Fame and Celebrity in the New China

18 Jan 2007

It’s not new, but it was too good to go unlinked to:

> BARTHOLOMEW FRANKS AND THE SPECIAL FEW—A STORY OF FAME AND CELEBRITY IN THE NEW CHINA

> BY PABLO

> CHENGDU, CHINA—Bartholomew Franks knew he was a Seriously Important Person the first time he was recognized on the street by a complete stranger.

> “I was just walking around, thinking about velcro, when suddenly this complete stranger walked up to me, all smiling, and said ‘hallo.’ ” The man was a local seller of steamed buns who, Mr. Franks explains, recognized him by the fact that he wasn’t Chinese, and had a big nose. “‘Chang bizi’ that’s what he kept on saying to me, laughing. ‘Chang bizi.’ I thought it was pretty cool, so I gave him five kuai and a flourish of my hair, which is long, and flaxen”

> [read whole story]

From Long Legged Fly.

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John Pasden

John is a Shanghai-based linguist and entrepreneur, founder of AllSet Learning.

Comments

  1. Greg Pasden Says: January 18, 2007 at 9:49 pm

    So much for being anonymous. I think the fame is a double edged sword. One can enjoy the lime light and also one can loose their privacy due to the limelight. I have observed the this type of fame only lasts so long and in my opninion it seems like such a hollow achievement since fame is mostly ego based… But having all the women right now would be a wonderful benefit I think walking this razor’s edge could be enjoyed if one understood the balancing act that is involved with fame.

  2. Rachel Liter Says: January 19, 2007 at 5:57 am

    Was the five kuai for recognizing you or the buns. If you paid five kaui for buns, you got ripped.

  3. It’s satire . . . . . .

  4. SICK!

  5. I’m glad he used a pseudonym for me.

  6. although i am not Bartholomew Franks, I do often give people five kuai for recognizing me, and also for recognizing my steamed buns

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