Wednesday, July 30, 2008

stay tuned...

I dropped my laptop and broke it.

The computer still works but the LCD is FUCKED UP!

But don't go any where the olympics is in 9 days and i get paid my first big FAT paycheck this wee so lots of shennanigans are on thier way!

Monday, July 21, 2008

wierd observations of racism in china

My friend anna the russian just got back to beijing a few weeks ago from moscow. She moved to beijing her family a few years ago. Recently she also had visa problems and had to go to moscow to get a new visa. When she arrived in the 'jing she went to register with the local PSB ( public security bureau ) and she was told that since she was a young unemployed russian girl in beijing she was suspected of being a prostitute and would not be granted a residence permit unless she had like 200k RMB in the bank ( $45k USD ). I was shocked personally i would be MORE suspicious if a 22 year old russian girl had $45k in cash but thats just me....

Anyways this and the recent visa crackdowns and deportations of so many foreigners got me thinking. Something i find interesting as a blonde haired blue eyed protestant is the concept of being discriminated against in china. There are two standard chinese words for foriegners in china the first is wai guo ren the politically correct term the second is lao wai which is essentially a racial slur. I hear the latter considerably more than i hear the former. There are lots of times when chinese people will make fun of me not realizing i understand what they are saying and sometimes they will choose not to pick me up in taxis or serve me in restaurants. I haven't let this bother me because deep down i know i am taller than most of them and also have a larger penis.

As hosts of the 2008 olymics an event celebrating culural diversity blah blah blah.... I am also finding interesting chinese peoples 1950's sense of politically incorrectness very sad... and by that i mean chinese people are complete racists. I first experienced this in a conversation I had in chinese with an anonymous chinese person. We were talking about the upcoming olympic games and i was being told how china will surely win this year. I was teasing back about how thats impossible america ALWAYS wins the olympics. Their reply in chinese was loosely transltated america "always wins because amwerica has lots of black people"

It is also no secret to those who live here and else where in the world of chinas increasing involvement in african nations. With deeper political ties has also brought a wave of african immigrants looking for opportunities to prosper in chinas currently booming economic growth. This is the group that gets the moste persicution in china and its kind of sad. There have been several occasions when police just come into the foreign bar areas shut everything down and arrest all the africans. I read recently in that in the coastal city of guanzhou the chinese rounded up and deported 10,000 africans.

The worst story i have heard yet is that the police have unofficially been asking all the bar owners to not serve either africans or mongolian girls. There is a definite problem here in beijing with africans dealing drugs and mongolian girls working as prostitutes. This is a problem but the situation is bound to happen as a result of the discrimination these people receive as poor immigrants. They find themselves in a new country discriminated against and when left destitute there is only one way for them to survive. In order to solve this problem the police find it better to just not allow a black people or mongolians into bars and resturants. ROCKET SCIENCE. ( for the record all the lao wais here will tell you you you will never meet friendlier drug dealers and prostitutes anywhere in the world... they will be missed )

Anyways its going to be very interesting to see how the chinese react to a sudden influx of 500,000 foreigners. i am pretty sure they aint gonna like it and the olympics might not go as well as planned.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Why the World Hates Us!

This is th back page from City Weekend Beijing. City Weekend is the local expat magazine that like it or not is required reading. It provides a kind of a dailey arts and entertainment nightlife guide to Beijing. It covers bands art show and other life necessities. On the last page they always do a day in the life of an expat guide usually featuring writers or diplomatic personal or other interesting expats living in the 'jing. This past week they focused on an american.

Monday, July 14, 2008

photo show

If you've been reading the comments you know mr finley is hosting a photo show and asked me if i was interested in showing some photos. the show is a group show featuring artwork from people working int he film industry.

i am not sure what to submit so i thought i would ask opinions. i made 2 flickr slide shows of what i think are the best ones and was wondering if you guys could help me pick the best ones for the show.

i would love to hear your thoughts on which way i should go color or B&W and which are the 4 strongest images.



chinese fau paux

Point of reference if ever you find yourself working in a room full of chinamen and they invite you to lunch don't complain that your sick of chinese food.

The thing is chinamen hate that... in china chinese food is just called food.


So this weekend i actually went and saw ziyo on friday AND saturday. I saw them friday at 2 kolegas then randomly a friend of mine went to see them at yu gong yi shan on saturday. i was over at rm 101 catching boy #6 then after that show shot over to catch a little bit of jungle cat and then ziyo again.

