Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Me, a Xinjiang hooker, and a wedding made in Afghanistan

It seems that Craig Murray, what with running for parliament, is unable to comment on 'Uighur independence'. Okay, so why don't I step up and fill in for him? It's funny that Craig ended up marrying an exotic dancer he met in a bar in Uzbekistan, because had my situation been ever so slightly different I might have done the same thing, albeit in Beijing. I'm in no way criticising him you understand - like I said, it could've been me.


Apropos my last piece, my laowai boss in Beijing was another of those people who would hook people up with drugs and get them laid. The single producer I cited previously wasn't the only fellow I knew like that, far from it, it's just that he was just the best at it. Meanwhile in Beijing, whilst I was happy to know someone who could score hash (indeed that first year in Beijing was such a tough gig that had I not been able to get stoned every evening, I'd have run melancholy mad. Or perhaps I did anyway, who can tell?), but that aside, being endlessly dragged off to hooker bars, like the infamous Maggie's (above), was unspeakably tedious - another reason to go home and get stoned.

But whatever! I've been back to China many, many times, mostly to Shanghai, and slowly grew to love it. The ticket is to avoid the expats. But there I was years later, back in Beijing, amongst the expats, and being dragged back to fucking Maggie's. And there, curiously, sitting amongst the tiresome local hostesses and the hard-bitten Mongolian hookers (don't ask me why but all the hookers in Beijing were Mongolian), was a gorgeous round-eye girl. No one was paying her any attention apart from yours truly - "Hello," says I, and we have a conversation. She was a Uighur from Xinjiang. I'd met Uighurs before, mostly selling shish kebab on the street (and to which I am addicted), but also socially, and I'd always gotten on with them dandy.


As I did with this girl. Turns out she was a lawyer, better educated than I was, brilliantly fluent in several languages, and here working as a prostitute. Go figure. I don't know about other people, but I'm not the sort of fellow who would automatically condemn someone for being a prostitute. It's a fucked up world and people end up doing all sorts of disagreeable things in spite of the fact that they wish it were otherwise.

And that was the case with her. In a perfectly clear-eyed fashion she explained to me that the only way she was going to get out of this fucked up country was through hard currency and she could only earn that by hooking. She didn't like it, but in one more year she'd have the $30,000 dollars she needed to get into an Australian university. And yep, I contributed to the cause. Think poorly of me if you like, I really don't care.


Anyway for that single evening, I spent hours spellbound as she told me all about herself and what life was like in Xinjiang. Her law degree, it seemed, was merely a licence to participate in corruption, and that from a position of second class citizen. It was just as bad in Beijing where Uighurs (at least the ones who weren't playing 'mein host' in the numerous Uighur restaurants) were treated like absolute shit. Not that I needed her to tell me about that. I could see it in the laneway out back of where I worked. Neither Beijingers nor Uighurs are shy and disputes and fights are public affairs.

The weirdest part was, she had no time for her own people either - a tuppence for the lot of them. Perhaps her problem was that she was too damn smart? I have no idea. And thinking about it, such sentiments don't augur well. It's my opinion that a person who cannot find happiness at home, probably won't find it anywhere else either. But you never know.

Sure enough, I was only in Beijing for a short-time gig and was on a plane back to Oz a couple of days later and I never saw her again. But had this taken place when I lived there, who knows what might have happened? She was easily the smartest, funniest, and most interesting chick I met the whole time I was in China. And gorgeous with it. In some daydream we might have gotten married and lived happily ever after. Or the whole thing might have crashed and burned. Who knows? Not me.


Anyway, from this brilliant position of having once met a hooker in a bar in Beijing I shall now render my genius and very worthy opinion on the bloody events now taking place in Xinjiang.

