- Entertaining cats
- Making martinis: Shanghai's best
- Languages and language
- "Dot connecting", I am the Shanghai Guanxi Nvwang
- Mass mentoring young Chinese nerd girls
- Cooking (well, slightly good)
- Analytical conversation
- Internet shopping
I am NOT, at all, good at:
- Suffering fools
- Any sports involving balls
- Small talk
- Social markers in any culture
I am very outgoing, but also very introverted. I take a while to get comfortable enough with people to really let it rip. Then, well, I am not sure but I expect that what comes out is that I am smart and that I take care of people. I love helping people, strangers or friends, setting them up with a job, an assistant, a masseuse, a gym, whatever: it is not entirely altruistic, I do enjoy the dot connecting. I love and "collect" people, because people are so awesome and fascinating and bizarre, and our lives are short and what we make of them for better or worse is amazing.
I am a China history nerd, and my favorite China writers are Jeff Wasserstrom and Lynn Pan and John Gittings. And Qiu Xiaolong, and Duncan Hewitt, and Alex Harney, and Wang Anyi, and...and...
Right now I am mawing through the ouvre of James Mann, good if dense stuff. I just read for the first delicious time "To Kill a Mockingbird", and before that while down with a flu "Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell". I will be contemplating something entirely else next week.
I do love genre fiction, and television. I currently watch: 30 Rock, Parks & Rec, Community, Mad Men, Breaking Bad, Homeland, Game of Thrones. Old favorites: West Wing, Veronica Mars, Buffy, Angel, The Wire, earlier Simpsons.
Food! I love food, a bit too much. Stinky tofu and heavy cheese split my heart like a half-peeled hairy crab. I am a vegetarian/pescavore/flexavore; I think meat is a waste of resources and calories when there is cheese, carbs and stinky tofu in the world. But I make an exception for xiaolongbao, guotie and shengjian. I am not very good at being a vegetarian, but I try.
The only thing I really miss about the US, apart from individual people, is good Mexican and Greek food. I waitressed in a Greek restaurant during college, and...I don't want to think about it. But I am trying to learn to make good Mexican food, and my tortillas are approaching edible.
- my flat
- my cat
- my gadgets (laptops, cameras, smartphone)
- my notebooks and pens
- my stimuli (art, music, longjing, coffee, martinis)
I am not interested in: 1. Random email pals outside of Shanghai. I already have lots of actual friends I don't email enough. 2. Casual sex. 3. Anyone very conservative, sexist, homophobic or racist. (For some reason those three are half the messages I get on here...) 4. Anyone who self-describes, in user name or profile, as a "laowai".