July 24, 2006

are we rude and unfriendly?

There was an international poll conducted recently and Malaysians were voted as one of the rudest and most impolite peoples of the world. The local papers put it on the front pages. The Prime Minister released his thoughts and I'm afraid I have to agree. We are quite badly behaved especially to each other. I've mentioned before that customer service is a foreign concept and racial harmony is something we only talk about. Tough love? I don't know.

However, I was out today and spent a couple of hours with a good friend I hadn't seen in ages. This, of course, took precious time away from my camera pleasures but who cares really? I had a wonderful time. On my way home, I was stuck in the rush-hour traffic. Sitting in my car, listening to Dinah Washington telling me about makin' whoopee, I fished out my camera and just started clicking (practice purposes). Then I noticed the guy in the car next to mine was waving and posing for me. I wound down my window as did he and here is the result.

So, we may be one of the worst people to deal with but sometimes we like breaking the mold and thus showing the warmth that is associated with the people of my country, Malaysia. Home never meant so much till now.


Blogger ~tanty~ said...

How lovely. I don't think Malaysian people especially you are the rudest and most impolite people of the world.

7:19 PM  
Blogger Grant F said...

I'd never considered malaysians to be rude or unfriendly, quite the opposite. I wonder how they judge customer service...surely not be the over-the-top US standards, which can be every bit as annoying as bad service. The worst country for service I've been to is Russia by a mile!

7:51 PM  
Blogger Sally said...

Don't worry, edwin: sydney-siders came up as rude and unfriendly in the same survey. I think it must have been very dodgy, eh!

8:02 PM  
Blogger Mile Stones said...

Ed, your great text has shattered an illusion, that was clearly created by the advetising bizz. I was only recalling it a few days back. You know these image-ads that cost zillions, often for airlines, and appear on channels like BBC World, CNN,SkyNews, etc? Well, one such not long ago was for MAS, with the hook line: "Malaysia, Truly Asia", all soft-edged, beautiful flight attendants full of grace, charm & eternal patience. I flew MAS once & it was very good, left a good impression of how the society must be. Then Edwin comes along & blows it all away. Turns out it's just like all those places where we're all ready to kill each other for the sake of a parking place!!!
On the good side, your photo & that part of the report goes a long way towards restoring the damage. Great once-in-a-lifetime moment & shot! (Did you blow him away when the lights changed?)

9:47 PM  
Blogger Lisi said...

is that really so? Malaysians don't rank in the "rude" scale to me ;-)

9:53 PM  
Blogger Ame said...

HEY! His steering wheel is on the WRONG side of the car! HOW RUDE! LOL!

Great little story & capture...and I bet it's just shyness...yeah, that's it...besides, who conducted that survey ANYWAY!?! ;-)

Still doing great Mr. Eddie! Absolutely could have devoured those orchids...and how did you know, that is my FAVORITE color combination!

You keep GOIN' GUY!

OH! PS: I'm not sure who did that UCSC red sculpture...but I'm heading off to find out right SEKARANG!!!

10:06 PM  
Blogger twistedzero said...

Well, I have never been to Malaysia, but all of the Malaysian I've met so far was very nice. So as for my surver, Malaysian are nice and friendly.

12:54 AM  
Blogger Natalie said...

Oh well, sometimes people come off as rude. But there are always nice and friendly people out there. I like the picture.

4:04 AM  
Blogger Pamela said...

I think I would have assumed shyness rather than rudeness. Even if it is rudeness, there may be a kind of honesty in it, say as opposed to us British who appear polite (well we used to be), saying please and thank you all the time and yet never mean a word of it!

4:11 AM  
Blogger Mile Stones said...

Edwin, as I've been locked out of my own blog (back to Nowhere!), or Blogger's got a problem, I came back here to reply that the Tall Ships Race and the surrounding events yielded a weekend haul of 610 pictures on my SD mem.card (excluding deletes)- an out-of-this-world weekend! So you can understand that what with heavy workload & plenty of etcs, been no time to get a shortlist of 4 to post. Patience guy, it'll come later...see you there, if I can get in there myself.

