The wide-eyed tourist's guide to f**king off the locals

OFF on your holidays? Want to annoy the locals with your infuriating enthusiasm? Do these things.

Eat in non-tourist restaurants

Tourist restaurants are there for a reason. They rip you off and keep you at a safe distance from the locals who actually know how to eat their spaghetti with a fork. If you want to f**k with the natural order of things, stay away from eateries that have laminated menus with English translations and try to pay with the wrong currency.

Try to prove you’re a local

You spent a long weekend in Vienna in 2005, so naturally this makes you an expert on the area. Wander down the city’s streets and loudly explain its history and customs to your friends while getting the details wrong. Was Mozart born on this street? Who cares, he was now. For maximum irritation, present cliched stereotypes as if they are insider knowledge.

Assume you’ll be understood

You abandoned Duolingo after two days, but that doesn’t matter because English is a universal language. Cheerfully ask people for directions in your mother tongue while channelling all the colonial arrogance you can muster. Foreigners are bound to appreciate the opportunity to practise their conversational English. Either that or they’ll sigh and walk away.

Show people what a great time you’re having

Foreign cities are real places with real people going about their busy, stressful lives. The last thing they want to see is a bunch of delighted tourists clogging up the streets eating ice cream in the middle of the working day. If you really want to piss the locals off, form a massive queue at their favourite lunch spot and loudly rave about what a relaxing holiday you’re having.

Photograph everything

Looking at amazing landmarks and thinking ‘that’s nice’ isn’t enough. You need to take dozens of photographs of them, as well as regular shops, the pavement, and any manhole covers that grab your attention. When you do so, be sure to abruptly stop in the middle of the street so people walk into the back of you. Will you share any of these snaps on social media? Of course not.

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The Guardian reader's top 10 self-indulgent problems to write in about

THE Guardian’s Lifestyle section offers practical advice to middle class people with non-problems. Here are the most common inconsequential dilemmas it solves.

I’m tired

If you’re tired after doing tiring things you’re just tired. If you’re abnormally tired, eg. frequently in a paralysing state of exhaustion, GO AND SEE A F**KING DOCTOR IN CASE YOU’RE ABOUT TO DIE.

Should I put ice in white wine?

Probably not if you’re a genuine wine connoisseur with an expensive bottle of wine. Otherwise, yeah, if you want to. Next.

I wish I’d had sex with more people

Invariably sent in by a bloke who’s happily married and doesn’t want to jeopardise it at any cost. There’s no solution then, is there? Try moaning to a friend. They’ll resolve the issue by telling you to piss off.

My batter never rises properly

Find a trusted cook, eg. Delia, and follow their instructions rigidly. There is not some unique curse upon your batter.

Should I leave my husband for a Moroccan waiter 30 years younger?

No. See how easy that was?

Do I need a TV licence if I only watch on a laptop?

Yes. This is very common knowledge. You have not beaten the system with your fiendishly clever hi-tech loophole, ageing Guardian reader.

Do soulmates exist?

Obviously you’ll have more in common with one person than another. But our love lives aren’t governed by magic because we don’t live in Lord of the f**king Rings.

How can I reduce my carbon footprint?

You know the obvious sources of carbon dioxide, flying, driving a car, etc.? Do less of that. Tricky concept, but you’ll get the hang of it eventually.

Which houseplant should I get?

A green one you like looking at? But not a rare type that costs 200 quid. That’s just stupid.

There’s an age gap with my partner

Again, there’s no solution except ‘split up’, unless you can run them through a time machine. If the gap is pretty negligible, say, six years, you’re just wasting everyone’s time. Actually you’re all just wasting everyone’s time, you wankers.