Mosaic of China with Oscar Fuchs — Season 3 Trailer
Hello, I’m Oscar. In this trailer, I introduce the new features of Season 03 of the Mosaic of China podcast.
OF: Hello this is Oscar Fuchs. And welcome to Season 03 of the Mosaic of China podcast. Yes, we are back! And only 5 months behind schedule! Things have been a little difficult for us folks based in Shanghai these days. But it’s finally time for the next 30 episodes, where we will once again be hearing from a diverse group of 30 people who are making their mark in China.
If you’re a new listener, welcome, and here’s a quick recap of how the show works. There are three parts to each interview. The first part is a straightforward two-way conversation, which starts with the guest introducing an object that in some way describes their life in China. In the second part, I ask every guest the same 10 China-related questions, all on the theme of their personal experiences, tastes and opinions. And the final part is just one extra question, where I ask each guest to nominate someone for the next season of Mosaic of China. And this is how the tiles of this Mosaic will connect, and continue to build out in future seasons.
We’re still on mostly the same platforms as last season. And there’s still a transcript of the show on the Mosaic of China website, for everyone whose first language isn’t English. But I also want to mention that the YouTube version of the podcast shows this transcript as captions alongside the dialogue. So if you do have access to YouTube, that’s a really good way to make sure you’re catching everything that’s spoken. And I’m probably going to incorporate more visuals into that video version too. For example, I want to say a big thank you to all the people who came to the Season 03 Launch Party last week. It was a great turn-out, and for many people (including myself) it was a nice reminder about the kind of events that used to be much more common in Shanghai in years gone by. The reason I bring that up is because I’m now going to include a little excerpt of the speech that I made at the event, and if you’re watching the YouTube version then you’ll actually be seeing the original video, taken by one of the guests, Tom Miller. Thank you Tom. The audio quality is obviously not great, so please fast forward 2 minutes if you prefer to skip it.
[Start of Video Clip]
OF: You know, there is one reason why are here today, actually. And it’s because I am very easily influenced. All you have to do is to say something nice to me, and then make me feel a bit guilty. That’s the equation. And somebody in this room said to me “You know, the end of Season 02 party, that to me was the highlight of the Shanghai social calendar last year.” And then he said “You know, you really should do it again.” Say something nice; make me feel guilty. It worked, we’re all here. Because honestly I didn’t really want to do this event. I think you all know why. Because I’ve been solidly pissed off for five fricking months. You know, I was ready to do this party 5 months ago. I had almost the whole season done, I even had a venue planned. And then guess what? That venue is now closed, and the person who owned that venue is no longer in China. No, the real reason for this party is because I needed this. We needed this. You know, when it was the launch party for Season 01, it was very small back then. It was just 20 people, it was basically just some of the guests of that season. And we were in my house, and I was saying to them “The thing I like the most about this podcast is the luxury that I have in meeting interesting people.” That was what I thought was going to be my favourite part. Then in Season 02, for those of you who were at the launch party for that season, I amended that, I expanded that. Because what I realised was that actually when people meet each other because of this project, that’s what I really enjoyed. Seeing people who make connections at events like this is now the part that I really like the most. But now it’s the launch party for Season 03, and we are 200 people in La Barra, and I must say the thing that feels the most important is just showing up. At this point, showing up means something. So let me go back and say thank you again for coming, it does mean a lot that you came today.”
[End of Video Clip]
There are photos from the party, just go to the events section of the website to see them all there. And I gave everyone who attended a little gift bag, and then asked them to send silly photos of how they’re using them. So check out the photos section of the website to see those too. If you’re in China and you’re wondering how to get an invitation to one of these events, please make sure you’re in one of the listeners groups on WeChat. They’re a great place to follow the show and its graphics, as well as to be part of the community. Add me on my ID: mosaicofchina, and I’ll invite you to the group. Alternatively you can follow the images on Facebook or Instagram. There’s no longer a dedicated Instagram page for Mosaic of China, I’m now folding it into my personal Instagram page, which is @oscology. So if you’re not already following me there, please make the switch. The podcast is also no longer on 小宇宙 [Xiǎoyǔzhòu], which is a shame because it’s the biggest podcasting app in China. They just one day removed all English-language shows from the platform. The good news for listeners in China is that SHINE.cn - which is the name of the electronic version of Shanghai Daily - has been syndicating the show on their site. And I’ll come back to that in a minute.
While I’m talking about changes, there are some more new elements to the show. One of them is that I’m now asking guests from the season to pose a question for their referral to the next season of the show. Credit goes to Logan Brouse from the Season 02 Wrap-up episode for coming up with that idea during our recording. Another new thing this season is that I’ve taken on board some of the listener feedback, and have tried to inject a little more of my own personality into the show. It’s not like I didn’t do that before, but now I’m injecting more about myself when it’s suitable. And when it’s not suitable, you’ll be happy to know that - as before - I will shut up and just let the guest speak. Anyway, there’s a new logo for the show which reflects this slightly new style. And I want to give a big thank you to Denny Newell for designing it, and all the other graphic signatures of the show.
