Author Topic: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread  (Read 59395 times)

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CharlieBraun

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #90 on: April 10, 2013, 03:01:38 PM »
I'm not seeing the replacement word for Americans taking the nation by storm, but I was wrong about Kim kardashian, so....
« Last Edit: April 10, 2013, 03:06:50 PM by CharlieBraun »
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sparksals

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #91 on: April 10, 2013, 03:03:20 PM »


There's also an accuracy problem--if someone SAYS "Americans" meaning "citizens of the US, Canada, Mexico," nobody else is going to know what they mean. Anywhere else in the world.
See above, so the bolded isn't true across the board.

Whenever I travel, people in Europe, Asia, Australia know there is a difference between Canada and the US.  If they hear I am Canadian, they know it is a different country.  They don't lump "Americans" into one continental category that often, if at all, in my experience. 

sparksals

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #92 on: April 10, 2013, 03:06:34 PM »
It is if you are speaking English.

For any English speaker to pretend that they do not know that "American" means (in most contexts) "inhabitant of the United States of America" is to be pedantic to the extreme.

I'm not sure I'd agree with you... To anybody in the US - probably, but I've met a number of people from Canada (sorry Sparksal, but I have), Central/South America* and New Zealand who use "America" and "American" in the same way as a Dane would - i.e. to mean either, depending on context.

In most situations it's probably either clear from context or it doesn't matter, but when it does, I make sure to say either "USians" or "People from the US".

* Sorry, just realized I don't actually know if English is the official language for any country in Central or South America. Not sure about that one then.

I believe the only context you mean would be to refer to something continental when talking about N. or S. America, something relating to the continent as a whole.  I would say I'm going to S. America on a trip, for instance and then expand on what country(s) I would be visiting.  But it is rare for a Canadian to refer to America (we refer to the US as "The States") lumping Canadians as Americans.  We just don't do that.

sparksals

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #93 on: April 10, 2013, 03:10:12 PM »
Fair enough. My experiences differ, but as this is all anecdata anyway it's worth exactly as much as you paid for it  :) This thread is the first time I've heard that some Canadians didn't identify as Americans.

We don't identify as Americans at all.  I think this is something that occurs in countries and continents outside Canada and the US.  Most know Canada and the US are different countries, but they don't realize the cultures and identities are so different.   When I have been overseas, many times I will be asked if I am American.  My response is, No, I am Canadian.  Some people respond it is the same thing, but I politely correct them.  Many others respond that they realize the difference, but don't realize the different cultural identity. 

sparksals

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #94 on: April 10, 2013, 03:11:13 PM »
Context of course makes a difference. However, if you are talking to Canadians about people who live below the Canadian border and above the Mexican one, it is generally agreed that these people are "Americans". Canadians identify themselves in simply as "Canadian".

If you call a Canadian an "American" they will likely take this as an insult, indicating that you do not consider Canada important enough to be seen as a real country separate from the United States. Seriously, don't go into a Tim Horton's, and start talking about "you Americans," unless you want to be thought of as extremely offensive.

You can call people from the United States "USians" if you want (it's an awkward but not offensive term), but be prepared for Canadians to stare blankly at you if you use it. The term is simply not used in this country. We know who the Americans are. They're the ones who think they won the War of 1812.  ;)

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sparksals

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #95 on: April 10, 2013, 03:13:01 PM »
Fair enough. My experiences differ, but as this is all anecdata anyway it's worth exactly as much as you paid for it  :) This thread is the first time I've heard that some Canadians didn't identify as Americans.

I'm Canadian; I've never met a Canadian that does identify as American, unless they are US citizens, living here.

And I would be very quick to correct anyone who called me American.  Especially when travelling overseas, which I may get a chance to do next year.

Friends of mine have lived in California for almost 15 years.  They still identify as Canadian.

I have lived in the US for 10 years.  I am Canadian and always will be.  I haven't taken US citizenship and don't have plans to do so.  I may change my mind, but at this time, I am happy with my status quo.

Twik

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #96 on: April 10, 2013, 03:15:48 PM »
Fair enough. My experiences differ, but as this is all anecdata anyway it's worth exactly as much as you paid for it  :) This thread is the first time I've heard that some Canadians didn't identify as Americans.

Maria, I'm wondering - is that when you're speaking Danish with them? Because it sounds like English and Danish use very different terminology here.

