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What's something awesome you've noticed about Chinese people?


原创翻译:龙腾网 http://www.ltaaa.com 翻译:黎明晖烬 转载请注明出处
Michael C. Hilliard, Made in America, currently living and working in China

Michael C. Hilliard,美国制造,目前生活和工作在中国

I’ll mention four things that have stood out to me the most so far:


Always looking for things to learn and ways to improve themselves.


As with all of these, it doesn’t apply to everyone, of course; there are lazy Chinese, just like there are lazy Americans or lazy Europeans or lazy people anywhere else in the world. I’m not trying to make a comparison here or say everyone is like this. But, I would say that for a lot of Chinese I meet, they seem to have this in common. For example, if I ask someone if they like their job, after normal things like whether it’s busy or not or if the pay is any good, they usually comment on whether they are able to learn something from the people they work with or improve themselves in some way through their job. I think that’s really cool. Just look at how many Chinese use Quora because they really want a place where they can practice and improve their English. I find a lot of Chinese to be curious and lifelong learners. I think that’s awesome.


Hospitality and helpfulness.


Sure, sometimes it’s fake or just for show, but a lot of times, it’s really genuine. Making a Chinese friend can take time, and you have to learn to tell the difference between who is a real friend and who is just putting on a show for ulterior motives (Chinese learn to do this with each other, too), but when you make a real Chinese friend, they’re worth their weight in gold. And I can’t tell you how many times people have taken me out for a meal or helped me with something just to be nice. Tong Xin’s answer does a good job describing this. Generosity, helpfulness, and hospitality really are traits that all well-mannered Chinese seem to share, and it’s a cool thing.




Chinese people like to sing. Even in public. Of all the traits on here, this one may be the most universal. One of the most popular things to do with your friends in China is to go do KTV, which is the Chinese version of karaoke; while, granted, that differs from Western karaoke in that it’s just in a private room with you and your friends still, with a little coaxing (or sometimes even without), it’s not too hard to find someone in a group (or several people in a group) who are willing to sing in front of other people. Singing is usually something you do when you’re happy—and when you’re not, it’s still usually cathartic in some way—so I think this is a positive thing any way you look at it.


An indomitable spirit.


I taught for two years in a Chinese high school (高中) in the Lintong District of Xi’an. Of course, anywhere you go, in any country, there will be people who work hard and people who, well, don’t put in as much effort. But middle school in China…man, it’s rough.


Most students live at the school and spend almost the entire day in class. A typical day’s classes might start at about 8 a.m. and keep going until a lunch break for about two hours from noon to 2 p.m., but sometimes it’s not even that long, especially for 高三 students (seniors)—they might take a full half hour for lunch, but more often they bring their food back to their classroom so they can keep working. After lunch, regular classes resume until dinner, which is usually either 5:30 or 6 p.m., and again only lasts for about an hour (unless you’re a senior). After dinner, you have to go back to your classroom, where you either work on homework or sometimes have extra lessons or makeup lessons if anything happened to disrupt the normal class schedule that week. That goes at least until 9–9:30 p.m., or at least that’s usually how long the students are required to stay before they can go back to their dorms. After that, sometimes there are clubs and activities or free time, but as often as not, there’s more studying to do, because the amount of homework is usually pretty tremendous.


As for teaching styles and class discipline, it can vary a little from teacher to teacher, but I think it’s fair to say that many teachers (particularly the class teachers, who are responsible for supervising and disciplining a given group of students) can be very, very strict. Once, at my school, one of my students told me that after some boys in the class had been playing around with a basketball at the back of the classroom between classes, their class teacher made them line up outside and spent a half an hour yelling at them and smacking them across the face for goofing off, even though it was not during class time and they were in one of the highest ranked classes at the school. Another common form of punishment: taking away the chairs of students caught sleeping in class, so they have to stand the rest of the day for all of their classes. (I stopped punishing sleeping students in my class once I found out about that).


And then there’s the pressure. Pressure from parents, pressure from teachers, pressure from your peers. Competition is extremely fierce to get into good universities, and the only way to get into a better university is to get a high enough score on the dreaded 高考 (gaokao, the university entrance exam). Every single point counts, and every moment of your life is leading up to the fateful day when you take that test. Everyone tells you that the entire rest of your life hangs in the balance of your performance on this test.


So. Like I said—it’s rough.


But despite all that, I taught a lot of really incredible kids. I was amazed at how hard some of these students would work. And not only that, but how they would still keep their spirits up as much as they did. How they would still be really kind, genuine, funny, interesting people, despite being in such a tough situation with so much pressure day in and day out. It would be easy to give up, get frustrated, or be depressed—and, of course, for some that does happen. Probably many. But I was impressed by how many didn’t let it get to them—how many chose to do their best, and still keep up a good attitude and a positive, hopeful outlook. There were a lot of smart, talented, warm, and passionate students that I had the privilege to teach at that school. Maybe I was just lucky; I know different schools can have different characteristics, but I still think those qualities are something a lot of Chinese share.


In my last weeks of teaching at that school, I let my students use the entire class time to ask me any questions they wanted. I got a lot of questions about sports, or food, or my plans for the future and if I have a girlfriend or not, but there were some really interesting questions, too. One student asked me, “Are you worried about the future and what will happen?” If memory serves me, there had recently been a terrorist attack in the news, and I think that may have been what prompted the question. My answer might sound cheesy, but it was sincere. I told him that students like him and others at that school are what give me hope for the future. I genuinely think that, as depressing as problems in the world can be, people like him and his classmates are going to be the ones that make the world a better place.


Sam Arora, Great respect for China /Chinese, culture, peace loving, hard work/wisdom/smart
Sam Arora,十分尊重中国/中国文化,热爱和平,努力工作/智慧/聪明
I do not know where to start, I have worked with oversea Chinese at various levels in Canada for close to four decades. I had them as classmates, professors, co-workers, reports and service providers. At my present business in a Canadian university town, I have scores of contact with them.


A short answer: The Chinese showed my family and me how to eat tons of vegetables, I, our sons, our daughter (in law) and our grandsons will be indebted to you forever. An extremely high consumption of vegetables is one of the most “ awesome” things we observed here in Canada from our Chinese friends and during our visits to China. Thank you for our Chinese friends.


A long answer with explanations:


Here are some awesome facts about Chinese people:


Dietary habits: Highest producer and consumers of vegetables in the World:


The Top 5 Countries that Produce the Most Vegetables( year 2013)


Country: China, number 1, Production 583,321,399 m/t , % of the world production: 51.3 percent,

国家:中国,第一,产量583,321399 吨,占世界产量的51.3%,

Other 4 countries are India, 10.6 percent, U.S.A. 3.01 percent, Turkey 2.49 percent, Iran 2. 08 percent.


Source: The Top 5 Countries that Produce the Most Vegetables


Chinese great eating habits of vegetables: 
The Chinese are without a doubt the largest consumers of fresh produce. In 1961, 62 percent of the daily intake consisted of fruit and vegetables. That equates to an average of 537 grams per person. Root vegetables took up 35 percent of the diet, followed by vegetables with 25 percent. Fruit consumption accounted for 1 percent. Twenty years later, the consumption had dropped to 41 percent, which corresponds to 400 grams. Fruit consumption remained low with 2 percent. In 2001, fresh produces resurfaces as a major part of the diet. Chinese ate an average of 1027 grams per person, accounting for 55 percent. The percentage of tubers dropped to 11 percent. The consumption of fruits and vegetables increased to 37 percent and 6 percent respectively. Ten years later, little has changed in the diet. Chinese people still eat lots of vegetables: 56 percent of the daily intake. Especially vegetables were significantly more consumed and make up 39 percent. Fruit consumption rose to 9 percent.


Chinese consume most fruit and vegetables


China: 332/kg/per person per year.
Armenia 311/kg/per person per year.
Albania 251/kg/per person per year.
Iran 250/kg/per person per year.
Montenegro 242/kg/per person per year.

中国:每人每年332 公斤;



My and my family totally switched to Chinese way of eating tons of vegetables in our house hold: Following pictures are from our kitchen.




Thank you my Chinese friends, and you showed me and my family how to eat tons of vegetables, this is what my wife and I learned from you. It has changed our lives, my sons and grandsons are also indebted to your wisdom. Hats off to great wisdom of the Chinese.


Stir frying, steaming and salads are new mantra at our home now, these following pictures are from Author’s kitchen.


The following pictures shows Canadian food guidelines, Two parts vegetables, One part protein, and One part grains. But our Chinese friend taught us to cut grains even more to almost nothing, may half part or less. We observed very carefully in Beijing/Shanghai/Xian/ Chongqing/Wuxi/ Suzhou/Hangzhou area most of the Chinese did not eat much rice/noodles/past kind of food. They ate lot of vegetables and a little bit of meat.



Michael Hutchens, Director of Global Sourcing
Michael Hutchens,全球采购总监
The ability to do the asian squat. Five years in and I’m still in awe (and quite jealous) of the general population’s ability to go chair-less at any moment for extended periods of time. The buttocks rests upon the heels and this allows for hours of Wechat moments swiping or checking your ZhiHu queries without ever having to sit on a less than sanitary surface such as your local guangchang which has probably been the recipient of more than a few lung cough ups or less desirable actions…



It has been theorized westerners generally cannot do it correctly because of a shortened achilles tendon due to sitting in chairs regularly and wearing shoes where the heel is raised above the toe.[1] Children can generally do it because their flexibility is still intact.


Try it for more than a couple minutes, likely you’ll be uncomfortable or you won’t even be able to fall back into this position at all.


Square dancing!



No, not like that you noobs…



Like this! You gotta be outside in full view playing the music extremely loud so everyone around can enjoy it. It’s said more than 100 million people around China participate and the dancing usually occurs in the early morning or evenings if you are interested in catching it. Go see it, I promise you will be in awe.



Took this one coming home last night. Simply awesome.


Karpagavalli Krishnan, Software Engineer
Karpagavalli Krishnan,软件工程师
Family business
Imagine having your spouse as your boss. Imagine going back home with your boss. You may have get scolded in front of few clients in the morning and right now, you are sleeping next to your boss. You sweat and toil while your brother laze around, but you all share the same profit. There’s a lot of tough love.


Family businesses aren’t easy, anyone who’s been in a family business for more than two generations knows how hard it is. It brings a family together, it also tears the family apart. It’s sheer hard work, from dawn to dusk and because it’s your family business, it becomes a part of you. You need to put behind all your petty arguments behind and be a professional.


These are just the small challenges of family businesses.


It’s for the fearless. For people who doesn’t get intimidated by sweat, blood and long working hours.


I remember, when I was small, my father used to bring me to markets and night streets. And he used to point out the chicken butcher and the meat stalls. He’d made a point for me to note how the son/daughter are helping their father/mother after school hour. I’d wonder how hard it must be for them. Then on the way back, he’d point out their house. Big mansions. Those houses rarely looked like it belonged to a stall hawker or meat butcher.


That’s what I admire most about Malaysian Chinese I guess. They all sailed in the boat across the sea from China mainland. They strive for a better life and they aren’t afraid of hard work.


Anne Brown, Beginning to understand Chinese culture. Daughter lives, works in Flushing.
Anne Brown,开始了解中国文化。女儿生活、工作在法拉盛。

This is mostly based on my interactions with Chinese (ABC (American-born Chinese) and FOB (fresh off boat/CBC) (not MY term—theirs) in Flushing, New York.

我的见解主要是基于我与纽约法拉盛的中国人的接触,包括ABC(American-born Chinese,美国出生的中国人)和FOB(fresh off boat,新移民或Chinese-born Chinese,中国出生的中国人)。

My daughter works in a government office where approximately 85% of the staff is Chinese, and about 95% of the management is Chinese.


If I am wrong, or if any Queens Chinese could advise me about what I’m obviously ignorant of, I would certainly appreciate respectful and helpful comments.


The first time I visited the Flushing library on a cold February afternoon, I was shocked at the number of prep manuals the library had, and the heavy use they received. Everyone had a graphing calculator. There was no flirting. It was serious study time.


The Young Adult section of the Flushing library was filled with teenagers in groups going through the SAT’s, A/P exam, and GRE prep books. Although the section was designed to look like a soda shop from the 1940’s, 50’s, or 60’s for American teenagers to hang around at after school, drink soda, have ice cream, and flirt, the way it was actually used couldn’t have been more different.


(SAT、ACT:SAT(Scholastic Assessment Test,学术能力评估测试)是由美国大学委员会主办的一场考试,其成绩是世界各国高中生申请美国大学入学资格及奖学金的重要参考,它和ACT(American College Test,美国大学入学考试)被称为美国高考)
(GRE:GRE( Graduate Record Examination,美国研究生入学考试),是世界各地大学研究生院(除管理类学院,法学院)要求申请者所必须具备的一个考试成绩)

My daughter grew up in a town which had a substantial Asian/Indian population, and she was a HS nerd—but this kind of studying took it to a whole new intensity.


Their aptitude for math. I’m a retired nurse with a grad degree and was adjunct faculty at Yale. I attended Grand Rounds in psychiatry with my students most Fridays, and over the years, more and more research pointed to genetically linked personality traits, abilities, and disabilities. Whether it’s a genetic trait or a cultural one, almost every Chinese person I’ve known has had outstanding math abilities. Many are employed in math-based professions—engineers, CPAs, bankers, business people, research, etc.


Verbal skills are not as highly prized in MOST of the Chinese I’ve met. * While they recognize the value of good verbal skills, they do not encourage children to major in literature, liberal arts, etc. My daughter has so-so math skills, and my math skills were above average as a child. Where we really shine is our verbal skills, and we both were in the 98th percentile in our GRE English and writing scores.


What my daughter had in common with her Asian and Indian girlfriends was an outstanding academic ability that made them an “outsider” to the mass of C+ students. While she would never lead the Mathletes to glory, she was shockingly elected vice president of her 1600 student high school in senior year. No nerd had ever been elected to office. She was a ground breaker. She could articulate the feelings of the much-ignored nerd herd, address the board of education, and bring further glory to the nerds.

我女儿与她的亚洲、印度朋友的共同之处在于,他们拥有杰出的学术能力,使他们从大量C +(表示平均水准)的学生中脱颖而出。

I am amazed at the significance and tradition attached to some of the most everyday things—numbers can be good or bad, the direction of the door of your house is significant, the belief in certain colors, especially at Lunar New Year, intrigues me. I will never go without red under and outwear on a Lunar New Year again.


We recently watched and Olympics and were rooting for the Chinese swim teams and gymnasts. One swimmer, who won the silver, seemed more depressed than happy about it. When she was interviewed, she said, “During practice, sometimes it seemed that being alive was worse than being dead.” The humility and gratitude of the Chinese teams made Michael Phelps look like a spoiled brat.


The Chinese teams were certainly not the product of overuse of antibiotics, braces, cosmetic surgery, waterproof contact lenses, helicopter parents, or any type of indulgence. Despite every hardship, they won medals. Phelps, to say nothing of his stupid pal, claimed he had been depressed in the last few years, but in the setting it looked like it had been a very well funded, comfortable, never-missing-a-meal depression.

(直升机父母是目前国际上流行的一个新词语。把某些“望子成龙”、“望女成凤”心切的父母叫做 “直升机父母”——就像直升机一样盘旋在孩子的上空,时时刻刻监控孩子的一举一动)

The lack of amenities available to the Chinese teams was obvious, even in their warm-up suits and athletic attire. The warm up suits were invariably too large, did not fit smoothly, and even the typefaces were mixed (a different font for the capital letter and another for the lower case letters). The girls did not have tailored, perfect suits with expensive spangles. In contrast, you could tell Phelps’ suit was custom tailored, of the most high tech materials, and annoyingly cut so low they showed the crack in his a** when he got out of the pool.


We only rooted harder for the Chinese because of these differences.
The Chinese prefer to live in very dense urban areas, and high rise architecture is highly favored. This is what I’ve seen, both in Vancouver and NYC, but don’t know why tastes run to high rises. I can understand their preference for city over country living.


My daughter, my husband and I love with the food court at New World Mall in Flushing. Unfortunately, none of us speak Chinese, he reads only a tiny amount, and we would order different things if there was the tiniest bit of English translation. Everything we’ve eaten has been wonderful, but we would go to more places if we had a hint of what it was or the cost. We like to go to J Mart and look at the fish tanks.


I came from a home which valued scholarly achievements, wise use of money, hard work, and was not carefree. The Chinese-American culture seemed to be a very extreme form of the household values I’d already known, and for that they have my admiration.
My daughter thoroughly enjoys working with people who share her feeling that nothing done is ever good enough, but she is part of them—a team, and now is included in conversations which make her feel at home. Hopefully she will even go to a Mets game this year and learn about baseball.


Wang Sisuo
The ability to turn any bad situation into opportunities.
Environmental pollution? Aging society?


OK. Let’s use them as opportunities to develop an industry: green economy, green technology, electric cars, age friendly tools, old age services, old age housing, old age friendly communities. You do not even have to be rich to be a part of these.



In a similar vein, the service industry is incredibly varied. If you have a demand, there will be some businesses which supply.


Slow economic growth? OK, let’s build infrastructure and it will pay back in the future. Then you see road and railway networks expanding.


2. Ready to try new gadgets, new apps.


Every time I visit, there are new life transforming innovations, or innovative ways to use existing technology. I visited China several days ago, it was amazing. WeChat literally turned the economy cashless. Even when you buy roasted sweet potatos, a dirt cheap street food usually sold by poor people, you can pay with WeChat. I first realised that in China, even the poor can afford to have a smart phone. I then realised that it is empowering. You can scan a QR code and get a public bike. You can scan a QR code to pay in restaurants so that you never have to be harassed by fake smiling waiting staff who cannot even get their eyes off the bill when you write the tip, or having to wait for hours to get your bill. You just scan, pay and go. Everything is sorted in 20 seconds.



3. The innovative spirit, in particular in the food industry.


Yes, American professors like to say that the Chinese are not good at innovation and the Chinese just nodded and agreed because they do not know how to think independently. Wooo—hahahahaha. Seeing American professors swamped Chinese universities during their teaching break, you kind of understand why they need to say so. They can be invited to Chinese universities to earn a second salary. No disrespect, they are great people, especially at the dining table. More adventurous than some of the ignorant Quora questioners.


Cooking technology is revamped almost every several years in China. They do not pay so much attention to colourful cooking gadgets, they change the way the industry works. Just think, what is special about a hotpot restaurant? It does not need a chef. The restaurant just washes and cuts the ingredients and the customers cook themselves. The new trend is steamer. You get everything steamed on your dining table. You can see the ingredients, fresh and clean. You steam it yourself. Just put the food on the steamer and set the timer. In a couple of minutes, the food is ready. You do not need balanced weight losing diet or formulas. You are not going to eat a big chunk of red meat which will give you a heart attack.


In some restaurants, food is cooked and served by robots. The following picture is from the internet as I have not been to one myself. (Please remove if it has any copyright issue.)



4. Inferiority syndrome. 


A lot of Chinese tend to be overly respectful to westerners. As a result, the latter often get spoilt. These days, as the Chinese economy gets better, people are more confident, especially in larger cities. Even so, when you see some of them greet the westerners, you still wonder why they are soooo hopeless. You do not have to be so cheap, do you? This gives some westerners the illusion that they can get away with anything. The reality is that China is a society where people respect good working ethics and delivery of results. Ultimately, if you do not perform, you will be seen through and you will still get superficial respect, but…


Rod L'Huillier, Lived and studied in China for 6 years
Rod L' huillie,在中国生活和学习了6年
SO many things! I think most have been covered already. For me they include hospitality, kindness, friendliness, pragmatism, filial piety, as just some of the awesome qualities that immediately come to mind.


One of my best friends from China is someone I truly admire, he is more intelligent than most, yet wants for nothing, his family comes first, and he thinks nothing of what he sacrifices for them. His calmness, and his kindness is something to be admired. To me he is a holder of very traditional Chinese values, yet comfortable and capable in a modern world. I’m blessed to know that guy.


Heather Dove, works at Self-Employment
Heather Dove,个体经营户
I have to answer this question, my answer may sound trivial but it's something that strikes me as honourable every time I see or meet a Chinese person. I live in Canada, Calgary to be more percise, I live in a community that has a relatively large chinese population, not Asian but China specifically. I am second generation Canadian and I am a believer of immigration to build Canada into a stronger and better nation! So…. to answer the question…… Chinese people are hard workers, never complain, never asking for free hand outs, firm with their children and they don't have children unless they can take care of them both emotionally and financially. They never ever cry racism, they never complain about the past and how unfair they were treated, they don't use the past, future or present to act like victims. They are intelligent, hard working, proud, independent people!! And more countries should learn from their example!

我必须得回答这个问题,我的回答可能听起来很琐碎、微不足道,但这正是每次我看到或遇见中国人时,发自内心觉得值得尊敬的地方——我住在加拿大的卡尔加里(加拿大西南部城市),我住在一个中国人相对较多的社区——不是亚洲人,就是中国。我是第二代加拿大移民,我的信仰是把加拿大建设成一个更强大更美好的国家! 所以……现在我回答这个问题……中国人是努力工作者,从不抱怨,从不要求不劳而获,与他们的孩子关系牢固——他们只有在感情上和经济上可以照顾好孩子时,才会要孩子。他们从来不为种族歧视而哭泣,他们从不抱怨过去,也从不抱怨他们遭到的不公平对待,他们不“利用”过去、未来或现在去扮演受害者身份以获取好处。他们是聪明的,勤劳的,自豪的,独立的人!!更多的国家应该以他们为榜样!

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