Canadians See Weird Things in Their New Dollar Bills

According to Canadians, Canada's new polymer bills feature naked women, sex toys, ghosts, and Pinocchio.

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According to Canadians, Canada's new polymer bills feature naked women, sex toys, ghosts, and Pinocchio. The Canadian Press obtained reports from Canadian focus groups screening the design of the new bills. This is what they had found:

What It Is: The Peace Tower Clock and Prime Minister Robert Borden

What Canadians Saw:

  • A Woman's Body "Almost every group thought the see-through window looked like a woman's body, but participants were often shy about pointing it out ... However, once noted, it often led to acknowledgment and laughter among many of the participants in a group."
  • Religion "Every focus group thought they saw religious iconography on the face of the Peace Tower clock."  The report mentions people seeing Stars of David and "religious" symbols.
  • A Bad Portrait "Respondents also thought the former prime minister was either cross-eyed or that each eye was looking off in a different direction," the report said. "Others felt that the PM's moustache is unkempt."

What it is: A researcher and a double-helix strand of DNA

What Canadians Saw:

  • Sex "A Vancouver focus group thought it was "a sex toy (i.e., sex beads)."
  • Stars "Others thought it was the Big Dipper."

Okay, then. Let's move on to the C$50 bill:

What It Is: The research icebreaker CCGS Amundsen

What Canadians Saw:

  • Ghosts "The small white windows at the front of the icebreaker's bow were believed to have faces in them," the report says. "One respondent who saw faces in the windows suggested that they looked like skulls and crossbones."
  • A Foreign Ship "Some assumed the Amundsen was a foreign ship while others saw the Stars and Stripes fluttering from the anchor port. The Montreal group noted that oil companies have used the coast guard ship."

What It Is: The shape of Canadian province of Newfoundland Labrador

What Canadians Saw:

  • Not Newfoundland "The shape of Newfoundland and Labrador was often mistaken for other forms, including a bird, Pinocchio and a war plane."
  • Secret Codes "Others thought Inuktitut writing on the bill, which translates to the word 'Arctic,' was some kind of secret code or a set of mysterious symbols."

The C$100 bank notes will go into circulation come November and the C$50 will debut in March, but not before some minor tweaks. "Before and after those focus groups, there were design changes for multiple reasons," said Bank of Canada spokeswoman Julie Girard to the Canadian Press.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.