Friday, 22 April 2011

Chinese-English Blog Sites...Autopsy @ Funeral

Thought the photos would get your attention. Just read The Corpse Walker and Other True Stories of Life in China by Liao Yiwu, a man with a incredible biography. Actually, the wiki entry does not do his personal history justice as the Studs Terkel of the diceng or those at the "bottom rung of society". What follows is 21 interwiews with a range of outcasts such as the Professional Mourner (photo) the Safe Cracker, the Human Trafficker, the Former Red Guard etc, all told in gritty fatalistic terms. Liao has just been denied a visa to attend an Australian literary festival. This is one dark journey thru the [1] Middle Kingdom superstitions and [2] the lunatic Mao history of modern China, which was both truly fucking demented and beyond all normal reason. Sort of like Monty Python on really bad LSD.

And for the non-Sino wise, some background here on a recent way to go tradition.

The main course here was meant to be a thorough review of all the sites I visit or where I am a regular commenter. But as the title suggests, Sino-English bridge blogs are rapidly losing their allure. However, instead of value-adding to other sites, lets Get Down and Get With It a la Slade

My commenting baptism, like others who have gone on to greater things, began with Fauna's tabloid trash Chinasmack. Scroll back a couple of years, and you will find that some quite serious commentary and quality trollery in the person of Pusan Playa who was a force to be reckoned with in the non pc department. Today, the stories are the same, the commentary is beyond pathetic, but I notice that some of todays big guns still make a sneaky return. You know who I am talking about!

Next on the board of disrepute has to be the now-defunct Chinadivide run by a triunvirate of seasoned bloggers. CD set a high bar in terms of eye candy graphics and rapid response feedback from the overlords. Not so sure if it succeeded in its mission statement, but it sure was fun, and to this day I have a high regard for Kai Pan. (Here one should also mention a couldn't decide who we are, and also defunct site CNreviews. Late arrival here, and the only interesting poster was Adam with his book reviews.)

Other veterans of the Long March incl.

ChinaGeeks run by Charles Custer. Custer is a fractious weblord who, unlike many, wears his political heart on his sleeve. Play-for-keeps-guy lacking a sense of humour, but to be respected.

chinahearsay run by
Stan deals with biz/law/IP topics. Has to be the most prolific blogger around, with excessive faith in the legal processes and again displaying an Americans limited sense of humour. Nonetheless, a must check-in site.

Peking Duck run by Richard since 2002 has serious traffic and a couple of pathological trolls to keep you on your toes.

Lets finish this post before it dies on the vine.

Oz readers. I highly recommend the five sites listed top right.

Adam is definitely the Christopher Columbus of interesting link-finds and his unfortunate taste in music is forgiven. Want to know what are the contemporary haps in North Korea, hit his link.

FOARP is a hardened Sino blog warrior of long standing, multi-lingual and a major practitioner of due diligence.

Justrecently provides Sino translations, does his own blog art as well as providing sophisticated political analysis.

CMP or China Media Project is a must visit site containing context and translation of CPC editorials and other debates taken from Chinese media sources. I have devoted considerable time on this site outing that windbag, publicity hound and recent detention-hoaxer Yang Hengjun, all to no avail such is the gulliblity of the Oz media.

Finally, want a good rant about anti-Chinese Western media bias after posting a recipe for vegetarian lasagne, where else do you go but to Hidden Harmonies.


  1. A couple of websites which were awesome in their time:

    TalkTalkChina - China Expat site where most post consisted of complaints, brilliant commenting. One day in 2006 they just took the website down without a word of explanation.

    Sinocidal - A group of TTC commenters formed a blog of their own. For about 8 months it was awesome, then a falling-out between two of the bloggers caused the whole thing to implode.

    ChinaSMACK was the spiritual successor to TTC and Sinocidal. Before she was famous, Fauna used to comment on both. The only difference is that TTC and (especially) Sinocidal were way more political than ChinaSMACK. Of course, this was in the days before heavy censorship, so even when Sinocidal got blocked after doing a piece featuring Dashan enjoying carnal relations with his wife (not as innocent as it sounds: a dildo, a panda-suit, and a Hu Jintao mask were involved - rumour has it that it was the great Dashan himself who reported them) they managed to get themselves unblocked quickly enough. Couldn't do that nowadays.

    The beating heart and soul of China expat blogging is posts bitching about the country, which attract comments from other expats who want to vent, which then reaches a critical mass of pissing and whining that metamorphoses into something awesome. Censorship killed this.

  2. Thanks FOARP. A panda suit. Crikey. That piece just confirms that I'm normal. No more stuff like that please: I'll bloody choke on my toast here.

    Before my virtual day, unfortunately.

  3. @FOARP
    Didn't know that, about Fauna commenting on Sinocidal, I mean. Using the same handle, or a different one? As for the panda suit post, I don't recall reading it; maybe it was pulled in the process of unblocking the site...
    If you ever have time to waste, or feel like spitting your coffee all over your your computer, try WaybackMachine:*/

  4. @Neddy. Thanks for the Wayback thingy which worked a treat, and couldn't help but notice that you were a perp on Sinocidal.