Wednesday, March 9, 2011

It puts the lotion on its skin...


This is a creepy video - an oldie but a... well, it's memorable.


I had checked on Facebook but not found great answers. Unfortunately, I had come up with most of this stuff myself and a few from another website. Here is my compiled list of American customs:

In America (especially people younger than 40) typically go by first names as opposed to last.

Americans are often thought (by other cultures) to be very blunt/direct.

Obesity. (I'm not fat, I'm following tradition, damn it!) America is famous for fast food - we've exported it all over the world as well... 63% of Americans qualify as obese! Apparently, 25% of all Americans eats fast food daily. Possibly several times a day.

Despite people in the middle ages learning about crop rotation, Americans like to raise one crop in the same place every year. We call it 'a lawn'. When I came back from Egypt years ago, this actually gave me culture shock.

Warfare (we call it 'police actions'). I suspect that this is to keep the military/arms manufacturers/special interest groups employed as much as anything else. It's only a theory.

Trivial suing. (I slipped on your walk because you didn't shove it, not because I was there in the first place uninvited on your walk). People not from America often ask me about it. It doesn't go on as often as the news would indicate that it does, but much more than any other culture would put up with.

Strange religious beliefs.

Movies/music/culture exporting. Here's a hint - if you find illegal/pirated movies in foreign countries, they are not from Bollywood (the Indian version of Hollywood) - they are always American. Arguably, culture is what America does best.

America is run by special interest groups as opposed to a single dictator.

I'm not sure if this is purely an American thing or just a fat thing. Because more Americans are obese than not, I've had plenty of opportunity to observe it. This only seems to happen with women. There seems to be a belief that spending more money on clothing, shoes, getting piercing and body art can make up for the fact that you're 40 kilos over weight. It doesn't (at all) but people seem to think it might. I've asked about it and was told "It's easier - duh!"

Many people (mostly women but an increasing number of men) also seem to be turning more to piercing, tattoos and other 'body art' in order to attempt to look 'differently unique'. This often fails as well and they become another person who has limited job openings as they often surpass the maximum number of visible piercings/visible tattoos one may have in order to secure a job that does not involve wearing a paper hat.

Automobiles: Americans have been 'in love with' the automobile since the 1950's or so. Pretty much everyone (aside from the very poor - like Logan) owns at least one. Many own several. This is part of the reason why American public transportation (compared to many other countries) is shit. Americans historically believe 'bigger is better' - only the current trend of gas companies gouging the shit out of Americans has caused this trend to slow down. Also, families that are at least middle class typically purchase for their sixteen year old (legal driving age in some places, eighteen in others) their first car. If the family is too poor, the youngster has to purchase their own car. The automobile is often seen as status, freedom and a way to get to work. Or get laid. Unlike other cultures (German, English) Americans like to do a multitude of other things while driving - text message, phone friends, drink, eat, apply makeup or all of these at the same time. This may account for the rather high rate of traffic accidents. Those without valid drivers licenses are seen as eccentrics as best, freaks at worse.

Followers. Many - but not all (by any stretch - remember, all Americans wish to be 'uniquely individual' even if that means conformity in a rigidly defined group) like to latch on to some figure to follow. This will usually be some person who advertises things like "a return to family values". Later, that same individual will be found drunk in a school zone, cheating on his wife and soliciting sex from minors. This will create a media storm and then the sheep will go out looking for a new 'moral compass' in which to place their faith and give their money. It seems to be a never ending cycle.

From Bert: " ‎"America" is a mish-mash of many different and divergent cultures. As much effort as the government has put into making us a unified "whole", it just isn't so. Customs by regions of America might be easier to do. In the south for instance, it is impolite to be direct. You take your time and be "neighborly". In the west (and in large cities) time is money and people tend to be shorter tempered, and more blunt."

Bert also reminded me of 'the speed at which things happen'. In Illinois, things happened very fast. In Virginia, the pace of life is MUCH slower. This can cause people to become quite...angry. Also, in America there is a sense of 'entitlement'. If you're poor, you will only feel you 'deserve' one car and two or so TV sets. Things like that may confuse foreigners who wonder why Americans live so far beyond their means. It is because they think they deserve to have the good stuff - regardless of what their pocketbook suggests.

Bert also found this interesting page.


Why do people keep saying 'Surprise buttsex?' Oh right - because it is funny.


  1. You want trivial suing? How about this:

    The correct response:

  2. This video contains content from Sony Music Entertainment. It is not available in your country.

  3. Huh. It's available in my country... it's Weird Al Yankovick's "I'll Sue Ya", look it up.



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