The buildup is long and strange, but it’s full of wonder and intrigue. Why is the old man’s pants unbuckled? Why is he surrounded by three much younger urban enforcement officers, i.e. chengguan? Why does one of the officers appear to have a ripped shirt? Why does the old man taunt them, saying, “Come on, hit me?” We only know what the video title and description tell us, that this happened in Donggang, Liaoning province, and the old man had been riding a dray, significance unknown.
The exposition comes to a tipping point at the 2:15 mark, and soon after the fists start flying. And then the crowd — which had been steadily bulking up with interested onlookers — gets involved, and a frenzied horde bull rush the chengguan.
Cooler heads momentarily prevail, and we see no group beatdown. But far from a disappointing resolution, something can be learned here, I think, about the inscrutability of society and groupthink and enforcement or some other vague concept. We’ll leave it for you to figure out though. Youku video for those in China after the jump.