Every time I biked past the dozens of men (and the occasional woman) fishing in Beijing's canals, I'd assumed they were fishing for their dinner. I shuddered at the thought of eating anything that came out of a stinking canal that already had dead fish floating in it. I mentioned it to my Chinese coworkers and they said it was impossible, that nobody would be crazy enough to eat Beijing's fish. But I wasn't convinced, so camera in hand, I went to find out.
You may think you've seen them all, but this one has that little something extra. It's worth watching from the beginning, but go to the 30-second mark for a mushroom cloud of commentary. Noooooooo fucking way.
To celebrate the debut of Beijing Blend on Beijing Cream, we're offering a second helping this week. The hosts talk about the Great Fall of China -- the country's recent stock market crash that wiped out $3 trillion -- and the role that damas -- Chinese grannies -- might have played. Also, check out Hong Kong's hottest new cruise, combining "the fun of botox with bare boy's bums." Yeah you'll just have to watch.
If you've been anywhere near WeChat or Weibo today (or China's corner of Twitter, for that matter), you've likely heard that a young man filmed himself having sex with a young woman in a fitting room in the Sanlitun branch of Uniqlo in Beijing recently. The video was uploaded to the Internet yesterday evening and has been making the rounds. It's out there. Someone was gonna post it. [...] Here it is.
Everyone! Please meet Beijing Blend, a social media news digest / e-magazine doing very cool things both IRL (creative events, talks, etc.) and on the intranet (WeChat, namely). For the past couple of months, they've been uploading short videos on their YouTube page in which a rotating cast of genial hosts discuss a series* of current events. We'll be posting them here every Tuesday. It'll be fun. Oh, and go follow them on Twitter.
Want to visit the backwater Yunnan town of Jinding, which sits in the shadow of Asia's largest lead mine? Of course you don't. Luckily, Greenpeace has done it for you, and come away with this 360-degree, interactive video shot from a drone.
Before I saw Tom Olden's video, I heard reactions to it. It was described as a "leap off the deep end" with an "ISIS vibe," featuring a "headless girl in the background chopping carrots on an ironing board... PUA-style 'burns' on manhood, and, of course, that Jigsaw voice." That's crazy, I thought. Does the carrot represent neutered sexuality? Is the headless woman some self-aware avowal of misogyny? And what of the knife, that weapon-turned-tool of domesticity, scything away? Is the video menacing or ironic?
A goalkeeper makes dozens of decisions over the course of every match, from how to position himself to whether to attack or sit back on incoming crosses, and the slightest miscalculation can sometimes be the difference between a win and something lesser. Never will this point be more obviously illustrated than during Sunday's Chinese Super League match between Chongqing Lifan and Liaoning Hongyun, when Chongqing goalkeeper Sui Weijie's crucial decision to take a sip of water cost his team a victory.
As widely prophesied on weather apps this morning, a sandstorm smote us this evening. Around 6 pm, our editor-at-large received an ominous warning about said sandstorm devastating Changping. Minutes later, it was we in Sanlitun amid its yellow maw. I wonder if people noticed...
Ed's note: Portrait of a Beijinger is an original video series for the Anthill by Tom Fearon and Abel Blanco. Each month, Tom and Abel will profile an ordinary Beijinger with an extraordinary story. The first episode in the series, along with Tom’s description of meeting its protagonist Liu Xinran, is republished with permission from the Anthill.
Don't look now, but a basketball dynasty is blossoming in Beijing, and the only man who was brash enough to dream it -- to, indeed, articulate that dream -- was the pride of Coney Island, Stephon Marbury.
Here's another view of the fireworks on Chinese New Year’s Eve last Wednesday night, taken by someone on a plane landing over Beijing. In my previous post I wrote, "During no other time, living on the ground here, do I feel like zooming out to become an all-seeing observer." I guess it'd look something like this.
For the first time ever, New York City set off fireworks to commemorate Chinese New Year. It happened over the Hudson and was synchronized and jubilant. At one moment it looked like skyscrapers were melting out of the night. Colorful. Impressive. Yet it was still mere facsimile for the real thing. You see, for my money, the most noteworthy -- if not outright best -- New Year’s celebration happens in Beijing.
There's verve here. Brio. These singers are rouged with holy spirit and plainly happier than you and I, poor nonbelievers at Christmas Mass. Why do we continue to pay the price for our pride? Who are we to let the piddling inconvenience of no Gmail make us glum, corruptible, not-rippling as befits our 5,000 years, unfaithful and obfuscated and dark and meekly dying on sand? March to this goddamn battuta, guys. INTERNET POWER. Hotdamn.
Back in June, we brought your attention to the adventures of Ivan Xu, a Chinese youth who planned to bike alone around Europe for 100 days for Ultimate Frisbee and charity.
He ended up cycling across 14 countries and visiting 11 high-level Ultimate Frisbee clubs* from June 18 to September 25, beginning in Brest, Belarus and ending in Berlin.
His adventures have been profiled by media around the world, including CCTV-4, Estrepublicain.fr, Pärnu Postimees, Belarusian CTV, Russia-Belarus TPO TV and OHT TV, so what follows is hardly an exclusive. But here's an update anyway.
Our beloved China, the new social-political-economic butterfly on the scene, wowed at APEC before jetting off for the ASEAN East Asia Summit and the G20 Summit.
Hosting APEC for the first time since 2011, Beijing did things 大气, spending $6 billion on a lakeside campus, a new elevated expressway, and a no-costs-spared spectacular opening complete with fireworks. But how did they really do?
I didn't want to like this -- and I probably still don't -- but I will say: watching it, it gets better. If your goal in a music video is to out-weird PSY and the Ylvis ("The Fox"), you probably should go all out like Rolling Wang Rong did and do stuff like this:
Ed's note: First, watch the above trailer. It's awesome, isn't it? It's the preview for The New Masters, a proposed full-length documentary about mixed martial arts in China directed by Christopher Cherry and David Dempsey. You can learn more about it, which has the makings of something special, over on its Kickstarter page. Or keep reading, as screenwriter and producer Sascha Matuszak explains the inspiration behind this project.