#26 6-19-2017 12:21 AM

nolan
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

jacobi wrote:

We could all think of it another way too; as people say "hello" to others who they may think speak English, so might people say "Ni Hao" to those they think might speak Chinese.

Yup, very true.

When I was in Taiwan a couple of weeks back, I noticed that "Xièxiè" 谢谢 or "Thank you", was quite common with locals as well as tourists. If you say "nĭ hăo", they will respond. Here is a 6 minute video that shows the simple greeting phrases in Mandarin ...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M2WN_AH_4bo

 

#27 6-19-2017 2:33 AM

stefmuts
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

I´m glad I can say I´m from Belgium now, I used to live in the Netherlands and when people ask you where you´re from and you tell them The Netherlands you often get the reaction ´kijken , kijken niet kopen´ (looking but not buying) weird how many people can speak Dutch!

 

#28 6-19-2017 4:30 AM

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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

Don't care any more!

 

#29 6-19-2017 7:26 AM

grandmar
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

I am not good at discerning ethnicity from someone's facial features between China, Japan or Vietnam, but sometimes I can tell from the name what their country of origin is.  This is because we have many doctors here who are from India, or Vietnam, or other countries.  I also have the opportunity to listen to them talk as they tell me what is wrong with me so i get familiar with their accent (in English)

I would think it rude to ask, but I don't think saying Hello to someone in a language that you think they might speak is rude. Unless they are trying to pick you up.  If you think that is the case, it isn't just racist, it is insulting.  And deliberately ignoring them (turning away) is the best first response.

I have not traveled in the Pacific (except in the US, Canada and South America).  But when we went to Europe for the first time (1950), people assumed that as Americans we could not speak any language except English, and this was not correct because my father grew up (in Colorado) speaking German with his immigrant parents.  This meant that when people were talking about us in German, he could understand what they were saying, which was sometimes quite rude and insulting.  (Stupid American was the most benign).  He would not let on that he knew what they had said, but would take the opportunity to ask a question of the speaker in German. 

So if someone says "Ni Hao" to you and it is just friendly, perhaps respond "Hola"

 

#30 6-19-2017 7:44 AM

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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

I would like to share my story - when I travel solo to another countries especially in Asia, people always know that I am foreigner as my features and skin are different with those local people.

However when I travel with my foreigner friend (white man or I can say blond hair, blue eyes, etc), the local always think I am from the areas as I am with a "white man".  It doesn't matter that my face and skin are different with the "normal" people.

When I tell them I am from different country, they do not believe and keep saying no, and insisted that I am from the area and want to know where, sometimes the hotel reception ask as well, even my passport show my exact nationality.

I found it was really weird and sometime insulting, as they think when asian women go out with white man, it is just for money.  Little did they know, some of Asian woman have their own money.

Do you have the same experience?

 

#31 6-19-2017 7:59 AM

sarahelaine
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

grandmar wrote:

I am not good at discerning ethnicity from someone's facial features between China, Japan or Vietnam, but sometimes I can tell from the name what their country of origin is.  This is because we have many doctors here who are from India, or Vietnam, or other countries.  I also have the opportunity to listen to them talk as they tell me what is wrong with me so i get familiar with their accent (in English)

I would think it rude to ask, but I don't think saying Hello to someone in a language that you think they might speak is rude. Unless they are trying to pick you up.  If you think that is the case, it isn't just racist, it is insulting.  And deliberately ignoring them (turning away) is the best first response.

I have not traveled in the Pacific (except in the US, Canada and South America).  But when we went to Europe for the first time (1950), people assumed that as Americans we could not speak any language except English, and this was not correct because my father grew up (in Colorado) speaking German with his immigrant parents.  This meant that when people were talking about us in German, he could understand what they were saying, which was sometimes quite rude and insulting.  (Stupid American was the most benign).  He would not let on that he knew what they had said, but would take the opportunity to ask a question of the speaker in German. 

So if someone says "Ni Hao" to you and it is just friendly, perhaps respond "Hola"

We went to a safari lodge way up country in Uganda, run by an ethnic-English South African former game warden. It was an amazing trip. The only other people in the lodge at the time were a group of younger back packer/voluntourist types, quite an international crowd but the ones that came across as the most dominant in the group were German.  The South African guy was nice with them, but guarded, and very much playing the host. As soon as those guys checked out he invited us to dinner in his actual house as Home made bulging on the best rock for sunset. Great bloke. Anyway, it turned out his son ran the hostel in kitgum, the last town before the wild. The German guys had been assuming English South Africans don't understand German and ghad been properly rude about both the hostel and really rude about the local Acholi staff. But our hoss spoke very good Afrikaans and understood German well enough to know what was being said- and tone of voice isn't hard to follow and these guys were openly mocking when we met them too. So our host decided he would take their money as be pleasant but he didn't have to go the extra mile. On the other hand we were nice to everyone, so gone made bolting and dinner was on.

