Friday, April 30, 2010

Vietnam re-enacts fall of Saigon

Source: BBC

Vietnam has marked 35 years since the end of its war by staging a re-enactment of the fall of the Saigon.

Thousands of troops marched through the streets of what is now officially called Ho Chi Minh City to mark the day the communist North claimed victory.

Vietnam's President Nguyen Minh Triet used the event to praise the country's economic development.

The Vietnam War claimed the lives of three million Vietnamese and some 60,000 US soldiers.

Tens of thousands of people gathered in front of the former presidential residence, now called Independence Palace, in Ho Chi Minh City, to watch the military and cultural display.

The BBC's Nga Pham in the city said the events began in the early hours to avoid the heat of the day, with a play recounting the history of the country from ancient times to when the North's tanks smashed through the gates of the palace, leading to the surrender of the southern government.

A replica tank drove through the city to the palace, greeted by cheers from the crowds.

The event was an emotional one for many who lived through the war itself, with some people crying as they watched the display.

"We are here today, very emotional, and thinking of what happened 35 years ago," said Vu Dang Toan, a member of the tank unit involved in the victory in 1975.

"It was a great victory, it was very quick to liberate Saigon and the country is reunited."

It's this last statement that bothers me the most. Severe brainwashing that still exists today. You liberated Saigon from what? Saigon was one of the most advanced cities in Asia in the 50s and 60s. The Paris of Asia.

Look at this picture of Saigon in 1966.

Big buildings, commercial advertising. Looks very advanced!

Liberated from what? Liberated from capitalist to communist ruin? From 1975 to 1995 Saigon was sent back to the dark ages. Upon taking control of the bomb-ravaged country, the Vietnamese communists banned all other political parties and forced public servants and military personnel of the Republic of Vietnam into re-education camps. The government also embarked on a mass campaign of collectivization of farms and factories. Reconstruction of the war-ravaged country was slow, and serious humanitarian and economic problems confronted the communist regime. Millions of people fled the country in crudely built boats, creating an international humanitarian crisis. The boat people. If you had a degree, it was cancelled. If you had a house, they could just come and take it.

This is liberation?

Beginning in the late 1970s, the quality of health care began to decline as a result of budgetary constraints, a shift of responsibility to the provinces, and the introduction of charges. Inadequate funding has led to delays in planned upgrades to water supply and sewage systems. As a result, almost half the population has no access to clean water, a deficiency that promotes such infectious diseases as malaria, dengue fever, typhoid, and cholera. Inadequate funding also has contributed to a shortage of nurses, midwives, and hospital beds.

This is liberation?

Vietnam can say they have advanced all they want, but Vietnam in 2010 is still nowhere near Vietnam in 1975. While other countries like US and Canada have made amazing advances in the last 35 years, Vietnam is still backwards. But of course that's liberation from evil forces, wherever they might be.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Asian Ripoff LXXXV - Black Cat

Artist: Shirley Kwan
Language: Cantonese

Bad quality but a classic nonetheless.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Lorry driver builds himself a Lamborghini

Source: Orange

A Chinese lorry driver has built himself a Lamborghini supercar in his spare time - for just £2,000.

It took Chen Jinmiao, 25, of Binzhou, Hunan province, a year to build the replica sportscar, reports the Red Net.

"I downloaded the drawings from the internet, and then bought materials from the market," he said.

Chen, who has only a basic school education, had always dreamt of owning a Lamborghini but knew he would never be able to afford a real one.

It is a fully working car - and even has the famous wing doors - but its top speed is a little over 50mph, compared to a real Lamborghini's 200mph-plus.

Chen said his family and friends tried to discourage him from building the car.

"But they couldn't stop me, as I did it all with my own savings," he explained.

He is now waiting to see whether traffic officials will give him permission to drive the car on the road.

"If they don't, I can have it for my collection at home," he added.

Holy crap, £2,000 is alot of money that he's been saving up. A whole year!
That's a really cool project but there's not way he can really drive that thing very far. Just around the neighbourhood? It looks great but doesn't look safe, no bumper, bad wheels. Can it even break at high speeds? I like his attitude though, that's a wonderful lifetime collection to have :)

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Disorient? What?

I was notified of a film festival called DisOrient?
Hmmm is this a festival showing films of people who have no sense of direction?

dis·o·ri·ent (ds-ôr-nt, -r-)
tr.v. dis·o·ri·ent·ed, dis·o·ri·ent·ing, dis·o·ri·ents
To cause (a person, for example) to experience disorientation.

