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Poland: The Things That Make Foreigners Lift a Brow


Tamara 9 | 202  
13 Mar 2007 /  #61
and shoving in queues was a bit extreme sometimes (but no where near as bad as the legendary Paris equivalent).

I remember when my son was small and in a stroller and I couldn't believe the number of people who would practically push us out of the way or off the sidewalk! Here you would end up eating a knuckle sandwich!
Beck's  
17 Mar 2007 /  #62
Kowalski is right but that argument " 5. Lots of girls would wear clothes and use make up only prostitutes would in USA" is wrong.Girls in Poland are beautiful and smart .i have Polish girlfriend and She is perfect !! All girls have nice face , beauty ass !!! :) Polish girls are the most beauties on the WORLD !!
sabina  
18 Apr 2007 /  #63
hi steve ,
very interesting piece of work and i am assuming you are not polish...
...well i am and to be honest i found your article quite offensive. i live in london and i have never seen people drinking on so many occasions as i see here.

tripes ?-a typical polish dish? maybe in some cheap, old chavy pub

telling jokes? well it is rather a good thing but i always hear that poles are grumpy...

poles talk all the time?
i just wonder how long you have been in polska....
Zgubiony 15 | 1,554  
18 Apr 2007 /  #64
tripes ?-a typical polish dish? maybe in some cheap, old chavy pub

That was actually one of the first dishes that I tried in PL. I guess it's still popular with some families. Keep in mind that the articale isn't quite as EVERYONE in PL is. It's a general idea to give foreigners an idea.

poles talk all the time?

Yeah. I can honestly say that I was constantly answering questions ang having to partake in conversations. I guess you can say that PL are more family oriented than many families in the US. Many discussions at the dinner table.

relax a bit Sabina
Beatka  
19 Apr 2007 /  #65
natural is not always the best way of looking for the majority of people (not girls only..)
miranda  
19 Apr 2007 /  #66
what do you mean by "natural"?
dannyboy 18 | 248  
19 Apr 2007 /  #67
Not a flame but the above article could have been written about any country in central or western europe.

Polish immigrants in Ireland generally do not celebrate namedays at all, only birthdays.
Vaa  
1 May 2007 /  #68
Most Poles celebrate both namesday and birthday. So do I, my wife, my children. So did both of my parents and grandaparents. Especially teh kids love the practice of getting gifts four times a year: birtday, namesday, Christmas, Children's day (1 June).
Daddysgirl0994  
2 May 2007 /  #69
Why do you find it confusing??????????????????????
Zgubiony 15 | 1,554  
2 May 2007 /  #70
Find what confusing?

Care to quote what you're referring to?
Puzzler 9 | 1,089  
2 May 2007 /  #71
Boy, oh boy, what a prejudiced posting on Stevie the 'Admin's' part. - The main message of it is that 'the Poles' ways ain't our ways. The Poles are unlike us.'

Again, the ageless bunching up against the Poles. Again, the puffed-up shameless silly babbling from the position of 'Western' superiority, even though the term 'West' seems to signify absolutely nothing, especially today, when the supposed 'Western' cities swarm with African and Asiatic crowds.:)

What do you mean by 'the West,' buddy? And why, according to you, Poland isn't part of 'the West' and Polesa aren't Westerners? :)

But let's analyse almost sentence by sentence why Steve thinks that Poles are oh, so very different from 'us' (who are those 'us,' by the way? Can you name them?) - So, first of all, Steve finds it very 'unlike us' and un-Western that 'the Poles like to talk. They talk all the time... enjoy sharing their views and experiences, often unconcerned whether you want or don't want to listen.' - Well, very similar in this respect are the Irish and Scots. Would Steve also brand them as so very different from 'us' and un-Western?

Next, Steve alleges that the Poles are so different because their alleged favourite 'pastime' is 'telling jokes.' Hm, and where did you take this idea from? From your experience? Really? I'm Polish and I haven't noticed it that our best liked pastime is 'telling jokes.' We like telling them, but perhaps just as much as any other nation does. And certainly less than the Americans, including 'Canadians,' with their ultraracist 'Polish jokes,' which should be actually called American (pseudo)jokes. Steve asserts: 'Compared to other nations, jokes are a serious business to the vast majority of Poles.' What do you mean by that? Do you have even one shred of evidence to support your assertion? Give it. Don't you confuse us with, for instance, American Jews to whom spreading ultraracist hateful 'Polish' jokes is a serious political business? Maybe you're one of them and because of that you're projecting your own group's characteristic on us, Poles? :)

