1. On the "Cultural Revolution" Museum (关于"文革"博物馆)
Feng Jicai (冯骥才)
Twelve years before, when the entire nation was immersed in the orgy of destruction that was the Cultural Revolution, one old man paced back and forth alone, with bowed head, over the spiritual wreckage of our entire race. In one momentous confessional after another, he never ceased urging people to heal their souls. Now several years had passed. Society had changed its tune and altered course. Fascination with Western science and technology as it affects modern life had poured over China; the Chinese people, impoverished for so long, were eager to get rich. The tragedy of the Cultural Revolution, the most disastrous in history, with its pile of unanswered and not yet fully investigated questions, was fading imperceptibly from memory. The old man looked up suddenly and solemnly raised the cry: "We need to build a museum of the Cultural Revolution!"
That man was Mr. Ba Jin.
When I heard his call, I suddenly remembered the night in the early days of the Cultural Revolution when my house was ransacked and everything was taken. I was sleeping on the floor in a dark corridor while people outside were mutilating each other. I don't know why, but Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony suddenly started playing in my dream, and the divine Ode to Joy woke me. My face and the floor by my face were covered with my tears.
From Mr. Ba Jin's call, I once again got that feeling of pure and holy love for humanity that I'd gotten from Beethoven’s Ninth. In his writer's heart, love trumps hate, and the future trumps the past. However, he saw with even more youthfulness than we in the younger generation, that if China wanted to make real progress, it could never discard the historical and political monster of the Cultural Revolution. China must face it, and reflect on it, and reject it.
Although the Cultural Revolution has been put to death politically, its specter lingers on. As long as the soil that produced the Cultural Revolution has not been eradicated, no one can guarantee that a Cultural Revolution will never come again. The Cultural Revolution as an authoritative force has already withered away, but as a social and cultural force it remains as stubbornly alive as ever; as long as its influence lasts, the danger of its recurrence will last that long as well.
History, when it repeats, will absolutely never take the same form. We can only rely on people who have been through it, and have awakened from it, to monitor against its repetition in whatever form. People, those who are awake and mature, march in step with the advance of history.
However, a young man once wrote me a letter to say that after reading my book "Ten Years of Madness", he did not believe it was true. He thought such things could not happen in real life and that I had fabricated the whole thing. Then his father read it and told him, "The Cultural Revolution was like that, or even more cruel and absurd."
The young man was convinced. But I still don't see how this national tragedy, which had ended only ten years previously, and scenes of which still often appeared in people's nightmares, could have become a mere anecdote for the younger generation, something which could only have happened in another place and time. What are the consequences of this?
A painful lesson experienced by one generation is a spiritual asset for the next generation.
Striving to build a Cultural Revolution Museum that will turn this lesson into an asset is a charge conferred on us by history. The museum will display the Cultural Revolution to the world through the medium of physical evidence. There generation after generation of Chinese will be able to see with their own eyes, and experience for themselves, everything that their forefathers went through. From this experience they will believe it without any doubts. Each and every question regarding social abuses, cultural roots and weaknesses brought about by a sincere yet uneducated image of that era, along with the reality and absurdity of the Cultural Revolution's culture, will be put on display. It will force the younger generation to ponder and to question, and will evoke the conscience and the responsibility and the power of personality needed for their cultural survival.
Only in this way can they avoid the blind obedience and ignorant fearlessness of their forefathers. Only in this way can they avoid tragic policies brought about by ignorance which would lead to repetition of the disaster, and instead invest in clear and thorough scientific minds to strengthen the Chinese modernization cause. Only in this way can we invest clear and lucid scientific minds in the cause of strengthening the modernization of our China. Only after we truly transfer the Cultural Revolution to a museum, where it will become a cultural fossil, can we say that we have bid adieu to that era.
With that same thought in mind, I set up a file for ordinary people who'd gone through the Cultural Revolution. I had no interest in so-called high-level "insiders". I only cared about the spiritual journeys of ordinary people, because the real experience of the times lays only in the experiences of the people. Given the nature of literature, a writer can only provide characters, so my narratives are mainly a psychological record of the characters. I regard the writing of that book as one of the tasks of building the Cultural Revolution Museum.
While it was arduous and draining, every time I came to utter exhaustion under my lonely lamp in the middle of the night, I thought of the Cultural Revolution Museum coming into existence sooner or later, and how each of my narratives would be delivered to it. My enthusiasm instantly increased and I again put pen to paper.
