Ask us where we’re from.
Yes, everyone knows about Essex’s reputation. People from Essex in particular are well aware of that reputation, thanks to the knowing looks and smirks we frequently get when we confess our roots. In order to avoid this, less hardy locals will respond to the innocent enquiry with ambiguous statements like “near London” or “in the South East.” It’s not even about feeling ashamed, most of the time we’re just irritated or bored by the question. Plus, you know you’ve really made it on an international level when you meet people from abroad and they’ve heard of Essex…and give you the smirk.