Here's the thing about teaching English in China: it's a way in. "The people who come for the experience, I feel, are the most valuable people you can have in a place like Beijing because they're learning about themselves, and you never know what somebody might be able to do until they arrive in a place like this," says Matt Jones, an English teacher who's using his years of experience -- teaching "communication" and "culture" as much as anything else, as he puts it -- to start his own school. "If the ticket is English teaching, why not use that ticket?"
Lottie Dowling is single. How this is, we may never know, considering this Kiwi is smart, cute, and funny, as evidenced by her co-founding of Improv Beijing, the original improv group in China. Here she is:
Amy Daml of Coon Creek, Minnesota has had a productive first year in China, braving TCM, Chinese grannies, and sex scenes in movies (alas, just as a voice actress, with her sexy, sexy voice). Listen to her charm the pants off our hosts, John Artman and The Good Doctor, in the latest episode of The Creamcast.
You can also catch Daml (pronounced Dam-ol) on China Radio International's Easy Cafe (time tbd).
Sam Goodman is a Beijing oldie, having first moved here in 1995. In 1997 he was among the first foreigners to open a shop in the food-and-beverage industry, the sandwich chain Sammie's. He has since written a book, Where East Eats West, and gone on to start an assortment of projects, which you can read about here.
Ed's note: The Good Doctor and I attended the 3rd annual Beijing International Film Festival on April 23 at the China National Convention Center. You can read my write-up here. The following is The Good Doctor's work.
Jay Chou performs at the closing ceremony of the Beijing International Film Festival. I was lucky enough to be able to film, though I wasn't very close to the stage. Enjoy the spectacle as Hollywood collides with the Chinese Film and Television industry.
The Stand-up Showcase portion of the Beijing Improv Festival took place this past Friday. Here's my takeaway after watching the five finalists:
It turns out that there's an honest-to-goodness, thriving stand-up scene in Beijing. If you're a closeted comedy nerd who'll only risk coming out to see live shows in Beijing when big name comics fly in from the States, I hate to break it to you, but Louis CK isn't walking back onto that stage anytime soon. Why not try to get a laugh on at one of the many local venues in Beijing that host regular stand-up nights?
When I think of happy bears, I think of Baloo from The Jungle Book or George Wendt and Chris Farley. I absolutely do not think of Asiatic black bears that have been imprisoned since birth in order to extract bile from their gall bladders.
Ed’s note: The one you’ve been waiting for: The Good Doctor follows more than 100 merry Santas during the December 8 Beijing SantaCon. What is the collective noun for Santas? I’m not exactly sure, but we definitely need one after this. The music is Santa Claus Is Coming To Town, performed by the Tracson 5. Previously: Behind the Scenes... Read more »
By The Good Doctor Ever wonder what would happen if you fuck with the public works department in Beijing? If you’re like this unfortunate car owner, your vehicle will get paved over by a thick layer of asphalt. Let these photos (and video) be a warning. To see Beijing’s latest installation piece, head over to... Read more »
We visit the folks at Beijing Improv, where you should always expect the unexpected.
Notes: Beijing Improv holds free, bilingual workshops every Wednesday night at the Hot Cat Club, as well as a theater show on the last Saturday of every month.
Some of Beijing’s best expat climbers they take on the waterfall at Bai He. Featuring Simon Adams, Ben Cook, Dave Gliddon, and Joachim Corstiaans. To learn more about climbing in and around Beijing, visit Beijing Climbing Club. The music featured in this episode is Begging In Rome by Cut By Ice and Départ by OpenChords. Previously: Beijing’s Cheapest... Read more »
Ed’s note: In lieu of Beijing Slice, here’s The Good Doctor’s video wrap-up of Beijing Design Week. Via The Good Doctor‘s Vimeo description: An introduction to the 2012 Beijing Design Week at Cao Chang Di. The video focuses on three designers, Carl de Smet, Nikolaus Wabnitz, and Nicole Condon, and highlights their exhibits from Design Week.... Read more »
The Good Doctor, cooking instructor/amateur bowler Candice Lee, and Beijing Climbing Club head Simon Adams went on a mission to find the cheapest haircut in town. How low did they go? (Answer: very low. Xibahe Nan Lu just outside Third Ring Road is what you want.) The music is Crazy Glue by Josh Woodward. Beijing Slice is now... Read more »
The Caochangdi branch of Beijing Design Week is an eclectic mess. The posters have the wrong dates. Designers didn't finish their work on time, so you'll find empty spaces in the place of installations. Volunteers might sell you a button or a program that's supposed to be free. You'll wonder what some exhibits, such as a mishmash of geolocation balloons and a physical "chat room" called "The Real Network," have to do with design.
Mix it all together, and you have a wonderful template for the best and worst of Beijing.
By The Good Doctor Every Tuesday night, the VA Bar has a showcase of talented expat musicians in Beijing. The shows include covers and originals and are totally free. If you like music and want to hang out with a community of people who also like music, you should check it out. Featuring: Steve Blaque, Renee Robinson, Simon... Read more »
By The Good Doctor I still remember my first encounter with one of these trucks of death. I was walking near Xinjiekou when everybody suddenly scrambled into the nearest shop. I couldn’t figure out what was happening until I saw what looked like a firetruck watering the trees. Everyone else knew what I was about... Read more »