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to expect people to use the terms 'kayak' and 'canoe' properly?

92 replies

NotQuiteCockney · 26/07/2007 18:07

I am just thinking about buying a canoe. Canoes are open boats. Kayaks are the closed ones. Yes, really. I'm Canadian. I would know!

But thanks to British confusion, the terms seem to be used randomly on ebay.

OP posts:
pointydog · 27/07/2007 07:56

dh was telling me all about this on hol when we went to a Canoe and Kayak Hire place. I'm sure you would have been a much more satisfying person for him to talk to about it.

agnesnitt · 27/07/2007 07:58

NQC, I go with the proper definition of hockey. None of that pansy field stuff in my world, hence the knowledge of random Canadian 'eh' pronunciation


arfishy · 27/07/2007 08:23

LOL. Yes, I also had trouble keeping time, hence my demotion into single sculls.

So what is the "proper" definition of hockey then? Is this an ice vs field thing? In which case we invented it first so we are of course the proper one.

NotQuiteCockney · 27/07/2007 08:33

I can believe field hockey was invented first, but it's just not a serious sport. Seriously, I find it hard not to guffah at any bloke who talks about playing field hockey. FGS, I know Canadian women who play ice hockey, British men should sack up and learn to skate!

OP posts:
agnesnitt · 27/07/2007 08:45

I know British women who play ice hockey. Shed-loads of them. One for her country at one point


NotQuiteCockney · 27/07/2007 09:43
OP posts:
agnesnitt · 27/07/2007 13:23

Most of the players I know of the female and male variety are rec players, and they're all bloomin' mental Mind you, anyone who has the energy to don skates and all that kit must be mental, with special amounts of kudos reserved for the netminders. (un)Surprisingly, my daughter wants to be a netminder when she grows up.


MEMsmum · 27/07/2007 21:30

I haven't laughed so much in ages!!! Thank you one and all!

MEMsmum · 27/07/2007 21:31

Meant at whole thread, not just last posts!

PixiNanny · 13/01/2010 00:28

I know that I'm ressurecting an old thread but:

That OP could have been me! I'm a freaking paddler after a kayak, not after a sit-on-top, not a canoe, and so on and so forth.

A mother and her kid passed us whilst we were loading the kayaks into the pool area one Saturday before Christmas; her kid said to her "Mummy look, there are boats!" She corrected them saying "No, they're canoes." It took all I had not to reply that they were actually kayaks (not in a rude way obvs )

crazycanuck · 13/01/2010 07:00

oh I totally agree! you have hit upon one of my pet peeves over here (yes, fellow Canadian!). It absolutely does my head in-dh thinks it's a riot when I start yelling at some presenter on TV that it's a flippin' kayak ya moron!!!!!

crazycanuck · 13/01/2010 07:02

blimey this is an old thread...

DecorHate · 13/01/2010 07:04

I did a double-take there! Thought some old departed MNetters were back!

PixiNanny · 13/01/2010 13:42

Sorry, I did say I was resurrecting an old thread I was about to make a thread about it myself as I recently had an argument with somebody who kept insisting that I was wrong and that I row in canoes, not paddle in kayaks slaps forehead (though I paddle both kayaks and canoes, there is still a difference between the two )

onagar · 13/01/2010 13:47

Well I have learned something new because until now I really didn't know the difference

I do understand the irritation if trying to order something.

ilovegreenbeans · 13/01/2010 13:50

yup, me too! Another Canadian here

FimbleHobbs · 13/01/2010 13:56

Have you tried searching 'Canadian Canoes'? I know you can't have a non-canadian canoe, its like saying 'Footwear Shoe', but I have heard people call them that.

FimbleHobbs · 13/01/2010 13:58

oops just seen how old the thread is, I'll paddle off...

Sassybeast · 13/01/2010 14:00

Did the OP go paddling in those grim waterways ? Has she been seen since ?

bronze · 13/01/2010 14:04

Canoe comes from the spanish...

how about a skiff then
or a punt you can row

NotQuiteCockney · 13/01/2010 14:08

I'm still around - spotted this thread and though 'oh, someone has the same problem I do!'. Oh, wait, it's me. I did go paddling in the canals, I will start again when it's warm out.

OP posts:
GrimmaTheNome · 13/01/2010 14:34

Its what Fimble said. The correct British term for what you want is a Canadian Canoe.

Now you know, you should be able to remember that!

As to field/ice hockey - just at the moment you're forgiven for forgetting, but normally we have a lot of playing fields and not much skatable ice. Its all very well saying British men should learn to skate, but theres not enough rinks.

Anywhere there is a rink (eg Blackburn arena) you'll find a fearsome crowd (mixed, I think though its hard to tell) taking over the ice in between figure skating sessions.

DDs school is doing hockey this term and judging from her careful checking of kitbag for shinpads and gumshield, the normal non-ice sort may be vicious enough anyway!

WallyDoodle · 13/01/2010 14:45

Technically kayaks are a subgroup of canoe though and some of the boats you are seeing are probably racing or slalom canoes (kneel, single paddle but every bit as sporty looking as kayaks).

The type you mean is called a "Canadian" or "open canoe" here. I know it looks like we are not using the term properly but it covers such a range of boats these days (which just means Canada can be proud of inventing something so variable). You can have a non Canadian canoe, for example the one at the bottom here:

I was canoeing in Canada last year, it was beautiful, although we did swap to touring kayaks for the coast. Hope the British waterways aren't too disappointing in comparison.

grenadine · 13/01/2010 14:53

Have you heard of the phrase "when in Rome...?"

In England closed boats are called canoes and open boats are called kayaks.

It is the other way round in Canada.

Therefore if you are trying to buy a closed boat in England search for canoe. If you are trying to buy an open one search kayak.

RolandButter · 13/01/2010 14:53

lol at this OLD htread
dh has a kayak

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