OCCUPY MORE!

Another amazing experience in Admiralty. The movement is still going strong a month later, with no signs of letting up. Perhaps it will be a permanent fixture in Hong Kong, wouldn’t that be amazing!

Another amazing experience in Admiralty. The pro-democracy/Occupy movement is still going strong a month later, with no signs of letting up. A substantial community of sharing and donations, an authentic anarcho-commune collective in a modern metropolis. It is truly working. In some ways it actually reminded me of Burning Man, yet it is even less regulated and more organic. An inspiration. Perhaps it will be a permanent fixture in Hong Kong, wouldn’t that be amazing!

At 6:00 p.m. sharp I witnessed the umbrella-opening ceremony. I wandered and learned a lot. I saw tens of thousands of campers, infinite yellow ribbons, inspiring post-it’s along the Lennon Wall – You may call me a dreamer, but I’m not the only one – and recorded some more video which I hope to edit soon and share. I was blown away by the creativity. T-shirts, banners, sculptures Umbrella Man ad Spider-Man and more, with cute paper Totoros. Even a library. The KFC sign amused me. And I like the setup in the bathrooms, with toothpaste ad shaving cream and even has volunteers to clean up. Very nice. The most solemn moment was the ‘Dark Corner’ area where a recent incident of police brutality took place. Finally, the umbrella tree.

Recently, I’ve been reading the book “Why Nations Fail” and while I am not smart enough to understand economics on a complex level, the book explains in layman’s terms that civilizations tend to be extractive or inclusive economies. Extractive are always unsustainable and damage a country, but the elites prefer it because it is good for only them. It is very hard to change this. Throughout all of history, development in human rights (which in turn helps growth) never comes because elites politely give it away through their bureaucratic laws, but because the masses of people demand it. Period.

CY Leung’s recent comments about how democracy is bad because it will give poor people too much political power… That is straight out of the thesis of this book. Let me just say, in my own layman’s terms, fuck this guy and this system.

Meanwhile, the latest propaganda from the mainland purports that it is all a scheme from Western governments. I scoff at that, because if it was so easy for outsiders to start movements than why are the PRC-funded counterprotests so pathetic?! They keep coming up with new narratives, from it’s only bad for business to pretending it’s all about rule-of-law to now this. Of course, it is truly a matter of the elites…

Things will change. I know they will. It won’t be easy, and it’s always a struggle because an entrenched system cannot even comprehend positive change, but it does come eventually.

 

 

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Shenzhen Daily

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Occasionally I write (and edit) for the local English-language newspaper of Shenzhen, the Shenzhen Daily. All very official. The only English daily in South China…

It’s not much in the realm of hardcore investigative journalism, but some fun lite reads herein. Here are a few humble lite posts worth resharing:

Book Review: Good Chinese Wife

Book Review: No City for Slow Men

Film Review: The Wind Rises

Futian District: A Holiday at Lianhua Hill

Interview: American Expat to Run Marathon in Australia

Interview: Expat Cycles to India for Good Cause

Interview: American Starting Local Volunteer Group

Editorial: Kimmel’s Apology Merits Acceptance

Restaurant Review: Vegetarian Oasis

CHINESE MOON

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The Moon isn’t there
And nobody cares
The daylight is screaming
The twilight receding
And you aren’t here

The stars in the city
Invisibly swimming
But the moonlight
It stays bright
And your obscene, yes somehow, is fitting

Do we see the same sky?
When we star up, and we’re high?
Or is the Moon an illusion?
An optical trance-state
A visionary-escapist intrusion?

I don’t believe in stars
Here in the city
The distances between us
It’s just much too far
To buy the idea
Of gaslights exploding
And sunlights departing
And gravity’s spinning, while atmospheres boiling
And dying

No, there is no moon
But there may be a sun
Yes, we might see the same one…

 

 

11/10/08

Dating in China 2012 – 2013

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SZ

 

PREVIOUS MEGAPOSTS

Dating in China 1
From Burning Man to Shenzhen, covering mid-2008 to early 2011

My Guangzhou Year
In the city… the city of Canton…

 

2012

Back to Shenzhen
In which I return to this town that somehow suits me

Emma
I begin the online game~

Jeanie
I have a girlfriend! I really did!

