China-focused Satire, Social Commentary, Comics and More

Comic Book “Waijiao” Available on Amazon!

Dear anyone who still visits This Ridiculous World (and those who have just arrived),

While this blog lost its momentum a couple of years ago, a related comic book has recently been published and is now available in print or Kindle through Amazon (or CreateSpace, which gives the author a bigger chunk). If you currently are, or once were, or are thinking about becoming a teacher in China, it could have something that would appeal to you. Please check it out.
Waijiao Cover
Waijiao Excerpt - Kindergarten

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CARTOON: SHANGHAI DEAD PIGS

HUANGPU STIFFS

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Just Another Day at a Chinese School

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Ideas Like Plastic Bags

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Romance of the Western Chamber – a Review

An adaptation of a famous Yuan Dynasty play, the silent film Romance of the Western Chamber offers 45 minutes of jerking eastern theatrical acting, ridiculous head gear and awesome close-up clips of swords clashing. Sources tell us that the original version was nearly twice as long, but the remaining portion did not seem to need anything more. Here is the entire film in case your interest is piqued:

A scholar randomly stops at a monastery to study. There is a girl living there with her family. The scholar falls in love. Bandits come for the girl. “Whoever saves my daughter can have her hand in marriage,” says the mother. The scholar thinks hard. An idea! He sends a brave monk with a letter to a powerful general who comes and defeats the bandits. The scholar is happy and worn out. Crazy dream sequence. “Go pass your exams and my daughter is yours,” says the mother. How do you think it ends?

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INVISIBLE HAND OF MARKET FOUND IN CHINA!


Some Smoggy City, CHINA – While Americans bicker over economic policies and try to disagree on the best way to guide the nation toward prosperity, it seems the object of Adam Smith’s over-referenced phrase has floated across the Pacific to get itself dirty (quite literally) in a different kind of muck. Skeptics will no doubt raise some obvious questions:

1) What good would the invisible hand be in a communist country, where the common good must, by definition, come before the individual? While that is a nice sentiment, self-interest now reigns. The common good is still important, but it has been stripped of its old meaning to be more harmonious with other goods. The hand has been enlisted to guide people toward their own ambitions and desires – whether it be a new bicycle and a steady job or Hummer and designer dog jacket – while another hand, working in unison, waits ready to collect or to swat. It is in the interest of the individual not to be swatted, of course, which encourages one not to be too curious about where everyone is headed or whether or not anyone else is actually with them.

2) How could an “invisible” hand be perceived at all, let alone photographed? The answer to this question lies in the high levels of particulate matter in the air, which collect on the surface (invisible things still have form, remember) of the hand and makes it perceptible to the naked eye (consider what happens in Hollywood films when an invisible person puts on a raincoat or smokes a cigarette). Based on this phenomenon, some analysts suggest that with stricter environmental regulation the hand might actually remain invisible.

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