Thursday, July 31, 2008

What Not To Wear

CBS News/AP Article
Polishing up Beijing for the Olympics has extended to the city government telling residents what not to wear, advising against too many colors, white socks with black shoes, and parading in pajamas.

The advice, on top of campaigns to cut out public spitting and promote orderly lining up, was handed out in booklets to 4 million households ahead of the Olympics, an official said Thursday.

The etiquette book giving advice on everything from shaking hands to how to stand is part of a slew of admonitions on manners, said Zheng Mojie, deputy director of the Office of Capital Spiritual Civilization Construction Commission.

"The level of civility of the whole city has improved and a sound cultural and social environment has been assured for the success of the Beijing Olympic Games," she said.

No white socks with black shoes! That's too funny. How about black socks with sandals? That was the fashion choice for Chinese grad students at UCLA 20 years ago. Will there be squads of fashion police enforcing these rules? My fashion sense is not that good; I don't want to get in trouble when visiting Beijing in September. :)

The down side is that the government spent money to print 4 million copies of this nonsense; surely the money could have been used more wisely. Trying to clean up the air and stop public spitting is good health policy; this effort to create "a sound cultural and social environment" seems kind of trivial. Once again, I think this is the result of the natural tendency of the communist government wanting to control everything, and having too many people that need jobs. Seriously, what is the Office of Capital Spiritual Civilization Construction Commission (maybe I need to see that in Chinese characters) and is that a regular part of the government?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Your article is interesting. I will put on "white socks with black shoes" that day.