Sunday, March 29, 2009

Why I don't write for anymore

I wrote about China for for about 8 years. If you check the columns out, you'll see I wrote in spurts. There was often a month or more between any one column. It was basically geopolitical stuff but it also served as my forum for the things that inspired, infuriated or interested me about China. I have some great memories:

The Chinese Beats column that got translated all over. The Beautiful Morning for a War column that poured out of me in twenty minutes. The WTO protests columns, the last one inspired by a few days in jail with the other protesters. And some duds, like the Revering the Big Men column that (I stand by still to this day) incurred a LOT of hate mail.

We parted ways for a couple of reasons. I stopped being interested in political columns. I evolved from my earlier columns and became a more nuanced observer. I moved away from journalism period ... became much more stringent about keeping their content libertarian in nature. I am not a full fledged libertarian and i tend to be all over the map in terms of ideology. Because I came to believe that situations determine ideology and policy. We basically grew apart.

The only thing I regret about not writing for them anymore are the few readers out there (like the brother who commented on the previous post) that wonder why I left. And who consistently urge me to take it up again and make it my career. I can't really find words for how much readers' comments mean to me. I live and die by the interaction that a column or a blog can generate.

If any of you brothers and sisters can make the switch from to this blog, that would truly be ideal. This is a much more interactive platform and the content here ranges from bawdy tales to acid trips to comments on current affairs. It suits my brain a lot better than a weekly (or monthly) column constrained to a certain theme and ideology. I guess I am growing as a writer and want to experiment with a variety of styles and ideas. I hope you all can find time during your days to holler at me about things that are on your minds, because it inspires me to respond and think deeper.

Ask me about China. Or Portland. Or acid. Or tea. I promise I'll get back to you here at Chachin Aint Easy.

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Friday, March 20, 2009

throw a stone or move

Sigh. How many times do we read something like this over coffee/tea in the mornring, imagine charging or throwing a stone at a rich man's house and then ... just go about doin yer thang?

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Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The Sack of Long Beach

I am working on this chapter right now and i am finding it quite difficult. i want to convey the deep desire of the pirates to be acknowledged for their adventures while at the same time showing them to be the pillaging bastards that they really are. basically, they wanted to be loved, when they found that the people of Long Beach didn't really give a fuck and were more interested in the sunset, the drinks, the flirtations with sunnyside dudes who preach to high heaven about their 10 day meditation retreat, etc, anger and resentment forced these guys into a liquor and debauch frenzy that was ... basically the catharsis of warriors after battle returned home to a peaceful and blissfully unaware homeland.

So it was a sack that could have been prevented. Like Nanjing. Some people say the Japanese went berserk because the Chinese army defended Shanghai for two months and that infuriated the arrogant "liberators" so they took it out on the capital. It is interesting to note that Chiang Kai Shek supposedly sacrificed his army in order to convince the Allies that the Chinese were capable of fighting the Japanese, thereby garnering support, cash and Gen. Stillwell. Or the sack of Constantinople when the Crusaders arrived and realized they did not have their shit together for an assault on the Holy Land and so they took it out on their "hosts" the Byzantines who were rich, decadent and standing in opposition to the Roman Pope. The Byzantines asked the Crusaders to help with those dastardly Turks, and ended up getting raped and pillaged by their "saviors."

So i am trying to get the mindset of the pillager down. How does one go from wanting to be loved by a group of people to wanting to destroy them? Its a feeling of inferiority in a way, that makes the pillager resort to pillaging. It i also interesting to realize that the Japanese must have felt conflicted about destroying China because China was once the beacon of light for an island of semi-civilized immigrants. How must it have felt for the student to look upon a fallen master, groveling and weak before hairy barbarians? It drove them to destroy. To wipe out their own shame.

And writing that is kinda painful. Cuz i was one of the pirates.

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Monday, March 16, 2009

watch out now

funny funny, i talk about the beatnuts, pop open Itunes and

my song's on.

howz that yo?
its hard for you to swalla
whatcha gonna do?

you was in jail wearin kneepads ...

cuz for real

there aint nothin but crooks in here ...

watch out now.

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Sunday, March 15, 2009

me and the devil sluggin it out

so yo, I have been dwelling daily on a tea business. I started out thinking that I was going to get a van, pimp it out Thai style and then roll around Portland dishin out love. It doesn't work like that for a variety of reasons. So then I looked at my plans and numbers and realized that my ORIGINAL idea, which was to open a shop and have a van that I could cruise around in when the opportunity presents itself, was a much wiser course of action.

So then I looked at what it would take to get a retail shop going. All of the permits, regulations and Food Handler Card tests that I found necessary for a van, also apply to a retail spot.

And also a retail requires a much more substantial investment of capital. I got rent, re-modeling, health inspections, a kitchen, inventory, tables and chairs, etc. So this began to daunt me. I started wondering: Oh Lord, what if this idea is too much for me to handle and I can't get any of this done. I am just running after a shadow dream that sounds great to the people that don't have to invest, but for me and mine, the ones who have to shoulder rent and such, its a pit that might just break me and send me running for the hills again.

So I slugged it out with the devil all weekend. He said, fool, you can't do this. My spirit rebelled and we went toe to toe. This morning, we sat down over a plate of one-eyed jacks and a cup of jasmine tea and talked it over.

he was like: sasch, my man, I don't really mean you any harm. I am just the harm within.
I was like: I feel you, devil, in more ways than colloquial speech.

And we agreed that he ain't going anywhere and I ain't either. Ain't nothing easy. he was silent while a sang a little ditty to myself, then I went down to the Space Monkey and sold two ounces of Buddha Palm Honey Dew Green tea and my peeps were like:

We are down with Buddha Palm. It helps us get through.

And that's pretty much all I needed to hear. I have a duty to do this tea thing. Just like I have a duty to write and holler at my friends and smile at pretty girls. Its just one of those things.

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Thursday, March 12, 2009

whats goin down

this is what i'm reading and i am thankful for a bucket of blessed mobility.

because this is why i aint been writing on here recently.

Buddha Palm Teas ya'll.

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Monday, March 9, 2009

I got emeralds in my cup

When o when will the weather cease to drive me down into my dungeon? Its hailing outside right now. And its got that dank and dreary grey vibe that just warns ya: "if u go out, the sky can see you. and it will MAKE U PAY!"

In the News?

Phish is back
. Long live the parking lot.

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Thursday, March 5, 2009

I take my music whereever I go

because I'm just so in love with it.

I beatbox walkin down the block a lot and sing in easy soul rhymes. My gait loses me in the funk and I must look wild to passersby. Its so easy to slip into a soulwalk in any town on any street, I flash it out like bursts of qi to anyone I meet. Sometimes i get so nervous and I falter in my funky step, cuz steppin easy aint so easy when I'm the only one.

If I could forget about it and just step on, i'm sure all them would follow, cuz I've been there before with my beatbox goin and everyone's bobbin along. Bobbin along ....

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Tuesday, March 3, 2009

I remember playin BB guns

My man Riz. I remember when his goofy big toothed ass showed up in Chengdu and immediately girls were following him around like he was an ice cream truck. i was so jealous i licked his girl's eyeball. he would console me when i was drunk. he told me it was going to be all bad when i went into work on X and was like: make me the boss or I'm out!

He listened to my drooling while we ate hot pot down on funk street. we yelled JESUS at the same time every time we rolled past the latrines on that street. (Rindy was there too but this post aint bout you daddy.)

When he left Chengdu i could finally pimp in peace. But by then the word had gotten around and all sorts of goofy blonde dudes had shown up and i was stuck in the massage parlors crying on old ladies' shoulders. He went to Shanghai and started to outshine me. I lied to him all the time about fat gigs i was doing so he would stay my friend. In the end it took cash.

