The Pride of Chinese

In Personal on 3 February, 2006 at 7:00 am

Overheard on the radio a story related by a lawyer.  He was handling a case whereby the compensation given by the government to relocate was too low for a particular family.  That family consist of an old lady with kidney failure and her daughter who did not finish her primary education.  They are quite poor and thus are getting monthly allowance from a certain charity.  So the lawyer was trying to argue the case base on the financial difficulty of the family in order to secure a better pay out for the relocation.

Come the actual day of the court case and the lawyer was waiting for the family outside the court as they were late.  Finally they appear, the old lady was still wearing her normal everyday clothing, but the daughter went for a hairdo and was wearing a brand new pink long sleeve shirt.  Furthermore her shirt’s first few buttons was undone, both sleeves rolled up and a thick gold necklace can be seen shining brightly.  She was also wearing a shiny gold bracelet.

The lawyer was furious, there he was waiting to tell the judge that the family is poor and the daughter was looking anything but poor.  He ask the old lady what happen and the old lady told him that her daughter wanted to look the best since this is her first time in court.  Then he asked her about the gold necklace and bracelet, the old lady replied that those are left behind by her old man (meaning husband) and that they are the only valuables they have left.

Its not that they are lying about their financial status, they have the proper documents from charities and government organization to prove, it just that for traditional Chinese you need to look the best when attending important event.  The lawyer went over to scold the daughter and help her to button up the shirt, straightened the sleeves and remove all the jewelry.  The daughter was still grumbling about one should look one’s best for occasion like this.  The case was heard and the family got a much reasonable payout.  But for the lawyer he always remember the Pride of Chinese.


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