Around the Horn: “Reading is so Passé”

free-audio-books

For the past 5 years I’ve been listening to audio books of all kinds. Once upon a time, I used to love going to the bookstores and browsing for hours to find the perfect book to spend my time reading on my comfortable chair, but now I listen to voice actors dramatizing my virtual book on my ride to work… AND I LOVE EVERY MINUTE OF IT!!!!

I never found anything wrong with this convenient way of getting through all the books that I want to read, but recently I’ve shared this new passion with a close friend of mine and he told me, “THAT’S NOT READING! Don’t say that you’ve read that book when you clearly didn’t turn a single page”… funny how that struck a chord with me that now I felt that for the past five years I’ve really failed to really “read” a book. And yet, I’m fine with it.

Funny story. I was listening to “The Child” read by British actors. I told my wife that it was hard to listen to them with their heavy accents, so I commented by saying, “I feel like I needed subtitles for the actors.” My wife responded, “… Like a book?”

Do you think by listening to Truman Capote’s “In Cold Blood” or even E L James’ “Fifty Shades of Grey” dampens the experience of reading the actual words in the book? I want to hear the writers opinions on this subject since the written art can now be consumed by listening while doing laundry.

The Walking Dead — Season 5, Episode 15 — “Try” Recap & Review

unnamed

(Spoilers ahead…)

The episode opens with Deanna and her family, mourning the death of Aidan by playing his mixed CD as Trent Reznor sets the tone of despair and doubt in this episode. Carol prepares a casserole and delivers it to Deanna’s doorstep with a condolence card. Deanna doesn’t take the casserole and burns up the card as her husband and other son look on.

Why Japan is Awesome #3355: Kit-Kat Sandwiches

Apparently, Japanese fast food chain First Kitchen now has these on their menu:

sk4tbnlq0rse1r3jkens

It’s a Kit-Kat sandwich comprised of a Kit-Kat bar, whipped cream and orange peel between two slices of white bread. And this isn’t your ordinary Kit-Kat bar, but a special “krispier” version made to be dipped into your hot beverage.

And once again, Asia has upped the fast food stakes by creating another WTF wonderful creation that puts American innovation to shame. Come on, American fast food companies, what’s up?! Where’s that good ole ingenuity and creativity? This is a start, but we can and must do better if we’re going to compete with this:

Film Festival Dispatch: Strong Asian American representation at SXSW 2015

SXSW_2015_ID-071-530x353

South By Southwest (SXSW) is the new Comic-con. A convergence of music, film, interactive, food, comedy, and everything else underneath the Sun, this massive series of conferences in one of the coolest cities in the US really showed its excess this year. Throw in TV in the mix, and SXSW has become the Howard Stern equivalent of “King of all media.” For many newbies, this did not disappoint, but for old timers like me, I long for the days when SX was a little smaller, weirder (this would be pre-Foursquare).

5 Asian Characters ‘Downton Abbey’ Can Work Into Its Final Season

mast-downton-s4-series-icon-675×290-scale-2000x2000

As you can tell from the photo above, the popular British TV series Downton Abbey isn’t the most diverse show around. But considering it’s set in the early 20th Century world of the British aristocracy and their servants, it’s hard to fault the program for being so white (aside from that one already-forgotten black recurring character from two seasons ago). However, with the recent announcement that next season will be Downton Abbey’s last, there’s still time to add a little bit of diversity with the inclusion of an Asian face or two. So to help creator/writer Julian Fellowes with this task, here are my suggestion for five Asian characters that could find their way to the Abbey:

1) CHINESE OPIUM ADDICT

Modern-day-Romeo-Juliet

Frankly, I’m surprised the show hasn’t already used this trope—the Limehouse Chinatown district was known at that time for all sorts of illicit and immoral shenanigans and would be the perfect setting for Downton Abbey’s version of its “Chinatown episode”. Since Lady Edith continues to be the character that everyone shits on, she could run away from home because her illegitimate baby was taken away from her or Lady Mary got a pony and she didn’t or whatever slight she’s suffered that week. She finds her way to the Limehouse district where she is easily seduced by a nefarious Chinese opium addict/dealer who gets her hooked on the drug and plans to sell her as a sex slave.

