I originally started this site as a travel blog but it has since taken on a life of its own and I write about whatever comes to mind. Politics, culture, my experiences around the world and in my own country. Feel free to follow me and leave comments!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

If I were president

As I sit here and drink my wine that I’m sure somebody spit in, I can’t help but think about how the world would be different if I were president. And heads up, I’m a little drunk right now. There’s no doubt in my mind that there would be several assassination attempt on me and I would have to go through several impeachment proceedings. I know this. But I would be able to get through it all by replacing the secret service bodyguards with genetically engineered super soldiers capable of catching a speeding bullet in their teeth. Yes. That’s right. Their teeth. I cannot stress enough how awesome that would be. Now that my personal safety is taken care of I could move on to national concerns. Seeing as how I won’t be legally able to run for president until the 2030’s it’s a safe bet to say that China will be the world’s dominant economic and military power. NATO will probably have expanded to counter the inevitable Russia-China alliance, and the EU will have grown. These are drunken visions of the future, mind you. The main things I would do in my one term:

-Form the North American Union (US+Canada+Mexico+whoever else) at any cost. Or we could call it the Empire so I could be crowned right then and there. Emperor sounds so much better than president. To counter the economic shift to the east, the West must become more efficient and innovative, something it has always excelled at. The combined resources and industries of North America could crush any other part of the world. No joke.

-Legalize gay marriage and marijuana. Seriously. We have bigger things to worry about so let’s just get it out of the way.

-Colonize the moon. Yes. You read correctly. I don’t mean a lunar base or anything lame like that. I mean a whole freakin’ city. And then we claim the moon in its entirety for the US. No one else can have any. I’m serious. Well, maybe the UK can have a little piece. And maybe Japan if they stop bitching about the base on Okinawa.
UN: You can’t do that America!
US: Oh? Well it looks like I just did! FACE! And if you got something to say about it then how about I stop giving you money?

-Withdraw from the UN. The UN is a worthless organization. It receives hundreds of billions of dollars a year and barely has anything to show for it. I say withdraw and form a new organization. Preferably of strong, secular, democratic countries to police the world. An organization that allows Libya, Pakistan, and China on its Human Rights Commission is a joke.

-Send my super soldiers to hunt down and kill terrorists. No prisoners, no mercy. People who walk into a place of worship and blow themselves up, killing dozens of people at a time are not human beings. They are animals and deserve to die like animals. Enough said.

-Lay the verbal smack down on governments I don’t like. Cuba, Venezuela, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Russia, Syria, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Libya, Sudan, Senegal, Zimbabwe, Somalia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, Myanmar, China, North Korea, Vietnam and I’m sure there are plenty others.

-Deny aid to people who messed with us. Sorry North Korea. Looks like you guys are going to starve over the winter. Sorry Iran. That looked like a bad earthquake but your pleas for help are interrupting my chillin’ time.

-Heavily invest in alternative fuels. I want flying cars by the 3rd year of my presidency.

-Become supreme master of the world. It’s been tried a thousand times and failed every time. Here’s my plan so far.
-Declare my intention to unite humanity under my banner.

The plan looks pretty good so far. I just have a few kinks to work out and we’ll be all set. Any suggestions? After world domination I will lead the human race into a future of technology and expansion into space. Sounds good, right? Vote for me!

Travel in China,

Sunday, March 27, 2011

New Beginnings

Hey dudes. For those of you who don't know yet, I am now pretty much engaged to Jen. GASP! I know, right? I had originally been planning on waiting for at least two years due to my financial situation (I'll get into that in a second) but since things are looking so much brighter now we don't have to wait so long. It was a lot to ask of her to wait for that long and only be able to see her a few times a year. As of right now I have about $20,000 in college loans to pay back and I wanted to have as much of that paid off as I could before I moved to China. Just so I could start my life without anything to worry about. But now I don't have to worry about any of that. A family member who I'm very close with, not really at liberty to say who right now, decided to give me part of my inheritance money early because they wanted me to start my adult life with a clean slate. Initially I was a little hesitant about it. I don't like getting something for nothing. Maybe I have too much pride. But, in the end it was freely offered and I accepted. So now I'll be moving to China before the end of the year. I'll need to make money here for the flight, apartment, and initial costs of course but other than that I'm good to go.

One of my boys on LoveLoveChina asked me:
1) Chinese or Western wedding?

We've talked about doing a traditional Chinese wedding over there and then when we move to the states in a few years have a small Christian ceremony.

2) Wheres the honeymoon?

We'll probably travel to a few places in Northern China. I always did want to look for dinosaur bones in the Gobi desert. Travel in China is easier and cheaper and we can always travel to Thailand or the Philippines later.

3) You don't feel too young to get married?

Not really.

See? Pretty as a painting. Or is it picture? I don't remember the expression.

Now if you suddenly tell your family that you're moving to China for a long time, finding a job there and getting married you're bound to get all kinds of different reactions. I live in South Carolina. Most of my mother's family are city people who tend to be better educated and accepting than my father's country family, half of whom didn't know the difference between China and Egypt and probably couldn't find either of them on a map. Here's some of the responses I've gotten.

