Posted by Reneé Alexander on August 27, 2009 04:54 PM
There’s nothing more Canadian than making fun of Toronto – except, of course, if you live in the country’s biggest city.
This was never more evident than earlier this month when Molson Coors launched a promotional campaign in support of one of its flagship brands, Coors Light.
Billboards across the country heralded the beer’s long-heralded attribute – its coldness – with witty sayings like “Coors Light, colder than streaking in the dead of winter and realizing you forgot your keys” or “Coors Light, colder than my dog’s nose.” But the one that attracted coast-to-coast media attention – much of it negative – was “Coors Light, colder than most people from Toronto.”
Among Canadians, Toronto-bashing is hardly new. Many Canadians say their favorite hockey team is whoever happens to be playing the Toronto Maple Leafs that night. And it’s not uncommon for an uppity Torontonian to be scolded with “you’re so 416” (the city’s area code).
Of course, Molson chose to run this particular billboard in British Columbia – across the country from The Big Smoke. But that didn’t stop a number of Toronto residents, seeing the ad while holidaying on the West Coast, from calling in to complain.
The resulting coverage convinced Molson to pull the offending billboard. While many Torontonians saw this as a victory, they failed to realize that their actions only reinforced the marketing message, and revealed something about Torontonians that is truly embarrassing and completely un-Canadian: they have no sense of humor and they’re unable to poke fun of themselves.
Please, somebody call in Bob and Doug McKenzie, Canada’s hoser icons and kings of self-deprecating jokes, to give Toronto a boot to the head. Hurry. And while you’re at it, give each bottle and can of beer entering 416 a hearty shake before it's put on the shelf.
Now THAT’S cold.