In this particular game of thrones, a young lady from Beijing lays claim to the trickster’s crown by publicly insisting she is part of the Monkey King’s bloodline. If you’ve never seen a Chinese re-run, this royal primate is a character from Wu Cheng’en’s epic Journey to the West and has been made famous through countless movies, video games and cartoons worldwide. The only evidence she has to prove her claims is an ‘ancestral stone’ and a piece of ‘monkey wool.’ On January 6th she presumably rode a “cloud“ and visited Fudan University’s anthropology research labs in Shanghai to expose her furry identity through DNA testing.

The young women comes from Lianyungang, Jiangsu province, a place recognized as being the celestial Monkey King’s birthplace. According to legend, the Monkey King was born from a stone covered in orchids and magic fungus. There is little doubt that there is any possible way this young woman could be a Monkey Princess, but regardless of what the scientists conclude, the elders of her village are as convinced as a Dothraki following their Khaleesi. 

So far DNA testing hasn’t provided any clues, mainly because the supposed ‘monkey wool’ may not be real, and that there is currently no way of testing a stone to see if primate magic is present. Luckily for us all and the Monkey King bloodline, she won’t give up until she has proven her ancestry. 

In coincidentally related news, the trailer for the new film adaptation of the Monkey King has been made public with the film release set for later this year. Perhaps this is all just a crazed attempt at viral marketing. It’s quite common these days for film companies to blur fact and fiction to generate hype, but many films can’t quite live up to their marketing strategies. Let’s hope this isn’t the case. 

In other community news, Beer for Books Part 2 is on tap again for another serving of inebriated charity. Beijing’s most distinguished craft beer specialists at Great Leap Brewery will be donating RMB 10 to The Library Project for every beer you buy; the event will take place from 4pm to 10pm on February 8th at their Original No. 6 location. Who says that an event promoting literacy and group intoxication can’t have its benefits?

Here are some more upcoming community events: