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required: survival tips for a FoB

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antibiotique

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I come from small town place in India and planning to shift to USA in near future. This is the first time I would be getting out of India. I dont have any relations or friends staying in USA. So I would be pretty much alone in USA and to make matters worse I'm not fluent in English. (thanks to my education in vernacular medium, but my TOEFL score was pretty good! ;) )

So, in short I'm very anxious about how the thing are going to turn out. Diaspora movies, with their distasteful portrayal of FoBs are not turning out to be helpful either. I would really appreciate it, if someone comes up with few practical tips, helpful links or reading suggestions, which would make it smoother for me to adjust to life in new country.
 

Faraaz23

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My biggest piece of advice is be yourself, and don't try too hard to "fit in". I see many people coming from the sub-continent and are trying to hard to act "American." I'm sure it will be stressful starting a new life here, but relax you'll be fine. And plus, you'll find Indians in EVERY part of this country... even small towns. As stereotypical as it sounds, it seems as if majority of gas stations and motels are run by Indians. I'm sure you'll meet someone who'll help you get adjusted. Be prepared for a fast-paced life though. Most of my family back in Pakistan doesn't believe how fast paced and stressful life is here. Also, if you feel your English isn't as fluent as you want it to be, try taking an English course at a community college that teaches English as a second language. Best of luck.
 

gwen

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yup, be yourself. i don't think your english is all that bad, at least your written english isn't. my father always says that indians know 5x more proper english than americans.

two pieces of advice:
1) if you don't shower regularly, do so in america.
2) use deodorant

i personally find hygiene to be more of a problem with people who move here from the motherland more than their english.

don't worry about english. i think americans (at least in the east and west coast) are used to desis, be they fobs or abcds by now.

latch on to one or two good desis and learn the ways of america, but don't ever forget where you came from.
 

antibiotique

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gwen said:
yup, be yourself. i don't think your english is all that bad, at least your written english isn't. my father always says that indians know 5x more proper english than americans.

:laugh: English was my third language in school....... and your father is a typical Indian!

i personally find hygiene to be more of a problem with people who move here from the motherland more than their english.

oh, really?

latch on to one or two good desis and learn the ways of america, but don't ever forget where you came from.

:laugh: how can I ever forget that! just read my signature.
 

antibiotique

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Hi Faraaz23!

are you talking about ESL schools?

Thanks for your advice. :)
 

gwen

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i can see you were offended by the hygiene comment. and yes, my father is a typical indian...why wouldn't he be? btw, why are you asking for advice and making sarcastic comments to those who are giving you an honest opinion? we seriously have a problem with a resident at my hospital who has horrible B.O. and she's a fob. so i was just letting you know. anyway, my two cents...
 

antibiotique

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gwen said:
i can see you were offended by the hygiene comment. and yes, my father is a typical indian...why wouldn't he be? btw, why are you asking for advice and making sarcastic comments to those who are giving you an honest opinion? we seriously have a problem with a resident at my hospital who has horrible B.O. and she's a fob. so i was just letting you know. anyway, my two cents...

:laugh: :laugh: :laugh: OMG! Thats precisely the kind of misunderstanding I was afraid of. Believe me I didnt mean to be sarcastic or rude to anybody, and why should I pass a sarcastic comment when your trying to help me. That BO comment didnt offend me even slightest bit. But what i learnt was new to me - that "oh really?" was more of expression of surprise rather than sarcasm. Its not your fault either, there is big chasm between how we use English in India and how you guys use it in USA. And you know your father's comment reminded me of my uncle, we are especially fond of making such boastful comments about ourselves in India. I really appreciate your honest opinions and I know your trying help me. If I have unknowingly offended you feelings then please accept my sincere apologies.

:)
 

BDS-DMD

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I strongly second the shower and deo advice. Indians, I feel, sweat much more and tend to use synthetic clothes. This causes a lot of sweat retention and in turn bad odor.

I am sure you English will be fine. You will be fine. What I would do is to try and get the hang of the local lingo. I had started a thread in the International Dental forum where everyone compared the terms used by Indians and Americans. There was a lot of debate there about whether I am trying to be "Americanised." The only point I was making is that if we know the local lingo, we will understand the people around us better and vice versa.

If I may ask,where in India are you from and where in the US are you headed? Also are you joining a particular accademic program here or are you going to work?

