Thank You Jacinda! Special Reissue



New Zealand’s iconic prime minister, Jacinda Ardern, has announced she’s stepping down in the coming days. In honor of her 5+ years of Kiwi leadership, we’re heading back ‘down under’ with a special reissue of our “Island Hopping: New Zealand” episode from November 2019. Enjoy!

We’re back with a special “island hopping” episode: between the North and South Islands of New Zealand! Dean and Tom dive into Dean’s recent travels along the stunning TranzAlpine railway, and to the hub of extreme adventure activities in Queenstown on the South Island (where Dean may or may not have bungee jumped in the nude). Then, they visit the All Blacks rugby team and the haka, as well as cultural dynamics between ancestral Europeans and the Maori, the indigenous people of Aotearoa (Maori for New Zealand). Like the flightless kiwi bird – an icon of New Zealand – you’ll want to stay grounded in this episode!

Check out our NEW YouTube channel here (and/or the playlist below)! In honor of the pod’s upcoming 5th anniversary in late March 2023, we’re posting 2-3 of our original episodes, in the order they were released, each and every Wednesday into March. Our first TWENTY episodes are up now! If you haven’t heard them yet, or even if you have, head there & click Play today, and bring a friend along with you – thanks!

Listen today to “island hop” with Dean and Tom! Have a cultural question or episode idea? Reach out on Twitter and Facebook (@OopsCultureShow) or by email at oopscultureshow@gmail.com.

Music: “Little Idea” – Bensound.com


Joy To The World! Supersized Holiday Reissue



Happy holidays, dear listeners! We’re doubling your dose of joy this holiday season with BOTH parts of our ‘two-part gleeful gabfest’ from Nov/Dec 2021, “Joy To The World!” – packaged together in this supersized, super-special reissue. Both episode descriptions are below, plus the link to our new YouTube channel (while on a plane ride or road trip these holidays, head there to hear or rehear our original episodes!). A very happy new year to all, and we’ll be back with new episodes in 2023!

PART ONE: What’s so funny? In this jolly episode, Dean and Tom gleefully gab about what is, and is not, considered funny across cultures – and how laughter can also be interpreted differently depending on where you are. Plus, Grammar Time makes a brief cameo! You don’t have to wait anymore for the punchline; it’s here for you. En-joy!

PART TWO: In the finale of their two-part gleeful gabfest, Dean and Tom continue to delight in the complexities of humor, language, and culture. Then, they elatedly explore similarities and differences in how joy is expressed communally across cultures, in Bhutan, Denmark, Brazil, and the U.S., and in birthday celebrations in Europe, the Middle East, and East Asia. Happy holidays everyone!

Check out our NEW YouTube channel here (and/or the playlist below)! In honor of the pod’s upcoming 5th anniversary in late March 2023, we’re posting 2-3 of our original episodes, in the order they were released, each and every Wednesday into March. Our first TEN episodes are up now! If you haven’t heard them yet, or even if you have, head there & click Play today, and bring a friend along with you – thanks!

Have a cultural question or episode idea for Dean and Tom? Reach out on Twitter and Facebook (@OopsCultureShow) or by email at oopscultureshow@gmail.com.

Music: “Little Idea” – Bensound.com


36: “Holidays of gratitude”



Happy Thanksgiving to our US American listeners! In this episode, Dean dishes to Tom about both experiencing US American holidays like Thanksgiving while in different countries, as well as immersing himself in different countries’ holidays over the years – from Slovakia to India to China, and many more! Plus, Tom searches for wordplay (but does he find it?) and producer Torin calls out semantic satiation when he hears it (but can he say “satiation”?). Enjoy gobbling up this episode, and thank you for listening!

Check out our NEW YouTube channel here (and/or the playlist below)! In honor of the pod’s upcoming 5th anniversary in late March 2023, we’re posting 2-3 of our original episodes, in the order they were released, each and every Wednesday into March. Our first two episodes ever (“Shaving & Japanese Toilets” and “Tea & Magnetic Pole Flips”) are up now! If you haven’t heard them yet, or even if you have, head there & click Play today, and bring a friend along with you – thanks!

Have a cultural question or episode idea for Dean and Tom? Reach out on Twitter and Facebook (@OopsCultureShow) or by email at oopscultureshow@gmail.com.

Music: “Little Idea” – Bensound.com


35: “‘Work to live’ cultures, and ‘live to work’ cultures”



Listening to this while eating lunch in the workplace? Fais attention (be careful!) because if you’re in France, that’s illegal. In this episode, Dean and Tom get to work contrasting how countries from France to Japan to the US value, and even legislate, work-life balance – and, bien sûr (of course!), how it’s all grounded in culture. Plus, a Grammar Time segment somehow sneaks up on all of us…est-ce possible?

(Here are the referenced NPR articles on the French lunch law and the Portuguese ‘right to disconnect’ law, from June 2022.)

Have a cultural question or episode idea for Dean and Tom? Reach out on Twitter and Facebook (@OopsCultureShow) or by email at oopscultureshow@gmail.com.

Music: “Little Idea” – Bensound.com


34: “There’s no chicken lane in Amsterdam!”



