Things I Have Learned That British People Think About Americans
Having touched down in London a couple of days ago, I realized quite quickly that my VERY American accent stands out here. A lot. So, I have had a lot of random generalizations about Americans asked/assumed of me. I’m going to be fair here, and say that this is not a sweeping generalization of every British persons’ view on Americans, just ones I’ve encountered since being here. I have an astonishingly American accent, so it’s only fair that they should ask me these questions (Tip: Don’t say y’all. You are suddenly a moving target.) Here are just some of the things I’ve encountered (if I suddenly get a burst of creativity, look for a COMING SOON Sh*t Brits Say to Americans):
“How do you find the weather?” It’s the same as it is in America. Warmer than New York, to be honest. I think they all expect us to show up here dressed as Paddington Bear, expecting monsoons-type rain.
“You all sound quite like Paris Hilton!” This is a real thing said to my roommate. Insulting. So violently insulting. I don’t know what made them all think that, but it is painful to hear the “typical American accent”. I think the consensus from that version of “American” is that our “celebrities” are slow.
There actually is “English English”, and we as Americans will never understand it. If you’ve ever seen the scene in Austin Powers “Goldmember” when Austin and his father speak to each other in weird British slang in front of Goldmember: that is real. It’s so real. We were warned of “tea leaves” (Thieves) and various other things (“Apples and pears” is up the stairs? Up the street? I’ve already forgotten.) It only vaguely sounds like what it means. I need subtitles for that, just like I need them for Troy from Swamp People.
“Do you have a gun/taser?” No. Do YOU?
They all are very curious to why Americans would ever choose London as a place to travel to. I have no good answer for them, and my joke answers (“The weather and the food”) have all been poorly received.
American Football is not reality in their eyes. It literally does not exist. So our sport is called….nothing. Football is Football. Soccer is Football. Einhorn is Finkle.
Everyone uses coins for everything. Their “pounds” can be coins instead of paper bills, so basically, new Americans look like pirates trying to sort out the dubloons they were just handed by the coffee people. That is why we are robbed.
American wear their pants down to their ankles like rappers from the 90’s. Pants. Are. So. Tight. Here. Please tell me why that is, anyone from the UK. Every single guy here is wearing tighter pants than I’ve ever worn in my life. So even on the “Bachelorette” show here, (in which they make that poor girl guess who is gay and who is simply super “Euro”) they’re all sporting the tightest “trousers” I have ever seen in the Western world. (I’ve also learned that “pants” are underwear and “trousers” are pants. Einhorn is still Finkle.)
“So d’you know anyone famous?” That would be like me going around trying to find out the cell phone number of that guy on that one soap opera here with the beard that I liked. Stupid. If I count as famous, then yes. If not…then one time I met Chris Martin from Coldplay, but he’s from England, so I’m not sure if that counts. WAIT! JUST KIDDING! I met Ron from Harry Potter this summer! So yes, Rupert Grint and I are best friends.
You (Americans) know nothing about tea. Well, to be fair (in my case) they are right. I know that tea is not coffee, and is thusly an inferior hot drink. In America. HERE the tea is much better than the coffee, and sincerely: the coffee is horrendous. You don’t know what kind of horrors it takes to make me say that, but it’s so true. Also, apparently they’re still mad about that time we pushed all of that tea into Boston Harbor. 300+ years ago. (I know about ‘Tea Partay‘, does that count? No? Never mind.)