出来冒个泡

哇噻,瞧这一阵子忙的,根本没啥闲空。还好到波特兰开会演讲后抽出点时间,算是唯一的放松。波特兰很不错。

八月桂花香,八月我四十。我出生后一个月左右,林彪感到老冒把自己周围的人搞的杀的差不多了,这回该轮到他这个副统帅,仓皇出逃坠机而死。我五岁那年,老冒驾崩,说实话,我没啥印象。七十年代末开始在我们季庄村上小学,俺娘是季庄小学的民办教师,教小学数学。考市重点中学升初中落榜。那次考试要到枣庄市,是我第一次进城:第一次见小汽车,第一次见高过两层的楼房,向往着小城里的地下饭店(这饭店居然能开到地下来,何等的神奇呀!),听着吃公粮的人说出来的城市话,看着城市的繁华,让我稍微乱了方寸,可能是我落榜的原因之一。然后到公社/镇上的初中念了三年,俺大是那里的公办语文老师。1986年升高中,考重点高中再次落榜,然后到县城读高中。高考时,你猜对了,我第三次落榜。然后复读一年,这次我卧薪尝胆,咸鱼翻身,成了我市文科探花,于1990年到遥远的南方厦门大学读书。1994年毕业前夕还搞了段黄昏恋,毕业后到北京工作大半年期间和她分手。我看了下当时的日记,主要是觉得性格和理想上合不来,不可能走到一起。以后曾给那个善良美丽的女生写过一封道歉信,发信之前,和一个朋友聊起这件事儿,他说你这不行,道什么歉,要一刀两断,弄不好还搞得藕断丝连。我听从了这个建议,烧掉了那封信。那一段时间还写过一封求爱信,被拒。

然后就来美国了,1995年夏天的事儿。这一走,就是16年,并且我很有可能在美国这片土地上度过我的大部分生命。一开始的艰难,有语言、文化、风俗、饮食上的不同,有孤独和不安全感。但所幸的是我有成为我妻子的女友,我们一起走过了这些日子。对于我的父母和亲人,我永远感恩不尽。在语言、文化、风俗、和饮食等方面,我感觉我调整的还不错。宗教上,我回归到了坚定的无神论者。政治上,我觉得民逗启蒙精英和五毛乌有之乡之类的人士都很恶心,虽然如果我一直在北京工作下去的话,我现在很可能以民逗启蒙精英人士自居。这十几年的游历,让我觉得人和人之间差别真的很小,不管你是美国人,中国人,瑞典人或其他各种符号的人。中国,印度,越南,菲律宾,非洲,拉丁美洲等太多太多国家的人士,那么多人的自信被各种各样的因素摧垮。我感觉要重建那种自信,不自卑自负,光大自己的优良传统,吸收外来文化,才能走出自己的路。

老婆之前开玩笑,说要给我个over the hill派对。那天也就从中国城点了几个饺子,炒地蛋丝儿,水煮肉,老虎菜,夫妻肺片,素炒米饭等,带回家里吃。因为我们前几个星期养了个小狗,不好带到饭馆里去。我去取菜,老婆在家里弄了壶茶,拿出孔府家酒的辣酒,完了我们三口人吃。水煮肉吃起来过瘾,但晚上我坐在马桶上,火星四射,天女散花,放出一些稀薄的汤水般的粪便后才好受些。

分享一首歌,叫《我多想》。1986年春晚,我在我家的飞跃或凯歌牌14寸黑白电视上第一次听成方圆唱这首歌,当时就很喜欢。在虾米上我没找到成方圆的版本,就听了下黑鸭子唱的,也不错。


我多想

我多想变成一朵白云
飘在家乡翠绿的山林
在那果园里留下亲吻
在那湖水中投下笑影
啊让翠绿的山林更加翠绿
让美丽的姿容更加年轻
啊让翠绿的山林更加翠绿
让美丽的姿容更加年轻
—Music—
我多想变成一缕春风
吹遍家乡翠绿的山林
为那小伙子擦去热汗
为那姑娘们送去歌声
啊让翠绿的山林更加翠绿
让欢歌笑语更加动听
啊让翠绿的山林更加翠绿
让欢歌笑语更加动听
啦啦啦啦啦啦啦啦啦
啊让翠绿的山林更加翠绿
让欢歌笑语更加动听
啊让翠绿的山林更加翠绿
让欢歌笑语更加动听

Persuasive Composition

By my sonson
Legislators, you have come here to hear the cons of Saturday school. I come before you today with compelling evidence that Saturday school is a bad thing from the start. First, finance will decrease all over America. Second, companies will fail. And third, the average kid will get over stressed. Eventually, with Saturday school all America will fall.

