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snopes
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Comment: It's often said that in arab countries, it is polite to burp
after a meal. However, I've never met any arab who does this. Is this a
fact, or a piece of old racist propaganda (portraying 'foreign' cultures
as uncivilized)?

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Phaedra
Jingle Bell Hock


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I lived in the South Yemen in my early teens and recall my father saying that it was essential to burp when you cleared your plate in an arab household otherwise they would assume you had not had enough and would keep reloading it 'til you did.

Having said that I don't remember burping after meals there and I can't imagine my mother doing that...I never heard her burp in my whole life. My father on the other hand made up for both of us.

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Kafroggy
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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Yea, and I always heard it was Japan. Guess it depends on how old you are. I really think this was another one made up by a Great American Burper; they are a very common species who like to be regarded as having some savoir faire:) :fish:

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Stoneage Dinosaur
We Wish You a Merry Giftmas


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I've also heard it in relation to China as well as Arab countries, but always thought it was just used as an excuse for one's own poor table manners.

International Dining Etiquette at h2g2 doesn't mention burping for Chinese or Arab meals, but does state that in Japan, noodles should be slurped as loud as possible to express satisfaction.

quote:
A natural phenomenon that occurs after filling up your insides, burping, is considered impolite in the modern West. But this used to signal, in certain corners of the world, that the host had provided enough food and if the guests didn't burp at least three times, they were clearly not satisfied and the host was poor, or just plain cheap.

Many believe that in Germany it is polite to burp. This idea comes from the religious reformer Martin Luther, allegedly, who said:

Warum pfurzet und ruelpset ihr nicht, hat es euch nicht geschmecket?

Which roughly translates as:

Why don't you farteth and burpeth, didn't you fancy the meal?

Many Germans know this phrase and use it frequently. It might be a handy phrase to know to divert the attention from an unwanted sound or smell to historical/cultural topics at a German dinner table.

It is actually considered a compliment in some parts of the Southern United States to burp during a meal. For some reason, though, men are expected to give this compliment and not women. Women who burp are deemed to be uncouth, just as they are in the rest of the United States.

Generally speaking, men around the table smile and laugh at the burp. Women are expected to feign annoyance, even if they also find it amusing. This behaviour rarely occurs outside the home, but that could just be due to lack of opportunity.

It's actually considered an honour to the chef to burp as a sign of enjoying a meal in some parts of Turkey.



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bounder
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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Funny, when I was a child, we were told that the French were the ones that burped to express satisfaction with their meal. Never heard about other country's burping etiquette or that it was an expression of having one's appetite sated. Then again, I was raised in the country in the middle of nowhere and worldly topics weren't at the top of our daily discussions.
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laura 2
The First USA Noel


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I performed for over a year at a Persian place that had a significant Arab clientel. I've never heard any of them burp after the meal, FWIW.

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Q: What's the difference between an onion and a mizmar?
A: No one cries when they cut up a mizmar.

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annabohly
Jingle Bell Hock


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well you know what they say " better to burp and taste then to fart and waste it"

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And always remember....when life hands you Lemons, ask for tequila and salt and call me over !!!!!

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momto4+
Deck the Malls


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A burp is but a little thing that comes straight from the heart. But, when it takes the long way round its just a great big fart!

Excuse me, excuse me from the bottom of my heart but, if it would've went the other way it would've been a fart!

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A little rudeness and disrespect can elevate a meaningless interaction to a battle of wits and add drama to an otherwise dull day! -Calvin and Hobbes

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Mistletoey Chloe
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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It warms the britch,
It breaks the stitch
And brings sweet music to the fleas.

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Senior
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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TO FART: To break wind behind.
As when we gun discharge,
Although the bore be ne'ere so large,
Before the flame from muzzle burst,
Just at the breech it flashes first;
So from my lord his passion broke,
He farted first, and then he spoke. - Swift

From Samuel Johnson's A Dictionary of the English Language

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Ad astra per asparagus.

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quiltsbypam
Happy Holly Days


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A fart is the crookedest thing in the world. It aims for the heels and hits the nose.

