Author Topic: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????  (Read 37054 times)

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Sophia

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #60 on: May 28, 2011, 01:29:55 PM »
I'm usually fine with chopsticks.  That being said, in the last year I've been to Japan twice (one week and then two months), China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong.  I'm fine with chopsticks--except when people stare at me.  ...

Maybe you could explain how to cut with chopsticks.  For example, I ate in the TSMC cafeteria, in Taiwan, and the main entree was breaded chicken patties in an oblong shape about the same size as "salisbury steak" in the High School cafeteria.  No could explain to me how they got it to bite-sized pieces.  They "just did it".  They thought I was a real hoot when my chicken flew onto the floor and I made an unhappy noise.  It was really good chicken. 

Old question, but if anyone's still interested--basically, you stab the meat with your chopsticks and then force them apart, or you stab one into the middle and then force the other in from the edge. Works really well on softer things, but it's very difficult with chicken or steak. Which is why I always cut chicken up into reasonable pieces when I put it into my bento box. That said, sometimes you can force the meat apart along the grain. It's something every Japanese schoolkid could do and I had to learn through trial and error.

thank you, I will try that out. 
I still remember my disappointment when that chicken flew on the floor. 

JillyJ

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #61 on: June 21, 2011, 04:29:52 PM »
hI live in a small-medium sized town and we have 3 Hibachi restaurants and about 6 Chinese restaurants plus a Thai/Vietnamese restaurant, so I know larger towns must have even more. Given the wide availability of cuisine designed to be eaten with chopsticks, jow does someone become an adult without learning how to use chopsticks?

I'm pretty good with chopsticks now (though it took some time for me to "master" it).  But, thinking back to my childhood, the only places I was ever taken that would require chopsticks were chinese restaurants, and I can't remember ever being given any, so I definitely never learned as a kid.  As an adult, I think that many places give you what they THINK you'll want.  So, I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of places just give people forks, assuming they wouldn't want chopsticks anyway.  My husband is Indian and we joke that I need to hide in the bathroom when we go to the Indian restaurants in our city because we swear if they see me sitting there, they somehow do the "White girl at table 5" flavor/heat conversion when they make our food no matter what level of heat we tell them we want. 

Quack

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #62 on: June 22, 2011, 09:16:42 AM »
I can imagine how it can be rude. If you were sort-of stabbing your rice trying to pick it up, its like an offering for the dead. So technically it can be kinda rude to use chopsticks incorrectly, though no one should be insulted by that (if you really didn't know about it)


dqduck

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #63 on: June 25, 2011, 08:09:27 AM »
I'm Chinese and when I was little, my parents always figured it was easier to give me a spoon than to have me struggling with chopsticks. At family reunion dinners, my relatives were always very nice about it and made sure I had a utensil I could use. However, being surrounded by people who could use chopsticks embarrassed me enough that I taught myself.  :P

kitty-cat

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #64 on: June 25, 2011, 09:12:15 AM »
Oh, I love the souvenir that my mom brought me back from her last trip. They visited a Japanese garden while they were there.

I now have my own pair of chopsticks with a cherry blossom print on them. I love em!




NE Florida

Piratelvr1121

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #65 on: June 25, 2011, 10:04:04 AM »
I don't remember how old I was when I learned how to use chopsticks, just that it was sometime when I was a kid since my family really enjoyed Chinese and Japanese food and we got takeout often and went out to eat often as well.

But I still sometimes have trouble with them, so I wouldn't expect everyone to use them or even have an easy time with them.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

kitty_ev

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #66 on: June 25, 2011, 07:22:44 PM »
I taught myself how to use chopsticks when I was a teenager. I love Chinese and Japanese food and had a real hankering to learn how to use chopsticks. It was a trial-and-error process but I won. My parents and my brother, at the time, didn't bother learning how to use them and just used a fork instead. My brother has, I think, since learnt how to use them but my parents never have. Chopsticks are probably my favourite eating utensil. I was once complemented on my chopstick prowess while eating out in a local Chinese restaurant (by the owner who was from China)- I felt very flattered!

My husband has a different chopstick technique to me. He learned when he was a little boy living in Japan (his family had moved there with his father's job). His preferred utensil for Chinese and Japanese food is the chopstick. We both think the food tastes better that way.

My housemate has never learned to use chopsticks. Every time I cook Chinese food we attempt afresh to teach him (he asks us to!) but we've still not managed. It's good fun in the attempt though!

JoyinVirginia

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #67 on: June 26, 2011, 02:10:59 PM »
I just gotta say, Ashara, I love love love the sushi chef animations in first post!

PaintingPastelPrincess

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #68 on: June 26, 2011, 05:15:28 PM »
I think it would be rude for chopstick users to laugh at fork users, but I don't think it's rude to use (or attempt) either utensil, no matter what anyone else is using. 

I am not very good with chopsticks.  I can usually eat sushi with them, although I have problems if the pieces break sometimes.  At a few restaurants, I've been given a fork (for "just in case"), but usually not.  None of the Asians I've eaten with have really commented on my chopstick etiquette, although they have tried offering me pointers to make it easier.

I haven't yet attempted other things, like my favorite honey chicken on rice.  I think I might drop it all over the place.  I really should get some connected chopsticks so I can practice at home where I won't embarass myself.

Mom2PBJ

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #69 on: July 04, 2011, 10:48:16 AM »
[ Wow she must be incredibly sheltered!  Why didn't Heather just ask someone to show her how to use the chopsticks? What a loon![/b]
[/quote]

Then I guess I was a loon, too, until a year ago, because I, at the age of 47 then, never knew how to use chopsticks.  And even then the super nice and helpful hostess noticed that I didn't know how and gave me a pair of training wheel chopsticks (the kind that were banded together).  But since then I've mastered it as my husband and I have been going to sushi places at least once a month since then.  But when we were having dinner with others and they did use chopsticks I never thought they were rude, or that anybody was a loon. 

PaintingPastelPrincess

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #70 on: July 04, 2011, 01:09:50 PM »
[ Wow she must be incredibly sheltered!  Why didn't Heather just ask someone to show her how to use the chopsticks? What a loon![/b]

Then I guess I was a loon, too, until a year ago, because I, at the age of 47 then, never knew how to use chopsticks.  And even then the super nice and helpful hostess noticed that I didn't know how and gave me a pair of training wheel chopsticks (the kind that were banded together).  But since then I've mastered it as my husband and I have been going to sushi places at least once a month since then.  But when we were having dinner with others and they did use chopsticks I never thought they were rude, or that anybody was a loon.
[/quote]

I thought the loon part referred to Heather not asking for help or just enjoying her meal with a fork, not to her not being able to use the chopsticks.

Sirius

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #71 on: July 04, 2011, 04:45:17 PM »
I lived in Japan as a very young child, and I learned how to eat with chopsticks, although I never got the hang of eating rice with chopsticks.  I think Heather was the rude one, not the OP, and I'd have been rude and said so. 

purplemuse

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #72 on: July 22, 2011, 03:31:49 AM »
I wouldn't say I've mastered chopsticks by any stretch of the imagination, but I can manage with them.

I actually like eating with them at restaurants-- I have to eat more slowly, which means I end up feeling full sooner. This has the double benefit of portion control, and ensuring I have yummy, yummy leftovers for the next day.

And using really pretty ones makes me feel like eating is an art form, which I think helps me enjoy my food more.

glacio

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #73 on: August 20, 2011, 05:09:59 PM »
I went to a "Chinese" buffet in a small Texas town that did not have chopsticks readily available. As someone who has lived in China and eaten just about everything with chopsticks (including cake), I was at a bit of a loss. I had the hardest time eating sushi with a fork and felt so rude with the mess I was making. Next time, I'm bring my own!

snowfire

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Re: Relatives: Chopsticks Are Rude???????????
« Reply #74 on: August 21, 2011, 01:04:25 AM »
I have a pair similar to these http://www.rei.com/product/749401/snow-peak-compact-chopsticks

Mine were not as expensive but they work just fine.  I keep them in my purse...right next to the swiss army knife and my streamlight flashlight.  I'm prepared for most anything.  ;D