Shouldn't you at least be 18 for this? Or am I an old fart?
Last week I went to a Christmas/mingle/glögg-wine/networking event (take your pick!) and brushed shoulders with a lot of nice people. Since it was Christmas on the theme a lot of people had brought their kids and families. One woman was walking around with her 2 sons: 12 and 16 years old, that politely shook hands with all the guests. I was standing in a group of middle-aged men when the two teenagers came up to us and introduced themselves.
After some small talk it became clear that one of the men I was talking to had a son who went to the same school as Mr 16-year old. In an effort to figure out if they knew each other or not (not by name anyway), the middle-aged man suddenly went:
-Well, OK, maybe you guys are party buddies if nothing else? What clubs do you normally go to?
-Well.. for clubbing I go to Mural. And then sometimes….
-Eh… excuse me, I said. How old are you again?
-Just turned 16.
-And you go… CLUBBING?
-Yeah, of course! Mural’s has the best free flow of booze!
I was looking at my fellow group of grown-ups, looking for some kind of moral support. Nothing. They were all busy giving encouraging smiles to the 16-year-old that just admitted he enjoys a free flow of booze on the wknds.
Not until later that night did one man come up to me, put a hand on my shoulder and said:
-Yeah, they grow up faster over here.
Silence, until I said:
-We weren’t like that when we were sixteen?
-Well I sure did not go clubbing anyway?! And I never experienced anything like “free flow” before I came to China?! As a teenager you don’t know how to handle things like that?!
Polite smiles and silence, until he went:
-Got any kids yourself?