Angry Reader of the Week: Karthick Ramakrishnan

Here we go again. Friends, it is time meet the 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 Karthick Ramakrishnan.

Disney Princesses re-imagined as Asian American

"What if Belle wore a hijab?"

Who wants to be a Disney Princess? Lots and lots of little children. Unfortunately, if you look at the long, storied history of Disney royalty there isn't whole of color. In the 76 years since Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was released, there have been twelve Disney princesses, only five of whom are women of color -- and honestly, some of those don't really count as "princesses."

Kim Navoa and Donnie Chang had all this in mind when they created Asian American Disney Princesses, a photography project that re-cast and re-imagined some of Disney's most iconic characters as Asian American. Navoa, a student in Chicago, says they wanted to create something a little closer to what kids of color could relate to: 'Asian American Disney Princesses': What If Belle Wore A Hijab?

Okay, so Tinkerbell wasn't a princess. But you get the idea. I realize how problematic the Disney Princesses are on a variety of levels. But I appreciate this as one clever subversive take on pop culture "tradition." Here are some more photos:

The Most Racist Neighborhood in America?

One man, one town, and a crazy racist plan.

What the hell kind of racist craziness is this? This is next level white power takeover type insanity. The New York Times has a story on a man in North Dakota who has buying up property in his small town in an effort to transform it into a colony for white supremacists: New Neighbor's Agenda: White Power Takeover.

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, 61-year-old Paul Craig Cobb -- an unabashed white supremacist -- has been buying up dozens of plots of land in the town of Leith, North Dakota (population: 24) in an effort to populate the town with fellow, like-minded racist-ass people. There goes the neighborhood.


Plate by Plate San Francisco, September 14

Project by Project's 4th Annual Tasting Benefit

Bay Area foodies! It's not too late to buy your tickets for Plate by Plate, Project by Project San Francisco's annual tasting benefit. Food, drinks, entertainment, a silent auction, and lots of fun folks to mingle with.

Proceeds from this year's event will go to Kearny Street Workshop, whose mission is to produce, present, and promote art that empowers Asian Pacific American artists and communities. Join PbP SF and KSW on Saturday, September 14 at City View in San Francisco. Here are some more details:

Quang and Ellie's super cool, slo-mo wedding video booth

Wedding mischief looks better in slow motion.

Are slo-mo photo booths the next big wedding trend? If you've been to a wedding in the past several years, you've probably taken a photo booth pic featuring you and your friends wearing oversized sunglasses and possibly a feather boa. But here's a fundamental truth: everything looks cooler in slow motion.

Seattle couple Quang Dinh and Ellie Koning got married earlier this month and instead of renting out the ubiquitous photo booth, they hired video production company Super Frog Saves Tokyo, who shot wedding guests in slow motion using a RED Epic camera and then edited the video into a cool montage of their friends in various states of mischief.

Check out the video of their guests dancing, making fish faces, blowing bubbles and slapping each other, among other slow motion shenanigans. Looks like they had an amazing time. (Warning: the video is paired with everyone's favorite rape-y song of the summer):

Tribunal finds restaurant guilty of racial discrimination

The Shark Club is ordered to pay Indian complainants $10,000 each for denying them entry.

News of discrimination out of the Vancouver area... The B.C. Human Rights Tribunal recently ruled that a restaurant in Langley racially discriminated against three patrons of Indian descent when they were denied entry: Human rights tribunal finds men were racially discriminated against by Langley Shark Club.

Surinderjit Rai, Manjit Gill and Manjinder Gill tried to get into a graduation party at the Shark Club two years ago, but were told they could not join the rest of their party already in the restaurant and given bogus excuses by the doorman about reservations and tickets, while white customers were not given the same treatment.

The tribunal ordered to the Shark Club to pay the three complainants $10,000 each for injury to dignity and self-respect:


New Music: Electronic beats by KTown Shekki

Some cool new tunes for you... KTown Shekki is a new DJ and production crew hailing from Koreatown, Los Angeles. Emerging from a rising KTown electronic scene -- "using karaoke rooms as their studio, Casios swung over their shoulders" -- they're making remixes and mashing up pop hits with grinding electronic beats. Basically, hot stuff to dance to, if that's your thing. Here are some tracks:

Fund This: South Asian indie comedy Miss India America

"A comedy where Election and Legally Blonde meets the world of Indian-American beauty pageants."

