scruta

Either you are sorting it out, or you are full of it.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

New Years Bull#$@%

[The BOSS and his UNDERLING sit in their office.]

BOSS

Are you on MSN?

UNDERLING

Absolutely not.

[The UNDERLING is on MSN. She receives yet another "Happy 牛 Year!" pun from yet another one of her foreign friends.]

UNDERLING

Oh, dammit.

BOSS

What is it?

UNDERLING

Umm. My computer had a problem.

BOSS

You aren’t on MSN, are you?

UNDERLING

Absolutely not.

BOSS

So when is the giant ox going to arrive out front?

UNDERLING

[typing away vigorously]

What?

BOSS

The giant ox. You know, out front.

UNDERLING

Oh yeah. That’s not going to be here for another two days.

BOSS

Why the delay?

UNDERLING

Well, it seems that we got our order in too late. They were out of gold oxen.

BOSS

I don’t believe it.

UNDERLING

Well, they did have one that looked like it was taking a deuce. It was a special order for a fertilizer company in Qingdao, but they cancelled it. I thought you didn’t want that out front.

BOSS

Good thinking. Okay. But why so long? I mean, can’t they just whip one up overnight? They have a mold or whatever, right?

UNDERLING

You’d think, right? But it turns out that the owner of the bull shop had a fight with his wife.

BOSS

What does that have to do with anything?

UNDERLING

Well, he was having an affair with this girl who wears a lot of purple.

BOSS

Why purple?

UNDERLING

I have no idea. Ask her!

BOSS

Okay, then what?

UNDERLING

His wife dumped purple paint all over the one that was supposed to arrive today. So they tried to repaint it, but the paint kept peeling back to purple. So are going to have to strip the paint and start over again.

BOSS

Couldn’t we buy an old one? One from 12 years ago?

UNDERLING

I called around, but the only one I could find was in front of a slaugherhouse. It would take at least 3 more days to fumagate it.

BOSS

[sighs]

Okay.

[The UNDERLING begins to type away. She laughs.]

BOSS

What’s so funny?

UNDERLING

Umm. Nothing. Oh the year of the ox! Haha!

BOSS

You are on MSN, aren’t you?

UNDERLING

Absolutely not.

posted by ferret at 4:56 pm  

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Ichido Wants You to Save the Environment

[FERRET attempts to buy some bread at Ichido, the Japanese bread/cake shop extraordinaire. As he seeks to pay for his prepackaged half-loaf of bread, the CASHIER begins to put the bread in a paper bag.]

FERRET

我不要袋子。

I don’t want a bag.

CASHIER

好的。

Okay.

[The CASHIER begins to put the bag away, but her ASSOCIATE stops her. Speaks to FERRET.]

ASSOCIATE

你需要用袋子。

You need to use a bag.

FERRET

为什么?

Why?

ASSOCIATE

如果你没有袋子,你看起来可疑的。他们会觉得你偷了面包。

If you don’t have a bag, you look suspicious. They will think that you stole the bread.

FERRET

[叹气] 好的。

[sighs] Okay.

[FERRET pays, takes the bag, and walks away. As he walks, he inspects the bag, and finds himself a little perturbed by the irony of the situation:]

“偶” 不污染地球!

Ow” Don’t pollute the environment!

posted by ferret at 9:11 pm  

Thursday, January 22, 2009

New Words: Crorepati, Conturbed

Crorepati

Conturbed

posted by ferret at 3:16 pm  

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

An (Imaginary) Correspondence with 港汇广场

Dear 港汇广场,

Since you are one of the premiere shopping destinations in all of Shanghai, I would like to say that I’m concerned, and it’s not because of the price gouging one is bound to receive by going into one of your eyeglass stores, nor is it the questionable quality of some of your restaurants (I’m looking at you fifth floor sushi go-a-round). I’m perfectly willing to accept these pitfalls. They are to be expected in any shopping area.

I’ll cut to the chase. I’m deeply concerned about the status of the doors at the entrances to the building. They are perfectly satisfactory in their construction. They are positioned well enough, and work wonders for preventing drafts. However, why do you persist in keeping only one set of doors open at each entrance?

Locking the rest of the doors not only produces a minor nuisance for anyone entering and exiting the building, having to navigate the simultaneous entry/exit with disgruntled, stroller-ed mothers carting their offspring under heaps of shopping bags, or over-involved couples holding a public menage-a-tois with their Cold Stone buckets of cream-slop, it also presents a serious fire hazard. If there were a need to quickly evacuate the building, the cramming at the exits would result in shattering those fine glass panes in the doors at the very least, or the unfortunate trampling of one of your dear customers at worst. In the interest of safety and the continued prosperity of your business, I am advocating that you open ALL the doors in the future.

Sincerely,

Ferret

[The response:]

Mr. Ferret,

We are happy to hear shopping at 港汇广场 give you such wonderous feeling. It is our pleasure to open doors for you. A good opportunity indeed! If there is need to prevent the fire, then we feel this import. To stop the stampede, we will use our security guard to open door. There will be no trample.

We will speak to Cold Stone management about menage-a-tois cream. This is unacceptable what they do to mothers.

The glasses shop has a special buy! Buy 1 pair give you 1! 10,000RMB only at the least! If you want to eat the fifth floor sushi, please use enclosed coupon to feast vigorously without tariff.

Thank you so much from our patronage!

港汇广场

posted by ferret at 8:23 pm  

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Li and Zhou: Dastardly Death

LI

So you remember that one magazine that always gave us trouble?

ZHOU

Which one?

LI

The expat one in Shanghai.

ZHOU

That’s Shanghai?

LI

No. Well, no. I don’t think so.

[LI looks at his monitor searching.]

LI

No. SH Magazine.

ZHOU

SH Magazine?

LI

Yeah, the one where they tried to print Sassy Pandez.

ZHOU

Mmm… Miss Panda. So what?

LI

What do you mean?

ZHOU

I mean, why do you bring it up?

LI

Well, it looks like they are going out of business and they want to print an issue with more problems than I can even begin to tell you.

ZHOU

Well, like what?

LI

Well, for starters, the whole thing is about death.

ZHOU

Death? How can they do that? They don’t even have a magazine license. You can’t sell death. Unless of course you are a funeral home.

LI

I know.

ZHOU

Or a memorial garden.

LI

Right.

ZHOU

Or a preacher.

LI

Um-hm.

ZHOU

Or an urn maker.

LI

Zhou.

ZHOU

Sorry. Well, what do they say?

LI

They have a tour of all of these different tombstones. Some guy rambles about drunken debauchery in a bar. They made an insert of paper foods to burn to dead ancestors at New Year.

ZHOU

That’s despicable! How could they think of doing that and get away with it?? I mean, I understand they are Westerners, and that they want to push boundaries, but this is ridiculous. They know traditions like that are off limits. Bastards…

LI

Yeah, I can tell they were pretty frustrated.

ZHOU

Well, so am I. Tell them that even if they clean it up they can’t print it!

LI

They’d have to rewrite the whole magazine. I don’t think it’s going to happen.

ZHOU

Good!

LI

Hmm.

ZHOU

Hey, Li.

LI

Yeah.

ZHOU

Print me off a copy. I want to read it.

LI

No worries. I’ve already printed out a couple. I think you’ll want to keep a copy of this.

R.I.P. SH Magazine

posted by ferret at 6:09 pm  

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Epigram #4

These temples as splitting

Crumbling idols straight to the dome.

Reach for an aspirin.

posted by ferret at 2:27 am  

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

New Words: Cithern and Peristyle

Cithern

Peristyle

posted by ferret at 7:07 pm  

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