The Taiwanese Are the Most Apologetic People in the World

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The Taiwanese Are the Most Apologetic People in the World

Postby jimipresley » Thu Nov 01, 2018 19:23

What do people think about this article?

http://www.bbc.com/travel/story/2018103 ... pologising

It's most certainly not my experience. Maybe it happens more in areas outside of Taipei?
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Re: The Taiwanese Are the Most Apologetic People in the World

Postby Big Vern » Fri Nov 02, 2018 07:48

I also found parts of this article surprising so discussed them with some Taiwanese colleagues. Supposedly, people do say bu hao yi si when they receive a gift. It's the equivalent of "You shouldn't have!". I have never heard a cacophony of bu hao yi si when I'm on the MRT, and I don't hear my students saying it. However, perhaps I'm just not listening properly.

I've always thought that bu hao yi si was the lowest form of apology, but this article seems to imply that it's much higher. I dunno, perhaps someone who understands the culture more than I do could chip in?
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Re: The Taiwanese Are the Most Apologetic People in the World

Postby Kal El » Fri Nov 02, 2018 09:57

Yun-Tzai Lee and Joanne Chen are one of those sickening couples that finish each other’s sentences, lace their fingers together and just won’t stop oozing adorable. But the three little words ‘I love you’ don’t come as easily to Lee as they do to his fiancée Chen. His face turns beetroot-red at the thought of uttering the phase, and causes him to feel ‘buhaoyisi’ (pronounced ‘boo-how-eee-suh’) – one of the many ways to feel mortified or to be sorry in Taiwan.

“Most people here will feel this way,” Lee said.

Twatwaffle! Maybe with old people, sure, but certainly not "most people". :twocents:
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Re: The Taiwanese Are the Most Apologetic People in the World

Postby cfimages » Fri Nov 02, 2018 10:03

Not my experience. Most of the bu hao yi si I hear is usually in a situation where we'd say "Excuse me" in English. Not so much apologetic , just trying to get off a crowded bus or grab someones attention.
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Re: The Taiwanese Are the Most Apologetic People in the World

Postby Kal El » Fri Nov 02, 2018 10:05

Big Vern wrote:I also found parts of this article surprising so discussed them with some Taiwanese colleagues. Supposedly, people do say bu hao yi si when they receive a gift. It's the equivalent of "You shouldn't have!". I have never heard a cacophony of bu hao yi si when I'm on the MRT, and I don't hear my students saying it. However, perhaps I'm just not listening properly.

I've always thought that bu hao yi si was the lowest form of apology, but this article seems to imply that it's much higher. I dunno, perhaps someone who understands the culture more than I do could chip in?

It's an all use word. Pardon me. Excuse me. Sorry. The situation feels awkward (我覺得有一點不好意思). I hear it all the time, or in many situations interchanged with pāi-sè.
That said, it doesn't support the article at all, unless the entire English speaking world is also "forever apologising".

cfimages wrote:Not my experience. Most of the bu hao yi si I hear is usually in a situation where we'd say "Excuse me" in English. Not so much apologetic , just trying to get off a crowded bus or grab someones attention.

Exactly.
Don't talk to me about naval tradition. It's nothing but rum, sodomy and the lash.
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Dr Kurt Langstrom

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Re: The Taiwanese Are the Most Apologetic People in the World

Postby sandman » Fri Nov 02, 2018 12:59

Oot ay me fuckin' way, ya bampot. That is the correct translation. Perhaps "want a square go, bawbag? Come ahead if ye think ye're hard enough." Or maybe, "sorry mate." "Ah'm no yer feckin' mate. Wantin' chibbed?" Just as well that here in Taiwan you only have to utter "Nnnngh" to exit the MRT. Makes life much easier.
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Re: The Taiwanese Are the Most Apologetic People in the World

Postby jimipresley » Fri Nov 02, 2018 15:38

I take the MRT a lot, and I've never heard a single "bu hao yi si", to me or to anyone else. I get it occasionally at the Family Mart when one of the cashiers is a bit tardy. And also, rarely, from an overworked waitron at a restaurant.

I never hear Taiwanese people saying it to each other as matter-of-factly as the article suggests. :idunno:
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Re: The Taiwanese Are the Most Apologetic People in the World

Postby Big Vern » Sun Nov 04, 2018 18:08

The weird thing is I've been listening out for bu hao yi si for the past couple of days and I'm hearing it all over the place. I've seriously not noticed it in the past - perhaps because it's never said directly to me.

The thing is, though, it's no different to "Excuse me". When I ask someone I don't know a question in the UK I always start with Excuse me. If someone is in my way, or I am in their way, I will say Excuse me.
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Re: The Taiwanese Are the Most Apologetic People in the World

Postby Kal El » Sun Nov 04, 2018 23:53

Big Vern wrote:The weird thing is I've been listening out for bu hao yi si for the past couple of days and I'm hearing it all over the place. I've seriously not noticed it in the past - perhaps because it's never said directly to me.

The thing is, though, it's no different to "Excuse me". When I ask someone I don't know a question in the UK I always start with Excuse me. If someone is in my way, or I am in their way, I will say Excuse me.

Exactamundo! :thumbsup:
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Heathen filth, the lot of you.
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人不可貌相,海水不可斗量
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