Stereotypes — funny because they are true | Katerina Vrana | TEDxThessaloniki


Translator: Lazaros Boudakidis
Reviewer: Denise RQ So hi, my name is Katerina Vrana, I am Greek, I live in the UK,
I live in London, I am stand-up comedian. As far as the power to create goes,
I am stand-up comedian. I have two brothers,
one is 30 the other is 14; the 30 years old is a drummer
and a photographer. In fact, he is the drummer of the band
that’s going to be closing TEDThessaloniki this year, TEDx. So our Greek parents are very proud
of our professional choices. Like, “Will you ever make money?” “No.” The 14-year-old wants to be a lawyer. Here’s hoping! So yeah… Oh, and my hair, my hair. My hair is like this
because this is how it is, OK? No discussion about it. In Greece,
this doesn’t stand out that much. It’s big, but it’s not that extraordinary. In the UK, it’s become
a sightseeing thing. (Laughter) People stop me in the street,
people touch it without asking me. (Laughter) And then, there’s teachers
that bring little children out of the classrooms and go, “Look,
look at the lady who looks like a tree!” Is very annoying. I’ve been in the UK now for 10 years; oh, and also, I am 100% Greek. I was born here, I was raised here,
both my parents are Greek, my whole family lives here. I have no idea
why I speak English like this. Absolutely none! It’s a fluke. The rest of my family
doesn’t speak English like this, they speak like proper Greek people. (Laughter) So I asked my mum, I said, “How come when I speak
English I sound awesome? And the rest of the family
sounds like bloody foreigners.” And my mum went, “Ah, darling, when you were born,
you were so very, very ugly!” (Laughter) Don’t clap that! You bastards! And she went, Your father and I thought, “This one
will need personality, and language helps. I wanted French and maybe piano,
your father wanted English.” “Yes Katerina, I wanted English,”
– that is my father – “I will tell you why: because British
royalty marries very ugly women. Go!” (Laughter) No! No. William is already married,
and Harry has very red hair. And I haven’t got anything
against red hair, right? It’s because I would totally
have the sex with Harry. I am telling you this now. I just, I wouldn’t do it in the sun,
I’d do it in the shade. Do you know what I mean? (Laughter) If you have sex with Harry in the sun,
he’ll explode, “Aaa!” It’s not a good idea! So, having lived in London– The thing is that I’ve been living
in London as I said, for about a decade, and what’s happened is,
over there I feel definitely Greek, but what happens is when I come back home there’s been a bit of a shift
in my identity, and suddenly, I find myself saying things like, “Why can’t the Greeks form
orderly queues? God damn it!” I am trying to balance out the things
to not feel foreign in two countries. One of the things I’ve really
come to find endearing about the British, for example,
is how they get angry. They don’t! When a British person gets angry,
they write you a strongly-worded letter, “Dear Sir […], regret to inform […],
[…] most upset!” (Laughter) An English friend of mine was in a train. The train got stuck, they stopped
in the middle of nowhere between two stations, and they left them
there for an hour and a half; they didn’t explain why,
they just kept apologizing. My friend’s telling me this story said,
“Katerina, I was so angry, I was livid. I was so livid,
I was tempted to complain!” (Laughter) I was like, “What?!” (Applause) I said, “In Greece, there is no strongly-worded letter,
there wouldn’t have been a train.” You keep the Greeks five minutes
longer than they need to be anywhere, you know, like in the boat
at the time of “disembarkation” (Laughter) you keep the Greeks inside that boat, and it’s like, “What? What you keep us
here like animals, like animals? You call this an European country?
This is not Europe, I don’t understand!” (Laughter) (Applause) Wait, there is so much more! And then someone always goes, “Where is the manager? I want
to speak to the manager!” “Please sir, please sit down,
you are becoming hysterical!” “Who are you to tell me
what to do? Who are you?” “Screw you!”
“I screw your mother!” Wow! It takes five seconds
to escalate that level. And also, as far as that goes, the “Screw your mother!” makes no sense! Like, “I screw your mother!”
“No, really?” (Laughter) What a coincidence! Of all the boats in all of Attiki,
