Welcome to the Age of Porn

Hong Kong, You’re Standing in It

Scandals can be the spice of life, but sometimes they’re a little mundane. Take, for instance, the current kerfuffle in Hong Kong about photos uploaded to the Internet from singer Edison Chen’s laptop. Young Edison likes to take digital snaps of himself having sex with the local canto-starlets and is a little too gormless to not send his computer in for repairs. Another year, another celebrity screw up. Literally. Rob Lowe and Paris Hilton, you’re role models now.

happy-days.jpgWell Edison was happy for a while. Or smug. At least until his good times became news highlights. You might recognise the woman in the photo – she’s Gillian Chung, the now more besmirched half of the canto-pop duo Twins.

Wikipedia has a page on this with 63 footnotes! The EastSouthWestNorth blog has also been following the media rendition of the saga, day by day, and it’s carrying more of the censored photos. Particularly interesting are those from Oriental Sunday, published by the Emperor Group, which just so happens to own the Emperor Entertainment Group, Gillian Chung’s management. ‘Never let a chance go by’ we like to say in Hong Kong.

There are also more than a few photos of local singer Bobo Chan, who seems to have been very gymnastic in her role as amateur porn star. My youngest son has a toy bear named Bobo Chan.

Damn.

In any case, it’s all a bit redundant with the ready availability of free Internet porn. Except that the moralists are out in force. Yesterday’s South China Morning Post reported Chief Executive (that’s Mayor for you out-of-towners) Donald Tsang calling the photos a “serious issue, which demanded further follow-up”. A few people were doing just that – there are more than a hundred favourites to chose from. Police Commissioner Tang King-shing said “everyone has his or her own view”.

Indeed.

Hong Kong isn’t exactly a puritan city. When my wife and I registered the birth of our daughter two years ago the family left the registry office and, walking through the side alleys of Yau Ma Tei, passed a street vendor with a veritable flock of white latex vibrators, all pointing proudly to the sky.

Child, meet dildos.

Find a computer mall in Mong Kok and you’ll probably find pirated porn DVDs on the third or fourth floor; spot the hookers in Wanchai on a Friday night and you’re two steps away from much of the same.

Porn vendors, hookers, naughty celebrities; they’re all playing the same game – they’ve just got different rules. The scent of sex is tantalising from a distance, but up close it’s just about body odour and transformed appearances. Why should celebrities always smell and look so sweet? After all, Gillian Chung is an actress.

It’s a puzzling world.

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