31 May 2011


Dear Chinese guy,

I am going to have a baby in the near future with my Shanghai-nese wife. Given that you have experienced both cultures, Could you recommend a boy or girls name that would share both British and Chinese culture. We have yet to decide if the UK or China is the best place to raise a family and giving the baby two names, I feel would be rather alienating.

David G

Dear David

That's a tough one namely because what may sound great in one language can sound shitty in another. And may well get your child beaten up (in the UK that is, I got beaten up a long and the kid who was called Wang was beaten up even more than me). Children can be so incredibly cruel, in fact children today are still incredibly cruel sometimes!

For example Ming 明

Which can mean shining or to indent/inscribe/write . In itself a fairly common upbeat name a neat Chinese name. Except in the UK this will likely get you called a Minger and thus violence and or insults and or humiliation of your child in the UK.

Or Dong 东

Which means East, but its pretty obvious as to what the connotations are in English. My dad has a friend who has a son called Dong. Southern Chinese say his name as dung. Also something with lots of potential for verbal abuse. Heh it is perfectly acceptable to put your dong in a woman's hand in the street in Vietnam.... because it is the currency of Vietnam.... I mean what else were you thinking of?

Brought to you by FileHurricane.com

Your child may hate you for this as well and will go to the deed poll office! Of course as they grow up it may or MAY not stop the verbal fun making for instance. My old boss who had me by the balls used to be quite nasty about it. My cousin Ho, yes Ho, still calls himself Ho, even though there are many negative connotations

On the flip side some coolish sounding Chinese names are also subject to odd remarks. My uncle for instance was called Yun (Wun in Cantonese) (云). Which means cloud, he was apparently made fun of because of this, what? You're named after a clouds? (Children being children will ALWAYS find a method in which to demean, humiliate or find advantage over somebody!).

Or simple ones like May 美, you have to be careful as to what the second part of the name is. I know a girl who is called May. The other part of her name is gold (I don't know how it is spelt. Hey baby can I have a look at your passport please?) Beautiful is also short for America as in
(beautiful country). Gold as with silver is considered to be money. American ~ gold = dollar. Which makes her sound like a exotic dancer with a made up stage name. Her parents are 2nd generation Chinese in the UK and thus did not understand the implications of naming!

Those are a couple of limited examples I can think of off my head. There are many more. For instance a old friend I lost contact with 15 years ago (he went the 2.4 children mortgage route. I chose a different path) who shall remain unnamed had a name which in Sichuanese Mandarin from Chongquing meant Hero of ones family. At least thats what I think it meant as said it was 16 years ago since we last met. Oddly enough you move south a bit. And when spoken phonetically (not the characters themselves) it sounded like Chicken scent. Though only I am tactless enough to actually mention it, I am completely tactless foot in the mouth.

Think long and hard, and consider the pronunciation in the various flavors of Chinese and then the pronunciation in English and run it through urban dictionary and see what comes up. I comically remember over 20 years ago a kid called Feltch. 20 years ago it probably meant something else.

My other thought is there is nothing wrong with having two different names. Lots of people have multiple names. For instance my mum uses both her married name with my dad's surname and yet also in parallel uses her own name as per Asian tradition. While my dad has a completely different unrelated name in English as well as in Chinese.

Even famous people do it.

李小龍 Bruce Lee for instance - His Chinese name reads Lee Shi Lung (Lee , small dragon)
except that wasn't his birth name 李振藩 he was born Lee Jun Fan

It was fashionable in the 1980s and 1990s to have an English name as well as a Chinese name, they do not have to be the same or relate to one another.

Myself I have three names. With more unofficial handles. I'm considered weird because my English name and Chinese name are phonetically identical and mean exactly the same thing. But seriously do some research think long and hard and if you can't think of anything just use two different names.

28 May 2011


Sex in China.

Chinese guy...

I was in Beijing a few weeks ago and stayed in a pretty big hotel near Wangfujin. One thing I noticed that there were large numbers of well dressed what I can only describe as white men who were in the hotel lobbies sat around in the lounge. Sometimes they would leave only to come back a little later on I saw some evenings.

Whats going on?


Dear TCG

Why are there so many men in suits lurking around the edges of night clubs in Beijing?


