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    (Original post by sarbruis)
    I like fried potatoes. I'm just talking about plain potatoes, though. You have to do at least five things to them to make them taste good.
    Let me see, chipped potatoes; wash, peel, slice, boil, deep fry, season, eat. That's 7 things.
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    Don't forget mash
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    Oh sorry - you were talking about chipped potatoes
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    Why is it that nans (grandmas, nana's; what ever you like to call them) have mastered the roast potato? My nana isn't a brilliant cook but when she prepares a roast she cooks them to perfection. It must be one of those God given talents.
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    I don't like potatoes unless they are inundated with salt or fried. I also am dreading my 3 mandatory 20 odd person "discussion" sections next semester--being forced to talk or "discuss" does not sit well with me. I at times talk a lot--AP US history first semester was a conversation between me and my teacher, until I discovered that conversations with the cute boy who sat next to me were more fun
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    Potatoes suck. :p:

    Sorry for the thread drift. I suppose we should keep it on topic.
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    You see, the fact that we have now begun discussing the joys of cooking potatoes demonstrates how stupid this thread is. The thread pretty much self-destructed once people resorted to insulting cultures etc.

    We forget to mention potato waffles and rostis, potato cakes, potato dumplings, oh and how can we forget, CRISPS!!!!
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    My brother was eating french fries in front of my face today, and even though I could see the grease dripping off them, I wanted one so badly. But he didn't offer to share
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    Don't forget potato wedges.

    I think it's time for the mods to close this one down now.
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    Oh no... please don't close it down. It was my fault that the topic switched to potatoes... I was just fed up with the insults!
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    No I just think this is a very silly thread which has been riddled with some very stupid and sweeping generalisations. People who resort to insulting other cultures etc. just demonstrate they know nothing about the world around them.

    Yes India may have had (and maybe still does have) some issues with regards to the caste system but that doesn't mean it is a bad coutnry and that doesn't mean Indian people don't have the right to express an opinion about American culture etc. Also, you will know that it was as a result of many years of colonialism by the British, French and the Portuguese that some of India's natural resources were taken by force to the benefit of said regimes leaving India in a rather impoverished state upon independence. This is a well known fact.

    Fast forward to now 60 years after it became an independent state, India is now beginning to realise its potential to become a superpower which the G8 nations and any self-respecting individual couldn't have failed to take any notice of. The fact is within 40 years both India and China will be superpowers and will be richer and more powerful than the USA (and Britain obviously).

    As a hindu myself, I admit that the caste system is unpleasant part of our culture which despite rigourous efforts by the government for much of the 60 years since independence, seems to still rear its ugly head. However this does not mean that neither India as nation nor its people (or people's of Indian origin) are 'bad people" and that we have no right to voice an opinion.

    America and Britain have been for many years (and still are) a breeding ground for ignorance and discrimination whether it's sexual, religious, racial, height (quite evident in American culture from what I've read but this seems to go unoticed), weight etc. However living in a modern, democratic and apparently "educated" society, discrimination as such shouldn't be so evident which it isn't. But it does still exist and no more or less so than anywhere else.

    I've typed for long enough now. But I hope I've made my point.
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    (Original post by Davetherave)
    I attended a university that engaged heavliy in US->UK exchange, and the uni likes to think that it teaches the cream of the crop (ish) from both countries. Now I took several Econ, politics, maths and IR classes, and in the majority of cases the only thing that saved the class from becoming a series of awkward silences occasionally interrupted by the teacher shuffling their papers was the vocality, flair and charisma of that lone American exchange student sitting in on the class.

    Now my question: Why is this? Why do so many British/EU/Asian students sit around jaded and unable to respond to basic questions while American exchange students are more often than not bursting to contribute? Is there a difference in college climate? Do admissions in the US place greater emphasis on extra-curriculars and personality? Does anyone else get this impression? Any thoughts appreciated.

    (I should point out that unlike domestic students, American exchanges receive a grade for class participation. However, this only counts for a very small share of their final score, and liveliness and creativity are hardly things that can be forced with grades.)
    Maybe its due to the extreme onpeness of the U.S. students. I had a guy come in from the U.S. during high school...he wasn't afraid to be wrong...plus he wasn't afraid of the local police either, but thats another story. so like I said..maybe they're more open. Plus alot of exchange students are the smart guys and girls while the short minded or academically challenged stay back too right...?

    oh and a little thing about what warrior king is saying, there are many U.S. corporations outsourcing, and takinig their business there along with U.S. citizens searching for jobs in India...so Americana is brought with them...Those of India can experience it and say anything about it pretty much.

    Not only that, but he/she (trying for political correctness here) is wrong about the years and years of brewing ignorance in UK/America mostly because the most famous place of ignorance might be germany...or maybe people are looking at the middle east right now because of so many different peoples wanting to go every other way or so...but hey, lets stay with script.
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    I'd say that's an important point about American culture as well. Most Americans aren't afraid to say something stupid. Perhaps there's more of an emphasis on thinking aloud, I don't know. But I've observed that people from other countries would rather stay quiet than possibly say something incorrect. Maybe in the working world, that might a concern, but school is for learning, it's OK to make mistakes.
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    (Original post by thereal da_nolo)
    Maybe its due to the extreme onpeness of the U.S. students. I had a guy come in from the U.S. during high school...he wasn't afraid to be wrong...plus he wasn't afraid of the local police either, but thats another story. so like I said..maybe they're more open. Plus alot of exchange students are the smart guys and girls while the short minded or academically challenged stay back too right...?

    oh and a little thing about what warrior king is saying, there are many U.S. corporations outsourcing, and takinig their business there along with U.S. citizens searching for jobs in India...so Americana is brought with them...Those of India can experience it and say anything about it pretty much.
    They are more open.
    Its just social conditioning as well.
    Some cultures just teach students not to retort to teachers, or question them, with regard to elders as well.
    The american culture, calling your mother by her first name just exhibits how open they are. Class rooms are SO much more informal, which is actually a really good thing.

