Have your say & ask the experts!

"Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

35 replies [Last post]
chebby's picture
Offline
Joined: 2 Jun 2008
Posts: 15307

"Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

That question was asked of me today by one of our company's internal helpdesks. (ROW = Rest of World)

I explained that the UK (or Great Britain) was in Europe but to no avail.

"Sorry sir I cannot find the UK on our list."

I explained we have 22,500 employees over here and repeated my name (with use of the international/NATO phonetic alphabet) and my user credentials etc etc. At one low point I had to even explain the strange language I was using (English) and why I was saying things like 'Romeo' and 'Charlie' and 'Golf' to spell out certain words. (I had to spell them too!)

It was no use giving my phone number and works extension because they claimed the system did not recognise numbers beginning 011 44 or even just 44 and asked again which State I was in!  (My 'state' by then was ill-concealed frustration.)

 Eventually after one and a half hours on the phone - and a couple of escalations and a shift change on the 'help desk' - someone took over who had obviously travelled a little further than their workplace, their home and the local mall in their lifetime. She was able - within seconds - to locate my country code under 'ROW' (grrr) and my phone number, email etc, and did not require me spell out the international phonetic alphabet letters (Alpha, Bravo, Charlie.... etc.)

Re-assuring in one way though. Despite the UK often being referred to as America's 51st State, at least 99 percent of them would never be able find out where we are. 

 

 

 

__________________

Marantz M-CR603 • Rega R3 loudspeakers • AirPlay • Apple iPad Mini • Apple iPhone 5 • Apple iMac • Apple AirPort Extreme 802.11N • Humax HDR-Fox T2 • Panasonic TX-L32D25B • Sony BDP-S390

idc
idc's picture
Offline
Joined: 2 Jan 2008
Posts: 7783
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

I presume you were talking to an American? Even if you weren't I have a story about a friend who worked in a hotel in Boston one summer. For the Labor Day holiday he told another member of staff he was going to go to Canada. He was then a party to a discussion as to where Canada is.

__________________

Internet - laptop - DAC - amp - lots of headphones.

http://idc1966.blogspot.co.uk/

"A music lover will stop what he's doing and stay glued to a favorite piece of music even if it's coming over a 3" speaker or a public-address system..." - Ken Rockwell

 

chebby's picture
Offline
Joined: 2 Jun 2008
Posts: 15307
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"
idc:
I presume you were talking to an American? Even if you weren't I have a story about a friend who worked in a hotel in Boston one summer. For the Labor Day holiday he told another member of staff he was going to go to Canada. He was then a party to a discussion as to where Canada is.

Canada is where Americans claim to be from when travelling overseas.

[Edit] A quick check on Google maps shows that the closest bit of the Canadian border (en route to Montreal) is only as far away from Boston as Exeter is from London. I guess they really don't get out much.

 

__________________

Marantz M-CR603 • Rega R3 loudspeakers • AirPlay • Apple iPad Mini • Apple iPhone 5 • Apple iMac • Apple AirPort Extreme 802.11N • Humax HDR-Fox T2 • Panasonic TX-L32D25B • Sony BDP-S390

idc
idc's picture
Offline
Joined: 2 Jan 2008
Posts: 7783
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

Their idea of getting out is travelling from Conneticut to New York State because it allowed the pubs to stay open till 0400 instead of 0200.


Something that my wife and I found on our honeymoon was that the Americans and Australians made no attempt to speak the local language, whereas the British did. We were in Austria and they are quite reserved to the point that they can appear unfriendly and standoffish. We found ourselves cringing at an American couples attitude towards the waiting staff in one hotel, so much so we ended up apologising and explaining we were not Americans.


I have American relatives and think that the country has a lot going for it, but their ignorance of/to the rest of the world is frightening.

__________________

Internet - laptop - DAC - amp - lots of headphones.

http://idc1966.blogspot.co.uk/

"A music lover will stop what he's doing and stay glued to a favorite piece of music even if it's coming over a 3" speaker or a public-address system..." - Ken Rockwell

 

The_Lhc's picture
Offline
Joined: 16 Oct 2008
Posts: 12575
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"
chebby:

"Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

That question was asked of me today by one of our company's internal helpdesks. (ROW = Rest of World)

I explained that the UK (or Great Britain) was in Europe but to no avail.

"Sorry sir I cannot find the UK on our list."

