Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Honey, I've lost you in a game of cards

Source: AsiaOne

A MOTHER of two young children has gone into hiding after her husband wagered her in a card game and lost.

Worse, she only found out that she had been wagered when the four men who had 'won' her showed up to collect their booty on 19 Dec, reported the Times of India.

Instead of defending his wife, Mr Sokendra Kumar, a resident of Muzaffarnagar in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh simply told her: 'Tumko hum juen mein haar gaye hain (I have lost you in the game of cards).'

Fortunately for his wife, her screams drew the attention of their neighbours, who rushed in to prevent the men from dragging her away.

In the confusion, the four men fled.

That's gambling. You can gamble away anything. Ever see those old HK movies? They bet houses, wives, arms, hands, and their own life. But of course that's just the movie.

The most troubling part is the following.

When questioned, station officer Vijay Kumar confirmed that the woman had approached the police, but said that it was a domestic dispute.

He said: 'It was found to be a false allegation and the issue was only limited to a domestic dispute and she went home.

Police never help anyone in these places and it shows how little rights women have. If you bribe the police they'll look into it. But of course all the bribing money has been gambled away! Even the utensils!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Bonus Asian Ripoff - Last Christmas

Source: Slant Eye for The Round Eye

Artist: Foxxi misQ
Language: Japanese

Youtube Link

With a slick vibe and danceable beats, the 2008 mashup by Dem, Chie, and Yu-a didn't just get me through the holidays without the need for a caffeine drip (and that's saying a lot), but as an extra added gift it also washed away that lingering bad taste in mouth from the '07 rendition by Ashley Look At Me Pole Dance At Rockefeller Center Tisdale.

And seriously - that alone is worth an award.

It doesn't sound too bad. I'm not a huge fan of girl trios cause it means neither of them have voices strong enough to sing on their own. Even together their voices are quite weak. But it's pretty catchy and I have it playing in the background :)

Movie Reviews - December 30, 2008


Couple of reviews to end the year.

Ip Man

Wilson Yip's film about Bruce Lee's master stars a surprisingly subdued DONNNNIIIEEE, and qualifies as a successful action film with exciting choreography. However, it's also a failed biopic with too much history whitewashed to placate the China audience. Still, while Ip Man may be less funny than Flash Point, it's definitely a better film.

Youtube Link

Deadly Delicious (China)

A clever premise and decent suspense makes Deadly Delicious an intriguing little thriller. However, the distant characters and rather prosaic revelations render the film only slightly above average.

Youtube Link

Hitler lose the bet on Vietnam - Thailand final match AFF cup

Hahaha! We've all seen the Hitler scene from Downfall used in a million different situations. I never though I'd see it used for Vietnam's recently AFF Cup victory :)

Youtube Link

And if you missed it, this is the goal that got Hitler so mad! :)

Youtube Link

N. Korea Ups Effort To Portray Healthy Kim

Source: CBS

Kim Jong Il attended a concert by North Korea's state orchestra, state media said Monday, the latest official report to portray the reclusive leader as healthy amid speculation he suffered a stroke in August.

The official Korean Central News Agency said that when Kim appeared in the auditorium, "the whole audience broke into the rousing cheers of 'hurrah!' and enthusiastically welcomed him."

It did not say when the performance by the State Symphony Orchestra took place.

Gotta love a place whose sole purpose in life is to deny and hide everything from everyone. This is turning into the real-life version of Weekend At Bernie's

Monday, December 29, 2008

Asian Ripoff XXII - Lambada

Artist: Akemi Ishii
Language: Japanese

Youtube Link

That's pretty good. Easy to dance to :)

New Years = FIREWORKS!

Here's a wonderful article on firecrackers and fireworks.

Source: Midlife Crisis

Now that Christmas is behind us, it’s time to focus on the upcoming New Year - and that means stocking up on FIREWORKS! Okay, maybe it’s mostly a “guy thing” but firecrackers is something that we Baby Boomers grew up with.

Back in the day - on Oahu - we didn’t need no stinkin’ permit to purchase firecrackers. We just needed someone over 18 years of age. And it was simple then: Baby Camel or Checkerbombs. Oh yeah, and “cracker balls”. Do you remember cracker balls? Little colored balls about the size of a small jawbreaker. Came in a square box similar to the box that mosquito punks come in. Cracker balls were made out of what looked like paper mache and had little gray rocks inside them. We’d throw them on the concrete floor hard enough so they’d pop. Sometimes we’d have to give some stubborn ones a few overhand throws to the floor until they’d pop. I always wanted to try shooting them against a wall with a slingshot - but we weren’t allowed to have slingshots. I don’t know what ever happened to cracker balls. My dad said they looked too much like candy and little kids were getting hurt by biting on them - so they banned them.

Firecrackers aren't a big deal here in Canada. People usually just attend a midnight event and watch the fireworks shoot up into the sky. It's also usually -30C on New Years Eve so people tend to stay indoors.

It's a different story in Hawaii and in Asia as people buy firecrackers, light them, then run away covering their ears. Don't forget that in Asia there's also Chinese New Year which falls on January 26, 2009. So there's double the opportunity to blow your fingers off.

University sends UFO course into deep space

Source: Independent Online

Hong Kong - A UFO group in Hong Kong has condemned the city's largest university for cancelling a course on ufology because, it said, of faculty objections to the subject.

The course was set to begin last September as an optional subject for University of Hong Kong students in a joint project between the university and the Hong Kong Institute of Ufology, local newspaper Apple Daily reported on Monday.

The course was delayed and discussions were held on offering it at a later date after some academics expressed reservations about its content, Moon Fong, a committee member of the institute, told reporters.

Really? If you were a parent would you let your kid take a UFO course? Can you have a course in something that is not an exact study? Would it be a GPA booster?

I might take this course cause it sounds fun! But I can also see the point the institution for not allowing it.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Vietnam win their first international title

Source: Nhan Dan

Youtube Link

I think my dad's lost more sleep over the last two weeks than at any other time waking up at 5am to watch four Vietnam matches over that period of time.

The last time Vietnam won a tournament (a minor one), he was 11 years old! :) My dad tells me that in that tournament in 1959,goalkeeper Pham Van Rang was the MVP. He died last month. In this tournament, goalkeeper Duong Hong Son was named the MVP. Divine intervention perhaps? :)

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Kobayashi fails at fruitcake

Do you like fruitcake? I mean, really like fruitcake? It won't bring him the same prestige as winning back the Mustard Yellow Belt, but when Takeru Kobayashi set his sights on breaking the record for competitive fruitcake consumption, everyone expected him to breeze to victory. Yet for all of his talent, the Man from Japan was unable eat enough fruitcake fast enough to beat the existing record set by IFOCE queen Sonya Thomas. Kobayashi, who admitted he had never eaten fruitcake before making a run at the record, said the consistency of the infamously inedible dessert proved to be his undoing, noting "it was very difficult to eat because it was so dense".

Lest anyone get the wrong idea, I have nothing but the utmost respect for competetive eaters and their grueling sport. Should you ever wish to get a look at the event and the men and women who put their bodies to the ultimate test, I highly recommend reading Eat This Book by Ryan Nerz to get an idea what sort of physical and mental training it takes to make it to the top of the competitive eating world, and why the fittest (like the tiny Sonya Thomas and famously slender Kobayashi) triumph over the fattest.

NewSpeak TV at Anime Expo 2008 Cosplay

Cosplay - short for "costume play", is basically describing a performing-art behavior of self-rigging out as a character.

There are some wild costumes at in this video. People put in alot of work in their costumes. Duct tape/cardboard technology!

Youtube Link

I went to Otafest a few times when it was small. It was interesting but I'm not that big of an anime fan and seeing a 300-pound white guy dressed as sailor moon made my decision not to attend the following year alot easier. To my surprise, it's gotten alot bigger with 4,278 attendees and guests! I might have to check it out next year.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Asian Ripoff XXI - We'll Be Together

Artist: Anita Mui
Language: Cantonese

Youtube Link

Anita Mui was such a great performer. She is dearly missed.

Six China officials sacked for dozing at meeting

Source: Reuters

BEIJING (Reuters) - A local government in southern China has sacked six officials who were photographed dozing during a meeting and whose images were published online, Chinese media said Friday.

The six, some company managers and some Communist Party chiefs for various government branches, were attending a meeting in Hengyang city in Hunan province marking 30 years of economic reforms, the Beijing News said.

"They (the sackings) are intended to strictly enforce discipline and clear up the bad impact this had on society," the newspaper said, citing the decision made by the city government.

While the report did not say who took the pictures and posted them on the Internet, the incident has generated heated discussion online, with many saying the dismissals were unfair as it was not the officials' fault the meeting was boring.

"In 99 percent of those kinds of meetings the words are empty and stereotypical," one poster named Damocangying 2007 wrote on popular portal

"If the audience falls asleep when you're making a speech, then your speech is to blame," another person called Cmbbs said.

Government meetings in China are often long full of long-winded speeches, though senior officials have tried to push for shorter and more efficient ones.

The six were not the first to be captured and ousted after their improper behaviour was captured on film.

An official in the booming southern city of Shenzhen was fired last month after photos and video clips of his drunken behaviour appeared online.

Sleeping during a speech can be seen as an insult and people who fall asleep are disrespecting the speaker, who is always some top-ranking official.

Have you ever fallen asleep in a meeting or at your desk? Would you be fired?

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Japanese Drinks


Theres a huge variety of drinks available in Japan and you could last quite a while drinking something different every day.

Photos of vending machines and drinks follows. You will notice that there are some freebies attached to some drinks at no extra cost. Some are useful, some make you want to hit somebody. The One Piece freebie attached to the Fanta is a refrigerator magnet which also seals bags of crisps - left it in the hotel bin ^^;

I've had some of these drinks before. Some of them might be the iced tea I get at different Calgary Chinatown locations.

I think it was this one:

Please to be teaching in Engrish OK? Congratulations!

Confession time - I am not the painfully hot regular blogmistress, or even Asian ... but rather, a guest contributor. I do, however, have some experience with the topic of this post: Japanese Engrish.

By all accounts, Japan, with a population of 150 million people, should be one of the largest English speaking nations on earth. Why, I hear you ask? For starters, Japanese children are taught English at a very young age, and it is a compulsory subject for Japanese children from grade school through college. English has obtained a status as Japan's unofficial second language, with English language television shows and movies to be found in great abundance. English is used in Japanese advertising, popular songs, as a second language for street signs and subway maps, and is more consistently omnipresent than in some places with an actual native English speaking population I could mention.

