First time on this blog? Beijing Traffic Lesson: Left Turn is probably a good place to start.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

My Apartment was Designed to Kill Me

Now that I've been here 20 days, I have my doubts about whether the Chinese really like me. Oh sure, they're extremely polite and friendly to my face, but then they put me in an apartment that is a veritable Pit and Pendulum of ways to main and kill myself. Let's take a tour.

1.) Trip Inducing Doorways:

Most of the doorways, including the front, have a threshold that's a couple inches high. Apparently this is an architectural relic of superstition, which said that evil spirits couldn't make it over these. Large, clumsy, bleary-eyed Americans who just need to use the bathroom, for crying out loud, may have some trouble with them as well.

2.) Razor Sharp Doorknobs:

The doorknobs are made of flat pieces of metal, and the corners are slightly undercut, meaning that each of the four corners has a razor sharp edge that could bring down a boar, if said boar happened to be walking by the door with his arm swinging freely by his side.

3.) Convenient Electrified Showers:

Sure, they could have actually put the outlet UNDER the shower head, but where's the sport in that?

4.) Do-It-Yourself Defenestration Kit:

In the states, you rarely have free-opening windows in a high-rise building. At least theres a screen to help break my fall if I-- oh.

5.) Super-Secret Window Features:

Let's see, I just turn this handle ALL the way up, and--


--the window NOW tips into the room the long way, causing me to lose my balance and fall backwards through the screen shown previously.

After all that, I don't even want to know what the mysterious, unmarked, unmentioned shiny red button located above my bed - right next to the light switch, where I reach without looking every night when I go to sleep - does.