So far, Seattle is a pretty cool city. There’s tonnes of places to eat and lots to see, and it’s very cosmopolitan.
But there are a few differences and oddities that have stumped us so far!
1. Entrées are mains.
WTF! Yes, if you go to a restaurant, they call entrées “appetizers” and mains “entrées.” Thus, the entrée list is filled with things like ‘surf n’ turf’ or ‘beef burger.’ Confusing to no end.
Apparently the usage that we (and the rest of the world) follow stems from the French. The ‘North American’ meaning is only used by (wait for it)… North Americans!
2. The trolleys in Target have their own escalators!
Apparently this is a new innovation in Seattle, but your trolley can travel up to the next floor right beside you on its own escalator!
We can’t figure out whether this is odd, lazy or just architecturally necessary, but here’s a video from YouTube of the one in NY (thanks Zaylee Saint-James Turner!):
3. There’s nothing like ice water.
Still or sparkling? No? At restaurants and cafes, they serve you a giant glass of ice water as soon as you sit down. Even in the dead of winter. There’s nothing like topping off the cold weather outside with a giant glass of cold ice water.
And for some reason when we were apartment hunting, we were constantly told that as a bonus, freezers come with ice makers too. What is this fixation with ice?!
4. Everyone here is driving Ford F150s.
Or larger – 350, 2500. Seriously! We’re not sure why you would need such a monstrous ute just to drive around the city and do your groceries. But they are popular. Esh says they make you feel like a real man.
(Blurring courtesy of Redacted!)
5. Customer service people are actually nice.
Even when they’re not getting tipped. They are just genuinely helpful and happy to be working. As opposed to back home, where you are either harassed to death by a salesperson or greeted by them with an expression of utter uselessness and contempt.
6. McDonalds is NOT a happy family restaurant.
And the chicken nuggets taste like those frozen ones you buy at Woollies. Not lovin’ it.
7. Americans are obsessed with Sriracha Sauce.
A.k.a. the famous Rooster Sauce. They put it on everything – pizzas, burgers, sandwiches, burritos, you name it. This is a good thing. If you don’t know what Sriracha is, you’re missing out – go hit up your local Asian grocery.
Apparently there’s also a Sriracha doco, but we haven’t watched it.
8. TV Ads are out of control.
Anti-smoking ads basically look like a trailer for Lord of the Rings. Commercials for medicines list every side effect under the sun (“this drug may lead to death” – or – “do not take if you suffer from internal bleeding”).
On the plus side, the Eat a Snickers ad stars Danny Trejo and Steve Buscemi! Somewhat cooler than that dude from Home & Away.
And apparently the Muppets get off on drinking Lipton Iced Tea (though it’s a sad day in history when even the Muppets pimp themselves out for the sake of advertising).
9. You can get a sandwich home delivered.
Seriously. Just 1 sandwich! (as Jimmy John’s says). To your home or office. Lunch was never so easy. Wish we had this in Australia!
10. Alcohol is gigantic.
At least at Costco. Shelf after shelf was lined with half gallon bottles of grog. Half a gallon! And each cost between $20-$30! Holy cow. It was almost like shopping duty free. We ended up with a bottle of Veuve for $34. Time to drink up!