This looks fun... Miss India America is a South Asian American indie feature film project that's currently trying to raise funds via Kickstarter. Co-written by Ravi Kapoor and Meera Simhan, it's described as "a comedy where Election and Legally Blonde meets the world of Indian American beauty pageants." Count me in! Sounds like it's got some potential to be awesome. Watch this video for more information:

Please tell me that is a real tattoo.

Your awesome Asian character tattoo? This is what it kind of looks like from the other side.

Saw this item perched pretty on the top of Reddit, which is kind of like the front of the internet... I think it's pretty self-explanatory: IT'S HAPPENED. Chinese person with a random English word as a tattoo.

There's a decent chance that this is fake. Heck, it could be a Sharpie job. But man, I hope it's real.

If you've been thinking about getting one of those totally awesome tattoo of a Chinese or Japanese or Oriental or whatever character, do the math, throw in a little bit of common sense and consider for a moment that this is what your totally awesome Asian tattoo might look like on the other side of the equation.

If you've already got a tattoo like this... um, yeah. Good luck with that.

New Harry Potter Anniversary Cover Art by Kazu Kibuishi

Scholastic celebrates the 15th anniversary of J.K. Rowling's series with a new paperback box set.

This is for all you Harry Potter fans... This summer, to celebrate the 15th anniversary of J.K. Rowling's phenomenally popular book series release in the United States, Scholastic commissioned newly designed cover art by Kazu Kibuishi, graphic novelist behind the incredible, award-winning Amulet series.

While the original designs by Mary GrandPre have become iconic, the new covers are pretty awesome. The new special edition paperbacks are now available as a box set. Here's a good interview with artist Kazu Kibuishi: 'Harry Potter' gets a makeover on its 15th anniversary.

Here are all seven of the new covers:

Another racist Starbucks cup?

Asian American customer gets his Starbucks drink order with "China" written on the cup.

Several people have sent this one my way... Over the years, we've seen our share of racist Starbucks cups and fast food receipts. It's a weird, disturbing trend. Now, a Starbucks customer in Connecticut is calling foul over a recent drink order where the word "China" was written on his drink cup.

David, who is Asian American, was at a Starbucks in New York City when he received the cup in question. He snapped the photo above and posted it on Facebook, which got the attention of the local Fox news affiliate: Controversy At Starbucks Over What Was Written On Cup.

Seattle woman arrested for racist soy sauce attack

She told everyone to "go back to China" and sprayed customers with soy sauce.

What the hell? Last weekend in Seattle's International District, a woman was arrested after she walked into a Chinese restaurant, told everyone to "go back to China," and assaulted customers -- including a baby -- with soy sauce and chocolate milk: Woman arrested after restaurant guests covered in soy sauce.

According to witnesses dining at Dim Sum King on Saturday afternoon, a 52-year-old woman burst into the restaurant, told everyone to "go back to China," started tossing over guests' plates, spit on a man and then squirted him and his baby with soy sauce. What did that baby ever do to you, lady?

Naturally, they called the cops on her:


U.S. speed skater suspended two years for skate tampering

Simon Cho will not be eligible to compete at the Sochi Olympics.

You did the crime. You must do the time. U.S. Olympic short track medalist Simon Cho has received a two-year suspension from the International Skating Union after admitting he tampered with the skates of a Canadian rival: Simon Cho Suspended: Olympian Gets Two-Year Ban For Skate Tampering.

Cho came clean last October, confessing that he sabotaged the skates of Canada's Olivier Jean during the 2011 World Team Championship in Warsaw, taking them out of the competition. Cho claims that he was acting under pressure from former short track national coach Jae Su Chun.

