Re: Cultural Exchange

We were in Edinburgh for a day or two and then spent a couple of days in the Highlands. Even drove past Loch Ness.


I didn't see anything.

Re: Cultural Exchange

Nessie's a good hider. You know, I think I have only ever been to Edinburgh once in my life, a school trip to the castle, I think.

I can only apologise for our accents big_smile

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Re: Cultural Exchange

She's just shy.

I couldn't tell you were Lanark is. I'd probably guess that it was in the lowlands somewhere. Ironically, my US geography is a lot better. I can name all 50 states of the US and can more or less place them on a map... but I can't do that at all for the counties of my own country. Hell... I don't even know were Suffolk is and it's in the same south-east corner of the country where I live.

We only bother to learn or remember things that interest us. I guess there's a perception of Americans just not being interested in other cultures and countries, so you all get criticised when the stereotype seems to fit.

Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were. But without it we go nowhere. - Carl Sagan

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Listen, I know the whole "cab driver with an unintelligible accent" thing is a tired cliche, but seriously.

I love LOVE LOVE Edinburgh. Someday I will be rich enough to pick up and move the entire city - climate and all - to where ever I'm living at the moment.

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Shifty Bench wrote:

That is very true. I can't name all of the American states

We can't do that either.

Well, Al Franken can. But the rest of us not so much.

I also have been to Loch Ness and seen nothing.

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Re: Cultural Exchange

I can name and place all fifty. Well, I could in tenth grade. Could probably still do pretty well now.

Could also probably do 40 capitols.

BECAUSE AMERICA RULES

.....http://img58.imageshack.us/img58/2934/FuckYeah.jpg

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: Cultural Exchange

redxavier wrote:

We only bother to learn or remember things that interest us. I guess there's a perception of Americans just not being interested in other cultures and countries, so you all get criticised when the stereotype seems to fit.

Very true. By the way, I have nothing against the English, personally. I don't see the point in all that shite. Live and let live, I say. I love America too, my 'aunt' lives in Poughkeepsie, NY smile

Lanark- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lanark smile

Brian Finifter wrote:

Listen, I know the whole "cab driver with an unintelligible accent" thing is a tired cliche, but seriously.

big_smile If it makes you feel any better, there are some parts of Scotland that have strong accents that I can't fully understand. Oh, and when I was in New York a few years ago, I had to fake an American accent because people working in McDonalds couldn't understand me. Sorry hmm

Last edited by Jimmy B (2010-09-24 21:26:19)

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Re: Cultural Exchange

Down in Front wrote:

I can name and place all fifty. Well, I could in tenth grade. Could probably still do pretty well now.

I just tried to name from memory and only missed Kansas and Nebraska. That must've been when the stewardess was handing out drinks. Ba dum bum.

Re: Cultural Exchange

DorkmanScott wrote:

I also have been to Loch Ness and seen nothing.

Like Redxavier said, she's shy big_smile

Oh, and I just remembered, we learn some American history in High School over here. I remember helping my sister with homework on The American Civil War smile

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Enthusiastic nomination for Edinburgh as the best place.

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Last summer when I was waiting tables I correctly guessed that a couple I was serving were from Yorkshire.  Of course they may have just been acting polite (Bloody Anglophile...).  Of course earlier this year I mistook a gentleman from Australia for a Londoner, so...  When I was in Iraq the locals would ask where we were from, but the only places they knew were New York and California.  As far as the population of Baghdad was concerned, I was Joe from New York.  I'm sure I wasn't the only one.

After I started this thread I went looking for a book or something to familiarize myself with the broad strokes of British history.  What I wound up with was An Utterly Impartial History of Britain, or 2000 Years of Upper-Class Idiots in Charge , by John O'Farrell.  It's a great trip, starting with speculation about the very first Britons, running up to around WWII.  I went with the audio version, and it's become one of my standby something-to-listen-to-while-I'm-working selections.  Very entertaining, and informative (just like DIF!), my favorite combination.

Incidentally there is a follow up book An Utterly Exasperated History of Modern Britain, or Sixty Years of Making the Same Stupid Mistakes as Always, which I will get around to eventually, but two thousand years is a lot of history to catch up on.

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Brian Finifter wrote:

I love LOVE LOVE Edinburgh. Someday I will be rich enough to pick up and move the entire city - climate and all - to where ever I'm living at the moment.

I recommend moving it to Kentucky. Kentucky needs a big city; it's gorgeous, has about the right terrain, and mild weather. I've long said the only thing wrong with it is that it's filled with Kentuckians.

However, I want to make clear that while I fully support your plan, I will not be present when James Bond comes to stop you.

Warning: I'm probably rewriting this post as you read it.

Zarban's House of Commentaries

Re: Cultural Exchange

Matt Vayda wrote:

earlier this year I mistook a gentleman from Australia for a Londoner,

Chances are you were probably right wink

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Re: Cultural Exchange

Faldor wrote:
Matt Vayda wrote:

earlier this year I mistook a gentleman from Australia for a Londoner,

Chances are you were probably right wink

It's actually happened to me twice.  It's one of those strange abilities which, just when you think you're getting the hang of it, something comes along to prove you dead wrong.

I did find this video demonstrating a number of British accents.  I recognize a few, then there were a few I'd never heard before.

Shifty Bench wrote:

If it makes you feel any better, there are some parts of Scotland that have strong accents that I can't fully understand.

Oh we have that to, we call 'em Rednecks.  Just look up Jeff Foxworthy, he's made a comedy career out of being a Redneck.  For that matter look up The Blue Collar Comedy Tour, hilarious stuff.  Back to the accent, Boomhauer from King of the Hill is a fair example of an accent I can just barely follow (he's supposed to be Texan).  Then there's the Louisiana Cajun, which has as much if not more to do with French as is does with English.

Shifty Bench wrote:

Oh, and when I was in New York a few years ago, I had to fake an American accent because people working in McDonalds couldn't understand me. Sorry

Fair enough; I say if you can pull it off, go for it.  In fact I'd try and see how long I could pull it off before I got busted!  On that note, check out the preshow for episode 4 of Geekza at about 22:30.  I would think the tough part of faking an accent isn't so much the accent itself, but the vernacular.  Even if your American accent is perfect, if you order chips at McDonalds the gig is up.

I'm an avid Top Gear fan, so I've had to educate myself on a fair bit of British lingo; yes I'm a petrolhead as well as a boffin, but not so far as to be an anorak.  (I think I got that right).  Still, there's no way I'd try to pass myself off as a Brit.

Which brings me to my last point: actors.  I know of a number of British / Australian performers who regularly don an American accent, and I can't think of any right now that bother me (subject to change).  I'm curious how our British members feel about, say, Natalie Portman's English in V for Vendetta.  For some reason it didn't feel right to me, but then again I'm not used to hearing her like that.

Re: Cultural Exchange

Matt Vayda wrote:
Shifty Bench wrote:

Oh, and when I was in New York a few years ago, I had to fake an American accent because people working in McDonalds couldn't understand me. Sorry

Fair enough; I say if you can pull it off, go for it.  In fact I'd try and see how long I could pull it off before I got busted!  On that note, check out the preshow for episode 4 of Geekza at about 22:30.  I would think the tough part of faking an accent isn't so much the accent itself, but the vernacular.  Even if your American accent is perfect, if you order chips at McDonalds the gig is up.

big_smile Yeah. I did Drama at school for 3 years and we did months of doing various accents and the New York accent was my strongest one. By the time I went to America, though, I had been out of school for about 7 years and as I hadn't really been practising my accents since I left, it was a bit rusty, but I just about managed it. I wouldn't try it today though.

I'm an avid Top Gear fan, so I've had to educate myself on a fair bit of British lingo; yes I'm a petrolhead as well as a boffin, but not so far as to be an anorak.  (I think I got that right).  Still, there's no way I'd try to pass myself off as a Brit.

I used to watch Top Gear but my hatred for Jeremy Clarkson finally took over and I stopped big_smile

Which brings me to my last point: actors.  I know of a number of British / Australian performers who regularly don an American accent, and I can't think of any right now that bother me (subject to change).  I'm curious how our British members feel about, say, Natalie Portman's English in V for Vendetta.  For some reason it didn't feel right to me, but then again I'm not used to hearing her like that.

How about Hugh Laurie in House? A lot of people think that's a poor one. If you hear Laurie in person, he's a bit of a posh brit but I think he does ok with the American accent. Portman's accent was ok, a bit 'plumnmy' or posh. Rene Zellweger had a good try in the Bridget Jones films, but again, that's a middle class accent.

Anyway, even English people can fail at different British accents. Just look at Daphne from Fraiser. The character is from Mancheter yet the actress is from London and it sort of shows as her Mancunian accent is all over the place. And I have never seen an American or an English person do a passable Scottish accent big_smile

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Re: Cultural Exchange

Shifty Bench wrote:

I used to watch Top Gear but my hatred for Jeremy Clarkson finally took over and I stopped

Wow, hatred is a strong word.  I'm a bit in the dark as to how other people feel about Clarkson, as I don't really know anyone else who watches the show.  I like him just fine, but I can certainly see why he might not appeal to everyone.

Shifty Bench wrote:

How about Hugh Laurie in House? A lot of people think that's a poor one. If you hear Laurie in person, he's a bit of a posh brit but I think he does ok with the American accent.

I'm a bit embarrassed to admit it, but I had no idea Hugh Laurie was British for the longest time, so I guess I have to say that one's fine by me.

There are a couple others that have surprised me.  I remember commenting once while staying with Teague that I didn't care for Amanda Tapping's accent in Sanctuary, to which Cloe informed me "You know she's English."  Sure enough, born in Essex, moved to Canada when she was 3.

The other was Gordon Ramsay.  My sister watches all kinds of cooking shows, and I've recently become a fan of his, so I was surprised one day when we were talking to learn he's actually a Scotsman, born in Johnstone, and raised in Stratford-upon-Avon after his family moved when he was 5.

