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Thread: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

  1. #41
    Senior Member Sion's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by agentmonkey View Post
    ....my buddy and i met this aussie kid who had never left his country till now. nice boy, but quite ignorant and filled with stereotypes. said to us, "you're chinese, so you know kung fu right??! "
    This reminds me of my expereince in LA where I was staying in a downtown budget hotel next to a Kung Fu School.

    One day I walked past it and heard noises of people practising Kung Fu. I went in and took a look.

    To my surprise the minute I walked inside it everyone was applausing me. I later found out they were expecting a Sifu from China and mistaken me for him.

    I was requested to show them a few Kung Fu moves as their revered Sifu from Shao Lin. Alamak where Lim Peh know how to do Kung Fu one?

    But I remembered The Karate Kid and promptly showed them the "Wax On, Wax Off" move.

    They were impressed and wanted more demonstrations. Then I did the "Sand a Floor" move.

    After "Sand a Floor" I gave them a bow and quickly exited from the door.

  2. #42
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    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by Sion View Post
    This reminds me of my expereince in LA where I was staying in a downtown budget hotel next to a Kung Fu School.

    One day I walked past it and heard noises of people practising Kung Fu. I went in and took a look.

    To my surprise the minute I walked inside it everyone was applausing me. I later found out they were expecting a Sifu from China and mistaken me for him.

    I was requested to show them a few Kung Fu moves as their revered Sifu from Shao Lin. Alamak where Lim Peh know how to do Kung Fu one?

    But I remembered The Karate Kid and promptly showed them the "Wax On, Wax Off" move.

    They were impressed and wanted more demonstrations. Then I did the "Sand a Floor" move.

    After "Sand a Floor" I gave them a bow and quickly exited from the door.
    the pic in your avatar is wad move har?

  3. #43
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    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by sORe-EyEz View Post
    the pic in your avatar is wad move har?
    I think it's "Couching Tiger" or "Wipe a Window" move.

  4. #44
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    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Once I was travelling in Afganistan wearing a scarf and swimming goggles. You know what they say about when in Rome do as Romans do.

    I was crossing a valley outside Kabul and was stopped by a Taliban.

    "Hey you from Singapore?" He shouted at me from a distance.

    "How you know?" I shouted back.

    "I saw the photo in CS!" Shouted back the Taliban.
    Last edited by Sion; 14th June 2008 at 11:32 AM.

  5. #45
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    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by haagen_dazs View Post
    how long have you been away for?
    About 15 years... and I know better than to order mee siam mai hum

    (had to google for that one to figure out what that was about though - so lost touch with some Singapore pop culture..)

  6. #46
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    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by Sion View Post
    Once I was travelling in Afganistan wearing a scarf and swimming goggles.
    What about the time you ran into E.T. when on a space walk?

  7. #47
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    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by lennyl View Post
    What about the time you ran into E.T. when on a space walk?
    I'm glad you remind me.

    ET said to me, "上得山多終遇虎."

  8. #48
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    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert View Post
    Even the China Chinese can't tell us apart.

    Another incident in that same Paris trip - my wife and I went to the Louvre Museum and after walking around, we went to the souvenir shop. There was this table that displayed the Louvre Guidebook in various languages - English, Japanese, Spanish, German, Chinese etc etc. We were looking for the English version and this group of China Chinese (who were browsing and talking loudly as usual) took a copy of the Chinese Guidebook and handed it to me.

    Indignantly, I told him loudly "I'm looking for the English version". We found it - took it - paid and walked off.
    Why did you had to react so rude? You felt embarrassed to be seen as a china chinese? They just wanted to help you!

    HS

  9. #49

    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    I bumped into an old classmate (during my school days in the USA) and she asked me, "Are there gas stations (i.e. petrol kiosks) in Singapore?" I wanted to slap her. Singapore isn't so backwards! She thought that Singaporeans lived in tepees!

    And of course, the most famous thing SIngapore is known for among Americans is the anti-gum chewing law. I, for one, am thankful for it, because once when I was 5 years old I stepped on a piece of gum on the ground while wearing my favorite pink slippers. That made me very unhappy.
    Available as a model, photographer, and art director/stylist.

  10. #50
    Senior Member CS TAN's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by Triazolium View Post
    I bumped into an old classmate (during my school days in the USA) and she asked me, "Are there gas stations (i.e. petrol kiosks) in Singapore?" I wanted to slap her. Singapore isn't so backwards! She thought that Singaporeans lived in tepees!
    You don't have to be mad, be thankful that you come from a much more cosmopolitan place than your classmate. Being in US doesn't mean anything. For all I know, they might came from the south where their parent grow cotton and have never been out of the city where they were born all their life.

    Quote Originally Posted by Triazolium View Post
    And of course, the most famous thing SIngapore is known for among Americans is the anti-gum chewing law. I, for one, am thankful for it, because once when I was 5 years old I stepped on a piece of gum on the ground while wearing my favorite pink slippers. That made me very unhappy.
    So you still have not realized that all things in life has its pros and cons. The only thing Singaporean don't have is the freedom to choose whether they want to chew gum or not because some one else has made the decision for us.

  11. #51

    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by hongsien View Post
    You felt embarrassed to be seen as a china chinese?
    Yes - because I am a Singaporean Chinese.

    They were more rude - shoving the book in my face with that "You're Chinese, you only can read Chinese books" attitute.

