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  1. #86
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    Originally posted by Pete LSD
    It's the same type of problem I face when I am in HK. I try to memory the Chinese character of the dishes I like before I order. However, there is time when I just can't recall so I get the LOOK from the waitress or waiter. They are thinking, "This guy can speak fluent Cantonese but ask for an English menu?"
    Nahh, they are thinking "now I have to walk all the way back just to get the other menu "

  2. #87
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    Default Ordering food

    So do you guys just order the same things over and over again because you can't understand the other words?

    I knew this guy who is BBC and went to work in Hong Kong for 6 months. The first night that he got there, one of the colleagues ordered a simple dish like roast pork cha siu with rice or something. He asked for the same. Since then he could only order that dish! which was a great shame as I'm sure you all know, HK offers a lot more to eat than just roask pork and rice! You can see his face change colour when he sees that dish now LOL.

    While I do not proclaim efficiency at all, I guess I can understand about 70-80% of a chinese menu because vocabulary for food is limited, though it would take me some time to decipher it Apart from more upmarket places with fancy names and complex seafood dishes that is.

    One thing I can do with Chinese language is haggle! Cheung can attest to that
    How many of you have that ancient Chinese skill?

    But back on topic, do you guys also look for food that you recognise on a menu, just because you can order it in Chinese? especially if you are with boyfriends/girlfriends and friends in general?

    or do you poke at the other table and say I'll have what they are having like my mom does

  3. #88
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    Nope, I try to read the menu...in Chinese...my limited knowledge of chinese characters includes a lot of food....it's necessary for survival!

    BBQ pork...what's wrong with that?
    He could have ordered BBQ duck.....

  4. #89
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    Wizbit,

    I actually feel a bit sorry for your friend. I remember my 1st 6 months in HK and it was definately hard work and difficult not knowing the language. Determination helps !!

    People used to humour me because I didn't know the expressions
    "eat tofu"
    "eat lemon"
    "salty pig's trotters"

    i.e. I am talking about their implied meanings. However, that is something peculiar to HK style rather than Chinese culture as a whole. Different regions of the same country have different slang terms. I guess this would be more so in a country as large and populous as China.

  5. #90
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    Lightbulb

    Another one is licking crab juice! Bad, real bad.

  6. #91
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    Lightbulb

    Or Tofu rubbing against Tofu for a change

  7. #92
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    Crab juice, that's really vulgar. People usually call me

    crab face in Msia.

    What's that about salty pig trotters?

    I suspect it's vulgar since it starts with " hum'.

    Is Kwun going to censor all this ?

  8. #93
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    Itīs not the land we are walking that makes us.
    Itīs not our history that creates us.
    Itīs not our language.
    Not our parents.
    Not our skin.
    Not you.

    Itīs our minds.

  9. #94
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    Seems like from the postings and from the people I've met that

    Scandinavian people have a kind of "neutral" culture and do not

    usually align themselve politically ( as opposed to economically in EU).

    Is it history and culture that makes Scandinavians slightly different

    from other Europeans who tend to be more insular ?

    I'm just curious as I know next to nothing about European culture.

  10. #95
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    Originally posted by Cheung

    People used to humour me because I didn't know the expressions
    "eat tofu"
    "eat lemon"
    "salty pig's trotters"

    i.e. I am talking about their implied meanings. However, that is something peculiar to HK style rather than Chinese culture as a whole. Different regions of the same country have different slang terms. I guess this would be more so in a country as large and populous as China.
    i have been disconnected with the HK culture for the last 14 years. i don't know what "eat tofu" nor "salty pig's trotters" mean either. perhaps your friends will start humoring me too.... actually, sometimes hanging out with some really "cantonese" friends, i find that i hardly know what they are talking about. i don't know their music (i don't even know any of the current popular singers) , i don't know their popular culture, i don't know their slangs, i don't know what hot these days in HK.

    and i just noticed i even used the word "their".

  11. #96
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    yay

    as MBC i think im chinese lol

  12. #97
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    Originally posted by Cheung



    "eat tofu"
    "eat lemon"
    "salty pig's trotters"

    i
    Actually, the one with "eat tofu" are widely used in mainland china, and taiwan, too.
    All 3 basically have similar meaning as, "taking advantage on girls" (sexual harrassment). But between friends, u can just joking around, if a guy is very close to a girl (hot ones, prefer )

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    Now now . . . the conversation is getting too provocative.

