“There are many ways of going forward, but only one way of standing still.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt
When you live in a certain place for a long period of time or surround yourself with a certain group of people (whether purposely or circumstantially), you start to acclimate to the habits, beliefs, and lifestyle of those people in close proximity. That’s just human nature. If you aren’t the type to travel outside your town, state, or even country, then your perception of what’s normal squarely rests on your everyday interactions.
As such, it’s easy to assume that everyone is just like you or, at least, carry similar values and attribute that allow us to all participate in society. You may have a conservative stance on social and political issues, and understand that other people don’t, but you still assume the average person is going to be act a certain way, regardless of their beliefs. For example, Billy Bob in HR may believe the government is working with aliens to poison our water as a mind-control experiment but you STILL expect good ol’ Billy to say “howdy” to you when you walk into work and not be a dick by drinking all the coffee without making a new pot.
Although America is the ultimate melting pot, we are united in that we have certain traditions and actions we all try to do. Because of this, it’s easy to assume that people in other countries act in similar manners, but that couldn’t be further from the truth.
I remember taking a taxi once with a guy from Trinidad. I was eating a burrito and he made some comment that, in his country, it would have been considered rude not to offer part of your meal with someone you’re sitting next to.
I was blown away. Never once have I been at a Starbucks and thought to offer part of my scone to the dude on his laptop next to me. If anything, dude would probably think I was really freakin’ weird.
Here, an Ireland-native talks about his experience with American culture and how totally backwards it felt to him as an outsider looking in.
Being stuck at the airport for longer than two hours is THE WORST.
Okay, that is clearly a very melodramatic statement and a “luxury problem” only entitled people in First World countries would dare make.
But I’m not afraid of making overly-inflated generalizations, so here we are.
If you’ve ever had a layover in Chicago or Buffalo over the Christmas holidays, then you DEFINITELY can relate to the mind-numbing and anxiety-inducing feeling that being stuck at a terminal with thousands of other impatient travelers can cause. If you’ve ever flown out of Chicago in December and never ONCE had a situation where you were standing in line for hours trying to get a redirected flight, you’re a liar. I simply don’t believe it’s possible. I’ve been stuck in Chicago at least three times for a layover and I now refuse to take a flight in the wintertime that goes anywhere near Illinois. (No offense to Chicago-natives… LOVE your city, HATE your airport.)
You would think by now they would offer more things to do at an airport than drink your face off or watch the weather channel at the gate. It’s not uncommon for people to be stuck in airports overnight, so why not offer more activities, O’Hare? Give us a freakin’ movie theatre or petting zoo or strip club for Christ’s sake. People are ALREADY cranky from lugging their kids and bags through an airport to go visit family members they can’t stand on Thanksgiving (and that’s when everything goes seamlessly).
But when you add a five hour flight delay to that already sobering experience? People go from testy to UFC, cage-fighter crazy.
If you’re currently reading this while you’re at an airport, waiting for your plane to arrive, God bless. Here’s a bunch of hysterical airport pictures that might make you feel a little better about your current situation.
Coffee On The Rocks
Quick: what are the two things we can’t live without? If you’re like us, the answer is coffee and alcohol. Enter coffee-infused Jack Daniels