Understanding China, One Blog at a Time

An American in China

Archive for October 26th, 2010

China’s Research into Work on CPU’s Will Now Surge

Posted by w_thames_the_d on October 26, 2010

That is my take. Intel just opened up a fab in China, think about it, if the Chinese steal secrets from our factories in the US, imagine what they do to factories in China..Why not just hand them the blueprints.

“DALIAN – US computer chip giant Intel Corporation’s first chip plant in Asia began production in Northeast China’s Liaoning province Tuesday. “This is the first fab we’ve built at a brand new site since 1992,” said Paul Otellini, Intel’s president and chief executive officer, at the commencement ceremony.The start of operations was announced at 9:45 am by Kirby Jefferson, general manager of the plant. “

Posted in Big brother..., Cultural oddities | 2 Comments »

Massage or….

Posted by w_thames_the_d on October 26, 2010

I think the sign in Chinese says …massage…

Posted in Cultural oddities, Photos | 1 Comment »

This is China

Posted by w_thames_the_d on October 26, 2010

I love this shot…

Posted in Photos | 1 Comment »

Chinese Envelopes suck!

Posted by w_thames_the_d on October 26, 2010

Ok here is a multi-dimensional story that can let you know many aspects of living in China. It will also allow me to vent my full spleen in the process.

Remember I said I had to pay a bill, actually not a bill, it was a payment made in error by another party, but anyway, I had to pay a ton of cash or refund it. The problem is that when I went to the bank the lines were too long and I was wasting my time, so I called the other party and said, lets do this another way. They said, ok, lets meet and you merely give us the cash. The amount is around 30,000RMB and in China a 100 is the biggest you can get so I basically had a huge stack of RMB to take to these folks.

I said, no problem lets meet you decide where. But due to the nature of Chinese, this was a dumb question as it necessitated on their part, no less than 12 phone calls to see when and where we could meet, who would go etc. I made it easy, I said meet me at the intersection of lines 2 and 13.

So I prepare to meet these people, and being semi-responsible, I wanted to get the money in organized little Mao -faced bundles. What I did, being relatively intelligent, was to procure some ‘envelopes’. I figure it may be smart to put the bills in small envelopes, then into a bag and off I go. But this is China and Chinese envelopes suck!

I pull out the envelopes and stuff the bills into them, then I try to lick and close the envelopes, as any normal human would, but this is China. No matter how hard I licked and what effort I exerted, the damn things would not stick. I am thinking wtf is up with the envelopes. Here I am frothing at the mouth like Old Yeller, getting vulgar with the envelopes and nothing is happening, they wont stick. All of my colleagues are watching me like “get a room you filthy barbarian” and my brow is bent like a ‘ V ‘ that cartoon characters have over their eyes when they are mad. So I examine the now saliva saturated envelopes and no shit, they have no gum on them, no sticky substance….

Im thinking, isn’t the point of an envelope to actually house something, and to provide a means of securing that thing? According to M-w.com, that is technically not the case, but to us normal people, I think it is a convention to which we have grown accustomed.
So I am kinda pissed, I’ve already wasted a lot of time on this project and my colleagues now think little of me and my odd habits so I say screw it and dump all the bills into a greasy mcdonalds bag.

The people who I will take the money to call me and ask how they will know who I am when we meet, I was like “I will be the dumbass foreigner with a bag full of cash looking like I just robbed a bank, and have hair that looks like a Cincinattie Bengals helmet” and hung up.

I arrived and waited, and finally met the two people. Their English sucked so we stuck to my caveman Chinese. I looked at them like ‘where will you go to count the cash’? The guy offers to count it there in the middle of the subway station. I am looking at him like “Damn you got balls, you cant weigh much more than a pair of pliers and you are going to sally around Beijing carrying all that cash.” The guy was so small, I could see someone grabbing him by the ankle and dumping him upside down and running off with the cash and his subway card.

In Caveman Chinese I said,”We go there. You look money. We careful”. He and his partner followed me and then did that patented wrap the money over the fingers thing to count money … that all Chinese do. We smiled, promised to do lunch and took off. I will probably never see them again, but it was fun.

Posted in China Fact, Cultural oddities, Let me educate you..., Ranting in general | 2 Comments »

China Probe, Oh China Probe Where for Art Thou China Probe?

Posted by w_thames_the_d on October 26, 2010

On China’s 61st birthday (Oct 1), they launched a space probe called Chang’e 2. We heard a lot about it and China’s aspirations for space exploration, but that was on October 6th. Hmmm. I am looking at my calendar and its October 26 and still no new news about that little probe, or what it has been up to for the past 20 days. Could it be that something has befallen it and the locals feel embarrassed inform us of that?
I guess that is what is frustrating about this place, face takes precedence over everything. Instead of telling the truth, they try to cover it up and look even more foolish. If something happened, such is life, you rolls the dice, you takes your chances, but at least man up about it.
Maybe the probe is good and all is well, but I have my doubts. What will probably happen is that they will soon publish some cgi of what the probe is up to and the truth will never be known.

Posted in Big brother..., China Fact | Leave a Comment »

Chinese Walk Funny

Posted by w_thames_the_d on October 26, 2010

Please let me preface this gross over-generalization with the following:” This is all true…
Ok, the Chinese have 3 means or styles of walking, two for the women and one for the men.
The men amble along like stick figures, all of their appendages way too tight and move their heads quickly from side-to-sdie and up and down , kind of like owls. Their form of movement is herky jerky and unnatural. It reminds me of claymation figures, but not the new good ones, more like the old school claymation – ala Davie and Goliath (I used to watch this show and Dr. Max as well).

In general the women trundle along like lumberjacks eschewing any sense of grace or femininity. When they are wearing high heels, they stagger from side to side, much like one does when trying to walk on cement with ice skates, or like a drunken longshoreman.
The younger women are trying to be modern and thus have changed their gait a bit. They use those dainty little 3 inch steps that young girls back home use. The idea is that they want to swing their hips, but are too slim to do so, thus have devised this method.
The funny thing is that in all honesty, when using the flowing garb of their kin, the Chinese women are quite magnificent in their motions an rhythm. They move with such beauty , elegance and grace. I dont know what it is about denim and polyester, but is sure kills that natural rhythm they must possess.

Posted in Cultural oddities, Ranting in general | Leave a Comment »