The two-year suspension, announced by U.S. Speedskating, runs through October 4, 2014, which will take Cho out of eligibility to compete for the American short track team at the Sochi Olympics.

Play the Verizon Linsanity The Movie Sweepstakes

Win a trip to the Los Angeles theatrical premiere of Linsanity.

The feature documentary Linsanity opens in theaters everywhere on October 4. Want to win a trip to the Los Angeles Premiere on September 19? Then enter Verizon's Linsanity The Movie Sweepstakes for your chance to win a trip to the premiere of Linsanity and a meet-and-greet with Jeremy Lin himself.

Just passing this along -- I have no vested interest or ties with Verizon for this promotion. It just sounds cool. The grand prize includes airfare and transportation for two, a VIP experience at the premiere, two nights hotel and a Droid Ultra and Maxx by Motorola. Here's some more information:

Zhang Ziyi versus Wack Mustache Man in The Grandmaster

This is how you make an asskicking look beautiful.

All right, I know I've already posted a bunch of Grandmaster stuff, but here's one more, and it's dope. Renown auteur Wong Kar-wai's latest film is a historical epic on the life of the legendary Wing Chun master Ip Man -- teacher to Bruce Lee -- and the martial artists of his time. In this awesome clip, Gong Er (Zhang Ziyi) faces off against Ma San (Zhang Jin), aka Wack Mustache Man, to restore her family's honor.

This is, hands down, my favorite scene in the movie:

Ah, the good ol' chased-by-a-dinosaur prank

When you want to make someone mess their pants, a fake dinosaur always does the trick.

Forgive me, but this made me laugh. A lot. There are pranks... and then there are Japanese pranks. Not content with just giving the unsuspecting victim a fright, pranks of the Japanese variety are intended to terrify, traumatize and make you crap in your pants. They're also hilarious. So just watch as this poor guy wets himself, running away from what he believes is an actual dinosaur loose in the office. Some things don't need translation:

"Maybe you should go back to China where you belong."

Video captures an encounter with a racist dog walker.

Some more everyday racism, this time from Canada... A woman is out walking her dogs when a neighbor politely asks her to put her dogs on a leash. No big deal, right? That's when things get real racist, real fast: Calgary dog walker prompts social media backlash with 'Go back to China' comment.

In this video, shot last month in the northwest Calgary community of Sage Meadows, the neighbor, who happens to be Chinese Canadian, approaches the woman and asks her to leash up her dogs. He had apparently made the same request to her a month prior, and was recording video to file a complaint.

After establishing that they both live "right close," the dog walker tells him, "Yeah, well, maybe you should go back to China where you belong." Here's the video:


Win tickets to Dis/Orient/ed Comedy in San Francisco, September 7

A showcase of Asian American female comedians, happening September 7 in San Francisco.

Bay Area comedy fans, this one's for you. My pal Jenny Yang (a recent guest on the Sound and Fury podcast) invites you to check out a comedy show with her and her friends: Dis/Orient/ed Comedy, a showcase of Asian American female comedians happening Saturday, September 7 at South Side Theater at Fort Mason Center in San Francisco. Anyone want free tickets? I'm giving away a pair. To find out how to win, scroll down to the bottom of this post. But first, here are some more details about the show:

Nominate an artist for the 2013 Wai Look Award

Nominate an Asian American leader in New York City working for the advancement of the arts.

The Asian American Arts Alliance in New York is seeking nominations for the 2013 Wai Look Award for Outstanding Service in the Arts. The award, now in its third year and presented to a NYC-based Asian American leader in the arts, is a tribute to Wai Look, a former Alliance board member who passed away when she was very young. Here's some more information about Wai Look and the Award:

See you on the Clara C 2013 Acoustic Tour

You guys know I'm a big fan of singer/songwriter Clara C. She is the real deal. It's been a little while since I've caught her in concert, so I'm looking forward to the Clara C 2013 Acoustic Tour, hitting 14 cities this fall. First, enjoy this music video for her song "Wanting What I Need," which I never got a chance to post when it was first released. It's four glorious minutes of people jumping up and down:

Toronto driver fined $400 for killing grandmother

How much is one woman's life worth?

This story out of Canada is both tragic and outrageous... Last week in Toronto, a motorist was convicted and fined $400 for running over and killing an elderly woman with her car. And that's it. A four hundred dollar fine: Family devastated after driver fined $400 for killing grandmother.

75-year-old Fen Shi, a grandmother and mother of three, was walking on the sidewalk in September 2012 when she was struck and killed by a car pulling out of a driveway. Toronto businesswoman Ann Wyganowski was charged with careless driving, but reached a plea bargain that meant she would only pay $400:

Understandably, Shi's family is outraged:

A Sneaky Sneaker Proposal

If the shoe fits, marry her.

I know you romantics like these proposal videos, so here's another one. This video short and sweet, and does not involve the tricks of a hypnotist. Last month, Paul wanted to propose to his gal Hazel. So he did what any sneakerhead would do: he took her to a shoe store and asked her to marry him with some custom-made kicks. Surprise! And her reaction is picture perfect. Check it out:

Tony Jaa joins the cast of Fast & Furious 7

Fast 7 will be the Ong Bak star's English-language Hollywood debut.

The next Fast & Furious flick just added some fast and furious star power to its roster. Thai action star Tony Jaa will make his big studio English-language debut in the seventh installment of Universal's blockbuster auto action movie franchise: Asian Star Tony Jaa Joins 'Fast and Furious 7.'

Jaa, best known for kicking copious amounts of ass in the Ong Bak movies, joins the bulging cast that includes Vin Diesel, Paul Walker and Dwayne Johnson. No details on Jaa's character, but I'm sure it will involve a great deal of punching and kicking. And if we're lucky, maybe an elephant or something.

Watch the new Linsanity theatrical trailer

The feature documentary hits theaters on October 4.

All right, Jeremy Lin fans. After premiering at the Sundance Film Festival and making its way through the film festival circuit, the feature documentary Linsanity gets its theatrical release this October. Directed by Evan Leong, with exclusive access -- Evan and his team were following Jeremy long before he was a household name -- the film follows his unlikely, underdog rise to NBA stardom.

And now, here's the newly released theatrical trailer:

Sushi restaurant writes "An Open Letter to Bigot Diners"

To the people on Yelp who act like they know a damn thing.

I generally find Yelp to be a helpful resource when researching new places to eat or, say, finding a decent dry cleaner. But the user-generated reviews can also be unhelpful, irrelevant... and sometimes racist. And that's who this sushi restaurant was addressing when they wrote this blog post. The racists.

Mashiko, a Japanese restaurant and sushi bar in West Seattle, rates four stars in Yelp, which is perfectly respectable. But they've also apparently received reviews andcomments calling out a lack of Japanese staff (not true) at this Japanese restaurant, including, most notably, a white woman sushi chef. Her name is Mariah Kmitta. Chef/owner Hajime Sato is progressive like that.

Still, the unfounded criticism bugged them enough that Mashiko composed An Open Letter to Bigot Diners on the restaurant's blog. Take that, haters and fools. Here's an excerpt:


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30 Incredibly Chic Street-Style Photos From India: A cool Buzzfeed gallery of street stylin' folks in India.

The Japanese-American Internee Who Met Malcolm X: NPR's Code Switch covers the brief friendship between civil rights leaders Yuri Kochiyama and Malcolm X, drawing connections between the Black Power and the Asian American movements.

The Origins of 'gook': Recently, a young man on the street called Soya Jung a 'gook.' Where does the word come from, anyway? What is the history of 'gook'?

Why Are Asians So Racist?: Why do Asians hate black people? Why do Asians only stick with other Asians? ChangeLab's Scot Nakagawa grapples with the questions he often gets asked on Asian Americans and racism.

The Asian College Bubble: Self-Segregation or Something More?: The Fung Brothers' recently released a video on the pros and cons of having mostly Asian American friends in college. So, is allowing yourself to spend time in a social network that caters to a particular ethnic group okay?