    Has anyone seen Russel Peters? You'll get what I mean if you have.
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    (Original post by thereal da_nolo)
    Maybe its due to the extreme onpeness of the U.S. students. I had a guy come in from the U.S. during high school...he wasn't afraid to be wrong...plus he wasn't afraid of the local police either, but thats another story. so like I said..maybe they're more open. Plus alot of exchange students are the smart guys and girls while the short minded or academically challenged stay back too right...?

    oh and a little thing about what warrior king is saying, there are many U.S. corporations outsourcing, and takinig their business there along with U.S. citizens searching for jobs in India...so Americana is brought with them...Those of India can experience it and say anything about it pretty much.

    Not only that, but he/she (trying for political correctness here) is wrong about the years and years of brewing ignorance in UK/America mostly because the most famous place of ignorance might be germany...or maybe people are looking at the middle east right now because of so many different peoples wanting to go every other way or so...but hey, lets stay with script.
    I somehow doubt that the individuals who comment their "india bashing" comments have actually lived and worked (or travelled) in India and hence their opinions of Indian cultured have been formed from some rather far-fetched stereotypes.

    As for ignorance in the UK/USA, it still exists except probably not to the extent it was say 40 years ago.

    America is not the be all and end all and neither is it the culture that "leads the way". All cultures have their good points and bad points and without sounding like some John Lennon wannabe, that's what makes the world a great place.

    If you have experienced a culture first hand (travelled, worked there, lived there etc.) then you have the basis by which to form an opinion. If your opinion is simply based by what you have seen on television, films or on what someone on some internet forum has typed, then that's just plain ignorance.

    You have to find out the answers for yourself.

    American culture is not the best in the world but neither if British, nor Indian, or French, or Chinese, or Iranian etc. We'd be here all day if we were to list the pros and cons of every society. I just think people should think before they type.
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    (Original post by kashmir.noir)
    The american culture, calling your mother by her first name just exhibits how open they are. Class rooms are SO much more informal, which is actually a really good thing.
    Everyone has their own opinion but I don't think that's a good thing. I would never call my parents by their first names but that doesn't mean I live in a strict household. Likewise I would never call someone considerably odler than myself by their first names unless they asked me to do so.

    As for the classroom, I think a level of formality in such an environment is a good thing however I think the idea that we don't question the teacher if they say something wrong is rather misinformed. I would never have had any qualms about questioning the teacher if an answer appeared to be incorrect or if I or other students didn't seem to understand what was being conveyed (or maybe I just went to a rubbish grammar school).

    I actually had a discussion on this sort of thing (formality) with a friendly American lecturer from NYU I met in Istanbul two summers ago. He has travelloing around Europe but was staying at his friend's flat in London and he was talking about levels of formality in British culture comapred with American culture. For example, he pointed out that in America people would have no qualms about addressing a stranger by their first name whereas in Britain you would usually be addressed as Mr or Mrs. Also when introducing a family in America you would introduce them by their surname "The Brown family", whereas in a formal British setting they may be introduced as "Mr and Mrs Brown and their children Master Richard, and Miss Jane".

    LOL don't I sound like a butler?

    You get my point. Perhaps American culture doesn't really have a sense of formality (although I do hear the terms Sir and Ma'am used every now and then) but doesn't mean it's any more good or worse than cultures which do place a great deal of emphasis on formality (e.g. British, French, German, Indian, Japanese etc).
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    I don't know anyone who calls their parents by their first names, and I'm American.
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    neither do i. actually, my little brother went through a rebellious stage where he tried it- but my parents would not have it. also, i would never call an adult i wasn't close to by their first name (without permission). maybe this is another case of people judging a culture by what they see in films.
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    I had totally forgotten about crisps. I suppose chips and crisps make potatoes' existence worthwhile.

    The only time I've heard people call their parents by first names is when it's not an actual parent, but a step-parent. Which is reasonable. If I had a step-dad, I'd never call him dad or father.
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    My perspective on the whole "speaking out in class" thing:
    Lectures are a no-no. One individual should not have the right to disrupt the lecturer, and, therefore, the hundreds (180, in my case) of students who are listening. There is a time and a place for such questions - after the lecture, or in a tutorial. If the lecturer thinks that the question asked was sufficiently important, they can mention it next time, or send an email to everybody to clarify.
    As far as tutorials are concerned, there is an unwritten rule: no individual either hogs or shies away from the tute. You answer (and ask!) a reasonable number of questions. We'll often agree in advance what we want to find out, and what we're most willing to answer - there's always a momentary gap in which everyone looks at one another, wondering who's going to answer.
    Thinking about it, that does seem very reserved and particularly British, doesn't it... everyone with their own turn and a "fair share"...
 
 
 
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