And others

Dear All

They could merely be employees or guests of the hotels and patrons of the night clubs out to enjoy themselves to kick back and have some fun sometime. However that is a terrifically boring answer so I'll speculate a little.

OTOH they could be ducks. What are ducks then I imagine you may ask. Ducks are gigolos, men who get paid to have sex with women. You read that right men who get paid to have sex with women. Ash is a bit of an androgynous name you could be a man or a woman.

But simply women need some luvin' too.

You might think hold on with the gender imbalances in China why on earth would women go to ducks to get some time in the sack? I mean women can just go to any bar and walk out with a man easy.

While the reverse is less easy!

The thing is this is China, and much like Asia although it is rapidly changing, sex is still rather taboo and kept under wraps. Sex? Whats that? I use artificial insemination mate......

Secondly in China you have what we call well they call left over women. Since TCG sees nothing wrong with dating a woman in her late 20s and 30s. I haven't dated anybody older though so I can't really comment on any age range outside this. Women who simply focused upon other things instead of a love life. Things get in the way like work and education.... they put off love lives or simply don't want love lives and boom they hit a certain age and suddenly men don't want to go out with them. Or so it seems that way anyway. A myriad of reasons. Though TCG sees nothing wrong with not being married and absolutely hates the way in which being married is seen as a milestone everybody has to achieve in their lives.


Part of this is something else though. Kazuo Koike & Ryoichi Ikegami wrote something similar in the 1980s Manga Crying Freeman about Emu Hino. Her father was a uber rich businessman and as a result men would be afraid of her father. Thus nobody would dare approach her to ask her out. Thus the power and money isolates this person.

I mean remember this is China, money = power (yeah ok so money makes the world go round everywhere) And Tbh to make big piles of money you have to generally do things which are shall we say questionable. Like IBM's creators and stock holders being in bed with Hitler. Or Tony Blair who made millions from Iraq and tried to cover it up. Sure sure you get exceptions like erm......

Give me a moment.....

I'll think of one sooner or later.




Moving swiftly on... (feel free to provide examples)

Sort of like Mr Burns from the Simpsons who fictionally has done a ton of questionable things. Anyway Money in China is power as it is in many places around the world. Thus it can be risky.

As lampooned in Red Dwarf where they find an escape pod. 6 minutes and 40 seconds into this video

Death or a date.

While on the otherside, the wealthy woman is worried about attracting the wrong kinds of people. I.e. male gold diggers (all is fair in love and war right?) and thus even if there is some guy willing to be her partner she can't be sure if it is true feeling or if it is money. This has been played straight in various movies from Mainland China recently. Which are copies of the Eddie Murphy film Coming to America

Anyway before I go on another wild tangent, thus to get some erm ...lovin' SOME people have to turn to this avenue as flicking the bean would probably get old sooner or later.

On the other hand they could merely be guests of the hotels and men just out to have some fun in night clubs. I mean for quite some time I used to stand around the edges of night clubs until I felt more confident.

Perhaps to confirm you could ask them, I take NO LIABILITY if you get punched in the face for insulting them though.

23 May 2011

We Chinese

I stumbled upon this interesting project via ChinaHush. Created by Scott Brauer, the project, known as "We Chinese" aims to document how modern Chinese feel about their country and where it is going. Well, heres their description:

We Chinese grew out of a curiosity to find out what Chinese people think about their country and their future. In 2010, I traveled throughout major urban centers in eastern China stopping people on the street to ask the same two questions about their country and their future. The respondents filled out a one-page typewritten questionnaire that included these two questions and some basic information including name, age, and occupation.
The questions were interpreted variously, and the responses range from prosaic to poetic, from rote to inspired, and from unemotional to patriotic. While it’s difficult to draw conclusions about the entire population, the people photographed here expressed a sincere love of country and optimism about the country’s future development and peaceful position in the world. I started the project as a way to respond to friends’, family’s, and strangers’ questions about the global direction of China and their stereotypes of the people. “Should we be scared of China?” or “Where is China headed?” or vague assertions about the collective character of billions of individuals that make up the country.
The project also comes from suspicions of my own methods in documentary work. My work imposes visual and written narratives on situations and cultures. By photographing anyone willing to be a part of the project, using the same set up for the portraits, and asking the same questions of all the subjects, I hoped a narrative about China and its people would emerge naturally.
There are hundreds of responses from people across China with many interesting responses. Check it out sometime.

Monday Comedy

Stolen but relevant 

Not Chinese, but amusing nonetheless 

22 May 2011


Emigration is less a matter of the Chinese government, it is more a matter of the country which is to receive such migrants. The Mainland Chinese government has little control over people leaving. If you want to leave you can, the many many illegal migrants from China I encountered in Russia was a prime example of this. There is an old socialist jibe which is relevant. Whereby Socialists say if you don't like it leave!

Then people REALLY do leave and the government seeks to prevent people from leaving. The Berlin Wall and the Korean Border are excellent examples of this. The Great Wall under the Ming Dynasty is also supposed to have a secondary purpose. To keep the Barbarian hoarders out AND people IN. The UK used to have a totally open door migration policy, inwards because the government in the pocket of corporates like to lower wages. The migrants are happy because of wage arbitrage.

Thus it is actually a HK government issue. Although the CCP has powers over the HK government it is very rare for them to actually interfere overtly except in limited areas. So when the USS Nimitz docked, the HK government had to ask the PRC government. The PRC government said yes.... much to the delight of all the working women, bars and dealers in HK. But they have done some noticeable things. For example TV broadcasts first thing in the morning you get the PRC anthem, in schools soon children will be taught ONE China type thinking. But shadowy slight movements are harder to detect.

Boiling a frog is a very good example.

Hong Kong as said is a funny place, it is quite legal to buy your citizenship, you have to invest several million HK$ (I forget the exact amount) and you get citizenship right away. This is pissing off local HK people because there are many many wealthy people in China, this is causing lots of hot money to flow into HK stoking uberinflation where prices can and DO change daily (upwards) as the investment is often property. Which restricts supply and makes property which is already expensive in HK even more expensive.

Anyway as I mentioned in prior posts, Chinese people are internally racist to one another. Mainlanders are just another sect to which people can spit their bile to. As really there are benefits in HK, but it is rather low. $900-$1100 a month (HKD) but this is about the same as you'd get working in a shitty main lander job so it makes sense to them sometimes. Much like working for min wage makes sense for Eastern European migrants in the UK.

Anyway the HK government in 1997 one of the first things they implemented was the right to abode/return law. Meaning if you were born overseas but your parents were born in HK or the NT then you were granted 3* citizenship status. 3* status is full citizenship, which means uber subsidised health care (not dentistry) right to vote (in the rare occasions they do vote that is), right to government rebates like the $6000 stimulus thing (which is still not resolved) and also heavily virtually free education in HK. This law was overturned in 1999 on appeal. Which allowed a lot of people to 'return' as well as 400,000 people on the mainland also to take up residency.

This has been going back and forth for pretty much a decade about how there should be restrictions on mainland Chinese going to HK. It waxes and wanes. The last BIG issue I recall was the pregnant mainland women thing. Whereby mainland women who gave birth in HK their child would gain substantial benefits which you don't get in some parts of China. I.e. subbed health care, freeish education and many of the 3* benefits above. This annoyed a lot of people because it was seen that many people came across the border and got a free ride having not paid into the system. Such benefits to some looked attractive so the number of mainland women who did go to HK to give birth increased from about 4-8K a year to about 25K a year. The HK government responded by demanding a $5K bond if they were to travel to HK and were pregnant, though I'm not sure of the intricacies of this arrangement. Since I've never been pregnant or gotten anybody pregnant.... I think...

The issue that has flared up the tussle is the $6000 stimulus package amongst other things. I.e. people want to get the $6000 (a substantial amount in some areas of Mainland China) for nothing. TCG has and does pay into the HK tax system btw since a couple of my exist in cyberspace businesses are registered there. I.e people don't want to be paying it to others who are seen not to have earned it. Similar issues in the UK, if you've worked for ages and lose your job nobody is that fussed about if you are unemployed and claim welfare. However if you have never worked and claim it is seen as much less fair.

But to answer your original question, there are hoops to jump through which are increasing all of the time, but it is far from impossible for both HK and the wider world... I mean in Manchester China town there are many many restaurants staffed completely by mainland Chinese. 10-15 years ago they were staffed by Cantonese and Hakka migrants. Thus it WAS pretty easy for them to get in..... in a terrible irony I remember an illegal immigrant in the UK from Chongqing. He had hidden in a container to get to the UK. He was pretty pissed off to realise that the legal route was so much easier.

