Superman syndrome

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  1. #1

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    Talking Superman syndrome

    With the success of our 'Bumping into People' thread, where we're bashing locals for being unable to walk in a straight line, I'm starting this thread which I call 'Superman syndrome'. So in that thread, aussiegal made a point:

    Quote Originally Posted by aussiegal:
    ...It's all in good fun. We could start on about the failings of another group... How about expats who play at being rich when they are in HK, because you can, all the while they'd disappear right back into middle class back home.. You know the ones...

    I think it's a great point we all should be able to laugh about. I'm completely open to the fact that I feel like Superman at times (take it with a bit of humour please) here because I'm a tall, muscular and blond ( ). I kid you not, besides people obviously 'wanting' to bump into me on the street, I also get the other side of the story, and that is people who are extremely respectful and curious. The girls always blush, giggle and flirt at work and always want to squeeze me and call me mr strongman, the boys at the gym always stare in curiosity and awe (which I need none of), and the list goes on.

    But when I go back home to my country. What do I get? Well, the food is thrown on the table at the restaurants disrespectfully, like as if I've caused them great trouble. All in all, I just blend into the stew of people going about their things. Just an average bloke in an average place. What happened to all the people staring and wanting a piece of me? Superman has lost his cape. Subdued by kryptonite.

    If you can't relate to this, you're missing out on a unique experience. I hope you take this with humour, because it's meant to be, although there's some seriousness in all this madness. I'm no pompous expat who believe he is any better than any local passing me on the street. But it's an experience. It's something special to sometimes feel like superman. Being different than the average.

    Discuss.

  2. #2

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    I've gone to leaving parties and said farewell to people returning "home" only to see them back in Hong Kong, or another part of Asia, having been unable to adapt to 'normal' life again.


  3. #3

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    >> I just blend into the stew

    In my case, as an Indian, I blend into the curry.

    Even in the most generic situations, I stand out more than others... "that Indian guy who lives in block 8". White, Black, Brown or blended, as a minority you stand out. How you deal with that is up to you. Many Indians I know use it negatively ("they discriminate against us"), I tend to use it and abuse it to my advantage.


  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by KnowItAll:
    >> I just blend into the stew

    In my case, as an Indian, I blend into the curry.

    Even in the most generic situations, I stand out more than others... "that Indian guy who lives in block 8". White, Black, Brown or blended, as a minority you stand out. How you deal with that is up to you. Many Indians I know use it negatively ("they discriminate against us"), I tend to use it and abuse it to my advantage.
    It's useful when post is wrongly addressed. They just know it is for the gweilo in block XX whatever it says on the envelope.

  5. #5

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    Yes to the gym thing. I am, at best, medium sized at home but I get all sorts of looks in the gym. Usually it isn't me, it's the weights getting the look because nobody will mistake me for the Governor of California. But it is like they have never seen anyone lift so much.
    BTW the kryptonite-fearing Superman isn't blonde, so you might consider some dye next time you step into the phone booth. And then you will also stick out when you are home.


  6. #6

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    Fatness is what I notice. Here I feel like an elephant. Like the others, I'm pushing weights bigger than most of the blokes in the gym (i'm a chick) and when I stand there in a pump class and look in the mirror I'm just so much wider than the rest of them! Quite depressing really. In shops the assistants automatically reach for XXL sizes....
    Then I go home. (Or go to America, now's that's a laugh) and its the best diet known to man. Take one 8 hour flight and go from fat to thin! In AUstralia I can buy "small" sized clothes, the people all around me are bigger than I am and I can go to the gym and look skinny compared to many around!


  7. #7
    A-J

    At first it does feel like that but after a few years you get used it and even the IFC2 doesn't look that special anymore. Enjoy (bare) while you can, after awhile you won't feel that strongly about it in either good or bad way.


  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by MovingIn07:
    Fatness is what I notice. Here I feel like an elephant. Like the others, I'm pushing weights bigger than most of the blokes in the gym (i'm a chick) and when I stand there in a pump class and look in the mirror I'm just so much wider than the rest of them! Quite depressing really. In shops the assistants automatically reach for XXL sizes....
    Then I go home. (Or go to America, now's that's a laugh) and its the best diet known to man. Take one 8 hour flight and go from fat to thin! In AUstralia I can buy "small" sized clothes, the people all around me are bigger than I am and I can go to the gym and look skinny compared to many around!
    I had forgotten how truly fat Americans can be until I flew home last year. Some of the guys trying to wedge into seats have serious problems.
    Saw in the paper that the Chinese kids are second only to Americans in terms of weight--will the competition between these two countries ever stop?

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Master:
    The girls always blush, giggle and flirt at work and always want to squeeze me and call me mr strongman, the boys at the gym always stare in curiosity and awe (which I need none of), and the list goes on.

    But when I go back home to my country. What do I get? Well, the food is thrown on the table at the restaurants disrespectfully, like as if I've caused them great trouble. All in all, I just blend into the stew of people going about their things. Just an average bloke in an average place. What happened to all the people staring and wanting a piece of me? Superman has lost his cape. Subdued by kryptonite.

    This particular aspect of the Superman Syndrome pretty much explains the Wanchai Syndrome (or the Asian Disease in general). And in a similar vein to what Claire said, what my mates have observed is that if you don't get out of Asia after three years you probably never will...

  10. #10
    A-J
    Quote Originally Posted by ScotchDrinker:
    This particular aspect of the Superman Syndrome pretty much explains the Wanchai Syndrome (or the Asian Disease in general). And in a similar vein to what Claire said, what my mates have observed is that if you don't get out of Asia after three years you probably never will...
    nice observation! i was in a crisis and wanted leave hk after 3 years then i made some expat friends and now roling my 8th year and have no plans of leaving.

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