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Love at First Sight? Man Attempts to Sue Woman after Instant Crush at Beijing Bookstore

After waiting for 50 days to see her again, the man decided to sue a woman he met at a bookstore to trace her down.

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Every now and then, romantic trending stories pop up on Chinese social media in which people try to reconnect with people they’ve met. But the story of Mr. Sun, who tried to find the girl he met in a bookstore by suing her, has caused unease among netizens.

When a man named Sun saw a young woman during a visit to the Wangfujing bookstore in Beijing, it was love at first sight for him.

He first saw the woman in the afternoon of September 24th in the well-known bookstore, where she was wearing a yellow hoodie and “skin-colored stockings.” The two allegedly had prolonged eye contact, which is when he realized he had a special connection with her, according to Chinese news platform Pear Beijing.

Within no time, he lost sight of the girl, and was not able to find her again. Without knowing her name, age, or other details, the search for the woman was virtually impossible.

But Sun was reportedly so desperate to see the young lady again, that he went back to the store in the fifty following days to wait for her. Since the man went to the bookstore instead of to work, he had to borrow money from friends and family to sustain a living.

According to Chinese media, Sun has waited in the store all those days from 11 in the morning to 7 in the evening.

On December 10th, the man went down to the local Dongcheng courthouse in order to sue the woman, hoping to find her through the legal system.

According to the petition for appeal, the man sought to sue the woman for emotional distress. By tracing her down through the legal system, he further hoped to get some answers that would “solve his mental anguish.”

The Dongcheng courthouse, however, has advised the man not to sue the woman, and his case was not accepted. Sun now says he will think of another way to find the woman – whom he thinks might be the love of his life, – telling reporters that he will “figure out other ways if the normal way is not working.”

On Weibo, Sun’s case has received a lot of attention today. One Toutiao News post dedicated to the story received almost 30,000 shares and over 40,000 comments at the time of writing.

More than 170 million people have now viewed the Weibo hastag “Man Attempts to Sue the Person He’s Looking for” (#男子欲起诉寻人#).

Many netizens think there is nothing romantic about this story. Instead, they label Sun as a “maniac” and are worried about the safety of the girl if he were to find her. One Weibo user writes: “This is sexual harassment, not LOVE. He is a stalker, and totally has no respect for the girl. The girl should stay far away from him.”

Others suggest that reporters should find out more about the man and his situation. In the papers he prepared for court, which were readable in the Pear Video report of the case, he wrote down that he “possibly lost the love of life, as well as the meaning of life,” leading to some worrying about the man’s mental well-being.

In 2016, another bizarre love story also went trending on Chinese social media, involving a Dutchman who waited for over ten days at Changsha airport in hopes of meeting his online Chinese girlfriend – who failed to show up. After eating nothing but instant noodles and sleeping on airport benches, the man was even admitted to the local hospital due to physical exhaustion.

The Dutchman waited ten days for his “online girlfriend” to show up.

For that Dutchman, the story unexpectedly took a happy turn when it was widely reported in Chinese media. It turned out that due to poor communication, the ‘online girlfriend’ did not know the Dutchman was waiting for her, and still wished to pursue a romantic relationship with him.

As for Sun, if it were up to the people in the social media comments sections, he will never find his “true love” again. “Girl, if you see this Weibo post, please remember how this guy looks, and stay far, far away from him,” one popular blogger writes.

By Manya Koetse and Wendy Huang

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us.

©2018 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com

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China Memes & Viral

Shanghai Disney’s Crystal Castle Sold for RMB 1.8 Million

Shanghai Disney’s cherished object was sold off to the “dirty rich.”

Manya Koetse

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Who’d spend RMB 1.8 million on a small crystal Disney castle? For most Weibo commenters, it’s just a castle in the air.

Almost three years after Shanghai Disney first opened its doors, its sparkling ‘enchanted storybook’ crystal castle has now been sold for RMB 1.8 million ($276.500).

The minitiature bling bling castle has been an eyecatcher and a much-photographed object at the Disney resort.

Today, the hashtag “1.8 Million Shanghai Disney Crystal Castle Sold” (#迪士尼180万水晶城堡被买走#) went trending on Sina Weibo with some 180 million views, with many people wondering what kind of person would spend so much money on a decorative crystal castle.

According to a Weibo user, the castle was bought by a “tuhao” (土豪), Chinese slang for a “dirty rich” or extravagantly wealthy person (more info).

“Even if was RMB 180 [$27], I still wouldn’t be able to afford it,” a popular comment said.

“I went there just some days ago and was joking about whether someone would actually ever buy it – now it’s sold!”

“I’m happy I was still able to see it [before it was sold],” many commenters write, with hundreds of people sharing their own photos of the little castle. In 2017 alone, the park attracted 11 million visitors.

