|The Mothership |
As an American who lived overseas for almost a decade, let me assure you, every word of this is true.
I'm Canadian. A boss of mine (describing some atypical Americans) once remarked that "usually, Americans a really intense." That always struck me as a pretty good distinguishing characteristic. Although, Canadians and Americans are basically the same thing.
In America, the stereotype about Canadians, is that they're much more polite, and civilized.
I read an article recently, written by a Canadian, to the effect that Canadians are sick of hearing that stereotype, because from their point of view, they're just normal, and we're a bunch of assholes.
In my 7 or so years in Asia, the main thing that distinguished Americans from the rest was mostly their absence. Americans don't travel, typically, and thus are outnumbered compared to Europeans in the places I've been. I dunno, maybe the resorts were loaded with them where they can have their little package deal and not see the real country they are visiting, but out in city and countryside, I was often the only American for miles. some really thought it was a novelty that I was traveling at all.
For whatever it's worth, I bet at least half of that is because American pay scales don't allow average joes much of a travel budget. I know more people who would like to visit Europe some day, but it's financially inconceivable at present and for the foreseeable future.
I guess that raises the question of, who DOES have the budget to travel, and what sort of impression do they leave?
So Americas cultural ambassadors are currently trustafarians on spring/summer breaks, financial industry d-bags, and the elderly with good retirement plans whose pensions weren't gutted by corporate corruption and bankruptcy
These days, the typical American worker gets around 2-3 weeks paid time off, compared to at least 6 weeks for Europeans and Australians. Basically we're living to work to pay for our houses and cars (which we need to get to work), and we prioritize our budget towards house and car payments instead of nice clothes, which are less comfortable anyways when you're out of shape from relying on cars all the time. Yay freedom!
Miss Henson's 6th grade class
As a longtime American, I think it's cultural. My dad has always said that Americans don't like to travel, they like to vacation. They like to spend a few weeks not making their own beds or cooking their own meals. That's hardly a novelty for the upper class in the third world, of course. Americans want to be comfortable.
Also, I think that the size of the country prevents travel. You can go a lot of places in the US without having to get out your passport. In Europe, you can't step outside your door without crossing a border, so people are more disposed to it. Also, the middle-upper classes in Europe consider travel to be a part of a complete education, but that's not really the case in the States, European grand tours circa 1880 or so aside.
Our PTO is really the worst. I love to travel, but I get three weeks a year. If I want to go somewhere far away, that's not a lot of time. Plus you rarely want to use every last hour of your PTO on a vacation, just in case you need to take some to stay home for whatever reason.
Most of my travel has been to Thailand where I'll usually spend 2-3 weeks training muay Thai. I rarely run into other Americans. Whenever I meet someone new at the gym, usually the second or third question they ask you is "how long are you here for?" When you tell them it's only 2-3 weeks because that's all you've got, they're almost incredulous.
Gotta disagree with the "unfashionable" part, particularly our males. Most of the non-American dudes over maybe 22 or so that I've seen in my travels have got to be some of the worst dressers of all-time. This is especially true for Germans, Australians, and anyone from the Middle East. As for fattest, give at least the Germans a few years and they'll be caught up.
I believe Mexico has us beat for the Fattest Nation title.
We can't even be number one in THAT anymore.
Now where are all the hams?
Oh no, they are to close!
Do not smother us in your rolls
At least the American 'trustafarians' are being judged by their own kind. I doubt a single person in this video is making their own way in life.
I've been over seas a couple of times on the company dime. I wear jorts, a fanny pack, and an American flag leather jacket. I go to restaurants and order food, and then send it back just to make the waitstaff my bitch. I belch in peoples' faces. I wipe my nose with my bare hands, and then don't use the tongs at the breakfast buffet. I fart in crowded elevators and taxi cabs. I scratch my balls on public transportation. I do this because I'm an American and that's how we do.
Actually, I was in Europe for a couple of weeks and just wore a shirt, jeans, and sneakers. Standard stuff. But I also wore a backwards baseball cap. I expected this to be a signal flare that I was American. Whole streets coming to a stop to gawk at me while I walked by. Instead, everyone thought I was French. Until I spoke. Then they thought I was English. If we ever want to invade Europe, we could take it down from the inside because no one would even realize we were there.
