The internet is finally picking up on the fact that Britain is a quirky place filled with quirky people.
However, it wasn’t until a Reddit thread popped up that Britain’s baffling traits were fully recognized.
Just four days ago, Reddit user TIGHazard posed this question:
“Non-British people of Reddit, what about Britain baffles you?”
The original post has since exploded with nearly 40,000 comments that run the gamut when it comes to Britain’s perplexing qualities.
Another person commented on the actual geography.
“I grew up in a town in rural Australia. The text town from us was 45min drive away via a highway at 100kph all the way.”
“Flying over rural Britain I saw loads of little villages within walking distance of each other. It just seemed so odd to me. Why did they never amalgamate into 1 large town?”
“Edit: Ok I get it – according to 50% of the people responding it’s because ‘f— that other village’.” – MeltingDog (Reddit)
One observation was surely referencing The Great British Bake Off.
“How they help each other on their reality/competition shows” – grsull (Reddit)
One Redditor pointed out what was later called “the cornerstones of British society.”
“I am french and have been living in London for a year. What struck me the most was how friendly pubs were.”
“If I go out in a bar on my own in Paris, I will talk to no one and no one will talk to me.”
“In London, it takes roughly 30 seconds to find some mates to chat with”
“I loved that” – Clemeeent (Reddit)
In fact, pubs came up a lot.
“Having two beers at lunch and going back to the office or class and no one thinks it’s weird.”
“I was dumbfounded on my semester abroad by this” – Robcofounder (Reddit)
“Honesty? The bar scene in London. I remeber getting into London and having to wait hours for a train to take me to Scotland, and I dove into a bar off the tube. It’s midday, raining, and I’m getting hammered on IPAs like a decent midwesterner, when an old lady come up to me and asks if I want to read the days paper. Uh okay, sure. So I’m drunk, reading the news, and I’m in the bar so long, talking to the bartender and old people, when a huge influx of workers come into the bar having just got off. It’s the most casual I’ve ever seen a bar, and that feeling never left until I left the UK. Yalls bar scene is so damn decent I get jealous, I got chain smoking, keno playing, fist fighting, bud lighting bars over here in the states.” – massacre167 (Reddit)
“I took someone visiting from Asia to a pub and his way of describing it was ‘it’s like a living room for drinking beer’. I’d never thought about it like that before, but he was spot-on; a pub is a communal living room where people go to drink. It’s the shared social space for a neighbourhood or area. I saw them quite differently after I got that outsider perspective, and I think that’s why they seem very civil spaces.”
“People here joke that couples would not get together without beer, but I think the grain of truth in that is most people will meet and socialise in the pub – it’s a very casual place where people get to know each other and social and class distinctions count less by virtue of people choosing to go there (as opposed to being obligated to be there, like a workplace). Booze is just the cover story.” – davemee (Reddit)
The weather was also a topic.
“Britain is the only country to perform better during World Wars than in a snowstorm.” – zBaer (Reddit)
As was British banter.
“How they’re so rude to each other. FOR FUN. (I have a British boyfriend and the way he talks to his family is just baffling to me.)” – Eevee Spectrum (Reddit)
The island’s consumption habits also came up.
“Your obsession with tea.”
“I like tea. It’s good. I don’t see my nation drinking so much tea that power companies have to account for when the commercials start because everyone’s turning on an electric kettle.” – BlueberryPhi (Reddit)
“I was so confused the first time I went out for dinner in London. The waiter said “we have four different puddings tonight.” I was like wow how odd that this restaurant only has various flavours of pudding for dessert.”
“EDIT – also that tea can mean dinner. “We’re going to have roast chicken for tea, how about you?” …Uhhh I’m just going to have tea thanks… like earl grey?” – cornflakegrl (Reddit)
Needless to say, Britain is a lovely, albeit confusing, place.