I’ve been living in America for over two years now, and I’ve compiled a list of several American customs I find absolutely odd. Sure, any American, any non-Asian, really, would consider eating balut downright bizarre
and gross, but as a non-American, this is my own perception of America’s strange idiosyncrasies.
1. Everyone drives everywhere.
I pretty much already knew about this even before coming to America, but having to experience it firsthand is something else. I’m so used to walking or taking public transportation, but those don’t seem like options here – unless you’re living in New York City or San Francisco. Cities have a very different atmosphere here, less lively, if you will.
2. Huge gaps around toilet doors so people can peek in.
To be fair, not all American public restrooms are like that. However, that awkward eye contact caused by those massive gaps around toilet doors gives me extreme anxieties. Since I’m going to be living in the US for the next several years, I would appreciate it if America can get its shit together and design a setup where I can have a shit in comfortable privacy.
3. Absurd amount of medical advertising.
I don’t have cable, and thank goodness for Adblock, so I’m not exposed to the ridiculousness that is American advertising. But seriously, why would you advertise prescription drugs? “Do you often feel too tired or too awake? Ask your doctor for Chorvametroxin.” “Have you suffered from uncontrollable bowels, stress, and fatigue from taking Chorvametroxin? Call this number to be part of a class action lawsuit.” Crazy.
I don’t want to get into a whole discussion about the tipping system in America. All I’m gonna say is I don’t believe tipping should exist at all. A worker shouldn’t have to depend on someone’s charity to make a living. Not to mention how not tipping is considered offensively impolite. America needs to ditch tips and and pay its service workers better wages! Tips should be an extra – not a necessity.
5. Not using the metric system.
I don’t even know.