Friday, April 16, 2010

Paranoia (again)

Someone dropped into my favourite bar asking after me a few days ago. He purported to be a journalist with local expat magazine The Beijinger, curious about something I'd written about government plans for the redevelopment of a popular bar district near where I live.

However, it was a Chinese guy. I've never seen his name in the magazine. And he left a very cheap and tatty personal business card rather than a The Beijinger one, with only a private e-mail address rather than a The Beijinger one.

So, forgive me, but I'm just a mite sceptical about that "journalist" cover story.....

Probably I'm fretting over nothing; but after a good friend's little run-in with the authorities a few weeks back, I am in state of heightened alertness. Please don't be offended if I treat attempts to contact me by strangers with extreme suspicion.


The Weeble said...

I wouldn't sweat it: the most the police seem to be interested in these days (except in cases like that of our mutual friend, who was reported to the police by an anonymous malefactor for writing anti-China screeds online) is whether or not people are having guests over without registering them. Expect maybe a few more knocks at the door for registration checks than usual, but the odds of any po-po being motivated enough to find out your perfect bar and ask after you there are pretty low, I'd say.

Froog said...

Well, I did have a conversation with a plain-clothes cop in Reef a few years ago (OK, he said he was - might have been bullshit); that got rather unsettling. Didn't say he was there to spy on us/me/anyone, but hinted that he did that kind of thing sometimes.

The Weeble said...

Occam's Razor still applies, I think. The cops here aren't that good, or motivated -- and you and I aren't doing anything they'd find interesting even if they were good and motivated. English-language blogging has all the import of a mouse fart, as far as The Man here is concerned, if only foreigners are reading it.

Froog said...

Ah, but Weebs, you are making the mistake of applying logic. The authorities here are much more paranoid even than I am, and routinely get their knickers in a knot over absolutely nothing.

My concern is as much that he might be some fenqing stalker nutjob who's taken offence at one of my little jokes on here, as that he might be my own private secret policeman come to put the frighteners on me ahead of my next visa renewal.

When someone shows up wanting to "interview" you for no plausible reason, and purports to work for a well-known magazine but makes no attempt to prove as much, well, that is downright weird.