Looking American: On culture, nationality, and immigration

Worth a read, my friends. Reblogged from notesfromtheuk.com.

Notes from the U.K.

A few months ago, M. told me, “You’re looking very”—and here you have to imagine a short pause— “American today.”

When I stopped laughing, I asked what American looked like, and you can insert another, somewhat longer pause before you go on, because he had to think about it. Or else he was looking for a gentle way to say it.

“You walk as if the sun always shines on you and you own the world,” he said. Not unkindly, I should add, although from someone else it might have sounded like a complaint.

Semi-relevant photo: The sun shining on a herd of cows. (Actually, they were making sure we left their field, and I can't remember if the sun was shining on them or not--it looks like diffuse sunlight. Does that count?) Semi-relevant photo: The sun shining on a herd of cattle. Actually, they were making sure we left their field, and I can’t remember if the sun was shining on them or not–it looks like diffuse sunlight. That may or may not count.

The sun wasn’t shining on me that day. I’ll skip the details, because they’ll…

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Author: nananoyz

I'm a semi-retired crazy person with one husband and two cats.

10 thoughts on “Looking American: On culture, nationality, and immigration”

  1. Interesting, when my wife and I travel outside of the US, almost everyone assumes we are Canadian. When we tell them we are Americans, the response is almost always some variation of, “But you’re so nice!” It makes me mourn for the state of our civilian ambassadorship!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anytime I’ve had the opportunity to travel abroad (all two times!) I’ve tried desperately to promote the notion that Americans are good, kind, decent people. I think I should get to travel more! As should you. We need more ambassadors like us out there. Seriously, it is sad that so many of us have put a damper on the American image.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. So true! I will always feel like an outsider…in all of the multiple cultures I belong to, haha.

    And Americans do give off an optimistic and sunshiny vibe…sometimes to the point of being annoying.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. When Studly and I went to Scotland we noticed just how lovely everyone was. Polite, genuinely interested in how we perceived their country. I don’t think Americans as a whole got that memo. We are a bit egocentric.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Studly! I love it 🙂

        Americans are actually very friendly (at least in comparison to people in Poland, where I’m from) and I do like that. But the constant cheerfulness and the fact that everyone’s always “doing great!” can get a little old sometimes 🙂 not to mention that sometimes it’s just fake….

        Liked by 1 person

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