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Old 07-21-2005, 10:37 AM   #16
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The American Response to England's Revocation of Of Independence
Author Unknown

To the citizens of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland,

We welcome your concern about our electoral process. It must be exciting for you to see a real Republic in action, even if from a distance. As always we're amused by your quaint belief that you're actually a world power. The sun never sets on the British Empire! Right-o chum!

However, we regretfully have to decline your offer for intervention. On the other hand, it would be amusing to see you try to enforce your new policy (for the 96.3% of you that seem to have forgotten that you have little to no real power). After much deliberation, we have decided to continue our tradition as the longest running democratic republic. It seems that switching to a monarchy is in fact considered a "backwards step" by the majority of the world.

To help you rise from your current anachronistic status, we have compiled a series of helpful suggestions that we hope you adopt:

1. Realize that language is an organic structure, and that you aren't always correct in your pronunciation or spelling. Let's use your "aluminium" example. Sir Humphrey Davy (an Englishman) invented the name "aluminum" (note spelling) for the metal. However, in common usage the name evolved into "aluminium" to match the naming convention of other elements. In 1925 the United States decided to switch back to the original spelling and pronunciation of the word, at which point we dominated the aluminum industry. We'd also like to point out that the process of actually producing aluminum was developed by an American and a Frenchman (not an Englishman). However, we'd like to thank you for the Oxford English Dictionary. It's an interesting collection, considering that over 10,000 of the words in the original edition were submitted by a crazy American civil-war veteran called Dr. William Charles Minor.

2. Learn to distinguish the American and Canadian accents, and then we'll talk about the English and Australian accent issue.

3. Review your basic arithmetic. (Hint 100 - 98.85 = 1.15 and 100 - 97.85 = 2.15)

4. If you want English actors as good guys, then make your own movies. Don't rely on us for your modern popular culture. We liked "Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels", "Trainspotting", and "The Full Monty". We've also heard good things about this "Billy Elliot". But one good movie a year doesn't exactly make a cultural powerhouse. However, you're doing pretty well with music, so keep up the good work on that front.

5. It's inefficient to have a national anthem that changes its title whenever your monarch dies. Let's not forget that your national anthem has an extremely boring tune. We suggest switching to that Rule Brittania ditty, it's toetapping. Or maybe Elton John could adapt "Candle In The Wind" again for you guys.

6. Improve at your national sport. Football? Soccer? This just in: United States gets fourth place in men's soccer at the 2000 Summer Olympics. United Kingdom? Not even close. By the way, impressive showing at Euro 2000. You almost managed to get through the tournament without having your fans start an international incident.

7. Learn how to cook. England has some top notch candy. Salt 'n' Vinegar chips are quite yummy. However, there's a reason why the best food in your country is Indian or Chinese. Your contributions to the culinary arts are soggy beans, warm beer, and spotted dick. Perhaps when you finally realize the French aren't the spawn of Satan they'll teach you how to cook.

8. You're doing a terrible job at understanding cars. The obvious error is that you drive on the wrong side of the road. A second problem is pricing, it's cheaper to buy a car in Belgium and ship it to England than to buy a car in England. On the other hand, we like Jaguars and Aston Martins. That's why we bought the companies.

9. We'll tell you who killed JFK when you apologize for "Teletubbies".

Thank you for your time. You can now return to watching bad Australian soap operas.
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Old 07-21-2005, 10:51 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511
Let's use your "aluminium" example. Sir Humphrey Davy (an Englishman) invented the name "aluminum" (note spelling) for the metal. However, in common usage the name evolved into "aluminium" to match the naming convention of other elements. In 1925 the United States decided to switch back to the original spelling and pronunciation of the word, at which point we dominated the aluminum industry.
A lot of this didn't look right, so I thought I'd look it up.

Quote:
In 1808, Humphry Davy originally proposed the name "alumium" while trying to isolate the new metal electrolytically from the mineral alumina. A couple of years later he changed the name to "aluminum" to match its Latin root, but was finally persuaded to restore the -ium ending in 1812 giving "aluminium." This had the advantage of conforming to the -ium suffix precedent set by other newly discovered elements of the period potassium, sodium, magnesium, calcium, and strontium (all of which Davy had isolated himself). However, for the next thirty years, both the -um and -ium endings were used in the scientific literature.

Curiously, America adopted the -ium for most of the 19th century with "aluminium" appearing in Webster's Dictionary of 1828. However Charles Martin Hall selected the -um spelling in an advertising handbill for his new efficient electrolytic method for the production of aluminum, four years after he had patented the process in 1888. Although this spelling may have been an accident, Hall's domination of aluminum production ensured that the -um ending became the standard in North America, even though the Webster Unabridged Dictionary of 1913 continued to use the -ium version. In 1926 the American Chemical Society decided officially to use "aluminum" in its publications.
So not only is the spelling of "Humphry" incorrect ("-ey" is a common misspelling), but the original element was called "alumium." But, even then, Davy himself agreed to the spelling of "aluminium" by 1812, a mere four years after he discovered the element.

