Saturday, February 03, 2007

Dim sum

Aside from my Radiohead-related efforts, I spent much of last year in the unfamiliar realm of business books, especially those dealing with the more hard-nosed end of human resources. You know, the sort of thing that gives quasi-academic credibility to the brutally Nietzschean process of firing people in Northampton and North Dakota and shipping their jobs to Bangalore and Bangkok. Learn To Make Underlings Love You Even As You Destroy Their Puny Lives And Condemn Their Families To Penury With A Single Keystroke On Your Spreadsheet. All that.

So it was with some joy that I discovered from pinyin.info, via Shisaku and Richard's Asia Exile, that at least one great myth of management-speak has been shown up for the absolute crap it always smelled like. The next time some David Brent clone with a functional grasp of PowerPoint tells you that "the Chinese word for crisis comes from a combination of danger and opportunity" I give you unequivocal permission to give him an authentically Chinese burn, then kick him in the fortune cookies. Because, like suicidal lemmings, and Marilyn Manson playing the hero's best friend in The Wonder Years, it just ain't so.

12 comments:

BiB said...

...nor was there ever a vote to decide whether English or German should be the official language in America which English won by one vote. Look, myth-mongers, it just didn't happen.

Anonymous said...

A crisis being an opportunity, the catch phrase of NHS management. If this latest bird flu stuff turns out to be the real mcCoy you'll see that it's an opportunity for the whole organisation to go tits up.

Spinsterella said...

I've just read that Peter Mandelson never actually confused mushy peas with guacamole.

Shame, I always rather liked that story...

Jun Okumura said...

Please note that Mr. Abe's evil twin credits our friendly East Asia Community Internet vigilante Shisaku for alerting us to that meme buster.

Tim Footman said...

Indeed he did, JO, and I've now amended accordingly. Thanks.

Doc: haven't the turkeys got the big girl's blouse version of bird flu, not the kind we have over here? I may be wrong.

And thanks, Bib & Spin - do keep those urban misapprehensions coming in. Oooh, it's like an episode of QI here. Can I be Rich Hall?

Tim Footman said...

Hang on, though... RLP isn't Abe's evil twin. That's Tom Conti. I thought Richard was the evil twin of that bloke off Coupling?

Jun said...

Tim:

It is Mr. Parry's contention that Tom Conti is Shinzo Abe. I'm the one who exposed Mr. Parry as Mr. Abe's evil twin, through his resemblance with Mr. Conti, somewhat in the way of those photo montages where a gorilla portrait shades by degrees into that of a human being.

orange anubis said...

Who moved my Chinese?

Richard Lloyd Parry said...

Whomever I actually resemble the most, the important thing is that everyone agrees that I am evil.

Hwaah-hwaah-hwaah-hwaa!

Billy said...

But are Chinese burns Chinese?

Tim Footman said...

Leaving aside the precise nature of RLP's relationship to Satan, and OA's quite magnificent in-joke for aficionado's of management wank, I can only offer a list of medical abstracts that may be of interest to anyone who might have to treat a Chinese burn or similar affliction.

Tim Footman said...

I can't believe I just put an apostrophe in a plural. What am I, a greengrocer?