The Chinese Strike Back

June 8, 2009

Well, it seems that I must have pissed someone off in China. It was widely reported of the great lengths to which that country went last week in order to see that the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen massacre passed as quietly as possible.

So, in addition to the attempts to keep people in China from accessing information on that event via the internet, they have exacted revenge upon me for writing about it.

My access to the internet went down the morning that I made that post.

The result was several hours on the phone with my ISP – sometimes even with an actual human – and several days without a connection. Coffee isn’t the same without being able to surf the morning’s news online.

I read a lot of news and used to buy a newspaper daily (sometimes being skinned enough that it was a luxury), and, these days, reading the news online is far less shrill than the stuff you ingest from television.

Even the most stridently idiotic commentary online is reduced to the manic babbling of a small, sugar-buzzed child in my head. Eventually, the child tires and collapses in a heap.

On television, the rancorous ranting seems to never end and it’s visually obvious that most of those jabbering away are old enough to, theoretically, know better.

Anyhow, China, if you’re reading this, thanks for letting me back on the internet.

More likely, rather than being back in the good graces of China, I suspect I’ve made a return because I finally reached the least inept person at my ISP’s support center.

Enya – China Roses
from The Memory Of Trees

I like a little Enya now and then, although I could only name a few of her songs. Like Bjork, I easily believe that she is from another world. Unlike Bjork, I picture that world to be more like a Maxfield Parrish painting rather than a Dr. Seuss illustration.

Red Rockers – China
from Good As Gold

I know nothing about the band Red Rockers aside from the fact that their song China seemed to pop up on every other ‘80s compilation. It is an engaging song, clean, angular and wiry. There’s something about it that reminds me of the theme from Mystery Science Theater 3000.

In the late ‘90s, I spoke with a roommate whom I hadn’t heard from in five or six years. It turned out that she was dating one of the guys from Red Rockers.

Thin Lizzy – Chinatown
from Chinatown

I feel no hesitation in stating that if I never hear The Boys Are Back In Town again, it will be too soon. For me, it’s on that list we all have.

But Thin Lizzy deserves more acclaim than they’ve received (at least here in the States). In addition to an impressive string of stellar guitarists that passed through the band’s ranks, there’s the late, great Phil Lynott, a man who personifies the overused term “rock star” as much as anyone.

Romeo Void – Chinatown
from Benefactor

A bit art rock, a little new wave, and a dose of punk – San Francisco’s Romeo Void weren’t around long, but they did manage to produce the ‘80s classic Never Say Never and even notched a Top 40 hit on the Billboard charts with the moody A Girl In Trouble (Is A Temporary Thing).