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myHK: Don’t apologize to me!

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Meeting new people in Hong Kong comes with the territory. Possibly due to the denseness of Hong Kong and the somewhat open mindedness of expats living away from their home countries.

However, on countless occasions over my time here, I have had people ask me questions like, “When were you last in the States?” or
“Where in America are you from?”

I then go on to tell him or her that I’m actually Canadian, which is followed by the inevitable apologies.

“Oh, I’m so sorry!” they say. As if they just called me a mutant or something.

It’s particularly funny when this apology comes when I’m standing next to my American wife…

I tell them not to worry about it and the conversation goes on.

Now, I’m definitely not naive to the fact that American politicians have done, and continue to do despicable things. However, those actions in no way represent each and every American. Obviously!

Having gone to university in the States, I can honestly say that I have never met nicer people in my whole life. Walking on and off campus you are constantly greeted by strangers with, “Hellos!” and “Have-a-good-days!”. It’s refreshing to see such kindness and consideration from people that live near you, for no other reason than just being nice.

As a lone Canadian on my university football team, on many occasions I was invited into my teammates’ homes to celebrate Thanksgiving, Christmas and other days. The warmth that I received was so appreciated, yet completely normal to them.

So, understand that when I’m mistaken as an American, it’s nowhere near an insult to me.

Canadians in particular preach such enlightenment, about being open to change and acceptance of others. However, they are so quick to play the stereotype card against their southern neighbours.

To me, Canada is no longer a representative of what a ‘green’ and ‘peaceful’ nation stands for. But, I’m not going to say that I think Canadians are bad people. Obviously!

This reminds me of how Canadians are well known for putting Canadian flags on their backpacks while traveling in fear of being mistaken as American.

Talk about pandering to the ignorant!

To me, this is just as stupid as wearing something specific to announce that you aren’t gay or aren’t a pot smoker in fear of being judged.

Can’t these people stand up and say, “I want to be judged for me!”?

They plaster that Canadian flag on their bodies hoping that it will help them be treated more kindly, by the type of people that judge and discriminate against others based on their appearance, aka, assholes.

Well I say, “Screw these people!” I’m not going live in fear of what random people may think I am. I’m going to be me, and if you don’t like it… that’s… just… fine…

I’d love to hear what you think in the comments below!

Liking and sharing would be SooOO appreciated!

Have the best weekend!

Mr.J

4 comments on “myHK: Don’t apologize to me!

  1. Sean Earl
    January 17, 2014

    Thank you for articulating my exact thoughts and feelings, Mr. J. I have been an expat Canuck for 20 years now, and learned to tire very quickly of this attitude. Again, well said.

  2. Mr.j
    January 17, 2014

    Cheers Sean! And thanks for reading!

    I’ve had a bit of a debate on Facebook about this. But tough to argue against the fact that individuals should be treated as such

    MrJ

  3. expatlingo
    January 24, 2014

    Yes, I spotted some of the very Canadians you mention at the airport in Phuket last spring. With Canadian flags stitched prominently on their matching backpacks (insert eye roll): http://expatlingo.com/2013/04/13/damn-smug-canadians-or-were-they-americans/

    Or maybe they were Americans pretending to be Canadians?

  4. Mr.j
    January 24, 2014

    Yes! Who knows where they were really from! It’s anyone’s guess…;)
    I’ll check your link now.
    Thanks for stopping by!
    Mr J

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This entry was posted on January 17, 2014 by in myHK.

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