Friday night, I went with some of the other teachers in the English department–two foreign and two Chinese–to a bar/music venue to see some bands play. We were invited by some friends of ours who are in a band called The Vernons. The members of the Vernons are all expats from the US, but the other six bands were Chinese. The music wasn’t great (lots of emo song covers and stage-antics), but the performances were high-energy, so I had fun anyway.
My friend Wendy “Beefcake” was there! I introduced her to the other Chinese teachers who hadn’t met her yet.
I’ll go ahead and introduce the two Chinese teachers since I’ll be talking about them a lot…
Rachel: Very sweet, a few years younger than me, a Business English major at a university in Guangzhou. I mentioned her in a previous post and added that I think we’ll be good friends. She’s actually an intern at my school, not an English teacher. She has a desk in the English office, so I lump her in with the rest of us. She’s new to Foshan like me and doesn’t have a lot of friends yet, so she was happy to go with us to the rock show. She was also a bit apprehensive because she had never been to a bar before.
Maggie: Also very sweet, dainty, shy, a keen observer, about five years older than me. Bars and loud music are not Maggie’s cup of tea, but Rachel used her magic powers to convince her to come out. As soon as we sat down, I glanced over at Maggie and recognized a look of slight shock on her face. Maggie thought Wendy was crazy.
And she is. Beefcake Wendy is nuts. A total social deviant by Chinese standards.
As soon as The Vernons were done playing their set, Wendy begged us all to go next door with her to the bigger and louder bar/club called Lazy Papa. She was a bartender there for three weeks and has super insider perks now. From that point on, the night took a crazy turn. Renae, Michael, and I, the only foreigners in the place, were treated like celebrities. People were constantly coming up to us and trying their hardest to befriend us. Everyone wanted to clink glasses and buy us more beverages. I would turn around and my beer mug would be full again. One guy poured too quickly and got beer all over me. I wasn’t too upset about it but he looked like he wanted to die. He produced a bunch of tissues as a peace-offering.
All the attention was exhausting, especially because of the language barrier AND sound barrier. I could hardly hear myself talk, let alone comprehend any Chinese. One girl insisted that I come back to her table and meet her other friends. WHAT A MISTAKE. I got caught up in one of the number games that I’ve heard tales about. It’s a drinking game and I don’t know any of the rules. It looks a lot like Rock/Paper/Scissors. I lost almost every round. Then they brought out the dice and wanted to play the dice game that I’ve also heard tales about. I drew the line there and the girl called Renae over to rescue me.
I don’t know if I want to go through that again.