a couple of observations regarding these united states of .... since I've been here
as I exited the people loader / unloader and entered Washington Dulles, I was assaulted by the sounds of barking masses. That's right, hordes of big people pushing and scurrying while barking into some sort of device.
if they weren't elbowing their way around, they were sat, overflowing the chair, yakking into sometimes unseen gadgets strapped to their ears. Or they were staring transfixed into some handheld device, heads bobbing to the beat of music plugged into their ears.
I can also report that these large humans certainly couldn't credit their girth to the ample servings received while in transit on aircraft between said airports. since one is served doll food.
perhaps American cars are bigger because the people seem to be as well? hmmmm. dunno. Other things that are bigger. EVERYTHING! lol! Okay, I have spent hours and hours now at BricoDepot in France. Which is considered a BIG store. BricoDepot would fit in the paint and tools section of the Oakland Home Depot. I mean, the Oakland Home Depot is at least six to eight times larger. It is VAST! I wandered around while getting a key made (only $1.47 per key by the way! HELLO Brico Depot!!! but I digress) and as I was wandering I didn't discover any products or sections not on offer at BricoDepot. Just that there must be five times as much in each aisle. What is the necessity of all of these consumables?
I was reminded of the circle I dosie-dohhed out of not long ago. The one where we all strive to make more money to buy more things to put in bigger houses that cost more money that we work more hours to get more money so we can buy more things to put in ... well you get it.
regarding this device fixation. I said to a friend, 'please don't tell me I was like that ...'. She stared at me a bit ruefully and tried to tiptoe around my question, telling me ... 'well, sometimes you would look at the phone and see who it was and not answer it ... but your phone was always ringing and if it wasn't ringing you were looking at it to check stuff'.
are people really that incapable of conducting their lives without technological assistance? or connection?
it has really gone over the top. couples sit in restaurants and talk on the phone to others. or send and read emails with their PDAs, rarely exchanging a word with their dining partners. People are out shopping, shouting into cell phones as they check-out, nary a word to the person working to acknowledge the transaction. Individual diners sit and talk into cell phones, many times hidden little bits on their ears and covered up with hair, which is equally confusing!
If the above isn't bad enough ... it is all done Loudly! Very, very loudly! While in France, I've jokingly told folks that Americans are like the labradors of the world.
You know ... kind of big and bouncy and 'here I am, look at me, be my friend' sorts ... tails wagging and big grins on the face.
But I can also tell you ... comparatively speaking ... Americans are LOUD. And frankly, it is annoying.
Americans don't just talk loudly on the phone (which of course they do and in the most inappropriate situations). They talk loudly to each other. In restaurants. At theaters. In the bank. Didn't anyone ever teach these people about using their 'small' voices? Because just like bigger cars, roads, malls, platters of mass produced 'cuisine', bigger voices seem to be all the rage.
I haven't decided if it is the labrador factor. OR if there is a desire to be the center of attention. If they think they and what they have to say are that much more important and must be shared in elevated tones.
I'm on sensory overload.
(the misadventures of an expatriate corporate dropout)