    In my meetings overseas, they never fail to embarrass us whenever there are China Chinese participants.
    Last edited by Robert; 14th June 2008 at 03:00 PM.

  12. #52
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    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert View Post
    In my meetings overseas, they never fail to embarrass us whenever there are China Chinese participants.
    Curious about what you mean by this - do you mean they purposely embarrass you in front of others to make you look bad, or is it something they do that you find embarrassing?

  13. #53

    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert View Post
    Yes - because I am a Singaporean Chinese.
    Like how when in China I tried explaining to someone, I'm 'Hua Ren', not 'Zong Guo Ren'.

  14. #54
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    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    I'm a bit amazed with the racism in this thread... funny though... but underlying racist attitudes nonetheless.

  15. #55

    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by lennyl View Post
    Curious about what you mean by this - do you mean they purposely embarrass you in front of others to make you look bad, or is it something they do that you find embarrassing?
    They do things that are rather embarrassing, and to the uninitiated we are all clumped into the same basket - orientals. They tend to scorn the Europeans and other Asians, downplaying achievements, and believing that they are the 'superior' race.

    Sometimes for lunch breaks, our hosts would invite everyone across the road for a nice steak meal or something. These people have a naturally bad habit or clearing their throats and spitting on the road and wiping the gunk with their shoes.

    They make snide remarks about our Chinese Taipei counterparts in front of the other participants.

  16. #56

    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by theveed View Post
    I'm a bit amazed with the racism in this thread... funny though... but underlying racist attitudes nonetheless.
    It's not a matter of racism.

    I have great friends who are China Chinese - but a very small minority. They too, are sometimes embarrassed by their own people.

    I was travelling from Singapore to Thailand with some colleagues from China. There was this huge group of China tourists who were very well dressed and looked like educated people. Once the plane landed in Bangkok, they immediately stood up to take their luggage out of the compartments above. And the plane has not even stopped at the gate yet. The air stewardess had to shout to them to sit down until the place has stopped - in her Singaporean Mandarin. They ignored her - totally.

    My friend, who was from Shanghai, shouted at them and said "For goodness sakes, do not embarrass the citizens from China and sit down" in his China Mandarin. They stopped - looked at him sitting next to me - and meekly sat down.

    And the other Chinese passengers (probably Singaporeans or Malaysians) just shook their heads in disgust.
    Last edited by Robert; 14th June 2008 at 03:51 PM.

  17. #57
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    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by theveed View Post
    I'm a bit amazed with the racism in this thread... funny though... but underlying racist attitudes nonetheless.
    I swear it wasn't my intention when I started this thread. It's meant to be a tongue in cheek Singaporean laughing at Singapore thread, after the recent Samuel Ong incident. But this is kopitiam and the thread sort of ran away in its own direction.

    And speaking of being embarassed, I used to feel pretty embarrassed by the behavior of some Singaporeans overseas. I've since learned to ignore them, or better yet, just treat it as a lesson in how not to behave.

    Robert, all I can say is that anyone who judge you by the action of others of your skin color is not someone whose opinion you need to care much about.

  18. #58

    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by lennyl View Post
    Robert, all I can say is that anyone who judge you by the action of others of your skin color is not someone whose opinion you need to care much about.
    Agreed!

    That's why these days we avoid areas where there are tons of China Chinese lingering about when travelling overseas, to prevent being mistaken for one of them.

    I guess my attitude towards them is also partly due to many incidents years ago when I was studying in New York. When we (International Students) were invited to various local gatherings and customs (eg Hannukkah, Thanksgiving, etc), the Singapore and Malaysian Chinese students were chided for joining the Americans, by the largely China-population of the International Students Association. They said their (American) ways were dysfunctional and against Chinese customs etc. And I thought that one of the aims of studying abroad was to have a better understanding of the people and culture, and experience them first hand. Eventually the Singaporean and Malaysian Chinese were treated as outcasts, for not conforming to their ways. Well, it never hurt us a bit for not joining them - in fact we were glad we did not stay with their narrow ways.
    Last edited by Robert; 14th June 2008 at 04:21 PM.

  19. #59
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    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert View Post
    Agreed!

    That's why these days we avoid areas where there are tons of China Chinese lingering about when travelling overseas, to prevent being mistaken for one of them.

    I guess my attitude towards them is also partly due to many incidents years ago when I was studying in New York. When we (International Students) were invited to various local gatherings and customs (eg Hannukkah, Thanksgiving, etc), the Singapore and Malaysian Chinese students were chided for joining the Americans, by the largely China-population of the International Students Association. They said their (American) ways were dysfunctional and against Chinese customs etc. And I thought that one of the aims of studying abroad was to have a better understanding of the people and culture, and experience them first hand. Eventually the Singaporean and Malaysian Chinese were treated as outcasts, for not conforming to their ways. Well, it never hurt us a bit for not joining them - in fact we were glad we did not stay with their narrow ways.
    You just contradicted yourself again and again hehe.

    But this is kopitiam and the thread sort of ran away in its own direction.
    LennyL: Like you, I'm surprised with how the thread turned out, your opening thread wasn't pointing to any stereotypes against others, just what the others think about Singapore.

  20. #60
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    Default Re: It's tough being a Singaporean overseas sometimes

    Quote Originally Posted by firestone View Post
    Like how when in China I tried explaining to someone, I'm 'Hua Ren', not 'Zong Guo Ren'.
    "英雄所見略同"

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