Tuesday, July 14, 2009

You know you are Dutch when....

I came through THIS link about dutch people and culture.... some i could relate and agree ... some i found funny ... some i am not much aware of...

Some of which i found interesting, i have listed them down.

You know you are Dutch when....

- If you are between the ages of four and eighty, you own at least one bicycle and use it, too.

- You consider four weeks of vacation a year normal, and in many professions count on a 36-hour working week.

- You speak English, at least somewhat. After all, you are exposed to at least two hours of it daily if you listen to pop songs, TV and movies. You also know enough German to get by, and watch German television. If anybody starts talking in broken or accented Dutch to you, you will reply in English. Only the most determined English-speaking foreigner has a change of learning Dutch in your country.

- The decimal point is a comma. Certainly not a dot.

- Dubbing is for kids. All movies and TV series are subtitled, except for the Dutch ones.

- You are shocked if anyone offers you a bribe, or asks for one.

- For a politician to show off his wife or kids during an election campaign is ridiculous, since you don't understand what do they have to do with his work. You don't even know whether most party leaders are married, divorced, single or whatever.

- A company can't fire just anybody it wants. For this reason, many companies hire temporary workers through an employment agency.

- Labor Day is the first of May, but it is not a holiday.

- You count on excellent medical treatment. You know you're not going to die of cholera or other Third World diseases. You expect very strong measures to be taken to save very ill babies or people in their eighties. You think dying at 65 would be a tragedy. You take it for granted that health care insurance is universal, and even grant illegal immigrants the right to basic medical assistance.

- You're used to a wide variety of choices for almost anything you buy.

- You drive on the right side of the road. You stop at red lights even if nobody's around. If you're a pedestrian and cars are stopped at a red light, you will fearlessly cross the street in front of them.

- The police are armed, but not with submachine guns.

- You wouldn't expect both inflation and unemployment to be very high (say, over 15%) at the same time. High unemployment may occur, high inflation never.

- Christmas is in the winter. You spend it with your family, and put up a tree. Presents are given at December 5th, St. Nicolas day, and you include satirical rhymes where you gently point out people's bad habits.

- You've left a message at the beep.

- You can drink alcohol at age 16. IDs are not often asked for.

- Unemployment benefits are your right, you've paid for them after all, and of course people who don't have any money should get welfare-- should they starve or what? But you also think that there are a lot of people cheating the system.

- Germany and the Germans are overbearing neighbors. You get along well with them, but Germans are known to be arrogant, which you are always alert to point out them. The war is not forgotten, and most people have elderly family members who were killed, deported or otherwise mistreated by the Nazis. Germany never returned the bicycles it stole, either. Even the most politically correct can make jokes or disparaging remarks about Germans and get away with it. Your greatest dream is beating Germans in the World Cup finals.

- France is a country that doesn't understand your soft drugs policy. This is arrogant. It is a great place for summer vacation, and you like their cheese and wine.

- The USA provides most of your entertainment, as well as technical innovation. If a non-American explains to you that something is better in the US than in the Netherlands, you will explain that American ideas will not work in the Dutch context. If an American tells you things are better in the US, you just think that he's arrogant. Apart from always telling you that things are better in the US, Americans are nice people. Your country has more money invested in the US than any other country in the world.

- Your country used to have colonies but you rarely think about this.

- You were born in a hospital or at home (these are about equally likely) and were delivered by a midwife, general practitioner or gynecologist. Unless she had a cesarean, your mother did not take anesthesia during the delivery. Your father was most likely present at your birth.

- Having a Royal House and a Queen is a Good Thing. Why, you're not sure.

- Changing your name is very difficult. It takes a lot of paperwork, you need to convince the authorities that you have a good reason to change your name, and you need the Queen's permission (yes, really!)

One another interesting link about Dutch Culture... HERE


thamarai said...

This is really informative Lopa! Some were known to me but some were rather new....:)..Some I hope I don't experience..:D

~ Lopa said...

Thanks :)
When i was reading it, i could agree with some instantly, some surprised me and some i don't know yet whether true; but i found them interesting and so thought to share it.

But i think only those who live here or have lived in Netherlands can understand what it means !

Unknown said...

Two great big thumbs up in approval of this! It's great!!!

Vani said...

Hey thanks for stopping by my blog, Lopa. This post sure was very interesting and informative too :)

~ Lopa said...

@ A Touch of Dutch

Aaah i feel relieved now seeing more people approving it, so it's not just me ;)

@ Vani

Thanks Vani to you too for getting back to me and commenting :)
I look forward to read more of tasty treats on your blog :)

Dheza Marie Aguilar said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pinay in Dutchland said...

ahahaha these are all true and are all funny. BTW, I asked MK abt Labor Day being a non-holiday and the Dutch reason is "It's Labor Day and people should be laboring (working)". Isn't that very Dutch?

And oh, I want to add to it. I watched an R-Rated movie (or was it an X) and in the Netherlands, 12 year old kids are allowed to watch it. Ahahaha, isnt that cute?

~ Lopa said...

@ Pinay in Dutchland

Thanks for dropping by and commenting.
About Labourday... Yes that's exactly the same explaination i got at my work place when on this labour day i asked innocently... ohh don't we have a holiday on Labour day??? hehehe

About movies and kids, Yes i have also seen it, May be compared to other countries... here they consider kids mature at early age or may be they really get mature at early age!!

Wait for some 15 years and then may be i will be able to comment on this, when my future kids might turn 12 ;)

Anonymous said...

"High unemployment may occur..."


~ Lopa said...

Yes but that link shows 2007 est. Right now unemployment rate does stand higher than prev year in NL.

Ineke said...

being dutch born and bred these all seem very logical and normal to me.
Which were the ones that surprised you?

~ Lopa said...

yes it is indeed logical and normal to us also when we live now here in this culture.
But when compared things normal to local people often seems interesting to expats...specially when recently moved...
These are just somethings that we expats feel typical of Dutch, as we see it more here and many times we use them to describe life over here when asked about living experience over here...

When i said interesting or funny, i meant it's interesting how things differ from culture to culture... and funny is we only realise things when we live it and see/experience things which we didn't even think of growing up in totally different culture.

I am sure that when dutch people live outside Netherlands they also might be finding some interesting differences in cultures.

Anita said...

Hillarious and so true !

~ Lopa said...

@ Anita

hahaha, it is, but may be only to we expats :)
Thanks for dropping by and commenting :)

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