life rattle show no. 1336

Presented on SATURDAY, March 28, 2015


hosted by laurie kallis



"Parasite Crisis"
by Zili Wang



tonight's Show

Life Rattle No. 1336 features four stories by Zili Wang.

Zili Wang was born in 1994 and raised in China, where her father is an architect and her mother an auditor. As rare as it is in China, her parents have two daughters, Zili, the eldest, and her six-year-old sister, YiLing.

A river flows beside Zili’s early childhood home in YongZhou, a small town with only one movie theatre. When Zili was nine, her family left the quiet of YongZhou for Changsha, a fast-paced southern city with six months of blazing summer. Zili moved away from home in 2010, when she turned sixteen. She came to Canada, where she attended an international high school in Hamilton before moving to Mississauga for university.

Zili Wang now studies digital media and professional writing at university, and has great passion for writing, archery and cooking.

Tonight’s featured stories capture the experience of a university student with such precise detail that you feel as if you suffer through the frustrations of living in residence, or a disappointed parent’s response to a failing grade, right alongside the narrator. The unique aspect of Zili Wang’s stories is that, as you suffer, you also gain insight into those who deliver the torment. Zili leaves us with the feeling that we are all in the same boat, making our way through life as best we can, a richness that extends the breadth of Zili’s writing far beyond the surface theme of university life.

"Territory" and "Parasite Crisis"drop us into the midst of the day-to-day struggle of living with an assortment of different characters brought together in one house through circumstance. Shared cooking space, shared living space and thin walls trigger overwrought reactions, and moments of brilliant, subtle humour.

"Believe" though still set in residence, tonight's third story is more of a study of character, friendship and the quest for a deeper meaning in life. When a young woman’s initial attraction to a young missionary results in a new-found connection to God, she questions the source and validity of her conviction and looks to her friend for support.

"Crossfire" takes us on a trip to China with our narrator who journeys home at the end of the school year to spend time with her family. From her lifestyle as an independent adult in Canada she returns to that of a child who must face the wrath of an exacting mother, determined, it seems, to impose her own dreams onto her daughter.

What transpires between father and daughter is more far-reaching and thought-provoking than what we expect, and our narrator is forced to begin the process of recognizing her father, and mother, as more than her parents.