Angry Reader of the Week: Maggie Lee

(Photo Credit: Karen Wilson)

You know what time it is. People, it is time to meet the 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 my old friend Maggie Lee.

The bloody-faced Glenn action figure you've always wanted

Your favorite Asian American zombie apocalypse survivor gets an action figure.

At long last! This for fans of action figures and The Walking Dead. And you know I love both. McFarlane Toys has released several waves of figures based on characters from the popular AMC zombie drama. They recently announced that Series 5 will include a Glenn figure, fashioned in the likeness of actor Steven Yeun.

Finally! I mean, come on, the water-logged zombie from the "well" scene got a figure before Glenn did.

Hindu guy makes the mistake of traveling on Ramadan

This week in Flying While Brown.

I've lost track of how many frustrating, mind-melting accounts I've read of innocent brown folks getting profiled, hassled and mistreated by airport security while traveling, just trying to get to wherever the hell they're going. Here's one more infuriating account from Aditya Mukerjee: JetBlue Refuses To Let Hindu Man Board Flight During Ramadan, Concerned About His "Disposition."

Mukerjee, who is Hindu, was traveling from New York City to Los Angeles to vacation with his family. Unfortunately, he made the mistake of flying during the Muslim holiday Ramadan -- I repeat, he is Hindu, not Muslim, and not that it friggin' matters -- which he believes ultimately got him detained for hours and questioned by the TSA, NYPD, FBI and Homeland Security. And yes, he missed his flight.

After going through the gauntlet of inane interrogation by all those agencies, it was ultimately the airline, JetBlue, that booted Mukerjee off the flight. He detailed the day's entire shitty experience in an infuriating blog post entitled Don't Fly During Ramadan.


Ichiro Suzuki joins the 4,000 Hit Club

Ichiro joins only two other players in major-league history with 4,000 career hits.

Is it there any doubt that Ichiro Suzuki is one of the greatest baseball players of all time? On Wednesday, with a mighty swing of his bat, the New York Yankees outfielder collected the 4,000th hit of his professional career: Ichiro Suzuki reaches 4K-hit plateau.

There's a little twist, because the 4,000th hit reflects a combined total between his career in both the Japanese Pacific League and the American major league. But no matter how you slice it, the feat is impressive -- an exclusive benchmark that only two other players, Pete Rose and Ty Cobb, have reached.

Number 4000 was single in the first inning against Toronto Blue Jays starter R.A. Dickey:

Casting Call: Reality show seeks Asian Americans "who strongly identify with Hip-Hop Culture"

Searching for "street smart Asian American friends with interest in hip-hop culture."

Got this odd reality show casting call sent my way... Are you a "street smart" Asian American with "interest in hip-hop culture"? (I can think of, like, a hundred people who fit this description.) According to this casting call, a major television production company is looking for you and your friends for a reality show: CASTING: Group of Asian American Friends who strongly identify with Hip-Hop Culture.

I don't what production company is making this, or what kind of show they're putting together. But I've seen my fair share of reality television to know that they'll make a friggin' show about anything. And people will watch it. Here are some more details on who they're looking for:

Weird-Ass Craigslist Posting, Part 22: "Secrets of the Orient"

"Young, gay, Asian waiters to help out on an over-the-top gay, costume party."

Oh, hell. You've got to be kidding me. Another weird, racist gem posted to Craigslist. This one comes from the Portland area, where a guy named John recently put the call out for "2 young, gay, Asian waiters" to help out with his upcoming Asian-themed gay soiree, "The Secrets of the Orient: The Year of the Snake." Yeah. John promises "it will be awesome!" I have a strong feeling it will not be awesome:

Jeremy Lin opens up about faith, identity and "Linsanity"

The Houston Rocks guard gets introspective in front of a crowd of 20,000.

Jeremy Lin was recently a featured speaker at the "Dream Big, Be Yourself" Christian youth conference in Taiwan. In front of a crowd of 20,000 attendees, through a translator, the NBA star shared about his faith, his identity and his career, getting honest about his amazing highs on the court -- who can forget "Linsanity"? -- and the tremendous pressure and scrutiny that was placed on him when he arrived in Houston.

