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“Mommy’s Washcloth” – Shanghai School Uses Dirty Sex Joke to Teach Kids English

This Shanghai school gave its pupils some noteworthy homework.

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This Shanghai school has provided its students with a sexual joke as a “light and funny” text to study English. Chinese netizens are now making a joke of the school and the book it uses.

A private international school in Shanghai has given its 8th-grade students some remarkable homework to study English this winter holiday. Spoiler: it’s about pubic hair and extramarital sex.

The English text in the book, that has now gone viral on Chinese social media, is called “Mommy’s Washcloth” (妈妈的抹布). It is listed in the category “light and funny” and goes as follows:

 

Mommy’s Washcloth

There was a little boy whose mother was about to have a baby. One day the little boy walked in and saw his mother naked, he asked his mother what was the hair in between her legs? She responded, “It’s my washcloth.” Weeks later after the mother had the baby, the young boy walked in on his mother again, but while she was in the hospital the doctor shaved her pubic hair, and the boy asked his mother: “What happened to your washcloth?” The mother responded, “I lost it.”

The little boy, trying to be helpful, set out to find his mother’s washcloth. A few days later the little boy went running to his mother yelling and screaming, “I found your washcloth!” The mother thinking that the child was just playing went along with the boy and asked, “Where did you find it?” The boy answered, “The maid has it and she’s washing daddy’s face with it.”


 

The homework assignment was for children to write down their thoughts on the story.

The joke itself is not new; a quick online search shows that it has since long been featured on various websites listing ‘dirty jokes.’

The remarkable text started attracting the attention of netizens when parents complained about it in various WeChat groups. It was then picked up by Chinese news outlet Caixin on January 23rd.

The joke is reportedly featured in the 2018 version of a homework textbook that was originally published in 2009 by Beijing Atomic Energy Press, and has been distributed nationwide. The book is focused on stimulating pupils to learn English in a “light,” “creative,” and “active” way.

The Chinese translation of the text is making its way around Chinese social media.

The school that gave its pupils this homework is the SMIC Private School (中芯学校), which, somewhat ironically, says in its mission statement that: “It is our belief that students should be instilled with proper values, and schools share in this responsibility.”

Although the Shanghai school was not available for comments, Sina News reports, the Beijing publishing house did give a statement today, saying they were aware of the issue and were in the process of recalling the textbook.

On Weibo, however, many people seem to appreciate the “creative” English texts and find it funny.

Others just complain about the language difficulty level of the joke: “As a university student, I must admit, I still can’t understand this,” one person wrote, with others adding: “Surely the pupils won’t be able to understand it anyway!”

This is not the first time a Chinese textbook causes controversy online for its content. In 2017, a sexual education textbook caused a stir in China for being “too explicit.”

By Manya Koetse and Miranda Barnes

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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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. K Het

    January 25, 2019 at 3:45 pm

    Most students won’t understand this joke, but there are certainly a few who did. I have 13 year old students who have gone to English cram schools their whole lives and would understand every single word in this joke except “pubic”, which they could easily look up on their phone dictionaries. I doubt they would get the punchline, but they would certainly understand how sexual the joke was.

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China Memes & Viral

Meet Sister Zhang and the Heilongjiang College Room Inspection Gang

The “six cadre members” of the dorm inspection team take college standards for cleanliness very seriously.

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This scene featuring a room inspection team at a vocational college could be straight from a Tarantino movie – but these girls from Heilongjiang apparently just like to go about their duties in gang style.

A video showing the arrogant and authoritarian way in which a team of female students inspects the dorms at a vocational college in Heilongjiang, China, has gone viral on Chinese social media.

In the video, several girls wearing black suits can be seen stepping into one of the female students’ dorms as ‘the room inspection team’ and announcing their arrival like army inspectors, giving a special mention to their leader Zhang.

“Clearly look at the faces of the six of us, we’ve come to inspect the beds,” one of the young women says.

The team leader Zhang then brushes some of the other inspection members aside as she steps forwards and critically glances around the dorm room.

They then begin to give instructions to the female students in the room who stand by in their pajamas and humbly reply “OK,” and “understood.”

The snobbish room inspection ‘tyrants’ comment on the dust bins, the walls, telling the students they need to adhere to the “highest standards” of dorm cleanliness before exiting the dorm room again.

Some online commenters thought that all that was missing from the scene was a cigarette dangling from the team leader’s mouth.

After the video leaked online on social media, as it was secretly recorded by one female students, it caused somewhat of a social media storm focused on the “six cadre members” of the dorm inspection team.

It did not take long before the first illustrations were created to ridicule the ‘dorm sisters.’

One of the reasons the scene caused such a viral storm was because it perfectly illustrated the hierarchy within the dorm inspection team, with lady A first appearing, without much to say, and lady B being most familiar with all the guidelines relating to bed-checking, and ‘Sister Zhang’ having the final say in all of it, having the power to silence everyone else in the room.

After the video became a viral hit, the Heilongjiang Vocational College issued a statement saying that the video was actually recorded in October of last year and that the six student members involved have since been informed of all the criticism and corrected their behavior.

The video also led to some media articles diving deeper into the history of student unions in Chinese college campus life, with student-led organization becoming more professional and more rigorous throughout the decades; some even require written tests and interviews before fresh students are allowed to join.

