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An American in China

Archive for April 11th, 2011

Survival Guide to Etiquette in China

Posted by w_thames_the_d on April 11, 2011


The other day while bored, I searched for sites explaining Chinese behavior and etiquette. While I think that the authors have done a ‘smashing job’, as the Brits would say, I think they have missed some of the finer points or nuance of what it means to blend in with the locals, or to truly go native. As such your humble proletariat/teller of woes, has devised a list of Chinese etiquette, albeit a list that is not meant to be all-encompassing.

Notwithstanding the oxymoron and hilarity of this topic, here goes. Bill’s list of ‘must knows’ when it comes to Chinese etiquette:
General
Pushing on the subways is mandatory, in country with limited resources it should be expected, shouldn’t it? Excess rancor/enmity should be meted upon the infirm, weaker and pregnant women if possible. It is an exceptional show of one’s manhood to trample the fairer sex.
-Always walk in front of someone and then slow down. Related to the above, in China, as they say, the problem is limited resources. Thus when trundling along the uneven soot filled streets, make special effort in cutting off the locals and then proceeding at a crawl.
-Screeching on one’s cellphone shows one to be a man of standing and power. This is best done when in close proximity to women whose haberdasher is also the mama san at the local ‘massage center’.
Spitting is a sign of standing, as Deng Xiao Ping dictated. When expectorating or spitting, one must always remember the cardinal rule- “suck in from the diaphragm to ensure maximum volume on your hack, before you spit” in the land of noise, one must rise above the mere peasants, and what better way to do so then with a healthy hack and then spitting of a gooey hunk of ones phlegm. When your clients spits, and he will, simply smile, hitch a finger through your belt loops and do likewise.

Eating
Chewing with one’s mouth open is not impolite but rather a sign of how much one is enjoying one’s meal. When speaking with your Chinese hosts, be sure to chock as much of the flavorful sustenance as possible into your cavernous maw then smack your lips and chew open-mouthed like a hyena.

Use of Chopsticks
*chopsticks should be considered an extension of one’s proboscis and fly or buzzard like, one should attempt to touch as much of the shared plates as humanly possible
*it is considered cute, or ‘fashion’ to nosh on the chopsticks when you speak to others, especially true for the women, as all men consider it to be in good taste to watch you remove the now sullied chopsticks from your crooked-toothed orifice and shove them into a gelatinous hunk of braised red pork
* related to the above- ram your saliva encrusted chopsticks into the heart of a steaming heap of meat. It is considered in poor decorum or weak to merely fiddle at the edges of the food. Be daring, after sucking on those long tongs ram the now saliva infested bamboo posts into the center of the meat dish as this is considered the most sanitary of practices.
*treat all waitstaff as dogs and berate them as often as possible. Being pleased with their service means that you are of the same stock as these unfortunate souls and the only way to prove it different is to leave them assured of their woeful lot in life after your departure
*scream ‘fuyuan’ or waiter as often as humanly possible. Even if you need nothing, it’s always best to keep those lazy waiters on their toes

Dress Code-
-Choose an off white pair of sports socks to wear with a Hart Schaffner and Marx suit.

Man purses are mandatory. If at all possible, visit your doctor before coming and undergo a simple procedure whereby one’s danglers are removed and then stuffed into said purse.
-Exposing one’s flanky belly is only acceptable if they are utilizing an unwashed 2008 powder blue Olympics jersey, or one that is discolored with sweat. Under no circumstances, however should a man expose his nipples as that is utterly disgusting.
-Dark sneakers are worn with light suits and light sneakers with dark suits.

Honesty-
-what is this? Lie early, lie often and continue to do so. Deceit is the basis for good governance, peace and harmony.

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A Look at Chinese Aid to Africa

Posted by w_thames_the_d on April 11, 2011


Interesting post on the aid that China has been giving Africa. In the full post here, the author gives both sides to the story.

excerpt from here(http://chinatrade.foreignpolicyblogs.com/2011/04/10/aljazeeras-witness-series-the-colony-on-china-in-africa/0

American University professor, Ghanian-born, Dr. George Ayittey:

“The nature of China’s contracts is most objectionable. They are secured through outright bribery by building presidential palaces (Namibia, Sudan and Zimbabwe) and sports stadiums (Democratic Republic of Congo and Guinea)…China’s engagement has devastated local industries in Lesotho, Nigeria and Zambia. In Nigeria, the influx of Chinese products has destroyed Kano’s manufacturing sector. In 1982, 500 factories churned out textile products in Kano, but fewer than 100 remain operational today, most at far less than full capacity. In South Africa, the textile union says some 100,000 jobs have been lost as Chinese synthetic fabrics replace cotton prints in street markets across Africa…..More troubling, China’s increased engagement with Africa has impeded the continent’s halting steps towards democratic accountability and better governance. The West has made its aid conditional on progress on these fronts. But since China attaches no such
conditions, African countries receiving Chinese aid have little incentive to improve governance. Indeed in 2003, when the IMF suspended $2 billion in aid to Angola, citing rampant corruption, China came to the rescue with a $2 billion oil deal…The claim that China’s intentions in Africa are noble is fatuous. Its real intentions are well known: to elbow out all foreign companies and gain access to Africa’s resources at cheap prices; canvas for African votes at the UN in its quest for global hegemony; isolate Taiwan; and seek new markets for Chinese manufactures as European markets become saturated with Chinese goods. Less well known is its quest for African land to dump its surplus population. As a condition for Chinese aid, African states must accept large numbers of Chinese experts and workers as part of their investment packages. Chinese communes are springing up across Africa. In Namibia, the number of Chinese expatriates has reached 40,000, with 100,000 in Zambia and 120,000 in Nigeria.”

continue reading here- http://chinatrade.foreignpolicyblogs.com/2011/04/10/aljazeeras-witness-series-the-colony-on-china-in-africa/

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China’s Elite Planning for Their Escape?

