All right, so this story of a Chinese guy from the Guardian (and via a local Chinese newspaper) who told everyone he was a police officer even though he definitely wasn't and then it all blew up is pretty complicated, so it's going to be useful to break it down a little bit.
Who pretended to be a police officer?
Why did he do that?
We're not sure. The Guardian says he used the "alter ego as a moneymaking ruse," selling fake Public Security Bureau documents and warrants. Seems like there's easier ways to make money, though?
But how did he pretend to be a police officer? Like how far did this dude go?
He went pretty far! So the most extreme part is that he built his whole apartment like a police station. Here's a picture from the newspaper:
Looks pretty legit. But that wasn't all: He rocked a whole wardrobe full of police officer uniforms. He put a siren on top of his car. He kept a bunch of handcuffs just laying around. Dude went all-out. Also, he kept this up for two years, according to the South China Morning Post.
But was he fighting crime? Or did he just look like a police officer?
Unclear! Apparently all he did was hang out, chill in his uniform, and kicked it with his girlfriend.
Wait, fake police officer guy had a girlfriend?
Yep, he did, and she was apparently the only person who ever thought that he might be faking it? Which, logistically, just seems impossible. Didn't people think it was kind of weird some dude was just living in a police station? By himself? With no one else around? And, did his girlfriend ever stop to ask, "Hey, man, why do you live in a police station that no one else works in?"
So how'd she rat him out?
So I guess she got suspicious at some point (…) because he was flirting with her friends online (…):
“Your boyfriend is not reliable,” one friend told her, according to the Chutian Metropolis Daily newspaper. “He always flirts with us online and is a total scoundrel.”
OK, cool, good work dude, but—what? That was the giveaway? That he was sliding into her friend's Facebook chats? Not the whole "police station inside an apartment" thing?
Anyway, she confronted him about it, and allegedly told him, "I'm going to post our sex tape online."
Were there any oddly poetic details to this story that make it seem like this is all a bunch of bullshit?
Funny you ask! Apparently in his apartment they found "The Story Of The Stone," a famous 18th century piece of Chinese literature.
“Truth becomes fiction when the fiction’s true,” the book’s opening line reads. “Real becomes not-real where the unreal’s real.”
This is the kicker to the Guardian story. I don't know, man. I don't know.
Michael Rosen is a reporter for Fusion based out of Oakland.