Go Back   English Forum Switzerland > Living in Switzerland > Daily life  
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #41  
Old 30.11.2011, 09:51
dino's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Zurich
Posts: 1,631
Groaned at 31 Times in 24 Posts
Thanked 1,279 Times in 628 Posts
dino has a reputation beyond reputedino has a reputation beyond reputedino has a reputation beyond reputedino has a reputation beyond reputedino has a reputation beyond repute
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

Quote:
View Post
wait.... I thought you were an integrated Swiss by now.

I would say she is ....judging from her opening sentence...

>>> Sooo...today, it's about 16.58
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank dino for this useful post:
  #42  
Old 30.11.2011, 09:57
summerrain's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Zürich
Posts: 4,350
Groaned at 4 Times in 4 Posts
Thanked 985 Times in 325 Posts
summerrain has a reputation beyond reputesummerrain has a reputation beyond reputesummerrain has a reputation beyond reputesummerrain has a reputation beyond reputesummerrain has a reputation beyond reputesummerrain has a reputation beyond repute
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

Ahhhh those uptight nothing-better-to-do busybodies...lots of them roaming around in their natural habitat.

I've had many telling-offs from passerbys, usually dog related. One stopped me to say that my leash is too short, and I had another who stopped me to say that my dog needs to, believe it or not, go on a diet. He has a thick coat which gives off the impression that he is "full" but just to be sure, I double checked with the vet and we had a good laugh.

I usually smile, nod with my MOST patronising expression, say thank you and wished them a nice day before carrying on. For the rude-r and much more aggressive ones, a simple: "mind your own business" usually shocks them into silence.

They dont seem to be used to such a strong reaction and will usually back off. Thats the thing I discovered about these busybodies: dont entertain/accomodate them. I used to try and be polite all the time but after some time, you'll learn that if you do that, they'll smell weakness.
__________________
Remember when someone annoys you, it takes 42 muscles to frown, BUT it only takes 4 muscles to extend your arm and b****-slap the mother-f***er upside the head.
Reply With Quote
The following 3 users would like to thank summerrain for this useful post:
  #43  
Old 30.11.2011, 10:11
Swiss Cheddar's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Zug
Posts: 2,139
Groaned at 40 Times in 27 Posts
Thanked 3,047 Times in 1,239 Posts
Swiss Cheddar has a reputation beyond reputeSwiss Cheddar has a reputation beyond reputeSwiss Cheddar has a reputation beyond reputeSwiss Cheddar has a reputation beyond reputeSwiss Cheddar has a reputation beyond reputeSwiss Cheddar has a reputation beyond repute
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

Quote:
View Post
Is there some sort of response they are looking for that will send them away?

As mentioned before, just say you are going to the cash machine.

cheers
SC
Reply With Quote
  #44  
Old 30.11.2011, 10:24
Newbie 1st class
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Bonstetten, Zurich
Posts: 12
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 4 Times in 3 Posts
MeganShay has no particular reputation at present
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

Quote:
To be fair, some of those "scoldings" sound a bit like friendly advice to me. I have warned a couple of people about their purse hanging out of their bag or the zip of their rucksack gaping open and they usually respond with a bit of gratitude.

Think I'll keep my mouth shut in future.
I'm not saying they are wrong. They're probably right, I shouldn't leave my purse in my stroller, there might be purse snatchers about...in Switzerland. The point is I already know that and I've chosen to do it anyway and take my chances. The likelihood of someone taking the blanket and the bag of groceries off my purse which is hidden in my stroller while I am a few meters away to steal it is less likely than someone rummaging through my stuff to take my purse so that they can return it to me and teach me a lesson. If my purse got stolen today would I blame all the people around me who didn't steal it first so they could return it to me? No, I'd blame myself.
Reply With Quote
  #45  
Old 30.11.2011, 10:42
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: north
Posts: 6,132
Groaned at 218 Times in 138 Posts
Thanked 5,100 Times in 2,636 Posts
rob1 has a reputation beyond reputerob1 has a reputation beyond reputerob1 has a reputation beyond reputerob1 has a reputation beyond reputerob1 has a reputation beyond reputerob1 has a reputation beyond repute
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

the swiss dont need police, they police themselves.

