Saturday, June 26, 2010

Taboo Observations and Truths About Taiwan That No One Would Dare Say

Taboo Observations and Truths About Taiwan
That No One Would Dare Say
A Taiwanese American Freethinker
(an oxymoron I know, but I’m a rare kind)
“The only thing that counts for these people is food and making money...” 
- A Swiss woman who lived in Taiwan

Chinese version here (computer translated, not completely accurate)

Warning: These observations and truths that are taboo and politically incorrect which may be offensive. 

Note: There are two versions of this page on my site. Every time I update this list, I've had to update both of them, which is tedious. So I will just post the link to the other one below. After reading it, you may return here and post your comments below. Thanks.

http://www.happierabroad.com/Observations_Taiwan.htm



28 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. Some points are true in what you said. For example about Taiwanese people spending a lot of time at work or school and being practical, sometimes not thinking outside of the box. But many of your points after are strictly bias and over exaggerated. Life in Taiwan seems like hell from your writting which in reality it is actually untrue. Life CAN be exciting in Taiwan. Many people ARE open-minded, curagious, and out-going. If fact, many teachers and parents now even STRONGLY encurage children to be open-minded and creative. Also, you were true about Taiwanese girls that sometimes put on "don't bother me" masks but seriously, I don't think Taiwanese girls are shy at all.. from my experience.. some Taiwanese girls are even more flirty than weterners! They love fashion and most girls spend a lot of time in make-ups such as dying thier hair(almost all girls do so now). They are defentily not weak and non-communicative. I am a Taiwanese, and since small my mother has taught me to be everything the oppisite of what you think taiwanese parents do, and I don't think I'm considered "freakish" at all as you said living in Taiwan. In fact I have many friends who are just like me. It seems that you had some bad experiences meeting the wrong people while living in Taiwan.

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  3. Dear anonymous, I don't think you are a native Taiwanese. You sound like an ABC. Your English is not that of a TW who never left the country. Your notion that TW girls are more flirty than Western girls is 100 percent BULLSHIT and you know it. I'll give you $500 if you can prove it.

    Go to a crowded area in Taipei or Kaoshiung or Taichung and see how many strangers you can chat up. Only middle aged people in TW will talk to a stranger. Young people DO NOT. ABSOLUTELY NOT. They are the most introverted people on the planet. Only Japan is the same.

    As a girl, TW youngsters may be more open to you. But as a general rule, they do NOT talk to people they don't know.

    That is a FACT and I will bet you $500 on it.

    I've been everywhere in Taipei and Taiwan. I am very extroverted and outgoing and meet people easily and talk to strangers easily. I know thousands of people. Taiwan is the only place where I CAN'T MEET ANYONE. People treat me like I don't exist.

    Go say hi to every girl in Taipei, in the most crowded place. Watch as they act like you don't exist.

    If I'm wrong, I'll give you $500. I am 100 percent sure about this.

    If you want $500, email me at wwu777us@yahoo.com and tell me where and when to meet you. If you lose the bet, you'll have to pay for my transportation home, that's all.

    Same goes for you MKL.

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  4. Anonymous,
    It is not true that SOME girls in TW are antisocial and do not talk to strangers. 99.9 percent of them are like that. 99.9 percent is not "some", it's almost everybody.

    The only truly extroverted girls in TW that are comfortable talking to strangers are the ones who work in hostels and have to talk to tourists. They are very rare. Trust me.

    I don't think you talk to strangers much either. You just talk to people you know there. That's typical. If they don't know you, you don't exist.

    To MLK:

    What did I say that was inaccurate? This has nothing to do with Amber or me vs your opinions. This is about REALITY. The reality is that if you see a smoking hot girl you like in Taiwan, YOU CAN'T FUCKING DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT!!!!!!!!

    THAT'S WHAT I HATE THE MOST! THAT'S WHAT DRIVES ME FRICKING CRAZY!

    It's simply not appropriate to talk to her if you don't know her. If you try, she will usually ignore you and avoid you or just not even look at you.

    That's COLD, VERY COLD!

    What can you do about it? NOTHING!

    If you have a solution to it that works, I'll give you $500. I'm looking for a reliable way to meet them that will get them to be open and friendly, LIKE MOST FEMALES in the world are.

    It's simply the truth. Your opinions do not change that. If I show you videos of me talking to strangers in TW and how fucking cold it is, would you believe me?

