Sunday, July 13, 2008

In Vermont, “BBQ” Means “Cookout”

This post is about cultural differences. Sometimes, we don’t realize what our culture is until we’re thrust into another one.

Example #1: Yesterday, dinner was scheduled as “BBQ on the college green.” One of my classmates, Katie, and I were sitting on the grass reading our workshop pieces for the next day. “Are we having hamburgers and hotdogs?” Katie asked as the smell of charcoal wafted our way. “Because that would be odd since we had that for lunch.”

I replied, “I thought we were having BBQ.”

Knowing where I’m from, Katie understood my confusion. “Do you mean pulled pork or pulled chicken?” she asked.

I didn’t really. “I meant brisket.”

Katie asked, “What’s brisket?”

She’d heard of it before, but thought that it was some kind of Mexican meat. I further realized my ideas on BBQ when I went through the food line. I was incensed when people passed up the potato salad. Alright, so it was fancy potato salad with no mustard and made out of red new potatoes, but how can you eat BBQ without potato salad? I got potato salad and coleslaw, noting the lack of charro beans. As I neared the end of line, where people were serving themselves lemonade with a ladle, I set down my plate and began looking for the sweet tea.

I guess this proves that I lived in East Texas for four and a half years.

Example #2: I was sitting at a picnic table today, writing a letter, when a few scattered drops fell from the sky. I heard people say, “It’s raining!” and head briskly toward a building. I stayed and enjoyed it. My paper barely got a few drops. Later on, when the rain grew harder, someone said, “Take an umbrella if you go out. It’s pouring!” I came out (on my way here actually). It’s raining, not pouring. My bag didn’t even look like it had the measles, just some acne. If my bag and I aren’t soaked by the time I get from one place to the other, it’s not pouring.

So, those are just some of the cultural differences that I’ve noticed here in Vermont. :-D

P.S. It feels like early fall here, not the middle of July. Which is good, considering the dorms have no AC.

P.P.S. Some of my classmates and I played Apples to Apples last night, and “The South” won for “Distinguished,” so I’m not alone here! :-D

1 comment:

jahanschen said...

I know what you mean!! No brisket, weird potato salad, and don't even try to ask for salsa or pico de gallo...welcome to the Northeast! (However, I came to somewhat enjoy their 'potato salad' after 4 years!)