Furthermore, Steve the Admin suggests that Poles are inherently and incurably 'different' than he and those like him because the Poles 'like to shake hands ... all the time.' Do we really shake hands all the time, even, for example, when we sleep? Don't you grossly exaggerate, Steve? Hm, for example, as far as I know only in Canada folks reply 'mhm!' when you ask them a question, and this 'mhm' means actually: 'Yes.' Does this 'mhming' make Canadians oh so very unlike 'us' and so very 'un-Western' in Steve's eyes? If not, why? By the way, do all Poles like shaking hands? Steve advises: 'A handshake tells you a lot about the person, thus, you better practice to be perceived as the person you are. Not to hard, not too soft, don't hold it for too long, your handshake is you and an important part of giving the right impression.' - And what do you mean here, pal? Do you mean that when you shake hands with a Pole it's some form of probing you by the Polish guy, and not just a shake hand? Would you say that when a Jew says: 'Shalom!' it's actually not a common 'shalom,' but some form of probing, testing somebody? :)

Steve continues: 'Kssing ladies' hands, especially the older ones, as a sign of respect, is still a common, although a bit outdated, practice in Poland.' What's so 'un-Western' about this charming custom - a custom quite 'outdated,' as you rightly observe (meaning that few people practice it)? In the olden days in continental Europe - in Germany, France - kissing ladies' hands was the sign of the man's good manners. If I'm not mistaken, some people in those countries still practise this custom. Would Steve call them 'different than us' and 'un-Western'? If not, why?

Steve continues: 'Another strange thing is that, mostly at night, but even during daytime, you can see drunken people in the street. This is very uncommon in the West...' - Well, have Steve ever visited any of the British cities? If you have, have you been sober enough to see the scores of often aggressive drunks on the streets, also during the day? Steve: 'It's the famous Polish vodka talking.' Why is it allegedly so famous? Famous with whom? Please, enlighten me in this matter, because although it (whatever it is) is allegedly so famous, I have never heard of it. Or maybe you made up this allegedly famous thing in some drunken or narcotic stupor?

Steve:'Unfortunately, nowadays, many drunks have an easy access to a vehicle... No wonder that Poland has triple the rate of the drink driving accidents compared to the West.' Where did you take this statistic from? And what is this 'West' again? Does it include the United States? So according to Steve the rate of drinking and driving accidents in Poland is three times higher than in the US? :)

Steve goes on: 'Beware of when the drinking takes place: it is a common practice to get drunk once you receive your pay at the end of the month.' - Why should one 'beware' of the end of the month? What's so unusual about the fact that people buy alcohol when they get money? Don't folks in other countries do exactly the same? Wouldn't it be more unusual if they drank when they were moneyless?

Steve goes on: 'People also drink on the weekends...' Don't all other nations, except perhaps the Jews, do exactly the same? Why would it be unusual only in the case of the Poles? Steve: '[B]ut any reason will do. Many do not even need a reason...' Well, isn't it just the same with all the others? Have you ever been, for example, to Ireland, buddy?

Steve again: 'Another common pastime for young people, mostly young men, many of them unemployed, is to hang out in the streets. Many are not aggressive, but some are.' Isn't it exactly the same in any European and American city? Why would it be unusual and un-Western only in Poland? Steve: 'During the communist years, the Police had been very observant for this kind of behavior, but the new regime is not very proactive in this respect.' - Is Steve praising the 'communist years' and 'police' in Poland? In reality, during the communism, or Russian occupation of Poland, the crime rate was huge, because the police, so-called People's Militia, were actually not observant of common criminals; the militia's function was predominantly to protect the rule of the communists. I wonder why Steve calls the present Polish government 'a regime' and not 'a government'? Does he call, say, a German or American government 'a regime'? And what evidence does Steve have that the communists fought common crime more actively than the present government? Hm, the communist militia was brutal and hostile towards any free expression. Does Steve praise them for this? :)

Steve goes on: 'You might also be surprised by the stuff Poles eat. The tripes (intestines of a cow) cut in long pieces, cooked with spices are one of the Polish specialties. It might not be your piece of cake, so better check out the offerings.' Hm, why eating cow tripe would make Poles oh so very different from other nations, and un-Western too? For instance, famously, the French eat frog meat. Does it make them very unlike other peoples, and un-Western too? Why eating only cow tripe is the most unusual of all, and most un-Western? And do Poles eat also things which Steve regards as tasty?