Ultimately, Jeremy says he could not let himself be defined by the critics and onlookers, nor could he strive to live up to the "Linsanity," because that would be setting himself up for disappointment. After much reflection, Jeremy says it always came back to his identity in God. And he challenged the audience to do the same.

Here's video of Jeremy's speech (it begins at 1:06:22):


Exclusive Screening: Lil Tokyo Reporter, August 29

Thursday, August 29 at LA Center Studios

If you're in Los Angeles, you're invited to a special screening of Lil Tokyo Reporter, an award-winning narrative short film based on the true life struggles of Sei Fujii, immigrant pioneer, leader and publisher. Directed by Jeffrey Gee Chin, the film stars Oscar winner Chris Tashima, Eijiro Ozaki, Ikuma Ando, Keiko Agena and Sewell Whitney. The exclusive screening/DVD release is happening Thursday, August 29 at LA Center Studios, and will include reception and Q&A with the cast and crew. Here are some more details:

White House Initiative on AAPIs hosting in-language Google Hangouts about health coverage

The first Hangout will be in Korean, August 27.

Nearly 1 in 5 Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders do not have health insurance. That's a serious statistic, but the Obama administration is hoping that health coverage will be more accessible for everyone through the Affordable Care Act. So what does that actually mean for Asian Americans?

To provide information about the new Health Insurance Marketplace to members of the AAPI community, particularly those with limited English proficiency, the White House Initiative on AAPIs will host a series of online Google Hangouts in AAPI languages.

The first of these Hangouts will be in Korean, happening Tuesday, August 27 from 3:00-4:00pm EST. Representatives from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will answer questions and provide info on how to obtain health care coverage through the new Marketplace:

Here's some more info on Tuesday's Hangout in Korean:

Music Video: Rocky Rivera's got "No Love"

New music! Hip hop journalist by day, emcee by night... Here is the fresh music video for "No Love," the first release from rapper Rocky Rivera's upcoming album Gangster of Love, dropping later this year. Extra cool, and representing the Bay Area. Check it out:

Petition: Make voting accessible for all Californians

Help ensure that every voter's voice is heard in California -- no matter what language we speak.

If you're in California, here's some news about an important voting rights bill on the governor's desk... AB 817 would allow lawful permanent residents (green card holders) to serve as poll workers. Currently, only U.S. citizens can perform this important community service. This online petition urges Governor Jerry Brown to sign the bill into law: Tell Gov. Jerry Brown to make voting accessible for all Californians.

Poll workers are the volunteers who check voters in, hand them their ballot, direct them to the ballot booth, and give them an "I voted" sticker. In California, many voters have limited English skills and rely on poll workers who speak a second language. But often, bilingual poll workers aren't available to help voters. AB 817 would help create a larger pool of bilingual volunteers for Election Day.

Alas, the bill has its opponents. A group called the Election Integrity Project is circulating a petition to urge Governor Brown to veto AB 817. The Election Integrity Project has been linked to True the Vote, an organization that voting rights advocates believe tried to suppress the minority vote during the 2012 election. The Election Integrity Project's petition is bullshit.

Sign this one instead and support voting rights for all:

Funny Short: Abby White, Interracial Relationship Counselor

Abby White thinks she is an expert in "interracial relationships." She is not.

Got a big kick out of seeing my pal Lynn Chen in this YOMYOMF Network sketch short Abby White, Interracial Relationship Counselor, directed by Doan La. Lynn plays one-half of an interracial couple who visit with the most clueless, offensive couples' counselor in the world. Abby White thinks she is an expert in "interracial relationships." She is not:

Tony Leung and Zhang Ziyi duel in The Grandmaster

Do you like kung fu? Here is some kung fu.

Take a moment out of your day to enjoy this rad fight scene from Wong Kar-Wai's The Grandmaster. That's Zhang Ziyi and Tony Leung as Gong Er and Ip Man, respectively, enjoying a private moment. And by private moment, I mean an awesome little martial arts duel between skilled masters. Not only is it badass, true to director Wong's style, it's also gorgeous:

No, wait. THIS is the greatest windup in baseball history.