When i went to Shanghai to pretend like I was cool he let me stay with him. But I couldn't hang out at the bars with him cuz I would get all sad-wasted and try and hit on his friends' girls or start a fight with some corporate guys who looked at me like I was the second sentence in a Kafka book. He liked my brother more than me.

He made me do things in a park that I can't tell anyone ever.

He's one of my main men and he is marrying a fine woman that has convinced him that being merciful is alright. So i am allowed to use his name and post his articles on my blog. If it weren't for her, I'd have to pay in cash like usual.

Mad Love.

(These are the only pics I was allowed to keep)

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Monday, March 2, 2009


Courtesy of my man Charles "Himmler" Moseley:

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Speaking of holograms

I play World of Warcraft.

But since i understand that massive multi player role playing games can be detrimental to your health, i try and find ways in which this truly enjoyable game can help me out in some way.

so yesterday i was playing and my character was on a rocky coast WAY far away from any other character. nobody was going to come and fight me, trade items with me or do anything really. I was alone on this coast. The scene was beautifully rendered by WOW's amazing designers. I have this item that casts a pillar of moonlight where ever i want it to be. So i sat atop a boulder looking out over the ocean and cast the moonlight right on top of me. For the three minute duration of this little spell, i was sitting on a rock looking out at the ocean bathed in moonlight. It was beautiful.

In related thoughts, my man Sam is a brilliant mathematician and we were talking about a certain project in which a team of math-heads put together a formula that mapped out all of the maps that map out all of the possible functions that mathematically represent a certain group of three dimensional forms. Imagine. Step back mentally. Envision an interconnected system of maps, then rise up above that system and envision an interconnected system of maps, mapping the maps.

is this not related to the idea of a holographic universe or being bathed in moonlight on a computer server?

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The Universe is a Hologram

I was tipped off to this article this morning by meeks shuckafunka and about four paragraphs down is the word "eidolon."

I wrote a story a LONG time ago that is still sitting in the unpublished drawer about a man who falls in love with a woman in seconds and the story is called Eidolon because he creates, for himself, an image of love for this woman because he is guilty. He creates a love reality because it feels better to actually love this poor girl rather than leave her to her lonely fate.

so once again, coincidence rears its head at me and, yeah, i can shrug it off and go about eatin my eggs. or ... or i can rise up out of my wheelchair and cry freedom. Even if i collapse back into my chair at least i know they aint never got me.

and, oh, various posts in this blog deal with the topics discussed in the article linked above, but i suppose this most recent one really ... you know .. proves that electrons communicating across oceans are really. just. talkin to theyselves.

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Remember the Neocons!

Because now they want you to believe they never existed.

The WSJ talks about it and here in the Washington Sketch is a funny little interview with Richard Perle. The lady's comment at the end is pretty funny:

"You kept us entertained."

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In Defense of Piracy

Today's NYT has a story about the Beijing Silk Market and the struggles between big names brands and the pirates that knock-em off and slang em to tourists.

I was at the silk market every day last summer during the Olympics. The big brand names do have a point: China does need to "graduate from manufacturing to designing" and stop biting other people's ideas. At the same time, the Silk Market is not a place where Chinese shop, unless they want to be foreign or have a foreign partner. Foreigners from all over the world hang out there all day and eat Subway or drink Lavazza. Tourists make it their first stop, women dragging men down into the depths of the market to shop for excellent quality knock offs.

All the dork gear I got in this post was from the silk market. Passed the cubicle test and cost me about $35. A while back I wrote this column, also called In Defense of Piracy, and I pretty much said all I have to say on the subject in the column.

But for those of you who only have 1 minute and want the gist of it right now, here's the deal:

Francis Drake was a fkn pirate. The Spanish tried unsuccessfully to have the Queen control him. Finally, she knighted him. He led her navy to a victory over Spain that ushered in a Golden Age. The big brands should grab these people before the CCP does.

They got skillz: making great stuff, good distribution network and AWESOME sales skillz. These peasants from Henan beat the pants offa any Shanghai MBA grad in terms of gettin that sale.

Hire them. Or get out of the way.

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