As Ed ‘Measuring Up’ Moed and I made our way through the Amalfi Coast of Italy on a
way cool National
Lampoon-like European Vacation, we
were struck by the obvious and fundamental ways in which to distinguish our fellow tourists:
– The Japanese all wore Hidecki Matsui-autographed New York Yankees gear and videotaped anything and everything in sight.
– The Czechs all wore baseball hats that read ‘Czech.’ I kid you not.
– The Americans all looked lost and harried (or, at least Ed and I did after I bottomed out his car on the Spanish Steps).
– The Europeans all smoked cigarettes.
The latter was absolutely stunning in its totality and, in fact, strained credulity.
What do our European friends not understand about the dangers of nicotine and tobacco? How can they visit scenic and physically-challenging locations like Capri, and climb up and down mountains with a ciggy clinging out of their lips?
I’m sure there are many examples of the stereotypical ‘ugly American’ tourist. But, for my money (Euros, or otherwise), the tobacco-crazed Euros are the ugly ones.