Scores can’t give me security anymore, but money can

Six years after leaving Hengshui High School, Liu Jiasen repeats the story of his glory back then almost every day – it has become his job. In that sense, it seems he has never graduated.

Liu Jiasen is often in a trance about where he is, with more than six hundred speeches, each of which is too similar: hundreds of high school students wearing similar uniforms; the school built in a similar fashion; the principal saying the same thing; and the students asking the same questions in the exchange after the speech. “How do I learn the language? How do I learn math? How do I learn English? “

XX is the name of the high school, and sometimes two words are added. “Against All Odds”.

The Liu Jiasen in front of the stand-up sign looks extraordinarily small, with a microphone in front of him and his head unable to cover any of the words on the sign.

The chief public service lecturer of the Chinese version of Culture is Liu Jiasen’s identity at this Time.

I am not from Hengshui, but from Zhuozhou, a small city below Baoding in Hebei. In front of the microphone, Liu Jiasen slightly paused his head and read out this familiar opening line. After hundreds of tours, he no longer needed to look down at the script.

There was silence on stage – something Liu Jiasen was also familiar with.

Monotony, repetition, silence, exactly the same as the high school that Liu Jiasen walked out of. But the difference is that on such occasions, he has two other eye-catching and more comfortable names: the bully of Beihang University and the top student of Hengzhong Middle School. These two glittering labels split his week into two distinct parts: four days at the university and three days catching up at high schools across the country.

Six years after leaving Hengshui High School, Liu Jiasen repeats the story of his year’s glory almost every day – it has become his job. In that sense, it seems he never graduated.


The top student

The most important label on Liu Jiasen’s body is that of “top student,” who entered the Chinese Department of Peking University in the summer of 2015 with a score of 673. In the summer of 2015, he scored 673 points and entered the Chinese Department of Peking University, the top student in Hengshui High School and the second best student in Hebei Province.

This score meant that he could enter one of China’s top institutions of higher learning, but it also meant that he could escape from that high school.

Shortly after the college entrance exam, Liu Jiasen had a dream – a dream in which a television set was playing the evening news. There was a blue backdrop, a female announcer sitting on one side of the screen, and news messages scrolling across the bottom of the screen. This is a scene that Liu Jiasen has seen nearly a thousand times. In the first two years of high school he attended Hengshui Middle School, and in his senior year he came to Hengshui No. 1 Middle School, two schools in different places, but sharing the same group of teachers, the high school would organize students to watch the evening news program edited by the school every day. This is almost the only way for students at Hengshui Middle School to be exposed to the outside world.

In the dream, a sentence slides in from the right side of the screen, “The 2015 college entrance exam results are null and void, and all recent graduates need to return to their original schools to repeat.”

With a chill, Liu Jiasen woke up with a start. He sent a message to several high school friends, only to learn that each of them had a similar dream.

And with the start of college in September, the freshness washed away the nightmare. What’s more, Liu Jiasen is a top student. In his three years at Hengyuan Middle School, his vision for the future was “to get into Tsinghua and Peking University and to be an alumnus of the President and Premier. When he entered Peking University, Liu Jia Sen proudly thought, “I, Mr. Liu Scholar, should be a horse in harness”.

The reality is not like that at all.

After the college entrance exam, many students went to learn to drive, but Liu Jiasen did not learn, thinking that he would become “a person who contributes to society”. “The state will give me a driver”. At the orientation meeting of the club, everyone had to introduce themselves. He stood up and said, “My name is Liu Jiasen, and I am the top student of Hengshui High School. “The classroom was silent for a moment, someone led the applause, and some cheers came from all around.

The response wasn’t as enthusiastic as he thought it would be. After several orientation sessions, Liu Jiasen felt uninterested and did not mention the word “top student” again. He realized that the cheering and coaxing sounds are just because some people are “emotionally intelligent”.

For love in college, the top student also has a vision. According to the rules of Hengyuan High School, Liu Jia Sen had not fallen in love until he was 18. When he first went to college, he naively thought, “If I don’t like them, they should like me too. At that time, he still wore his junior high school clothes and didn’t like to wash his hair. He defined this as “not pretending”.

