Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Favourite posts from the 2nd quarter of 2010

Another round-up of my best posts from a little over a year ago...

Pick of the Archives:
Favourite Posts, April-June 2010

1)  Inappropriate laughter  -  1st April 2010
One of the things I find hardest to deal with in China; one of the biggest disincentives to persevering with trying to learn the language...

2)  Friday Frivolity  -  2nd April 2010
Thanks to blog-friend JES, I discover OK Go's marvellous 'Rube Goldberg machine' video for their song This Too Shall Pass.

3)  China and Me (How it all began...)  -  3rd April 2010
An epic post describing the history of my fascination with the country (on or about the 16th anniversary of my first visit here).  I followed up with some more soundbitey 'explanations' in my April List of the Month. And there's another even pithier - and more idealistic! - answer here.

4)  The dog ate my homework  -  6th April 2010
Or... how the eccentric work schedules of Chinese accountants can be used to avoid paying you.

5)  It really ought to be a word  -  7th April 2010
I come up with the perfect word to describe my career-fecklessness.

6)  One for JES  -  9th April 2010
My great blog-friend has a weakness for puns; so, I dredge up a favourite story remembered from my high school days, what might very well be the worst pun in the world - but brilliant.

7)  What are they thinking?  -  12th April 2010
The HR department at the British Embassy in Beiing, that is. Although, god knows, HR departments the world over seem to have a strange knack for concussed bee behaviour.

8)  The Hurt Locker  -  22nd April 2010
I did NOT rate this year's Oscar winner, and here's why.

9)  Faces  -  29th April 2011
Two favourite cinema moments, incredibly powerful uses of extended close-ups: Gérard Depardieu at the beginning of Tous Les Matins du Monde and Glenn Close at the end of Dangerous Liaisons.

10)  Ultimate bank queue nightmare  -  30th April 2010
An hilarious-but-true Chinese news story about a man who bought a bus with small change.

11)  Face - not such a good thing?  -  6th May 2010
I have little time for the Chinese obsession with "saving face", and here's why.

12)  There's Alot about  -  7th May 2010
The Alot, I discover, is a cuddly furry monster - at least in the conception of cartoonist Allie of the wonderful Hyperbole And A Half blog, my 'Website of the Month' recommendation.

13)  The Chinese way  -  13th May 2010
A favourite anecdote about one of the bizarre inefficiencies which seem so rife in this country.

14)  My Fantasy Girlfriend - Miss Scott  -  22nd May 2010
The formidably poised and outrageously sexy personal assistant (extremely well played by the beautiful English actress/model Tracy Reed) to George C. Scott's manic Air Force general in Dr Strangelove is the latest of my fantasy swoons.  [Alas, the clip I'd embedded from the film including her memorable scene has now been deleted from YouTube, and I haven't yet been able to find an alternative.]

15)  Who do you think I am?  -  28th May 2010
I am offered another 'token foreigner' gig - but my ethics stand firm.

16)  Film List - Crowning Moments of 'Awesome'  -  29th May 2010
Stumbling upon this definition of 'Crowning moments of awesome' on the TV Tropes website, I am inspired to compile this list of 10 of my favourite 'tough guy' moments from the movies.

17)  List of the Month - Beijing types  -  5th June 2010
A ruthless dissection of the expat community here: a category for everyone but me!

18)  My Fantasy Girlfriend - Louise Brooks  -  12th June 2010
The silent screen siren is one of the most fascinating selections I've had in this series; and I found a wonderful compilation video of clips from her greatest film, Pandora's Box, to embed at the end of the post.

19)  The view from elsewhere  -  18th June 2010
I wonder how the Football World Cup is being covered in North Korea...

20)  The Chinese have a word for it  -  22nd June 2010
My enjoyment of the World Cup had been rather hampered by the dismal coverage on the local CCTV5 sports channel, but the limitations of Chinese commentators provoked a little nostalgic reverie about sports commentaries back home in the UK.

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