I write better when I smoke. Don’t ask me to reduce it to a science.

Flying Dutch(wo)man

She called us ‘fucking lazy,’ and she got put on the first flight out of the Philippines. Yay!

The hurrah-for-patriotism and down-with-rude-foreigners rhetoric aside, we really ought to seriously think about why these foreigners think of us this way (I guess it’s one thing to call ourselves fucking lazy, and it’s another to have some foreigner point out the exact same thing). Not that we should actually lose sleep over it, but in the interest of self-improvement maybe a slap in the face is not the worst thing in the world.


Filed under: musings, pop-culture, ,

6 Responses

  1. BrianB says:

    Not lazy but siguristas. We don’t move until we know we’ll get something out of it. This is true in all classes.

    And routine work isn’t really our thing. Kind of like Italians and South Americans. Koreans, Japanese and Chinese are great at routine work.

    And ROM, I’d rather be slapped in the face by a fellow Filipino than a foreigner. I will ignore her comment completely even if it’s true. Call it reverse-reverse racism, since everyone else is always looking for suggestions from abroad.

  2. cvj says:

    At one time, the Japanese, Koreans and even the Germans were also thought of as lazy. As per H.J. Chang’s Bad Samaritans:

    In his 1903 book, Evolution of the Japanese, the American missionary Sidney Gulick observed that many Japanese ‘give an impression..of being lazy and indifferent to the passage of time’

    After her tour of Asia in 1911-1912, Beatrice Webb…described the Koreans as ’12 millions of dirty, degraded, sullen, lazy and relgionless savages…


    Mary Shelley, the author of Frankenstein, wrote in exasperation after a particularly frustrating altercation with her coach-driver: ‘the Germans never hurry’. It wasn’t just the British. A French manufacturer who employed German workers complained that ‘they work as they please’.

    Once the economies of these people took off, that image was replaced. The impression of ‘laziness’ is a function of one’s economic development, rather than the other way around.

  3. Jeg says:

    we really ought to seriously think about why these foreigners think of us this way

    That’s one sociopathic foreigner. ‘Foreigners’ dont think of us this way. Ive been all over and Pinoys are always praised by their colleagues for their dedication and skill. Our skilled workers, professionals, and sailors are still in demand overseas.

  4. cvj says:

    Jeg, as an OFW myself, i think that impression of ‘dedication and skill’ is because of the economic success that we have achieved as a sector that enables us to become providers. When i was not yet an OFW i.e. when i was still working in the Philippines, i worked with the same dedication and skill as i have today. That validates H.J. Chang’s thesis that i referred to above. The perception of dedication and skill comes with success more than the other way around.

  5. BrianB says:

    CVJ, that’s a very good point. can you blog about that?

  6. cvj says:

    Ok Brianb, will put that in the queue.

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