Date
21 January 2017
Even in the midst of the most violent protest in decades, a young man reaffirms Hong Kong's innate nature as a consumer society. Photo: Facebook
Even in the midst of the most violent protest in decades, a young man reaffirms Hong Kong's innate nature as a consumer society. Photo: Facebook

Amid the Mong Kok violence, a young man stoops to buy a toy

Somehow the vending machine found its way onto the street at the heart of the violence between protesters and police in Mong Kok on the first night of the Lunar New Year.

Amid a standoff at about 4 a.m. Tuesday, with a phalanx of police in riot gear as a backdrop, a young man bent down, put in a coin and bought a toy.

The unexpected sight went viral on social media, Next Plus Magazine reported Thursday.

Some netizens commented that the young man’s action showed that Hongkongers are still civilized and will pay for a product from a vending machine — even if it is one among several thrown together with other debris to form a makeshift blockade — during a level of unrest that is nearly unprecedented in the city.

Others wondered sarcastically whether, by venturing onto Shantung Street, the young man would lay himself open to a charge of participating in a riot.

Another netizen said the young man must be so obsessed with these toys from vending machines that he felt he had to get one regardless of the time and circumstances.

One wit called it a form of performance art and suggested a new catchphrase: “the vending machine revolution”.

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