Grass-Mud Horse Quiz, December 2015 Solutions

Here is the answer key for the December 31, 2015 edition of the Grass-Mud Horse Quiz:

1. B) Egg fried rice, what is said have killed Mao Zedong’s oldest son on November 25, 1950. “Chinese Thanksgiving” is also referred to as “Egg Fried Rice Day” (Dàn Chǎofànjié 蛋炒饭节).

2. C) “Breathes”; draw attention to China’s infamous air pollution.  Some netizens took an additional step, transforming the Tsinghua University motto into a joke about air pollution: thus, “self-improvement never ends, strong morals carry heavy loads (zìqiáng bùxī, hòudé zài wù 自强不息,厚德载物) becomes “self-improvement never breathes, strong morals carry heavy smog (zìqiáng bùxī, hòudé zài wù 自强不吸,厚德载雾).

3. B) Purchase stocks and securities as a sign of patriotism. A May 15, 2015 Weibo post by carried the headline “National Strategy Behind Bull Market: Bear Burden for the Country, Don’t Ask for Repayment!” (大牛市背后是国家战略,为国接盘就别讲回报!). Sina later deleted the post.

4. D) My country, a common reference to China, is ironically represented as “your country,” “kneeling country,” and “mystical country.”

5. C) Volunteer “anti-terrorism” patrols in Chaoyang, deployed during a “people’s war” on terrorism in 2014. posted a humorous column about the “Chaoyang masses” on March 11, 2015. The article was deleted, but the idea that the grannies practicing tai chi in the park were members of an elite intelligence agency caught on.

6. B) “Johnning,” to be framed for visiting a prostitute.

7. C) Power Whore. Li Xiaolin followed in her father’s footsteps, serving until 2015 as CEO of China Power International Development Ltd., a Hong Kong-listed arm of China’s state-owned power monopoly and subsidiary of the China Power Investment Corporation (CPI).

8. A) is enmeshed in China’s power structure. While the term “Zhao family member” is used to refer to government officials or others who wield much power, “Zhao in spirit” (jīng Zhào 精赵) is used to mock the overly nationalistic.

9. A) lawyer Pu Zhiqiang. The line, “Since you went to prison, the whole nation has been shaken. Nothing in life could be more glorious,” was co-opted from the film to refer to the prominent rights lawyer after he was detained in 2014.

10. A) and C). During important events, the Beijing blue sky often makes a rare appearance, as it did during the city’s hosting of the APEC meeting, or the annual Two Sessions legislature meetings, which in 2014 were held just after Chai Jing released her environmental documentary Under the Dome.

lexicon_2015_cover_thumbHow’d you do? Need to brush-up up on your subversive Chinese netspeak? Check out our latest ebook, “Decoding the Chinese Internet: A Glossary of Political Slang.” It includes dozens of new terms and classic catchphrases, presented in a new, image-rich format. Available for pay-what-you-want (including nothing). All proceeds support CDT.

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