December 17, 2011

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"Meet foreign big hot dogs" - Are Taiwanese girls obsessed with foreigners?


Today I want to share a video with you, which was made by Apple Daily, a fairly known media in the yellow press of Taiwan. It's discussing the issue of late night action between Taiwanese girls and foreign guys. They interviewed a cabbie and two Taiwanese guys in front of a night club in Taipei, and shot few videos with a camera which was secretly placed in a cab just to highlight how easy it is for foreigners to hook up with Taiwanese girls. Check my transcription of the things that were said in the video below, and join the discussion below.

Western guys' attraction makes the Taiwanese girls obsessed!?
Google says Taiwan girls are easy.
Guy 1 says: "Foreigners don't need to be handsome, just normal. Some are even a bit chubby, but they can get the girls easy, because they have a big hotdog."

The video wants to prove that Taiwanese girls are obsessed with foreigners. We want to do a research in the most popular night club among foreigners. The club has a "foreigners night". [The night club is named Brassmonkey]

Guy 2 says: "Many foreigners, be it whites, blacks and taiwanese girls, when they enter the night club, they kiss with tongues, hug tight, touch the butt, grab the waist."

The cabbie says: "The club here is full of foreigners and Taiwanese girls. Even if some foreigners can't get girls inside the club, they will go out and try to get a drunk girl outside and take them with them. Those foreigners are all horny."

They want to track, if things they say is true, hence they install a camera in taxi to monitor.

Cabbie again: "Most of the time foreigners will hold the girl, when she enters the cab and then he will be all over her."

The video ends with: This is happening every day. Foreigners are very horny. Are Taiwanese girls so easy to get?

My thoughts about the video

It's a very one-sided video, and you don't need to be Einstein to understand what it tries to say. It's the classic case of the "good" Taiwanese guys against the "bad" Taiwanese girls, and the notoriously horny immoral foreigners). It's interesting how the whole story is interpreted and commented only by three Taiwanese guys, there are no comments from foreigners who frequently visit the club, let alone Taiwanese girls... or a sociologist, for example. I'm not saying that what we saw in the backside of the cab doesn't happen, but how much does it represent the dating scene of Taiwanese girls with foreign guys? I'd say very little. Well, at least in my world. But what do I know, I'm just a boring TGIF worker, never go to clubs or pubs, and never had interest to hook up with girls this way. This behavior doesn't represent me, and I can't be happy about the sexist and racist undertone I felt throughout the video, which goes against my personal love story. Similar and crazier things happen between Taiwanese girls and guys, but nobody makes a story out of it. Why is that? The answer is obvious.

My personal experience

Videos like this one do cause harm, I experienced it first hand. It's a kind of a constant theme in recent years for the Taiwanese yellow press, and it gets under people's skin. It took me a long time to prove that I am a "good foreigner", before I was accepted by my wife's parents. When we started to date, and she told them about us they always confronted her with the bad stuff about foreigners they saw on TV, or read in the newspapers. They had a lot of concerns about our relationship, their fears were rooted in such biased reporting. In addition it seems that it's in the nature of Taiwanese parents to be overly worried about their daughters, even if they are over 30 years old. It was a very stressful and tiresome time for me, and I don't wish anyone to go though a similar torment.

Open sexuality in Taiwan

Openly displayed female sexuality is a taboo in Taiwan, but what we saw is nothing shocking for Europeans. Go to Hamburg's, London's or Amsterdam's night clubs, and you'll see things that will make the video above look very innocent. Of course Taipei is not Amsterdam, but it's also not the Taipei it used to be few decades ago. Taipei wants to be a global player (constantly ogling at Hong Kong, Shanghai and Tokyo), and a part of this process is a liberation of mind, and a tolerance for the choices other people make, even if they conflict with your own values. A vibrant night scene is part of a metropolis, attracting foreign and domestic adventurers, travelers and free spirited people. It's part of city branding. If we take this into consideration we realize that the video is fairly naive. Even more so in the way it argues its point. If you constantly use other guys' "big hot dogs" and "horniness" as a kind of a case against them, what does that say about your own hot dog and sexual drive? I've heard these things a lot during the recent attacks against Taiwanese girls in interracial relationships. I also mentioned this whole issue in my detailed post about interracial relationships in Taiwan. I guess these things won't stop any time soon, because there's a great divide between sexes in Taiwan, which is completely redefining the way the society is structured, and it happened way before Westerners entered the local dating scene. There is no simple answer to why are some foreign guys able to pick up Taiwanese girls like ripe cherries from the tree, but one thing is sure: Constantly bemoaning this fact won't help you. Real men take action, real men don't whine. And Taiwanese girls like real men.

Read more about Taiwanese girls.

21 comments:

  1. "Real men take action, real men don't whine. And Taiwanese girls like real men." GOOD ONE! :)

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  2. those who cant the girls and whine all day long are probably sore losers. ;)

    i do think you represent one of those "good foreigners". asian media love to paint white males as philandering, booze binge etc while white girls as easy sleazy etc. Malaysia is no exception. We're constantly fed by the natioal media that Western culture is perverted, decadent, immoral - and Eastern culture and ethics should be upheld in sanctity. And this, along with many Asian countries' colonial past, add up to the general resentment against the West (but ironically, they do idolize Western stars to an extent, esp the gorgeous hunks and beauties of Hollywood).

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  3. @Saša: Thanks.

    @kyh: Good points. Asian societies are very moral on the outside. It's very important, that everything looks according to the norms and traditions, but it's a whole different story behind the public face. In less than a year in Taiwan (but also before in Malaysia) I have seen and met a lot of people with double standards (for example moralistic during the day, cheater at night). Ask a Taiwanese about those, who go to work in China for a while, ask them about what they do there :) Based on the stories I've heard, the video above is nothing compared to that :)

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  4. "Taipei is not Amsterdam, but it's also not the Taipei it used to be few decades ago."

    Actually, MKL, the Taipei of the 70's was a well-known sleaze-bucket of whore-houses serving the needs of both local military personnel and the big-spenders of the US military. It was only after Chen Shui-bian came in that Taipei's infamous "Combat Zone" of brothels and bars was cleaned up.

    The parents of the people seen tut-tutting in this video may well have patronised or worked in the Combat Zone. Go figure.

    As for the rest, people will always look for something a little different. The Greeks and Italians at my university in the UK boasted about the ease of their British conquests, Canadian and British expats I knew in Taiwan back in '01 spoke of the ease with which
    they hooked up with local girls, Taiwanese I knew working at Foxconn bragged about the way mainland Chinese girls flocked to them - and so on. In every case, as well as an economic motive in some cases, there was also a simple curiosity in what men from another country are like.

    Finally, on the subject of being a "good" foreigner, I am surprised that anyone would ever feel they would have to prove that about themselves. It is enough to show that one is a good person.

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  5. I also react negatively when someone wants to go out of their way to show that they are a "good foreigner". I think only people who are for some reason insecure in their own cultural, ethnic, national or religious, etc. ) identity will behave that way.

    I heard it when I lived in Europe from Americans who wanted everybody there to know that they were against U.S. foreign policy, that they were not a "typical American", etc. I hate that approach.

    Heck, if my being from the U.S. (or my being gay, Catholic, vegetarian or whatever) is enough for certain people to be predjudiced against me, then I don't want to be friends with them anyway, and don't care what they think about me.

    Stuff I hear than makes me think "jeeez, gimmie a break...."

    "Oh, but I'm NOT an English teacher!"

    "Oh, but I'm Canadian (British, Dutch, German, etc.), NOT American!"

    "I have never once been in Carnegie's (McDonalds, Brass Monkey, etc.)"...

    "So, um, how long have you been here??" (meaning: I want to make sure you know that I am better than you because I can speak Chinese better than you)

    "Oh, I just love stinky tofu!"

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  6. @John
    Heck, if my being (whatever) is enough for certain people to be predjudiced against me, then I don't want to be friends with them anyway, and don't care what they think about me.

    I do not think that would apply to the parents of your wife-to-be.

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  7. Me:

    - Was an English teacher.

    - Am British, but did and do agree with with many elements of US foreign policy.

    - Have been to Carnegie's, more than once.

    - Used to show off my Chinese until I noticed how annoying it was when other people did it.

    - Do love stinky tofu.

    However, the idea that someone might feel that they have to make a point of distancing themselves from my 21-year old escapades at B1's simply because they share the same skin colour as me just seems all wrong. If what they're really doing is trying to counter-act racist stereotypes about foreigners, then it's worth asking whether those stereotypes might exist anyway. In fact, the whole "but your one of the good foreigners, not like the rest" spiel is often just a way of keeping a stereotype going whilst letting the person saying it off the hook.

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  8. @FOARP: When I said a few decades ago, I had the 50s in mind.. but it doesn't matter, you have a valid point :)

    @John S: Good points. Problem is, you can hardly have this attitude towards your Taiwanese in-laws. Believe me, I agree with what you say, but it won't work in my case. It wasn't for me to do this, because I was insecure, it was to ease the tension, that was already affecting my relationship. The cases you list base on casual encounters, so it seems to me.

    @Sam: Great reply.

    @FOARP: If you distance yourself for no reason, it's of course ridiculous. But often here there's always a reason, people have prejudice, good and bad, and love to put you in drawers. I'd rather be seen as who I am as a person.. but.. takes time and effort, before they see you this way, especially older generation.

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  9. What is "good" prejudice?

    And how does one make "an effort" to get others to see one as one is? Any effort made towards this end -- any effort to make a particular type of impression because of someone else's misperceptions -- is always, by definition, a stepping away from one's natural self.

    And sooner or later (may take years, though) the negative consequences of the insincerity of this effort will become apparent to self -- and then to the ones one was trying to impress, if they ever bought the con job in the first place.

    One find's oneself trapped by an image that is, at best, only partly oneself but that needs to be (fully) maintained lest all hell finally break loose both within self and with the others one has made "efforts" with -- but one can't bear to maintain it anymore!

    These laws of psychology are true for distant-to-medium relationships (think teacher-students), close relationships, every relationship. Not a chance in Douliou (sort of like hell, in case you've never been to D-town:)) that your case is an exception.

    I'd be unhappy about it if my girlfriend's/wife's parents were prejudiced against me, and I would dearly hope it would change so that we could be friends. But I certainly wouldn't be more than formal with them once I found out their attitudes.

    And I'd stay away from them as much as I reasonably could and would suggest that my wife tell them why I'm staying away. And if she wouldn't tell them (she probably wouldn't at first), I would tell them myself.

    I guarantee you this will work -- if one sticks to high-minded principles from start to finish and completely.

    "Completely" means withdrawing from them again if they act like/say that the prejudice is gone but later show that it's not, explaining clearly and in reasonable tones in a letter the specifics of their behavior/words that you feel reflect prejudice.

    But be ready for all kinds of "Don't think that way!" responses that fail to actually address the point(s). Patiently and maturely wait for points to be addressed; and firmly keep bringing matters back to specific points.

    Whether this approach will take a short time or a very long time to work will depend on the parents' nature and degree of prejudice, but it will definitely sooner or later work -- and unlike the "make efforts/false image" approach, it will work forever.

    And it requires far, far less effort overall -- but far more courage, maturity, and possibly patience.

    The key is putting up with the tension and staying loving toward your girlfriend/wife for the duration. She'll start more and more actively working on this with her parents if you voice a belief that they'll come around; don't let her anxiety over this stuff get you upset; and -- as I just said -- keep letting her know (in every way) that you love her.

    And explain to her that such people's prejudice is rarely really gone the first time, but often does disappear once they see a second time that you really are aiming for a 100% vanquishing of the prejudice.

    Anyway, I hope this helps. And good luck to you and to all who are or who ever might be in this situation.

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  10. Oh, by all means-- show all due respect and deference to your in-laws and the whole extended family.

    I wasn't suggesting a guy should be an "in-your-face" kind of foreigner.

    I just meant that I could never be happy around people who didn't like me simply because of who I was.

    Learn the local language (and her family's dialect!) as best you can, so you can participate in various functions (even just the basics will go a long way!). Help with the cooking and washing up, learn to sing some of the favorite KTV songs, learn to play their favorite card games, have a genuine interest in the local surroundings.

    And above all, be sensitive to the various challenges your Taiwanese partner is facing by bringing you into her/his family. It's not always easy or simple. Having that experience made me love and respect my girlfriend all the more. And I should remember to tell her that.

    I am very fortunate in that my girlfriend's family accepted me, or at least I feel they gave me a chance to show what kind of person I am before they judged me simply on my national or ethnic identity.

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  11. @John and Kevin: Thanks for sharing and clarifying things.

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  12. Hi MKL

    Good post. I agree with you that this video does not portray foreigners in a good light, nor is it an accurate depiction. In your comment on December 18th, you said that you’ve seen a lot of people in Taiwan who are “moralistic during the day, cheat at night” and you also have heard a lot of stories about people in China who behave less than admirably.

    I would just like to point out that there are people from all parts of the globe who act this way and who probably have “stories” that are just as bad as the ones that you’ve heard.

    I only bring this up because I want to point out that this phenomenon is not only found in Taiwanese men, and that there are men from Finland, Italy, Libya, and every other country in the world that don’t want foreigners with their women.

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  13. @Anonymous: I fully agree with you, it's a phenomenon, that usually exceeds culture and race. My post above however was only talking about Taiwan and its specific situation. By generalizing the issue, the case of Taiwanese men doesn't become less significant. It's not a good way to talk about the issue.

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  14. Hi MKL

    You are absolutely right. Even though this phenomenon is exhibited in men around the world, that does not justify the actions of the men in that video. I only brought up the issue because there are some people who read your post and think that only Taiwanese men dislike foreigners with their women, or that Taiwanese men are more likely to feel this way, which isn't true at all. That may not have been your intention, but unfortunately, there might be people who misinterpret it that way.

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  15. @Anonymous: Thanks for clarifying.

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  16. I get the feeling that you try to refute prejudices by ignoring the reality. For sure, the reality is always complex. But you must see certain things that happen in your life. For instance, if I say that the Taiwanese people I met work more than the Western people I met, is my subjective experience applied to a small number of people I know not based on facts? Can't I draw a conclusion from these facts, though these facts do not represent a proof valid for everyone?

    So, let me say that the question of horny foreigners and easy Taiwanese refers to a niche. There are some people who feel attracted to foreigners, and there are foreigners who love to sleep with pretty Taiwanese girls. Does this nice exist and is it visible in Taipei? I guess it is. It is more visible - and more interesting for the media - than the housewife that sits at home and never had a one night stand in her life or the student who goes to the library every day and doesn't even think of guys. Why does that niche attract so much attention?

    I'd say because it's extremely obvious that for foreigners it's easy to get a Taiwanese girl. I am planning to write on my blog about this later, but I will just say that for most foreigners it's much easier to get a girl here than in their home country. Besides, I met many Taiwanese girls who were looking for a foreign boyfriend. I don't like it at all, because I am not "a foreigner", I am myself, a person with his own history and personality, and I want a girl to know me and understand me before we get together. However, the things you experience are facts of life and you cannot just ignore them.

    As far as this niche is concerned, the Taipei nightlife, this video is depicting a widespread, visible phenomenon.

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  17. Besides, I do agree with your attitude of going against generalizations. I don't like stereotypes, either. But everyone has the right to talk about his own life and draw some conclusions. For instance, I lived in Italy, Germany and Taiwan, and based on the people I met here I have very different experiences. And I am really upset if someone tells me I don't have the right to observe what goes on in my environment only because in someone else's things might be different.

    Back to your post. It's true that probably Taiwanese media bash too much the allegedly bad foreigners. Media should not just report what happens in nightclubs, but also what happens between Taiwanese. The problem is that what happens in nightclubs is visible to everyone, and at times it's shocking. As a foreigner, I have been part of that, and my personal feeling was that there are indeed many Taiwanese girls who like foreigners and many Taiwanese guys get angry about that.

    On top of that, what happens behind the four walls of everyone's home is not easy to be reported on the media, so you'll never heard the stories of Taiwanese cheating or having one night stands. If a husband cheats on his wife, nobody will know except himself and maybe a bunch of other people.

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  18. I don't know why people get so worked up about this subject. I think there are a couple of points:
    1) Taiwanese girls are easy - Averagely, they are not more or less moral than any girls in the world. They are easy in the sense that a western guy can play a league or two above his looks in Taiwan. Spanish can do that in London. Taiwanese guys in China. Rich Taiwanese guy can do that in Taiwan. So what? It just means the only decider of being able to get girls is not looks and age.
    2) Foreigners are more dirty than locals - I can understand the older generation thinking like that but for young ones you have a divorce rate as high as the west, low birthrate. I am married to a Taiwanese woman but not one of her friends are with a foreigner. Yet, they get dumped and cheated on week in week out by local guys. No judgement. Modern society is confusing and filled with opportunities, just don't pretend your society is more family orientated anymore. I cover this subject in my blog. Here is one on the definition of family:http://betelnut-equation.blogspot.tw/2010/07/definition-of-family-orientated.html

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  19. @dan: Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the issue.

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  20. I don't think it's about the size of the cocks because if that's the case, you would've seen hordes of Taiwanese girls running for Black guys. They are mostly into dating white guys because of the "power" it gives them by dating a white guy.

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  21. There actually isn't penis size by race based on doctor measured results. I think the stereotype comes from Japanese pornos vs American pornos.

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