Monthly Archives: January 2011

Beijing Traffic / 北京的交通

Here are two videos, one at night and one in the daytime, showing what the traffic is like outside my office. These are pretty typical driving habits. I’ve seen much worse.




Today is the eighth day of the twelfth month of the lunar calendar. In the lunar calendar the months don’t have names, except the twelfth month, which is called “La”. Today we drink a soup made from a whole variety of rice and a whole variety of beans. If you know what congee is, then you know roughly what I’m talking about. My teacher tells me it’s primarily a northern thing, but then the other stuff she told me about the festival doesn’t match what I found online so who knows.

Also curious for the geeks in the crowd: since my IP address originates in China, Google does their thing with the logo on the top of the search page, as you can see below.


Where’s Paul? / 郝博在哪儿?

Here are a couple of maps and a video giving you an introduction to the place I live and work. In case it’s not clear, I’m at the red ‘A’ on the map. Also, in the video, when I talk about weather, what I really mean is pollution.



Mercedes-Benz Hates Roses?

This is an ad for the B-Class Mercedes that I keep seeing on TV here in China. I understand the basic idea. A man grows an entire field of flowers to show his love for his wife. Then when they’re in bloom, he surprises her one day and drives her to the field in a Mercedes B-Class. From this we all learn that romantic men drive a Mercedes B-Class, as opposed to manly men who drive a Dodge Ram. Or something like that.

What I don’t understand is that at the end of the commercial, the man drives his B-Class through the field, mowing down a whole bunch of roses in the process. What’s romantic about mowing down roses? Or does this mean that men who drive a B-Class don’t think far enough ahead to leave space to park the car in the field of roses? Someone needs to fix this.