I am never rude or mocking about anyone in any language now!

 

#32 6-19-2017 12:52 PM

grandmar
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

Yes, it is always wise to be polite.  And the host was probably following the best practice in that case in not letting them know that he understood.  But someone not in the hospitality industry doesn't have to be so careful.  We were getting into a railroad carriage in Switzerland, and my dad was wearing an overcoat and carrying some camera bags.  There were two girls in the carriage already and one of them looked at him and said to her friend in German "Come over here and sit with me so this big fat pig (a word like pig but more insulting) doesn't sit here and squash me".  My father, then spoke to her in German - he said "Are these seats taken".  It was a fairly long journey and those two girls did not say a word for the rest of the trip.

 

#33 6-19-2017 7:40 PM

trippin_jen
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

gingerbatik wrote:

When I tell them I am from different country, they do not believe and keep saying no, and insisted that I am from the area and want to know where, sometimes the hotel reception ask as well, even my passport show my exact nationality.

I found it was really weird and sometime insulting, as they think when asian women go out with white man, it is just for money.  Little did they know, some of Asian woman have their own money.

Do you have the same experience?

- Yeah that's odd and gets on one's nerves when some people insist they are right and as though they know better than you!
- Yes it's insulting, but sorry to say, those kind of perception happens everywhere. Especially if the Asian woman has a tan complexion, and speaks broken English. But if the woman speaks good English, people would think that she grew up overseas and normal to have a caucasian partner. Unfortunately there's a very high likelihood that such perceptions are true. But I've also seen cases where Asian women actually own a better career than their caucasian partner.
- When I was hanging out with a caucasian male friend, I did get stares, but it wasn't those negative ones. They were probably just curious. Sometimes I do wonder if people talk behind my back when I travel on business with my old, caucasian bosses. smile


grandmar wrote:

Yes, it is always wise to be polite.  And the host was probably following the best practice in that case in not letting them know that he understood.  But someone not in the hospitality industry doesn't have to be so careful.  We were getting into a railroad carriage in Switzerland, and my dad was wearing an overcoat and carrying some camera bags.  There were two girls in the carriage already and one of them looked at him and said to her friend in German "Come over here and sit with me so this big fat pig (a word like pig but more insulting) doesn't sit here and squash me".  My father, then spoke to her in German - he said "Are these seats taken".  It was a fairly long journey and those two girls did not say a word for the rest of the trip.

So far, thankfully I've not heard of any negative remarks about myself (there probably is, but just didn't reach my ears), but if in such situation, I'd probably still pretend I don't understand, just to listen to the rest of their conversation. Who knows maybe there's some information I could use back against them. Haha!

 

#34 6-19-2017 10:06 PM

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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

planxty wrote:

I fully appreciate all of what has been said and I do not doubt for a second the veracity of any of the anecdotes here.  I may have been seen to be "harsh" as stated above which was not my intention.  My intention was to point out that your position seems to be the supposed universality of this kind of unacceptable behaviour when, patently obviously, it is not universal.

I stand by everything I wrote above.

your post is, frankly, offensive and unworthy of a decent site like this.  Kindly rethink your completely wrong and childish attitudes.  Not everybody sterotypes as you claim. (As said by Planxty)




The OP pointed out her OWN experiences and never said it was universal. She ASKED if others had experienced this. She even used the word "some". You stand by what you wrote but act like you can't read. So to me you sound like a jerk. You may not BE one but you SOUND like one. Forgive me if I am being harsh.

Last edited by Sept922 (6-19-2017 11:35 PM)

 

#35 6-19-2017 10:26 PM

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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

I just left Morocco and it was actually cool to be mistaken for a local. The average person is a light brown and many are mixed race with Euro and sub Saharan African and Arab. Being a mixed race person people spoke Arabic and French to me in casual non tourist settings and were surprised when I answered in English. Usually people know I am American right away when I speak and that doesn't bother me at all. I get "you sound like New York" a lot but I can see why. I have a few words that still sound like my years there and I am very strong and confident in speaking with anyone. Not overbearing, but confident and strong. I don't act shy in almost any situation and I am strongly built. I have found that some other westerners, sometimes Euro don't like this as they assume that I am pushy because of my confidence and that I will try to dominate like I am American military. That has NEVER been the case. Every single place I have been I have been adopted by locals if I am alone and had a grand time because we have fun and I was not to shy to meet, greet and invite people to do, eat and drink. My recent time in Morocco and Italy as well as Lisbon were so great because I usually smile and and chat and disarm people easily because I am more gentle than I look. Looks can always be deceiving.
I would never think to use any language except my own with anyone unless I can decipher what they are speaking and know the proper words to use in that language. Many times I will ask if they speak English and apologize for asking if they do OR if they don't. I would never be mad at someone trying to communicate with me but I understand the OP because many people are just rude with bad assumptions. I recently heard an airport worker saying "konnichiwa" to every Asian he saw until someone Japanese answered him. He obviously learned a little Japanese and kept trying until he found someone to speak some with him. I found it humorous and odd, but he wasn't at all meaning to be annoying.

