America is a Foreign Country

November 18, 2008 at 2:12 pm 11 comments


I have recently returned from a second business trip to Atlanta, Georgia in the United States of America. And, having just shaken off the last vestiges of jet lag (Kate, I can assure you that it is NOT just a state of mind!) it is clear to me that the USA is one of the most foreign countries that I have ever visited. Or at least, Atlanta is one of the most foreign cities that I have ever visited.

I have visited some 33 countries. Now this might not be a scientifically sound statistic – it is only about 15% of all countries, depending upon how you define a country – but when you consider that some of those countries are in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and include France and Belgium (Belgians are weird – read here for evidence!) you can see that it is still quite a claim.

The currency is different. The food is different – who on earth would eat grits out of choice? Their whiskey is different. The politics are different – just see some of the responses to Obama’s victory. Their music is different. They take religion far too seriously, with many Christian fundamentalists that would make Bin Laden look like a Sunday School preacher. The fashion and body image is different – most of the women either look like Roseanne Barr before the diet (some even look more like John Goodman) or a Desperate Housewife. They drive everywhere. And, what on Earth is all of this rubbish with the right to bear arms?!?

We might share a common language, but even that is different. Like Alanis Morisette (I know she’s Canadian), they certainly don’t do irony.

It was a surprise to discover how different the American experience is. But, it was also a nice surprise. I like to experience new and different cultures. And, it is nice to know that Britain is not as American as many fear it has become.  May your Gods bless us all.

ps. I think that Little Britain USA has it about right:


Entry filed under: humour, travel. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

Barack Obama’s Victory Speech Strictly Cum Dancing

11 Comments Add your own

  • 1. erik  |  November 18, 2008 at 2:43 pm

    Was that the broadest brush you could find?


  • 2. Dennis the Vizsla  |  November 18, 2008 at 3:35 pm

    Technically, most of the stuff that Alanis Morrisette mentions in her song “Ironic” isn’t ironic …


  • 3. Middle Man  |  November 18, 2008 at 4:12 pm

    Erik, my good man…….I was thinking of a regular column!


  • 4. Middle Man  |  November 18, 2008 at 4:15 pm

    Dennis the Vizsla,

    You’re American aren’t you! Kerchink!!!!

    …..I couldn’t make this stuff up.




  • 5. Dennis the Vizsla  |  November 18, 2008 at 4:32 pm

    Well, yes, but Tucker the Other Vizsla is Canadian … 😉


  • 6. Anonymous  |  November 19, 2008 at 6:29 pm

    You can’t judge our whole country based on Atlanta, Georgia. You will find a different experience.


  • 7. Accidental Sexiness  |  November 19, 2008 at 6:31 pm

    Sorry for my last comment, I hit “send” by accident.

    My point was that all the states in the U.S.A. are all a different experience. Please do not judge the whole country by what you experienced in Atlanta.

    Have you visited any other States here?


  • 8. coolcrys  |  November 28, 2008 at 7:14 pm

    As an American…I agree with you. America IS a foriegn county in comparison to say….Uh…Great Britain! LOL!

    All of the things you said are true…sometimes and they DO apply to SOME Americans.

    All in all..we DO take ourselves way too seriously. Keep writing your perspective! I so Enjoy it!


  • 9. Middle Man  |  November 29, 2008 at 10:32 am


    Thanks for popping in and for your nice comment. An American with perspective and a sense of humour!!!



  • 10. Timotheus  |  December 4, 2008 at 7:24 pm

    Middle Man,

    Try a Hadj to Chicago next time.



  • 11. writechicpress  |  December 19, 2008 at 5:55 am

    Pshaw! Your Henry James tour of Atlanta. That’s a sissy town. Next time slate Oneonta, Alabama on your (how do y’all say it? sh-shedule?) schedule. 😉



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