Out of a mix of sheer curiosity and boredom at work, I made a web profile at QQ.com, one of the largest Chinese internet portals. QQ is also a Chinese instant messaging program that started as basically just a Chinese clone of ICQ but has expanded into the largest Chinese social networking tool available. There are nearly 100 million unique Chinese QQ users, which makes it one of the largest instant messaging / social networking programs in the world. Of course, it is all in Chinese, so there are very few non-Chinese actually using it. The hypothesis then became: If I, as a white male with light hair and blue eyes, made a QQ profile entirely in Chinese, how many girls could I get to send me a message?
The answer is: a lot. I’ve decided to extend the experiment one step further. I am going to choose one of them to go on a date with and see what happens. I have never gone on an “internet date” before - however, internet dating is a totally accepted and commonplace thing here in China. There is no shame associated with it like we might have back in the US (though I’ve heard this stigma is slowly dying away). There are far fewer venues for Chinese people to meet each other than we enjoy, so the Internet has become one of the most improtant ways young people meet each other and date.
I have chosen six girls that messaged me. Your job, citizens of rpgclassics, is to help me decide which one I should date, and I will write up a final report / description of the event after it is over. I will also take some questions from you that you want me to ask her, and report back on her answers after the date. I have chatted with each of these six girls for a few minutes on QQ using a webcam to verify they are all who they say they are, and that they reasonably resemble their pictures. Here are the six candidates:
Girl number 1:
I don’t really know too much about girl number 1. She is originally from Shanghai (where I live now), and she is a very attractive girl. She is 22 years old. She seems to spend most of her time at the Internet cafe, which means she is probably lower down on the socioeconomic order (doesn’t have her own computer). She came off as a bit dirty to me, so there is a reasonable chance I could…well, take her for a test drive on the first date, if you’ll allow me to be so blunt.
[STRIKE]Girl number 2:[/STRIKE]
[STRIKE]Girl number 2 is a very fashionable and attractive young girl. She is nineteen years old and originally from Shanghai. She seems to love taking pictures in McDonald’s, which is her favorite restaurant (this is not uncommon here - a date at McDonald’s is a completely legitimate date. It’s a rather upscale type thing with young people). She still lives with her parents (read: virgin). She collects handbags…which means I’d probably have to take her shopping on the date (not my favorite activity). She is very cute though, and has a very soft voice. If I buy her stuff, I could probably get some kissing action in.[/STRIKE]
[STRIKE]Girl number 3:[/STRIKE]
[STRIKE]Girl number 3 is a true “peasant girl” Her family comes from a small farming village in the country side of China. She is a very, very pretty girl however, and in Chinese they have an idiom to describe her as: 小家碧玉 (xiao jia bi yu), which transaltes as "a beautiful girl of humble birth). She studies at a university in Shanghai. She supposedly studies English, but her English does not seem that good. I have a feeling she is only really studying to try and find a husband, as most girls from her background would do. She is 21 years old. There is no way that a date with her would result in any form of physical contact, except perhaps a hug at the end. However, I have never been on a date with a countryside girl before, so it would be itneresting.[/STRIKE]
Girl number 4:
I was originally not going to include girl number 4, because honestly, I don’t find her that physically attractive. What can I say? I’m shallow. After having a conversation with her, however, I concluded I’d put her in the running, because she has a very strong and interesting personality, and we had a very interesting conversation about Chinese culture. She speaks nearly fluent English, and she is currently studying for her master’s in translation and interpretation. She is 23 years old, making her the oldest among the candidates. She might be a bit too excited about the possibility of dating a white guy though. She seemed to be rather forward. Date could potentially result in disaster.
Girl number 5:
Girl number 5 would fulfil one of my fantasies: a date with a Chinese secretary (and she even looks like a secretary too). I’ve got a weakness for girls with glasses, I must admit. Girl number 5, like girl number 3, is a girl of rather humble birth. She is a big girl, however…almost the same height as me, which is quite abnormal for a Chinese girl (most of the other girls are all around 5 feet to feet 3 inches tall). I’ve never had a date with a Chinese girl of such stature before, which could be interesting. Girl number 5 is 22 years old, and she seems to have a dreadful taste in fashion. As you can see, her shirt proudly declares “cute girl”. I kind of like the whole clueless Chinese fashion thing though.
[STRIKE]Girl number 6:[/STRIKE]
Girl number 6 is the youngest girl of the bunch, clocking in at only 18 years old. She has just graduated high school, and will be soon moving on to study art here in Shanghai. She is a very artistic minded person. In our webcam conversation, she showed me some of the artwork and photography she has done. It wasn’t great, but for a young girl with no training, it wasn’t bad. It can be difficult to find girls here that have hobbies other than looking for husbands and shopping, so it was quite nice. She talked about how some of her other friends all have “foreign boyfriends”, so I think she’s feeling a bit behind the curve, and would merely be using me to show off that she’s cool too. I have no problems with this, as long as I get the um…requisite payback for such services.[/STRIKE]
So there you have it rpgclassics. Who would you choose? Please explain your decisions, as it will help me greatly in the decision process.