Last edited by Sept922 (6-19-2017 10:28 PM)

 

#36 6-21-2017 2:23 AM

Yian
Singapore, Singapore
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

Me : "I am from Singapore!"

Westerner : "Which part of China is that in?"

 

#37 6-21-2017 4:34 AM

stefmuts
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

Yian wrote:

Me : "I am from Singapore!"

Westerner : "Which part of China is that in?"

So did you explain or just walked away?

Ones someone said to me: the Netherlands ... is that near Amsterdam? And I just said yes

 

#38 6-21-2017 8:32 AM

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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

I have been trying to get over the fact that many people don't look at maps or study the world or other countries. It may be annoying to us travelers but we have to accept that some just don't care. There are even times when I have to consult a map...but the difference is that I am interested. I am learning to accept that the average person isn't interested if they are not going there, and they are only going where it will seem the popular choice for their social media. I found some non touristed white sand beaches and it seems no one is interested because they are not well known!

I spent two weeks in Cyprus and almost all of my co-workers had no clue where it was or that it was an independent country (not a greek island).

ME: I want to go to Monaco...staff..blank stares...finally someone said that it was in France....

 

#39 6-21-2017 8:59 AM

grandmar
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

I once called the phone company to see if my phone would work in the Bahamas (this was a long time ago when we still had analog phones), and the lady on the phone seemed to think that because the phone would work in Barbados that it would also work in the Bahamas.

 

#40 6-21-2017 10:38 AM

rolfasp22
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

melissawong wrote:

One of the most irritating things during my solo travels is when people just assume that I'm Chinese or they tried to say "Ni hao" in a really bad accent. I find them really ignorant to assume that all Asians are from China and live in China. If I say no, they will usually go on and guess if I'm Korean or Japanese. When they learned that I'm not from any of these countries, I will tell them I'm from Malaysia which they have absolutely no clue about.

I know this post sounds a bit racist but the problem here is some locals are ignorant and rude. Do you have similar experiences and how do you deal with them?

I apologize for the people who are really ignorant.
I have Filipino friend and they always mistake him for a Mexican or Spanish.
He really try to explained every time to explain why he is Asian and just look Mexican or Spanish.

 

#41 6-21-2017 9:38 PM

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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

stefmuts wrote:

Yian wrote:

Me : "I am from Singapore!"

Westerner : "Which part of China is that in?"

So did you explain or just walked away?

Ones someone said to me: the Netherlands ... is that near Amsterdam? And I just said yes

I have to admit, while i like traveling, I am really bad with geography. If you talk to me about Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE, Qatar.. honestly, I don't know which one is the country, which one is the state, or how you differentiate them.

Just like what's the difference between Netherlands and Holland? (I didn't know until my friend explained it to me).

Just like Great Britain, United Kingdom, what's the difference?

I don't mean to offend anyone if I ask such question, but with this thread I now realized that such question may sound rude or ignorant to some others.

 

#42 6-23-2017 2:05 AM

nolan
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

trippin_jen wrote:

stefmuts wrote:

Yian wrote:

Me : "I am from Singapore!"

Westerner : "Which part of China is that in?"

So did you explain or just walked away?

Ones someone said to me: the Netherlands ... is that near Amsterdam? And I just said yes

I have to admit, while i like traveling, I am really bad with geography. If you talk to me about Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE, Qatar.. honestly, I don't know which one is the country, which one is the state, or how you differentiate them.

Just like what's the difference between Netherlands and Holland? (I didn't know until my friend explained it to me).

Just like Great Britain, United Kingdom, what's the difference?

I don't mean to offend anyone if I ask such question, but with this thread I now realized that such question may sound rude or ignorant to some others.

I pity those who think questions like those you mentioned make you "rude". For one, they obviously can't distinguish between hypothetical and real life questions. Second, they tend to make ignorant comments, not because they intended to, but because of their paradigms and prejudice. The challenge here is to win them over to your side, or if that's not possible, prevent more damage from being done. Everyone is born and raised with biases and prejudices, but unlearning those that are wrong is an interesting journey in itself.

What's also scary are those people who pretend to know it all and yet obviously are showing off or pulling your leg. It takes quite a lot of discernment to be able to make that judgment call as to which is which.

 

#43 6-23-2017 2:36 AM

stefmuts
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

nolan wrote:

trippin_jen wrote:

stefmuts wrote:


So did you explain or just walked away?

