Everyone can relate to a stereotype in some sort of way, whether it’s personal, insulting, flattering (unlikely!) Or simply relatable. Being in America has especially emphasised this for me!
I remember last year when I befriended a few exchange American exchange students. One of them struck with as a cheerleading, soroity president kind of girl. She was clearly well off, petite, wore extensions, and spent hours getting ready. The stark truth was she was a med student who had a passion for playing soccor and would never dream of paying to be part of a soroity. In turn, she was bemused at our lack of “snobbiness”, though she was in Lancashire afterall.
Today those stereotypes popped up again in the local laundry-mat. I’d gone in to check how our washing was drying and a kindly gentleman grabbed my attention.
“I had to restart that dryer with the sneakers in,” not even the term ‘sneakers’ throws me anymore I’m so used to america! “They made the door open so I made sure to restart it.”
Simple enough considering he was right next to the machine, and it saved us waiting another 20 minutes. My response?
“Oh I’m sorry about that! Thank you!”
It wasn’t until he said there was no need to aologise that I realised my mistake. Firstly, they weren’t my sneakers so even if it had warrented an apology it wouldn’t have been mine to make. Secondly, it didn’t warrent an apology.
But I guess that’s part of my British charm. Typically we hate being an inconvinence to anyone and are known for our manners- though they’re going down hill many would argue. Even when I got hit by the cycalist my automatic reaction was to apologise for getting in his way- God forbid I cross at the designated crossing zone at the correct time.
I guess in the case of stereotypes, the Britishness which we’re famous for probably isn’t that insulting. Unless you think we’re snobby, in which case you’re mistaken and I apologise for that.