10.31.2010

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Offensive (or Awesome) Halloween Costumes: KoreAm has compiled a funny post one some of the worst Halloween costume ideas out there. The photo above should give you the right idea.

Cease and Desist!: Ah, alas. My man Jerry Ma, who runs the superb t-shirt company Epic Proportions, talks about getting the dreaded cease and desist letter from Bruce Lee Enterprises demanding that he stop selling his Bruce Lee-inspired designs. So if you've got one... consider it a collector's item!

10.29.2010

caam presents outdoor cinema at japantown peace plaza


Good times! For all you film fans in San Francisco... The Center for Asian American Media and the Japan Center Mall have partnered to bring you a very special series of free events in Japantown Peace Plaza to include four film screenings and two karaoke contests, from October 2010 - January 2011. Here's some more information:

paperdoll's china tour 2.0 blog: hangzhou and goodbye china 2010


One of my favorite bands, PaperDoll, is currently on tour in China, October 12-29. I've invited lead singer (and former Angry Reader of the Week) Teresa Lee to contribute some guests post chronicling the band's journeys.

Here is Teresa's last guest blog. The band's China 2.0 tour was reportedly an enormous success! After two and a half weeks of some huge shows and crazy touring around China, PaperDoll is headed home...

supervisor candidate jane kim on the cover of sf weekly


Check out our friend Jane Kim, president of the San Francisco Board of Education, who is running of supervisor for District 6 (and looking for your vote in next week's election), rocking the cover of SF Weekly: The Identity Card.

the bad lieutenant


Check out Lieutenant Dan Choi, Iraq combat veteran and outspoken -- and probably the most visible -- activist against the U.S. military's 'Don't Ask Don't Tell' policy, on the cover of the Village Voice: Bad Lieutenant, Dan Choi.

angry reader of the week: esna


Hey everybody! It's time to meet 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 Esna.

send me your cool halloween costume photos


Okay. So Halloween is upon us. And every year, I write about all the obnoxious, awful racist Asian-themed costumes that are out there. I'm tired of that. I'd like to write about some of the cool ones.

hey losers! here's how to attract asian women


I don't know who Bruce M. is, but he apparently knows the secrets and tips on how to pick up Oriental girls -- and has written a book about it: How to Attract Asian Women - Secrets & Tips to Pick Up Oriental Girls.

Available for your Kindle! Yes, for just $7.95, you will discover "how to pick up, approach, attract, and date Asian girls such as Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Filipino, and more." And "more"? AWESOME.

Wow. So the next time you're at a bar and happen to come across a foxy Oriental girl, just pull out your Kindle and you'll know what to do. (Thanks, Hoyin.)

how china's coming to get you (part 283)

Brianna Lee of PBS' Need to Know has an article on the alarming flood of anti-China campaign ads circulating this year, including the Zack Space "Chinatown" commercial and of course, my favorite, Chinese Professor. Make no mistake -- these ads are preying on American fears of eventual Chinese domination: On the campaign trail: The enemy hearts China!

10.28.2010

'arise: unchained' charity benefit to fight human trafficking


Sending a shout out to Kappa Phi Lambda at Columbia University, who are putting on a charity benefit to fight human trafficking: ARISE: Unchained. It's happening this Saturday, October 30, 7:00pm at Roone Arledge auditorium at Columbia University.

Proceeds from the event will go to the National Asian Pacific American Women's Forum and to The Blind Project, a charity that provides rehabilitation to survivors of the Southeast Asian sex trade. Here's some more information:

dawen and paul dateh cover fm's "rocketeer"



You're gonna like this... Check out this cool video of my pals Dawen and Paul Dateh collaborating on a smoove-ass cover of Far East Movement's "Rocketeer" (in Dawen's bedroom, from the looks of it).

Their distinct voices really complement each other, and I love the fact that they're covering an FM song but bringing a totally different spin on it, all acoustic and chilled out. Like I said, smoove.

For more from these guys, visit Paul Dateh's website here an Dawen's website here. And of course, Far East Movement's website here.

call for papers: asian american policy review

The Asian American Policy Review at the Harvard Kennedy School is accepting submissions for its twenty-first edition, to be published in February 2011. Founded in 1989, AAPR is the first non-partisan academic journal in the country dedicated to analyzing public policy issues facing the Asian American and Pacific Islander community.

