Liuzhou Laowai

Random thoughts on life in Liuzhou, Guangxi, China

Slow Down

I spent most of yesterday evening and a lot of today yelling at inanimate objects. Those of the supposedly high-tech variety. I’m surprised you didn’t hear me.

For reasons which I haven’t yet fathomed, the internet here in Liuzhou has ground to a near halt. It took me until half past forever to open MSN Messenger or whatever they call themselves this week,; my usual climb-the-wall measures were timing out and I was becoming seriously disgruntled. In fact my gruntles and I got divorced.

This evening, I have managed (just) to open this long enough to type it. I still don’t know if I can post it. (SPOILER ALERT: If you have read this, I managed (© 17 BC, “Common Sense for Idiots”). The internet is still ponderous; my wall jumping is highly intermittent (i.e. usually banging head against the wall) and I burned my dinner which is clearly their fault whoever they are!

I am generally relieved from all this stress and trauma by discovering tonight that I can get into MSN and chat with friends all over the world. Unfortunately, 99% of my all over the world friends are in China and want to bitch about HOW F-ING SLOW THE INTERNET IS TODAY” I’ve had reports in more languages and dialects I knew existed. From all over China. Shenzhen, Shanghai, Beijing, and the Lucky Cat Internet Bar and Massage Parlour in Huaihua, Hunan – and if anyone knows where it is at and what’s happenin’, it’s the Lucky Cat guys and gals.

After the complaining, we turn to conjecture as to why. Usually things like this happen when the faceless, self appointed drunks with bad dress sense decide that my watching obscure Delta blues videos on YouTube is likely to lead to rioting and worse, with particular emphasis on destroying the Chinese “communist” party through the music of Robert Johnson. Makes sense to me.

But they usually only do this before major party orgies. None are publicly scheduled. The only thing on the calendar is National Day on October 1st. But it isn’t any special national day like the 50th or 60th. In fact, I guess most locals couldn’t even tell which it is (despite us only having had the 60th last year. Despite the urban myths and tales of super mathematicians, the Chinese population are no more adept at maths than the average dormouse. Try handing over a ¥100 picture of the Chairman and wait for the vendor to calculate the correct change from a ¥37.30 purchase. They can’t without resource to technology. There is a reason they all carry calculators and it ain’t so that they can show their rip-off prices to foreigners who are congenitally incapable of understanding Chinese numbers. In fact, I think I will spend the weekend inventing erroneous calculators which work in the laowai’s favour. The technology should be simple and the guys in the market won’t know any different.

(Brief aside: If you believe me that they are bad at maths, try them on geography. For the cheapest entertainment of the week, grab a couple of bottles of the local brew, get together a bunch of locals and ask them to point to ‘north’. You will see more directions than you knew existed. The more people you can muster up, the better the display. I am just waiting for UN funding to come though for my movie of just this activity. The movie will be called “Windmills of the Mind: Maternal Grandmothers Fragrant Fluttering Arms”. Catchy, huh?. Tell the cinema you know me personally and they may let you in free. More likely, they will tell you to do what what some onebraincell did on my bus to work on Tuesday. He spent the entire 45 minute journey yelling Fuh Cough in my general direction. He is a newly recruited student in the college next door. Academic standards – bless!)

Anyway, whatever is going on, I hope it goes off soon.

. This entry was posted on Thursday, September 15th, 2011 at 10:37 pm and is filed under Censorship, Internet Stuff, Liuzhou Life, Strawberry Fields, Stupidity. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a Reply

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

It may take some time for your comment to appear, it is not necessary to submit it again.

%d bloggers like this: