Kollaboration Los Angeles showcase is now accepting applications for this year's showcase! We're looking for singers, rappers, & poets who have what it takes to represent LA in this year's Kollaboraiton Star Finale and take home bragging rights for the city where the Kollaboration Movement started, oh and also over $10,000 in prizes! Online applications will be accepted until Friday, April 3 and you will be notified of your auditions time slot by Sunday, April 5. Live auditions will take place on Sunday, April 12 in Koreatown. Details and directions will be distributed if you are accepted for a live audition.
Kimmy Is Not Viet Penis & Tina Fey Doesn't Do Anything For Us In Unbreakable Kimmy Shit (That's Schmidt in Vietnamese Btw)Monday, March 23, 2015
As I posted a couple weeks ago, even though I hadn't watched the show "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt", I wasn't quite feeling a character called Dong with a thick accent who also tutors in math and then marries someone to get a green card.
But I thought - well - let's watch every damn episode just to see if in fact it could go against the grain and was really trying to make a point to usurp stereotypes.
So I did...
And I can tell you right now - not only does this character have all the issues I cringed at with no redemption - but the whole show uses Asian Americans and Asians as the butt of jokes throughout the season.
*Here's a list of fun racist items from the show from the Asian American perspective (because if I included everything else, this post would be a book).
- The character Jacqueline Voorhees thinks her husband is having an affair and one of the running "jokes" is that he's been spending a lot of time in Asia where she thinks he's most likely having an affair. One of her quotes is "He's been going to Japan lately and you can get mistresses in vending machines there". Yeah - I know. Apparently her husband has a foot fetish so of course Asia would be a place for him to pick up a mistress as well because of foot binding (where a reference was made). Score one for the Asian woman china doll stereotype!
- Quote from Titus: "This isn't the Chinatown bus - you can't just choke someone who's sleeping." I wasn't sure if this was in reference to a news story I wasn't aware about but I'm guessing even if it was, it went over most people's heads so either way - I'm not a fan of it.
- The character name Dong, because you know Asian names like Dong are funny and of course you have the Donger cultural reference. What other possible name could you have? And P.S. - there is no turning that one upside down because "Kimmy" is not Viet for cock and even if it was there is no parity there.
- In one episode at the high school where Kimmy is getting her GED apparently they also rent out lockers to Japanese business men - because you know - Japanese men are small and don't mind living in high school lockers
- At one point in the GED high school scenes Dong talks about the aggression of the Americans from the Viet/American War and Kimmy has to say to him "look around where you" (because I guess some of the other classmates were vets). Vietnamese immigrant = love for communism!
- Quote from Kimmy: "Is everything upside down in China?"
- Did I mention all the Dong name jokes? EP 8 has 'em good!
- Love the pan flute music for Dong scenes. It's almost as irritating as the general chinky gong/music people play. It's Asian but it's not!
- Quote from Lillian describing Dong as he's dressed up: "I guess VC stands for Very Sheik". Yes - please. Let's call more Viet characters VC.
- Even though the show tries to turn Asian fetish upside down with one scene from Lillian - its still borderline because we're still objects.
- Random Indian food joke - because that NEVER gets old!
- Of course the Chinese restaurant gets raided where Dong works and they have to shut down because you know - ALL the people working there are illegal!
- There's an Asian American adopted sister as one of Xanthippe's (Jacqueline Voorhees's stepdaughter) friends. But of course - she's sleeping with her brother! More oversexed Asian American female characters!
- Dong marries some old as hell lady so he can stay in this country - because who in the world ever thought that maybe his character could be sponsored by another family or friends already over here or someone else? Hell no - we're liers and cheats!
What's funny to me is how some statements are made for feminism, Native Americans, mascot names, and being black and gay - but for us Asian Americans - there's nothing.
While some people want to applaud Tina Fey for giving us an Asian American face, in effect it's the same old caricatures we've seen before except wrapped up in a POV of a hipster White world where we're supposed to believe that it's somehow better and different.
But it's not.
*Note that some quotes are paraphrased/close to verbatim but not always word for word.
An interesting and quick read from the Canadian Tyee as sometimes I forget that my neighbors to the north have had some issues as well:
I was very much alive in 1942 when Japanese-Canadians were expelled from the British Columbia coast, without charge or trial; and interned, with their property seized and sold for peanuts. (I pause here to admit, as I did here a few weeks ago, that my father "bought" a factory from the "trustee" for the Japanese at 10 cents on the dollar, and with this "loot" I was educated and raised. No doubt my conscience bothers me, but in the words of Jiminy Cricket in Pinocchio, "always let your conscience be your guide.").
