Monday, October 31, 2011

The complete River Song stories timeline

Right, I know I'm sticking my neck out there, but here it is: the River Song timeline as we know it.(Warning: large file)



I know, Rory isn't there. I may add him later. Also The Eleventh Hour doesn't feature River Song, but I somehow feel it should be here. (Perhaps it should be called "Steven Moffat series 4-6 stories timeline" instead.)

And apologies for the poor graphics...

Saturday, October 08, 2011

And this is where it begins...

... (Madame Kovarian, Closing Time)

You don't often see that a finale can be described by this, but this is Steven Moffat's non-time-travel but still timey-wimey way of ending a series exactly where it starts! He does love these things, even in Coupling the techniques of showing different time perspectives, telling story in wrong order etc have been used. But back to here...

Doctor Who Episode 6.13: The Wedding of River Song

It must be a difficult task to hide away the big resolution for an entire 13 episodes - it literally started in the first few minutes of episode 1 and did not get resolved until the last few minutes of episode 13 - only Moffat would have even attempted that, and I think he did that pretty well. I didn't guess it (before seeing the "previously..." part), and probably not many did. Part of it is because both inside and outside the whoinverse, it was stated many times that it "really" is the doctor and he "really" is dead  (e.g. by Canton, by Moffat himself). In an interesting way they are not "lying" because the whole point of the resolution is to make the rest of the universe believe the doctor is really dead. You may say "how can you expect people to be so easily fooled into this", but look at the Internet: half of the "fans" cannot get their heads around to understand the idea that the fixed point was always the Teselecta's "death", not the Doctor's, and still refuse to believe it even after it has been pointed out.

Overall it is quite a good series finale. I won't say it is "surprisingly simple" (as said in another review) though. Yes, there is no actual time travel, just an aborted timeline, but the way the story was told (interleaving the original timeline and the aborted timeline) appeared to have confused some viewers. There's even people bothered enough to say they don't understand the complex storylines and complained to the BBC. Seriously though I think they maybe should give up and watch Eastenders. However I think it is fair to say that the heavy series arc will drive casual viewers away, which is unfortunate.

"Haven't you figured out that one yet?" - the Doctor, Let's Kill Hitler

As expected, not all open questions were answered. Some of the questions that were not much discussed, but I particularly wanted to see them answered, but I suspect they won't be, are:

1. Why is the spaceship in "The Lodger" exactly a Silence spaceship? You are not telling me this is just coincidence, are you? Is it really an attempt by someone to build a time machine, and if so, why? And what about the tunnels around the entire Earth thing, is it related?

2. Why/how did the Silence blow up the TARDIS, and more importantly,why that particular point in time and space (as the Doctor himself asked)? Why at Amy's garden, just before her wedding?

3. What's written on the cot? If it is the Doctor's or River's name, how on earth can the Doctor deduce anything from it? (If it really is the doctor's cot, it would make no sense for River's name to be on it - I suspect there is some further timey-wimey stuff going on...) And by the way why was he so gleeful (though that scene is amusing to watch) - he should have half-guessed it long time ago?

"It's more than just a secret" - Madame de Pompadour, The Girl in the Fireplace

Doctor's name is now officially not just a secret but serves a significant plot purpose in Series 7 or after. In Forest of the Dead the Doctor said River knew his name, that "there is only one time I could" (tell anyone his name). Lots of speculation suggested this would be his marriage, but as we have just seen, it is not. So when will it be? Presumably The Fall of the Eleventh, but what happens then, why would that be the only time to tell his name? And River will be around when that happens?

"My time is running out..." - the Doctor, Closing Time

Maybe not for him yet, but it is for Doctor Who Confidential. At least they have a good last contribution, showing the entire River Song timeline from her perspective. But otherwise the programme has recently started to show irrelevant pointless stuff - like putting Karen Gillan in a car (why not do it in Top Gear?!) So in a way, it makes sense to cut the programme. But like many "fans" I sometimes fear that the end is about to come. I always have the thought that, "they won't cut the main show directly, first they will start with the spin-offs, then they will mess with the scheduling until no one watches it". Well we might be seeing the beginning of it here...