I think that once the Cultural Revolution Museum is completed and realized, it will be one of the greatest museums for our people. It will transform hatred into love, change absurdity into wisdom, and turn one generation's decade of misfortune into an eternal happiness for future generations.
[Fannyi – Regarding the ignorance of Chinese youth about their country's recent past, see our essay "Capitalist Roader" here.]
From 一百个人的年代, story 26
Translated from 读书369 at http://www.dushu369.com/zhongguomingzhu/HTML/33060.html
2. Ward Connection (病房连线)
Tian Hongbo (田洪波)
The whole gang hated the guy with the beard. Since his woman had been admitted to the ward, his thick, throaty voice often disturbed everyone’s peace and quiet.
Nevertheless, he once again picked up his cell phone to call the village chief and have his son come to the phone. "Are the chickens fed? Is the feed for next time ready? And did the pig get fed...?"
One time when the bearded man stood at the ward door to make a phone call, his woman asked him something with a worried look on her face. "I know my disease can’t be treated. Don’t spend any more money. Take me home tomorrow, okay?"
“Heh, heh!” the bearded man laughed in his booming voice. "Is money the whole world? Don’t we have chickens? And a pig? Besides, everything’s fine at home. What’re you worried about?"
That day, while his woman was sound asleep, an older woman in the ward finally had to ask the bearded man, "Every day you make a call and it’s always the same stuff. Aren’t you sick of it?"
The bearded man’s eyes reddened. "Truth is, I’ve already sold the family chickens and pigs to pay her medical bills, and I’ve borrowed a shit pot of money, too. And my phone was shut down a long time ago because I owed them money. But I can’t have her worrying! I only say those things so she’ll see reasons to keep on living...!"
Translated from here, also available from田洪波的博客 under the name 打电话, at blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_4da75bc50100a0lo.html
3. Can I Call You Mama? (我可以教你妈妈吗)
By Rainy (阿雨)
The little girl was flitting around like a butterfly at the entrance to the village. Before long she was flitting at my heels. She stepped up on a high spot to touch my face, laughing and talking all the while.
One day she flew up to me again and gave me her mother's scarf. She looked up at me and asked, "Hey, do you have a mama?"
Looking at her pink face, she seemed to be a lotus blooming in a pond. I shook my head in the slight breeze. "I never knew my mother."
"I have a mama," she said. "We'll never be apart." Then she laughed, like the tinkling of a silver bell. The two tiny sheep-horn braids on the top of her head bounced around playfully.
Two days later she was standing still by the side of the road, holding her parent's hands and pleading mournfully. "Mama, I won't let you go!"
Her mother bent down and kissed the silvery tears from the girl's face. "Do as I say, girl," she urged. "Go home with your auntie. I'll be back when the rice stalks are brown in the paddies."
Autumn came, with waves of golden stalks in the paddies, and the young girl again flitted up to my breast. She tubbed at my shirt and pleaded, "Come with me to find my mama."
Her father had come home, but her mother hadn't. I heard the adults talking: She'd gone somewhere else, and didn't want to be part of this family anymore. I couldn't understand where it was she'd gone.
The little girl didn't know about that, and I didn't have the heart to tell her. She lay down at my feet and fell asleep smelling the aroma of the rice stalks. A slight smile appeared amidst the tears streaking her face. She was murmuring "mama" over and over again.
Standing there in the autumn breeze, I looked down the road into the distance, The little girl had just asked me to wake her up right away when I saw her mama coming home, since I was so tall and could see such a long way.
When she woke up, she held my hand and asked, "Can I call you Mama?"
A gust of wind, and I nodded slightly. But I'm just a scarecrow.
4. Can I Borrow Something? (能借你点啥)
Liu Zhengquan (刘正权)
The man lit a cigarette and looked at the street lamp through the rising spiral of smoke. Then he looked at the stars. It takes some effort to see the stars at night in the city.
The reason the man was so humorless was that he was quite bored.
Bored silly, that kind boredom.
The woman drew close to him right then, but didn't say anything. She walked around him, three steps forward and three steps back, three to the left and three to the right, until the man turned around with a confused look on his face.
"What're you doing?" he asked.
She returned his stare. Gnashing her teeth, she said, "Loan me something, will you?"
He spit out the cigarette butt and laughed. "Lend you what? I don't have anything right now. If you want me to loan you something, I'll loan you me."