AAPR is looking for papers exploring 1) the social, economic and political factors impacting the AAPI community and 2) the role of AAPI individuals and communities in analyzing, shaping, and implementing public policy. Here's some more information on the kind of submissions they're looking for:

i09 interview with detention director joseph kahn


Music video director extraordinaire Joseph Kahn has been hard at work on his second feature film, the time-traveling horror comedy Detention, which has been described as "Back to the Future meets Scream, with a hefty dose of John Hughes teen movies." That sounds crazy. Crazy intriguing. Here's a recent interview with the director over at i09, with the some more details about the movie: First look at the time-traveling horror comedy we can't wait to see.

new bruce lee clothing line launch


Bruce Lee fans, check it... Take a look at all the cool new Bruce stuff in the recently launched clothing line now available at the revamped Bruce Lee Store. It's a little pricey, but collection's all official and curated by Shannon Lee herself. I'm looking at the Bruce Lee Is My Hero or the Jun Fan Gung Fu Institute shirt. Buy one and wear it in honor of Bruce Lee 70th birthday next month. Here are some more photos of the designs:

another extra in the "chinese professor" ad speaks out


Through the power of Twitter, I was able to get connected with another extra who appears as one of the students in the "Chinese Professor" commercial. Howard K. is the guy in the front row wearing the orange shirt, listening attentively to Professor China. He shares about his experience getting cast and shooting the commercial:

f@#$ this costume: kim jung il


Halloween's rolling around again. You know what that means. Lots of racist costumes. Every year, we see the same old stupid Orientalized nonsense, from sexed-up geisha girls to the infamous "Kung Fool" mask from several years back. Here's another one, spotted at Ricky's: KIM JUNG IL.

new saalt report: from macacas to turban toppers: the rise in xenophobic and racist rhetoric in american political discourse

Yesterday at a briefing in Washington D.C., South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT) release a new report, From Macacas to Turban Toppers: The Rise in Xenophobic and Racist Rhetoric in American Political Discourse, documenting an alarming increase in intolerant remarks and comments made by elected officials and political candidates.

According to the report, since September 11, there has been an unprecedented rise in xenophobic statements that have specifically targeted South Asians, Arab Americans, Muslims, and Sikhs. Here's an excerpt from SAALT's press release:

10.27.2010

stir friday night! presents "bubble tea party"


Hey Chicago! It's a good time to check out some Asian American sketch comedy. Stir Friday Night! celebrates fifteen years of funny with its anniversary show "Bubble Tea Party, running Fridays and Saturdays, October 29 - November 20 at the Chicago Center for the Performing Arts. Here are some more details about the show:

check out the new features on I am korean american


Real quick. I Am Korean American is an online project that features daily profiles and stories of Korean Americans. Since starting in October 2009, the site has featured over 250 profiles from a diverse range of Korean Americans. IAKA recently launched a new version of its website. Read on for detals:

yomyomf's interpretations finalists


Over the weekend at the San Diego Asian Film Festival, YOMYOMF announced the five winning entries in the Interpretations short film initiative, a project to encourage aspiring filmmakers to develop their own original and unique voice. They received hundreds of submissions, all with the same four lines of dialogue, but each with completely different visions. Here are the five films chosen as finalists:

playing the china card


With midterm elections next week, the campaigning has been crazy divisive as usual, and the mudslinging has gotten pretty ugly. But it's comforting to know that both Republicans and Democrats can come together on one thing: everybody's scared of China.

the lxd: season two is live


Check it out. The next installment of director Jon M. Chu's epic dance adventure web series saga thing The LXD: Legion of Extraordinary Dancers went live last night. Honestly, I don't always entirely understand what's happening, but it doesn't matter -- I came to see the awesome dancing. You've already met the heroes... in season two, "Secrets of the Ra," you'll meet the villains:

san francisco giants poetry


Just for fun... Here is some baseball-inspired poetry, in honor of the San Francisco Giants playing in the World Series (Game 1 tonight!), courtesy of some third and fourth graders at Commodore Sloat Elementary School in San Francisco: Kids write the darndest Giants poetry.

wtf music video: "check it out" by will.i.am & nicki minaj


I don't know what the hell is happening in this krazy music video for "Check It Out," but will.i.am and Nicki Minaj appear to have been bitten by the K-pop bug and lost their minds. Korean overload. Just watch it and you'll see:

cops suspect murder-suicide in flushing fire

EDIT: The man involved in the arson and murder-suicide described below, originally misidentified by authorities and media reports as Shao-Fan Gong, was later positively identified as 22-year-old Zhang Zhen: Mother makes identification in Flushing murder-suicide.