something similar happened to me other day - behind basel SBB is a car/coach park used for european long distance busses. i needed some photos of the car and this was the closest spot still with sun.

the bus had left, i pulled in at the corner and started taking photos, within 30 secs some old bag came over and had a go at me saying its not allowed to park there and the buses need the space etc....

i pointed at HER car 2 spaces away also in the bus section asked is she parking control, the police, does she have a special permit to park there, no?

well mind your own business and bugger off and annoy someone else was the reply.

she scuttled off quick enough rather red faced, tutting and commenting about auslanders
Reply With Quote
The following 3 users would like to thank rob1 for this useful post:
  #46  
Old 30.11.2011, 11:55
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: -
Posts: 1,640
Groaned at 26 Times in 22 Posts
Thanked 2,932 Times in 1,202 Posts
Russkov has a reputation beyond reputeRusskov has a reputation beyond reputeRusskov has a reputation beyond reputeRusskov has a reputation beyond reputeRusskov has a reputation beyond reputeRusskov has a reputation beyond repute
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

Quote:
the swiss dont need police, they police themselves.
I wish that was true. In contrast to all the busybodies needlessly enforcing mild offenses, the readyness of the Swiss to act when actual crimes happen is some of the lowest I've seen. The bystander effect is alive and strong here.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank Russkov for this useful post:
  #47  
Old 30.11.2011, 12:05
PaddyG's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Pensier, Fribourg
Posts: 9,243
Groaned at 118 Times in 102 Posts
Thanked 16,857 Times in 5,912 Posts
PaddyG has a reputation beyond reputePaddyG has a reputation beyond reputePaddyG has a reputation beyond reputePaddyG has a reputation beyond reputePaddyG has a reputation beyond reputePaddyG has a reputation beyond repute
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

According to my SiL in Barbados, middle-aged Bajan women are some of the worst busybodies you'll ever encounter, especially to when it concerns how your children are behaving/dressed/eating/doing etc
Reply With Quote
  #48  
Old 30.11.2011, 12:51
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: north
Posts: 6,132
Groaned at 218 Times in 138 Posts
Thanked 5,100 Times in 2,636 Posts
rob1 has a reputation beyond reputerob1 has a reputation beyond reputerob1 has a reputation beyond reputerob1 has a reputation beyond reputerob1 has a reputation beyond reputerob1 has a reputation beyond repute
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

Quote:
View Post
I wish that was true. In contrast to all the busybodies needlessly enforcing mild offenses, the readyness of the Swiss to act when actual crimes happen is some of the lowest I've seen. The bystander effect is alive and strong here.

bystander happens everywhere, i dont think its on a par with the UK, but of course we are talking about 2 different situations.

1 where phsyical action is required or the other where you can just report someone and not be directly involved
Reply With Quote
  #49  
Old 30.11.2011, 15:37
Joy2's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Nebenan, CH
Posts: 121
Groaned at 1 Time in 1 Post
Thanked 214 Times in 62 Posts
Joy2 has an excellent reputationJoy2 has an excellent reputationJoy2 has an excellent reputationJoy2 has an excellent reputation
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

I've been told in the U.S. to be careful of leaving my purse in the shopping cart (I am the most trusting person ever -- I will leave it in the cart and walk to the next aisle and have never had anything stolen). Other women have approached me to warn me of the dangers, but this was always accompanied by a story of how theirs or a friend's was indeed stolen. After talking for 5 minutes about the human condition, we both go on our way, having formed some sort of connection with another person, however "superficial" this may seem from a native German-speaker's point of view.

I think the problem here is the extreme introversion of some of the people. I am an introvert by nature, but in the U.S. (and other "outgoing" countries) extroverts are made, if not born. If you are used to friendlier and longer "suggestions," then the concise and direct manner of communicating here does seem like scolding.