He was surprised to learn that there were girls who were star-struck, something he had never seen before at Hengyuan. Liu Jiasen’s freshman girlfriend was a fan of Wu Yifan, and he once confronted her: “Wu Yifan scored several hundred points lower than me in the entrance exam, and you like him? “

The profession is also not the situation that he imagined. Classes are about ancient Chinese and literary history, not the writing that Liu Jiasen was expecting. He was a little disappointed, which is the appearance of the Chinese Department in his own mind. With the title of “The Best Chinese Department in the Universe,” the fact is that there are not many options after graduation.

Liu Jia Sen once approached his class counselor and asked himself, “Can I make a million dollars a year after graduation?”, to which the other party replied bluntly. “No”.

For a long time, he was still immersed in the evaluation system of the world of Hengyuan Middle School, where scores are the standard for everything.


The Machine

When he was in Hengzhong Middle School, Liu Jiasen had brushed more than 100,000 practice questions; he had practiced the English font “15 degrees to the right” for the exam; he had to shout in unison every morning I can do it, I will do it”. All these seem to be invalidated with the moment of handing in the college entrance examination. As one of the best products of Hengshui Middle School, he is good at exams. Once seen as a nightmare, Hengshui became the safest place for Liu Jiasen.

As the most famous test-taking Education machine in China in recent years, Hengshui High School is considered by many to be a “small town problem maker”.

But Liu Jiasen doesn’t consider himself a “small-town problem solver” in the strictest sense of the word – he comes from a He comes from a double-income Family and his father is a local section-level civil servant, so he is “not very likely to be bullied. According to his observations, only the “small middle class” in small cities, such as self-employed people, civil servants, or children from double-income families, have the opportunity to be trained at Hengyuan. In order to get into the school, the family also had to pay a “school choice fee” of 20,000 yuan.

After graduating from junior high school, Liu Jiasen’s performance in the middle school exam, combined with the comprehensive assessment of his three years of junior high school performance, ranked fourth in Zhuozhou City. With this ranking, he got a ticket for an interview at Hengyuan Middle School. The interview took place in a car. The teacher in charge of the interview told Liu Jiasen’s mother that part of the purpose of the interview was to screen out students who had “good grades but were psychologically radical”.

Liu Jiasen still remembers the scene of the interview. He was sitting in the passenger seat of the car, with the examiner to his left. A mother stood outside the car, repeatedly tapping on the window, begging the examiner to give her child a second chance. A teenager, on the other hand, stood by, looking at his mother’s repeatedly bent back with a wooden expression.

At Heng Middle School, students actively squeeze what little time they have out of school to study. Every three weeks on Saturdays, the school takes a half-day off, allowing students to leave school and return the next morning. Liu Jiasen’s Parents would come to Hengshui at this time and stay with their son at a local hotel for one night. And this night, Liu Jiasen will choose to stay overnight – because at school, teachers will inspect the dormitory after lights out to prevent students from studying privately. He said he tried to save time by going 21 days without changing his clothes until he developed a nail infection and then had to stop. The school gave students one hour a week to do laundry and take showers, and Liu chose to spend that time doing 40 small problems plus eight big ones – all of which became inspirational stories in his later speeches.

Hengyuan is a school, but it is also like a business. Students invest their time, consume their knowledge, and produce their grades; their scores become the teachers’ performance evaluation criteria. In the classroom, a teacher would say directly, “If you get good grades, I can get a car too.

The clear interest relationship makes it difficult for “teacher-student love” to exist. One of the teachers in Liu Jiasen’s class deleted all the students’ WeChat after graduation so that the messages sent by the students would not “affect their work. Liu Jiasen’s feelings towards his teachers during his school years were limited to “understanding”. In this “workshop”, students and teachers are trapped together by the ultimate rationality.



Because they have not yet entered society, and because of the closed environment of the school, the ideas that the students receive basically come from the indoctrination of others. In this world, according to Liu Jiasen, students are confronted with the “fragmentation” of two values.

