40 U.S. Customs That Baffle the Rest of the World

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40 U.S. Customs That Baffle the Rest of the World

Americans might not want to admit it, but the ol’ US of A is a strange, strange place. We’re no national psychologist but we’re guessing its size, cockiness and rebellious nature all play a role in its kooky “individualism.” Think about it: Seattle and Dallas are both American, and that’s just weird. After winning its independence from Britain, ‘Merica decided to shun anything remotely “European,” which it generally considers gay or socialist (or both). Even if other countries have much better ways of doing things (like, I don’t know, universal health care and free college), ‘Merica is doin’ things ‘Merica’s way! And boy howdy, that’s that!

STORE HOURS CN OPE Stores staying open 24/7 is a thing in the U.S. and also in parts of Asia, but not at all in Europe. For example, in Germany, opening on Sundays is against the law in most cases. In France, pretty much the only 24-hour stores are pharmacies, and in Switzerland, the only late-night options are vending machines. GRACKED.COM

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GRACKED BOSNIA'S FESTIVAL OF SCRAMBLED EGGS. The U.S. might celebrate spring with a spring cleaning, but Zenica, Bosnia, kicks off the season with Čimburijada - a tribute to scrambled eggs. They cook them in a large pan in a city park, then spend the day partying, BBQing and jumping in the river.

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GRACKED ATHLEISURE ISN'T COOL EVERYWHERE ELSE. TRANSBORED Sure, stylish sportswear outside of the gym is trendy, but in Japan, most of Europe, and elsewhere, wearing sweatpants, leggings, flip flops, and even baseball caps in public is disrespectful.

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GRACKED YOU'RE FROM THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. Travelers saying they're American implies that only the U.S. should be considered America. From North to South, there are 38 American countries.

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On workdays, 53% of Americans get fewer than seven hours of sleep. Those numbers are considerably lower in other Western countries - 39% in the UK, 36% in Germany, 30% in Canada, and 29% in Mexico. CRACKED.COM

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CRACKED.COM Red Solo cups are uncommon outside of the U.S. In fact, foreigners think they are All- American and even host American parties where they use the iconic red cups to lend authenticity.

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COLLEGE LOANS xx STOP R.I.P. T the Price OUR of our DR FUTURE Even keeping to where student loans are necessary, there's a big difference in how the U.S. and other countries handle them. In America, you'll be hounded to pay back loans even after declaring bankruptcy. In the UK, your student debt is completely written off if you have not repaid it in 25-35 years. GRACKED.COM

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BREAD To visitors from other countries, American bread tastes like cake. That's because manufacturers add a ton of high-fructose corn syrup-the stuff is so cheap there, thanks to corn subsidies. Some people think American bread tastes better. Others think the sweetness makes it incompatible with any kind of topping. GRACKED.COM

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GRACKED AMERICAN DATES ARE CONFUSING. 12 17 18 19 24 25 Americans write the month, the day, then the year, but pretty much every other country writes the day first, then the month, then the year. So 06/03/1985 is June 3rd, 1985 in the U.S., but the 6th of March, 1985 everywhere else.

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GRACKED THANKSGIVING IN THE U.S. IS WEIRD! Canada has an even older Thanksgiving than the U.S., and most countries who celebrate Thanksgiving do so in early October, to give thanks for the last harvests. The U.S. holds it way after the harvest, and is the only one that involves Pilgrims.

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GRACKED BLACK CATS DON'T HAVE TO BE BAD LUCK! Germany has a different take on luck with black cats. It's only bad luck if they cross your path right to left. Left to right is good luck, so there's a silver lining not given in the U.S.

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