I have always assumed that talking about the weather was a fairly universal matter and everywhere the weather can be rather unpredictable. In Florida, we deal with hurricanes, tornados, and flooding, but I learned in the weather chapter of Kate Fox’s Watching the English that the English do not want to hear about how everything is bigger in the States. This was helpful knowledge for me to have because I could easily see an English person making a comment about how much it was raining and I would respond about how this was nothing compared to Hurricane Frances and Jean in ‘04.
So, what I have gleaned based on the book and my interactions with the Brits is that they are probably the most non-straightforward people I have ever met and the weather is an excuse to talk to other people that they want to talk to. My first day of work, I experienced just this. Every person I met at the office made a comment about the weather and how I would always need an umbrella, sunglasses, and gloves in my purse to deal with the unpredictability of England’s weather. To them, talking about the weather is something to talk about with the American girl that “doesn’t really have an accent.” The CEO of the company even made a comment to me about how this must be nothing compared to the hurricanes in Florida, but I was prepared and brushed it off like hurricanes were not that big of a deal (a slight lie).