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Jersey Girl in a London World


Three out of four people automatically fist pump when I say where I’m from.  Several people came up to me in a pub and began looking me up and down for any signs of an orange glow or drunken “hook up”.  They chant “GTL!” every time I walk past their place at the bar.  No, I’m not in the States.  I’m in London.  Clearly, my home’s reputation precedes me, yet fails to represent me.

Let me attempt to contradict the stereotypes…I’m Kara Romanetz and a psychology and advertising dual-degree candidate at Boston University—two degrees for the price of one!  I am interning at Ergo for the next six weeks.  I am also a self-proclaimed zombie fanatic, avid Jane Austen reader, craft addict, coffee lover, Joss Whedon fan girl, a Whovian, amongst other equally eccentric things.  Have I shattered your expectations yet?

With eight million viewers in the UK and the launch of Geordie Shore, I’m not surprised when Brits claim to know all about “my type.”  Long before the Shore, we were already branded the “Armpit of America” or giant mafia front.  We exemplified the loud and rude American stereotypes.  Although Jersey Shore made them popular, we have lived with the Jersey stigma for much longer.

Although this article from the BBC does a pretty accurate job defying the show’s stereotypes, I want to try to explain how a true Jersey Girl feels about her home state. 

New Jersey is like chocolate cake.  It is comforting and filling, and by far your favorite flavor.  Sure, you've wanders to pastures of red velvet or funfetti, but at the end of the day, nothing beats a slice of your cake.  Too much of it at once will make you sick, and even make you hate it for a while.  It is common sport for chocolate cake lovers to even brag about how bad it is.  But you keep returning to that cake in mind and mouth.  You are locked in a bad romance.  But if someone comes along and tries to steal a bite, they better be prepared to be stabbed with a fork.

On the other end, London is like a tall glass of milk.  It is cool, smooth, and refreshing after a long day at the office.  It comes in many different flavors, styles, and preparations.  It has been around forever, and that makes it all the more comforting.  History sip-by-sip.  It is a staple in many different foods, which scatters its creamy influence across cultures.

What I found is that chocolate cake and milk go really well together.  Although you may not believe it, consider trying it once or twice.  There are so many parallels between the two cultures, and their differences only accentuate their uniqueness.  New Jersey has the beautiful shores, great farms, awesome boardwalks, and the life-changing “fat sandwich”.  London has its different, yet exchangeable, counterparts: lovely walks along the Thames, quality food, cultural activities, and a mean “fish n’ chips” with cider.  We both fawn over Springsteen and Oasis.  We both have accents people always imitate wrong.  We are proud of our homes and joyous in our idiosyncrasies.  When you really look at it, New Jersey and London aren't that different after all. 

Two proud peoples dueling the stereotypes.  It is time for chocolate cake and milk to join side-by-side in the battle.  Together, we can make a dangerously delicious combination that rivals all the desserts.

Written by Kara Romanetz 

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