7.30.2015

Tamlyn Tomita. Arden Cho. Sword Fight. Badass.

Watch a sneak peek clip from MTV's 'Teen Wolf.'



Have you been watching MTV's Teen Wolf? In addition to a lot of young pretty people and dark, shadowy happenings, the hit supernatural drama features one of television's few Asian American families. The cast includes Arden Cho as Kira Yukimura, a foxy (literally) lady, and Tamlyn Tomita and Tom Choi as her parents.

In this sneak peek clip from next week's episode, Kira and her mom engage in a sword fight that nearly goes wrong. Don't ask me why mom and daughter are suddenly dueling in the middle of a high school classroom -- I'm not actually caught up with the current season, so I have no idea what's going on. But it's badass.

It's Arden Cho versus Tamlyn Tomita, swinging sharp blades at each other. That's all you need to know.

Check it out:

Asians React to Yellowface

In this BuzzFeed video, we offer some thoughts on Hollywood's greatest racist hits.



Not that we needed a reminder of how friggin' racist Hollywood can be.... In this BuzzFeed video, Asians react to yellowface. They recently got some Asian American folks, including me and my pal Jenny Yang, to sit down, watch and react to various movie and TV clips in which white actors were made up to look like some form of "Asian," like Marlon Brando in Teahouse of the August Moon, Mickey Rooney in Breakfast and Tiffany's and more. I think we reacted pretty much as expected.

Take a look:

7.29.2015

Watch this stunning 3D animated tribute to Hayao Miyazaki

Superfan's video pays homage to the unique worlds of the master animator.



Wow. Wow. This is a must-see for fans of Hayao Miyazaki. One talented superfan, Vimeo user dono, has made a stunning tribute to the beloved master animator, re-creating some of Miyazaki's most famous worlds and characters in animated 3D. The video features characters from Spirited Away, Princess Mononoke, My Neighbor Totoro, Porco Rosso, Kiki's Delivery Service, The Wind Rises, Howl's Moving Castle, Castle in the Sky, NausicaƤ of the Valley of the Wind and Ponyo. It's epic.

Take a look:

The Slants to NAPABA: Stop Undermining the Work of Activists

Guest Post by Simon Tam of The Slants



On July 17, the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), the South Asian Bar Association of Washington, D.C., (SABA-DC) and the Fred T. Korematsu Center for Law and Equality (Korematsu Center) jointly filed an amicus brief to support the U.S. Trademark Office's denial of trademark registration for my Asian American band, The Slants.

The case has been profiled in numerous media outlets and has brought on larger questions about reappropriation, language, and identity. While there are certainly legal arguments to be had among lawyers and judges, I believe a separate conversation is necessary on the ethical implications of what transpired.

Frankly, I was surprised at NAPABA's position, because for five years, the organization and many of its members expressed deep interest in supporting The Slants. In fact, I was on a featured panel at their 2014 national convention and NAPABA (along with several of their individual chapters) have sponsored numerous events for The Slants. Earlier this May, I had multiple conversations with NAPABA president, George Chen, who said "You have many fans within NAPABA."

7.28.2015

National CAPACD's 15th Anniversary Convention

"Moving Forward, Rising Together: United for Thriving Communities," September 28-30



National Coalition for Asian Pacific American Community Development's (National CAPACD) mission is to improve the quality of life for low-income Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders by promoting economic vitality, civic and political participation. You are invited to join hundreds of progressive and diverse AAPI organizations at the National CAPACD 15th Anniversary Convention, "Moving Forward, Rising Together: United for Thriving Communities," happening September 28-30 at the Embassy Row Hotel in Washington DC.

Here are some more details about the convention:

7.27.2015

Inmate found hanging in Houston city jail cell

38-year-old Hung Do apparently used his own clothing to hang himself.



I've lost count of all disturbing recent headlines about people who have died in police custody. Last week in Texas, an inmate was found dead hanging inside his cell at the Houston city jail. [UPDATE: Four people have died while in custody of the Houston Police Department within the span of one week.]

PD: inmate hanged himself in Houston city jail

38-year-old Hung Do was arrested for possession of a controlled substance, underwent and passed physical and mental health evaluations, and was booked into the city jail on Wednesday. According to police, he was found dead in his cell on Thursday afternoon. He apparently used his own clothing to hang himself.

Stickers, ketchup, banana, farts and 'Kaiju Clubhouse'

Cool stretch goals added for 'ABC Disgusting,' a children's alphabet book about disgusting things



Writer Greg Pak and Co. are in the final hours of their already successful crowdfunding campaign for ABC Disgusting, a children's alphabet book about disgusting things. Having blasted past their initial goal of $24,000, they've come up with some cool, fun stretch goals -- and met them. This includes stickers, gross-out videos, a fart-filled song, and soon, maybe even a whole 'nother book.

First, here's a video with more info about the project:

See spaceships and dinosaurs in the teaser for 'The Garden'

Watch the epic 18-second trailer for the forthcoming sci-fi short.