Whoa. Now that is how you throw a first pitch.

Dang! Koreans sure know how to start a baseball game. A few weeks back, folks got their minds blown by this clip of South Korean rhythmic gymnast Shin-Sooji throwing the ceremonial first pitch at a Doosan Bears game, featuring what had to be the greatest wind-up in the history of baseball.

The greatest wind-up? Not so fast. I believe that distinction has been usurped by actress and taekwondo champ Tae-Mi (aka Kim Kyung-sook), who also threw the first pitch for a recent Bears game, adding some asskicking aerial flip-flair for good measure. Holy moly -- check the slo-mo:

Customer kicked out of McDonald's for limited English skills

Somebody call corporate. They've got an asshole running this restaurant.

Today's edition of racist restaurant news... In Vancouver, a woman is demanding an apology from McDonald's after a manager refused to serve her because they apparently couldn't understand her English: McDonald's customer says she was booted due to English skills.

51-year-old Hai Xia Sun, who is a Chinese immigrant, says she was mistaken given a mocha coffee after she ordered a hot chocolate. When she tried to correct the mistake, the McDonald's manager allegedly berated Sun and her friend over their limited English skills, ordering her to get out of line and leave. Really?

Yes, it's true. Like a lot of people who eat at McDonald's every day, English is Hai Xia Sun's second language. But that definitely doesn't justify treating some like s$%t over a friggin' mocha.


Early graduation ceremony fulfills father's dying wish

Tony Tran just wanted to see his son graduate from high school.

Over the weekend, Mill Creek High School in Gwinnett County, Georgia held a graduation ceremony -- caps, gowns, pomp and circumstance -- over half a year early. For one student. Seems like only a minor hassle to fulfill a dying father's wish: School grants dying father's wish.

Tony Tran is battling terminal liver cancer. According to doctors, he doesn't have much longer to live, and most likely not long enough to see his son David graduate from his school. With Mill Creek's graduation not scheduled until next May, school administrators made a touching exception for the Tran family:

Sound and Fury Podcast Episode 11: Jenny Yang

What up, podcast listeners. We're back with a brand new episode of Sound and Fury: The Angry Asian Podcast. Episode 11 features a fun conversation with my good friend, writer/comedian Jenny Yang, who made a drastic career change a few years ago and jumped into the world of stand-up comedy.

Thank you to everyone who helped make this thing go to eleven. This has been a lot of fun, and your support and feedback are greatly appreciated. To catch up on previous episodes, get the rundown here. To get them delivered to your device as soon as they're released, be sure to subscribe.

But without further ado, here's my sit-down with Jenny Yang:

14 More Asian Leading Men Who Deserve More Screen Time

A complementary list with, regrettably, fewer abs.

Last week, BuzzFeed posted a Very Important list of 27 Asian Leading Men Who Deserve More Airtime -- a fine, ab-tastic piece of journalism that all sorts of people saying "Mm hmm" and fanning themselves. Even with a whopping 27, I couldn't help but notice that there were some major omissions who also deserved to be included on the list -- it actually could have been a lot longer. So I did some quick brainstorming...

I give you fourteen more Asian leading men who deserve more screen time (in no particular order):


Hypnotist helps out with surprise marriage proposal

It ain't a marriage proposal unless someone gets hypnotized.

Darren wanted to propose to his longtime girlfriend Christine. But these days, you can't just pop the question. You need to do something spectacular, funny and/or insane, with a dash of public embarrassment. So Darren enlisted the help of a hypnotist: Hypnotist show at Toronto CNE includes a marriage proposal.

It all went down over the weekend at the Canadian National Exhibition in Toronto. Weeks ago, Darren schemed with hypnotist/comedian Boris Cherniak, who was performing at the CNE, to get the couple on stage for a trick. Through the power of "hypnosis," Cherniak compelled Darren to propose to Christine with some considerable difficulty, much to the crowd's delight. That's when Cherniak pulled out a sign -- and Darren pulled out a ring.