The music scene in beijing is great. It reminds me a lot of when i ws living in chicago. any night of the week you could see some great live music. the only problem with chicago is all the bands thought they were on the verge of making it big and becoming the next smashing pumpkins. The thing about the china music seen is no matter how good they are or how popular the bands never distance themselves from the audience. Even the most famous bands when they play the music is unbelievable but the show itself feels like a college band and really connects.

Anyays Ziyo is definately fast becoming my favorite local band. i dont quite know much about them but they definately really connect. their sound is sometimes very siousxie and the banshees meets new wave. hard to describe but their shows are great.

as for the photos i shot them on my canon10d with a 50mm 1.8f lens. no idea what i am doing but practicing shooting bands in low light with out a flash.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Big News!

So after months of waiting and negotiations and chinese physicals I am now actually employed AND officially disease free! ( in order to work in china you can't have hiv OR syphillis )

Although i didn't want to take this step i just could make a living teaching english with out teaching kindergarten. So I pulled every string and connection I had and got a job working for Technicolor Beijing. Actually I signed a 2 year contract with them. If you don't know who technicolor is its the company that invented the color film process used in d in Wizard of Oz and Snow White. They purchased several visaul effects facilities all over the world and are now trying to get VFX work outsourced from america.

I have no idea what i am supposed to do there as I have no live action VFX experience and I dont really speak chinese all that well. I imagine its only a matter of time before i am fired but they spent several thousand dollars to sponser a work visa and residence permit. So i am here for a while whether china likes it or not.

I talked with the vfx supervisor today and right now i am just doing pre-vis stuff for a chinese movie but the first VFX work will be fully CG shots from a persons point of view underwater. The director doesn't want to actually shoot underwater so they just want to do it in CG and I am supposed to make this seemless and photoreal with a stock copy of maya and 32 proc renderfarm. yeah i see this happening!!!!

anyways they seem to have no concept of 3D and just say yes they can do it and then i will have to figure it out later. ( insert cheek blowout here )

thoughts commens anyone?

Friday, July 4, 2008


so its been a while..... my laptop is brokenm and things have obviously been hectic.

so last weekend i took a flight down to shenzen to find myself a shady china visa. It was a whole lot cheaper if i had a connection in shanghai. I got to shanghai around 11 and my connecting flight was at 2 arriving at 4. sure enough it got delayed apparently a typhoon had hit hongkong and blew in north to shenzhen. ( shenzhen is the border town ) I was paranoid about getting stuck in the 'hai for the evening anyways finally around 5 we borded the plane and sat for two hours on the runway. the dinner consisted of pickled radish's and wierd dinner roll in a bag.

I finally got to shnzen arouns 10ish and got the last shuttle across the border. it ended up being like 90 kuai instead of the normal bus which is 20. On the bus i met an american guy who owned seven toaster factories in china. he had been coming to china for 24 years and was the main toaster supplier to walmart. he was supposed to fly from shenzen to shanghai but his flight was cancelled so he was rolling back to hong kong to enjoy the comforts of the first world. he told me all kinds of crazy stories about the factories and that the employees make 900 month. i make 2400 month teaching english 4 hours per week.

anyways i was loaded with rmb and it was too late to change money so the guy gave me enough hong kong dollars to get to jenny from the blocks. Jenny was taking off the next morning for dubai to visit her boyfriend who was working as freelance geologist and was gracias enough to let me crash at her place. I got there hung out with her while she frantically packing. I then drank half a bottle of wine and fell asleep.

next morning straight over to kowloon for to a shady visa office full of BURLEY lloking expats all doing the same as me. the guys in front of me came over that morning from shenzen and reeked of hookers and ripple. we bonded instantly.

afterwards i met up with E.L.S. and we got our curry on then he gave me the keys to his tiny HK casa and went back to work. ( wheni say tiny this place makes a place in manhatten look like a plantation ).I passed out and met up with him that night. it was thursday and he was crazy busy at work so we decided to just grab a couple beers in lan kwai fong. after a couple beers we decided to get our rage on and met his financial planner jo-jo who was a smoking hot cantonese girl. her and her friend got us into the party for free hosted of all places at the "BEIJInG CLUB"! can you say destiny. after too many $15 cocktails we gound ourselves in another bar on the dance floor surrounded by hookers. after that it got fuzzy i remember ELS dissapearing and me wandering around hong kong. unfortunately i woke up in bed next to ELS in his microscopic apartment.

he took off from work and i slept ALL day waking only to eat falafels and indian food. We vowerd to never go out again and next day i caught the direct train back to the 'jing.

Anywas i am back in china and have big news coming.... so stay tuned.