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    Replies
    1. Hey Guy, why should young Taiwan women should felt attracted by old strangers at once? Sure it is easy in Ukraine, where life is so desperate that 50% of the women want to become a prostitute. It is regarded as a job with a promising future! No joke! Nice all the pics whith lots of women and it all looks sooooo natural. Yes we believe you , you are very handsome and successful. Now you can cool down and look for some mental help or some good friends who take

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  6. To MLK:

    A few more points. I don't know what you were referring to when you said "What about the changing young people?" What about them? The young people seem the same as they were 20 years ago in Taiwan. Sure they have more gadgets, conveniences, better fashion than before, and have more access to the cosmopolitan world with the advent of the internet and modernization.

    But in personality they are still the same as before. At family gatherings, they sit there like statues, silently with no expression or opinion on anything, while their parents yack away with each other. I see it all the time, even at my own family gatherings in Taiwan. They are the LEAST sociable in Taiwan. Why do you think the elderly easily talk to strangers but the young people don't, if the young are so "progressive"? Think about it.

    20 years ago when I was in Taiwan, it was the same. Strangers didn't talk to you and do not stop if you try to talk to them. Same as now. That hasn't changed.

    If you are white or black, you might arouse more curiosity from them yeah. But if you are Asian, forget it.

    Bottom line is that regardless of one's experiences, the truth is that in GENERAL Taiwanese women do not talk to strangers, so it's hard to meet them, as the ways you can are very very limited. In most countries, women will stop if you say "excuse me". But in Taiwan women just ignore you or get scared if you say that to them.

    You also say I sound negative in my observations. Well of course. I am an extrovert and suffocated in Taiwan. Everyday there I feel lifeless and handicapped. How else can I feel but negative?

    The truth is, there is no social, cultural or intellectual stimulation in Taiwan. There is no social energy at all. The people are cold, expressionless and don't talk to strangers, especially the girls. If they don't know you, then you don't exist to them. 99 percent of young Taiwanese are strongly introverted, shy, and nearly impossible to meet. There is no real culture there, except for the variety of Chinese food and the two main languages spoken. The buildings are ugly concrete slabs put together with commercial signs at the bottom. Pretty much every street looks the same. It's hard to get any intelligent conversation there. People are simple and only talk about simple practical things, or trivial shallow things, not meaningful things. They do not love knowledge, wisdom, or adventure. Their two primary interests are food and making money.

    Other than lots of good Chinese food, hot looking Chinese barbie dolls that are "look but don't touch", and jobs for English teachers, Taiwan really has nothing to offer, and nothing you can't get anywhere else.

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  7. MLK, uh dude. I am not the problem. Taiwan is. I've been to 12 countries and do not have problems getting dates, only in antisocial countries. I got letters from business people, lawyers, and even Christian missionaries that also report that Taiwanese do not talk to strangers and that girls gave them blank stares. I can show you their letters. They sound way more honest than you.

    You're just a politically correct zombie and a BSer. I definitely trust Missionaries more than I would trust you. You're just a loser who has to go overseas to get attention. Nothing on your blog is intellectual or substantive. It's just shallow claptrap. You aren't in my league.

    If I'm wrong, you could prove it. But you can't. You just give lame copout excuses. I offered you $500. Don't you want it?

    Guys like you end up with ugly older women in Taiwan that no one wants. The hot skinny ones that are young would not go anywhere near you. And you know it.

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  8. MLK,
    Check out my photo collage here. As you can see, in other countries I can meet hundreds of girls easily:

    http://www.happierabroad.com/ebook/Collage.htm

    And my dating paradise slide shows:

    http://www.happierabroad.com/slideshows.php

    So the problem is not me. I am not shy and introverted. Maybe you are and so you fit in TW better than me. But I am not the problem. You are probably yellow on the inside, whereas I am white. Most English teachers I know also have the same views about Taiwan. They just don't go public with them, but they will express them at expat parties.

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  9. MLK,
    I saw on your blog where you commented and told me that you didn't think that it was possible to meet girls in public anywhere in the world. Boy are you wrong!

    Here on this page are six of my videos showing me talking to female STRANGERS in Russia. It shows you how EASY it is to meet foreign women in public without any introduction (unlike Taiwan, Japan, US and Canada, which are more conservative)

    http://www.happierabroad.com/film.php

    You really need to get out there if you think you can't meet girls in public! lol. Boy are you wrong! lol

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  11. Ok MLK, you say that I am closed and not willing to hear your advice or help. Ok I'm all ears now. So tell me what I should do about this:

    1. How do you meet or approach girls in Taiwan outside of "conservative introductions through friends"? I mean, the way I meet and chat up girls in Europe, Russia, The Philippines and even America does NOT work in Taiwan. Saying "Hi how are you" or "Excuse me miss" or flirting or complimenting them does NOT elicit and open sociable response from them. So what can you do? How do you get an extremely introverted, repressed, closed, and stuck up girl to open up? (pardon my frankness)

    Is there a socially acceptable Chinese way of approaching or chatting up girls in Taiwan? Even the act of approaching them itself feels uncomfortable, creepy, inappropriate and out of bounds. I KNOW it is not my imagination or due to any lack of bravery on my part either.

