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ARE BRITS MEANER AND LESS HOSPITABLE THAN POLES?


Polonius3 1,000 | 12,446  
21 Jan 2009 /  #1
Yes, I know the self-appointed apostles of PC will scream 'more stereotyping', but that's their right and gut reaction to things.
Nevertheless, back when relatively few Poles ever made it over to the Isles (pre-1989) I more than once had heard something along the lines of: 'Nalał po kieliszku wódki, resztę schował do lodówki.' Anybody who has visited relatives in Poland knows that at least one bottle must be emptied at table (nithing in ti could be left unconsuemd) for thigns to be right with the world.

Also, another real turn-off was the coin-operated gas ring -- something only the Brits could have invented.-In fact, I've heard Poles say the Scottish jokes were thought up by the English to take the heat off themselves, because in fact Scots are far more hospitable. Any comments?
PolskaDoll 28 | 2,105  
21 Jan 2009 /  #2
Also, another real turn-off was the coin-operated gas ring -- something only the Brits could have invented.

Why a turn off? You put a coin in and you get your money's worth. I remember all through the 80's and early 90's that my grandmother had coin operated electricity. There was a box in her hall, high up by the front door and you had to slot 50p in every time it ran out. People used for what they could pay for rather than pay for what they used. These things were introduced after the war when people just didn't have the money. Even now people can opt for powercards and top up their money rather than be sent a bill every month that is usually rounded UP. Why pay for more than you use?

I've heard Poles say the Scottish jokes were thought up by the English to take the heat off themselves, because in fact Scots are far more hospitable. Any comments?

People say the Scots are more hospitable but who really has the evidence? I think Scots have the reputation of being more hospitable because really, we'll gather for any occasion. ;) Perhaps we're more social, who knows?
Kilkline 1 | 689  
22 Jan 2009 /  #3
Its a bit of a myth to say that all Polish families crack open a bottle of vodka as soon as you arrive. Sometimes people just dont want to drink vodka. Maybe they've realised their are far more tasty spirits to be had such as whiskey, which they'll drop hints about so that you'll bring them a bottle next time you're over.

Also, when I'm in Poland I've stopped buying rounds as I realised I'm the only person doing it. People I know well are ok about it but all the others just take the p1ss. Its like they think they're being clever at getting a 'free' drink.
Grzegorz_ 51 | 6,163  
22 Jan 2009 /  #4
far more tasty spirits to be had such as whiskey

You're joking, right ?

Its like they think they're being clever at getting a 'free' drink.

That's not the point. "Rounds" are just stupid, some people drink faster, some slower...
Kilkline 1 | 689  
22 Jan 2009 /  #5
Kilkline: far more tasty spirits to be had such as whiskey

You're joking, right ?

You dont like whiskey? Loads of guys I meet in Poland seem to love the stuff. When you get the plane over to Poland from the UK you see loads of people (me included) with their carrier bag containing 1 bottle of whiskey (for Dad), 1 bottle of Baileys (for Mum) and either a large Toblerone or a box of Heroes/Celebrations.

That's not the point. "Rounds" are just stupid, some people drink faster, some slower...

True, but that doesnt explain why everyone disppears when its their turn.
PolskaDoll 28 | 2,105  
22 Jan 2009 /  #6
Also, when I'm in Poland I've stopped buying rounds as I realised I'm the only person doing it. People I know well are ok about it but all the others just take the p1ss. Its like they think they're being clever at getting a 'free' drink.

The first time we all went out in a group a Polish friend of mine was surprised that we bought rounds. She said at home people just bought their own drinks when they wanted one.

"Rounds" are just stupid, some people drink faster, some slower...

That's a good point. The slower people are "forced" to keep up. I buy my own when I am ready.
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
22 Jan 2009 /  #7
You know what the Poles say about Kraków and Poznań people, LOL. Personally, I think you won't find more hospitable people than the Scots, especially in the west of Scotland. I have met people here who wouldn't give you the shirt off their back but Poland also has a good hospitality industry.

The golden words in English, it depends
Kilkline 1 | 689  
22 Jan 2009 /  #8
That's a good point. The slower people are "forced" to keep up. I buy my own when I am ready.

I understand how people may object to feeling pressured to buy drinks when their not ready. However, they never voice any objection when I'm asking them what they want to drink, or when I'm actually at the bar buying them. They seem to voice their objection by not buying me one back.
PolskaDoll 28 | 2,105  
22 Jan 2009 /  #9
I have friends like that who are not Polish so I know how frustrating that can be. I usually solve this by sitting down and saying "right, who's going to the bar?" so that I am not first. Generally I keep out of rounds now.

