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WTF – Training Chopsticks

June 15, 2011

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Yeah, we know that this isn’t really as weird as our Japanese Instant Boobs. Nothing will ever live up to the awesome bizarreness of those boobs. These chopsticks, though, we found quite befitting for what we’re doing this week. Martina’s parents are visiting us from Canada – Hooray! – and they’re not really skilled in chopstick usage, so these training chopsticks are just the thing for them. And, hey, maybe they’re just the thing for you as well, if you don’t know how to use chopsticks yet. You could win them in our WTF Care Package contest next week. Sweet!

Anyhow, we’re not sure how well these work to begin with. I mean, they work, in that they’ll pick up food for you in a chopstick like manner, but I’m not sure if they’ll do much for teaching you how to use them. You stick your fingers in the holes, and those holes are attached to the chopsticks, so move your fingers and the chopsticks move with you. It doesn’t teach you, though, how to hold the chopstick with your thumb. It’s lazy, no? Maybe it’s like training wheels: they teach you how to ride, sure, but they don’t teach you the most important part of riding: how to balance your bike and not fall on your face and run home crying to your mom about how much you hate biking and never want to bike again. That’s a very important lesson to learn.

The packaging was just ridiculous, though: these chopsticks, supposedly, boost your IQ and EQ? We weren’t even sure what EQ was (we had to Google it. “Emotional Intelligence”. Cool!) and now that we know what it is we’re not even sure how these chopsticks will help you develop emotionally. Anyone trained in child psychology here? We need answers! Martina’s guess is this: if you’re that one kid in kindergarten who can’t use chopsticks to save your life, and everyone teases you for it, these trainers will help teach you, so that you’re not teased anymore, and thus no longer in emotional turmoil. Is that it?

Another question: when do Asian kids begin to learn how to use chopsticks? They’re hard to use, after all! Simon learned in his grade 10 English class when someone did a presentation on multiculturalism (great presentation, by the way!) Martina had a really close Japanese friend as a neighbour, and so Martina learned how to use them when she was really young. But she was taught by her friend. How old was her friend when she learned how to use chopsticks? Miki? Are you reading this? We hope you are reading this. We’re gonna email you just to tell you to read this.

So that’s it for this week. If anyone knows anything about these, please let us know.

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WTF – Training Chopsticks

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  1. 3 ish for me?  One thing I noticed (from the very small sample size of Chinese people in Vancouver), is that Asian families all love to say that THEIR family was the one that knows how to hold chopsticks properly and that if anyone tells you that their way was the way it’s been passed down by China then they’re WRONG! XD

    To each their own.  

    8 years ago
  2. I learned when i was about 5-6. Since my parents ate with chopsticks, my brother and I thought it would be really cool to learn.

    8 years ago
  3. Happy anniversary!!!!!!!!!

    8 years ago
  4. I don’t remember when I was skilled enough to use chopsticks perfectly. Maybe 5 or even younger. My mom said I would not be getting any girlfriend if I can’t use chopsticks properly but I still don’t have girlfriend even after mastering chopsticks. LOL

    I am not sure if that is how you use that chopstick. It looks really awkward! Maybe thumb and middle finger on the top and ring finger on the bottom loop?

    EQ part is one of those weird things salesmen put up to make things more expensive and make you buy them more… It’s just something you hear about all the time but don’t believe in.

    8 years ago
  5. My aunt made me use these once, they are so uncomfortable! I don’t know if they helped. I learned to use chopsticks at around when I was 17, but I don’t think I mastered it quite yet.

    8 years ago
  6. I’ve seen similar ones here as well. Though none with those finger thingies, lol. Oh wait, here’s a picture.
    Hmm, I don’t remember when I started. D: 5 or 6, probably.

    8 years ago
  7. i taught myself to use chopsticks when i was around 5 i believe? i don’t use it the proper way though so it’s not as efficient.

    8 years ago
  8. I never thought of looking on amazon (don’t know why i’m surprised…amazon has everything!). Looking right now for a set for my daughter.