Adj. 1. disoriented - having lost your bearings; confused as to time or place or personal identity; "I frequently find myself disoriented when I come up out of the subway"; "the anesthetic left her completely disoriented"

2. disoriented - socially disoriented; "anomic loners musing over their fate"; "we live in an age of rootless alienated people"

So I find out that it's an Asian film festival.. this is what their about us page says:

DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon is a community, grassroots, and volunteer-run film festival committed to presenting honest portrayals of the diversity of the Asian American experience. We believe in the power of film to educate, positively transform our community, and challenge the negative stereotypes of the 'Oriental' presented by mainstream media. We use the W.E.B. DuBois standard of "for us, by us, or about us" when selecting new and exciting films for our festival.

For us, by us, or about us sounds pretty selfish to me. And how is it that an Asian role in an American movie is stereotypical but a movie with 100% Asians is not? Are these 100% not doing Asian things? Are they doing stereotypical white things?

I looked through the film program and the movies look pretty good. It truly is an honest portrayal of the Asian American experience. I don't think we need to show our diversity or show that we're DisOrient! whatever that means.

Silly name for a festival.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Harold Koh Supreme Court

Source: Huffington Post

This nomination to replace Justice Stevens -- a staunch liberal on the court for 35 years -- can be more important than health care, the recovery bill and financial reform combined. That's why President Obama shouldn't just nominate someone who Republicans deem acceptable -- he should nominate someone that progressives would be proud to fight for.

That's why we need Harold Koh.

The son of first-generation immigrants from South Korea, Koh would be the first Asian-American nominated to the Supreme Court -- and his credentials speak for themselves. The former dean of Yale Law School and a renowned expert in international law, he served as Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights & Labor under President Clinton and is currently Legal Adviser to the State Department. In an increasingly global era where knowledge of international law will be crucial on the Court, Koh is the strongest candidate from this field and would also be the first Justice to hold such expertise. Beyond his roles at the State Department, Koh also worked in the Office of Legal Counsel at the Justice Department under President Reagan.

FAIL. You CAN NOT start a defense of any position with race. We need Harold Koh because he would be the first Asian-American nominated.. blah blah. That's stupid.

Asians needs to stop looking at people through race. Forget that he's Asian. He's the best candidate because he's the best candidate and make your argument starting there.

This is the argument
We need Harold Koh because...

1. Worked as an attorney-adviser to the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) in the United States Department of Justice under Reagan.

2. Koh was nominated by President Clinton to become Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor

3. Author of several books, including The National Security Constitution: Sharing Power after the Iran-Contra Affair (Yale University Press,1990); Transnational Legal Problems (with Harry Steiner and Detlev Vagts, Foundation Press, 1994); Deliberative Democracy and Human Rights (with Ronald C. Slye, Yale University Press, 1999); and Transnational Litigation in United States Courts (Foundation Press 2008). He has also written over 175 law review articles and legal editorials.

Stuff like that. As an Asian writer Mr. Chi, make an argument for an Asian without mentioning he's Asian and the argument will go much further. Starting a defense with.. He's ASIAN and will make HISTORY immediately draws the reader to that fact and undermines the rest of the article. Someone who doesn't like racial profiling will read that first sentence and conclude "Another fucking Asian supporting someone because they're a fucking Asian."

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Asian Ripoff LXXXIV - I've Never Been To Me

Artist: Vivian Chow
Language: Cantonese

She's insanely beautiful but never really had a singing voice.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Hello Mr. Death! Researcher finds rare Chinese names

Source: Reuters

A man in China's southern province of Jiangxi has spent the last 20 years compiling a list of unusual family names, according to state broadcaster CCTV.

Most Chinese people share a few common surnames, like Zhang, Wang, Li, Liu and Chen. The Chinese expression for "ordinary people" literally means "the old one hundred surnames."

But Cheng Yinglian's interest was piqued after reading a newspaper many years ago and discovering a person with the surname Gui, meaning "ghost," CCTV said.

Since then, he has scoured newspapers, books and other publications to find similar rare surnames, coming up with about 2,000 to date.

Those he has found include Ling, or "zero," Cu, or "vinegar," Miao, or "second" and Yi, or "one."

