Sunday, December 18, 2011

My last weekend before Christmas

  • Not much Christmas shopping going on in Wuxi, China -- that is the impression I get from asking the students.
  • Employees at Carrefour, I learned, have already had their annual Chinese New Year company dinner.  They have to because CNY is a busy time for them!
  • A man tells me that his wife asked for a divorce after their daughter was born with congenital heart problems.  He looks after the child but has to pay 25 percent of his salary to his wife.  Sad.
  • My favorite article by Christopher Hitchens had to be one he wrote about partisanship -- he was for it. If I remember correctly, he said politics was meant to be partisan and there was no point in holding back in discussions.  I believe, he saw, like I did that talk of bi-partisanship these days has the stench of authoritarianism associated with it.
  • The World is all that is the case.  What does that mean?  What does Wittgenstein mean by the World?  Does he mean the Universe?  Was does case mean?  Does case mean all that is, i.e. reality?  Does Wittgenstein mean that the Universe is all there is?
  • Good riddance!  Someone, I loathe, is leaving Wuxi.  He was the classic transient worker, the teacher who was a body but not much else.  He couldn't show up on time for work if his life depended on it.  It wouldn't surprise me if he was returning to his Native country to take part in a Occupy movement.  It is about all he is good for.  I hope, for the sake of people who don't come to Wuxi to lie to everyone and anyone with an ounce of deceny, that he isn't late for his plane.
  • I overslept Monday morning.  I had to wake up early to get Tony on his way to school.  Because I slept late, I had to take Tony to a bus stop and accompany him to his kindergarten, instead of just putting him in the van that would have taken him there.  The bus took forever to come, and it was standing room only when it did. 
  • It was interesting for me to observe Tony at the Kindergarten.  When we got to the school gate, Tony took off his backpack, opened it and put a toy car, he had been carrying, in it.  He knows enough now to put his stuff away.  He then lead me to his classroom.  Entering it, he knew where to put to his backpack.  Tony ran into the class -- a foreigner teacher was doing his thing -- Tony grabbed an empty chair and ran happily to his place.  It surprises me how quickly babies become their own person and become socialized.

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