you walk into mine! The son of whose mother
you are screwing, and it is… Hello, Yannis, the son. The lady who you’re having
carnal relations with. What a– A pleasure to meet you! This kind of– also, right? No one you ever want to say it
to you ever does, right? Because if Bill Gates comes up to me
and goes, “I screw your mother.” I’ll be like, “Daddy…! You’re home!” “And will all be going
to Cannes, on my jet.” So I wish the Greeks
would temper their rage that immediate “Mmm!” that happens. I don’t expect them
to become like the English, no, “Dear Sir […], I regret to inform […]
I screwed your mother.” just a little bit more of a thing… Also, the other thing I’ve really
come to enjoy about the UK, and I know this is weird
for a Greek person, is the weather. I know, I know, I know, I know! Oh, one person going, “Yes!
You tell them! It rains!” The thing is I keep trying
to explain to the British that everywhere else in the world, clouds are functional
rather than an aesthetic choice. (Laughter) In the UK, the clouds arriving,
just go, “Hi, we are here. We’re going to just sit here,
maybe a bit lower, do nothing, hi.” In other countries,
when the clouds arrive, it’s going to rain and the heaven
is open, water pours down, water so thick you cannot see through it. So it’s like, “Where is my Tzatziki?”
“Behind the rain? Who knows?” That lasts for two hours, then stops,
the sun comes out, and we forget about it. In the UK, the same amount of water,
takes 24 hours to come down. Because in the UK,
rain is that really soft mist, it’s like a cat spraying your tent
to show it’s its territory, you know what I mean? It’s a very gentle thing.
It’s a tipi-tap, it’s called drizzle, and that’s what I’ve come to love because drizzle is rain
being quintessentially British, right? (Laughter) It’s rain going, “I’m terribly sorry,
I’m coming down, I don’t need to be in the way,
I’m just going to came around you, I won’t get anyone wet, I promise,
just pretend I am not here. Shh, no, no! Everyone will know I am here!
You are not– Missing the point… I don’t– Did I get you wet? How clumsy of me! I do apologize.
I didn’t mean to do that, I’m just going to come over here,
I’ll be gone in 5 minutes. I promise! I am so sorry, I do apologize.
24 hours, and I am still here, It’s getting awkward now, isn’t it?
I don’t mean to be doing this. I’m going to be go. Really.. I’m so sorry.
Really, don’t– I am just going– I am the Hugh Grant of moisture.” (Laughter) And my hair absorbs moisture!
So whenever it drizzles my hair goes pfff! And a mile radius around me
stays completely dry. And I look like I’ve all of
the Jackson 4 on my head. Because he is dead! The thing is that I am in the UK; well, I went in the UK to act. And that’s when I discovered
that I am not Greek enough because I used to be sent up for auditions
for Greek and Mediterranean parts, only to be told that I don’t look
Greek enough. I’ll translate that for you; it means that I don’t have
a mono-brow and a mustache, because Irini Papa has cast
a very long shadow. I usually got feedback, “We are looking for someone
who looks like Salma Hayek.” She is Mexican! So I went up for casting
for the movie “Troy”; Do we remember? The movie “Troy”? So I went up for one of the small parts, one of the slave girls
that had only one line. And my line was, “More chicken, my Lord?” (Laughter) And I did that really well, so I ended up in the final five, and they line us up,
and the casting director comes in, and goes, “Oh, no, no, no, no.
You’re too fair to be Greek!” I said, “Who? What now…?” “You’re too fair to be Greek!” I was like, “I am too fair to be Greek?
I am the only Greek in the room!” (Laughter) I am too fair to be Greek in a movie
where the Greek warrior Achilles, is played by Brad freaking Pitt! (Laughter) I’m too fair to be Greek?! I didn’t get the part. An Albanian girl got it. Go over there, take our jobs. (Laughter) Where is Kaplani? But even, I mean, acting
and comedy are just steps for my final twelve-step-plan
for global domination! I’ll find the pose, it’ll be better
than this, I promise! Because you know, I think I’m Greek,
we did it before I can do it again. Bring it on! I think the world will be lovely place
if everyone listens to me. It’s going to be a little bit like Hitler, with less genocide, more hair,
and really good shoes! So more like Dubai. I am going to wear a crown and a robe,
