Xi’an Up Close 《西安零距离》, an investigative journalism programme which airs on Xi’an TV, has become an international laughing stock after airing a report on June 17 on a “mystery mushroom” which was discovered by villagers in a rural part of the city.

Residents of the Liucunbu village on the outskirts of the capital of the Shaanxi province came across a strange fungi-like object while drilling a new well. They then contacted the local TV station for help and reporter Ye Yunfeng was despatched to the village to follow up.

The news report on the mysterious "mushroom"

One villager who was there during the fateful discovery of the unidentified object tells the reporter, “When we dug down to about 80m deep, we fished out this long, fleshy object. It’s got a nose and an eye, but we have no idea what it is!”

“Even our 80-year-old neighbour here says he has never seen anything like this before,” he adds.

Reporter Ye then begins to describe the curious object as the camera pans in on it. “As we can all see, this looks like a type of fungus, on both ends of which you’ll find mushroom heads.”

“On this side, you can see what looks like a pair of lips,” she adds. “And on that side, there is a tiny hole which extends all the way back to this side. The object looks very shiny, and it feels really fleshy and meaty too.”

“I’ve done my own research on the internet,” says the afore-mentioned villager. “It’s a type of lingzhi mushroom, called the taisui.”

Without skipping a beat, reporter Ye chimes in with her own research, saying this type of lingzhi is generally found in the Shaanxi region deep underground and is hence rarely seen. “When the Emperor Qin Shi Huang was on the hunt for the secret to longevity,” she elucidates, “it is said he discovered this lingzhi was the answer.”

Viewers who saw the report on Sunday immediately identified the mystery mushroom as a double-headed masturbation toy with an artificial vajayjay (vagina)on one side and an artificial anus on the other. Yes, you read that right, it was a jack-off aid that some guy used to spank his one-eye monster  when he wasn’t getting it from his wife.

Overnight, the video of the news report went viral on the Internet, chalking up a few million views across multiple video-sharing sites.

The next day, the embarrassed TV show issued the following apology on its Sina Weibo profile:

An open letter to all netizens and viewers: Hi everyone, one of our news reports which aired last night has made everyone laugh. This incident has been widely followed, shared and commented on. As our reporter was still very young and unwise to the ways of the world, this report has brought great inconvenience to everyone. We’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone from the bottom of our hearts for your criticism and correction. Please forgive our oversight!

致广大网友及观众的公开信:各位亲!昨晚我们的一条新闻让大家见笑了。这件事引发了大家的广泛关注、转发和评论。由于我们的记者还很年轻,不谙世事,在这条新闻中给大家带来了不适和误导!在此,我们衷心的感谢各位网友对我们节目的批评和指正。亲们,请原谅我们的一次疏忽吧。

The villagers of Liucunbu, in the meanwhile, heaved a sigh of relief that they had put a hold on their  temptation to stir-fry the “mushroom” to taste its “yumminess.”

In a wacky sense, maybe there is a little bit of truth to the reporter’s  assessment that the “mushroom” is a lingzhi treasured for promoting longevity. It may promote the longevity of some men’s sex lives, hahaha!

You must view the video of the news report…..it is hilarious!

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