Friday, November 12, 2010

Men sporting Fur

We were prepared for some similarities and differences between Morocco and Taiwan. Driving is similar in Morocco and Taiwan - crazy with roads littered with bad motorists; scooters vying with cars, buses and trucks. Although, Taiwan does not have the problem of sheep, donkeys and horses vying for road space too.

Anyway, there is something that the men encounter that women don't. Fur. Not animal fur. No. Human fur. In Taiwan, body hair is basically non-existent, just like, I am sure, most Asian societies. The children at our school come from privileged backgrounds (I am told our school is one of the most expensive in Taiwan), with access to internet and television.

However, nothing prepares them for an encounter with male body hair, even if it is only arm hair, oh, I mean fur. Six year olds and sixteen years old alike, like to pet and pull at the fur on males' arms. They are amazed. They are also alarmed that the men with the fur don't shave their arms. They shave their face, no? Then why not their arms?

One male teacher with shiny blonde hair told me a story. A boy in grade 7, about 13 years old, petted the teachers fur. "You are just like a golden monkey!" the boy exclaimed. "Oh, no, wait. You are more like a golden dog!" he corrected his mistake.

1 comment:

  1. What an interesting post!

    It would be interesting to ask some teenagers or adults if they think foreigners should remove any visible body hair with waxing, or if they think it's OK for foreigners to leave it.

    Mary M. in Marrakesh