Sometimes, students in certain leadership positions feel a sense of superiority and self-righteousness.

In this case, leader Zhang displayed the most extreme and dramatic ‘bad boss behavior,’ turning her into an overnight internet celebrity.

According to one entertainment blog (金牌娱乐) on Sohu.com, team leader Zhang Meiyu (张美玉) has temporarily left the campus and went home to escape all the attention.

Meanwhile, some hashtags related to the video (#黑龙江职业学院回应查寝视频#) have already received 150 million views on Weibo.

By Manya Koetse, with contributions by Miranda Barnes

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us. First-time commenters, please be patient – we will have to manually approve your comment before it appears.

©2021 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

Zhang Xifeng’s “Countryside Pig” Speech Still Lingers on Social Media

“I was born to be a rural pig, but I’m determined to snatch cabbages in the city.”

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Ever since Zhang Xifeng delivered his emotional speech on a Chinese TV show, he has remained a hot and controversial topic on Chinese social media.

“I was born to be a rural pig, but I’m determined to snatch cabbages in the city” (“我就是一只来自乡下的土猪,也要立志去拱大城市里的白菜”).

This is the sentence that took Chinese social media by storm after the 17-year-old student Zhang Xifeng (张锡峰) first said it during his ten-minute speech for the Super Orators (超级演说家) TV show in late May of this year (see video here).

In Zhang’s passionate and emotional speech, titled “Small World, Big You” (小小的世界大大的你), the high school student talks about his childhood in the countryside, the wide gap between China’s urban and rural areas, and educational inequality.

He also mentions his experiences as a student at the prestigious Hengshui High School (衡水中学) in Hebei province, and how he and his fellow classmates were feverishly preparing for the gaokao, the National College Entrance Exam, in order to “change their fate.”

One point made by Zhang is how he believes that rural people like himself are destined to lead an average life and how they are behind children from middle-income and rich families with access to better educational resources.

This summer, Zhang’s speech generated a series of popular hashtags on Chinese social media, and the student even became a so-called ‘super topic‘ on Weibo – an online community where fans post daily updates about Zhang and why they admire him.

 
Inspirational or Selfish?
 

Zhang’s speech left netizens divided. There were those who found his speech to be truthful and inspirational. One fan (@是冰羽啊) wrote: “I want to become someone like you who dares to chase one’s dream. You are a beam of light that shines through the darkness for me.” Another fan wrote: “I will work hard and try to become just like him!”

But there were also many who criticized Zhang, blaming him for having “distorted values” and actually looking down on people from the countryside. Others said Zhang was wrong for measuring one’s success in life solely based on whether or not they attended a well-known school.

Some comments point out that Zhang is essentially selfish, as his main aspiration is to climb the social ladder. Hengshui High School is also being blamed: “This school’s education is really a failure. Maybe students achieve high grades, but they fail at making valuable contributions to society.”

Zhang studies at Hengshui High School, a high school notorious for its regimented and even militaristic style of preparing students to get high scores in the gaokao – the school is even called “a gaokao factory.” In his speech, Zhang refuted the stereotype of Hengshui High School students: “We are not gaokao machines, we’re just kids from poor households who want to make their parents proud!”

Another point of criticism is that the really poor families in China would not be able to send their children to a famous school such as Hengshui High School, making people doubt the veracity of Zhang’s story.

These doubts became stronger when Zhang was spotted getting into an expensive car at the school entrance on the last day of his exams.

After his speech went viral and Zhang went famous overnight, he reportedly succeeded in obtaining a relatively high score for the National College Entrance Exam and was accepted into Zhejiang University. He did not make it into the more prestigious Tsinghua or Peking University.

 
The Countryside Pig Controversy
 

By now, Zhang’s speech and his “countryside pig” comment have become one of those trends that seem to stick around on Chinese social media.

The “countryside pig” comment especially managed to become a recurring sentence in the online media spheres because of how Zhang used it.

As explained by Alice Yan in SCMP, the saying “good cabbages snatched by pigs” (好白菜被猪拱了) can refer to resources being destroyed, but more often refers to good girls being ruined by bad boys – this was one of the reasons why that part of his speech was particularly controversial.

In the context of Zhang’s speech, however, the student used the sentence to convey the meaning of rural people trying to find a way to the (educational) resources and capital offered in China’s cities.

One Weibo blogger (@历史冷幽默) recently also wrote about how Zhang’s comments triggered controversy, but perhaps should be viewed in another light.

By mockingly comparing himself to a “pig from the countryside,” going into the city to “snatch the cabbage,” Zhang had actually wanted to express that even a poor and common student can achieve the results he wants through his own efforts.

He meant to encourage students not to give up on their dreams, and to take their fate into their own hands. But because his “countryside pig” metaphor was considered inappropriate, he was subjected to a wave of criticism.

“It’s not fair to describe poor people as ‘pigs’,” one Weibo commenter said: “This is just full of disdain for ordinary people.”

Other netizens however seem to take Zhang’s comment more lightly, and jokingly refer to themselves as “countryside pigs.”

“He only used symbolism to express how desperate he hopes for success,” another Weibo user wrote: “If you misinterpreted his words, it’s just because you don’t understand what that feels like.”

By Susanna Sun & Manya Koetse

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

©2021 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

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