Marching For Canto

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Yesterday was July 1st, what was meant to be a good opportunity for Hong Kong people to worship at the altar of the mainland, thanking its kind government for rescuing us from the slimy claws of those Limeys.

Marching

Instead it has become this; March Against Everything Day. Good on the Hong Kong people! This year the turnout was just incredible, like triple the last time I joined two years ago.

Ah-On (Andrew) and I joined in, but instead of calling for the resignation of our unpopular and unelected Chief Executive, we encouraged Hong Kong people to speak Cantonese and not use simplified characters:

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We had standing ovations along the way, and everybody wanted to snap a pic of the foreigners who apparently had no idea of what it said on the posters we were holding.

Snapping

That’s the impression I got at least, based on the amount of people who came up to me asking – in English – “Are you know what’s the mean?” The worst was a higher-ranking policeman who took the poster away from ah-On.

“Do you know what it says?”

‘係呀, 係我自己寫既’ (yes, I wrote it myself) I naturally answered in the language in which the posters were written.

“Yes, but do you know what it REALLY means?” No matter what we said to him in his own language, he pretended only to be able to speak English. I found this vexing.

Everyone who wanted to take a photo and all the newspapers (many) who wanted to interview us addressed us in English, explaining that although I may have written the posters, I wouldn’t actually understand Cantonese. After a while it got really tedious.

Scribbling

So there you have it; not even writing their own language and holding it right in front of their faces can get Hong Kong people to fathom that a whitey can understand Cantonese. So yesterday was a kind of victory as well as yet another gigantic slap in the face.

(It says on the posters: Support Cantonese, down with simplified characters! and: “Hong Kong people speak Cantonese. If you don’t get it, off you piss.”

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Insanerator #1,000… This Time With Plan For Action

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Our not always easy to understand government seems to be dead set on this incinerator thing. Needing to “spread the pollution around” they want to build a toxin-spewing monster right outside Pui O Beach, assuring us that “there will be no toxic emissions” and that “all the particles will blow over to Cheung Chau.”

What are we to believe?

Having been pushed back and back, it seems the day of doom (the day the funding yes/no will be decided on, but hey, it’s only 18 billion of your money in return for being poisoned) is June 27th. There will be a protest flash mob thing outside Government Headquarters at Tamar, at 2.30 that day.

I think this is not a time for same-coloured T-shirts but for sober attire; suits and dresses, so we don’t look like a bunch of deranged hippies. We must be taken seriously and also get press coverage. So please do come along and notify your journalist friends!

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Yellow River – Blue Grass

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Cantonese and bluegrass go together like beer and Sichuan food. It all started in Hainan last Christmas when I met some 86 year-old-geezers playing the saxophone near the beach. One of them had started only two years earlier and he was great!

That’s when I decided to take up the banjo, not realising how incredibly heavy this light-looking instrument is. But I love banjo and I love Cantonese, so here we go!

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The Worst Yam Cha In Hong Kong

Taro cakes

Last Saturday was my birthday, and my friend E who was visiting from the States wanted to take me out for lunch.
And not just any lunch – we hadn’t eaten since 2 the day before followed by lots of beer, so we were hungover-starving.

For some reason which now escapes me we had decided to go to the Hong Kong Museum of History in Tsim Sa Tsui East and thought we’d nip into Jade Garden in Star House on the way there. There was a QUEUE to get in which I normally don’t do, but it started torrentially raining so we might as well. It looked very upmarket and the prices certainly were. Observant E looked on the back of the menu and saw all the things that were extra, such as CHILLI SAUCE ($15) XO Sauce ($35) Nuts – which they plonk down on the table without asking – $35; in fact there were more items charged extra than the actual menu.

But whatever, now we’d finally be able to chew and swallow. The first thing was “spring rolls with prawns” an old favourite of ours’ from Treasure Lake (Jubilee Street). Their only saving grace was the mayonnaise and wasabi dressing. How can anything with mayonnaise go wrong? But the rolls themselves were thin, over-fried and tasteless, and there were only 3 of them! Although long and thin, I’d say that dish was 55% smaller than a normal spring roll dish. To cover up this miserable fact, they had optimistically put some wilting carrot and cucumber sticks into the cup, but we saw at once. At once!

The next thing was panfried taro cake, one of my favourites, but we couldn’t even eat one half each. It was slimy where it should be crunchy and otherwise tasteless.

Noodles

Some horrible noodles then appeared, tasting worse than the so-called noodles in the so-called Western restaurant in Railway Station Hotel in Shenzhen. Inedible! We paid for that chilli sauce just to be able to swallow it, but failed.

