1. “If you’re Brazilian, why are you so white?”
This is a question that some Brazilians hear a lot and the answer is simple: No!
Brazil has no face, no color and no body. In Brazil, none of the typical identification rules apply. We’re a country of immigration and because of that, we have all the faces and all the body types here. We’re everybody, mixed all together, in one big nation.
2. “How do you say ‘good morning’ in Spanish?”
How the hell should we know? We speak Portuguese! Believe or not, the biggest country in South America is the only country that doesn’t actually speak Spanish as its main language. The little country of Portugal was the one who got here first.
3. “So the capital of Brazil is Buenos Aires, right?”
Wrong, wrong, WRONG. The capital of Brazil is Brasilia. Buenos Aires is the capital of our lovely neighbour Argentina.
4. “What do Brazilians typically eat?”
Okay so Brazil is almost 2x as big as Europe. We have TONS of typical dishes. If French food has almost nothing to do with Finnish food, can you even imagine the amount of flavour, spices and unique cuisine we have in Brazil? We have feijoada, churrasco, feijao tropeiro, escondidinho, carne de panela. And pao de queijo, coxinha, pastel, risoles, empada. Then some brigadeiro, beijinho, pe de moleque, paçoca, pamonha, quindim… Do I really need to list more?
5. “If I go to Brazil, will I see beautiful naked women on the beaches of Ipanema and Copacabana?”
No, you will not! Brazil still has a law that makes going topless illegal here.
6. “Can’t I just catch a bus from São Paulo to the Amazon forest?”
Well, technically you can, but you’ll stay inside that bus for more than 4 or 5 days. Remember, we’re huge. You should probably take a plane.
7. “Brazil is a pretty dangerous place, right?”
No, of course not! Brazil, just like any other country has its areas where you should be more cautious than others, yes. But to be honest, you just shouldn’t be stupid here. Don’t go out on the streets showing your high-end mobile phone and flashing your brand new gold Rolex.
8. “Are Caipirinhas only made with lemon?”
Heeeeeellllllll no! And not only with cachaça either! Caipirinha is a big thing in Brazil and the lemon+ice+sugar+cachaça combo is by far the most popular version of it. But most bars have creative alternatives like the ones made with Sake and Vodka, or different fruits like passion fruit, clementines, strawberries and so on. We do a lot with our Caipirinhas.
9. “Does every Brazilian know the samba?”
Actually, from all the friends that I’ve made in my entire life, less than a 1/4 of them actually know how to dance samba for real. It’s more common to find a Brazilian who can’t dance samba than it is to find one who can.
10. “What about salsa? Do you all know how to salsa?”
We-do-not-have-salsa! I can’t stress this enough. And we have so much more than samba, too. Frevo is an amazing dance that the carnavals in cities like Olinda have as their main thing. You should Google it — it’s colourful, happy and we dance it with an umbrella.
11. “Can’t I just stay on the beach from 9am until the sun goes down?”
If you’re asking this, chances are you’re from a cold country a much lower sun tolerance. Countless tourists, especially from Northern Europe, come to Brazil and get crazy with the beach. They forget to hydrate, they forget to put on sunscreen. Please do not do that. Brazil is a tropical country and you should take every safety precaution you can with our sun.
12. “Do gorillas and jaguars just cross the street like it’s normal?”
First of all: We don’t even have gorillas, we’re not African.
Second of all: Brazil is not the Amazon, therefore we’re not all jungle.
Brazil is home to more than 200 million people and has several of the largest cities in the world, of course we don’t have jaguars just wandering around. Well, maybe in Manaus they do.
13. “Will I get robbed by a monkey in Brazil?”
Mmmmmm…no?! Do I really need to answer this one?
14. “Do you even feel the heat?”
Did you know we have snow in Brazil? It’s very rare but temperatures in the very south can go as low as 1 or 0 degrees. In São Paulo, the biggest city on the entire South American continent, the winter can give us temperatures of 3 or 4 Celsius. So yeah, I can feel the difference between hot and cold.
15. “Are you excellent at football?”
No, just because I’m Brazilian doesn’t mean that I even know how to play football. And I’m not going to even start to tell you how rare it is to find somebody as good as Neymar. That’s why he’s so famous.