Oh, I see! moments
Travel Cultures Language

Cultural Differences of the Fast Food Kind

by Meredith Mullins on May 18, 2015

Desserts in a Paris McDonald's restaurant, showing cultural differences in fast food. (Image © Meredith Mullins)

Sweet Dreams
© Meredith Mullins

McDonald’s: From Le Croque McDo to McSpicy Paneer to Matcha McFlurry

Yummm. Rows of macarons in their inviting soft pastel palette. Rich chocolate cake. Little canelés rising like flour fortresses. Tiramisu. Cheesecake. Cookies. Lemon tarts.

Where are we?

In a sweet dessert dream? In a prominent Paris patisserie? In the restaurant of a Michelin-starred chef?

We could be. But, in fact, we’re at a McCafé, a part of the McDonald’s ambiance in France that brings all the lusciousness of French pastries and desserts to its fast food counter. From croissants to muffins to traditional French pastries, they’re all here for the (fast) taking.

Oh, Deer! Road Signs in Different Cultures

by Sheron Long on March 31, 2015

Deer crossing sign in Hertfordshire, England, shows a running deer with a huge set of antlers, illustrating how different cultures interpret the same animal on road signs. (Image © Simon Gurney)

In Hertfordshire, England, the deer on road signs have a certain regal look
with antlers fit for a bejeweled crown.
© Simon Gurney

Crossing the Road and Cultures, Too

Why does a chicken cross the road? Ponder that all you wish, but know for sure that a chicken and a host of other beasts are gonna cross the road.

Humans devised the idea of warning signs to help you avoid a bump in the road. Governments and international commissions created copious specs (669 pages in the US Manual alone) to make sure the humans got it right.

Going Bananas: Uses for Bananas Around the World

by Meredith Mullins on October 13, 2014

a single banana, representing cultural encounters and uses of bananas around the world (Photo © Meredith Mullins)

The multi-talented banana
© Meredith Mullins

Cultural Encounters of the Banana Kind

Q: Why did the banana go to the doctor?
A: It wasn’t peeling very well.

Q: Why don’t bananas snore?
A: Because they don’t want to wake up the rest of the bunch.

Q: What did one banana say to the other banana?
A: You’ve got appeal!

Broccoli: I look like a tree.
Walnut: I look like a brain.
Mushroom: I look like an umbrella.
Banana: Dude! Change the subject.

A priest, a rabbi, and a banana walked into a bar . . .

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