Windows is a “chain” of bars in Shanghai. The original Windows bar was so successful that Windows Too was opened, followed by Windows Tembo and Windows Scoreboard. A segment of the Shanghai population considers Windows trashy, and not without reason. I still think Windows is not bad at all, though, for the following reasons:
1. The drinks are really cheap. 10 rmb gin and tonics! All drinks are 10 or 20 rmb. (Drinks in most Shanghai bars start at 30 or 40, and I’m not talking about the expensive bars).
2. Even on Sunday night when other bars are deserted, the place gets pretty packed.
3. Cheap drinks!
4. People dance. It’s just a fun atmosphere. (No snobs in Windows!)
5. Drinks… cheap!
Since the Windows model has obviously been successful enough to open three additional bars, I wonder why more bars aren’t copying it. The model is basically: (1) cheap drinks, (2) popular hip hoppish music. Nothing remotely fancy or difficult. As best as I can guess, the model is not being copied because (1) bar owners like to be pretentious, and (2) most people in Shanghai like pretentious bars. (They call it “class” but they’re not fooling me.)
Windows Too is a bar in Shanghai I have had fun at on multiple occasions. I can’t really say the same about any other bar except for the now gone Tanghui and the legendary Excalibur Rocks behind the Portman, which I found out the other day has already disappeared into some new construction site (don’t cry, Greg). Of course, the best time I ever had at Excalibur Rocks was largely due to one Jamie Doom, but that’s another story…
Jamie’s recent post outlined his history with China. It was a history which crossed mine. The most significant common experience was had in a college in Hangzhou we call ZUCC. (If you’re American, you say Z-U-C-C, kind of like F-B-I. If you’re Aussie or kiwi, you say “Zook,” rhyming with it “book.” I have always wondered about that little cultural linguistic difference.)
In chronicling my three years at ZUCC, I aim to do three things:
Create an easy reference for myself, since I’m very forgetful.
Provide a reference for friends and family with regards to ZUCC friends.
Provide an idea of what kind of salary you might expect. (Yes, I’m going to disclose how much I was paid for each semester I worked at ZUCC.)
A while back (years ago, I believe) I offered to host Jamie Doom on the Sinosplice Network (wow, that page is really in need of a makeover). Apparently Jamie is aware of neither the gradual decline of the Sinosplice Network nor the unspoken statute of limitations on such a verbal offer (it’s one year). By resurrecting my long expired offer, I was put in an embarrassing situation which I handled deftly… by agreeing immediately to host him. And then set up a WordPress blog for him. And then customize and edit his theme for him. And then write a post on my blog promoting his new blog location. Such are the powers of awkwardness between friends that haven’t actually seen each other in a long time.
But I suppose I should say something about the double cock action, which is presumably what drew you to this post in the first place.
Jamie was originally going to do his theme in some kind of wussy bamboo green theme (who likes green, anyway??), but I talked him out of it. I had seen the strength of the double cock action in his photo collection, and I knew that strength could be a part of his new blog as well.
From that humble double cock beginning, the theme took on a life of its own and matured. Jamie is anything but one dimensional, and double cock action alone is a completely inadequate representation of all that is Jamie Doom.
Jamie is a man of many talents, but I am sad to say that Chunky Salsa design skillz is just not one of them. I knew, however, that Jamie (and quite possibly Greg as well) had some serious, borderline neurotic needs for online Chunky Salsa, so I had no choice but to go that extra mile and put together my own Chunky Salsa layout.
Get it while it’s fresh… it may not last! In the meantime, for those of you that need it, each new Sinosplice post can be a fresh bowl of China salsa for your minds. But this blog needs chips. You, the readers, can be those chips. Together we will boldly forge into uncharted Salsa-China blog territory!
Jamie Doom is back in the game. He recently started updating his long-neglected weblog Doom in China (even though he’s not in China right now). Now his weblog is called “Doom in….” Presumably his weblog will be called “Doom in… China” when he moves back to China.
I finally got to meet the guy last night. He was passing through Shanghai on his way to Hangzhou, where he will soon be a teacher at ZUCC. First I’ll say that he was exactly as I expected his to be from his blog, and that’s a compliment. He was friendly, funny, up for a good time, and he looked like he does in his pictures.
I sort of did a repeat night out that I did with Amy, Carl, and Greg a few weeks ago: all you can eat and drink teppanyaki at Da Yu, followed by merriment at Excalibur Rocks. It did the trick.
I was a little disappointed by the initial lack of gusto on the parts of the eaters. When it’s all you can eat and you’re shelling out a pretty penny, I expect people to eat all they can eat. Those fools actually needed reminders! Same goes for the alcohol! It wasn’t long before Jamie was catching up with (and surpassing) me on the drinks, though, and Russell made a valiant effort too. By the time we got to Excalibur Rocks we were all pretty happy.
Highlight of the evening for me was watching Jamie do a solo dance on the floor with two hula hoops. I’m not sure if he even remembers it, but I was dying laughing at the time.
It’s always interesting to meet these bloggers. People choose what parts of themselves to expose in their blogs, but when you actually meet face to face, you get the rest. I think every blogger has tons of good stories he doesn’t want to write about on his public blog.
Anyway, good luck in Hangzhou, Jamie. We’ll meet again….
Mr. Quan looked at me and said, “I don’t want to go back to my apartment. I don’t want to go back to work tomorrow. I don’t want this weekend to be over.”
I nodded. I told him there were times in my life in the past when I felt the same thing — the dull ache of daily routine piling up on you. I told him, that is why I was happy to be in China.
Further down the page, in “Chinese Cultural Intricacies” he tells about CCTV’s plans for a miniseries in which he will play the role of an evil foreigner:
The television mini-series is about a country filled with greedy white foreigners (maybe Iceland?) attacking a small helpless Island filled with Chinese people (maybe San Francisco?) for its rich oil deposits. I don’t know where they came up with this script (maybe CNN?), but I think this will be a winner.
Jamie Doom only plans to be in China until next summer.