Superstitions related to names are still strong in China, and many parents go out of their way to give their children auspicious names which suggest they will grow up to be healthy, strong and rich.

While you can legally change your surname in China, the report did not say how many people had chosen to change theirs if they were unfortunate enough to be born a "death" or "ghost."

Ever notice Asian names (especially Vietnamese) names are always opposite the personality?

A girl who's named Snow is dark.
A girl who's named Nice is mean
A guy who's named Brave is a coward.
A guy who's named Strong is a wuss.

Monday, April 12, 2010

What? You Think That's Funny?

The reporters asked Chan Ho Park why he was bad in the first outing of the season, giving up a two-run homer to Dustin Pedroia. I think he gave the answer they wanted to hear. I love the guys (especially Rivera) laughing in the back.

Guess he couldn't stop the runs.

Chico Has a New Outlaw

Source: CNNGo

As if Eri Yoshida's story could not get anymore interesting, the 18 year-old sidearm knuckleball pitcher will make her way this year to the U.S. to play for Golden League team Chico Outlaws. She was already the first female to play in the Japanese men's baseball league, but now she will be the first female professional baseball player to play in North America for over a decade.

Yoshida is a mere 155cm, a height which normally does not inspire much fear and trembling in batters. And her pitches are relatively slow at 80 kph (50 mph). But with knuckleballs, the issue isn't speed as much as the unpredictability of the ball's path. Yoshida's got a killer knuckleball.

The young pitcher will appear at spring training in May and spent March preparing with knuckleball legend Tim Wakefield at the Boston Red Sox' minor league training center. She has also been playing (and winning games) in the independent Arizona Winter League. Yoshida will surely challenge herself with this move to America, but the good news is that even if she fails as a pitcher, she can easily sell her life story back in Japan for millions and millions of yen.

That's quite amazing. And this is the league the Calgary Vipers play in. So when the Chico vipers come to town, the Vipers would be smart to hype this up and sell a few tickets!

Takeout from Y.E. Yang

Source: Deadspin

I'm not sure the joke is as bad as it is old. Come on guy, you're an established writer and you resort to toilet humour? And then the next time you see Yang and he doesn't want to talk to you, you'll cry about it in the paper as Yang being a jerk eh?

Perhaps Yang should hit him with the BIG trophy he won last year.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Culture can challenge foreign students

Source: College Media Network

If living at home, Bangladesh native Refayat Haque would not see unmarried men and women publicly holding hands.

It's forbidden. But in America and at GW, the taboos around sex dissimilate, Haque said, giving students from other countries new perspectives on sex and relationships.

"Sex is very taboo and sex before marriage is even worse. Almost everyone is Muslim and they aren't supposed to have premarital sex," Haque said of his home.

With scantily clad men and women on television and couples engaging in public displays of affection in plain sight, the sex culture at Western colleges and universities can challenge the beliefs of international students. In a study on Asian students adjusting to college life in the U.S., Dr. Jun-Chih Gisela of Texas A&M said a lack of familiarity with American customs and culture can sometimes cause international students to feel isolated.

"Many Asian international students feel uncomfortable with the individualism and competitiveness associated with the American culture, " Dr. Lin said in her study.

But for Haque and other international students interviewed, America's sexual culture was less of a shock because they attended international boarding schools before college.

Haque's experiences freshman year led him to the conclusion that certain values held by college students weren't for him.

"I realized what situations were good for me and what's not. My morals and ethics are still how they were at home," he said. "It wasn't hard to adjust, but [it was] a bit weird."

Very simple. If the 21-year skank is hot, than the situation is good, if she's not hot, than it's not.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Asian Ripoff LXXXIII - This is My Life

Artist: S.H.E
Language: Mandarin

Monday, April 5, 2010

What's the Big Deal With Oriental?


It happens so often that those of us in the column-writing business can quote the response even before it arrives.

Almost every time we express an opinion — which is, of course, every time we write a column — we get at least one e-mail that says, ''It must have been a slow news day.''

No, it must have been a day when you didn't agree with me. If the topic is inconsequential, why are you taking the time to comment?

But a record number of readers informed me that the second item in a recent five-item column must have been triggered by ''a slow news day.''

If you really want to know, it was triggered by a photo I saw a week earlier in a basketball program that identified a collection of young athletes as ''the East High Orientals.''

