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You Know You’re Integrated When…

4 Aug

Peace Corps volunteers are given the daunting chore, when arriving in their host country, of integrating into their communities.  In Benin, this meant learning to shower with a bucket, greet appropriately, munch on peanut sticks, properly wrap a pagne, and frighten small children.

au dos

So what does it look like to be bien integré – well-integrated – into our good ol’ United States of America?  Here are some possible signs that you’re blending right in:

–       You had orthodontic work before the age of 15.


–       You also have whitened your teeth.  Or if you haven’t, you really want to.


– You can walk past the pet food aisle at the grocery store without skipping a beat.

–       You’ve been to a SuperBowl party.

–       You have owned at least one car by the age of 21.

–       A two-hour car drive doesn’t phase you.

–       You like cheeseburgers and fries… and burritos… and falafels… and pizza… and naan… and sushi… and crème brulee… and cappuccinos… and…

–       Speaking of cappuccinos: you’ve gone through at least one Starbucks gift card.

–       Speaking of giftcards: you get at least two every Christmas.

–       At least 10% of your income goes towards entertainment.

–       You have a hobby.

–       You have a favorite dog breed.

fridge–       You have an enormous refrigerator.

–       If you accidentally bump someone at a store, you smile and say “excuse me”.  If you accidentally hit someone on the freeway, you yell and make at least one angry gesture.

– You only sort of know the words to your national anthem… and even if you knew them all there’s little chance you could hit those notes.

– You can name more current celebrities than past presidents.

(Shoutout to Dutch: this list was his idea)