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March 21, 2007 / missallaneous

So Civilised

I couldn’t help but overhear a conversation among some fellow waiting passengers (as we waited, and waited, and waited for our very delayed flight from JFK to Rome) about their travels around the world. An especially vocal American man was boasting his jet-setting ways, and waxing lyrical about his latest trip to China. He talked about how beautiful it was, how friendly the people. He then ended his spiel saying what a civilised country China is “with at least 5 English channels at the hotel – 2 CNNs and ESPN! – and people at the airport who speak English”. All this he said with his shoulders shrugged, his hands lifted, and palms faced up… almost saying, “Yeah… you’d never have guessed, but it’s true!”

Hrm.

When did “civilised” become synonymous with TV channels (American ones, of course), and English- language fluency?

What about the thousands of years of well- recorded Chinese history, so intricately interwoven with its literature and art?

Sure. But they have ESPN!

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5 Comments

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  1. djterasaki / Mar 21 2007 11:35 am

    so are Malaysians civilised, then? Does living in trees count? =P

  2. shadycasino / Mar 21 2007 2:52 pm

    That is lame that the guy thought that way….i ran into that a lot in the midwest as well. People still categorize themself as what is “normal” or standard or in this case “civilized” Pretty Lame. I admit, before comeing to UW and growing up in that environment, I probablly thought the same. I think it’s a natural tendancy for any culture to consider what they have as sophisticated or normal of another until they have more exposure. And some…are just idiots.. Miss ya MISSA, it will be wierd without you haning out in the room

  3. shadycasino / Mar 21 2007 2:53 pm

    oh…But they did have ESPN….thats basically life right there! haha JK JK

  4. missallaneous / Mar 23 2007 1:46 am

    ESPN is NOT the life for me, Cody! :(

  5. mykim / Mar 24 2007 8:48 pm

    hahaha your description of the guy cracks me up

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