From The Shallow Minded
At least that’s the gist of what we got from the Xinmin Evening News front page article, “Men who ‘won’t grow up’ are embarrassing schools (“长不大的男生”让学校犯难).” To add insult to injury, the writer accused Shanghainese men of being “unable to shoulder burdens” despite their height and of having voices “childish and like mosquitoes,” despite their good looks. The piece even went into detail about how many of these “boys” wore glasses. You know what that means, right? Shanghainese men have the same genetic predisposition towards myopia as most of the Han population? NOPE! THEY’RE NERDS!!!!
A translation by Shanghaiist below:
“Three years after graduating, what are 18~19 year old boys capable of?” Yesterday, the only national aviation school – Shanghai Vocational School of the Civil Aviation Administration of China (SVSCAAC) – began their annual college admissions interviews. A large amount of men are needed to play leading roles in areas such as aircraft ground handling, machine repair, safety check, security etc. However, right now Shanghai’s high school boys lack wisdom and maturity, causing schools to despair.
The graduates of SVSCAAC have usually studied for three years, and are about 18 or 19 when they leave the school. 30 years ago, boys of this age would have been ready to take on the burdens of life. But now, they are just big kids, hiding under their parents’ wings. According to SVSCAAC Vice President Yang Zheng, although companies are very willing to recruit male students, the previous years’ batches were all spoiled and childish, cowardly and unsteady workers – causing employers no amount of headaches. Many airlines have stated explicitly that they will only recruit college educated men. To state it plainly, they’re hoping against boys that “never grew up,” hoping for some more mature and prudent.
Why are today’s men giving off an aura of “can’t grow a moustache, can’t finish work strongly (嘴上没毛办事不牢)”? Yesterdays series of interviews have lead teachers to share their worries:
Scene I: While reciting their CV, they sound like mosquitoes
Though the recruiters were only five or six meters away from the candidates, almost nobody could hear these men say their own names. They may be tall and look handsome, but as soon as they open their mouths, they mumble and speak vaguely, as if they have a mouth full of olives.
Scene II: Of the first 15 guys, six wore glasses
The first batch of candidates contained a total of 15 boys, of which six wore glasses. Even if they weren’t wearing glasses, however, they all looked like they could be toppled by a gust of wind, as if their arms and shoulders would be crushed under weights. The recruiting teachers told our reporters, they hope that during the next two batches of interviews this month, there will be more “big” boys with better temperaments.
It is not just that SVSCAAC recruiters are being too picky, it’s that there are just too few young Shanghainese guys with some level of masculinity. Aircraft maintenance used to be a male only field, but has in the last few years begun recruiting femals. This year, about 1/3 of the job spots will be reserved for girls.
“Though the educational departments do want to reflect gender equality, we still believe that the hard jobs should be a man’s burden.” According to admissions professors, the professional vocational school majors of aircraft manufacture, engine maintenance and the like have attracted a lot of female candidates. Will Shanghainese guys be able to compete with these women of other provinces, who are so willing to endure hardship? In the future of cultural learning, basic internships, graduate recruitment, will they have the confidence to “win”?
So it looks like China’s Got Talent Judge Gao Xiaosong isn’t the only person doubting the manliness of Shanghainese men. But how bizarre is this story?
Let’s put aside a moment the obvious sexism of the last paragraph, how is it that this made front page news – especially since it was placed right next to the news of a hometown student murdered overseas by her Shanghainese stalker? It’s almost as if this is a belated and poorly thought out April Fools joke.