More Japanese Teens Will Commit Suicide Today Than Any Other Day of the Year

Today, September 1, is allegedly the day when more Japanese teens commit suicide than on any other day of the year, according to figures compiled by Japan’s suicide prevention office over the past four decades. The reason for this? September 1 is traditionally the first day of the school year when students who are bullied return to their classes and find themselves once again in the company of their tormenters after the summer break.

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Suicide is the leading cause of death in Japan for people ages 15-39 and government figures show that 18,048 children under the age of 18 took their own lives between 1972 and 2013.

But Japan isn’t the only Asian nation where suicide rates are higher than the norm. For the 11th year in a row, South Korea was ranked #1 when it comes to suicide rates amongst OECD countries, according to that organization’s latest Health Data report.

“Warriors – and those other 20+ gangs – Come Out To Play” (11-21)

Proposed drinking game while watching “The Warriors:”

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Spot The Gang.

Fans of the film may remember some of the more prominent gangs – The Baseball Furies, The Lizzies, The Turnbull AC’s – but there are many gangs, which, if they were lucky, got a frame, maybe two, of screen time, as the camera roamed the Big Gang Summit which opened the movie, or, if director Walter Hill was in the mood to show off shiny jackets and interesting hats, merited a moment in the subway station.

11. The Savage Huns – bet you didn’t even remember there was a sandal-clad gang of Asians that – I think – was meant to evoke the Vietnam war…sorta.

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But college kids haven’t forgotten about them, especially come Halloween.

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Farewell to Wes Craven who has Made the Most Beautiful Nightmares

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I rarely stalk people, but last year I successfully stalked Wes Craven online and found his e-mail address. I e-mailed him and told him how I had been a fan of his work since I was a teenager… and was hoping that he would take a look at a project of mine. He wrote back and asked, “My first question would be, where did you get my e-mail address?”

It’s really sad to see one of my favorite filmmakers gone as I’ve been very much looking forward to his next picture. Come to think of it, all my favorite filmmakers are still alive. Wes Craven is the first one to pass.

Mr. Craven has made classic after classic since his first feature The Last House On the Left in 1972. Below is one of the most memorable moments from the movie:

Around the Horn: Your Every Day Carry (EDC)

After purchasing a custom made bag, I realize there’s a collection of items that go into specific pockets that are with me every day. Some items I need and some I carry for the “just in case” moment. What are yours?

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Eric: 

1 Hydro Flask. Anyone have one of these? I got turned on to it in Hawaii and because of it, I hydrate greatly. I chose the 32oz but am regretting it now and want the 40oz. (Hydro Flask link)

2 1.61 Backpack. Where does everything fit? My custom made backpack. It’s all made by hand in DTLA. (1.61 link) My bag is a custom version of their collab project that you can read about here.

FEAR THE WALKING DEAD — Episode 2 “So Close, Yet So Far” Recap

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I guess like the mothership, FEAR THE WALKING DEAD is going to move like molasses. Last night’s second episode did just that (move slowly) as the characters were confined to essentially three locations (DTLA/Ruben Blades’ barber shop; the high school; the family home). I suppose the first season arc (all 6 episodes of it) will be the plight of our main characters escaping Los Angeles, which I guess is fine because this episode, as well as the rest of the season, was shot in Vancouver (the pilot, on the other hand, was shot on location in East LA) and you can totally tell the show is shot in British Columbia, because of the tight shots and the sheer Canadian cleanliness of their streets and neighborhoods.

DOMINUS VS MEGATRON: GRATUITOUS BOOBS & THE ROBOTECH MAKEOUT SCENE

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ScarJo as Black Widow and Major Kusanagi from GHOST IN THE SHELL (1995)

DvsM is a new feature for YOMYOMF where we’ll debate geek media and demystify timely topics involving superheroes, Asians, and transforming robot culture. Dom/Dominus Prime is an adult dork who likes Spider-Man. But he’s growing his hair out, so maybe one day he’ll be cool. Follow him @ThorHulkCritic and watch his karaoke reality show at karaokerhapsody.com. Meggy/Megatron is an actor who works in tech. She enjoys The X-Files, zombies, and cats.