The man made that joke because he was depressed.
“I don't believe it." Her eyes lit up. "Really, that's just what I wanted – to use you."
He laughed and couldn't keep the remaining smoke in his lungs from puffing out in a smoke ring. Nor could he conceal his surprise. Use him for what? He was just a poor old scholar, completely useless.
"Is that funny?" she asked. "Let me make something clear up front. I'm not sick."
But he thought she was, and seriously so. It wasn't good to borrow without rhyme or reason, and to borrow a man? She must know that everything under the sun was in short supply those days, except men. There was no shortage of men.
The woman seemed to see his doubts. She laughed. "There's no shortage of men in the world, but there is a shortage of men with a little bit of scholarly intimation."
"No doubt about that." He himself had no scholarly intimation, or he absolutely wouldn't have gotten mixed up in such a desperate situation.
It's necessary to say something about the man. After all, he serves as the cover for everything that will happen in this story. He'd been a copywriter for a business. He did everything that was expected of him and fit in well at the company. The problem was that his female boss had appreciated him so much that she got the idea of making him a regular part of her daily life. Faced with her aggressiveness, the man chose to storm out in a huff.
These days some men do live off women. The problem was that this man thought someone who has read the sacred books had to have a highly moral character, even if he shouldn't be self-righteous. Compelled by this and by his scholar's airs, he'd self-righteously walked out of the small apartment in his female boss's luxury office.
But life didn't appreciate his righteousness. After he'd hit one wall after another, his girlfriend dumped him. He thought that was ludicrous. His girlfriend was the very reason he'd maintained his purity, but she of all people had taken his death before dishonor attitude as a kind of incompetence.
So he'd chosen to come out and watch the stars on such a night. He remembered the lyrics of a song in a Japanese animation: "The stars blink even if they're asleep". At the moment this woman was also blinking, so he didn't know whether she might have said what she did because she was sleepwalking.
The woman suddenly wasn't blinking. Her face got a serious look. "It's like this. I'll borrow you for one day to attend a class reunion. I'll say you're my boyfriend."
"A reunion? Is it important?"
"Yes, very. I only went to school through junior high, and the rest of the gang of students went to college."
"Understood." He laughed suddenly. "You think it'll be all right if you have a boyfriend who’s been to college, even though you didn't go yourself."
The woman didn't deny it, but said, "If you won't laugh at my vanity or misbehave."
"How can you be sure I've been to college?" The man was quite curious.
"From the melancholy all over you." She lit a cigarette. "A woman who's never been to college isn't necessarily unable to read lots of things about people," she said with a laugh.
A woman who can read lots of things, what kind of woman is that? He stood there dumbly, at a loss for words.
"You're bored stiff, anyway," she said. "Just treat it like a game. Besides, I won't be borrowing you for nothing."
That got to him. It wasn't the mention of money, it was that he hadn't been in the mood to play a game in such a long time. Since he left school, in fact.
Playing a game as a job should be a rather unique day. He nodded to show he agreed to do it.
The next day the woman drove over in a sedan to pick him up. A woman with a car annoyed him a little bit, because he was worried she might be overbearing, but he stifled the feeling. Whether he realized it or not, he straightened his spine the moment he got into the car.
"Relax, no one's going to put pressure on your back." The woman looked at him askance in the rearview mirror above the steering wheel. Looking askance or not, she had a shallow smile on her face.
He warmed up a bit, and the warmth flowed through his back. His spine naturally relaxed.
Not many of the women's classmates were social elites, The most prominent of them were just married to some section-level chiefs.
The man’s scholarly air made him like a crane among chickens, but only slightly so. A crane's haughtiness doesn't have anything to do with the fact that it's clucking around with chickens, but with its aloofness. The man hadn't intended to remain aloof – he just felt that he had nothing to say. He was still polite, of course.
His taciturnity was appropriate to the occasion and left the women's classmates casting envious looks. Envious of what? A scholar with natural-born talent that's of no use anywhere? He laughed at himself when he had that thought.
The woman saw all this. She took his hand and told people they had to leave, that the man’s company was having a meeting.
The idea that a simple company would be having a meeting left the crowd feeling they'd been given the cold shoulder. They stared as the woman paid her bill, and then she and the man left the restaurant acting very affectionate.
The man held off as long as he could as they drove away, but eventually he asked the woman, "What exactly do you do? You're such a good actor."
