By PILI JIAOWA
SHENYANG (China Daily Show) – A strong, independent young woman set out for work this morning with an empowered sense of confidence, apparently unaware that it was, in fact, National Humiliation Day.
Li Hong’s blithe morning routine, which began with a rise at 7am to perform yoga and continued with a breakfast of muesli with banana while browsing her favorite entertainment and fashion websites, appeared to make a mockery of the date commemorating the 1931 Mukden Incident, a Japanese attack on a small barracks in Northern China.
The 27-year-old office worker then took a last look around her apartment – partly paid for by her loving, elderly parents but completely owned and occupied solely by Li – and gave it a satisfied nod, before heading downstairs in the luxury heels that she, herself, bought with her own money, seemingly ignorant of the self-abasing historical nature of the date.
National Humiliation Day is unofficially celebrated in China every year, to mark historical defeats by foreign powers, particularly neighboring Japan. The date – also known as National Defense Education Day – has never been properly agreed on by lawmakers but is generally accepted as being September 18, when Japanese troops began their 14-year occupation of Northern China.
However, even while shouting self-determinedly from her Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder at a male driver she believed had contravened her right of way, Li continued to show cavalier disregard for the critical patriotic anniversary.
As she began to sassily sing along to her one of her favorite songs by US group Destiny’s Child, Li’s morning commute seemed almost an essay in a woman’s control over her own biological destiny – a display that showed near-total indifference to her government’s notions of nationhood and self-image that morning.
Walking from her car towards her foreign-owned company, where she has acquired the status of ‘office manager’ entirely on her own merits and without any concession to patriarchal expectations, Li was only reminded of the importance of the date by the sudden appearance of anti-Japanese protestors outside her offices at around 9.18am, to which she unpatriotically responded, “Oh, for fuck’s sake. Now I’m late for work.”
Declare support for Diaoyu by clicking @chinadailyshow on Twitter or using Baidu