George Mikes

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George Mikes (19121987) was a Hungarian-born British author, best known for his humorous commentaries on various countries and their citizens.


How to Be an Alien: A Handbook for Beginners and More Advanced Pupils (1946)[edit]

  • On the Continent people have good food; in England people have good table manners.
  • Continental people have sex life; the English have hot-water bottles.
  • An Englishman, even if he is alone, forms an orderly queue of one.
  • The trouble with tea is that originally it was quite a good drink. So a group of the most eminent British scientists put their heads together, and made complicated biological experiments to find a way of spoiling it. To the eternal glory of British science their labour bore fruit.
  • Television is of great educational value. It teaches you while still young how to (a) kill, (b) rob, (c) embezzle, (d) shoot, (e) poison, and, generally speaking, (f) how to grow up into a Wild West outlaw or gangster by the time you leave school.

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