Funny Things From an Intercultural Marriage #1: Ice Cream…SANDWICH?

My husband was born and brought up in another country.  He came to the US at about the age of 30 and is now a US citizen.   We are about the same age (I hate the idea of dating older men, see previous post), so we share many of the same cultural references.  For instance, when he and his friends first saw Michael Jackson moonwalk on tv, they all went crazy just like we did and practiced it for hours on end.

[I can’t believe tv is the first thing I thought of when it comes to cultural references.  Sigh.  But I was raised on Sesame Street and watched a lot of tv as a kid and teen.  Can’t help that now.]

Back to the story:  However, people in his country didn’t always see the same tv shows in the same years we did in the US, so sometimes, he remembers seeing a show in his early teens, when I remember seeing it as a younger child.  The Six Million Dollar Man and The Bionic Woman are two examples. They were on in the late 70s here, but on in the early 80s where he is from, so he relates to them in different ways than I do.

Anyway, sometimes I forget that he didn’t grow up here, and this often shows up in funny ways.  One example that always makes me laugh happened when we were visiting my mom and the drunken asshole stepdad in Florida, I think during the year we got married.  We’d been together about 2 years by then.  After dinner, my mom was offering us some dessert and detailing what she had in the fridge.  Her sentence went something like, “Would you like a piece of pie, or an ice cream sandwich?”

He waited a second, looking confused.  Then, his eyes got really big, and he repeated back, incredulously, “Ice cream…SANDWICH?”  At the same moment he uttered SANDWICH? he looked at me, as if to say, “Why have you never told me that such a wonderful thing exists in this magical world of the USA?”  Now, this is a guy who loves sandwiches as much as Joey on Friends.  I couldn’t believe he’d never heard of an ice cream sandwich, and he couldn’t believe it either.  Needless to say, he tried one, and then another, hehehe.

We bought an automatic ice cream maker this summer, and he keeps bugging me to make ice cream and put it in sandwiches.   : )