When you feel embarrassed (and then guilty) about other fellow Americans in Britain



Dear Readers,

Do you ever have moments when as a Shamerican * you stumble across a fellow American in Britain that do things that are really embarrassing? Sometimes it happens when an American speaks really loudly with a very jarring American twang: “Hey Bob, look that stone bridge over there! It is from 1109, did you hear that Bob, the bridge is from 1109 –Mary would love that, bedder gedder a picture!!”

Or sometimes you get Americans in the UK that are more shocking in London, like on the tube, at 11am.  I knew she was American before she spoke. You can just tell. It was her overstuffed ‘Jansport’ backpack, a huge hoodie that that said ‘University of Texas Beta theta Phi Kappa Delta (or whateveh the hell those sororities are called ). But this isn’t about her wardrobe.

This American gal opened her bible up to the New Testament and attempted to read very loudly to other passengers around her on the carriage.   I know, brave!! But oh, lovely readers, the reaction was NOT PRETTY. One guy whispered to his girlfriend: Bloody Americans trying to push herself on us, what’s she on about? Got to give my fellow unabashed countrywoman credit. She just kept on reading and reading and reading— tube stop after tube stop….I did find myself very embarrassed for her.

Clearly she had no clue about how the British do things,  I mean she should really have a crash course in the ‘British way’ because let’s just say that preaching on a tube is not gonna win over any Jesus freaks, well, at least it’s not likely, anyhow.**

I can’t help it. Sometimes I see another American and feel embarrassed for them as they try to negotiate their way in this country. After all, I am American too, and have made a mess of it in the past, this blog will testify to that! The steps usually go like this when I see an embarrassing American.

1) Shame for finding a fellow American, a compatriot so embarrassing

2) Guilt because I really am finding them embarrassing,

3)  I tell myself to stop being so damn snobby and just laugh (the best step– but sadly it takes going through steps 1 and 2 to reach this point.)

4) Complex comes over me where I want to protect these lost souls from stepping into it even more.

5) I usually text fellow blogger Yankeebean an OMG story and we cringe


* We have unofficially nominated Shamerican as our term to replace ‘expat’ on occasion. We do not however, have any affiliation with this very intriguing website !!!

** Still trying to figure out (while writing this post) what the best way to win ‘Jesus Freaks’ over would be in this country. After 5 years I still could not give that American gal suggestions.

Feeling homesick? Why even the embarrassing American tourists might be your answer. Click here

Feeling homesick? American tourists might be your answer.

yahooavatar15 There is no rhyme or reason, it just happens. Some days I wake up extremely homesick. Today, lovely readers, was one of those days.

Starbucks in one hand, plopping myself in front of the York Minster I sat staring at its Gothic spires. I needed space, time to clear my head of my negative fog.

As I was finishing the hot chocolate with extra whipped cream I heard those all-familiar voices like a much needed hug– American Accents! Here was the conversation between two American men that put me back into reality.

-Hey Tom, whats that church over there?

-Lets see, let’s look at my guide book…that there is the York Min-i-uh-steer.

-Oh, that looks purdy old. Should we take a picture of it?

-Nah, let’s get lunch!

(And then off they walked!)

It didn’t stop my homesickness, but their words sure helped me realise that I am living in such a different world then these American tourists! I came to the conclusion that I am not such an outsider afterall. Overhearing their conversation made me really grateful to be in the gorgeous city of York, in front of such a beautiful masterpiece.