Whose side am I on? Whose side was the hooker on? Are there good guys and bad guys? For mine, the answer to this question is 'No'. I'll happily admit that the Han Chinese are as racist as the best of them. Just like they do with the Tibetans, the Chinese view the un-Asian, round-eye Uighurs of Xinjiang with a variety of contempt. Historical assertions aside, the Chinese are nothing more than occupiers. And never was there an occupier who didn't think that the occupied were scum. Always this way.


Have people here been keeping up over at Aangirfan's blog? The schoolgirls there have been doing a brilliant job pointing out the links between the various Uighur separatist leaders and the usual suspects who have the art of destabilisation down pat. The long and short according to nobody - all those 'leaders' who fancy themselves as Uighur versions of Ahmed Chalabi and who are taking the CIA (and their proxies) dollar are at best fooling themselves and at worst motherfuckers happy to profit from their countrymen's misery.

Whether these Uighur 'leaders' seriously believe the CIA's siren song of Uighur independence, or whether they're merely in it for the immediate prospect of filthy lucre, Chalabi-style, either way it will only end in tears. I wonder what odds Ladbrokes are offering as to the possibility of a happy outcome resulting from running amuck and splitting open the heads of the Han Chinese living in Urumqi? Let's just call it 'the bookie's delight'.


But whatever! Let's imagine the million-to-one longshot comes off, and that it all goes swimmingly with the people of Xinjiang ditching their Chinese masters, as well as their Chinese appellation, and calling themselves Uighurstan, or somesuch. Then they could all live happily ever after just like all the other Muslims in all those other Utopian something-stans. Three cheers! Perhaps they'll get their very own Karimov, he of the boiling-people-alive gag. They might even be as lucky as the Afghans where the banker's US military golem has righteously brought them the gifts of democracy, smack, and high-explosive death from above. Speaking of which, do the Uighur people get married and hold wedding parties? Let's hope not.

Sure enough, if you try combining the two sayings 'The enemy of my enemy is my friend' and 'With friends like these, who needs enemies?' you end up disappearing up your own arse. Substituting hyperbole for precise accuracy, in considering the rightness of doing a deal with the CIA and other banking minions, one would be best served by viewing them as 'People Who Eat Their Own Children'. Honestly, you may as well since it's as close to the mark as any other description.


Anyway, back to the polyglot Uighur girl in the bar: imagine if my daydream came true? And since it's my daydream, there's no point being half-arsed about it. Thus we'll take the happily-ever-after as read, and add an image of her as dedicated English-to-Uighur translator of Brice Taylor's Thanks For The Memories. Then we could send it to every Uighur who has an email, with the header - 'This is the truth of the people who declare themselves your friends'.

Whilst for the Uighurs the choice between the Chinese and the 'Americans' might appear to be a no-brainer, it ain't. Or to put it another way, it is. Which is to say, the punchline to 'Better the devil you know' says as much about no-brain as it does about devils. Can you dig it? Can the Uighurs? Let's hope so.

28 comments:

Von Curtis said...

'all those 'leaders' who fancy themselves as Uighur versions of Ahmed Chalabi and who are taking the CIA (and their proxies) dollar are at best fooling themselves and at worst motherfuckers happy to profit from their countrymen's misery.' - there is a lot of that going on in many countries , they must all be sponsored by the ' democracy and freedom ' lot that is trying to homogenize and internationalize all the people of the world. SICK and I hope it starts really turning around soon or we are sunk.

john said...

Nice one Nobody, I was wondering what your take on this was. Thanks for the book as well.

Von Curtis said...

When I say to people that both political sides are the same and they both want to take our rights away many don't want to realize it and then they say 'Oh well we can't do anything about it .'
I wish many people everywhere would wake up to the left/right nonsense in our countries and around the world.

'the Hegelian Dialectic perfected by George Bernard Shaw '

http://www.911oz.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=4992



What is the Hegelian Dialectic?

