An American in England

Apparently there was a guy from Florida who recently visited England and made a list of his observations which has circulated around the Internet. I decided to take his list and add my own responses in parentheses beside his.

I was in England again a few weeks ago, mostly in small towns, but here’s some of what I learned:

1. Almost everyone is very polite  (Agreed.)
2. The food is generally outstanding (Yes indeed!)
3. There are no guns (I never saw any.)
4. There are too many narrow stairs (I respectfully disagree. It’s part of the charm.)
5. Everything is just a little bit different (And yet just similar enough that you don’t feel like you’re in a foreign country.)
6. The pubs close too early (Really?)
7. The reason they drive on the left is because all their cars are built backwards (Lol)
8. Pubs are not bars, they are community living rooms. (Pretty much.)
9. You’d better like peas, potatoes and sausage (They can keep their peas.)
10. Refrigerators and washing machines are very small (Yes, they are.)
11. Everything is generally older, smaller and shorter (No problem for me!)
12. People don’t seem to be afraid of their neighbors or the government (On the second point, it depends on who you ask. As it does here.)
13. Their paper money makes sense, the coins don’t (Sure they do!)
14. Everyone has a washing machine but driers are rare (Yep, that’s true!)
15. Hot and cold water faucets. Remember them? (Lol)
16. Pants are called “trousers”, underwear are “pants” and sweaters are “jumpers” (Confusing, I know.)
17. The bathroom light is a string hanging from the ceiling (Most of the time.)
18. “Fanny” is a naughty word, as is “shag” (They have worse words than that!)
19. All the signs are well designed with beautiful typography and written in full sentences with proper grammar (They also lack unnecessary wording.)
20. There’s no dress code (Lol)
21. Doors close by themselves, but they don’t always open (Were you in a haunted house?)
22. They eat with their forks upside down (I have heard of this, but never witnessed it to my knowledge.)
23. The English are as crazy about their gardens as Americans are about cars (Which makes more sense to me.)
24. They don’t seem to use facecloths or napkins or maybe they’re just neater then [sic] we are (Sure they do!)
25. The wall outlets all have switches, some don’t do anything (They stop the flow of electricity to something plugged in that’s not being used.)
26. There are hardly any cops or police cars (But when they are around, you know it)
27. 5000 year ago, someone arranged a lot of rocks all over, but no one is sure why (Yes they do, but they aren’t going to tell you.)
28. When you do see police they seem to be in male & female pairs and often smiling (I don’t recall ever seeing police officers and I’ve been three times.)
29. Black people are just people: they didn’t quite do slavery here (They did it, but saw the error of their ways long before we did.)
30. Everything comes with chips, which are French fries. You put vinegar on them (Not me!!)
31. Cookies are “biscuits” and potato chips are “crisps” (And all are delicious!)
32. HP sauce is better then catsup (I don’t know, I have yet to try it.)
33. Obama is considered a hero, Bush is considered an idiot. (Not surprising.)
34. After fish and chips, curry is the most popular food (Yep!)
35. The water controls in showers need detailed instructions (I know, right?)
36. They can boil anything (Including cake.)
37. Folks don’t always lock their bikes (Not surprising.)
38. It’s not unusual to see people dressed different and speaking different languages (Mostly in the big cities, though.)
39. Your electronic devices will work fine with just a plug adapter (Yep!)
40. Nearly everyone is better educated then we are (No lie!)
41. If someone buys you a drink you must do the same (This I did not know.)
42. There are no guns (You’ve caught onto that, have you?)
43. Look right, walk left. Again; look right, walk left. You’re welcome.(Lol)
44. Avoid British wine and French beer (Noted.)
45. 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 (When you open your mouth they know, so I don’t care about that.)
46. Many of the roads are the size of our sidewalks (Pretty much!)
47. There’s no AC (Yes and no.)
