Friday, January 24, 2020

Clueless White Guy Orders in Perfect Chinese, Shocks Patrons and Staff

Aside from the funny reactions, this is really fascinating.

If we came across an Asian here in the U.S. who spoke fluent English we wouldn't be shocked. It is much more important for foreigners to learn the language of the Empire rather than the other way around.


Here he is in Taiwan:




  1. I met a guy in Shanghai once - white, laid back, surfer-type - but who spoke flawless Mandarin and loved to bust it out in public. Everywhere we went it blew peoples minds.

    When I asked him how he got so good, he told me that he had to get good in order to argue with his Chinese girlfriend. lol

  2. By empire I suppose you meant the British Empire for that is how English became the international business language.

    If an american of european ancestry spoke perfect German, French, Russian, Spanish, Swedish, Italian, Polish, or numerous other languages nobody would be shocked.

    While it is not common it is also not unusual for people in the USA and Europe to learn asian languages for their careers. Any surprise is about context and these videos are setting up a context where people will be surprised.

    If this guy were working for a US company and was in the USA on a call to a supplier in China there would be no surprise. The conversation would move between Chinese and English as needed. In that situation having someone on the call that spoke perfect Chinese in one form or another would not be a surprise. In person in a meeting in the USA he might get some surprise, but that's generally when the language barrier is being deliberately used for privacy.

    Furthermore internationally operating companies offer language classes. Not only for learning english but also Chinese, Japanese, etc.

  3. Between the US and British empires English has been the regimes language since the 17th century or so. Let’s say over 400 years. During that time technology has made the world “smaller” more connected. Much of that tech was originated by and or implemented by English speakers.

    The way tech changed the entertainment industries, especially music and movies is a huge part of why English is the international language. Second only to the financial control the British had and now the USA has over the globe.

  4. I travel to China and Taiwan 5-7 times per year. While I know very little of any Chinese language, I like to mess with them by taking their side discussions and taking an intelligent guess what they are talking about, so I'd replying in English to the context of their discussion.

    If I'm correct, they be completely shocked, asking: "You speak Chinese?!?!"