    2. How do you even tolerate living in Taiwan for long? Every time I go out I feel so depressed and gloomy. It's awful. I am very sensitive and feel vibes and energy around me very acutely. Everywhere I go in Taiwan, I see these highly REPRESSED cold stuck up closed inhibited faces everywhere. Their body language is of total introversion and inhibition, especially the young females. It makes them almost INHUMAN, like robots or zombies who have been "altered" like in some scary sci fi horror movie! That gets me down, just like the antisocial, anti-stranger, cliquish mentality of the US does. So how the hell do you tolerate that here? I could not live here for very long, despite the good food and modern conveniences.

    Ok I'm all ears. You say you can help me. Then go for it. Give me some serious answers to these questions, with no bull and no fake politically correct claptrap.

    Thank you.

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  12. I just got yelled at by my mom for one hour straight just cuz she was bored. She ridiculed and verbally abused me, like your article says. She does this every day. Now I know why. Thanx for the analysis and putting it down so now I know it's not my fault.

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  13. To give you a simple example, if I say "Excuse me miss" (in Chinese or English) to girls walking by in Taiwan (who are totally cold and closed) none of them will stop. But in most other countries, when I do that, very often the girls will stop and talk to me. That's a very big difference that says a lot, no matter how you try to spin it.

    Taiwanese girls are extremely picky, shallow, judgmental, difficult, vain, and spook easily like deer do in the wild. They are overly cautious and unnaturally shy to the extreme, and don't like talking to strangers without an introduction through mutual friends. These extreme traits that are common in Taiwanese females make them almost inhuman and definitely unnatural. Now there is nothing wrong with being a little shy or cautious. That can be cute. But Taiwanese girls take it to the extreme and are too excessive in their closed-ness and shyness. Ironically, their own ancient Chinese wisdom says that nothing in extremes is any good, and that everything must be in moderation.

    Also, Taiwanese girls have hang ups about dating. To them, dating is a stepping stone to marriage, so they won't just go out with you for fun, at least not the good girls. You have to jump through a ton of hoops. So you can't just simply ask them out like you can in most countries, otherwise you will be met with polite rejections and excuses. To make matters worse, the normal courting process of flirting is considered a taboo in Taiwan, seen as creepy bad behavior. So if you are a Romeo or Casanova who likes to flirt, that will be a big let down for you, because you are not allowed to use your main arsenal of seduction. Furthermore, it's very hard to vibe with Taiwanese girls if you are not on their small minded, shallow, narrow, insular wavelength.

    So it's like everything is against you in Taiwan if you want to try to fulfill your romantic or sexual needs, which sucks and is terrible beyond words. Taiwan does have a high concentration of hot girls, but what's the point if they are all look and no touch? That just makes it more depressing and frustrating. Personally, I find Taiwan to have the most unnatural and ego-deflating dating scene I've ever seen. The miserable vortex in Taiwan compounds it and makes it all worse.

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  15. What an asshole! Gross stereotypes about a perfectly nice country. I've lived and worked throughout Asia Pacific for 15 years, and find the Taiwanese people, and Taiwanese women perfectly approachable. Sure, they might be a little less forward than other races, but I find the reticence charming.

    Clearly, Mr Wu, you are the one with the problem- think you need to change your tag name to WuWimpy...

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  16. I've got to say, as a latin american, I'm missing the chili sauce infused in my personality, and my fellow compatriots in Taiwan. They're just not that social.
    BIG DEAL, stop whining and go back to fucking ukraine to pick up easy women then. Let's be honest, your whole deal here is you not being able to pick up women. There's an easy answer for that, taiwanese people have a higher average IQ than americans, giving them the ability to render you a creep, stalker, pervert, or well an "open minded person" as you like to call yourself.

    You complain about not being able to "meet" people, but the only thing that you're trying to do is "meet" women, there lies your hate for the island.

    And stop flaunting about your ability to pickup, being in a "league" of some sort given your status in the adult-fornicator, women-trophy winner blog category. Anyone can do that, and telling by your slideshows, you pay for at least a third of them. To play in your "game" you need looks, which you don't have. And go to freaking clubs, which seemingly you don't go to, because there is where you find your type of women.

