Satirical magazine(s) McSweeney’s – or at least the internet branch – has actually taken the time to check out our lil’ Expo, with their “travel writer” Kevin Dolgin taking the time out of visiting everywhere worth going in Europe to come all the way to Shanghai.
Dolgin comes off like a greenhorn – he spends a good few paragraphs talking about silly English phrases on T-shirts – but hits his stride when he finally actually visits the Expo and gets into the gist of getting his previous assumptions debunked. For instance, on China proving itself to the world with an Expo, he says “Once there, I started getting a different impression. Perhaps it wasn’t China that was extending its bid to be considered as something beyond the world’s prime manufacturer of vuvuzelas, perhaps they figure they’ve gotten past all that, even if you’re not aware of it. Perhaps they had decided to host the world’s fair so that other countries could try to come and impress them.”
Anyhow, it’s something to check out if you’re fond of snarky writers from New York chatting about Shanghai:
- PART I, which contains this quote “If I were a devout Catholic, I’d want to live in Rome, if I were a fervent Muslim, I’d want to live in Mecca, but I’m a businessman, which means that I want to live in Shanghai!”
- PART II
- PART III, in which he visits the not-as-impressive Europe pavilions. We hope he checked out the beer at the Malta Pavilion.
- PART IV, where he falls in love with the African Pavilion.