Apparently this list has been circulating on the internet since Kane met Able and despite the risk of pissing some people off I thought I might repost it here. Some of it is slightly funny and some too close to my own experience. Anyway, you know you’ve been in Taiwan too long when…
1. You can order the entire McDonald’s menu in Chinese.
2. You decide it makes more sense to drive a motorcycle instead of a car.
3. More than one garment has been ruined by betel-nut spit.
4. More than one garment has been ruined by salty sweat stains.
5. More than one garment has been ruined by food grease.
6. Someone doesn’t stare at you and you wonder why.
7. You look both ways before crossing the sidewalk.
8. Hsiaohsing Wine tastes good.
9. You turn left from the right lane, no matter how many lanes there are.
10. 20 degrees feels cold.
11. You see three people on a motorcycle and figure there’s room for two more.
12. “Squid” sounds better than “steak”.
13. You don’t notice the smell.
14. There are more things strapped to your motorcycle than you’d ever put in a
15. Looking at a dog makes you hungry.
16. You stop conjugating verbs.
17. You speak fluent Chinglish.
18. You drive on the shoulder to pass traffic.
19. The main reason you stop at a 7-11 is to buy tea eggs.
20. You expect a Chinese New Year’s bonus.
21. Firecrackers and garbage trucks don’t wake you up.
22. You spend two hours and a fortune to eat Western food.
23. You can distinguish aboriginal languages.
24. Your family stops asking you when you’ll be coming back.
25. You consider taxi drivers “good drivers”.
26. You don’t think beer is expensive.
27. You stop and look both ways before driving through a red light.
28. You don’t stop or look both ways before driving through a red light.
29. “A”, “an” and “the” aren’t necessary parts of speech.
30. You know when the next “big bai-bai” is.
31. Smoking is one of the dinner courses.
32. You don’t mind when your date picks her/his nose in public.
33. You wear out your horn before your brakes.
34. You know which place has the best noodles & duck meat at 3:00 a.m.
35. You (male) wear white socks with suits and black socks with tennis shorts. You (female) wear socks with pantyhose in summer. You (any gender) wear polyester and paisley.