Posted by w_thames_the_d on April 11, 2011


Here is a great article about China’s ruling elite sending their kids abroad as a safety valve ie. plan B in case the place implodes and they (the communists) need to seek refuge in foreign lands. My issue is that these SOB’s who are sending their children abroad are the same pos’s who are fouling up the country. So, in the event it implodes, they should be forced to stay here rather than getting a free pass to civilized countries. Somehow it does not seem fair that the ruling elite can rob from the commoner here and then when it comes time that they pay up or be held accountable, they take off.
At my B-school we had a ton of Chinese whose folks were ex officials or military and all of them were wealthy and all had escaped. Do we really need those people in our countries? Why not bring over the good, the decent, the peasants and Chinese farmers?

From here

In the years before Hong Kong reverted to Chinese control, the children of its rich and upper middle classes were sent in great numbers to Canada, Australia, Britain and the U.S. for schooling — and passports. These children were the means of escape for their families if escape was necessary. We may be seeing the same phenomenon repeating itself, with the mass exodus of China’s political and economic elites children to schools abroad.

This time, the U.S. is the most-favored destination, with 100,000 Chinese students studying in American colleges and universities — more than any other country. Many thousands more study in high school and boarding schools. The talk in Shanghai and Beijing, and New York and Boston, is that many are “just-in-case” children, vectors to more permanent residency for their families.

The arrest and disappearance of world-renowned artist Ai Weiwei is but the latest evidence that the political culture of China is shifting toward that of a police state. For the past 20 years, the upper classes in China’s cities have been able to negotiate an ever widening-space of freedom for themselves. It was possible to talk to censors who, by and large, were willing to liberalize when possible. Private networks and workarounds let elites retain access to information when Google, YouTube, and Twitter were shut down. Artists were allowed to criticize the growing inequality in society in their work.

This appears to be ending as the military and extremely conservative political forces restrict civic and cultural spaces. The Middle East upheavals and the prospect of a more liberal Tiananmen generation soon taking power has pushed policy to the extreme right in China. Political control in universities is tightening and overseas travel for scientists is being scrutinized. While government economic policy favors “indigenous innovation” and Beijing’s five-year plan focusses on innovation, the free flow of information and creative expression are being repressed.

Meanwhile, some 20% to 30% of college graduates every year can’t get white-collar jobs and do menial work while protests against corruption in rural areas and rising inequality in the city increase in number. High-profile officials and businessmen are being arrested or blocked. The head of China’s famous high-speed train project was just arrested for corruption. The CEO of BYD, China’s electric-car company that has Warren Buffet as an investor, has run afoul of authorities who prevent him from expanding production. Indeed, politically-connected state enterprises are reasserting themselves against the entire private sector.

Beneath the gloss of high-GDP growth numbers, there is now a whiff of fear in China. A bright future for the political and economic elites is not as guaranteed as once thought. Sending their children to study in the U.S. is an insurance policy that many Chinese are purchasing. These overseas students make up China’s new just-in-case generation.

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Chinese Father and Son Pic

Posted by w_thames_the_d on April 11, 2011


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UFO Sighting in China

Posted by w_thames_the_d on April 11, 2011


I blogged this photo before, I should actually make it my avatar. I have no freaking idea what this Chinese lady has on her head, but it looks like a flying saucer. In China they will do anything to avoid the sun. Maybe it’s a halo from some neck surgery or something but I really have no idea wtf this thing is.

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Great Chinese Photo from SerentiyinChina.wordpress.com

Posted by w_thames_the_d on April 11, 2011


I can’t grab the image from this site, but check it out. It has a photo of someone drying not only clothes but also fish on a clothes line in China. Then if you look at the section called ‘possibly related posts’ there is a post called ‘crossing the street in China’. It is also good. The photos on the site are pretty cool.
This is the link
http://serenityinchina.wordpress.com/2011/02/20/drying-fish-and-laundry-on-a-line-in-china-i/

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Chinaman in His Trike

Posted by w_thames_the_d on April 11, 2011


Look closely at the upper right hand side. A chinese guy is stuffed into the back of his trike.

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Picnic at the Mickey D’s in China

Posted by w_thames_the_d on April 11, 2011


Chinese are the only people I’ve seen who pack their lunch to go to a restaurant. Just today as I sat getting fatter at a local McDonald’s. I saw a typical scene in China, oxymoron that it may be.
To my left was a chinese lady with her little daughter, while the daughter was happily lapping at a 6rmb serving of ice cream, her mom had other plans. Setting up what looked like a camping expedition, she removed plates, tupperware jars filled with strawberries, meats and hunks of lettuce and began to have a regular old ‘chow down’ at the table. Alhtough none of her meal was actually purchased from the establishment, she definitely made herself at home. Soon she looked like a refugee from the long march as all around her lie the remnants of what was now her lunch.
Sittign back and emitting a loud burp, she then wiped the meaty paws of her little child and stowing the tupperware in her checkered plastic bag, she padded off leaving the hired help to clean up after her.

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2 2- Beautiful Chinese Panda Rabbit

Posted by w_thames_the_d on April 11, 2011


Here is a glamorous shot of 2 2 my panda rabbit.

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China News- First Quarterly Trade Defecit in 7 Years

Posted by w_thames_the_d on April 11, 2011


From the Chinadaily
BEIJING – China reported its first quarterly trade deficit in seven years, but analysts said it will not be repeated in the coming months as tighter monetary policies, introduced to combat inflation, slow import growth.

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