Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Pandas & Chickens

Just before we left for California, Nick hired an assistant.

She's made life a whole lot easier, with her broad knowledge on business, Chinese government and the such. She has also provided us with what I like to call "street smart slang.
NZ, Sal and I are "Pandas".

You know how everyone likes to go to the zoo and watch the pandas? For the Chinese, watching a family of Americans is just like going to see the pandas.

They can't keep their eyes off of us because they are intrigued by everything we do.

We also learned from his assistant that there are two kinds of chickens...I'm not referring to a Rhode Island Red vs. a California gray but chicken, chickens, and female Chick-ens...known to Americans as ladies of the night, call girls, slutty mc sluttersons, hookers, prostitutes.
As a woman, you do not want to be called a chicken.
Duly noted.

I had to laugh when Nick passed on this wealth of information to me, because it occurred while we were at the local outdoor market about to buy a chicken. We needed help from his assistant in asking the butcher to remove the neck and feet of the chicken. So, Nick calls his assistant, and the conversation went a something like this....

NZ: " hi, K. I'm down behind the vegetable market, and I want to bargain for a chicken."

(I don't know what her response was, but it required some clarification by NZ)

NZ: " A chicken, chicken.  Not a girl."

I want the biggest Hen you've got.

While K. Did the translation for us to bargain for a chicken, chicken (complete with picking male vs female and sorting out the butchering details-"no, we don't want the stomach or intestines. No, we don't need the legs or head."), NZ explained to me that women who sell themselves are also called chickens.

Wei? Ni Hao.
( we sanitized the crap outta his phone after the chicken wrangler bargained with K.)

It gave me a good laugh, and now I smile every time I think about his phone call to his assistant.."uhm, yeah, I'm out back, about to buy a chicken...."... Poor assistant probably thought to herself, "what did I get myself  into? My boss wants me to barter with a chicken for him?"

Stay tuned for more street smart slang. I'm sure there's tons to come.

Never a dull moment.

Oh, and..I learned this...when eating with chopsticks, and finishing your meal (or even taking a breather), do NOT put your chopsticks in the bowl pointing downward...instead, lay them across your bowl. Putting your chopsticks in the bowl, pointing downward is like telling the cook you want to kill him.

That was my big Wuxi whoopsie.

Always learning.

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