China-focused Satire, Social Commentary, Comics and More

Dear Man Standing on a Rock in a Field of Other Rocks


Dear Man Standing on a Rock in a Field of Other Rocks,

Nice rock. Or is it a boulder? Either way, what are you doing up there? Was the ground below not satisfactory? Obviously, something caused you to leave the common plane and ascend to your present position – let us propose a scenario or two…

Warily, unsteadily, one hand hiding in his blazer, he climbs upon his rock of choice. At first he settles his rear to his heels in the unmistakable Asian squat, but then, doubtfully, he raises himself up to a full stance – not much further from the ground, maybe a foot or two, but nonetheless HIGHER – it is, after all, one of those inescapable performance-enhancing adjectives, always leering out from posters, t-shirts, and billboards (Requesting? Promising? Demanding?), so he is only doing what is asked of him, getting up as high as a man of common means can manage, all for the sake of progress…

Or, maybe there is more to the man – to You, sir – than a simple follower of crass demands. Instead, with a face beaming of near-Buddhist humility, the grin of enlightenment, he pulls himself up to face his audience. We have heard of this before, seen this image – a lone soul braving the tyranny of the status quo and daring to offer a different view, a critique perhaps, or a complaint. Your perch of choice makes no difference – be it this rock, the soap box, or the chapel steps, you are now a head above the people, and so you have the power to sway them, but you will also feel its wrath…

But wait! Perhaps he was not so self-motivated in his deviance. Perhaps here, in this solid, austere field of gray, came a promise of opportunity never before seen or heard, when a “FREE ZONE” was announced – an open mike of sorts, for poets, speech-givers, or jokesters – and he (who appears to be of the comedic sort), believing in the goodness of words, seized the chance to test his new routine. And now, thinking he has an audience he’d never thought possible and a warm, nurturing spotlight, he will feel the sharp tug of a bait and switch…

WATCH OUT! They will string you up, funny man. They will bury you, preacher. Did you not see that massive heap of sand and rubble behind you? Did you really think that you could get high enough to overcome that wall? Now, alone and vulnerable, you too will become a piece, churned and packed, a part of the wall, that great buttress against the reservoir.

Good luck,

This Ridiculous World

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