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  17. Honestly, I am speechless about your paper. At first, I thought your analysis would be thought provoking and an interesting read but as I continued reading your "analysis", it becomes clear that this is just a bitter guy bitching about his inability to pick up Taiwanese girls. Your bitterness is so obvious and it's kind of pathetic. I almost pity you.

    Although I agree that Taipei isn't the friendliest city in Asia, you just have to face the fact that it isn't a place for YOU and you need to MOVE ON.

    Your desperation to get laid is so sad it hurts...and your inability to take criticism is obvious when you deleted commented from MLK.

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  18. While I do agree with your points on repressive workaholic culture, I feel offended by the assumptions you made on the character of the Taiwanese people, in particular the girls. I am Taiwanese American and growing up in America, I do feel the repressive goal-focused mentality as a negative societal pressure. I also do agree that many relationships in Taiwanese culture may seem fake as it is considered impolite to tell a person to their face that you simply do not want to invite them to things. However having only been back to Taiwan for a few weeks to months at a time and having traveled through much of the world, I do not agree with your analysis of your observations.

    Taiwanese people are more reserved, wary of strangers, and there are cultural expectations for respecting the older generations. It is true that they feel less free to pursue things for their own desires, that we don't want to disappoint our families. My family moved to the USA during the span of time when China kept threatening to fire missiles at Taiwan. My parents have had to make sacrifices to, in their minds, put me somewhere I could be safe. My mother, working at a hospital in Taipei when I was a toddler (so just 20 years ago), had to go through regular bomb drills to practice what would happen if China was to attack Taiwan. So yes, there is a strong societal pressure in many families that we have to do better, to be practical, and to be wary of strangers. Especially the girls.

    My experience in traveling anywhere is that if you have at least one female in your group as you are trying to meet people, they are much more unlikely to give you the brush-off. Another thing about Asia in particular, even as a fellow traveler, I would be extremely wary about talking to or hanging out by myself with a male and I have been warned many times to be careful because human trafficking is a very real problem in Asia, particularly for females.

    And I have to say if I encountered someone who acts like they just want to get in my pants, I would probably smile and then avoid them. In my travels, I have had to put up with many guys who just don't seem to get a clue, I think the Taiwanese girls just give more attitude about it and don't put up with it. If they're not interested, they're not going to pretend to be nice. If you haven't figured it out by now, I am a girl.

    My experience in Taiwan has been a very friendly warm experience. The Taiwanese natives my age I do find a bit awkward and shy, but they are very friendly once they get over it and very curious about everything. At the time I was traveling with a mixed group, myself and another Taiwanese American male, and our caucasian female and another male friend. We found that adults loved talking with us, myself and the other Taiwanese American in particular. Our other two friends amused them, but they loved to know what me and the other guy have been up to since our families left Taiwan. Some offered us rides, food, asking about affairs as if they were our own proud parents or grandparents, and generally trying to ensure that our time there was a good one.

    Taiwanese people our age seemed awkward, as if they weren't quite sure how to act. They would always try to engage me in conversation or our other female friend first and girls would tend to avoid the males in our group. They would relax some time had passed. If we knew someone in a group of natives, they instantly treated us as close friends.

    Granted if you cannot make a connection with any of the natives at all and you spend most of your time trying to hit on girls, I can see how that can be a thoroughly negative experience.

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  19. Oh Woo Wu~~

    Whatever medicine the doctor told you to take, PLEASE CONTINUE NOT TAKING THEM!!

    It's so wonderful finding a troll with whom I can keep myself entertained during my dead-end conformist job!
    (most trolls eventually retire after taking heavy critism and pressure from the public, but you sir! with your mighty black-hole-like ego, will undoubtedly stick around for years!!)

    I just want to take this opportunity to sincerely thank you. You have done a marvelous deed by preventing other rejects like yourself from preventing taiwan by your anti-Taiwan propaganda! (We could really use less of your kind in Taiwan!)

    Don't ever stop, Woo Wu!! (I can call you that, right? It's the name of my friend's dog, too!)

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  20. "...by preventing other rejects like yourself from VISITING taiwan by your anti-Taiwan propaganda!"

    oops, sorry! typo :p

    I hope you could excuse my carelessness. After all, I'm just a simpleton who could never lay claim to having beaten a level 5 computer at chess!

    (btw, what is your actual IQ score, in digits...)

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  21. If you claim to be "revealing the truth" I suggest you stick to your original thesis and not talk about stuff concerning "This might be personal and subjective"...that totally misleads ppl and makes me kind of angry that you inadvertently tried to manipulate people by leading them into an article claiming "TRUTH" but in reality spouting your own opinions about soul draining, etc.

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  22. Hi, I don't want to criticise the general tone of your argument. I think your assessment is, for the most part fair, and you know a lot more locally about them than I do.

    I do want to make the point though re. Taiwanese women, that my personal experience has been different. I've found them approachable; easy enough to flirt with (though they dont flurt back typically); and responsive on dating sites. Not wanting to be an ahole, but id say it has more to do with your looks. I think, when they go out with white guys, looks (and dating the stereotypical handsome, Hollywood-esq) are on their mind.

    But other than that point, id think a lot of your assessments are accurate and generalizable.

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  23. Taiwan is definitely an interesting place. It is definitely quite serious, but in reality the economy will never be diversified. Women are in relationships and only marry for money. Women that date foreigners want their money. I have friends who are married to Chinese, Taiwanese, Japanese, South Koreans, and Thais. Everything is about money, and they are forced to hand over their paychecks, which gets dispersed according to social norms to the extended family members. Non-natives are always considered outsiders in East Asian, and all of their cultures are highly xenophobic. They have a reason for hating everyone, and they are the least compassionate people on the globe. Of particular note is the story of my English friend with the Taiwanese wife who attempted to kill their unborn child by drinking 250 milliliters of insecticide. The child was born partially blind. She was apparently angry over a dispute regarding finances and the monthly allowance demanded by her parents. The situation is just crazy, and Britain’s NHS has footed the medical bills. He also is stuck in a situation in which he cannot report it because obviously the child would be removed by child protective services and be motherless. The child is now 3, and she has only partial sight.

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    1. Please Taiwanese women mostly doesn't marry foreigner man for money. Most of foreigners are not really rich, and level of life in Taiwan really improved in the past, girls could find richer Taiwanese guy. I think, they are mostly appeal by the idea of foreigner and the romantic image of foreigner, having a foreigner guy especially a white one is like a big achievement for those, it's like a pride, a trophy my white man trophy! I don't get why maybe because in France white guys are so banals but here in the south of Taiwan they are most rare maybe girls just dream to have a mixte baby. Moreover you can't blame those girl to choose a foreigner who will easily approach them try to charm to the shy and called apperence Taiwanese guy who waits for girls to come to him and mostly don't know how to seduce or handle a women. I can't tell about other Asian countries but here in Taiwan money is not the first reason to date a foreigner guy.

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    2. About the paycheck it is more cultural the Taiwanese man will have to do the same. The guy who marry a Taiwanese girls should be aware about culture style and this type of subject should be talk and agreed before getting married. About your friend, I' m sorry he has to deal with a psycothic wife but you can't generalized to all Taiwanese girls and it's even worst for the child.

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  25. I'm a foreigner, I see some truth in your article but the description of Taiwanse population like robot seam too caricatural and unfair and about the Taiwanese women please! Maybe some are shy and cold but if you go to bar and club women are more than open especially for white foreigners, they are almost raping them ! You can't be warmer than this as a girl. After for love story in fact it is more complicated but don't tell they are cold with foreigners it is totally not true, maybe it for you own experience, as you look Asian even you are technically a foreigner, Taiwanese girls don't see you as a foreigner for dating matter because you don't have the Western charmed that drive them crazy. Sorry that you get the local treatment :S. As a foreigner, the main problem I felt is supperficialty in relationship as many Taiwanese in the south are chasing foreigners to put picture on Facebook, like this is my best foreigner friend, that seems to bring them popularity but they mostly doesn't search for a real friendship, they just want the image of it. Image and apparences seem to be the most important thing in Taiwan, to appear good, people hide themself avoid to give personal opinions cause they are scared to be judged. It's a pitty because if they don't allow you to see deeper in their personnalty, friendship can only be superficial like acquitance Buddy you contact only to go out or party. I think it is not hard for foreigners (espacially those who look very different from Taiwanese) to meet people in Taiwan, but to built a real friendship with Taiwanese is very hard, that the main issue that only people who stay for a long period in Taiwan can understand. Tourist can't see this, they are more than well treated here in Taiwan and really welcomed so when you try to discuss with them about this they see you as dramatic and associable person complaining about nothing. I think if you stay long enough you can find real friend and some Taiwanese people start to feel trust and open to you. But me I stay only 9 months and I have feel really frustrated in relationship matter. Cause I didn't find any Taiwanese people to lazily hang out talk about readings, personal taste, politics point of vue and philosophy or just share with me things that are special for them. It's really a fail for a traveler to come back after 9 months without crating any strong link with locals and to not know so much about their real interest. Anyway I made other friends here, and I have been pleased to teach to so nice students that will be the thing I will miss the most on Taiwan and I have real hope for new generation they are used to foreigners and at more normally to them. They are also more willing to give opinions, even if they still really focus on appearing good to others.

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