Times When I Feel Polish

  • When I expect the trash can at a friend’s house to be under the sink.
  • When I’m generally surprised and confused to find that it isn’t.
  • “Are you Russian?”
  • “Ukrainian?”
  • “Are you sure?”
  • “Wait, where’s Poland?”
  • “Do you guys have the internet over there?”
  • The inevitable twinge of rage when people don’t take their shoes off upon entering the house.
  • When I order a drink without ice and the bartender looks at me weird.
  • When I ask them to make it a little stronger and get charged double.
  • When being a vegetarian means I can only eat salad and bread at family functions.
  • When my family thinks that’s all I eat in real life.
  • Confusion and dismay when an American wedding ends at midnight.
  • Getting the urge to ask if there’s an after party.
  • Wanting to get married partly for the 24-hour mini-rave that is a Polish wedding.
  • “Say something in Polish.”
  • “I don’t care, just say something!”
  • “Oh wait my mom’s on the phone, can you say it again? Here.”
  • “Yak she mash…? Did I say that right?”
  • “How are you drunk already?! You’re Polish!”
  • Feeling proud that John Paul II was Polish for some reason.
  • Still being made to go to church on Christmas and Easter.
  • Still being elbowed in the ribs for chewing gum in church.
  • Still not understanding the point of an Easter basket.
  • Also not understanding why people with garages leave their cars out on the driveway.
  • When people ask if I’m a natural blonde.
  • When I say yes and they don’t believe me.
  • When I think it’s totally normal to make a pizza with ketchup instead of pizza sauce.
  • When someone asks me what’s in blood sausage.
  • When they get irritated because all I know is “blood.”
  • When my friends come over and I automatically ask what they want to eat.
  • Having to stop myself from correcting people when they say “pierogies” instead of “pierogi.”
  • “When did you come to America?”
  • “Oh, so you’re American.”
  • When I use the “I’m Polish” excuse for everything from hating peanut butter and jelly
  • sandwiches to never having seen Star Wars.
  • When people use the “I’m Polish” excuse for me – as in, “You wouldn’t know, you’re Polish.”
  • When I get offended by that even though sometimes they’re right.
  • Genuine disappointment when I meet someone Polish who doesn’t speak it.
  • Even worse disappointment when they can but don’t want to.
  • When people assume that I know stuff about soccer.
  • When I have no idea about soccer but party on game days anyway.
  • When my #1 choice of neighborhood is actually Greenpoint.
  • No, I’m not kidding.
  • When people ask if I’m moving back to Poland even though I haven’t lived there for 18 years.
  • “So do you guys still hate Germany?” Thought Catalog Logo Mark

 

image – Djukami

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