Saturday, September 24, 2011

How religion eats people

This may not be a particularly excellent episode, and it certainly will not be the most loved one. In fact it will probably be hated by quite some people. But any attack on religion is good, isn't it?

Doctor Who Episode 6.11: The God Complex

Doctor Who has a history of satiring about religion. I don't know about the old series, but even in the new series it appeared quite a few times; in Parting of the Ways, the Dalek Emperor claimed to be god because he created the new Daleks... just make you think, if somebody created you (or claim to have created you), why does it automatically mean that you should "worship" him? This isn't just an RTD thing; in series 5 and 6 we already have those clerics which for some yet-unknown reason are military-looking; in A Good Man Goes to War the headless monks cut their (and others) heads because (not exact wording, but means something like) the logical mind obstructs faith and pure faith can only be obtained by removing the ability to reason.

In this episode though, religious faith are the core of the story.
  • I like the idea that "gods" are just creatures from outer space that "fall from the sky" and feed on people's faith (as a form of emotional energy) as food. It is probably not new, but still nice to see it on a TV programme that was watched by millions, many of them kids.
  • Although sci-fi never spell it out, the parallels to real-world religions is always there. In this particular episode we see how these monsters instill fear in people to turn them into believing the "god"; those who are turned will then constantly "praise him"; and most importantly those believers now feel "happiness" and "peace" despite the impending doom, in fact the closer they are being eaten the happier they become.

    Sounds familiar?
  • Of course, the best bit is that "gods" actually get punished: when civilizations get sufficiently advanced, they realize what gods are and decide they have enough of them, they build prisons, send them off to outer space and make sure the gods suffer long enough. Again, it is not new, in fact it has some interesting similarities with RTD's The Second Coming, which is every bit as weird just by reading the wikipedia page.

    Seems a very very long way to go for this earthly civilization, though...
The episode also features an interesting parallel on the Doctor's life to the "god's": both pick people up for the purpose of getting adored or worshipped. It has not been explicitly mentioned, but there has always been such a suggestion, the dangerous idea - for example in Moffat's short story Continuity Errors - that the Doctor can and do manipulate people's minds to make them believe what he wants them to believe. In a way he is also a "god" that bends and twists people's minds for his own purpose, even pleasure. To tie in with the series' theme the parallel was made further on the Doctor's death. I feel it is a bit heavy handed though; there is no need for the Doctor to spell out the Minotaur's last line "I wasn't talking about myself". Just let it fly past those who don't get it.

Overall, it's a clever episode, incorporateing some interesting thought-provoking ideas. I think episodes 9, 10 and 11 have been very good, even better than those River Song-related stories. Now just two more episodes to go...

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

completely rubbish?

我常「鄧」古德明可憐,堅持舊式一點的英文便經常給人批評,把字典例句搬出來人人便說他只懂讀字典學英文。那難道像葉劉淑儀般用在 Google 打 completely rubbish 第一個彈出來的 result 乎? (有「多達」三千幾人看過那 video 呢)

英文我是不懂的了,就隨便打幾句出來,看看各位認為那句是對,那句是錯,那些 adverb 又修飾些甚麼...
 
1. This is completely rubbish / This is complete rubbish.
2. This is completely madness / This is completely mad / This is complete madness.
3. This world is crazy. Yes, it truly is.
4. This is simply a sentence.
5. It really is a rubbish bin / It is a really rubbish bin.

Friday, August 26, 2011

A half-dead laptop, a half-dead TV aerial and a new half-series of DW

A few days ago I thought my laptop was properly dead. I assume it must be this well-documented problem of the Nvidia 8xxx series display chip. But perhaps I shouldn't complain too much: one, it happens a few years later than it did to some other people, and two, I actually managed to savage the computer by going into safe mode and disabling the card and thereby switches to, presumably, the on-board display. So far it seems to be holding up - I'm typing from this thing right now - although not sure for how long. I suppose I can tolerate the lower resolution and the sluggish response.

Now I'm thinking maybe I should buy a desktop PC - so far I have always been using a large-screen laptop as a desktop replacement, but it seems to make sense to split the money instead on a small netbook/tablet and an average desktop. There are plenty of cheap PCs in this country, just that the spec is a bit... meh. Looks like they are months if not years behind the newest models. And 20% VAT...