A few weeks ago I accidentally squashed a little girl's finger in a door. I was closing it and she put her hand between the door and the jam on the hinge side. Of course I felt horrible and apologized to her and her mother profusely. Mom fussed a bit over the child and completely ignored me -- didn't even make eye contact. Neither of them looked at me or said a word, while I went on and on with Entschuldigungen. Finally I realized that the kid was fine, but they weren't going to interact with me at all. This, to me, is incredibly weird, but I figured that this is the communication pattern of a painful introvert, has nothing to do with me, and her life is probably a lot tougher than mine because of it. So I walked away and forgot about it until now. I mean, wow, how hard must it be to go through life unable to communicate basic thoughts and needs to your fellow human beings? No wonder some people just can't take it any more and freak out over minor infractions. Itreally is their problem. It's their movie and you aren't the star!

Try yoga, Poptart. I guarantee it'll help .
Reply With Quote
The following 5 users would like to thank Joy2 for this useful post:
  #50  
Old 30.11.2011, 15:41
ecb's Avatar
ecb ecb is offline
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: out n about - it's summer!
Posts: 2,200
Groaned at 8 Times in 8 Posts
Thanked 3,567 Times in 1,323 Posts
ecb has a reputation beyond reputeecb has a reputation beyond reputeecb has a reputation beyond reputeecb has a reputation beyond reputeecb has a reputation beyond reputeecb has a reputation beyond repute
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

I thought about this thread this morning.

At another of our interminable appointments at the Kinderspital here in Basel and being asked (yet again ...yawn) to undress child for measuring/weighing etc. Particularly tedious because he really does not like this and it starts the whole thing off badly.

He hopped up onto an Ikea play table in the corner of the room to let me take off his trousers and socks. A nurse passing by dipped her head in to say "that table is not for standing on, its for playing, its a play table, put him on the bed if you want to undress him". Cue think of Poptart's thread, deep breaths and snigger internally thinking "if only you'd seen him jumping on and off the window sill onto this table at his last visit .. and being encouraged by the doctor to do it .."
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank ecb for this useful post:
  #51  
Old 30.11.2011, 16:05
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: AG
Posts: 333
Groaned at 6 Times in 1 Post
Thanked 107 Times in 79 Posts
Wakey is considered knowledgeableWakey is considered knowledgeableWakey is considered knowledgeable
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

interestingly, we happened to have a lunchtime conversation on this topic today.

One of my Swiss colleagues was talking about his kid throwing attention-seeking tantrums in public places, and how he hates it when strangers intervene.

Surprisingly some other (female) colleagues admitted that they also tell off other parents and their kids! They feel it is their duty to create a better society. Arguments like 'misbehaving kids are annoying other people', 'it makes people aware of what they are doing', 'some parents just don't have a clue how to raise children' and 'kids listen better to strangers'.

My colleague and I were baffled, had a heated 40-min discussion and were not able to change the Busybodies' minds. They are deeply convinced that it is the right thing to do...
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Wakey for this useful post:
  #52  
Old 30.11.2011, 16:12
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

Quote:
View Post
Surprisingly some other (female) colleagues admitted that they also tell off other parents and their kids! They feel it is their duty to create a better society. Arguments like 'misbehaving kids are annoying other people', 'it makes people aware of what they are doing', 'some parents just don't have a clue how to raise children' and 'kids listen better to strangers'.
Did these people have kids themselves? I remember before I had my son I was of the opinion that people who allow their children to have some kind of meltdown in the middle of a shop were somehow crap clueless parents and "no child of mine" would EVER behave like that on my watch.

I wasn't adverse to doling out a hard stare, rolling eyes or even a "tut" in the direction of where it was going nuclear.