* * *

This is a crazy story out of New York... Last week in Queens, the body of a man was found with his throat slashed inside a burning building. A second man, who was also hurt in the fire and also appeared to be stabbed, died later at the hospital: Man, who was stabbed, found dead inside burning Flushing building, M.E. to determine death.

Later, it emerged that the victim found with his throat slashed, 42-year-old Chang-Xin Hu, had been stabbed multiple times by 27-year-old Shao-Fan Gong 22-year-old Zhang Zhen, who then set the office on fire in a murder-suicide:

10.26.2010

afterschoolspecial album/music video release party, october 29


This is for all you hip hop fans in San Diego... If you're in town this Friday and want to support something new and good, come help afterschoolspecial celebrate the release of their brand new full-length album It's All In Your Head, and the world premiere of their new music video "Name" with Wong Fu Productions. It's happening October 29 at The Loft at UCSD. Here's the weird album release promo video:

nbc's the marriage ref looking for asian american couples


Calling all married couples out there. Do you have a squabble that needs some settling? I recently heard from a casting associate for NBC's The Marriage Ref. They're casting for the show's second season and are apparently trying hard to focus on diversity. Here's some of the information that was passed along to me:

ong bak 3 teaser trailer


Awwww yeah. Here's the newly released teaser trailer for the upcoming Thai martial arts epic Ong Bak 3, in which Tony Jaa returns to kick everybody's ass, and then does so. The end. This trailer just offers a small taste of the action but I think you get the idea. Take a look:

kickstarter: aaww presents page turner 2010


The Asian American Writers' Workshop is proud to present its annual book bash, Page Turner: The Asian American Literary Festival, a fun, brainy and eclectic celebration of the best minds in Asian American artsna dn politics. It's happening Sunday, November 7 at powerHouse Books in Brooklyn.

But in order for it to come together, the Workshop is calling on committed, generous patrons of the arts like you to help make Page Turner the amazing, ambitious event it deserves to be. Thus, they've set up a Kickstarter page.

what I'm listening to: lyrics born's as u were


Ahhhh! So many great music releases in the last month. As U Were, the highly anticipated new album from Lyrics Born -- one of my favorite emcees -- is available in stores today. I (legally) downloaded it just now, and I'm listening my way through it as I write this. So far so good!

Seventeen hot tracks, with a lineup of guests that includes Sam Sparro, Francis and The Lights, Lateef the Truthspeaker, The Gift of Gab, Jake One, Trackademicks, Clyde Carson, Joyo Velarde and more. Here's the track list:

two arrested in san antonio hate crime attack

Some disturbing hate crime news out of Texas... Police in San Antonio have arrested two men in connection with a robbery and knife assault on an Asian man early Monday morning. Authorities are describing it as a hate crime: Police detain suspects in alleged hate crime against Asian male.

the walking dead premieres october 31


I don't know about you, but the show I've been most looking forward to is AMC's The Walking Dead. Adapted from the comic book series by Robert Kirkman, it tells the story of a group of people trying to survive in a world stricken by a zombie apocalypse. I'm not crazy about zombie movies, and I'm not even much of a horror fan, but I got a chance to watch the first two episodes of The Walking Dead last week, and it's awesome. Here's the 30-second trailer:

An extra in the "Chinese Professor" ad speaks out

Soon after that "Chinese Professor" got everybody talking, question started to emerge over the Asian participants in the commercial. A lot of people pointed out that it didn't look like they were actually from China, and more likely young Asian Americans who were recruited here, in the United States, to be part of the ad. So who were these Asian faces?

