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(Metro)   You cross your legs and the next thing you know, you insult a whole country   (metro.co.uk) divider line 336
    More: Amusing, Iran, Swedish, Ahmadinejad, diplomats  
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24590 clicks; posted to Main » on 11 Dec 2012 at 1:32 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-12-11 08:30:36 PM

meanmutton: Germany didn't attack the US; we attacked them.


Maybe some old Merchant Marines around who would argue that with you.

/prolly win too
 
2012-12-11 08:44:56 PM
Proud of the foots feet:

www.theargonath.cc
 
2012-12-11 08:54:33 PM

rynthetyn: Keizer_Ghidorah: rynthetyn: The fact that Ahmadinejad pointed his foot away when he crossed his leg suggests that he was aware that the Swedish dude didn't know any better and was demonstrating that he didn't take offense. But go ahead and continue with the anti-Iranian, anti-Muslim sentiment.

In any case, the Swedish diplomat really should have known better, showing the bottoms of your feet is insulting in so many places in the world that it's usually better to be safe than sorry and someone who's a professional diplomat should know that. It's just as offensive and insulting in a number of non-Muslim countries, including Thailand, and it's bad form to not be careful about it. That's basic etiquette.

Of course, it's only insulting if you let it insult you. Maybe humanity could grow up, develop thicker skin, and stop finding things to be offended at.

Because you never ever get offended by people doing things that are considered rude in America.


Only if you let them offend you. Words have no power over you until you allow them to. Actions that don't directly affect you don't need to make you angry or hurt.
 
2012-12-11 09:40:05 PM

armoredbulldozer: BigNumber12: armoredbulldozer: Lots of interesting alleged cultural taboos. Don't give a man from China a clock for a gift either.

Or a green hat.

Link

The following items are to be avoided as they are associated with funerals: Straw sandals, clocks, handkerchiefs, four of any item [the Cantonese word for "four" sounds similar, in the same language, to "death"], gifts or wrapping paper in white, black, or blue.


Correct, and a green hats are associated with being a cuckold.
 
2012-12-11 09:41:51 PM

The_Sponge: BigNumber12: whidbey: BigNumber12: ...aaaaaand "the type" is so afraid of someone out there in the world calling them a bigot that they go to great lengths and practice spectacular mental gymnastics to avoid being seen as even remotely critical of someone else's culture.

You two should go have coffee together and discuss the upcoming nationbuilding.

I really don't know why I bother. Refute something I said. Anything. Until then, later.

Don't bother is right....whidbey is famous for claiming that opposition to Obama's healthcare policy is racist, but he offers no proof. It's very childish.



It feels like trolling, but he puts so much effort and anger in that it ultimately comes across as sincere.
 
2012-12-11 09:58:40 PM
Please don't let this have been an American who did this, please don't let this have been an American who did this

*clicks link*

For once, ah, thank goodness.
 
2012-12-11 10:36:25 PM

LeroyBourne: JackieRabbit: So I guess unzipping and scratching my bass is out. Good to know.

[25.media.tumblr.com image 500x341]
[24.media.tumblr.com image 500x340]
just keep that fish in your pants sir!


NICE REFERENCE.
 
2012-12-11 10:40:13 PM
Sweden has envoys?
 
2012-12-11 10:40:14 PM
Yeah let's pretend that their culture is the only one that has old idiosyncrasies and a list perceived social insults that no one could anticipate unless raised within that culture. Let's pretend.

Part of diplomacy is understanding and getting past these unintentional errors.
 
2012-12-11 10:48:23 PM
Oh .I do love this site.

/if not for the PUR love of instilling i t
 
2012-12-11 11:19:41 PM

StashMonster: signaljammer: H31N0US: Who doesn't know that exposing the soles of your feet is considered an insult in most of the Muslim world? 

No merde!

//my pet hate--White boys from Naperville
//who suck directly on the chillum. 

//I think it is more of an Arabic thing than a Muslim thing. I don't think this is a problem in Philippines.


Actually the documentary I saw it on showed some SE Asian country, don't know which one.


Thailand and Laos for starters, a big no no. It is not just a Muslim thing.
 
2012-12-11 11:35:41 PM
The action goes against the custom of some Muslim countries, which considers shoes unclean because they are 'closer to the ground, closer to the devil and farther away from God'.

csb -I knew people in college who slept on the floor because they were closer to the earth when they did that.

They may have been hipsters but at least they weren't Muslim.
 
2012-12-12 12:00:41 AM
I submitted a funnier headline, about a different story on a different topic. So, I'm also offended by something.
 
2012-12-12 01:51:58 AM

ChipNASA: NEXT TIME go with this.....

[www.whoaorno.com image 750x563] 
[4.bp.blogspot.com image 700x530]  
[i.imgur.com image 600x450]


before going to bed i thought i would browse the thread. started feeling sad that people had to relate this back to something in the US instead of laughing at the pettiness. the i scrolled to the pictures and couldn't stop laughing. thank you sir!
 
2012-12-12 03:51:33 AM

signaljammer: H31N0US: Who doesn't know that exposing the soles of your feet is considered an insult in most of the Muslim world? 

No merde!

//my pet hate--White boys from Naperville
//who suck directly on the chillum. 

//I think it is more of an Arabic thing than a Muslim thing. I don't think this is a problem in Philippines.


It would be a problem in much of Asia; in India, as well, this would be considered inappropriate. Just like somebody belching at an official dinner in the US or Europe.
 
2012-12-12 04:02:52 AM
And by the way, crossing the feet wasn't the problem. The problem was crossing it in a way so that his sole was visible. If he had done it the other way round (left foot over right knee), it wouldn't be an issue.
 
2012-12-12 04:47:59 AM
Don't remember which country one of my coworkers was from, but somewhere in the middle east. He said it was terribly offensive in their culture for someone to visibly yawn. I occasionally did it without thinking and he was shocked if he saw it. He was a pretty nice guy though, just shocked at odd stuff. I knew the thing about soles of the feet, as apparently that is an insult in India, too. However most people don't call others unfamilar with their culture out on it, as foreigners generally don't know.
 
2012-12-12 05:27:24 AM

Rich Cream: Crossing your legs is a sign of familiarity and is informal. It's casual, not dignified. Improper and unseemly. It's that way in your own culture too but you too ignant to know that.


It really isn't.

Rich Cream: Same as crossing your arms. Rude body language.

/enjoying all the knee-jerking


I think you're confusing "indicative of something" with "rude."

A man crossing his legs while conversing with another may be a sign that he is comfortable with himself and the situation. Folding one's arms may be indicative that they are uncomfortable. Neither alone are rude or offensive in any modern culture. Context matters to people who don't make a living of pissing and moaning about everything.
I do give you props for at least pretending that the Victorian era hadn't ended, though.
 
2012-12-12 06:53:38 AM

Keizer_Ghidorah: Cyclometh: Keizer_Ghidorah: Of course, it's only insulting if you let it insult you. Maybe humanity could grow up, develop thicker skin, and stop finding things to be offended at.

Is this where we get to gore your sacred cow?

Hell, go ahead and make some steaks, tri-tips, and hamburger out of my sacred cow. I'll get the seasoning salt and ketchup.



Now you have offended me.

BigNumber12: armoredbulldozer: Lots of interesting alleged cultural taboos. Don't give a man from China a clock for a gift either.

Or a green hat.


Does that mean they have been cuckolded? Or was Noble House full of shiat?
 
2012-12-12 07:54:44 AM

thamike: A man crossing his legs while conversing with another may be a sign that he is comfortable with himself and the situation.


That is a sign of familiarity. Exactly what you say I'm not saying.

In other languages there are familiar ways of addressing someone and proper ways. Not Victorian, just etiquette.