Oddly enough, since I became a mum I'm a shining example of understanding and tolerance, sharing even a knowing smile or a sympathetic look.
Reply With Quote
The following 6 users would like to thank for this useful post:
  #53  
Old 30.11.2011, 16:14
mimi1981's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: London, previously Basel
Posts: 3,773
Groaned at 21 Times in 19 Posts
Thanked 5,792 Times in 2,173 Posts
mimi1981 has a reputation beyond reputemimi1981 has a reputation beyond reputemimi1981 has a reputation beyond reputemimi1981 has a reputation beyond reputemimi1981 has a reputation beyond reputemimi1981 has a reputation beyond repute
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

Quote:
Did these people have kids themselves? I remember before I had my son I was of the opinion that people who allow their children to have some kind of meltdown in the middle of a shop were somehow crap clueless parents and "no child of mine" would EVER behave like that on my watch.

I wasn't adverse to doling out a hard stare, rolling eyes or even a "tut" in the direction of where it was going nuclear.

Oddly enough, since I became a mum I'm a shining example of understanding and tolerance, sharing even a knowing smile or a sympathetic look.
Ignorance is bliss huh?
Reply With Quote
  #54  
Old 30.11.2011, 16:26
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: AG
Posts: 333
Groaned at 6 Times in 1 Post
Thanked 107 Times in 79 Posts
Wakey is considered knowledgeableWakey is considered knowledgeableWakey is considered knowledgeable
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

Quote:
Did these people have kids themselves? I remember before I had my son I was of the opinion that people who allow their children to have some kind of meltdown in the middle of a shop were somehow crap clueless parents and "no child of mine" would EVER behave like that on my watch.

I wasn't adverse to doling out a hard stare, rolling eyes or even a "tut" in the direction of where it was going nuclear.

Oddly enough, since I became a mum I'm a shining example of understanding and tolerance, sharing even a knowing smile or a sympathetic look.
No they don't. But I don't have kids either, yet I do understand that kids are human and you can not program or reset them. Of course I hate it when they yell and scream, but I mostly feel sorry for the parents because they have to deal with it, whilst I can walk away...
Reply With Quote
The following 4 users would like to thank Wakey for this useful post:
  #55  
Old 30.11.2011, 16:54
robyn.oz's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Australia
Posts: 245
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 145 Times in 86 Posts
robyn.oz is considered knowledgeablerobyn.oz is considered knowledgeablerobyn.oz is considered knowledgeable
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

Poptart, you make me laugh (in a good way), because I can entirely relate to what you have experienced.

I would probably just tilt my head, smile and have a 'blonde' moment (wishing that I had my full head of peroxide blonde hair to go with it). But, not understanding a word I would say OK and walk off. Actually, that works in english speaking countries too...

What did you actually do?
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank robyn.oz for this useful post:
  #56  
Old 30.11.2011, 18:28
Nil's Avatar
Nil Nil is offline
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Basel
Posts: 10,356
Groaned at 428 Times in 333 Posts
Thanked 16,045 Times in 6,322 Posts
Nil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond repute
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

Quote:
Did these people have kids themselves? I remember before I had my son I was of the opinion that people who allow their children to have some kind of meltdown in the middle of a shop were somehow crap clueless parents and "no child of mine" would EVER behave like that on my watch.

I wasn't adverse to doling out a hard stare, rolling eyes or even a "tut" in the direction of where it was going nuclear.

Oddly enough, since I became a mum I'm a shining example of understanding and tolerance, sharing even a knowing smile or a sympathetic look.
And this is why I roll my eyes when people who don't have kids feel the need to tell us parents that we don't know better than them if not less... I was exactly like that too before I had kids and believe it or not, with all my experiences with babysitting and friends's kids, I now know how little I knew back then....
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Nil for this useful post:
This user groans at Nil for this post:
  #57  
Old 30.11.2011, 18:59
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Bern
Posts: 196
Groaned at 3 Times in 1 Post
Thanked 177 Times in 72 Posts
EvenPar has earned the respect of manyEvenPar has earned the respect of manyEvenPar has earned the respect of many
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

