七月 2007


最近裝了一個新的軟體,專門下載各式各樣的 Video。他支援 BitTorrent,還有 RSS。最近已經流行一陣子的 Video RSS 就是結合 RSS 跟 BitTorrent。甚麼電視上新的節目在網路上分享後,透過 RSS 便可自動將 BitTorrent 傳到自己的電腦,軟體收到 BitTorrent file 後會自動開始下載檔案。

由於剛開使用,我還不知道有甚麼 Video RSS Channels 可以用,但是裡面預設的頻道有美國 NBC 晚間新聞,是美國晚上 6:30 電視上看到的新聞。由 NBC 在網站上提供,所以品質跟電視上沒有任何差別。我現在每天設定新聞一撥出就自動下載。工作完一整天後回到家就能直接看美國晚間新聞。加上叔叔家裡有個 37 吋的 HDTV,我把電腦接上電視,新聞用全螢幕播放,坐在沙發上用電視遙控器控制音量大小,簡直跟看電視沒兩樣!

這幾天看新聞看下來,有時候自己都會忘記我現在是在上海。一直等到轉頭看窗外的景色,那一棟又一棟的高樓大廈,才會警覺到自己其實不在美國了,在世界的另一端,在中國人的地方。在這裡我可以吃我習慣的食物,跟我覺得親切的人一起上班,一起聊天,一起玩。但是回到家的時候,我又可以觀賞在美國看了8年的電視節目,看高品質的新聞跟 Drama 或是美國僅有的 SitCom(Friends, Frasier, Everybody Loves Raymond 之類的節目)。這是 The Best of Both Worlds!

上次在上班的時候聽到同事聊起美國 Lost 最近劇情怎樣怎樣,我很驚訝為甚麼他們會知道 Lost。我隨口問問這裡有播放 Lost?他們說當然是沒有囉,網路上下載就有了嘛!連中文字幕都有咧!我的天啊~有了網路,真的是甚麼資訊都可以取得…連電視節目都能輕鬆的取得。聽他們興奮的談台灣的綜藝節目,美國CSI, Lost, Desperate Housewives, 等節目,比我住美國住台灣的都還要熟。這個世界真的是變平了!

廣告

So today after lunch me and grandpa was strolling our way back to home.  It was just him and I, and for some unknown reason grandpa began to talk about China and its future.  Ah yes, I remember now, it all started with a Pepsi.

After lunch I was quite thirsty and I went to buy a Pepsi.  A side note, while I was lining up to pay, a middle aged mother fu**er cut in the line twice, I was about to slap him dead, but I digress…After seeing I got a Pepsi, grandpa began to say something about President Nixon and his visit to China.  Something about Pepsi Co. saying if only 1 Pepsi was sold to each person in China every year, that would be enough to cover the cost or something.  I wasn’t really listening attentively, still thinking about that bastard who cut in the line twice…

Then the topic somehow turned to China and its future.  Grandpa said he once told my dad that his hope was that all his grandchildren can develop their careers in China.  “China is our country, it will always be our country.  America is their country, and it will always be their country".  As I listen to him it occurred to me that my grandparent’s generation’s thinking is quite different than my parent’s or mine.  Although that is to be expected, all generation have gaps, this gap is deeper than I expected.

To my grandparents, they are Chinese living in Taiwan.  All their decisions of sending their kids to America and learning from westerners, are made based on the fact that China was weak and in turmoil.  All the things they did was to improve their own lives and wait for China to come to a level where it was suitable to live, as it was when they were growing up.  Inside my grandparent’s heart, they are always Chinese, no matter where they live.

Then came my parent’s generation.  They have never seen China until recent years (and probably some still haven’t seen it).  To them, Taiwan is China.  Mainland China is that hell that their parents escaped.  Now occupied by this evil empire, they are the surviving ones from the great war that turned China into this dark place that it is.  The notion of being Chinese is vague and only something they learn but can’t feel.  They say they are Chinese because the textbook tells them so.  But when they see other Chinese from mainland China, a foreign feeling arises.  It is still us Taiwan and you China.  We are different from you.

Then came my generation.  For the lucky few (including me), we have been blessed to be able to be born in America, to grow up in America, and feel that ourselves is true Americans as well.  To us, being Chinese is even a more vague idea not only can we not grasp but further more do not even think about.  We are Americans, and the good thing about being in America is that you can come from any culture, but when you become American, you ARE American.  All the past can be safely erased and you can belong in the mainstream.  Classifying us as Chinese Americans is an insult because Americans should not distinguish our differences.  Chinese Americans are the same and Caucasian Americans and both are no different than African Americans.  At least, that’s the way it’s supposed to be. 

That’s for Chinese in America.  For people in Taiwan, our generation has been unfortunate enough to be caught in the ideological fight of whether we are Chinese or Taiwanese.  Being Chinese suddenly is a political issue and most are afraid of being labeled.  When I say I am Chinese, most look at me with confusion.  Among Taiwan friends I am labeled as the “Chinese sympathizer", “friend of communist", or “deep blue" (translate those yourself…).  They are Taiwanese, being Chinese is something that their parents or grandparents once were.  The same way that we say our grandparents were once rich and wealthy.  To them China is a foreign country and they are fundamentally different. 

As I listen to my grandpa continue on his talk about identifying ourselves as Chinese and we should strive to make China our home once again, I wonder if he understands that at least 2 of his grandchildren do not think they are Chinese?  And at least 3 of his grandchildren do not act like Chinese either?  In my grandfather’s mind there is no identity issue.  He is Chinese.  The rest of us have to struggle what it means to be Chinese.  His children and grandchildren have never lived in China before, all we hear are old stories of a strong China.  His children and grandchildren grew up in Taiwan or America, and as such they identify with their childhood environment much more than this vague notion of being Chinese.