    8 years ago
  9. I remember when I started using chopsticks! Most parents begin teaching when the child is also learning how to feed themselves.. I learned when I was about 5 or 6, when my family and I would go to a Chinese restaurant and there are plenty of chopsticks and time to practice while waiting for the food. Initially the chopsticks were too long for my hands so I used them as stabbing devices. And I tried copying how my parents and brother would hold them in their hands. Initially I didn’t get the chopsticks held in the correct position (since my hand coordination wasn’t that great yet) but with practice it got easier and my position is now the correct position. 

    As a kid, I practiced picking up all sorts of things (like tofu, peanuts, mushrooms cut in half are surprisingly one of the most difficult things to pick up) at the dinner table and I think that’s the reason why as children we pick up using chopsticks fairly quickly. And most of my family used chopsticks anyways, so as a kid I would really felt left out if I was the only one using a spoon. :P

    8 years ago
  10. MSA

    Oh oh oh!! Here’s one of the children who ran back home to momma and swore never to touch a bike again with a ten-foot pole, after her dad eliminated the not-so-helpful training wheels and pushed her down a (not so steep) slope!

    And I remain fully commited to that oath. I keep my promises, oh yeah.

    – As a side note, I pretty much taught myself how to eat with chopsticks after my mom bought our first three pairs last year. I cooked nothing but kinda-asian stuff, and refused to use anything except my chopsticks to eat it. It turns out Hunger is a great teacher.

    8 years ago
  11. ^^ This is so splendid! I remember making my Dad some of these for my Parents celebration of their 30th Weddingday, visiting a sushi-restaurant.

    8 years ago
  12. :P i learned how to use chop sticks when i was 4

    8 years ago
  13. I remember seeing those in the korean supermarket here in Hawaii. I was going to buy it but then changed my mind the moment I seen the silver chopsticks that you see the koreans in dramas use. awesome. lol

    8 years ago
  14. Omo!!!! I had training chopsticks when I was a kid!!! Except they didn’t look like that… They weren’t attached like a hinge, but one had a loop for the ring finger and the other had a small groove for the index finger to rest on. Just thought I’d share that with u… ^_^

    8 years ago
  15. I’m an 18 year old Asian girl and I can’t use chopsticks at all.

    Oh, the shame!

    8 years ago
  16. Those are so cute!

    8 years ago
  17. Visiting from Korea? Don’t you mean Canada? :D

    8 years ago
  18. Lol i got taught to use chop sticks when i was 4 …..Hey i just asked my Mum :DDD…..it was difficult…..to this day i stick get hit with Chopsticks if i use my left hand >.< Mum and Dad doesnt approve :D im Multi-chop stick :DD ….?
    I must say i have 10 years of experience :DDD so im not that bad :DDD

    8 years ago
  19. I learnt how to use chopsticks when I was 5? cos out of curiousity, i picked up peanuts with them. so yeah from then on, i started using them! :D

    8 years ago
  20. I feel the ultimate skill in using chopsticks is being able to cut/split kimchi.  My mom is a master, and I have yet to obtain the same level of skillz :)

    8 years ago
  21. Me too. I still can’t bike, though my balance on my feet is quite good. I learned to use chopsticks in Chinese restaurants. I was probably around 10 or so when I learned, maybe a bit younger.

    8 years ago
  22. I think for me. I learned chopsticks just by holding them. Cuz I watched anime and read alot of manga when i younger like 4. ahahaha I remember trying to copy Bleach’s Karin when she ate ahahahahahah. For me, it wasn’t that hard actually.

    7 years ago
  23. Martina,U’re SO cute when you do a “littlechild-sweet-voice—thing?” =3

    8 years ago
  24. They are wonderful for kids… my almost 5 year old is doing pritty well… no more ” mommy i wanna use chopsticks like you!” all the time… tho i really need to start putting the extra pair in my purse so when we go out she can use them… fyi they work better with the smaller hands… its why you two are having such trouble lol

    8 years ago
  25. I found these chopsticks that you’re talking about at Galleria Supermarket(Korean Grocery Store on Yonge & Steels)! $7.99 for one!

    8 years ago
  26. Tee hee, you guys are so cute.

    8 years ago
  27. Tee hee, you guys are so cute.

