I’ve been debating whether to write this or not, just because I know so many people do it and it may offend? Just know thats not my intention before reading. These are just observations and real life conversations.
Being from England and living in San Diego is simply four things. Amazing, irratating, eye-opening and culturally difficult.
It only really hit me when I started working at my first restaurant. I would open my mouth for one simple ‘hello’ and would get instant attention. Whether it was as simple as “nice accent” or as confusing as “what part of Australia are you from?”.
I think one situation that still sticks out to this day was when I was shopping at my local mall and met a gentleman selling jewellery. I asked him if he had any ‘stretchers’, looking at me confused I repeated myself, then to be interrupted by my bestie to correct me. “She means a gauge”. Naturally eyerolling, I nodded. He then proceeds to laugh and say “thats a good one, you’ve even got the lingo down”…. excuse me, what? My friend and I looked at each other confused, which he then proceeds to ask for ‘proof’ that I am really from England. I humored the poor guy and gave him my English ID, he apologized and began to explain this confusing scenario. Aparently it wasnt a rare situation that American girls would pretend and put on a ridiculous accent. It certainly baffled me why anyone would want to do it. We ended up deciding it was because English people sound more attractive and they somehow believed they weren’t attractive enough. Ha.
So now, not only do I get it when I am out and about, I get it at work. Some days I don’t mind it, and somedays it gets on my nerves! Here are a list of things would say to me:
“Where are you from?” – this is the most acceptable question to ask me in my opinion. It isn’t getting too personal and it isn’t assuming or rude.
“Why are you here?” – why do you need to know this? To be honest, now I am a bartender and have a lot of regulars, so this question is a hit and miss. If I have been talking to you for awhile and you think you’d like to get to know me a little more, than this question is acceptable, but if you’ve just met me? Not sure I am ok with sharing my personal reasoning for moving across the world… on another note, for those of you who want to know, the only answer I am giving is “because I wanted to”.
“Are you on a work visa?” – ??? Why?
“What part of England are you from?” – acceptable and most common.
“What part of Australia are you from?” – no, no and NO.
“Do you like sharks?” – WHAT?!
“Are you from South Africa?” – *eye rolling*
“Are you from New Jersey?” – ….
“How long ago did you move here?” – common also and acceptable but also annoying. Its annoying cause I KNOW they are asking me because they either don’t believe I am from the UK or they think I am loosing my accent so they are trying to figure out if their mums, best friends, uncles, daughter is going to loose it too!
“Do you like tea?” – no I don’t, why? Are you ordering one or not?
“Say *insert corny British commerical shown on American TV*” – eugh, leave me alone.
“Do you like Harry Potter?” – yes, why? Did a new movie come out?!
I respect people so much for the courage to ask some of the questions that they do. Just understand, if you are asking a British person something personal, while they are working, you are going to slowly drive them up the wrong wall.
Love you really, you Yankees… I mean, Americans 😛
Peace out, yo.
Oh and just a heads up. Mr Barnaby gets a little thanks and mention for this blog for the status he wrote a couple months ago. Made me want to write a full rant haha.