John Oliver and his team at Last Week Tonight didn’t do a show on Sunday because of the long weekend. They did, however, put together a little online video to hold fans over until their next show. In it, Oliver spends three minutes explaining everything Americans gave up by declaring independence. The list includes lovely vowel sounds, bowler hats, and meat pies, which Oliver says are a metaphor for British people: a crusty outer layer with a hot mess inside.
The most important thing Americans gave up, though, was the British sense of pessimism. Americans, he says, believe the sky is the limit, whereas the British are painfully aware of their limits, knowing that they will never measure up to the example set by the Queen, “an elderly woman who frowns for a living.”