Understanding China, One Blog at a Time

An American in China

Archive for January 18th, 2011

More from The Chinese Subway

Posted by w_thames_the_d on January 18, 2011

A photo from this summer.

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Hum.an Rig.hts Lawyer Missing in China

Posted by w_thames_the_d on January 18, 2011

from here

FILE – In this file photo taken on April 7, 2010, Gao Zhisheng, a human rights lawyer, pays attention to a question during his first meeting with the media since he resurfaced two weeks ago, at a tea house in Beijing, China. The police stripped Gao bare and pummeled him with handguns in holsters. For two days and nights, they took turns beating him and did things he refused to describe. When all three officers tired, they bound his arms and legs with plastic bags and threw him to the floor until they caught their breath to resume the abuse. The beatings were the worst he said he ever endured and the darkest point of 14 months, ending last March, 2010, during which Gao was secretly held by Chinese authorities. Two weeks later, he disappeared again. His family and friends say they have not heard from him in the more than eight months since. Police agencies either declined to comment or said they did not know Gao’s whereabouts. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe, File)

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Dancing with The Devil- Obama and Hu

Posted by w_thames_the_d on January 18, 2011

Americans can be pretty ignorant about world affairs- actually most countries are, but I am an American, so will focus on my own. While I love my country , I realize the flaws we possess.
Pictured below is an example of a grave flaw. No its not BO, the smooth talker who reminds me of a poolhustler cum pimp, but the fact that although we love to tout our virtuous ways, we in the end are not much different than Chinese.
What? you may ask?
Of course we are different, ie. taller, have wavy hair and eyes that come in more flavors than brown and black. And yeah we eat food free from toxins- for the most part, and breathe air that does not corrode our lungs. But my point goes much deeper.

Lets analyze your typical china-man. He has no religious beliefs and thus lives for the moment. He forces his obligatory one-child burden to study so that this child can then provide his parents with a comfortable living- hopefully outside of china when they are old. the china-man resents his life and coutnry men as they consume all of the resources that he believes is his. given the opportunity, he’d shove a person in front of a bus, just to move one half step ahead of the other 1 300 000 000 Chinese. He claims t hate the pollution suffocating him as he sleeps, and the corruption of the chinese communist party officials. yet, he drives a car three miles to work, waiting in 30 minute lines, just so he can avoid the bus. Oh yeah, although he despises the party he is a card carrying communist, in his mind he can change nothing so why try -‘what can i do, i am but one man.’ is his mantra.

Now for the American. He claims to be religious, and probably has deep rooted beliefs. He will attend church and pray for the unfortunate souls in Africa and those in china who suffer under the barbaric communist regime. while claiming to be a vicar of human rights, he will not purchase soccer balls sewn by the hands of five years olds, he will make his weekly trek to wal-mart to purchase the latest 5dollar gadget he must own. cursing the fact that the device is made in china and thus is of horrendous quality, he will then shrug his shoulders and say ‘what can i do, i am but one man.’

Turning on the nightly news, Joe American, with little to no knowledge of China, will see BO the hustler, ‘shucking and jiving’ with some fat-headed Chinese guy who is smiling like he urgently needs to defecate. Joe American will curse the bullet headed man and wonder why BO the dud is actually meeting with the guy.

Joe American will then vaguely recall someting about a prize called the “Nobel, or Noball’ or something of the sort that on a yearly basis is awareded to some good people. Joe A, will then recall that maybe this year some guy from China won the award, or maybe it was in ’89, he is unsure. Shrugging his shoulders he woders what he can do, after all , ‘what can i do, i am but one man.’

Spots his pooch lovingly looks at him as they both ingest toxic fibers from the Chinese drywall and Joe A moves to give his old Lab a treat. Straight from the Lucky Dragon Golden Luck ltd. Joe offers the hound the finest in Chinese melamine laced goodness.
Cursing the rise of China, he hopes that we as a country can do something to maintain our edge. But of course the word ‘we’ does not include Joe America, as he thinks
‘what can i do, i am but one man.’.

The essence of this rant is that we as Americans talk a good game. Claiming the moral high ground we pontificate and point fingers at others while rarely take a look at what is wrong with our country. One or our favorite pastimes is to badmouth or fear that which is unknown. when confronted with the ability to truly practice what we preach and bring good to the world, we avoid it, after all we really need our cadmium jewelry and toxic Chinese milk.

