On two separate occasions, in different parts of Nanjing, I have observed a local practice of bicycle use that is a sad commentary on value and waste in urban Nanjing—bicycles chained to the ground along the side of the road as ritual sacrifice. While they were created to be ridden for transportation and enjoyment, the sad, twisted objects with their tortured frames pegged to the ground will never again be used as a means of locomotion. Their “bicycleness” has been […]
Thanks to high levels of pollution in the air, today Beijing “enjoyed” a sunset that lasted much of the afternoon. Driving home sometime around 4pm, making our way through the clogged streets in the thick pollution, I couldn’t help imagine that I wasn’t in the present but in a not too distant post-apocalyptic future of environmental devastation. Then again, who said apocalypses have to arrive suddenly? Maybe they can creep up slowly like a car in Beijing traffic.