From China Digital Space
When I see something wrong, no one can shut me up!
Critic and author Yao Bo (姚博) goes by the pen name Wuyue Sanren, a.k.a. "Idler of the Five Sacred Mountains." He is known for his biting commentary on a range of social and political issues. In 2008, Wuyue was nominated as one of Southern Metropolis Weekly's 20 most influential internet personalities for his "shameless use of obscenity to vent his feelings."
Wuyue started his professional life in journalism, and began writing political commentary in 2002. At one point he became a venture capitalist. He is now a freelance writer and the owner of a restaurant in Beijing's Asian Games Village neighborhood, with side businesses selling antiques and other goods through several Taobao stores. Wuyue is the author of several books on Chinese social and cultural norms, exploring the concept of "face," self-esteem, and the code of the outlaw as enshrined in martial arts novels.
Any Big V has their fans and detractors, and Wuyue is not one to shy away from controversy. His commingling of promotions for his Taobao merchandise with regular commentary on social media has soured him on some followers. Still more were enraged by an October 2016 Weibo post on the romantic prospects for "old men" like the 40-something Wuyue himself:
As an old man with a bit of experience and some economic standing, I'm positive that those of my ilk, unless they don't want it, have no trouble attracting fairly pretty girls, or at least getting them into bed. Don't deny it, it's the honest truth. These tricks were written down and became second nature long ago.
But as a woman, you must know that the reason we like you isn't because you're idiotic to the point of childishness. In our minds, a woman's qualities go in this order: intelligence, prudence, independence, a good figure, and beauty. If you only have the last two, you're nothing but an expensive ornament. We'll buy you, but nothing will come of our affair.
Why? It's simple. If you and I aren't intellectually and emotionally compatible, we won't be able to get on together, right? I'm here pondering business models, and you ask me to go window shopping; I'm absorbed in a book, and you say I didn't respond to your WeChat message fast enough. Except for your value on my arm or in bed, everything else you bring is just a nuisance. [Chinese]
Wuyue is also given to provocative political opinions. He has not joined the Chinese Communist Party, though he once wrote a mock "application" to the CCP that waxed sardonic on the place of communism in the natural progress of civilization and the universe. In response to Xi Jinping's fitting shoe argument for China's development path, Wuyue replied, "Whoever buys the shoes has the last word. The common people pay taxes, so they have the right to say whether or not the shoe fits... The shoes themselves don't have the qualifications to say whether they fit or not. Shoes that do aren't shoes, they're shackles."
Read a selection of Wuyue Sanren's essays at CDT Chinese.
Wuyue Sanren at CDT
- Person of the Week: Wuyue Sanren 30 September 2017, by Josh Rudolph
- Wuyue Sanren Reacts to Xi Jinping’s Shoe Comment 26 March 2013, by Anne Henochowicz
- Destiny in the Flood Waters 24 July 2012, by Anne Henochowicz
- Twenty Most Influential Figures in China’s Cyberspace 8 December 2008, by Xiao Qiang
- Even If the Mayor Transforms Into An Octopus . . . 24 October 2008, by Jenny Leung