A man from West Yorkshire has become the first European to spontaneously turn American, a phenomenon long predicted by biologists.
Professor Stephen Tucker of the University of Birmingham explains. “Europe and America are separated by thousands of miles of ocean, and also by some primary biological traits such as irony, self-deprecation and – on the American side – confidence and correctly-shaped, white teeth.
“It’s no surprise that the first spontaneous nationality switch has happened in a coffee shop. We believe that the strain of enforced professionalism coupled with the insane levels of customer choice on offer might have proved too much for the man’s brain. It’s a form of cognitive overload. Most people can ‘hold’ three characteristics in their minds simultaneously – say, coffee (versus tea); black or white; with or without sugar. The British brain evolved in an environment where these were the only choices required. Baristas in American coffee houses are routinely juggling five or six categories whilst encouraging complete strangers to ‘have a nice day’ in a non-ironic way – have you been to Huddersfield? I doubt whether anybody’s ever had a nice day there, and certainly not whilst selecting a skinny double-shot extra-vanilla latte.
“We urgently need to get these people into an MRI scanner and see what’s going on inside their brains. Early experiments were inconclusive after a woman from Wolverhampton was asked to picture a double skinny vanilla spice moccachino whilst having a nice day in the West Midlands. Sadly , her head exploded and knackered the scanner. We’d buy a new one but they’re very expensive and, of course, Starbucks don’t trouble themselves paying taxes, so there’s no money in the pot. I’d describe this as ironic but there’s really no point”.