Hmmm. Just got a mysterious video link passed along to me... Check out this cool-looking teaser trailer for a soon-to-be-released sci-fi short film called The Garden. I don't know who's making it, who's in it, or what it's about, but it appears to involve spaceships and dinosaurs and laser guns and special effects and pretty people in peril. And I like movies about all of those things.

If you've got 18 seconds of your day to spare, check it out:

New Jersey EMT killed in ambulance crash

22-year-old Hinal Patel was responding to a routine call on her last day on the job.



Some tragic news out of New Jersey, where an emergency medical technician, on her last day on the job, was killed when her ambulance got into a fatal accident Saturday morning while responding to a routine call.

On her last shift as EMT, woman killed in ambulance responding to call

22-year-old Hinal Patel and her partner were in their ambulance, responding to a mutual aid request in East Brunswick. It was supposed to be one of one her final calls, on her last day of work as an EMT. Patel, a recent graduate of Rutgers University, was scheduled to start graduate school next month.

According to a police news release, the ambulance had its emergency lights and sirens activated and was crossing an intersection when it was struck by another car. The ambulance overturned and slid into another car. Patel, who was riding in the front passenger seat, was killed.

Kentucky prosecutor fired for derogatory remarks

Attorney's history of "inappropriate and unprofessional" behavior came to light after "greedy foreigners" remark.



Remember that Kentucky prosecutor who got in trouble for sending a racially inflammatory letter regarding the Asian American owners of a local martial arts school? It's official: he's been fired. Good riddance.

Controversial prosecutor Karl Price fired after incendiary comments

After a monthlong investigation, the Jefferson County Attorneys Office terminated local prosecutor Karl Price last week for his unprofessional behavior, as well as his deliberate refusal to take responsibility for his actions.

It all started in May when Price, while working a civil case in his private practice, sent a letter to the attorney representing the owners of Hwang's Martial Arts Academy, calling the Hwang family, among other things, "greedy foreigners." Later, Price doubled down and defended his comments, saying the Hwangs could be "illegal aliens" due to their "broken English." He was subsequently disciplined for his remarks.

7.26.2015

Read These Blogs



Facebook Apologizes For Not Taking Down Death Threat Against Comedian Hari Kondabolu: When a Facebook user left a threatening comment to Hari Kondabolu -- "Keep making comments like you do and the only thing going to be fed to you will be a bullet" -- the comedian reported the commenter. Facebook replied that the text did not violate the network's "Community Standards." Um, what?

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Jose Vargas: White People Is for White People: An interview with Jose Antonio Vargas, whose MTV documentary film White People engages with, well, white people, on how we talk (and do not talk) about race and issues of belonging in an increasingly multiethnic America.

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Reactions to Jose Antonio Vargas' #WhitePeople Doc: How did audiences react to White People, a documentary which follows five young white Americans faced with issues of race in cities across the country.

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When the absolute right to snark turns sour: A Gawker believer reconsiders the manifesto he once held dear: Snark can be a useful tool, but when it turns into an indiscriminate hammer, everyone starts to look like a nail. Arthur Chu on snark, smarm and the internet.

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Beyond the Model Minority Myth: Asian Americans' long history of challenging stereotypes has often overlooked the ways in which capitalism forges racial identity.

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Counter-protesters join kimono fray at MFA: In Boston, an ill-conceived promotion at the Museum of Fine Arts has triggered a controversy that is mushrooming beyond expectations, with protesters taking to the museum's "Kimono Wednesdays" event in increasing force each week, and a group of kimono-wearing counter-protesters joining the fray.

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When 'Nikhil' becomes 'Nik,' and 'Piyush' becomes 'Bobby Jindal': "Indian Americans aren't ashamed of our heritage. We just want to go easy on the barista." Noopur Bakshi on Indian American names and identity.

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Sizzler and the Search for the American Dream: In Eater's essay series exploring essential roles that chain restaurants play in our lives, writer and artist Cecilia Hae-Jin Lee writes about strangeness, familiarity, and all-you-can-eat salad bars.

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Why everyone should stop calling immigrant food 'ethnic': "Immigrants' identities are deeply tied to the foods we bring with us. When we hear our cuisine described as exotic, hodgepodge, greasy or cheap, you might as well be remarking disdainfully about our clothes or skin color." Lavanya Ramanathan on why the term "ethnic food" has got to go.

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A Call to Social Scientists - Segmenting Population & the Inadequacy of English: "Anyone of Asian descent born or mostly raised outside of the motherlands, particularly, in English-speaking nations like Canada, the US, Australia, and England share so many similarities in terms of history and interests that I am surprised academia has not coined a term that groups these populations and that allows us to talk about ourselves without sounding awkward and long-winded."

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It's Time to Get Real About Racial Diversity in Comics: "Like virtually every other form of entertainment, the world of comic books has been increasingly grappling with issues of diversity especially over the last several years as social media and Internet platforms have amplified the voices of minority creators and critics."

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How To Tell If You Are In A Korean Drama: Do you spend roughly 35% of your day sitting in fashionable cafes? Does everyone in town know more about your family than you do? Do you and everyone you know own a Samsung Galaxy S6? Chances are, you're living in a Korean drama.

