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Old 25.03.2012, 17:34
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

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wolli... yes, people put their cart in line at coop or migros, but any open desk like lets say the kiosk on HB opposite track 6 is a real bad example. 3 aisles leading to the cashier desk might make it easy to get how n where to queu but i have been many times in the situation that people were in line in the middle and still from left or right side other customers come along, take a paper from the front display and cut others/me by handing in said magazine directly to the cashier. or take the bar "rio". 2 guys were ordering, i come in 3rd. after me 4th n 5th guy comes in, staff serves 1 n 2 and after that a)asking whos next and 4 or 5 ordering though its 100% clear they came after me b) staff serves automatically randomly. i could go on about places like that...and yes, i can tell most of them are swiss as i get their accent while ordering.
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THE Kiosk opposite track 6 of course is an interesting example of a place where Switzerland adopted customs from Italy and France. Suggest you try it with Milano Stazione Centrale or Milano Stazione Norte or the Gare du Nord in Paris

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and this maybe a good example for how i turned into a very defensive german in CH. because before i moved to ZH i had 1.5 years time to integrate myself, get a very good feeling for the swiss people, mind set, behaviour, customs, dos n donts. because my ex swiss GF explained it all to me what we germans do wrong. the tschüss and ciaos (now normal and accepted in Zh not meant to be a duzie) the ich kriege-faux pas, rules, the very upsetting and bothering ending every word with a -li, müsli und müesli... hochdeutsch aversion (means where the arrogance comes from) everything!
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Sorry, but Tschüss as Goodbye started to get into Switzerland in the late 1960ies. Tschau (Ciao) was the Goodbye for Du-ers for ages, but was and is regarded as strange if used as Hallo. "Adieu" is the Goodbye still for Sie-ers. Alternative rather is "Widersää" or "Widerluäge". Whomever says "müüsli" instead of "Müäsli" outs himself as a foreigner

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that turned myself very much into a rather more sensible guy, always trying not to piss in anybodies fondue.
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Well, well, well, here in Zürich your chance to piss in anybodies fondue would be limited as people here eat Züri-Gschnätzlets


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for example i have been to a concert. my ch-frind came, brought along 4 more friends from basel, 3 girls n 1 guy. right when they hit HB hey seperated each other and ganged up on the way to the volkshaus. i tried to get involved, soft, easy... not that alone that puts one off..."wow, this german is very direct asking me bla bla bla..." trying to find a base...asking the guy from where he got these trainers, easy. again a cul-de-sac-conversation. the gig was shit, ok. back home i would have said that to my friends openly. here i am rather asking, trying not to hurt anyones feelings...checking out how they found the gig, ending up with a "es war schon noch speziell" which can mean anything, very likely it rather sucked. still nodding, yes,right...it was speziell... i keep it...
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A) rather abstain from asking people about where they bought some particular textiles, as this is NOT liked
B) try not to take such "remarks" personal. I over the decades heard people talking about me as "de huere Schiss-Tschingg" or "de Dräck-Araber da vorne" or "scho wider so än eklige Südländer" but over time acquired a certain ability simply to ignore such things. I admit, it hurts at times, particulary if you have the same passport as them, have gone to the same schools as them and have done your 400 days of military service. But what ? Ignore ...
C) "äs isch scho no schpeziel gsii" usually means that it was quite good. If it is stated that it rather sucked, people might rather say "jä äs isch ggange" or "äs mag iä" or "äs isch scho rächt gsii"

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i never found it ever so hard like in switzerland. yeah, you might find a 10000000 explanations of which many might be true indeed, but it is very different in switzerland. i man, read these threads in here, check them on hallo-schweiz.de, local, where ever... through all ethnic groups coming here as an expat, immgrant or what have you will tell you the same: it is harder than elsewhere.
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No doubt. Not least as it here matters where in Switzerland you come from. I mean, a Zürcher in Basel is in exile abroad just to pick one example. You in Zürich can find clubs of Schaffhausers, Berners, Luzerners etc, ! As Mum and her family were/are from Schaffhausen, I have a certain accent when talking dialect, which leads some Zürcher to enquire "chasch eigentli nöd normal Züritüütsch rede ? " (my reply long ago has become "Nei, wärum ? " . Nice was last year on a visit to Stein-am-Rhein when people suddenly became most exceedingly friendly when they heard my accent. As THEIR accent revived fond memories of my grandfather and my godfather and others

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and about staring: its not being looked at like coming into a bar: oh, whos that? do i know him? bla bla...no, its the offensive staring for minutes! the in your face-behaviour. there is no explanation for that but being rude.
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reaaaallly ? I mean, I am used to this and generally do not care. Simply ignore it or look to a point 50cm to the left of the "starer". But I met such "starers" quite heavily in Paris and in Lyon and in Stuttgart (not yet Switzerland) and in some other places.