Steve ends his posting with a warning:' And hey, avoid those dark parks and alleys.' And what parts of British or American cities would Steve advise to avoid? None at all? :)

I hope any intelligent and unprejudiced person will see that I have pointed out Steve's strong prejudice towards the Poles and Poland. I wonder about Steve's own national-ethnic background and his motives for putting down the Poles. A low national self-esteem? Sticking to the ole cold War habit of belittling hatefully the Poles, their culture and history? Belonging to a Pole-hating ethnic group, such as Jews? What is it, Steve? Why are you so prejudiced towards us? :)

Dannnyboy rightly observes: 'the above article could have been written about any country in central or western europe. Polish immigrants in Ireland generally do not celebrate namedays at all, only birthdays.'

Right-o, Dannyboy. Unlike some others, you're a smart lad.

By the way, if Poles in Ireland celebrated namedays, would it be wrong? (I don't mean here that Dannyboy thinks it'd be wrong.)

Do the Poles think it's wrong when the Irish in Poland celebrate only birthdays?
Zgubiony 15 | 1,554  
2 May 2007 /  #72
Please note the article was written by "Steve" and isn't necessarily in 100% accordance with the PolishForums.com authors' views :).

wow...you love a good rant huh? mhm lol

LOL did you say Steve enough puzz :)
Puzzler 9 | 1,089  
2 May 2007 /  #73
Zgubiony babbles: 'wow...you love a good rant huh? mhm lol LOL did you say Steve enough puzz :)'

- What do you mean? Explain clearly.
Zgubiony 15 | 1,554  
2 May 2007 /  #74
A good rant...you know what a rant is

No need to explain...It was an interesting read though

do you have to be so serious all of the time?
daffy 23 | 1,508  
2 May 2007 /  #75
It was an interesting

what do you mean, interesting ;) sorry couldnt resist

i agree with fisz, it was well interesting but then, i was always interested in rants (a rant is when you go on into great detail without pause about a subject)

good one puzzler! havent seen you in a while
Puzzler 9 | 1,089  
2 May 2007 /  #76
Szarlotka writes: 'We smile to be polite, Poles seem to smile when they are amused.'

- Actually, I think that many English people (still) smile to feel better and make others feel better. One of the great and most beautiful secrets of the English psyche.

Szarlotka: 'Finding people’s apartments was sometimes a challenge as the numbering was a little strange in parts of Warsaw.'

- Hm, would you admit, Szarlotka, that numbering in England is often very strange? - Many houses don't have numbers at all, or have them either very small or very decrepit. And street names are extremely badly marked. When I made a Thomas Hardy pilgrimage to Dorchester, I found that streets there weren't marked at all, or I could not see the names? But even if I could not see them, doesn't it say something about the marking?

Imagine a city where streets have no names.

Did Bono visit Dorchester too?
;)
daffy 23 | 1,508  
2 May 2007 /  #77
well my friends made that remark about dublin suburbs (signage)
and i said, well the signs in the suburbs are at the begining of streets and not at every single lane entrance - they still refused to take that as acceptable - though i later pointed out - polish suburbs were just as bad :D

its just one of those little quirks

2 cents
Puzzler 9 | 1,089  
2 May 2007 /  #78
Thanks, Daffy. I have been very busy - too busy to write, but I've kept on dropping in and reading what you folks scribble.

By the way, I'm soon to visit Ireland (last time I visited in the 90s). You Irish guys in this forum have inspired me to do that. Will leave lots of bucks there, and maybe even look for a property to purchase... Who knows?

:)
daffy 23 | 1,508  
2 May 2007 /  #79
maybe even look for a property to purchase

may i recommend cork/kerry! beautiful scenary! :) id be delighted to have you as a neighbour! Your more than welcome here to Ireland! do keep dropping in btw.

On topic now, the article was written a while ago - changes in moods since?
Puzzler 9 | 1,089  
2 May 2007 /  #80
Daffy, exactly - Cork is the name! I'd be happy to have you as a neighbour too.

Yes, the article is at least one year old. I think that since then many folks visiting Poland have started liking the country and people.

And when Europe is as one, there'll be no mutual hostility at all.

