Asians are really stingy about paper napkins.
You can be sitting there, covered from head to toe in duck sauce, and be forced to wipe it all off with a postage stamp. Okay I was exaggerating about the postage stamp, more like a single sheet of toilet paper. Coming from the United Forest-Clearing States of America, where the average person uses about a redwood's worth of paper per day, the napkin misers of China have been pissing me off.
It's bad enough that the napkins are tiny enough to be diapers for small rodents, but the real smack in the face comes when you find out that you have to PAY for them. Granted, it's about 2 cents, but they might as well start charging you for other things that are supposed to be free, like straws, ketchup packets, and oral sex.
The real irony if you think about it, and Lord knows I have as I angrily wipe my fingers with my two-cent hamster diaper, is that China's supposed to be a Communist country. Charging people for napkins is something that even capitalist societies won't sink to. But if you walk around Beijing, and especially Shanghai, you'll know that in many respects, China's the most exorbitantly capitalist nation in the world. Everybody's obsessed with making money here. It's insane, whether it's speculating in the Shanghai real estate boom or betting on the World Cup games.
But I guess it could be worse. In some parts of India, they don't even have paper. If you wonder what they use to wipe their asses, hold up your two left fingers. That's called double-ply over there.
On another note, sorry I haven't been able to respond to posts. The government recently did a morality crackdown on Internet cafes. I guess they said it was to block porn, but it's also to block sites where people can read and post messages. This way, Chinese people can't use the Internet to criticize the government and their policy on napkins. So if I were to try to put down the url for, say, AsianAvenue.com, I'd get sent to a page with a stern message informing me it's a porn site. (Although if you've seen some AsianAvenue pages, like naka-chan's, you know this is partially true.)
For some strange reason, I've obviously been able to update my LiveJournal page, but I can't access or read my own or anybody else's pages. Or obscene comments posted by licegirl.
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