It’s no secret—the rest of the world looks at how peculiar American culture can be and wonders if it’s even real.

‘Cause let’s face it—even if it looks fine for us, that doesn’t mean that having police patrol your school, paying for a ride to the hospital, and calling the toilet “restroom” when we all know very well there ain't nobody going there to have a rest shouldn’t raise a brow for others.

So this time, we are looking at what American things make our fellow non-American friends scratch their heads in simple, yet very spot-on questions below. Our dear American Pandas are also welcome to help separate what’s real, what’s rumors, and what only happens in movies in the comments! And after you're done with this post, check out our previous one with things Americans do that require an explanation for non-Americans.

#1

Questions-For-Americans

max_lus Report

Ceredwyn Ealanta
Community Member
1 month ago

But taking off shoes and socks when you come in is nearly as good as taking off your bra.

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#2

Questions-For-Americans

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Jo Choto
Community Member
1 month ago

It's a staple food. Most kids grow up eating PB&J sandwiches.

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#3

Questions-For-Americans

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GirlFriday
Community Member
1 month ago

We have them. They are usually part of the cheerleader squad or dance squad. It is a sports thing. We take sports very seriously.

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Even though Americans and Europeans share many things, like commitment to democratic principles, a strategic alliance, and some of the highest standards in the world, there are still some very notable differences between them.

A 2016 study done by Pew Research Center was very revealing in that respect. First of all, it showed that Americans are more likely to believe they control their own destiny.

The research showed that a staggering 57% of Americans disagreed with the statement “Success in life is pretty much determined by forces outside our control.” The percentage was higher than in any other European nations polled.

#4

Questions-For-Americans

Kina_Matata Report

Truth Monster
Community Member
1 month ago

How else do you hide bodies?

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#5

Questions-For-Americans

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Ray Martin
Community Member
1 month ago

It's aisles, though an isle just for cereal would be amazing :-)

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#6

Questions-For-Americans

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Brendan
Community Member
1 month ago

An affective way to make the 'popular' kids feel even more popular.

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The second interesting thing the Pew poll showed is that “Americans prioritize individual liberty, while Europeans tend to value the role of the state to ensure no one in society is in need.”

When it comes to religion, it turned out that over half in the US (53%) say religion is extremely important in their life, which is nearly double the share with the same view in Poland.

In France, for example, only 14% consider religion a very important aspect of their lives.

#7

Questions-For-Americans

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Truth Monster
Community Member
1 month ago

you should see what we do to marshmellows....they had it coming

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#8

Questions-For-Americans

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chi-wei shen
Community Member
1 month ago

How else would you call them? Students wouldn't use the teachers first name.

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#9

Questions-For-Americans

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GirlFriday
Community Member
1 month ago

Some schools are more strict than others and require them. My schools didn't require them. We just excused ourselves and went to the restroom when needed.

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#10

Questions-For-Americans

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GirlFriday
Community Member
1 month ago

No. They don't - at least the schools that I went to and my nieces and nephews don't (they are ages 4 - 17). In the past, students were made to recite the "pledge of allegiance" each morning, but I think this is something that has fallen by the wayside.

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#11

Questions-For-Americans

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giraffescupcakesandlove
Community Member
1 month ago

Some schools don't allow it, but at the schools I went to we were allowed to. It was fun! You can put magnets, quotes, pictures of loved ones.

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#12

Questions-For-Americans

kraken_seance Report

Potter
Community Member
1 month ago

Yes, and there are usually one or two questions where you have to read something and write a few pages for it.

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#13

Questions-For-Americans

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Kat Hoth
Community Member
1 month ago

Yes, and sometimes mail does get stolen even though it's a federal offense.

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#14

Questions-For-Americans

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Kat Hoth
Community Member
1 month ago

Some do and if you put raisins on top you call it ants on a log.

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#15

Questions-For-Americans

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Les🐝an
Community Member
1 month ago

My lab partner lit the science classroom on fire. I love chemistry

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#16

Questions-For-Americans

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Kat Hoth
Community Member
1 month ago

Bacon IS considered finger food :D

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#17

Questions-For-Americans

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Kat Hoth
Community Member
1 month ago

Yes, instead of wanker or cunt.