And in addition to that, the TV is not receiving properly either since this digital switchover thing. I was told that the (communal) aerial is to blame, but the management company seems pretty determined not to do anything about it until at least after the second stage of the switchover, and probably long after that. So now over a hundred people who share that aerial are sitting through this bank holiday without BBC1, 2, 3 and 80. I can get a very poor analogue BBC1/2 signal from a different transmitter, but it too will be switched off in a couple of week's time. They can take a better time; Doctor Who is coming back, you know.

Speaking of which, this remaining half-series of DW seems even more insane than ever (a shape-shifting spaceship with metallic jellyfish and miniaturized people inside who are time police?! Egyptian pyramid labeled as USA Area 52 with a train running right inside it?!) Only if the episodes are half as good as the trailers I'll be very happy. They certainly know how to make trailers. And what trailer music they used too...

Friday, August 19, 2011

亡德作賊 媚共求榮

亡德

我衰衰地也是港大舊生,但見港大今天淪落至此,但求攀附權貴,賣校求榮,實在是不堪入目,只能引以為恥。

徐立之初來之時,看樣子也算是開明,這些年來也沒有做過甚麼太過無恥的事。「北望神州」等是在所難免,但至少比鄭耀宗好得多。大概多年來耳濡目染,在醬缸裡待得久了,今次的所作所為,比鄭耀宗好不了多少,唯一不同的是可賴給其他低層的人或警方等。但既為一校之長,所有事最終自然唯你是問。撞跌多少個學生,說錯些甚麼說話等,是微枝末節,重點是沒有腰骨,只懂奉承。事後還耍無賴,砌辭狡辯,連一句道歉也沒有。

作賊

徐立之你不知是不是作賊心虛呢,一時說 「副總理李克強出席典禮,是對方的安排」 (你生日會有人白撞?),一時又說李克強是 「應港大邀請到訪」。再說,李克強於港大無名無分,竟居中坐「龍椅」,就像 facebook 有人說的:「我說白了,即使是黑社會,也斷不會到人家的生日會坐中間的!

不過我好心提醒你一句,偉大祖國的「國情」與眾不同,「未來總理」嘛,嘿嘿,也難說得很,小心擦錯鞋啊。

「而家港大唔再係香港既大學」

本來這只是一時口誤,不宜苛責,但重點是他說的是正是事實。在他的領導下,那些甚麼河套區校園啊 (好人好姐搬去邊境?),或直接去深圳開分校,迫香港學生返大陸讀啊 (回鄉証給公安沒收了的「攪事分子」,或怕吃地溝油死 / 電視機爆炸死 / 給城管打死 / 搭高鐵撞死 /... 而不肯返大陸的,是否就沒書讀?),「中港融合」得很好嘛。

這也不止是港大,香港淪陷十多年,間間也是這樣,看誰做得最難看而已。

徐立之要加把勁啊,不然讓人捷足先登,他日淪為特區人民第二或第三大學,便很樣衰的了。「大學之盜,在明明屈,在欺民,在止於至賤。」大家共勉之...

See also:
亡德作賊.港大之恥 (http://plastichk.blogspot.com/2011/08/blog-post_18.html)
徐立之毁掉港大百年聲譽 (http://thosewerethedays.wordpress.com/2011/08/19/徐立之毁掉港大百年聲譽/ )

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Quit FIFA now!

So an organization runs an election, A wants to get re-elected, B is the challenger. Suddenly B is accused of bribery, then B revenges and claims A is corrupted too, then A sets up an inquiry to investigate B, then B pulls out of the election, then A also sets up an inquiry to clear his own name, then A is "elected" unopposed as the only candidate. All under the sun as if the rest of the world are all blind.

I said it before, and I am glad that someone else is also saying it: can someone break away and start a rebel league? Clearly it is impossible for this organization to "improve" from within: the FIFA bosses are elected by such a small number of national FAs; the bosses and the national FAs give benefit to each other and it is their mutual advantage to keep things as they are; the national FAs are not accountable by the greater public either (say if some government wants to investigate this scandal, they will say this is "political interference" and suspend the country from FIFA).