Today the dialectic is active in every political issue that encourages taking sides. We can see it in environmentalists instigating conflicts against private property owners, in democrats against republicans, in greens against libertarians, in communists against socialists, in neo-cons against traditional conservatives, in community activists against individuals, in pro-choice versus pro-life, in Christians against Muslims, in isolationists versus interventionists, in peace activists against war hawks. No matter what the issue, the invisible dialectic aims to control both the conflict and the resolution of differences, and leads everyone involved into a new cycle of conflicts.

Something we have to do is to break an almost universal mindset, that Communists and Capitalists are bitter enemies. This Marxist axiom is a false statement and for a century has fooled academics and investigators alike. The key to understanding modern history is that elitists had as close working relations with both Marxists and Nazis as they have with Marxists and Capitalists.

Hegelian conflicts steer every political arena on the planet, from the United Nations to the major American political parties, all the way down to local school boards and community councils. Dialogues and consensus-building are primary tools of the dialectic, and terror and intimidation are also acceptable formats for obtaining the goal.

nobody said...

Thanks you two. Have I struck people dumb with two posts in two days? Ha ha ha, everyone's head is spinning! Well mine is anyway.

Yeah VC, it's the same old story. Do these people really imagine that their money comes from legit sources? Have they not ever heard of the word 'proxy'? Cop a scrute at the Snow Lion Foundation. I came across it whilst looking up Rebiya Kadeer. See if you have anymore luck than I did in finding a 'Who We Are' page anywhere in amongst it. In the 'Contact' page? No? Hmm... no one wants to put their name to it, it seems.

Mind you I did find one fellow on their offshoot blog. His name's Howard G Fass. Standing next to him, Rebiya Kadeer seems, I don't know... something other than 'brimming with enthusiasm'? Perhaps she'd just asked Mr Fass if he was as concerned for the occupied Muslims of Palestine as he was for the occupied Muslims of Xinjiang and gotten a curt reply? Who knows?

Otherwise, the Snow Lion foundation seems dedicated to the liberation of whomever is under the yoke of Chinese oppression, and Chinese oppression only. We're vaguely left to assume that they strongly identify with Muslims and Tibetan Buddhists. Like that makes any sense. Whilst who they're fighting for makes no sense, who they're fighting against is crystal clear.

What if I said that Howard G Fass was assigned to the destabilisation of China and he'll identify with whomever suits his cause, and whomever is stupid enough to believe that he's for real.

I could be wrong of course. Perhaps the Muslim/Buddhist cause is one that's very dear to Mr Fass's heart, and he selflessly gives his time, energy, and money not just to the Muslim/Buddhists under a Chinese boot heel, but to all Muslim/Buddhists the world over. In which case anyone thinking he's as crooked as the proverbial should hang their head in shame, apologise, and indeed lead everyone in a rousing chorus of 'For he's a jolly good fellow'.

Howard, if you do happen to pop in, feel free to tell us all that you are so too the right sort of fellow. If you get it right I absolutely promise I'll type out all the lyrics to the aforementioned as a penance for having called you out as bullshit. And you can't say fairer than that!

nobody said...

Ha! typing-jinx VC!

Yeah, fucking hegelians! Funnily enough I have an unfinished piece on my desktop about this called 'Fucking Hegelians!' Honestly, you gotta hate 'em don't you?

Anyway I might get around to finishing it one day. Mind you there's at least two more pieces just in Brice Taylor alone.

Hmm... and now that I think about it, the only guy ever banned from this blog, the dreaded apple onion, was perpetually spouting on about the rightness of 'hegelian dialectic blah blah blah'. I recall one of my failings was my refusal to participate in his 'dialectical process', ha ha.

Frank said...

Nobody!

Yes you struck me dumb. 2 posts, a credit to your generation.

I was going to mention two things but I'm under seige here (wife_having_tendon_operation...in_8_days_I_am...cowardly...husband. It's like give HER the spinal tap and give ME the knockout gas or dope.)


But regardless.