Why did Dean, the global cultures expert, cross the road? To chat with Tom about navigating street crossings in cities from Rome to Hong Kong, and the corresponding cultural implications – of course! Plus: Don’t miss the exciting premiere of Wordplay!, a subset of Grammar Time, later in the episode. We’re giving you the walk sign to stroll through this episode and enjoy it, hopefully without jaywalking involved (but if you do, we won’t – and can’t – tell on you).

Have a cultural question or episode idea for Dean and Tom? Reach out on Twitter and Facebook (@OopsCultureShow) or by email at oopscultureshow@gmail.com.

Music: “Little Idea” – Bensound.com


Taxi Please! Special Reissue



We hope you’re staying as cool as can be, listeners! Since Dean and Tom will be chatting about global transportation customs in next month’s brand-new episode, we’re ‘crossing the road’ to there with a special reissue this month of our “Taxis & Malaysian Smiles” episode from May 2018. Enjoy this off-the-rails (or whichever transportation idiom you prefer) episode, hopefully while sipping on an ice-cold beverage!

In this episode, Dean and Tom share taxi adventures and delve into what to do, and not do, when in the backseat, or maybe the front seat, in India, Australia, and Japan – all while they swat away malarial mosquitos and sing “Oh My Darling, Clementine” (6:22). Next, Dean answers a listener’s question about cultural differences around smiling and laughing in Malaysia and the U.S. (19:57). Then, the topic of men’s outerwear somehow comes up, so put on your culturally-appropriate listening shorts and enjoy!

Have a cultural question or episode idea for Dean and Tom? Reach out on Twitter and Facebook (@OopsCultureShow) or by email at oopscultureshow@gmail.com.

Music: “Little Idea” – Bensound.com


33: “Why is a child ‘reared’? Why aren’t they ‘forwarded’?”



Hey (literal) baby! In this episode, Dean and Tom toddle over from a prior discussion of elders to the other end of the age spectrum: kids, and how we adults view, rear, and set expectations of children similarly and differently across cultures! Pay special attention for mentions of defenestration, Victor Borge, and dunce caps, children, because there will be a quiz afterwards. Plus: Grammar Time boldly returns to ask the question on every child’s mind; where has the semicolon gone? Please be seated criss-cross on the carpet; we need to see your eyes on your phone and your ears listening; now you’re ready to enjoy!

Have a cultural question or episode idea for Dean and Tom? Reach out on Twitter and Facebook (@OopsCultureShow) or by email at oopscultureshow@gmail.com.

Music: “Little Idea” – Bensound.com


32: “Grandma Time!”



Listen up, you whippersnappers! Dean, Tom, and baby/producer Torin impart some wisdom about how cultures value their elders and the “elderly,” especially by comparing perceptions and customs in US culture with those in cultures in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. Plus, you’d be wise not to miss the long-anticipated launch of Grandma Time (or perhaps it’s the long-awaited return of Grammar Time, who can say?). Pull down those earlobes, open up those ear holes, and enjoy!

(Referenced in this episode: Stephen Colbert receives broadcasting wisdom from Tom in this Daily Show segment from fall 2001, at around the 2 minute 55 second mark.)

Have a cultural question or episode idea for Dean and Tom? Reach out on Twitter and Facebook (@OopsCultureShow) or by email at oopscultureshow@gmail.com.

Music: “Little Idea” – Bensound.com


31: “For Ukrainians, the sunflower is an incredibly powerful symbol.”



Dean and Tom are back to talk about the use and importance of symbols across cultures, otherwise known as “going the full Robert Langdon” (you know, the main protagonist in Dan Brown’s novels). Being the super symbologists they are, Dean and Tom decipher what iconic symbols have to tell us about the Russian invasion of Ukraine, while also decoding symbols that have arisen from other conflicts, such as in Hong Kong, the United States, and more. We hope you’ll crash some cymbals to commemorate this discussion of symbols, symbolizing a celebration of all our new 2022 episodes coming up!

(For more on protest symbols in Russia, here is the April 15, 2022 episode of the Rough Translation podcast from NPR.)

Have a cultural question or episode idea for Dean and Tom? Reach out on Twitter and Facebook (@OopsCultureShow) or by email at oopscultureshow@gmail.com.

Music: “Little Idea” – Bensound.com


Back To China – Special Reissue



With both the Lunar New Year and the Winter Olympics in Beijing this month, we’re heading back to China in this special reissue of our “Goat Eyes & Chinese Banquets” episode from June 2018! Please enjoy this classic offering, and stay tuned for tasty new episodes in the coming weeks. Happy Year of the Tiger!

Dean and Tom are back in this episode to sink their teeth into what to do, and what not to do, when presented with traditional foods across cultures: goat eyes in Kazakhstan, natas in Portugal, fried mayflies in Mexico, and the list goes on (3:26)! As the honored guest at a Chinese banquet, Dean also guides us through the ins and outs of this formal ceremony while respectfully passing along his fish head – yes, you read that correctly (9:13, 27:34, 48:25). Then, Dean and Tom launch into an informal edition of Grammar Time, and digest the bizarre fact that “bizarre” and “bazaar” each contain a single z (38:17). Who knew? So pop five natas into your mouth, avoid those one-eyed Portuguese cats, and enjoy!

Subscribe today! Have a cultural question or episode idea for Dean and Tom? Reach out on Twitter and Facebook (@OopsCultureShow) or by email at oopscultureshow@gmail.com.

Music: “Little Idea” – Bensound.com