Sep 16, 2007

You Have Been in... Too Long When...

Surfing around as I do on regular basis, I found an old post from what seems to be an American expat in Japan. He collected a long list of sentences that makes it clear when a foreigner has been in Japan for too long.

Here is a sample of that collection....

You have been in Japan too long when: find yourself bowing while you talk on the phone. don't hesitate to put a $10 note into a vending machine.
...people stop complementing you on your Japanese, and start asking you where you had your nose and eyes done. have mastered the art of simultaneous bowing and hand-shaking.

The original list is longer of course and you have to at least have been to Japan to understand some of those statements.

Nevertheless, it got me the idea to start lists for some other countries... for example:

I guess that you have been too long in Argentina when: are a man and you kiss another man (in the cheek, one kiss) without feeling awkward. believe that 'vegetarians' are similar to 'vulcans' or 'romulans' (people from outer space that either you can see in TV or that they "are among us" but difficult to identify), and you are conviced that eating red meat 5 days a week is a perfectly healthy diet. know that an "early dinner" means around 9 pm and that a late dinner is around midnight

And I believe that you have been too long in the USA when:

...Oreo Pizza makes perfect sense to you start to understand how that feeling that Americans call "road rage" is developed start calling people by their 'politically correct' label, so no one is blind or deaf or stupid anymore but (fill in the blanks) impaired.
...early dinner equals late lunch (5 pm!) know how to ask for a coffee in Starbucks without missing a bit got a pill for every mood in the dictionary and some there are not

I guess my lists could be way longer and that those of you that are living in some other countries (from Singapur to Chile and from Poland to Brazil) could help me giving your list. Of course, you are also invited to include more entries for USA or Argentina.

So please feel free to include here more examples of "you have been too long in XXX when..."

1 comment:

San :) said...

You have been in Brazil long enough:

... when you always keep a spare R$ 20,00 around on the car, just in case of a police inspection
... when you think it's funny when a workmate 'buttslaps' you as "good morning"
... when you look at a calendar to see what holidays are due this week
... when you know Buenos Aires is NOT the capital of Brazil (LOL)

(sent by Dani) :)