Right, I just have to ask you. Is it wrong that I get excited by the Syed and Christian romance in Eastenders? Friday night, Christian (the fit gay lover boy) said to Syed’s Muslim mother:
” I want Syed back. And I am gonna get him. “ He-he-he.
Have been thinking, after the posting on the lack of smiles for expat+harem , that there is another quite interesting issue that emerges from the whole non-smiling topic.
You see, I said that Azeri girls did not smile to waiters and taxi drivers because they were supposed to act all shy and aloof with men in general. But then I thought actually, no. It is not just that.
You see, they could also be ignoring waiters and taxi drivers because to them, those guys are servants.
There is one major difference between the UK and back home. It is in how our rich people present themselves.
It is in every little detail.
When I had a baby, friends gave us gifts, flowers and cards. One of my friends, originally from Kazakhstan, brought a very generous gift. She was clearly very pleased with it. It was a beautiful little dress of a perfect shade of light pink.
There was just one small problem with it. The exquisite material had BABY DIOR carved into it. All over.
It was like that little dress was shouting into your face: “Look at me! I am a BABY DIOR dress! BABY DIOR! In case you have missed it all over my front, there are more letters on the back, too!”
There was simply no way I could put that dress on my child.
The worst part was that I knew my friend had probably spent a lot of money on that dress. She probably thought she was being generous and fashionable. Of course, it was a designer item!!
You might ask how is that story connected to the servants issue. Let me explain.
You see, the main driving force behind both the Baby Dior dress and ignoring the waiters is this overwhelming desire to show everybody just how rich you are. So you buy flashy clothes, presents with designer names all over them and drive fancy cars. But also, you act arrogantly towards all those that you consider servants, and therefore, below you.
Arrogance often comes in a package with money back home. You might think fine, that’s just some nouveau riche bastards. Yet, there is another, more pathetic category. People who are not rich but would really like for everyone else to think they are. Treating taxi drives, waiters and shop assistants like servants who don’t deserve a smile or a thank you is just an ex-Soviet, chushka attempt to appear rich and powerful.
Acting difficult to please would come straight after being rude.
Just what is this place, a McDonald's? Oh, this waiter has not got a clue, has he? Oh, please, you call THIS sushi?
And back in my Baku days, I, myself, might have not smiled to waiters. I don’t even remember. I probably would have never even noticed just how rude some of my friends acted in restaurants or shops. It is only these days, having lived in the UK for a long time, and having got used to everyone being obsessive about manners that I notice the difference. And it becomes painful to watch. I sit next to a wealthy friend of mine from back home in a restaurant, and I want to whisper to her: “Say “thank you!” please!” like I would to my four-year old. I wish I could explain to her just how arrogant and chushka she looks, despite all her effort to act cool. But I know there is no point. Who am I to teach her, an important rich lady, how to speak to servants?