The 9 Types of Asian American Actors You’ll Meet in Hollywood

tumblr_inline_njlwg3YyWF1sd3xh3

I realize the following is a question that can be asked of all actors regardless of race, but for our purposes as an “Asian American” blog: Are there “normal” and “un-neurotic” Asian American actors in Hollywood? Of course. Well, probably. I mean they have to exist, right? Just because no one’s seen Bigfoot doesn’t mean Bigfoot, doesn’t exist. As for everyone else, here’s who you’re more likely to meet…

1) THE HOBBYIST

Many Asian Americans who wish to pursue acting are afraid to do so for fear of disappointing their parents who’d prefer they pursue something more “legit” like medicine or law. So what’s a good, filial Asian to do? Pursue that legit career, of course, while doing the acting thing on the side, you know, as a hobby.

Positive traits: Since he has a secure career elsewhere, he will usually pick up the check when you go out for food or drinks.
Negative traits: Always missing auditions and rehearsals because he has to work overtime at his “real” job.
Sample dialogue: “Well, you know, Ken Jeong was a doctor while he was pursuing stand-up/acting and it worked out well for him.”
Where you’re most likely to find them: Presenting opening arguments in a divorce case at the L.A. County superior court in his “real” job as a family law attorney.

You Can Do It! (White People Edition)

Yes, white people, you can indeed do it—as this cover from the University of Georgia’s recent course catalog clearly shows:

North-Georgia-catalog-800x430

Way to “lead” and leave the slower blacks and women in the dust! And may I add that’s a spiffy suit you have on there.

Now don’t mind the fact that university officials have removed this image and are reprinting the catalog because some people have found this “offensive”, you know what’s up. You know what you’re capable of. So let the image inspire you because there’s clearly a visible lack of positive white male representation in our racist society. Shine on, you crazy white diamond!

Queer Positive Moments in This Week’s ‘Arrow’ and ‘Flash’

guest_offenderDOMINIC

Dominic Mah is a writer, director, erratic blogger at dommah.com, and rock musical enthusiast. He recently co-wrote a feature film about superheroes and sidekicks. He is working on a startup comic book. He is often found in karaoke bars being @dommah and @thorhulkcritic.

FLASH's David Singh

FLASH’s David Singh

Y’know, those superhero shows may uphold some ideas which are of questionable value in real-world application — vigilanteism, duplicity, the solving of almost every problem with violence, the unlawful imprisonment of misfits whose main crime is that they can shoot electricity from their hands — but juvenile hero fantasies aside, they are also pretty supportive of gay people.

In this week’s FLASH, we meet, for the first time (I think), Central City Police Captain David Singh’s boyfriend, Rob. Captain Singh is hospitalized after Weather Wizard attacks the police station. The nurse hesitates when Rob wants to see David, saying that visitation is only for “family.” Joe explains that being Singh’s fiancé qualifies Rob as family. Ooh! A future same-sex marriage episode of FLASH seems inevitable! Pied Piper (Flash’s resident queer Rogue) will probably attack the wedding.

Mr Chicago – Tim Hugh of the Asian American Showcase

R-1589328-1258832694.jpeg

In 1995, the Asian American music scene was a tiny spark that kindled a film festival. It was all happening at the same time. A tour and CD that seemed epic, “Ear of the Dragon,” went across America. It even stopped in my city, LA, and one of the key bands was Seam. A couple of the members, Sooyoung Park, William Shin and their friend, Ben Kim, began a small film festival in Chicago.

My history with this festival begins in 1998 with Sunsets, a project I co-directed with my cousin Michael Aki (Idemoto). It was part of a whirlwind of 4 feature films directed by Asian Americans. At the time, it was a record and it was dubbed “The Asian American New Wave.” It was a bullshit title, but we went with it. One of the stops was Chicago’s “Asian American Showcase.”

Inappropriate Children’s Books?

Bored Panda is compiling some images from children’s books that they are dubbing the “weirdest”. Check out a few of them below. Not sure if “weirdest” is the best word to describe them. “Inappropriate” maybe:

Poorpussy

(Is it just me but does that look like an Asian brother on the receiving end of the poor pussy?)

harpo