The Hidden Seduction – Part VI-2
Ou Yang was not in China, where single 27 year old women were tagged as “left-overs,” too old to be a men’s first choice for marriage, or even dating. She was now in a different market where the “foreign men” were naive about Chinese women, and those who knew a bit of Confucius and Lao-Tsu thought Chinese women were brought up with Confucius teachings: “Emperor Be Emperor, Minister Be Minister, Father Be Father and Son be Son,” and not a mention of women.
Western men do not know that the New China, though it liberated women 61 years ago, allowed them to be spoiled by men who wanted to show their power as China opened up and they were given the right to chase material wealth. They would never have imagined that they were creating monsters out of China’s women, in between the nothingness and liberation in women’s history and the male society returning to raw lust for money and power. Western men were looking for solutions to their own feelings of confusion and emptiness from the liberation of their own women.
Ou Yang’s case was unique, and she was caught even tighter in Quebec. She had fallen into a place where women were independent and supported by a society that is kind to women and their children, where men think that paying for every coffee and meal would be an insult to independent minds with self-esteem. In their interactions with Chinese women, Quebec men unconsciously tripped over a cultural error zone. They were accustomed to their kind of women, whose older generations had fought hard for the freedom to work and earn their own money. It was not an issue for them and they respected women who took pleasure in paying their own bills.
Simone tried to make Ou Yang see that love is priceless and that it comes from getting to know each other first, not from the irrelevant gift of a coffee in a society where anyone can afford three full meals by panhandling on the streets. But Ou Yang insisted that if there was no free coffee, then there would be no chatting, and certainly no chance for further development!
Seeing that her message was not getting through, Simone lost her patience with Ou Yang:
“So your love has a price, one coffee, is that right?”
Ou Yang felt strange when Simone said that.
“Of course not!”
She held herself up high, because she was worth more than a cheap coffee. That was the whole point; in her eyes, she was worth diamonds!
Simone could not keep herself from laughing. She was trying to make her assertion sound less harsh, to soften her observation of Ou Yang selling her love for a coffee. She hid her disdain in her laughter, not so much for Ou Yang as it was for the prevailing Chinese women’s concept of love measured by rituals or money. Simone tried to adjust her improper statement and her scorn for Ou Yang’s inherited ways of thinking into her subtle laughter of empathy and understanding.
“Why do you laugh? I am serious! I would not go out with a man who would not even pay for my coffee on the first date. If he is not willing to pay for just one coffee, what else he could do for me?”
For the Chinese, love is invisible, untouchable, and has no smell, but coffee (even though Chinese do prefer light tea) does have a strong smell and taste, and a diamonds are shiny and solid to the touch, with much more value to tag the worth of love. That is why Chinese carry these measures in their hearts and minds so heavily that they cannot lift their muscles to smile or laugh; they are so busy calculating that they don’t even have time for facial expressions. They forget that living each breath of life with appreciation is the most important measure for life, especially in Quebec, where people can fully execute this ultimate ideal for anyone.
Simone saw that Ou Yang was getting upset, so she pointed out with words again:
“No, no, I was only joking!’
But Ou Yang was already offended. She had understood the hidden meaning of the joke. She stood up suddenly from her chair, grabbed her purse, put on her shoes, and left while saying in a wronged and bitter tone:
“You are lucky! You do not understand me. Victor treated you well, and you are lucky. If I had your money, I wouldn’t care either; if I had a person like Victor, I would not need it!” Ou Yang judged Simone’s situation because she had never heard Simone complain or mention anything as trivial as to who paid for what.
But Ou Yang was right. We do need money to satisfy our addiction to money, and a good generous man who pays for our coffee can go a long way to make one feel like they don’t need anything else. But how much do we need, and how much can be called generous?
There, sitting on her porch, Simone watched an angry Ou Yang rush away and get into her car. Ou Yang’s anger made Simone feel that her comment had been very improper, inconsiderate, and even rude. She felt that she should have been more patient and tried harder to understand Ou Yang’s complicated entanglement. In that moment she felt so sorry for Ou Yang and for her own behaviour that she chased, running and yelling, after Ou Yang’s car, but Ou Yang sped away, leaving Simone’s shouts unheard in the wake of her Volkswagen.
Even forgetting to turn on her headlights, Ou Yang and her anger disappeared into the darkness.
Yes, Simone was lucky to have had Victor Point treating her to the clean air in the restaurant when they first met. They had actually treated each other to some free water, which at most made the waiter unhappy to be serving two cheap people who did not reward his work! How lucky she was in Ou Yang’s mind. Maybe Simone should join Ou Yang in cursing the cheap Quebecois men, eh?
Simone sent Ou Yang an e-mail and also called to apologize to make sure that Ou Yang was all right. Ou Yang rightly excused herself for not knowing the situation of Quebec women, but she emphasized at the end of her message that she was not a Quebecoise ( the “se” suffix denoting the female sense) and that she would not let men have her so easily…
To Be Continued…