I like to be in America!
O.K. by me in America!
Ev'rything free in America
For a small fee in America!
- West Side Story
Thanks to all the awesome folks at Quora who shared their answers.
1/35. You have American flags everywhere. You are VERY patriotic.
2/35. I'm Australian and spent two weeks in the US last year on a long awaited holiday. One thing that really amazed me: advertising for prescription medicines. In a country with universal healthcare you'd never go to the doctor and ask for a certain brand of medicine, you just take whatever the doctor prescribes to the pharmacy and they'll give you whatever brand they have. The only countries where advertising prescription meds is even legal is New Zealand and the US!
3/35. How open Americans are about their shortcomings and always ready for self criticism.
4/35. Bike lanes and sidewalks: Despite the fact that I could be the only person walking or biking in a mile, there are plenty of bike lanes and sidewalks. I wish more people would use them though.
5/35. People from different parts of the US have different accents of English and are culturally different. Before moving here, I thought US was a country that spoke English and it was the western culture. I now identify a Southern accent. I now know that people in the mid-west are different than people living in New York.
6/35. No jaywalking. At least not in Seattle, no matter how empty the street.
7/35. I thought that the sound of crickets and frogs in the evening was a cinematic convention meant to convey that night had fallen. The first time I heard this sound (especially on the east coast) it blew my mind.
8/35. Exorbitant serving sizes of meals: I was amazed by the serving sizes of meals in the US. Having a meal in US meant one of the two things for me:
i) I felt drowsy and did not feel like doing anything
ii) I would skip the next meal or deliberately choose to eat only a small portion of the normal meal serving
9/35. Many American don't have a passport, and therefore have never traveled out of the country.
Probably because Hong Kong is so small and there isn't really much to see, when it's vacation, the airports are packed with locals going to Taiwan, Japan, Thailand, etc for vacation. It's just a 3 to 5 hour flight. I later realized that America is so big and diverse that traveling within it is enough to bring you lots of different experience.
10/35. Obesity. I heard a lot about obesity in the US but was still shocked when I came here.
11/35. People asking me to 'say something in English'. I'm from the UK. I still struggle with that one.
12/35. Why individual houses are so large? We always get into discussion that house is not just a shelter, but also a manifestation of one's financial achievements.
More on the next page!
13/35. Obsession with Tanning - I am adding this one late, as I had forgotten previously. In India, we have an obsession with "fair skin". Skin lightening, skin whitening, anti-tan...so on. In US, it was the opposite. Every block has a tanning salon and drugstores have tanning creams and sprays instead of anti-tan ones available here. I thought it was fairly screwed up that in every part of the world, the cosmetics industry makes a way to make money off of people's insecurity.
14/35. Americans LOVE free T-shirts. This picture is of my collection after one year of living here.
15/35. I got a picture from the movies, but the reality was even more. Cookie-cutter homes everywhere, there is nothing like designing your own house.
16/35. The most impressive thing I LOVE LOVE LOVE about the USA is that, despite what's being said in media by a few people, this is the country where you can practice your religion 100% FREELY without any opposition anywhere, as long as your practices do not violate the law or other people's freedoms. Some minor limited exceptions might apply here or there.
17/35. Soda being cheaper than bottled water. It makes no sense that carbonated and flavored water with HFCS are cheaper than regular water, but hey, that's just how it is.
18/35. Dessert. Not dessert as in sweet foods, but as in the specific course eaten after dinner. It doesn't exist. Guyanese people eat dinner and then that's it. I remember going to my American friend's house and being shocked that people in real life actually ate dessert.
19/35. The fact that Americans don't stay with relatives when visiting them. Many Americans would rather stay in a hotel, or at least the Americans we know. Guyanese people (or at least my family) think it's strange that you would pay money when you have relatives to stay with, even if you can afford it. I remember when we had a family reunion, nobody paid for a hotel, so there were 3 people in my bed, 2 people on the floor in my room, 2 people in the master bedroom, 2 people in the guest room, 1 person on the couch, and 2 people on the floor in the living room. That was considered totally acceptable, whereas my American stepdad thought we were nuts.
20/35. There are vast amount of areas in the US which do not have any human settlement for miles at a stretch!
21/35. Cracking your spine. I had not seen this in my country, but in every class, seminar or other situation when people sit for a long time, they occasionally tend to straighten up and crack the spine by rotating their backs left and right.
Francisco Feij Delgado
22/35. I'm from Bangladesh and here are a few things that I find hard to explain to peeps back home.
- Fruits and vegetables are way more expensive than meat and poultry.
- By and large, people do not carry cash.
- Parents can get arrested for physically punishing their children.
- The importance of credit rating/ credit score.
23/35. A whole lot of people think Africa is a country, shame...
24/35. Clean air. Although Southern California is notorious for its air quality (I live in LA county), it is still heaven compared to Hanoi.
More on the next page!
25/35. Drive-thru ATM's and stores: it left me speechless. And then to think that most purchases in the U.S. are on credit ;). You can even do drive-thru shopping, drive-thru oil-change. Everything is drive-thru!
Duco van Breemen
26/35. Use of slang OMG!: So, apparently people really do say O.M.G. a lot (in California that is) and other slang you hear on T.V. I thought that was simply T.V. stuff.
Duco van Breemen
27/35. Most single-family homes have a subterranean basement that you can actually walk around in (not just a crawlspace for utilities)
28/35. Early to bed culture- in suburban areas, especially during weekdays. 10 PM is the latest till when the malls or restaurants would be open.
29/35. Lack of public squares. I couldn't imagine not meeting up with someone or having a chat with them anywhere else. The closest thing to a public square were grassy parks, then private businesses.
30/35. Rich people are thin/ well maintained, poor people are fat. This stems from the fact that cheap food is fatty, rich people don't eat cheap food they tend to eat either home-cooked food which is expensive or eat at expensive / healthy places. Unfortunately, it is expensive to be healthy in America.
31/35. No kid ever goes out to play outside in the streets - ever . At least, I never found anyone out there to play with.
32/35. Depression - during my high school years I saw quite a bit of people with symptoms of depression.
33/35. Tipping, it's just exotic.
34/35. People set a time to socialize. I have no idea what that means but you can hear people say things like "Midterms are over, now I can socialize! "
35/35. One thing that was pointed out to me in college by an international student:
Majority rule and voting are so deeply ingrained in our mindsets that we barely notice it. Whenever we're in a group, whatever activity we're trying to pick, whether it's what movie to see or what restaurant to go to, our first instinct for settling disputes and disagreements is to take a vote, and the losers accept the majority rule without question. Even students from countries with long democratic traditions found this a bit unnerving.
Psst... don't forget to share!
It's become increasingly hard to get through a day without encountering a scam artist.
Be it an email where you've been told you won a non-existent prize, a fraudulent call from the IRS claiming there's a warrant issued for your arrest, or a neighborhood psychic, luring you in to tell you a terrible fate awaits you, but you have to pay hundreds of dollars more to find out what it is.
From snake oil salesmen to Ponzi schemes, scam artists have been around for ages, and will not be going anywhere any time soon.
And while our hearts break for anyone who falls victim to these horrendous acts of deception, there is also little that is more compelling than reading about some of the more outrageous scams which ever took place (Fyre Festival anyone).
"What is the biggest scam in the history of mankind?"
Un-Holy Matrimony Is More Like it...
"The wedding industry is one big scam."- Resafalo
Tax Fraud Has Several Forms...
"Telling me to figure out my own taxes."
"Then, they tell me I did it wrong. If you know how much I owe, just tell me and I’ll pay it!!'- dinahsaur523
Just Don't Tell Tom Cruise...
"L Ron Hubbard is quite a fascinating man to learn about, terrible, terrible man, he began lying at a young age and then never stopped afterwards."
"Becoming a billionaire out of that creepy cult like 'religion' is the biggest scam of all time."- Joe_PM2804happy tom cruise GIF by South Park Giphy
You Do Just Keep Needing More...
"Printer ink."- Mr_BananaPants
Spending More Money With The Slip Of A Finger
"The ads that claims to be inter actable but when your finger barely touches the screen it takes you to AppStore."- AnimePeter_
"Textbook access codes that you get after buying a new textbook and can use only once."- SuvenPanBg3 GIF by Larian StudiosGiphy
The Money Goes Somewhere...
"Payday loan companies."- Im_Negan
It Runs In The Family!
"My mom telling me she won't be mad if I tell her the truth."- Low_Quarter_583
Maybe Not A Girls Best Friend...
"Diamonds."- TheCyrcusdiamonds GIFGiphy
Scams Fine If It's the Nazis Your Scamming...
"Eye doctor here."
"I'd like to dispel the myth regarding carrots and good vision or night vision because of a scam set forth by Britain at the time to screw with the enemy."