You'd have to work really, really hard to out-obnoxious the Australians and the French.
As far as financials go, it's breaks down to expectation and location. If you want a movie star vacation, it'll cost you tons. If you want to backpack, you'll barely spend anything. I traveled for so long by working in the countries I visited. In Asia, that is pretty easy to do, so other than the cost of the ticket and the super cheap rent and food for the initial setup is over, you typically break even, or even save money traveling. It's actually at the point where I considering being a traveler through Asia to be more financially viable than living in America.
For Europe, it might be different. Depending on the country, it is way more to ludicrously more expensive to just live in those places, vacationing even more so I image. that said, I knew many who did a two or three month European circuit under 2 grand. Europe typically won't hire Americans unless you are a top class professional, in which case you can afford to visit anyway
Shit, I haven't gotten paid time off for more than a couple of months in my whole life you boojie fucks.
Thing about PTO is that America doesn't separate "vacation" from "paid time off". Most Americans use it to fill in gaps they may have missed on their paycheck for sick time or whatever.
But yeah, "travel" implies actually going somewhere for a reason. Business class is for TRAVELERS. A vacation is something else, something more purely American. Non-Americans often fail to grasp the sheer variance and size of our country. Traveling from Seattle to LA, for instance, puts you from a Scandanavian environment to a Mediterranean one. Americans are, indeed, whether you want to admit it or not, blessed with the most beautiful ENVIRONMENT in the world, with the most spectacle for the buck. Why do I need to go to Thailand when I have Las Vegas? Why do I need to go to Africa when I have Yellowstone? We have huge cities, we have our own just amazing parks system infrastructure, we have our own cars.
I'm not saying there's no CULTURAL value to traveling abroad. But for beauty's sake, give me the Rockies over Tibet every single damn time. I can go to Carl's Jr. in Colorado, I'd probably be stuck with Jack in the Box or (ugh) Hardee's in Tibet. Stupid Tibet.
Let's just all agree that Tibet sucks.
|Boomer The Dog |
Nice sense of discourse in this article, compliments.
Size of the country was also my first thought too, thinking of the USA and that travel to another state often seems like an expedition. There are different state taxes, and rules on alcohol, drugs and fireworks to deal with.
States even view changing one's name differently, some are far more permissive than others with unusual name changes.
|Robin Kestrel |
I'll be jolly as I want to, you overly polite/diplomatic foreign people!
|Rodents of Unusual Size |
How about "they lie to you and won't fucking pay you what you're worth". That sums it up nicely.
As others have said, America is fucking huge with a shit ton of stuff to do.
Some of America's national parks are bigger than some countries in Europe.
For an american, taking a vacation to another state is similar to a european visiting another european country.
yes, but mostly if you're talking about nature tourism.
Americas short history and the wasteland between the coasts mean it doesn't offer as much much in terms of historical or cultural sights compared to most of the rest of the world.
Mr. Purple Cat Esq.
Except for the cultural differences. Which is one of the main reasons to travel.
Mr. Purple Cat Esq.
ps. I dont like travelling. People who say it broadens the mind are largely full of shit. You learn a lot more, and gain more insights, cultural or otherwise, reading the right books, non-fiction of course.
The right literary fiction is just as affective.
"Wasteland between the coasts"?
SolRo, just live in your ignorance. Nothing I could say would change your mind.
I can't speak for anywhere else, but as a new englander I'm always impressed by our ability to be about 5 years behind the midwest while thinking we're 20 years ahead.
Some crusty old white dude a couple of centuries ago said that the New England way was something to the effect of "never be the first to try something and never be the last to try it" and that sounds about right.
I'm Californian. Have traveled 35 of the fifty states. Haven't been to the south. Been to Peru, China and Germany/checzosolvojia. Which I can't spell. East coast might as well be another country. In Germany and Prague everyone thought I was German. Travel is good for the soul.
lived in the south for eight years, it doesn't have anything that the rest of the country doesn't have except perhaps for a higher density of christians
and better barbecue
and right now, humidity
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