They rome the althabaska from Smith to North McKay,
And you’re gonna lose your Stetson if you have to pass their way.

Well Winter is a comin’ and a chill is in the breeze,
My pirate days are over once the river starts to freeze,
But I’ll be back in Spring time but now I have to go,
I hear there’s lots of plunderin’ down in New Mexico.

And it’s a Heave (HO!) Hi (HO!) Comin’ down the plains,
Stealin’ Wheat and Barley and all the other grains,
And it’s it’s a Ho (HEY!) Hi (HEY!) Farmers bar yer doors,
When you see the Jolly Roger on Regina’s mighty shores.

(Repeat)

When you see the Jolly Roger on Regina’s mighty shores
When you see the Jolly Roger on Regina’s mighty shores
A-har!

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