American claptrap, Random trans-Atlantic claptrap

US cops will shoot you in the back. But oh, the ice cream…

A recent study showed that more Americans were killed by police in one recent month in March, than were killed by police in the UK over the course of the entire 20th century. If you live in America, you’re about 10,000 times more likely to be killed by a police officer than someone living in Britain.  Must be a terrible… Read More US cops will shoot you in the back. But oh, the ice cream…

Random trans-Atlantic claptrap

I try rugby. Sort of. But people end up in hospital. So it counts.

Okay, let’s get this out of the way- it wasn’t really real rugby that I played for the first time this week, with scrums and tackles and missing teeth. It was mixed-gender tag rugby, with full sets of teeth, and ladies and men playing together, and lots running but no tackling. But still, someone ended… Read More I try rugby. Sort of. But people end up in hospital. So it counts.

Random trans-Atlantic claptrap

Kiss me, I’m Irish-American. Don’t mind me, I’m, er… English-American?

Nearly 40 million Americans claim Irish heritage according to the most-recent census. On Tuesday the 17th of March, at least 39 million of those Irish-Americans will be out on the streets, celebrating St Patrick’s Day- virtually every major American city holds an annual parade. America is of course a nation of immigrants, where people are… Read More Kiss me, I’m Irish-American. Don’t mind me, I’m, er… English-American?

Random trans-Atlantic claptrap

Americans are deaf to accents, and Russell Crowe is a dick

In the late 1970s, the north of England was terrorised by a serial killer known as the Yorkshire Ripper. In 1979, an audio tape arrived at West Yorkshire police headquarters. The recording consisted of taunts and threats from a speaker claiming to be the Yorkshire Ripper. The message was carefully worded, and offered no clues… Read More Americans are deaf to accents, and Russell Crowe is a dick

Random trans-Atlantic claptrap

The 2nd most-popular sport in the world

Last night, a basketball player called Klay Thompson scored 37 points in a National Basketball Association game. He took 13 shots and made 13 shots, most of them from long range. He broke the record for most points in a quarter, and the most 3-pointers in a quarter. This is an amazing feat, somewhat equivalent… Read More The 2nd most-popular sport in the world

British claptrap, Random trans-Atlantic claptrap

English geography: 48 counties, all slightly different! (not really)

When you are an outsider living in England*, you quickly learn that if you want to fit in, you have to do some pretending when it comes to issues of geography. You must pretend London is not the centre of everything The largest city in Europe, London has around 8.4 million residents. It is the… Read More English geography: 48 counties, all slightly different! (not really)

Random trans-Atlantic claptrap

We need to talk about Benny: Is British comedy “the best in the world?”

Self-effacement is an essential part of the British national character.  As an American living in the UK, even if you are a low-key person by US standards, you will immediately stand out here for your “loudness” and your  ability and willingness to talk confidently about yourself, compared to the locals. But as with most national… Read More We need to talk about Benny: Is British comedy “the best in the world?”

Random trans-Atlantic claptrap

Living in Muslim Europe: A chain letter to send your Fox News watching parents

Recently, I received a call from my parents, checking that I was okay, in the wake of the recent terrorist attacks in Paris. I was a bit confused, as France is generally considered to be an entirely different country from Britain- the country I live in. But apparently mom and dad had been watching a… Read More Living in Muslim Europe: A chain letter to send your Fox News watching parents

Random trans-Atlantic claptrap

Post-Christmas apologies and corrections from Expat Claptrap

It was brought to my attention recently that the 27th of December, the day after Boxing Day is not in fact commonly known in the UK as “Kicking Day,” as I stated in a recent blog I wrote about Christmas. It was also pointed out to me to that Christmas mince pies do not actually… Read More Post-Christmas apologies and corrections from Expat Claptrap

Random trans-Atlantic claptrap

A list of British “celebrities” no American has ever heard of

This country is filled with non-famous famous people. If that sentence seems self-contradictory, all I can do is refer you to the latest issue of “Closer” magazine, which is kind of like a British version of  American mag “People.” But instead of being filled with stories about pop stars and movie actors, it’s mostly about… Read More A list of British “celebrities” no American has ever heard of