For the same price of the small crystal castle, the buyer could have visited the park 3706 times during high season (a peak season entrance ticket is priced at RMB 499/$75).

The display where the crystal palace was shined now shows a bronze statue of Frozen.

By Manya Koetse

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us.

©2019 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com

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China Memes & Viral

Meet China’s Latest Internet Celebrity: The “Vagrant Shanghai Professor” (上海流浪大师)

He is the latest online sensation in China, but what is this hype really about?

Gabi Verberg

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Over the past month, the popular short-video app Douyin flooded with videos of the so-called “Vagrant Shanghai Professor” (上海流浪大师), who has conquered the hearts of millions of Chinese netizens. His fans are determined to make the Shanghai drifter more famous, regardless of his own wishes.

It has been nine years since “Brother Sharp” (犀利哥), a homeless man from Ningbo, became an online hit in China for his fashionable and handsome appearance. Now, another homeless man, this time from Shanghai, has become an internet sensation for his poise, wisdom, and modesty.

‘Brother Sharp’ became an online hit in 2009 (image via Chinasmack).

It all started about three weeks ago when an online video of a homeless man who eloquently discusses literature and philosophy went viral on Chinese social media, receiving millions of views within a time span of just three days. The man was nicknamed the “Vagrant Shanghai Professor” (上海流浪大师).

Soon, more information about the man’s identity started making its rounds on the internet. The “Vagrant Professor” is named Shen Wei (沈巍), a 52-year-old who was born and raised in Shanghai. Shen reportedly once worked as a civil servant at the Shanghai’s Xuhui District Audit Bureau, before he took sick leave and started roaming the streets anonymously for more than twenty years.

Persistent rumors started circulating the internet, suggesting that Shen once graduated from the prestigious Fudan University in Shanghai and that he became a vagrant after his wife and daughter had died in a car crash. Despite Shen himself repeatedly denying these claims, the rumors kept appearing in articles and on social media.

Whether he likes it or not, Shen’s quiet days of reading books and collecting garbage are now seemingly over. Within a few days after the first video of Shen went viral, hundreds of people began searching for him near Shanghai’s Gaoke West Road, the place where he usually stays, hoping to catch a glimpse of the ‘Vagrant Professor’ and take a selfie with him.

Hundreds of photos and videos of Chen started flooding the internet, all showing the same image: Shen surrounded by people, holding their phones in his face.

Shen became a true social media phenomenon, even receiving attention outside of China, with both BBC and Washington Post reporting about this man’s sudden rise to fame.

For Shen, his online celebrity status has come at a price. When the crowds became too big, the Shanghai police had to intervene and escort him out of his shelter. While the police were trying to bring Shen to safety, people were still taking his picture and tried touching him. One woman even held up a cardboard sign saying: “Vagrant Professor, I want to marry you.”

Over the past week, Shen hasn’t been seen out in public. Some recent photos of Chen show that he had an apparent makeover when attending a class reunion that was specially organized for him by his former classmates.

As the hype around the ‘Vagrant Professor’ is slowly quieting down, more critical responses to Chen’s sudden fame are surfacing on Chinese social media, asking who this hype really is about in the end.

Many netizens question the invasion of Chen’s privacy, saying that this craze was not so much about Chen himself but more about people’s needs for a dramatic and touching story, and social media users’ greed for more clicks and likes for themselves through Chen. These so-called “like hunters” will try to get as many ‘likes’ as possible to make them feel good about themselves.

Commenters also point out that if it would have been about Chen himself, his ‘fans’ should have left him alone as he requested. Instead, they disrupted his life so drastically that he had to leave the streets he once called home.

On Weibo, one person wrote: “This is how I see it: all these people who took his photo are the real beggars, begging for likes.”

Other people wrote: “Society has gone mad,” and: “Even if you don’t want to be famous, they will just make you famous.”

The fashionable beggar ‘Brother Sharp’ who rose to fame in 2009 initially benefited from his overnight stardom. He received help from social workers, but once he looked like a ‘regular person’ again, people lost interest in him.

Brother Sharp after his makeover.

According to a recent media report, ‘Brother Sharp’ has, again, lost contact with his family and might be back on the street, anonymous this time. Perhaps the story of the ‘Vagrant Professor’ will see a similar ending once the hype has blown over.

By Gabi Verberg, edited by Manya Koetse

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us.

©2019 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com

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What’s on Weibo provides social, cultural & historical insights into an ever-changing China. What’s on Weibo sheds light on China’s digital media landscape and brings the story behind the hashtag. This independent news site is managed by sinologist Manya Koetse. Contact info@whatsonweibo.com. ©2014-2018

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