So why not take this chance to quit it altogether? You have an unhappy English FA (of course, none of this would have happened if England won the 2018 bid, or just lost less embarrassingly - they are just losers of the game, but still), and a lucrative English Premier League. Try to get one or two more European countries and leagues on board - this is where the money (i.e. power) are. Who cares about football corruption somewhere in Africa or central America anyway? Then you might, just might, be able to start a revolution...

Friday, May 20, 2011

A TARDIS inside a TARDIS inside a TARDIS inside a TARDIS...

First off, a brief word about Episode 3; I think it is a perfectly fine episode. As far as filler episodes go, it is actually very good and very carefully constructed and the twist is unexpected yet sensible.

Now back to this episode...

Doctor Who Episode 6.04: The Doctor's Wife
I didn't like the idea of a "personification" of the TARDIS. But somehow it worked really well, and I think it is all down to the actress pulling it off very convincingly. Even down to the accent; I quite like that accent.

Anyway here is a list of random thoughts:

1. So, Idris (the "soul" of the TARDIS trapped in human body) travels using the freshly-constructed TARDIS, which then materialised inside the Tennant-era TARDIS, which has been archived inside the current TARDIS.

2. Rory dies again. I've counted that he dies on average every other episode (only counting episodes that he actually travels along: that's episode 7 and 9 of 6,7,8,9,12,13 in Series 5, and episodes 2,3,4 out of 1-4 in Series 6.)

3. Oh no, the swimming pool! Ditched!

4. "The only water in the forest is the river." Hinting at River Song-Amy Pond struggle?

Thursday, May 19, 2011

When should a yellow card be given?

Seriously, I'm not making this up:
"You must not talk to other students whilst you are in the examination room. If you are heard talking an invigilator will issue you with a yellow warning card. If you are issued with more than one warning card, you will be required to leave the examination room and you will be awarded a mark of zero..."
I didn't say where I get this, if you make any logical conclusions yourself that's your problem.

Saturday, May 07, 2011

River Song with a gun

So, our brains were all melting after this episode. Despite being a big Moffat fan I'm less and less convinced about the grand scheme of things. I think his best episodes are the ones when everything has to be resolved completely in one episode (Blink, The Girl in the Fireplace). I can only hope I will be proved totally wrong. Below are some questions that are either big mysteries that will be resolved, or just glaringly big plot holes.

Doctor Who Episode 6.02: Day of the Moon

Observations:

(1) Amy and the Silence:

Amy surely is somehow related to the creation or origin of the Silence: "You will bring the Silence". Is this related to her "quantum" pregnancy and the little girl?

But at the same time it is the Silence who bring the girl up by putting her in the spacesuit - possibly even create her (from Amy?) in the first place. The quick flashes as she wakes up in the proto-TARDIS clearly indicates that the Silence did something to her during that long period of time.

Back to the Future, anyone?

(2) Doctor-Silence similarity:

It is a mad theory, but I can't help notice that the Silence are in some sense similar to Time Lords. They attempted to build a TARDIS; they can manipulate people's memory, which is not dissimilar to Time Lord's abilities (for example, the Doctor planted the memory of "something blue" into Amelia in The Big Bang). This "dark" side of the Doctor (?) is described in Moffat's short story Continuity Errors, where lots of ideas have found their ways into the TV series (a planet-sized library; time-travelling archaelogist; "a hero to many"; rewrite a person's past to achieve a particular aim for himself).

The girl can regenerate, so surely she is at least part- Time Lord. Why would the Silence want to bring up a (part-) Time Lord?

(3) Spacesuit-Cyberman similarity:

The spacesuit is some sort of a womb to sustain life, and it chases down the little girl to "eat" her, much like the cyberman head opens and tries to "eat" Amy in The Pandorica Opens.

(4) Cracks vs Silence:

By creating this memory-erasure plot point, now Moffat can insert anything back in the show's history at any point - just say that the characters have forgotten them. So Series 5 he has this crack thing which erases anything he doesn't like, and now he can insert anything he likes.

