The Empire Strikes Back

China-based hacks into commercial and political networks across the planet have made the news again, with the Trend Micro report on an attack called LuckyCat that targeted Asian defense systems as well as Tibetan networks. The attack was traced back to a graduate of Chengdu’s Sichuan University, Gu Kaiyuan. Gu currently works for Tencent and […]

China-US Cold War and what we can do about it

Can it be denied that the US is actively engaging China’s border nations in an attempt to contain and control China? It seems pretty clear to most observers that such was the case years ago – Kissinger commented on the idea of containment back in 2005 – but with the recent moves in Myanmar and […]

Ode to Third Ring Road

You can catch me on the Third Ring Road, zipping down the sideline on my Bad. Moduh. Scooduh. I’m on there enough to have found myself a little community, people who all come from different backgrounds but share one thing in common every time they slip onto the Third Ring from some obscure exit choked […]

Excerpts from an Interview with Luo Fahui

This is a companion piece to ChengduLiving’s Portrait of a Chengdu Artist: Luo Fa Hui. Here I put together some excerpts from an interview back in October. Stay tuned next week for more Chengdu artist love, both here and at On China’s Future: -有希望。中国朝着良性方向发展,不是以前那样封闭。现在我们很多人,都有机会和权贵坐在一起。这是大趋势,不是一个政党可以控制的,所以这个是个很大的希望。现在慢慢的改变,慢慢开始尊重人权,尊重人的思想,自由度,精神上的,越来越宽。首先是看着这30年的变化,亲身体会,当年是怎么样,现在是怎么样,随便怎么比。 There’s hope. China’s is moving forward in a good direction, […]

Holy Shit I miss Sichuan

Man I found myself teary eyed listening to the Ya Jian Bang sing about Sichuan food. I was thinking about what it would feel like kicking it with my peoples out there around a cheap ass table covered in steaming spicy ass delicious heart warming lip smacking eye glazing down home sichuan style dishes lord […]

My man Fu Qiang

Has just opened up a shop selling his CDs (compilations of music he digs) and art. He takes pictures and uses software to make his own impressions. pretty interesting stuff. You can check his site out right here. Here is a picture of Fu that he manipulated into an oil painting-type image: Here is a […]

Free to Post

I wrote an essay a while back about censorship in China, for, and I basically said that within the parameters of black and white, all life transpires. Well i am now, thanks to Freedur, safely within the gray. Freedur is a VPN protocol that allows me to surf through a proxy and avoid sneaky, […]

Mengding Mountain Tea

I took a trip last month while i was in china to my main homegirl’s tea spot. here are some pics: From Left to Right: Guan Da Ge, Xiao Bai, Chen Shui Yuan and Chen’s employees. Xiao Bai run’s the plant, Chen is my logistics, tea ware and oolong guy and Guan is my right […]

The Du

MM-MM something about the Du makes me feel all homey. its easy as pie out here. the sky looks like dishwater and i aint seen the sun yet but instead i got down on some Pickled Pepper Beef and some of the tastiest gong pao chick en this fool has ever scarfed down. Got with […]

Back in China

Shanghai is a sea of skyscrapers as far as my eye can see. There are pockets of two-story blocks of old school homes with laundry hanging from lines strung between houses. The glow of the sun is like that of a streetlamp through fog. When i see the orange orb in the sky it looks […]


Julia Zimmermann came to Chengdu and stayed with me for several days chronicling the earthquake there for the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung — my favorite German-language newspaper. Here is her finished work, in German. The photos speak for themselves and if you click on the slideshow to your right, you will see more of the same […]

The death of traditions

It is so hot and humid in Chengdu right now that my brain is bathing in its own liquid, humming strange tunes to itself and sending me images of massive artillery guns firing into the distance. Spengler is a columnist for Asia Times who has derided the Europeans for lacking the courage to face the […]


today … bout three minutes ago, a large aftershock shook chengdu. the largest in a long time, maybe since the original quake. and it lasted for about one minute. here things rattled and my heart raced, but nothing damaging happened. but if it was this heavy here, then up north people died. and who knows […]

Luo Shui

We went to Luo Shui today, about 20 of us in several cars and trucks loaded with toys, paints, candy and other goodies for the surviving schoolchildren of Luo Shui town. We went to four different schools and each school had lost kids during the quake. The kids loved and we had a blast. My […]

mom i can’t see your hand

A Poem by an anonymous Chinese circling the web(translated): Children quickquickHold fast to Mother’s handThe Road to HeavenIs so darkMom is afraidyou’ll hit your headQuickHold fast to Mother’s handHave Mom walk with you momI’m afraidThe road to heaven is so darkI cant see your handSince the walls felland stole away the sunI haven’t been able […]

Around Qing Cheng …

Yesterday i climbed as far as it is possible to climb right and Qing Cheng mtn is def. devastated near the top. Past the Tai An Old town basically every building lies in ruins. There are a few valleys which will take months to clear. Boulders and huge chunks of mountain clog the roads at […]

To Mianyang

Tomorrow we will try and head up to see if we can help. THe local authorities and Red Cross have designated the Bookworm and Cafe Paname as two foreign est. where supplies can be dropped off and from which teams might be able to head up and help. Earlier today, a group of Brits trapped […]

We felt it comin …

My friend Rachel wrote the day before the quake: “I feel like the world is shifting” if ya’ll check the first few lines of my post “The Illusion of Coincidence” you’ll see that there was something in the air … just to embellish a bit: yesterday was Buddha’s birthday. The plates that caused this earthquake […]

The Illusion of Coincidence…

A great many strange things have happened in the past few days … perhaps not as many as may be transmitted by the feeling that accompanies one or two strange happenings, but nonetheless … something is happening. I was sitting with my friend Himmler one evening. His woman Jodie and roommate Wu Tong were in […]

Basic Conversation with a Chengdu Cabbie

Oh shit! Wassup Laowai! Where you from? For real? Where you teach at? You aint a teacher? Where you study at? Oh so you a company man. How much you make? Writer?! Yeah right, lying ass. How long you been here? Holy shit! So you like Chengdu? Can you eat spicy food? Hell no. Really: […]


Let me know if you can see my entire blog and comment on it, cuz i can’t. I have been saving up my energy for this post because I am going to try and describe the inner working of a large state-owned enterprise chartered by the municipal government to promote Chengdu abroad. Even writing this […]

pear blossoms and rapeseed

i went walking through the orchards yesterday, but the people i guided there were uninterested in fairy-watching or pollen-passing, so i stowed away my plans and wait patiently for another day, hopefully soon, when i can walk the orchards again and drift off watching bees hop. will it be the same with the pack of […]

gou re de

Today i spent the whole day with my man Liu Yuan running from one massive development project to another, extolling the virtues of Chengdu’s real estate situation. I was interviewed a few times for the TV and all the girls in the house were giggling. the older women too. they would roll up on me […]

Back in The Du

I have been wrestling with being called a racist by people who read my occasional column on — i admit that i do have some racist-ass thoughts about China and Chinese. But at the same time i love these fuckers. what can ya do. anyway i am back in the dirty du, my home […]