Yuki
I must admit, things got a tad gross.
Hope this wasn’t the beginning of a certain pattern…

 

2013: Epic Clusterfuck Year

Not Dating in America (and Hong Kong, and Canada)
2012 comes and goes and the world doesn’t end,
Meanwhile a bad start as I embark upon a year of drama bullshit

The Stalker
In which I make a foul choice which ends up following me around all year.
Dark times. No fun.

Carmen
I meet someone cool and travel to the Philippines
A brief positive note, albeit all too brief

Sonia – Jing – Amelia
POF, a site, met some peoples from differing lands, times are had,
and then I quit online dating forever more

The Very End
And I do mean it, the very very end.
I reflect and I consider and now it is time to move forward–

 

Not to be continued.

–Thanks for the memories!!

 

Ray

Hong Kong Protest – Video

Last week I went to see the Occupy Central democracy protests in Admiralty, Hong Kong. Students had camped out in front of the government offices, and took over roads in order to express their frustration with authority and demand change. The movement was still going strong, after violent actions from police had the opposite intended affect and renewed the people’s motivation and strength. Sadly, since then there has been yet more brutality and there is even more healing to do. At this rate Occupy isn’t going anywhere…

At the time, the scale of the scene astounded and humbled me. I have already posted some pictures, but I think moving-pictures footage can best communicate what is happening there. Allow me to share my video:

Identical Crisis – an old poem

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Identical Crisis

I’m a son
I’m a bun
I don’t work
It don’t hurt
Tell me what to be
Show me what to see
So I can know
And scream and grow
And cry on the sidewalk
And die, and hide
And crawl, and talk

Because I am smart
I read a book
I am lying
I’m a crook
I stole this line
And lost a shoe
It’s not a sign
It isn’t true
That I am lost
I have a plan
To steal socks
and live in a van
Or hide in a park
Or explode my heart

Or die alone
With a million dollars
And sing along
While the world goes smaller

 

 

7/27/08

Latest in Chinglish

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Oooookay, random Hitler shirt in HK subway. That’s appropriate

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I would never retrograde

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I’m always careful when I slip. –From Taiwan I’m told!

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Much better than that street of large merchandise

Thanks again from MartaLivesInChina!

Occupy Central

Occupy Central – Umbrella Movement – Democracy Hong Kong Protests

On Monday night I finally found the time to go to Hong Kong’s protest site in Admiralty, and I was humbled by what I witnessed. It was remarkable; a much larger scale than I had imagined.

After some violence that morning, the protest movement turned out not to be flickering down but had escalated once again. What else could have happened? Lesson learned: violence doesn’t seem to be working.

The students built barricades on Queensland Road using public property, and then a truck also delivered bamboo with accompanying cheering of the crowds.

(The next morning, I sadly read, the police had brought chainsaws and tore down the barricades.)

It is all incredibly inspiring. In front of the corrupt government offices, the movement had completely rebuilt the landscape. Tents, notices, artwork, umbrellas, endless signs. They had taken over, without permission of the System. The people are truly taking over their own city.

I’m no expert, and I don’t know what will happen. It is very possible that no legal ramifications will be directly affected any time soon. But in a sense, I believe that doesn’t even matter. I believe the culture of Hong Kong has changed in subtle, more powerful ways. Mindsets have been altered forever. The genie cannot be put back in the bottle. The government will never forget, from now on, that they must be more accountable and more responsible or otherwise there will be pushback from the people…

Hong Kong, and China, will certainly never be the same. And that is amazing.

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MORTALITY

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MORTALITY

Time is running out
We’ll all live forever
Countdown to Doomsday
Utopia isn’t very clever
If we don’t die tomorrow
We’ll survive another day
If we don’t ever have to die
Then there shall be an eternity to play
If that doesn’t work
We’ll figure something out
Write a self-help book about it
And never have a doubt
That life’s a happy rainbow
With happy stupid people
Singing, dancing, dying
All by way of needle
Skipping Revelations
The future… is wide… open
I heard that in a song
At least, that’s what I’m hoping

 

 

7-20-08