Monthly Archives: September 2009


  • China's Birthday Photo Album
    Chairman Mao Zedong (center) proclaims the founding of the People's Republic of China on Tian'anmen Rostrum at 3 pm on Oct 1, 1949.The PRC turns 60 tomorrow.


  • Ancient Chinese Sex Advice
    Besides creation of life and, depending on who you ask, the highest aim of life, sex also serves as a preserver of life. The sexual aspect of life force, qi, is qing essence.


  • Chinese Fighting Crickets
    They were plucked from the fields, the ones with the blackest faces, largest bodies, and loudest singing voices. And now they will fight, perhaps to a death by decapitation, quite possibly to a loss of limbs.


  • Ai Weiwei: Objecting Artist
    It's grand to be Ai Weiwei. The true businessman lives for the deal; money is only a way of keeping score. The true artist, more than anything else, wants to be taken seriously, for his work and ideas to move people.


  • Beijing's Holy Parks
    Before the new order, Beijing's Tiantan, Ditan, Ritan, and Yuetan parks were as off limits to commoners as the Forbidden City. It was a matter of propriety, not imperial scorn.


  • Buying a Slave
    Among the sellers with their ropes, cages, and water tanks were the sellers of little girls. Sometimes just one man would be standing by the side of the road selling one girl.


  • China's Ancient Law of Equality
    In a few days China will celebrate the birthday of a republic based on, among other lofty ideals, the proposition that all Chinese are equal. Of course life in four dimensions can never be as pretty as dreams written on two-dimensional paper.


  • Xu Xing's Dinosaurs
    Maybe the government should make our major life choices for us. Xu Xing originally wanted to study software design. Had he had his way, today he'd be one more sixty-hour a week jamoke in a white short-sleeve dress shirt, eyeing flat-scree


  • Qiantong Town - No River, No Worries
    There's usually not much historical authenticity near highways, even in China. But an hour out of Ningbo, a stone's throw from the expressway to Wenzhou, lies a town laid back, spring fresh, and blessedly oblivious to modernization.


  • Weihsien Compound - A Prison Camp for Expats
    Everything's such a nuisance: supermarket lines, slow traffic, nothing good to watch. You know what would help a lot? A few years in an internment camp. Not one of those horrific ones from history we see so much of in movies, or the ones today