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Dear Steemit friends:
As part of my on-going project of cultural exchange, today i’m going to be introducing another Chinese Idiom. In my last post, we talked about the importance of placing emphasis on the right order and sequence of things with the idiom To put the cart before the horse. If you missed that one you can find it HERE.
Today’s idiom also has valuable moral lessons we can learn from, so let’s delve a little deeper and find out what’s in store today.
Today’s Chinese Idiom story — Teaching fish to swim
The idiom’s classical story
This idiom originates from a classical Chinese story. During the Warring States period, there was a master carpenter known for making delicate wooden structures. His name was Lu Ban. People consider him the grandfather of Carpentry and a genius in his art. One day, a young carpenter came in front of a Red Door, and ushered his confidence in being able to create beautiful wooden pieces with his ax.
People asked this young carpenter if he would be able to make a door better than the Red Door behind him. His reply was : “I studied under the great Lu Ban, how could I not make such a simple door, what a joke!”.
The people laughed at his reply, for the Red Door was actually made by the great Carpenter Lu Ban himself, and the Lu Ban lives in the house with the red door. The people asked the young carpenter, can you really make a door better than Lu Ban’s door?
The young carpenter was so embarrassed that he immediately ran away!
In ancient times, people used this idiom to criticize people who are ignorant and enjoy showing off. In modern times, it is used to encourage people to express themselves, show their skill and challenge authority. Sometimes we encourage people to show their “carpentry in front of Lu Ban”.
People in History who have dared to “Teach fish to swim”
In my opinion, “Teaching a fish how to swim” in the world of food is never a bad thing.
The English style of Afternoon tea became popular around the Victorian times.
And this is the style of Afternoon Tea I’ve enjoyed whilst in London.
This is the afternoon tea I have in China
China has introduced English Afternoon Tea into some of their restaurants, however their arrangement differs somewhat from Afternoon Tea in London. Most notably, the scones are absent, instead taking their place are little dessert cakes. Apart from offering Chinese food, restaurants offering afternoon tea are teaching fish to swim. It’s not authentic English Afternoon Tea, but it is a welcome addition to the menu giving people more choice.
This Chinese café offers french fries and wrapped candy as well as some other Chinese desserts in their version of Afternoon Tea, I like to call it English Afternoon Tea with Chinese characteristics.
If you are interested in my other blogs related to “Chinese Culture” please check out these other blogs below^^
Taking Steemit to one of the 8th wonders of the world^ ^
Impressions of China–Taking Steemians back to the Tang Dynasty.
Capturing the Spirit of the Uyghurs through Ink Wash Painting.
A thousand years ago, I was an Empress!
Welcome to my world of Idioms #1.
Welcome to my world of Idioms #2 .