The Viral Week That Was is our weekly round-up of the last week’s trending memes, humor, rumor, gossip, and everything else Chinese netizens are chatting about. Here’s the lowdown from last week:
1. New paint job for Beijing’s most famous phallus
Yup, the building in Beijing that most looks like an erect penis now has a new coat.
“Winter has arrived in Beijing! The new People’s Daily building quietly changed into new clothing, stripping off its ‘tuhao gold‘ and putting on a silver coat, which looks like it’s wearing a ______”
2. Scamming Good Samaritans
Many recent headlines have not so much been of the “hit and run” variety, but of the “no hit and no run” type instead. Earlier this year, Shenzhen tried to set a positive example by establishing a “good samaritan law”; the expected ripple effect has not surfaced. News of old people faking injury and then blackmailing people who have helped them have been resurfacing. So much so that a foreigner was deported after news of him hitting a woman caused nationwide debate. At the beginning of 2014, a man killed himself, to prove his innocence, after an elderly man accused him of hitting him, even though he was helping him get up. The most recent update to the story is the elderly man admitting that the fall was all his own doing. The following satirical nugget went viral:
@洋葱日报社: iPads and iPhones have become increasingly common, and fu’erdai (second generation rich) students are complaining that they have difficulty flaunting their wealth. However, recently at a middle school in Zhejiang, “helping old people get up” has become the new killer move for flaunting wealth. “I have money, I dare to help” is now a widely acknowledged tuhao label. Li Long, a 9th grade student helped 18 old men get up within a month, and gave 1.73 million in compensation. He is accepted as the Top Rich Kid at his school, and flocks of girls are pursuing his love crazily.
3. Bizarre Study Aids
On a lighter note, if you have ever wondered why Chinese students are always getting straight As and are puzzled why many of them don’t seem to have a life besides studying, this viral picture will show you just how far they are willing to go.
@其可夫: In the ancient times, there was “悬梁刺股“(literally “tying hair to the beam, stabbing thigh with an awl”) , nowadays there is “tying hair with clotheshanger”. Recently, universities across China entered the time for their finals. Yesterday, the picture of a sophomore female student from Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University hanging her hair to study dillgently went viral on Weibo. Netizens exclaimed: “the world of Study Machines is beyond our comprehension.”
She won’t fall asleep using this crafty contraption。 Image from Weibo
4. Are You Married Yet?
Spring Festival is approaching and this means big family dinners and tiresome visits from relatives. The incessant nagging of family is one reason why Spring Festival is often seen as a holiday of pain. Dinner table conversations for both men and women are summarized in this image:
5. Take Your Time on the Toilet
And a photo of the most user-friendly, most caring, and most humane toilet in China:
@琦殿: A photo I took in a toilet at Shenzhen’s airport. This is the most humanist toilet in the world.
6. Run Run at Rest
Another joke came after Run Run Shaw passed away at the age of 107 last week:
@假装在纽约 Billionaires all lead long lives. Run Run Shaw, who lived to 107 years old, exercised four times a week and practiced qigong everyday. Li Ka-shing, 86-year old richest Chinese man, swam and played golf everyday. Stanley Ho, 93-year-old Macau “King of Gambling”, never consumed any tonic and swam half an hour every day. Red-crown businessman Henry Fok only eats fruits for breakfast and corn and taro for dinner. Media tycoon Murdoch eats over 20 types of fruits and vegetables everyday… The key to their longevity is: wealth.
7. Baidu Mistranslate
Baidu Translate has a new feature: it can recognize images. And it has become a hot plaything online. Netizens discovered that while it is correct with some items, it also makes some amusing mistakes.