48. Instead of turning the heat up, you put on a jumper (Lol or light your fire place)
49. Gas is “petrol”, it costs about $6 a gallon and is sold by the liter (Mmhhmm)
50. If you speed on a motorway, you get a ticket. Period. Always (Should be like that here, too.)
51. You don’t have to tip, really! (No? Hmm.)
52. Scotland, Wales, Ireland and Cornwall really are different countries (Lol on Cornwall)
53. Only 14% of Americans have a passport, everyone in the UK does (Not surprising since they have more than two options for visiting other countries within a reasonable distance.)
54. You pay the price marked on products because the taxes (VAT) are built in (Isn’t it brilliant??)
55. Walking is the national pastime (Eating is our national pastime.)
56. Their TV looks and sounds much better then ours (For sure.)
57. They took the street signs down during WWII, but haven’t put them all back up yet (And it’s bloody confusing!!)
58. Everyone enjoys a good joke (They are a funny lot, aren’t they?)
59. There are no guns (So it would seem…)
60. Dogs are very well behaved and welcome everywhere (There are a few places non-dog owners would rather they weren’t.)
61. There are no window screens (Because there are mosquitos.)
62. You can get on a bus and end up in Paris (Yes, but you would have to know how to swim.)
63. Everyone knows more about our history then we do (Sadly true.)
64. Radio is still a big deal. The BBC is quite good (Even talk radio is better.)
65. The newspapers can be awful (Lol)
66. 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 (Totally confusing.)
67. Beer comes in large, completely filled, actual pint glasses and the closer the brewery the better the beer (Duly noted.)
68. Butter and eggs aren’t refrigerated (I don’t remember, to be honest.)
69. The beer isn’t warm, each style is served at the proper temperature (Also noted.)
70. Cider (alcoholic) is quite good. (Will have to try it next time.)
71. Excess cider consumption can be very painful. (I’ll take your word for it.)
72. The universal greeting is “Cheers” (pronounced “cheeahz” unless you are from Cornwall, then it’s “chairz”) (Lol)
73. The money is easy to understand: 1-2-5-10-20-50 pence, then-£1-£2-£5-£10, etc bills. There are no quarters.(Not everyone needs them.)
74. Their cash makes ours look like Monopoly money (No, no it doesn’t. It’s the other way ’round.)
75. Cars don’t have bumper stickers (Sadly, no.)
76. Many doorknobs, buildings and tools are older than America (Yup!)
77. By law, there are no crappy, old cars (Thank goodness!!)
78. When the sign says something was built in 456, they didn’t lose the “1” (Lmao)
79. Cake is is pudding, ice cream is pudding, anything served for desert is pudding, even pudding (Pudding is life!)
80. BBC 4 is NPR (And just as lovely.)
81. Everything closes by 1800 (6pm) (Ish.)
82. Very few people smoke, those who do often roll their own (I noticed that.)
83. You’re defined by your accent (As you are the world over.)
84. No one in Cornwall knows what the hell a Cornish Game Hen is (Lol)
85. Soccer Football is a religion, religion is a sport (That’s the way they roll.)
86. Europeans dress better then the British, we dress worse (That’s debatable.)
87. The trains work: a three minute delay is regrettable (They are late.)
88. Drinks don’t come with ice (Nope.)
89. There are far fewer fat English people (Depends on where you look.)
90. There are a lot of healthy old folks around participating in life instead of hiding at home watching tv (I know, right? I ❤ OAPs)
91. If you’re over 60, you get free tv and bus and rail passes.(Awesome!)
92. They don’t use Bose anything anywhere (Lol)
93. Displaying your political or religious affiliation is considered very bad taste (No doubt)
94. Every pub has a pet drunk (lol)
95. Their healthcare works, but they still bitch about it (You still have to wait, too.)
96. Cake is one of the major food groups (Which is surprising. Lol)
97. Their coffee is mediocre but their tea is wonderful (I’ll take your word for the mediocre part.)
98. There are still no guns (I think we know now.)
99. Towel warmers! (Never heard of those. Must investigate.)
100. Cheers (Cheeahz!!)

Original list written up by Mr Scott Waters of St Augustine, FL, whom I sincerely hope enjoyed his trip to the lovely England.

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