Tuesday, 24 April 2012

21. U... it has to be the U.S.A.

'It's hard not to be fascinated by the U.S.A.   The impression from news, films and documentaries is that everything is on a larger scale than here in the UK.  The rich appear to be richer, the poor poorer, the cities busier, the landscapes more dramatic... Whilst we in the UK are portrayed as quietly eccentric (can't deny it, personally), the media paints the citizens of the U.S.A. as loud and 'crazy' - "It could only happen in America!" 

I hasten to add that this is not my personal view of the citizens of the U.S.A.  It stands to reason that there are plenty of quietly eccentric people and people who are neither loud nor quiet, crazy nor eccentric and just want to be left alone to get on with being a person rather than a stereotype, thank you very much!

The diversity of the huge landmass that makes up the U.S.A. is what fascinates me.  The extremes of temperature, of wildlife, of life-style - the fact that a plane journey is required to get from place to place in the same country!  (I know that we have internal flights in the UK, but let's face it, people walk from Land's End to John O'Groats!)  Food is fascinating too - the difference in portion size in restaurants is reported by everyone I know who's been to the U.S.A. - and the different things you can buy in supermarkets, cheese in its many forms being just one of my fascinations!  The language difference is so interesting, too.  Apart from the spelling differences (colour, color etc), the whole meanings thing:
pants/trousers
broil/grill
fringe/bangs
booger/bogey
fanny/fanny...(it doesn't mean the same thing, hehe!)

Sorry, got a bit below the belt there.  I could go on, but I won't because if you've been kind enough to stop here and read my blog, I know you have others to get on to!

Thanks for stopping by!  Feel free to add to my feeble little list of meanings :-)

9 comments:

Annalisa Crawford said...

Great U post! I'm also fascinated by the differences in language - the curse of being a writer, I suppose. I have a whole list of places I'd love to visit - luckily Hubby hopes to tour the US in the next couple of years, so I'll just hide in his guitar case :-)

Julie said...

This was so interesting for me to read, as I am totally fascinated by the UK! I've been to London once, but I've always wanted to explore every nook and cranny of the UK, I think your country seems like such an amazing place. And, I love the language differences too, very fun.

L.G.Smith said...

I was well aware of the stereotyped image people have of the US as I traveled through the UK. I fretted opening my mouth to speak every time for fear of the eye roll. Oh, great, another rude American!

We are loud, but it's because there's so much space here. Ha! We have to shout to be heard in the next county. Okay, not really. We do have some incredible open spaces here though. I live at the foot of the Rocky Mountains and I wouldn't trade them for the world.

Shelley Sly said...

I loved reading your perspective of the US :) Like Julie, I'm fascinated with the UK. The language differences are fun. "Loo" is something you don't hear in the US, as another example.

Gina said...

Language is one thing that has always seem enigmatic and interesting for me. How it evolves through centuries, and how uses and customs make it turn into anything thing entirely. I'd love to hear more about the language differences between american and british english! Great post.

From Diary of a Writer in Progress

Dana said...

Loved this! I'm interested in the language differences, too.

Claudia Moser said...

I did expect this U entry! :)

Gwen said...

Here in the States, we're just as fascinated by the UK. I mean, a lot of our TV shows were yours first. And we don't have anything nearly as amazing as Doctor Who.

But it's true the US is big. And despite that, and all it's variance, people don't travel it. :/ I mean, I know people who haven't ever left their state.

Jessica L. Foster said...

Awesome post. I've often wonder what it is like to live in the UK. Thanks for posting.