Billy Jack! Remember? Right around that time ('71) a fellow-sailor I smoked weed with got himself thrown out of the service. Dishonorable discharge, the whole shallow grave routine.

His name was Russ and the last letter I got from him, way back maybe 72, was he got a Hollywood job. This was not so odd, he had a Berkeley education, and his DH couldn't have hurt with THAT crowd either.

He wrote a script, he told me, about when China takes over the world far before the 21st century. In his timeline it would have been about the time Reagan became prez, in fact.

The bunch he fell in with, you've guessed, became the Lucas - Speilberg - Francis Coppola Axis. Last I heard AFTER his last letter was he quit the movies and got a job teaching. They wouldn't hear about China-takes-all. They wanted robots and mafias.

But 1971! Predicting SOME of what actually did happen indeed! The fact is anyone with a lock on manufacturing in due time holds the keys and makes the rules. Right now that's China.

The other thing... oh yea everything Brice says is true. DO NOT, whatever you do, go to the same-sex stories on that subject unless you need to vomit quick.

No, I'm not a prude and gays have been pals of mine... but the names you run into are too, too incredible.

Keanu Reeves was supposed to play BILLY JACK in the remake, did you ever get to that one? I know, it didn't happen anyway but that would have been a splendid piece of offbeat casting, I think.

Von Curtis said...

Yes NB , the ABC and SBS and politicians are certainly doing a HIT job on China this week - now they are going on about a man from Rio Tinto not being allowed to leave China.

'What if I said that Howard G Fass was assigned to the destabilisation of China and he'll identify with whomever suits his cause, and whomever is stupid enough to believe that he's for real.'


I would think you are right.

Some interesting graphs on http://www.biblebelievers.org.au/bb970219.htm suggesting that USA will side with Russia against China.

Surely many people are starting to wake up to all the rotten lies and spin in politics and the media - it is getting very obvious now.

Man From Atlan said...

Made it back to your site by way of Les Visible. Too shagged at the moment to comment on the Uighurs but I really admire your pictures. Great composition and use of colour; first time I saw it I wondered if you were part of Christopher Doyle's crew.

Man From Atlan said...

Speaking of the 'destabilisation' movement, I really do believe that Falun Dafa leader Li Hongzhi is on the CIA dole.

Von Curtis said...

Now a very suspicious has happened in China - maybe China is not letting the US dollar collapse fast enough that is why they are being attacked.

slozo said...

Yes, Hegelian media propaganda indeed. Well said, VC.

Sometimes, as open minded as one might perceive themselves, one may be born into at least
one of the many paradigms that teaches us to oppose or hate without solid rational thought of the humans on the other side . . . even we who espouse such high minded ideals and logical thinking, commenting as if we are the Socratic Ideal. I get caught up in it myself, sometimes . . . we are emotional beings, and we all have pressure points to push and prod us into action and reaction.

It's a complicated world indeed.

I find most Han Chinese much less racist than their western counterparts, btw . . . especially when you compare equal social strata. One must remember not to fall into western media mode and compare poor Sichuan peasants with NYers who live in the rich part of Long Island . . . instead, you might compare them to deep south Alabama slum dwellers, or maybe a better one would be middle of nowhere prairie dwellers, poor Kansas farmers hanging on to their homestead (not many of them around anymore, actually). No, the Chinese I find much less racist . . . especially when you begin to understand that a lot of what even I took to be racist behaviour (as I stood on a crowded green train on the way to Chengdu) was just born of curiosity and ignorance, most of it simply genuine wonder at my physical attributes and overall strangeness, as if I was an alien who suddenly decided to take the subway.

I think the difference is propoganda . . . tv, radio, newspapers. A whole different level of brainwashing takes place in North America, something that most westerners would hotly deny. I found that even I had turned automatically to anger at times, conditioned as I was to be wary of foreigners being such racists compared to the "civilised world".

* * * *

Hey, just throwing this out there, Nobody - what you up to next Spring Festival? I will be in a city nearby Shanghai . . . if you're around, it'd be neat to have a pint with ya.

