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-   -   American strange ... (https://britishexpats.com/forum/usa-57/american-strange-242835/)

Franklin Jul 18th 2004 2:12 am

American strange ...
 
Have you done anything here that was to an American strange (“American strange�), but it’s what you did in the UK.

Example, on my second appointment visit to a US dentist I did something “American strange� … on my first dental appointment the dentist told me he needed to do some work which required an injection. On my second visit I saw the receptionist, sat in the waiting room and then got called into a room and sat in the chair (yes, “that chair�). The dentist asked me to open wide, in went the needle and I got that injection. As the dentist put the needle out of my mouth I immediately got up like an automaton and headed back to the waiting room.

The dentist was startled, “where are you going?� I replied, “back to the waiting room�.

For me it was an unthinking reflex action, back home I always went to the waiting room for the injection to take effect, then the dentist would call me back. Anyway, with the new dental etiquette I stayed in the chair, it was the dentist who left the room while the injection took effect.

I will always remember the dentist’s look of shock at the speed at which I left that chair! :D

It’s funny how we get conditioned to one way of doing things to the extent we don’t even think about it. :)

Yorkieabroad Jul 18th 2004 2:29 am

Serving chipolatas with the Christmas Turkey ...lots of semi suppressed giggles and 'never had breakfast links with turkey before' sort of comments....

Patrick Jul 18th 2004 1:18 pm

being so anally retentive about men wearing hats at the dinner table!

having a hot cup of tea when it is 100 degrees

Eating french fries with mayonaise

saying "oh well never mind" and "lets have a nice cup of tea" when things have gone wrong

excpomea Jul 18th 2004 1:33 pm


Originally posted by Patrick


Eating french fries with mayonaise


LOl I was doing this very thing the otherday in 'Chickfillet' Parents were pointing me out to their kids !!

I would love to have been able to hear what they were saying.

dbj1000 Jul 18th 2004 3:54 pm

The list of "American strange" things I do here seems to be endless. My colleagues find the whole mayonaise-with-fries thing very strange indeed.

However, the most life-threatening "American strange" thing I do is to use my indicators ("turn signals" for the Yanks reading) when driving. In Texas use of these strange little blinking lights means "Hey, you in the other lane! I really need to get into your lane so please accelerate as fast as you can to block me, then slow down to keep me blocked while staring straight ahead and pretending you didn't see me". People tell me they don't use turn signals beacuse it's always easier to catch the guy in the other lane by surprise, and they're serious.

The biggest impact on my life of guns being so prevalent in Texas? I don't even dare give the bastards the finger when they piss me off like that :)

snorkmaiden Jul 18th 2004 10:28 pm


Originally posted by dbj1000
The list of "American strange" things I do here seems to be endless. My colleagues find the whole mayonaise-with-fries thing very strange indeed.

However, the most life-threatening "American strange" thing I do is to use my indicators ("turn signals" for the Yanks reading) when driving. In Texas use of these strange little blinking lights means "Hey, you in the other lane! I really need to get into your lane so please accelerate as fast as you can to block me, then slow down to keep me blocked while staring straight ahead and pretending you didn't see me". People tell me they don't use turn signals beacuse it's always easier to catch the guy in the other lane by surprise, and they're serious.

The biggest impact on my life of guns being so prevalent in Texas? I don't even dare give the bastards the finger when they piss me off like that :)
Man, that is so true. That is totally our experience when driving around here.

Patrick Jul 19th 2004 12:21 am


Originally posted by snorkmaiden
Man, that is so true. That is totally our experience when driving around here.

and whats worse, you start to drive that way after a year or so! And you know how bad it is too

syllk Jul 19th 2004 2:24 am


Originally posted by dbj1000
However, the most life-threatening "American strange" thing I do is to use my indicators
I would say that another very "American strange" thing to do is to turn said indicators back off again after performing the intended maneouvre. For some odd reason, some drivers are so deeply impressed with their cunning change-of-lane tactic that they need to keep everyone informed for at least the next 4 miles...

