Have you ever been asked, what are you?
When people ask me, I hesitate slightly, answer with, “I’m Armenian” and wait for the confusion to spread across their face.
You see, since many don’t know about my cultural background, I often spend the next 2 minutes clarifying that I did indeed say Armenian and NOT American.
To cut out this unnecessary discourse, I’m here to outline some hints to help spot an Armenian wherever they may be. Like any culture, Armenians have their own set of stereotypes. So below I list 3 of the most iconic stereotypes of all Armenians and detail the positives and negatives each one provides…
1) Big Noses
Now, I’m not talking about just any big nose. I’m talking a nose that’s so noticeable it may as well carry its own nametag. So prominent that when you – and your nose – walk into a room, people feel blessed by the mere presence of such a specimen.
Isn’t It just beautiful… (Image: ZetaBoards)
As awe-inspiring as these large noses are, they carry many advantages and distinct disadvantages.
- A heightened sense of smell, optimal for detecting if your Mom squeezed enough lemon on your Lahmajoun (pizza)
- Greater spatial versatility, your Dad’s glasses won’t fall off when placed ¾ down his nose to read the newspaper
- That’s it
- A heightened sense of smell, although Basturma (salami) tastes great, its smell rivals moulded cheese left out of the fridge
- A higher propensity for balls – typically basketball or soccer – to strike blood, seriously when’s the last time I didn’t get hit in the face during a game??
*My nose cringes* (Image: Buffet o’ Blog)
2) Body Hair
Since most Armenians live in warm climates surrounding the Middle East, our sheer amount of body hair makes me wonder if – by God or evolutionary processes – we’ve been selected solely to survive the next Ice Age.
For Armenians, hairiness applies to both genders. In fact, it’s not uncommon for some women to be as hairy as their partners (don’t picture it).
Just like large noses, body hair bears its own set of advantages and disadvantages.
- Improved insulation for the brisk, winter mornings
- Gives men greater perceived testosterone or “manliness”
- A moustache that requires daily if not hourly maintenance
- Gives women greater perceived testosterone or “manliness”
- A five-o’clock shadow by noon
- Getting bits of your just-finished meal trapped in your beard
I wish this was an exaggeration… (Image: Buzzfeed)
3) Height (or lack there of)
If you’re unhappy with a large nose – get a nose job. If you’re disturbed by unrelenting hairiness – get a wax. But if you’re short like most Armenians – sadly, there isn’t much help for you (…drinking copious amounts of milk doesn’t work. Trust me).
To follow the other 2 physical marks, here are the advantage
s and disadvantages of shortness:
- If you’re an Armenian man and by some divine chance stand greater than 6 feet tall, your family will worship you as a giant
- If people stand for the final minute of a football game, accept that you’ll have to catch the Hail Mary on the morning highlights
- You won’t make it past the first cuts for the school basketball team – you’re skills could be Like Mike but the coach only sees Danny DeVito in gym shorts
- Limited dating opportunities – think about it, no girl ever says “I just love short guys”
Armenians greeting non-Armenians like… (Image: Yahoo!)
Ideally, some of these stereotypes struck a chord and some laughs for you, whether Armenian or any other culture that can relate. I’ve always been fascinated by learning about others’ backgrounds – their values and traditions – so feel free to share anything you wish about your own heritage in the comment section below. I would love to hear!