From the AOL article
The way we have to measure progress here is not, is there ever going to be an incident of racism in the country. It's how does the majority of our country respond?" he said. "And on that front, there's no doubt that the overwhelming number of students at the University of Oklahoma, and around the country, think that kind of behavior is deplorable and don't accept it.
Doesn't surprise me but I am glad that they got rooted out:
A five-month internal investigation led to three of them being fired, and one of them resigning, according to NBC Miami. The officers reportedly sent a trailer-style video amongst themselves containing a Ku Klux Klan hood, attacks against minorities, derogatory images of President Obama and racist comments about Hispanics and homosexuals. "I had a wet dream that you two found those n-----s in the VW and gave them the death penalty right there on the spot," one of the texts reads. Many of their extremely hostile and racially charged conversations can be read at the Sun Sentinel.Too much time to take everyone down.
Pic from the Red Bull Crashed Ice World Championships in St. Paul
When people think of the Midwest it's easy to think of percentages and especially in MN thinking Trang Blanco Trang.
And in some ways that is true overall. As a state it's around 80%.
But in The Cities - it's more diverse.
And in St. Paul - 15% of the population is Asian American.
Consider that your factoid for the day if you didn't already have that one under your belt.
Stat a PDF or hit some quick facts to find out more.
Especially like the flow at 2:20.
Hmmm...it's not really an invention per se and it's not like anyone hasn't done that before...and yes, I know, it's not supposed to be taken seriously...
But you know...
I still give points for the effort.
Music and Lyrics by Joseph Vincent
Mixed and engineered by Travis Atreo
Cook County You Just Got Yourself A Shiny New Asian American Advisory Council. Now What Are You Going To Do With It?Sunday, March 22, 2015
From the article:
In a news release Wednesday, Preckwinkle says she named eight people to the new Asian-American Advisory Council. The volunteer group held its first meeting Tuesday. Asian-Americans make up 6 percent of the county's population. But council members say Asians have been underrepresented in county and state government. The group also is hoping to increase Asian-American's participation in government contracting.
A little reading if you are so inclined, and really, who wouldn't be.
What else do you have planned?
Is There Anything 'Insurgent' Star Daniel Dae Kim Can't Do?
The life of a television or movie star seems charmed to most; the glamour of red-carpet events, the glare of cameras demanding your attention, the glossy photos depicting the story of your life. But Daniel Dae Kim - star of the iconic series "Lost," the primetime hit "Hawaii 5-0," and "Insurgent," the latest blockbuster in the "Divergent" series - is quick to lay bare the reality of his personal experience.
Foundation For Asian American Independent Media Gets Some Funds
Definitely glad to see that the FAAIM film fest has gotten some funds, and there's still a few days left to add to the total.
The Foundation for Asian American Independent Media (FAAIM) is an organization that celebrates emerging Asian American creative talent. We do this by hosting the annual Asian American Showcase in Chicago, and supporting artists in building a grassroots audience for their work [...] Even today there is a lack of Asian American visibility in media and the arts. What we see all too often in mainstream media are superficial depictions and outdated stereotypes of Asian Americans. At the same time, Asian American artists often struggle to access the necessary resources to produce their work and share it with a broad audience. This uneven playing field isn’t just a disservice to a culture – it prevents a fuller expression of the American story.
Why some critics think Japan’s Miss Universe contestant isn’t Japanese enough
Miyamoto made a point of preemptively, if politely, defending herself during her first meeting with the Japanese media after she was crowned Miss Universe Japan last week. The biracial beauty queen — the daughter of a Japanese woman and an African American man — said she may not “look Japanese” on the outside, but on the inside, her soul is replete with Japaneseness, according to the blog Kotaku.
An Open Letter + #TBT: Before I Had The Flu And I Watched Black-ish With That "Chink In The Marital Armor" CommentThursday, March 19, 2015
Dear Me Before I Had The Flu,
Sure in some ways I know - it's strange to get the flu now - and it was bad...I mean I can't believe I'm even walking...
But I pulled through it and I'm glad for us as we're feeling a little better now.
Sure maybe not as good as pre-flu, but it takes time...
Good enough to catch up on some Black-ish though (s1 ep16)
Are you kidding me?
"Chink in the marital armor?"
Why do shows always have to fuck it up?
I thought they were supposed to be above this?
Taking on new racial conversations, new dialogues...errr...
If you don't know you can't use that phrase anymore I can't really help you because you truly have no clue - and if you decide to bust one out on the etymology and use of the word and how it was accepted, etc., etc., etc., blah blah blah, xenophobic you could care less about implications and connotations - well - I just may be inclined to bust a boot up someone's clenched little derrière (in spirit only of course)...
Well...that's it for now.
Hope I'm feeling as good as you soon,
You may have seen this. You may have not. Sure. V-day is over, but when do you stop professing your love?
Spin it DJ.