I still have a lot of catching up to do on your books . . . but I'll get to it.

Von Curtis said...

Now a very suspicious has happened in China - ' earthquake' was what I mean't to put there.
Looks like China is in the firing line - the media is going on the on and that Dalhai Lama is around again , I can never work out what he is going on about , he laughs too much while he talks. They say he is a CIA puppet.

Penny said...

good god nobody, between the church and the haiku, I simply can't keep up.

I checked the link to the book btw and started looking through it, read a few pages, but what pops out at me?

Topanga Canyon.
This gal is near laurel canyon?

sigh,,, so much to read and so much yard work.......

Anonymous said...

From Belgium

On the Susan Ford post and the question of the identity of the council, here is a reprisal rant from a guy that belongs to the CLDS in Utah. He names names and calls them illuminate. It sure appears they are mean, moneyed and not altogether true and straight. It seems that those mentioned are Lear Jet rich but not Lake Bykal rich. Some names I recognise as former US government HOD’s but how many skins they are away from the centre of the onion is not altogether clear. Anyway, for what it is worth, here is the link.

http://deadmanmusings.blogspot.com/

kikz said...

hmmm. 'weegar'.... i saw one of them being interviewed the other night on PBS...in counterpoint the Han rep, almost snickered at the notion of their independence.
all, back down to natl resources to plunder, yet again.

i was so taken by the juxt of his heavily asian accented english and his almost russian features. almost couldn't pay attention to his story.

the girl.
smart cookie. maybe she just resigned herself to the only course of action she had any 'control' over. i mean... if y'er overrun and vastly outnumbered and not yet ready for the 'big recycle'...what's left?

get out.
i'm glad you helped her.


dialectic. hegel sukz the big one.

ultimate perversion of a transcendent art; maieutic psychagogy.

i'm not at all skilled in it.
i should study plato more, and i'm trying to.

http://www.hermes-press.com/dialogues_teach.htm

baz said...

at the risk of making a fool of myself, .. ah, be brave! Hegelian Dialectic? Good and Evil—Thesis: an oversimplification perhaps? Difficult choices often need to be made, amounting to—choosing between the lesser of two evils!

Antithesis: Why even choose at all! ~ there is a middle path ~ The Tao .. avoiding both extremes. Lateral thinking required for this option :-K <—a vampire with crooked teeth!

Synthesis: Hey, only 1 german philosopher! Many others—some not even german!

'Schopenhauer's saying — “A man can surely do what he wills to do, but he cannot determine what he wills.” — impressed itself upon me [Albert Einstein] in youth and has always consoled me when I have witnessed or suffered life's hardships. This conviction is a perpetual breeder of tolerance, for it does not allow us to take ourselves or others too seriously; it makes rather for a sense of humour.'

“I see it all perfectly; there are two possible situations - one can either do this or that. My honest opinion and my friendly advice is this: do it or do not do it - you will regret both.” ~
Soren Kierkegaard

Why limit the 'world' to mere philosophy? What about mythology also! Freud built a whole psychology out of 1 greek myth!—What about the others? Personally, I believe the Cassandra myth is vastly under-utilised in understanding our modern predicament!—Powerlessness in portending our [immediate] future.

“Face the facts of being what you are, for that is what changes what you are.” ~ Soren Kierkegaard

“It is not my aim to provide a whole fruit salad—merely a taste.” ~ baz

“Old age realizes the dreams of youth: look at Dean Swift; in his youth he built an asylum for the insane, in his old age he was himself an inmate.” ~ Soren Kierkegaard

“The alchemists in their search for gold discovered many other things of greater value.” ~ Schopenhauer

Von Curtis said...

Washington is Playing a Deeper Game with China

http://www.itszone.co.uk/discuss/viewtopic.php?f=18&t=108560

nobody said...

