Category: My opinion

The differences between Germans and Americans 

The differences between Germans and Americans 

They are miles apart. The Atlantic Ocean is right between them. However, how much different are Germans and Americans actually? I do not want to focus much on politics or economics, but about the people. I was born and raised in Germany. I have relatives and friends in both countries. I love American TV shows and holidays, I am interested in the political situation in both countries, and I think Germans and Americans are more alike than it might appears. 
(I want to point out, that this is just my opinion, based on the experiences I made. It can vary to your own.)


The beauty of globalization!?

Many people still dream of one united world, while many world leaders want to turn their nation into the only one triumphing. We all live on one single planet, but there is not one mindset, that is entirely right. Every person is unique. I mean, underneath the skin, we are alike. There is no difference between the X-ray of a black and a white man, a Christian and a Moslem. It is solely the feelings, and beliefs, which vary. What makes us so unique is not the skin color, but the emotions attached to it. Back in Stone Age, people were looking for those, who appeared similar to them. They were suspicious about aliens. They wanted to protect themselves. Still these days we are more likely to find friends and a partner who is like a beloved person. The chances that this relationship will last long, is by far higher than to someone who is quite the opposite.

That is the reason “the others” are often considered as the bad people. They can be the black ones, refugees, or belong to any other minority. Both countries fear losing their home to the minorities. Parties like the AFD, that is far right in Germany, arise unreasonable fear by ignoring the facts and creating vicious emotions. There are only two percent of refugees compared to the amount of Germans living in Germany. Therefore, it is unreasonable that the refugees will soon take over. The reaction to such, by statistics proven, facts is in both countries the same, when it does not fit to specific politicians’ opinions: in Germany, it is called “Luegenpresse” (lying press) and in the US, it is “fake news”. 

However, what is a “real” German or American? The AFD considers everyone not German who does not look like one – to them. How is a typical German supposed to look like? That is a big issue, also in the US. Some people might have grandparents from different countries, but cannot relate much to it, because they were not born and raised there. I have a friend who is half Moroccan, but she has never been to that country. Her Mom lives in Germany, my friend was born and raised here. Germany is her home country. She is German. Unfortunately, many people tell her she is lying when she talks about her nationality. 

Putting stereotypes into boxes

Facts are one thing, but they are meaningless when they do not appeal to the emotions, which can lead to illogical decisions. Why seeking for a potential enemy even in the own country? Why do we want to tear others down, instead of accepting a challenge and become better? When I was a college student, I had to do an interview with a former doctor who is nowadays doing comedy in Germany. His secretary refused using the words “he is a TV star now, he cannot do interviews with students.” He was just one of many people I figured out who think they are better than “freaking, stupid students”. In the US, it is different. I feel more support. Politicians and entrepreneurs are pleased giving interviews to students for infamous podcasts, magazines or blogs – not all of them, but there is a higher chance they answer questions than Germans. These people maybe remember how they once started, and are not thinking, “Now I am the famous guy and you better beg or pay lots of money to afford me.” I think the more money is on the table, the less happy people are for others. At least that is what I experienced in Germany. These rich people become some sort of a Montgomery Burns on The Simpsons. They think they cannot fail, nothing they do is questionable and who ever dares to, has to be the declared enemy.

When I was younger, I felt I was the only person with issues. Life seemed so easy for other people. They were smart and beautiful, and I was simply too stupid for it all. Now I have realized that many successful women, like actresses Melissa Benoist and Emma Stone, were dealing with anxieties and insecurities. It feels good to read about that, and to notice I am not the only one. It has always been hard for me to express feelings. As a teenager, I tried my best to refuse them. Emotions made me feel even more vulnerable. I did not want to give the other kids another thing to laugh at me, or talk behind my back, which I constantly felt they were doing. Listening to my friends and helping them is something I like, but I always feel like I cannot bother them with my crap, because they have enough to deal with. Even when they tell me, they are interested; I feel it hard to accept. I know they have problems, too, but I feel to be just excessively different and they would not understand, maybe even consider me crazy. Who am I to complain anyway? There are “real” problems out there, than me feeling like an alien.


The same in different ways

Have you ever felt differently? Have you ever felt unaccepted for who you are? This could be because of your nationality, religion, ethnicity, or maybe your emotions. We all have them. They make us human. They make us the same, but also separate us. They make us vulnerable, but they also empower us. I think when everyone shares, instead of hiding or even refusing having feelings, insecurities and anxieties would not be such a big deal. Everyone has them. It is good to admit being imperfect, instead of laughing at others and pretending or not showing any issues. The minority is the majority. Instead of pointing fingers and catastrophizing, I wish for people to be more open about themselves, and about other people. Accepting others and focusing on the good, that is still in the majority and it is on us to keep it that way; that is the actual beauty of globalization. 

Do not fear or hate those who are like you. Forget the box thinking, and allow everyone the freedom to embrace herself entirely. Put the obstacles from your thoughts aside, the differences that humankind created like nationality, religion, and ethnicity. Only then, we can maybe become what we already are: equally human beings.

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Celebrating TV stars

The lights turn out. Everyone is sitting quietly and watches the stage. Music sets in, the spotlights are switched on, and it all starts. The live event of the year. The whole TV world waited for this to come. Every year right before the next TV season starts. It’s the Primetime Emmy Awards.

So while some are curious about the gowns and tuxedos, hair and makeup of the celebrities, most just wanted to know who is going to take home a trophy. There are lots of great people nominated, and I am pretty sure that Jim Parsons will take home his 4th Emmy for playing Dr. Sheldon Cooper on The Big Bang Theory. He is a brilliant actor, actually the best I have seen in years. His talent is overwhelming and being also nominated for The Normal Heart, which will definitely win the award for best TV movie, he pretty much proved that Jim is more than Sheldon. Reprising his role as Tommy Boatwright from the Broadway play in 2011, Jim portrayed a character that is the total opposite of Sheldon. An intense role, not funny at all but also amazingly played. Still Jim is mostly famous for playing the nerdy character on Big Bang who would not be such a fan favorite if Jim wasn’t playing him so incredibly well. 

Jim Emmy Win 2014
Will Jim Parsons win his 4th Emmy for playing Sheldon Cooper on The Big Bang Theory?

Jim’s fellow nominees in the category of Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series are also all great actors. Mostly Ricky Gervais (“Derek”) and Louis CK (“Loui”) might have a slight chance to win too, but this is just the “Parsons category”. Will Jim actually win, he’d join Michael J. Fox, Kelsey Grammer and Carroll O’Connor who also won the Lead Actor category four-times. With three more seasons of Big Bang to come, I already guess right now, that Jim will at least win his 5th award and then be  crowned the “Super TV Comedic Lead Actor”. He also is a very good example that hard work, believing in your ability and the love of acting are the best ways to make it big in the world of TV. He shows the passion, that is what not only I love about him. I am pretty sure than even after Big Bang, Jim will show us all even more of his extraordinary talent. I just hope that Jim stays the way he seems to be: humble, nice and down-to-earth. But I doubt he’d ever turn into some sort of Charlie Sheen… So kudos Jim, thanks for your great work. It’s a pure joy watching you.

Besides Jim and The Normal Heart, there are also many more interesting categories. For those who missed my Google+ hangout about the Emmys, here are my predictions who’s gonna win in the “main” categories:


Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series: Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series: Julianna Margulies 

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Bryan Cranston

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series: Kate Mulgrew

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series: Tony Hale

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: Christine Baranski 

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Peter Dinklage

Outstanding Comedy Series: Veep

Outstanding Drama Series: True Detective

Outstanding Television Movie: The Normal Heart


What are your guesses who might win this year? And how to do you think will Seth Meyers open the show? Please leave a comment here. Thanks and happy Emmys 2014 !!!!

Note: Please also join me live tweeting @SannySpear during the Emmys today. You can also join my post-Emmy talk this Friday, August 29. I’m looking forward to chat with you!