I have been fortunate enough to identify myself with Chinese.  Why this is I do not know.  Perhaps it is because in college my friends consists of a lot of mainland Chinese and so I do not find them any different than me.  Perhaps it is because all the 武俠小說 and history stories I read when I was a kid gave me such an appreciation of Chinese culture that I never considered becoming otherwise?  I look at the people who resent their own culture and say that they are not part of who they belong, and I am confused.  They must really hate what they are in order to say such a thing.

And so I am proud to say, grandpa, at least 3 of your other grandchildren now will probably fulfill your dream.  My two young cousins have never lived outside Asia.  They will both be coming to Shanghai soon (one this September and the other next year).  When I think of their childhood and how they will grow to identify themselves, I see an encouraging environment.  They will come to Shanghai and grow up with other Chinese.  Chinese from Shanghai, Chinese from SuZhou, Chinese from HangZhou, Chinese from America, Chinese from Europe, Chinese from all places.  To them they will grow to understand what being Chinese is really about, what it means to be Chinese.  No longer will they have to ponder who they are or what group they belong to.  Perhaps when they grow up they will even come to view their cousin’s identity problems or decisions as foolish and incomprehensible?  My, my, what a day that will be…Grandpa, looks like your dream will come true after all.

這麼多天以來,終於有時間跟力氣來寫寫東西了。來上海將近 4 個禮拜,前陣子家人在上海聚集,搞的天天一下班就是去餐廳吃飯,然後逛街,其實幾個禮拜下來還蠻累的!

每個禮拜單向去公司就要一個小時,說真的也習慣了。地鐵人很擠,但是大致上還算守規矩。地鐵慢慢的駛近地鐵站得時候,拿著大喇叭的人總是緩慢又悠閒的喊「先下後上,文明乘車」~喊的時候「車」字尾音還要拉得很長,好像在唱京戲一樣,挺好笑的!等到車門一打開,人就像潮水一樣往地鐵車上湧,就聽到拿著大喇叭的叔叔加快速度且略帶緊張的喊「先下後上,不要擋住門中間!」,但是每次總是於事無補,大家瘋狂的找漏洞,盡量往車上擠。等車子要關上門的時候,就聽到拿著大喇叭的叔叔直喊「車子要關門了!大家抓緊時間!快點快點!」。我猜等下一班車時,他一定又是同樣從悠閒到緊張的喊著同樣的話。蠻好笑的~

在公司的感覺,跟美國總部蠻像的。公司文化,做的事情,辦事態度跟程序跟美國感受不到任何差別。唯一的改變就是大家都說中文。這種感覺真的很棒,先前很多顧慮都消除了。想一想當初來得時候還害怕大陸人工作怎樣怎樣(被很多人講到心理毛毛的),其實都不符合公司現在的情況。別的公司怎麼樣我不知道,但是至少我的公司裡面,工作很愉快的。來了沒多久,組上大家感情都不錯。特別是其他的實習生,大家都聊得很開心,週末會一起出去玩。上次是滑雪,明天要去看電影。下班的時候作公司的接駁車到地鐵站,大家就像學生放學一樣,車上充滿歡笑,有說有笑的。有些人還一起搭地鐵,一路上聊天,一個小時的乘車時間也就這樣過去了。

我覺得上海跟美國公司最不一樣的是R&D還有行銷部門的人不僅沒有隔閡,更沒有美國那種藐視對方的感覺。大家坐接駁車的時候,R&D跟marketing的人根本沒有差異。我從沒有感受到marketing的人感到我們R&D的人是nerd或是書呆子。大家總是互相開玩笑,跟美國公司R&D裡面「marketing people are evil!!!」的那種感受完全不一樣。

在上海住了快一個月,我只能說,太爽了~八年以來,我第一次覺得跟周圍的人不在有間隔。在外國人的環境生活這麼久,我第一次覺得我在一個屬於我的地方。先前會害怕這邊的人因為我是美國回來的而排斥我或是把我看做不道地的中國人。現在都證明這些顧慮是多餘的,組上大家有人在法國待了四個月,有人去美國去了好幾次,有人從沒離開過上海。但是他們對我都沒有任何的不一樣,彼此接受。大家都會說普通話,我比他們會講英文,但是他們卻比我多會了自己的地方話。常常聽到別人講自己聽不懂的話,大家早就習以為常。

我常常想我的地方話是甚麼(台語?我根本就不會講),現在我知道,我的地方話是英文,我跟其他中國人沒有任何不一樣。碰到美國人,我就講英文。碰到中國人,我就講中文。這跟上海人碰到上海人講上海話,碰到其他中國人講普通話一樣,沒有任何差別。每個人都有自己特別的地方差異,我的背景跟成長環境比較特別沒錯,但是其他人又何嘗不是?公司有人從新疆來,有人從福建來,每個地方都有特別的地方。我從美國/台灣來,也有我自己特別的地方。但是最後大家從不分你是新疆來得或是海南島來,大家都是中國人。這才是真正的 diversity。

實習第三次,美國人喜歡說 third time’s a charm,還真的是這樣。我第一次不那麼討厭工作(雖然有時候還是很無聊的),去公司不再是去坐牢,反而是去跟朋友見面,大家共同為同一個目標努力。這種感覺…我國中畢業後就再也沒有感受到了,能在15歲後終於再次感受到這種心情,真的是等太久了。快23歲了,我在上海恢復成正常人。Just another person among the crowd,這種感覺,太棒了~