And yet, for all of this intensive, mandatory study, the actual quality of the English used in Japan is bad - even infamously so. It's certainly not for lack of effort - or even enthusiasm for the subject. Many English speaking visitors to Japan, myself included, have had the startling experience of complete strangers rushing up to practice their invariably broken English with anyone who "looks American" (read as, white - god knows what German or French tourists are supposed to think). So with all this desire to speak English and all this practice, why does Japanese English still suck so terribly?

Part of the problem lies in the way English is taught in Japanese schools, where the language is presented almost as a theoretical exercise. English grammar is emphasized at the expense of phonetics, conversation and practical usage. A Japanese English student will be drilled extensively on the differences between "Jane walks", "Jane walked" and "Jane will be walking", but will invariably butcher a question about what she's doing to Jane herself.

Japan's Education Ministry is apparently tired of Japanese English being the butt of the jokes of ESL teachers from New York to Johannesburg, and is attempting to remedy the problem by mandating the usage of English instruction in English classes. This move is being met with polite resistance by Japanese English instructors and students alike, for practical reasons (the difficulty), but for cultural reasons as well.

Cultural reasons, you ask? You better believe it. Part of the "problem" with lousy Japanese English is that Japanese English teachers, on average, are better with Engrish than they are with actual English (see the photo above). What's more, this move by the Education Ministry would not only force Japanese teachers to admit that there is a problem (which is difficult in general in Japan), but also that they haven't been doing their job as well as theoretically possible (most Japanese would rather eat a live skunk than admit this). There's some serious face saving to be done here.

For my part, I think I would miss the occasional brain jarring displays of Japanese Engrish. Once you've seen a sweatshirt proclaiming the wearer to be a member in good standing of the "Philadelphia Oatmeal Subway Boy Club" or meekly tried to obey a sign instructing the public not to be "photo taking of nature's koala magnificence if at all possible", real English just isn't as good anymore.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

A Japanese Town That Kicked the Oil Habit

Source: TIME

Shin Abe doesn't find it odd that the picturesque little Japanese town of Kuzumaki, where he has lived all his life, generates some of its electricity with cow dung. Nor is the 15-year-old middle school student blown away by the vista of a dozen wind turbines spinning atop the forested peak of nearby Mt. Kamisodegawa. And it's old news to Abe that his school gets 25% of its power from an array of 420 solar panels located near the campus. "That's the way it's been," he shrugs. "It's natural."

COW DUNG! I always wondered that if we pee in the gas tank, would the car run? :)

Christmas Songs - 12 Girls Band

Some uniquely played Christmas Carols from the 12 Girls Band using traditional Chinese instruments.

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Nine-year old girl is youngest person to become Microsoft Certified Professional

Source: Engadget

A nine year-old girl in India named M. Lavinashree has passed the Microsoft Certified Professional Exam, becoming the youngest person to ever pull it off (smashing the record previously held by a 10 year-old Pakistani girl). The youngster has a long history of making records in her short life -- including reciting all 1,300 couplets of a 2,000 year-old Tamil epic at the age of three -- and now she's now cramming for the Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer Exam.

Everytime I see a story like this of a young person passing a test or graduating collage, I think back to the story of reincarnation. A person is to eat porridge upon reincarnating in order to wipe out his/her mind of the previous life.

I think cases like this show that this person skipped the line and didn't eat the porridge.

Asian Ripoff XX - Christmas Edition!

Are you sick of Christmas Carols yet? If you are. TOUGH! Here are some that you never thought you'd hear.

Artist: Aki Maeda
Language: Japanese

Youtube Link

Artist: Quang Vinh
Language: Vietnamese

Youtube Link

Artist: Cookies
Language: Cantonese

A medley of a bunch of songs.

Youtube Link

Monday, December 22, 2008

Cowboy Bebop Live-Action Movie

Source: MTV

It’s no secret that Keanu Reeves loves anime – a main influence on the “Matrix” series. It’s also common knowledge that the actor holds a place in his heart for sci-fi, as evidenced by films like “A Scanner Darkly,” “Johnny Mnemonic” and the currently-tops-in-theaters “The Day the Earth Stood Still.” It’s no surprise, then, that Reeves’ latest passion project revolves around his desire to make a live-action “Cowboy Bebop.”

“Oh yeah, cool,” he said when I asked him about the flick recently. “We’re trying to do that.”

As fans of the Japanese classic TV series know, “Bebop” follows a crew of bounty hunters traveling around the universe in the year 2071. Reeves hopes to play Spike Spiegel, one of these futuristic cowboys forced to pick up the slack after a population crash and hyperspace gateways have left law-enforcement unable to capture many of the galaxy’s most ruthless criminals.

I'm not a big anime fan so I don't know much about Cowboy Bebop. I know it's extremely popular and considered one of the best series ever made. I'll have to defer to all the experts for an opinion of how good you think the live-action movie by Keanu will be.

Britney Spears Doesn't Translate Well Overseas

Source: Jossip

Well at least Britney Spears can always say that she's huge in Japan. Or China. The slightly trashy songstress was in one of those Asian countries as part of her Womanizer tour and wished all her fans "A Merry Christmas," despite the fact that the majority of Japanese viewers of Buddhists.

On the scale of 1-10 Britney Blunders this doesn't rank nearly as high as shaving your head or driving with your child in your lap, so that's improvement, I guess?

Surreal video, after the jump.