21 May 2011

Chinese savory cake

TCG, there is something I saw at a restaurant the other day, its sorta like squares which were burnt on the sides almost like a less watery tofu with little cubes of meat inside. What is it? How can I make some? Does it taste good?

John C

Erm this could be anything, but my guess at the moment it that it is poorly named turnip cake. Though such cakes can be made from pretty much any root vegetable. You can probably make one out of cabbage if you want. Anyhow traditionally this is made from Chinese turnip. It is very easy to make..... its sort of like hash browns but prepared in a slightly different manner.

Because I'm lazy and busy here is the recipe

You can exchange the turnip for anything else tbh as said previously. Its interesting to have it made from carrot or even potato or sweet potato

18 May 2011

Living in Beijing

So what is it like living in the heart of China: Beijing?

Unknown, I haven't really lived there visited for longish periods but never really lived there, tbh I'd guess that it is like living in any big city. It's crowded, polluted, expensive (compared to the less ubanised areas) and is filled with tourists from all over the place. This is my experience of both London, Seoul, Hong Kong, Manchester and Hamburg.... though Hamburg was cleaner less polluted and had a fairly good standard of living for a big city. But balanced out by good transport good food and better employment prospects. I.e. like any other big city on the planet.

16 May 2011

Questionable questions

1. How is the United States portrayed in China?

Depends on how the CCP wants at the time and who you ask.

2. What do native Chinese think about American people?

I covered this in an earlier post, although as said this is going to be a mass generalisation as my view is limited

3. What did you like most about Chinese Culture?

Very little these days. Maybe the go getter attitudes of people, i.e. you see people try and fail try again and fail again try again and fail and they keep on getting up and trying again.

On the flip side:

A lot of the traditional values of Chinese culture I do not share and I abbor completely. Like being a typical Chinese parents i.e. being a dick to your children. Automatic respect for being old which I hate even more. Veneration of the dead when I don't believe in life after death and stupid Confucian values like YOU MUST HAVE A WIFE AND children (my dad argues with me frequently when I say I want neither and he can't get his head around it). I also utterly hate the concept of face which means people do incredibly stupid things to save face. While apparently reputationless rascals like myself who apparently have no face do the eminently sensible thing, i.e. admit I am wrong and thus seek to correct my deficiency, or not starve to death type situation.

4. Was it easy to get an education in China?

Unknown as I've been in and out of private education there and in the UK.

5. Where did you live in China?

In the South, north of the Border from HK and in HK itself somewhere along the Pearl River.

6. What dialects do you speak?

A mishmash of Cantonese, Hakka, Wu and bits of borrowed Mandarin. People often ask me to repeat myself a few times because of this.

7. What about China would surprise Americans?

Up frontedness of many questions. Almost to the extend of people on the street asking how long your penis happens to be. People will be that abrupt and job interview you on the street. They'll ask questions about your life people in the western world are uncomfortable or feel impolite answering like their salaries and ages.

8. What about America would surprise Chinese?

Not sure not been to the US probably the huge amount of space as everywhere you go in other than the empty desert bits and the mountainous regions in the middle there are people EVERYWHERE. There is always somebody around in almost any city in China at all hours. Not even up mountains can you find peace, because there are tons of tourists clambering all over the mountains and Sherpas hauling things up the mountains as well for the tourist traps.

Thus privacy and isolation are a premium.

9. What is young life in China like?

Lots of school lots and lots of school because of the obsolete thinking that schooling = success. Which has been proven wrong many times over and over again but the belief is still ancient and ingrained in the people.

10. Are different dialects seen differently in China?

China is sort of like the USA, not in terms of politics but it is less of an entire country it is more like a union of provinces which form a.... non voting, non free press type republic. Europe would be a more apt example except Europe is not politically unified. They pretend it is but generally countries act unilaterally. In effect some dialects are very similar and quite close much like German, which is close to Dutch, Danish, and Scandinavian languages as well. For example a Cantonese speaker can understand a Hakka speaker as they are close somethings are even identical. Some things are different.

Ah Por = granny in Hakka on fathers side
Ah ma = granny in Cantonese
Nai Nai = granny in Mandarin
(all on the fathers side)

11. What is changing the most in China?

This is too wide a question tbh. But if I could stick it in a nut shell, I would say everything which happened in the USA between 1945 and 2000 has pretty much occured in the last 15 years in China. Sexual freedome (yay) , gold diggers (nay). General ownership of whitegoods in homes. Families becoming divided, credit, loans, abandoning parents in old folks homes. Food improving

12. What is a communist nation like?

This is pretty irrelevant, as China isn't communist. Much like the USA isn't a democracy (says my buddy from Illinois) it is a Republic. China is communist in name only and going through the notions but China represents more of a corporate state than anything else. With some communist leanings.


Has some interesting views. Of course the cynic in me says that it is exactly same as living in a western nation. I.e. we have tons of corruption and voting changes absolutely nothing as the corruption and pork barrelling still goes on. But people are fooled into thinking they can affect change by voting. When change can only come about via events which occurred post Boston Tea Party and the bloody war which occurred afterwards.

13. How did people in China handle the attention from the Olympics?

Another too wide question tbh,

14. In America wealth and fortune are high priorities is it the same case in China?

Pretty much except in China it is MUCH MUCH more overt and people show it off for face issues. You see 50 cent show off his bling bling? In China a LOT of people are like this.

15. What is the climate like where you lived?

Insanely hot and humid 24/7 from March to October with regular hard rain from April for a few hours a day. Cool(er) in the period from October to February but still fairly humid and uncomfortable.

15 May 2011

Glorious Mission


The Nanjing military region has hired Giant Network Technologies to produce a Modern Warfare-esque video game to help train soldiers. Despite being Chinese, it looks very well made. There is a full article here.

Destroy the American Imperialists!

Someone please, find me a torrent or something!

12 May 2011

Jessie Ventura as the ultimate boy scout, yeah Predator was on last night
Dear Chinese guy

What are the young pioneers of China?


Dear Lucy

The Young Pioneers of China is sort of like boy scouts and girl guides, and erm brownies, girl scouts type organisation. The Chinese version of boy scouts was banned about a year after the PRC was formed. It was reformed as the communist version. Though I forget the exact year even the communist version was disbanded during the cultural revolution. It was replaced briefly with little red guards.

Much of the same things are done, group activities except with a communist sort of slant and of course loyalty to China rather than the US. Which is kind of laughable really as China is NOT a socialist communist country. Its more like an ultra corporate state. A bit like the government Corporate type from the game master of Orion 3

Have a gander at the American Boy Scouts motto's, or is it Boy scouts of America.... I forget (TCG was NEVER a boy scout as I grew up in the inner cities)

Scout Oath

On my honor, I will do my best
To do my duty to God and my country;
To obey the Scout Law;
To help other people at all times;
To keep myself physically strong, mentally awake and morally straight.[27]

Scout Law

A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent. The original version by Lord Baden-Powell had only 10 points to the Scout Law (the last two of the BSA version were added when the BSA was founded).

Scout Motto

Be Prepared

Scout Slogan

Do a good turn daily

Outdoor Code

As an American, I will do my best, to be clean in my outdoor manner, to be careful with fire, to be considerate in the outdoors, and to be conservation minded


Which pretty much means for Children to learn communism and how to promote communism and socialism.


Blah blah, I will be loyal to the mother land, country work hard etc etc. That kind of thing, in effect through my cynical eyes it is a form of indoctrination sort of like :

Robots which build robots which build robots..... etc...

Commies to produce more commies which produce more commies. Which is supposed to be common in communist states. Except of course China ain't communist! By my half assed extrapolation I reckon they'll grow up and become disillusioned pretty much.

Man, I see in fight club the strongest and smartest men who've ever lived. I see all this potential, and I see squandering. God damn it, an entire generation pumping gas, waiting tables; slaves with white collars. Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy shit we don't need. We're the middle children of history, man. No purpose or place. We have no Great War. No Great Depression. Our Great War's a spiritual war... our Great Depression is our lives. We've all been raised on television to believe that one day we'd all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars. But we won't. And we're slowly learning that fact. And we're very, very pissed off.

For a bit of balance here:

I'd note indoctrination and propaganda is NOT limited to China. In UK schools Children are brainwashed into believing everything hook line and sinker about Man made global warming. Even when it was discredited here. Hell UK children are FORCED to watch Al Gore's Inconvenient truth DVD.

