In the End there Should be Silence: Respecting Anita Mui
Like every Chinese feature writer/columnist in this city, I have been musing on Mui Yim Fong. I have maybe three or four more pieces I wanted to post up, when I got the tone right. After all there is not much of such importance. But as I tried to learn more about what my Chinese compatriots are saying from friends, as my reading isn’t so great. I am not so sure where all the ink is going.
Li Bik Wah, who wrote the original novel that became “Rouge” wrote a scathing piece about “those who live off others” using Chinese history as a backdrop, saying things like, “Well, some people I suggest go get jobs or they will have to find someone else to follow.”
A piece in Apple Daily mused how although all of Anita’s list of impressively gorgeous and successful former lovers came to pay respect, one sat by her coffin every day for five days as is tradition of family members, she probably would not feel any peace because all this beauty is untouchable, much like they are in museums.
Then the newspaper and entertainment magazines are trying to find out whether she could be saved if she accepted medical treatment, which she didn’t believe in because she lost her sister and her friend Roman Tam to cancer. Then go into the minute of the fight over her finances between her family and those who were close to her.
Her mother, a woman of eighty is being hounded every day where ever she goes, and journalists waiting at the door of her home, hoping to provoke her into an angry outburst which they managed to do previously about certain issues.
Obviously they have run out of things to write about. Really what is the point of dredging over her personal choices in life as there is no way to bo gao (to amend). Li Bik Wah I am sure said those things because as a friend she had enough of watching people she perceived to be parasites continue to do so, but if she didn’t say it in life, maybe it’s best to keep it to herself when Mui Gei is gone.
After the wake, on the way elsewhere I walked pass a giant TV screen feeding daily news. A crowd had gathered watching the story on her funeral. There were images of the journalists hounding her mother as she was on the way, and could barely get out of the car. The man behind me goes really loudly, “I feel sorry for this woman. She lost both of her daughters and she can't go to the funeral in peace.”
Everyone turned towards him and seemed to nod in agreement at once.
In the end, it might better to be silent.