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Dave who ? from Englandshire !

Posted by Big John on September 28, 2012

I watched an exert from Dave’s performance on ‘The Late Show’ with David Letterman and was at once reminded that it was  Mark Twain who said .. “God created war so that Americans would learn geography.”.. as Letterman asked the most dumbed down questions about the United Kingdom and Europe .. “What’s the deal on Wales?” .. “Is Northern Ireland part of England ?” etc. In fact this line of questioning has been described in the press as an “idiot’s guide” to Britain for American viewers.

Having seen people in New York being interviewed as they left the theatre, it was pretty obvious that few of them knew who our Prime Minister was. One guy said that he thought David Cameron “was cool” and was going to look him up on ‘Wikipedia’. I even got the impression that some probably thought he was one of the footmen from ‘Downton Abbey’.

Now back in the 70’and 80’s I made a few trips to various parts of the United States and found that, during my time there, it was almost impossible to find out what was going on in the ‘outside world’, and that most of the lovely Americans I met did not have a clue about life in Europe, and wouldn’t be able to point to “little old England” if you put a map of the world in front of them.

I thought that things must have changed in this ‘digital age’, but I have to wonder just how many of our American cousins still believe that all Scotsmen wear kilts ?.. we all know ‘er Maj ? .. we live on fish and chips ? .. we talk like Dick Van Dyke in ‘Mary Poppins’ ? .. we serve warm beer ? .. we live in thatched cottages ? .. and that we all love …

…  ‘Monty Bloody! PIE-THON ?


4 Responses to “Dave who ? from Englandshire !”

  1. grannymar said

    You mean you don’t? 😉

  2. Rummuser said

    Big John, you are being unfair to the Americans. Try visiting any of the old colonies and you will find exactly the same condition despite they being English speaking nations too. Let me share my experience in the UK. Most people that I met, not surprisingly, did not have a clue about India. They were worried about other more important things like the poll tax and vat and the cost of beer going up. I can honestly say that I knew more about Scotland than most Londoners knew. Most Europeans would not know much about the UK either.

    I suspect that the vast majority of people everywhere do not particularly care about what happens outside their immediate neighbourhood and may care about their national problems if they directly affected them.

    You and I and people like us have been exposed to what can be called the broader vision. We are the privileged and I suspect, not particularly liked for that by the locals.

  3. I and most of my friends can find England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland on a map. Wonder how many Brits can pinpoint South Dakota, New Mexico, Rhode Island, and Oregon?

  4. Big John said

    ‘Grannymar’ … Maybe when I was about five years old. 🙂

    Yes Ramana. I’m sure that not many people here know that the Prime Minister of India is Manmohan Singh, but a few probably know that he is some old bloke with a beard wearing a turban. 🙂

    “Wonder how many Brits can pinpoint South Dakota, New Mexico, Rhode Island, and Oregon?” Not many Dick, although a few ‘Western’ fans may be able to spot three of them, and chicken breeders may be able to locate the other one. 😉

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