'Lady Guard', a Pill to Prevent Peeing

Source: Japanorama

Frequent urination and the constant need to keep a bathroom within range cause undue stress and bladder hypersensitivity among Japanese women - at least, so says Kowa, manufacturer of new Lady Guard pills. The over-the-counter medication
lets girls of all ages work, play and relax longer, thus improving their quality of life.

Lucky I don't have any peeing problems.

Here's the commercial.

Chinese Woman ‘Kappa Girl’ detained by Shanghai police for posting own sex video on internet

Source: Guardian

Kappa Girl - otherwise known as Ms Huang - became a viral phenomenon last month in China after posting a 12-minute homemade porn flick of herself - and then writing an accompanying blog to try and defend her video and to cash in on her popularity. Huang wanted to charge 50,000 yuan (£4,926) or a modelling assignment, 20,000 yuan for a bar appearance and had offered interviews with the media for 300,000 yuan. A good head for figures, then.

Sheesh, girl can't even make a buck.

Movie Reviews - December 22, 2008


Two reviews before the Christmas rush.

All About Women (HK)
Dream (Korea)

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Meaning of Christmas

Source: Vancouver Sun

The Vancouver Sun put together this roundtable titled Any meaning in Christmas? An atheist, Christian, Sikh and ethnic Chinese respond. The article is quite lengthy but a very good read as to how Christmas is viewed in multicultural Vancouver.

In a multifaith and consumer-oriented country like Canada, we explored how Christmas comes with a dizzying array of hard-to-measure meanings.

Some are deep. Others are superficial -- unless you can find profundity, as the participants laughed, in the Santa Claus song, All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth.

The person who acknowledged having the most at stake in Christmas was Lynn Szabo, head of the literature department at Trinity Western University, a Christian school in Langley.

Szabo found deep religious truth in the Christmas story of God becoming one with humanity through the birth of Jesus, acknowledging she embraced the traditional belief in Jesus' virgin birth (which many liberal Christians do not).

But Capilano University philosophy professor Stan Persky, who is gay, had trouble with how Christianity and its often-conservative members have at times thrust their values in his face at Christmas. Persky said he finds orthodox Christian theology strange.

Rajvir Kaur Basra, a Surrey-raised Sikh in the community relations business, started off joking that at Christmas she "celebrates commercialism."

Most Indo-Canadians have fun with Christmas trees, Christmas dinners and giving presents at this time of year, she said. But mostly they like a few days off work.

Ed Shen, a Hong-Kong raised Vancouver psychologist who informally follows Eastern forms of spirituality, has nevertheless sometimes found satisfaction in sitting in on a Christmas service.

As a psychologist, Shen maintained that Christmas has become a "canvas" on which people project their own meaning. Some love to be with family. Others look inward. Some celebrate the birth of Jesus, whom they consider the Messiah. Others make a "religion" of shopping. Is one better than another?

Closing Comments (Video)

I would have to say my Christmas experience is most like that of Basra's. My family is Taoist and we celebrate the Lunar New Year more than Christmas. But Christmas is a time to have a family gathering, exchange small gifts and eat like a pig!

Christmas in Vietnam

Source: Thanh Nien News

Santa Claus and Xmas trees have become so familiar with Vietnamese over the past decade that neither families nor companies are skimping on their Christmas budgets despite the global economic recession.

Purchasing decorations for Xmas and New Year celebrations, reserving parties at hotels, karaoke restaurants and cabarets or booking tours to romantic destinations are some of the most popular plans for the festive season in Vietnam.

Season preparations began last month in all of Vietnam’s big cities with Santa Clauses smiling at the entrance to shopping malls and Christmas lights illuminating the main streets.

"Christmas is an opportunity to go out with family and friends rather than a time for religious reflection," says 24-year-old Hoang, who plans to spend Christmas night at HCMC’s Lush Bar with his friends.

In Vietnam, Christmas has turned into a commercial holiday more than a religious one. Christians in Vietnam celebrate it religiously but that number is only around 15%.

Buying presents for Christmas AND Tet. That would make anyone broke.

Another good thing about Christmas is you get to see Vietnamese girls in Christmas-y red Ao Dai

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Chinlone: The National Sport of Myanmar

Wikipedia: Chinlone

Now we know where the hacky-sack originated from :)

My dad just watched it with me. He says the girl is awesome. Some guy will marry her and she'll kick him all over the house. :o

Friday, December 19, 2008

Asian Ripoff XIX - Do You Think I'm Sexy?

If you want my body and you think I'm sexy
Come on, sugar, let me know!

Artist: Kenji Sawada
Language Japanese

Thursday, December 18, 2008

College Schoolgirl: 3 Years, 5 Abortions

Source: ChinaSmack

A Girl’s Monologue: Three years of college, five painless abortions

My boyfriend treating me like this, what should I do???

I am a university student in Xi’an. This year I am a senior, and I am from Hubei Province.

When I was in my first year, my current boyfriend pursued me. At the time, he was very sincere and what more, I didn’t think find him annoying, so we started to date. Two months later, he rented an apartment outside of campus, and we began to live together. Not long later, I became pregnant. In order to let me have a painless abortion, he spent all of the money on his bank card meant for his living expenses and borrowed money from his schoolmates. At the time, he told me that he wanted me to worry about nothing. After the baby was aborted – maybe it was because of guilt – he cried, and so did I.

Shocking. Been shaking my head all lunch hour.

It shows how uneducated they are in China and how the old taboos still exist.
The man takes no responsibility. He just want shis sex and when the girl is pregnant, it's her fault.

And also the old taboo. "A women who has had abortions is now imcomplete and no longer desired by men. Someone tell the Chinese that it's almost 2009.

China's internet 'spin doctors'

Source: BBC

China is using an increasing number of paid "internet commentators" in a sophisticated attempt to control public opinion.

These commentators are used by government departments to scour the internet for bad news - and then negate it.

They post comments on websites and forums that spin bad news into good in an attempt to shape public opinion.

Chinese leaders seem aware that the internet - the only public forum where views can be freely expressed - needs close attention.

China's Communist Party leaders have long sought to sway public opinion by controlling what the media can report.

That policy was extended to the internet, and many websites are blocked by a system sometimes dubbed the "great firewall of China".

I wouldn't mind this job. Going around and bashing people who disagree with me :)

Seriously, this is very bad. All countries have good and bad things about them. China continues to hide all that is 'unpleasant" and it can only do harm in the end as people are not allowed full information. You can't make good decisions when you only know one side of the story.

Macho Macho Man!

Source: Clearly Cultural

Masculinity versus its opposite, femininity refers to the distribution of roles between the genders which is another fundamental issue for any society to which a range of solutions are found. The IBM studies revealed that (a) women’s values differ less among societies than men’s values; (b) men’s values from one country to another contain a dimension from very assertive and competitive and maximally different from women’s values on the one side, to modest and caring and similar to women’s values on the other. The assertive pole has been called ‘masculine’ and the modest, caring pole ‘feminine’.

According to the article, Japanese men are first with a ranking of 95!
Swedish men are last with a ranking of 5! This will make my Finnish and Estonian friends very very happy :)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Sex In China 2008

Woooow, he's so hot! He was one of my favorite actors before the scandal. He still is but he's out of the business. Could you imagine with the lead role in "21" instead of that other douche? It would have been perfect!

Source: Variety

Anyways, the reason you see a picture of Edison Chan is because his scandal is the Top Sex-related incident in China in 2008 as people were curious to find out more about his sexy picture leaks and trysts with other starlets.

Lust, Caution being banned was #2.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Anti-Winter Driving

It took me 2 hours to get home from work today.

After 2 days of -30C temperatures it warmed up to -15 today and snowed for about 2 hours at lunchtime. This caused all hell to break loose. People in this winter city cannot fucking drive in the winter.

1) Calgary police responded to over 180 collisions and another 20 injury accidents by 4:00 p.m.

2) Nobody has snow tires so everyone's going 5 miles an hour trying not to slide.

3) City of Calgary decided not to go out there replenishing the sand that they put down over the weekend, at the stop lights everything has been polished down now into a sheet of ice.

4) Nobody knows where they're going. They realize they have to go across 3 lanes to get to the next exit while everyone else is gridlocked.

5) Only crazy people will venture out into this without a good reason to like grandmas driving around in minivans doing their Christmas shopping during rush hour.

6) A few cars were not making it up the hill

7) Yesterday I watched four vehicles (SUVs and trucks) miss our corner and slide into our sidewalk or onto our front lawn simply because they were going too fast.

This is fucking insane. People today cannot drive. This is not even a bad winter day. I've lived here all my life. It's certainly been much colder than this before (We've hit -45 before). It's certainly snowed more than this before. But I've never seen traffic jams like this. And we still have 2 months to go.

Movie Reviews - December 16, 2008


Two movie reviews this week and the results of the the Golden Horse Award show.

Legendary Assassin (HK)
The Equation of Love & Death (China)

45th Golden Horse Awards

Chinese 'classical poem' was brothel ad

Source: The Independent

A respected research institute wanted Chinese classical texts to adorn its journal, something beautiful and elegant, to illustrate a special report on China. Instead, it got a racy flyer extolling the lusty details of stripping housewives in a brothel.

Chinese characters look dramatic and beautiful, and have a powerful visual impact, but make sure you get the meaning of the characters straight before jumping right in.

There were red faces on the editorial board of one of Germany's top scientific institutions, the Max Planck Institute, after it ran the text of a handbill for a Macau strip club on the front page of its latest journal. Editors had hoped to find an elegant Chinese poem to grace the cover of a special issue, focusing on China, of the MaxPlanckForschung journal, but instead of poetry they ran a text effectively proclaiming "Hot Housewives in action!" on the front of the third-quarter edition. Their "enchanting and coquettish performance" was highly recommended.

This is unbelievable. There is a Chinese person in every city in the world I think.
Chinese people outnumber every other type of 'people' in the world. And this journal couldn't find ONE chinese person to proofread this?

Look around your office right now. Wherever you work, there is a person who can read Chinese no more than 20 metres from you.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Asian Ripoff XVIII - Roxette Again

Looks like we're on a Cantonese roll.
Take one of the most popular singers ever from HK (Alan Tam) and give him this song and you get this :)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

S Korea parents fined over rape

source: BBC

A South Korean court has fined the parents of a teenage rapist more than $60,000 (£40,000) for failing to supervise their son.

The 18-year-old, who has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, raped a local seven-year-old girl in 2006.

The court said the boy had grown up watching pornography and had imitated a film he had seen, during the attack.

It said his parents could have prevented the crime with appropriate education, but neglected their duty.

The teenager is serving a 10-year sentence for the rape, but a court in Seoul ruled that his parents were also liable for his crime.

I don't know if I agree with this or not. The 18-year old already got 10 years in prison and was sentenced as an adult. The parents probably already suffered with both this guilty verdict and spent money in the criminal trial to help their son. Why is the victim's family so greedy over this incident? The accused is already in jail, getting more money out of it doesn't change the fact the girl was raped.

And what responsibility does the parents really have? I'd like to hear from parents here. Do you watch your child 24/7 when they're 18? If you son did something illegal, do you feel you are responsible for it too and must pay a fine?

Friday, December 12, 2008

Archer Has An Arrow Escape

Source: Ananova

A Chinese schoolboy had an amazing escape after being shot through the eye with an arrow by a pal.

An x-ray shows the arrow through Liu Cheong's skull.

Teachers at Jiutai City school believe the young archers were practicing on their own when the accident happened.

The arrow went through 11-year-old Liu Cheong's eye socket, completely through his head and was only stopped by the back of his skull.

"If the arrow had been shot with just a bit more force, it would have come out the back of his head," said doctors at Jida Hospital in Changchun, eastern China.

The boy only survived because the arrow miraculously missed his brain.

I remember archery in school. You stood there and shot at a target miles away!
How can you hit another student!?

How Daring Are You?

To Eat Takoyaki?

Source: Noodles and Rice

Believe it or not, these contain diced baby octopus coated in a specially prepared batter.

Japanese food scares me more and more by the day! :P

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Business As Usual in India

Source: Daily Mail

The first sporting event on Indian soil after the Mumbai attacks began yesterday as India welcomed England for the first of two test matches.

On the roof of the ground, soldiers with guns keep guard. Very sad to see but England have 3000 soldiers to look after them and they are maintaining a visible presence. Bit eerie with those rifles trained on targets though.

England, who came into this cold and on a massive losing streak, looked quite comfortable with 164/1 at tea. But 4 wickets fell in the final session of the day on a very flat surface and England are vulnerable again. If India can quickly dismiss the tail on the morning of Day 2, then they will be in control and England will doubt themselves again. A team in poor form always fears the worse.

Now... did anyone understand what I just said? :)

Asian Ripoff XVII - Aaron Kwok

Please help identify this song. Sounds very familiar but I'm stumped.

Artist: Aaron Kwok
Language: Cantonese

Is Aaron Kwok the best Chinese dancer ever? There have been many many Chinese singers over the years but can any of them dance? Some of the dancing routines in the 80s and 90s were pretty sad.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Warcraft restaurant opens in Beijing


A newly opened Beijing restaurant captures the trend. The
interior decoration of the place is inspired by one popular
online game.

The owner of the restaurant said he created the diner in the hope that people who share his enthusiasm for The World of Warcraft would find a comfortable gathering place.

The owner of the restaurant said he created the diner in the
hope that people who share his enthusiasm for The World of
Warcraft would find a comfortable gathering place.

In addition to the interior decoration, game features dominate
the menu selection. Diners choose from dishes named after
denizens of the virtual world.

I don't know much about Warcraft. I did hear that the government restricts parts of the game, like zombies and undead. Is that true?

The Sushi Birthday Cake

Source: the.[ED]ition

Have your friends ever bought you a birthday cake that made you think to yourself “Yep, there is a definite lack of seafood in and on this cake.” Well, worry no more, friends as you can now by cakes made entirely of raw fish. This is the Sushi Deco Cake made by Ryu Gu Jo Sushi Studio.

Hmmmmm. I think I'll pass. I don't like sushi to begin with so I don't think I'd like it on a cake!

Meet the world's newest oldest mom

Source: Slate

Your new frontrunner is Rajo Devi of Alewa, India. She just gave birth at 70. Her husband is 72.

It's a heart-warming story of man—or, in this case, woman—overcoming nature's cruelty. Devi and her husband tried for years to have kids. Eventually, menopause claimed her. That was 20 years ago.

Then technology arrived to save the day. No eggs? No problem. We can get you donor eggs. Bad sperm? No problem. We'll fix that, too. "We used the usual intra cytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) technique," the couple's fertility doctor, Dr. Anurag Bishnoi, told the Times of India. "The ICSI method enables even poor quality sperms being used creating embryos." In Devi's case, the paper adds, the doctors used "blastocyst culture," transferring the egg after five days in vitro instead of the usual two or three.

So when will this record be broken next?

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Christmas Lights in Japan

Source: Mainichi

They really know how to light it up for Christmas in Japan!

Bangkok's red light district suffers from political chaos

Source: Yahoo News

Doesn't anyone look out for the little people!? You never know who will be most affected by poltical situations.

The go-go bars are empty and sex is on sale at half price as Bangkok's infamous red light districts suffer from a blockade of the capital's airports.

"It's high season, but now it's like low season," said Nan, a scantily-clad hostess at one deserted nightspot in the Thai capital's notorious Patpong area.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Asian Ripoff XVI - Yolinda Yan

From one of the better covers with Shirley Kwan to a couple of the worse.

Most of you probably don't remember Yolinda Yan. She was known for being the girl in the classic movie "Bullet in the Head" but other than that had a forgettable acting career.

She wasn't much of a singer either. Here are two examples.

The first Bollywood film distributed by Warner Brothers

Chandni Chowk To China

This looks awesome! Hilarious! Opens January 16.
It is first Bollywood film distributed by Warner Brothers and the first Indian production to be shot in China.