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#18

Questions-For-Americans

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chi-wei shen
Community Member
1 month ago

What's so unusual with this? I'm Austrian and my children's friends never used my first name.

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#19

Questions-For-Americans

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Truth Monster
Community Member
1 month ago

question: why do you ask?

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#20

Questions-For-Americans

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Bill
Community Member
1 month ago

Veterans do.

Wicked Witch
Community Member
1 month ago

They do if you work for the prison system as well.

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Evil Little Thing
Community Member
1 month ago

That's a military thing that occasionally works its way into academia. I LOVE being called by my last name, and for years have signed documents with my first initial and last name. I like thinking that if people can't tell I'm a woman then they will judge my work on its merit.

Miss Cris
Community Member
1 month ago

That's sad.

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80 Van
Community Member
1 month ago

I think this is a lot more prevalent on TV than in my experience, at least. Ironically, I first noticed this kind of thing when reading the Harry Potter books and thought it was strange that the teachers called the students by just their last names.

Anna Martin
Community Member
1 month ago

usually a guy thing....especially with athletes.

Susan Stead
Community Member
1 month ago

Not civilians, although I've seen it in an office where many people had the same first name. Nicknames are normal, though.

Daniel Lewis
Community Member
1 month ago

I only heard this when I was in the military.

Koalamonster
Community Member
1 month ago

soldiers and athletes mostly. Things where your last name is the thing people see on your shirt. I did have friends who tried to do a weird nickname with my last name- I did not enjoy it.

Roald Andresen
Community Member
1 month ago

Norway is a very informal country. The only people I insist that should call me by my last name are telemarketers.

Jenny Rosbach
Community Member
1 month ago

Yes, if you've got a common first name. My first name, Jennifer, was so common my friends started to call me by my initials, JT, which I still go by today. Or, if someone's got a cooler sounding last name than first name.

TA B
Community Member
1 month ago

Did it in my school, but that's because there were repeating first names, made more sense to use last names. Even in friend groups.

Donny Cromwell
Community Member
1 month ago

Do you have any idea how many Chrises I know?! (Chris)

jessica hoke
Community Member
1 month ago

Depends if there are too many people with the same first name, then last names make sense, but I think first names are preferred. My work calls me by my last name usually.

Walter Smith
Community Member
1 month ago

Chiefly in athletics.

Rebecca Schultz
Community Member
1 month ago

That's usually just a military, police, or sports thing. It's kind of macho.

Mike Gnarra
Community Member
6 days ago

It’s very common for friends to use last names when addressing one another.

Alex T
Community Member
1 week ago

No... I thought that was a british thing, like in the harry potter films they will call eachother by last name,

Suzi Gauthier
Community Member
1 month ago

I usually hear it in sports, but sometimes other teachers do it.

Leslie Burleson
Community Member
1 month ago

Only douchebags do that. Or military people

Kate Yeti
Community Member
1 month ago

We only called each other by last names during gym class or when playing sports. That way, there's no confusion. There were almost always multiple Jennifers or Jessicas in my classes 😅

Debster
Community Member
1 month ago

Military thing. I didn't know very many people's first names while i was in the Navy. Weird to find out their first name. Ha

Michael Capriola Jr.
Community Member
1 month ago

Depends on where you were. Friends use first names. The TV show "House" had people using last names for their co-workers. BBC does that a lot too, especially with period pieces. Isn't that right, Holmes? It's quite elementary, my dear Watson.

Arctic Fox Lover
Community Member
1 month ago

In lots of businesses and office places, yeah.

Orange Knight
Community Member
1 month ago

pretty common if some people have the same first name; with my pals, there were 3 johns, so no one went by john

Max L.
Community Member
1 month ago

Well, there may be several people by the same first name

Paul Macdonell
Community Member
1 month ago

I think that's really only a police drama thing.... it is also mirrored on cop shows from England and parts of Europe.

Candace Fitzpatrick
Community Member
1 month ago

All the hockey boys put a Y at the end of the last name ie Smithy, Jonsey, Gibby, Fitzy etc.

Rohan Moran
Community Member
1 month ago

Used to happen at my school alot (UK) Teachers to students... usually when they were pissed at me lol. So it was never a good sign when you hear it

Perfectly Imperfect
Community Member
1 month ago

Most men, some women, and nearly all Veterans do!

b l a n c
Community Member
1 month ago

i had no idea people did this

Elida Lechuga
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

I get that all the time. Actually my Dad and brother do as well. It might have something with our last name or being Latino. Back in the day when we had a land line someone would call and ask for Lechuga. We always had to have them clarify which one.

