England vs. America: Part I

29 02 2012

What’s better:  America or England?  Unfortunately for those of you who are wanting a definitive answer, there is none.  Both places are different, and personal preference and what exactly you are referring to makes a difference (as we all know, living and visiting places are quite different).  I feel like I have a pretty good grasp on the British culture.

Side note: I keep finding out about that are studying abroad this semester that I had no clue were going to be, and I’m a little put off by their seemingly intense enthusiasm.  This is somewhat hipster of me, because I am touting my “I’ve been here since September” over all these bright and bushy people who are like, “OOOOH EUROPE!!!! LOOK, LONDON!!!!” Does this make me a bad person?  Side note over.

1.  Food–Winner: America

This isn’t even close.  England has very little cuisine to speak of, apart from crumpets, tea, and fish and chips.  By the way, the Cambridge Wind Orchestra traveled to Oxford on Saturday and we had lunch at a pub.  It was in this pub, The King’s Arms, that I got my first fish and chips meal.  It looked like this:

Traditional English right here.

It was good, and I enjoyed it.  I really did.  However, England can’t hold a candle to the amazing (and fattening) American foods.  The Philly cheesesteak I had in Philadelphia beats anything I could possibly have here, and that is only one part of the country.  Also, America has a number of wonderful burger establishments, a fair amount of Mexican influence (which is awfuly good), and the correct kind of bacon.  In England, bacon is taken from the back of the pig.  It tastes and looks a lot more like ham.  In America, we take bacon from the belly, which is the fattiest and tastes the best.  No contest there.  Also:

Chik Fil A alone is enough to push America into the winning side.

 

2. Comedy–Winner:  England

I find English comedy funnier than American comedy.  I really do.  Not everyone likes British comedy–this is because it has particular quirks that some people just don’t enjoy.  The funniest book that I think has ever been written is by a British author–The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams.  Add in Monty Python and Wallace and Grommit–we’re set.  England wins.

3. Public Transportation–Winner:  England

I can walk out of my room right now, go down to the train station, get on a train, and arrive in London all in a span of less than two hours at a cost of around $22.  This is fantastic.  In addition, this ticket is round trip and has tube travel included.  I can easily spend a day in one of the biggest and most influential cities in the world without owning any vehicle and without getting a taxi.  England, along with the rest of Europe, wins big in the public transportation category.  In the United States, you need to have a car to go anywhere, unless you live downtown in a big city.  If you lived in St. Joseph and wanted to get to Kansas City (a similar distance, about 60 miles) without a car of your own, you would be out of luck.  If you did find some sort of transportation, chances are it wouldn’t be round trip for $22, and even so, Kansas City has barely any public transport of its own.

This is an area in which the United States could improve.  Think about it:  we gripe about airfare, the TSA, and the ridiculous baggage requirements.  But, we could avoid this with a network of high-speed rail.  The United States is just too dependent on cars.  We can’t have our cake and eat it too; a solution is right in front of us but we don’t eve pay it any mind.

 

Total:  England 2, America 1.

Come on, America.  Step up your game.

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