"They had just started performing night air raids and the Germans couldn’t figure out how they were accurately flying and bombing in the dead of night so the Brits printed in their newspapers that they were feeding their pilots carrots to improve their night vision and how good carrots were for your vision due to the beta carotene."
"Turns out that the Brits had just effectively mounted radar units to their planes for the first time and beat Germans to the punch with it."
"The truth is that beta carotene, while important for vision, is rarely in short supply in most diets and you can probably get enough out of a few packets of ketchup for weeks of good vision."
"Meanwhile, here we are now approaching 100 years after the development of radar still eating the lies of carrots."- OscarDivine
It's amazing the lengths people will go to deceive people for money.
And that sometimes they actually get away with it.
But as a general rule of thumb, if something seems like it's too good to be true, then it probably is.
Some Americans have been known to wish they lived elsewhere in the world, owing to certain things appearing to be much better handled elsewhere.
Up to and including healthcare, free education, cost of living, or simply the way they make pizza or coffee.
However, sometimes we must stop and remind ourselves that the grass is always greener in someone else's yard.
As there are plenty of people all over the world who wish they were living in the USA, believing that some things are simply done better in America.
"What does America do better than most other countries?"
The Versatility Of Corn!
"Turning corn into things that are not corn."- rlemon
"I was going to say cornbread but everyone said rest stops. Have y’all ever had cornbread?"- Admirable-Ad-2554
The Pause That Refreshes
"I love the Interstate Rest Areas on road trips."
"I'm a Canadian from the west coast, and was always VERY impressed with the 24/7 rest areas."
"Clean washrooms, nice grassy areas for dogs, picnic tables, and a lot of times people selling crafts, or offering free coffee!"
"I've only driven through the western states, (WA,OR,CA,NV,UT,AZ) but yeah, those rest areas were always reliable."
"Always well-marked signs when the next one was coming up."
"Just made everything about traveling easier!"
"Thanks neighbors!"- Ubba-GaGiphy
"Jazz, the Blues."- BretonVikander
...But Maybe Not The Airports...
"Aircraft carriers."- TheBladeRodenFlying Take Off GIF by U.S. NavyGiphy
A Breath Of Fresh Air
"National Parks."- Big-Win6220
"We have nearly every biome on Earth available in the lower 48 alone."
"Adding Alaska and Hawaii just completes the set."
"Is there any biome that doesn't exist in The US?"- Ursa_Mid
A Nice Cold Drink
"Make sure there's ice in your beverage."- HegemonHarbingerWater Day GIF by ZinZenGiphy
Very Logical Indeed
"Serious answer? "
"We're quite a large country and we've gotten very good at moving things around."- weirdoldhobo1978
America is what it is today all owing to the fact that people came here for a better life.
No question, America has its issues, hence why no one mentioned our political system or our electoral process.
But it's the things that are uniquely and unequivocally American which makes people feeling lucky to be living here.
There are very few people in the United States who don't indulge in fast food every once in a while.
Sometimes it's out of pleasure, taking an occasional indulgence in the delicious, salty, if less than healthy, treats the food chains provide.
Other times, it might be out of necessity, as it might be the only option while on the road or waiting in the airport after your flight was canceled for the second time.
But there are some fast food chains to which people have such an aversion to that they simply will not eat from them, even if it is literally the only option.
Making one almost wish that these places would go out of business, so that they will never even be an option.
Redditor rcinvestments was eager to hear which fast food chains people wish would go out of business, and thus no longer be found in rest stops and airport food courts, leading them to ask:
"What fast food chain should go out of business?"
Long John Silver's
"i swear Long John Silvers is just a money laundering front."- FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF1234Seafood Hushpuppies GIF by Long John Silver'sGiphy
"I’m starting to question getting subway multiple times a month."- Moose_dude16439
"They brand as fresh and healthy but are neither."
"The food is awful."- Emergency_Sundae6842
"I’d be down to get rid of subways but only if all locations were replaced with better sub/deli sandwich shops."
"Cause that’s about the one thing Subway has on anyone else, proximity."
"I do love the cookies too."- Forsuremaybe_
"You can’t get a footlong for less than $10 now and it’s not even a good sandwich compared to just about anywhere else."
"Firehouse and Jersey Mike’s are better, but nothing great, don’t @ me. Go local on this one fools."- AllGarbageSub GIF by Subway SverigeGiphy
"KFCs quality has DROPPED in the last 10 years."
"It’s not the same delicious, well cooked chicken I remember."- Graceland1979
"Is Burger King even trying anymore? "
"When I was a kid I remember them being a legit competitor to McDonalds and Wendy's was barely an afterthought."