  14. #99
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    Originally posted by LazyBuddy
    Actually, the one with "eat tofu" are widely used in mainland china, and taiwan, too.
    All 3 basically have similar meaning as, "taking advantage on girls" (sexual harrassment). But between friends, u can just joking around, if a guy is very close to a girl (hot ones, prefer )
    i thought "eat lemon" is when you got rejected by a girl?

  15. #100
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    You are right Kwun, well to my understanding, eating lemon means a rejection by a girl. But maybe different parts of the world have different meanings for this.

    By the way, Happy new year to every Chinese person and everyone else who celebrates it!

  16. #101
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    Let me open up another can of worms and re-state what I've originally written, if it wasn't clear enough.

    To Wizbit: I understand what you have written about forming a separate culture that is neither Western or Asian but a mixture of both. I have enough Asian-American friends to understand what some of them always tell me, that they feel they are neither here nor there.

    I believe that what I am writing are based on my personal experiences. I have nothing agst people who don't burn paper money, eat rice dumplings, mooncakes or mandarin oranges - frankly, I don't do three out of the four things either. I don't curse and swear at people just because they don't celebrate CNY. I understand what you are saying about the behavior of some FOBs because (although I am one myself), it is true that what they do sometimes leaves much to be desired - I have seen and heard instances of people who do not (among others) wash their hands after using the toilet, flush the toilet after using it plus a host of other unmentionable bad habits. And if we're talking about hygiene matters here, yes, it turns me off too. Personally I have not seen the FOB snobs you mentioned in your post so I cannot actually comment on that.

    I even think I can partially understand the mentality of XBCs because coming from Singapore, I see a lot of people among my circle of family and friends who despise Chinese from the mainland and feel that they are socially inferior for the very same reason as to why XBCs distance themselves from FOBs. And the best thing is that Singapore is 76 per cent Chinese!

    But what does get me offended - and makes me go on a cursing rampage - is when some XBCs speak and act as though any Asian who comes from Asia are "inferior" (in whatever sense of the word) JUST BECAUSE they are Asians from Asia. I specified in my earlier posting that not every XBC is like that - I do have plenty of Asian-American friends as well - and I acknowledged that it might have been bad luck on my part to meet those people I met. And unlike what you have stated, it is not simply a case of the FOBs acting as though they were superior because they have plenty of money, of lousy personal hygiene like the examples I have given above, or in less extreme cases like talking VERY LOUDLY in the library - as though their grandfather owned it - when everyone else is trying to study.

    I know of a Korean-American who once said in front of her FOB friends, "Oh, I don't want my kids to look Asian" as though it was shameful to look Asian. I have had times when I just ask people casually if they can speak Mandarin and they answer "NO" in a very disdainful manner. I know a Japanese friend - very modern, open-minded and has been in the States for close to 10 yrs. Nothing undesirable about her - as far as I am concerned - but this Japanese-American in her class kept a distance from her the moment she mentioned she was from Japan.

    After being in the States for close to 2 years, I am increasingly beginning to understand how difficult it is, among other things, to celebrate CNY in a country that doesn't do so. I have friends back in Singapore who are ethnically Chinese but whose families are not even Chinese enough (in outlook) to celebrate CNY. Like you said, you take part in those festivities as a sign of respect and not because you actually believe in them. You are probably one up above me because there are some so-called traditional Chinese stuff that my entire family does NOT do because it clashes with our religion. The thing is, I don't even expect anyone to be apologetic about not being able to speak Mandarin, celebrating Chinese festivals or knowing why they are celebrated - but at the very least, don't make it seem like it is SHAMEFUL or LOW-CLASSED to do so. It is precisely THIS attitude, not so much the lack of knowledge about your own language or culture that makes me want to go on a cursing rampage.

    My concluding line in the last post was meant more as an apology than anything else. Before I came to the States, I was warned that a lot of XBCs and other American-born Asians despise FOBs because they take us to be socially inferior. After coming here, I realised that the act of despising people works both ways and that FOBs are equally guilty of whatever we have been accusing XBCs of doing.

    And in case you are wondering why I am so pissed, I must say my anger is primarily directed at the group of ABCs I know who try too damn hard to be Korean, Japanese or anything else but Chinese. If they think it's shameful to be Chinese, why then is it any more cool to be Korean or Japanese?

  17. #102
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    PS. I forgot to add that I do partially support your thesis as to why a lot of Asians like badminton. And table tennis for that matter. Simply 'cos we're more successful at it than most Whites. It's a perfectly natural thing to like what you're best at and I wouldn't take that as an instance on despising one's own race.

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