4:12 AM  
Blogger Juggerpix said...

Sounds like other countries polled needed someone to pick on (or they had never been to New York).

It's always fun to find people who want to play along. Life is too short to be grumpy!

4:14 AM  
Blogger John said...

Excellent, I love that sort of shot - spontanaity rules! Oh and Edwin stop being so rude you ?(98*(#$R6kj $7895$11@!!!!&U5c vkj! idiot!

6:56 AM  
Blogger Lucy said...

Hey, I thought New Yorkers, especially Brooklynites, were the rudest...
this guy looks like a piece of cake - pretty mellow and the nice red car, too...

9:00 AM  
Blogger santy said...

That's really interesting. I don't know many Malaysians, but I know you're not rude and impolite. And the guy on the picture seems very nice. He looks like a Japanese tourist with his two fingers like that :)

9:26 AM  
Blogger Passante said...

I've visited Malaysia and I had a wonderful time. I would visit again anytime.

Parisians and New Yorkers (and probably other city/country dwellers that I can't call to mind right now) are said to be rude. No doubt some of them are. Anywhere you go, there are going to be rude people. But that doesn't mean that everyone there is impolite.

I found Malaysians charming and warm.

10:04 AM  
Anonymous anne said...

I don't agree that Malaysians are rude and unfriendly. Have visited Malaysia a couple of times and always find people there very hospitable and warm. I wonder where did that notion come from!

10:34 AM  
Blogger edwin s said...

It's good to know those of you who have visited Malaysia were treated well and with courtesy. It would be a shame otherwise. But there have been complaints albeit a handful, enough to spark an interest by this poll that deemed us so rude.

There have been instances when locals are seen to be very rude to each other. Tourists, of course, are treated well but we see how salespersons snap at locals, not many people offer to open swinging doors for a mother with a child in tow instead choosing to rush through the doors, nearly knocking her down... the list goes on.

Maybe we are shy, who knows. People are people selfish or otherwise. Times are changing though and with that, i smile knowing there will be better days.

thank you all for being the kind souls that you are and on behalf of the tourism ministry, thank you for enjoying your visits.

11:32 AM  
Blogger Kris said...

Great post! a rare friendly face..hahahha! usually i'm muka masam also 'cos of stress (excuse, excuse :p)

i think we are in the shy category! when we were young, noone has offered to open the door for us (except hotel lah) so how could we have learned even this basic ettiqutte? (spelling?)

4:12 PM  
Blogger Kala said...

peace haha I did not notice this - very kewl and ppl pics always rank!

4:54 PM  
Blogger edwin s said...

Jugger, New York ranked as the most courteous city!!!

1:57 AM  
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Blogger dean said...

I am from Lisbon but work with a Conglo. here in malaysia. in my opinion Malaysians are damned dumb, timid and outrageously unfriendly. Most of them think that friendliness is beaming so never-near-to-the-heart smile. its more than that. Social life here is damned at the lowest ebb of modern existence. They al seem as shy as the cats hovering everywhere inthe streets and Oops!

6:30 PM  
Blogger ALISON said...

I have to agree with you Dean , Malaysians are so damn rude , dumb and unfriendly , i am a foreigner too!!!

9:45 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I'm a foreigner living in Malaysia.. I like it here, but whenever I have guests coming from Europe, they are always surprised how unfriendly the people are. The driving style is super aggressive as well. The day to day people that you might encounter on the street aren't rude, just blah..... niceties aren't part of the culture here, don't expect hello, goodbye, please, thank you....

2:01 PM  
Blogger Nena said...

I am Australian, living in Malaysia. Extremely unfriendly and rude country. Just to mention driving, getting to the public transport, waiting in lines, pick pocketing on the trains, food out of date in supermarkets...

9:32 AM  

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