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Monday, February 25, 2013

Differences: Socializing

There's a lot of regional stereotypes. Minnesotans are stereotypically super-nice, obsessed with tapioca pudding, and ride moose to work. As a native, I laugh them off, knowing that they aren't true. There are variations of people. While some fit the stereotype, most people are, well, normal.

Likewise, people on the East Coast have the stereotype of being cold, unhelpful, and in a rush. Or, New Jersey residents are expected to act like Snooki and the gang. And, overwhelmingly, I've found this stereotype to be short of the truth also.

The people that I've met in New Jersey have all been incredibly nice. They've been talkative, kind, and helpful when I've lost my way or gotten confused at work. Instead of the Jersey Shore accent that I expected, I find that I interact with people of a variety of ethnic backgrounds with a variety of accents. In fact, no one seems to notice mine.

I've also noticed that they are very, very blunt. I always know exactly what my coworkers and classmates are thinking. At first, it made me a little uncomfortable... its definitely not what we're used to in Minnesota. However, more and more I'm coming to appreciate it. I think sometimes its easy to think, in Minnesota, that strangers, classmates, etc. are being kind because that's what is socially appropriate.... not necessarily because they really want to talk to or get to know me. Here, I don't have those doubts because I know that if someone doesn't want to talk to me then they won't and if they do, they will. I'm really learning to enjoy that.

Overall, I suppose I'm learning that most people are pretty normal and that I have a lot to learn.


  1. It's so true that people vary everywhere... stereotypes are almost always way too general! The very broad ones can be pretty accurate, like the East Coast being uptight and the West Coast being laidback. Again, it just depends on the person, though! I've known prissy Californians and hippie New Yorkers... Moving to Australia I tried not to pay too much attention to stereotypes. I didn't want to have expectations! It's worked really well for me :)

    1. Moving without expectations is the way to go, because as experience showed me they're often wrong and really do you no good. It really is best to meet people with an open mind and see what comes from it.


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