The thread seems to have passed away...........
 

maestro1625

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I've sometimes thought that the "americanization debate" is one of the most key things to look at. In my experience working with immigrants from ANY nationality, those who resist "americanizing" and cling to every native custom with an iron grip are often the least happy. my own personal advice is don't be too proud...adapt.
 

BDS-DMD

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So true so true......I have often seen a lot of Indians are more "Indian" in the US than they are in India. "Adapt"....thats really the best way to describe the change required.
 

gwen

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no probs, apologies from my side as well for misinterpreting your comments. its all good (american lingo for - sab kuch theek hai).


antibiotique said:
:laugh: :laugh: :laugh: OMG! Thats precisely the kind of misunderstanding I was afraid of. Believe me I didnt mean to be sarcastic or rude to anybody, and why should I pass a sarcastic comment when your trying to help me. That BO comment didnt offend me even slightest bit. But what i learnt was new to me - that "oh really?" was more of expression of surprise rather than sarcasm. Its not your fault either, there is big chasm between how we use English in India and how you guys use it in USA. And you know your father's comment reminded me of my uncle, we are especially fond of making such boastful comments about ourselves in India. I really appreciate your honest opinions and I know your trying help me. If I have unknowingly offended you feelings then please accept my sincere apologies.

:)
 

gwen

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amen to that. i totally agree that some indians here try so darn hard to stick to how they were in india in the 70s or 80s making their own life so isolated and miserable. they also force their kids to live a similar life. then they're shocked to see how india is (umm, modern...or at least modernizing...can't say if its good or bad, but that is how it is). and unfortunately, their kids (i tell you this from personal experience) suffer from identity crises. i was born in india and came here when i was 11 so i truly consider myself to be 50% desi and 50% american. it wasn't hard to adapt to the american lifestyle/lingo etc, but later on in life, my parents were definitely pushing some old school ideas on me which didn't fly. so i was happy to find other desi kids like myself in college where i finally realized that i have to respect my heritage/parents, etc and at the same time learn to be independent and stick to some of my own decisions in life.

yeah, slightly off from the "survival tips for a fob" thread, but somehow and somewhat related.

BDS-DMD said:
So true so true......I have often seen a lot of Indians are more "Indian" in the US than they are in India. "Adapt"....thats really the best way to describe the change required.
 

supersunny

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gwen said:
yup, be yourself. i don't think your english is all that bad, at least your written english isn't. my father always says that indians know 5x more proper english than americans.

two pieces of advice:
1) if you don't shower regularly, do so in america.
2) use deodorant

i personally find hygiene to be more of a problem with people who move here from the motherland more than their english.

don't worry about english. i think americans (at least in the east and west coast) are used to desis, be they fobs or abcds by now.

latch on to one or two good desis and learn the ways of america, but don't ever forget where you came from.


true story. smell matters.
 

BDS-DMD

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I always say the term ABCD is so off. Its the parents who are confused,not the kids.

The Indians who came to the US in the 70s or so are caught ina funny dilemma. They would love to go back to India. Trouble is that the India they left and the India they want is no more there. They are looking at the India they left behind while the India today has moved far ahead.

Some one I know once told me this,"When I came to NYC from India in the 1984, I got a cultural shock. Today,in 2004,when I went to India from NYC, I got a cultural shock"

I think this sums up the situation very well.
 

antibiotique

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BDS-DMD said:
I strongly second the shower and deo advice. Indians, I feel, sweat much more and tend to use synthetic clothes. This causes a lot of sweat retention and in turn bad odor.

I am sure you English will be fine. You will be fine. What I would do is to try and get the hang of the local lingo. I had started a thread in the International Dental forum where everyone compared the terms used by Indians and Americans. There was a lot of debate there about whether I am trying to be "Americanised." The only point I was making is that if we know the local lingo, we will understand the people around us better and vice versa.

If I may ask,where in India are you from and where in the US are you headed? Also are you joining a particular accademic program here or are you going to work?

The thread seems to have passed away...........


may be BO has something to do with all the spices, onions and garlic we eat or just plainly because Indian harbour a different kind of bacterial flora. ;) anyway i dont have any issues with bathing and using deo. we use them here all the time.

can you provide the link to the thread you've mentioned?
 

antibiotique

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maestro1625 said:
I've sometimes thought that the "americanization debate" is one of the most key things to look at. In my experience working with immigrants from ANY nationality, those who resist "americanizing" and cling to every native custom with an iron grip are often the least happy. my own personal advice is don't be too proud...adapt.

