20 March 2011

Czechs Generalizing Czechs

The assignment for my class: Write some tips for a foreign visitor to your country.

 It was meant to be a lesson about ESL generalizations and social behavior but turned out to be more of a "what not to do" for me as the foreigner. I jotted down a few of the most interesting ones. Again these are straight from Czech students and I don't know if they are always applicable. Feel free to comment on their accuracy. 

  • "It is not acceptable for women to pour alcohol at the dinner table." (Whoops!)
  • "In general men shouldn't drink beer on a first date."
  • "It's normal for young people not to tip at restaurants" (Hence the terrible customer service.)
  • "You should never give two flowers as a gift unless it is for a funeral.
  • "It is important put down a drink coaster before the waiter brings your beer." (Seriously, they will give you the stink eye if you forget.)
  • "It is impolite to drink your beer before saying 'Na Zdraví'."
  • "People expect you to give your seat up for children or old people on the bus" (I noticed this immediately.)
Of course there were other interesting tips but not necessarily appropriate to post on the internet-- especially because I don't know if they're true.

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