How to tell if you're Montreiano
If you're Montreiano...
- You believe that you live in the most beautiful country with the widest ranges of climates suitable for everyone except maybe those from the frozen north or the blazing tropics. Afterall who wouldn't want to live there, with its gorgeous beaches, rolling hills and plains, beautiful forest covered slopes, and snow capped mountains.
- You know how to play fútbol, and play it almost as religiously as your wife attends church. If you´re a rural woman or girl, you know little of it, if you´re a woman or girl in the city, you probably played on a league as a young girl.
- You know what rugby or baskedball are but you most likely have never played, except possibly as a part of your physical education program in school.
- You pity the poor soul who gets less than four weeks of vaction minimum. You at least get Holy Week, Christmas, Easter, and the week long Fair of Saint Carlos Borromeo of Carmel.
- You wonder how anyone can work through La Sësta. Only one hour for lunch? You think not! You need those two to three hours in the day to recoup, relax, and spend time eating. You don't mind working into the evening hours if it means la sësta!
If you died tonight...
- You're pretty sure there's a god, although no one really talks about it, except those atheists, mormons, and lunatics in the cities. Creationism is rarely an issue since no one takes the bible that seriously.
- You consider Mejican food a tasty treat, but Japanese ramen, sushi, and grilled items are commonplace. You don't head down to the local Taquería like they do in Alta California, you head down to the local ramen joint or sushi restaurant. Fast food restaurants are unfortunately a common occurance in the cities although the food is cheap and tasty.
- Unless you live in poverty, you have a telephone, a television, running water, and at least one bathroom. Your house is heated in the winter unless you live in the far south where the heater isn´t often on. You may have a washing machine if your family lives comfortably, but more often than not you'd rather pay the local lavandaira to do your laundry (and she does an impeccable job). No one has a house with a dirt floor, not even the poorest settlers did. You eat your meals at a table, sitting on chairs in the kitchen or the dining room.
- Ground squirrels, and pocket gophers are rumored to be sold by streetside vendors as chicken, but you know better. Beef, seafood, and lamb are likely to be your main sources of protein while chicken and pork are less popular. No one eats cats, dogs, and rats. Snake is a delicacy.
- Your bathroom has a toilet, a sink, and often a large shower. Bathtubs are for the rich or the upper middle class. Public toilets are segregated by sex, and in the men's room contain a toilet, urinal, and sink, while women have just a toilet and sink. A public bathroom without toilet paper is considered barbaric.
- Power and water are government run. Telephone and electricity are privately owned although monitored by the government.
- If you own no phone, there is always one on almost every corner in the cities or near every mercao.
- The train system is excellent, and often better and easier to get around the nation than on the roads. You rarely take the trains into Alta California though as their lines tend to be of poor quality compared to the ones in Montréi (they're just not the same as they used to be. It must've been the war).
- You find a government with a few parties absurd, and a monarchy even moreso. You like your multi-party system. However, with the reinstatement of the queen in Tejas, you're beginning to think they're not all that bad.
- Your favorite childhood fantasies involve the colonization of Montrei and the fight for independence from Alta California.
- There are White, Black, Brown, and Yellow people, although what matters most is where they're from.
- You believe most of the problems on your side of the continent come from meddling in other people's business, so you'd rather not get involved unless it affects you directly.
- The court system is fair, although rather harsh. You know that the court can work in your favor however, you wouldn't dare think of taking someone to court for frivolous reasons.
- You think it's odd that some people speak only one language. You couldn't imagine not speaking Casteuiano as well as Montreiano. Japanese is considered important if you live in the northern part of the nation, and Txumax is helpful in the south.
- School is free and cursory through the 12th level. If you are able to pass exams, you may enter University which is also provided for free (however, everyone knows how difficult the exams are). Private schools offer higher education at a rather steep price. In the country however you'll rarely have the opportunity to be able to take the exams and usually cease education at the 12th level. Further education is not free and is paid by the student.
- If you live in the city, it's usually considered odd not to attend University. However, for those who do not, there is always the option to learn a trade.
Everybody knows that...
- Mustard comes in jars, although few in Montréi use it. Milk comes in cardboard containers, and shaving cream comes in handy cans.
- Dates are normally day/month/year (30/05/28).
- The decimal point is a dot. Comma? How silly!
- A billion is a million millions.
- The Second Great War was something you and your grandparents heard about in school, but not something your nation was involved in. Why would you? That was something nearly halfway across the world. Business was as usual for you if you were alive back then.
- Marriages happen out of love, unless you're from the country, where they might be arranged. You are always married by a priest, even if you don't really take religion seriously. To be married by a judge is a disgrace, and no way would your parents accept that.
- If a man has sex with another man, he's a homosexual. Only the very religious, backwards, and foreigners would involve themselves in what others are doing. Not that you're necessarily comfortable with it, but it's not your business. If you're from the city, it's likely you're OK with it.
- If a woman has sex with another woman, she's a homosexual. If she's not married by 30 she's spoiled anyway so what's the point of making a big deal of it? If she's under thirty, it's a shame, but it's really not any of your business.
