GoKunming Forums

Clearing the table

bucko (695 posts) • 0

Ive spent a while trying to come up with a plausible explanation with Chinese behavior.
No matter where you go for fast food, Mcd's, BK, KFC, also all Chinese fast food places the Chinese diner never clears their own trash after eating. Young or old, it makes no difference. No other country has this situation. Just in China.
Is this a "face" thing? It's beneath them to bus their own table and be considerate of the next diner or what?

This has had me wonder for a long time what the deal is.
Any thoughts?

Liumingke1234 (3297 posts) • 0

I've noticed this for a long time too. The Chinese(mainland) don't consider others feeling. They are not taught to be considerate of others, the environment, etc. Even when there is a garbage can right next to them, they will throw the garbage on the floor. WTF!

cloudtrapezer (756 posts) • -2

Oh for God's sake, you lot are not in 1930s Shanghai. All of you have lived here many years. It's make your mind up time. Either stop whining or go home, where I guess you'll find other things to whine about. Take the clearing table thing. In works canteens Chinese people always clear their own tables. In KFC they don't because they know it's someone else's job to do it. The world's a big place and people are not perfect anywhere. Grow up.

mr_woggle (30 posts) • +1

@liumingke1234 That sentence is perfect. Can I use that for my classes?

Geezer (1953 posts) • +4

@bucko I've noticed it as well. I think there is a 'face' issue involved.

There is a book I highly recommend which might help understand the Chinese.

面子 Miànzi Face

"面子第一miànzi dì yī

Mianzi Outweighs All Else

Mianzi" is an important and interesting word in Mandarin Chinese which has evolved into a synonym for "dignity" and even beyond that from its literal meaning. It embodies a significant concept deeply rooted in Chinese society. When with others, Chinese people always take to heart their dignity and superiority, which they hope will earn them due respect. Otherwise, they will 'lose face'."

"The Way We Think: Chinese View of Life Philosophy" By Li Gang 李钢Sinolingua

ISBN 978-7-80200-411-5

lemon lover (1006 posts) • +5

Maybe it is the other way around?
If you go to a restaurant other than a fast-food chain do you clear your table? In a Chinese fast-food place like a noodle place; do you clear your table?
No you don’t. So the odd one out is that you do this at McDonalds, KFC and Burger King.
So this is the abnormal behaviour. Leaving your mess on the table is normal behaviour.

Liumingke1234 (3297 posts) • +2

@lemon lover
That's a valid point. It will take time for it to change. In those noodle places and Chinese restaurants they even spit the bones on the table or floor. Yuk!

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