We all know that Americans tend to think they’re the center of the Universe. And they’re quite right. It doesn’t matter in which country you were born. You surely grew up watching American movies and Tv shows. We know everything about the United States. We know how they talk, how they walk, how they eat, how they think, and how they behave.
But most Americans know little about the rest of the world. And they would be shocked after reading that some things they are used to don’t exist elsewhere. We are not talking about a specific brand of cereals; We are talking about a whole different way of seeing the world.
Take a look at these few things Americans think they exist worldwide but they’re wrong.
Everybody says “Bless You” when they hear or see somebody sneeze. Well, that’s not entirely true. There are countries where that’s a little rude. For example, in some Asian countries, saying “Bless You” (or the corresponding translation) does not exist at all.
In America, most people measure distance in blocks, and that’s the most common way of giving directions. But not in other countries. In some places, people measure distance using other terms like meters, yards, and even streets.
In the United States there are safety codes that force builders to make almost every door to open outwards, to make evacuation easier in case of an emergency. You may be used to this, but some countries do not share the same regulations. Stop pulling and start pushing. Or the other way around.
Clothes dryers exist worldwide, but they are not as big and functional as those in the United States. And not as popular. These dryers are present in a lot of places in the northern country, but people mostly air dry in other places.
The United States is the Land of Freedom and with freedom comes responsibilities because it’s also the land of choices. There you have thousands of flavors of everything, a million choices for eating, dressing, and having fun.
Most Americans are used to drive-thru banking, but that doesn’t exist everywhere. In fact, most countries don’t have them. You have to park, get out the car, and walk inside the bank like if we were in the nineteenth century.
People walk. But not in the United States. There, most people are used to driving around, even when the distance is short. But, for example, in Rome or other old cities, most places are not reachable if you don’t move your own feet.
People in other places are usually amazed at how big engagement rings are in the United States. Not only big, also shiny, expensive and full of diamonds. My big fat American wedding.
This is typical, and it amazes American people traveling abroad and foreigners traveling to the United States. In the big northern country (the one that’s not Canada or Mexico), you can order tap water and they have to give it to you for free. But in most other countries, you need to pay for your water.
Americans are loud. And they don’t notice it, since they live among loud people. But when they travel abroad, they can see (or hear, actually) that they are the loudest people in the room. Everyone knows what you said on the phone, Karen
Though dental care is a bit expensive in the United States, people tend to have white beautiful teeth and perfect smiles. Not everyone, of course, but the average is bigger than in other countries.
People all over the world dress with fewer colors than in the United States. That’s probably not that easy to see, but you can notice it when you pay attention.
Americans describe obvious things out loud. You can usually hear them reading signs and pointing the obvious: “That’s the Eiffel Tower” “This is a green sweater” and stuff like that.
Red Plastic Cups
Americans use those classic red plastic cups in almost every party. But that’s not common elsewhere. In fact, they use them as an accessory for American-themed parties, and they are not that easy to find and quite expensive.
Eating At A Restaurant
When you go out to eat at a restaurant in the United States, everything is faster. You need to eat all the courses in less than forty-five minutes. But in most countries dinner lasts longer, and you can stay talking for a few minutes after dessert.
Coca-Cola With Ice
People don’t drink Coca-Cola with ice as much as they do in the United States. In fact, if you ask for your Coca-Cola with ice, they may give you a weird look.
When you visit the United States, you can notice that there are flags in most buildings, parking lots, gas stations, private homes, and in the middle of nowhere. In most countries, you only see flags in some government buildings and monuments.
As we pointed out before, people in the United States drive a lot more than in other countries. That means big road trips to other states and even to Mexico and Canada. That is a little mind-blowing for people in Europe.
In the United States, you can hear music all the time. In stores, in the streets, in cars passing by. But in other places, like in some European cities, streets are much quieter. You usually only hear traditional music in tourist areas.
Asian food is popular all over the world, but fortune cookies are not as easy to find as in the United States. They are almost an American thing.
Almost every house in the United States has garbage disposals in sinks, but that’s not a very common thing elsewhere in the world. In fact, it is something most people only see in American movies.
The Size Of Cars
Something that shocks people when they travel in or out the United States is how different the size of cars is. In the United States, cars are larger, and compact cars are a weird sight. But in other countries, especially Europeans, everyone drives compact.