Wack Things in Taiwan 2019

Happens to me almost every time at PX mart. The cashier asks every other customer in front of me for their member card before they begin scanning their items. My turn…nothing. When they’re just about finished I remind them 我的會員卡呢?About the only time they ask at the beginning is when they’re in auto-pilot and ask without looking up at me.

Yeah and I am more Asian-looking IMO. My hair isn’t black but it’s a color that people might assume I dyed.

I have a Mexican friend who is often mistaken for Filipino. And oddly enough, a Jewish friend who is occasionally mistaken for a mixed Taiwanese person!

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I’ve learned to start talking or at least say hi in whatever language I want to speak. Breaks the ice and preps them for a foreigner to speak Chinese.

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Tango42: 你好…
Clerk: 哇噻!你的國語那麼標準喔!


Oh my lord. You win. Hahahahaha

One of THE most frustrating things about Taiwan .
Taiwanese are mostly nice enough but their unwillingness to interact sometimes is super annoying. Weak sauce.

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In Thailand the foot/feet are the lowest part of the body. To point with your feet, gesture or to put your feet on chairs, benches and especially sinks is extremely rude behavior and a cultural taboo.

Feet rules in Thailand

So, this woman washing her feet in a sink meant for hand washing or face washing is an extremely serious breach of etiquette.


Well sed.

Mine weren’t disappointing in any way. Both times were young clerks, probably high-schoolers (one a boy and the other a girl). They were both happily surprised when I spoke to them and they realized I could speak Chinese. It was all very innocent and light hearted. Keep in mind, this is in a small one-horse town (Dayuan) so they don’t get man foreigners there at all.

LMAO! Every. Damn. Time! Like, verbatim! I like to recycle a joke @sulavaca told me and reply, “你的也還不錯啊”.


The big problem is not that most Chinese tourists couldn’t give a toss about foreign customs, they’re not even aware that other customs exist. It’s going to take a couple of generations before that happens.

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When I arrived here 22 years ago not many people were using strollers, babies were bound up in a blanket against moms chest or back. 10 years is still in the old times. And BTW, you’ve never seen a pole like way out on a street? They put the pole than widened the road and left the pole.

They just started accommodating wheelchair users the last what, 5-8 years? And allowing them on buses since they started using low floor buses.

…And that’s Taipei.

Which is just a minor part of the island.

The sidewalks around my apartment building is like this. Light poles right in the middle. And the entire subdivision is only 5 years old. Hardly any buildings still, just open fields, but the sidewalks are all like this. Like it was in the planning.

I think they do it on purpose to let pedestrians know their place in the pecking order.


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And it turns out my work just had some sort of Chinese new year function, me learning of it from photos on Facebook.
I talked about it to a friend who said Taiwanese companies have this three month thing where you’re not considered an employee until after that. I noticed the other new employee wasn’t their either but they’ve been around just one week. I’ve been there just over three months. Either way seems a bit rude to not even mention it to me; not that I really get told about anything anyway. Doesn’t do a lot for my, uh, sense of belonging.

It’s called Probation.

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Pedestrians walk on the street like in the ‘old’ days when there were still few cars.

It’s rude, no manners!

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They kind of think of it as a gift and reward and share of last year’s hard work and profit. It’s like end of year bonus or taking all your employees on a trip to Hualien or Bali.

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