Beijing is cold.

It’s cold in a I’m-sleeping-in-my-long-underwear, I-don’t-want-to-wash-my-face-or-bathe, I-haven’t-done-the-dishes-in-three-days, I-understand-why-Medieval-people-only-showered-once-a-year, I’m-only-warm-when-I’m-asleep-under-my-six-blankets kind of way.  It’s cold outside: it got up to about 18 degrees today and it felt like Indian summer after earlier this week.  It’s cold inside: we don’t have running hot water and the radiators heat the bedrooms to about 60 degrees, but the living room, bathroom, and kitchen are probably 5-7 degrees cooler.  It’s the global warming.  It causes those record snowfalls and record lows in desert cities all the time.

This week saw record low temperatures in Beijing. Global warming, where are you?

I was doing some reading over at the People’s Daily today.  Here’s a self description:

Launched in January 1998, People’s Daily Online is a website built by People’s Daily, the official newspaper of the Communist Party of China.

That alone should lead you to guess that perusing the website would be informational and educational if you find yourself with some free time.  This article is especially interesting.  Anyway, while I love many things about living in China (and the good definitely outnumbers the bad), one of the bad things that ranks high on the list is inefficiency.  However, the People’s Daily Online impressed me when I read this at the bottom of their web page:

efficiency at the People's Daily

Pleasantly surprised at the efficiency with which the People's Daily is battling the Chinglish war.

If the blue type is too small to read, here’s what it says.

Attention: If you find mistakes in our website, please select the incorrect dates and press “CTRL + ENTER.”

I see poor English and Chinglish all the time, especially on English-language sites where the main site is in Chinese, and it brings two thoughts to mind.  1) If they go through the trouble of having an English site, why not make sure it’s good English?  2) I could make a lot of money proofreading stuff like this.  But props to the People’s Daily for striving to publish good English.

Also in the news, it seems that Yao Ming and his wife Ye Li, who played basketball on China’s women’s team, are reportedly expecting their first child.  Congrats to them, but I hope they have a boy if the baby is a Chinese citizen!  Ye is not a short woman at 6’3″ and Yao is the NBA’s tallest player at 7’6″.  I learned today that Yao Ming (b. 1980) was practically a creation of Chinese government officials who wanted some tall basketball-playing athletes in a bad way.  They played matchmaker to get his [tall] parents together.  Here’s one estimate of the height of their child-to-be from the People’s Daily Online:

(This post is brought to you by hot water bottles and wool socks.)