At Hengshui High School, slogans of spiritual inspiration can be found everywhere. For example, “I stand proudly above the nine heavens and hate not to be king for the rest of my Life. “Raise one point, kill a thousand people” and so on. In the group speech, you will often hear “If you work hard, you can change the world”. Each class also has a class song, and the class song of Liu Jiasen’s class is “Against the Odds” by Zhang Jie.

It’s a kind of dream-like value,” Liu describes.

Compared to the “grand narrative,” the values teachers tell their students are much more realistic. In his senior year, Liu Jia Sen’s homeroom teacher called him into his office for a private chat and taught him that “to be rich, you have to learn more.

Under the influence of the two values, Liu Jia Sen experienced a sense of “absurdity”. In his sophomore year, he conceived a novel – a story set in a country where the people do not speak and move slowly; they are divided into several categories like in “Beautiful New World”, and each category has its own color, and the only action for all of them outside of sleeping is to keep counting beans, and only the one who counts the most can Only the one who counts the most can get the reward. At the end of the story, everyone goes crazy.

Liu Ka-sen expects to finish and publish the novel so that it will “get the attention of the community” and “contribute to the reform of Heng Middle School and even to the reform of the school. He expected to finish the novel and publish it so that it would “draw the attention of the society” and “promote the reform of Heng Middle School, or even make it disappear outright. But reality did not leave him the opportunity to put his ideas into action. All he could do was climb as high as he could in the system and fight for a little freedom.

In his three years in high school, he rose from 586th place on his first monthly exam to the top of his grade, which is the “comeback” story he talks about in every speech. As a top student, Liu Jiasen advanced all the way to become the “king” in this testing ground. At that time, he felt that he would become a “history changer”.

That is, until he stepped into the world outside of Hengyuan.

After the college entrance exam, his parents took him to the mall to buy a cell phone. In his imagination, cell phones must have a keyboard. But seeing the large-screen smartphone in the glass counter made him “like a lifetime ago”. Then in an August 2018 Zhihu answer, he wrote, “The world has changed, I, too, have changed. “

The bigger shock came afterwards, as Hengyuan Middle School was fundamentally a different world from the one Liu had entered.

When it came time to fill out the application form, Liu did not choose a major related to economics and management, as many top students did. Because of “not much knowledge and pursuit of money at that time” and In the end, he chose the Chinese Department because of his “beautiful imagination of literature”. After coming in, he found that it was completely different from what he expected.

One of the first things that almost every Chinese student is told is that “the Chinese Department does not train writers”. The culture of “accepting one’s own mediocrity” has also become the culture of the Chinese Department. During an exchange with a senior, Liu Jia Sen learned that the greatest achievement of the great scholar Ji Xianlin was “the use of the infinitive past as a criterion for determining the age and origin of Buddhist texts. Before that, he had always believed that Ji’s work had been a good one. Before that, he had always thought of Ji as a “prose Writer.

When he saw the students buried in the library’s antiquarian reading room, Liu Jia Sen was confused and envious. He did not understand the significance of devoting his life to the study of an academic problem that seemed trivial to outsiders. He wished he could understand those people, how they could feel settled and happy when they knew there was no fame or profit in doing so.

“Panic. Some years later, he used these two words to describe his state at that time.



The most anxiety still comes from the material, directly speaking, is “money”.

Liu Jiasen told All Now that he has been more sensitive to material things since he was a child. He always remembers the scene when he moved to Zhuozhou city when he was young – the house was not small, with 120 square meters, but the only decent furniture was a picture tube TV and a set of spring chairs sent by relatives, and the white paint on the ceiling and walls made him feel vain. The white paint on the ceiling and walls gave him the feeling of “a house with four walls.

In that small town, KFC was considered a “big meal” that could only be eaten after bathing and dressing. The “big meal”. Until he graduated from high school, he was convinced that if he didn’t study, he wouldn’t have anything to eat.

In junior high school, he first became aware of the class difference. There were some “rich kids” in his class at that time, and because of his good grades, Liu Jiasen was often brought along to play with them. In Hebei Province, where competition in education is particularly fierce, having an “educated” friend is a matter of The “face” thing. Liu Jiasen hangs out with these rich kids, eating and singing karaoke at no cost to himself.

But his ranking has also slipped from within 100 to more than 800. Seeing the ranking, Liu Jiasen was confused. He suddenly realized that “how people play, there is still the bottom of the family. But I don’t have a bottom”. He needed to work hard to climb up, and the higher he climbed, the safer he would be.

A more intuitive impact occurred after going to college. When he first used a smartphone, Liu Jiasen registered with WeChat and changed his signature to “fear the lagenaria of hanging, fear the dredging of the well of the Food“. At that time, Zhihu was popular among the student community, and discussions on social issues became Liu’s main source of information about the real world. In his timeline, he often found news related to housing prices. Once, he checked the selling price of houses near Peking University and found out that in Beijing, a room in an old neighborhood in the 1990s could be sold for 100,000 yuan per square meter. His hometown Zhuozhou is just over two hours away from Beijing by car, more than twenty minutes by high-speed rail, but the price of housing in Beijing is more than ten times higher than there.

Liu Jiasen, who imagined his success and fame, realized that not only was it a dream to be “side by side with the President and Prime Minister”, but according to the price, even staying in Beijing would be a problem. He wanted to earn money quickly, as much or as little as he could.

After his freshman year, he met “that opportunity” of his own.

After the 2015 college entrance exams were released, an old high school teacher who had already left his job and was preparing to do teaching aid book publishing contacted Liu Jiasen and bought his high school notes for book planning. 2016, the teacher had become the boss of China Edition Culture Communication Co. He asked Liu Jiasen to help him give lectures around the world, and the reward was tens of thousands of yuan, which could cover tuition and living expenses. The payment was tens of thousands of yuan, which “could cover tuition and living expenses”. Liu Jiasen agreed, and from that summer on, freshman Liu Jiasen returned to high school and became the “Jiasen senior” of the preparatory candidates.

The first speech was given in the summer of 2016 at a middle school in Dexing County (now Dexing City), Shangrao, Jiangxi. For this speech, Liu Jiasen prepared a month in advance, writing a 20,000-word speech and simulating it at Home every day, practicing various gestures, tone of voice, and the intonation of his speech.

But when he sat down at the podium, Liu Jiasen was still panicked. The principal called the entire sophomore class, dressed in neat and tidy uniforms, to fill the auditorium. The speech had more than 20,000 words, and Liu Jiasen didn’t look up the whole time, reading the script word for word. After the first session, the principal said he spoke well and didn’t even let him move his butt, so he arranged two more sessions for the other two grades directly in the morning and that afternoon.

Sitting alone on the stage with a banner over his head welcoming him – the three words “Liu Jiasen” For the first time, it was printed so big and hung so high. At the end of the three speeches, Liu Jiasen’s mouth had long been dry, but more than that, he was happy, “I didn’t expect this thing to be quite popular”, and this kind of speech turned out to be “There is a market”. A random search on the short video platform can find dozens of creators who claim to have a prestigious school background. Similar to the content of Liu Jiasen’s speech, they will talk about their own “retrograde” experience along the way, share their parents’ successful education style, tell the audience, saying “Learning will change your fate, and so can you”.

This is how the top student of Hengshui Middle School, Liu Jiasen, started his lecture tour. China Edition Culture signed a one-year contract with him, and all he had to do was travel to speak at high schools across the country every week, as arranged by the company, and mention a sentence in it about the teaching aid books the company produces and sells.

Although a year’s income is not enough to buy a square meter of real estate around the school, but compared to other ordinary students, Liu Jiasen has been much more nourished, and has more room to groom himself. He went to the mall and spent three thousand dollars to buy a coat of Jack Jones, to a set of body, from the dormitory to walk outside, trying to hide his inner pride with a serious expression, “do not come to see my dragon robe! “


Mr. Liu

Now, Liu Jiasen will wear the same plaid shirt from junior high school at least half of the week, but looking back at the time when he first started his lecture tour, he felt it was the state of his rapidly expanding materialistic desires. At that time, he would buy the next ten pieces of clothes online in one go, and put the ones that didn’t fit in the closet, too lazy to return them.

