Thursday, July 24, 2008

At China's Olympics, you are wonderful

China is making final preparations to host the Olympics, and part of those preparations include educating their citizens about what not to ask foreign visitors.

Among the taboo subjects:

What do you think of communism?

Actually, that's not on the list that's being posted on signs around Beijing. The eight subjects not to ask foreigners about are age, salary, love life, health, income, political views, religious beliefs and personal experiences.

Another interesting part of the story:
Another poster gives advice on talking to disabled people. Locals are told not to use phrases such as "It's up there,'' or "It's over there'' when talking to anyone who is visually impaired, and to avoid phrases such as "It's behind you'' to physically impaired athletes.

Instead, locals are recommended to use phrases such as, "You are really great," or "You are wonderful."

So a conversation might go like this:

Excuse me, can you tell me where the elevator is?

You are really great. You are wonderful.

Uh ... OK, thanks. I guess I'll find it myself.

Also, examples of Chinglish are supposedly getting wiped away by the Chinese government. So I don't know if "Crispy skin infections" and "God with vanilla" are still on the menu.