Clean Information Matters

When people find out their food has been tampered with, they freak out. Why then, don’t we care about the quality of our news and information? Perhaps we don’t care because the internet has provided us with an seemingly infinite amount of choices for free news and information. This, in turn, has caused us to … Read moreClean Information Matters

The Best Books Have Coffee Stains

Digital means that books should now be obsolete. But people keep buying them. I consider myself a very practical person, but still I cannot find the courage to throw away the books that I have read. Similar to my last post, it just feels too hard. Like I might be throwing away a part of … Read moreThe Best Books Have Coffee Stains

Can the NHL Help Ice Hockey Grow in China?

Some of my best childhood memories are of going to hockey games in the winter time. My friends and I used to drive up to the local university on Friday nights to catch the game. Sitting in the bleachers, we ate popcorn while we watched big hits, slap shots, and good ol’ fashion hockey fights. … Read moreCan the NHL Help Ice Hockey Grow in China?

The Hardest Part About Being an Expat

The hardest part about living abroad isn’t missing your family and friends. It’s watching fellow expats leave town. This is the part that no-one talks about. In the beginning living abroad is fun … You get to meet new people and exchange stories. How you came to the place and what your opinions are about … Read moreThe Hardest Part About Being an Expat

How to Prepare Leftover Jiaozi

The Chinese word for dumplings is 饺子 (jiaozi).  饺子 can be steamed, fried, or boiled. They have a texture similar to that of pasta, and they come with a variety of meat or vegetarian fillings. I used to buy frozen 饺子 from the local supermarket just outside of my compound, but they never compared the … Read moreHow to Prepare Leftover Jiaozi

The Center of the Universe Is Anything but Stable.

宇宙中心 (yuzhou zhongxin) is Chinese for the center of the universe. It’s also a common saying in reference to Wudaokou, the hub of university life in Beijing. But why do people refer to it as the “center of the universe?” Perhaps the reason is its proximity to Beida, Tsinghua, and many other well-known universities. Or … Read moreThe Center of the Universe Is Anything but Stable.

The Dingiest Apartment in the Best Part of Town

I would rather eat an extra spicy bowl of hotpot and then go for a ten-mile run than search for an apartment in Beijing. Why? At least when you go for the run there is the possibility of some intrinsic satisfaction and the runner’s high. When you look for an apartment in Beijing, it’s mostly … Read moreThe Dingiest Apartment in the Best Part of Town

Is the Term “China Hand” Still Relevant for Foreigners in China Today?

The word 中国通 (zhongguo tong) means “China hand” or “China watcher” in Mandarin. It’s a combination of 中国 (zhongguo – China) and 通 (tong – to know well). The three characters, when combined together, create the meaning of one who knows China well, i.e. a “China hand”. Today it’s still used to describe foreigners in … Read moreIs the Term “China Hand” Still Relevant for Foreigners in China Today?

Fall in Love with Communication, Forget About Grammar

I always get surprised when I hear someone complain about their English very articulately. Normally, I have been speaking to the person for a while, perhaps even in deep conversation. “What do you mean?” I inevitably respond. “I think your English is great. Sure, you could probably work on your tenses and gender usage, but … Read moreFall in Love with Communication, Forget About Grammar

“WeChat” By Higher Brothers ft. Keith Ape Is Fire

I get a very particular sense of rage when I’m in the middle of doing something and I hear a message arriving on my phone. Here in China, the messages mostly come through WeChat, that lime green “do-everything” app developed by Tencent. I don’t know if I always used to get as angry when being … Read more“WeChat” By Higher Brothers ft. Keith Ape Is Fire