Sue Prewitt
Community Member
1 month ago

No

Devon W
Community Member
1 month ago

sometimes but if you have a wack last name like me its a big nope

Adam Hart-Dyke
Community Member
1 month ago

It's not just Americans. It happens in all English speaking countries. It can be done in a friendly way that show familiarity, or an aggressive way to show superiority or dominance, or an insulting way to show contempt or dislike.

Dan Beck
Community Member
1 month ago

I've often been going by my last name. It started in college, when there were several other Dans in my dorm hall.

CatWoman312
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

Yalls questions makes me want to ask are all foreigners stupid or just the ones who are mesmerized by American culture

Abigial Griffith
Community Member
1 month ago

but not children or other lower stranded adults

Abigial Griffith
Community Member
1 month ago

teachers doctors etc.

Bridgette Helms
Community Member
1 month ago

Guys do with their friends. Girls don't.

makenzie stephenson
Community Member
1 month ago

I get called by my last name alllll the time

Toasty
Community Member
1 month ago

In high school, we called out friends by their last names.

CrunChewy McSandybutt
Community Member
1 month ago

I do for work. Of course, I work with a lot of military brass.

Gerry Higgins
Community Member
1 month ago

Boys do, girls not so much.

Miss Cris
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

It doesn't sound practical for women not having and own second name and changing it everytime they marry a new person.

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lara
Community Member
1 month ago

Started with the military and people thought it sounded "cool" and wanted to sound tough, now it just sounds rude.

Anxious Pansexual Nightmare
Community Member
1 month ago

not really

Jimmy Wakeman
Community Member
1 month ago

Some do yes

Jill Pulcifer
Community Member
1 month ago

Some people do, I know a couple people that everyone calls by their last name, but it was a nickname given to them, not that they selected.

Danieletc
Community Member
1 month ago

YES [Sarah's last name]!!!! Like, duuuuh! Deal! Until we're friends, then you're either TOTES Sarah, or TOTES [your last name here, Sarah]. Or you're called whatever dumb nickname you're assigned by some ass, Lovey.

Eric Mac Fadden
Community Member
1 month ago

Because of my surname lots of people calls me that way... and we are very informal in Brazil.

NMN
Community Member
1 month ago

We go by nickname, if any your surnames is good enough for a nickname, then that will do (however in Sampa ppl do last surnames more often while in DF people do more first name or first last name)

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GirlFriday
Community Member
1 month ago

Some do.

Hiker Chick
Community Member
1 month ago

Yes

Sarah Grace Marsh
Community Member
1 month ago

My name sounds better with the whole name lol

Lola
Community Member
1 month ago

I’m originally from Europe and this was happening there too.

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#21

Questions-For-Americans

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Electric Ed
Community Member
1 month ago

Where do teens not slow dance??

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#22

Questions-For-Americans

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Dave P
Community Member
1 month ago

no, never seen it and you do it in NYC you will be banned for life

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#23

Questions-For-Americans

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Kat Hoth
Community Member
1 month ago

Most of us have the entire thing memorized.

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#24

Questions-For-Americans

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chi-wei shen
Community Member
1 month ago

I think children all over the world have to feel "slightly suicidal" to do this.

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#25

Questions-For-Americans

cmangles_ Report

80 Van
Community Member
1 month ago

No, we call eye doctors “Optometrists,” and we call Opticians “Opticians.”

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#26

Questions-For-Americans

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Truth Monster
Community Member
1 month ago

Regionally yes. it is also known as "hot chocolate"

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#27

Questions-For-Americans

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Ojberretta Berretta
Community Member
1 month ago

every human loves fireplaces.....

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#28

Questions-For-Americans

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Missy Wernstrom
Community Member
1 month ago

I’m afraid so. It’s not a movie thing.

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#29

Questions-For-Americans

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Bill
Community Member
1 month ago

most countries do because it has been a part of military training for centuries. They want inshape youth for military service.

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#30

Questions-For-Americans

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Danieletc
Community Member
1 month ago

American: Yes. And we do both.

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