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Viral Week Ep. 147

Bratty behavior, banned football tattoos, Cao Cao discovered in Henan, and a bitter ex with bitcoin—it’s Viral Week

Viral Week is our weekly round-up of the previous week’s trending memes, humor, rumor, gossip, and everything else Chinese netizens are chatting about. Think of this as a cool spring breeze that wafts – wait, is it really 25 degrees outside?

Coming up today, we bring you the (not) bitter ex, a warlord unearthed, and your misbehaving child of the week. But first…


CFA’s tattoo ban

Soccer fans are speculating that the Chinese Football Association (CFA) is about to ban Chinese football players from showing their tattoos. Players were spotted covering their tattoos with tape in the national team’s match against Wales last Thursday.

In January, China’s top media regulator announced they will ban hip-hop culture and tattoos from television, as these elements apparently contradict the Chinese Communist Party’s ideals. Though there’s no official confirmation that this is going to apply to CFA players, Thursday’s events have triggered a heated discussion on social media. Most netizens thought it was ridiculous to police such personal behavior, though a minority believed such a ban would miraculously help the players concentrate on the game.

Unfortunately for them, in spite of sporting many layers of tape, the national team still lost miserably to Wales, six nil.


Ex-boyfriend isn’t bitter, not at all, nope

“Lian Shiya, I threw away 2.08 million [RMB] to wish you a happy marriage!” declared a handwritten message purportedly written by a man called Fei, wishing his former girlfriend the best of luck in her new married life. Fei paid for the message to be posted on several major WeChat lifestyle accounts, in over 100 cities, so that his ex (whose contact details Fei apparently no longer has) will get the message that he’s totally over her, and is not bitter. At all. Nuh-uh!

Fei also took the time to praise crypto-currencies for enabling his message: “[This message] is really not expensive, only cost 39 Bitcoins—that’s right, from those hundreds of Bitcoins we saved few years back,” Fei reminisced. “I wish you happiness and health,” he assured the world, adding, “So don’t use money as a standard to judge someone who loves you ever again.” Yeow.

This tall tale of a snooty bride and her Bitcoin-loving former beau proved popular among netizens, not least because many suspect it was simply a “guerrilla marketing” strategy from yet another dodgy PR firm, trying to prop up Bitcoin’s fluctuating value and brand.


Cao Cao’s last gambit

The Henan Provincial Institute of Cultural Heritage and Archaeology has “basically” confirmed that the Hill Tomb of Cao Cao in Anyang, a site that’s been under excavation since 2009, actually holds the remains of the legendary Three Kingdoms warlord himself.

According to The Records of the Three Kingdoms, Cao, ruler of the State of Wei, had ordered his tomb to have a “high base and no structure built upon it,” but architects say this tomb definitely had a foundation to support some type of structure. Zhou Ligang, the site’s chief researcher, says this could mean that Cao’s son, Cao Pi, did not honor his father’s last instructions.

Speaking of Cao’s sons, clothing found inside a smaller tomb beside Cao’s could belong to his eldest son, Cao Ang (he’d died in battle and his body was never recovered). The remains of a woman around 50 years old and another about 20 were also found, though their identities are still a mystery. The only person recorded to have been buried with Cao was his wife, Lady Bian, who was around 70 when she died.

Somewhere, China’s trickiest warlord is having the last laugh…


Pushy kids

A recent post of Zhihu, recounting a woman giving a brutal beatdown to her aunt’s misbehaving grandson late last year, is dividing public opinion on the proper way to deal with bratty kids, evocatively named “bear children” (熊孩子) by netizens.

In the post, the author described catching the fourth-grader shoving her pregnant sister-in-law to the ground during a Mid-Autumn Festival family gathering. When confronted, the child said he’d “seen on TV that pushing pregnant women to the ground would make them miscarry, so I wanted to try to see if I can make her miscarry.” At this point, the narrator inflicted punishment via rolling pin and stainless steel rod.

Afterwards, she bragged that all family members except the child’s grandmother supported her actions. Zhihu and Weibo commenters also overwhelmingly cried, “He deserves it!” and shared horror stories of kids they’ve witnessed disturbing airline passengers and murdering small animals. But is violence really the answer?

As mainstream media are saying, no, it isn’t—but some way of holding parents accountable for kids’ bratty behavior would be welcome.


TWOC‘s editors are a bilingual, international team that is always on the lookout for original and human-centered stories to share with our readers. We are dedicated to accuracy, objectivity, and looking at each of China's stories through the eyes of its participants. Get in touch through our About Us page if you have a story to pitch!

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