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the 3rd culture:

in a recent conversation with a couple of friends, the concept of third culture kids came up. all of us are technically third culture kids by definition, despite the fact that one of them is a local.

now, theres been alot written on the subject, and i’d rather not rehash it all again, since it makes little difference to the lives of those in question. studies range from explicitly recommending large multinationals hire 3rd culture kids for their as their staff( we work better with a larger world view, apparently:P), to blaming them for the gradual erosion of the local culture and traditions( i dont want a falafel mommy i want a fuckin McDonalds,..umm fo shizzle).

on the one hand we’re great cos we can be dropped into just about anywhere in the world and hit the ground running,….. but then we get blamed for forgeting our core traditions and values and allegedly wanting to see a Starbucks on every corner. (ITS NOT OUR FAULT FFS!!!)

actually i take issue with the very phrase “3rd culture kid”. it suggestes that while youre neither one of the other, youre a third, and quite frankly, it doesnt fit.

that might fit in a country like singapore or malaysia, or even the uk and anywhere else immigrants have been accepted into the community. as the second generation comes forth they become malaysians, british, americans, french and germans.

we dont.

we dont fit in where we are, and we dont fit in at home. but we can get comfortable almost anywhere if we had to.

and while we dont fit in, would we really want to? i think alot of us like our odd expatish status. fuck a conventional life! 😀

we’re the first generation of the truly global.

the personification of the globalisation phenomenon.

we’re the first step on the way to the whole world becoming only a shade of brown, instead of colours and nations.

we live on cnn, time, newsweek and the herald tribune cos your local papers dont satisfy our need to know what goes on in the broader world. (especially the papers in the UK,….. jesus christ they wrote about such pointless shite!)

we’ll have cereal for breakfast, a curry for lunch and sushi for dinner,…. or the other way round if we feel like it.

most of us were flying between timezones before we could crawl.

we got jetlag before we learned to stop pooing in our diapers.

so heres to anyone that ever felt out of place,…. know that youre the next step in human evolution, and take comfort in the knowledge that there are lots of others just like you out there.

and the world is yours for the taking ! 😛

global nomad?

nahhhhh 😛

citizen of the world!!! 😀



  1. Whoa and you managed not to talk about fluctuating markets??? So proud of you 🙂

    Hmmm well recently the world seems to have been dumped in a blender and out popped a potpourri of new hybrids.

    Now perception is always subjective: either it concludes in appreciation of each others cultures on a more profound level; or it dissolves them into weaker strains while the most dominant lifestyle (the man-made culture of MacD and liberal hedonism)may come out on top…

    I personally dont have a problem with a chunky dollop of western ideals, but it IS nice to wrap yourself in a deeper culture(even if you havent inherited it)… its warm and fuzzy with communal comprehension, you know?

  2. i agree, there are both pros and cons to the traditional and the new pop culture.
    and being displaced allows us to view things in a truly objective light.
    keep the goodstuff of both the old and new, but have the guts to chuck out the bad, hypocritical self-defeating stuff.

    what is depressing is when people say “thats just the way we do things” knowing full well the retardedness of that comment.

    like does having a full bushy beard make you holier than me? no, you just look scruffy 😛

    and does wearing a suit and tie in the desert make you seem more professional than i? no, youre just a idiot that’ll prolly get heat stroke:P

    i’d wear a dishdasha here, but then i’d just look silly:P

    and lol you just reminded me what i wanted to write about on the KSE 😛

  3. Nice post! I agree with jitterbug! Nice to see u deflect from the market for a bit 😛

    I myself am a 3rd culture kid and I’m constantly bombarded by people who don’t “believe” in my contradictions. Things like :

    I pray five times a day/ everyday…

    and yet, I can recite every lyric to every Aerosmith song.

    I have many guy friends, have travelled all over the place, gone clubbing…

    and yet, I don’t have premarital sex.

    It’s contradictions like these that people tend to have trouble comprehending.

    Citizens of one country/culture tend to view the world in black and white.

    I am a firm believer in gray areas.


  4. its always ammusing to see how people handle apparently conflicting concepts.

    or fail to handle them as the case is all too often 😛

    but once we face the fact that we’re just novelties to everyone else,… thats when you can capitalise on it.


    its amazing how many doors i’ve gotten into based on silly things like nationality.
    and a mid-atlantic accent does wonders on the phone 😛

    i’m proudly guilty of hamming up one accent or another depending on where i am to get what i want 😛

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