Oh, my God, Canada. I'm trying not to raise my voice right now because I know you're doing your best, but, can't you ever correctly complete one simple task?
It kills us to see you flail like this.
The mix-up began a hundred-some years ago when Canada, a small club founded by French misfit children, decided to create its own currency. These bills and coins would function much the same as Chuck E. Cheese tickets at a modern-day Chuck E. Cheese, in that it would be tradeable for goods (and services). It would be valid in all of Canada.
For many years, the system was a success. Canadians used their Canadian money with ease. Every once in a while a Canadian penny or dime would slip down into the United States but that was no big deal because all the coins look about the same and everyone could just leave them in tip jars, like "not my problem."
Then, in 2011, Canada decided to redesign their banknotes.
"Paper is out and polymer is IN!" Canada exclaimed in an email newsletter that the rest of the world deleted without reading.
The new bills were made out of plastic. They had fancy updated pictures and a holographic whoozy-whatsits and a big clear window to make them harder to counterfeit.
They featured a big ol' maple leaf.
But not a Canadian maple leaf.
A Norwegian one.
"Big deal," you say. "Leaves are leaves; who cares?"
The problem is that maple leaves are Canada's thing. Like how some nations' thing is communism, or being the world economic leader, or producing generation after generation of beautiful supermodels. Canada's thing is that there are leaves there.
And they fucked it up.
The leaf on the new Canadian bills has five lobes and stringy tips, because it is a Norway maple leaf.
The Bank of Canada insisted to the Globe and Mail that it is not a Norway maple leaf, but rather a "stylized" Canadian maple leaf (that has been stylized to exactly resemble a Norway maple leaf).
"We created an image for the bank note that represents a stylized Canadian maple leaf, if you will, so that it wouldn't represent any specific species, specifically not the Norway maple," said spokeswoman Julie Girard.
To clarify: the only species specifically represented by the Norway maple leaf design on Canada's money is the not-a-Norway-maple-leaf species.
The worst part of the leafiasco is that now Canadians are getting down on themselves about it. Finally realizing that they can't do anything right. Falling into a deep depression.
Said University of Ottawa botany professor Julian Starr:
"It's rather sad. It's not the first time that it's happened. It's almost Canadian in the fact that we can't even get our symbols right."
Just because it's true doesn't make it any less sad.
Oh, Canada. :(