Wednesday, August 31, 2011

4 Things You Must Do In Chinese Culture

China is one of the oldest civilizations in history, with over 4,000 years under their belt. What's that America? Never heard of you. With the largest standing army in the world, and the second largest defense budget, China has been said to become one of the next superpowers in the world. Maybe it's time to learn some basic etiquette before entering a Chinese home.

Don't take things too literal. Oh you.

4. Never Let Someone Pick Up The Bill

Some people may have noticed the fighting after a meal in a Chinese Restaurant. It isn't because the food was bad, or that Chinese people are simply angry people that run around looking to pick fights. The reason for this is, it's extremely impolite to allow someone to pay the bill without fighting wholeheartly first.

Regardless of being invited, or inviting someone else to a meal, be sure to fight to pay for the meal. If you don't have the money at the moment, consider "faux-fighting" the bill.


But what's with all the fuss? Is Chinese culture based around fighting and being angry at each other? No. The reason for this is that, if you don't even try to pay for the meal, you appear to be some type of free-loading jerk. If you instantly accept for their payment of the meal, it's as if you only showed up to get a free meal. The American counterpart would be dine and dashing.

3. Never Accept Compliments

Some people may have noticed that Chinese people simply can't take compliments. Even if they just solved world hunger, it's unlikely that you'll see them going around accepting compliments like hot cakes.

If you choose to compliment someone's son or daughter, you may find them saying things like "No, they aren't that smart" or "No, they aren't that strong". It's not because they hate their son or daughter, and refuse and refute compliments as if they were insults. It's simply because it's impolite to accept compliments.

"Nah, I'm not that strong."

Why? What type of strange custom is this? The idea behind it is that if you instantly accept a compliment, it's like saying "Me, Smart? Of course! I know I'm smart, thanks for the compliment sucker." Accepting a compliment would be compared to showing off or saying "Yeah, I really am that smart." Other reasons also spans to humility which is highly regarded by the Chinese.

2. Never Accept Gifts Without Refusing A Few Times

Yeah, that's right. Even if your friend's mom offers to buy you a brand new computer, you should not accept it immediately. You should never ever instantly accept food, drinks, or brand new PS3s without refusing a couple times beforehand.

Money? No thanks.

The reason for this is, if you accept it immediately, you appear to be needy, greedy, or very eager to get it. Doing this, makes you look like some douche that comes over to take advantage of them, and take their things. When you refuse a few times, it suddenly becomes a win-win for both parties. The "giver" appears nice and kind, and you appear "not-poor". (Appearing poor and greedy is not a good thing.)

1. Never Take "No Thank You" Seriously

Since the same rule applies for the Chinese, they will also reject your gift. Even if they're lying on the ground, half-dead from thirst, they may reject your offer of water. If a Chinese man comes over to your house, and you offer him dinner, don't instantly throw him out on the curb after he says "No Thank You."

The concept of this is important for you and the receiver. If you instantly take back your gift, you will appear to be greedy. It's like saying "You don't want it? k, it's mine rofl"

Pictured: You

Even after they tell you "No Thanks", you must keep asking to make 100% sure that he or she actually doesn't want it. If you instantly rip it out of their hands after they say "I don't want it", they will consider you impolite.

You may obviously see this when you go over to your Chinese friend's house, and their mom keeps offering you food and water. They would be considered impolite by other Chinese people if they didn't offer you that Kool-aid six times.

A good guest would refuse at least once, and a good host would offer at least twice.

This post is literally overflowing with irony.

Notice: As you can see, I didn't cover obvious or boring topics like taking off shoes or something like that. Why? Because you can simply look down at the dinner table, and check if you're the only one wearing winter boots. Also, because we're awesome like that.