I realized yesterday just how much I’ve become attached to being able to blend in here. I had dinner with a friend from the US yesterday; this friend has a particularly American presence. Tall, slightly louder on public transit, friendly in that very American way, among other subtleties. I focus on presence here because I have a strong American (though not regional) accent so the jig is up once I open my mouth. I’m completely fine with that but I do love not being pegged as an American the second I step outside. Anyway, when I was with my friend, I felt unusually uncomfortable because I could no longer blend into my surroundings. And I felt bad because I was judging the friend as though I were British. It was weird.

I’m not one of those people who slips in and out of accents. I’m too inhibited for that and I think it’s horribly tacky and strange when people do it. But I’ve done a similar transition: I’m starting to think and behave like a Brit, or at least like a Londoner. I’ve gotten very used to moving through the city in my own little world, with my headphones on, and with a purpose. Nobody’s going to say anything to me; I don’t have to say anything to them. It’s wonderful. So even though I was talking to somebody I knew, it was weird to be riding on the tube and talking to anybody, let alone to be talking at a slightly louder volume than I would normally with the few British friends I have.

And yes, I’m a horribly judgmental person but there’s not a ton I can do about that.


2 Responses to “camouflage”

  1. 1 whitheramp

    and then you get home and watch sytycd clips on so american! hahaha

  2. Um,, thank you!!! Hey, being American’s fine; I just don’t need people to be able to sniff it out before I even open my mouth.

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