I’ve been to the UK twice in my life. Once to Manchester for Christmas and another just recently to London to scout for work.
Previous to that everything I learnt about England was from British TV. Or my dad.
No my dad’s not Sid James but he is a pom.
Here are a few things that I’ve learnt so far in no particular order.
they like to queue
They’re an obedient race. If there’s a line at a counter, the bus stop or the emergency exit they’ll join it. Don’t believe me, a recent study surmised that more British than American passengers died on the Titanic because they queued politely for the lifeboats.
they drink like nobody’s business
I have to admit, I just can’t keep up. The English have this misguided notion that Australians know how to drink. I can tell you after being there and experiencing the English drinking culture first hand, they have it all over us.
They drinking drink at lunch, after work, watching the match, on the weekends, whenever. In most places it’s cheaper to buy a lager than it is a bottle of water. Up until recently the majority of pubs in the UK served final drinks at 11pm – making ‘half to’ the ritual three-drinks-a-piece final rush to the bar.
Until recently it was still legal to drink on public transport. On June 1st 2008, London’s new mayor, Boris Johnson, banned it outright. The rest of the country soon followed. How did people respond? By riding the tube the night before for one “Last Round on the Underground”.
Vodpod videos no longer available.
they rule the airwaves
For starters, the Brits pay a a television licensing fee (funding the BBC’s television, radio and interactive services) every year so you can imagine they want to get what they paid for. They’ve also grown up use to having their own culture reflected back at them through the telly.
On average the UK produces 27,000 hours of domestic TV content a year (that 520 hours a week) at a cost of 2.6 billion. This is about five times what Australia produces. Imports from the US, Europe and Australia do get a look in but are the exception to the rule.
In Australia we’re use to getting both pretty much anywhere. Now English food certainly isn’t as bad as it’s made out to be but by god it can be expensive. If you want to eat out and eat something fresh then it’s going to cost you.
Same goes for their legendary black cabs, they may have “the knowledge” to get anywhere in London but it will cost you. I quickly learnt that most people just take public transport or mini-cabs – the cheap alternative to London’s black cabs.
meat – with jelly – served cold
A throw back to the 1800’s when there was a meat shortage and they used the jelly as a preservative to stop it going off.
So am I wrong?
Know something about England I don’t?
Feel free to let me know. All recommendations welcomed … including where to get a good pad thai.