Thursday, October 24, 2013

Bracing for the Long Descent - part 2

I remember having watched a movie depicting a positive figure using radio communication to save the planet after modern communications failed. "That is brilliant! Make be I should get on with it..." Then it daunted on me, probably there will also be no policeman (self defense against armed robbers?), no water supply (digging a deep hole underground?), no vegetable (get a decent house with a backyard? Can't afford it in cosmopolitan HK).... "Afterall it is a movie..." I rationalized and forgave myself for lack of action.

In HK we can't get a repair man who charges reasonably (the repair charge of manufacturer after warranty is as much as half the newest model with more functions!) to repair our old appliance (we buy a new wasteful!) because people can't make a decent living that way. Some people take an interest in doing their own repair (I did for simple things too). Once in a while, local news would report a brave guy burned his appliance during repair (in rare cases also his flat), afterall we are all amateurs without proper training. But no complaint, boxers got head injuries. Fighting is fun and so is appliance repair.

In China small appliance repair is a dying industry (dead in HK). I chatted with one owner once and he told me that he could feed his family well with repairing old appliances "But I like my boy to go to University and earn more!" Sure he does. "Do you teach your boy to do repair?" "I am eager to, but he aspires to be a pop singer! I hope I can find an apprentice...."

In case any of you have kids who are good at mechanical things and who are interested to learn old appliance repair and don't mind to be an apprentice at a small shop in China, there will be lots of opportunities. Monthly salary: RMB1,000 per month (give and take 100). Free room and board. Buy your own flight ticket.   

Paul's comment: The above was my feedback to the author.

It reminds me of my learning experience in meditation: You still have to tackle life's problems when you are out of meditation; using methods other than meditative techniques.  We all have our own specialty. Gurus and experts should understand their own limitations, unfortunately professional self-importance sometimes bars our better judgment.

Though I agree with the author's response to my feedback "(but) this is a worthwhile project", with one caveat, an option for a modern man to spend during his spare time.

The happy repairman


  1. The Art if Manliness blog discusses these things regularly.

  2. Thanks for your linkage, I'm checking on it.

    I find internet forums interesting in two ways: first some give us helpful instant advice on practical problems and second some offer us a great opportunity for mental gymnastics or "free-fight". The former is like little tricks to solve software problems (such problems can be very frustrating!) The latter is like discussions/debates on "everybody being expert" subjects like current affairs, philosophy and politics - in particular those subjects/forums where there is a number of "dedicated experts" who would argue as if this is the last chance to save their humble lives.....:):)

  3. i really like youe information and thank's for your information ^___^

  4. Thanks dear fellow meditator. You reminded me of Tao Te ching chapter 11: "A hollow opening makes a window for a house". Information becomes useful because we don't find it useful...:):)


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