Turns out chewing with your mouth full isn’t a universal no-no, and while foreigners might be offended by the burping, spitting and bone chewing that accompany most meals with locals, there’s a lot we can do to offend our Chinese hosts as well.
The Daily Meal has a slideshow of the world’s table manners, including a bit on China:
The Chinese have a wide range of do’s and don’ts related to chopsticks. Do hold them with your right hand. Don’t point them at another person, bang them up and down, or wave them around, no matter how emphatically you’re trying to make a point. When not in use, rest them on the chopstick rest or on one’s plate. Don’t penetrate your food with them. And no matter what, don’t stick them upright in a bowl of rice, because that evokes a sense of death.
CNNGo also delves into the tricky subject with its “5 Chinese eating habits explained” article.
Chinese tradition calls for a birthday girl or boy to slurp a bowl of noodles as a celebration of the many years ahead. And as “Lady and the Tramp” so aptly demonstrated, that one long noodle can be a great thing.
Meaning: It symbolizes longevity.
Don’t worry if you can’t remember all the eccentricities!