Ones someone said to me: the Netherlands ... is that near Amsterdam? And I just said yes

I have to admit, while i like traveling, I am really bad with geography. If you talk to me about Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE, Qatar.. honestly, I don't know which one is the country, which one is the state, or how you differentiate them.

Just like what's the difference between Netherlands and Holland? (I didn't know until my friend explained it to me).

Just like Great Britain, United Kingdom, what's the difference?

I don't mean to offend anyone if I ask such question, but with this thread I now realized that such question may sound rude or ignorant to some others.

I pity those who think questions like those you mentioned make you "rude". For one, they obviously can't distinguish between hypothetical and real life questions. Second, they tend to make ignorant comments, not because they intended to, but because of their paradigms and prejudice. The challenge here is to win them over to your side, or if that's not possible, prevent more damage from being done. Everyone is born and raised with biases and prejudices, but unlearning those that are wrong is an interesting journey in itself.

What's also scary are those people who pretend to know it all and yet obviously are showing off or pulling your leg. It takes quite a lot of discernment to be able to make that judgment call as to which is which.

I don't think a question like that is rude or ignorant , just a bit silly and on some days I just don't feel like explaining it.
It might be considered rude of ignorant if you ask such questions in countries youre visiting though! I expect travellers to study the places they want to visit at least a bit

 

#44 6-23-2017 2:54 AM

harbinger
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

Education and training professionals often say, "There's no such thing as a stupid question" (although I'll happily concede that many come perilously close).
Personally I'd much rather that travellers try to engage with local people on some sort of level than not engage with them at all, thereby demoting them to background scenery and potentially photogenic props.  What I think matters is that the visitor tries to use a tone that is respectful (not always easy in unfamiliar cultures) and that the communication is genuinely aimed at initiating engagement on some level, however trivial.
Often a clumsy question will open the door to more meaningful engagement, but that can depend as much on the initial response as the initial question.

 

#45 6-23-2017 4:34 AM

jitendra8819
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

Hii welcome to the travel forum.

You are not Chinese its ok but i think you are look Chinese that's way peoples you called a Chinese.

classified website

Last edited by jitendra8819 (6-26-2017 1:33 AM)

 

#46 6-23-2017 9:14 AM

shavy
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

jitendra8819 wrote:

Hii welcome to the travel forum.

You are not Chinese its ok but i think you are look Chinese that's way peoples you called a Chinese.

How about you what are you look like if not Chinese? Japanese, Thailand or Malaysian? big_smile

 

#47 6-23-2017 3:26 PM

nolan
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

jitendra8819 wrote:

Hii welcome to the travel forum.

You are not Chinese its ok but i think you are look Chinese that's way peoples you called a Chinese.

I think we should be the ones to welcome you, not the other way around. You just signed up less than 3 months ago and you're already welcoming TravBuddies who've been here longer than you, not to mention have complete profiles.

I highly recommend you fill up your Travbuddy profile lest the others pounce on you for not providing information about yourself.

Cheers

Last edited by nolan (6-23-2017 3:27 PM)

 

#48 6-23-2017 4:08 PM

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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

 

#49 6-24-2017 6:25 AM

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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

melissawong wrote:

One of the most irritating things during my solo travels is when people just assume that I'm Chinese or they tried to say "Ni hao" in a really bad accent. I find them really ignorant to assume that all Asians are from China and live in China. If I say no, they will usually go on and guess if I'm Korean or Japanese. When they learned that I'm not from any of these countries, I will tell them I'm from Malaysia which they have absolutely no clue about.

I know this post sounds a bit racist but the problem here is some locals are ignorant and rude. Do you have similar experiences and how do you deal with them?

The ignorance I come across is always one of the highlights (best and worst) parts of my trips. It gets worse because I'm from the States and they go... "no like where is your origin?" I get so frustrated and sometimes just yell "I'm from NYC." and walk away.

Once on the tube in London someone asked me if I was Mongolian, I started cursing them out all in Brooklyn accent and they were confused. I thought people in London would be civilized. Yet again, I still get "Nihao ching chong" in NYC as well.

It makes us angry because they are ignorant, but for them (most of them at least), they just want to make small talk. I honestly haven't found the best way to troubleshoot. sad

 

#50 6-24-2017 6:33 AM

grandmar
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Re: Please stop it! My name is not "Chinese" or "Ni hao"

If someone greets you with "Nihao ching chong", maybe just say "I don't speak Chinese"?
Even if you do.  But not a lie because you don't want to speak Chinese with them.

If someone asks you if you are [xxx], you can just say "No" (full stop) with a cold stare.  (Perfect the cold intimidating look for use in those circumstances)  And then pointedly ignore farther inquiries.

 

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