A Travellerspoint blog

66 reasons the US is better than China

Why Silly Billy's happy with his new home

sunny 19 °C

Well, hello there! In honour of Silly Billy's recent relocation from China to the United States, I thought I'd make this run-down of why life is so very much easier around here. In no particular order - apart from number one, which is number one - here are my 66 reasons why it's better to live on Route 66 than Liyang Jie.

1. Decent brewed coffee is widely and deliciously available.
2. Chairs and tables are designed for people of average Western height and size.
3. The range of edible fast food extends beyond McDonalds.
4. The range of inedible fast food extends beyond KFC.
5. When you want something midway through a meal out, the server will probably come over unheeded and ask if everything's all right. (In China, you have to crane your neck in every direction before screaming 'Foo-yennnnn!' at the top of your voice.)
6. Splashing water on your face does not require bending the knees
7. The toilets don't look like this:


8. Using a public computer does not necessitate getting pernicious adware.
9. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and Blogger are accessible at any time.
10. Cinemas show movies in English.
11. Taxis have seatbelts.
12. Supermarkets don't sell live birds.
13. Opening the kitchen window will not result in a new pet bat.
14. Apartment complexes have lifts.
15. Nobody says 'at last' when they mean 'in the end'.
16. Rubbish bins don't look like this:


17. Coffee at the airport does not cost $12.88
18. Buying takeaway meatball soup does not result in convulsive vomiting.
19. Convulsive vomiting over a sink does not result in a broken rib.
20. Showering is in a stall or bathtub, not over the floor
21. The internet works during the midday heat.
22. There are no bars without beer on tap.
23. Babies do their business in nappies, not on the street.
24. Cooking herbs don't come via international mail.
25. Headache tablets don't come via international mail.
26. DVDs don't come with Mandarin subtitles burnt on, and usually feature accessible menus.
27. Drinkable wine is widely and deliciously available.
28. Cheese is less than a 90-minute train ride away.
29. Popcorn doesn't have sugar.
30. Fruit salad doesn't have mayonnaise.
31. Pasta doesn't have ketchup, and is served warm.
32. You can buy things online with a foreign credit card.
33. You can buy a cup of coffee with a credit card.
34. Overheard music sometimes sounds good.
35. Ham is savoury, not sweet.
36. Nobody drinks red wine with ice.
37. Sofas are comfortable.
38. Buses don't make your insides rattle.
39. Toilets have toilet paper.
40. Most streets can be walked in sandals.
41. Haircuts don't come with painful knuckle 'massages'
42. Crisps generally don't have added mint flavour.
43. Christmas is widely celebrated.
44. Visiting an internet café does not require a passport.
45. A man of average height can walk through doorways unimpeded:


46. Gizzards are discarded.
47. Lunch is generally served later than 11:05am.
48. Local currency can be exchanged overseas.
49. Irregular bowel movements are just that - irregular.
50. Television's worth watching, at least some of the time.
51. English-language bookstores are not a phenomenon exclusive to megalopolises.
52. Westlife aren't popular.
53. Red meat never smells like dirt.
54. You never see anyone take a dump.
55. The number of rooms in your house does not depend on the season.
56. Notice is usually given before professional or social appointments.
57. Chances are somebody else will have already devised an English-language map for your town and you won't have to make one yourself.
58. Personal bags can come to the supermarket.
59. Lighters can come on the plane in your luggage.
60. No matter how incomprehensible you are, ordering a beer will never result in lime Bacardi Breezer.
61. Video games, for those that play them, are more thrilling than your average taxi ride.
62. Milk is less than a taxi ride away.
63. The dimmest child won't think New York is in Africa.
64. Limes exist.
65. Water can be ingested safely.
66. Pigs don't fly:


There are plenty more reasons I could add to this strange list I'm sure, although stranger still was the slight feeling of nostalgia I had while writing it. Until next time, dear readers, suffice to say life is complicated in China. :-)

Posted by BillLehane 18:26 Archived in USA Tagged living_abroad

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hiLARIOUS! and so true! love it!

by Megan

67. In the West, one can't chew the air (as in, the air is so full of particulates and crap in China).

by Boyd R. Jones

This list is amazing! One of my most enduring China memories is of using the bathroom at the Nanjing Bus Terminal. That shit trough was probably a mile long. It was so gross yet so facinating. And at least I didn't have to touch anything. Which, I guess, is their excuse for not cleaning it.

by Michaela

Haha! Thanks Michaela. Bus and train stations have particularly bad toilets it's true. And highway rest stops. And and and....P.S. Boyd I was in lush green Lishui, where the air wasn't too bad, but I can certainly attest to the issue in the big cities, got a taxi at like 5am to Beijing International Airport one time and the smog was about two feet above the car!

by BillLehane

I've never been to China but that was really funny/disgusting.

by Pete Haney

That toilet has a very similar colour to the cup of coffee I was just drinking. So much for that pick me upper! :)

by Sam I Am

Bill - I havent time to write 67 reasons why China is better than USofA but here's one - You can get a cold beer for 40cent at any time along a 10,000km long wall - miles from anywhere.And another - there are no fat f#cks at every turn asking 'do you know? ,like, where I could get some like wadder or something'.
And a third - only in China would who hear a dozy twat from USofA stating ( in the Forbidden City) - How did they like know that ,like, gold n stuff would be worth a lot ,like, in the future?

Chinese are pretty much animals but Americans are pretty much fat idiots. Best off being Irish I reckon- clever, mannerly,thin but just dont take the sun too well!!!

by Lehanza

This was the best laugh I've had in weeks...thanks for the excellent writing and visuals ! Personally I am very glad you guys are back in the US (Ireland would be great too !!)

by Patricia Finn

i think ,everybody is acusstomed to our original life naturely . you have the rights to reserve your opinions.but don't force your ideas to others. try to think so, if anyone comes to a new country ,do you think he\she can adapt it quickly?that's just the differnces

by accrossor

Thanks to Patricia, the distinguished Mr Daams (part owner of this site) and Pete for their kind words. Bren, easy up on the casual racism, you're bothering, well, everyone! Accrossor, I appreciate your comments but I think you may have missed the idea behind this blog post. I'm not from the US either, and this is just a satirical look at how adaptation to the US is much easier for an Irish person than adapting to China. Please read some of my other entries to see how I enjoyed many aspects of the wide, wacky and weird Middle Kingdom.

by BillLehane

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