Go Premium
Facebook Twitter Google Plus

TL;DR – China vs Korea

June 6, 2014

Comments

Share Post

So, we tend to do these TL;DRs whenever we come back from traveling. We’ve done them on Australia, Japan, Europe, and Toronto. Now for one on Beijing and China. Hooray! I’m sure we’ll do one comparing LA’s Koreatown to Korea’s, umm, Koreacountry when we get back at the end of the month!

Back to Beijing, though, apart from the things we mentioned, there were a few other things we found interesting that we hope maybe you could help shed some light on.

Namely, we spoke with one of the event organizers at the conference we were attending. She’s a German girl living in Beijing. We asked her if she has a similar experience to us, in that Korean people often ask us if we’re American. She said no, people in Beijing often ask her if she’s Russian. Russian saram? Russian saram!? We asked her if there was the same kind of connotation there with asking a girl if she’s Russian as there is here in Korea, and she was totally shocked. So, for those of you in the know…is there a similar connotation in Beijing and China, or is it just what we’re experiencing here in Korea?

Another difference we found in Beijing: taxis. They’re still pretty cheap like taxis in Seoul, but it seems so much harder to get a taxi in Beijing than it is here. We only got into a Rickshaw after waiting for 20 minutes and not getting any taxis at all. I’m glad we didn’t get a taxi that night, though, because it was an absolutely wonderful experience and I’d gladly ride those instead of taxis for the rest of my life. SOOO FUN! We also saw a lot of “black cars” or something along those lines: black cars would stop in front of us and ask us where we’re going, but our guide would ignore them and only try to get the regular taxis, supposedly because the black cars aren’t licensed or something like that. Anyone have more info on this? We never experienced anything like that in Seoul.

Anyhow, we’d love to hear what you guise think. For those of you who have been to Beijing, what was your experience like, and what was different? We’d love to go to Beijing again. The food alone is reason for us to go. Korea: y u no have Chinese food here? YOU’RE SO CLOSE! Bring me some deep fried beans! Do it!

If you’d like some delicious deep fried beans from China, click on this pretty button below. Free beans for you!

Comments

356

Share Post

TL;DR

HIDE COMMENTS

TL;DR – China vs Korea

356 COMMENTS

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  1. Black cabs sound like Gypsy Cabs, which are illegal, unlicensed taxis. Basically someone sticks a sign in their window, and start driving people around for a fee. You see Gypsy cabs in Chicago sometimes, more so in New York (in the words of Jay Z, “Yellow cab, gypsy cab, dollar cab, holla back”).

    5 years ago
  2. Shirtless-ness in Korea: I do not want it to happen lol. While kpop idols may have amazing bods I doubt if half of the male population here in Korea is like that as well. Most of them seem to just be extremely skinny… No from what I have noticed about kpop idols… They have weird looking nipples. (Ie: Minho from SHINee. They look like pepperoni)
    In “my country” aka ‘Merica. Where I grew up with my dad never wearing his shirt at home. I am pretty sure as a child I was like, “why doesn’t everyone just not wear tops???? Whyyyy?” Because I was an adorable clueless child.

    Lastly: AAHHHH MY COMMENT!!!! I said it on FB I will say it here: woke me up in 2.5 seconds and made my day ^^ I will totally come to your cafe to craft… As long as you have juice offerings (I’m not a coffee or tea person ㅠ.ㅠ)

    5 years ago
  3. Hearing you guys talk about Beijing’s driving skills… makes me understand why Hong Kong ppl are so pissed that the government are letting mainland chinese drive in HK. Anyways mainland cars have the driver seat on the left, while HK cars have driver seat on the right. this will totally mess up HK’s traffic system. I haven’t been to Beijing, but I have been to Chimelong… and the air wasn’t really bad. But then again… that was four years ago.

    5 years ago
    • another thing I noticed in China is that traffic lights are like suggestion. They suggest you stop, and even one way streets you have to look both ways lol. In China it’s always the bigger cars fault. If a person is hit, it is the car’s fault, if a bike in car hit, car’s fault, if car and bus hit, the bus is at fault, if truck and bus hit then….

