A Daring Culture Clash

| Friendly | March 4, 2014

(My friends and I are walking around Amsterdam (we don’t live there). We stand out, as all of us are clearly metal-heads or otherwise alternatively dressed. We are quite the merry bunch, too, so we are seen skipping around the most expensive neighborhood in town.)

Friend: *spots an expensive brand store* “Hey, wouldn’t be cool if we skipped right in there and asked where the nearest punk shop is?”

Me: “Sure, go ahead!”

Friend: *suddenly backs down* “Hmm… don’t think they’ll appreciate that.”

Me: “Oh this was your idea! You wuss… Look and behold!”

(I skip to the store, which is near empty with only two store clerks busy with steam-ironing a shirt worth close to €500 on a rack.)

Me: *beaming* “Hello! Do you happen to know where we can find a punk shop around here?”

(Both the clerks look semi-shocked and disgusted, looking at me: a girl wearing muddy combat boots, a long buckled coat, and spiked bracelets.)

Clerk: *with the most painful smile I have ever seen* “Well… clearly not around here.”

Me: “That’s obvious, isn’t it? So where should we look?”

Clerk: “You should try at [Street]. There’s a shop there called [Name], and is more suited for… your kind.”

Me: “Fantastic! Thank you!”

(I skip out of there.)

Friend: *dying in laughter* “I can’t believe you just did that! So, where is that punk shop?”

(We found said street and wound up at the red-light district. The ‘punk store’ was an SM store that sold whips, leather cat-suits, and the like, along with some horror shirts and latex outfits that might appeal to some extreme goths, but certainly not to us!)

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Ignorant On The Immigrant

| Friendly | March 3, 2014

(I am an Indonesian-British mix who recently moved to Sydney. I look more obviously Caucasian and I was raised in an international lifestyle so my accent is very neutral. I am making small talk outdoors.)

Stranger: *walks out behind me* “Hey, you!”

Me: “Yes? Can I help you?”

Stranger: “I heard you talking back there. Are you new here?”

Me: “Yeah, I just moved here last month.”

Stranger: “Cool! If you want I can show you around. You are the first American exchange student I’ve met. California?”

Me: “I’m actually from Indonesia.”

Stranger: “Get back on your f****** boat!”

Me: *taken aback* “What?”

Stranger: “You and your f****** kind keep coming over here and taking our jobs and rubbing in your Islam s***! We don’t want you! That’s why we keep sending you back to your s***hole country! I bet you’re illegal!”

Me: “I assure you I have a visa, and stop yelling at me!”

Stranger: “I can say whatever since you’re in my country!”

Me: “Americans aren’t from Australia, yet you seemed excited when you thought I was one. Is having an American with your job better than having an Indonesian?”

Stranger: *pauses for a second* “Well, it’s my country and I can CHOOSE WHO I WANT!” *runs off while giving me the finger*

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Some People Need To Stay At Arm’s Length

| Friendly | March 3, 2014

(It is late at night, and we are going back to our car after a long night. There are six of us: five have been best friends since high school and the sixth person is a new friend of ours. I’m considered a bit of an oddball and can get on people’s nerves, which the new person has made quite clear. We also happen to be walking through a very bad part of town.)

New Friend: “Ugh… you are so annoying! You should consider yourself lucky that we don’t ditch you somewhere.”

Friend #1: *to New Friend* “Dude, stop whining already. You’ve been at it all day.”

New Friend: “I’m just saying [My Name] needs to learn how to behave. I don’t know why you all keep him around.”

(At that moment a drunk stranger comes up and cops a feel of one of our female friends. The new friend, who is standing right next to her, backs away scared. I step up and grab the guy’s arm, lifting it up, with my best poker face.)

Me: “Ooh! I’ve been looking for an arm to add to my collection. Hope you don’t mind me taking yours!”

(The stranger freaks out and runs away. The new friend looks at me like I’m crazy.)

Friend #2: “And that is why we hang out with him. You can sit in the back, [New Friend]!”

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Their Least Favorite Friend

| Friendly | March 3, 2014

(I’m chatting to my best friend on the phone. I’ve recently had to go clothes shopping, which I hate.)

Me: “Shopping for clothes is my second least favourite thing in the world.”

Friend: “What’s your least favourite?”

Me: “Shopping for shoes.”

Friend: “Huh, I thought you’d have said something like ‘genocide’ or ‘world hunger.'”

Me: “Well, obviously. I meant things personal to me, rather than global issues.”

Friend: “Don’t worry. I was just being facetious.”

Me: “Which by a startling coincidence is number three…”

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This Conversation Is Sliding Downwards

Friendly | March 2, 2014

(My friend and I are working part-time at an event hall and have just finished cleaning the floors. We are congratulating ourselves on a job well done.)

Me: “Man! I think this is the cleanest we’ve ever gotten it!”

Friend: “I know! It’s so shiny and polishy!”

Me: “Yeah! I wonder how far you could slide on your socks in here!”

Friend: *becomes suddenly pensive* “Or slide a baby…”

(I couldn’t stop laughing for five minutes. She says really bizarre things sometimes, but that’s why we’re friends!)

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