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Neffti Noel
We Three Blings


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I lived in Saudi Arabia as a kid in the late 70's and early 80's, and being a kid my own table manners were questionable at best. On the few occasions we did go out to dinner, it was explained to me by my parents that hospitality is taken very seriously in Saudi and it's important to leave the host in no doubt that you are fully satisfied. However I don't remember the meals being festivals of slurping, burping and lipsmacking. Perhaps the compliments were repeated a little more often and the "mmms" a little louder, but I can't honestly say that there was a special rule we had to follow when eating in public. I'm sure if people had been burping loudly I would have enjoyed it and taken every opportunity to join in.
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Alana
Newsqueak


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Growing up, my mom always said "It's not bad manners, it's good food." She said it was something they used to say in Germany, but of course, I'm not sure about that, hehe.

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My friend said to me, "Man, this weather is trippy." I said to him, "No, man, it's not the weather that is trippy. Perhaps it is the way we perceive it that is indeed trippy." Then I thought, "Man, I should have just said, 'yeah.'" - Mitch Hedberg

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Alana
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Growing up, my mom always said "It's not bad manners, it's good food." She said it was something they used to say in Germany, but of course, I'm not sure about that, hehe.

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My friend said to me, "Man, this weather is trippy." I said to him, "No, man, it's not the weather that is trippy. Perhaps it is the way we perceive it that is indeed trippy." Then I thought, "Man, I should have just said, 'yeah.'" - Mitch Hedberg

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DougW
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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quote:
Originally posted by Stoneybridge Dinosaur:
This idea comes from the religious reformer Martin Luther, allegedly, who said:

Warum pfurzet und ruelpset ihr nicht, hat es euch nicht geschmecket?

Which roughly translates as:

Why don't you farteth and burpeth, didn't you fancy the meal?


That is brilliant. I wonder if I could convince the Lutheran church up the road to use that as one of the messages on their ever changing outdoor sign.
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Blatherskite
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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Is this a
fact, or a piece of old racist propaganda (portraying 'foreign' cultures
as uncivilized)?


It at least might not have started out as propaganda portraying foreign cultures as uncivilised, or people wouldn't make the claim when they're trying to justify their own burp.

The main point in it being somewhere foreign - particularly both foreign and far away - could just be that the person the belcher is telling the legend to has hopefully never been there and therefore can't dispute it. Unfortunately the legend is attached to places people believe are more 'likely' to belch after meals, which is where the racism comes prancing in.

Still, there are worse insults than 'You belch flattery'.

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frogpond
Jingle Sales


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Anyone remember the scene in "Witness" when the little boy burps and the Amish mother says "good appetite!"

I don't suppose we will get much direct Amish feedback on this board! [fish]

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frogpond
Jingle Sales


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Anyone remember the scene in the movie "Witness" when the little boy burps and the Amish mother says "good appetite!"

I don't suppose we'd get much direct Amish feedback on this board. [fish]

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So many books, so little time.

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Signora Del Drago
Angels Wii Have Heard on High


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I heard it was polite to burp after a fine meal in India. Go figure.

I'd like to know in what part of the South it is considered polite to burp. I was raised in Georgia and Alabama, have relatives in Tennessee, Lousiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, and have lived in Texas. Everyone I know always covers his/her mouth if they feel a burp coming on and says "Excuse me" after burping. I suppose we don't actually consider it to be impolite to burp if you can't help it, but we don't burp to be polite, either. We try to do it as discreetly as is possible.

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"This air we're breathing. Oxygen, isn't it?"~I’mNotDedalus, impersonating Vincent D’Onofrio.|"Sometimes trying to communicate can be like walking through a minefield."~wanderwoman
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Honey Bunching Oats
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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My Mother-in-Law worked in Kuwait in the late 80"s until 1990. She said that burping was a complement after a meal. She didn't say anything about farting. I'm sure she would have had that been the case. Unless it was just the people that she was working for doing it. Maybe it's when people eat in your home so they don't do it at resturaunts.

I do remember seeing something in The Atlantic that was from another source about Muslims having to hold farts during prayer or else the prayer is invalid. I was trying to find it but the search didn't turn up what I was looking for. Try entering prayer and fart and I got two matches one of which was a Garrison Keillor story. Then I changed the words to Prayer, Gas, and Islam. Never use the words Gas and Islam together in a political magazine you will get a lot of hits. [lol]

Honey Bu "uuurp"nching Oats

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"When we talk about democracy, if the people's stomach is empty, democracy is also empty. Democracy cannot be installed by fiat; it must be achieved by the people themselves." Y.C. James Yen (1893-1990)

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