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Is it really "island time" or is it rudeness?

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lunkerlou
(@lunkerlou)
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I'm referring to the racial comment......not the post in general

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Topic starter Posted : May 9, 2011 10:07 am
SunnyCaribe
(@SunnyCaribe)
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Question.....Is it considered rude or culture when locals won't look you in the eye when you speak to them....???*-)

I'm sure many people consider it rude, but it isn't intended to be--quite the opposite. Two generations (at least) of Crucians are brought up to keep their eyes to themselves. Here, looking someone in the eye is considered impertinent or challenging so people in polite discourse will avert their eyes, at least initially. You can see that the younger generation is conflicted about this because they wish to be polite as they've been taught yet be engaging in their discourse which implies eye contact.

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Posted : May 9, 2011 2:21 pm
Lizard
(@Lizard)
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Two generations (at least of Crucians) "BOLOGNA"!(td)

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Posted : May 9, 2011 3:23 pm
Jazznurse
(@Jazznurse)
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This should answer your question...Very lucid and flowing....Its not rude or complimentary,,,just their customs

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Posted : May 9, 2011 4:16 pm
Hiya!
(@Hiya!)
Trusted Member

I know that when I am working and a customer is being rude I will not make eye contact because it's hard to disguise the anger from your eyes. Never mastered the dull eye look. I would suggest being friendlier and taking your time more talking to people if they are not making eye contact. I have never had that problem at all here with locals, seems like a bizarre complaint in general. I could give a rat's ass if someone I don't know makes eye contact with me. This reminds me of my time in California, which had bizarre customs to me. I was raised to ALWAYS say yes mam and no mam and in California they often get offended by this, to them it's like you're saying you are old. Where I'm from it is strictly a sign of respect, nothing to do with age.

So you really really have to let this small stuff roll off your back or you're going to pop. And remember, someone may just be having a bad day, be sick, have someone in their family that sick, etc, not everything is rudeness targeted at you, lighten up. Transplants are always going to be outsiders but if you adaptable the locals will accept you and might even like you!

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Posted : May 9, 2011 5:27 pm
SunnyCaribe
(@SunnyCaribe)
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I've taken the time to earn my way into this community. My wife and I have lived here over 65 years between us, we're proud to be part of many local families, and we've asked the question. Xenophobic condo-dwelling shut-ins may be threatened by any answer that doesn't corroborate their agenda, but so be it.

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Posted : May 9, 2011 6:19 pm
Lizard
(@Lizard)
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Xenophobic condo-dwelling shut-ins? Earn your way into a community? What Planet are you referring.:S

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Posted : May 9, 2011 8:05 pm
Exit Zero
(@exit-zero)
Trusted Member Registered

The Planet that they believe starts inside the gated, guarded and video surveillance communities that many people have decided is the way of life that allows them the 'proper' amount of insulation from the overall island culture.
A few books I recommend - [we have all read ' Don't stop the Carnival ' ] -- but these are non- fiction.

Don't Get Hit by a Coconut - Caimite - ISBN 0-682-49246-9

Living in the Changing Caribbean - Ellis Gladwin - Library of Congress Catalog Card Number - 71-127939

But Say It Politely - Elizabeth Hawes - Little , Brown and Company

These all deal for the most part with STX but are pertinent throughout the Virgin Islands.

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Posted : May 9, 2011 10:19 pm
Lizard
(@Lizard)
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Gated, Guarded,and Video Surveillance communities are found in every state. It has nothing to do with the culture of the islands. More about Crime, Safety and Privacy.
What about the transplants that don't live in one of your referenced communities.*-)

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Posted : May 9, 2011 10:57 pm
Hiya!
(@Hiya!)
Trusted Member

Or the locals that live in them. Enfield Green and Judith's Fancy are the two biggest gated neighborhoods and there are plenty of locals in both of those, I would say much more then transplants.

**I however totally disagree that gated neighborhoods keep you safer. Very easy to get in and out of all of them. It's a false sense of security.

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Posted : May 10, 2011 1:28 am
A Davis
(@A_Davis)
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Question.....Is it considered rude or culture when locals won't look you in the eye when you speak to them....???*-)

i believe that depends on the individual and context of the social interaction. i'd like to think you'd know from the vibe you are getting, if you are open to such.

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Posted : May 10, 2011 10:47 am
Neil
 Neil
(@Neil)
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Just got back from a visit to the states. The "friendliness" of the employees everywhere up there was shocking and refreshing. Actually, seems like they are emphasizing it more than they did a few years ago. Recession friendliness?

I was picking up a sandwich last night back here and the local woman's "indifference" was kindof shocking by contrast of having just been in the states. She wasn't just indifferent to me, she was indifferent to everyone else in the line. And her indifference was typical.

Is "indifference" rude? Yes, it is.

Let me throw this out there: The problem is mostly with the local women. And they are indifferent to other women as well, local or stateside, white or black. On the other hand, the men here, including the young men, are much more open and talkative if you break the ice.

Now why do you suppose this is?

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Posted : May 11, 2011 8:58 pm
SunnyCaribe
(@SunnyCaribe)
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When you move to another culture you have to understand that culture on its terms, not your own. Judging people, or choosing to take offense at people's actions based on the values and behavior you learned and brought with you from a different culture is rude in itself.

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Posted : May 12, 2011 3:40 pm
Lizard
(@Lizard)
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Hey SunnyCarib,
Try to adjust yourself to what is, and not try to make crucian culture over to suite yourself and your need to be accepted in such a community!*-)

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Posted : May 12, 2011 4:17 pm
speee1dy
(@speee1dy)
Expert

rude is rude

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Posted : May 12, 2011 5:48 pm
stiphy
(@stiphy)
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One problem I have with the whole "culture" argument is that it denies human beings their individuality. There are rude individuals here, more so than stateside in my experience. But that doesn't mean that everyone or even the majority of people who grew up here (and would be said to be of "VI culture" ) are rude. Individuals can choose to be rude or not regardless of where they grew up, those that choose to be rude cannot use "culture" as an excuse for their depravity in my eyes.

Sean

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Posted : May 12, 2011 7:48 pm
SunnyCaribe
(@SunnyCaribe)
Advanced Member

Y'all need to get out more.

Didn't we just do a thread on all the dirtbags that have been drawn to this island and left us a mess to clean up? In light of that litany of negative experiences, don't you think it's reasonable for those people who are raised here to feel at least some cynicism? Intentional or otherwise, the statements by both Lizard and Neil among many others hint at an expectation of something owed to them and of their condescension to locals. Whether you judge them for that or not, you have to accept the validity of a reciprocal perception by those whom they disdain.

And culture, as we're using the term, does not deny anyone's individuality. We're talking Margaret Mead, not Ayn Rand. Perhaps nowhere better than on a culturally distinct island such as this, one sees that individuals with similar experiences, beliefs, values and their resultant behaviors have forged themselves into discrete yet interconnected communities.

This really is a rich, diverse place which deserves so much better than to be written off as rude and depraved by those whose contextual understanding is incomplete and whose expectations are unrealistic. I can get a smile out of almost anyone I encounter--it just takes a bit of understanding.

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Posted : May 12, 2011 8:56 pm
Lizard
(@Lizard)
Trusted Member

SunnyCarib,
A hint of what? My family has been here since 1868 not a combined 65 years. You really don't know what you're talking about. Crucians are not taught to be rude. Your Pseudo intellect and knowledge of Crucian Culture and Society are impressive, but only to yourself.(td)

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Posted : May 12, 2011 9:26 pm
SunnyCaribe
(@SunnyCaribe)
Advanced Member

I never said they were, Lizard. If you aren't going to contribute, at least keep up or keep quiet.

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Posted : May 12, 2011 9:58 pm
Linda J
(@Linda_J)
Expert

No, rude is NOT rude. In some cultures, including this one to an extent, looking someone in the face is seen as confrontentional. Another difference is the reluctance to disappoint. Ask someone if they can do something "tomorrow" and you may well get a yes when you should get a maybe or even a no. Often times tomorrow is code for "not today".

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Posted : May 12, 2011 10:42 pm
Lizard
(@Lizard)
Trusted Member

confrontentional? ???????????????
and SunnyCarib,
I will be Agreeable, Cheerful, Charitable, Praise you for what you don't know, I will not criticize your wealth on Knowledge on Crucian Culture. I will save my Worry, Hurry and Indecision for another day. Because you have all the answers for the crucians, I will look at the crucian society with fresh eyes and discover the wonder of it; I will Know that as I give to the crucian culture, so the culture will give to me, Thank You.

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Posted : May 12, 2011 11:13 pm
speee1dy
(@speee1dy)
Expert

linda, the today/tomorrow thing is not rude. the not looking a person in the face is not rude. i am talking about how a person treats you, how they talk to you and how many times teeth sucking goes on. some people ars shy and don't like to make conversation , no problem all i and many others ask is for someone to be nice. how hard is that. and no, it is not a culture thing.

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Posted : May 13, 2011 12:14 pm
loungestx
(@loungestx)
Advanced Member

Really, in a culture that prides itself in polite greetings then not getting one in return from the cashier, etc is rude. And I don't care if someone does not want to talk to me but then don't work in the service industry, and if it's all the work you can find then for your jobs sake and your bosses... Fake it. (And I agree it does seem to be the young women mostly, and before you yell, I don't like it when it happens in NY either and no it is not everyone but certainly enough for this heated discussion to happen)
D

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Posted : May 13, 2011 4:34 pm
Neil
 Neil
(@Neil)
Trusted Member

Referring back to my post on this page....

I have observed that the "rudeness" OFTEN comes from the younger women (i.e. the ones we encounter in the stores).
Older women, and most of the men, in general, are polite, and some are friendly to a fault.

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Posted : May 13, 2011 4:40 pm
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