Oh, and those oddly placed vanity mirrors on the sides of the car...I tend to use those as well.

:)

NC Penguin Jul 19th 2004 12:46 pm

Having been raised eating British style sandwiches and fillings, when I go to the deli in the grocery store to get sandwich meats cut, I ask for "medium".

This results in one or both of the following:

I get asked to repeat my request (they need to double check that they really are hearing someone ask for a thickness other than wafer thin).

The assistant gets the medium thickness right on the third attempt.

The most curious thing is I only ever go to two same grocery stores for sandwich meat and so I've been served by the same assistants over and over yet I have to go through one or both steps each visit :rolleyes:

yorkshirelass Jul 19th 2004 12:52 pm


Originally posted by NC Penguin
Having been raised eating British style sandwiches and fillings, when I go to the deli in the grocery store to get sandwich meats cut, I ask for "medium".

This results in one or both of the following:

I get asked to repeat my request (they need to double check that they really are hearing someone ask for a thickness other than wafer thin).

The assistant gets the medium thickness right on the third attempt.

The most curious thing is I only ever go to two same grocery stores for sandwich meat and so I've been served by the same assistants over and over yet I have to go through one or both steps each visit :rolleyes:
Exactly! Except I ask for it medium to thick which completey confuses the deli staff! I also get strange looks when I start to pack my own groceries! :p

NC Penguin Jul 19th 2004 1:43 pm


Originally posted by yorkshirelass
Exactly! Except I ask for it medium to thick which completey confuses the deli staff! I also get strange looks when I start to pack my own groceries! :p
I more often than not pack my own groceries because:

1) I'm faster
2) the whole process of paying and leaving the store is faster.

It never ceases to amaze me that shoppers will just stand there (right in front of the cashier) as he/she scans the contents of the shopping cart/basket, whilst the shopping is piling up at the end of the conveyor belt if there's no-one there to pack.

Scorchio Jul 19th 2004 7:50 pm


Originally posted by yorkshirelass
I also get strange looks when I start to pack my own groceries! :p
I used to help pack my groceries when I first arrived, but the packer at the checkout always seemed keen to do it, to the point where I was getting in the way. Now I let them do it, but still feel like a lazy b'stard, trying to cover my embarassment by taking my time with the card swipe machine, deciding on cashback, shuffling cards in my wallet and all that. :o

joto Jul 19th 2004 10:45 pm

I had the exact opposite problem a couple of years ago on a visit to UK. Was in a Tesco and the checkout girl was putting things through the scanner and groceries were piling up with me waiting for the bag packer. I forgot Tesco's don't have bag packers.

Patrick Jul 19th 2004 10:51 pm


Originally posted by Scorchio
I used to help pack my groceries when I first arrived, but the packer at the checkout always seemed keen to do it, to the point where I was getting in the way. Now I let them do it, but still feel like a lazy b'stard, trying to cover my embarassment by taking my time with the card swipe machine, deciding on cashback, shuffling cards in my wallet and all that. :o

I go through the self checkout so I pack my own bags, I love the fact that you do not to speak to anyone when I shop, the sooner Wallyworld introduces it the better

DaveC Jul 20th 2004 1:41 am


Originally posted by NC Penguin
It never ceases to amaze me that shoppers will just stand there (right in front of the cashier) as he/she scans the contents of the shopping cart/basket,.
I think it's one of the amendments to the constitution, the right to have one's groceries bagged for you. Since Albertsons supermarket introduced the shop and scan in our local stores, there have been many complaint letters in the papers. The majority of those shoppers want Albertsons to pay them for scanning and bagging.

Self check out is optional, people!

Our WalMarts have just introduced a triangular gizmo at the checkout, each face has two bag dispensers on it. As the grocery sales professional fills up the bags on one side they spin round to the next, leaving the shopper to lift the full bags into the cart. Or not, I still don't know the etiquette and I got snarled at once as the grocery sales professional had't finished bagging.


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