Wednesday, March 22, 2006

10 Provinces: New Brunswick

History: Neubraunschweig and the Anglofrancagermanians


Whether you say New Brunswick, Nouveau-Brunswick or Neubraunschweig, it is Canada’s only officially trilingual province. However, while this unique status is a source of great pride for most New Brunswickers, it has also led to controversy and prejudice; and just once, a pretty crazy pie fight.

The province's language laws require all signs, news, memos, and grocery lists to be printed in all three official languages, placing great strain on the province's timber industry. Meanwhile, protesters regularly congregate in front of city hall in the provincial capital of Frederictal (sometimes also known as Neiltown, because Neil lives there) to stop the over-dependence on trees. Such activist groups have suggested using smaller fonts or maybe creating an entirely new language that incoporates elements of the three official tongues (possibly to be named Frenglerman).

It has become essential for anyone working in the customer service industry (including the Government) to know at least two of the three languages. Parents complain that this puts unnecessary pressure on their children to learn more, while other people think that even two is not enough.

“These children merely have to learn to adjust. If they can't handle the two languages now, how will they ever cope once we add Spanish and Mandarin to the education curriculum next year?”

Jean-Francois Diefenbaker, Provincial Minister of Linguistic Rights.

In spite of any controversy, however, most New Brunswickers are supremely proud of their Anglofrancagermanic heritage. Every 15th of August, NBers celebrate “Das fete des Acadientag,” which commerates the events of 1755, when the Acadian and German peoples deported the English to a far off Pacific island continent. This later became Australia.

[mp3] Rheostatics - King of the Past
[mp3] 1755 - Je monte a Moncton
[mp3] Thursday - Dying in New Brunswick
[mp3] Marie-Jo Therio - A Moncton
[mp3] Port City Allstars - Downtown is Alright

* Read real stuff about New Brunswick here

5 comments:

Niveous said...

Isn't the Thursday song about the other New Brunswick? The one in New Jersey.

The Trick said...

Yes, it most likely is. But considering how few New Brunswick songs we were able to get our hands on, we had to stretch a bit.

sps said...

go Neil!

Steph said...

How the heck do you come up with this stuff? It's awesome and hilarious. I love it.

I've been on that bridge before! There's something special about it, I know because there's a sign in front of it that says so. I just can't remember what the sign says. Longest covered bridge in the world?

The Trick said...

Yep, at 390.75m it is said to be the world's longest covered bridge. It's actually amazing how many people are aware of that being here in little New Brunswick. Fundy Bay is also said to have the world's highest tides, so I guess that's another claim to fame.

Thanks for reading!