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Congratulations Australia From The US

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Gay3 View Drop Down
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    Posted: 09 Feb 2022 at 5:22pm

 
 · 
AUSTRALIA: AN AMERICAN VIEW...
Interesting set of observations from a visitor from the other side of the Pacific. ‘Value what you have and don't give it away.' There's a lot to admire about Australia, especially if you're a visiting American, says David Mason. More often than you might expect, Australian friends patiently listening to me enthuse about their country have said, ''We need outsiders like you to remind us what we have.'' So here it is - a small presumptuous list of what one foreigner admires in Oz.
1. Health care. I know the controversies, but basic national healthcare is a gift. In America, medical expenses are a leading cause of bankruptcy. The drug companies dominate politics and advertising.
Obama was crucified for taking halting baby steps towards sanity. You can't turn on the telly without hours of drug advertisements - something I have never yet seen here. And your emphasis on prevention - making cigarettes less accessible, for one - is a model.
2. Food. Yes, we have great food in America too, especially in the big cities. But your bread is less sweet, your lamb is cheaper, and your supermarket vegetables and fruits are fresher than ours.
Too often in my country an apple is a ball of pulp as big as your face.
The dainty Pink Lady apples of Oz are the juiciest I've had. And don't get me started on coffee.
In American small towns it tastes like water flavoured with burnt dirt, but the smallest shop in the smallest town in Oz can make a first-rate latte.
I love your ubiquitous bakeries, your hot-cross buns. Shall I go on?
3. Language. How do you do it?
The rhyming slang and Aboriginal place names like magic spells.
Words that seem vaguely English yet also resemble an argot from another planet.
I love the way institutional names get turned into diminutives - Vinnie's and Salvos - and absolutely nothing is sacred.
Everything's an opportunity for word games and everyone's a nickname.
Lingo makes the world go round.
It's the spontaneous wit of the people that tickles me most.
Late one night at a barbie my new mate Suds remarked, ''Nothing's the same since 24-7.'' Amen.
4. Free-to-air TV. In Oz, you buy a TV, plug it in and watch some of the best programming I have ever seen - uncensored.
In America, you can't get diddly-squat without paying a cable or satellite company heavy fees.
In Oz a few channels make it hard to choose.
In America, you've got 400 channels and nothing to watch.
5. Small shops. Outside the big cities in America corporations have nearly erased them.
Identical malls with identical restaurants serving inferior food.
Except for geography, it's hard to tell one American town from another.
The ''take-away'' culture here is wonderful.
Human encounters are real - stirring happens, stories get told.
The curries are to die for. And you don't have to tip!
6. Free camping. We used to have this too, and I guess it's still free when you backpack miles away from the roads.
But I love the fact that in Oz everyone owns the shore and in many places you can pull up a camper van and stare at the sea for weeks.
I love the ''primitive'' and independent campgrounds, the life outdoors.
The few idiots who leave their stubbies and rubbish behind in these pristine places ought to be transported in chains.
7. Religion. In America, it's everywhere - especially where it's not supposed to be, like politics.
I imagine you have your Pharisees too, making a big public show of devotion, but I have yet to meet one here.
8. Roads. Peak hour aside, I've found travel on your roads pure heaven.
My country's ''freeways'' are crowded, crumbling, insanely knotted with looping overpasses - it's like racing homicidal maniacs on fraying spaghetti.
I've taken the Hume without stress, and I love the Princes Highway when it's two lanes.
Ninety minutes south of Bateman's Bay I was sorry to see one billboard for a McDonald's. It's blocking a lovely paddock view. Someone should remove it.
9. Real multiculturalism. I know there are tensions, just like anywhere else, but I love the distinctiveness of your communities and the way you publicly acknowledge the Aboriginal past.
Recently, too, I spent quality time with Melbourne Greeks, and was gratified both by their devotion to their own great language and culture and their openness to an Afghan lunch.
10. Fewer guns. You had Port Arthur in 1996 and got real in response. America replicates such massacres several times a year and nothing changes.
Why?
Our religion of individual rights makes the good of the community an impossible dream.
Instead of mateship we have ''It's mine and nobody else's'.
We talk a great game about freedom, but too often live in fear.
There's more to say - your kaleidoscopic birds, your perfumed bush in springtime, your vast beaches.
These are just a few blessings that make Australia a rarity.
Of course, it's not paradise - nowhere is - but I love it here.
No need to wave flags like Americans and add to the world's windiness.
Just value what you have and don't give it away.
David Mason is a US writer and professor, and poet laureate of Colorado
The funniest thing about this particular signature is that by the time you realise it doesn't say anything, it's too late to stop reading it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (2) Thanks(2)   Quote jujuno Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Feb 2022 at 6:55pm
 He forgot to mention falling in love with meat pies.

 There is an American who makes videos on youtube, about Australia. The first time he tried one of our meat pies, he was in heaven.

 I'm writing about an American's reaction yo Aussie culture in my new book. A lot of this came up.

 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jujuno Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Feb 2022 at 6:59pm

“So, where do you live, now?” 

      “I got a bed-sit, in a block of flats over Kenso way.”

      “Kenso?” John Grant looked puzzled.

