You're in Paris; how do you . . .

spot the foreigners? or the Americans?

Americans try to blend in overseas, so whether Paris or London, they’ll be without baseball caps and Ralph Lauren gear with the Stars and Stripes.

My key to spotting the non-natives:

Foreigners (in general): guidebooks.

Americans: ice in their soft drinks; early diners in restaurants; they expect others for form orderly lines (as do the Brits); jogging shoes or Birkenstocks; copy of Herald-Tribune with them. Also highly likely to be wearing a fanny pack.

Germans: shorts in any season – when combined with sandals and socks, it’s certain to be a German. Be careful because some Seattle residents have been known to wear socks and sandals.

Japanese: adorned with camera; often seen in flocks.

British: pasty complexion + women don’t wear hose. If you have the only former, may also be from Seattle.

Aahh, that would explain the camouflage fatigues. I had wondered.

Easy guide to spotting Americans abroad: talk about 30 decibels to loudly in public places. Bonus points if they’re complaining about “why can’t these people just learn English”.

Parisians iron their fucking jeans. I’ve never seen anything like it.

Ratty-ass Levi’s? Got to be an American.

I bartended in Paris for a few months last year, and had a whole list of these for spotting fellow Yanks. Among others: khakis, tennis shoes, and how they hold up their fingers to signify numbers (i.e., French people hold up a thumb as part of their count, whereas us Yanks don’t; so it’s common for Americans to hold up two fingers (index & middle), and get three of something. And no self-respecting American male would ever jeans as tight as they do in Paris.

Heck, just ask us. We’re not shy – in fact, we’ll talk so much about being American that you’ll be sorry you didn’t just guess and move on.
Gar-kon! There are snails on my wife’s plate! And can we have some damn ice?

Brands of clothes et cetera. It’s harder than it used to be, but JanSport backpacks or Hanes sweaters are still pretty good giveaways.

Leaving the Germans aside (;)), Americans tend to be a bit heavier set than Europeans.

Sneakers, sneakers, sneakers.

Outdated glasses, weird enough. The person may be wearing top notch clothes, but they still have their oversized 1982 glasses on.

T-shirts or other clothes supporting sports teams. A pretty rare thing here (unless you’re actually attending a match), leaving aside the British isles and Ireland. Well, the sports teams we’re talking about generally wouldn’t be supported by a European anyway. :slight_smile:

And ever since September 11, those “God Bless America” t-shirts (crying eage optional) are making things really easy for us.

Interestingly, that does not mark you as necessarily American in New York City.

We appreciate the support, and your tourism.

Good Lord !

Oh,that kind of ‘fanny’. Damn, I was suddenly rather looking forward to the next four months of invasion.

No worries matey, you’ll still get to call them a pack of cunts. :smiley:

Jeez, that’s a tad harsh 'aint it ? :wink:

To spot a Canadian?

We sew little Canadian flags to our backpacks (lest we are confused with our southerly neighbours).

Indignantly protest “we are NOT Americans, eh!”

Pathologically polite when asking for directions.

Carry condiments such as ketchup so as not to offend a chef by asking our waitor for some (or is this an American thing too?)

Possibly, but will the owners of the fanny packs be full of ‘spunk’ ? :smiley:

  • whoa…this is getting harsh.

Ha, it’s easy to tell Canadians. They pretty much look and act exactly like Americans, but they’re freakishly friendly.

Why is it that Germans and Dutch peoples both seem to be tall and thin, right up until about 45-50 years of age, then pow, suddenly they’re short and squat? And where does the metamorphosis occur?

Except when it’s convenient. . . I was last rebuked by a Canadian in Africa when I referred to “Americans” – to exclude Canuckians.

“I’m from North America, I’m an American too,” quoth my neighbor.

My friend in Bulgaria says she can spot us by how we sit. Especially men, we’ll cross our legs, ‘at a wide angle’. They don’t do that there. And jeans.
Peepthis is right about the one, and a two. Took me a while to figure that out there. Came with with two apples everytime I ordered one. Couldn’t figure out why the vendor would always give me the ‘thumbs up’ everytime I ordered something. I thought they thouught I was cool.

Elderly Americans have their pants pulled up to their arm pits.

I’ve been told that British men in Australia can be spotted easily (apart from being permanently drunk, aggressive and sunburned) because we have longer sideburns. Aussie guys don’t, for the most part (or so I’ve been told).

I’ll second spotting American tourists by JanSport labels. The smell of particular cigarette brands can identify French tourists and long hair on skinny guys usually makes me think “Italian”.

Ooh!! Crossing over the fork to the right hand when they eat.

Most Europeans eat double-handed, and most Americans don’t.