小北的不老歌

Monthly Archive: December 2008

Very Cold

In Rhode Island
* * *
非定势思维

给小南讲小马过河的故事,说到“河要是太宽太深了,小马就过不了河了。”小南很奇怪地说,把河里的水…倒掉…不就好了么?

The Blame Game

From NYTimes, the latest article in its “The Reckoning” series: Chinese Savings Helped Inflate American Bubble. The title might be a true statement, but pointing to Chinese savings for the crisis is as ridiculous as suing McDonald’s for causing the obesity problem.

One could blame McDonald’s for selling the fattening BigMacs in the first place. One could also point to the fact that the BigMacs are priced very low, so that now it’s possible for people on a small budget to load up on the calories. One could also argue that the regulatory scheme is lacking: the FDA could have banned the BigMacs, the USDA could have declared the beef patties unsafe, etc. But if you ask me, I’d say the 300-pound guy who eats BigMacs three times a day only has himself to blame for his obesity and heart attack.

But when it comes to the economic crisis, the NYT seems to blame everyone but the 300-pound guy. In its almost 20-article series, it blames the regulators, the risk-takers, and now the Chinese savings that enabled cheap credit. But it seems unwilling to say the obvious: ultimately it’s the consumers, stupid. American consumers over-borrowed, and over-spent. Everything else, including regulatory failure, aggressive risk taking by the banks, and yes, Chinese savings that enabled cheap credit for the US government and American consumers, might have failed to put out the fire, but they didn’t start the flames.

Liberal media of this country need to stop portraying middle-class America as the victim rather than the culprit of the economic downturn. The U.S., as well as the average American consumers, have been able to borrow very cheaply in the past decade, but instead of investing, they blew the borrowed money on supporting a war and consuming beyond their means; and instead of being thankful for the cheap credit, they are now criticizing how cheap it was. But then again, being quick to criticize others is so typically American, just like America’s habit of overborrowing and overspending.

On the move

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My officemate and I will be moving to another office very soon, so we took a picture from what had been our office for the past three months. I haven’t seen our new office yet, but it will most certainly not have this kind of view.

干净的女士

小南回家说她在幼儿园的事情,说到午睡起来以后她看见那个干净的女士来了。我和萍儿楞了一下,不知道说的是谁。再听下去,说她看见那个干净的女士擦家具,于是恍然大悟,原来小南把cleaning lady给直译过来了。

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What’s inside?

一、二、三

秘书递进来一个小小的棕色信封,于是知道众目所瞩的年终奖的通知,没有任何征兆地就来了。里面简单地写了几行字,给了一个数字。敲了几下计算器以后发现所里还是随大流了。

晚上叫车回家,司机唉声叹气地说年景实在不好,半天才有个客人。过了一会儿注意到他喜欢说“一、二、三”,很有趣。

“我就在附近等了半天活,所以你们所一打电话我一、二、三就到了。”

“路长的活也少了,原来去康州,一个来回一、二、三就挣一百五,现在,最多跑跑新泽西,一、二、三就到了,挣不到钱。”

“这行干不下去了。准备改行,明天要去考大车驾照的笔试,一、二、三考过了我就去上大货车驾校,还是当长途卡车司机好。”

“年景好了,我再去买辆高档轿车,一、二、三我就又回纽约开出租了。”

一、二、三我也到家了。

打开信箱,看见本科学校和法学院都来信建议捐款给母校。再算一下要给秘书,幼儿园老师和门卫包的礼金,还没到手的钱就一、二、三出去了不少。

上海·波士顿


偶然看见老牌新潮手表。


表面设计么,有些新意,可惜太招摇了。没法戴着上班。


反面居然还有一句吴语方言,一开始以为有个错别字,后来一想还是自己土了,估计是故意写错的,就和那什么f.c.u.k.的服装店一样。

Boston Legal终于拿中国开涮了。美国左翼精英们逢中国必提的那些批判要点,从几个演员的嘴里婆婆妈妈地也基本都点了个遍。同时还不忘声明:我们不讨厌中国人民,我们讨厌的是他们的政府(似曾相识的一句话。。。对了,我们曾经也同情美国劳动人民而憎恨压迫他们的帝国主义政府来着)。虽然知道是在演戏,较不得真,但是可惜美国大众的定势思维和自我优越感又被巩固了一把。

除此之外,又加了一层“鬼子来了大家警惕”的意思:处处暗讽中国人多,现在钱包也鼓了,有野心了,挣美国人的钱还不够,小心他们来美国扫荡。(于是便有了美方一个孤胆英雄女律师单挑十来个中方男律师的场景)。里面中国人的英语大多也都很蹩脚,颇有早年抗日电影里鬼子进村后操着半生不熟的中文说“花姑娘的,哪里”的意思。(其实这帮演员的中文也很差劲)。

正在我纳闷为什么他们始终不提计划生育问题的时候(猜测是不是左翼分子比较认同这一点),某个角色终于说了一句:他们还强制计划生育。掐指算来所有能批的都批到了,于是功德圆满,关掉电视睡觉去也。

偷懒

有几天偷懒没有写了。活又多了起来,高年级的律师干起活来好象都不要命。午饭时候旁边一桌是七八个老合伙人在高谈阔论,偶然听见他们说出一个法律圈知名八卦博客的名字,非常惊讶,没想到他们也去看律所的八卦消息,不知对上面痛骂律所裁员和减红利的诸多贴子是怎么想的。