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China blogs: Five must-reads, chatty cabbies, angry youth

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For those readers on the apparently impossible quest of "understanding China," and anyone who enjoys a good read, it's worth checking out this list of five classic books carefully chosen and discussed by Xinran, former taboo-breaking radio host in Shenzhen and now an author living in Britain (hat tip to China Digital Times for the link).

I think everyone harbors a soft spot in their hearts for taxi drivers (at least in certain cities), who, despite the occasional misunderstanding or near-suicidal road-handling are often some of the friendliest and chattiest people in the city. Chai Jing, a journalist and CCTV host, recounts some memorable conversations she's had with taxi drivers, pleasures that for her are reason enough not to drive a car. Translation by China Hush.

Chinese is a language rich in homonyms providing fertile soil for puns and word play. The term fenqing, often translated as "angry youth," gives such an opportunity for such fun, as K. E. David on ChinaGeeks shares: The same fen also sounds like both "aspiring" and "excrement." And what better way to categorize Chinese youth?

It's little old now, but if you were wondering how Zebra compares to other festivals around China, you can get the backstage info from Pet Conspiracy's lead drama queen Helen Feng. (Zebra, she says, is a well-oiled machine but not much fun.) China Music Radar also reviews the Beijing festivals, asking why sponsorship has increased while the quality of the festival hasn't, which could be said for Zebra too [and that question will be asked, and more, in our interview with Zebra head Scarlett Li in the next issue of CHENGDOO citylife—ed.].

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