China-focused Satire, Social Commentary, Comics and More

Dear Chungking Mansions

Dear Chungking Mansions,

Your guts are showing. We discovered them in the stairwell, pouring grotesquely out from a hole in the wall. When we saw them we felt as though we’d seen something we shouldn’t have – something inappropriate, obscene, even dangerous. Perhaps it had something to do with the stairwell itself, with its windows open to the outside, those puddles of discolored liquid on the landings, and the men huddled smoking in the corners at 3 am. It is no place for this kind of display.

What sort of madman wired you, anyway?

I wonder where all those wires go. Is this what powers the flashing remittance signs in the lobby, or the radios blasting the latest Bollywood soundtracks? What would happen if we had reached in and pulled out a handful wires?

Chungking Mansions, you have no shame. You are a seething hive of food, lodging, commerce, and clandestinity. There is not a legitimate business inside you. Men patrol the streets in your name, luring passersby with promises of cheap rooms, cheap Indian food, and cheap copy handbags.

You are a mess. Please, have some decency and cover yourself.


This Ridiculous World

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