The woman smiled. "Can't you tell?"
The man shook his head. "No, I can't."
The woman didn't laugh. "Since I know how to act," she said, "of course I work on the stage."
The man didn't laugh, either. "As a woman who's been oppressed by life, I should say."
The woman stopped the car and laid her head on the steering wheel. "Thank you for understanding. You have the air of a scholar after all."
"You're welcome. It's because I've also been oppressed by life.
The woman straightened up in surprise and gave the man a quick peck on the forehead, a half-hearted one. Then she said, "Can I borrow something else?"
The man was startled. "What else can I loan you?"
"A smile," she said. "I haven't had a man give me a heartfelt smile for a long time."
"Only one smile? Easy." The man straightened up, got the muscles in his face ready, and tried with all his might to smile. Unexpectedly, his smile brought on a face full of tears.
http://blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_5eda19700102wrpn.html, bottom of page
5. Friendship Leads to Red Faces (交个朋友是红脸)
Tian Hongbo (田洪波)
When there was nothing going on, Little Heh and some of the guys would get together – they’d go to the place where Big Wang worked to watch movies. Big Wang was a projectionist and he welcomed his friends with a naturally smiling face when they came around. From the looks of it, it seemed he could get them in free because he was in tight with the doorman, Iron Face.
But on one occasion, several of them were astonished by Big Wang – It was hot and stuffy in the theater, and Little Heh suggested that one of them should go out and buy ice cream or popsicles to quench their thirst. And while he was at it, he should take some to Big Wang, too. The task fell on Little Ai.
Just as Little Ai was striding out the security door, he saw a scene that stopped him dead in his tracks – Big Wang was giving some tickets to the doorman to tear up.... Although the doorman was quite agile, Little Ai was able to see at a glance that there happened to be four tickets. He didn’t say anything.... Red in the face, he just said hello to Big Wang....
For a long time after that, no one suggested going to Big Wang’s place to see a movie.
Later on, everyone did get together one day to see a movie at Big Wang’s. They didn’t go looking for Big Wang to let them in, but they did meet him in front of the ticket window....
At first Big Wang was perplexed when he saw them.
Then it was his turn to blush.
Translated from here, also available at 田洪波的博客, blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_4da75bc501000boo.html, story #2
6. The Light on Valentine's Day (情人节晚上的灯)
She was lucky. After coming to the city from her village in the mountains looking for work, she was taken under the wing of a Big Boss. She didn't have to look for a job where she'd be mistreated and work her fingers to the bone. Instead, she had a fair amount of money and an apartment of her own.
She really was only twenty years old. It was rare in the city for a "rich woman" to be so young.
At the same time, she wasn't so lucky. She'd never been romantically involved – never truly loved any man, and never been truly loved by any man. After she'd lived with the Big Boss for a year, he didn't come around much anymore. She knew he had other women – "Tits Number Three" and "Tits Number Four" – but because he was still in the picture, she didn't dare get too close to any other man. No man who knew her situation would dare get close to her, either. The Big Boss was a hotter-than-red-hot entrepreneur on the surface, but in reality he was the biggest of big shots in the underworld.
She spent almost every day alone. Daytimes she ate alone and went shopping. She'd buy anything that struck her fancy, occasionally something she might even have a use for. She did all this in attempt to stave off the loneliness and isolation that was spreading inexorably through the depths of her heart.
At the end of each insufferable day, she'd swallow sleeping pills so she could sleep and dream sweet dreams. The dreams were shattered when she woke up, though. In the fall, they crumpled like withered leaves drifting in the wind. In winter, they were crashed under a covering of down-like snow…. In truth, the "fallen leaves" and "snow" were just her own sorrows being tossed in the wind and covering the world.
"A beautiful woman long restrained, a spring breeze ever blowing." Her heart was forced to stray, like a solitary ship on the boundless ocean with neither sail nor rudder – she needed a man who could disperse her isolation and loneliness, a man who could provide a sail and a rudder for the ship of her youth.
Eventually, one day, a man who set her heart aflutter appeared in her life. He was a migrant worker, twenty-some years old. Her air-conditioner stopped working and he came as a post-sale service rep. With the sensitivity unique to women, she grasped the depth of emotion sprouting from his bright eyes.
Several times she made up lies in order to see him again. She said that her air conditioning was still not working right. Every time he came over in response, she'd feel like she was being showered with sunshine when their eyes met.