The final new thing about the season is that the Mosaic feels like it’s getting a little more set in stone. Because this season we have some corporate supporters, who will be mentioned alongside some of the 10 questions that I pose to every guest of the show. So I mentioned Shanghai Daily earlier on, this season they are supporting Question 1, on the topic of favourite China facts. Question 2 on favourite Chinese words and phrases is supporting by the language learning company, Rosetta Stone. Question 3 on favourite destinations is supported by the luxury resorts company, naked Retreats. Question 6 on favourite places to go out - to eat, drink or hang out - is supported by the listings and classifieds app SmartShanghai. And an entirely new question this season, ‘favourite sources of inspiration’. This question is supported by JustPod, the podcasting company co-founded by one of the guests in Season 01, Yang Yi, who very generously allowed me to use their studios to record most of the season. Thank you to all these supporters of Season 03 and I hope that with your help we will be able to spread the word more about the podcast this year.
Let me leave you with one more thing. I want to remind you - yes you listening now - that now is the perfect time to subscribe to the extended version of the show, where there will be an average of 10-20 minutes of extra content for every episode. These will accumulate to over 10 hours of extra content over the course of the season, and they can be accessed for the tiny cost of US$2 per month on Patreon and Apple Podcasts Subscriptions, or RMB13 per month on 爱发电 [Àifādiàn]. Just to help prove that it’s worth it, I’m going to end this episode with a compilation of audio snippets that you could only have heard on the PREMIUM version of the show last season. And of course you can access the full back-catalogue when you subscribe for Season 03.
Stéphane WILMET: So in a way China invented crypto-currency decades ago.
Jamie BARYS: He invented 煎饼 [jiānbing], 包子 [bāozi], and landmines. You're like “Well, he wasn't all good”.
CHANG Chihyun: I was a sort of bodyguard for a gentlemen's club.
OF: Oh right.
Katherine WONG: So the guinea pig was used as an X-ray.
‘COCOSANTI': I’m smart, China, I am. I have degrees.
Louise ROY: But then you look like crazy religious freaks, as everyone walks down the street, bowed in prayer.
ZHANG Yuan: It’s kind of that I got a marriage, you know. I married my parents during these three or four months.
Jovana ZHANG: We brought a craftsman from China to do a carving on a concept car which we designed for Peugeot.
Sean HARMON: We’re a young group. I think our average age is around 32. And that's my age as well. So yeah.
Danma JYID: I lived in the tents, but now people think tents are too inconvenient.
Alex SHOER: The immigration agents were asking me “Did you just come in from China?” And I said “Yeah”. And they were like “Right this way, separate line”.
Wendy SAUNDERS: When we called, they said “Come back in March.” And we were like “What?”
Vladimir DJUROVIC: So basically people could imagine that the roof was falling on their head.
Noxolo BHENGU: When you come to one of my plays, I know how to do ‘depressing and serious’ very well.
Douglon TSE: They fill the red wine to the brim. And then you have to 干杯 [gānbēi] a whole full glass of red wine instead of 白酒 [báijiǔ].
OF: Oh man.
Björn DAHLMAN: Me falling on my ass. I mean, how beautiful can life get?
Jo MCFARLAND: Oh we once had some bicycles that we brought in, and the wheels didn’t go round. That's not ideal.
Seth HARVEY: There's not a lot of room for discussion, and if I teach you two plus two equals five, and I put it on the exam, and you write four, you're wrong.
Michelle QU: “吃饭那个，今天挺热的，你得买个西瓜啊。[Chīfàn nàgè, jīntiān tǐngrède, nǐděi mǎi gè xīguā a.]” Understand?
OF: I understand. And I’m a bit scared.
Ajay JAIN: I still see it driving around; I still see it in movies; I see it in America; I see it all over the world, actually.
Casey HALL: My mother-in-law, she was like “Nope, not enjoying this at all”.
‘DJ BO’: “Writing about music is like dancing about architecture”. I love the idea of dancing about architecture.
Salome CHEN: And he is one of the guys who proposed to me.
OF: You're kidding.
Michael KINSEY: Known waits feel shorter than unknown waits. So if you tell people how long they're going to wait, that makes it feel like it's a shorter period of time.
Crystyl MO: He was in the kitchen, I went in the kitchen, I met him there. Basically love at first sight, and I was like "Wrap him up, and I'm taking him home”.
Vittorio FRANZESE: You make the law, you find the trick.
OF: The tricksters are always one step ahead, right?
ZHAO Huiling: I would get so excited, and we would buy fried yam.
OF: I can see your eyes light up just talking about that.
Murray KING: We talk every day - obviously, he’s my brother, he's my twin actually - so…
OF: Do they actually know there's two of you, right?
MK: They do, they do.
‘JIYOUNG’: I mean, there are people who say “Oh, you're just like a drag queen,” thinking it's a compliment. When actually it really isn't a compliment.
OF: Oh dear.
J: Not that it's bad to be a drag queen.
[End of Audio Clips]
There you go, that was my hard sell. Please head to Patreon, Apple Podcasts Subscriptions, or 爱发电 [Àifādiàn], the links are all on the website. Thanks to all of you for your continued support, and I hope to see you back here next week for Episode 1 of the Season.