Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Italian-American (Anglo) Culture Clash #2, That's a Bit Out of Line

If only they were as organized as their trees...sigh...
  A few weeks ago my husband and I made a trip to our electronics store to replace our old rusty refrigerator. After making our decision the salesperson filled out a form and told us to take it up to the counter and pay and then we could go pick-up our item from the warehouse down the street. As we headed over we could see that there was no one in line in front of us….

…..and then all of a sudden out of nowhere, this woman comes walking up (more like speed walking actually) and just swoops in right in front of us. And I mean we were literally 2 steps away from the cashier. My husband and I just looked at each other in disbelief, dumbfounded, and then just shook our heads and chuckled.

Unbelievable! And by now I know that I should expect things like that to happen but there are just some things that no matter how long I live here I just can't seem to get used to. And it happens everywhere you go, no matter what is happening, there they are trying to cut in front of you. I just stand there watching out of the corner of my eye, feeling myself getting more and more irritated with each centimeter closer to they get to me, and then I try to inch my way up a little further so that I can somehow have the advantage over them, but then, its that moment, the moment when the cashier is ready for that next customer, and somehow, I never know how, but they always manage to sneak their asses right in there ahead of me as if they have been waiting there patiently the whole time. Errrrrrrrr!!!!!!

I made the mistake of saying something a few times and then you just feel like a complete idiot, because the response is always, with a incredibly surprised look on their face, ‘oh scusi, non ti avevo visto.’ HOW EXACTLY DID YOU NOT SEE ME????  You were breathing down my neck for the love of God! And its not like there is really anything you can say at that point, they didn't see you!

What is it about the concept of a line that you don't understand people??? One after the other! Everyone will get his or her turn.

Waiting in lines in the country is really, truly a test of that virtue they call patience and Lord knows I am lacking it in spades.

But…..there are some things that are just left well enough alone. Either you can get upset about it or have a chuckle at how unbelievably ridiculous it is! The best way to handle the situation is just to say prego, and gesture for them to step in front of you. That way they will either feel like an idiot themselves….

….or not, but at least you can stand in line peacefully. 

But even if you foaming at the mouth ready to spit fire at the next person who dare try and cut in front of you, if they are over the age of 70 you may just want to retract your claws because the elderly have this special power around here, they get to do whatever they want and no one can say a thing. Although, if you saw a little Old Italian lady in the grocery store with an arm full of groceries, I imagine most of us would be happy to let her take cutsys anyway.


  1. This had me laughing. I experience the same thing on a very regular basis. I feel invisible sometimes. Glad to know it's not just me.

    1. Oh no! Not just you! But what else can we do but laugh about it? Otherwise we'll just make ourselves crazy! Thanks for stopping by! It's always a pleasure to hear from you:)

  2. As the swede I am I get very confused when there is no que, and even more when there is one but the que laws are broken. Since I'm very Swedish I would never though start to argue about this but smile and get furious on the inside. That's why I complained silently to myself, standing in Standa and Coop, having the same experience as you of course, and why it always took ages for me to reach the cashier. (And when finally getting there- having the terrible experience of absolutely no feeling for costumer services...)
    Still love it though. Messes me up! ;)

    1. Helene! You are too funny!! Its so true though, it does mess us up! What can we do but except them and all of their unorganized ways! And yes, I know what you mean about finally reaching the cashier only to have them barley look at you while asking 'saccetto?' And then of course they want EXACT change!! And if you dare hand them a 50 euro bill for something that costs 10.50, ahhhh the horror and of course the not so discrete siiigggghhhh!!!!! LOL! As always, I love your comments! Thank you! baci! :)


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