      5 years ago
  4. wow, I’m glad you had fun in China. Next time have Beijing duck, it’s really amazing. And they do a lot of food entertainment performances flinging noodles and the like. One thing about the black cabs, I wouldn’t take them alone for fear of being driven into a trap lol, but overall if you have more then one person, they usually get you to where you wanna go, at a negotiated price. The thing about them is, you need prior knowledge of where you’re going. If you know going to a restaurant costs 30 RMB in a regular cab, a black cab will offer you 25 RMB to get some business, but a lot of times, people have no knowledge of where they wanna go, and the black cab driver will know this, so instead of paying 30 RMB to that restaurant you end up paying 60!

    5 years ago
  5. im going to guangzhou on june 30 … is there any tips you guys can give me when i go to guangzhou? oh and do they have etude house?

    5 years ago
    • You should check the Etude House store locator. It tells you exactly where they have stores (or booths in department stores or malls). That way you can be sure.

      5 years ago
    • It would probably be a good idea to check the Etude House website store locator to tell where it is sold for sure.

      5 years ago
    • If you’re looking for etude house products, I suggest you be careful because fake beauty products are literally everywhere. It’s very difficult trying to find legit products, I find, and the last time I was in Guangzhou I almost got tricked too (with another brand, Soap&Glory). As for anything in particular you have to be careful about… I can’t really think of anything.

      5 years ago
  6. Woah! Beijing air sounds so intense! In Australia(melbourne) in summer, you can see many shirtless men, regardless of age and women can wear crop tops, shorts and thongs. This is normally when its really hot or near a beach though ^^

    5 years ago
    • Just to clarify for the non-Australians here: when you say ‘thongs’, you mean ‘jandals’ or ‘flip-flops’, right? Not ‘thongs’ as in the underwear? :)

      5 years ago
      • OMG BAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Well I assume some people wear “thongs” because it’s hot ;) *inappropriate nasty eyebrow wigglies* Yes, I did mean shoes in my previous comment XD

        5 years ago
      • Ha! Yes, of course. The sandals. Not the undies.

        5 years ago
    • I’ve noticed here in Hobart, people go shirtless at the drop of a hat! I suppose we don’t get the same kind of summer down here and have to enjoy it while we have it!

      5 years ago
  7. I’m from the Caribbean island Curaçao and you don’t usually see people shirtless walking around here. If you do it’s one of 3 things:
    1.Tourists! Lol They can’t handle the heat and think we all wanna see their nipples :s spoiler: we don’t!
    2.On extremely hot days driving through your neighbourhood you might see old men on their porches or what not shirtless so neighbourhood ahjussi’s basically.
    3. Thug gangsta people if you’re in THAT neighbourhood. Caution: Drive away fast cause they’re scaryyyy.

    5 years ago
  8. I pretty much grew up in Beijing since I lived there for 11 years. Taxis in Beijing generally try to rip-off foreigners and tourists, because they assume that the visitors have no idea where they are going. By taking them in circles or a longer route, the taxis’ meter would actually collect more mileage and as a result more money. The so called “black” taxis in China are cars that especially aim towards picking up foreigners. These black taxis don’t have an accurate meter, and they charge you whatever they like, in other words, ridiculously high prices. Generally, everyone tries to avoid black taxis; however, during desperate times like when you have been standing in the pouring rain for hours without any luck, then black taxis may be an option to consider. Anyway, just know that “black” taxis in China are rip-offs, so try to avoid them as much as possible.

    5 years ago
  9. In Vancouver, BC we have Wreck Beach, which is a nude beach. Most shirtlessness is limited to beachy areas (of which there are quite a few, being on the pacific ocean and all) but men will do this when it gets hot pretty much anywhere.

    5 years ago
  10. Boys here in Spain feel free to take their shirts off in summer, but only if they are around the beach… But they will show you their abs if they can -.-, also is common of girls to show their belly (this summer that is very fashionable) and cleavage.

    5 years ago
  11. I personally haven’t been to either Korea or China, but a friend of mine lived in both places. She told me that for the year that she lived in Korea, the driving was a relief to her, and that she wished it could be that way in China. And also, the pollution level in Korea was much lower, in her opinion. She has cystic fibrosis, so breathing was hard enough for her, and the pollution in China made it really hard, and even caused her to have lung cancer once. She was even born and raised in China and still had problems there with traffic, air quality, as well as other things. I guess it depends who you ask.

    5 years ago
  12. it is pretty common in the U.S., I live in a small town in Washington State and whenever it’s like 55 degrees fahrenheit; which happens rarely because it rains 9 months out of the year here, but all the time see men working outside with their shirts off and its not pretty.

