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Chinese Hysterics

obama gum

putin

I've never been to mainland China, but was completely amused at all the press attention our respective leaders received yesterday. First, the Chinese are offended that Obama was chewing his Nicorette gum, which the American public is used to seeing. The President was an avid smoker before entering the White House, and I have no doubt he will resume the habit once he's out of the White House. In the interim, he tries to curb his cravings with this gum. I assume his desire for a cigarette is at its highest during stressful events, like yesterday, when he is on the world stage. But, I'm most amused, and confused, that the Chinese censored Putin putting the shawl on the wife of the Chinese President. Why??


Last night, when I was watching the news, I heard several American commentators call Putin's act "noble" and "gentlemanly". Why did the Chinese consider his act censor worthy? I don't know who would ever want to enter politics in today's age, where almost every single moment of your life is put on display, and analyzed by social media, body language experts....the list is endless. Politicians - they are still humans. Some good, some bad, some evil. I think the public sometimes loses sight of this.

Who knows a lot about Chinese culture? Explain this situation to me. I have no interactions with the Chinese in my lawyer life, or thus far in my travel life. Now I'm very curious to explore the customs and culture of this mysterious land...because they seem very unique and quite formal. The opposite of American culture, and I'm always attracted to the strange and unusual. In travel and almost all aspects of life.

Comments

( 136 comments — Leave a comment )
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roman_yhnovec
Nov. 12th, 2014 03:46 pm (UTC)
:)
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 03:53 pm (UTC)
Yes, customs around the world are sometimes funny. Esp. when supposedly sophisticated world leaders, like Putin and Obama, unknowingly step into a pile of crap for failure to abide by local rules of interaction. However, I can see how some foreigners would perceive Obama as being unprofessional because he has a very laid back and casual demeanor, walking with a certain "swag." But, he's American. :)) Some people have told me that business dealings in Asia are much more formal when compared to America. He probably forgot to adjust his mentality when he stepped off the plane :))
(no subject) - phd_paul_lector - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:13 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:10 pm (UTC) - Expand
elena_88888
Nov. 12th, 2014 03:53 pm (UTC)
I can imagine. I was to China twice but each time for two-three days so I don't know a lot about their mentality. But the main difference is in it, of course. As far as I understand when any man, not a husband, shows such attitude even like a gesture in China, it means that this man doesn't have any respect to this husband. If Putin would render such gesture to a wife of a Prince of Saudi Arabia or any other strong Muslim country - will you have such a question?
And as for difference in mentality. There is a museum of shit in Korea (and different ways of visiting different restrooms), but it I would say almost impossible in the Western countries...
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 03:55 pm (UTC)
"Museum of shit!" :)))) Horror! This scares me even more than local Chinese food and fried insects. I think you are right, some Chinese perceived his act to be sexual or in a flirting manner. After all, Putin is single again. :)
(no subject) - elena_88888 - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:06 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:31 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - elena_88888 - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:36 pm (UTC) - Expand
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(no subject) - elena_88888 - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:41 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:43 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - elena_88888 - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:49 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:21 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - elena_88888 - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:29 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - phd_paul_lector - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:24 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:44 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - phd_paul_lector - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:49 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:11 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - baron2012 - Nov. 12th, 2014 11:50 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 11:58 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - baron2012 - Nov. 13th, 2014 12:20 am (UTC) - Expand
j1980
Nov. 12th, 2014 04:00 pm (UTC)
он наверное забыл о жвачке
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 06:05 pm (UTC)
I don't know what he was thinking? But it would have been worse if he walked in with a cigarette in his mouth. :)
(no subject) - sibir_muzhyk - Nov. 13th, 2014 03:31 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 13th, 2014 04:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - sibir_muzhyk - Nov. 14th, 2014 03:41 am (UTC) - Expand
moebiuscat
Nov. 12th, 2014 04:03 pm (UTC)
As far as I understand, the relationship between Chinese president and his wife (who was a famous folk singer) is public and they are frequently shown as romantic couple. Putin putin' a shawl on his wife undercuts his carefully groomed images as a caring husband. There were lots of jokes about that already, so they decided to censor it.

It's communism - so it's natural. Even when I was a kid (early 80-s) I remember my father telling me never to tell any jokes I hear at home at school. Back then one could get in a lot of trouble or even to jail over a political joke told to friends. And during Stalin's times, a political joke would get you life in prison or death by a firing squad. I'm not kidding. This is the nature of a communist dictatorship, and even though it's relatively soft in China, it's still what it is.

