So here is a "LOST IN TRANSLATION" moment I had while modeling in Taiwan a few years back. (New Face placed by CQ 2005)
For all of you that have ever lived in a Foreign country for a spell, probably have some great/humorous experiences with the language barrier. The culture by comparison seems compatible to the eye. People rushing around, consumed with their own agenda. Various modes of transportation buzzing by making your castings a bit more 'adventurous'. The food...... well you can always find a little mom and pop shop called McDonald's somewhere close by that can transport you back home, even if the bun is made of sticky rice. But the one thing, especially in ASIA and specifically Taiwan, that becomes interesting is Communication. Castings here require you to perform Natural pose, Fashion pose, Catwalk pose, Suit pose, Big Suit pose, Big pose (very different from Big SUIT pose, however), and various Sporty poses ex. Ping Pong pose, Golf pose, Strong pose, Look Out Window pose, all of which should be changed with ever click of the camera keeping rautch of (watch of) logo and reinkle (wrinkle). Not an easy request but you do your best so that you come across as the Professional you are.
So one day, I was working with a new photographer and mid way through the shoot he requested me to "OPEN YOUR ASSSS and SMELL." I thought it a strange request but being the Professional I am, tried my best to make an Open ASSSS pose and Smell with confidence. I remember thinking that there is no way I can make this look sexy. In the past, I remembered a Shit down and Shit up request (sit up and sit down) but never an open anus and smelling option. Where was my Booker on this one? She never taught me this pose, and by the look of all the eyes around the photographer I was failing at grasping the direction. So I tried even harder as the requests came, "Open your Asss wider and Smell bigger!!!" I did but failed again. Now the translator who is the one that speaks the "best" English asks me to "FUCKUS you ASSS and Smell bigger!!!" At this point I had to stop the madness. Someone is FUCKUSing with me here. What are you wanting from me? Show me, "prease", which is what most of the clients do for you, via a look book, tears, or they themselves pose it out for you. The photographer goes about pointing to his EYES (ASSS) and Smiling (Smelling) and the FUCKUS (FOCUS)........... Much easier to do then the original request. "Open your EYES and SMILE like Tom Cruise." That was something i could do........
I had a great experience in Taiwan. I was there from January through April 2006. I found that I worked consistently every week and in most cases every day. A unique experience was that the first week of February is Chinese New Years. EVERYONE takes off from work. Nice time to travel, which I did for a solid week traveling with an Estonian, a Chinese who spoke FRENCH better the Cantonese, and 5 Canadians, plus a Dog named PIEGO (cantonese for beer) only a Canadian could name a DOG, beer. We went from Taipei to Kanting, north tip to south tip in a Disco Van complete with microphone and disco ball to keep you entertained on those long day trips through the mountains. Great memories I will have forever and for all of you interested in traveling there I recommend you all to practice "Opening Your ASSSSS and Smelling!!" Also, try the steamed rice patty buns at Mc-e-Dee's, how good we have it here in the states!! There's no place like home.