    5 years ago
  13. I am heading to China TOMORROW, so I can’t tell you what it’s like yet, but I will update you in like, a week yea? Great TL;DR peoples!

    5 years ago
  14. Nobody really gives a frick-frack about modesty here in Bulgaria. Especially if it’s summer! I don’t particularly do it, but guys will take their shirts off if they feel hot.. in both ways, because most of the time they don’t really do it to cool them selves down, but rather to attract girls. :D

    5 years ago
  15. Ok, so hopefully i’ll be going to study Chinese in China next year as an exchange student. I am aware that it’ll probably be the best for me to go to Beijing since Standard Chinese is based on the language of Beijing. But, the crazy pollution there is totally making me not want to go there. My other option is going to Hangzhou Zhejiang University.Hangzhou is famous for their West lake, beautiful natural scenery and is way less polluted compared to Beijing. However in Hangzhou, they speak standard Chinese with their own regional accents. Since i want to become a Chinese teacher in the future, I’m so conflicted in what to do. Any suggestions?

    p.s Im not a native Chinese.

    5 years ago
    • PS: If you’re going to be learning language from a language teacher there at the Zhejiang university, there should be no issue. Just make sure not to get bad habits from speaking to locals.

      5 years ago
    • Hello there!

      I was born in Hangzhou but moved to Canada when I was young. I’ve visited 6-8 times in the past 10 years or so, and the last time I went back was in March of this year.

      Believe me, my accent is very strong. I don’t have a foreigner accent in my Chinese but any native Chinese will be able to identify me as from Zhejiang province (or “South” China in general). In Zhejiang, most natives speak a variation of the “Wu” dialect, which includes what’s known as “Shanghai-nese” and also “Hangzhou-nese”. I can understand much of the Hangzhou dialect but I cannot speak it because my grandparents thought it would be more important for me to learn Mandarin properly first. In recent years, many workers from the countryside have moved into the city to find work so you’ll find that there’s quite a big mixture of people.

      In the “Southern” accent, we do not “roll” our tongues with certain sounds (‘z’ vs ‘zh’, ‘s’ vs ‘sh’, etc) and have difficulties differentiating whether words end in ‘n’ or ‘ng’ (‘shen’ vs ‘sheng’, ‘bin’ vs ‘bing’). As a result, when I do dictation in Chinese class, I often get those pinyin wrong. My dad is unable to distinguish between them either as he is a native of Hangzhou, but my mom is from a “Northern” province and can tell me which one is which. (Although I still can’t figure out the difference between what she’s saying…)

      I’ve been to Beijing on a trip (to Korea + Beijing) about 3 years ago now. At that time, the air wasn’t that bad, but I haven’t been back since. Hangzhou is so much more beautiful than Beijing! There’s greenery everywhere, lots of different historical monuments, and (slightly) less pollution than Beijing. Unfortunately, there is pollution in Hangzhou too. The smog was worse on rainy days and in the morning, it looked like fog was covering the distance but in reality it was pollution. Still, Hangzhou is (probably) the most popular destination for Chinese tourists.

      If you want to become a Chinese teacher in the future, I would suggest going to Beijing to study. When I went back to visit in March, a high school friend of my dad jokingly said they’d teach Chinese if they moved to America but it wouldn’t work out because they can’t even speak it at the “standard” level. Keep in mind that you don’t have to go to Beijing! You can always go to somewhere close, such as “Liaoning” province. As a warning though, I’m not sure how good of a job being a Chinese teacher would be as there are plenty of Chinese people in the world who can teach Chinese as a native speaker. If you plan on teaching in an area that has a small Chinese population, it could be okay.

      Honestly speaking, every area has their own regional accent (my mom/dad can tell me what city/province someone is from just from their accent) and “standard” Chinese isn’t even that important when it comes to every day conversations.

      So tl;dr: Make sure you’ve thought out your future plans of becoming a Chinese teacher because there are many native Chinese people who can do that job. Hangzhou > Beijing. Even if you want to learn “standard” Chinese, go to a province next to Beijing instead of Beijing itself.

      Let me know if you have any other questions.