Turns out, most of the extras in this commercial had little or no idea that their appearance in the ad would turn out like this. I was recently able to track down Josh H., who happens to be one of the extras in the now-infamous future Chinese classroom. He says he was recruited when he signed up to be an extra on Transformers 3. Here's what he wrote to me:

10.25.2010

Contest: Make your own Evil Chinese Professor parody



Last week, the internet was buzzin' over that crazy-ass political ad, "Chinese Professor," from an organization calling itself Citizens Against Government Waste, depicting a future in which America has crumbled -- and China now laughs at the United States' downfall. It's basically one of the most racist and xenophobic pieces of fear-mongering propaganda I've ever seen. Here it is again:

faces of america excerpt: kristi yamaguchi

Don't know if you were able to catch Henry Louis Gates' Faces of America series on PBS a few months back, but it was an extremely interesting and moving program that traced the ancestry, as far back as possible, of a dozen prominent Americans.

Faces of America is also now a book, published by NY Press, "intended to be a tribute to the true triumph of American democracy, which is the diversity of our people, a diversity that we can now measure both through the branches of our family trees and in our genes."

Huffington Post recently posted an excerpt from Faces of America, looking at the unique family history of Olympic figure skater Kristi Yamaguchi: Faces of America: The Yamaguchi Story -- How an Immigrant Farmer Paved the Way for Success.

music video: "picture perfect" by jay legaspi


Check it out... Here's the newly released music video for "Picture Perfect", the title track and first single from Jay Legaspi's debut album. According to Jay, the video is dedicated to anyone who believes that romance in real life is better than anything scripted on paper. Take a look:



Take that, movie romance! The music video was produced, filmed and edited by JR Pena, Angelica Bonus, and Justin Mendoza, better known as the M3 Crew, with co-production by Jay and Amanda Yu.

If you're digging the track, the single and album are available are iTunes. For more information on Jay Legaspi and his music, and to order physical copies of Picture Perfect go to his website here.

newcomer cast in ang lee's life of pi

Almost missed this bit of movie news... First of all, I had no idea that director Ang Lee was working on the movie adaptation of Yann Martell's award-winning novel Life of Pi. Now I do. And now, the movie has its star: Director Ang Lee Finds His 'Life Of Pi' Guy.

After a worldwide talent search, Life of Pi's lead role goes to newcomver Suraj Sharma, a 17-year-old student from Delhi who has never acted before, but beat out thousands of teens for the part of Pi Patel:
Director Ang Lee has completed a worldwide talent search for Life of Pi and has cast newcomer Suraj Sharma to play the lead role of 16-year old Pi Patel, a youth who gets stranded for 227 days through shark-infested waters aboard a 26-foot lifeboat with a wounded zebra, a spotted hyena, a seasick orangutan, and a 450-pound Bengal tiger. The Fox 2000 film is a David Magee-scripted adaptation of Yann Martel's Mann Booker Prize-winning novel about a kid who sets sail from Pondicherry, India on a freighter bound for Canada along with his father's menagerie of zoo animals and gets stranded with those shipmates after an accident. I'm told that Sharma, a 17-year old student from Delhi, India, never acted before. He's got quite a journey in front of him after Lee chose him after auditioning 3000 teenagers. The film will shoot in January.
Hey, look at that. They cast an actual Indian person to play the part of an Indian character! Amazing. This project has gone through several directors -- even M. Night Shyamalan was attached at one point. Glad to see they didn't pull a Last Airbender on this one.

Then again, maybe they'll give the role of the Bengal tiger to a white guy.

2010 sdaff award winners


Over the weekend, I got to attend the San Diego Asian Film Festival's annual Awards Gala, a fancy dinner event honoring the festival's special guests and emerging artists. It was great to see these films and filmmakers recognized, especially because a lot of them are works I've admired and supported for a while. Here are SDAFF's 2010 Award Winners:

man dies after being hit in the head by golf ball

Just caught up on this horrific news out of Chino, California... Earlier this month, 69-year-old Hiroshi Tango died after being hit in the head with a golf ball. He had been playing golf at a country club: Man struck by golf ball in Chino dies.

paperdoll's china tour 2.0 blog: shanghai tv, mtv china, beijing, tianjin


One of my favorite bands, PaperDoll, is currently on tour in China, October 12-29. I've invited lead singer (and former Angry Reader of the Week) Teresa Lee to contribute some guests post chronicling the band's journeys.