- Nude beaches are not considered a big deal and you don't see why Californios and Tejanos blanch when they visit your beaches.
- A hotel room has a private bath.
- You hate dubbed films, mostly because of the poor quality. Subtitled movies from the NAL, Lousianne, and Alta California are popular, although you prefer homegrown movies which are popular around the world, such as Vértigo, De aquí a eterniá, and Eu sauváj.
- Bribing carries a high penalty, and probably prison. That doesn´t stop a few folks.
- Credit Cards are an easy means of making transactions, although you don't trust them, preferring personal cheques or cash.
- You country is essentially an at will nation, meaning you can be fired anytime.
- Labour Day is on the First of May.
- You've probably seen War in the Heavens, Casablanca and Snow White (and others by Ditzenø). If you're under forty, add Amalia of Castreleon, Gigantic!. You swear that it's American crap, but you'll be first in line to go see what else comes from the east.
- You know NoMoreEagleZ, but Angelita Diaz is one of your favorites, you will swear upon your mother's grave that she isn't a whore, but find it a shame that she's a homosexual. However, she's one of your own, so you rabidly follow her every move in the music world. You've also swallowed up everything V.A.Howard has written by proxy, but like it because it's simply great reading. You've heard of Teoria Hibrida, but you swear by Los Deftonos and consider the former talentless ripoffs. You may like Z Japan a little too much.
- Medical treatment is excellent, even in the government run clinics. The best care are in private hospitals, although they charge other fees on top of what your government healthcare provides.
- In school, you went over the history of Tejas, Louisianne, and especially Alta California--the western half of North America--in detail. You also were exposed to European and NAL history. You know little of Oregon or Alyaska's history, but you know they're the two nations to the north which speak funny.
- You are happy with the way the Military defends the nation, although you're a wary getting too close to the borders.
- You're used to a wide variety of choices for almost anything you buy.
- Comics come in two varieties: newspaper comics and magazines. Due to Japan's influence in your country, manga is far more popular than traditional western style comics. Anima is almost as popular as the locally produced cartoons.
- People who appear on the most popular talk shows are mostly entertainers, hicks, and trash. You're scandalized and enthralled by what you see on these shows. You call anyone who watches these trashy, but you yourself are known to sneak a peak every so often.
- You drive on the left side of the road. You stop at red lights even if nobody's around. If you're a pedestrian and cars are stopped at a red light, you will fearlessly cross the street in front of them.
- The police is armed with shotguns, handguns, and near government buildings and banks, high powered rifles. YOu wouldn't dare try to rob a bank.
- If a woman is plumper than the average, it doesn't improve her looks.
- The biggest meal of the day is at la sësta when everyone goes home to eat. Very few go to restaurants, as most are closed at this time. You cannot do any sort of business as all the shops are closed. The lightest meal is in the evening when everyone goes out for a couple of hours to socialize and snack.
- You think Alta California is a very dismal place to live outside of San Diego and Los Angeles. Tejas appears downright frightening, along with Deseret, and Louisianne appears to be a rather absurd nation, but full of decadence. You firmly believe everyone in Oregon and Alyaska are hunters who wear furs all the time.
- You don't think much of the NAL, except that they produce some exciting movies and music. You notice they don't pay much attention to anything west of Louisianne, but you're mostly OK with that.
- People always joke about the Calfornios and the Mejicans. Tejans are considered prideful. The Txumax are mysterious, and the natives are mostly considered rural.
It is always Something...
- If you live in the Capital, you believe the nation revolves around you. If you live in San Françisco, you know that all of the culture comes from your fair city. If you're from the country, you find the city folk weird and strange and no one pays any mind to what you have to say.
- You fear the hostilities around AC, Deseret, and Tejas spilling over into your homeland, or an eventual invasion by AC.
- You only care about what family someone comes from when it comes down to marrying a daughter off. Then it matters. Other than that, it's what part of the country you're from that matters.
- If a coule dies, the eldest child inherits the property.
- You think of opera and ballet are something only people from the cities partake of.
- Christmas is in the winter. Unless you're Jewish, or Muslim, you spend it with your family. You don't open gifts until the Epiphany. Christmas Eve and Day are spent with family, and you have no tree, why would you want one in your house? You do, however, put a fancy star shaped lantern somewhere in the house underwhich you place the gifts.
Space and time
- You run on what's known as "Montreiano time", which means for non-appointments, you add thirty minutes to the start of an event, or dinner invitation, minimum. If your friends say "dinner at 6:00", they really mean "be there around 6:30 - 7:00 pm". Although arriving an hour and thirty minutes late will raise eyebrows.
- Showing up unannounced is considered rude and tasteless. You always call, even if it is your best friend's house you intend to visit, unless you are sure they are ill. Only children show up at a friend's house unannounced. Close family are always excepted.
- Meetings are always held over coffee or dessert during work hours. They are never held during la sësta, nor are they held after work.
- Men will often spend an hour or two at the local taverna after work. However, it is considered bad form to get drunk.