Monday, August 22, 2005

Cutthroat White Man


Well, my Board and I are close to being ready to set a date for the commencement of a short term missionary assignment for me in Brazil, so I imagine I will soon have lots of more interesting stories for this blog about Culture Clashing! But for now, here is a funny one from Ghana in 2002.

I was with my Team touring the Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park in downtown Accra, which has fountains, a museum, and the masoleum of Ghana's first President and the man who led them to independence from British colonization in 1957. Very interesting man whom I am trying to write a movie about, but that's a story for another time.

As we made our way back to our car, we were being bothered by various street vendors who see white people and think "MONEY, MONEY, MONEY" (sing Apprentice theme song for effect). One was particularly aggressive and kept bothering our team and we were dealing with a problem with our van, which had broken down. I tried to shoo off this vendor and finally he left. Another vendor moved in to take his place. Without thinking, I cut him off mid-sentence with a finger pulled horizontally across my upper chest as if to say: "NOT A WORD." He got a terrified look and moved off. Soon I noticed a crowd on the street gathering and talking and pointing my way.

My Ghanaian host, and dear friend, Lydia, asked me what had happened. I explained and she started laughing. "You just threatened to slit his throat. He is afraid of you." I felt terrible. Lydia said it was no big deal, just a cultural misunderstanding and seem very amused. Soon our driver fixed the van, and we left. But I have never forgot the fearful look on that poor man's face. Or the way the crowd stared and gossipped at the cutthroat white man and his friends.

Hope this gives you a chuckle. Just an example of how even our body language can cause culture clashing!

6 comments:

adhddepression said...

Hi Bryan Thomas,

I was browsing for information on adhd in children when I came across your site and boy am I glad I did.

Although not totally the same, I believe that the work we are doing has some synergy to it.

I am researching information on adhd in general and am trying to make as many connections as possible so that my subscribers can have the maximum chance of controlling their adhd.

Are there any resources on adhd in children that you recommend I visit?

Would very much appreciate your input on the subject.

Thank you for your blog post.

Warmest regards,
Hoe Bing

adhddeficit said...

Hi Bryan Thomas,

I've seen this post before but important things are always worth reminding. After all, repetition is the mother of learning.

adhdchild said...

Hi Bryan Thomas,

Love the fun blog, came across it while having a break. Ta.

adhddeficit said...

Hello Bryan Thomas (I hope that is the right name):

Hi my name is hoe bing and I have been on a research mission to crack the problem that is child with adhd .

You see ADHD is my passion and I have been pursuing it in the most holistic way possible. In fact that is exactly what brought me to your blog. Last week I spent 10 hours during the weekend trying to sort out the wheat from the chaff when it came to ADHD websites but no luck there. Most of the websites were of a commercial nature, no one was really interested in providing a full picture and I was getting disheartened.

By chance though I stumbled upon a few personal blogs, like Charles Blanc who is the adhd adtivist. Charles blog was personal and informative and he was exceptionally kind (responded to my post within a few hours and we have been working together to get the word out since).

Bryan Thomas, my intention is really simple, basically my subscribers are looking for quality information and so far it is personal blogs like yours that have yielded the best unbiased information. I would like to request your help.

Because of the great response from other blog owners I have decided to create my own blog called the adhdpodcaster. If you have some time please take the time to post information that you would find useful to my subscribers.

Please don't limit yourself, just like the great job you have done at your blog put whatever information you have come across. The different areas that I am working hard to get more information on is the involvement of sleep and adhd, nutrition, relationships, cognitive behaviour therapy, subliminals and also learning tools.

Any help would be appreciated.

Hope to hear from you soon. Thank you for your blog, it makes great reading and keep up the good work.

Have a great day.

Warmest regards,
Hoe Bing

adhdchild said...

Hi Bryan Thomas,

Thank you very much for Cutthroat White Man, it was an informative post, very useful.

I'm currently researching information for kid adhd, would that be a topic that you are familiar with?

If you could help point me to the right direction it would be much appreciated.

Thank you for your time and effort.

Warmest regards,
Hoe Bing

adhd said...

Hi Bryan Thomas,

Sounds great.