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Old 11-30-2011, 09:51 AM
 
11,282 posts, read 22,880,218 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob702 View Post
Too true and it is really annoying to hear America-bashing whenever I visit my family in Europe. My brother always tells me how he doesn't like the "Amis", but the only thing he knows about the US is what he saw on television. Nice to judge 300 Millionen people without knowing a single one of them.
But also true for Americans who think they are everything, and the rest of the world is nothing. I can't count how many times have I been called a socialist, communist, nazi, an f-ing liberal, a backwards stone-age monkey, you name it.
Many people are just ignorant and that is valid for both sides of the puddle.
What I love is he basically responded exactly how I was saying. I brought up how Europeans don't like to ever be told anything negative about themselves, and how they just shove back on what you do wrong.

So what was his response? To say how horrible Americans treat the environment compared to Europe Deflect and attack. Deflect and attack.
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Old 11-30-2011, 03:29 PM
 
Location: South Beach and DT Raleigh
11,898 posts, read 19,315,966 times
Reputation: 11319
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Lennox 70 View Post
I have two friends from the Czech Republic who were here this past summer on a work and travel thing. I live in a suburban town outside Baltimore, MD and they've also been to Florida, Georgia, the Carolinas, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and New York. Here are some of the things they mentioned (i know some are contradictory but that is how America is!!) I'm also not saying if any of this is good or bad its in the eye of the beholder

- the low density nature of most American communities

- car dependency / lack of public transportation (we actually became friends after I let them tag along with me when I went grocery shopping before that they had to walk a mile there is no bus service from the neighborhood to the local commercial strip).....they also noticed that outside of New York, only poor people take mass transit which is especially true of Baltimore since anyone who can afford a car drives

- the consumer culture with our massive shopping malls, fast food (though these things are increasingly common in their country too with the fall of the Iron Curtain and the Czech Republic now being in the EU and NATO); the large serving size in American restaurants

- the generous use of air conditioning (apparently indoors temperatures not just in Maryland but in Florida and South Carolina are cooler in the summertime than it is in Prague)
- the lack of national health coverage in the U.S.

- the importance of religion in American life, the number of Americans who attend church every Sunday (vs only on holidays/special ocassions)
- open displays of patriotism and support for the military

- the low taxes especially low sales tax (can be up to 40% in Europe)
- the amount of people here who never go to college
- the early age at which many Americans get married and/or have kids (they were surprised to see many people married at age 20 or 21 with 2-3 kids)
- the amount of single mothers in the U.S.

- the amount and level of poverty in the U.S.
- the amount of violent crime (300 murders in Baltimore City last year)
- Americans' lack of knowledge about their country (just about nobody knows that Czechoslovakia no longer exists, and many think it was a former Soviet republic, and that they are Russians.....and nearly every time we went out around Baltimore they would be hit on by guys who think they are Russians and therefore are here to find an American man to marry)

- country music and Christian radio are new to them as are authentic barbecue ribs (though there are knock offs back home)
- they were surprised we eat a light lunch and a heavy dinner (the opposite of where they're from....this was VERY shocking to me i though dinner was the large meal throughout all cultures)
- They liked how friendly and hospitable most Americans are since back home the only Americans they see are rich tourists

They actually never said anything negative or critical of the U.S. just observations. And were very understanding given that our first conversation involved me asking where their accent was from!
This is an excellent post. I'd add that many Europeans that I meet are surprised that everyone in America isn't a bible thumping right wing conservative that drives a huge SUV and lives in a giant house in the suburbs.
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Old 11-30-2011, 03:42 PM
 
2,341 posts, read 4,056,428 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Lennox 70 View Post
But this is the worst, on my cross country roadtrip one of my friends from Maryland was using the GPS in our rented car to find different to the Stratosphere Hotel in Las Vegas (the "fabulous" Vegas) and asked if it was the Las Vegas in Nevada or New Mexico I guess Vegas was just Vegas. There are also some who think Las Vegas is in Arizona or California (the Grand Theft Auto San Andreas game places it in California.)
This is terribly OT but wasn't San Andreas based on San Francisco in the original GTA, just like Liberty City is based off NYC?
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Old 12-01-2011, 03:18 AM
 