The communist regime in china is one of he bloodiest in history yet too many people are making money so its better to let sleeping dogs lie. For all the news reports of the atrocities of he party, like Chinese KTV workers, we sell our souls to the lowest bidder. At present the lowest bidder lives in China and belongs to the communist party.

If our empire should crumble one day I guess I will have to start a new blog
“Understanding our lack of Understanding- Expoloring the US implosion, One blog at a time”

Hu, Obama set up new economic dialogue
Chinese President Hu Jintao (L) shakes hands with his US counterpart Barack Obama during their first meeting in London, Britain, on April 1, 2009. [Xinhua]

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Bolivia Puts the Coke in Their Cola

Posted by w_thames_the_d on January 18, 2011

This is not China related but pretty cool. Bolivia’ indigenous president Evo Morales is trying to get the UN to scrap a ban on chewing coca leaves. Bolivia is apparently making a soda out of the stuff.

I say whats the harm? I visited Bolivia- La Paz and was given coca tea for altitude sickness. In the markets you can buy huge bags of the stuff or pennies. For the most part, the experience was interesting. Chewing the leaf does not give you an obvious ‘buzz’ but your face will become flushed and you will have more energy. To me it was like a smooth caffeine buzz.

Bolivians have some anger with the US and how we manhandle them in the foriegn arena. We send the DEA to the country and turn them against one another. To a certain degree I can understand the Bolivians and think the US has enough on its plate domestically to screw with Bolivia.

Also, when Coca Cola started out, it had cocaine as well. So why not give the Bolivians a chance, they are decent people.

“LA PAZ (Reuters) – A pale green energy drink made from coca leaves has given Bolivian President Evo Morales a boost as he tries to persuade the United Nations to scrap a ban on the traditional Andean practice of chewing the leaves.

Coca is the raw material for making cocaine, but Bolivians have chewed the leaves for centuries for it mild stimulant that reduces hunger and altitude sickness.”

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Lots of Chinese- Beijing Subway Pic

Posted by w_thames_the_d on January 18, 2011

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Only Chinese Who’ve Studied Abroad Need Apply

Posted by w_thames_the_d on January 18, 2011

There is an interesting phenomenon in China, vz they have no idea how to evaluate talent, or the lack thereof. I guess 62 years of communist rule have left them timidly shaking their heads at the command of ignorant leaders for so long that they now do not understand how to make an objective decision.
Why the rant?
As I just posted, we have been doing quite a bit of interviews lately. In addition, one of my best friends in China has been doing likewise. This person is brilliant, capable and knows China- the real China. So we were lamenting the poor quality of Chinese applicants who study abroad yet have horrendous language skills and lack of emotional IQ. I had seen some of the candidates my friend had chosen from Bejing and out of the 40-50 I had interviewed, this person had chosen 2 of the top 3 imho (none of whom had studied abroad- but possessed excellent English skills- Renmin University grads).
So when I asked about the candidates their new company hired, this person rolled their eyes. “typical of the chinese branch of a foreign company, they set up interviews with people who have studied abroad.” when i asked about their skill level, my friend rolled their eyes saying, “its about the same that you have seen here. People who have wasted 4 to 5 years in a foreign country but who neither assimilated nor learned while there. But due to the ignorance of the human resource function, they believe the prospects to be strong.”
This is China

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I sPeak Engrish

Posted by w_thames_the_d on January 18, 2011

My company has been doing quite a bit of hiring (and no if you are looking for a job, we cannot use you- sorry). And as the firm is American, English is our working language. We set a high bar for the employees and its difficult to find qualified Chinese.
All Chinese resumes will say that the prospect is, ‘fluent in English’ and yet 75% of these applicants melt like butter in the face of a ‘real’ foreigner. In China, where a premium is put on speaking English, most candidates will lie about their real abilites wasting your time and theirs. If you are going to hire someone with ‘native English’ speaking abilities, I would recommend pre-screening them first, it will save you the hassle of giving them a cursory 5 minute ‘polite’ interview before whisking them away.