09 May 2011


Sorry I've been away for a while, one of my family passed away and some ritual customs have to be performed, they are on going.

Although I don't believe in life after death thinking once you're gone thats it is over a bleak view many say. I still have to do these sorts of things because of social custom.

Torture in Ancient China

Torture has been practiced by nearly every civilization at some point. It is mostly used as a punishment for a crime or to extract information or a confession. In Ancient China (2100 BCE - 200 BCE) torture was frequently practiced.

Some of the best recored torture practices were known as the Five Punishments, used in ancient China up until the Han Dynasty. They are divided into 3 categories; Five Punishments for Slaves, Five Punishments for Serfs, and Five Punishments for women. Most of these punishments could be remitted by paying a fine.

Five Punishments for Slaves

Qíng (黥) meaning tattooing or branding. The offender would be tattooed on the face as a mark for their crimes.

Yì (劓) meaning to cut off the nose. Obviously this would cause you horrible disfigurement.

Yuè (刖) meaning to cut off one or both of the feet. This would greatly hinder your ability to work and provide for your family.

Gōng (宫) today known as Yāngē (阉割) or castration. I have a whole post dedicated to this here.

*Dà Pì (大辟) lit. "Great Provision", the death penalty.

Five Punishments for Serfs

Chī (笞) Caning. The more severe the crime, the more lashes.

Zhang (杖) The same as Chī, but with a larger stick.

Tú (徒) Slavery or Penal servitude for a given period. I guess the equivalent would be "community service"

Liú (流) Exile. The more severe the crime, the more remote and farther away the exile location.

*Sĭ (死) Death

Five Punishments for Women

Xíngchōng (刑舂) The offender was forced to grind grain. So in other words, a typical day for a women in ancient China.

Zǎnxǐng (拶刑) To crush the fingers slowly.

Zhàngxing (杖刑) To beat with a wooden plank.

Cìsǐ (赐死) The gift of death, permission to commit suicide. (I don't get it either)

Gongxing (宫刑) Although it had the same name, Gong for women was solitary confinement rather than castration.

*Execution was carried out in various ways depending on the time period, including boiling, quartering, decapitation, strangulation and two very unique methods described below.

One famous form of torture/execution was by bamboo. In World War II and Vietnam, the Japanese and Vietnamese would force strips of bamboo under POW's fingernails which I imagine hurt like hell. But in ancient China bamboo was used in a different way. The victim was suspended over a bamboo shoot, and since bamboo grows so fast, the shoot would grow into and out of the victims torso over several days, causing a slow and painful death. It was even featured on Mythbusters.

Another famous practice was that of 殺千刀 (Shā qiān dāo) or "death by a thousand cuts". It was practiced from the Tang Dynasty until the fall of the Qing in the early 20th century. As the name implies, it involves slowly slicing into different parts of the victims body until they died. This punishment was seen as disgraceful to the victim because mutilating ones body was against Confucian ideals.

08 May 2011


Hi Chinese Guy!!

I first fell in love with China when I visited in 2007 and can't wait to go back there in the near future, I miss it! Especially Beijing, they love white (I'm not tanned AT ALL) girls with blonde hair over there! I can't believe how many people wanted to touch me and have their photo taken with me! I saw a fortune teller in HK in mid November of 2007 and he told me I would have a baby boy "next year". November 2008 I had a baby boy. I'm sure he mentioned I would have 3 kids although I only ever wanted two. I can't rememeber what he said exactly but I think it was a girl then another boy. I thought to myself I would make sure I don't fall pregnant a 3rd time so I just had a boy and a girl. Perfect pair. Well, I'm pregnant with TWINS aren't I?! They are due any day now and we have not found out what we are having. I believe I'm having a boy
and a girl. Just wondering what the Chinese think of twins? Are they lucky? Is it luckier to have a certain set like identicals who are the same sex?


Twins have no special luck to them. Or any other luck, I had to ask around for this. I've two aunts who are twins and they were not considered to be lucky in any manner. However many Chinese people are fascinated with twins and will do the typical foot in mouth asking awkard questions in the western world where social ettiquette does not allow us to ask! Things like how much do you earn is NOT to be asked in the UK.

