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Dear Mr. Bagel

by Lonnie Hodge


Dozens of letters of application sent to an Italian restaurant (Danny’s Bagel) in Guangzhou, China

China & Drunk Drivers

Drivers will soon be slapped with a harsher penalty to stem the deadly trend on the nations roads.

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Grocery shopping in China

Alexis Ohanian: How to make a splash in social media

Weirdchina is a story of an American family trying to survive in the back streets of China. Currently 100,000 followers and ranks as the top Twitter user in China.

Let us show you the secret China that foreigners rarely get to see. Follow us around as we explore new places and meet new people. See what $1.00 can buy in China

UK Telegraph Newspaper - Shanghai Correspondent:

Robert Kong Hai 孔海

American in China. Futurist. Global Entrepreneur.

Writer. Education, Social Media, News, Asia, Business

January 29, 2009

China's railways carried 75 million passengers between Jan. 11-27

BEIJING, Jan. 28 (Xinhua) -- China's railways carried 75.05 million passengers between Jan. 11-27, or in the first 17 days of the 40-day Spring Festival travel rush.

The figure represents a 17 percent increase from a year earlier, the Ministry of Railways (MOR) said Wednesday.

The ministry has ordered to add more transport capacity to provinces and municipalities including Sichuan, Chongqing, and Jiangxi to brace for the post-holiday traffic rush. The regions are homes to the largest number of migrant rural workers.

Hundreds of millions of Chinese went home for family gatherings in the lunar new year holiday, the most important traditional one in China, creating the world's largest population migration.

In addition, 114.7 million passengers have traveled by road between Jan. 25-28, up 5.4 percent from the same period last year. Short trips account for 80 percent of the total in the first four days of the seven-day Spring Festival holiday.

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January 27, 2009

Funny Photo: "Dr. P. Adult Diapers", sold at a market in China

I found these today at a local market in China, "Dr. P. Adult Diapers". You get 10 to a bag. If you click on the photo, "see more", you can view it in a bigger size.

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Recycling Market in China Shattered, Glass Bottles Turned Away

China has been one of largest importers of waste material. But as the world economy has slowed, there has been a severe drop in demand. Recently, Biz Journal quoted Brian Scaffer of Blue Mountain Recycling, located in Philadelphia, as saying the values of recyclables had fallen 80 percent in a four-week period last fall.

Millions of poor people in China make a living sifting through the garbage, pulling out anything of perceived value, and then selling their wares to a middle man, really just living a meager existence with the small pocket change earned (that is now even smaller). Wu Wenxiu, a recycle-man interviewed by the Tapai Times was upset to learn, his wholesale buyer would only pay him 1 RMB ($0.15) for two pounds of plastic.

While walking around in Shandong Province, China, I found evidence of a slowing waste market. In the video above, you will see a large pile of glass bottles, abandoned after being pulled and separated from the garbage for recycling. Any ideas on what can be done about the 1000's of abandoned glass bottles shown in the video? They now have no cash value, it's a shame because these used bottles would have been recycled into new products.

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American caught at Beijing airport with forged visa and deported from China

Ready to leave.......

BEIJING, Jan. 27 (Xinhua) -- An American man with a counterfeit China visa was caught by police at Beijing International Airport on Monday, the first day of the Chinese Lunar New Year, airport authorities said Tuesday.

The man in his forties was found to have a passport with a forged visa and two fabricated entry-exit inspection and quarantine seals when he checked in at the T3 Terminal, a Beijing General Station of Exit and Entry Frontier Inspection official said.

The man was fined 2,000 yuan (292 U.S. dollars) and was deported from China.
Photo By: Josh Nataros

Follow me on Twitter: @weirdchina

January 25, 2009

2009 Chinese New Year - Fireworks Show

January 23, 2009

Photos: Doritos, Cheetos and Pepsi in China

When I get a junk food craving, I always look for Doritos. The "D3" is the nacho cheese flavor, they also have the "D2" which is Rock Taco flavor. That is Chester Cheetah on the front of the cheetos bag.

Pepsi set up some kind of an advertising campaign, built this cow (or bull) with aluminum cans. I was drinking a coke when I took this picture.

Photo: The Magic Lemon Ice Cream and Juice Bar in China

This was a cool little juice bar, the Magic Lemon was very busy selling a lot of ice cream on this cold day

Photos: Mcdonalds in China

Photos of two different Mcdonald's, as you can see in below photo, the demand for hamburgers in China is very high.

I was so hungey but the restaurant was really busy, and the lines were crazy long inside, I just didn't have the patience to wait.

Photos: Turning a bus into a restaurant in China

I was walking around the neighborhood and took some photos. This was an old double-decker bus, almost looked like a tour bus. It had been converted into three restaurants. The upstairs had seats, so you would order your food down below then take it upstairs to eat.

January 17, 2009

Khat is a Narcotic Leaf Chewed by Millions in Somalia

NAIROBI, Kenya, Khat farmers and traders are seeking to expand beyond their traditional Somali chewing markets to make a foray into China, they said in a statement Friday.

Khat -- or "miraa" as it is sometimes referred to -- is a mild narcotic leaf chewed by millions in Somalia but a controlled substance in many countries.

January 16, 2009

The World's Most Exciting Contemporary Art is Being Made in China

Trash or Treasure? Household goods... Deceased Estate by Claire Healey and Shaun Cordelro, artists featured in Current.
Photo: Christian Schnur

An excerpt and photo from an article posted today by the Sydney Morning Herald Newspaper from Australia:

I mention these works mainly to show that artists are capable of making outstanding pieces using similar ideas and materials to Gladwell but with much grander ambitions. If the world's most exciting contemporary art is at present being made in China, that is not simply because the Chinese are making up for time lost during the Maoist years. There is a vision, a boldness and a hunger among Chinese artists that is rarely found in their Australian counterparts. The only nations to show a similar dynamism at present are South Korea and, to a lesser extent, Japan.

Trash or Treasure?

Migrant Workers in China Looking for Jobs

Migrant workers who returned home from China's Guangdong Province after losing their jobs, look for work at a labor market in Chengdu. One worker advertises that he will take any job. (Getty)

January 3, 2009

I Was Talking To This Prostitute Today About Life.

I was talking to this prostitute today about life. Her English name is Amy and she embarrassingly told me she was 18 years old, although she did look younger, she told me it was her destiny and that she had accepted this cruel punishment. What struck me was that she said it in an upbeat and arrogant tone as opposed to a sad and depressed tone you would have expected from someone in that situation. She said she makes 1000RMB ($683.00 a month) and she works from 10am to 10pm, six days a week, she lives in the back of the store with five other girls in bunk beds.

I met Amy one day when I was walking to the vegetable market. I was with my 7 year old, we were hungry and knew of this little 2.50RMB ($0.36) pork sandwich stall around the corner, but we had taken a detour around a side street and nearly got lost. As I was looking around trying to catch my bearings, out pops this tiny girl from a storefront, a big smile on her face, power walking directly at us, her arms reaching wildly out for a hug.

I looked up and saw a big colorful neon sign advertising 10RMB ($1.46) haircuts. As I caught a glance through the window I see several girls in revealing attire sitting on a flimsy couch, one staring into space and the other two engaged in a conversation. I at once realize that this isn't a hair salon but a typical Chinese brothel. They are quite common all over China and there are millions of girls like Amy willing to work at these places.

When you live in China long enough, you do get a feeling of what a legitimate haircut place is and what a front operation for hookers is, so I wasn't surprised by seeing this. I whisked my 7 year old boy from her clutches and got us back on track to the pork place, but Amy had apparently decided to follow us because she appeared at the same food stall right after we arrived, she then starts voluntarily opening up about her life as I instinctively cover my sons ears with two pork sandwiches. ...This was part 1, come back for part 2 and view the photos

January 2, 2009

Chinese College Girls, Nicole and Candy Start Work

Our two new workers, Nicole and Candy, came over to the house and cooked us a big lunch: chicken and potatoes, corn, fried rice, scrambled eggs with spinach. They spent only 11RMB ($1.61) to feed 4 adults and 3 children! Then cleaned the entire house and played with the kids. Really nice girls, both 20 years old, big smiles, very happy to be working. I think they did great considering this was only the first day. I am feeling spoiled, all this help around the house for just 800RMB ($117.00) a month for each girl.

January 1, 2009

Hired Two Local Chinese College Girls Today For $117 a Month, Low Cost China Labor

Hired two local college girls today to help out around the house, cooking, cleaning, helping the kids with Chinese homework, they will work 4 hours a day X 5 days a week. I will be paying them 800RMB ($117.00) per month each, that is around 10RMB ($1.46) per hour, and payed once every 30 days. In China the labor is very cheap and believe it or not, this is about double the per hour rate of 5RMB ($0.73) offered in this area. They seemed very happy when I saw them today, and were excited about starting work, hopefully they can cook good, fingers crossed! I will find that out later today and give everyone an update after they make us lunch. I will also share with you a little more about the girls and tell you how I found them.