Chinese Language Week Trustees are popping open the rice wine after another successful year of sharing videos of people mispronouncing basic phrases, not bringing attention to issues faced by Aotearoa’s Chinese community, and promoting the CCP’s One China policy. The five-day celebration of not-celebrating the 260+ languages spoken in China is a fine example of what white people can achieve for diversity when put in charge.
“I’ve always had a deep love for Chinese culture” said BeiGu Wang, one of the initiative’s leaders this year, “All my girlfriends have been Chinese, except when I dated a Korean in second-year”. BeiGu, who changed his name from Brian Williams when he started learning Chinese on Duolingo in 2019, says that Chinese Language Week is all about getting your average Commerce-bro exposed to China.
“It’s all about the job opportunities—uh, I meant the diverse history and culture,” one of the Week’s “Mandarin Superstars” told Craccum. “Learning Chinese made me appreciate new things and taught me how to embrace differences, like my Uncle’s wife from XiAn. I’m definitely gonna get out of my comfort zone next time at White+Wongs—maybe I’ll try something that isn’t the sweet and sour pork!”
When asked what motivated participants to learn Mandarin, most people’s answers were either “further employment”, “finding an Asian girlfriend”, or “asking my Asian coworker to not use the office microwave for her smelly noodles”.
Despite the lack of abundance and diversity of Chinese involvement in the initiative, the leaders behind Chinese Language Week are happy with the amount of engagement they’ve gotten from across the Chinese community.
“We hear stories of total strangers going out of their way to tell a Chinese person in their community ‘Ni Hao’,” said one of the initiative leaders, “they love it obviously!”
Craccum is still waiting on confirmation from the Chinese community on whether they do in fact, love it.