It is perhaps testament to the peaceful nature of Switzerland that citizens can safely chastise each other. As a former chief of a police force, I always cautioned citizens against taking it upon themselves to enforce laws - for the safety of the would be amateur constable.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank EvenPar for this useful post:
  #58  
Old 30.11.2011, 20:09
Newbie 1st class
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Baselland
Posts: 14
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 10 Times in 5 Posts
Megsch has earned some respectMegsch has earned some respect
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

Once i was told off by an angel/devil of recycling bin....she said i can not dump my bottles, pet there because it is for residents only...but there is Denner, Migros, apotheke etc. in the same compound....she pointed out my BL plate no...and said here is Ag. i then ask her....am i also not allowed to shop in the same Migros, Denner....(Liebrüti) she walked away. i never saw her again.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Megsch for this useful post:
  #59  
Old 30.11.2011, 20:25
poptart's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Boston
Posts: 1,785
Groaned at 33 Times in 28 Posts
Thanked 3,013 Times in 1,242 Posts
poptart has a reputation beyond reputepoptart has a reputation beyond reputepoptart has a reputation beyond reputepoptart has a reputation beyond reputepoptart has a reputation beyond reputepoptart has a reputation beyond repute
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

Quote:
View Post
Poptart, you make me laugh (in a good way), because I can entirely relate to what you have experienced.

I would probably just tilt my head, smile and have a 'blonde' moment (wishing that I had my full head of peroxide blonde hair to go with it). But, not understanding a word I would say OK and walk off. Actually, that works in english speaking countries too...

What did you actually do?
LOL...seriously, I thought I was the only freak magnet in town so it is tremendously comforting and strangely disconcerting that my run-ins with really wound-up freaks is far less unusual than I originally imagined.

I did have a blonde moment when, after I made it pretty clear that I could only speak German and not Swiss (though I got the gist of her rantings), she continued in Swiss German, barely able to catch her breath and waving her arms about...I simply didn't know what to say after asking her if she was with the police or the bank. She got bored after about 30 sec of my completely blank look due to my really not getting what the fuss was about and moved on. I was thinking, ok, whatevs but I think it was her completely unhinged approach that got to me and, again, it isn't the first time I've attracted this kind of looney lady but....it's really not doing much for my sense of adventure outside the walls of my apartment.

Perhaps valium needs to be pumped into the water supply. I know I'd be drinking more water daily if they did!
Reply With Quote
  #60  
Old 30.11.2011, 20:28
poptart's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Boston
Posts: 1,785
Groaned at 33 Times in 28 Posts
Thanked 3,013 Times in 1,242 Posts
poptart has a reputation beyond reputepoptart has a reputation beyond reputepoptart has a reputation beyond reputepoptart has a reputation beyond reputepoptart has a reputation beyond reputepoptart has a reputation beyond repute
Re: How are you supposed to respond to busybodies?

Quote:
View Post
It is perhaps testament to the peaceful nature of Switzerland that citizens can safely chastise each other. As a former chief of a police force, I always cautioned citizens against taking it upon themselves to enforce laws - for the safety of the would be amateur constable.
Or, as in my case, the safety of the alleged criminal. All I've got is a handbag to defend myself with....

I don't know that I'd call Switzerland 'peaceful'. Perhaps less inclined to physical violence, but that's likely only due to the way the insurance is structured.
Reply With Quote
Reply




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
"You were only supposed to blow the bloody doors off" - German robbers destroy bank sharkey General off-topic 6 26.05.2010 16:40
Nosey question - why are you in Switzerland and how long do you plan to stay? itsme Daily life 53 12.04.2010 11:23
How is "doch" on it's own an appropriate answer to "how are you?" MaryThomi Language corner 12 22.03.2010 21:47
How to do parenting, when you are a single parent ? bluesky_2009 Family matters/health 13 22.03.2010 10:25
how to take care of dog when YOU are sick delfinita Pet corner 13 17.10.2009 17:24


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 02:18.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.1.0