Understanding China, One Blog at a Time

An American in China

Chinese Walking, Why Do They Do That?

Posted by w_thames_the_d on April 1, 2011


When you come to China, and you should. you will notice some things. No I am not referncing the debilitating smog, nor the inability to take a stroll along Wangfujing on a Sunday, but you will notice that in a country of 1 340 000 000, they all are basically clones. Of course some are tall and some are short and some are ugly and some are uglier and some are skinny and some are fat but in many respects, they are a nation of duplicates. Take, for instance, the gait of the common chinaman. Self-conscsiouly stooping their shoulders, they then shuffle thier feet, propelling their waifish thin bodies along all the while scanning to the left and the right as if cautious of where their next ass beating will come from. If I were a cartoonist, I’d draw them as follows

Shaggy from Scooby Doo

This generalization, really only applies to the men of course, as the women are a different ballgame entirely. To watch a Chinese woman stumble along in high heels is almost an excercise in masochism. Yesterday I walked behind a woman who seemed to be turning her ankles with each step. Glancing at her ankles reminded me of a four year old learning to skate….
Alhtough I have never worn high heels, I would suspect that due to the physics of the design, a modification of my gait would be in order were I ever to undertake wearing them. I do know that my leg movements are modified somewhat when I wear my beloved Doc Martins and my sneakers, so wearing heels must also require a modification.
The typical chinawoman, however, has never learned this convetion. It would appear that after stuffing their flabby toes into miniscule shoes, they then propel themselves along as if they were back home floundering along the Lake Erhai mud-to me the term trucker, and trailer come to mind…
I guess I shouldn’t judge as I am but a barbarian in a land of thousands of years of culture and old stuff that was supposedly invented by some ancient Chinese sage, but I really have to wonder wtf they are thinking as they clomp along like that….

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