      5 years ago
      • oh! i forgot the mention, i really like the fact that hangzhou and shanghai are like only 45mins away by train. I’ve always wanted to visit shanghai because it looks so pretty! If i lived in Hangzhou, i could go to shanghai during the weekend and stuff( so cool! ) Beijing is so far from all the other awesome cities like Hangzhou, Shanghai, wuhan, Xi’an, guangzhou etc hmm…that kinda sucks :(

        5 years ago
      • Hello!
        Thank you so much for taking the time to reply! I’m actually from Canada as well! haha :)
        I’m aware that there are a lot of Chinese people in this world, but just because you were born Chinese doesn’t mean that you can teach. In fact, all my native Chinese friends have a hard time explaining simple concepts because of the fact they never really had to think about it, as they grew up with the language. Same could be said to all the native english speaks. I’ve personally always loved learning languages so i want to do something that I’m passionate about. In the further, I don’t want to only teach, but also branch out to other fields where i can incorporate my language skills.

        Here are the places i can go to:

        Shanghai- Fudan University
        Tianjin-Nakai University
        Beijing- Peking Uni, tsinghua Uni
        Jinan-shandong Uni
        Xi’an-jiaotong University
        Hangzhou- Zhejiang University

        After seeing the options, do you still recommend Beijing? ><

        All my Chinese are mostly from Southern China, and when i asked them where i should go, they all said Beijing as well. Even though they really dislike Beijing for pretty much the same reasons as everyone else. However, i want my first impression of China to be good. I want to actually be able to see the sky and breath fresh( well not as polluted) air. I really can't stand the smell of cigarettes too. omg, I know I'm totally contradicting myself lol I want to learn Standard Chinese, but i don't want to go to Beijing ㅠㅠ

        Ps- yes, I will be learning Chinese from a language teacher in Hangzhou. Heck, even my teacher at my University now is from Hangzhou! haha However, she speaks and teaches us standard Chinese. She actually told me she had to study in Beijing for a year to take a Standard Chinese proficiency test, or something like that so she could teach.

        5 years ago
    • While I’m not sure how mandarin is spoken in Hangzhou and whether or not it carries a strong accent, I suggest you should go there instead of Beijing. Like you mentioned, the pollution in Beijing is no joke, and besides, I imagine cost of living would be much higher there compared to other places. While I’m not sure if this is 100% true or not, but I’m fairly certain that the Chinese spoken in schools (unis too?) are standardised and don’t really have an accent, accents are mainly picked up from other influences. (I’m not 100% sure on this, while this was the case for me while I was studying near Guangzhou as the locals mainly spoke cantonese, a totally different dialect, I studied mandarin at school…)

      5 years ago
  16. When I was younger, I went with my mom to Ethiopia to visit some relatives. I thought that driving through the city was rough, and clung to my mom the whole time since it seems like anything goes there for driving. But then, one weekend, we went to visit some relatives in the countryside. For starters, the ride was rough because there were often patches of unpaved roads. But then at one point, we had to switch taxis and when I saw it, I refused to get in. Get this — THERE WASN’T A SIDE DOOR. My mom made me get in, and I sat in the back on the opposite side, crying because I was afraid I was going to die. And trust me, the fact that it was missing a door didn’t make the driver go any slower. T____T

    5 years ago
  17. I think most South East Asian countries have somewhat nasty traffic (maybe not Singapore and Brunei). I’m from Malaysia and I have grown up learning how to drive ‘aggressively’ just to not be bullied by other drivers, but when my foreign friends visit me, they always get a bit of a culture shock at the driving culture! I’m sure Malaysia’s traffic is very similar to Korean (from what I’ve seen), but from my travels, Indonesia/Vietnam are also culprits of incredibly crazy traffic! Here’s a link to a video I took when in Vietnam: http://instagram.com/p/i0MUJhLXn7/. I got honked for not simply crossing the road, they just expect you.. to GO.

    In terms of the air quality, I think that is also something very subjective. I never knew we had bad air in Malaysia.. until I came to the UK to study and was like WOW the air here is SO NICE! But even then, I am perfectly fine with the polluted air back in Malaysia everytime I go home… I think it just depends on how sensitive your body is but growing up in a slightly more polluted environment does somewhat affect your tolerance I guess.

    5 years ago
    • Oh man that would terrify me. I’m definitely too used to seeing people in the states use an intersection like that as a four-way stop, not everyone just crowd out at once.

      5 years ago
    • Are you sure those aren’t bump cars? O_o OMG Vietnam!