D: Major Motoko Kusanagi of GHOST IN THE SHELL apparently will be played by Scarlett Johansson in the live-action adaptation. GHOST IN THE SHELL is an iconic anime feature, beloved by fans for its elegant action, cyberpunk imagery, and, uh, other things. Like. Um. You know. The boobs.

M: Major Kusanagi is an android. The hyper-sexualization of the boobs was unnecessary.

D: Wait, was it the largeness of the android boobs or the fact that they existed at all?

M: Largeness. Perkiness. Nipples. Same as in TOMB RAIDER or RESIDENT EVIL.

The Latest Must-have Accessory Out of Beijing? Sprouts Growing Out of Your Head

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When I first heard about this story, I thought it was one of those fake stories that occasionally pop up on the interwebs, but alas looks like it’s the real deal. Apparently, folks in Beijing are wearing these fake sprouts on their heads:

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No one’s really sure why people started doing this, but one theory is that it’s inspired by a character in a popular Chinese animated TV show entitled Pleasant Goat and the Big Bad Wolf. Assuming they’re referring to the old dude with the sprout on his head/helmet:

Careful Where You Walk or Stand

WHYSo it appears that walking or just standing around and minding your own business in China can be a dangerous thing. First there was that escalator incident in Jingzhou last month where the ground at the top of a shopping mall escalator literally caved in and killed a woman in the process and now this–folks just minding their business at a bus stop in the Chinese city of Harbin when this happened:

Luckily, in this case, none of the five people who fell into the 10 foot sinkhole died or sustained life-threatening injuries, but damn!

Hey White People, Don’t You Know There’s ‘No Escape’ When It Comes to Southeast Asia

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In the new Owen Wilson/Lake Bell-starring film No Escape, we once again see your average white American family coming to Thailand a random Southeast Asian country only to find themselves in great danger—in this case when a rebellion breaks out that threatens any white people unfortunate to be hanging around.

Critics haven’t been too kind to the film and have pointed out its racist tendencies like in this review from the Wrap: “it’s fair to say that this new movie combines genuine filmmaking skill and effective action editing with a queasily racist subtext, one in which a bloody revolution in Asia only matters insofar as some white people might get killed.”

But while it’s not surprising that Hollywood movies set in Asia would star white folks often at the expense of actual Asians, it’s also become abundantly clear that if you are a white person traveling to Southeast Asia for any reason in an American movie, you will most likely get fucked up.

Cancer: The Battle, The Journey (update #5)

Ten weeks after being diagnosed with Stage 4 Pancreatic Cancer, my friend Gabrielle Burton recounts a summer filled with grandkids.

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Update # 5, August 28, 2014

The Grandchildren

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Well, we’re closing in on fall, still having perfect CA summer days but no more sunshine streaming into our bedroom at 6AM, and the grandchildren (and Charity, daughter #5, dance teacher for LA Unified,) are heading back to school.

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After being here nearly the whole summer, Gabrielle (#4), Graeme, Annabella, 7, and Philip, 6, have gone back to Ohio, and Jenn (#2), Ani, Roger, 12, and Lilia, 10, have gone back to Boston, leaving the LA Contingent, Maria, Ursula, and Charity, here with Rog and me.

The grandchildren are eight:

In Box Exhibition – Artists Working in a Confined Space – Curated by Audrey Kawasaki

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In Box, an exhibition curated by Audrey Kawasaki features 18 artists, including Amy Sol, Andrea Wan, Andrew Hem, Audrey Kawasaki, Edwin Ushiro, Kelsey Beckett, Ken Garduno, Kristina Collantes, Mari Inukai, May Ann Licudine, Mika Nitta, Nomi Chi, Rebecca Green, Sean Chao, Stella Im Hultberg, Tran Nguyen, Wayne Johnson, and Yoskay Yamamoto. Everyone’s objective is to create work inside of a 12″x12″ wooden box. For some, it’s layers of subject matter to tell a story. For others, it’s a single central image that powers the box. Some chose to paint on the outside while many left it natural. The rules were flexible and the results are thus far, amazing. This is the first curatorial project by Kawasaki who chose both artists familiar and unfamiliar, therefore creating a collection of artists that speak to her tastes.