36. People who knew you when you first arrived don’t recognize you.
37. You speak Chinese to your foreign friends.
38. You own a karaoke machine.
39. You offer directions to locals.
40. You leave the plastic on new furniture and appliances.
41. Forks and knives feel awkward.
42. The shortest distance between two points involves going through an alley.
43. You wear blue rubber flip-flops to work.
44. Your deodorant stick has cobwebs on it.
45. Foreigners smell funny.
46. You check that the karaoke machine is working before boarding a wild chicken bus.
47. Mando- pop remakes of Western songs sound better than the originals.
48. You own a Mando-pop CD.
49. You’ve been to a Mando-pop concert.
50. You know the lyrics to Mando-pop songs and/or have sung them in KTV.
51. You point out foreigners and stare at them.
52. You shop for clothes at night markets and the clothes fits.
53. You own at least one mosquito tennis raquet.
54. The majority of foreigners who have been in Taiwan longer than you are buried here.
55. You find yourself saying, “Oh geez, not ANOTHER Year of the Rat.”
56. You know which turn signal should be on when driving the wrong way down a one-way street.
57. You get homesick for Chinese food when away from Taiwan.
58. You can name two dozen different types of night market snacks.
59. You pray at temples for a winning lottery number.
60. At least a part of Christmas dinner is stir-fried.
61. Other foreigners give you a funny look when you tell them how long you’ve been here.
62. You can’t think of any good reason to leave Taiwan.
63. People no longer come up to you on the street and want to be your friend.
64. You’re impressed by the safety of Taiwan scaffolding.
65. The last few vacations you’ve had have been around Taiwan on company outings.
66. Your idea of a barbeque is squatting by the side of a highway.
67. You prefer squatting to sitting (including toilets).
68. You’ve had a dozen different Taiwan email addresses.
69. You’ve had several local cell phone numbers.
70. Locals are surprised to find out you can’t vote in the upcoming election.
71. Your pets are bilingual.
72. Pizza just doesn’t taste right unless there’s corn on it.
68. You prefer to park on the sidewalk.
69. Most meaningful conversations take place in doorways or on slow-moving motorcycles.
70. Sometimes the sight of yourself in the mirror shocks you.
71. You think your nose is big.
72. You speak Mandarin with a Taiwanese accent.
73. You take “ho” onto the end of your sentences.
74. You say “hei” instead of yes.
75. You can haggle with the best of them.
76. You don’t want to sit near the foreigners on the bus or in the restaurant.
77. Your English has gone to hell.
78. Foreign women look big and fat; foreign men look the same, but also hairy.
79. In your home country, you find yourself accidentally speaking Chinese (answer the phone with “wei?”)
80. You can differentiate different types of tea, even during a hot tea blowjob.
81. You can tell taxi drivers the exact route to take…anywhere.
82. You know where to buy *anything*.
83. Wearing shoes in a house makes you really uncomfortable.
84. You shower in the evening.
85. The smell of chou dofu makes your mouth water.
86. You wait until just before Chinese New Year to “pick up” new furniture.
87. You walk into restaurants and they know what you want before you order.
88. You only know what’s popular back home from the dress and speech of new foreign Chinese students.
89. You get all mushy inside when you think about Chinese New Year.
90. The best way of spending your free time is sleeping.
91. You deflect compliments in the presence of foreign friends.
92. You fight to pay the bill.
93. You don’t open gifts until you get home.
94. You have fond memories of a particular spot in Taiwan…that no longer exists.
95. Taiwan beer is your beer of choice and you prefer it with ice.
96. You don’t make important decisions without consulting the temple astrologer.
97. You can tell what someone wants from what they don’t say.
98. ICRT is a “good” radio station.
99. Some of your biggest musical influences have been the Carpenters and Air Supply CDs.
100. You can tell what is inside a Chinese/Taiwanese cookie without biting into it.
101. You recognize old girlfriends.
102. You count yourself fortunate to have stepped in dog shit.
103. You know the difference between a duvet, duna, and comforter.
104. Your mom has a funny accent.
105. You look at traffic accidents with indifference.
106. You think Taiwan game shows are fucking hilarious.
107. You can tell the political orientations of local cable news stations from the way they report the news.
108. You think of Tianmu as a place where foreigners live.
109. You own a little, yappy dog and carry it around with you.
110. You own a shirt with a pig on it.
111. You own a buxiban.
112. You eat ji pi gu because your complexion isn’t what it used to be.
113. You just can’t get that Kenny G song out of your head.
114. You can’t remember not having athlete’s foot.
115. You get a post-dated check two months after completing a job and still thank your employer.
116. You’re terrified that the chicken head will point at you during the annual “wei ya”.
117. You are in a car with six people and argue with the seventh to hurry up and get in.
118. NT$1000 is far less than the equivalent in your home currency.
119. Your kids speak better Chinese than you do.
120. Steak just doesn’t taste right without an egg, noodles, and tomato sauce.
121. When you’re thirsty, you go to 7-11 for a box of tea.
122. Someone wishes you a Happy Easter and you remember it’s easter…
123. You can keep up with the plot lines of local soap operas.
124. You see Taiwanese who resemble your foreign friends and relatives back home.
125. You’ve become unconscious of profuse sweating.
126. You no longer sweat.
127. You know where to buy clothes that fit you.
128. You can cook Chinese.
129. You know police and tax officials by name.
130. You know the visa system better than people in the visa offices.
131. You cannot say the number six without an accompanying hand gesture.
132. You’d take boiled peanuts over dry-roasted any day.
133. The only TV shows you know about from home are those in syndication in Taiwan.
134. Money from home looks and feels like “Monopoly” money.
135. You feel embarassed for *other* foreigners.
136. You add syllables to English words when speaking Chinese (eg test-uh)
137. You have Chinese input software on your computer.
138. You can’t live without dried squid-flavored strips.
139. You know the names of Taiwan actors, actresses, singers, politicians, and broadcasters.
140. The rate at which you speak English has slowed considerably, and you use simple words.
141. Writing an email in English is taxing.
142. You start your day with soybean milk and oil sticks.
143. You start the day in the park exercising with people your age.
144. You have accumulated more stuff than you could possibly take home with you.
145. Your savings are in a “hui”.
146. You’ve started a “hui”.
147. Internal organs are yummy.
148. You casually pick out and discard cockroach parts in your “biandang”.
149. You take stock market tips from taxi drivers.
150. “Meibanfa” or “bukenung” are perfectly acceptable answers to your inquiries at government offices.
