By SAICHE SHOU
SHANGHAI (China Daily Show) — Naughty schoolboy Han Han may be in trouble again, after challenging a neighborhood bully to a race – and winning.
The doe-eyed “Diet Coke of dissidents” reportedly got into a spat with classmate “Big” Dao Gu, 12, when the latter stole his lunch money during class recess.
Rather than risk his good looks, Han suggested a soapbox race down a nearby hill to settle their score.
But local police say the pair’s race-off infringed on public space and was a traffic misdemeanor. Thus, even though he won the battle of the karts, Han still stands to lose — to the long arm of the law.
The adorable blogger has been a thorn in the side of authorities at the Song Jiang No. 2 High School ever since graffito in the boys’ changing rooms, accusing one teacher of being “smelly,” was traced to Han’s school locker.
The errant schoolboy has since written quasi-critical articles on the school’s Intranet, questioning its canteen policy, bus schedule and curriculum.
His recent refusal to meet with the visiting headmistress of foreign faith school the United Church of America earned him further rebuke.“She’s just a silly girl,” Han pouted at the time.
Teachers are now exasperated for the youngster’s future.
“If Han doesn’t pass his exams, how will he succeed?” asked one. “There is no way to prosper in life if you fail the Chinese education system. What is he going to do, race cars? Write blogs?”
But it seems cops can’t stay mad at the cherubic Han for long. After confiscating his boxcar and giving him a stern ticking-off, police chief Wen quietly slipped Han a hundred yuan: a kickback for winning the race.
The same can’t be said for Big Dao, who claims Han cheated and he wants a rematch behind the school’s bicycle sheds — an event which could lead to more trouble but also possible corporate sponsorship, experts say.
So far, the Nescafe-sipping Han has avoided detention — but his sulks have earned him an embarrassing public rebuke from his mother.
“I’ll take away his blog privileges if he carries on like this,” Mrs Han warned him via China Daily Show, adding that Han should start showing more filial respect by “ceasing to slouch, sitting up straight and taking his hands out of his pockets.”
“And brush your hair,” she added.
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UPDATE: Han Han won plaudits recently for an essay-writing competition in which his winning entry, ‘On Racing,’ demonstrated the breadth of his knowledge and learning: “Having traveled widely throughout the school grounds, I can say with confidence that everything is working well,” he wrote. “We shouldn’t then knock the school, otherwise the whole education system might collapse — even though that system has produced a great deal of embarrassingly low-quality students.”
At the prize-giving ceremony, Han accepted his award from a tearful headmaster, adding, “The fact I have won this award proves the system actually works, despite what I may have cheekily suggested in the past. Them were just jokes, baby.”