Four More Stories and a Mooncake Dessert
Fire Joe Morgan have reunited for a day. They’re a group of old friends-turned-television screenwriters who eviscerated pompous sportswriters for years, and their site was the most-loved baseball blog until the writers shut it down because they didn’t have the time anymore. Among today’s offerings, I especially liked their takedown of Mitch Albom and “Is This Normal?” which features Joe Morgan himself.
FJM cited this 2008 article about members of the Department of the Interior having (cocaine and sex parties with the executives of the oil businesses they were supposed to be regulating. The federal government is a disgrace no matter who’s in charge.
The star of today’s El Pais article about the sorrows of young Spaniards is a third wheel named Oscar. He lives with a young couple because they can only afford rent by making it a three-way…I mean, splitting the costs three ways. The picture emphasizes the awkwardness. Oscar’s big smile says he’s trying to keep it classy, but everyone in Spain knows about this now!
A lot of great stats at the bottom tell you this is not America:
(1) 53.6% of 18-35’s live with their parents.
(2) The average youth would have to put 56% of his salary into a mortgage or 42.3% into renting.
(3) 13% of Spanish apartments are rented out.
(4) Spain only has 2,776,037 rent-controlled homes.
(5) The median salary of an 18-34 year old is 15,623 euros, while the average deposit for a home for a youth is 22,526 euros.
(6) Since January 2008, 213,257 22-30 year olds have received aid from the state for their rent.
Recently, a Chinese ship crashed into two Japanese coast guard vessels that were patrolling disputed waters. Japan took the Chinese crew in custody and has rebuffed China’s demands to release them. In response, China is making a lot of noise: halting exports of products like topsoil, warning that the number of Chinese tourists visiting Japan will decrease, calling off other negotiations, and even canceling a Shanghai performance by hella-popular boy band SMAP, which is just the kind of absurd thing that chafes apolitical people.
Heaven and Hell and Mooncakes
In personal news, I spent 45 minutes hunting for moon cakes, but it was impossible to buy only one; I could only find them in packages. I couldn’t eat that many myself, so I went home empty-handed. I could have just bought a set and given the rest to the friends I’ve met here. When I got to my room, I remembered a Japanese fable: in hell, a great feast is laid on the tables, but the chopsticks are five feet long, so no one can feed themselves, and they all go hungry. Heaven has exactly the same layout. But in heaven, people use the long chopsticks to feed others, so everyone is satisfied. So if I don’t get a big box of mooncakes for everyone tomorrow, I’ll see you in hell!