Από τον συγγραφέα Yu Hua ("Brothers")
“If you were to stick all of today’s officials in a line and shoot every one of them, that would be unfair to some. But a lot would slip through the net if you only shot every other one.”
A friend of mine told me her father had been a professor at the start of the Cultural Revolution, while her mother was a housewife. Her father, born to a landlord’s family, became the target of attacks, but her mother, from a humbler background, was placed among the revolutionary ranks. Pressed by the radicals to divorce her father, her mother outright refused – and not only that: every time her father was hauled off to a denunciation session, she would make a point of sitting in the front row and, if she saw someone beating her husband, she would rush over and start hitting back. Such brawls might leave her bruised and bleeding, but she would sit back down proudly in the front row, and the radicals lost their nerve and gave up beating her husband. After the Cultural Revolution ended, my friend’s father told her, with tears in his eyes, that had it not been for her mother he might well have taken his own life.
It is commonplace for successful men to keep a mistress, or sometimes multiple mistresses – which people often jokingly compare to a teapot needing at least four or five cups to make a full tea set. In one case I know of, a wealthy businessman bought all 10 flats in the wing of an apartment complex. He installed his legally recognised wife in one flat, and his nine legally unrecognised mistresses in the other flats, one above the other, so that he could select at his pleasure and convenience on which floor of the building he would spend the night.
In China today, Buddhist temples are crowded with worshippers, while Taoist temples are largely deserted. A few years ago, I asked a Taoist abbot: “Taoism is native to China, so why is it not as popular as Buddhism, which came here from abroad?” His answer was short: “Buddhism has money and Taoism doesn’t.”
Even Chinese beggars have to keep up with the times: sometimes they too have a QR code handy, and they will ask passersby to scan it and use the mobile payment platform to dispense some spare change.