This New Yorker cartoon (from September ’08) makes me wonder, were American tourists really arrogant before? Isn’t that what we always said about the Parisians? In my own experience, I’d say 90% of Americans visiting France are not arrogant at all. But the other 10% sure have made an impression! The most mortifying moment for me was when a tour client tried to pay for a coffee in Deux Magots with a $20. “Sorry, we don’t accept dollars,” explained the manager politely. “But you can keep the change, it’s worth more than the €5 coffee!” That’s debateable after commission and the hassle involved, but it was just the assumption — likely leftover from the days when “everyone” around the world accepted US Dollars — that the Dollars were preferable to Euros. I mean, if a Mexican came to America and offered 150 Pesos (just over $10) for a $2 coffee at Denny’s, do you think anyone would even consider taking it?