An American Man Recently Visited England. This Is What He Learned
October 6, 2015
A few weeks ago, 66 year-old Scott Waters from St. Augustine, Florida, visited England. He decided to share his observations on Facebook...
"I was in England again a few weeks ago, mostly in small towns, but here's some of what I learned:
- Almost everyone is very polite
- The food is generally outstanding
- There are no guns
- There are too many narrow stairs
- Everything is just a little bit different
- The pubs close too early
- The reason they drive on the left is because all their cars are built backwards
- Pubs are not bars, they are community living rooms.
- You'd better like peas, potatoes and sausage
- Refrigerators and washing machines are very small
- Everything is generally older, smaller and shorter
- People don't seem to be afraid of their neighbors or the government
- Their paper money makes sense, the coins don't
- Everyone has a washing machine but driers are rare
- Hot and cold water faucets. Remember them?
- Pants are called "trousers", underwear are "pants" and sweaters are "jumpers"
- The bathroom light is a string hanging from the ceiling
- "Fanny" is a naughty word, as is "shag"
- All the signs are well designed with beautiful typography and written in full sentences with proper grammar.
- There's no dress code
- Doors close by themselves, but they don't always open
- They eat with their forks upside down
- The English are as crazy about their gardens as Americans are about cars
- They don't seem to use facecloths or napkins or maybe they're just neater then [sic] we are
- The wall outlets all have switches, some don't do anything
- There are hardly any cops or police cars
- 5,000 year ago, someone arranged a lot of rocks all over, but no one is sure why
- When you do see police they seem to be in male & female pairs and often smiling
- Black people are just people: they didn't quite do slavery here
- Everything comes with chips, which are French fries. You put vinegar on them
- Cookies are "biscuits" and potato chips are "crisps"
- HP sauce is better then catsup
- Obama is considered a hero, Bush is considered an idiot.
- After fish and chips, curry is the most popular food
- The water controls in showers need detailed instructions
- They can boil anything
- Folks don't always lock their bikes
- It's not unusual to see people dressed different and speaking different languages
- Your electronic devices will work fine with just a plug adapter
- Nearly everyone is better educated then we are
- If someone buys you a drink you must do the same
- There are no guns
- Look right, walk left. Again; look right, walk left. You're welcome.
- Avoid British wine and French beer
- It's not that hard to eat with the fork in your left hand with a little practice. If you don't, everyone knows you're an American
- Many of the roads are the size of our sidewalks
- There's no AC
- Instead of turning the heat up, you put on a jumper
- Gas is "petrol", it costs about $6 a gallon and is sold by the liter
- If you speed on a motorway, you get a ticket. Period. Always
- You don't have to tip, really!
- Scotland, Wales, Ireland and Cornwall really are different countries
- Only 14% of Americans have a passport, everyone in the UK does
- You pay the price marked on products because the taxes (VAT) are built in
- Walking is the national pastime
- Their TV looks and sounds much better then ours
- They took the street signs down during WWII, but haven't put them all back up yet
- Everyone enjoys a good joke
- There are no guns
- Dogs are very well behaved and welcome everywhere
- There are no window screens
- You can get on a bus and end up in Paris
- Everyone knows more about our history then we do
- Radio is still a big deal. The BBC is quite good
- The newspapers can be awful
- Everything costs the same but our money is worth less so you have to add 50% to the price to figure what you're paying
- Beer comes in large, completely filled, actual pint glasses and the closer the brewery the better the beer
- Butter and eggs aren't refrigerated
- The beer isn't warm, each style is served at the proper temperature
- Cider (alcoholic) is quite good.
- Excess cider consumption can be very painful.
- The universal greeting is "Cheers" (pronounced "cheeahz" unless you are from Cornwall, then it's "chairz")
- The money is easy to understand: 1-2-5-10-20-50 pence, then-£1-£2-£5-£10, etc bills. There are no quarters.
- Their cash makes ours look like Monopoly money
- Cars don't have bumper stickers
- Many doorknobs, buildings and tools are older than America
- By law, there are no crappy, old cars
- When the sign says something was built in 456, they didn't lose the "1"
- Cake is is pudding, ice cream is pudding, anything served for desert is pudding, even pudding
- BBC 4 is NPR
- Everything closes by 1800 (6pm)
- Very few people smoke, those who do often roll their own
- You're defined by your accent
- No one in Cornwall knows what the hell a Cornish Game Hen is
- Soccer is a religion, religion is a sport
- Europeans dress better then the British, we dress worse
- The trains work: a three minute delay is regrettable
- Drinks don't come with ice
- There are far fewer fat English people
- There are a lot of healthy old folks around participating in life instead of hiding at home watching tv
- If you're over 60, you get free tv and bus and rail passes.
- They don't use Bose anything anywhere
- Displaying your political or religious affiliation is considered very bad taste
- Every pub has a pet drunk
- Their healthcare works, but they still bitch about it
- Cake is one of the major food groups
- Their coffee is mediocre but their tea is wonderful
- There are still no guns
- Towel warmers!
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