A purpose worthy of sacrificing one's life for.
:)
Patrycja19 63 | 2,699  
3 May 2007 /  #81
And certainly less than the Americans, including 'Canadians,' with their ultraracist 'Polish jokes,' which should be actually called American (pseudo)jokes. Steve asserts: 'Compared to other nations, jokes are a serious business to the vast majority of Poles.'

wik.ed.uiuc.edu/index.php/Polish_American_are_unintelligent_and _uneducated

I took the time to find you some proof. it was we American Poles who had to endure
the " Polish Joke" if your done on your high horse, maybe you will stop and listen
to your American Polish Brothers and Sisters, as you should with the Canadian
Polish Brothers and sisters who also have had to endure same. that was in a post
on another thread. ( didnt remember the thread name). :)

what a prejudiced posting on Stevie the 'Admin's' part.

Things are done differently then in the west. what /why does that make his statement
prejudiced?

You have a culture. if these are some things he has observed, that is his proof.

I can tell you what I observed, that not all Polish people have same traditions.
from what our cousins here told me, what I seen in here, and my friends whom I write
and cousins from poland, I have heard four different ways to celebrate Wigilia.

I know I spelled that wrong. but its true, so which way is the correct way?
and if your American who has french and say english and irish background, then
whatever someone does who is Polish would seem very different . they dont celebrate Wigilia!! their culture is different, would you say its the same as any other nation?

if steve were to say, well white Polish women all have dark hair and blue eyes and are
extremely stubborn and throw bad fits. well, then he would be sweepingly saying
in a prejudiced way. and sterotyping too.

But he didnt...least from what I read.. so leave our steve alone :)

BTW. I like to shake hands and to talk <~not that anyone would notice lol..

Just so everyone knows , the above link about the American Poles is true.

my father didnt get a great education because all the kids had to help make
money at young ages, and they were very hard workers.. a great majority
of the older generation dropped out of school at ( i think ) the age of 15. but
I know the legal ages is 16 now a days, it could have been even 14 years of age.

those who were educated, some didnt get to use their skills here because it wasnt
recognized..from poland ( my grandfather)

my father had to help my grandmother because his father died early , so it was up
to the last boy in the house to take care of her, which he did, he came home from
the navy and was working as laborer, and took care of her and the house. till she died

all the rest were off and married. but my mother also said when i asked her why
she dropped out, she first told me cause she hated math, but then told me because
times were hard, and they needed help with bills and keeping the house up, so my
mother even did it.

but once we all were in school, there was more pushing with education.
shopgirl 6 | 928  
3 May 2007 /  #82
About the jokes, this line from the end of the article sums it up well, Patrycja:

In fact, Poland is a community that has a rich history of literature, music and scientific study. One who truly has studied Polish history wouldn't find value in the "Polish joke."
Patrycja19 63 | 2,699  
3 May 2007 /  #83
an assumption that a WHOLE group of people lack intelligence proves a lack of intelligence by the person who makes the assumption.

I think this ones even better.. :)

this could also go for those who sterotype other nations as well , including
Americans who are targets and assumed about all the time.
shopgirl 6 | 928  
3 May 2007 /  #84
I think that we all make generalizations sometimes without even being aware of it, until someone points it out to us.
Generalizations are usually wrong, because very little of anything in life is ALL or NOTHING. I think it is a feeble attempt to try to make sense of the world and to sort things out.

What do you think?
Patrycja19 63 | 2,699  
3 May 2007 /  #85
What do you think?

yes I think I can agree with that :)

I have caught my mistakes, when I word things I try to be more careful now. so
coming here give me lessons in life as well :)
szarlotka 8 | 2,208  
3 May 2007 /  #86
Hm, would you admit, Szarlotka, that numbering in England is often very strange?

As precise as ever Puzzler. I should have used the word different rather than strange. I agree that some of our house naming and/or numbering is a little different and sometimes illogical for visitors.
Puzzler 9 | 1,089  
4 May 2007 /  #87
Patrycja19 inquires:'Things are done differently then in the west. what /why does that make his statement prejudiced?'

Do you mean that in Poland things are done differently than in 'the West'? If so, what things are done so differently and what do you mean by 'the West'?

Have you read my reply to Steve's rant? If so, do you think I've pointed out his strong Polonophobic bias?

And why do you Polish Americans and Canadians have to endure 'Polish jokes'? Why don't you do anything about it at last? Why don't you catch the rat deal with him properly?

Where's your honour, where're your guts?

By the way, hm, yes, I might call you a Polish Sister, but as to folks such as miranda, I'd hesitate to acknowledge any family ties with them, due to their obvious Polonophobia.

By the way, Patrycja, you seem to be biased at times too, which bias, I suppose, you have acquired automatically and unconsciously from living in a Polonophobic milieu and being exposed to the hate propaganda carried out by newsmedia psychopaths.

