The last few weeks haven't been the best time to be an expat in Beijing with misbehaving foreigners and police crackdowns, so why not get out there and relieve some of stress with some hot parties and great movies. Read on to find out more.
1) Don't jump into the panda cage
It seems self-explanatory, after all a panda is a wild bear but for some reason visitors to Beijing Zoo just don't seem to get it. On May 18th a man jumped into the open-air panda enclosure, the fourth such incident in recent years, to get a photo of Gugu the panda. Instead, the only thing he got was a nice bite on the leg. Maybe Beijing Zoo needs to change its warning sign about the pandas from "I'm a loner and I have teeth that bite" to "Listen up idiots, don't jump into the panda's cage! It will bite your dumbass!"
2) Gay activists fuming
Gay activists in Beijing are upset over the fact that Beijing National Olympic Psychological Hospital (seriously, who names these hospitals!) referred to homosexuality as a mental disorder on their website despite the fact that Chinese law excluded homosexuality from the list of mental diseases in 2001. A gay organisation in Beijing was made aware of the website when they searched the word "gay" on Baidu which led them to the hospital and its services to help rid patients of homosexuality. The hospital has refused to comment, but apparently references to homosexuality as a mental disease have been taken off their website.
3) High rate of juvenile abortions
According to the World Health Organization there are nearly 35,000 abortions daily in China, a number buoyed by China's One Chile Policy. But it was a maternity hospital in Beijing that caught people's attention this week when it said that nearly half of all women who request abortions are teenage girls.
This has caused noted sexologists at various universities around Beijing to bemoan the lack of sex education for young people and the fact that teenage abortions pose a high health risk to the young girls involved. But as of yet no concrete actions have been taken.
4) Misbehaving foreigners and a crackdown
Unless you've been living under a rock over the past few weeks, you must have noticed that it's a strange time be a foreigner in Beijing. First, a video of a drunk British national sexually assaulting a Chinese girl lit up the internet and then a few days later a rude Russian cello player on a train added fuel to the fire as netizens across China ranted against foreigners. (The fate of the British national is still unknown, but the Russian musician has lost his job with an orchestra in Beijing.)
In the middle of all this mess, Beijing authorities began their 100-day crackdown on illegal foreigners in the city. While bad apples do exist, the whole "sweep way foreign trash" sentiment is deeply unsettling to expats in Beijing. To avoid problems make sure you have the proper documentation with you at all times.
1) XIU 3rd anniversary party!
XIU bar located at the Park Hyatt hotel in the CDB area is well-known around Beijing for its famed "ladies night". But on May 30 it is time for everyone to dress up in style and head out for XIU's Miami-themed 3rd anniversary party. Entrance is 100 RMB and includes one drink.
2) Great Wall rave!
That's right; it's time to party at the Great Wall. On June 2 there will be a rave in the shadow of the Badaling section of the Great Wall. The rave will feature two stages pumping out electronic music so mark the date and get ready to party late into the night. For more info email firstname.lastname@example.org. Just make sure you don't end up like that foreign student who recently fell off the Great Wall because he was drunk!
3) Japanese beats at Tango
If you like Japanese DJs then June will feel like Christmas. First, on June 2 world renowned DJ Steve Aoki will tear up the tables at Tango. The music will start at 22:00 and tickets range from 200-500 RMB. Then on June 8, DJ Shinichi Osawa will make his way to Tango for another all-out electronic party. His set will get started at 22:00 and tickets are 150 RMB in advance or 200 at the door.
4) Movies, Movies, Movies
If you don't like dancing the night away, no need to worry; you can sit down and enjoy one of the great blockbusters coming to Beijing cinemas over the next few weeks.
First, on May 31 Martin Scorsese's animated masterpiece Hugo, about the adventures of Paris orphans, hits Beijing in all its 3D glory. Then on June 8, the humorous Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted, about the misadventures of a motley crew of various animals, roles into cinemas (also in 3D). Then finally on June 14, the American breakout hit The Hunger Games, about a post-revolution world in which 24 young contestants must fight to their death on live television, surprisingly got approved by the government censors and will try its luck with Chinese audiences – so Kate Winslet's boobs are too controversial for the censors but a feisty young woman determined to break the rules isn't? Hmmm…
1) New sports bar near Beixinqiao
Just in time for Euro 2012, a new sports bar called Cu Ju (蹴鞠) is scheduled to open in the previous location of a Ningxia noodle restaurant in Xiguan Hutong near Beixinqiao. The owner is none other than multitasker Badr, the live music aficionado who runs the blogs beijingdaze.com and thenoodlediaries.com. The joint is supposedly going to be nonsmoking and will offer up the usual bar grub and a selection of imported beers. So if you are looking for a new place to enjoy the Euro football tournament this summer, make sure to check out Cu Ju.
2) Little Britain in Lido area
If you are a fan of bangers and mash washed down by a little Guinness then head out to the newly opened Little Britain bar near Gung Ho Pizza and Cafe del Mar (at the crossroad of Jiangtai Lu and Fangyuan Xilu) and enjoy a little taste of Britain.
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Keywords: Beijing watchdog movies in Beijing Great Wall rave Beijing crackdown on foreigners abortions in Beijing
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