When we first heard the reports that Xinhua had featured a story on a lesbian man-hating town full of sapphic amazons in Sweden, we thought it was crazy. First off, everyone knows the only lesbian man-hating town around is in Massachusetts. Secondly, we couldn’t actually find the Xinhua article, which made us wonder if The Register had invented the controversy themselves.
But we guess it must exist (and that we should have tried to search the term “Sweden Lesbians” in Chinese) because Gawker‘s reporting that Chinese men have crippled the poor northern country’s internet providers on their frantic search for more details.
Chagrined, we got off our butts and typed “瑞典 女同性恋” into Google. Whaddya know, there was a Chinese site with an embarrassing screenshot of the story as it appeared on Xinhua. In case you wanted to know exactly what was in the story that launched a million clicks, we’ve translated it below:
“In Sweden, there is a place that is respectful of women’s love, but with a rule that men cannot enter. This is Chako Paul City (沙科保市). The town holds around 25,000 women, all from around Europe. If men transgress into the forbidden city, they will be beaten half to death. The citizens of Chako Paul are mostly engaged in the forest industry, because of such many of the women wear thick belts full of woodworking equipment. Some go into nearby cities to work and return to Chako Paul by night. Chako Paul’s tourism industry is increasingly prosperous, with hotels and restaurants everywhere that cater specifically to women around the world.”
Ha! Lending a little more credence to that one paragraph bit (though it really shouldn’t have), someone at Harbin News posted up an article about one Chinese girl’s experience going to Chako Paul Town.
We won’t translate the story word for word, but it sounds like it was meant to be fiction in the first place. Summarized, it goes like this:
A Shandong gal called Niu Xiaoyu (牛小羽) went to study at a Swedish university and fell in love with her college teaching assistant, Ribe. One day, she came back home very late with another Chinese student in tow, and Ribe fell into a jealous rage. The two quarreled and Xiaoyu decided to end the relationship, making up her mind to go to Chako Paul to hide from her angry Swedish boyfriend.
She manages to find the city, where she discovers that she’s not physically fit enough for all the lumberjacking and that she’s too sensitive to do police work (apparently, women there happen to be much more cruel because, since they aren’t men, it’s harder for people to take them seriously). She also was nonplussed about the cosmetics store, which didn’t have much in way of make up offerings – since lesbians totally hate makeup.
Anyway, Ribe comes in at some point dressed as a woman to win Xiaoyu back. Though she refuses to be moved at first, a near-miss homosexual experience with a real lesbian causes her to reconsider. She runs out of Chako Paul and back into the arms of Ribe.
You can’t make this crap up. Oh wait, we guess you can.
Photo screenshot from aibai