At that time, he would also follow the strategy in the public number of men’s dressing instruction to match himself with a formal dress. The article says that in a suit, the color of the pocket scarf and the shirt, the belt and the shoes must be the same. Liu Jiasen then dressed carefully according to the strategy, permed his hair and went out confidently, “special burn bag, looking like a businessman in the 1980s”. There were indeed many girls who looked at him sideways, but when Liu Jiasen looked at them, he saw a “gentle smile for primates” on his face.

During his sophomore and junior years, Liu Jiasen seemed to have returned to the state of squeezing time and stretching efficiency when he was in Hengzhong. At most, he spoke four days a week, going to eight different schools and speaking from morning to night. Liu Jiasen has also really changed. When he graduated from high school, he “couldn’t speak well,” but now, his voice is intoned, and he can speak without stopping to answer a question from a student. He can answer a student’s question without stopping for four or five minutes.

He also invites guests to dinner and buys gifts for his roommates more often, and his friends in the same dorm laughingly call him “Chief Liu”. He prefers this name to “Liu Zhuangyuan”.

He began to think about how to achieve the leap from 100,000 to one million. After a year of contract, he took the initiative to propose to the company that he wanted his salary to be linked to book sales. Now that he has been with the company for nearly five years, he says he has earned nearly two million yuan.

In his senior year of college, Carson Liu took a break from lecturing. That year, he was introduced to an investment institution by a Chinese senior who was working on an educational venture. Liu Jiasen revealed that there were about thirty students with Tsinghua and Peking University background and entrepreneurial ideas in this institution. The agency pays them a monthly salary of five thousand dollars and requires them to come to the company once a week for a meeting to exchange their latest experiences and ideas.

Liu Jiasen knew in his heart that the lecture was just “selling halo”, which is hard to hear “He wanted to find a chance to transform himself. He wanted to find an opportunity to change his direction and “stand and earn the money”.

But Liu Jiasen later found that to stay at that institution and get investors, he had to make himself absolutely obedient. He told the whole now, the weekly meeting will have a session called “criticism meeting”, the main theme is The main idea is to “punish the former to prevent the latter and cure the latter”. In this session, everyone had to reveal all of his or her inner self. He remembers that a student union officer, who was always dressed as a “legal elite”, was forced to get down on both knees and cry under pressure from his investors, and publicly admitted his He recalls a student council officer who, under pressure from investors, was forced to get down on both knees and cry at a meeting and publicly admit his gay identity. In addition, every student entering the institution must learn to play golf, and the investors set up a competition for the two to “bet on the ball.

It was here that he was exposed to the other world he had been waiting for. Among these people, there are sons of multinational bosses, entrepreneurs from Haidian chicken, and “seniors” who have handled millions of dollars but have been imprisoned for illegal fund-raising. But their anxiety and torment are even deeper than Liu Jiasen’s. Liu Jiasen once casually asked one of the seniors “what tea do you usually drink”, the other party froze for a moment, hesitated two seconds and replied. “I usually drink very expensive tea”.

Five months later, Liu Jiasen left the place and returned to the Chinese version of the culture to continue to do lectures.

Soon, Liu Jiasen will embark on the next tour of nearly a month. Before he speaks, he is always torn – for those children who are still closed and struggling for the college entrance exam, whether to let them out of their illusions and accept the truth of the world: “For them A central dilemma is that he has not yet experienced the life that comes after, and is responsible for the life that comes after, so he can only know what the future life might be like through the words of others. “

The most he can do, and the most realistic, is to remind students when they ask questions that “small-town problem solvers” are not necessarily suitable for basic subjects, according to Liu Jiasen. Otherwise, they may face the disillusionment of their Dreams, as well as embarrassing employment prospects.

Liu Sui (a pseudonym) heard a speech by Liu Jiasen. It was March 18, 2018, and she was in her senior year at a key high school in a county-level city in Yunnan Province. The campus was small, and the speech was held on a playground surrounded by a 250-meter track, with a full house and a banner on the stage to welcome Liu Jiasen.

Liu Sui sat in the back row. For her, this was a very normal day in her high school career. She could not remember much about the content of the speech, but she remembered that the top student was quite funny and told many stories about his life in Hengzhong. She also remembered the last sentence of the whole speech – at that time, Liu Jiasen solemnly said, “My journey is the starry sea.