How to be an Ugly American Without Leaving Your Hostel

1. At a very full hostel, with conversation flowing at over ten packed tables, talk so loudly that your voice carries over the entire place.

2. Be sure to talk about money. Drop a comment about how much money you make, how expensive your apartment is, or the latest and greatest stock tips you have.

3. Tell the girl at your table who speaks English with a different accent than yours that she must be British. When she tells you that she’s German, make a big surprised face and say that well, you could tell that she wasn’t American (as though Americans and Brits are the only people who speak English).

4. Make really bombastic comments that show just how ignorant you are. For example: “The poorest people in the world live in America. Seriously. I mean just check out Harlem.”

5. Throw in a crude comment or two. A good one would be: “Staying in hostels is like a total Catch 22. You meet so many girls. It’s awesome. But at the same time you don’t have any privacy. Argh. What are you to do?”

6. Declare that there’s just no way to blend in as an American so why try. Then continue to be the loud, ignorant, obnoxious American that so many people expect us to be but that so few of us actually are. Someone’s got to keep the stereotype alive after all. Someone’s got to make the rest of us step up our game as we try to prove the stereotype wrong again and again and again.