Is "Chinese Firedrill" offensive to anyone?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Lanny_B, Feb 6, 2002.

  1. Lanny_B

    Lanny_B Second Unit

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    I hope this isn't too off topic.

    I need to know if this is an offensive term to anyone. When I say "Chinese Fire Drill", I'm referring to a high school thing when two cars stop at a stoplight, everyone gets out and switches cars before the light turns green. It's kind of a stupid little thing that in some parts of the country they call a Chinese firedrill.

    Anyway, I was thinking of putting it in a short film, and it's kind of the punchline of a joke, and I just stopped and wondered if this is offensive. The joke has nothing to do with chinese. It's about the characters running around and all and at the end you find out they were trying to do a chinese firedrill. So, I thought I'd ask your opinions.

    Only real answers please, because I want to take everyone seriously. Thank You.

    It's really short, and it would be in some festivals, and I don't want it to be taken sour".
     
  2. Nick Sievers

    Nick Sievers Producer

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    I'm not offended by anything. So I guess my answer is No, not offended.
     
  3. Mark Turetsky

    Mark Turetsky Supporting Actor

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  4. Dome Vongvises

    Dome Vongvises Lead Actor

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    I've always thought that "Chinese Firedrill" had its roots in how at one time (okay, before you proceed, I treat this more as an amusing plausible urban legend than anything else) during the exhibition of a play, a fire broke out in a theater. Of course, this event took place in China. Nonetheless, people didn't proceed in a calm and orderly fashion to make an effort to exit out of the building and summarily everybody in the theater died. Hence, Chinese Firedrill, which in common usage refers to the a state of mind akin to thoughtlessness, extreme panic, and lack of composure during an emergency situation.
     
  5. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    I've never even heard of the term.

    Nevertheless, if you have to ask (if something's offensive), it almost certainly is, to somebody. In my case, I'd sit there not even getting your punchline, so I don't know if I'd be offended or not.
     
  6. Miles_W

    Miles_W Second Unit

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    Being Chinese I can safely say Not in the slightest bit offended...
     
  7. Steven K

    Steven K Supporting Actor

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    It's sad to say, but nowdays, almost anything you say can be construed as being offensive.

    Just the other day a friend was telling me about a lady who approached him on the subway and told him that she was offended when he used the term "old wive's tale."

    Sheesh... political correctness...
     
  8. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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  9. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    I'm Chinese, but I find hardly anything blatently offensive. It's more of the person who says it than what they say anyway. One can typically judge intent by the context in which it was used for the most part...

    However with strangers, you will never know until somebody complains.

    Jay
     
  10. Dome Vongvises

    Dome Vongvises Lead Actor

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    I'm part Chinese, and I'm not offended. Does that count? [​IMG]
     
  11. John Besse

    John Besse Supporting Actor

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    Hey, I used to do these when I was a junior in high school. I would laugh my ass off if I saw some teenagers do one these days.
     
  12. MikeAlletto

    MikeAlletto Cinematographer

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    If you are making a movie and it is YOUR movie do what you want. Don't try and censor youself because you "may" offend a group of people. Its your movie, your art, do what you want.
     
  13. David Susilo

    David Susilo Screenwriter

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    Thank you for the kind consideration. I personally am not offended. I'm Chinese. Then again, it depends on the context. In your context, it's just funny. [​IMG]
     
  14. Iain Lambert

    Iain Lambert Screenwriter

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    I'm offended. Any reader of the Illuminati books will know thats a Bavarian Fire Drill, not a Chinese one!
    [​IMG]
     
  15. John Spencer

    John Spencer Supporting Actor

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    While we're on the subject, does it just incense you guys when someone uses the term "French fries"? How about "English muffin"? "Mexican restaurant"?

    Pretty much, if a person opens their mouth, there's a damn good chance they're going to offend someone, since it's currently en vouge to be overly sensitive to every damn thing. Oh shoot, is it ok to use "en vouge"? Damn, I better stop before I get too culturally offensive.
     
  16. Scott_G

    Scott_G Second Unit

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    I don't know how else to define it.

    I saw the title and could see one from the past.

    Any other word wouldn't have sparked that vision.

    It's really getting sad when we have to worry about everything we say.
     
  17. Ryan Peter

    Ryan Peter Screenwriter

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    "en vouge"? [​IMG]
     
  18. DaleR

    DaleR Stunt Coordinator

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    speaking for all firemen i admit that we find it offensive
     
  19. Jim_F

    Jim_F Screenwriter

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    Taken from word-detective.com:

     
  20. John Thomas

    John Thomas Cinematographer

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    Well, I'm sure it's offensive to somebody.

    I tell ya what - lets go with a thread listing what offends us. Yeah. I'm gonna jump over there and start one.

    Follow me...
     

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