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Old 06-03-2007, 05:33 PM
 
Location: Alberta
110 posts, read 588,577 times
Reputation: 86

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This is a question for those who have moved to both countries. Is it a culture shock moving down to the states, or are people basically the same? I know that in Canadian culture, the belief is basically that Americans are not as smart or are not as friendly as us. What do you think about that?

 
Old 06-03-2007, 05:57 PM
 
323 posts, read 1,390,919 times
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Ahh, people are the same everywhere.
 
Old 06-03-2007, 09:49 PM
 
4,282 posts, read 15,748,958 times
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Breakaway

On the topic of culture shock, there are a couple of items which grabbed me during my time in Oregon.

First was the almost universal belief that the United States was the best in almost every field imaginable.

Second was the prevalence of "gun culture", more specificly, handguns.


As far as friendly and/or smart, I've found most Americans to be just as friendly as Canadians.

"Smart" is a relative term dependent on what a particular question is asking. Americans have considerable knowledge in areas which are important to them and about which they've been taught.

Will many Americans know what a Newfie is? No. Does that make them stupid? Again, no. It merely means "Newfie" isn't in their knowledge base. Similarly, if a guy from Alberta vistied Georgia and didn't know what grits were, that lack of knowledge wouldn't indicate our Alberta boy was stupid. It would simply mean grits aren't a dietary staple in Alberta.
 
Old 06-04-2007, 05:57 AM
 
266 posts, read 1,195,617 times
Reputation: 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cornerguy1 View Post
Breakaway



First was the almost universal belief that the United States was the best in almost every field imaginable.
DEFINITELY!! I did get the impression that many (not all!) Americans assume the education, lifestyle, you name it is better here in the US.

One thing I do get very sick of, though, is people asking what "proviDENCE" I come from. Now to me that is a serious sign of not being well educated... and unfortunately I have had everyone from teachers to doctors say this! It is quite shocking... they have heard of Providence, RI and of course assume this is the correct term. I can't ever imagine a Canadian coming down and never having heard of certain states, let alone not knowing the terminology - it is a definite difference in the way we are educated. I know my kids have not learned a thing about Canada at school... but all we Canadians know - the US was definitely something WE learned about!!
 
Old 06-04-2007, 08:06 AM
 
Location: Toronto, Canada
4 posts, read 32,233 times
Reputation: 15
Canadians are like everyone else. There are smart Canadians, mean Canadians, ignorant, and so on. I don't regard us as anything different. I admit it's a bit of a culture shock for me to come to the US but it's for different reasons; I'm Wiccan and in Toronto, where I live, it's not a big deal. In some parts of the US I'm looked at as a devil worshipper. Same with my pierces and tatts.
 
Old 06-04-2007, 04:59 PM
 
Location: Newark, CA
5 posts, read 31,641 times
Reputation: 14
I have lived in Vancouver for over 40 years. I have lived in California for the last 8 years. I have visited Cities across Canada. I have visited all the west coast states. I have relatives in North Carolina, whom I visit. I've visited friends in Florida.
The bottom line is that Canadians and Americans ARE DIFFERENT. And the difference is derived from some of the factors stated in the other people's posts. however they are generally just cultural differences, manifested in different behaviours. Also contributing to the differences is the population density and the amount of liveable land mass, which affects how people develop socially.
I, being Canadian, would be biased towards Canadians being smarter and friendlier. As my American wife would be biased the other way. Like everything else in life, you just cannot generalize. You will find exceptions in both cultures.
I live in California and I find it very 'unfriendly' here. I attribute that to the 'it's all about me' attitude of the west coast vs east coast culture of both countries. Also in California, people are spreadout all across the Bay area, making social contact outside of work almost non-existent. But when I am in North Carolina visiting family, I swear, they are friendlier there than any Canadians I've met.
I believe arbitrary political borders do not discern the 'kind' of person living there. You have to be a little more granular...take a look at the regions weather and its affects on social behaviour... take a look at the commercialism/capitalism/business factors of an area to determine what kind of people that attracts to that region ... take a look at the history of the area... and ignoring the political borders that delineate countries, states, and provinces. Another example just occurred to me....just go to Quebec and see how UNfriendly Canadians can be. Je me souvien my ass.
If Canadians are so smart, why is it that we succumbed to the wishes of a few francophones and have to have everything bilingual, doubling the cost of packaging items ? Hmmm...do I have some repressed anger here
... I'm getting off topic....

Last edited by Obira_an; 06-04-2007 at 05:06 PM.. Reason: grammatical errors and to clarify some points
 
Old 06-05-2007, 05:49 PM
 
17 posts, read 77,864 times
Reputation: 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Obira_an View Post
I have lived in Vancouver for over 40 years. I have lived in California for the last 8 years. I have visited Cities across Canada. I have visited all the west coast states. I have relatives in North Carolina, whom I visit. I've visited friends in Florida.
The bottom line is that Canadians and Americans ARE DIFFERENT. And the difference is derived from some of the factors stated in the other people's posts. however they are generally just cultural differences, manifested in different behaviours. Also contributing to the differences is the population density and the amount of liveable land mass, which affects how people develop socially.
I, being Canadian, would be biased towards Canadians being smarter and friendlier. As my American wife would be biased the other way. Like everything else in life, you just cannot generalize. You will find exceptions in both cultures.
I live in California and I find it very 'unfriendly' here. I attribute that to the 'it's all about me' attitude of the west coast vs east coast culture of both countries. Also in California, people are spreadout all across the Bay area, making social contact outside of work almost non-existent. But when I am in North Carolina visiting family, I swear, they are friendlier there than any Canadians I've met.
I believe arbitrary political borders do not discern the 'kind' of person living there. You have to be a little more granular...take a look at the regions weather and its affects on social behaviour... take a look at the commercialism/capitalism/business factors of an area to determine what kind of people that attracts to that region ... take a look at the history of the area... and ignoring the political borders that delineate countries, states, and provinces. Another example just occurred to me....just go to Quebec and see how UNfriendly Canadians can be. Je me souvien my ass.
If Canadians are so smart, why is it that we succumbed to the wishes of a few francophones and have to have everything bilingual, doubling the cost of packaging items ? Hmmm...do I have some repressed anger here
... I'm getting off topic....
Hi,

On the topic of friendliness, could you elaborate on the bay area? I was thinking of possibly moving there --- for the weather and for the people---they were the friendliest people I've ever met in san francisco. But I was just a tourist at the time.
How friendly is the bay area to newcomers?
What are the pros and cons of living in the bay area for you?
 
Old 06-12-2007, 12:54 AM
 
Location: San Antonio, TX
334 posts, read 915,583 times
Reputation: 261
I think Obira_an summed it up pretty well for the friendliness. As for who's smarter, it has been my experience that most people think that their own culture, whatever it may be, produces the smartest people.

Kitty71's problem mystifies me. In all my life here in the States, I have never met anyone who misused "providence" for "province." Most Americans will be completely ignorant of the names of the Canadian provinces, but they do know that they are, in fact, provinces.
 
Old 06-14-2007, 02:34 PM
 
75 posts, read 347,870 times
Reputation: 36
Default Stupid question?

Cornerguy1 when you say newfie are you refering to a Newfounland dog? Just wondering out of curiosity. I am from the south so I know what grits are.
 
Old 06-14-2007, 04:16 PM
 
Location: Newark, CA
5 posts, read 31,641 times
Reputation: 14
Default SF Bay area friendliness from a Canadian perspective.

There are different levels of encounters that give different impressions. Your impressions were made from a tourist's perspective. You are looking at the world through 'rose coloured glasses'. I went to Singapore on a 4 week holiday about 8 years ago and it was fantastic. We kept saying, I'd love to live here if I could. I went back last year expecting the same experience. It was a nice visit but did not meet my 'unrealistic' expectations.
In my previous post, I wasn't saying that people in San Francisco are unfriendly. I was speaking from another level, a level of living here and having to deal with the day to day, 'getting ahead' attitudes of the general public. One on one, people are people and they are friendly.
The 'generalization' of an unfriendly Bay Area is from watching the driving habits of people; how discourteous most drivers are. It's from going to restaurants or shopping, where it is all about 'me' and forget about giving someone your seat. Hey, I paid to have this road paved, so I DO own it. How some people treat workers in the service industry (waiters, etc.). Sometimes I think there are just a lot of arrogant people around. There is a fine line between friendly and courteous, respectful, but just the same, one trait affects the other. It's sad to hear over the radio, the DJ making a big thing about an act of kindness.
Another factor that I left out is one's own attitude. How people respond to you is very much affected by how you convey yourself. (At least in my mind) I am a fairly laissez-faire, friendly sort. I smile a lot and let people go in front of me. So, I feel that my impressions are from a good starting point, so to speak. I am also 6 ft tall and have broad shoulders. So it isn't as if I'm a small person being pushed around. But if one has a demeanor not conducive to friendly contact, then that can deter 'good behaviour'. However, just from the fact that you are curious about all this, says that you are a good natured individual.
Pros and Cons of living in the Bay Area? Hmmmmm. I'm going to over the file size limit on this one. I've been told that I 'write' too much.

Pros:
Great weather; not too hot nor cold.
Lots to do in terms of entertainment, sports, and sites to see. You can stay a tourist down here for most of your time here. We are still exploring after 7 years.
There are beaches within 30 minutes drive. Sierra Mountains. And lots of parkland.
Land of opportunity (truly). If you fail here, you don't have a hope anywhere else.
It's 'international' like the Greater Vancouver area. Many different cultures: Indian, Mexican, Afghan, British, Chinese, Vietnamese, Samoan, ....
It's a main hub for industry: tourist, entertainment and trade.
Very liberal environment...San Francisco, Berkeley, Stanford, ....
Large gay population.
It's the Silicon Valley

Cons:
Cost of living is very high. Toll bridge fee has risen from $2 to $4. It almost costs more to go to work than to just stay home.
You have to drive everywhere.
Places are far away from each other.
Gas prices are the highest in the nation here.
House prices are astronomical.
More emphasis on 'work' than on 'life'.
There is a more prevalent criminal element, but you get that at any metropolitan area. But beware of Oakland and East Palo Alto.
For events, be prepared to line up or wait. This also applies to fine restaurants. There is a large population in the Bay Area.
Being 'international', it is one of the terrorist targetted spots.
Earthquakes: I believe there are 3 fault lines passing through the area. One of them is the San Andreas.
It's the Silicon Valley :0

Did I miss anything .




Quote:
Originally Posted by mark_04 View Post
Hi,

On the topic of friendliness, could you elaborate on the bay area? I was thinking of possibly moving there --- for the weather and for the people---they were the friendliest people I've ever met in san francisco. But I was just a tourist at the time.
How friendly is the bay area to newcomers?
What are the pros and cons of living in the bay area for you?
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