My first reason is in regard to finance. More electricity will be used to power schools due to extra time spent in school. To pay a teacher for a year will cost a lot more money than now from all the extra work they will do. Even families will have to pay more due to an increase in taxes to pay the school. This will lead to a drop in the economy. The consequence would be America going bankrupt from all the money needed to pay for schools. I suggest that if kids need extra help a tutor can be used instead and would be cheaper than Saturday school.

My second reason is that companies will fail. Families won’t have enough time to buy things because their time is wasted in school. Kids won’t have time to play with toys so they won’t buy them because their time is wasted in school. Eventually, companies will close down with no profit money. With no companies there are no jobs to supply civilians with money. Within months the economy will fall. Then people will emigrate to a different country to avoid the bad economy.

My third reason is about health. Kids will get extremely stressed from all the homework and school time. Then kids will get sick and depressed from too much school. Then from stress people won’t be happy and become bullies. With so many bullies the schools will go crazy. And when bullies grow up they will do horrible things to America.

America is lucky as it stands right now. With Saturday school America will fall. Bills will increase, companies will fail, and people will become stressed. This is not the America we know. This is a free country but with Saturday school it is not.

Getting closer to the elements

Well, after talking about it, I finally put my feet where the pedals were, and biked to work today.

IMG_0233
My Novara, the front facing one.

My original plan was to find time riding in on a weekend for some field research. But with the move, house painting (where my wife did most of the work), teaching my son Chinese, my son’s baseball, and other family activities, I couldn’t find the time. This morning I woke up a bit after 5 and decided, what the hell, might as well take it all the way today!

It was not bad at all. In fact, I enjoyed the whole thing. Going in: total distance 14.69km, average speed 18.60km/hr, peak speed 25.13km/hr, total time 47 minutes. Coming back: total distance 14.29km, average speed 18.35km/hr, peak speed 27.93km/hr, total time 46 minutes. Thanks Liz for riding with me on the way back. It’s nice to have a partner returning with you, with more people milling out and about than in the morning.

Well, I went to work without shaving, breakfast and shower. Not that I am set out to win a bushy beard competition or anything like that. While I am at it, I gave up on hairy chest competition long time ago. I’ve got to say, it’s not bad. I was a bit tired in the early afternoon. A quick snack of a banana and cheese stick provided enough fuel on the way back. I did save up a set of toothbrush and toothpaste at work. It’s good to brush after lunch anyway.

I am really excited and look forward to do more of it! Time to bed. Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise. 早睡早起身体好!

Biking to work

Finally we have storage for bikes! Now we each have one. I’ve been biking with my son after work. It is really a lot of fun and great exercise.

Industrial revolution, urbanization and urban sprawl, and information age combined have made many of us living a sedentary lifestyle. I know I currently don’t have enough physical activity: like now I am sitting in front of a freaking computer typing away. 呜呼唉哉!长此下去,人将不人,成何体统?So I am seriously thinking about biking to work.

The biking distance is a little over 9 miles, one way, which makes around 30 kilometers in total both ways, very much doable, I think. I’ve been gathering information on the web, but if you have tips, site recommendations, or better yet, routes from around North Ave., Division, Ridgeland area to downtown Chicago, I’d love to hear them. Thanks!

If I have time this weekend, I plan to bike to downtown just to try it out and see how long it takes and how I feel. We’ll see what happens.

Name wiki participation guide

Despite the underwhelming response to my wiki site for Chinese and foreign name translation, I went ahead and created a participation guide. Chinese version of this guide will be published soon. This article looks better here, due to the wiki syntax embedded.

Thanks.

==== How to participate ====
=== Quick start ===
Search for “**Please enter here**” in the search box, located in the left side of the page, below the navigation bar. Follow one of many links, then click “**Edit this page**”, replace “**Please enter here**” with information you know, click “**Preview**” to verify. Once you are satisfied, click “**Save**”. That’s all there is to it.

For example, if you know how to write Afghanistan in simplified Chinese, you can put that into the corresponding location by editing this page:
http://www.haidongji.com/wiki/doku.php?id=places:f2c:master

Do this for a few entries in person’s names, places’ names, and other object’s names, then come back to read the section below. That can probably give you a good feel of how things are organized. Hopefully you find this a worthy endeavor than following some people’s Facebook status or tweets!