      5 years ago
      • Hahaha! I like that analogy! Bumper cars! LOL
        Yea… I seriously wonder why there wasn’t any traffic lights but there you go.. traffic of the world @[email protected]

        5 years ago
  18. Ooh, now this is something I can relate to! A couple of things I’d like to point out:
    Beijing has got to be the worst air quality in all the places I’ve been to in China. It’s right smack in the middle of mountains, so the smog literally sits on the city and doesn’t blow away. Air quality everywhere else, even Shanghai, is much, much better! I saw clear, blue skies in Shanghai since back in 2009! Beijing also has my vote for worst tourist city to go to in China, ever.
    For the nekkid men thing in China, sadly, it’s a cultural norm. It’s seen as normal during summer/hotter days to have men roll up their shirts and soak in the shirtless life. It’s one of my running jokes with friends that during dinners, especially hot pot dinners, the longer you stay, the more shirtless the men get. Hot+spicy+good food+beer=shirtless, cahorting men.
    Hahaha, there’s just this overall lawlessness when it comes to traffic in China. It’s better in smaller cities, but in general following rules suck. They don’t even let ambulances/police cars with flashing lights bypass them like they do in the US or in other countries. Funny you should mention that taxis in Beijing are still cheap, because they’re the most expensive out of all the municipalities in all of China (they start at a higher flat rate and increment more per unit distance). Back when I went in ’05 with my fam, the drivers even had devices to allow the meter to keep ticking even when the taxi wasn’t driving.
    As for those BLACK TAXIS, AH! They’re the sketchy kind of things you generally don’t want to get yourself into in China. Black taxis aren’t owned by a company (ahem, government) and are just people who use their own cars to run a driving business. They’re always much more expensive than taxis and you haggle for a flat price (I’d wager 5 times the price? more?) and while you could get a black taxi that does the deal, it still isn’t 100% reliable as there are always people who might want to take advantage of you getting into their car, if you know what I mean. I was unable to get to an obscure hotel in the outermost region of Beijing that I was staying in, as the taxi drivers weren’t willing to drive me there, but a black taxi did the job. I don’t think I would have gone on them if it weren’t for the two guys with me.
    As for the Russian girls thing, I think that in Northern China (my guess based on experience, as my family is all Southern China), being so close to Russia means that a lot of Russians take vacations there. I was in Dalian summer ’11 and my host family and everyone pointed out all the Russians to me, Russians who want to escape the extreme cold and get warmer weather (summer in Dalian is incredibly nice, 25C, because it’s an oceanside city). I’ve noticed that in Northern China, since there are so many Russians taking vacation/visiting there, that the default for the Chinese to think of a white person is Russian and not American, like it is more like in Southern China.
    When comparing Beijing to all my other traveling experiences in China (Shanghai, Hangzhou, Suzhou, Wuhan, Dalian, Shijiazhuang, Shangri-La, Kunming, Lijiang, and hopefully more in the future), I really, really, REALLY dislike Beijing. The smog already makes it suck, the overwhelming fake-ness that I feel when I go there. It’s so touristy and the students I’ve worked with are all bedazzled by the life abroad (“OMG you go to HARVARD?!” like only Harvard matters), and my favorite thing about traveling, cultural uniqueness, just feels so wrong to me in Beijing. Maybe it’s just what I feel for what once was, and what now is all for the sake of progress. Old Chinese houses, hutongs, were systematically destroyed for skyscrapers, etc. Everywhere else in China that I went to was much more peaceful than in Beijing, especially in Yunnan province which was so incredibly scenic and beautiful, for their preservation of ethnic minority culture and land. Those are just things I dig.
    I see you guys have had Peking duck, you lucky ducks. One of my favorites! There’s a famous-ish restaurant in Wangfujing that Bush went to for Peking Duck, though I have a Beida native’s account that it’s not even the best there, but regardless they’re epic to eat. Wrapped in delicious goodness!

    5 years ago
    • I’m conflicted in whether to study Chinese in Beijing or Hangzhou. I would personally choose Hangzhou but standard Chinese is based on the language of Beijing. Where would you recommend me in going since you’ve been to many different cities in China. thanks!

      5 years ago
  19. Ok, so hopefully i’ll be going to study Chinese in China next year as an exchange student. I am aware that it’ll probably be the best for me to go to Beijing since Standard Chinese is based on the language of Beijing. But, the crazy pollution there is totally making me not want to go there. My other option is going to Hangzhou Zhejiang University.Hangzhou is famous for their West lake, beautiful natural scenery and is way less polluted compared to Beijing. However in Hangzhou, they speak standard Chinese with their own regional accents. Since i want to become a Chinese teacher in the future, I’m so conflicted in what to do. Any suggestions?

    p.s Im not a native Chinese.