Nitpicks:

(1) Episode 1 cliffhanger:

Why didn't the Doctor question Amy why she shoots? (He probably have deduced a lot of things by now, though; just not saying.) And why didn't he confront the astronaut / the Silence immediately, which is his usual behaviour?

(2) Dead Silent:

Can a dead slient remove itself from people's memory? I mean, after I killed it, if I looked away do I forget it? If yes then people all over the world would be busy looking at dead alien bodies repeatedly wondering "What is that?" and forgetting... If no then since 1969 there should be plenty of documentation about the Silence?

(3) Doctor forgetting:

The Doctor also forgets what the Silence looks like initially. So presumably he should also forget all the events soon afterwards, like humans forgetting the killings in 1969??

[EDIT 20/5:]  (4) Telepathic spacesuits?

Actually I just came across this: the little girl calls the President and says the spaceman is coming at her, so she's not inside the spacesuit yet at that point, so how can she call the president (unknowingly using the spacesuit's communication-system-hacking technology)? Unless you tell me that the spacesuit is telepathic or something...

Nice bits:

(1) So the reason that River Song is an archaelogist is to give her a Tomb Raider moment then... visually spectacular too. Give her more things to shoot please...

(2) Another heartbreak when River realises that was her last kiss...

Friday, April 29, 2011

Monsters are real... on Saturdays



So, the evil genius brings us a new series of the show. Sadly, the excitement to the premiere of the show was unfortunately overshadowed by, to everybody's shock, the death of Elisabeth Sladen (Sarah Jane Smith) a few days before the first episode.

I probably won't be writing about every episode this time - on reflection, series 5 was not as good as I thought and many episodes were a bit "meh" and there's no point in writing much. Hopefully it will be better this time round.

Doctor Who Episode 6.1: The Impossible Astronaut

A year ago, we have the Series 5 opening episode. Every time I watched it becomes better and better; in my view it was the most perfect way possible to introduce a new companion. Moffat must have that idea for his whole life. This series opener, of course, is very different. No new doctor or new companion to be introduced, but packed with shocks. It is mindblowing as usual, and bold, very bold.

The good:

You really can't fault Moffat's witty writing; there are so many brilliant quotes. Just two samples:

Funny, referring to the show itself:

Time isn't straight-line. It's all... bumpy-wumpy. There's loads of boring stuff, like Sundays and Tuesdays and Thursday afternoons. But now and then there are Saturdays. Big temporal tipping points when anything's possible.

And touching, an Alzheimer's disease's take on the opposite time travelling nature of River and the Doctor:

Trouble is, it's all back to front. My past is his future. We're travelling in opposite directions. Every time we meet I know him more, he knows me less. I live for the days when I see him. But I know that every time I do he'll be one step further away. The day's coming when I'll look into that man's eyes - my Doctor - and he won't have the faintest idea who I am. And I think it's going to kill me.

Particularly sad if you re-watch the scene in Silence in the Library when River realises that was the last time she saw the Doctor.

The bad:

Steven Moffat has introduced so much mystery and so much timey-wimey into the show that, unless you have a sci-fi brain or are the most hardcore viewer, any casual viewer would have absolutely no idea what is going on.

They are brilliant in making trailers, but despite my (half-hearted) attempt to avoid spoilers, I already know too much and some of the shock has been lost. In the Christmas special, the trailer is very exciting, but that's all the best bits and the episode itself was disappointing. Not as bad as that here, but still some shock is lost.

This episode introduces so many mysteries that makes people wonder that - even with a genius like Moffat - maybe it will run loose and never gets resolved, like Lost.

Various little questions/observations:

I won't repeat the obvious ones here, but

  • Is Amy really pregnant, and if so, does Rory know about it??
  •  Apparent hints of a close Amy-River relation:

    River: "It's a lock, how's a girl supposed to resist?"

