World’s smallest egg? Via CRI: “The chicken egg, which is about two centimeters long and weighs 2.58 grams, was laid on Monday by a Malaysian bantam owned by He Daiyou, a 55-year-old hairdresser from Shapingba District, Chongqing.”
Here comes another five-day workweek, unless you’re in Hong Kong, in which case, enjoy your day off tomorrow. Irregardless, start your week off right with links.
Everything I’ve read about Xi Jinping is making me optimistic about China’s future, including this article about his wife. “As China counts down to its carefully scripted 18th Communist Party congress next month, everyone here knows the country will soon get a new president, and who it will be. (Spoiler alert: His name is Xi Jinping.) // But there is suspense over one element of the transition: Will the nation get a full-fledged first lady as well in the form of Peng Liyuan? // …Yet crafting a public role for Peng will require Communist Party image makers to delicately navigate millenniums-old suspicion of women near the center of power in China, the party’s own squeamishness about making officials’ private lives public, and a gossipy media culture increasingly critical of elites’ lifestyles and behavior.” [LA Times]
That rescue in Japanese waters of Chinese sailors? Netizens saying “Wait a minute”: “Where did this cargo ship set out from and where was it going? Why did it sail through the waters off Okinawa, so close to the Diaoyu Islands [aka Senkaku Islands]? Why did it happen to catch on fire at that precise area? Why did the Japanese rescue team arrive so swiftly? Why was there also another report in today’s news: Chinese 1,500 People Tour Group Arrives in Japan to Warm Welcome? Could all of this be a coincidence? Or is it to suppress the ordinary common people’s anger over losing the Diaoyu Islands? If the islands are lost, then they’re lost, the people are not stupid.” [@腾讯网友 kevin, chinaSMACK]
Hell of a story. “What had happened? Images rushed to my mind: A yellow dinghy bucking forward and back in white-lipped waves; the oars flapping once and twice and then ripped from their sockets; the water cold, salty, alien, surging up as if to drag her under; the gray sky dipping down to meet it; Yan alone, terrified, hugging the boat until the waves grabbed that too. Had she tried to fight it, the encroaching sea? The strength would have drained from her arms like water from an upturned cup. She had the body of a child: Maybe five feet, maybe an inch or two shorter, ninety-five pounds tops. And the image of that childlike body, briny and pallid, washed up on the shore. // Did she scream? Did she try to turn back? Or did she surrender to the storm? Or there had been no storm. Or she had planned for the storm all along.” [Eli Bildner, Tea Leaf Nation]
Um… kinda graphic, because there’s a picture of a knife sticking out of a woman’s head. “A Chinese woman has amazingly survived without serious injury after stabbing herself in the head with a knife. // These gruesome images show the knife protruding out of Zhang Lan’s skull after she launched the five inch blade in to her own head.” [Daily Mail]
Indeed, some types of hearsay are OK. “For a couple of years now, I’ve been writing about the power of China’s online voices (aka netizens, aka weibots) in their struggle for truth, justice and all kinds of other good stuff. Frankly, it worries me. And now they’ve gone and started a riot in Sichuan for no reason, and people might have been hurt.” [China Hearsay]
Deep breath. “The world’s second-largest economy grew 7.4 percent in the three months ending in September, data showed Thursday. That was down from the previous quarter’s 7.6 percent and the lowest since the first quarter of 2009.” [AP]
Evan Osnos’s interview with Ai Weiwei interlude, via The New Yorker:
“The Creation Myth of Xi Jinping.” [John Garnaut, Foreign Policy]
Evan Osnos talks with Charlie Rose. [Charlie Rose]
Pictures of China’s Internet cafes. [Kotaku]
China becoming more popular for expats, says survey. [Expat Explorer, HSBC]
Neat pictures of Shanghai, via China Underground:
Don’t get your hopes up. We can all wish, but Xi is not pulling the strings.