British student creates alter ego to avoid ‘Brexit’ talk

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By Zachary Roman

Brexit. The word, a combination of ‘Britain’ and ‘exit’, is the term commonly used to describe Theresa May’s plan to leave the European Union. It’s also the reason I’m going insane. 

At first an exchange to Canada seemed like a brilliant idea: the weed is legal, my accent is a hit in the dating scene and anything is better than British food. 

You’d think I’m exaggerating but ‘spotted dick’ is a real dessert that people eat and it involves dried fruit and custard. My fatal mistake was not considering just how much my classmates would care about an issue that has zero impact on their daily lives.

I used to love meeting new people. It’s one of the main reasons I decided to do an exchange in the first place. People used to care about my hobbies and aspirations, and I theirs.Now all they care to hear about is my hot take on May’s latest nationalist undertaking.

Every time I strike up a conversation with someone new, they’ve already asked me about how I think Brexit will affect the economy faster than you can say “extremely negatively”. 

That’s why I’ve devised a plan. It’s a new semester with new courses  and I don’t intend on letting anyone know that I’m British. Admittedly, it will be tough to fake a Canadian accent, but I feel as though I have no other option. 

My morning tea will become Tim Hortons coffee, as much as it pains me to drink that disgusting bean juice. I’ve spent my winter break memorizing the assist totals of the Toronto Maple Leafs’ offence. I switched the family photo on my bedside table with a shirtless picture of Justin Trudeau. 

With these preparations, I was ready for the first day of my new life.

On the first day of class, I almost got caught checking the Daily Mail to see if the Queen is still alive. 

Thanks to my quick reflexes, I was able to switch tabs to the YouTube video I had prepared earlier, “Top 10 Goals from the 2017-18 NHL season”. 

You won’t believe what goal number one is,” said a voice from behind me. “I’m Dave, nice to meet you!” Fighting back the tears in my eyes, I replied, “I know, eh, what a beauty!” 

It wasn’t much and it wasn’t even authentic, but it was the first human interaction I’d had in months that didn’t involve the words ‘European’ or ‘Union’. A single teardrop escaped my eye and fell into my lukewarm double-double, sending ripples across the cup.

Maybe I wouldn’t have to Brexit this life after all.

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