A very interesting result of this is a "reverse-FOB" effect I have noticed in Asia, directed to the "bananas", namely the Asian-Westerners (banana as in yellow on the outside, white on the inside). Be it Australian, American or Canadian, people in Asia have a high level of disdain for Asian Westerners who do not know their native language.

The FOB effect is sad but very widespread. When I was visiting New York this summer, one of my grandfather's best friends is the president of the Chinese American Association in NYC (a prestigious post). We were looking for his apartment in Chinatown and lost in the maze, we proceeded to ask people. Everyone assumed we were FOB's, fresh off the boat, looking for the so-called "contact", or liason to help set us new immigrants up in America. I was deeply insulted and verbally lashed out at them. The result was quite ugly and I will not speak of it any more here.

While living in Asia, when I first arrived I had no knowledge of Mandarin. I was treated quite badly by the locals, who viewed me as a banana. Lucky for me I was a quick learner and within a year I was fluent, and I encountered no more problems. But many of my Asian American friends suffer the "reverse-FOB" effect, as I like to call it.

Social discrimination really sucks. Can't people just get along?