Then some awful, awful things that didn’t know what they were but called themselves “panfried chives cakes”. Avoid! In fact, avoid anything with the word Jade in it.

What a scam! Although seriously hungry, we left 90% of the food behind as we ran out the door, signalling “don’t go” to the dozens of people sitting in rows outside thinking they were going in to a great yam cha experience.

Avoid.

And the cups had handles!

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My First Interview

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I’ve wanted to meet Cesar Millan for three years and now I have! His show at the Hong Kong Asia Expo was excellent and really funny. When he comes back, you must go. In the meantime, don’t let your dog run your household.

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Man On Emission

The latest of our brilliant government’s brilliant schemes is moving closer to fruition. There is a waste disposal EMERGENCY!!!! The landfills are full! Something must be done right away!!!
Therefore their best solution is something that will take eight years to half-solve one fifth of the problem.

So the rubbish we throw away is 15 thousand tonnes a day. The Shek Kwu Chau (Sek Gu Chau which it’s actually called) super incinerator can handle 3 thousand tonnes a day. More than one third of this will become ashes that will be taken by barge to Tuen Mun – TO BE BURIED IN A LANDFILL!!!

No. Not even the dimmest of government officials can look at these plans and think they make sense. Some geezer stands to make a lot of money from this. Way to go, Hong Kong government! You’re still lagging somewhat behind the beloved motherland when it comes to corruption, but you’re getting there. You’re getting there.

Here are the lyrics to Ode To An Incinerator (Die For You):

Die For You

Ode To An Incinerator by Cecilie Gamst Berg

Melody: Only You by Yazoo (Alison Moyet)

Looking from the window each day

You’re just a few steps away

I can feel you

Soaring like a mountain above

Two hundred stories of love

I can see you

Chorus:

All I needed was the breath you gave

All I needed for an early grave

And all I want to do

Die for you

Burning like a fire in my soul

Is my cancerous mole

It’s shaped like a heart

Wonder if you’ll take me back

Melt me down in your stack

Can’t be apart

Chorus:

All I need is to be one with you

Burning like three thousand ton in you

And all I want to do

Die for you

How much more of this can I stand

Before I meet you again

Can’t breathe anymore

Embers smouldering in my head

Here in my hospital bed

Behind a closed door

Chorus:

All I need is to be recreated

Subjugated and incinerated

And all I want to do

Die for you

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Too Much Information

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No, nothing, I just thought this photo needed showing. It’s from Zhangjiajie in north-west Hunan province. And yes, if you’re wondering, the guy is not dead. Just suffering from too much information. The kind of information that’s inside Chinese rice wine, baijiu.

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Become A Film Star- Save Our Coastline!

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石鼓洲焚化爐 (sek gu chau fan fa lou) – Sek Gu Chau Incinerator – is an expression that strikes terror into the heart of Lantau and Cheung Chau dwellers and should actually do the same to all Hong Kong residents.

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If the government thinks: “We have an emergency, it’s extremely urgent, let’s do something that will solve 5% of the problem – in eight years!!!” and that solution is to ruin one of the last pristine coastlines of Hong Kong, think of what they can do to you.

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So we have decided to make a film about the incinerator, and we need your help. As you can see in the photos we had a bit of a dress rehearsal yesterday morning, bizarrely one of the few days this year where you’ve actually been able to see the islands strung out like pearls just outside Pui O beach; Sek Gu Chau being the largest.

We need hundreds up people to play incinerator-stricken victims, all hollow-eyed and coughing up ketchup, staggering around the beach and collapsing in clouds of dust and smoke. We also need smoke.

Sunday May 18th is the day, 9 AM, followed by lunch at the excellent Mavericks. Bring your kids, friends, and green and grey makeup. And why not make a day of it; the incinerator has still not been built so you can play and breathe on Pui O Beach. And it won’t be built! Not as long as we keep pummeling government officials with letters and calls, and embarrass them by showing up their feeble arguments – I can’t forget Elvis Au from the Environmental “Protection” Department saying in almost the same sentence: “There will be NO emissions”, “the particles will blow over to Cheung Chau”, “we need to spread the pollution around”.

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The film will be in Cantonese but don’t worry, Canto speakers will be on hand to rasp out with their last breath: Fan Fa Lou… killed me…

Please go to Living Islands Movement’s website to find the email addresses of officials that need to hear your voice and fast. And turn up on Sunday May 18th at 9 for a fun day out! No acting experience needed.

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Better Late Than Early, I Say

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Finally! Here is the trailer of a film that premiered six months ago!

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Journey To The Wild West

Or, as it turned out, the very civilised, nearly sedate West. I bet the people in it didn’t think they’d find themselves in a video with Glenn Beck!

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