"Now its McDonald's vs. Wendy's for me."
"McDonald's vs. Burger King for me now feels like WalMart vs. K-Mart and then Wendy's is Target."- basedlandchad20
"Going to a Burger King is like playing Russian Roulette but with food poisoning."
"The quality of the locations varies so much it's crazy."- SquilliamFancySon95
"As sad as it makes me, Burger King."
"At least in the part of the US I live in."
"It’s been years since I was satisfied by the taste, thanks to undercooked Pattie’s, cold hard buns, stale fries, employees that seem like they’d rather not be there, drive through as that smell like rotted soft drinks, and overall the locations are looking run down."
"Even their advertising has been sloppy and sometimes outright inappropriate."- RustliefLameManeScared The Shining GIFGiphy
"Golden Corral needs to go."
"People touching food, coughing and sneezing by the food, kids grabbing plates and then putting back."
"Food is absolutely bland."
"The best tasting food there is the iceberg lettuce if that's any indication how bad the food is."- kimsuh
Of course, the quality of the food might not alway be the reason people wish some places would go out of business.
Sometimes, the food might simply be so good that you find yourself unable to resist your temptations.
Ask anyone with an office in close proximity to a Shake Shack.
And these days, who's office ISN'T in close proximity to a Shake Shack...
What one person finds sexy is anther person's ick factor.
It's an eternal debate.
The mind, the heart, pheromones... it's a messy combo.
To each their own.
Redditor PetrichorPrints wanted to hear about what makes many of you tingle in ways the rest of us don't get.
"What’s something other people find sexy that you just can’t understand?"
I'm not telling you my secrets. But I'll listen to yours.
"People doing fillers to make their cheek bones look more 'refined.' it just looks like you got stung by a bee."
"There was a dude years ago that I was seeing, we're on a webcam and he said he liked my crease. Had no idea what he was talking about and he kept saying 'right there.' Turns out he likes armpit creases."
"That is oddly specific. Congrats, you taught me that literally anything can be a turn-on for the right people."
"That voice some women put on to seem cutesy/sexy, I can only describe it as 'baby voice', but it just annoys me. Talk like an adult."
"That's the voice I use to talk to my cat. She doesn't care if I talk in my normal voice, but slap the baby tone on it and she's all ears."
"My wife had a friend who did that baby voice. Not all the time, just when she thought she was being cute. It used to drive me crazy, especially in the car. One day when I was driving them back from a crafting event we had agreed to drop her off at her place. As we got closer, she baby talked , You don’t have to stop. Just slow down and I will jump out. Hehehehe.”
"After we dropped her off, I mimicked her 'I’ll just jump out. Hehe.'"
"My wife said, 'I felt like shoving her out the door and shouting, Tuck and roll, *itch!'"
"Interrupting while I'm asleep."
"Yes! I always wondered if I was in some very tiny minority because it seems to be labeled as a 'hot' thing to do. Waking me up in the middle of the night, you’re going to get someone angry, disheveled, and confused. I’m surely not going to be rearing to go. I don’t even like being touched in my sleep. We have the whole waking day to bang."
"Omg this is a double edged sword for me, because I love the fantasy of my husband taking me when he wants but the actual execution of this? Nope nope nope! Let me sleep!"
"The serious/intense 'model' face (ie. Blue Steel). Completely unsexy."
"I’m assuming you mean faces 'like' Blue Steel but not actually Blue Steel itself which is incredible."
Werk. Stand. Give. Face.
"I don't understand the big breast implants some women get. Breast implants are fine but the huge a** ones are just a massive turn off."
"Totally get this. I've always felt the same way. Until I met my wife. The first time I saw her breasts I was flabbergasted! 'Cos they're not over the top while she's dressed. But once they're free and breezy I immediately questioned their authenticity! She never hid the fact they aren't real, but my word they've changed my mind on augmentation! Teardrop implants can be (trust me) magnificent!"
"Being mean to someone. I understand it's 'I'm so sexy I can treat you like crap' attitude, but what about 'I'm so confident, I don't have to put people down' confidence?"
"If you mean someone getting turned on by another person being mean to them then it's almost always a domination thing."
"I question more the people who are with these a**holes. I don't get how someone likes that at all unless they're masochistic. And even if they are, I would imagine they would want someone who's only that way in the bedroom and not all the time."
Well, that is quite the list!
What would you add to this? Let us know in the comments below.