      “Kensington…near the Uni.”

      John shook his head in amusement. “I forget that you Aussies like to shorten everything. I can see I’ll have to have an interpreter, to survive.”

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gay3 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Feb 2022 at 7:15pm
At least most of what we shorten is a fair chance of being translated whereas the US  use letters (forgotten the term) for almost everything! Yes, us too to some extent but I have to google nearly all of them Confused
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jujuno Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Feb 2022 at 7:23pm
 I have an American friend in Arkansas whom I have to ask to translate half of her posts.

 We really do have the best country, as far as freedom and attitude go.

 In America, you couldn't get within cooee of the POTUS, without being shot.

  Here, you can walk up to Scomo and tell him he's an idiot...and he'll probably agree.

 But America is the most scenic country I've ever been. Just gob-smackingly beautiful. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acacia alba Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Feb 2022 at 8:05pm
Some parts of America are beautiful.  Visit the projects in Nashville and you will change your tune.
Prettiest country ? For mine, Canada. 
Arkansas is the pits.  Spent time in Little Rock.  No one here knows what racist is until you go to a place like that. 
animals before people.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jujuno Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Feb 2022 at 8:36pm
 She lives in Eureka Springs.

 It is stunningly beautiful country...but full of people off with the fairies...

 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote VOYAGER Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Feb 2022 at 9:26pm
The only part of that article I have a problem with or disagree with to a certain extent, is the acceptance of multiculturalism.

It is my experience that Australian's desire is for a monoculture, which adds some aspects of other cultures to our own to evolve into the monoculture.

In all aspects of culture, cuisine, art, entertainment, language, business etc,, Australians do not like other cultures changing their communities. They embrace and accept aspects from different cultures but they want those aspects to become a part of our culture.

I am not sure of the professor's experience with multiculturalism in Australia but if he is a tourist, I am not sure you can gauge a nations acceptance of multiculturalism in a short period of time.          
Remember, it might take intelligence to be smart , but it takes experience to be wise
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jujuno Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Feb 2022 at 7:24am
 I think Aussies embrace multiculturalism, so long as those cultures don't destroy the essence of Australianism...which is 'to have a fair go'. 

 We certainly love the food of other cultures. 

 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Tlazolteotl Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Aug 2022 at 11:38am
Nearly every male American who doesn't live in a progressive state that I see interviewed says that hunting animals is one of their favourite things to do. Does that seem weird to you? Favourite thing to do, kill animals. And they always mention bringing sons along too as soon as they are old enough, which seems to be about 8 years old.

That's a lot of people out shooting animals. I'm surprised there are any left to shoot.
"Two hundred years ago, 99.999 percent of human idiocy went unrecorded. Now we have the Internet."

Errol Morris
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jujuno Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Aug 2022 at 2:31pm
 The neighbour of my friend in North Carolina practices shooting at chipmunks...

 WTF?

 


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Passing Through Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Aug 2022 at 4:46pm
From ‘A Prayer for Owen Meany’ by John Irving.

2022 year of the Independent.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acacia alba Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Aug 2022 at 9:02pm
Thats quite true. A neighbour didnt know the difference between Australia and Austria, and she thought I talked good English considering where I cam from.
animals before people.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jujuno Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Aug 2022 at 9:31pm
 Same here. I was always thought to be from England, by Americans. 

 When I converse with my American friends, I'm aghast at how little they know of what is going on in the world....

 Except about the Royal family.  Americans are potty about them..

 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote horlicks Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Aug 2022 at 10:14pm
I was at a home in Ohio some years ago and the father could not comprehend that as it was snowing (this was in February) that it was 40 degrees C in Perth. 
No amount of logic could persuade him.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote acacia alba Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Aug 2022 at 12:19pm
Not one of my ex husbands family had ever crossed borders into another state, and keep in mind how small Tennessee is . When my Mother visited from Sydney they had no idea how far she traveled or how long it took her, and many ask me would they be able to understand her when she talked .
The neighbour who didnt know Austria from Australia told me her son when ski ing in Australia every weekend.  He was stationed at Ramstein AFB in Germany at the time. Cry
animals before people.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote rusty nails Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Aug 2022 at 1:07pm
They are such an insular country…..

A few years ago, we were in a store in Barstow.
The cashier identified from out accents we weren’t local, and told us her dream was to travel.
Where you want to go?
Vegas
Vegas was literally less than 2 hours away….

Another time I was in New Mexico, stopped for a breather in a town that a couple of dozen shops tops.

I asked a guy what the road was like heading south.
No idea, never been on it.
Sorry, I thought you were a local…
I am, born and bred, lived here 60 years…
And never been on the road out of there.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jujuno Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Aug 2022 at 1:59pm
 Yep. That's what they are like.

 A road trip is a holiday...only as far as Vegas or New Orleans, depending on which side of the country they live. 

 They only know what's in their horrible hamburgers and pizzas.   
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jujuno Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Aug 2022 at 2:01pm
 But their ribs ain't bad...

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acacia alba Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Aug 2022 at 2:43pm
I liked the cajun stuff from Louisana Heart
animals before people.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jujuno Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Aug 2022 at 2:48pm
 I lived on fajitas...

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