Saturday, March 18, 2006


Here's how it goes:

The good folk of Dege tip their trash into the Sequ river.

In a couple of months' time, the rainy reason will slosh it all 20 kilometres downstream to the Jinshajiang.

A thousand or two kilometres further downstream, the Jinshajiang changes its name to the Chang Jiang - better known to English-speakers as the Yangtze River*.

The Dege Dustbinfuls will then lap up against the Three Gorges Dam, creating a pretty patina over the surface of China's tub-thumpingest reservoir. And just multiply Dege by a couple of tens of thousands, to account for all the other towns, villages and cities in the Jinshajiang watershed, and, well, that's going to be a lot of crap floating around down there.

*Or, "The Mighty Yangtze", as the Evenmoreindescribablyboringthanusual called it today.

Please, please, please - I am weeping here. Isn't that the first thing that they teach you at Journalist School? - never, ever, whatever you do, ever slap "the mighty" onto a river. It doesn't help. Really.

OK, now Google me and see if I've ever cycled past the "mighty" Danube/Volga/Yenisey/Yellow/Yangtze/Mekong. And sue me if I have.

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