Star Control Discussion Board

All About Star Control => Off Topic => Topic started by: Lukipela on March 02, 2010, 12:54:14 pm

Title: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Lukipela on March 02, 2010, 12:54:14 pm
Inspired by Americans and cheese over in the reading thread. Tell us what your country (or another country you've spent more than a few days in) doesn't get from your perspective. Since the good Stephen Fry has made an excellent case for American cultural diversity, you can also compare different states provided that they do not border each other, or something.

I'll go first.

Sweden doesn't get bills. Seriously. Where I come from, there's a standardised form for bills. Be it a utility bill, broadband bill or any other form of bill it follows the same standard. The sum is always in the same place, as is the due date, the reference number, the account number and so forth. Any bill I open, I can immediately see how much it is for, when it's due and where to pay it to. As an added bonus, they all have the Single European Payment Area codes on them, so if I want to pay a Finnish bill from a Irish account, it's a piece of cake.

Not so in Sweden. Every single bill I've found here looks different. They don't even have account numbers, there's some company that apparently handles every transfer. Well two companies, but their codes are extremely similar so you need to know which one you're dealing with. Information can be virtually anywhere on a bill. I spent 15 minutes with a bill yesterday before I found the coded account number, printed in light grey under the company address in the left bottom corner. Seriously. I don't want to be spending my time hunting for the information necessary to write my bills.

Finland on the other hand doesn't get grocery store competition. We've got two major chains that only compete in name only. Not until I moved to Sweden did I realize how bad that makes not only our prizes, but the products on offer. Seriously, I live in a small podunk town and the produce section is much better than in any store in the rather large (by Finnish standards) city I live in back home. It's hard to vote with your feet when there are no alternatives.
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Draxas on March 02, 2010, 09:08:58 pm
Speaking for the US, we don't get a lot of things that are pretty common and accepted in Europe and other areas heavily influenced by European culture. Chief among those is the lack of taboos concerning sex. But then again, we're living in a country founded by puritans (and in some places, still run by them too), so I suppose that's to be expected.

In terms of inside the US, it seems like nobody that's not from New York or New Jersey gets the concept of good pizza. Seriously, it seems like the farther away you go from NYC and north / central Jersey, the worse the pizza tastes. Here in Pennsylvania, right near Philly, it's practically impossible to get a decent slice. I've had pizza in Connecticut, and it was atrocious. It only gets worse from there. Pizza in Florida is an affront to your senses, and in California it's a crime against nature. Related to that, all of the pizza chains are absolute crap. Pizza Hut, Domino's, Papa John's, it makes no difference. They all taste stale, overly greasy, and somewhat cardboardish. Maybe that's the best you can do if you live in Iowa or something, but it baffles me that these places are able to stay in business in a place like NJ, where there's a fantastic pizza place practically on every corner that makes fresh pies to order.
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Eth on March 03, 2010, 12:42:28 am
Chicago has good pizza too, though it's very different in style from New York's. 

Costa Rica doesn't get batteries.  I don't know what it is, but all of the batteries in Costa Rica were crap; they only lasted for a little while compared to American batteries.  Same brand names, even, but they were crap. 

America doesn't get leftist politics.  Seriously, there is no organized left to speak of here.  As far as political parties go, you've got the centrists and the right-of-centrists. 
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Bleeding Star on March 03, 2010, 01:50:29 am
I'll slag off my current country of residence, as I can't think of anything from home at the moment.

The Irish do not understand how to cross a road. At all. I'm a big fan of the old jaywalk now and then, but the Irish will just stroll across right in front of you, making no effort to hurry up even if you're heading straight for them. Any tooting of the horn, or acting like they might want to get out of the fucking way, or use the pedestrian crossing five meters away, results in an incredulous, aggreived look, as if they're perfectly entiled to amble along at a snail's pace through heavy traffic. I don't understand how they survive if they're holidaying somewhere like Italy or Spain.
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Rider on March 03, 2010, 02:23:07 am
The English and Australians do not get the concept of "Left" and "Right". Ironically, they're the countries where the word came from (or rather, where they have their most self-explanatory meaning). Somehow they still believe that Left is Right and Right is wrong.

Oh well.
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Draxas on March 03, 2010, 07:07:33 am
Chicago has good pizza too, though it's very different in style from New York's.

And yet, having tried it, I never developed an appreciation for it. Something about it just seemed wrong to me, though I couldn't really put my finger on what (unlike most of the time I eat pizza I don't like).
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Dabir on March 03, 2010, 08:21:00 am
In my area, people don't seem to get the idea that if your dog craps on the ground, you clean up after it. Because everyone LOVES navigating shit-covered pavements.
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Zeracles on March 05, 2010, 06:39:00 am
The English and Australians do not get the concept of "Left" and "Right".

. . .

