Foreigners gobsmacked by Shanghai cab spittoons
Foreigners are spewing bile at China's latest plan to curb spitting in Shanghai, the country's financial capital, which is slated to host the 2010 World Expo.
Authorities here -- eager to put the city's best face forward while under the international spotlight -- plan to distribute 45,000 "spit sacks" to Shanghai cabbies, to curb the common habit of rolling down the cab window and expectorating onto the street.
But the proposal has foreigners spluttering with rage.
"This solution is a recipe for disaster," seethed one reader in an email printed in the Shanghai Daily on Saturday.
One of the many risks of the plan -- which involves fixing a sack to the metal grill which surrounds the driver's seat -- is that the bag may spill and unleash the "malodorous aroma of spit," the reader added.
Another respondent said he was afraid drivers might toss the bags out of their windows and be encouraged to hawk even more.
Local authorities are stunned by the livid reaction, the paper reported.
"We will persuade the drivers not to spit in the presence of passengers, and consider stabilizing the paper bags in unnoticeable corners near the driver's seat as improvements to our plan," health promotion campaign official Ni Yanhua was quoted as saying.
The "spit sack" follows an earlier innovation in Shanghai's public hygiene, after the city attached spittoons to garbage cans on sidewalks.
The spittoons were not seen as a success, since residents mistook them for ashtrays.
Tuesday, January 30, 2007
One of the things I hate the most about walking around here is trying to avoid the gobs of spit that are EVERYWHERE (not to mention the puke). It is disgusting. Apparently South Korea isn't the only place/country with a spitting problem: