Warning Signs That You Are Becoming English

Becoming English

Previously I shared a few of the warning signs for expats to look out for if they think they are starting to become Dutch. But what about the Dutch themselves? Could they also be influenced by all of us English expats moving into their country? Do you think you might be becoming English? It’s very possible. Here are a few early warning signs that might indicate you are starting to become English.

You Might Be Becoming English If…

1) When a disaster strikes, no matter how devastating or terrifying it might be, your first instinct is to ‘put the kettle on’ as a means of putting things in to perspective. Even the apocalypse will seem easier to deal with once you have had a nice cup of tea (including milk and sugar).

2) Saying the word ‘sorry’ becomes an uncontrollable, automatic and involuntary reaction to everything, including things that have not actually happened yet, things that might not even happen and things that you are in no way responsible for at all. In extreme cases you will even apologise for apologising too much.

3) Your manner of speaking becomes similar to that of a Victorian villain in an American movie.

4) You suddenly realize you know the rules to cricket.

5) You become compelled to drive on the left hand side of the road (a real problem if you are on a Dutch highway at the time).

6) You start requesting ketchup instead of mayonnaise with your friet. In extreme cases you will be very specific that it must be HP ketchup.

7) In addition you start to refer to friet as chips and will be disappointed if they are not soggy.

8) You become confused by the Euro.

9) You measure how well you are doing in life by comparing your happiness to that of the average Eastenders character.

10) You consider Baked Beans on toast a ‘treat’ and know what Egg and Soldiers are.

11) You’ve written a letter of complaint at some point in your life.

12) You consider queuing a hobby.

13) You become frustrated by the American spelling of the word ‘colour’ and ‘favourite’.

Think you might be becoming Dutch? Check out the list of Warning Signs That You Are Becoming Dutch.

20 responses to “Warning Signs That You Are Becoming English”

  1. Laura says:

    I have to confess… The first four definitely apply to me, as does the last.

    But hey, I can go by the excuse of studying English Language & Culture with a focus on British English, and by being a member of a ballroom formation dancing team (which obviously means that I dance, yes).

  2. Yvette says:

    Ah a new favorite- what color this post has! ;-)

  3. Deepa says:

    And I thought excessive apologizing was strictly an Asian thing! One “sorry” is never enough, “sorrysorrysorry” is always much better.

  4. Alison says:

    We watch Eggheads every evening and last night I found myself thinking that maybe we should start watching Strictly Come Dancing, since they have a chat show of sorts for it every evening after Eggheads. I’m also getting more and more questions correct on Eggheads about cricket.

  5. Likeahike says:

    Nope, I’m not at risk. Having read this list I suddenly feel very Dutch. I do drown my friet in mayonnaise (of course) and eggs and soldiers sounds like a very mischievous children’s game. But when I want to get a feel for how expensive something is, I still calculate the price in guilders in stead of euros, does that count as confusion?

  6. kiki says:

    I score 7 out of 14… What does this mean?

  7. dragon lady says:

    I can’t stand Tea,I don’t understand Cricket, I now like Mayo on my fries, I like sogy chops with lots of salt and vinegar from the chippy,I find all Amercan spelling annoying but I am English born and bred. Now I am really confused. But I do consider Holland as my second home. So I think maybe I am becoming Dutch?

  8. Invader_Stu says:

    Laura – I don’t know if they are excuses or just more warning signs that you are becoming English.

    Yvette – Thank you :)

    Deepa – We just say one. But we say it a lot.

    Alison – Oh yes. You are totally English.

    Likeahike – You are not at risk… for now :p

    kiki – You are almost one of us… one of us… one of us.

    Dragon lady – Hmmm… You might want to check the Warning Signs of Becoming Dutch list again.

  9. Meta says:

    Hmmm, do I have to start worrying?

    I love Eastenders; my bf always asks if someone has died yet and I always go (sobbing) “not yet”!
    I write complaints all the time (but hey, that’s very dutch, too).
    And what is up with all the american spelling everywhere!

    I had an english co-worker who used to appologise for everything, while we dutch just make it out it is the other person’s fault! Bump into someone, “Hé, kijk uit je doppen!

  10. Corinne says:

    Uh oh… 8/14

  11. VallyP says:

    Can we add to this the tendency to say ‘excuse me’ and “I beg your pardon’ to anything you find shocking :) I am English, but only the 2, 5, 12 and 14 apply to me. Perhaps my Englishness has been diluted by years of banishment in the southern hemisphere and another 12 here.

  12. suus says:

    Zero for me, sorry. Oh, that’s one.

  13. M. Verhoef says:

    What are eggs and soldiers?

    Is it white and green beans mixed together?

    If so, we know it as “kinderbilletjes in het gras” in the Netherlands

  14. Invader_Stu says:

    Meta – It sounds like you are becoming more English so you might not be blaming it on the other person for much longer :p

    Corinne – I’d start to worry :p

    VallyP – That’s a good one. We do tend to find things more shocking then the rest of the world :p

    Suus – And that’s how it starts :p

    M. Verhoef – Oh you are so far off the mark :p

    This is beans on toast:
    http://girlalive.com/food/images/beans_on_toast430x300.jpg

    And this is Egg & Soldiers:
    http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_-4Z7uSAAik0/SFmOaEEDXII/AAAAAAAABak/ZFhele2db-Q/s400/Boiled+Eggs+and+Soldiers+002.jpg

  15. Firewood says:

    100% Dutch.
    So your list is correct. :)

  16. Andrew says:

    I will on my year here convert my international flat mates to English ways. They seem to find beans on toast a strange concept.

    They also laugh at me calling chips chips.

  17. Invader Stu says:

    Firewood – To you check the warning signs of become Dutch list to be sure? :p

    Andrew – Yes. Turn them to our ways. They will join us and make our numbers strong.

  18. 1 1/2 out of 14; I do like French mayonnaise with my fries and I do have a preference for soggy ones. Obviously, I still refer to “chips” as fries.

    As for the American spelling of certain words, now that I am teaching English to French students, I make an effort to use the British spellings as the exams here have a tendency to use British English.

    So, while I still call “chips” as “fries,” don’t be surprised if I replace the S with a Z (pronounced as “zed”) in certain verbs and add the extra U to “color” and “favorite.” :P

  19. Invader Stu says:

    Barb the French Bean – Hmmmm. That is a low score. You might not be turning English or Dutch but what would the warning signs of turning French list be? :p

  20. Kayla says:

    HP Sauce?
    Have you been out of Britain too long or bumped your head recently?!
    Heinz!

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