English national habits – COMPLAINING

In order to be British, or at any rate to pass unnoticed in British society, the visitor must learn not to make a fuss (поднимать шум). A fuss is something that the true Brit cannot stand. It is nearly as bad as making a scene (устраивать сцены), and in the same category as drawing attention to yourself (привлекать к себе внимание).

A clear example of fuss is complaining about poor service, for example in a hotel, shop or restaurant. The true Brit does not do this. "Just think for a moment," says the Brit, "would you like to do their job?" If the receptionist ignores you, or the hairdresser blows smoke in your face, if the soup is cold or the taxi driver overcharges — say nothing. Who knows what disappointments, what secret sadness their lives might have. You may purse your lips (поджимать губы) or grit your teeth (скрежетать зубами); you may raise one eyebrow quizzically, but don't complain. You can always write to the local newspaper when you get home!

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© 2012 Школа Китайгородской