Everyone thinks they know something about America, whether they’ve actually visited or not. I guess that comes hand in hand with being at the epicenter of the world’s politics, culture, media, and sport. But it’s even more mind-blowing for non-Americans when things they’ve heard about the U.S. turn out to be true!
Non-Americans who’ve spent time stateside recently went online to share the rumors they heard about us that turned out to be true. Enjoy!
50. Going Green
49. You’ve Got A Friend In Me
48. No More Scrubbing
I heard that Americans had to pay for an ambulance ride and thought at most it would just be an amount to cover gas or whatever. But I’ve seen people claim it costs anywhere up to $3,000? (I understand it will probably vary a lot between states.)
44. O Say Can You Sea
43. The Sink Monster
42. Driven To Drive
41. It Ain’t Easy Being Cheezy
40. Your Fence Is The Wrong Color
I’m told the real purpose of HOAs is to maintain a certain aesthetic standard for the neighborhood while the developer tries to sell houses. It also allows the developer to recoup some of the expenses to create or maintain the common areas from the homeowners. HOAs are created to benefit developers and not homeowners. And yet people take it so seriously!
39. Pill Poppin’
38. Fast Friends
37. Going Solo
I’m Finnish and few years back people actually threw US themed parties and the high point of the parties were the red cups and drinking games played with them. Every person I know who owns a set of those cups (like 20 or so) and use them only for drinking games. They wash them and use again at the next party.
Standard in Finland are those see-through cups you see in festivals. The Red cups make every party just slightly better and classier and add a feel that the host actually put in effort.
36. Green Energy
35. Like A Bunch Of Geese!
34. Fort Education
33. Go The Distance
32. This Is Not A Drill
31. Book Worms
30. Three Strikes You’re Out
I never thought that “take me out to the ballgame” song was a real thing, but it’s apparently sung at baseball games. It’s a thing at the 7th inning stretch. Not everyone sings it, but they play it on the PA. I’m still not entirely sure the guy who explained this wasn’t making fun of me though…
29. No Privacy
(Female here.) I’ve been in bathrooms in the US where the gap between the stall and door is so big I felt the need to cover it with my purse just to get some privacy.
The absolute worst is when some mother brings her grubby-handed son on the bathroom and you see an 8-year-old’s eye staring at you from the other side of the door.
28. Candy Man
27. Walk It Off
26. Park It
25. Buy This Car To Go To Work, Go To Work To Pay For This Car
I mean, I was surprised that you literally can rack up $100,000 or more in debt just through student loans.
24. Just The Tip
23. Come For The Cups, Stay For The Cups
22. The Joys Of Motherhood
21. Mr. Tea
Free soft-drink refills in restaurants. Like how does that make any sense?
I’m told restaurants pay an incredibly low amount for soft drinks. Like almost nothing for the syrup they put in the machine. Their profit margin is HUGE, which is why the price is so low and why free refills don’t cut heavily into their bottom line.
19. America The Thirsty
18. Hello, Dolly!
I never realized that woman is a saint. She has a book program for children where, once they are born, they will receive a free children’s book once a month until they turn 5.
That is amaaaaaaaazing. She deserves her own theme park for that!
17. If Only
16. We’re Getting Ripped Off
15. I Like My Freedom With Ketchup
14. Coming To America
13. In Laws
12. Give Me A Hand
11. Pie In The Sky
10. Hello, You Eat Too Much
9. Paper Boys
8. You’re In New England Now
7. Think Inside The Box
6. I Come From A Land Down Under
5. They’re Not The Bobbies
4. Thumbing It
French ex-exchange teenager in California here. Summer 97. I was young and missed the field trip bus to Disneyland from San Diego. So I did something pretty stupid: I hitchhiked to go there by myself. The dude who picked me up looked like a plain clothes cop, but he was really friendly.
When he heard I was French he told me never ever to hitchhike in USA because its pretty dangerous. Plus people could assume I’m up to no good.
So I replied, “Look at you! You don’t think I’m up to no good. I’m not that dangerous-looking or you are careless. And you seem perfectly nice.”
“Oh yeah?” he said. “Take a look at this.”
He told me to open the glovebox in front of me, where I found a loaded handgun.
3. Give Me Your Candy
2. Not In E-mail Form, Though
After Pearl Harbor, the effects of WW2 started in the US and rationing became a thing. Well, it turns out that it’s kind of hard to get fresh rations to an island that imports almost everything. So, for meat, they had to make do with spam. Human ingenuity prevails and dishes were invented. And that’s how Hawaii learned to love spam!