I sat in the library café this morning trying to finish reading the Chapter 1 of my interpersonal communication course. The servers in the coffee house just gave me perfect ideas of how I should interpret impersonal-interpersonal spectrum. Thanks to them, I may get an A out of it.
It was kind of early in the morning, so I understand many Americans need caffeine to set them up. Almost every customer would have a short conversation with them during the time waiting. The frequency of this kind of talking almost makes believe this is written in their job description that part of their job is to chat with customers.
I have to admit they are very friendly but over-friendly in my culture. They would start with “how are you” or “how you’re doing” mostly. Sometimes they asked how was people’s summer since this is the first week back to school. And wish their customer a nice day at the very end.
I bought a cup of coffee too, but I can see in their eyes that I behaved awkwardly. I don’t feel comfortable sharing ideas with total strangers though they look really nice. I assume that’s why Americans think Chinese are reserved. Not in the way that British people weirdly behave, but in the way of keep-it-to-ourselves and not-open-to-strangers. It’s probably because what Confucius said about “you will always make mistakes if you talk too much.” This idea is rooted in our mind and it’s our life philosophy. Another thing to adjust to. Hope I can be more comfortable to reply next time.
Maybe I can’t be as “easy-going” as the typical Americans do in the beginning. But when you know me for a period of time, you will find I can be a good friend. And please believe that most Chinese people are like this. I’m not advertising, but we really do. Feel free to be my friend and I want it too.