Japanese commuters told "Please do It At Home"

Source: Telegraph

Five years ago, it would have been unthinkable for passengers on Japan's crowded trains to witness a female office worker applying make-up on her way to work. But now, grooming in public is commonplace. For some, such behaviour reflects the fact that the politeness and courtesy that was a trademark of Japanese society are fading fast.

Standards are falling so rapidly that Japan Railways has just launched a poster campaign urging women to "Please do it at home" – put their make-up on, that is.

"I would have to say that levels of inconsideration have accelerated in the last five years or so," said Toshiko Marks, a professor of multicultural understanding at Shumei University. "I first saw a young woman applying her make-up on a train about five years ago but now it is an everyday sight," she said. "I even see people on trains eating food that has a strong smell, such as noodles, which means everyone has to put up with it."

Do you see this as a problem? To be honest in Calgary when I ride the train every morning, I hardly see anyone eating or putting on makeup. There is the odd loud MP3/IPOD but then I just end up listening to whatever they're listening to :)

Government Website Hacked, Official Now Sexy Girl

Source: ChinaSMACK

Woohoo!! Great to see the Chinese Government site breached.

The morning of December 5th at around 9:23, Jingchu News received reports from netizens, the website of the Jingzhou City Bureau of Commerce was hacked, the profile page of government leaders was replaced by a sexy lady wearing revealing clothes. This reporter immediately contacted the Jingzhou City Bureau of Commerce, where a staff member expressed that they just received notice from the provincial Commerce Bureau that some web pages were hacked, and presently they were trying their best to contact the company responsible for maintaining the website.

At 9:23 am, this reporter logged on to Jingzhou City Bureau of Commerce website and saw that the column introducing the Bureau leader had impressively turned into a bikini-wearing “AV idol,” while Bureau leader’s statement was “to drink for my girlfriend’s birthday”. These two columns were the most popular this week, collecting more than 9000 clicks. At 9:28, when this reporter tried to log on again, the website was already unable to load.

At 9:36 am, reporter contacted the office of the Jingzhou City Bureau of Commerce, to inquire about whether the bureau knew that the website had been hacked, the receiving party stated that they just received the notice from the Hubei Department of Commerce and are already handling the technical matter, presently doing their best to contact the the company “Jingchu Time/Space” responsible for site maintenance. Finally, this staff who declined to give his name hoped that this reporter would “not report this news, we will quickly resolve this problem.”

The reporter did a search on the company responsible for the site maintenance for the Jingzhou City Bureau of Commerce–”Jingchu Time/Space”, and found two similarly named companies. Jingzhou City Jingchu Time/Space Technology Corporation is the local Jingzhou division of the Beijing Time/Space Technology Corporation; while the other company is just Hubei Province Jingchu Time/Space Technology Corporation, without any further information.

As of 9:45 when this reporter was filing this report, the Jingzhou City Bureau of Commerce Bureau leader’s profile page had not returned to normal operation.

PSA - Heavy Snow

Source: CFCN Calgary

Eight inches of snow fell in Calgary yesterday and the radio report this morning reported 240 accidents ON A SUNDAY!

PSA! Slow the fuck down!!!!!

Mumbai - I hid in the Bathroom For 7 Hours

Source: Forbes

Just Frightening!

American Michael Pollack was having dinner in the Taj Mahal Hotel with his wife when attackers struck. He gives one of the first comprehensive accounts to emerge of the terrifying hours that followed. This is an excerpt from his story published by Forbes.

My story begins innocuously, with a dinner reservation in a world-class hotel. It ends 12 hours later after the Indian army freed us.

My point is not to sensationalize events. It is to express my gratitude and pay tribute to the staff of the Taj Mahal Hotel in Mumbai, who sacrificed their lives so that we could survive. They, along with the Indian army, are the true heroes that emerged from this tragedy. More....

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Christmas Tree

It snowed by the bucketload today. I had to shovel snow twice.

My wonderful Christmas tree!

Yokohama Chinatown


We're all familiar with Chinatowns in North American cities. The ones in San Francisco, Vancouver and Toronto are the big one I've been to. The one here in Calgary is pretty small. This is because cost of rent in Chinatown is so expensive and business open in other areas.

Check out pictures of the Chinatown in Yokohama, it's HUGE!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Pacquiao wins! - Total Devastation

Source: AP

Going into the fight, the talk was how a smaller fighter would handle the power of a bigger fighter. When the first round started De La Hoya looked so much bigger than Manny that you'd think it would be a factor in the fight. That's as close as Oscar got as Manny starting to show his speed and power. He lost respect for Oscar's punches by round 4 and it was pretty much over. Oscar isn't such a pretty boy anymore and quit after 8.

"A good small man is better and a good big man" :)

Movie Reviews - December 6, 2008


The Beast Stalker
(HK) Nicholas Tse Ting-Fung, Zhang Jingchu
Nobody's Perfect (HK) Stephy Tang Lai-Yun, Kary Ng Yiu-Fei
Detroit Metal City (Japan) Kenichi Matsuyama, Rosa Kato
Ikigami: The Ultimate Limit (Japan) Shota Matsuda, Takashi Tsukamoto
The Letter (Korea) Choi Jin-Sil, Park Shin-Yang

Friday, December 5, 2008

Hello baby! Hello Kitty welcomes Taiwan newborns

Source: Reuters

Wow. They have Hello Kitty Everything Now! Although I'm not sure I'd go for this one.