Aargh! So many excellent comments and me having so little time online and thus unable to pile in. And to make matters worse, I put in three new pieces at once and spread the comments all over.

Thanx Man From Atlan, you'd be amazed at how much time putting the pix in takes. It's insane. Um never heard of that fellow. And Li Hong Zhi? Why not? If it's good enough for the Dalai Lama, it's good enough for anyone. After all, it's all in a good cause!

VC. Crashing the US dollar eh? Good thinking. I don't know if it's a lock in, but it's perfectly possible.

Slozo, onya mate. I love Shanghai in the Spring! Best time to be there (unlike Beijing, ha ha). Er, no, I will not be there. I'm too poor now. And I pretty much left that life behind anyway. The thing with directing is if you don't constantly demonstrate your enthusiasm you get left behind very, very fast. I'm not on anyone's radar anymore. Mind you I do miss the food. Actually if you want an excellent Xinjiang restaurant go to Shanghai TV (for the taxi driver - Shanghai Denshurtai sp?) Nanjing Lu and across the road just down the lane is a brilliant place. Since you'll be the only laowai you'll be required to dance with the chicks from the floorshow but never mind.

Hullo Kikz, lovely to have you pop in. And what a wicked scholar you are. There's no snoozing on your watch mate!

Baz - I grooved on that - pop in anytime.

Did I miss anyone? Probably. Sorry sorry have to race off and say hello in the following three pieces.

Anonymous said...

I worked with Howard g.Fass in Taiwan during the recent typhoon disaster. You are all completely wrong about him, unlike yourselves who just sit back and complain, he actually trys his best to help people and is 100% for real. He worked tirelessly helping to clear away mud and help many people in Ling Bian in Southern Taiwan during the Morokot disaster. I saw it and was there.

Also I would not say that Howard is anti-china in any way. He just thinks the world should stand up for human rights more and challange china more and get them to stop all their terrible killings and murder. Maybe this is the best love that could be offered to the chinese by reminding them that they need to act more human with compassion and love.

Lien Bai

nobody said...

Hello Lien Bai,

How sweet you are, ha ha. As much as I'd like to take you up on this, I suspect you know nothing about Jewish people apart from what they've told you. Which is to say you have no idea.

In spite of your protestations, I resile from nothing.

I notice you didn't address why the 'Snowlion Foundation' has no names attached to it. Nor why they madly seem to be variously sticking up for Buddhists and Muslims both. Did you ever wonder who funds this 'foundation'? And who funded the tireless Mr Fass's trip to Taiwan? As for his standing up for human rights, where does Mr Fass stand on the human rights of the Muslims being oppressed and murdered by Israel and the US (with whom he has far more in common than he does with China)? Or do those countries not need his help like China does? And why might that be exactly?

Otherwise, as much as I'd like to fill you in on the part of the picture you don't understand, I've got better things to do and instead I'll just wish you well.

Thanks for dropping in Lien Bai, all the best!

Dolkar said...

I agree with Lien.

I am a Tibetan nun refugee and I can tell you that whoever works for human rights and religion freedom helps all of humanity no matter what color of skin or religion or country. I am a Buddhist nun and this is the perspective I am coming from. Others may think differently.

Rather than complain or make bad judgements we should first look at the work that is being done and look to see if there is a good heart behind it.

From my side I am grateful to the snowlion foundation and think its standing up for what is good and tries to help all sentient beings who suffer in samsara.

nobody said...

"Rather than complain or make bad judgements we should first look at the work that is being done and look to see if there is a good heart behind it. "

I'm in utter agreement. And DID you look to see if there is a good heart behind it? Just so you know, that 'stripping away' is more or less the point of the exercise at this blog. I'm only ever seeking to more nearly arrive at the truth.

Hmm... it seems that no one from the Snow Lion Foundation itself has popped in here to stick up for themselves - only proxies. Go figure - In a discussion that is as much about the role of proxies as it is about anything else, a couple of proxies turn up to say it ain't so.

