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Those typical Dutch

Updated on November 18, 2008

Forget your visions of Dutch people running around on wooden shoes with tulips in one hand, cheese in the other and a joint between their lips beneath the windmills. Okay, we might be looking like that, but only when we know that busloads of tourists are coming. We like to fool the tourist sometimes. But I admit, for some foreigners it might seem we have some strange habits.

Delfs Blauw, haring and DROP


Next to the cheese, Dutch traditions like Delfts Blauw (Dutch porcelain on which they painted windmills and other kinds of Dutch things to satisfy the souvenir buying tourist) we have a lot of other food products to eat. We eat raw salted fish for example. Salted raw fish we call haring( yes herring), preferably with some onion. And do you know DROP? Try to pronounce it.


Black candy we like, sweet flavor or salted. Almost all of us like it here. We need to like it really, because most of the time it rains and the wind blows nicely. Especially autumn and wintertime. And then we get a cough and we just need to eat DROP.



Ow we’ve got a lot of those things here. I would love to hear you pronounce pepernoten, hagelslag, oliebollen, pannekoeken, and poffertjes. But I won’t get in to those. Unless you really want me to. And you don’t really want me to do you?



There is this other thing the Netherlands seems to be known for. Tolerance. Freedom of speech, gay marriages, the asylum policy, sex and soft drugs for example. Even though things are not that easy anymore. I’m not going to talk much about all of them. Freedom of speech is too much for me if even a guy like Geert Wilders can just say anything about foreigners, which in my opinion just is the start of more intolerance and hatred. And hatred causes wars.


Gay marriages. Since about 7 years this is possible here. But I think the gay population here hasn’t so much problems compared to other countries. I love the gay parade by the way, every year in Amsterdam were gay from all over the world come together. One big party. Not a dirty one, just fun and celebration.


Cannabis (and other soft drugs). Yes, it’s easy to buy them. Almost every town has a coffee shop. And in the main capital there are areas that are just filled with coffee shops. You’re allowed to own about 5 plants for own use in your own home and when the weather is good, you just have them in your garden. There are more soft drugs of course.


Now we get to the next. Sex. We seem to talk about it easily. At least the last two generations. The red light districts, even gay marriages are normal, so why don’t talk about sex? (The first one is one of the safest places to walk around here by the way in Amsterdam)There are always exceptions of course. It’s not just a case of Dutch values, but more personal. But we are not ashamed. Much Dutch television series show some nudity, sex education on schools for example, make it a lot easier to talk about those things. But I think this is more European than just Dutch.


No taboo when my sister shows her new Mr. Bunny on her birthday, or when my dad is talking about his sex life in front of everyone or when I ask my son if I have to buy him condoms already.


There are “toy stores” in almost every city and they make it hardly a secret what they sell. Fetish or no fetish, there are stores for everyone. I remember shopping in Holland with some American male friends from the base who got almost embarrassed when I walked into the store with one of the Korean wives to buy some fun stuff for the guys. So that brings me to the question; did they fear intimacy? Or did they rather have one of those dolls that Christoph wrote about? No taboo makes it all so simple to talk about.



Is it typical Dutch?


Or just typical me?

Typical Dutch

 What do you think is Typical Dutch?



P.S. Ahum , Hope you like ALL the pictures.


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    • profile image

      Dutch Tom 

      12 months ago


    • tastiger04 profile image


      7 years ago

      Great hub, I have only been through the aiport but I would love to go back and see some sights in the Netherlands! Thanks for the info, voted up! :)

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Very Nice to read...hahahaha are you mexican or Dutch?

    • Thelma Alberts profile image

      Thelma Alberts 

      8 years ago from Germany and Philippines

      Hi! I love this hub. It is so entertaining for me how you write it. I have been to Amsterdam and many other Dutch places as I live in Germany near the boarder. Some of my relatives are married to Dutch men. What I like most of the Dutch are their tolerance to I think almost everything. Eating Haring with Broedje is very delicious. Thanks for SHARING.

    • pjdscott profile image


      10 years ago from Durham, UK

      Having visited the Netherlands on many occasions, I found this an entertaining and educational hub! Many generalisations are made about the Dutch and this hub certainly helps to dispel and clarify.

    • Lazur profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from Netherlands

      More often people feel offended here too, but I still think that we are pretty easy going down here. Thanks for commenting and I love to have a reasonable discussion with you if you're here someday:D

    • Alexander Mark profile image

      Alexander Silvius 

      10 years ago from Portland, Oregon

      Mmmmmm, brown maggots on buttered bread.

      Enjoyed your hub Lazur, I'm a dutchie in Kalifornia. I've been here a long time, but I'm still homesick (I'm in my 30's, immigrated 20+ years ago).

      I know that although we seem to have opposite values (I'm a conservative Christian), you and I could still have a reasonable discussion. That's pretty rare here, everyone gets offended so easily.

      I may move back someday, there's no place like it, where the food is wonderful, people can argue honestly and still be friends (everyone has an opinion), and you can be liberal without being against individual rights. At least that's my version ;-)

    • profile image

      Miss Footloose 

      10 years ago

      I loved your post! I'm a Dutchie but have roamed the world for years and it is always fun to get a look at my people from various angles and perspectives.

      I would love to use the top photo on my blog some time, the collage of all the cliches in one shot. Great! Who owns the rights? Or is it yours?