    Amy said something very similar in The Beast Below.
  • Just to remind everyone: the 10th doctor have been to the moon landing four times, with Martha.
  • While it is always assumed / implied / explicitly said that the timelines of River and the Doctor are in exact opposite order, this leaves quite some problems. For example River did not know Rory back in The Big Bang, which presumably is in her future, but she knows him now. This point is also raised by someone on Twitter, but I'm not so convinced by the great Moff's answer. I suppose genius also makes mistakes sometimes... Also how does River time travel from 50xx-ish to 2011? I think the following timeline, from River's point of view, do not seem to have major logical problems, barring the ending bit at The Big Bang:

    TPO-TBB-TIA-DotM-ToA-FnS-SitL-FotD

    But who knows, maybe after next episode everything here will become nonsense.
  • I believe The Doctor sends out the 4 envelopes not in order to save himself or for any particular reason, but simply because he knows it happened and therefore he has to make it happen to make timelines consistent etc. (Typical Moffat ontological paradox stuff.)
  • And surely the timeline (the Doctor's "real" death) needs to be rewritten at some point? And understandably, some people are not happy with such arbitrary rewriting of time. I prefer the closed-time-loop, predestination paradox view of time travel, but Doctor Who has a mixture of both.
  • How's next episode going to end? Presumably they won't deal with the Silence completely (after all, they have just been introduced), but Episode 3 seems to be a totally ordinary type of episode. Do they just all "forget" about the Silence again?? Huge anticipation of the enormous shock, as widely rumoured/reported...

Verdict:

As usual nothing seem to make any sort of sense in the first part of Moffat's 2-parter. Silence in the Library also received quite some stick when it came out, but Forest of the Dead is really good. So I will reserve judgment till next week. This may not be the best DW episode, but certainly miles better than most other
stuff on TV at the moment, including the reality or "talent" shows that are occupying the prime time slots. Give the 7pm slot back to DW!

Prologue: And the absolutely ridiculous:





Just who is the idiot that came up with the idea of the show "Don't scare the hare" just before DW? It is ridiculously stupid, even if it were on a children's channel. Many people, including me, have the misfortune of watching it because we tuned in a few moments before DW. The premise of that "family game show" is that the players have to perform tasks and answer questions, and if they got it wrong they will scare the hare - a robotic rabbit. Yes, seriously. With a bizzare looking host. Just why should i care not to scare this silly-looking robot? And how do you scare a robot anyway? The only thing it does is to move forwards and backwards - very slowly. Hardly looks like it is frightened; in fact it looks more scary than most monsters in DW.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

港式茶餐廳

天啊,這麼多年後,終於有人在這裏開了一間 (自稱是) 港式的茶餐廳。此前的不是茶樓 (一條友點飲茶?) 就是呃鬼佬的 buffet,還有也是沒有中國人幫襯的 takeaway。那些侍應居然還會說半鹹淡廣東話呢,於我等不懂北方土話者實是喜訊。雖然食物的味道頗為一般... 甚至有點不對勁... 但大致上是 authentic 的,況且勝在近,差不多就在樓下。我香港樓下反而沒有茶餐廳呢 (以前有一間,給領滙摺埋了,轉了做麥記...)

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Man Utd's reaction to the officials' decisions

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson and his assistant Mike Phelan were interviewed after the matches with Wigan and Chelsea:

Q: What do you think of Rooney's elbow on Wigan midfielder James McCarthy?

SAF: I don't know how he stayed on the pitch. Nothing done, the referee's in front of it. It was incredible.

Q: The match was refereed by Mark Clattenburg, what do you make of his performance?

SAF: When I saw who the referee was I did fear it. I feared the worst. You want a fair referee - or a strong referee, anyway - and we didn't get that. These are decisions that change the game. And he's going to be refereeing every week.

Q: But Luiz's foul on Rooney also escaped punishment, what is your opinion on it?

SAF: There's nothing in it. As it is Wayne, the press will raise a campaign to get him hung or electrocuted, something like that.

MP: We can't dispute the referee's decision. He's kept the game flowing and we're happy with that. There should not be a witch-hunt. The referee was consistent with all his decisions. We should lie low a little bit and let the powers that be take [control of] the game.

Seriously, could you shut up now Ferguson? If you are so furious about referee decisions then perhaps you could support video reviews?

