14 things Americans need to know about England before they even go near that little island.
Ever since the English adopted our language, Americans have wanted to cross the ocean to visit their quaint land filled with the people who became the model for hobbits. Before you make your next trip to the land of redcoats and Cadbury eggs, remember these 14 tips.
1. The words British, English, Welsh, and Scottish all basically mean the same thing. So don’t get caught up in distinguishing between these terms. Most people in England don’t care and have given up on such distinctions.
2. Endear yourself to Brits by calling them “Governor.” This is considered a deep sign of respect and recalls a favorite English movie called “Mary Poppins” in which Dick Van Dyke plays an Englishman so well that most of them to this day believe he is one of them.
3. They call it "soccer" now too. You may have heard that the English call soccer “football,” and while a few older types may still use this archaic term, most people have adopted the American name for the game and consider it much cooler and more descriptive.
4. Most Brits aren’t diehard fans of their soccer teams and watch more as an excuse to drink or get away from spouses. Unlike Americans, their loyalty to a club is much more arbitrary and immature. So, if someone asks you what team you “support” (the British word for “jock strap”) just say whatever one has the jersey that matches your outfit on a particular day. Again, soccer is more about fashion in the U.K. so they’ll appreciate this sentiment.
5. To “bugger” someone translates roughly into “getting to know” someone in American English. So, if you meet someone who seems interesting, simply say, “you know, I’d like to bugger you.”
6. Englishmen cannot hold their liquor well compared to Americans. Be aware of this if you ever visit one of their “pubs” which are essentially old timey theme bars that close early. If you’d like to be a little mischievous, challenge one of the “blokes” (English slang for fat, bloated men) to a drinking contest. They’ll probably cower in fear when they see a superior American drinking machine like you, but if they actually accept an alcoholic duel, it will only last a few minutes till they vomit after putting one back a bit too fast.
7. Fit in by trying a “cockney” (English for having a huge dick, or cock) accent. Just watch the aforementioned Mary Poppins and basically say whatever Dick Van Dyke does. Most English people will perk up immediately and take you in as one of their own.
8. Pass out American money to show your generosity. Go anywhere, to one of the “pubs” perhaps, and whip out a roll of hard American cash. Even a few dollars will go a long way as the English have an inferiority complex about their own currency (known as the “squid,” after sea creatures who used to eat British sailors.) Throw your money on the bar or the floor and watch as Englishmen scurry to collect it and thank you profusely as if you are some kind of idol or god.
9. As always, hand out small American flags and watch the Brits’ eyes light up as they greedily collect them. The U.S. flag, which the British based their own flag on, is very popular in their country and in some areas you may even see them proudly displayed on homes.
10. McDonald’s coupons serve as currency in England, so don’t forget any you have. If you ever find yourself in a tough situation with any officials or police, just pull them out and use them as bribes. Your problem will disappear almost as fast as the corrupt bureaucrats run to the nearest McDonald’s to cash in on their bounty.
11. Always remember that you are representing your country and try to overlook any of the deficiencies you may see in English culture. Just smile and walk on when, for instance, someone accosts you to ask if you’re a “yank” (British slang for someone they’d like to jerk off) and request an autograph or selfie.
12. The Brits don’t carry guns like we do, so you should win any firefight easily. This doesn’t mean you should challenge them to duels or shoot outs, however. These are generally frowned upon because the English prefer oil wrestling (see below) to settle their differences.
13. If you are ever challenged to an oil wrestling match, say no.* This is an attempt by the British to get you naked in a pool of oil so they can have their way with you in front of a crowd while one of their cronies films it all.
14. “Bangers and Mash” is the British version of the television show “Cagney and Lacey.”
*Unless you’re into that kind of thing.
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