Not (entirely) Safe For Work weekend post

ChinaSMACK is a window into the bizarre world of the Chinese internet. I regularly link to the oddities found therein. And while it is a window into a foreign world, it only provides snapshots that titillate and excite conversation on Chinese chat-rooms. Thus it is often the equivalent of watching helicopter footage of police car chases in LA. You might deduce something useful about life in LA from what you see and the insightful (*snort*) commentary of the reporters, but more likely it is just mindless entertainment.

This article appeared on ChinaSMACK today, Naked Chinese Girl Mentally Ill, Traumatized, or On Drugs?

The frontal images are pixelated, the rear images are not. I would argue that this is harmless, but you judge the culture of your office. WATCH AT YOUR OWN RISK.

I post it for the following reasons:

  1. The event takes place in Shenzhen. I swear this is Luohu district. The background looks so familiar, I bet this is near our old office.
  2. Notice the way she just walks through traffic and then hops the barrier fence – the one designed specifically to keep people from walking out into traffic. This is not a sign of mental illness. EVERYBODY does this in China.
  3. Notice the barely controlled chaos – the masses of people, the traffic, the noise. This is not because there is a pretty young woman running around naked. This is all day everyday in Shenzhen and every other place I’ve been in China. Most Americans cannot imagine the demographic density of Asia.
  4. Notice the unguarded construction site. While major digs with have walls built around them, it’s very common for smaller projects to be completely wide open, with people walking right through the middle, dodging around the construction workers.
  5. In my experience, the Chinese gawp at anything that outside the norm, including tall, fat white guys walking down the street. You should see some of the looks I get walking through Liantang.
  6. They are also charitable and helpful in my experience. Maybe it is because I am a lao wai, but I don’t think Kitty Genovese would have happened in China. There is a genuine effort to help her.
  7. The bare feet. The Chinese know that the streets in the major cities are beyond filthy. EVERYONE wears slippers around the house and would NEVER walk barefoot on the street. This is sure sign this is not a stunt. Even if she were a model paid to act crazy for some bizarre promotion, I am confident she would have retrieved her flip flops. That’s why the camera pans down to capture the image of the abandoned footwear.
  8. The omnipresent and yet soft police presence. Cops are everywhere in Chinese cities. Yet, I have never seen them bestir themselves for anything. I mean look at how the cop DOESN’T react when she climbs from the back seat of the cop car into the front seat. That would be impossible for a dozen reasons in an American police car – handcuffs, barriers, cops tasering you and then beating the crap out of you to name a few. I am almost convinced that as long as you don’t murder, rape, steal, sell drugs, or criticize the government, you can get away with anything. Jaywalking, reckless driving, spitting on the sidewalk, littering, public drunkenness, panhandling – those are all just fine. Indeed, it can be argued they are integral parts of Chinese culture.
  9. She’s naked. I mean, come on…

Have a great weekend!

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