Saturday, May 12, 2012
Winking at work
I grow up believing that if someone (especially a guy) winks at you, he is flirting with you. So when the first time a French man winked at me, I was a bit lost. Later I found out that he was winking at all the girls, I felt relieved.
Now I really wonder what does winking mean for the French as it happens also at work. During a meeting, during one to one conversation, during group discussions...there is no way the person is trying to flirt when he winks to male and female coworkers and several people one second after another?
So I "interviewed" two coworkers. They said it could mean complicity. Like we are plotting something towards someone (during a meeting) and the wink is a gesture to say that we are the accomplices. That makes sense to me.
Well, the second part of the interview cracked me out though. I asked them what gesture would mean flirting in France then. The answer: "I don't know actually", both of them said after thinking for a moment. Oh my god they forgot how to flirt, aren't French supposed to be one of the most romantic people in the world?
Site note 1
When checking on Wikipedia about winking, I saw this note: When Frederick Spencer Chapman was training Chinese guerrillas in Malaya to shoot rifles, he found that a large proportion of them were unable to close only one eye at a time. Normal, the Chinese boys are not used to flirting with eyes.
Side note 2
This led me think of the interview with too girl friends here about relationship.
"When is the cutting moment that signifies he & she are entering a love relationship? For certain Malaysians, it starts the moment the couple hold hands." I explained. "No cutting moment like the Malaysians actually", they replied. Curious, I pressed on : "Does the boy ask the girl if she wants to be his girlfriend?" They looked at each other and said "No. There is no need to ask the question, the boy would know if the girl agrees or not". I think most of the Malaysian boys would like to date the French girls then.
Side note 3
The word "dating" does not exist in French. So when a boy asks a girl out on a date, he would not say "would you like to go on a date with me?", he would say instead "let's go for a movie / to a restaurant" and you might not know ahead if he intends to date or it is just a simple friendly outing. Well, my coworker disagreed with me. "You will know if it is a date or not", he insisted. Ok, I think they are blunt enough with their feelings that you got to know.