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My Turn

Wayne Chan

From The Asian Reporter, V26, #15 (August 1, 2016), page 6.

A thwacking is worth a thousand words

Some of you may have run across a viral video of a trainer lining up a group of employees who work for a Chinese Bank and spanking them with a wooden paddle in front of their peers for poor performance evaluations.

Itís a shocking display. Itís demeaning. Itís humiliating.

And yet, I actually have mixed feelings about it.

Of course, Iím sympathetic to those poor folks on stage getting thwacked on the backside. I donít see how any performance evaluation should ever incorporate corporal punishment as part of its training methods.

On the other hand Ö

In this day and age, with all of lifeís inconveniences, politicians with too much political correctness (and some with too little), and all the little injustices in life, I canít deny the satisfaction I would receive if I had the power to administer at least a symbolic thwacking to some of those on my list. Yes, I have a list ó itís a theoretical list, but a list is still a list.

So here goes Ö

To the waitress in Shanghai who took so long to clean up a table for us to be seated that we started cleaning the table ourselves, which led to her complaining to us that we didnít do a good enough job. ó Thwack!

To the salesperson who gave us a really outrageously high estimate to replace a window in our home only to find out the same exact brand window was 30 percent cheaper at our local Home Depot. ó Thwack!

To my teenage son, who plays tennis and recently said, "I want to beat you in tennis while youíre still young enough to play." ó Thwack!

To the same teenage son, who a couple of weeks later while playing me in tennis said, "You know, you donít have to hit the ball so soft to me." Which was followed up by me saying, "I wasnít trying to hit the ball soft to you!" ó Thwack!

To my teenage son, yes, the same one, who while playing tennis with me a couple weeks later, smiled at me with a sheepish smile and said, "Youíre hitting the ball much harder now ó good for you!" Which was followed by me saying, "I want you to stop talking to me now." ó Thwack! (Heís probably getting pretty sore by now.)

To a certain presidential candidate who was also a first lady, a senator, and a former Secretary of State, when asked if she will tell the truth to the American people, responded by saying, "Iíve always tried to." ó Thwack!

To another presidential candidate who made a name for himself by firing people on a reality show, and has said ó well, there are just too many to mention, so Iíd like to administer a number of thwacks set to the beat of Queenís "Another One Bites the Dust." Thwack! Thwack! Thwack! Thwackie, thwack, thwackie thwack!

Finally, a few thwacks reserved for some inanimate objects.

For the scale in my bathroom, which manages to show a higher number even after Iíve only eaten an apple, two walnuts, and a glass of skim milk for the day. ó Thwack!

For the air conditioner in my home that seems to turn on randomly in the winter, but decided to stop working on the hottest day of the year. ó Thwack!

Finally, for the GPS navigation system in my car, which seems to routinely reroute my drive to head into the middle of a lake or on a 36-hour journey to Milwaukee. ó Thwack!

Now, I feel much better. Handís a little sore; next time Iíll wear gloves.


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