a post before Spring Festival aka Chinese New Year

CORRECTION: In addendum to the last post in which you see a freshly graduated bob. bob has informed me that he graduated in 2006, making my estimation two years off. oops. sorry bob. hahahaha. i have this agreement with bob that he will call me when it is mom or dads birthday so i can call them and wish them happy birthday. he also has to call me when it is his own birthday so i can wish him happy birthday. hahahah. i am a bad person. sorry world.

So it is an exciting time here. It is Spring festival time aka Chinese new year. no one calls it chinese new year here. asian countries use the lunar calendar to determine the new year so its usually like a month later. i don't know that much about spring festival. i think there is a lantern festival like 15 days after which i am looking forward to. and there will be tons of fireworks tonight.

I took this pic at a little noodle shop. I thought it would be really funny or an insight on how Chinese people feel about our pres'es but it turns out it's pretty lame or, i just dont get it. Obama is saying how are you, bush is saying not very good, laura is saying i'm so happy he finally got laid off, and i asked 3 chinese people and they don't know what michelle is saying because it doesn't make sense. Pretty lame right?

sugary glazed fruit. it was slightly above freezing this day so they were melting a little.

this is a big winter time attraction in beijing. doing the bing che "ice car" on lake hou hai. you sit in these chairs and push yourself around the ice with sticks. there were people ice scating too and there were even ice bikes.

Chinese people have a good sense of humor when it comes to racist imagery. or they just don't know to be offended yet. remember that illustration i did of the japanese racoon last year and the high ups at FIT thought it was too racist looking because he was wearing a straw asian style hat and and "slanted" eyes? well i asked some people here they thought it was totally fine. I don't even know anymore. are these statues racist imagery?

i've been drinking a lot of tea in china. i've been here 8 months and i still don't have the proper tea drinking apparatus so i just dump the leaves in a big cup and sip away.

remember these turtle statues me and bob bought at the forbidden city? well they are finally facing each other, bobs facing east in albany and mine facing west in Beijing. It is our made up brotherly bond story. We said where ever we are in the world we will have these two statues facing each other for always....and then we made out.

this character kewpie was actually created by a female american illustrator
Rose O'Neill that appeared in Ladies' Home Journal in 1909. Q.P. Corporation is a Japanese food manufacturer, famous for its popular brand of Japanese mayonnaise sold in plastic squeeze bottles with a Kewpie doll logo. I love that mayonnaise. it tastes different than western mayo, and i think that is what this ad is for here in beijing.

buying chinese new year stuff for the door and windows.

a wish tree in the lobby of the building that Ogilvy and City Weekend is in. I met Lily and Angel for luch and they both said they never even noticed the tree but it is right smack in the middle of the lobby and you have to walk around it to go to the elevator!

outside my kitchen window a woman is feeding what i think are pigeons, some in cages some not. A 19 yr old girl died of bird flue in beijing this month. i think i want to make friends with this woman and hang out with these birds in the afternoons so i can be in the middle of the next bird flu pandemic.

maybe because its chinese new year this family has 4 bags instead of 1 tied to ropes outside their window aka their refrigerator

lamb meat on sticks. yumm

finally went to the east shore jazz bar at lake hou hai. that band was ok. angel says the good band will be back after spring festival

spring festival decorations at the gate of my compound.