Meet the meat

Foreigners have two contradictory images of “Chinese men”. One is the effeminate scholar with long fingernails and the other is the kung fu dude. This actually parallels real Chinese culture pretty well, where there has long been a tension between literati culture and the world of rivers and lakes.
Lu Buwei11 4/4 has a nice story to illustrate both literati fascination and contempt with the heroic redressers of wrongs..

Among those fond of bravery in Qi, there was one man who lived in the eastern part of the city and another who lived in the western part. Eventually they met on the road and said, “Shall we have a drink together?” After several rounds, they said, “Shall we look for some meat?” One of them said, “You are meat and I am meat. Why should we go seek meat elsewhere?” They thereupon soaked each other in sauce, then pulled out their knives and ate one another, stopping only when they had fallen over dead. It would be better to lack bravery than to practice this sort of bravery.

not much else to say, really.


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