=== Scan through Wiki syntax page ===
Once you’ve gone through some changes mentioned above, reading through wiki syntax will make more sense. Fortunately, it is a quick read, short and sweet.

http://www.dokuwiki.org/syntax?do=show

On this wiki we use a lot of tables and shorthand links to Wikipedia. So it pays to know that well.

=== Structure and naming convention ===
As you can see on the left side of the web page, this site is divided into 3 sections: person’s names, place’s names, and other object’s names. Each of those 3 sections is further divided into 2 sections: foreign to Chinese (f2c) and Chinese to foreign (c2f). Using the technical jargon, persons, places, objects, f2c, and c2f are all called namespaces in DokuWiki.

Person and place names are self-explanatory. As to other objects, this category is reserved for everything else that does not fall into person and place category. For example, university names, movie/song/book titles, drinks, and things like that.

Each section has an entry page. Written in wiki syntax, they are
[[Persons:PersonsMaster|Person’s Name]]
[[Places:PlacesMaster|Place’s Name]]
[[Objects:ObjectsMaster|Object’s Name]]

Each name entry is a row in a table. For foreign names to Chinese, the header of the table looks like this:
^Name^Mainland Simplified^Mainland Traditional^Taiwan Simplified^Taiwan Traditional^Hong Kong Simplified^Hong Kong Traditional^

In wiki syntax, it is:

^Name^Mainland Simplified^Mainland Traditional^Taiwan Simplified^Taiwan Traditional^Hong Kong Simplified^Hong Kong Traditional^

For Chinese names to foreign languages, here is what the header looks like:
^ Simplified ^ Traditional ^ Pinyin ^ Wade-Giles^

Once again, in wiki syntax, it is:

^ Simplified ^ Traditional ^ Pinyin ^ Wade-Giles^

For each record, we put links to the English Wikipedia entry behind the foreign name, and links to the Chinese Wikipedia entry behind the Chinese name. For example, in
[[persons:f2c:master]]
we have this entry for Vinegar Joe, General Joseph Stilwell:
|[[wp>Joseph Stilwell]]|[[http://zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E7%BA%A6%E7%91%9F%E5%A4%AB%C2%B7%E5%8F%B2%E8%BF%AA%E5%A8%81|史迪威]]|Please enter here|Please enter here|Please enter here|Please enter here|Please enter here|

Below is an example of c2f, Chinese to foreign:
|[[http://zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E9%82%93%E5%B0%8F%E5%B9%B3|邓小平]]|鄧小平|[[wp>Deng Xiaoping]]|Please enter here|

Notice the shorthand to the English Wikipedia entry:
[[wp>Deng Xiaoping]]
It works pretty well.

Note that I’ve found in some cases Baidu Baike and other Chinese wiki sites has more content than the Chinese Wikipedia entry. In that case, I put the link to the Baidu Baike page.

=== Examples ===
Adding a new person’s name
Suppose you’ve come across 17th century German missionary Johann Adam Schall von Bell (thanks bezdomny), who was appointed a ministry level position in Shunzhi era during Qing dynasty, you can simply append a record into the table in [[persons:f2c:master]], like so:
|[[wp>Johann Adam Schall von Bell]]|[[http://zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E7%BA%A6%E7%91%9F%E5%A4%AB%C2%B7%E5%8F%B2%E8%BF%AA%E5%A8%81|汤若望]]|湯若望|汤若望|湯若望|汤若望|湯若望|

This is actually an interesting example, in that there are additional reference data for him in the German Wikipedia, see reference section. I am still thinking what is the best way to point that out to a reader, perhaps in a footnote.

Creating a new page
Suppose you want to create a page for university names. This obviously falls into the object category. So you would create two pages: one for c2f, another for f2c. Here is how to do it:

First, go to http://www.haidongji.com/wiki/doku.php?id=objects:f2c:master and add a line like below and then save the page:
[[objects:f2c:university|University names]]
This page will be for foreign university name’s Chinese translation.

Second, after the page is saved, its link will be in red, indicating the page has not been created yet. Click on the link will leads you to page creation. Follow the same table format for persons and places.

Similarly, create a similar page for Chinese university names. This time create a link in http://www.haidongji.com/wiki/doku.php?id=objects:c2f:master, like so:
[[objects:f2c:university|University names]]

=== Keep track of wiki change ===
Subscribe this feed in your RSS reader:
http://www.haidongji.com/wiki/