/still exists
 
2012-12-12 08:15:15 AM
I always go ape shiat when someone tries to 'Fist Bump' with me, or speak 'urban' because I'm black.

How insulting! I keeps it real, son, fark that shiat.
 
2012-12-12 08:28:20 AM

sprawl15: Two16: sprawl15: CheekyMonkey: sprawl15: whidbey: We reconstructed Japan and Germany after a war.

This.

We didn't build the nation, we reconstructed it. HUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGE difference.

I'm sure you fancy yourself quite a witty chap, but to the rest of the world, the fact that you can't even be bothered to learn the terminology of world history & politics makes you sound like a dunce. You are akin to a Creationist who doesn't even understand what a scientific theory or the Scientific Sethod is, but insists that Intelligent Design is science.

ID is far more scientific than that idolatrous worship of Darwin's corpse. It tries to find out how and why God did a bunch of interesting and beautiful things while neo-Darwinists just say CHANCE DID IT LOL.

You know how I know you don't understand the scientific method?

I understand it just fine. Notice that you just result to silly personal attacks instead of addressing the points. It's just like a neo-Darwinist to poison the well before any attempt at rational discussion with them.


9/10 for the whole thread. great work.
 
2012-12-12 08:48:54 AM

SpikeStrip: A furious Mr Ahmadinejad returned the gesture and also crossed his legs 'in response to the impoliteness of his interlocutor

OH SNAP!


In his anger, I hope Ahmadinejad crushed his own balls just enough to give himself a little wave of nausea that he had to endure stoically for the remainder of the exchange.
 
2012-12-12 08:52:08 AM

whidbey: Seriously, that's got to be the weirdest farking "insult" I've ever heard of.

Of course, I live in a first-world country, and like many of my fellow countrymen, ignorant of other cultures.


A friend just got back from Tunisia. Apparently, public space there and public space here *work* the same, but are viewed differently.

Here. it's public space, it doesn't belong to me. It belongs to us. We share it.

There. It's public space. It belongs to ME just as much as it belongs to anyone else, and if anyone wants to argue with me throwing my trash on the sidewalk I'm going to start a farking riot.

It's the little things that make big differences in the way the wheels turn in various cultures.
 
2012-12-12 09:00:21 AM

liam76: CheekyMonkey: Culture isn't stupid, it's COMPLETELY arbitrary. In some cultures, burping after a meal is a sign of respect for the chef, in others, it's considered vulgar. Is either interpretation empirically correct? NoSo you would never say it is "correct" to treat women as equals?You wold never say it is incorrect to treat women as chattel and never allow them to show their face in public.YOu would say the differences between countries that do and do not do that are "arbitrary"?


I see your point, and would separate out human rights issues like the ones you've raised from the bulk of culture, which is arbitrary. Things like the issue in TFA are completely arbitrary, and there is no right or wrong (why is is OK to be insulted by a raised middle finger, but being insulted by the sole of someone's foot is somehow "stupid"?).
 
2012-12-12 09:11:17 AM

Gyrfalcon: Being Ahmandinejad, he'd find a way to be insulted if nothing had happened.


I am curious. Why do you think that exactly?

Myself I am pretty sure he wasn't insulted in the slightest, but rather "doing his thing".
 
2012-12-12 09:20:24 AM

meanmutton:

Germany didn't attack the US; we attacked them.


That's factually incorrect.

http://www.ncmuseumofhistory.org/collateral/articles/S08.When.World.W a r.II.Was.Fought.Off.North.Carolina's.Beaches.pdf

I know Americans aren't generally aware of it, and it wasn´t really in the news because of the condition of the US navy at the time (ie. being unable to do shiat about it).

But fact is that Germany declared war on USA, and then proceeded to attack USA.
 
2012-12-12 10:07:13 AM

child_god: I always go ape shiat when someone tries to 'Fist Bump' with me, or speak 'urban' because I'm black.

How insulting! I keeps it real, son, fark that shiat.


What's a Nubian?
 
