Sometimes I go over my blog, to see if there is at least some semblance of balance between positive and negative posts. I don’t want to always sound angry and whiny, especially in my posts that are more directly related to being an immigrant in this
crazy country. That wouldn’t be an accurate reflection of my state of mind outside of this blog. Nevertheless, anger and resentment do seem to crop up on a regular basis. How is it that I am still able to keep that up after twenty-three years? Continue reading
Posted in Emigration / Immigration, Psychology, Society, Writing
Tagged computer games, cultural awareness, Cultural Differences, emigration, etiquette, faux pas, Forge of Empires, gaming etiquette, immigration, workshops
Vagabond Urges wrote in yesterday’s post, The Secret to Europe, about greetings in Paris shops. He observed that when a customer comes in, he or she greets the person behind the counter. Who then reciprocates and things go on from there. If you don’t start off with a greeting, you get the cold shoulder. As an American, he had to get used to that.
So I started thinking about different greetings. Continue reading
One thing I’ve learned is the difference between Dutch politeness and Texan politeness.
To A Texan, being polite is not just a matter of saying please and thank you, holding the door open for the person coming behind you, not belching loudly at the dinner table, etc. It also means avoiding embarrassing someone. Continue reading
Posted in Emigration / Immigration, Language, Society
Tagged America, Cultural Differences, culture, embarrassment, emigration, humor, immigration, language, manners, politeness, society, The Netherlands
As I’ve explained in previous posts, we were on vacation when our son B’s appendix ruptured. He had an appendectomy and was in the hospital in Cody, Wyoming for four days. Six days after coming home to Austin, he had pains again, and had to have a follow-up surgery, and he has been in the hospital here in Austin for six days now. And when I say that B has been in the hospital, I really mean our family has been in the hospital. Continue reading
Okay, for those of you who think I’m too negative about America, let me confuse you again.
Do I seem schizophrenic to you? Well, that’s because I am. Not clinically, but being Dutch in America, I can’t help being in a permanent schizophrenic state of mind. Depending on what I’m Continue reading
Posted in Education, Emigration / Immigration, Holland, Language, Society, Travel
Tagged America, Cultural Differences, culturele verschillen, emigration, immigration, Nederland, Netherlands, parenting, self-awareness, United States, upbringing
I am going to commit one of the biggest faux pas you can commit in America. I’m going to correct your grammar, Americans!
Yes, my Dutch friends, it’s considered impolite at best to correct anyone’s grammar here.When you do, people think you’re pedantic, rude, or a “grammar nazi”.
I will write about the inflation of the word “nazi” some other time.
So back to you, my American readers. Let me explain myself. Continue reading
Posted in Education, Emigration / Immigration, Language
Tagged America, Correcting grammar, correcting mistakes, Cultural Differences, emigration, etiquette, immigration, manners, preposition-pronoun agreement, pronoun-preposition agreement, pronoun-verb agreement, The Netherlands, Writing
We Dutch are world-famous for our directness, so American conversations require a whole new set of skills. In my previous post, I wrote about an example of what Americans say and what they mean. There’s a lot of that. I have figured most of it out by now–at least I think I have. But that doesn’t leave me any less mystified.
Take “That’s interesting”. Continue reading
Posted in Emigration / Immigration, Language
Tagged American, conversation, Cultural Differences, emigration, expressions, humor, immigration, indirectness, kultuurverschillen, Netherlands, uitdrukkingen, United States