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Saturday, January 9, 2010

The Ugly American Social Syndrome (UASS)

The Ugly American slammed the ashtray on the bar and shouted repeatedly: “Are you serving here or are you talking?” The veins on his neck were pumping, bestowing a beet-redness to his otherwise pink face. The American was big, inebriated and used to having his way.

Misha, the bartender, turned around and asked the man to wait one moment but that only poured gasoline onto the Ugly American’s flaming deportment. As his screams caught the attention of the patrons throughout the restaurant, the man’s companions attempted to calm their comrade down by pulling him away, which only provoked resistance and made him bellow louder. None of his friends had the guts to tell him he was being extremely rude and perhaps because he was American, with a neck as thick as a Howitzer, the bouncers were nowhere to be seen… and they are always seen.

The most regrettable aspect of this proud moment was that most of this group of fellow Americans were government employees, sent to perform our foreign policy duties here in the hospitable land of Georgia.

“Paul, are these your friends?” Misha asked after serving the goon’s order.

I knew that was coming. Guilt by association. How to explain to a guy that just had his ass chewed out by a guest in his country that you can take the Ugly American out of America, but you can’t take the Ugliness out of that American? It was easier to pass the buck.

“We’re not all like that, really,” I said. “They work for the State Department.”


Bob said...

Excellent work.

Anonymous said...

That must have been Adam from the embassy!