    5 years ago
  20. Though I live in the States, I usually visit my family in Beijing during the summer. I went to China last summer, but I didn’t experience any of what you did. However, I did notice that I couldn’t see farther than around 30 meters. Everyday my uncle would wash his car, and after a day, it would be covered in black dirt. The southern part of China, in areas like Yunnan, the air would be noticeably cleaner and the sky would be blue more often than the cities.

    The driving in China, as said, is pretty crappy, and a lot of screaming out of windows and honking is usually involved.They did say say that Beijing was “first to have traffic”, which is really just a play on the phonetics of “capital” in Chinese!

    And definitely, China has really good food, especially the Peking Duck!

    5 years ago
  21. Where I grew up it was very common to see shirtless men. Louisiana gets very hot and humid after all. Now that I live in Virginia though the only shirtless man I ever see is my boyfriend. Unless I go to the beach that is. However, at work today some man decided he didn’t want to use a dressing room and so just stripped his shirt in the middle of the store. Nothing like pregnant-man belly to start your day.

    5 years ago
  22. Nia

    I live in Ibiza and while most of the year is fine, as soon as may starts the traffic gets crazy. For example, taxi drivers, I might be driving at 100 km/h and they overtake me so fast they look like a blur. Then, there are tourists with rented car or motorbikes that have no clue of the driving rules or where they are going, so they its terrible to drive behind them, and of course the Ferraris, Porsches, etc that are too big and fast for such a small island.
    The polution is fine here, very low, but whenever I go to any big city I get sick because I’m not used to it.

    5 years ago
  23. I was in Beijing for 3 years and I just got back to Florida last month. I never had a problem with the air either *shrugs*
    I got asked once if I was Russian but he dropped it as soon as I told him I’m American. I didnt FEEL like it had any connotation but I could be naive.
    Anyway…I do miss Beijing. It was a second home to me. I’m from Florida so you can imagine my weather=DEATH!

    5 years ago
  24. When I go away to see my Spanish family even though I’m from England
    Well it kind of reminds me of this accept we get dry heat unless your near the coast we don’t suffer as much but I sympathise with you and the awful yellow dust but London kind of is like china when it comes to these sort of things but that’s the pollution on really bad days so I’m kind of used to the whole dust and pollution. If you think drivers in China were bad try Madrid
    You are taking your life into your hands literally inside a taxi they don’t have time to stop
    And also walking across roads unless you run … Well like I said run over or indeed dead by that point as none of the drivers have time even for older people

    Hope you guys read this and see what I mean

    5 years ago
  25. I live in TN, land of “if you don’t like the weather wait five minutes. It’ll change.” Shirtless guys (and sometimes brazen women) are pretty common the moment it gets warm. So about April, May you start seeing them. That’s about the time everyone comes out side. Let me tell you, you can see groups of shirtless men from about April to early October. And given the weather I can’t really blame them too much. When it’s 100 degrees Fahrenheit with 80 – 100 % humidity, you take off as much as you legally can.

    5 years ago
  26. Hey guyz :) I’m Mongolian .
    I lived in China about 1 year in small city 2 hours away from Beijing. i don’t speak chinese. If you are asian and don’t know chinese your are probably korean for them. all the time they said to me Hangook :P. In Beijing in market or in black market they know Mongolian people.

    5 years ago
  27. Hey! I live in Vegas. Here, it depends on where you are and what time of the year it is. Typically, in the casinos, you see a lot of shirtless guys because they are heading to and from the pool. In my neighborhood, I see the occasional guy (young) walking around without a shirt.

    The one thing that i do see a lot of though, are butts and boobs. I am not joking. Since it gets really freaking hot out and it feels like it goes from summer to (what we can only call) winter, it is normal to see shorts, tank tops, etc. BUT, it is taken to a whole new level when that sun is trying to burn you alive. Girls of (almost) all ages wear booty shorts and (sadly, I see this on young girls too) tank tops pulled low so their boobs are practically falling out. That mixed and really short dresses. I mean, yes, I will not deny that I own some short shorts, but at least my cheeks aren’t threatening to fall out.

    5 years ago
  28. I live in Vermont, and the drivers here are like too nice. Seriously. As a pedestrian, if I’m crossing where there’s a stop sign (like at a four way stop), most cars won’t go until I’ve crossed, even if I’m still like twenty feet away from the crossing, a distance where they could easily go and be out of my way before I even get there. And so whenever there’s a car stopped for me, I always feel this need to speed up so as not to inconvenience them further.