PS. So you, Patrycja, agree with Steve's main message that Poland is different from 'the West' and is not part of 'the West'?
:)

Szarlotka, what the house numbering in Poland and England is 'different' from?
;)
witek 1 | 587  
4 May 2007 /  #88
including 'Canadians,' with their ultraracist 'Polish jokes

no Polish jokes here.

maybe my friends are afraid they will get punched or get a baseball bat to the head.
Patrycja19 63 | 2,699  
4 May 2007 /  #89
Patrycja19 inquires:'Things are done differently then in the west. what /why does that make his statement prejudiced?'

Do you mean that in Poland things are done differently than in 'the West'? If so, what things are done so differently and what do you mean by 'the West'?

you never answered my question, but only avoided it. I explained Wigila, does
everyone have wigila? does the british celebrate this? no. they have their own

in the united states they do, but only the Polish, the whole united states doesnt
participate, because there is so many different cultures.

I am pretty sure our laws arent the same. the cars are different. and they drive
on a different side of the road in the UK. gun laws? hmm that was discussed
on another thread. schools, money is even different.

if it was the same, i am sure that people wouldnt go to visit because they can find
paradise in their own backyards..

I did explain that Poland has " A Culture" its own, we as Americans do not have
a specific Culture. as Krysia stated, things that are not done in Poland are very
much a reality in the United states.

So you, Patrycja, agree with Steve's main message that Poland is different from 'the West' and is not part of 'the West'?
:)

Yes. is the Uk ( west) same as the united states? NO. there is a great deal that is
different. our govt works differently, our whole way of life.

Things that are the same, love, taking a shower, eating, going shopping etc.

I am talking things that are part of a culture. which makes it different. steve wasnt
being biased, he was pointing out things which make those a Nation.

even here in America, the American indians dont do things the same as we do
they have a culture, traditions which seperate them from the obvious. and yes
they do things differently, we also have Amish people, who live by standards they
set in place which have been the same for well over 100 years, I think much longer
and they dont use electricity, they use horse and buggy. no one says anything
and they are different, but its not a bad thing is what steve has pointed out.

ok i think that summed it up.

why do you want to call me your polish sister? I didnt think you liked me as a sister
:)

And why do you Polish Americans and Canadians have to endure 'Polish jokes'? Why don't you do anything about it at last? Why don't you catch the rat deal with him properly?

it dont happen now, during my childhood and teenage years it did.

now I would clobber them!

I have clobbered some.. those who said it because they were just playing around
I would point out their nationality in a joke.

I was stating that because of the fact that people say it, no matter what generation
you are, I am 2nd generation and my dad being first.
And those who came here to America, we had Polish jokes here, then now as
2nd generations who want to learn about poland, call us Polish wannabes..

So between two lands acceptance was a battle.and still is.

when they left, Poland would have them back in a heartbeat, and America with
reluctance, now, if we left America would have us back in a heartbeat. and Poland
reluctant to accept. only those with open heart, mind and Arms.

no Polish jokes here.

maybe my friends are afraid they will get punched or get a baseball bat to the head.

That is good Witek that you didnt have to hear those jokes, but there was one
who came on in anther thread asking for advice and this was recently. he was
canadian. I am sure there is more.

Where's your honour, where're your guts?

honor comes with having something to be honored about. how can one be honored
or honorable when they are not accepted in either place?

but dont worry, my attitude here should tell you that I stood up and always have
even though I didnt understand why at the time people would say that.

By the way, Patrycja, you seem to be biased at times too, which bias, I suppose, you have acquired automatically and unconsciously from living in a Polonophobic milieu and being exposed to the hate propaganda carried out by newsmedia psychopaths.

where did you get your facts Puzzler??

how can you take on a biased view of me not fully knowing the person, only
the posts? and which posts show you this?

Biased is to easily judge, you seem to be determined to judge those of us you
dont know, or cant fully understand, possibly it is yourself you are referring to?

ever since you joined, you have had some harsh biased views of everyone, not
I disagree or agree. I think everyone minus Shawn_H who stroked your ego
is prejudiced in your eyes. how about spare me the questions and show me
some proof.

yes, today I will be instutional biased. I want proof.. is it ok to pick which day I can
be biased?

:)
shopgirl 6 | 928  
4 May 2007 /  #90
Puzzler, everyone has a "bias" in their opinions. You know that!
;) Even researchers make allowances for research bias.

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