CrossFit Discussion Board  

Go Back   CrossFit Discussion Board > Community > Stuff and Nonsense
CrossFit Home Forum Site Rules CrossFit FAQ Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Stuff and Nonsense For off-topic chatter. Keep it PG-13; no sex, politics or religion!

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 07-03-2008, 08:28 AM   #1
Jonathan Slater
Member Jonathan Slater is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Sandbach  Cheshire
Posts: 468
Reflective musings on first trip to America.

So, I went to Florida with my wife for a fortnight just under three weeks ago now, my first trip to the U.S. - I'm 26 so lots of time for return trips. Before we went everyone was pouring a variety of warnings upon us, focusing largely on being wary of criminals and the strange ways of the American people. Having never been, I started to develop a picture in my mind of a somewhat lawless and confusing place, which wasn't helping me look forward to it!

Anyway, I was pleasantly surprised. This is the understatement of the year.
The level of friendliness and politeness of the average American is, in my experience, a million levels above that of the average English person (no offence to English readers, I belong to that group myself after all).
I was actually struck by it more when we landed back home in Manchester - I couldn't find a single smile on around a hundred faces, nobody spoke, and their heads were bowed like the fearful denizens of a prison state (opinions on a postcard as to the truthfulness of this image).
By contrast, when we arrived at Orlando airport, I was stunned to find complete strangers actually striking up conversations with each other simply because they were sharing a space! Surely not.

Moving on to the main point of this post...
My wife and I were both very impressed by the level of respect and recognition afforded to the armed forces pretty much everywhere we went. Theme parks either gave free entry or a faster queueing system or both, Seaworld was covered with signs praising the military serving overseas, and they even paused at the beginning of a particularly well-known live show (you know the one) and asked all those currently serving or those who had served in the past, both U.S. and UK forces, to stand up so everyone could applaud them. It was brilliant. A lot of shops that we drove past had also military discounts.
I suppose (I hope) most Americans are already used to this sort of thing, but here in England it's like the military is almost a taboo subject - the idea of, say, Alton Towers (a large dustbin with a few rollercoasters, for the benefit of the U.S. readers) putting up posters to thank the army for their sacrifices, or mentioning them during a show, is about as likely as my legs spontaneously combusting.
Anyway, you get my point. America rules.

Also Oreo cookies back here in Britain taste like charcoal and have half the unhealthy but delicious ingredients. Damn it.
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 09:01 AM   #2
Larry Cox
Member Larry Cox is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Whitehouse  TX
Posts: 40
Re: Reflective musings on first trip to America.

Hola!

I'm glad you had a good time in the ole U.S. of A.

One thing immediately struck me about your posting.

England = overcast, cool

Florida = sunny, hot

Orlando, FLA = sunny, hot, and Disney-fied

Perhaps there is some truth to that whole seasonal affective disorder thing? I think there maybe some truth to that whole mood theory. People in Hawaii are a pretty friendly lot (my home state), contrast this with a more Northerly latitude say like New York City (many quiet silent subway rides) and you certainly have a different vibe.

I currently live in Texas, another state where it is oftentimes hot, humid, and sunny. People here smile a lot as well. Sometimes that smiling is actually panting as it is, again, really very hot here.

As far as the whole military appreciation thing goes, that varies significantly by region here in the US. Flying out of Atlanta people practically fell over each other trying to shake our hands (we were headed to an unhappy corner of the world). Flying back to the states into Newark (NJ) a crowded terminal and no one but an old Marine said anything to us. Pretty disappointing (by its abscence) especially given that I called the NYC-NJ area home for 6 years.

Why did y'all decide to holiday in Orlando (aside from the outragiously good exchange rates)? As compared to Spain or Portugal. . .

What did you think of the food in America?
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 09:04 AM   #3
Bob Guere
Banned Bob Guere is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: California city  CA
Posts: 1,670
Re: Reflective musings on first trip to America.

