Being Late

An Asian will arrive only on the dot, or in various increments of lateness depending on the context. Arriving early, even to self-compose or mentally prepare for an event, is a waste of time that the Asian could have spent doing something else. It is also awkward to arrive at a social gathering only to socialize with other strangers because your own friends/relatives/acquaintances have not arrived yet. There is also an unwritten agreement that everyone will arrive 15 minutes after the proposed time.


Asians are often late in the varying increments:

5 minutes late: Work (at an Asian job), doctors appointment.

15 minutes late: Most social gatherings, church/religious services. 15 minutes late is the optimal “Chinese time.”

30 minutes late: Large-scale social gatherings such as a wedding party.

2 hours late: Rare, because Asians would find it unpractical or inefficient to show up to the last hour of an event when they have already missed the first two hours.

There are exceptions to this rule. Asians are rarely late for music lessons, however, because they might be losing a dollar a minute or more for their daughter’s piano lessons. I don’t think Asians are usually late for romantic dates, too.

If you are frustrated with a constantly late Asian, regale them with all the free food they missed out while they were late to your social gathering. Or even worse, have them pay for their own and your share of dessert. Watch them arrive on the dot next time.


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