I find when I visit Polish friends there is always food being offered, tea and plates of biscuits but less so when I visit Scottish friends. I have one friend who has a habit of having something to do when I arrive and she'll say "I'm just folding the laundry, make yourself a cuppa..." :D I don't visit her often...
sapphire 22 | 1,241  
22 Jan 2009 /  #10
In the UK the concept of 'rounds' is a tradition and something that many foreign visitors fail to grasp the importance of. I had a friend from Latin America who came here and constantly left the pub before his round was due.. having consumed 5-8 drinks each time at the expense of others.. the first time it was ignored, the second it was commented on and after that he wasnt invited down the pub again. He soon learnt. Unless you are out with good friends who you know understand the concept, then I say better to get your own or even better to go in mini-rounds, rather than huge ones.
Kilkline 1 | 689  
22 Jan 2009 /  #11
I find when I visit Polish friends there is always food being offered, tea and plates of biscuits but less so when I visit Scottish friends.

"Ye'll have had ya tea then!?"
PolskaDoll 28 | 2,105  
22 Jan 2009 /  #12
Haha :D That's the one. I suppose even among the hospitable there are those who just won't conform. ;)
time means 5 | 1,310  
22 Jan 2009 /  #13
"Rounds" are just stupid, some people drink faster, some slower...

rounds work when you are in a group and are going from pub to pub. one person orders all the drinks,therefore you get your drinks together. if the pub is busy this avoids a huge wait if done individually.
ShelleyS 14 | 2,893  
22 Jan 2009 /  #14
True, just make sure that the stingy one of the group gets the first round it :)
time means 5 | 1,310  
22 Jan 2009 /  #15
yes, we all know the round dodger and he usually gets the first :-)
BubbaWoo 33 | 3,510  
22 Jan 2009 /  #16
i dont mind paying for drinks but would rather avoid having to get up and go to the bar - especially if it is full of a group of people who insist on buying their drinks seperately... inconsiderate tossers
IronsE11 2 | 442  
22 Jan 2009 /  #17
The 'Round system' has its advantages and disadvantages.

If someone does not wish to conform to this system whilst among people for whom it is traditional (from reading this thread it would appear as though the concept is peculiar to the UK), then they should simply refuse a drink when asked what they want.

Personally, I don't understand why anyone would want to queue up at a crowded bar numerous times during a night out, when they could just do it once or twice!

yes, we all know the round dodger and he usually gets the first :-)

Which often happens to be in the Weatherspoons, before you move on to the more expensive bar down the road ;)
ShelleyS 14 | 2,893  
22 Jan 2009 /  #18
Personally, I don't understand why anyone would want to queue up at a crowded bar numerous times during a night out, when they could just do it once or twice!

Maybe its because Poles like queuing? Contrary to popular belief.
time means 5 | 1,310  
22 Jan 2009 /  #19
Which often happens to be in the Weatherspoons, before you move on to the more expensive bar down the road ;)

ah yes the weatherspoons rush.
ShelleyS 14 | 2,893  
22 Jan 2009 /  #20
Isn't that the place you wipe your feet on the way out of?
osiol 55 | 3,922  
22 Jan 2009 /  #21
I've stayed with some very hospitable Poles. There is nearly always a bottle of vodka opened, and if not, a beer is quite likely. I just assumed that I come from a family of inhospitable people. If I go round to my Dad's house, it is unlikely that even a chair will be offered. A cup of tea might take about half to three quarters of an hour. At least having somewhere to sit down is one of the absolute basics of hospitality. I don't think I take after my father in this respect. I always offer food and/or drink, and never fail to find somewhere for guests to rest their arses. Many have to endure a tour of the garden though.

Drinking in rounds does cut down queuing time in pubs, and it is easy enough to say no (or so I've been told).

coin-operated gas ring

Go into a shop and see if you can get a Mars bar without paying.

The idea that Scottish people are thrifty (mean) is perpetuated both by Scots and others. Some quite like this stereotype because it means people are less likely to ask to borrow things, and will be pleasantly suprised when generosity is on display. A bit like the way I like the stereotypes about the English - that we talk like "fwa fwa fwa", run naked around foreign cities whilst vomiting, and generally thinking we can and do run the entire world when in fact, we find it difficult running our own bathwater.

Stereotypes are stereotypes, P3. They often have some basis in reality, but that reality may be one of the past, and they certainly never apply to everyone to whom they are applied.

Isn't that the place you wipe your feet on the way out of?

It's for when the fish and chip shop runs out of vinegar.
joo who - | 100  
22 Jan 2009 /  #22
Sometimes this Polish hospitality masks a sinister motive... I have had a Polsih woman who bakes me cakes, buys me drinks, smiles and laughs with me..... and robs me blind! This is maybe the epitomy of multi-tasking!?

It will be a long time before I accept Polish hospitality at face value again! In the meantime I am too busy running around trying to undo a tangled web of deceit to find time for a bottle of vodka!
Matyjasz 2 | 1,544  
22 Jan 2009 /  #23
i dont mind paying for drinks but would rather avoid having to get up and go to the bar - especially if it is full of a group of people who insist on buying their drinks seperately... inconsiderate tossers

Ay, you may be right. However mentioning the buying rounds ritual in a thread dedicated to hospitality doesn't say much about British generosity, now does it me ol china? Where I live hospitality is understood as an act of unconditioned kindness. You give and don’t expect anything in return. So at least when I buy a round I do it sincerely.

