One interesting side of living in China is seeing our own culture-of-origin reflected back at us in Chinese eyes — discovering the myriad ways that Chinese (mis)appropriate or expose our own traditions and bits of culture. Sometimes your knee-jerk reaction is, “Ha, they totally don’t get what that’s about.” But then on second thought you realize that they actually understand at least part of it better than you do; their outsider perspective lets them see some facets of our culture more clearly than we see them ourselves.
This particular Frosty statue, which is apparently on display all year long, sits next to a common money frog (金蟾), which is next to some Buddhist good luck trinkets, which are next to an equally ubiquitous shrine to the Daoist God of Wealth (财神爷). All these things (aside from Frosty) can been seen in pretty much every other Chinese business; they’re meant to bring wealth and good fortune.
Some related stuff:
- Ho! Ho! Who? Santa VS. China’s God of Wealth
- The Chinese Santa Claus
- Curiosity + China = way more than I bargained for
- The (cultural) value of money
- Merry… something, from Tianjin! :)
- The evolution of Christmas Eve in China
- Christmas (topic)