Why didn't I write about the topic before? I should have. I have always wondered why a group of educators would continue to sanction that name. Although I don't have a drop of Asian blood in me, I knew the term was incredibly dated and highly offensive to many folks of Asian heritage.

I guess I figured the school eventually would wake up and realize that ''Orientals,'' when used in connection with people, is the modern-day equivalent of ''Negroes.''

At one time, both terms were acceptable. But times change. And institutions should, too — especially schools.

I didn't know Negros was offensive. I thought the other N-word was.

Orientals has never bothered me, I actually kinda liked it growing up. It was a unique exotic place the Orient that I was from. Then it got changed to Asian and it wasn't unique anymore. Why is it an insult if a white person dresses like an Asian or draws an Asian to *gasp* look like an Asian (slanted eyes) or makes a few Asian driving jokes, but we can walk around with dyed blonde hair and have surgery to make our eyes bigger and it's ok? Why?

''There's a connection with Colonialism related with that word, and the word is more often associated with inanimate objects like Oriental rugs. We're not an Oriental rug. We're people.''

Oh please... that would be like saying. "I hate when people refer to people from Canada as Canadians. It is as if they are talking about Canadian maple syrup. We are not syrup, we are people! BE MORE SENSITIVE!!!!"

There are alot of racial or national sports names. The Montreal Canadiens and the Vancouver Canucks. Aren't those derogatory terms? Johnny Canuck is a racist caracature. If Johnny Canucks wore a kimono and has slanted eyes, the Orientals would whine and cry.

Canadians are proud of Johnny Canuck

What about the beloved New York Yankees? Isn't yankee an offensive term for american.
"DAMN Yankees, always thinking they're the best"

What about the Santa Barbara Gauchos? That's a bad Spanish Cowboy.

That's a pretty racist logo, don't you think?

What about Vikings or The Aztecs or The Fighting Irish or The Celtics?
Are Scandinavians insulted at Minnesota Vikings football games when thay see the real-life mascot named Ragnar whooping up the crowd?

I went to Western High School. We were the Redman!

So not only was I Indian, but I was a man! That's two things to whine and complain about? But does anyone complain? Noooooo, we took honour in that name that's been around since WWI.

What's next? I can't to into an antique shop and call China, China anymore? I have to call it porcelin or some crap like that?

This names are not racist. Native Indians in fact FIGHTING to save their names so that their history is preserves.

N.D. School Fights to Save "Fighting Sioux" Logo

That brings me to a story about my cousin. He was 12 years old and switching channels and saw a Fighting Sioux hockey game. It interested him enough that he wrote a paper about their history and got an A. So why can't people learn about Orientals? We always argue that we aren't represented right? So we're being represented here. 100 years of history.

I think it's cool that there's a team named Orientals because there is no proof that he use of the name itself is hostile or abusive nor does it creates a hostile or abusive environment.

I ask again, how did Oriental become an offensive term? The word Orient still exists. There's an Orient Travel Ltd. There's an Orient everything. So people from the Orient are called Oriental? What's wrong with that? Orient is a Latin word.

In British English, the term Asian generally refers to people originating from the Indian Subcontinent and its surrounding countries[7]. Oriental is used to describe people of Eastern and Southeast Asian descent, most particularly Chinese and Japanese. This usage reflects historic immigration into the UK, since more than 50% of the non-European population is British Asian, whereas East and Southeast Asians comprise only 5-6% of the non-European population. Of those, the majority are of Chinese descent.

Oriental is not usually considered an offensive term in Britain.

Be proud! If I had a baseball team I'd call them the Woks. My logo would be a BIG Wok and a happy face and two hands. It would look like either Marvin the Martian or Peter Puck.

The commentary would be fun.

"And that's another walk and bring in a run, the Woks are walking everyone"
"And that's a line drive double play, they had no chance on that one, Wok'd right into it.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Fledgling Asian hockey players strut their stuff in tropical Taiwan

Source: CP

TAIPEI, Taiwan — The skating was slow, the body checks soft and the slapshots lacked zing.

But it was still hockey they were playing this week in Taiwan, as nine of the world's least likely national teams - think Kuwait for example, or Hong Kong - faced off in a tournament that brought the quintessential winter game to this tropical Asian island.

Critics might question the value of the Challenge Cup of Asia, but any cynicism ignores the enthusiasm of the players, all but a handful being the products of homegrown Asian ice hockey programs.

Many, such as 30-year-old Malaysian forward Gary Tan, got their starts playing the inline, or iceless version of the game, and then switched over to the real thing when indoor rinks were constructed in their countries. In Tan's case, that was in 1998.

"I think my love for the sport has always been there," he said.

Thailand's Dechbadin Jittranont, also 30, said that hockey attracted him because the cold of his Bangkok rink seemed so refreshing after the heat of the city's streets.

"I love hockey and I'm very happy to be at this tournament," he said. "I need to show people that Thai hockey is the best."


Gotta start somewhere. Even a country like the US used to lose to Canada by 10 goals only 30 years ago. Today, they're pretty much even.

Looks like a decent crowd enjoying the action. Good family fun :)

CNN's Rapelay report

The Japanese government could care less about CNN or women's right group. It's people's choice to buy or not. Gamers don't seem to mind!

People who play games don't copy that behavior into the real world.

Asian Ripoff LXXXII - Yuan Fang 遠方

Artist: S.H.E.
Song: How did I fall in love with you

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Evangelion Water Body Bottles


Source: Japanorama

Curvy bottle shapes are nothing new, as Coca-cola's classic "coke-bottle" has demonstrated for decades but few other beverage companies have gone for that ergonomic yet obviously female form - until now.

Displayed prominently at the recent Foodex Japan 2010 show in Tokyo were a pair of Evangelion Water Body bottles certain to warm any anime lovers heart... and soothe their thirst in the bargain.

The bottles are not only voluptuously curved, but sport futuristic red and white bodysuits that reference those worn by characters Asuka Langley Soryu and Rei Ayanami in the mega-successful Neon Genesis Evangelion series of manga, movies and games.

The bodacious bodysuited bottles are set to be released to retail outlets on May 26, 2010, to coincide with the release of "Evangelion: Destruction" on Blu-ray and DVD. The estimated cost per each 280ml (9.5 oz) bottle is 368 yen or about $4

These look pretty cool. I guess it could open the market for any other character that could be put into a bottle. They could make sports drinks with Maria Sharapova figured bottles or something.

U.S. Census

What's this US census thing going on right now? The US government wants you to mail in a 10 questionnaire about your family. If you don't do it then they have to go door-to-door to find you. If they know where you live, then why do you need to send information in? Also being the US, everything political and the Republicans are protesting and not sending their questionnaires in. It's supposed to save money right? But then I see ads on TV, doesn't that cost money? And the ad said mail it in. Mail? Who uses mail in 2010. People are too lazy to mail anything. If I could do my entire unemployment claim online, surely people could do a questionnaire online right?

I don't get it. In Canada, they go door-to-door once every couple of years just to make sure no numbers have changed too drastically. I think they use tax returns too to count people.

Shouldn't the US have a year-round government organization that number-crunches year-round? Here we have Statistics Canada and they have all sorts of stuff. We hear it on the nightly news all the time that 69% of Canadians are this, or 57% of Canadian are that. Or something like Toronto now has more non-white people than white people.. stuff like that.

What do you think?

The Pretty Side of Ping Pong

Source: People's Daily

She's never broken into the world's top 150 but Japan's Naomi Yotsumoto is still a star on the table tennis world stage.

Wearing knee-length socks, a pleated mini-skirt or a shirt with one bare shoulder during her games, the woman dubbed the "Lady Gaga of pingpong" receives as much attention as the finest players.

"I like table tennis and fashion. I think it's best to look fashionable when playing table tennis," the youthful-looking 31-year-old said at the Volkswagen Cup in Guangzhou.

A second-tier player in Japan, Yotsumoto didn't come to compete at the event, which featured the top players from eight countries, including her compatriot Ai Fukuhara.

Instead, she was invited to participate in an exhibition match in clothes she had designed as well stage a fashion show featuring her stylish sportswear.

"I'm still learning design in Tokyo while playing professional table tennis. I hope more players will wear the sportswear designed by me," she said. "Now, most of the women players are still wearing shorts. I think if they wear more beautiful clothes, the games will be much more interesting."

Seems like a publicity stunt and a sideshow. I'm sure the aforementioned Ai Fukuhara is still the most popular player in Japan since she's in the top 10 in the world and she's cute too. She was Japan's flag-bearer in 2008 Olympic Summer Games.

Here's video of both, you judge for yourself.