Location: The Heart of Dixie
8,327 posts, read 12,766,538 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barneyg View Post
This is terribly OT but wasn't San Andreas based on San Francisco in the original GTA, just like Liberty City is based off NYC?
"San Andrea" is the fictional California so its supposed to be based on California, they have their version of Los Angeles called Los Altos, their version of San Francisco, their version of the redwoods and deserts, and their version of Las Vegas.
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Old 12-01-2011, 03:25 AM
 
Location: The Heart of Dixie
8,327 posts, read 12,766,538 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rnc2mbfl View Post
This is an excellent post. I'd add that many Europeans that I meet are surprised that everyone in America isn't a bible thumping right wing conservative that drives a huge SUV and lives in a giant house in the suburbs.
The interesting thing is, I actually am one of the people they met who goes to church every Sunday, I also have a Support Our Troops bumper sticker and consider myself a tea party patriot, but I was also down to Earth and was glad someone from halfway around the world could see my little piece of America and wanted them to feel welcomed. If anything, American media and European media both portray more conservative Americans in an unfair light.

Another thing my Czech friends noticed is that most of the businesses in America aside from bars and ethnic restaurants are chains or franchises while other countries have more independently owned businesses. They actually did get to experience Dennys at 2AM on a Saturday morning, and the 12 cars in the Taco Bell drive thru.
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Old 12-02-2011, 08:25 PM
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
60,062 posts, read 57,476,472 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Lennox 70 View Post
The interesting thing is, I actually am one of the people they met who goes to church every Sunday, I also have a Support Our Troops bumper sticker and consider myself a tea party patriot, but I was also down to Earth and was glad someone from halfway around the world could see my little piece of America and wanted them to feel welcomed. If anything, American media and European media both portray more conservative Americans in an unfair light.

Another thing my Czech friends noticed is that most of the businesses in America aside from bars and ethnic restaurants are chains or franchises while other countries have more independently owned businesses. They actually did get to experience Dennys at 2AM on a Saturday morning, and the 12 cars in the Taco Bell drive thru.
Some of us can remember when that wasn't the case in the US, either. Not that long ago.
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Old 12-03-2011, 05:05 AM
 
Location: The Heart of Dixie
8,327 posts, read 12,766,538 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mightyqueen801 View Post
Some of us can remember when that wasn't the case in the US, either. Not that long ago.
I think with the takeover of corporate chains more and more towns are all starting to look the same, and the biggest difference going across the country really is the natural landscape, though cultural differences are still there especially in the South, the Northeast, and California. On the other hand though I think in every place, the best independent businesses have been able to survive competition from national chains. In my experience most of the surviving mom and pop places in America are in the small towns you never see them in a big city anymore, except for super exclusive restaurants.
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Old 12-03-2011, 06:28 AM
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
60,062 posts, read 57,476,472 times
Reputation: 71665
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Lennox 70 View Post
I think with the takeover of corporate chains more and more towns are all starting to look the same, and the biggest difference going across the country really is the natural landscape, though cultural differences are still there especially in the South, the Northeast, and California. On the other hand though I think in every place, the best independent businesses have been able to survive competition from national chains. In my experience most of the surviving mom and pop places in America are in the small towns you never see them in a big city anymore, except for super exclusive restaurants.
That's a good way to put it. So many places ARE starting to all look the same.
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Old 12-03-2011, 03:28 PM
 
Location: 59°N
5,358 posts, read 6,106,176 times
Reputation: 4194
The inefficiency at Avis in San Francisco and Las Vegas. Why are the clerks spending 15 minutes per customer? What a waste of time! I have rented from Avis in Norway, France and Germany and have never spent more than 5-7 minutes at the counter. For instance, Avis at Munich Airport were fantastic. Great service and efficiency.
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Old 12-03-2011, 11:16 PM
 
5,955 posts, read 7,278,368 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OyCrumbler View Post
Eh, a majority of recent European immigrants tend to cluster in large dense cities where you're less likely to have big houses and big cars.

Not the ones who come to Detroit to work in the auto industry.
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