tell people what to do and they’ll do it, it’s going to be lovely! I’ve recently realized I’ll probably end up
looking like a kindergarten teacher trying to manage an unruly classroom, so I’ll turn up in a crown and a robe
looking a bit stupid, making grandiose announcements
like, “Hello! I am Katerina Vrana, hello! I am going to be your global dominator
for the foreseeable future!” Please lay all gifts by my–
What is it, Thailand? Yes, Thailand, you may massage my feet.
You are very good. Israel, Palestine, be quiet!
They don’t shut up, Somalia darling,
why are you dressed up as a pirate? No, that’s slightly inappropriate.
What…? Well done, America. Everyone, America has done a drawing. Yes, dear. No, we can all see, yes!
The black man is in the white house! And he’s still alive.
Hasn’t America done well, everyone? OK, now darling stop drawing
and and look to your sums, because the numbers are all wrong. England! Stop copying from America! You’re old enough to know better. Greece, you’re making me look really bad! I don’t know– Palestine,
I don’t care who started it. Israel, give Palestine her Gaza back, now! The two of you, learn to share! Iran, put the stone down! (Laughter) No my love,
that’s not democracy, no dear… I know, I am Greek, I gave it to you! (Laughter) Bloody Persians.
And what’s that in your mouth? Spit it out, spit… Who gave uranium to Iran? (Laughter) You know they don’t know
what to do with it. I just… I don’t… (Applause) OK, Italy! Italy, tell your dad to stop playing
with the little girls in the class. What’s that? Cyprus,
I don’t understand what are you saying. Say it again. Slower… Twelve points to Greece!
That’s really going to help her. (Applause) Don’t clap this. Israel, just because your book says so
does not make it right. OK. Palestine why did you just
blow up in Israel’s face? What you mean because Syria told you to? And if Syria told you to jump off a cliff
would you– Palestine get off the cliff! The two of you play nice together or else
I’m sending you to corner with North Korea am I making myself clear? Greece, stop calling
Germany’s mother a whore! (Laughter) And India, get off the phone! Why can’t you all be more like Canada? They do all! They’re very good! Actually it’s exhausting
just performing this. I don’t think I’ll ever make it
to global domination. I’m probably going to just sit at home,
reading gossip magazines. You know, the ones full of celebrities,
and cellulite; it’s the way to go. I just want to tell you one more thing
before I head off. What I found was the biggest difference
between Greeks and the “Britishers” – as I like to call them – is their approach
towards the opposite sex. When I first went over there, I thought that was something wrong with me because no one stared at me
intently for hours. Because you know how the Greeks–
The Greeks sit in cafes and this how they watch women go by. In the UK, this is how they watch women. Don’t look, it’s inappropriate,
Don’t look. And also in Greece,
you walk down the street, and people shout random slightly
complimentary things at you. I was walking down
one of the main streets in Athens and a car went by, honked, and shouted, “You make the pavements
creak, manari mou!” I was like, “Did he called me fat?” In the UK, the only people who shout
anything like that are the builders, and they only ever shout things
like, “Show us your tits!” No one ever has, I don’t know
why they keep insisting. You get other things shouted at you
in the UK, like painfully obvious things. I walked down the street
and the people shouted at me, “Oy!” – that’s, “Psst!” in English – “Oy, you’ve got big hair!” I am like, “Yes, thank you, I know!”
I have a mirror and no peripheral vision. (Laughter) I’m like those horses that drove
the carts, I have natural blindness. If you want to attack me, do it
from the side, I won’t see you coming! Ahh! There you are! A Greek cab driver just showed me
the biggest difference between “Oy, you’ve got big hair!”
and then I get into this Greek cab, now, a week ago,
because I came over to vote. Ha, that went well! So it was 9 degrees in the UK
and I come here, and it was 29, I get into this taxi, and I go, “Oh, God!
Is so hot, I’m sweating so much!” Without pause, the cab driver,
a Greek cab driver went, “Your sweat is very lucky to be
traveling down your body!” (Laughter) Thank you very much. Bye! (Applause)

