Last Week in Reality
News in bite-sized chunks. Illustrations by Ryan Chan.
Blaze Haze Eight firemen from the Tsim Sha Tsui Fire Station are suspended due to a case of bullying and sexual assault in the workplace. The incident was first exposed via WhatsApp groups, which circulated images of a new recruit being bullied by his half-naked comrades. In one photo the man is pinned to a table, while a cream cake is pushed into his buttocks.
Bad Education A pregnant woman is having breakfast with her family in a cha chaan teng in To Kwa Wan when her two-year-old son misbehaves and refuses to eat. The mother slaps her son five times on his hands. A neighbor suspects it is a case of child abuse and calls the police, who escort the woman to the station. The boy is sent to the hospital by an ambulance for a thorough check up and the mother is released when police conclude that it is not a criminal case.
Grave Raider At least 19 graves of indigenous villagers in Tai Po are found to have been raided. The coffins were broken open and then left exposed to the elements: Police suspect that the grave robbers were after jade and jewelry buried alongside the deceased. The family involved says that they will arrange for people to take turns guarding the site; they estimate it will cost $30-50,000 to restore each grave.
Fallen Monks The chief nun of Tai Po’s Ting Wai Monastery is arrested on suspicion of entering into fake marriages with two monks from the mainland, to assist their applications for permanent residency. Actress and solicitor Mary Jean Reimer alleges that the nun told her that it was for the good cause of importing mainland talent into Hong Kong.
The Intern At a recruitment event in Tseung Kwan O, the Hong Kong Society for the Aged introduces an Android app which targets job seekers who are over 50 years old. The app allows them to have constant access to up-to-date job postings, at home or on the go. Among other job ads is a company hiring a cleaning trainee, a job which requires no experience and specifies no age limits.
Lonely Portrait A photograph of Peter Mathieson, vice-chancellor of the University of Hong Kong, goes viral online. In the photo Mathieson is sitting alone in the HKU campus, peering into his cellphone as he eats his sandwich. Some interpret the photo as a reflection of Mathieson’s lonely integrity, after last month’s failed nomination of Johannes Chan for pro-vice-chancellor.
Meet King Cobra A 2-meter-long poisonous king cobra is found hiding in a small tree in Siu Lek Yuen Village. The police and a snake expert are called in to assist. When the snake expert reaches slowly forward to touch the snake with a stick, the reptile escapes and moves to another, taller tree. This time, a team of firemen is called upon to confront the snake, to no avail. Eventually the snake escapes into the wilderness.