    8 years ago
  28. Those things are actually made for kids, but they have one like those made for adults…I saw it in our local H-Mart (Hanareum)…my girls and my nephew looooove them!!!!

    8 years ago
  29. Sam

    I’m Chinese and I think I started with chopsticks sometime before preschool when my hand dexterity was decent enough. I started using Japanese-style chopsticks – aka the ones that are tapered at one end – so that what I couldn’t really pick up successfully, I could just spear it and I was good to go XDD I varied later on between the square Chinese-style ones and Japanese ones depending on which were on hand/I thought were prettier hahaha.But tbh I held my chopsticks improperly for quite a few years. I held mine like a pencil/caligraphy brush rather than the proper way of using your thumb as a pivot with 2nd+3rd finger on the top stick, 4th finger supporting the the bottom one. I only forced myself to learn the proper way after a rude little girl (who was quite a few years younger than me) who was visiting our house for dinner with her family pointed at me in the middle of dinner and started laughing about how I was stupid and incapable of holding chopsticks like a normal person. When her parents started laughing as well, needless to say, I was definitely motivated to learn the proper way to hold chopsticks hahaha. I was pissed beyond belief considering she was friends of family friends and we’d only met maybe once before that dinner.

    My older sister on the other hand held her chopsticks perfectly since she was young – she learned from watching a popular shrimp dumpling commercial on chinese tv at our grandma’s as a kid by mimicking the way the the model held and displayed the dumplings LOL.

    8 years ago
  30. My daughter’s training chopsticks came today…she loves them.

    8 years ago
  31. I started to use chopsticks when I was 7 or 8 and yes, I am Asian (Vietnamese). I only used chopsticks when I was at home because I was still young and practicing. The beginning of the learning process was very difficult however, through observations (my parents), I got the hang of it. (P.S. Directions on chopstick wrappers you get from Asian restaurants are confusing. xD) These training chopsticks are definitely for non-Asian foreigners. That’s my story HUZZZAH! 

    8 years ago
  32. I need to get these for my grandmother especially because the first time I saw them I thought of her. Although she’s getting better, it’s a continuous joke between us about how she can’t use chopsticks properly.

    8 years ago
  33. I use chopstiks but I think I don’t do it right ^^ but still I’m good at this ^^
    Simon why are you so cheater! ^^

    8 years ago
  34. As long as I can remember I have been using chopsticks. Since me and my brothers were little kids we could already use them because my Dad wants his children to have at least some kind of connection or something to our Chinese blood. (My Dad’s half-chinese.) He made us practice whenever we eat chichacorn/cornick, a snack made of fried? corn and a special product of the Ilocos region, northern area of the Philippines. He wouldn’t let us eat it if we don’t use chopsticks, and he knows that we really love to eat chichacorn.

    8 years ago
  35. I don’t know how old I was..
    I think it was like, well, ur old enough to eat by yourself
    here, chopsticks, have fun with it and you will have to learn it, 
    cuz if you don’t, u can’t eat! :D

    8 years ago
  36. My dad taught me to use chopsticks when I was about ten, but then I’m not Asian and no one in my family is so… XD I think I need a pair of these for my mum though, she’s the only one in my family who can’t use chopsticks.

    8 years ago
  37. Korean kids just know…how to use chopsticks. It’s like the ability to pee and poo. It is like breathing. Ahh I remember when I first saw those straight metal beauties… I was 2 yrs old. They were calling for my fingers and I just knew that I had to use them to pick up food… All Koreans have their chopstick stories.. My friend started using them with his toes first..

    8 years ago
  38. I was probably handed a pair of chopsticks the minute I came outta my mama, it’s used more than my household’s forks. However, that doesn’t mean I’m good at using them- I remember being scolded as kid when I held my chopsticks with a pinky sticking out. -I often resorted to using it as a shovel and stabbing device instead (not as sophisticated, but it gets the job done).

    8 years ago
  39. this is quite awesome. i dont know how to use chopsticks so i have to do improvised training chopsticks. just tie the sticks together at one end and slip in a piece of folder paper between them then booyah! hehehe.. i need to find this a local kmart.

    8 years ago
  40. Haha. I see another potential gif from this episode. xD 1:05- 1:09

    8 years ago