The negative thing about being a successful TV star

Glitter, fame, so much money. The world of TV offers lots of chances. It seems so very easy for everyone to make it big. You only have to act a little bit. And didn’t we all played a lot as kids? Wasn’t it great to pretend to be someone else, not only on Halloween? TV is what we all know and love. We wait for new episodes of our favorite shows, it feels like we actually know these characters. For some people these guys fill their entire lives and the world is only revolving in that TV show universe.

You can use a phone these days for way more than watching for favorite TV shows. pic by JD Hancock
You can use a phone these days for way more than watching your favorite TV shows.
pic by JD Hancock

Being a fan of ‘The Big Bang Theory’ since season 4, I got in touch with lots of fans. Normally I only watch a show, but this one was the first I googled. That connection between the fans is amazing. People all over the world talk about Sheldon, Leonard, Penny and their friends. And the fandom is still increasing. Sure, the internet is something that helps to make the show even more popular and it is a show mostly watched by teens. At least they have the time to spread the word on the internet, comment the most, create fan account, etc.

I realize it every time I spend a few minutes on Twitter or Instagram. I don’t have that time to be 24/7 online, but to me it seems lots of people are only waiting for their star to post something, so they can be the first to like, comment or reshare. So it happens that I see a picture Jim Parsons posted on his IG at least 3 times in my timeline. Reshared at least 2 times by fans. Honestly, it’s okay to retweet or repost a picture from time to time, but many never create own content.

I only ‘like’ the original post, and only if I really like it and not because I like the person that this guy plays in my favorite sitcom. But that is just how kids are. And sometimes even some older people. And there we are: the negative aspect of being a successful TV star. People think they know you, when all they see is your character. And they think it’s their right to know every single detail about your life and share this with the world. Not only they reshare your pictures, but they try to find private ones and share them too. You lost control over your own privacy – not to forget the rumors which are spread easily over the internet.

I never cared about any celebrities, and still I don’t. I care about the people I have in my life, and who want me to have in theirs. Jim might be the only exception but I don’t wait till he posts anything. Mostly I see his pictures days later, then I decide if I comment, like or do nothing. And I stopped to google him, why would I? Isn’t it creepy what the internet makes possible? Isn’t it creepy that strangers can figure out everything about you and think that is okay because you are a celebrity?

There are two kind of TV stars: the ones with talent and the ones who have to sell themselves.

I prefer the ones with talent, with passion for their job. When someone is money-focused, this person will never be happy and always be lonely. Money and fame might be good, but only the moments we share with our loved ones can’t be taken away. These moments will last forever in our memory. That is what matters!!

Money and fame always come along with jealousy. Like when there was the big discussion about the Big Bang cast wanting $ 1 Million per episode. I had to write a post about that too. I didn’t get all the attention. But overall, it’s the proof that it’s better to not talk about money. We all want a lot, but don’t want others to have more than we do. We don’t see their hard work (Big Bang wasn’t a big hit when it started, they did the pilot twice, then there was the writer’s strike, etc.) They all work hard, and who knows how much they will get when one day the show will be over? And spoiler: this will happen one day!

Sure they have to take as much as possible. We all would do it that way. And they don’t get the money for ‘only’ 20 minutes. They work more than that. They give up most of their privacy. Others waste their time being 24/7 online, freaking out when they are not the first to get the news. Keep calm! These guys on TV are just people like you and me. Treat them like you wanna be treated, write them what you wanna read. And imagine how many mails, comments they get. Is it neccessary to only comment ‘hi’? Or to tag a person 10 times per day? I think this will make it even less likely your star to notice you.

Oh and before you now wanna write me that I might be not a real fan or that post is complete crap – don’t comment anything. That is my point of view. And I think there is a difference between a fan and an addict, which is someone who can’t spend a single day without internet. It’s good to get in touch with other fans and even our favorite stars, but don’t forget your real friends and family. Because a TV show is just that: a show that cheers up our lives. Not accusing anyone, just saying.

Be a fan and be polite!