I'll concede that it's possible that you two people might actually be what you say you are. If that is the case, tell those Snow Lion folks to pop in here and lay out how their resemblance to a destabilisation of China psy-op is purely coincidental that they are so too for real. And I'll stick my tuppence worth in too. And then you can just sit back, watch the to and fro, and see if I don't make you wonder at who these people are and why they appear to be helping you.

Here's something I'll tell you for free - In this wicked geopolitical world we live in, it's a cold hard certainty that dissident groups will be funded, if not founded outright, by the CIA (and Mossad and MI6 etc. etc.) in order to bring down regimes the West doesn't like. And believe it or not they'll lie about it. And yes, appear really credible while they're at it. Believe it or not, they can walk and chew gum at the same time.

But all of that is provided you are who you say you are. I have nothing to go on one way or another apart from your say-so. But these things are figure-outerable and I'm getting better at it. Feel free to pile back in and establish yourselves one way or the other.

best regards,

n

nobody said...

Very late post scriptum:

For anyone wanting to hear more, these comments ended up earning their own front page posting Howard G Fass! Come on Down!

P2P said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
nobody said...

Hola Cinita!

You think you got it bad? I had Japanese friends who lived in South America and 'Hola Cinita' was all they got. You didn't completely hate Italy did you? I was there for a year and I loved it.

Actually now that I think about it, it was very tough for me on account of the fact that Europe is like an Asian-free zone. They don't know anything about Asia, Asians, Asian food, anything. And their Chinatowns are chronically bad. Well the one in Milan was anyway. Australia is very Asian and you get really used to it.

And anyway, I expect that's why Italians call you Cinita - it's because they're so clueless about Asians.

P2P said...

I loved many things in italy, italians are a bit different story even though there's something very sympathetic about their ignorance... I heard the northern italy is more sophisticated and european, I spent all my time in northern sardegna and rome while there.

here in finland we don't have chinatowns (and now when you point it out we really don't have that kinda segregation in european cities, only that comes to mind is the turkish population in kreuzberg of berlin...) but we do have some funny similarities to especially japanese culture. I have few friends who study japanese culture and language, and they've pointed out several things about our customs and such that correlate with japanese ways with things (repressed emotion, alcoholism, suicide rates, relationship to elders etc). my generation also enjoyed a plentitude of anime as a kid...

nobody said...

Speaking of anime, have you seen any Miyazaki movies? They are the un-Disney. I reviewed Totoro over at the cinema blog a while back. It's not just Totoro, all of his movies are great. Did you know I lived in Japan for a couple of years and speak Japanese? (Not brilliantly, but whatever...) Anway, there's a lot to love in Japan but Miyazaki (and his Studio Ghibli partner Takahata Isao) might just represent the very best of it.

Otherwise, do you have decent sushi in Helsinki?

P2P said...

I have seen nausicaƤ of the valley of the wind, went to see it in the theaters a couple of years back. it was cute and thus alright, though I can't emphasize enough the fact that my entertainment preferences in regards to anime go towards the mayhem potential in such cartoons, ie drawn violence and sci-fi stuff is always more than amusing. not that I, anymore, watch cartoons actively (well, south park might make a difference).

there's a lot of sushi in helsinki, I don't know about the quality first hand for I've never eaten sushi here. but I know there's a few restaurants which have japanese staff, which is always a good sign. I think the fact that on the central railway station there's a sushi takeaway where there used to be a ticket booth, back in like 100 years ago or something, tells a lot about how popular sushi is.

I would want to live in japan in some point, too. the mentality and spirituality of the people there interest me a great deal, and not the least for the reflections of internal worlds one sees from their popular culture. oh and came to my mind too, that the 'crazy' japanese game shows are popular in f-land too. I haven't owned a tv in years but at other people's I've seen shows bought to be shown for finnish audiences and apparently they do well.