Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It’s Not Over Til The Fat Man Sings

Over the Thanksgiving break, I asked Qian if she remembered the "This American Life" program we listened to a year ago about an American guy and Chinese girl and the story of how they found each other. Qian got a smile on her face and said that she remembered. I couldn't help but beam a little bit too as I recalled the story again.

Here is the synopsis of the radio program that brought smiles to our faces:
It’s Not Over Til The Fat Man Sings

When Eric Hayot was 23, he went on an exchange program to China one summer. He took an opera class on a lark, and before he knew it, he was on stage, singing the part of a famous judge. Accompanying him, on a traditional two-stringed fiddle, was a 19-year-old musician named Yuanyuan Di. Eric fell for her the moment he saw her, and began spending time with her. But a couple of weeks later he went back to the States, and that was that. They didn't keep in touch—it was too hard to communicate by letter. Then, two years later, Eric went back to China to study, and decided he had to find Yuanyuan again. Only he didn't have her phone number, or address or any other way to contact her. So to track her down, he deployed his secret weapon: The fact that Chinese people love it when westerners sing Chinese songs. This American Life Producer Sarah Koenig reports. (19 minutes)
You can listen to this episode here. The story of the American boy and the Chinese girl can be heard at the 9 minute 30 second mark of the broadcast. I recommend listening to the Prologue before the "The Fat Man" begins as well, though.

I'm not sure exactly why I randomly remembered this story that we listened to well over a year ago. It probably had to do with having a very nice Thanksgiving weekend. I have a lot of family in Kansas City and Qian and I had a great time visiting with my family and friends back in town. Having good people in our lives has made our move from China to America a smooth one.

Although the days are shorter and the temperature has plunged, there's something very bright and warm about this time of year. This story that I highlighted above should bring you this joy this holiday season. I heartily recommend listening.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Dear Mark,
I like your blog very much! Maybe because I also had a chance to live in China (a 4 month business trip in Chongqing). This country really stays in heart forever - and the the more you learn about it - the more you want to get deeper and deeper. Thank you for sharing your Chinese experience!