Saturday, January 02, 2010

culture shock. again.

Or I guess at this point it's no longer shocking- is there a word for cultural annoyance?

Maybe there's a board game for ex-pats in here somewhere- like you take 3 random weird things that the culture that you're in does and try to find a scenario where all 3 happen at once.

Tonight, it was the old ladies who clamor for my recyclabes; the belief that the acid in acid rain will make you bald; and the prediliction for stating hurtful things as fact.

It was raining and I decided it was a good time to take out my garbage, since the old ladies who clamor for my recyclables wouldn't be out clamoring. I had underestimated the efficacy of giant umbrellas and the desirability of my recyclables.

"Blah blah blah," said Friendly Taiwanese Grandma in Taiwanese.
"Yes, it's raining," I said in Mandarin, following my habit of delivering possible non-sequiturs in Mandarin.
"You should use an umbrella, or something something hair," said Grumpy Woman, in Mandarin.
"Oh, you're right, but my hair doesn't look so good, it's OK," I said, following the custom of gently ignoring advice while deprecating yourself.
"But after the rain, it will look even worse," said Grumpy Woman. (OK, I took some liberties with the translation, and it could've been translater more nicely, but... ouch. Like, really, ouch.)

1 comment:

Mandie said...

Ha - Christina, its like when the one taiwanese lady told me I was to fat for her clothes and shooshed me away. haha