Did you try saying you were from England?

alwatson's picture
Offline
Joined: 20 Apr 2008
Posts: 229
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

When I was in Boston last year, an American woman stopped us and asked for directions to somewhere. After explaining where it was and chatting for a couple of imnutes, she then asked us if we were from France. I mean....

idc
idc's picture
Offline
Joined: 2 Jan 2008
Posts: 7783
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

Alwatson on holiday in Boston deliberately confusing Americans................


                 


 

__________________

Internet - laptop - DAC - amp - lots of headphones.

http://idc1966.blogspot.co.uk/

"A music lover will stop what he's doing and stay glued to a favorite piece of music even if it's coming over a 3" speaker or a public-address system..." - Ken Rockwell

 

Andrew Everard's picture
Offline
Joined: 30 May 2007
Posts: 29118
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

As I was asked in one hotel in Vermont, "Yew gotta ferny accent - yew from Maine?", or in another, this time in Maine, "Yew talk strange - yew from Sweden?".

In a third the woman behind the check-in desk stared at me blankly and said "Yew from New Hampshire?", to which I was pleased to reply "No - Old Hampshire"...

__________________

Audio Editor, Gramophone

professorhat's picture
Offline
Joined: 28 Dec 2007
Posts: 11010
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

Surely that just caused more confusion than it was worth?!

 

The_Lhc's picture
Offline
Joined: 16 Oct 2008
Posts: 12575
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

Some of these people must go to the movies and watch, for example, James Bond films. Where do they think he's from?

In fact how would you even watch a film like that if you don't know the UK is a separate country? Where did they think Matt Damon was in the train station scene in The Bourne Ultimatum?

The_Lhc's picture
Offline
Joined: 16 Oct 2008
Posts: 12575
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

Mind you, having said all that not so long ago a friend's 16 year old sister couldn't point out London on a map of the UK.

We lived in Essex at the time...

Andrew Everard's picture
Offline
Joined: 30 May 2007
Posts: 29118
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"
professorhat:
Surely that just caused more confusion than it was worth?!

Hopefully, yes...

__________________

Audio Editor, Gramophone

hammill's picture
Offline
Joined: 20 Mar 2008
Posts: 2385
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

During the ongoing healthg debate in the US, one right wing publication claimed that if Stephen Hawking had been treated by the NHS he wouldn't still be alive....

laserman16's picture
Offline
Joined: 23 Nov 2007
Posts: 2254
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

I think the vast majority of Americans are totally ignorant of  anything or anywhere outside of their borders. Whenever we have been over there and been asked where we are from I've tried to explain that we live just south of Birmingham, and somehow Alabama always seems to work its way into the conversation.


Had one American lady tell me how proud she was that where she lived there was a building that was 200 years old. She was really proud of it and wondered if there was anything that old where I lived. I took great pleasure in telling her that there was the remains of a monastery near to us that was nearly  900 years old.


Really enjoyed that little conversation.

Clare Newsome's picture
Offline
Joined: 4 Jun 2007
Posts: 13941
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

It drives me mad when Hollywood movies have to append/clarify locations - eg London, England. Or Rome,  Italy -  that gem in Angels and Demons recently, superimposed over big shot of the Vatican. Yes, i'm sure there are loads of towns called Rome in the US, but how many have St Peters' etc in all its glory Super Angry

__________________

Group Marketing & PR Manager - Computers Unlimited;

Former Group Editor of What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision and Whathifi.com

Twitter: @ClareNewsome

idc
idc's picture
Offline
Joined: 2 Jan 2008
Posts: 7783
Re: "Sorry sir but is UK in the USA or ROW?"

I was asked by American tourists when I lived in Oban 'which Roman Emperor built that colloseum' pointing to McCaigs Tower, built circa 1900. They were quite taken by our explanation of who McCaig was and that the Romans had not made it that far north as the Scots are all nutters, which of course is historically inaccurate as well.


Those tourist were much nicer than the ones who reduced a waitress to tears in a resturant in Fort William. Apparently you cannot eat oysters without tabasco sauce and they should not be offered on a menu if said sauce is not available.

__________________

Internet - laptop - DAC - amp - lots of headphones.

http://idc1966.blogspot.co.uk/

"A music lover will stop what he's doing and stay glued to a favorite piece of music even if it's coming over a 3" speaker or a public-address system..." - Ken Rockwell