I'm very good at adapting! :)
 

antibiotique

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BDS-DMD said:
The Indians who came to the US in the 70s or so are caught ina funny dilemma. They would love to go back to India. Trouble is that the India they left and the India they want is no more there. They are looking at the India they left behind while the India today has moved far ahead.

Some one I know once told me this,"When I came to NYC from India in the 1984, I got a cultural shock. Today,in 2004,when I went to India from NYC, I got a cultural shock"

I think this sums up the situation very well.

thats very true about post economic reforms and liberalisation India! :)
 

KaliforniaDoll

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I dont believe in petty survival tips like americanization, speaking local lingo, trying hard to 'fit-in' excetras, excetras. I truly believe in impressing americans with your hard work. You are never gonna impress americans with your south-asian looks, english linguistic skills or your curry cooking skills at any time. Nothing is going to get extra-points for you. I guess you are a medical professional. Whatever you do, do it with passion and sincerity. Even if it is not recognised instantly, it will be recognized soon. Even if you work ass off in the hospital, you are never going to beat that poor chinese/mexican or korean immigrant who work harder than you for nothing. They are the people who are real strugglers who have nothing. You have an education which is your blank check book.
Dont just plan to survive. Plan to rule.

Who cares abt poor linguistic skills of a german BMW engineer, Top french Chef , Romanian supermodel or an Italian designer in america? No body cares your language or looks if you are the best in your field. What matter most is the SUBSTANCE. America always recognizes talent and hard work. America only wants the best and the brightest. That is the only reason america is still the greatest country in the world.

I always remember my granny's words. She told me once even if i end up as some trash collector in new york city without getting residency or job..i should be the 'state of the art' trash collector in the world.( i guess evolving new techniques 'how to collect trash efficiently?) I even thought abt becoming top burger flipper in the world. It is quite possible in america. You could become CEO of the trashcollect.com.

I do recall reading a story abt a Colombian immigrant in Hollywood who started his career as coffee supplier for studio crews turned his business into multimillion dollars high line coffee parlours in LA. The point is BE THE BEST.
Remember those all famous FOB doctors in america who came to the US before us. They also came like us, struggled, survived and still ruling.They were no different than us.

My rules for survivor game is very simple.
Be the BEST and play HARD.
Dont be an ordinary FOB. Be an xtra-ordinary FOB.
Exude confidence from every pores of your body.
Always, always do the RIGHT THING.
Quit nothing.

(I posted this message once before and deleted. Someone requested me to post again. here you go buddy :) )
 

maestro1625

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gwen said:
amen to that. i totally agree that some indians here try so darn hard to stick to how they were in india in the 70s or 80s making their own life so isolated and miserable. they also force their kids to live a similar life. then they're shocked to see how india is (umm, modern...or at least modernizing...can't say if its good or bad, but that is how it is). and unfortunately, their kids (i tell you this from personal experience) suffer from identity crises. i was born in india and came here when i was 11 so i truly consider myself to be 50% desi and 50% american. it wasn't hard to adapt to the american lifestyle/lingo etc, but later on in life, my parents were definitely pushing some old school ideas on me which didn't fly. so i was happy to find other desi kids like myself in college where i finally realized that i have to respect my heritage/parents, etc and at the same time learn to be independent and stick to some of my own decisions in life.

yeah, slightly off from the "survival tips for a fob" thread, but somehow and somewhat related.


Actually, you've described one of my close friends. Her parents are very very resistant to american culture and try to shield thier kids away from it as much as possible, baiscally by locking them away at home. The parents talk constantly about how they want to return to India and how they liked it better there. Thier problem is that they've never tried to fit in at all. Thier daughter is currently at an indian med school and they're trying to arrange a marraige for her, something she's very uncomfortable with; however she doesnt have the courage to stand up to them. Further, I dont think she's met enough american desis to realize that such arrangements are not the norm.
 

antibiotique

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newyorker said:
I dont believe in petty survival tips like americanization, speaking local lingo, trying hard to 'fit-in' excetras, excetras. I truly believe in impressing americans with your hard work. You are never gonna impress americans with your south-asian looks, english linguistic skills or your curry cooking skills at any time. Nothing is going to get extra-points for you. I guess you are a medical professional. Whatever you do, do it with passion and sincerity. Even if it is not recognised instantly, it will be recognized soon. Even if you work ass off in the hospital, you are never going to beat that poor chinese/mexican or korean immigrant who work harder than you for nothing. They are the people who are real strugglers who have nothing. You have an education which is your blank check book.
Dont just plan to survive. Plan to rule.

