17 April 2013

What the French think of Americans - Part 1

Are you guilty of any of the following?


I know you must be ready for a break from the Mythbusters series. Well good news! Today I'm switching things up a bit and giving you the Frenchie perspective. My first month here, two years ago, I asked a couple of my French friends/fellow students what type of stereotypes the French had regarding Americans. Their response? They have no stereotypes about Americans. One person even tried to play the intellectually superior angle, claiming the French were too well-cultured to have such wide, generalist ideas about a country's people. 

I'm officially calling him out on that bull crap. No matter how "well-cultured" we presume to be, humans have a tendency to group and label people (even if they do so incorrectly). The French are no exception. So here we go. :)





1. All Americans Are Fat

You knew this one was coming. I have had the following conversation many times upon meeting people here:

Frenchie: So where are you from?

Me: I'm American.

Frenchie: .:Confused Pause:. But you're not fat.

Me: .:Awkward Silence:. (because how do you respond to that? Thank you? You're not either?...)


2. All Americans Can Sing

I've had people (plural) ask me to sing for them before, sometimes in public, because, obviously, all Americans can sing. Just like in the movies!


3. Americans Are Loud

The neighbors above us confirm that the French are too.


4. Americans Think the World Revolves Around Them

If you watch American news, this is kind of true. But in our defense, that's an easy critique to make when your country is smaller than Texas. You have a lot more time to read up and report on the news from other countries, because there's only so much going on in yours. 


5. Americans Eat At McDonalds All the Time

As much as my husband would love for this to be true, I probably only eat at McDonalds once or twice a year.  Monsieur Right recently informed me that he is a better American than I am, because he eats there more often.

6.  Americans Drink Huge Sodas (and go to the bathroom a lot)

M. Right was very impressed by the size of soda cups in restaurants when he came to visit. When we first started dating, he had a friend tell him that because I was American I would probably need to go to the bathroom a lot, and that this was the reason why.



How many this apply to you? Do you agree, disagree with these stereotypes?

If you're curious,  click here to read part 2

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