Thursday, February 28, 2013

Everything Comes with Instructions

via this hilarious tumblr blog by Liz
Ok, just because the image in the header of this post needs to be posted  in XL size to be seen and appreciated, I am making this little exception to my "layout rules" today.
Plus, tomorrow is officially Spring, my favorite season, so I feel like I can do it (although not sure how the two are connected).

Anywho, back to the subject of this post. Which is... you guessed it, the slight obsession people in America have with instructions.
Remember those tiny silica gel packets that are found everywhere from shows to handbags? Well, back when I was a kid and saw them for the first time, I applied all the knowledge of English I had to translate and educate my sister and my parents about its meaning. Let me just say, we were all puzzled. I was pretty confident that "Do Not Eat" means exactly that - don't put this stuff in your mouth. It still didn't quite make sense - why would someone tell me not to eat something that was CLEARLY non-edible?
See, unlike here, in my country we don't have instructions for everything :)

No doubt, instructions are helpful and sometimes absolutely necessary, but in some cases they seem to be just redundant. I got more used to finding the "how to's" in the unexpected and random places, but that doesn't mean I don't smile and comment on it, like in the following examples:

On the beach: "No sleeping on the beach"
On a Starbucks cup: "Caution: very hot!"
In a 3-foot deep hot tub: "No diving"
On a flower bouquet: "Remove from packaging, cut stems, place in water"
On a liquid soap: "Use like regular soap"
On a packet of nuts on the plane: "Open packet, eat nuts"

The list can actually go on for miles, just look around. For some more fun/ridiculous signs and directions, check this collection of 15 Most Unnecessary Instructions Ever on Huffington Post and this awesome list of Stupid Product Packaging <-- Caution: it's long! {pun intended}

Thursday, February 14, 2013

It's a Yes Country

How often do you hear a word "no" on average in your lifetime? Whatever the number is, I am sure that a person that lives in the USA hears this word about half the times less often.
It's not a surprise at all why this country is world-known and referred to as a land or opportunities, a place where your dreams come true.
A child in America goes to Disneyland and sees live sharks and dolphins versus anywhere a kid growing up somewhere else and just dreaming about them. Teenagers in schools are taught to "Dream Big" and to believe that "You Can Do It".
You go to the store and spend an hour there not because you need so much to buy, but because the selection is so overwhelming that you end up being stuck in one row reading all the labels before you can make up your mind on which pack of spaghetti you want to get.
Online is a whole other world. Most people have long forgotten what it is to ask for directions and writing down business phone numbers. What do you need them for if you have Google?
You call a Customer Service number and they greet you with a "Sure, I'll be happy to assist you" phrase. You write on a company Facebook wall asking for a discount and they give it to you:

Getting a "YES" as an answer is pretty nice. It makes us believe that everything is possible and nothing is off-limits. It is also very addictive, I must warn you. Please use with caution and never take it for granted.

... Wait, what do you mean never? :)