I've never heard of Canadians choosing to identify themselves as Americans when travelling. In fact, there are all sorts of stories (mostly, I hope, urban legends) that we get better treatment if we make it clear we're Canadian.
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Diane AKA Traska

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #97 on: April 10, 2013, 03:21:32 PM »
Fair enough. My experiences differ, but as this is all anecdata anyway it's worth exactly as much as you paid for it  :) This thread is the first time I've heard that some Canadians didn't identify as Americans.

Maria, I'm wondering - is that when you're speaking Danish with them? Because it sounds like English and Danish use very different terminology here.

I've never heard of Canadians choosing to identify themselves as Americans when travelling. In fact, there are all sorts of stories (mostly, I hope, urban legends) that we get better treatment if we make it clear we're Canadian.

There's the old joke that if the plane is hijacked, if you're American say you're Canadian!
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2littlemonkeys

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #98 on: April 10, 2013, 03:55:21 PM »
Getting back to having a "Miscellaneous thread for things that don't deserve their own thread",  I question this.  Everyone who starts a thread probably believes it is deserving of being on the board for comments.  Personally, I want to know what the gist of the thread is going to be before I read it.  I don't want to have to guess if it is something I'm interested in reading about.

The reason I made this thread is, there have been many times where a thread has sidetracked, and the sidetrack is actually interesting, albeit to a small group of people.  Then, those people are asked to take it to its own thread, which is great... but it's kind of like the old adage of "why don't they offer up cable completely a la carte," with the answer being that although you may love the three-guys-named-Bill-playing-Parcheesi" channel, if it's not included with other channels it will have too few people interested in it.

So this is basically the equivalent of a cable package... all those sidetracks that are interesting to you, but you just know wouldn't go a whole page if it wasn't in with other topics (admittedly, this one subverted that.  :D)

On that note, a new topic, sort of a question but not really enough of a factual one to go in the "this might be a stupid question" thread:

Do [other] people really only eat basil as pesto?

With spring approaching (in the USA  ;D ) conversations, FB, etc are turning to talk of gardens and fresh produce etc. Basil gets mentioned. So I note how easy basil is to grow, and how it just keeps producing, etc. I mention with pride how bushy my basils are and how I have to harvest several leaves a week to keep them in check. And without fail, seriously every single conversation I have ever had and mentioned my basil plants, someone says "oh, well you should make pesto!" As if this is A) a terribly ingenious idea that would have never occurred to dumb ole me before and B) the way to use basil. (Once someone even said "basil? Nah I don't like pesto.")

I like pesto, and occasionally I do make it (and sometimes when I do, I use other fresh greens then basil! And other cheeses and other nuts! Oh the humanity!) But gee whiz folks, basil is also delicious in tomato dishes, or in eggs, or mixed into salad, or mixed into rice our couscous or quinoa, in Thai curry, its good raw, or cooked into dishes, whole leaves or large cuts or diced - there are so many ways to use basil other then just pureed with olive oil,  Parmigiano Reggiano and pine nuts!

I grow basil and hardly ever make pesto.  I like to chop it up and put it on pasta dishes or pizza.  Sometimes I'll use it in lieu of lettuce on burgers.  And that's if my kids haven't stripped it bare from eating it right off the plant.  mmm...basil...I just planted some from seed and I can't wait until it matures.

Diane AKA Traska

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #99 on: April 10, 2013, 04:03:18 PM »
That's it.  I'm planting some basil.  Now I just need the right sized pot for indoor growth.  And a place the cats won't munch on it.
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Elisabunny

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #100 on: April 10, 2013, 04:17:45 PM »
I've never referred to myself as an "American", I'm a New Yorker - everywhere I've ever traveled to (England, the Netherlands, Japan, Ireland, Canada, the Caribbean, Mexico, other states in the USA, etc, everyone knew what I meant when I said "New York". And if someone called me "American" I would clarify (not correct necessarily, but definitely clarify) "actually a New Yorker" because honestly while me and a person from California, or Oregon, or Iowa might all be from the same official country, we are from vastly different places and cultures.

However, it should be noted that very few states or cities have the kind of fervor that New York does.  I think you can just about wrap up that list with Texas and California.  I would never introduce myself as "a Pennsylvanian" because, honestly, living in Pennsylvania isn't that different from living in Florida.  I know, as I lived there for three months.  Other than climate and food/drinks, there's not much different.

Add Idaho to the list.  People around here are very proud to be Idahoans.  Although that might just be the south-east section, where there is a strong undercurrent of, "Heck no, we are not Utahns!"  (Sorry, Utah.)
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Margo

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #101 on: April 10, 2013, 04:18:16 PM »
I think there are some nuances in thought as well here. I don't identify myself as a 'brit' - and I don't know of any British/Scottish/English/Welsh person who would. I personally don't like the term at all, but I understand that some people (primarily from the US) choose to describe us as such. I'm actually half English, half Welsh, so I would say I'm from the UK/British/a Briton.

