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Old 06-14-2010, 09:05 PM
 
39 posts, read 243,209 times
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Hello. I am Asian American living in U.S. I have a number of European American friends and often get it wrong on guessing their ancestry. For instance, I can't distinguish between Germans and Irish or between Spanish and Portuguese.

Without relying upon their last name for guessing their nationality, do you know a way to accurately determine how to distinguish German Americans from other European Americans? For instance, what is the typical facial feature of Germans in distinction with other Europeans? On one more note, is it true that Germans are almost never late to a meeting?

Thanks in advance for any insights.

 
Old 06-14-2010, 09:10 PM
 
Location: Silver Springs, FL
23,440 posts, read 30,607,252 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nicesinging1 View Post
Hello. I am Asian American living in U.S. I have a number of European American friends and often get it wrong on guessing their ancestry. For instance, I can't distinguish between Germans and Irish or between Spanish and Portuguese.

Without relying upon their last name for guessing their nationality, do you know a way to accurately determine how to distinguish German Americans from other European Americans? For instance, what is the typical facial feature of Germans in distinction with other Europeans? On one more note, is it true that Germans are almost never late to a meeting?

Thanks in advance for any insights.
There is no one distinguishing facial feature for Germans. I am German-American, and grew up in a heavily German populated area of Missouri.
As far as never being late for a meeting, it makes me crazy to not be on time, but thats just me, I have known other German-Americans that are NEVER on time.
Sorry not to be of any more help.
 
Old 06-15-2010, 04:13 AM
 
Location: Wildside of Oahu
1,412 posts, read 2,675,031 times
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Interesting questions. My daughter & I have been mistaken for Germans, while visiting France & Italy, mainly (I think) due to having blonde hair. While we have a little German in our background, we are mostly Irish/Scottish/French.
Usually, we are pegged as Americans, due to our teeth! Americans are notorious for our excellent dental care!
I don't think it is as easy to determine European ancestry as it is Asian, as there has been so much inter- breeding in the last centuries that physical type is no longer a good indicator. As for promptness, I think thats more an issue of upbringing.
 
Old 06-15-2010, 07:47 AM
 
Location: San Antonio
3,182 posts, read 9,221,015 times
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I'm wondering why you would need to distinguish?

I don't even know my own ancestry.

One thing that you will notice about people of "Eurpoean" decent in the USA, is that MANY (Not all) of them do not even know their own ancestry. We don't care. People who are 1st, 2nd, or 3rd generation might know, but people whose families have been here longer than that are so mixed up that they are now 10% Irish, 5% German, 2% Sweedish, 1% Spanish, 8% Irish, ect, that they just stopped keeping track.

Hardly any of my friends have any idea of what our ancestry is.

We are all just Americans!

And you can't even tell by name. I have a friend with a very "Polish" last name who doesn't have an ounce of Polish blood (that she knows of), but she married in.

Who cares?
 
Old 06-15-2010, 07:52 AM
 
Location: Bradenton, Florida
27,236 posts, read 40,261,063 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nicesinging1 View Post
Hello. I am Asian American living in U.S. I have a number of European American friends and often get it wrong on guessing their ancestry. For instance, I can't distinguish between Germans and Irish or between Spanish and Portuguese.

Without relying upon their last name for guessing their nationality, do you know a way to accurately determine how to distinguish German Americans from other European Americans? For instance, what is the typical facial feature of Germans in distinction with other Europeans? On one more note, is it true that Germans are almost never late to a meeting?

Thanks in advance for any insights.

They all look the same to me!

Really, the only ways I can tell is by the name, or if they are native speakers of their foreign language.
 
Old 06-15-2010, 08:57 AM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
14,131 posts, read 26,246,015 times
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There is no single "German" look anyway, even in Germany. The nordic looking ones up North look a lot different from the darker bavarians. Since Germans came to this country from all different parts, I don't think there's a distinguishing appearance they brought with them.
 
Old 06-15-2010, 10:03 AM
 
Location: Cali
3,885 posts, read 5,992,827 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CAVA1990 View Post
There is no single "German" look anyway, even in Germany. The nordic looking ones up North look a lot different from the darker bavarians. Since Germans came to this country from all different parts, I don't think there's a distinguishing appearance they brought with them.
Very true. Remember that Germany lies in the center of Europe and various tribes have lived there for thousands of years.
 
Old 06-15-2010, 10:06 AM
 
Location: Cali
3,885 posts, read 5,992,827 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kshe95girl View Post
That isnt even remotely funny.
I agree!
 
Old 06-15-2010, 10:23 AM
 
Location: Beautiful Niagara Falls ON.
10,024 posts, read 10,133,598 times
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Well we are not very politically correct around here. My wife and her family are as German as you can get and my family are as Scottish as you can get. It's an ongoing ethnic jokes battle around here and you know what? We can take it and laugh at ourselves about it. I usually come out on the loosing side of things because my family comes from the very north of Scotland and don't live much different than they did 500 years ago yet they maintain that " If it's nay Scottish it's Crrrrap."
 
Old 06-15-2010, 11:12 AM
 
Location: EPWV
9,852 posts, read 5,775,051 times
Reputation: 11288
Quote:
Originally Posted by nicesinging1 View Post
Hello. I am Asian American living in U.S. I have a number of European American friends and often get it wrong on guessing their ancestry. For instance, I can't distinguish between Germans and Irish or between Spanish and Portuguese.

Without relying upon their last name for guessing their nationality, do you know a way to accurately determine how to distinguish German Americans from other European Americans? For instance, what is the typical facial feature of Germans in distinction with other Europeans? On one more note, is it true that Germans are almost never late to a meeting?

Thanks in advance for any insights.
I don't think anyone expects you to know one from the other anymore than you would expect them to determine your exact Asian ancestry. We are curious of other's origins but not all of us living in the United States are 100% German or Polish or French or Irish. We've had different upbringings and some of us are more intuned to being on time as values instilled on us by those who have influenced us, be they parents or grandparents or even teachers. Some of us are 2nd, 3rd or 4th generation and sometimes that can be more of a determining factor than just being born in the US of mixed nationalities.
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