A series of anecdotes with or without any connection to the running of a restaurant.

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Chinese Wisdom...

Most Friday or Saturday nights after work, I meet Tony, my Chinese friend at his restaurant.

We usually have a couple of beers and some delicious food while trying to put the world to right in less than sixty minutes.
We talk about politics, religion, the growth of China, food, travel, Spanish shoe factories, etc...
We have yet to broach a taboo subject.

Last night, he shouted for his girlfriend to come and join us.
I asked if he had used Chinese terms of endearment.
He replied that he had just called her by her surname followed by her first name. "In China we do not tend to show our feelings overtly."
But then, blaming American-style consumerism, he confessed that today's Chinese youth were catching up with the West when it comes to celebrating Valentine's Day.
"This kind of extravagant behaviour was unheard of, just five to ten years ago!"

He startled me with: "And bloody Mother's Day, too!"
For a second I thought he was about to unleash some vitriolic attack on his poor mother, whom I have never met.

But he calmly came up with a deep Confucius-like pearl of wisdom:
"If you love your mother, then every day is Mother's Day!"

I can't wait for next week's topic...


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Blogger DCveR said...

When you really think about it, most of the "special days" are the same.
Even the mother's day gifts, valentine's day gifts, xmas gifts... mean so little.
Know what I love? Gifts on no special day. Both giving them and receiving them. Just because you do love someone. Those are the meaningful gifts and acts.

30/6/07 12:49 PM  
Blogger Cherrypie said...

I'd rather every day was Pay Day. I have to pay for my own Mothers Day card or else I don't get one. I'd be much happier if he just did the washing up.

30/6/07 1:03 PM  
Blogger Guyana-Gyal said...

My best friend and I try to sort out the world too. It's a good thing we're not rulers of the world though, we'd make everybody eat greens, drink milk, take care of each other, exercise and get 8 hours sleep.

It's true, every day, if we show even one ounce of love, give one gift...doesn't have to be something we buy...that's better than splurging on one day. Manufacturers would hate us though.

30/6/07 2:36 PM  
Blogger Cream said...

That's it DC! No-Special-Day gifts! But I can see someone starting to sell cards just for that purpose.

Hahaha, Cherrybabes, Jack is like my son Adam! I bought him a DVD for his birthday, the day before Fathers Day and I said to him, "I'll have it back tomorrow because I know you won't get me anything..."
And I didn't get anything!!!

You're right Gigi. Every day a little gesture that says: "I love you."
But that won't stop the manufacturers either. I refer to the answer I gave the right honourable DC...

30/6/07 5:48 PM  
Blogger ValGalArt said...

Tony is right! I know that the holidays are good for the restaurant business though. Very cool that you met CherryPie and friends. Sounds like you are having a wonderful summer!

30/6/07 6:12 PM  
Blogger Akelamalu said...

When Queenie and I get together we do the same. The only problem is we forget to draw breath!

Your friend is a very wise man!

30/6/07 7:13 PM  
Blogger Mary said...

Such words of wisdom. Sadly my children don't know that saying so I have to wait for Mothers Day.

30/6/07 7:35 PM  
Blogger Cream said...

Val, a wonderfully wet summer!

Akela, I bet you two can speak underwater! I can just imagine it.

Mary, you'll just have to remind them...

30/6/07 9:19 PM  
Blogger Caroline said...

Thanks for this a synchronicity for me...

30/6/07 9:32 PM  
Blogger Hayden said...

I like to buy gifts for special days. I like the planning and careful shopping, and finding the thing that I ((hope!)) will make their eyes light up! It's like a prolonged meditation on a loved one - what could be nicer?

30/6/07 10:00 PM  
Blogger Queenie said...

'Confusuis '(ok don't know how to spell it and can't be bothered to look it up in the dictionary) say you have very wise friend, and also bad at soelling blogging buddie!!!!!!
By the way yes we can talk under water, easy -peesie........

30/6/07 10:21 PM  
Blogger Queenie said...


30/6/07 10:43 PM  
Blogger andrea said...

I'm with Cherrypie! :) Great little slice of life, Cream: succint with narrative qualities and a slice of wisdom. (Do I sound like a composition teacher?)

30/6/07 11:04 PM  
Blogger Merisi said...

It's so easy to blame everything on American consumerism. Saying to somebody, your birthday is just like any other day, let's forget about it, is cruel in my books. One my think Mother's day is for the birds, I always enjoyed preparing breakfast and gathering a bunch of wildflowers for my mother on "her" day (while she pretended to sleep in). I shall never forget the burned toast and cold tea my little son served me on a lovingly decorated tray (even if the flower came from my own plant), not to speak of the breadcrumbs in my bed afterwards, because of course all four of them ended up sharing "my" breakfast.
Even before they could understand what it was all about, we celebrated their birthdays with cakes and food and champagne for their "friends" (and for their parents, of course *g*). This year, my kids gave me as a mother's day gift a whole Sunday to go make a surprise visit to my mother, who was pleased as punch being celebrated that way. For my birthday I took my kids parfume shopping, even though I paid with my own credit card (they have little money of their own, but I had fun spoiling myself with their consent *g*).
Oh gosh, call me American consumerist, I can live with that. And if any of you happen to be here in Vienna while any of our feasts are being celebrated, you are most welcome. No gifts necessary, just your presence (for Thanksgiving, though, I would need to know a little advance notice, there are already 8 expatriates who have claimed a permanent seat at our table, which means I need to have time to make a trip to IKEA, to get more table space).
May all your days be filled with love, but, for heaven's sake, add a couple of days with some extra portion of it, doesn't do any harm, after all! :-)

1/7/07 1:14 PM  
Blogger Trac said...

haha - I'm with Cherrypie too!

Last year, I bought myself a present, gave it to Nick to pretend to the kids that he had bought it, to then give it to the kids, for them to give back to me for Mothers Day!
(Hope that makes sense?)

And the little wotsits forgot!!? :O)

1/7/07 4:41 PM  
Blogger muddy red shoes said...

Oh any excuse for a celebration, dont care who invented them, and yes damm right every day is mothers day.

1/7/07 8:45 PM  
Blogger la bellina mammina said...

Do you mean CONFUSION? ;-)

The Chinese always have a way to balance the ying with the yang..

2/7/07 7:03 AM  
Blogger Daphne Wayne-Bough said...

When I think of you and Tony, why do I see Compo and Entwhistle?

2/7/07 3:43 PM  
Blogger Cream said...

I am in London (Down here for a couple of days)cooped up in front of my cousin's computer because of the bloody rain!!! JULY!!!!

I'm glad that most of us agree with Cherrypie!
So, I think we all should petition whoever pays our salaries, wages, etc... to divide the annual total, including bonuses and tips if any, by 365. That way, every day will be Pay Day!

2/7/07 8:12 PM  
Blogger Cherrypie said...

Woohoo! Tuppence a day.

Are you there for the tennis? Say 'hi' to Cliff for me x

3/7/07 1:31 PM  
Anonymous merisi said...

I am so glad you see it as I do. Even though I agree, that every day is special, I stand by my love for any good excuse to celebrate any which way. :-)
I must confess that I am often not organized enough to find something special for a certain day, but when I do, I simply give it without waiting for a special occasion. I admire anybody who manages this gift giving business better than me, because I appreciate that ability very much when it comes to gifts for me. ;-)

4/7/07 6:15 AM  
Blogger Edvard Moonke said...

is tony his first or last name?

4/7/07 12:23 PM  

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