These days it seems many people of Asian ethnicity all around the world have impeccably strong palates for Western foods.
McDonalds, KFC, Pizza Hut and various other Western restaurants are frequently packed during meal times in Asian countries. “Potato parties” have recently become a fad in Japan and South Korea, so-called parties where groups of young people order obscene amounts of fries and eat them all in one sitting at fast-food joints. Much love for fries.
Asian girl (me) extremely happy she gets to eat McDonalds. Photo: Sue C.
Many Asian international students and Asian-Australians here in Australia also seem to possess Westernised palates. It is not uncommon to see them ordering fancy smoked salmon and poached eggs on multigrain toast or bircher muesli along with their coffee at upmarket cafes for Saturday brunch and kebabs for dinner later. What happened to having yum cha or sitting at round tables dining at Asian restaurants?
“Your Arts degree is useless. You studied the wrong degree, made a very wrong decision there. You finished your degree, and you still can’t find a job. Should’ve studied something like commerce or dentistry. Like your brother. Maybe he can get you a job.”
That’s what my mum says to me all the time. It’s no secret she fawns over my brother who studies something science-related, holds a respectable office job and has completed Grade 8 piano as opposed to me who, well, is a free spirit.
Males tend to be regarded as the smarter, more reliable and more dependable sex in Asian cultures. Drawing: Mabel Kwong
It’s also no secret in Asian cultures that males are regarded as the supreme sex. The so-called almighty, smart, know-it-all, responsible sex. Many Asian parents prefer having boys over girls and shower infinite adoration over their male offspring.
How do Asians define success? What does success mean to an Asian person?
For different Asians living in different parts of the world, success crops up in various forms.
Success in general is hard to define. For some, success is coming in first in class or landing that dream job. For others, it is finishing an entire 12-inch pizza by themselves. But to put it simply, success is considered personal achievements, achievements sometimes influenced by society’s expectations .
Asians living in Asia and Asians living in Western countries usually define success differently. Drawing: Mabel Kwong
Long-held Asian beliefs and customs are at very the heart of livelihoods in many parts of Asia. The mentality of success here, also usually shared by the older Asian generation, tends to be steeped in Asian traditions.