What it comes down to, ultimately, is that our spelling of "aluminum" comes down to commerce, not science.

Melon
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Old 07-21-2005, 12:02 PM   #18
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Originally posted by Irvine511
there's an American response to that ... let me go try and find it ... and, of course, if we replaced the word "American" with the words "black" or "jew" or "queer" then it would be hugely offensive.
Funny how that works....
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Old 07-21-2005, 12:47 PM   #19
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heh, that's kind of amusing. I have a nagging suspicion that the person who wrote this really believes 98.75% of americans are ignorant morons, but I'll choose to ignore that suspicion.
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Old 07-21-2005, 01:23 PM   #20
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oh folks, 'tis all in fun.

but my point about the sometimes ruthless mockery of Americans in parts of Europe does still stand ...
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Old 07-21-2005, 01:32 PM   #21
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Originally posted by Irvine511
oh folks, 'tis all in fun.

but my point about the sometimes ruthless mockery of Americans in parts of Europe does still stand ...
yeah, I agree. it does seem like Americans are the one group who it's still okay/PC to stereotype and make oversimplified jokes about. (mention that most Al Queda members are Muslims, however, and you're an Islamophobe)

I mean I got a nice laugh out of this one, but some people do come off as more ignorant than the "ignorant Americans" they mock.
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Old 07-22-2005, 12:19 AM   #22
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Oh, come off it guys. Everyone is the victim of a joke of stereotype. Who was it from this forum who told me to take back Mick Dundee?


Goose. Gander. Etc.
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Old 07-22-2005, 12:44 AM   #23
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Originally posted by Irvine511
9. We'll tell you who killed JFK when you apologize for "Teletubbies".
...I like that one !

Anywho, yeah, I'm thinking these are all just harmless fun. These have some humor to them and seem to obviously be a joke type of thing, whereas if somebody were actually prejudiced against another country, their comments would contain no humor, and you'd be able to tell that they really were not joking.

Angela
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Old 07-22-2005, 02:24 AM   #24
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Come on. We don't want to add humorless (or humourless)
to the stereotype.
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Old 07-22-2005, 06:51 AM   #25
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Originally posted by Angela Harlem
Oh, come off it guys. Everyone is the victim of a joke of stereotype. Who was it from this forum who told me to take back Mick Dundee?


Goose. Gander. Etc.


hey -- i agree with you. i do think it's all in fun.

but, having spent lots of time in Western Europe, i did find it striking how much casual anti-Americanism was a part of everyday conversations, and i don't think people would speak as negatively about other groups then they do about Americans. that's really my only point.

though i will say that i received the British one from some British friends when i was over there. all well and good, very funny, ha ha. then i sent the American one to my British friends, and they thought the American response was way more mean.

all in the eyes of the beholder.

so ... in any event ... if i come to australia, will you teach me how to wrestle crocodiles?

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Old 07-22-2005, 03:29 PM   #26
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Originally posted by Irvine511


but, having spent lots of time in Western Europe, i did find it striking how much casual anti-Americanism was a part of everyday conversations, and i don't think people would speak as negatively about other groups then they do about Americans. that's really my only point.
Yeah but I don't think what you experience when you go travelling and some if it is very misguided and not a good reflection in general. I remember being in Melbourne and I got a lecture on Colonial conduct from a Belguim guy!
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Old 07-22-2005, 06:32 PM   #27
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Originally posted by Irvine511




hey -- i agree with you. i do think it's all in fun.

but, having spent lots of time in Western Europe, i did find it striking how much casual anti-Americanism was a part of everyday conversations, and i don't think people would speak as negatively about other groups then they do about Americans. that's really my only point.

though i will say that i received the British one from some British friends when i was over there. all well and good, very funny, ha ha. then i sent the American one to my British friends, and they thought the American response was way more mean.

all in the eyes of the beholder.

so ... in any event ... if i come to australia, will you teach me how to wrestle crocodiles?

Sure thing, MATE! (re: wrestling crocs)

I agree with you, I think, on the rest. I haven't travelled, but I imagine it wouldn't be too difficult for the rest of the world to mock yiu guys more than others. Here, we tend not to care and do it indiscriminately, to absolutely anyone.
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Old 07-22-2005, 08:22 PM   #28
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I agree with you, I think, on the rest. I haven't travelled, but I imagine it wouldn't be too difficult for the rest of the world to mock yiu guys more than others. Here, we tend not to care and do it indiscriminately, to absolutely anyone.

i'm all for equal opportunity mocking.

i LOVE offensive humor, taking the piss, so to speak, just so long as everyone's in on the joke.
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Old 07-23-2005, 03:55 AM   #29
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Originally posted by Angela Harlem


Sure thing, MATE! (re: wrestling crocs)

I agree with you, I think, on the rest. I haven't travelled, but I imagine it wouldn't be too difficult for the rest of the world to mock yiu guys more than others. Here, we tend not to care and do it indiscriminately, to absolutely anyone.
What? We're not universally adored?
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Old 07-23-2005, 04:25 AM   #30
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We call you guys Seppos with nothing but love
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