She called him again on Valentine's Day. She heard that he was breathing heavily over the phone, too. "Can I... Can I bring you some flowers?"
Her heart suddenly contracted into a ball of sweetness. "Of course it's OK," she said, so nervous that the words came out rather incoherently. Then she added, inconsistently ".... But it'll have to be in the evening!" He promised to come to her apartment between nine and eleven that evening.
She told him repeatedly, "You can only come upstairs and knock on the door when the hallway light is off!"
She lived on the third floor and access to the corridor was unrestricted. Two of Big Boss's underlings lived in the building opposite. If they happened to look over at her place, they'd be able to see the worker clear as day when he came up the stairs and knocked on her door!
Hope swelled up in her heart like the rising sun and brightened that whole Valentine's Day.
Come evening, her hopes gradually turned into flights of fancy. She tended the fantasies in her heart like a shepherd tending her flock. And she began to herd a flock of "wicked desires" that would make people's cheeks feel hot....
Nine o'clock, the time she'd been waiting for with such overwhelming emotion! But the worker didn't knock on her door! She impatiently left the sofa and peered out through the peephole, and discovered that the corridor light was on!
Damn! She'd already surreptitiously turned off the switch in the hallway that controlled the light in the corridor. How could it....
Once again she opened her door and quietly turned off the corridor light. She stilled her pounding heart as she returned to the sofa. She tossed back and forth on the sofa thinking of reasons why the worker might have got the time wrong. She firmly believed he was trustworthy and would never break his promise.
When it was almost eleven, her heart was completely confused, like thousands of wild bees were buzzing around in her chest. Anxiety and near desperation forced her to go to the door and look out the peephole again – the corridor light was still on!
What was it with this lamp? Was there a ghost? She absolutely did not believe in ghosts. Angrily she once again turned off the corridor light, prepared to call the property manager to vent her anger.
But just then there was a knock on her door!
The hopes that were about to be extinguished were suddenly on fire again, and the warmth of happiness immediately flowed through her entire body. She trembled and jumped to open the door, imagining the color of the roses she was going to get....
The door opened – the corridor light was still shining. And under the light stood a shriveled up old man!
He looked angry and sternly complained that she shouldn't keep turning off the light!
There were two apartments on each floor of the building. The old man was a new neighbor who'd just moved in across the hall. The place where he'd used to live had been broken into many nights because there was no light in the hallway. In the several days since he'd moved to this building, he'd looked out his peephole nine or ten times each night and would only feel safe if he saw the corridor light shining brightly.
The corridor light could be controlled by the people in either apartment. The light she'd turned off several times had been turned back on by the old man.
Her face had abruptly been distorted into a frightening mask of surprise, disappointment and anger when the old man first laid into her.... Then she suddenly realized why the corridor light had kept going off and a thought struck her like a bolt of lightning. Her heart immediately lit up. God – could he have been waiting somewhere downstairs all this time?
She charged recklessly down the stairs....
小说月刊，2017年第二期, translated from
91读网 at www.91du.net/filedownload/139527, story no. 4, also available here.
7. Road Building Problem (修路问题)
Xu Guojiang (许国江)
Double Bridge Village is a remote place located on a waterway. To this day no public road connects it to the outside world, but the Township government is getting ready to put one in. The Township is to provide some of the funding and the village itself is to provide some. The news has spread to Double Bridge and the villagers’ tongues are wagging.
Building a road is large project, and Chairman Liu of the village Party Committee has asked for everyone’s opinion. Some people have said: “To get rich, first build a road. When the road is done, Double Bridge can get rid of poverty and be on its way to affluence.” Others think: “The funding shortfall is too big. The village can’t afford it. Wait a few years and bring the proposal up again.”
Chairman Liu was very apprehensive. Logically, it would be conducive to economic development to build a road, connect Double Bridge to the outside world and change the village’s current inaccessibility. As a practical matter, though, asking the villagers to raise the funds would be a task with too great a degree of difficulty.
South Ferry, a neighboring village, was in generally similar geographic circumstances. In the previous year they’d built a road into the village with funds collected from the villagers. The villagers cried murder and the money that had been borrowed from a bank proved difficult to repay. After construction started, big shots from units and departments in the township, county and city came around to “inspect”, that is, to fish, hunt birds and have a good time. The costs of feeding, housing and entertaining them amounted to five or six hundred thousand yuan for the year.