2012-12-12 10:46:14 AM

CheekyMonkey: liam76: CheekyMonkey: Culture isn't stupid, it's COMPLETELY arbitrary. In some cultures, burping after a meal is a sign of respect for the chef, in others, it's considered vulgar. Is either interpretation empirically correct? NoSo you would never say it is "correct" to treat women as equals?You wold never say it is incorrect to treat women as chattel and never allow them to show their face in public.YOu would say the differences between countries that do and do not do that are "arbitrary"?

I see your point, and would separate out human rights issues like the ones you've raised from the bulk of culture, which is arbitrary. Things like the issue in TFA are completely arbitrary, and there is no right or wrong (why is is OK to be insulted by a raised middle finger, but being insulted by the sole of someone's foot is somehow "stupid"?).


I think you're confusing Culture with Etiquette. Culture is the collective personality of a society. Etiquette is the manifestation of that personality as a codified score-card of morality.

Culture is a consequence of humans living together and is typically a collaborative effort.

Etiquette is usually the consequence of a powerful or influential person or groups of persons deciding that there is only one "right way" to throw a party. Most western etiquette is just upper class twits' ideas about how to be identifiable as upper class twits, and more importantly about a way to identify lower class twits at a glance.

Oh ho ho, he picked up his fork firs, and behold! his cutting motion lacks the surgical precision and erudite subtlety of an aristocratic slice.
 
2012-12-12 10:50:27 AM

CheekyMonkey: liam76: CheekyMonkey: Culture isn't stupid, it's COMPLETELY arbitrary. In some cultures, burping after a meal is a sign of respect for the chef, in others, it's considered vulgar. Is either interpretation empirically correct? NoSo you would never say it is "correct" to treat women as equals?You wold never say it is incorrect to treat women as chattel and never allow them to show their face in public.YOu would say the differences between countries that do and do not do that are "arbitrary"?

I see your point, and would separate out human rights issues like the ones you've raised from the bulk of culture, which is arbitrary. Things like the issue in TFA are completely arbitrary, and there is no right or wrong (why is is OK to be insulted by a raised middle finger, but being insulted by the sole of someone's foot is somehow "stupid"?).


You can only define "culture" by its differences to other "culture". I don't think you can say that the "bulk" of the differences people notice aren't human rights issues.

And still this issue isn't "arbitrary". You can't have people sitting comfortably at a round dinner table, at restaurants, at bus stations, etc if you are going to get butthurt when you see someone's foot pointed at you.
 
2012-12-12 10:54:49 AM

BigNumber12: whidbey: BigNumber12: The action goes against the custom of some Muslim countries, which considers shoes unclean because they are 'closer to the ground, closer to the devil and farther away from God'.


Grow the fark up, you children.


Yes, they're not people, they're "children" to you. How enlightened of you. This is why nationbuilding fails, BTW.


Yes, we should fall all over ourselves to accommodate every last superstition they hold, and accept whatever retaliation they deem just if / when we screw up. Feeding their superstition = enlightened, if one goes by your book. Just like the actual Enlightenment, which cherished and maintained all of those precious Middle Age customs, right?

Pardon me for expecting a nuclear weapon-seeking world leader to behave like a reasonable adult.


When I see a spider in my house, I smash that farker dead.

When I see a spider outside, I am in the spider's house. And I leave it be.

Oh, how did I become such a backwards fool!? I was so careful!

/agreed that Ammadinnerjacket is just being thin skinned because... it's what he does.
//But it's disturbing how this thread immediately turned into "There are people who find something insulting that I find silly! Therefore they are superstitious, goat-herding, backwoods sand-yokels!"
///what side of the plate do you put your spoon on when you set your table?
////How high off the ground is the hem of your tablecloth, and how much space is between each table setting?
 
2012-12-12 10:59:59 AM

Keizer_Ghidorah: Crossing your legs and showing the soles of your feet are intolerable insults?