The band is making their way through China -- a whirlwind of record-breaking crowds, mobs and super fans -- performing their butts off and loving every minute of it...

two arrested in philadelphia home invasion robberies

Last week in Philadelphia, FBI agents arrested and charged two men for their involvement in a home invasion that targeted an Asian business owner back in August -- a robbery that netted nearly $200,000 cash(!) from a safe.

According to an FBI affidavit, the men told authorities they were involved in "multiple home invasion robberies of business owners who were Asian" so they'll probably be hit with several more charges: 2 arrested in August home invasion in Havertown.

10.24.2010

read these blogs


Exotic, Perilous, and Inscrutable: A History Of East Asian Portrayals in Comic Covers: This is a really interesting roundup of Asian characters (and general yellow perils) on comic book covers -- for better or for worse -- decade by decade since the 1930s.

10.22.2010

win all-access passes to the 11th annual toronto reel asian international film festival, november 9-15


Like I've said before, we're in the middle of a really crowded film festival season... But I want to give a heads up to everybody in the Toronto area -- mark your calendars! The Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival celebrates its 14th year as Canada's longest-running and largest showcase of contemporary cinema by East Asian and Southeast Asian filmmakers. It's happening November 9-15 at venues around the city. I've got free passes! Read on for details...

u.c. student regent comes out

On Wednesday night, University of California Student Regent Jesse Cheng, an Asian American studies major at UC Irvine, publicly came out after years of hiding and downplaying the fact that he's bisexual: UC Student Regent Comes Out In Wake Of Gay Suicides.

koream's krazy k-pop! contest


Hey, K-pop fans! Time to take your fandom to a new level. KoreAm invites you to enter Krazy K-pop! - A Music Video Battle, your chance to create your very own K-pop video. Outrageous story lines, costumes, choreography, and general dramatic Korean cheesiness. Check out this promotional video:

racist popcorn pals


Got this from a keen-eyed reader named Mike, who sent in this photo fo "Popcorn Pals" by The Popcorn Factory. Take a good look at the "sushi chef" character, as well as the one with chopsticks. Here's the close up:

against the grain artistic scholarship fund

I recently heard from Jared Rehberg, who tells me about this cool opportunity for college students... Against the Grain Productions in Dallas, Texas has announced a new college scholarship for Asian American students pursuing a major in the performing and/or visual arts: Against The Grain Artistic Scholarship Fund. Here are some more details:

angry reader of the week: nelson wong


Hey everybody! It's time to meet 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 Nelson Wong.

Political ad: Future China will laugh at your downfall, America



Holy crap. This new political ad, titled "Chinese Professor" and paid for by "Citizens Against Government Waste," is running on some serious Red Menace juice, and has to be one of the most racist and xenophobic pieces of fear-mongering propaganda I've ever seen. Just watch:

cnn story on south philadelphia high

CNN has posted a story (currently on the homepage) on the racial violence at South Philadelphia High School. It's great that they're covering this story... nearly eleven months after the attacks on December 3, when thirty Asian students were targeted and physically assaulted -- some even sent to the hospital. Thanks for being so on top of the situation, CNN: Racial violence spurred Asian students to take a stand.

Granted, the article focuses mostly on what's happened since the attacks, particularly among the student organizers, who have been trying to draw attention to the situation at South Philadelphia High. And not just the December 3 attacks, but also the ongoing harassment and violence that led up to it:

10.21.2010

screeing/signing/conversation with greg pak at paaff, october 23


I already mentioned the Philadelphia Asian Film Festival, but if you're headed to PAAFF this weekend, I especially wanted to point out a free event this with writer/director/friend-to-this-blog Greg Pak. They'll be hosting a special conversation with Greg and presenting him with the PAAFF'10 Emerging Voice Award. It's happening this Saturday, October 23 at the International House.