Chairman Liu has now decided that, weighing the advantages and disadvantages, it would be best to put the project off for the time being. Everyone agrees. But the township government is going to make the decision, so what can we do? Some say go talk to the Township Mayor and Party Secretary first, and if that doesn’t work, go find someone in the county government. Get them to change their opinions and give up on the idea of building a road.
Chairman Liu said that’s all we can do. Then someone reminded him, "Regardless of whether you go to the township or the county, don't forget to give generous gifts to the relevant personnel."
Director Liu forced a smile but said nothing.
Translated from here, also available from 闪小说阅读网 at
8. Bottom Line, Who Pays? (到底谁请客)
Horizon Visitor (涯客)
Big Forest was a draftsman at a construction company owned by his old classmate, Gao Yang. His wife, Ice, was a primary school teacher, and his son was about to be discharged from active duty in the army. Big Forest and Ice were worried about finding a job for their son. After a fairly long time, Gao Yang learned about this from private sources and he agreed enthusiastically to find the young man a job. Young Liao from across the street also agreed to help.
One day Big Forest received phone calls from several old classmates, all inviting him to a get-together at the Good Days Restaurant, part-part*, as they say in English. He found an ostentatious setup when he got to the restaurant – two big tables. These get-togethers were rare occasions for the classmates, sort of a chance to return to their days in school and enjoy themselves, really enjoy themselves.
Big Forest also knew that they were a respectable mix of people – managers, section chiefs, directors and captains, almost all of whom were "four-wheel drive” smoke-belcher types. Big Forest was a crowded “No. 11 bus and public transportation, finally arriving with his body stinking from sweat” type. Anyway, regardless of what they'd said about splitting the bill, someone would surely get the check, so they didn't worry too much about it.
From the instant they came to the table, everyone was in a rush to order food. Super fresh seafood, exotic gourmet items, soft-shelled turtles and tortoises all came to the table at the same time. Big Forest estimated that his salary for a whole month wouldn’t be enough to pay for this meal. Gao Yang praised the spicy Big-Boss Tripe and said, “Enjoy the food, my old classmates, and drink as much as you like. This is on me.” Everyone laughed, and the compliments and pleasantries flowed freely. The old friends drank even more happily now that the cost was off their minds.
Toward the end of the meal, Gao Yang wiped the grease from his mouth and picked up his “Big Brother” brand mobile phone. “Hey," he shouted, "is this Captain Wang? Our construction company's having a party tonight. The leaders are all here. You've researched last month's incident of theft from the company, so, what is your security company going to do about it? If you come over here now and host the party, that matter will be a lot easier to take care of.”
A little while later a uniformed security guard showed up and had a few words with Gao Yang, clearly about “hosting the party and getting the check”. What happened was, Gao Yang felt in his pocket and decided he didn't have enough cash, so he made another call. "Hello, Young Liao, about your friend's son getting into the security company. The leaders are at a party tonight. They've talked it over and are hopeful. Come over here and host the party and we'll drop the gavel on it."
Big Forest was having a great time. Although he usually couldn't hold his liquor, he had drunk quite a lot and was feeling good.
Then his phone rang – it was Ice.
"Young Liao said host a party, our son's job is all set. It's also at the Good Days Restaurant. Wait for me and I'll get you the money right away...." She hung up the phone in an all-fired hurry. Big Forest felt like he hadn't had time to even ask what floor and what room the party would be in. He was three sheets under and thought to himself, rather bewildered – "I'll have some more. When Ice gets here and can't find me, she'll naturally give me a call."
Maybe half an hour later, the door to their elegant private room opened, and Big Forest saw Ice and Young Liao walk in. The uniformed security guard smiled and hurried over to greet to greet Young Liao, patting him on the shoulder. All of a sudden Big Forest understood. He couldn't stop himself from throwing up, and then he fainted....
*[Apparently the author thinks these English words mean "fifty-fifty" or "Dutch treat". His readers were undoubtedly awed by his erudition.]
To get Chinese text by return email, send name of story to firstname.lastname@example.org
Chinese Stories in English
1. On the "Cultural Revolution" Museum
2. Ward Connection
3. Can I Call You Mama?
4. Can I Borrow Something?
5. Friendship Leads to Red Faces
6. The Light on Valentine's Day
7. Road Building Problem
8. Bottom Line, Who Pays?