Apr. 7th, 2007 03:31 pm
zeppelin: (Default)
I was raised associating China with Communism and opium. I was warned by solicitous Americans to avoid both. I've succeeded. Like any functionally rational being encountering Marxism in practice, I've been turned away from going red for good. I also have yet to come across any opium dens.

However, there very similar houses of addiction with which I am intimately connected. Dimly lit by a dull red glow made worse by the smoke and filled to the brim with practically soulless, mind-numbed addicts who might once have been human, they are the internet cafes. Even with 250-500 computers per cafe, I've found it's hard to snag one; most of them are taken by people doing . . . What?

In the United States, people wonder what they can do. There are a lot of websites that cannot be accessed with a Chinese IP. My blog is located on one such website, so I have to improvise in order to give my friends urgent updates on my fascinating life*. Thankfully, I'm well-trained in the art of subversion, and can draw on skills I learned in boot camp—er, public school, ninth grade. It turns out that the same websites deemed evil by the godless reds are the same ones deemed inappropriate for American children.

Actually, that's not true. Censorship in Communist China is less strict, though not less irrational and petty. China blocks blogs, but not information about the physics concepts that make firearms work, comics, or religion. I'm not sure who would be more offended to hear it, the freedom-hating censors or the guardians who keep our children safe. Forgive me for not taking all the moral outrage over Google and Microsoft selling out American values seriously.

Meanwhile, the addicts are too busy playing games to care.

*It's censored. Ipso facto, it is fascinating.


Mar. 26th, 2007 03:28 pm
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I'm eating the first Kraft Macaroni and Cheese I've had since I came here. I have to say that it doesn't taste all that good. My Chinese mom heard me making it and came in just in time to see me the pour neon-orange powder into the bowl. I told her that every American kid loves this stuff. She said, "oh, we can't eat it. We're really scared of it."

Scared of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese—tebie hai pa were her exact words. This seems amusing until you really consider that cheese has never, ever resembled powder. I won't drink the milk they buy because it doesn't spoil for two months; therefore, I reason, it is fake and undrinkable milk. But yet I eat "cheese" that lasts for years.


Mar. 1st, 2007 02:22 am
zeppelin: (Default)
I entered my room, and immediately saw what I had come for. She was there, by my bed, waiting. In her own way, she had known the confrontation was inevitable. Perhaps she had not realized that it would be on my terms.

"Bitch," I said quietly as I knelt down to pick up my weapon. "You die now."

She didn't move. Impassive, still. That didn't matter; I was not there to make her beg for mercy she would not receive. I positioned myself. "I'd rather have my blood back, but I will settle for yours." Then I moved. She was dead, instantly.

I set my gut-splattered calculus book down, pausing to scratch a swelling a full square centimeter in area. There would be no mosquito plaguing me tonight.
zeppelin: (Default)
"I downloaded the third Pirates of the Caribbean."

"But POTC3 hasn't come out yet."

"This is China. We can do anything."

"I want to watch it."

It was Moby Dick.


Jan. 1st, 2007 03:11 pm
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I went to my grandmother's house today, and they had orange juice. I've grown to love orange juice over here. So I grabbed a cup and immediately squeaked. The glass was too hot to touch.



Nov. 29th, 2006 01:47 am
zeppelin: (Default)
I had a dream last night in which the devil wrote me a letter about my "secret gluttonies" on Microsoft Word and put it in my school mailbox. He signed it "Satan."


Oct. 30th, 2006 01:46 am
zeppelin: (Default)
Friday I don't eat meat, and I really don't like eating only rice, so I skip going to the cafeteria. Last Friday, I bought six bananas for about thirty-five cents instead. I ate two of them, and I didn't really feel like eating anymore at the time, so I was wandering around with a clump of bananas for the afternoon. This seemed to be the logical thing to do at the time, but when I went to the host parent meeting, my mom was looking at me like I'm crazy. I guess it is extraordinarily weird to carry bananas around, but...what else would I do with them?


Oct. 20th, 2006 01:43 am
zeppelin: (Default)
Yesterday, I went to Wangfujing by myself so I could have the interview with DU. I didn't like the interview. But afterwards, I went to the gigantic mall and ate an enormous bowl of noodles for 12rmb and I purchased a card for the mall's food court...and I bought gelato. WHY can't the US have gelato stores all over its malls?! I then rode the subway back to my house. On the way out, I was riding up the escalator next to a college kid and I had my notebook open because I was studying for the character quiz today. The person next to me then said "Are you studying Chinese?" in Chinese and we had a conversation. His english is broken, my chinese is broken, etc. He gave me his number and his name (in English Nick, although he pronounced it "Nietzche") and then disappeared.

Black Hole

Sep. 22nd, 2006 01:42 am
zeppelin: (Default)
I've finally realized that the permanent fog Beijing seems to be in isn't actually fog, it's the air.
zeppelin: (Default)
They're actively discouraging internet use here, access to the internet is uncertain, and a bunch of my favorite sites are filtered. I'll post as often as I can, but don't expect too much. :/

oh, and the food is odd. it's good, but I have no freaking clue what i've been eating.

and the mosquitos are HUGE.


zeppelin: (Default)

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