    5 years ago
    • Vermonters in the hizzouse!

      I work retail and every summer we have people coming in the store absolutely amazed that drivers actually stop for pedestrians. I spent a decade in Scotland, but only drove there once – that was enough! Having said that, England was far worse. I’ve never seen cars on ‘onramps’ stop before entering the M-what-have-you, people don’t understand how to pass, or drive in bad weather, and in a week of driving never figured out how the directions work on the highways. But I know how to do roundabouts, ha!

      5 years ago
    • Nebraska is like this, too. By law, pedestrians have the right-of-way and that law is definitely followed. If there is a person walking, the cars will always stop and the driver will signal to you that you can go first. Then the person walking will wave to thank them. At an intersection where there is a traffic light, everyone just obeys the signals.

      5 years ago
  29. Meg

    Hi! I live in Arizona where it is hoooooot hot HOT pretty much all year round. I lied, for 4-5 months its like living in hell but then it’s absolutely beautiful weather the rest of the year which is really quite lovely.

    ANYWAY, given how hot it is I’m actually really surprised I don’t see more men going shirtless since it’s not as frowned upon for a man to do it in public like it would be for a woman to do it. If I’m driving in a neighborhood I might see a man going shirtless if he’s doing yard work. Also I see a lot of guys (mostly young guys fortunately) who go shirtless when going for a run. But other than that I think it’s a pretty universal belief here in the USA (I’ve also lived in Chicago and Philadelphia so I’ve had a good mixture of different cultures and people) that it is not appropriate to go shirtless in public.

    5 years ago
    • i wish your statement of universally unaccepted shirtlessness in public was true….
      it doesn’t happen often, but there are some men who bike around the loop with nothing on top.
      and often….not a pretty sight!

      5 years ago
  30. I’m Chinese, but I was born in America, and every two to four years, I go to China with my parents to visit extended family, and it is TORTURE. I’m not very close with my grandparents and other relatives, so visiting them really is very much of a formality for me, but the climate and culture in China just really makes me mad sometimes. In my grandparent’s hometown (which is very close to Bejing), there are plazas that you literally can’t see across because of the pollution. Because I always have to visit in the summer, it is also so hot, and the sun is like a death ray trying to fry anything that lives on the face of earth. I end up just trying to stay in my small room huddled in the corner with the AC on trying not to die from mosquito bites until I can leave.

    5 years ago
  31. Hahaha my friends visited Beijing a long tine ago and the only part i ever was told about it was how many crop top old men there was! And how they made a game of “who could find more”. So your comments made me laugh and remember their trip XP

    5 years ago
  32. I am always so fascinated every time you guys discuss topics about other countries probably because its so different from where I live.

    Here on Long Island I don’t really see guys shirtless everywhere. The only time is when they are exercising, swimming, or maybe washing a car on a really hot day. Thinking about it, I guess it does happen a lot but it’s usually young teenagers rather than old guys rubbing their bellies XD.

    The air here is also really good compared to Beijing’s but I’m not so surprised since we don’t have too much pollution or anything like yellow dust. We are also surrounded by ocean so it gets humid here and really hot during heat waves which makes everyone feel hot, sticky, and gross. Thank goodness for the beach!

    I can now proudly say that the driving and traffic here is absolutely great. People do follow the traffic lights and I rarely hear people honking their horns. We have had car accidents but I only know of three from where I live. There are also some people who are some sort of bicycle trainers and they ride on their bicycles with a helmet on along with the cars, so I guess you can say it’s pretty safe on the roads. In addition, children (well 10-15 year olds so I guess teens?) also bike and walk around by themselves to the local market and other stores during the daytime and walk to school if it’s close. I’m not too sure if this applies to all of Long Island but it does in my small town.

    Thank you guys for making this TL:DR once again you have taught me more about different places in the world :D. Ah, it sounds really scary to drive in Beijing but then again it can apply to most big cities. Can’t wait to watch the WANK about the food!

    5 years ago
  33. As regards the air quality in Beijing, does this mean China still has not embraced emissions controls and other industrial pollution control measures? Also, does everyone there smoke or is that a stereotype? As for shirtlessness, here on Long Island, the ancient beach custom is for the fattest men who can still waddle, in an ode to beached whales everywhere, to expose the blinding whiteness of their continent-spanning guts. You haven’t lived till you’ve seen it.