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  #282  
Old 25.03.2012, 17:57
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

People stared at me a lot when I lived in parts of the UK - but I took it as a compliment
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  #283  
Old 25.03.2012, 20:24
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

The staring thing comes up a lot-and I still notice it on a daily basis. I know well enough that the perpetrator has no ill means with it, usually just harmless observing. I think what also comes into play (not to generalize :P) but on average many people don't smile as much or show plesant facial expressions. Generally speaking, I find many swiss to have been socially conditioned to exhibit an appearence of seriousness and focus. This coupled with an observing glace can possibly be very uncomfortable to the receiver if on is not accustomed to it
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Old 25.03.2012, 23:02
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

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I know well enough that the perpetrator has no ill means with it[...]
...yet you make it sound like a crime!
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Old 25.03.2012, 23:07
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

I really don't get what the big deal about staring is.

What defines staring, and why is it bad?

Tom
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  #286  
Old 26.03.2012, 01:42
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

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I really don't get what the big deal about staring is.

What defines staring, and why is it bad?

Tom
Not really easy to define or describe as bad. But as humans, we are visual beings and a good 75% of sensory input is visual. When a stanger is making direct visual contact with you, there is a good chance that their brain is formulaing a good amount of judgement since your appearance is the chief stimuli being received. If one continues to keep a direct visual connection, it is commonly assumed that a jugdement has been made and the brain is building on it. This shallow judgement can be very uncomfortable to many as the subject is not involved in their own analysis, only their present visible angle. This leads many to become further uncomfortable, as they cannot properly guage the view of themselves which is apparently of interest, and cannot conclude whether it is an accurate representation of their true character.

Simple comparison. If a young child sees a person with a odd physical abnormality: missing extremity, odd large growth, siamese twins, their eyes are focused: staring, trying to understand the visual input. A empathetic parent usually intervenes and instructs the child not to stare, reinforcing decent, polite, respectable social behavior
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  #287  
Old 26.03.2012, 09:54
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

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I really don't get what the big deal about staring is.

What defines staring, and why is it bad?

Tom
For me staring at someone or something is looking at it for longer periods than the average normal..let's say a few seconds to confirm if you know them or not it's fine, but I have had people walking towards me looking straight to my face and turning their heads when passing by..that's not very comfortable and many of them wouldn't even answer my shy "grüezi"(not sure about the spelling). In many parts,that staring would be very rude manners, but here it seems to be quite normal, children at my child's school would stare at me or my husband for long time, like waiting for us to do some trick! It's not very pleasant really...but I suppose it's something we have to get used to or maybe learn to do..so we can stare at strangers every time we see them or hear them speaking a foreign language
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Old 26.03.2012, 10:43
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

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For me staring at someone or something is looking at it for longer periods than the average normal..
The term "average normal" is exactly the point. As with many things of human behavior, the norm is a matter of the local / regional / national culture.

There are cultures where looking in somebody's eyes is an absolute no-no, just like there are cultures where getting closer than, say two feet, is a violation of physical integrity.

On the other hand, there are cultures where burping after a meal is good manners, and there are cultures (just two hours flight away from Switzerland) where direct skin contact during a normal get-together (like a meal at a restaurant) is the norm and where blokes kiss each other while saying hello after a few weeks apart.

The culture that provided your upbringing is the one that usually forms your perception most. So you may feel shocked when encountering behavior that is different. You think it is not "normal," but that's only your kind of normality.

Whenever I go to the USA, I have to tell myself, "Listen, they don't care about how you are. They just ask because they grew up with asking how you are. Don't tell them you are coming down with a cold, they don't give a hoot. They just ask. Say you're great and ask how they are, although you don't care either. Got it?"

Cultures are different. Period. From a global point of view, it's the difference that is normal. Try to live with it.
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Old 26.03.2012, 10:44
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

I find the Swiss rather friendly.

It is known that if you turn up in their village they will meet you at the station with a tray of warn and tasty snacks.

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Old 26.03.2012, 11:43
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

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I find the Swiss rather friendly.

It is known that if you turn up in their village they will meet you at the station with a tray of warn and tasty snacks.

Yeah, I saw such things happen too.
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Old 26.03.2012, 12:37
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

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Yeah, I saw such things happen too.
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Old 26.03.2012, 23:58
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

For those who wonder what these three guys are talking about, here's a brief explanation:

Last Saturday, Assassin organized a trail running event along the pretty steep northern side of the Walensee, Canton SG. The group gathered in Weesen at the western end of the lake and took the train to Walenstadt at the very eastern end.

The participants had barely left the train in Walenstadt, as a weird looking guy approached them, one of those figures you can only see in the the Swiss mountains and maybe in the Ozarks (MO and AR, USA): sparse white hair, tousled beard, blue mountain-farmer-style flannel shirt, raggy Jeans, olive-drab baggy jacket, you get the picture.

