There are a lot of stereotypes in Japan about Americans. Some are reasonable, and some are unbelievable. As an American living in Japan I wanted to share 3 stereotypes I wish people who stop believing about Americans.
1. Americans are all outgoing and extroverts.
I am a very shy person. When people hear I am American they assume I can talk to anyone easily and have a lot of confidence. There are outgoing Americans who like talking to strangers and make lots of new friends easily. But, just like Japan there are a lot of very shy Americans too!
2. Americans can’t use chopsticks
When I hear someone surprised I can use chopsticks I get angry, confused, and even a little sad. I know that people don’t want to be rude, but this stereotype is offensive in my opinion. Yes, there are Americans who can’t or haven’t used chopsticks. But, there are just as many who can use chopsticks perfectly. The reason some people struggle is because they haven’t ever been taught how to use them.
Even so, if you see American using chopsticks and say 「Oh wow! You can use chopsticks?!」it is the same as if you go to America and and American say 「oh wow! you can use a fork?!」. So, please don’t believe this stereotype and don’t act too surprised when you see a foreigner using chopsticks.
3. American food is just hamburgers and fries.
True, hamburgers and French fries are a iconic American food. But, I wish people would know that American cuisine has an amazing amount of delicious varieties! Personally, I don’t even like hamburgers.
So if American food isn’t hamburgers and fries, what is it? American food is a magnificent mix of foods from many cultures and countries. There are 3 foods I want everyone to know more!
1. Chicken and Waffles
Came from southern African-American communities and warms your heart with perfect balance of sweet and salty.
2. Eggs benedict
A classic American breakfast. Poached eggs, English muffin, ham, and hollandaise sauce (not cheesy, but buttery!)
This is most important to me because it is my family’s cuisine. I remember making pierogi with my grandma every year since I can remember. There are many kinds, but my favorites are potato and cabbage.
You can even by frozen ones at the grocery store now!