In my big post about my racial attitudes written last month (See here), I said this:
And the claim that Asian cultures are tribal is a grave misconception. Asian culture is a culture of reciprocity. So if you treat them well or do them a good turn you generate enormous feelings of obligation in return. So when I walk into an Indian shop where I am known and buy three samoosas for my lunch I will occasionally get a fourth one popped into the bag as a gesture of goodwill. What is problematical about a culture like that?
At the bottom of the same post I also mention a bit about the Japanese Sushi Train restaurant that I regularly dine at and I note the typically Japanese impassivity of the chefs there. Because I am such a frequent customer there, however, reciprocity has now come into play there too and has overcome even Japanese reserve. Not only does one of the normally silent chefs say a few words to me now and then but I have even been given free sushi on a couple of occasions.
In other words, because I do them the slight favour of being a frequent customer, they feel under an obligation to me and reciprocate with friendliness and the odd dish of free food. I am not remotely of their tribe. They do not treat me well because of my tribe. They treat me as an individual and treat me unusually well because I treat them well (from their perspective). What was that saying that some old prophet once said? Something about "Do unto others..." It works, tribe or no tribe.
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