Somehow they still believe that Left is Right and Right is wrong.
But those two wrongs make a right! ;D

Oh yeah, we didn't get a recession to recover from :P
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Sage on March 06, 2010, 01:15:43 am
This must mean that people where you live don't listen to the talking heads on TV as closely. Too bad the rest of the financial and business world isn't that intelligent.
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Scott_Irving on March 07, 2010, 03:48:04 am
Canada doesn't seem to get "light" beer, and why everybody seems to think were backwater folk with igloos. In general we don't get the Superbowl either.
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Lukipela on March 07, 2010, 01:02:03 pm
The Irish do not understand how to cross a road. At all. I'm a big fan of the old jaywalk now and then, but the Irish will just stroll across right in front of you, making no effort to hurry up even if you're heading straight for them. Any tooting of the horn, or acting like they might want to get out of the fucking way, or use the pedestrian crossing five meters away, results in an incredulous, aggreived look, as if they're perfectly entiled to amble along at a snail's pace through heavy traffic. I don't understand how they survive if they're holidaying somewhere like Italy or Spain.

Hehe, I remember this from when I lived there. I never understood how Dublin could have so few fatal car accidents with everyone just walking any which way. In the small city where I lived it was even worse.

Canada doesn't seem to get "light" beer, and why everybody seems to think were backwater folk with igloos. In general we don't get the Superbowl either.

What kind of light beer are we talking about? Light, as in a low amount of calories or light as in a low alcohol content. In our fine ordered Scandinavian state we have multiple "classes" of beers sorted by alcohol strength. The Swedish have light beer, folk beer and strong beer whereas the finish have light beer non-existent beer, middle beer, strong beer and export beer. But we don't get light calorie beers, thankfully.

Also, no one understand the superbowl outside the US I think. Hell, most people don't understand American Football. I barely get rugby.
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Cedric6014 on March 07, 2010, 04:22:00 pm
Not surprised you donít get rugby, Finland is ranked 95th in the world (http://www.irb.com/rankings/full.html (http://www.irb.com/rankings/full.html)) (out of 95 rugby playing nations) Ė 44 places behind the dirty Swedes. In fact youíre probably surprised that you even have a team

What we donít get in NZ is how to make decent sandwiches. I, along with everyone else in my cohort, was brought up putting butter in sandwiches. It was only after spending some time in the US that I realised what an abhorrent practise this was. Mayonnaise is the way to go here. Americans might not get cheese, but they get mayonnaise. I had the culinary equivalent of a religious epiphany when I had a sandwich with mayonnaise. And interestingly, when I got back from the US, Subway had just opened its first store in my town.
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Rider on March 08, 2010, 01:39:38 am
There's not a lot that our country doesn't get... but I'm pretty sure we're one of the only ones who do get bicycles, as in... the real transport alternative, not the holiday trip type.

I have yet to see another country that has that... except maybe downtown New York, but that always looks really friggin' dangerous, like bikes don't belong there in the first place.
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Draxas on March 08, 2010, 06:56:10 am
Bikes DON'T belong in NYC, that's basically asking to die. I can't imagine being one of those bicycle couriers weaving in and out of traffic, drivers in NYC are so burnt out on the endless gridlock that they just don't care who they cut of to get an extra 5 feet ahead.

As for mayo, I used to like it when I was younger, but it has since become one of my condiments of last resort. Far better is the strategic addition of some ketchup to make thousand island dressing, or the complete substitution for honey mustard, barbeque sauce, or (best yet) buffalo sauce. I could seriously eat that last one on almost any kind of sandwich and enjoy it.
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Lukipela on March 08, 2010, 10:43:27 am
Not surprised you donít get rugby, Finland is ranked 95th in the world (http://www.irb.com/rankings/full.html (http://www.irb.com/rankings/full.html)) (out of 95 rugby playing nations) Ė 44 places behind the dirty Swedes. In fact youíre probably surprised that you even have a team

I only get rugby because I used to live in Ireland. That far behind the Swedes are we? they are obviously cheating, as usual.Oh well, at least we beat them at hockey this year.

Rider: Denmark, or at least Copenhagen is pretty good for bikes. They've got their own lanes and traffic lights and everything.

Draxas: Your country doesn't get the metric system  :P We had several decimetres of snow here recently.
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Cedric6014 on March 08, 2010, 11:31:12 am
As for mayo, I used to like it when I was younger, but it has since become one of my condiments of last resort. Far better is the strategic addition of some ketchup to make thousand island dressing, or the complete substitution for honey mustard, barbeque sauce, or (best yet) buffalo sauce. I could seriously eat that last one on almost any kind of sandwich and enjoy it.

Yes yes yes. I should have said condiments in fact. The US does get condiments, where as we here do not. We just have not come round to the idea that to make something delicious you really need to add some salty moistening ingredient. Rocket science? I think not
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Eth on March 08, 2010, 02:31:03 pm
@Luki: Yes, we really don't "get" the metric system in the US.  It's slowly creeping in in some areas (2 liter bottles of soda, medicines are generally measured in metric) but by and large we use the old imperial measurements.  
Title: Re: Things your country doesn't "get"
Post by: Scott_Irving on March 08, 2010, 05:37:41 pm
We have imperial and metric here which really mucks with things, i think it's mostly just cause the imperial stuff comes up from the states. Imperial... ick it's like fractions!. Mayo is by far the best condiment.

I personally don't get imperial (along with many other Canadians)