Bigger and Better than the Rest

Machines building cars on a production line.
Elementary school students in California playing basketball.
Slurpee sitting in a car cup holder.
Fourth-grader from Alaska about to answer a question in a spelling bee.
The United States playing Great Britain in the Women’s U25 World Wheelchair Basketball Championships.
Two pickup trucks towering over other cars.
Man studying in a library.

In many ways, the United States stands out for the size and scale of its production and achievements. Granted, the land area and the population of the country itself are among the largest in the world, helping to put it ahead of other countries in statistical tabulations. Nevertheless, it is still notable how everything from the U.S. economy to American soda cups are among the biggest in the world.

Business and education

When it comes to economic output and military might, the United States is the undisputed world leader. It owes this position largely to a big population and advanced technological development. The technological accomplishments that the United States’ make use of are often based on skills that Americans learn in their country’s world-class universities, and then practically created by governmental agencies like NASA, private companies like Apple and individual scientists. Still though, not to forget, America’s economic success is also greatly based on Americans working hard on blue collar jobs and non-academics feverishly educating themselves on the Internet, something many people connect with the American people’s famous go-getter attitude.

The special American go-getter attitude is arguably culturally rooted and stemming from a period in history when only those who were willing to cross big oceans and work from sun-up to sun-down found a bright future. Thanks to this heritage, the United States today is filled with people who, despite modest means, are prepared to apply themselves very hard and try new things in order to become successful employees or prosperous entrepreneurs.

Success in sports

Another common character trait among Americans is to be competitive. This competitiveness is something that is typically fostered in American schools and sporting teams, where, even at a young age, excelling and winning are held as two important objectives. Things like spelling bees, competitive debating and basketball games all form part of young people’s lives, and considering how American youth are brought up, it is perhaps not a great surprise that the United States usually wins the most medals out of all countries at the Summer Olympic Games.

Giant soda cups

Going back to the giant soda cups, lastly, contrasting both spelling bees and medals at the Olympics, their size have little to do with competitiveness. Instead, the large cup sizes go along with the American people’s great taste for fast food. The reason for this is that sodas are served with almost every hamburger and taco meal, and if people don’t finish their big drinks in the restaurant, they commonly take them to-go and slurp on them in the car. These cars, in which the sweetened drinks are conveniently placed in car cup holders, not surprisingly, are often a size bigger than most European and Asian cars. This could have something to do with the United States itself being spacious, but honestly, both large cars and large soda cups are much more easily explained by simply saying: it’s the American way.