Here's some YouTube video of the proposal, shot from the sidelines:

Finally, a hip hop track dedicated to Appa the Sky Bison

"Yip Yip." From the new Avatar: The Last Airbender mixtape by Adam WarRock.

Geeks gather 'round. This hip hop is for you. Known for his brand of internet pop cultural hip hip, rapper Adam WarRock has released Sozin's Comet, a new mixtape based on the popular Nickelodeon animated series Avatar: The Last Airbender. The free 7-song EP ranges on topics from specific characters in the show, the universe and lore around them, to a certain sky bison. Airbender fans, you know what I'm talking about.

You can preview one of tracks, "Yip Yip," below:

Secret recording catches politician's anti-gay rant

"Personally, I think it's just disgusting just to even think about."

Tell us how you really feel, Elisa. In San Antonio, a city councilwoman is under fire after a secret audio recording of her making hateful, homophobic comments with her staff was leaked to the press last week: Elisa Chan, San Antonio Politician, In Hot Water Over Alleged Anti-Gay Rant.

The recording, secretly captured behind closed doors in the City Hall office of Elisa Chan last May, reveals the councilwoman and some of her staff expressing intolerant, derogatory views about the LGBT community. Unbeknownst to the councilwoman, a former aide was secretly recording the meeting on his iPhone.

The staff was gathered in her office to discuss the city's proposal to update its nondiscrimination ordinance, adding protections for sexual orientation and gender identity. Chan used it as opportunity to make sure everyone in the room was aware how "disgusting" she finds homosexuality.

Here's the audio, released to the San Antonio Express-News:


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ending white supremacy does not begin with controlling asian women's decisions: A very important message to all the Asian American men expending misguided energy into "slut-shaming" Levy Tran for participating in the "Asian Girls" video, rather than calling out the real culprit: white supremacy.

How Kickstarter May Help a Korean American Rapper Explore His Adoption: Our friend Dan Matthews was recently a guest on PRI's The World, talking about his life-changing trip to Korea to reunite with his birth family -- including the twin brother he never knew he had.

The Notorious MSG's Unlikely Formula For Success: The "umami" craze has turned a much-maligned and misunderstood food additive into an object of obsession for the world's most innovative chefs. But secret ingredient monosodium glutamate's biggest secret may be that there was never anything wrong with it at all.

Cook Your Cupboard Korean-American Style: Cook Your Cupboard is an NPR food series where people submit photos of their pantries, and professional chefs offer cooking advice. This time, chef Edward Lee gives suggestions on how to use canned olives and noodles.


The Most Hated Man in San Francisco

The city hates you back, Peter Shih.

Here's how to piss off an entire city. Write a ridiculously shallow, unfunny and infuriating blog post entitled 10 Things I Hate About You: San Francisco Edition. Peter Shih, the founder of payment startup Celery, penned this charming post on Medium.com, immediately drawing backlash (and doing all sorts of wonders for San Francisco's contentious relationship with the tech startup community).

When Shih started feeling the heat, he posted a disclaimer with the piece: "This post is an opinion piece by me. It was intended to be humorous satire. Hate all you want, but please stop bringing my company into this." (Peter, your credentials paint you as a fairly intelligent individual, but you do not know what "satire" means.)

The post was disclaimed, edited, then eventually taken down altogether. But Uptown Almanac has it archived (with scathing commentary) for safekeeping. Here's the original post, in all its homophobic, transphobic, misogynistic, and general jerk hater asshole glory:

Read These Blogs: Stop-and-Frisk Kal Penn Edition

The other day, Kal Penn tweeted a link to an op/ed piece by Mayor Mike Bloomberg in support of New York City's Stop-and-Frisk program, setting off a flurry of back-and-forth Twitter messages in which the Harold and Kumar actor (and former White House aide) seemed to step out in support of the controversial policy. "Say it ain't so, Kalpen!" many of us exclaimed with much disappointment and shaking of fists at screens.

Penn's comments and the resounding response set off some pretty interesting reactions and conversations:

angry archive