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Old 16th June 2008, 14:30   #91
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We definitely tend to mistreat waiters and service people
You know what scares me most in India Shankar?

That the people who work the hardest, get the least amount of respect in India and those who don't need to work get the most. I don't know why!

Another anecdote - a bit off-topic.

I have a cook and a cleaning bai. Every morning they ring the doorbell and fly straight into the kitchen. One does the dishes and the other cooks. Till date I have never greeted them or said thank you while they left.
It seemed unnatural.

I was made completely ashamed of this fact when Jenny stayed over. Every morning she would open the door with a bright "Good Morning" to the help. While leaving, she would take them to the door with a bright "thank you, see you tomorrow!"
When I would open the door and let them in quietly and grumpily, like I do in the morning, she would ask me what was wrong with me, why did I not smile and say good morning to the washing lady? I had no answer. I've never done it!
So I had to start doing the same thing too, otherwise hear another lecture from Jenny.

You know, the first day you should have seen their faces. They were shocked.

By the second day, their attitude had already changed and they had these huge smiles at the door, while leaving.

But the greatest surprise of all came from the cleaning lady, the bai who washes the bathroom and my vessels, who i've never really spoken to...

When she spoke back to Jennifer in perfect, grammatically correct English. Educated, HSC passed to boot.

I've learnt my lesson. Time to be polite to all service staff, regardless of position.

Back to you guys and your super discussion.
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Old 16th June 2008, 14:37   #92
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You know what scares me most in India Shankar?

That the people who work the hardest, get the least amount of respect in India and those who don't need to work get the most. I don't know why!
This is correct. There are societies around the world who are far more efficient than the Japanese viz Vietnam. But they are not equally prosperous and do not have the meteoric rise of Japan. There is the avg citizen of mumbai who is extremely hard working and has been so since his/her childhood. The avg farmer of India is far more industrious and hard working than the farmer of US or Japan who sits in a/c combined harvesters.

But not all sections prosper with hard work, efficiency and ethics equally. This is where geo-strategy and geo-politics plays their part. Countries are bound to be closer to those countries and entities that control flow of capital because of their control of currency.
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Old 16th June 2008, 15:20   #93
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I have a cook and a cleaning bai. Every morning they ring the doorbell and fly straight into the kitchen. One does the dishes and the other cooks. Till date I have never greeted them or said thank you while they left.
.
Must have been the hangovers.

Careful about that woman, Mr Kapasi, she's trouble, she is getting the servants to discriminate against you
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Old 16th June 2008, 16:42   #94
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I've learnt my lesson. Time to be polite to all service staff, regardless of position.

Back to you guys and your super discussion.

I make sure that our office boys, security get their due respect on job. Every morning a small good morning shall bring cheer to their lives. And when we invite them to our small celebrations in our office, they feel pretty good in heart.

I learnt it the good way in my college days, where in during our final semester, we made sure that the lab assistants are all invited to the small celebrations and they do take part in it. Once I saw tears in a gentlemans eyes during this function. I was very much moved by it. After all they are also "humans" and they do deserve some respect. They take all the pains for us kids to get thru the lab tests so that we are "successful" engineers and we ought to respect. Thats wat I believe
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Old 16th June 2008, 19:46   #95
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So there is some proof that civilization spread westerward from the East.
pardon my ignorance, but are we discussing aryan invasion or aryan retreat?

Sam, very well put. This is the reason we indians are known to be less communicative. we do a lot of estimates of status before we even start speaking to somebody. and then comes the question of deciding between 'aap' , 'tum' or 'tu'.

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Old 16th June 2008, 20:33   #96
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pardon my ignorance, but are we discussing aryan invasion or aryan retreat?
we are discussing there is no such thing as Aryan.

there used to be an ancient Arya (nobility) which meant people of noble bearing. The Europeans later turned this on its head and made it into a mythical group that came from Europe (near Urals) and spread culture among dark-skinned India. They said upper-castes were Aryan and lower-castes were Dravidian.

In the Divide and Rule policy this was another wedge in the society. This set the ground for a lot of Indians thus sucked up to the Brits hoping they would be accepted. They ltr became the elites after the Brits left.
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Old 16th June 2008, 21:35   #97
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Giving respect to people like maids, waiters etc. is only half of the solution.

It is also linked with economy. Imagine, one day your maid comes to your house driving a Honda. I'm sure you then don't need to show her respect, she will automatically earn your respect

That's why in developed economies, everyone is treated in a similar fashion. Good news is that they way India's economy is progressing, in next few years time, we may see this in reality.

Contrary to what some BHPians say, I do feel that Indian society often encourage discrimination! Just see how a tiny fraction of brides/grooms wanted ads mention "Caste no bar".

Discrimination is in people's mind. Educated people just hide that with their sophisticated behavior. Illiterate people can't hide their original feeling and express very easily.

The root of all the discrimination discussed here, comes from the perception that Indians are poor compared to their western counterparts and won't give them enough tips etc.

So, it ultimately translates to more money you have, less discrimination you face.

Bit off topic, but if you ever observe how some celebrities behave with com
mon public in India and in overseas (Europe/N.America etc.) you'll be surprised. An average fan is dealt with a much better respect abroad.

Last edited by sbasak : 16th June 2008 at 21:37.
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Old 16th June 2008, 22:42   #98
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Never heard of a BJP book of history. But the Aryan invasion was just a theory made by some European guy (not even a historian) which found the fancy of lot of people and it spread. There is not even an iota of historical proof for the Aryan invasion theory.
Apparently Max Muller was paid by the Brits to interpret our scriptures in such a way that the ruled people develop an inferiority complex and would see the gora as a 'saviour' of sorts. If you destroy the self confidence of the people, isn't it easier to rule them? You destroy the confidence, you take out their will to fight, you rule them forever!

And also with the Aryan Invasion Theory, if the Brits were successful in showing that Aryans were outsiders and 'ruled' India, the Brits could paint themselves in the same colour and say 'Hey we are just like the Aryans, they invaded, we also invaded. They were supposed to be fair skinned, and we are fair skinned.' They also propogated the theory that North Indians are 'different' from South Indians. What better way to disunite the country?

Coming back to the topic, yes I find Indians are discriminatory. As somebody mentioned we discriminate on the basis of caste, religion, wealth and a 1001 other things. The west may not do so, atleast overtly. Outwardly they are very polite.

One thing from personal experience is that the west is polite but cold. The east(atleast India) is impolite but warm. No I am not talking about the weather in east or west. In the west we get to hear a lot of "hello, how are you", "thank you", "have a nice day" etc etc. But if you are in some trouble, people don't care and they just move on. If you want directions from a store, you have to buy something, they won't tell it to you for free. Nothing is for free. You have to pay even for frikkin water.You could be dying but you have to show the $ bill before they pour water in your mouth. 90% of the people don't know who their neighbours are and couldn't care less about it. I guess they have a need to be polite since the society is not very strong. If you have people who are cold and impolite the society wouldn't last long would it?

In India, yes people are rude no doubt about that,but we are much more warmer. We know not only our neighbours, but people 10 streets away. There is more of a feeling of community and "we" instead of just "me" as in the west. Yes we may not say "hell how do you do" and "thank you" to our maids and servants, but we give them leftover food, loan them some money(for free is needed) if they have some emergency, give them Diwali/(insert your festival) bonus, give away old cloths to them, give their kids books to read etc. So we don't say "thank you" and "have a nice day". Big deal? We show by action not words that we care. In the west, its just words, no action. They wouldn't care less if you drop dead the next day. You are just a commodity and will be replaced the next day.

I think what happens is people from India go to phoren and see "hello how are you", "have a nice day" etc and come under some sort of spell by seeing all this new politeness and forget to notice the ice cold interior below this politeness.

I am not saying that this impolite behaviour is good or ok. If we could just say thank you to people who help us, its a small thinkg we can do to bring a smile to their face. It would be nice if Indians could be more polite as well. But then warm and polite, you are asking too much from us yaar. We are rude and we discriminate and we are impolite, but we Indians are like that onlee .

Ofcourse this is from my personal experience and observations.

Last edited by Centro-P : 16th June 2008 at 22:45.
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Old 16th June 2008, 23:10   #99
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... One thing from personal experience is that the west is polite but cold. The east(atleast India) is impolite but warm.
Gosh, while reading this thread in the morning, I wanted to go back home and write a reply, but you stole all my words

Very true - the warmth is much better than the plastic smiles that stay on the lips for a fraction of a second and disappear. I remember some instances of western party hosts who say 'Ooooh, you should have stayed for the rest of the party, thanks for coming' with complete lack of feeling that would make an Indian ashamed of going there in the first place.

And yes, as Indians, we tend to discriminate in favour of our family, extended family, friends, our locals, our state people and so on because we are society oriented. Not necessarily a good or bad thing, but since we tend to build invisible bonds easily, we tend to give preference who is already in such a bond.