There is also something along with the thinking two is better than one. I'd add anedotally some Chinese people think that twins are good because no matter how far away they are they can always reunite. Just like if you separate them as far apart as you can they will come back together, and there have been fairly big stories about reunited twins here and there in China after long separations.

However if you were in China and happened to be the Han Majority then it would be considered lucky since this is a perfectly legitimate method to get around the one child policy without any repercussions (which vary from area to area). Other than that nope.


05 May 2011

The Chinese Text Project

Chinese Text Project

There are countless Classical Chinese trans-panning a history of thousands of years. The Tao Te Ching, the Zhuangzi, the Analytics of Confucius, the I Ching, The Art of War, the 24 Histories, Romance of the 3 Kingdoms, etc. May aspiring Sinologists want to study these texts to help understand Chinese philosophy and literature. How ever it can be expensive and inconvenient to order these books through amazon. Thats were the Chinese text project comes in. Since these texts are thousands of years old and therefore in the public domain, the Chinese Text Project has published every Chinese classic ever written for free in a massive, organized online library. Complete with annotations, Chinese transliteration and more. If you ever want a quick read and a taste of a Chinese classic, go here. Also, I urge you to donate to the project to preserve this resource for future generations.

04 May 2011


Dear Chinese Guy

Why do some men here in China have long finger nails on their pinkies, but short nailes on the rest of their fingers?


Dear Ruth

Erm pinky? (Had to look this up) first thought was this:

little finger.

There are many reasons for this:

Fashion and status.

Fashion is self explanatory

Status is to do with not appearing to be a peasant type who has to make a living working in the fields or as a manual laborer in the sun. People in China town were a tad arsier to me the other day after hanging around sunny drop zones and getting a funny tan. You know the kind where your sunglass covered bits don't get tanned but the rest of your tace does. Anyway I mean if you had long nails like this it would be hard to work in an agricultural environment right? That old chestnut again.

Next is excavation, not just this

But people digging in their ears, teeth and more horribly their arses..... i.e. smell my finger.

Finally there is another luck/superstition reason as to why many men keep a long fingernail on their little fingers. It goes back to palmistry. According to palmists folklore and the bloke down the pub, if your little finger is longer than one of the joints on your ring finger (it varies from who you hear it from) say the first or second joint then you will become prosperous. Men will often cheat by growing their finger nails so that it is sort of longer than their ring ringer joints since it is probably cheaper than limb lengthening surgery (which incidentally is illegal in China).

Looking at my hands and the fact I don't have a pot to pish in currently and the fact that my finger is a good 9mm shorter than the last joint on my ring finger. If folklore is to be believed then it is the second joint. Which means I'm a bit fookered then, of course this is merely folklore as I know plenty of Yakuza like types who are missing bing chunks of their little fingers through accidents rather than cutting off of. And they are loaded.

03 May 2011

Monday Comedy

In light of recent events...

Also this...

02 May 2011


Dear Chinese guy

Why are Chinese people mourning the death of Osama Bin Laden?


James K

Dear James

SOME people might be mourning the death of OBL, while others are indifferent. The problem here is that it merely illustrates that you can get arse holes all over the planet in each and every country. China is no different!

I would add however that there is also the issue of the enemy of my enemy type thinking. Nationalists still portray the old idea of if somebody is a thorn in my enemy's ass then that's a good thing. Oddly enough this has some real ironic overtones to it. Like the CIA supplying weapons to the Mujaheddin of Afghanistan who proceeded to defeat the Soviets. The Chinese example is of Vietnam whereby China provided 'help' to Vietnam during its various 'conflicts' only for Vietnam to bite China back in its ass a few years later.

Anyway the CCP has a tendency to blame as much as possible other outside forces for bad things happening. The thing is this is not unique to the CCP style of governance. The last UK prime minister who I might add nobody voted for. Blamed his crappy running of the economy on the USA.

Bob Mugabe blames the white man for the problems in his country.

Obama blamed BP (which is incidentally called Beyond Petroleum for a big oil spill, which then got hushed up when the safety company involved was a US company.

Then you get people who make you think WTF?

Tbh I don't know if Poe's Law should be invoked here

since I seriously can't tell if it is a parody or if it is real. Thus saying Chinese people as if all people are mourning is a gross generalisation.