Who cares abt poor linguistic skills of a german BMW engineer, Top french Chef , Romanian supermodel or an Italian designer in america? No body cares your language or looks if you are the best in your field. What matter most is the SUBSTANCE. America always recognizes talent and hard work. America only wants the best and the brightest. That is the only reason america is still the greatest country in the world.

I always remember my granny's words. She told me once even if i end up as some trash collector in new york city without getting residency or job..i should be the 'state of the art' trash collector in the world.( i guess evolving new techniques 'how to collect trash efficiently?) I even thought abt becoming top burger flipper in the world. It is quite possible in america. You could become CEO of the trashcollect.com.

I do recall reading a story abt a Colombian immigrant in Hollywood who started his career as coffee supplier for studio crews turned his business into multimillion dollars high line coffee parlours in LA. The point is BE THE BEST.
Remember those all famous FOB doctors in america who came to the US before us. They also came like us, struggled, survived and still ruling.They were no different than us.

My rules for survivor game is very simple.
Be the BEST and play HARD.
Dont be an ordinary FOB. Be an xtra-ordinary FOB.
Exude confidence from every pores of your body.
Always, always do the RIGHT THING.
Quit nothing.

(I posted this message once before and deleted. Someone requested me to post again. here you go buddy :) )

cool.... thanx!
 

antibiotique

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newyorker said:
You are welcome.
btw...i dont practice what i preach. ;)

that seems to be the problem with preachers anywhere in the world, isn't it? ;)
 

KaliforniaDoll

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antibiotique said:
that seems to be the problem with preachers anywhere in the world, isn't it? ;)

This is exactly like a guy who lives in the trailer park or garage publishing a book " How to become a Billionaire?" :laugh:
 

Seth's Steth

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BDS-DMD said:
I am sure you English will be fine. You will be fine. What I would do is to try and get the hang of the local lingo.

Speaking of language, I would STRONGLY recommend maximizing not only your English, but picking up at least basic Spanish as well, especially if you plan on working on either coast or in the more interior border states (Arizona, New Mexico, or Texas). I've been privy to some of the discussions in admissions offices and among the training programs and recruitment conferences, and even for US medical graduates, Spanish is becoming almost essential in quite a few regions. If you have a roughly similar record as another applicant but you can speak Spanish, you'll get the job.

The fact of the matter is, you save hospitals piles of cash if you're competent in Spanish (especially if you're fluent) and you provide much better care with a big portion of the patient population, and that's highly valued. This is particularly true in the big cities and in the Southwest which is sort of "Old Mexico" and which has an enormous sustained Latino demographic presence-- it's really unlike any other cultural phenomenon in the US. In many places, you can't practice medicine at all unless you can manage Spanish because there are so many Latino patients, and it's a requirement up front.

If anything, I think this is even more important for FMG's since there are far fewer slots available and it's so much more difficult to get a position. You need every advantage you can get, and Spanish is a big help. I heard in fact there was a program for UK doctors considering a move to the US, to get intensive medical Spanish training (in fact some US med schools in fact are teaching "immersive Spanish" with many med-school courses taught in both English and Spanish for those who are fluent). Basically, you want to have an intensive learning environment where both conversational and technical Spanish are learned. If there isn't one already in India, I would strongly encourage someone to consider founding such an institute for graduates who want to practice in the United States.
 

Faraaz23

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newyorker said:
I guess you are a medical professional. Whatever you do, do it with passion and sincerity. Even if it is not recognised instantly, it will be recognized soon. Even if you work ass off in the hospital, you are never going to beat that poor chinese/mexican or korean immigrant who work harder than you for nothing. They are the people who are real strugglers who have nothing. You have an education which is your blank check book.
Dont just plan to survive. Plan to rule.

)

No offense by me asking you this, but are you a FOB? The reason I'm asking because if you are, people will generally not say this to your face... but AT LEAST once a week when I'm working in the ER, i have patients ask me "who's the doctor?"... after I tell them, they immediately ask "does he speak good english, I don't want anyone who can't speak" I've had many friends or acquintances (non-desis) tell me "no offense because I know your dad wasn't born here, but I'd never go to any foreign-born doctor again" Is it because people don't think they are competent? Not at all. Its just that there is a difference between a FOB chinese person screwing up your order at the Great Wall restaurant and being ill and then having a hard time communicating with the person you are entrusting your health with.

Medicine is a business these days. Its not very easy to make a living being in private practice and getting mostly public aid patients. Patients are no longer just patients. They are consumers now, and are acting more like it. In addition to competency, people want physicians who they feel at ease with and can communicate with.

Don't underestimate the importance of communication. It will help you in ALL aspects of your life.
 

antibiotique

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@ Seth's steth: thanks for the suggestion. i was thinking about taking lesson in Salsa at Instituto Hispania .. now I'll take a few lessons in Spanish as well. :)
 

KaliforniaDoll

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Faraaz23 said:
No offense by me asking you this, but are you a FOB? The reason I'm asking because if you are, people will generally not say this to your face... but AT LEAST once a week when I'm working in the ER, i have patients ask me "who's the doctor?"... after I tell them, they immediately ask "does he speak good english, I don't want anyone who can't speak" I've had many friends or acquintances (non-desis) tell me "no offense because I know your dad wasn't born here, but I'd never go to any foreign-born doctor again" Is it because people don't think they are competent? Not at all. Its just that there is a difference between a FOB chinese person screwing up your order at the Great Wall restaurant and being ill and then having a hard time communicating with the person you are entrusting your health with.

Medicine is a business these days. Its not very easy to make a living being in private practice and getting mostly public aid patients. Patients are no longer just patients. They are consumers now, and are acting more like it. In addition to competency, people want physicians who they feel at ease with and can communicate with.

Don't underestimate the importance of communication. It will help you in ALL aspects of your life.

Nope. I never get offended if someone calls me a FOB. Infact, i am proud to be a FOB. I never underestimated the importance of communication. Communication is one important tool in patient care. It is not everything farraz.You dont have to be an orator with perfect english language skills to be a good doctor. There are so many great neurosurgeons, cardiothoracic surgeons and scientists in this country with difficulties in communication. I also face difficulties like you with my desi looks in work place. what are you gonna do abt it? Change it like michael johnson?. I have tried changing like trying to look like an american, act like an american, speak like an american. it never worked. finally i have decided to think like an american which is working great. Think american way. Think smart. Think different. Think Lateral. Think BIG. Think positive.

I just compared with Chinese/Korean immigrants for working hard not for the english language. Indians have the advantage of british history which helped us to speak english right from kindergarden. We just need to refine our english. How to deal with patients who need perfect english? You can change your impression within 80 seconds if you take charge. Every patient knows not to expect american accent from a foriegn doctor. There are so many things you can do in your job to change the initial impression.
Greet them. speak up clearly. speak confidently. make eye contact with patients. get very good history. explain things to them. educate them. Practice good bedside manners. seduce them with your medical knowledge and examinations skills. Patients are not stupid. They can differentiate a good doctor from a bad doctor within matter of minutes. It is just like you spotting a good waiter from a bad waiter in a restaurant.

If you also think medicine is business, patients are consumers, dont count competency as requirement..and want good looking doctors like in TV show who can smooth talk, there is no point in having USMLEs and intensive medical training. May be we should vote out good looking medstudents as doctors who can speak well, sing and who connects well with the public from some kinda TV show. Good idea for new fox channel hit show. :idea:
 

KaliforniaDoll

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antibiotique said:
@ Seth's steth: thanks for the suggestion. i was thinking about taking lesson in Salsa at Instituto Hispania .. now I'll take a few lessons in Spanish as well. :)

What kind of antibiotique are you? If you are a carbenicillin, i want to be that deadly pseudomonas infection. In case if you are INH, atleast i wanna be myco tuberculosis. ;)
 

KaliforniaDoll

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antibiotique said:
^ :laugh: and why would you want to do that?

coz..i dont want to end up as cheap enterobius vermicularis infection in the anal pit. :D
 

rollercoaster

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anti...man I am worried for you...remember one thing...it is a VERY tough country and you will have to prove yourself time and again. No room for mistakes, no sympathy, no callousness tolerated. Stick to business and be color blind.
All the best.
You switched from movies to salsa now? huh?remember euphoria is always followed by depression...no offences. Take all commments very seriously I think most of the guys have been very honest.
 

blingblah

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there is some good stuff here; yo but dont go overboard with that deo. you dont want people sneezing in your wake.

rollercoaster n faraaz alluded to this - people are nice, as long you dont screw up. if you dont already, try to grow some thick skin. good luck champ!
 

antibiotique

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newyorker said:
coz..i dont want to end up as cheap enterobius vermicularis infection in the anal pit. :D

thats interesting... no longer interested in being just a "human" eh? ;)
 

antibiotique

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rollercoaster said:
You switched from movies to salsa now? huh?remember euphoria is always followed by depression...no offences.
:laugh: was never really hooked to crossover cinema.. just saw coupla movies... and those were bad enough. doing salsa is just an extension of my hobby of dancing... no strategic planning going in there... ;)


Take all commments very seriously I think most of the guys have been very honest.

