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elitism rules

So the University of Auckland has allowed itself to restrict entry to all undergraduate courses. Predictably, not everybody is happy with this, and that familiar, foul old cry of "elitism!" can be heard ringing throughout the land, apparently. But there's...

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老诚一锅

Well, I think I've got the name of the place right in the title. It's a chain of restaurants with branches covering most of Beijing (including two within an easy bus or taxi ride of BeiGongDa), but we visited the one near our friends' place in Beichen....

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I'm scaring myself

Over the last week or so I've started to think that a National-led government might be the best result of the New Zealand election I believe is due next year. Not becaue I like National- I can't stand the arrogant born-to-rule pricks- but because Labour...

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giant pile of tomato paste mush

So what's the big deal? Well, before I get started: Here's one of the cool things about blogging. I wonder about the origins of 爸 and 妈, Haidong Ji offers some musings and a possible explanation, and then Zhao Xiangpeng provides a link to a Baidu Zhidao...

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wow

It seems our washing machine is finally fixed properly. First the motor broke, and so that was taken away, fixed, and put back in. But it was even noisier after that, and broke again, so the repairman pulled what I think was a counterweight (to help keep...

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gone

Mum and Dad left early this morning. It's a good day for flying, too: That stiff northerly breeze that blew up last night cleared the air out nice and good. And as predicted, the sun didn't rise until some time after we got back from the airport. And...

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last day

And so my parents' last day in China dawns- dry, blue sky, but thicker smog than yesterday. We need a breeze- I don't want to send them off in the kind of thick haze that had me rushing to the pharmacy for some Ventolin (available over the counter here!)...

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two random things

Just saw on Jiangxi Satellite (that human interest programme whose presenter's voice really rubs me up the wrong way, but whose name I don't know) an article about a guy living in Yunnan, probably somewhere near Lijiang, who has arms but no hands. Man,...

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大宅门

Not Laoshe Teahouse, but Dazhaimen. Still, dinner and a performance of more-or-less traditional Chinese performing arts. It wasn't too bad, actually, but unfortunately my body decided to crash somewhere between my last lesson and home, to the point where...

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pandas and electronics markets

Mum, Dad, and lzh are on their way back from Zhongguancun. Apparently I have electronic goodies to look forward to when they get back. Well, a portable hard drive (is that the correct English term? Serious question- I've only heard this in Chinese before)...

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