My goodness. It’s like an epiphany! I just learned an acronym that defines me:

Westerner With Chinese Characteristics

Reading this article, it suddenly all makes sense. I understand why I:

  • Sometimes express dismay, disgust or anger by ‘Aaaaayiiieeeee…’;
  • Eat stuff that disgust many of my colleagues just explaining what it’s made of;
  • Carry a dreaded ‘man-bag’ around;
  • Take unreasonable caution to shield the feelings of the people I disagree with;
  • Use strange mandarin grammar when talking (“Mo bu movie?” instead of “Want to watch a movie?”);
  • Laugh when I’m embarrassed;
  • Cross a life-threatening street corner without even glancing twice at the bus speeding towards me;
  • Consider karaoke one of the most exciting things to do on a Saturday night;
  • Always rush to pay the whole bill after a meal;
  • Consider eating each his own dish to be somewhat antisocial and barbaric;
  • Feel slightly ill after eating too much dairy products or sugar;
  • Gradually lose the distinction between ‘p’ and ‘b’ sounds, or ‘d’ and ‘t’. (“Wanna dalk or continue to blay?”)
  • Use peculiar expressions such as ‘That was very delicious”, or “How to say?” ;
  • Consider tipping to be strange and counter-intuitive;
  • Consider the presence of fish heads or chicken heads in my dishes to be a sign of freshness;
  • Think drinking cold water is bad for your health;
  • Can shove my way past a mob with no regard to how many elderly grannies I elbow in the guts.

Yep… It’s definitely starting to sound like I have spent too much time in China!

About Daniel Roy

Daniel is a writer, backpack foodie, slow traveler, and endurance runner. He is the author of the upcoming book, "The Way of Slow Travel: A Hands-On Guide to the Best Travel of Your Life."


  1. adèle Beizhang WANG

    Pardon me for a second…hahahahahaha!
    sorry, I couldn’t hold it in.

    vos commentaires, ça me plait beaucoup!

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