This particular identity has always confused me.  Does one refer to them according to where they were born, or where they grew up and have spent most of their lives?  How do they refer to themselves? I suppose it depends on the person.

Re: Cultural Exchange

I'm still confused about the terms "white" and "black," and undiplomatically demand that people call folks with white-ish skin white, and very dark skin black. I knew a guy who said "I'm not white, I'm Russian." No, homes, you're white, and I'm gonna go ahead and say most Asian people are too.

"Caucasian" is a specific term. "White" is not.

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: Cultural Exchange

Matt Vayda wrote:
Shifty Bench wrote:

I used to watch Top Gear but my hatred for Jeremy Clarkson finally took over and I stopped

Wow, hatred is a strong word.  I'm a bit in the dark as to how other people feel about Clarkson, as I don't really know anyone else who watches the show.  I like him just fine, but I can certainly see why he might not appeal to everyone.

Hatred was said jokingly smile Clarkson has a reputation in the U.K for being a bit of a prick, saying things he probably really shouldn't. He's an acquired taste. I like Richard Hammond though.

This particular identity has always confused me.  Does one refer to them according to where they were born, or where they grew up and have spent most of their lives?  How do they refer to themselves? I suppose it depends on the person.

This has always puzzled me too. Take Henry Ian Cusick who played Desmond in Lost, he has a Scottish accent but was born in Peru. Now, he moved to Scotland when he was 15 after living there briefly before when he was a child (he lived in Trinidad in between) and he supports Glasgow Celtic (the wise man). But, is he Scottish or Peruvian? I assume he'd say Scottish but I always thought it is where you were born that counts.

Oh, and Bruce Willis was born in Germany..... hmm

Last edited by Jimmy B (2010-09-27 17:55:06)

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Re: Cultural Exchange

The chemistry the presenters have on Top Gear is definitely the better part of what makes it great.  Top Gear USA is finally coming to fruition and I'm dubious that any other group can match that chemistry.  Then again we're pulling if off here at DIF, so who knows.

I'd like to think that had I been born elsewhere, with no memory of that place, I would still consider myself American.  Then again you always hear about folks saying "I'm _______ but I was born in ________ and my parents are _______,"
so who knows.

Heck, if you want to stretch the analogy, I could say "I'm American, but my Dad's family came from Hungary, and my Mom's family is German (for one)." Given the histories of the US and the UK in particular, unless you're a pureblood Native American or can trace your linage back to a cave in Somerset,  no one can really say they're American or British based on genetics.  Which brings us back to the notion that we derive our cultural identities more from our surroundings and upbringing, and less where we come from.

Robert A. Heinlein's Stranger in a Strange Land comes to mind.  The protagonist, Valentine Michael Smith, is a human, raised by Martians.  Throughout the story he is referred to as Martian, even though he is human, and his parents were from Earth.

Re: Cultural Exchange

Matt Vayda wrote:

There are a couple others that have surprised me.  I remember commenting once while staying with Teague that I didn't care for Amanda Tapping's accent in Sanctuary, to which Cloe informed me "You know she's English."  Sure enough, born in Essex, moved to Canada when she was 3.

She may be English but she doesn't have an accent, and the one in sanctuary (like the show itself) is rubbish.

Portman did an alright 'put on accent' it doesn't sound like an English accent (some of the reviews I recall wondered why she sounded South African) but it doesn't grate on you like the worst offender - Dick Van Dyke in Mary Poppins.

I was pleasantly suprised by Maggie Gyllenhaal's accent in Nanny McPhee (I work in a cinema)

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Re: Cultural Exchange

Down in Front wrote:

n." No, homes, you're white, and I'm gonna go ahead and say most Asian people are too.

Asian people are not white. Asian people are yellow.

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http://trek.fm

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I don't buy into the notion that where you're born dictates who you are. A white guy born in Japan is still white. An Englishman born in Hong Kong is still English.

So what does make you of a particular nationality? Generational history and language fluency.

Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were. But without it we go nowhere. - Carl Sagan

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I remember commenting once while staying with Teague that I didn't care for Amanda Tapping's accent in Sanctuary, to which Cloe informed me "You know she's English."  Sure enough, born in Essex, moved to Canada when she was 3.

What? No no no no no.

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Re: Cultural Exchange

A little on Scandinavia

Scandinavia includes Denmark and two of the Scandinavian Peninsula's countries, Norway and Sweden. The other Nordic countries, Finland and Iceland are often incorrectly grouped with the Scandinavian region.

This confuses a lot of people and I've even heard this mistake made by people from all of those countries (Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland) who couldn't keep this straight.

---------------------------------------------
I would never lie. I willfully participate in a campaign of misinformation.

Re: Cultural Exchange

Brian wrote:
Down in Front wrote:

I can name and place all fifty. Well, I could in tenth grade. Could probably still do pretty well now.

I just tried to name from memory and only missed Kansas and Nebraska

I am disappoint.

I am also very late to this thread... and the forums overall tongue