The Chinese and their love of spitting.

Essay by Keir October 2005

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The claustrophobia incurred staying inside these four walls here in Beijing is heightened by the constant noise from outside; buildings 24/7, screaming kids, and above all, the guards. Guards, shouting, marching, spitting. Everybody spits here, but it still gets some getting used to see men in uniform show such a lack of propriety.

It goes more than that. The need to remind oneself that we are only animals seems to be the prevailing thought here; an ideology that has now replaced communism as a reason to continue with the fascist regime ruling. Making a noise as you drink is the done thing among Chinese intelligensia. Other bodily noises in this country include spitting wherethe Chinese are proud holders of the world champions in bringing up snot from the back of their throat and disposing it on the pavement, classroom, train floor or wherever, and the aptly-named snot-rocket wherein they place one finger of a nostril and exhale with a fierce blow the snot in the other nostril.

It just struck me after hearing another spit that it seems like the government is intentionally striving to keep its people stupid through its ingenious employment scheme. My flat provides two examples of this. For example, outside any building, be it my apartment, an embassy, or the local massage parlour, there will be a guard all dressed up smartly in their uniforms and for the most part standing straight a s a rake. You would think as you go past one to get a haircut that the establishment is patronised by the Queen. At all times there is at least one at the door, with perhaps one or two loitering around the parking lot. Going past him, you enter the door opened by a special security card and proceed to the lifts where...