Now, as for the original question, does it really make a sense to compare those two mentioned cultures? The first time I visited an English friend of mine I felt totally offended. In Poland, when you visit someone it is considered extremely rude not to let your guest into the house and let him rot in the cold at your door. "Tylko nie przez próg!". However I fond out that in England it is considered rude to pop up without any prior notice. It seems that an English man's/woman's house is his/hers castle and sanctuary. Come to think of it, it's not that dumb after all. Maybe it would be better to try to understand the other culture instead of judging it? Both nations seem to have some good arguments on their side... Oh well...

Its a bit of a myth to say that all Polish families crack open a bottle of vodka as soon as you arrive. Sometimes people just dont want to drink vodka. Maybe they've realised their are far more tasty spirits to be had such as whiskey, which they'll drop hints about so that you'll bring them a bottle next time you're over.

Alcohol is like music; there are those tunes that you love from the very first time you hear them, alas very often the interest in them wears off just as fast as it appeared in the first place, and there are those tunes that you have to listen several times to appreciate and usually this is the music that stays with you for good. If whiskey was a song it would definitely be the latter. It's not an easy taste, but once it clicks in, you are just coming back for more.

Still, I don't see how whiskey could replace vodka in the future as vodka is an a lot more universal drink. You can drink it in shots if you want “a fast effect”. You can drink it in a form of a drink if you want to sip it and enjoy. Then there is a multiple variety of flavored vodkas. Cytrynówka as a aperitif, orzechówka as a great way to end a meal, krupnik staropolski on a cold winter evening or pomarańczówka with ice on a hot summer day… yumm.
osiol 55 | 3,922  
22 Jan 2009 /  #24
Sometimes this Polish hospitality masks a sinister motive

Like wanting me to persuade the boss to give ***ek or ***ek a full-time contract at work. Not exactly sinister, but I always sensed something of that idea running somewhere through their hospitality. I do believe there is more to it than that. If I didn't, I'd have to actually assume I'm not as likeable as I think I am.

In Poland, when you visit someone it is considered extremely rude not to let your guest into the house and let him rot in the cold at your door. "Tylko nie przez próg!". However I fond out that in England it is considered rude to pop up without any prior notice.

Friends of mine nearly always phone before calling round. I remember when I was young, my mother nattering with other women who lived on the street, nearly always on the doorstep. That may be something to do with assumptions about hospitality, or it may be so they didn't miss anything that happened outside that may be a good source of gossip.

Still, I don't see how whiskey could replace vodka in the future as vodka is an a lot more universal drink.

They're both good and bad. They each have their place. I have a drinks cabinet next to me at the computer containing whisky, vodka and wine. Why my girlfriend insisted on Żołądkowa vodka to go with spaghetti bolognese is something of a mystery to me. I'd have chosen red wine.
MrBubbles 10 | 614  
22 Jan 2009 /  #25
The first time I visited an English friend of mine I felt totally offended

diddums. go dry your eyes

In Poland, when you visit someone it is considered extremely rude not to let your guest into the house

Is that why when people ring your doorbell in Poland at 0700 they keep banging away at it until you answer?
osiol 55 | 3,922  
22 Jan 2009 /  #26
MrBubbles

Aren't we supposed to be trying to be a little more hospitable on this thread?

Is that why when people ring your doorbell in Poland at 0700 they keep banging away at it until you answer?

Then let them in at seven o'clcok in the morning, and tell them it's rude not to accept a few glasses of vodka. Well, why not?
MrBubbles 10 | 614  
22 Jan 2009 /  #27
Aren't we supposed to be trying to be a little more hospitable on this thread?

Oh I'm sorry where are my manners. Please have a seat and I'll get you a bottle of vodka
Matyjasz 2 | 1,544  
22 Jan 2009 /  #28
diddums. go dry your eyes

Are you calling me a diddums? How rude!

What's a diddums, osiol?
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
22 Jan 2009 /  #29
I think there must be a different interpretation, Osioł. In Scotland, thrifty means good at saving money. The Poles express it as oszczędny. Stingy is mean and the Poles say skąpy. Thriftiness is a positive attribute, especially in today's modern climate.
Matyjasz 2 | 1,544  
22 Jan 2009 /  #30
They're both good and bad. They each have their place. I have a drinks cabinet next to me at the computer containing whisky, vodka and wine. Why my girlfriend insisted on Żołądkowa vodka to go with spaghetti bolognese is something of a mystery to me. I'd have chosen red wine.

I agree. Żołądkowa Gorzka and spaghetti? Now that's very adventoures.

Żołądkowa is OK, but Krupnik is the real deal! Especially when home made!

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