Friday, January 28, 2011

夕陽大智話司徒

(陶傑, 壹週刊 20/1/2011)

司徒華先生病逝,全港淒然。

老先生尚在時,許多人出於政治對立、嫉妒奪權,罵司徒華,話說得太盡。十三年來,輿論自我審查,辱罵司徒華的傳媒與日俱增。至少有三分二;後來連泛民中的丐幫也加入聲討。
老先生一去,個個都把臉湊上來叨光——不錯,政治容許一點點虛偽,但虛偽得如此中國式之低下,會不會令人想嘔吐呢?

我與司徒華先生難攀深交,也不常見面,但每次見面,談敍必深。在香港,能交得上朋友的,年紀都比自己大一輩。「友直、友諒、友多聞」,多聞,即是有經歷和見識。從民國過來的一代,年紀比我大,經歷比我苦,八千里路雲和月的感觸和智慧比我深,無論做生意還是讀書人,學問往往也比我多,至少都是一冊活的歷史書。
司徒華患病期間,我與他見過幾次,談到「五區公投」。司徒華沒有趁這趟水,他的觀點,與我相似,就是發起「五區公投,全民起義」的那一位半個仁兄,聲嘶力竭,甚似悲壯,其實人格不可信。

中國人的老話:「修身、齊家、治國、平天下」,是有道理的,因為中國政治比其他國家污穢、殘暴、鄙劣百倍,從政的人,人格必須用特殊材料鑄成。「共產黨員是 用特殊材料造成的」,這句話在中共打天下時流行,意思是:從政的人,尤其處於抗爭的草野,道德要高潔,意志要剛強,不為財色名權誘使,更不為嚴刑拷打屈從。

司徒華先生一生獨身,不嫖不賭,從沒欠過錢,我相信,是那種刀槍架在胸口也寧死不屈甘心赴義的人。這個品種,屬於黃花崗七十二烈士、宋教仁和秋瑾那個系列,不敢說在大陸已成絕響,但在世界仔和精甩邊橫行的香港,像司徒華先生這般質地的,極為稀有。

發起「公投起義」的一兩位,以中國現代革命史的遠大目光視之,一看就知道靠不住。有的人當紅得令時。一身名牌,不可一世;從巔峰下墮深淵時,卻又垂頭喪氣惶惶如喪家之犬。在他身邊的「戰友」,必見識過如此嚴寒酷暑的喜怒大形於色的作風,與澳門賭場三更貧五更富的江湖賭客無異。這種性格,平心而論,有其可愛的一面,幹其他職業,是他自己的事,「政治」卻是眾人大我之業。但在中國人社會,讓這種性格的人士一統天下,做泛民的大盟主,即屬笑談。

若是修身不成,齊家也不力,教子無方,在鄰近地區惹上官非,關押在囚,很奇怪,真的讀通「幾狼都有」的中國歷史,就會明白,蔣介石把兒子送去蘇聯,誤成史達林的人質,以致後來圍剿延安,小辮子抓在蘇共手裡,就是不敢直搗黃龍。以史為鑑,不但可以知興替,更可以趨吉避凶。越是表演賣弄知識者,有無智慧,在這個骨節眼邊,會露底的。

中國政治黑在哪裡?黑在連身家性命、妻小家奴,隨時都變成犧牲品。劉邦父親讓項羽活捉,項羽揚言要把劉邦老爹烹殺,劉邦笑嘻嘻說請分我一杯羹。共產黨自己打天下,不但六親不認,毛澤東連自己的老婆楊開慧也甘心送給國民黨囚殺。子女管教不好,又到處亂跑,不慎因刑罪被囚,此時是一己親情為重,還是香港的「民主大業」為先?

當然,人貴有親情,但如果是這副婆媽的尋常德性,就不可奢望做什麼民主旗手。司徒華晚年時看出了這一點,他聽我說起項羽烹殺劉邦父親的典故,唯有苦笑。此時只有我明白,為什麼他為香港人付出如此巨大的幸福成本,為何他比別的「吹水革命家」更義無反顧,因為他沒有妻小,因為他甘泊於單身,如同遠古的瑪雅族女戰士,為了能扛弓箭,把一邊乳房割掉,這又是何等氣魄、何等犧牲?

