You Ain't A Nova Scotian If You Don't Like Fish
(Jim Bennet) video
#1336: YouTube video by wastrauss ©2009
~ Used with permission ~

You can tell a Nova Scotian by the fragrance of the ocean,
For they always wear the perfume of the North Atlantic spray;
But if you can't seem to smell 'em, there's another way to tell 'em,
For you'll always know a Bluenose by his diet right away!

What do we eat? We eat...
Fish bones, herrin', oysters when we're daring.
And we often take a bake of hake 'cause that's a dandy dish!
To make chowder fit for dolphins, throw in everything but sculpins,
And you ain't a Nova Scotian if you don't like fish!

What we eats, until we're bustin', most Albertans find disgustin'.
For it seems salt cod's upsettin' to that dainty western tongue;
And with faces hard and stony, they say "Herrin's too durn boney,"
But there's nothing for dissolving bones like Nova Scotian rum.

And so we eat:
Cod cheeks, cod tongues, even though they're odd tongues,
Fish sticks and Digby chicks as dainty as you wish;
We eat flat fish, like the flounder, and some others that are rounder,
And you ain't a Nova Scotian if you don't like fish!

You won't find no haddock fillets in them Manitoba skillets,
And away out in Saskatchewan they don't know fish from beets;
Way out in Red River Valley they can't tell scallops from tomalley,
And you'll get no clams or salmon with your dandelion treats.

But us, we eat:
Finnan haddie, good for lass or laddie,
And a smoked eel will make you feel like dancin' ish a tish;
We cook up salimugundi twenty-seven ways from Sunday,
And you ain't a Nova Scotian if you don't like fish!

Now lest there be a mix-up, there's just one thing I should fix up,
For there's some that can't tell us from Newfoundlanders tried and true;
We eat hake and cod and kippers, but we don't eat seal flippers,
And that's how you tell the difference, 'cause the Newfoundlanders do!

We just eat:
Mackerel, pollock, they never give you colic,
If you wash down your tuna with a little drink of swish;
We love a mess of shad roe, cod and gaspereau,
And you ain't a Nova Scotian (by the holy land o' Goshen),
And you've never seen the ocean if you don't like fish!

####.... James L (Jim) Bennet ....####
The lyrics above are from the singing of Tom Goux and Jacek Sulanowski.

Note: Jim Bennet is a native of Halifax, Nova Scotia, best known for his career as a CBC radio and television personality. His thirteen years as co-host of the network's popular Singalong Jubilee program (1961-1973) provided the showcase for his talent both as a performer and author/composer of some of Eastern Canada's best-loved humorous songs. This song was sung on the show by Mr Bennet and the Jubilee Singers more than once. He has also compiled two books, Jim Bennet's Verse: a compendium in Rhyme and Metre, wit, humor, satire, parody, plaint, impertinence, stuff and nonsense, etc. (Petheric Press, Halifax, Nova Scotia, 1979) and Jim Bennet Rhymes Again, Poetry & Prose (Formac Publishing Company Limited, Halifax, Nova Scotia, 1989). In recent years, Jim has been the senior consultant at Bennet Communications Ltd, in Halifax.
~ Courtesy: Robert V Smith, 2008.

The video above features a live performance by Jerry Bryant during the 2007 Chicago Maritime Festival at the Chicago History Museum on February 24th.


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