Vices we love: Let the sun shine in...

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Let the sun shine in...

I just learned, thanks to Shawn, that the Chinese government has unblocked blogger. So let me have my delusions of grandeur while I thank all my loyal readers who surely begged the PRC to take action so they can access more of my demented ramblings.

Okay, well, Beijing...

The good:

Chinese people are much more open to the outside world than Koreans were. (Which isn't saying much.) I know that I'm in BJ and not the "real" China so I live in a bubble of sorts but still. No staring, pointing, talking loudly in Chinese about the foreigner. Also, I do not have the urge to run up to every paleface I see and hug them because I haven't seen any for months (which happened a lot in Korea). Their English level roughly corresponds to their education level. You don't have Ph.D.'s who earned their degrees in England and don't speak a word of English because they spent all their time in PC rooms unlike a certain group I could mention. The food, while gut-wrenching is pretty varied. Menus are mostly bilingual and if not, a few key phrases help. Mandarin, while no picnic, is easier on my ears than Korean was.

The bad:
I can't breathe and don't really want to. This place is like L.A. on steroids when it comes to smog. Trash is everywhere. Do not look in the windows of the kitchens of restaurants-ever. There are homeless people galore. Not the New York variety- the three hundred pound chain-smoker dressed in the latest fashions from the GAP- but real homeless people, with missing limbs and obvious psychological problems. Homeless kids follow you around often at the urging of their mothers. Being western makes you a mark- generally, you are looked at (and not just by the homeless) as a giant dollar sign. This gets annoying.

The ugly:
See above. Also, Asian cities generally and BJ in particular have no concept of urban planning. There are no addresses worth a damn. Like in Japan, you have to show maps of your location. The streets are filthy and filled with potholes/broken sidewalks. (Where there are sidewalks.) You have to look down when walking at all times so you don't fall into an uncovered manhole. Unless you're into that sort of thing....


Blogger Adalmin said...

You know what? You just made me ashamed of my ancestors from China.

I love you! And your very honest blog!

*hugs Asiatown77*

P.S. Why not try Japan? This time YOU can oogle THEM.

1:20 PM  
Blogger L>T said...

Hey, I would love to see some pictures of this wretchedness. Throw a begger a few shillings or what-ever they are called & get him to let you take his pic. You would be doing a good deed and make me very happy. Prehaps one missing a limb or 2. I need some begger pics. for artistic referance. come on over and visit my site (decorated in american hillbilly)

5:31 PM  
Blogger L>T said...

P.S. your profile picture is freak'n funny! Us hillbillys enjoy that type of humor

5:35 PM  
Blogger L>T said...

Hey did the chinese sensorship board get you? I'm seriously trying to see who can get the worst living conditions on blog. I bet you could beat american hillbilly over there.

2:45 AM  
Blogger L>T said...

Look'n over your posts. Very witty. Will continue to check them out, unless you are being hung up-side down & having your finger nails pulled out slowly as you deny you ever said any thing unflattering about China.

2:30 PM  
Blogger peemil said...

How you doing? Haven't been round much.

Write more stuff. I like it.

3:14 AM  
Blogger asiatown77 said...

Write more stuff? You betcha!

9:34 AM  

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