151. You celebrate your birthday with taro, red bean, and lard.
152. You play mahjong until 4 a.m. with your in-laws on holidays.
153. You look forward to typhoons because it you might get a day off work.
154. After a couple of beers you jones for a betelnut.
155. You stop caring about tones in your Mandarin.
156. You’ve taught another foreigner something in Chinese.
157. You’ve learned something in Chinese from another foreigner.
158. You get a feng shui expert to go apartment hunting with you.
159. You can tell the difference between a fresh and a stale betelnut.
160. Your friends have gone home, gotten advanced degrees, and returned to Taiwan.
161. When someone back home asks you how things are going in “Thailand,” you are offended but don’t say anything.
162. You dream in Chinese.
163. You know just enough Taiwanese to embarrass someone who’s talking about you.
164. You have saved money.
165. When driving back home, people give you the finger.
166. When you’ve been on vacation, you’re happy to return.
167. Your police friends feel safe telling you about recent bribes they’ve taken.
168. You are a connoisseur of fine brothels.
169. You wish desperately you could vote in local elections.
170. Your kid is half Chinese, I mean, Taiwanese.
171. You haven’t had a dent on your motor vehicle in years.
172. Dry weather irritates your skin.
173. You realize that *everyone* is available.
174. You’ve used up quite a few health insurance cards.
175. You run into former students in bars.
176. You run into former students in bed.
177. Your porn collection is over 90% Asian.
178. You feel like a kid in a candy store at Costco.
179. You’ve called gangster friends to help you settle a dispute.
180. The credit card you gave your wife is your “get out of jail free card”
181. You learn more about the news from what it doesn’t say.
182. You piss off locals with running commentary on the local news.
183. You know someone who’s died here.
184. You drink coffee in the morning and tea at night.
185. You could rebuild your entire life in a day.
186. You had hair when you first got here.
187. New arrivals mistake your sarcasm for bitterness.
188. You have a beer taste on a champagne budget.
189. You just don’t understand what all those new young Mandarin students are all about.
190. You’ve consulted a lawyer.
191. You *are* a lawyer.
192. You’ve been in a local hospital more than once.
193. You only get gastroenteritis when you return home.
194. You own more travel guides than places you’ve been to.
195. You have a favorite pair of flip-flops.
196. You think the best gifts are practical.
197. You think the best gift is money.
198. You laugh when people say the word “illegal”
199. You are attracted to the parents of your students.
200. You think a half-hour car ride is an excruciatingly long time
201. You haven’t learned a new word of Chinese in years.
202. You’ve bought the same thing a dozen times … and will buy a new one when this one breaks.
203. You get get all weepy when you hear Christmas music.
204. You have more money in your pocket right now than you’ve ever had back home.
205. You spent more money today than you ever did back home.
206. There’s at least one room in your house you seldom use.
207. The pages of your Chinese notebooks are yellow.
208. The Lonely Planet Taiwan guide is so shallow.
209. You’re amazed at how low-tech everything is back home.
210. You have a giant wedding photo on your wall
211. You’ve *had* a giant wedding photo on your wall.
212. You own something cute.
213. You bake in a toaster oven.
214. You drink the water.
215. You can de-bone a piece of chicken in your mouth within seconds.
216. You can shell shrimp in your mouth within seconds.
217. You speak English in hotels to get better service.
218. You’re always the one who hold the door open button so others can get on.
219. Under no circumstances would you ever give up your seat.
220. You cut off gravel trucks and those blue Varica trucks.
221. You practice s-curves on the freeway at 120.
222. You answer either/or questions with yes.
223. You watch those late-night girls in bikini shows.
224. You cover your mouth when you pick your teeth.
225. You know what DM, POP, AE, XO, WC, and AV stand for or mean.
226. You golf.
227. All your air tickets are round trip.
228. You pay close attention to traffic reports.
229. You’ve been on television.
230. You have a stuffed animal in your car.
231. You’ve been through several cellphones, computers, and business cards.
232. Over half of your software is pirated.
233. You call your wife on your cellphone just to let her know you really are out with the guys.
234. You make up a really god excuse otherwise.
235. You forget to leave tips when back home.
236. You don’t buy anything unless you can get a discount.
237. You accept business cards with both hands, and inspect both sides without reading them.
238. You’re afraid of dogs.
239. Bread is thick, mushy, and sweet as hell.
240. You’ve tasted things that are too sweet.
241. You move to be within walking distance of the MRT.
242. You move to be within driving distance of the freeway.
243. You’ve picked up a few words of Japanese from TV.
244. You carry an umbrella with you for much of the year.
245. You dust-mop your floor.
246. You try to tell people back about Taiwan, and are angry when they look bored.
247. You have nothing to say to people back home.
248. You smile when you’re embarrassed or angry.