I1-1: 朝阳 - A China Coddiwomple - CycleBlaze

June 7, 2022

I1-1: 朝阳

On account of my having no place better to share them, here are some pictures from the 1995 UN Women's Conference held in Miyun.
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Seven years ago, when I was preparing for the Singapore/Malaysia trip everyone I contacted on Couchsurfing or WarmShowers already knew who I was. Furthermore, there was also an Irish-Australian met through a site not at all related to hospitality or bike touring who I met up with on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur who asked me "are you the author of this (link) CGOAB journal? I'm such a huge fan of your's" 

Those two episodes—both of which were heavily based around the niche fame I had built up on that now not quite dead yet website—were my first brush with the concept of having fans.

As I've become increasingly enmeshed in the whole "being an influencer" thing, it's become less weird that people who are basically strangers to me might want to meet me or talk to me because they admire me; however, it's still weird.

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So, now,  I've got these photos from 1995 that were shared with me because the owner of the photos was brave enough to mention that their Mom still has them and was all excited that I asked to see them; and, even though I don't know who a single person in them is, I'm thinking it's really cool that they wanted to share them with me, so I'm going to turn around and share them with you.

And maybe, if all the stars collide in all the right ways, there will be a time where someone who was at that Conference comes stumbling across these photos and says "that's me!" and then I'll get to be the person who passes the contacts along.

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It's not that I actually think this will happen, but it could happen; stranger things certainly have happened around me.

I basically spent all of today asleep on Jen's sofa. The time that wasn't spent asleep was either spent consuming large quantities of food and booze or was spent having a pre-interview interview with someone from the China Daily as the Venn Diagram of "interesting things which would make interesting answers" and "things which can be shared¹ on State Media²" has a very very small overlap and it's nice to know for sure what not to say beforehand so that they don't have to do quite so much editing.

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I really really meant to go out and get a Covid swab but, you know how it is when you have the option to get twenty mostly uninterrupted hours of sleep. 

I nap, I get up, and I lie back down for more napping.


¹ For example, when I came to China in 2002, I thought I was part of a University of Maryland program. The Hebei Education Bureau also thought I was part of a University of Maryland program. The University of Maryland, however, they didn't have a program sending fresh grads to Central China to teach English.

² A really good way to look at the difference between Chinese and non-Chinese media is to realize that local media is always positive. That positivity may be a case of "damning with faint praise" but determining how much negativity to apply to a certain report is the responsibility of the listener. Western media, on the other hand, is uniformly negative (if it bleeds it leads). As a result, the Chinese, who aren't looking at western reports on western topics, regularly perceive serious insult where none has been given.

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