Posted in Cultural oddities | 2 Comments »

Dont Nuke Your Fang Bien Mian Cups

Posted by w_thames_the_d on January 18, 2011

I was hungry and wanted some instant noodles. The brand pictured is my fav. Supposedly you can microwave these packages, but when I did it caught on fire. Maybe I misread the directions or maybe Chines goods are unsafe.

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If I were Chinese – Analyzing the Sucky Life of a Chinese Person- Part 1

Posted by w_thames_the_d on January 18, 2011

On my way to work today I thought of what it meant to be Chinese in 2011. As I battled my way to work, I then retraced my steps, mentally as it were, to try and understand what makes the typical Chinese person tick, or how they think.

If I were Chinese this is what my life would be like.
If I were Chinese…
If I were Chinese…I would open my eyes around 7 am , the Beijing smog thick as stew outside my window. Rising, I would not kiss my wife, my love for whom has long since run out. Although she has a good job, her utility beyond her monetary contribution to the household has now waned. Although she has given me my mandatory child whom I resent, I now find greater solace in the company of several young ktv hostesses than in her presence.
Cursing the puny 70square meter abode that my parents forced me to buy, I move to the lone bathroom. My father grunts at me in acknowledgment of my presence as he and my mother, both clad in pajamas that have seen better days, marshal all the strength their old bodies can muster and shove my lone child and burden out the door, presumably to play with him.
If I were Chinese…
Although I resent them, they are my parents and Confucious has long before sealed their fate. It was they who proffered me the cash to invest in my miniscule home, for which I mrerely have ownership rights for 70 years. After providing the cash to help me purchase the shoebox in which I live, I must allow these septgenarians to live with me in perpetuity. I abhor them as they have never shown me love, but they do take care of the little beast of a child with which I am now burdened. Passing through the door, the stench of chemical solvents is thick in the air, my new neighbors must be redecorating their apartment. I just read how leukemia is on the rise in Chinese children, the use of such chemicals in houses is considered to be part of the cause. If anything happens to my child, I have a diary of my neighbors activities in the hopes that I may be able to bring a lawsuit against them.
If I were Chinese…
Watching the people who conceived me pad out the door I exhale that our encoutner was brief. Moving to the bathroom, I curse the chinese products that my parents insist on purchasing. Holding tight to the mao’ist principles of the 60’s , they eschew foreign brands, much to my chagrin. Possessing no faith in goods made in China I shove aside the ‘Darlie Toothpaste’ and opt for baking soda instead. It is common knowledge that Chinese toothpaste frequently has toxic chemicals in it which give them their vibrant green color.
Glancing at the toilet, i curse as once again its leaking. While my building is only three years old the water stains on the walls are as numerous as the cockroaches now infesting my kitchen. Brackish water drips from my ceiling and collects by the toilet which also has a problem containing the water therein. The general structural integrity of my humble apartment is less than that the nest of a falcon, its impending collapse, i fear , is imminent.
Having bathed three days ago, I feel it is once again time to undergo a shower. Turning on the tepid water, I shudder to enter. The stench of potassium is strong as I move my fragile frame beneath the droplets now trickling from the shower head.
Cringing as I hear a noise, my wife enters the bathroom. I cleanse myself long enough for her to take her leave then quickly dress. the 25 rmb or U$3.50 I have in my pocket must last me three more days, so I forgo a trip on the local mechanized rickshaw for some baozi or dumplings. Trundling down the sidewalk, I move to the subway. My gaping maw grinding cheerfully on the beef mixed with cardboard disguised as a food stuff, enter enters my esophagus.
If I were Chinese…
As I avoid my fellow Chinese, who I secretly despise for their number and lack of morals and sense of humanity. Lacking all semblance of civility, my fellow China-men rudely shove into one another while screeching into their phones and ‘cleanse the streets of spittle with their urine’. As I look at them I am reminded of my parents, of whom I am secretly mortified.

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China and the Vatican

Posted by w_thames_the_d on January 18, 2011

In the excellent book, The Party: The Secret World of China’s Communist Rulers (Richard Mcgregor). He shows the secrets of the communist party. The book is prohibited in China, unless you can get it on your Kindle. Anyway the author states that the chicoms (communists) dont want to establish ties with the vatican.

“It is no coincidence that the Vatican is one of the few states with which China has been unable to establish diplomatic ties since the founding of the People’s Republic in 1949.

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