Jonathan,

Let me speak for many Americans when I say "whew, didn't blow that one!".... Kidding aside, I'm very happy you enjoyed your visit. We do have a bad reputation throughout the world, and most of it is warranted one way or another. But deep down, we're a caring people, we just argue with EACHOTHER too much.
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 11:17 AM   #4
Daniel Olmstead
Member Daniel Olmstead is offline
 
Daniel Olmstead's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Berkeley  CA
Posts: 567
Re: Reflective musings on first trip to America.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Guere View Post
we just argue with EACHOTHER too much.
No we don't.

(sorry, couldn't resist)
__________________
Those who say it can't be done shouldn't interrupt the people doing it.
M|31|6'4"|185 Goal: 200/10% On rock? Rock on.
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 11:25 AM   #5
Jamie J. Skibicki
Member Jamie J. Skibicki is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Pittsburgh  PA
Posts: 8,841
Re: Reflective musings on first trip to America.

I think we;ve given too much up to the state and argue to little. NYC banning trans fat and other states and cities banning smoking. WHat happened to the free market and personal responsibility?

Any way, I'm glad you liked the trip. What did you do while you were here?
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 11:29 AM   #6
George Mounce
Banned for Ethical and Integrity Violations George Mounce is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Steens  MS
Posts: 3,295
Re: Reflective musings on first trip to America.

I am actually glad that cities have banned trans fats and smoking, people are too stupid to take care of themselves or show any semblance of personal responsibility by realizing they are killing themselves. Frankly I don't want to pay their medical bills. They can take their personal responsibility and kill themselves away from me.

Ya, I just sounded like an a-hole, but I'm just about tired of people who expect to be taken care of when they brought it on themselves.

Sorry for the hijack. Every person I've met who has come from outside the U.S. has enjoyed their time while visiting here. I can say for the most part during my world travels I went with an open mind, tried to learn about the culture of the place I was visiting, and was not disrespected at all.
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 11:44 AM   #7
Glenn Pasewicz
Member Glenn Pasewicz is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Lancaster  PA
Posts: 281
Re: Reflective musings on first trip to America.

I'm glad you enjoyed your trip. Very nice, especially on the eve of our birthday.
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 11:57 AM   #8
Brandon Oto
Member Brandon Oto is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Santa Cruz  CA
Posts: 3,001
Re: Reflective musings on first trip to America.

Americans are chattier and more social to strangers than most Europeans. It's shallow (just social niceties) but it is nice.
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 12:34 PM   #9
James Besenyei
Member James Besenyei is offline
 
James Besenyei's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Cleveland  Ohio
Posts: 588
Re: Reflective musings on first trip to America.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Guere View Post
Jonathan,

Let me speak for many Americans when I say "whew, didn't blow that one!".... Kidding aside, I'm very happy you enjoyed your visit. We do have a bad reputation throughout the world, and most of it is warranted one way or another. But deep down, we're a caring people, we just argue with EACHOTHER too much.
Damn Bob, that's a loaded statement. Not gonna get into it, just wanted to point that out, and say I completely disagree with you.
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2008, 12:42 PM   #10
Jason Peacock
Member Jason Peacock is offline
 
Jason Peacock's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Seattle  WA
Posts: 563
Re: Reflective musings on first trip to America.

There was an similar article about this from the BBC earlier this year:

...there is a certain tranquility and civility about American life (w/f/s)

It's a little heavy on the gun-control aspect, but still represents the same surprise that the US is not a lawless circus of terror but instead feels much friendlier/safer than Britain.
  Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Coming to America Adam Stanecki Community 15 06-14-2007 05:12 PM
Some Equipment Musings Eugene R. Allen Equipment 13 12-27-2006 11:36 AM
Only in America - Fitness Jon Pappas Fitness 9 04-28-2004 06:41 AM
Hook grip and other musings about pulling. Robert Wolf Exercises 5 06-26-2003 12:24 PM


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:46 PM.


CrossFit is a registered trademark of CrossFit Inc.