Let’s resume, shall we?
When I started this blog, I had a burning desire to answer two searingly hot questions:
1. What will be in it?
2. What will it be called?
The first answer came surprisingly easily: Words and pictures.
The second was more difficult, but then the inspiration became obvious: What parent doesn’t want to be like Amy Chua, better known to you and I by her universally recognised nickname Elvira, Mistress of the Dark. She’s that woman who wrote that book that time. You know? The one espousing a parenting style which, on close inspection, is actually neither Chinese nor American but seems drawn more from somewhere between the region of Draconia and Medieval Spain.
Some people also call Chua The Tiger Mother. This draws on an Asian idea that equates tigers with vitality and energy, at least when they’re not being hunted to near extinction for their bones and penises. That name grabbed my attention. And thus, on a windy autumnal day last October, there came into the world a blog called Bride of Tiger Mother.
|Amy Chua, the original Tiger Mother, shares a|
lighter moment with daughter Lulu.
Alas that caused confusion, mostly gender-based, and led to great internal conflict and me having artistic differences with myself. In the end I acrimoniously split up, but reformed a few moments later as The Tiger Father.
This was no easy task. First I had to check someone didn’t already own that name. I googled it and nervously awaited the results. After 0.27 seconds, they were in, and the news was bad. “Tiger Father” was everywhere.
Thankfully, when I looked more closely, it appeared all the mentions were about Earl Woods, father of Tiger. In particular they related to Tiger’s penchant for vitally and energetically bedding women. Most were about Earl’s appearance in a Nike TV commercial which tried to make a silk purse out of the sow’s ear that was Tiger’s sex life. This was quite a challenge. For one thing, Tiger’s image had been sorely battered. For another, Earl had been dead for four years.
Seriously. There’s a close-up of Tiger, looking like a remorseful fool, while we hear his deceased dad somehow say: “I want to find out what your thinking was. I want to find out what your feelings are. Did you learn anything?” Wackiest thing I’ve seen since that movie Field of Dreams, about Kevin Costner playing baseball with the undead.
I thought it was pretty obvious what Tiger was thinking. I’m no psychiatrist but I think he was thinking “I want to have sex with all these women”. So I moved on.
There was also a genuine blog called Tiger Father. “Drats,” I thought, “someone’s beaten me to the Amy Chua lampooning punch.” Fortunately it turned out to be another nutjob, from Vietnam this time, who liked collecting photos of tigers and putting them on the web. So with a little cyber-magic, I added the word “The” to my title and thus I was born.
|This is him - the original Tiger Father. This|
sums up what this blog is all about - Woods
|Tiger Woods spots a close friend in the crowd at a|
tournament prior to November, 2009.
So far this has been a most enjoyable exercise, documenting the real nitty gritty, the stories that have to be told or, as TV current affairs shows would urgently have it – the stories every parent needs to know – about life in Beijing. Perversely, there’s also stuff no parent needs to know but people without kids do. It’s all happening.
Sorry to all of you who have found yourselves unable to eat, sleep, or function at all while I snatched my two-month holiday. Rest assured this time was spent garnering fresh fodder for a parenting blog, ie, looking after the %&$#y kids while they were on school holidays. But now they're gone, I'm back.
So for more of the same, only fresher and better, strap yourselves into your couch with a cuppa and enjoy Season Two, Back By Popular Demand, The Blog China Doesn’t Want You To See, et cetera … yes, it’s The Tiger Father.
And speaking about China, let’s take on America! How about some writings of our family trip to the US? Hmm? Ok then. We’ll start below. (For anyone who may have moved to China in the summer newbie intake, there’s loads of China stuff in Popular Posts and Blog Archive down the right.)
PS: It really is the blog China doesn’t want you to see. If you’re in China, and you don’t have a VPN, you might not be able to see pictures and other razzle dazzle, leaving you with an estimated 25 per cent less enjoyment than regular users. Or you might not be able to see any of it, in which case you are not, in fact, reading this right now.