As special bonus, Greg informs me that he'll be giving away free USB drives containing PDFs of his latest comic book, Vision Machine #1. Here's a good look at the issue's cover:

sincerely, bruce lee


Kind of random, but I thought this was pretty cool. I've certainly never seen this before... What you're looking at is a copy of Bruce Lee's letterhead, circa 1968, posted on the design blog Letterheady a few months back:

csun students engage community over professor's sex tourism website

Earlier this month, a coalition of student organizations at Cal State University Northridge held a Forum on Human Trafficking. The event was organized largely in response to news about CSUN economic professor Kenneth Ng, who apparently runs a Thai sex tourism website in his spare time, promoting advice to American tourists interested in meeting young Thai women.

Overall, the forum was a success, with over 350 in attendance. However, on that very same day, the school newspaper The Daily Sundial published an opinion piece written by none other than Kenneth Ng, in defense of his website. Basically, publishing the article that day allowed Ng to respond to the forum: Prof. Kenneth Ng speaks, defends controversial website.

11th annual san diego asian film festival opens tonight


Hey, San Diego! In case you haven't heard, the 11th annual San Diego Asian Film Festival starts tonight, kicking off a weeklong celebration of the best in Asian American films, international cinema and beyond.

For the Opening Night film, they've got the U.S. premiere of the martial arts epic Legend of the Fist: The Return of Chen Zhen, directed by Wai-keung Lau and starring Donnie Yen. Here's the trailer:

somebody's been watching too many rush hour movies


Can someone explain to me all the barftastic exploit-Asian happening in Travie McCoy's music video for "Need You"? The guy is walking around Los Angeles' Chinatown with chopsticks in his hair, chasing a disappearing girl while all kinds of completely random Oriental crap is happening behind him. To understand how idiotic this video is, you have to see it for yourself:

sharron angle's "first asian" is the new "I'm you"


You have imagine Sharron Angle's inexplicably weird "Asian" remarks to a group of Latino students last week had her campaign people doing the facepalm in anticipation of the mockery onslaught. To refresh your memory:

"like a g6" is number one on the billboard hot 100!


Oh, excuse me. May interrupt your daily routine to inform you that Far East Movement's "LIke a G6" is number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart? HELLLL YEAH: Far East Movement Tops Hot 100 with 'Like a G6.'

georgia high school's two-footed football phenom


Saw this cool sports story posted on Yahoo's front page... Erick Yang, kicker for the Brookwood High School football team in Georgia, has been getting a lot of attention for his unusual ability to kick the ball with both feet (not at the same time): Two-footed Georgia placekicker creating quite a stir.

It's not just that he can kick with either foot. He can kick with either foot with great power and accuracy. (The right foot's a bit stronger than the left.) The craziest part? The kid never even played football before the 2010 season:

10.20.2010

mr. hyphen 2010 happy hour


Short notice, but if you're in the Bay Area, I want to make sure you're aware of Hyphen's Mr. Hyphen 2010 contest, a celebration of the Asian American community's favorite men. That's coming up on November 6 in San Francisco, and I'll post more on the actual pageant later.

For now, you can help Hyphen out by attending their Mr. Hyphen Happy Hour fundraiser at Sports Basement. It's happening Thursday, October 21. Here are some details:

arowana films: ambient city


Check out this new video from the folks at Arowana Films, who recently messed around with three DSLR cameras on a steadicam rig: AMBIENT CITY. You may not understand what that means, and the rig looks rather ridiculous. But the filmed result is pretty darn cool. Take a look:

saalt launching report on the rise of xenophobia in political discourse

Next week, South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT) will launch a new report, From Macacas to Turban Toppers: The Rise in Xenophobic and Racist Rhetoric in American Political Discourse, an inventory and analysis of xenophobic rhetoric in the political spectrum, and a call for a return to civility in the political sphere. Here's an excerpt from the report:

cross-dressing korean bass players for meg whitman


Why is this freaky bass player suddenly the face of California's gubernatorial race? If you ask some people, it might be because he's waaay more interesting than both Jerry Brown and Meg Whitman. But actually, it's because he just became kind of famous, in that only-on-the-internet kind of way, thanks to a funny little Twitter typo by Whitman's campaign: Cross-Dressing Korean Bassist Rocks the California Gubernatorial Race.

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