The Chinese love numbers. We're good with numbers, and we're proud of this ability. The changes in our lives have all been about changing numbers. For example, it used to be that a household was considered lucky to own one television set. Nowadays, each home might have two or even three TVs. It used to be common to have three generations of one family living in a 550sqft apartment, but now, more and more families can afford to buy larger condominiums. Some people even have second homes. This rising index shows our increasing prosperity, but it also brings with it specific challenges. For example, in the past, there were only five or six TV channels to choose from; now, there are 50 to 60. Television producers have to work harder to get the attention of the average viewer. Another example: a couple of years ago, a woman claimed in her biography that she had had eight lovers. She gained instant notoriety. Nowadays, you have to have 80 lovers just to raise an eyebrow. What's more, you need famous names, not average Joes, in your diary to get noticed. Niuniu has gone to a small village in Jiangxi province for an interview. She finds the villagers are obsessed with numbers. After learning that she worked briefly in the US after graduating from an American university, the village head asks her: 'Could you earn one million?' 'American dollars or yuan?' 'American dollars, of course.' 'Are you talking about annual salary or what?' 'Monthly income.' 'No, I couldn't make that much money,' says Niuniu. 'But, I thought all Americans were rich,' the village head says. 'Not everybody is Bill Gates,' Niuniu replies. At the first home Niuniu visits, she meets a woman named Little Qing. The 33-year-old has just returned home from Shenzhen to visit her mother. Little Qing, who moved to Shenzhen 10 years ago, tells Niuniu: 'I've dated 12 men in Shenzhen. Three were Hong Kong truck drivers who made 20,000 yuan per month. They gave me 3,000 yuan per month. It was OK money back then. Now, that would be considered low, even by Shenzhen standards.' Little Qing has shifted her focus to mainland men. 'I'm dating a 56-year-old man now. He's 23 years older than me. And he's rich. But if I were to marry him, it would mean that in 20 to 30 years, I'd become his nurse. Isn't it sad? Unless he's really, really wealthy. Then it would be worth it,' she says. 'How rich do you want him to be?' Niuniu asks. 'It's really more about how rich my mother wants him to be,' Little Qing says. 'My mother asked me if he had five billion. I said probably not. My mother told me to forget about him.' Little Qing's words make Niuniu think. Last month, she interviewed the president of the Chinese company TCL, Li Dongsheng. Li was named the Asian Business Man of the Year by Fortune magazine. As one of China's new rich, Li is worth by conservative estimates a little more than 600 million yuan on paper. That is super rich by Chinese standards. Where can Little Qing find a man worth five billion yuan? Niuniu looks at Little Qing's mother and wonders: does this elderly village woman know the difference between five million and 50 million? Probably not, but at least she aims high. Or perhaps she is just confused by numbers, much like the village head. The Chinese are not always good at numbers, after all.