There are some sets of countries that people (for whatever reason - primarily similarity of language & accent), mentally group together, i.e. USA & Canada and New Zealand and Australia. This means that someone outside those countries/continent may describe something as American, when they actually mean Canadian, or Australian, when they actually mean New Zealand. To someone inside those countries that might seem bizarre or offensive, but to an outsider, it's easily done, although no offence is intended. By using the term USian, it removes the mental ambiguity from American, which could mean Canadian or American (USA). 

I think there was recently on another thread a quibble over someone saying something was 'typically European', when they actually mean German, Italian (or whatever, I couldn't work out what country they were talking about but it definitely wasn't the UK). As someone from the UK, that makes absolutely no sense at all - we don't identify as 'European', and our cultures and histories are so vastly different that it seems a bizarre statement. But from an outsider's perspective, we're lumped together geographically and (for the most part) economically, so what's the difference?

All in all, I think we should recognise that people outside our geographical area may not appreciate our own feelings about our identity, but as long as they're not disrespectful, we should try to take it in a positive light, and not see offence where none was intended.

This interested me, (as another Briton) I realised that which I would not normally self-identify as 'European', for the reasons you've given. An American friend of mine was in the UK recently. While she was planning her trip she made a comment in an email to me about how much she was looking forward to her trip to Europe, and my initial response was to think "that's funny, I didn't know you were going to Europe - I thought you were spending the whole week in England" (I did realise what she meant before I replied, however!)

That said, there are some situations where I would identify as both English and European.

(also, as the poster who inadvertently sparked this off by using 'USians, I've found the comments really interesting. I'd like to say that I had no idea that anyone would find it either unfamiliar or offensive - if I had, I would not have used it. I learned it from (American) posters on other boards where it's used simply as shorthand, with no negative implications at all)

I love pesto, but also use fresh basil in lots of other things. When I can get it. It may be easy to grow, but apparently does not survive being slept on by a large cat.  (although it makes the cat smell nice for a while)

dawbs

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #102 on: April 10, 2013, 04:22:59 PM »
That's it.  I'm planting some basil.  Now I just need the right sized pot for indoor growth.  And a place the cats won't munch on it.
FWIW, I've had a dickens of a time, over the years, keeping the cats out of my plants...
Now I have a small ikea greenhouse.
Added bonus, it helps me not have to water things so often.

They no longer make 'mine', but this is similar:  http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/70186603/

sparksals

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #103 on: April 10, 2013, 04:43:12 PM »
Fair enough. My experiences differ, but as this is all anecdata anyway it's worth exactly as much as you paid for it  :) This thread is the first time I've heard that some Canadians didn't identify as Americans.

Maria, I'm wondering - is that when you're speaking Danish with them? Because it sounds like English and Danish use very different terminology here.

I've never heard of Canadians choosing to identify themselves as Americans when travelling. In fact, there are all sorts of stories (mostly, I hope, urban legends) that we get better treatment if we make it clear we're Canadian.

Ohhh!! I missed that Maria is speaking a different language.  Yes, I agree with Twik.  Different language and use of terminology. 

Diane AKA Traska

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Re: File under Miscellaneous: Topics That Don't Deserve A Whole Thread
« Reply #104 on: April 10, 2013, 04:47:08 PM »
I've never referred to myself as an "American", I'm a New Yorker - everywhere I've ever traveled to (England, the Netherlands, Japan, Ireland, Canada, the Caribbean, Mexico, other states in the USA, etc, everyone knew what I meant when I said "New York". And if someone called me "American" I would clarify (not correct necessarily, but definitely clarify) "actually a New Yorker" because honestly while me and a person from California, or Oregon, or Iowa might all be from the same official country, we are from vastly different places and cultures.

However, it should be noted that very few states or cities have the kind of fervor that New York does.  I think you can just about wrap up that list with Texas and California.  I would never introduce myself as "a Pennsylvanian" because, honestly, living in Pennsylvania isn't that different from living in Florida.  I know, as I lived there for three months.  Other than climate and food/drinks, there's not much different.

Add Idaho to the list.  People around here are very proud to be Idahoans.  Although that might just be the south-east section, where there is a strong undercurrent of, "Heck no, we are not Utahns!"  (Sorry, Utah.)

You would say you're an Idahoan instead of an American?
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