CHINA: The Back Door

Cadging on the commune

In China only a decade or so ago, the supreme sex symbol was the virile young Red Guard. Nowadays for millions of Chinese maidens, the objects of affection are butchers, truck drivers and doctors. The reason, according to travelers recently returned from the mainland, is that these lucky fellows possess the most potent of aphrodisiacs—the goods and services denied the majority of Chinese. Butchers have virtually unlimited access to meat that is rigorously rationed. Truckers have proved ingenious in buying merchandise where it is plentiful and selling it where it is scarce. Physicians can provide...

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