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Japanese HS Batter Has the Finest At-Bat Warm-Up Routine of Them All: This Japanese high school slugger has the most entertaining don't-give-a-damn pre-bat routine in the history of baseball.

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Maybe Time Travelers Are Stealing Our Stuff: Wesley Chu's new novel Time Salvager is about time travelers who visit the scenes of famous disasters and salvage materials that are destined to be destroyed anyway.

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'China Rich Girlfriend': The Novel that Explains Billionaire Asian Grooming Practices: One of the most riveting and consistent plot devices in Kevin Kwan's novel China Rich Girlfriend is the grooming practices of the jet set elite, with distinctive styles that separate Singaporean, Hong Kong, and mainland Chinese women -- and yes, contains prejudices of their own.

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Talking to the Women (and Man) Behind Disoriented Comedy: Meet the folks behind Disoriented Comedy, the first-ever (mostly) female Asian American stand-up comedy tour.

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"I'm Hoping There is a Shift," Says Lea Salonga On Diversity and the "United Colors" of This Season: The diversity of roles and musicals this Broadway season is what Lea Salonga, who stars with George Takei in the musical Allegiance, describes as "The United Colors."

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"Advantageous" Sci-Fi Film Asks Where Women Will Fit in the Future: CAAM chats with director Jennifer Phang and co-writer/lead actress Jacqueline Kim about their unique vision of the future in the indie sci-fi drama Advantageous, now available for streaming on Netflix.

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Hell on Wheels Q&A - Angela Zhou (Fong): Angela Zhou, who plays Fong (a.k.a. Mei) on AMC's Hell on Wheels, talks about her unusual first day on set and how a night out with Calgary's transgender community helped her prepare for her role.

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Korean German Actor Teo Yoo Finds His Identity Through 'Seoul Searching': After years of struggling, Korean German actor Teo Yoo finally got the chance to play a version of himself in the role of Klaus Kim -- also a Korean German -- in Benson Lee's coming-of-age dramedy Seoul Searching.


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7.24.2015

JANM Summer Night Concerts featuring Magnetic North & Taiyo Na, Marie Digby and Priska

FREE! Thursday, July 30 on the JANM Plaza



If you're in Los Angeles, and wanna get down with some good tunes on a Thursday night, head over to Little Tokyo for the Japanese American National Museum's new free summer evening concert series, JANM Summer Night Concerts featuring Magnetic North & Taiyo Na, Marie Digby and Priska. There will also be food trucks and stuff. It's happening Thursday, July 30 on the JANM Plaza.

Here are the details:

Angry Reader of the Week: Wendy Wang

"Living life as a beginner to everything."



Hello, everyone! It's that time again. I am pleased to present another Angry Reader of the Week, spotlighting you, the very special readers of this website. Over the years, I've been able to connect with a lot of cool folks, and this is a way of showing some appreciation and attention to the people who help make this blog what it is. This week's Angry Reader is Wendy Wang.

Asian parents have the sex talk with their adult daughters

"The Encyclopedia Britannica has a really good section on sex."



My fellow Asian Americans, when you were growing up, did your parents give you the sex talk? For a lot of us, the subject was not discussed and pretty much avoided altogether. In this hilarious and heartfelt Buzzfeed video, Asian Parents Have The Sex Talk With Their Daughters As Adults. Our friend Jenny Yang and her mom get in on the awkwardness, and it's amazing and honest comedy gold.

Take a look:

Chinatown leader Donnie Chin killed in Seattle shooting

Community leader dedicated his life to protecting and serving the Chinatown International District.



Some tragic news out of Seattle, where a beloved community leader, widely known as one of the "beating hearts" of the Chinatown International District, was shot and killed early Thursday morning.

Donnie Chin, Chinatown ID's 'frontline hero,' killed in early morning shooting

Police found 59-year-old Donald "Donnie" Chin, director of the International District Emergency Center, critically wounded inside a car with shot-out windows. He was rushed to the hospital, where he died a short time later. Police do not believe he was the intended target of the shooting.

7.23.2015

Visual Communications presents VC #TBT

A Summer Screening, July 30 at the David Henry Hwang Theatre



Film fans, if you're in Los Angeles, Visual Communications invites you to VC #TBT, a special summer screening of ten short films by Asian American filmmakers, curated by VC's summer interns. If you missed out on the shorts programs at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival in April, here's your second chance. Plus free food and drinks. It's happening Thursday, July 30 at the David Henry Hwang Theatre in Little Tokyo.

Here are some more details about the event:

Angry Asian America: Jeremy Lin Leaves Lakers FOR WHERE?!

With co-host Jenny Yang and special guests Yong Kim and Ted Kim of Seoul Sausage Co.



Yo, YouTube watchers! Again, I am pleased to present the latest edition of Angry Asian American, our web talk show in ISAtv. In this episode, co-host Jenny Yang and I are joined by brothers Yong Kim and Ted Kim of Seoul Sausage Co., purveyors of tasty gourmet Korean flavors. We talk about a variety of pop culture topics including Jeremy Lin, Emma Stone, K-pop, X-Men, Tilda Swinton and more. This was a fun one.

Take a look:

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