After Kaitlyn’s and my bizarre encounter with an American fruit connoisseur, an Asian backpacker, a box of peaches and a flooded bathroom, we ventured down to the hostel bar for a quick break before heading out into the city. Not long after we scooted into a corner booth, we were quickly joined by three young English men, two of whom are seen above, who asked if they could a) have a drink with us and b) get a photo with us.
Now, in college, Kaitlyn and I (along with our friend Sarah) had nicknames for just about everybody. There was Namedropper, Agnostic Hair, Cinderblock on Wheels, My Boyfriend, My Other Boyfriend, Mutemath, Bat for Lashes, Colourcreepy, Woodland Creature….I could go on and on and on. So it was no surprise that, shortly after meeting the 3 Englishmen, we dubbed them: Rugbyneck, British Michael Cera, and Screech.
I think British Michael Cera was the only one not bothered by his new moniker. I can’t imagine why.
Anyhow, the boys asked us if we’d ever been to their home country. I told them we’d both been to London, and that someday we’d like to make it to Liverpool, which they seemed shocked to hear. When they inquired as to why on earth anyone would ever want visit Liverpool, I answered, “You know, for Beatles-related purposes”, to which Rugbyneck replied, “Have fun getting knifed!” According to them, Liverpool is a scary place – the last place two young American girls like ourselves would want to end up….. Okay, duly noted.
They were generally quite pleasant (and who doesn’t love a good British-accent-infused convo every now and then), but Kaitlyn and I felt compelled to call it a night rather early on in the evening, at which point, Rugbyneck (who had quite possibly consumed one two many Stiegls – Salzburg’s famous beer) asked me multiple times if he could give me a good, long, hug goodbye. I’m sure a friendly farewell hug would have been harmless, but I ultimately chose to employ my go-to line, which can be used in pretty much any country that is foreign when someone (usually of the male persuasion) is a little too flirtatious: “Oh…no, thank you! We don’t do that in my country; that’s culturally taboo. Sorry, but, you understand. Cultural differences….and stuff”.
It’s a pretty efficient dismissal method, I’ve found; you don’t have to worry about offending someone, it gets the point across, and they (rarely) challenge you because, well, you’re the American expert, not them!
In unrelated news, have you ever wondered why
most some Europeans think Americans are crazy?