100 thoughts on “Stereotypes — funny because they are true | Katerina Vrana | TEDxThessaloniki

  1. It's not mst upset, it's "disappointed" – like me you're almost British but there is always just a tiny clue that we're not quite! lol

  2. How clever of you to forget about Cyrus Cylinder and take the credit for democracy and minimizing a great civilization to its hardest time ever!!

  3. Someone with talent please animate or draw the Hetalia countries as children.

  4. omg.. i feel exactly like that in most cases… after 15 years in Britain, I am highly influenced and i make sure people respect the queue .. hehe.. thank you…x

  5. I totally LOVE, LLOOVVEEE THAT HAIR! Unfortunately, despite some good content/elements, bravery and moments, she did not make me laugh at all. Comedian is the toughest of the arts in the sense that there is a clear pass-fail, at times very fine line. I wish her well. I love the hair.

  6. Like most Stand-up Comedians, she is horrendously boring. I can't finish the video. LOL :/

  7. Somali, why are you dressed like a pirate? WHY CAN'T YOU ALL BE LIKE CANADA? I'm not sure which I'm supposed to relate to. I'm going for the Canada one

  8. The part with the anger is so damn accurate,το κερατο μου!
    Ποσο θεα!

  9. I love her as a comedian and i feel so so ashamed that i hadnt watched this video until now…..
    also….
    wth is that hetalia the live action movie? xD

  10. Stereotypes are things that put a big amount of people in boxes, the problem is there are exceptions and people dont seem to get it. This is why i dont like stereotypes basically.

  11. So what do we learn about that? What was the point of this talk? Just making fun of everybody?

  12. As a Brit, I laughed so hard at this! She is hilarious. I only ever laugh at jokes about Brits because were are ridiculous.

  13. Επίτρεψέ μου 1-2 πραγματάκια.Για αρχή καλή επιτυχία στην Αγγλία,με την δουλειά σου.Τώρα όσην ώρα χαζογελούσες με τα αστεία σου, ( τα οποία δεν ήταν ) είσουν βαρετή κ άχαρη.Όταν πήρες τον εαυτό σου στα σοβαρά,κ έκανες πετυχημένα το σκετς με τα παιδάκια είσουν αρκετά καλη.Καλή συνέχεια…!!!

  14. isnt she ashame to say the same jokes in every presantation? she has a tape inside her

  15. 13:45 This confirms that I must have greek blood, cause its what I do all day

  16. This was weird because I kept waiting to hear something profound, but it was a proper stand up.. 👍

  17. Ότι χειρότερο άλλαξε χώρα μπας και το πιστέψει…

  18. Yes stereotypes are funny! In America it's considered borderline racism and politically incorrect.

  19. "An Albanian girl got the part. Go over there, take our jobs" brilliant humor! Thanks Katerina 🙂

  20. As a west African, I have observed you Greeks…… you are one of us.

  21. Cringe.
    10 :00 minutes in… full narcissism schizophrenic breakdown.
    And Canada is just corrupt and it's people subtly oppressed.

  22. She throws jokes out very fast, many dont land and she laughs nervously and moves on quickly

    Its all quite uncomfortable to watch

  23. She is telling the truth, and that is why some people were not laughing.

    "I'm the Huge Grant of moisture." That had me laughing so hard… lol

  24. οταν οι αντρες σου βλεπουν "οοοο σιτ" χχαχαχα

  25. so…was she trying to do a TED talk or a comedy bit? she failed at both either way.

  26. If you like their weather you will also like their foods and their humor hagar horrible ha ha ha .

  27. It's just too much!!! I can't laugh anymore, my face is hurting! 😂😂😂

  28. ο αμειζινγκ πειτζ ονλι για ψαγμενους που ριντ ινγκλις αχρηστα ελληνοπουλα ο αλβανος φτιαχνει καλυτερο σουβλακι

  29. very funny i want to go to tedx and say funny stuff about blonde girls is it ok?

  30. do what to hear a real joke tedx make a speaking somewhere with close doors.Guess where and when ha ha.Stereotypes are funny

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