:) ;)
 

cutievans

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hahah, hey guys I know the deo think has already been made, but it is so freakin true...I have seen so many people with the B.O. problem, and its just cos of them not wearin any deo. well except this one guy who honestly was smellin like a trash can, he prolly jus dint shower for ages, he wasnt ndn though, he was white. I do research and my supervisor told me of this one time where she was in a room with this ndn girl, she said she was a sweet girl, but she was not wearin a deo and my supervisor was havin problems stayin in the room with her. so just stuff like that, I go to A&M btw, so there are a buncha international students there, so i hear a lotta stories, sad but true. as far as english goes, don worry about havin an accent, as long as it can be understood that is. America is a pot boiling with different cultures, so there are people with different accents, and I mean as far as u can be understood, its not an issue. I had an ndn prof for like 2 weeks, he's been here since ages, from what he told us, but his accent was pretty thick, i had trouble understanding him the first day, but then u get used to him. anyway point is, it just takes a little time to adapt, ull be fine, if u find urself getting frustrated with stuff, just calm down, it'll get better i promise. and there are people out there who can help, i mean u have to be independent but if u need something, just ask, dont be shy. Dont become used to the help though. I had this friend who is an international student, and I guess she was raised like a princess or something, I dint mind helpin her, but sometimes she took things for granted. anyway so thats for my story, jus be urself, don worry u should be fine.
 

antibiotique

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^

"ndn"?? is it Indian in texting lingo?

yeah, I have been listening about this stuff about BO and Indians in USA. But you know people here in India have been very conscious about BO and stuff like that of late. Even here I wear BO everyday. But I was never aware of so much being made out Indians in BOs, may be the Indians you encountered had emigrated way back... actually you will hardly find an Indian who doesnt bathes regularly... india is a subtropical country and bathing also has special singnifiacance as a ritual in hindu culture.. so far i havent encountered any medical colleague who doesnt bathe everyday.. may be few hostel dwellers and lazy chimps can be excluded.... but thats it! :) I think its not about smelling bad ... indian may smell just different because of the spices they use to make they food.

and yeah, I would never shy from asking for help if i genuinly need it (otherwise i wouldnt have posted this thread in first place) but at the same time I'm very indie. I understand your experiences with Indian friend of yours. Actually, its really very easy for someone with lot of money in india to have domestic helpers. Many of my friends who came from feudal families from hinterland of India have this habbit of bossing and taking help for granted. but city bred middle class girl and guys are really different they are very independent.

thank you very much for your words of support. :)

anyone from Boston here?
 

cutievans

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hey there, well yeah bathing is not a problem w/ the indians, i have lived in india enough to know that they shower everyday its just them not wearin deo's. I am not sayin no one in India does, I know a lot who do but still a lot here dont. as far as takin help for granted goes, my friend was from new delhi and from a pretty well to do family, i think its the way u r raised, i mean i came from a well to do family too, jus cos u have servants doesn't mean u get spoiled its the way u r taught to behave. my other friend from example, she aint ndn, she had servants all her life bt they have always been taught to do their work themselves. o well not the point. but don worry its not that hard, jus but the effort in and ull get there :) , gluck
 

gwen

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well, i think the BO problem arises from a couple of main sources:

1) not washing clothes frequently
2) not shaving (um, ladies)
3) eating really strong spices (including garlic, onion - can't help w/ indian food, though)...but it tends to seep through sweat.
4) not showering...less likely...

and btw, in kashmir, people do not shower on a regular basis. its too cold. the water is free and clean but it also takes time/money to warm it up.
 

Llenroc

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I knew this kid who came here from India, and in about a year he had more friends in high school than I had in a lifetime. And I've been living in Western countries since I was two. BTW: This was at a very white school in Ohio. Needless to say, America is a society that's pretty well accepting of newcomers. There's lots of foreign people here, and lots of well respected folk who speak English with a strong accent of their native homeland.