"At least you're datin' a Chinese and not one of them Japanese. The eyes don't slit as bad." -country aunt

"I just don't understand why you couldn't find a girlfriend here." -mother

"You know all them women just divorce you as soon as they get that green card." -several people

"I can't believe you're goin' over there with all them communist sons a' bitches." -crazy uncle

There were several other comments that are just too annoying and ridiculous to bother typing. And in this entire endeavor I was struck by how ignorant some people are. Mostly older people who grew up in the Cold War. And there is also a serious lack of adventurous spirit in my family, my father's side especially. There are grown people in his town that have never seen the ocean even though they live an hour and a half away from it. For serious. The only other person in my family like me is my thirty something year old brother in the navy who has traveled all over the world with the military and on his own time. He's done a lot of intercultural dating and he usually has some good advice. I'll tell you what he told me. "Aim high. If you aim high, you might not get what you wanted but you'll get somewhere above the middle. But if you aim at the middle you might get the bottom." Something like that.

So I'm moving to China and marrying the girl I love. That's right. I said it. I love this girl and I don't care who knows it. I'm going to marry her no matter who approves or disapproves. I'm living proof that aiming high can pay off in a big way. Stay cool and always aim for the top!

Travel in China,

Saturday, March 26, 2011

About Libya...

Just because I'm sick of hearing about it. I think that it's a terrible idea for America to help the Libyan rebels. And I know you can make the case about "saving the people from their leader" and all that but I'm totally against it. They rebelled, knowing that Qadhafi had more tanks, planes, artillery, and guns than they did but they chose to fight anyway. A month ago they were very adamant about the imperialist colonial governments (all the countries who were actually willing to help) minding their own business. One week later when they start losing they practically beg for help. To me that shows that they are willing to kill for democracy but not willing to die for it. If you aren't willing to die for it then you don't deserve it. And yes, Qadhafi is a bad guy, there's no denying it. He's a terrible human being and I'm sure that he'll get what he has coming eventually. But do I think that the US should be helping people who the majority of supported the 9/11 terrorists attacks? Or think of the Lockerbie bomber as a hero? Or sent more foreign fighters to Iraq to attack coalition soldiers than any other country? Nope. Let Qadhafi destroy them. He's our man anyway. He might talk a lot of smack but in the end he does what he's told. I guarentee that if the NATO airstrikes were to stop tomorrow the rebels would be on the ropes the next day. They don't deserve to win. This is my opinion and I'm sure the more compassionate people out there will completely hate me but there it is.

Travel in China,

Thursday, March 17, 2011

St. Patrick's Day!

At first I was like:

But then I was like:

What's up cool dudes? I got invited to several parties tonight so I'll have to decide which of my friends I like better. I'll be going to Savannah as well to Riverstreet. I hear they're going to try to dye the river again. It was a disaster last time but maybe they can pull it off. But probably not. I'll post the next China update after the hangover goes away. Party hard folks!

Travel in China,

Friday, March 11, 2011

Gonna get my learn on.

I'm starting Mandarin classes tomorrow. I'm pretty excited about it. It'll be nice to be in an actual classroom setting than sitting alone in my room practicing. Too bad they don't offer Cantonese. I know Mandarin is the most widely spoken dialect but I kind of like the way Cantonese sounds a little more. And it's what Jen and her family speaks so even if I am fluent in Mandarin I probably wouldn't understand what they were saying.

Travel in China,

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Back in Guangzhou

CNY was pretty awesome. I probably shouldn't have decided to leave for China three days before it started but whatever. After getting a late start the morning after I arrived, Jen and I went out into the city to look around. I thought Chinese cities were crowded as it is but with all the people traveling to visit family and whatnot it was just ridiculous. There were decorations everywhere, often including rabbits, which was kind of cool I guess. But I wasn't too crazy about the many meat stalls around where the butchers were cutting rabbits up. I used to have a rabbit as a pet and these guys are chopping them up and leaving gory piles of fur in the middle of the street! :-( I suppose it's better than cats and dogs though. We went to this one street where the shops were only open for 3 days a year during CNY where they sold flowers, orange trees, toys and all kinds of other stuff. We went to a tea garden to relax for a bit where I almost busted my ass in front of some hot girls but thankfully I'm way to ninja for that and I caught myself before anyone saw me. And later we went to the Sun Yat-sen Museum. Chinese museums are really nice. They are well maintained, usually have a lot of interesting stuff, have English labels on things, and are almost always FREE!!!! That's totally amazing to me.

And they look nice.

After lunch we had to go to the police station again to get my residence papers filed. That's really important, guys. Don't forget that. If you stay at a hotel I think they do it for you but if you are staying with someone in the city you have to file the papers within 24 hours. I think you have 3 days to do it if you are staying in a rural area. And instead of beating the free market trade out of me like I expected them to, one of the police officers actually recognized me and asked why I cut my hair. HOLY CRAP. And here I thought all white people looked the same.
One of Jen's aunts came to visit and stayed for about a week and a half. Ayi (auntie) Cham (pronounced "Com") is what I called her. That night we went out to the riverfront and enjoyed the city lights and shops where I discovered the greatest snack food ever. Sugarcane. No joke. It's amazing. It's dirt cheap and it'll strengthen your teeth! I was exhausted and destroyed from traveling the day before so we turned in early. Many Chinese houses are open to the outside by glassless windows, which is good for airflow and ventilation but watch out because sometimes you might wake up to have one of these in your face.

Travel in China,