    5 years ago
    • The only emissions control I know of is that there is a rule with license plates and whether or not you can drive that day. My uncle was telling me that on any given day, only cars with license plate numbers that start with a particular set of number (even or odd for example) or letters can be on the road. They have a lot of traffic cameras and despite the huge population and enormous amount of people, my uncle says he’s been caught a few times and got fined. So that says a lot about privacy, huh? But besides that, I’ve never heard of any other effort to reduce pollution.

      5 years ago
    • LOL, living on Long Island, I totally know what you mean. It’s not a beach trip unless there are old men waddling across the sands with their huge hairy bellies.

      5 years ago
  34. in germany you dont get to see mans nipples unless its about 30 degrees or higher

    5 years ago
  35. I’ve been to Shanghai for 10 days once, and the pollution wasn’t nearly as bad as what you described. I didn’t have any problem breathing or get any pains even though I did not wear a mask at all. Maybe it helps that it’s closer to the sea so there’s wind coming from there? Or maybe there’s just less pollution altogether, I don’t know.

    As for shirtless-ness, I live in Finland, and here in summer guys might not wear a shirt when it’s hot, but I’ve never particularly seen them patting their bellies or scratching or anything like that.

    5 years ago
  36. Haha I am too familiar with “Windsor-d”. I grew up there and I’m actually heading back home tomorrow for a few weeks – for family and a field course through the University. I’ll be sure to alert you if things have changed (I’m betting no). I’ll see a lot of it, actually, as I’m doing water testing on Lake St. Clair and Detroit River so PRIME location. *shudder*
    Any favourite haunts you want an update on while I’m down? Other than The Loop, obvi (I feel like that could have been your scene!)

    5 years ago
    • Oh – and Windsor drivers are pretty terrible, too! But I’m sure it pales in comparison to what you’ve experienced!

      5 years ago
  37. Oh my god Driving! I used to live in Egypt and the driving there is HORRIBLE! It takes serious skill to not die everyday! Its the same as you said in Beijing, there are suggested lanes but nobody cares about those. People fight over parking spots, and will leave someone to stand in the spot to save it while they get the car, more often then not though, car wins over human and another car gets the spot! Also people are constantly double parking or even triple parking! its illegal yes but the police can’t do anything about it! so you better have a driver to fend off other people from blocking you in, or to drive around the block 50 times until your finished doing whatever! its serious madness is Egypt, and Indian drivers are also horrible! In Dubai all the taxi drivers are Indian and my sisters and I used to pray for our lives getting into a cab! they don’t stop for lights, or pedestrians, and don’t use signals or anything its horrible…

    5 years ago
  38. Well In France People don’t show their nipples ! Ecxept at the Swimming Poll There guys Show Evertything they can ! No belly slapping Here !

    5 years ago
  39. I’ve been to Chengdu (which is farther in China) before. It hurt to breathe when I first arrived (mainly in Shanghai) but after a couple of days, I didn’t really notice it. The one time I did notice a huge difference in air quality was when my friend and I went to LeShan – a mountain that has Buddha carved out of it. The large amount of trees really made the difference. You could see farther as well :)

    I was stared at a lot too…but I think that was because foreigners were not as common in that area of China. That and my friend is tall and blonde. We got asked if we would take pictures with random people as we walked around.

    Buses and traffic were both terrifying. I was really glad that sky bridges were built to cross roads because cars don’t really pay attention to pedestrian crossing signs, or you know any kind of road signage.

    5 years ago
  40. Oh jeez, air quality in Beijing is…..Not good. Not good at all. orz;; I appreciate the clean, fresh air in Sweden that much more now. I always have, but after watching the TL;DR I went and looked at photos and yyyyiiikees. That’s pretty gross. How can people live like that!?

    Oh boy, shirtless men… It’s not common but it’s not rare here, either. It’s usually old shameless guys or hot young men. It never happens in the city, though. Just in the suburbs or country side. ^^;; Nudity isn’t that big of an issue here, but everyone–myself included–is very reserved and don’t enjoy being stared at. I think I said it before when you had Disqus on here, but I’ve seen my neighbor butt naked too many times than I ever wanted to. OF course, nobody would ever dare go around completely naked!!! Just in his yard. Crinkly old man butt cheeks….Welcome to Sweden.

    5 years ago