    • Lazur profile imageAUTHOR


      12 years ago from Netherlands

      Thank you Patricia and Patricia:D. I hope ths is one of the reasons why Holland still has the lowest teenage pregnancy rate in Europe at least since 2001. There is a lot of education about birth control too. Not only or maybe even because of the open attitude to sex:)

    • 2patricias profile image


      12 years ago from Sussex by the Sea

      Very entertaining Hub! There was an article in the Times this week that Holland has the lowest teenage pregnancy rate (anywhere, I think) and this could be due to the very open attitude to sex.

    • Lazur profile imageAUTHOR


      12 years ago from Netherlands

      You're always welcome to giggle Pam:D Glad you enjoyed it:)

    • Pam Roberson profile image

      Pam Roberson 

      12 years ago from Virginia

      Lazur, I absolutely adore this glimpse into the Dutch world. Until now, my experience of the Netherlands was limited to listening to 69 Eyes music and chatting with my cyber buddy, Marga, who is an astrology genius. Nothing tickles me more than to see, hear, or read about different cultures. Thank you also for the giggles. I enjoy your staight up sense of humor. :)

    • countrywomen profile image


      12 years ago from Washington, USA

      WOW!! I liked some of the cuisine and the tongue twisters. I guess Iam not that liberal as far as all that family talk is concerned. I surely want to visit the Tulip Gardens in Amsterdam. Great hub. Btw when we pay the bill we call it going dutch when each person pays for their own order(are dutch very careful with their money)?

    • Lazur profile imageAUTHOR


      12 years ago from Netherlands

      thanks Misty:D I can't say I didn't try those things;)

      I think you mean the hagelslag:D Little pieces of chocolate we put on our bread, or in our yogurt:D

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 

      12 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Brilliant Hub Lazur, one of the vets I used to work with is Dutch, and she is lovely. I remember being quite amazed when she told me neither her Husband or her had ever smoked cannabis or eaten the hash cakes when they lived in Holland.

      By the way, what are those things that look like maggots on toast in the picutres??

    • Lazur profile imageAUTHOR


      12 years ago from Netherlands

      The only language most Dutch have still trouble with is German Amanda.:) Emotional reasons I guess;)

      But thank you for describing the Dutch in such a way:)I've heared it before and I think we are proud of it.

    • Lazur profile imageAUTHOR


      12 years ago from Netherlands

      At least I can use Blogger for pictures that are forbidden here Christoph:D

      Watch your mail , I'll be sending it tomorrow:D

    • Christoph Reilly profile image

      Christoph Reilly 

      12 years ago from St. Louis

      You know the picture that I mean. There wasn't a sombrero in the picture though. (I didn't really think it was you.)

      I knew you and Ananta was not a secret. Why would it be. I just didn't know that and I think it's interesting. No big deal.

      Ok, then. I'll send you my address. MMmmmm. DRRRRROPS!

    • Amanda Severn profile image

      Amanda Severn 

      12 years ago from UK

      Hi Lazur

      I had the great good fortune to share a house with a lovely girl from Leiden for several years, and I also have two other good friends from Holland. All three are plain speaking, open, friendly, generous people, and a great advertisment for a little country with a big heart. I'm also more than a little jealous of their linguistic talents. Brits are renowned for being lazy about learning foreign languages, but the Dutch have no such problem. In fact the Dutch people I know all have a better grasp of written English than many English people have!

    • Lazur profile imageAUTHOR


      12 years ago from Netherlands

      I think you mean the last picture on my blogger? The one on Christmas? No, that one isn't me:D The others are:P

      Yes Spryte saw it right. It isn't a secret ;). I've even wrote some hubs about it:D

      Sure I would send some:) It isn't that hard. Just put some in an envelope, put some stamps on it, write an adres on it and send it by airmail:P

    • Christoph Reilly profile image

      Christoph Reilly 

      12 years ago from St. Louis

      Ok. I see some. I missed them the first time. I just visited your blog, very nice. (Ok...that picture at the that you? Actually, I saw that and more in Amsterdam!). I am gather from Sprytes comment that you and Ananta are together (plus he is on your blog). Interesting.

      Would you really send me a Drop? That's a lot of trouble.

    • Lazur profile imageAUTHOR


      12 years ago from Netherlands

      Yeah those are really tasteful Spryte:D My son eats them by the dozen if he gets the chance.:D If you're able to visit the Netherlands, we'll have them with the coffee:D

    • Lazur profile imageAUTHOR


      12 years ago from Netherlands

      The toy is vissible on more pics Christoph* lol*

      Give me your adres and I will send you the DRRRROP:D I won't do the same with the Herring. I don't think it will be very tasteful when it flies over the Atlantic instead of swimming over there:D

    • spryte profile image


      12 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Aebleskivers!!!! :) I love those things...but damn I suck at making them. Mine always end up with little indented sides, but they taste just as good.

      I'd love to visit your country someday. Perhaps I could interest you and Ananta into going out for a cup of coffee :)

    • Christoph Reilly profile image

      Christoph Reilly 

      12 years ago from St. Louis

      Hi Lazur! Thanks for the mention. I visited Amsterdam and really loved it (and not just for the reasons you might expect). It's a beautiful city with a lot of culture (Rembrandt Museum, Anne Frank House). I love your pic of the "toy" with the sombrero. I can't wait to try the herring and some Drop. Very funny! Thanks!


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