America is a country where people who talk a lot and are very sociable are able to move ahead. I also lived in England before I came to America. America has a lot of similarities to India. Who you know can matter for a lot.

People in America are very sports crazy. Whereas in some countries like England or India, the average Joe is content following one sport like cricket or soccer, here in America, baseball, basketball, American football, and ice hockey are all popular. And people follow them at all levels from professional, to collegiate, to even high school. It's a very sports mad society. I tell you, I've been here since 1992, I've been trying to get into the sports, and they still bore the hell out of me. But if you pick up interest in the American sports quickly, it can definitely give you quite a bit to talk about.

That's all I can think of for now.
 

Llenroc

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As far as desis stinking, quite frankly, no Indian person out there has any excuse. Our people have been bathing every day for centuries, while these guys in Western countries only picked up the habit - I don't know - post 1970 or something. Also, people in India usually wash their clothes after wearing them for one day. Americans sometimes wear their clothes several times, and let me tell you the Europeans are even worse.

So yes, many desis do stink, and quite frankly I don't get it. No one in my family has gotten any complaints about BO. We all smell quite nice actually. :D
 

antibiotique

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Llenroc said:
I've been trying to get into the sports, and they still bore the hell out of me.

:laugh: I used to play basketball while in school, I dont even remember last time i played the game. In my med college only sport gals played was badminton and tennis (both lawn as well as table varieties) I'm quite good at both of them. But i guess badminton and TT are not all that popular in USA, that leaves me with only lawn tennis I guess. Ice hockey, american football and baseball are not my cuppa tea. would prefer talking about american sitcoms rather than superbowl. :D
 

antibiotique

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Llenroc said:
. Americans sometimes wear their clothes several times, and let me tell you the Europeans are even worse.

:D

yeah i have heard, Germans have quite a reputation for their bathing habits. :D
 

$!n!$+er

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antibiotique said:
^
actually you will hardly find an Indian who doesnt bathes regularly...

India is a land of contrast so there can be no generalizations about India.... there are certain minority communities in India who are quite legendary about their once a week ablutional habbit. Yeah, if you are a Hindu kid first thing they teach you is ablutional skills. Brahmin rituals requires all brahmins to bathe at least twice a day. its an integral part of hindu culture. It is said that famed south indian mathematician ramnujan bathed twice a day in frigid climates of winter time Britain even when he was down with pneumonia.
 

DrGarfield

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And one more thing

Never ever whine that "This happened to me because I'm just an FoB"
 

squareDR

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One more thing. Please don't learn American race relations from your uncle who heard from his neighbor's business partner that certain races and ethnic groups are bad. The "black and white" nature of newly immigrated Indians' thinking on this subject drives me crazy and was a major source of conflict with my father ever since we moved to this country. Read a lot, talk to people of all kinds and understand that things are not as simple as people like to make them. If they were, there would be no point to learning history.

Sorry if this sounds preachy but it is a major pet peeve of mine and why I don't respect most of my parents' friends, who profess that Indian's are so smart but are themselves incredibly intellectually lazy.
 

antibiotique

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squareDR said:
The "black and white" nature of newly immigrated Indians' thinking on this subject drives me crazy and was a major source of conflict with my father ever since we moved to this country.

I dont get you?

Sorry if this sounds preachy but it is a major pet peeve of mine and why I don't respect most of my parents' friends, who profess that Indian's are so smart but are themselves incredibly intellectually lazy.

:laugh: can't agree more, its same here in India.
 

squareDR

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antibiotique said:
I dont get you?

I am sorry if I was not clear. Let me try to illustrate my point using my own family. My father, as smart as he is, feels the need to categorize whole races according to what he observes in his daily life, or worse, according to what he has heard from his friends. Until recently, he talked about how African-Americans are lazy, stupid and evil all around. There was no attempt to understand the history of this particular race in this country from slavery to segregation to the subtle racism which he himself is feeding into right now. This is what I call intellectual laziness.

I am certainly not saying that any race is above criticism or that it has no need to take responsibility for the present BUT ignorant, sweeping judgements about whole races just serve to make matters worse for everyone. Does that make any more sense to you? It is difficult to synthesize centuries of history in a short post but you will understand when you have lived here for awhile.

All I was asking for you to do is to keep an open mind and learn about complex issues from every perspective.
 
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