Our maids and workers often work with us for years and even life times - as compared to a strict formal hour based jobs that the west has.
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Old 16th June 2008, 23:45   #100
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Till date I have never greeted them or said thank you while they left.
It seemed unnatural.

I was made completely ashamed of this fact when Jenny stayed over. Every morning she would open the door with a bright "Good Morning" to the help. While leaving, she would take them to the door with a bright "thank you, see you tomorrow!"
Sam, you are kali peeli feeling ashamed. Thanking people for doing what is expected is not our culture. Let's not be ashamed of it.

In fact I was very surprised to see the mutual thanking culture within families when I first visited the west. Yeah, yeah, I had seen it in movies, but didn't think people behaved like that in real, you know, thanking all the time. I can't recall a single instance of me thanking my parents or them thanking me for anything. I am not ashamed of it and neither are they.

It is a standard protocol in the west. A fellow passing by might smile and say "hello, how are you doing?" without pausing for an answer. Fresh visitors from India often stop to tell how they are really doing there by breaking the protocol and cause mutual embarrassment. Eventually they learn to smile back and say "I am fine, how are you?" without a pause only to get back a "doing Ok" response. I too learnt this protocol and now use it on unsuspecting Indians in India.
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Old 17th June 2008, 02:23   #101
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And yes, as Indians, we tend to discriminate in favour of our family, extended family, friends, our locals, our state people and so on because we are society oriented. Not necessarily a good or bad thing, but since we tend to build invisible bonds easily, we tend to give preference who is already in such a bond.

.
well, be the receiving end of such a discrimination and you immediately will begin to hate this system.
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Old 17th June 2008, 08:55   #102
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well, be the receiving end of such a discrimination and you immediately will begin to hate this system.
Correct, and I am saying discrimination is the bad side of a good thing. And yes, there have been instances where I have been discriminated against, and whenever possible, I do hit back than keep mum.

One of the commonest things that happens is that the new person I go to meet starts speaking with the focus on a friend who would accompany me because he is very fair complexioned, while he has nothing to do with the business. I will need to gently force the person to speak to the brown skinned guy.

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Old 17th June 2008, 09:46   #103
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It is a standard protocol in the west. A fellow passing by might smile and say "hello, how are you doing?" without pausing for an answer. Fresh visitors from India often stop to tell how they are really doing there by breaking the protocol and cause mutual embarrassment. Eventually they learn to smile back and say "I am fine, how are you?" without a pause only to get back a "doing Ok" response. I too learnt this protocol and now use it on unsuspecting Indians in India.
Yes, I do it too, often! It is great fun to smile at or say hello to a stranger and walk on. More often than not, you can see the completely confused look on the Indian stranger's face, he/she is thinking "Do I know him? Where do I know him from? Was he smiling at me?"
Great fun!
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Old 17th June 2008, 10:03   #104
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One thing from personal experience is that the west is polite but cold. The east(atleast India) is impolite but warm.
I feel like standing up and saluting you Centro. An awesome post and an excellent point.
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Old 17th June 2008, 10:17   #105
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you said it!
Social inequality is an EVIL.
And I totally agree that the most deserving ones invariably have a hard time of it, whereas the least deserving types seem to get everything handed to them on a platter!
Very sad but possibly one's Karma has something to do with that!
cheers

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Originally Posted by Sam Kapasi View Post
You know what scares me most in India Shankar?

That the people who work the hardest, get the least amount of respect in India and those who don't need to work get the most. I don't know why!

Another anecdote - a bit off-topic.

I have a cook and a cleaning bai. Every morning they ring the doorbell and fly straight into the kitchen. One does the dishes and the other cooks. Till date I have never greeted them or said thank you while they left.
It seemed unnatural.

I was made completely ashamed of this fact when Jenny stayed over. Every morning she would open the door with a bright "Good Morning" to the help. While leaving, she would take them to the door with a bright "thank you, see you tomorrow!"
When I would open the door and let them in quietly and grumpily, like I do in the morning, she would ask me what was wrong with me, why did I not smile and say good morning to the washing lady? I had no answer. I've never done it!
So I had to start doing the same thing too, otherwise hear another lecture from Jenny.

You know, the first day you should have seen their faces. They were shocked.

By the second day, their attitude had already changed and they had these huge smiles at the door, while leaving.

But the greatest surprise of all came from the cleaning lady, the bai who washes the bathroom and my vessels, who i've never really spoken to...

When she spoke back to Jennifer in perfect, grammatically correct English. Educated, HSC passed to boot.

I've learnt my lesson. Time to be polite to all service staff, regardless of position.

Back to you guys and your super discussion.
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