Such a classic. This one was said by Richard aboard a ship in shanghai as we took a cruise down the [insert big important river name]. At this point were were only on our 2nd day of the trip and Richard was just establishing his "hat for everyday of in China" mission. Doing the responsible thing and building a hat safety net for unanticipated days of hat-lessness, he procured more than the necessary number of head coverings for the day and continued to wear all of them at once; much to the delight of the Asian pre-teen at the table next to us who was taking pictures of us with his phone and doing a monumentally bad job of trying to be subtle with it.
"Jake, don't even worry about your hair because I'm getting two mohawks!"
Caleb's two mohawks have since been shaved off but they were glorious while they were here. I'm sure there are pictures on the blog. Jake's traditional mohawk is still going strong and I'm sure we can all sleep better knowing that.
"These are great if you have to take a shit in public"
I'm fairly sure we can all guess who said this- *cough cough Betsy cough*. Not wanting any delay our going "full Chinese" Betsy purchased us all our own personal packages of toilet paper, much like the tissue packets that frequent American purses during allergy season. A trained eye can spot someone on their way to or from a public toilet by the Looking out for some TP in hand. We were also discouraged to learn that soap is another item on the list of things not included on the traditional Chinese public restroom.
"The whore in the wall."
Our Asian friend was summarizing historical courtship methods of ancient China. He told us all about the significance of certain architectural features in the houses of the village, Xidi, where we were exploring that day. One such feature was the "whore in the wall", through which young ladies would look out to peer at possible future husbands so they could later tell their families whom they wanted to marry. Nothing sexier than a foreign accent.
Oh, Upstairs Gals...
"Don't look at me like that, this is totally polite here."
She was assimilating by the third day. It is hard to say whether I was proud or disappointed with Virginia when I looked over at while eating lunch in a government building with some important-seeming officials and witnessed her holding a bowl to her mouth and using her chopsticks to push (some might even say shovel) food into her face, rather than using them to carry the Chinese cuisine from table to palette like we had always been taught at home. Betsy has insisted that this is the polite way to eat and even though I, as well as most other members of our group, partaken in this practice; I still can't help but wonder if the Chinese walk away from every meal asking themselves why the hell the crazy white people were eating like they had never sat at a table before.
"I have a way with the older women."
And we have quite a few pictures to prove it. Caleb boasted this fact during one of our first nights in Tangkou and has been proving it ever since. Better keep grandma inside when he walks down the street because if she has a AARP card, she has the right stuff.
"Girls, what happened to the toilet paper? We are in a code brown situation"
Just a little code used by the upstairs gals when it's time to steal some toilet paper from down stairs. Virginia is the one who said it but Mary Brett is the one who established it.
"This is for America!"
Said by Caleb, this was used to justify and keep going on a hours long "hike" with Virginia during one of our Wednesdays off. Apparently the Chinese word for "hike"also loosely translates to "you will first walk down a million stairs then walk back up them".
"Do you guys discuss anything other than chess and philosophy?"
Caleb and I have a running joke about Will and Richard's beautiful bromance that has truly blossomed over the duration of our stay. While no bromance is typical, they talked a little football yesterday...then discussed how odd it was for the to talk about something like that.
If one tries to listen in or participate in one of their numerous debates they usually find themselves thinking why the hell or how the hell are they talking out that. Such debates as "push-hands", the number 79, the spelling of the word "möbius", the value of $4 versus a bandana, and numerous others that have filled their intellectual appetites as well as entertain us all.
"This totally counts as my shower"
Something I frequently tell myself when in medium-heavy rain, swimming in the river, wash my hands more than three times a day. We try to live a very hygienic lifestyle here.
One of the games we play a lot while hanging around the house is Scatagories. There are multiple lists of twelve items, am item might be "boy's name", "dessert", or "things found in a junk drawer". A twenty six- sided die with all the letters of the alphabet is rolled and you have a limited amount of time to try and think of something for every item and they have to start with the letter rolled. This particular gem was written down by Mary Brett and you can imagine the laughter that occurred after we hear her quiet voice mutter "fucks given"'for "unit of measurement".
The letter was S, the item was "crime". Mary Brett can't be beat.
"Salt mines" and "piranha farms." "Meerkat rides." "Babes who are too into foreplay." "Ornate cloth." "Even wood panels."
Caleb is also known for extraordinary Scatagories answers. However, his are more often shot down by the group. S-"places to go on a date". P-"places to go on date" (we do lists multiple times). M- "ways to get from here to there". B-"excuses for being late to work". O-" things you fold". E-"things found in a desk."