Europeans like Chinese people

中欧合璧 – AJ and Natalie from Jason Lee Wong on Vimeo.

From director Jason Lee Wong’s site:

Sponsored by the European Union in China, Love Love Love is a series of ten short films showing European and Chinese relations, through love! The series will explore the challenges and joys that are faced in intercultural relationships as well as what it means to be in China today.

Some dust got in my eye during the scene where Natalie gets emotional after AJ’s dad says that they have to learn how to forgive one another.

Mind of a Chef

David Chang has a show on PBS! Awesome for all you foodies out there. Below is an excerpt where David talks about eating raw ramen when he was a kid. This is exactly what I used to do, except instead of sprinkling the flavor packet on top of the ramen, I’d eat that raw (or give it to my dog Sunny) and actually SELL the flavor packets individually to my classmates in junior high. They’d go as high as $2 for a single flavor packet, which I taught them to sprinkle on their palms and lick. My most popular flavor was the Tongyi Beef Noodles that my parents used to get at the Taiwanese supermarkets in the suburbs of Los Angeles. So yeah, this brought back memories.

Watch The Mind of a Chef, Episode 1: Noodle (Excerpt) on PBS. See more from The Mind of a Chef.

Some thoughts on the Election

I think my brother put it the best. When I told him that even though having our guy Barack Obama win re-election last night was an awesome feeling, it didn’t compare to how crazy excited I felt back in 2008. He told me that last night actually felt even better than four years ago, when he called me all the way from DC screaming and crying at the top of his lungs. He said that this time around, it was all about vindication, not just of his efforts as a congressional aide in passing the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), but the efforts of countless Americans in and outside of government who worked so hard to keep the vision of a fair and balanced America going, despite all the vitriol borne from misinformation and miseducation. He said this one felt better, and after thinking about it, he’s right.

Not just because he was actually out there canvassing and phone-banking and donating money. But because if Obama had lost, if a President Romney had ascended, beholden to the right-wing commitments he had made, then all that work the past four years really would have been for naught. No universal healthcare, no Dodd-Frank…and who knows who would be up for the Supreme Court. Very frightening. All this anti-Obama talk about how he’s the downfall of the country, when we were seemingly on the verge of undoing decades of evolution and open-mindedness.

I’ve gotta thank my brother and all the volunteers and campaign workers. I’ve been away from the US for almost a decade, so I don’t know what it’s like to roll my sleeves up and work hard for a political candidate. Doing it two cycles in a row, in a year when it was that much harder to find the idealism surf compared to four years ago, is a testament to their convictions about the direction the country needs to head.

Thanks guys. We owe you a big one.


I woke up this morning to watch my beloved Detroit Lions on my iPad and my beloved President Obama debating Romney on CNN. The Lions couldn’t do a lick against the Bears and are on track for another frustrating season. Obama was a smooth operator and pretty much won the debate, but it’s still frustrating every time I see him now to think about how he let Romney back into the race with a shitty first-debate performance, and now I have to read articles like this one about how Romney is surging and has all the momentum. Biden and the return of Obama were supposed to staunch the bleeding and stop the momentum, but that hasn’t seem to have worked. Super frustrating.

And also, the hated Giants won the NL pennant. Pretty bitter morning, even with the strong debate. I sincerely hope I am overreacting…

Weekly Twitter Updates

  • I just ousted Nick D. as the mayor of Republic Studios on @foursquare! #
  • latest @radiolab story about Hmong victims of chem warfare disturbing, not just cuz of story but needless badgering by interviewers. Bummed #
  • Good to be back to find Shanghai is nice and cool (@ Shanghai Hongqiao Int'l Airport T2 w/ 2 others) #
  • Morning market at Houayxay, capital of Bokeo province in Laos. 7 am and most people done selling already. #
  • I'm at L'opera Italian Restaurant (Vientiane, Vientiane Prefecture) #
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