Though I dislike Obama very much, I can't seriously hold a chewing gum against him. I wish it would be the worst thing he's done. However I understand why people are talking about it. Chewing gum at a public event is considered in most places an uncultured and rude thing to do. I'm sure in China too. So at the official event it supports the exact "rude, uncultured and arrogant American" stereotype that an American president should avoid. Definitely not a good behavior for the president. Basically he's saying to the world "I don't have enough will to hold off my cravings until a bathroom break, so the hell with social conventions". Basically he's reinforcing an image of a weak president - worst thing he could do really. I sympathize with his problem, but he has a duty to project a strong and civilized image, and this weakens it.
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 06:08 pm (UTC)
I understand the uproar over the gum chewing and agree it's usually viewed as not polite, or downright rude, in formal business situations. I think it's the same even in America. Obama is constantly shooting himself in the foot, doing stupid things like this, or taking actions which further damage his image. So, who do you think would be a good Presidential candidate in 2016?
(no subject) - moebiuscat - Nov. 12th, 2014 07:20 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 07:40 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - moebiuscat - Nov. 12th, 2014 08:24 pm (UTC) - Expand
robsilver
Nov. 12th, 2014 04:14 pm (UTC)
Shawl
As it was explaned in some russian media yesterday, you just can't touch somebody's wife no matter what.
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 04:16 pm (UTC)
Re: Shawl
Did Russian media speak about Obama's gum chewing?
Re: Shawl - phd_paul_lector - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:25 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Shawl - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:32 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - phd_paul_lector - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:37 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:38 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - phd_paul_lector - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:41 pm (UTC) - Expand
Shawl - robsilver - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:52 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Shawl - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 05:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - phd_paul_lector - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:59 pm (UTC) - Expand
genka8
Nov. 12th, 2014 04:32 pm (UTC)
This incident is somewhat reminiscent of hugging and backslapping of the Queen by Michelle Obama. Different cultures.
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 04:40 pm (UTC)
I'm sure they are advised about local customs before they arrive in the country, but perhaps they forget. For Americans, it's especially hard because our culture is not really formal at all. But I think you should abide by the local rules as a foreign guest, at least in most situations. Btw, you know a lot of American politicians love to be photographed with cute babies. Holding them, hugging them, or smiling at them. Has Putin ever been photographed like this? Seems out of character for him.

Edited at 2014-11-12 04:41 pm (UTC)
(no subject) - phd_paul_lector - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:46 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:48 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - phd_paul_lector - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:52 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - phd_paul_lector - Nov. 12th, 2014 04:55 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - valkirya77 - Nov. 12th, 2014 05:08 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - a_nimaida - Nov. 12th, 2014 05:51 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - valkirya77 - Nov. 12th, 2014 10:23 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - a_nimaida - Nov. 12th, 2014 05:48 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - phd_paul_lector - Nov. 13th, 2014 08:56 am (UTC) - Expand
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(no subject) - genka8 - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:54 pm (UTC) - Expand
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(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 07:59 pm (UTC) - Expand
seadevil001
Nov. 12th, 2014 04:41 pm (UTC)
In absence of real news (or inability to speak of those) mass media people gnaw on what they see.
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 05:19 pm (UTC)
They talked about more important stuff, but I don't really pay attention to all of these geopolitical affairs and games. I find the human interaction more interesting.
valkirya77
Nov. 12th, 2014 05:06 pm (UTC)
Who knows a lot about Chinese culture?

and I would also like to know)
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 05:18 pm (UTC)
Have you traveled outside of Russia yet?
(no subject) - valkirya77 - Nov. 12th, 2014 10:24 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 10:26 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - valkirya77 - Nov. 12th, 2014 10:28 pm (UTC) - Expand
pasha1980
Nov. 12th, 2014 05:20 pm (UTC)
Looking at the photo it looks like they are secret lovers - this is probably why her husband was upset at his gesture.
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 06:09 pm (UTC)
Unusual to see Putin so smiley. :) Also, I envision him with someone much younger. I wonder how many girlfriends he has now?

Edited at 2014-11-12 06:22 pm (UTC)
(no subject) - pasha1980 - Nov. 12th, 2014 07:56 pm (UTC) - Expand
pin_gwin
Nov. 12th, 2014 05:43 pm (UTC)
A real life interaction... not as nice as from a distance
Of my experience with a relatively young Chinese PhD who used to be working in a cubicle next to mine, he was rude while talking to his wife, he was very polite with his father who he called back to China almost each another day and reporting him all his business activities (spying?), he never was accepting any of his mistakes trying to justify them with a weak reasoning, at the same time he was very persistent in work he was doing, however his level of technical expertise was kind of underdeveloped, so the results of his work were not always satisfactory. He was also very surprised that we do not know the exact date of Chinese New Year. Also, he, a pretty young man, who got his BS, MD and doctorate here in US, he did not know who are The Beatles. After some questions he asked, I also understood that neither him nor his wife and daughter never visited dentist. His daughter was 9 years old with really rotten teeth... He got laid off during economical troubles of 07...09s
Generalization based on a single example is wrong, I know, but he lived more than 10 years in US but did not learn much... It could be just him.
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 06:03 pm (UTC)
Re: A real life interaction... not as nice as from a distance
It's interesting. I think Asian women are more traditional/subservient when compared to American females. Yet in some Asian cultures, like in Tokyo, they have a completely wild sex scene and females are running around dressed in scantily clad clothes, or looking like anime figures. One of my friends told me he visited a "pantyless" cafe in Japan. Waitresses wore no panties, and there were mirrors on the floor. :) So, in some ways Asian culture seems very buttoned up and proper, but also freaky. Though I understand Chinese and Japanese cultures are probably different. In general, Asian cultures confuse me. Can you tell? :))
a_nimaida
Nov. 12th, 2014 05:46 pm (UTC)
My son traveled to China in the summer.
At first he was surprised that China is not working Google), Facebook.
But even in the valleys have internet.
 
The purpose of it was the Shaolin. He is engaged in wushu.
Unfortunately, Shaolin nobody speaks English. He was very difficult to explain what he wants to buy food, rent a hostel. Helped electronic translator.
  He wants to learn Chinese language.
 
Hostels in Beijing, at the airport speak English, it was convenient to talk to people. When you do not understand something, people come up and offer assistance. It was this very surprised and pleased.


Son fascinated people and the country.

   He especially liked the girls))
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 05:59 pm (UTC)
It's a really "foreign" place for most people. For instance when I go to Western Europe, the culture isn't very different from America. That's why I like Eastern Europe, Russia and Asia much better. There, you really feel like you are in a foreign place. :)) I wonder why your son liked the Chinese girls so much? I've noticed a lot of my male friends in America also love Asian girls.
(no subject) - a_nimaida - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:18 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - qi_tronic - Nov. 12th, 2014 08:46 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 08:57 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - qi_tronic - Nov. 12th, 2014 09:37 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - qi_tronic - Nov. 12th, 2014 10:31 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 13th, 2014 03:59 pm (UTC) - Expand
a_nimaida
Nov. 12th, 2014 05:54 pm (UTC)
amazing!
turns all readers Shannon Russian people.
Americans are you reading?
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 05:57 pm (UTC)
Americans don't read my blog, except for Russians who have immigrated to the States. Americans don't know what LJ is, it's completely dominated by Russian users now.
(no subject) - a_nimaida - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:02 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:13 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - a_nimaida - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:27 pm (UTC) - Expand
English - ilfn - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:27 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: English - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:34 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: English - ilfn - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:39 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: English - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:42 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: English - ilfn - Nov. 12th, 2014 07:05 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: English - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 07:06 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: English - ilfn - Nov. 12th, 2014 07:14 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: English - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 07:18 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: English - ilfn - Nov. 12th, 2014 07:28 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - ilfn - Nov. 12th, 2014 07:31 pm (UTC) - Expand
sozidatel_lesa
Nov. 12th, 2014 06:18 pm (UTC)
здесь был я
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 06:20 pm (UTC)
Did you like China?
(no subject) - sozidatel_lesa - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:28 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - sozidatel_lesa - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:38 pm (UTC) - Expand
a_nimaida
Nov. 12th, 2014 06:31 pm (UTC)
Putin must urgently marry)))
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 06:37 pm (UTC)
I'm sure he has a lot of female attention. :)
(no subject) - a_nimaida - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:55 pm (UTC) - Expand
ru_ua_by
Nov. 12th, 2014 06:35 pm (UTC)
The confusion
This handkerchief for feet.
peacetraveler22
Nov. 12th, 2014 06:38 pm (UTC)
Re: The confusion
Handkerchief for feet?? Извините, я не понимаю?
Re: The confusion - ru_ua_by - Nov. 12th, 2014 06:40 pm (UTC) - Expand
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