老先生反對五區公投,其中一個原因是「對人不對事」。這一點,我讚賞他的眼光。「誰是我們的敵人,誰是我們的朋友,這個問題是革命的首要問題」,任何草根「民主」領袖,競選時先以自己陣營的隊友為嚙咬目標,搶自己人的票,其人必不擇手段,時機一變動,隨時是能把丹東送上斷頭台的羅伯斯庇爾。「對人不對事」,沒有什麼錯,譬如同樣聲稱「推翻滿清,建立民國」,同一句口號,由孫中山、黃興、袁世凱三個人分別喊出,你信哪一個?可不可以只因為袁世凱喊得最聲音嘶啞,就認定袁世凱更稱職?

讀通中國歷史,好處是這種人辦,先例千百年都不缺。戊戌政變失敗,因為譚嗣同誤信袁世凱,以為袁氏可助光緒,把榮祿抓起來。林旭不信袁,對譚嗣同說:不錯, 袁世凱也心繫變法,但他有把柄在榮祿手裡,不可以押寶在這個人身上。譚嗣同沒有聽,他的頭腦太簡單了,結果六君子一起浴血。

中國政治的DNA,千 代不移。了解中國政治的基因遺傳學,必料事如神。「五區公投」不論成績,一年不到,牽頭的那個「民主」幫會,突生詭譎的裂變,爆發一場微型的「天京之變」,原因正是有人的把柄被中方抓住,不得不退位,明明選出新主席,其後又多了個太上皇。毛澤東一九六二年退居二線,幾年後的文革之亂,鄧小平「誰不改革誰下台」,豈不同一基因?大半年來,「起義」不成,內鬥酷烈;「公投」不果,私寨火併方酣,小農越追求「民主」,一股土匪的天性,越是兇烈。幸好香港有殖民地文明基礎,「民主」幫會再分裂,只限於互相臭罵的「文鬥」,否則井岡山剿殺AB團的慘禍,早已上演。

司徒華先生晚年的一擊,好歹要待兩年後方見功過,並未因此進八寶山,未見有得益,罵他「出賣民主」的人,十個月來,是龍是蛇?其質素與能力,破壞有餘,凝聚無力,食豬紅屙黑屎,即刻有了結論。

這種活劇,只要綜觀中外歷史,即知不足為奇,畢竟人性的弱點和陰暗面太多了。政治天真,在權慾面前,論人面之險詐,誘惑之下,看人性之脆弱,許多人是沒見過 「大蛇屙尿」的一個快樂族群,一切只看表面。司徒華老先生的功過,湊熱鬧開講的人有許多,我不想加進一把嘴,只想為他老人家表一點小小的清白。他奮鬥終身,不會輕易葬送一生英名,我相信他,故略以納稅人的局外身份,兼誌一點所見、所聞、所思。

Sunday, January 09, 2011

一路走好?

民主派元老逝世,許多後輩哀悼,最後的一句,叫「一路走好」。香港人潛移默化,語言喜歡模仿中國大陸。

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這就叫話語權了,各位香港的小朋友。風俗不同,文化有異,不把話語權牢牢抓在手裏,包括粵語,主動向北面的詞彙 依偎過去,「一國兩制」就蒸發了,這樣,各位敬仰的「華叔」,就一路走不好了。這一節很基本的語文課,是「華叔」生前沒有教過的。 Understand?

是「早安」,不是「早上好」。說「晚安」,從來沒有什麼「晚上好」。是「新年快樂」,不是「新年好」。好好好,哈 哈,好你個白癡大頭 B呀?

《一路走好?》 陶傑 09/01/2011

本人慶幸出世得早,讀書時的中文還沒有被大陸的惡俗「漢語」污染。現在的學生大概認為那些才是正確的中文吧?

我讀書的那個年代,只有 「一路好走」,沒有「一路走好」的。「走好」根本不合中文 Grammar,這些把 adverb 放在 verb 後面的大概又是從英文「翻譯」過來 (live well, work hard, walk alone 之類)。中文只會說 「好食好住」,或者反過來「食得好,住得好」(要加個「得」字)。俗語有云,「好行夾唔送」也。

還好他們只是把 Good morning 翻譯成 「早上好」,而不是 「好早上」...