Ten things English people don't know about America
1 • Not All Americans Are Obese
Although acknowledged as the obesity capital of the world, not everyone in America is grossly overweight. For instance, Bobby Lardsome, a prisoner on Death Row in a maximum security penitentiary in Iowa, convicted of stealing his mom's apple pie, has a BMI of only 1.5, and weighs just 38 pounds more than he should.
Bobby has been on hunger strike for two years in protest at the harsh sentence he received.
Some Americans are not obese or overweight at all, but merely appear so. This is caused by some food intolerances or standing too close to pundits and breathing in second hand hot air, causing a sometimes permanent inflation.
2 • Americans do have a sense of humour
It is a misconception of English people that Americans have no sense of humour. There are many famous American humourists, such as film maker Woody Allen and stand-up comedian George W Bush.
A popular TV comedy programme, The Simpsons, is actually written by Americans. However, most of the jokes are too sophisticated for its audience, who are merely attracted to its use of bright primary colours.
Also, I have heard Americans who can take a joke against themselves or their country. However, I have only seen these people on TV, so have no idea whether these are real people or actors working from a script. But they laughed good-naturedly when their country was mocked, neither screaming in indignation or reaching for a handgun or threatening to invade the joker's own country.
3 • Some Americans are allergic to apple pie
Gluten intolerance is becoming more prevalent, but it is simply that, an intolerance and not an allergy. The same can be said of malic acid, found in apples, which causes suffers who ingest it to inflate and expand temporarily. On their own, gluten or malic acid ingestion are rarely fatal.
However, a combination of the two can have a devastating effect, causing a hideous unnatural bloating in the sufferer, often mistaken for obesity. This can be cured by the medical combination of vegetable oil and potato, often administered orally in the form of 'fries'.
4 • Not all Americans are ignorant of geography
Some Americans have travelled abroad, some on holiday or vacation and some to the trouble spots of the world. This latter is for the purpose of 'peacekeeping', which translates as invading other countries and shooting people.
When they travel on holiday or vacation to Europe, it is much like a quick shopping trip. They dash from capital city to capital city, taking in Madrid, London, Rome and Paris. Here they dash around from shop to shop, from landmark to monument, pausing only to take pictures of Japanese tourists taking pictures of each other.
5 • Americans play football
But they call it 'Sokkah', to differentiate between football and what they call American Football, at which they are world champions. This is not played with a ball at all, but with a sort of squashed synthetic leather egg. 'Footegg' doesn't have the same ring to it, does it? They are also world champions at baseball, a form of rounders which is also only played in America.
The American football team have actually appeared at the World Cup finals, but were primarily allowed in only to boost Coca-Cola sponsorship and make up the numbers alongside world football colossuses such as Luxembourg and the People's Republic of Kazkryznistan.
American football is played by little men who are no taller than 4' 6", weighing no more than 120 pounds. These little men are dressed in a bizarre costume, resembling a cross between gladiators and cross-country motorcyclists. When fully costumed, they stand at over 6' and weigh around 225 pounds. Curiously, the foot is seldom involved and most of the action occurs with one of the little guys running along with the little egg thing under his arm until he is attacked by members of the opposition. Then everyone falls over and a commercial for Coca-Cola is shown on TV.
6 • There are no real Americans
There are Native Americans, Afro-Americans, Irish Americans, Italian-Americans and Young Americans, an isolated community who worship David Bowie, living as though it was still 1974, eschewing CDs in favour of old vinyl and watching Betamax video tapes
7 • They really mean it when they say "Have a nice day".
It's true. Also when a waiter or waitress delivers your large fries and tells you to 'enjoy', it is said with the best intentions.. But the repeating of these mantras has no actual effect on the niceness of your day. Similarly, if you were requested to have a crap day it would have no effect on the outcome. Some of us enjoy wallowing in self-pitying misery and if told to have a nice day will be upset in this interference in their desired level of day-niceness.
But is a day long enough? What about 'have a nice week'? Or year? Or, indeed, life? Or afterwards, if you believe in reincarnation. Does 'day' include the evening, or are we just being requested to bathe in a nice blanket of niceness until the sun goes down?
8 • America won World War II all by itself
From 1939 until late 1941, Britain, France, Poland, Belgium, Australia and Russia merely fiddled around in Europe, putting up token resistance to Germany's threat. In Britain, this mostly consisted of writing patriotic songs and making quaint black-and-white films about the indomitable British spirit.
Proper resistance to the Nazis only began when America entered the fight for freedom. As the British stood by and sang their silly songs, the Poles and Russians drank vodka and the French surrendered, retreating to their cordon bleu kitchens, the American army, led by John Wayne, single-handedly defeated both Germany and Japan, quite easily.
But if anyone likes a challenge, it's America. Not content with this easy victory, they then went on to invade Korea, Cuba, lots of Central America, Vietnam and Iraq, often accompanied by British songwriters.
9 • Some Americans can cook
They work in McDonalds.
11 • Some of them have real names
You could be forgiven for thinking that Americans decide on names for their children by a random dip into the Scrabble bag and rearranging the letters. But what other explanation could there be for Tammi, Cammi, Flammi, Gammi, Krystzl, Viella and Beyoncé?
And it's not just girls. Boys' names include Buck, Brick, Hunk, Chunk, Bonk and Uzi.
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