the following two text messages recently popped up. they play with two core chinese values – education and proper social relationships. the humor in the first is self-explanatory. in the second, the humor hinges on the multiple meanings of 忽悠 (huyou), a northeastern expression that was introduced into national discourse through the skit, 卖拐 (selling a cane). the comic 赵本山‘s portrayal of a con artist who traded a cane for a bicycle by convincing his mark that he couldn’t walk, let alone ride a bicycle spoofed snake oil salesmen and gullible health nuts alike. the satire also established huyou‘s moral ambiguity; it’s not right to sell snake oil, but if the mark is so willing to buy . . . here note the characterization of 百姓 (the people/comman man).
the biggest training ground for assasins: driving school; the biggest training ground for unemployment: high school; the biggest training ground for prostitutes: art school; the biggest training ground for hooligans: police school; the biggest training ground for corruption: party school.
when a country huyous another country, it’s called foreign affairs; when a government huyous the people, it’s called policy; when the people huyou the country, it’s called crime; when a leader huyou‘s the common man, it called an appeal; when the common man huyou‘s a leader, it’s called stirring up trouble; when a leader huyou‘s another leader, it’s called exchange; when the common man huyou‘s another common man, it’s called business; when parents huyou a child, it’s called education; when a child huyous her parents, it’s called lying; when a man huyous a woman, its called flirting; when a woman huyous a man, it’s called seduction; when a man and woman huyou each other, it’s called love; when i huyou, it’s called a blessing; the friends who huyou me are happy everyday. friend, be happy.