Polish Kids versus American Kids

This article was originally posted on Polish-American forum, printed on Gen Dobry (Gen Dobry!, Vol. VIII, No. 12, December 2007, 5-6) and also posted on PolishOrgins.com and Polish Culture Forum. We though Dino Lingo Polish blog readers might really like this and wanted to share it with you without changing the original post.

“Polish kids vs. American kids

American kids: Move out when they’re 18 with the full support of their parents.
Polish kids: Move out when they’re 28, having saved enough money for a house, and are two weeks away from getting married … unless there’s room in the basement for the newlyweds.

American kids: When their Mom visits them, she brings a Bundt cake, and you sip coffee and chat.
Polish kids: When their Mom visits them, she brings three days’ worth of food, begins to tidy up, dust, do the laundry, and rearrange the furniture.

American kids: Their dads always call before they come over to visit them, and it’s usually only on special occasions.
Polish kids: Are not at all fazed when their dads show up, unannounced, on a Saturday morning at 8:00, and starts painting the window frames or mowing the lawn.

American kids: Always pay retail, and look in the Yellow Pages when they need to have something done.
Polish kids: Call their dad or uncle, and ask for another dad’s or uncle’s phone number to get it done … cash deal. Know what I mean??

American kids: Will come over for cake and coffee and get only cake and coffee. No more.
Polish kids: Will come over and get cabbage rolls, pierogi, roast chicken, salad, bread, fruit, cheesecake a few before, during and after dinner drinks.

American kids: Will greet you with “Hello” or “Hi.”
Polish kids: Will give you a big hug, a kiss on your cheek, and a pat on your back.

American kids: Call your parents Mr. and Mrs.
Polish kids: Call your parents Mom and Dad.

American kids: Have never seen you cry.
Polish kids: Cry with you.

American kids: Borrow your stuff for a few days and then return it.
Polish kids: Keep your stuff so long, they forget it’s yours.

American kids: Will eat at your dinner table and leave.
Polish kids: Will spend hours there, talking, laughing, and just being together.

American kids: Know a few things about you.
Polish kids: Could write a book with direct quotes from you.

American kids: Eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on soft mushy white bread.
Polish kids: Eat kielbasa sandwiches with dill pickles on rye bread.

American kids: Will leave you behind if that’s what the crowd is doing.
Polish kids: Will kick the whole crowd’s ass who left you behind.

American kids: Are for a while.
Polish kids: Are for life.

American kids: Think that being Polish is cool.
Polish kids: Know that being Polish is cool.

American kids: Will ignore this.
Polish kids: Will forward it.

And also one I got before (from another Polish kid….)


1. You or someone in your family owns a Nissan Maxima with a PL sticker proudly displayed.

2. You have relatives who aren’t really your relatives.

3. You sing the same song — “Sto lat” — on every occasion (weddings, birthdays, baby showers).

4. You watch soccer.

5. You know very well Pope John Paul II was Polish and his name was Karol, not Carol.

6. You go to Midnight Mass every Christmas Eve and keep your Christmas tree up till February.

7. You drink your vodka straight.

8. You listen to techno.

9. You don’t feel the need to add an “s” to pierogi because you already know the word is plural and it annoys you when others do. However, you still add ‘y’ to already plural English words … chipsy, dzinsy, etc.

10. You are convinced your pets only understand Polish.

11. You are forced to listen to Disco Polo by your parents.

12. You can spot Polish people like Asians can spot each other.

13. When others find out you’re Polish, they tell you about every Polish person they’ve ever known, which is most likely followed by them mispronouncing common phrases such as _czesc_ or _dziekuje_.

14. Your name always gets slaughtered on the first day of school.

15. The thought of eating cow stomach (flaki) doesn’t gross you out.

16. When you’re at a stranger’s house, you expect their garbage can to be under the sink.

17. Every window in your house must have _firanki_, even in the bathroom.

18. Once in a while, you do a big _przemeblowanie_ at home.

19. You always take off your shoes as soon as you step into someone else’s house (even if the owner of the house insists you don’t have to).

20. You celebrate your birthday AND your name day, _imieniny_.

21. You were extremely surprised to learn that American weddings last hours, not days!”

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