New Poll on the Sidebar. Would you have your baby delivered in a Hello Kitty Hospital!?

Rain's Steamy Performance at the 7th Korea Film Awards

Rain really plays up his "bad boy" image to the max in his performance at the 7th Korea Film Awards held at the Sejong Culture Hall on December 4, 2008.

After being bashed in the media sexually suggestive lyrics, Rain performed an even raunchier pole dance compared to his magic stick dance routine. After that sexy introduction, he launched into an hotter, sexier version of "Rainism". Check out the end and the reaction of the actresses who attended the event. You know they loved it! :)

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Wie's 65 reminiscent of her younger self

Source: ESPN

For the first time in her young life, Michelle Wie isn't being handed something. She's not being exempt to play on the LPGA tour. She's not getting sponsors into Men's events where she shoot +20 and quickly goes home.

Michelle Wie is now a common golfer playing for her LPGA livelihood in Q-School. Q-School is a 5-round tournament from Wednesday to Sunday where the top 20 finishers qualify for the LPGA tour next season. It's five nerve wracking days in order to play the entire year next season and make hundreds of thousands of dollars, maybe millions. Michelle Wie currently leads the tournament at -10 after two rounds. We'll see if she can hold on to her nerve and qualify. This will change her career because she would have actually earned something which I think will make her stronger and a force to be reckoned with in the years to come.

Asian Ripoff XV - Shirley Kwan

What do you get when you have an English song from a Swedish band sung in Cantonese?

Artist: Shirley Kwan

The original is still better and edgier but this is one of the best covers I've heard. Listen To Your Heart is an extremely difficult song to sing (especially the 2nd half). Shirley Kwan has an extremely strong and crisp voice and is able to sing the song at it's fullest. Most of the time, cover songs are often changed or sped up to make it easier for a poor singer to sing.

UMPC/MID, the LLUON Mobbit PS400

Source: Akihabara News

The Korean manufacturer TG (Trigem) just announced their new UMPC/MID, the LLUON Mobbit PS400. Powered by a 1.33GHz Z520 ATOM CPU, it features a nice little 4.8” touchscreen (WSVGA) LCD, 1GB of RAM, 30GB of HDD (or 16GB SSD), the Korean Wimax equivalent of Wi-Bro, the Wifi, Bluetooth, a digital TV tuner, a 2Mpix camera and Windows XP Home.

This nice little fellow weighs only 375g at a size of 166x88x21mm, making it almost a big as an average PMP.

YAY! A cute guy on a tech ad! :)

Looking for love in Vietnam: Don't forget to :)

Source: Crave

HANOI, Vietnam--Love, or the lack thereof, is an ongoing global issue. I offer no solution, but if you want to look for the one here in Vietnam, a word of advice: learn to text and know your emoticons.

While online dating services are rampant in the States (personally, I believe many young Americans aren't really sure what to look for in a partner and being impatient as usual, think spending money somehow helps solve this), things are a little different in Vietnam--in the big cities that is.

Kids in Vietnam are now crazy about texting and Yahoo IM. I've tried to IM in Vietnamese with my teenaged nieces but A) my written Vietnamese is too weak so I type very slow and B) those kids used way too many short cuts and emoticons that it gets crazy.

For example: Co^ Co' Khoe^? Khong (how are you auntie) turns into Co co KK?
Took me a while to learn that.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

632-Meter Shanghai Tower Will Spin Towards The Sky

Source: The Design Blog

Completing the trio of new super-tall towers, the Shanghai Tower is gonna be the highest skyscraper in China. Standing tall at 632 m, the Shanghai Tower accommodates numerous offices, a luxury hotel and retail and cultural venues, together with three floors of underground parking. The Shanghai Metro connects the building to the city. Enclosed with the inner layer of the double-skin facade, the Tower is comprised of nine cylindrical buildings heaped one on the other. While the building cover or the second skin is finished with a triangular exterior layer that swivels as it gets higher. The Shanghai Tower also features nine foyer sky gardens, developed between the two facade layers. The other two structures of the trio are the Shanghai World Financial Center and the Jin Mao Tower located in the Luijiazui Finance and Trade Zone.

WooooooooooW. Shanghai's skyline is always changing with buildings going up at an insane pace. And a Helicopter pad too! That's nuts!

What do people in China do with a day off?

Source: BBC

Many older people do what they've done for years - head to the park (at dawn) to exercise or sing. I once joined a group of people in a Beijing park on a freezing morning as they happily belted their way through a bunch of folk songs.

Others play badminton and ping-pong in local gyms, where normal barriers tend to come down (I once interviewed a senior Chinese official at his ping-pong club - I'm sure he would never have agreed to speak to me had I applied for an interview through his office).

And, then there's clubbing and dancing. Despite the controversy over the latest Guns N' Roses album Chinese Democracy, I can assure you that - from personal research - Chinese men and women are more than happy to dance to old Guns N' Roses records when the DJ plays them.

Very interesting. I've never even stepped foot in China so I don't really know how their lifestyle is. Myself, on my days off i mostly just SLEEP. If I happen to be awake I might go shopping or just sit around the house and catch up on whatever mind-numbingly long Asian soap opera I happen to be watching.

What do you do on your day off? I’d love to hear your own list of activities in the comments below.