I am familiar with the quirks and oddities of several countries but one country in particular doesn’t hold a place in my heart. By coincidence, it’s located in the heart of Europe. My parents were born there (or here, since I am currently in said country), they forced me to learn the language and sadly, I spent many years here. Ok. It’s not that sad but I dislike it intensely.
Anyway, I have noticed in many Germanic countries (I include the Netherlands in that group) are bad at standing in line in a civilized manner. My recollection of queuing etiquette in France, Italy or Spain is a bit hazy, so for now, my gripe sits firmly on the beefy shoulders of Austrian a-social delinquent assholes.
Cutting in front of you, shoving up from behind, invading your personal space [hot breath on your neck anyone? it’s gross] is not limited to cretins wearing waister crack-filler jeans and plastic clogs. With nylon socks. (This must be the last remaining bastion of plastic pitchers passing themselves off as socks) Old ladies with pearl necklaces and an array of other real gemitalia seem to feel their “Frau Doktor” status gives them the right to rude behavior. Old ladies present a problem as a verbal lashing may give them a heart attack. A stare-down usually doesn’t work as they categorically present the back of their mushroom-coiffed head, curls as tight as a sheepskin once they’ve garnered the desired spot.
I once ventured to remark “In England and the US people know how to queue.”
“You’re in Austria. Deal with it.”
Charming. I have a theory that a language where “Let’s make love” sounds like “let’s round up the prisoners” has a detrimental affect on common courtesy.