Yeah, sorry people, but some things are actual insults and some things are infantile overreactions, and these fall squarely in the latter category. Imagine if blinking too many times in one minute was a grievous insult, or not screaming the lyrics of a Justin Bieber song when you enter and exit someone's home was a grievous insult. You'd think those were ridiculous, too.

Also it's a good idea to NOT assume that everyone else in the world knows everything about your culture and then react petulantly when they commit a faux pas that they didn't know existed. Smart people do this amazing little thing called EXPLAINING.


Crossing your legs at your ankles is rude in Japanese offices. The problem here isn't the rule. It's the reaction to an outsider violating that rule. In most cultures, a level of acceptance is afforded to non-members as a sort of grace period. Arab countries, at this particular moment, and for reasons that should be more or less self evident, are wound up tighter than a frogs asshole. Go figure.
 
2012-12-12 05:34:17 PM

BeesNuts: //But it's disturbing how this thread immediately turned into "There are people who find something insulting that I find silly! Therefore they are superstitious, goat-herding, backwoods sand-yokels!"



No, the point was that the retaliation (if that's what it actually was - see discussion upthread) was totally out-of-line for a National leader and professional diplomat, when a simple, quiet correction (or downplaying-by-imitating, again, see upthread) would have been the polite, professional way of handling what was obviously not a deliberate insult. The emphasis on the local/superstitious nature of the "insult" was intended to highlight the fact that this is FAR from a universally-known insult, and therefore, one that could easily be made without awareness. 

So, again... if this was retaliation, then come on, grow up and act like a reasonable member of the diverse world community. If he was duplicating the gesture in order to downplay and "excuse" it, then that was nicely done, points to him.
 
2012-12-12 08:21:09 PM

Rich Cream: thamike: A man crossing his legs while conversing with another may be a sign that he is comfortable with himself and the situation.

That is a sign of familiarity. Exactly what you say I'm not saying.

In other languages there are familiar ways of addressing someone and proper ways. Not Victorian, just etiquette.

/still exists


You said in "your culture too" which I am assuming meant American culture, where it is absolutely not unseemly nor taboo for a man to cross his legs in the presence of another of any stature or in any formal or casual situation. If it ever was standard etiquette, it certainly isn't now. That is not to say "f*ck the Iranians and their customs." I was just taking issue with the smackdown you thought you had going on. A smackdown about etiquette, no less.
 
2012-12-12 08:38:16 PM

thamike: You said in "your culture too" which I am assuming meant American culture, where it is absolutely not unseemly nor taboo for a man to cross his legs in the presence of another of any stature or in any formal or casual situation. If it ever was standard etiquette, it certainly isn't now. That is not to say "f*ck the Iranians and their customs." I was just taking issue with the smackdown you thought you had going on. A smackdown about etiquette, no less.



Look at it this way. You go for a job interview. When seated across from the interviewer do you lean back and cross your legs? Probably frowned upon. Why? But what if the interviewer does it? His position would allow it more than the interviewee's but it would still be improper.

And if a "diplomat" practicing "diplomacy" can't do something like sit up and act in a dignified manner then he's not good at what he got hired for.
 
2012-12-13 05:30:58 AM

Rich Cream: Look at it this way. You go for a job interview. When seated across from the interviewer do you lean back and cross your legs? Probably frowned upon. Why? But what if the interviewer does it? His position would allow it more than the interviewee's but it would still be improper.


It really is not frowned upon. If you personally think it's offensive for you to cross your legs at a job interview (not sure where the "lean back" part came from or signifies in regards to this conversation) then by all means, sit erect with a stark chess piece face and speak only when spoken to. The rest of us will proceed to conduct our cross-legged 21st century selves in a manner befitting a business culture that is on first name basis and wears jeans on Friday.

And again, I wasn't referring to a diplomat making cross-cultural gaffes. I was checking your snide declarative statement regarding American leg status quo. As for the gaffe at hand-- It's OK to call the Swede insensitive and the Iranian overly sensitive, you know?
 
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