Maybe his evidently biblical age had befuddled his mind, and perhaps we shall never learn what made him approach the little EF group right on the platform. But approach he did, and that pretty unerringly.

He spoke a guttural language with some interspersed English-sounding words. Maybe he is one of the last survivors of those Walser tribes from Valais that settled the almost uninhabitable higher areas of Eastern Switzerland about 600 or 700 years ago. Xenophobic words like "Muslims," "Jews," "Vegetarians, " and "Vegans" could be picked up by the flabbergasted EFers and guests.

However, much to the amazement of the group, it soon became clear that, despite his strange appearance and behavior, he had no ill intentions. He may have been carrying a Swiss Army knife in his pocket, maybe even a SIG P210-2 in the black tote he was wielding in front of the somewhat frightened runners. But what he pulled out of the bag was an aluminum drip pan full of about two dozen roughly plum-sized, suspicious-looking objects, obviously cooked in an undisclosed manner.

Dismembered Alpine chough fledgelings? Walensee octopus brains? Marinated ibex testicles? After a while and some more gibberish from the geezer, one of the EFers hesitatingly picked one of those objects. After all, with such strange figures in such an unfamiliar cultural environment, you never know what possibly violent reaction the refusal of an obvious present might trigger.

Turned out those strange-looking objects were dates wrapped in bacon (the latter, as we all know, not available in Swiss) and baked or whatever. One of the few words the group could understand was "addictive" -- or maybe it meant something totally different, but it is a fact that most of the dates were gone after a few minutes.

The funny guy said something that sounded like, "Have fun," and left the group, who set off for the lakeshore. A few minutes later they spotted the guy driving a Renault Espace, waving at them, which lead to the conclusion that, since he must have passed a driver's license test some time in the dark past, he cannot be totally uncivilized.

All in all, the whole incident was an interesting experience in that it showed that looks can deceive, poor communications skills do not necessarily mean bad upbringing, and there are locals even far out in the sticks of this country that are not necessarily xenophobic ultra-patriots. Maybe they are not even SVP members.

On second thoughts, he may have mistaken the EF group for somebody else.
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  #293  
Old 27.03.2012, 10:16
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true


Well you certainly made me laugh with your description of Swiss people
You know, I've been here 6 years and I can confirm it is all true. Some people don't mind any of it, some do.

But I don't think that this is a real issue here - it is all up to each individual to see and notice and interpret the world around him.
There are 'good' and 'bad', boring and amusing people everywhere you go...you can simply choose to notice and not get bothered with what annoys you (or seek to 'see' and experience it differently), and focus and find people and events that please you and satisfy you.

Cultures are different everywhere you go and we all go through culture shock of some degree - it's all a matter of deciding whether you wish to accept the differences or not.

Regards,
Ivana
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Old 27.03.2012, 10:41
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

People in Barcelona stares a lot too and I can't put it on the Spanish since 1/4 of the people here are maybe pure spaniard / Catalan people.

So it is definitely not a Swiss thing.
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Old 27.03.2012, 17:26
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

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Old 27.03.2012, 17:51
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

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On second thoughts, he may have mistaken the EF group for somebody else.
Just thank your lucky stars that the group he was supposed to meet was very late !!!

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Old 27.03.2012, 18:18
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

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People in Barcelona stares a lot too and I can't put it on the Spanish since 1/4 of the people here are maybe pure spaniard / Catalan people.

So it is definitely not a Swiss thing.
In my opinion staring is a continental European thing - they do it in Spain, in France, in Germany, in Switzerland, in Italy - no wait, in Italy the staring is accompanied by loud exclamations and hormone-driven suggestions - and I will never forget the staring men in Tunesia all those years ago when I was the only woman on a public bus. I have come to ignore starers completely. My kids still get so upset, recently they started asking: Would you like a picture of me? LOL
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Old 27.03.2012, 18:29
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

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In my opinion staring is a continental European thing - they do it in Spain, in France, in Germany, in Switzerland, in Italy - no wait, in Italy the staring is accompanied by loud exclamations and hormone-driven suggestions - and I will never forget the staring men in Tunesia all those years ago when I was the only woman on a public bus. I have come to ignore starers completely. My kids still get so upset, recently they started asking: Would you like a picture of me? LOL
"Take a picture, it lasts longer" is the common one back home we are accustomed to using if someone is staring too long.
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Old 27.03.2012, 18:51
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

Staring happens when people are too conceited for glasses.
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Old 27.03.2012, 23:04
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Re: Are the rumours about swiss people true

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I really don't get what the big deal about staring is.

What defines staring, and why is it bad?

Tom
Google "it's rude". The 1st phrase that comes up is, "it's rude to stare". Simple as that.

When you stare back at people.who are staring at you in the UK (which isn't often), people seem to get the message and look embarassed. In Switzerland people more often carry on oblivious as if they're in a coma.
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