…that and musicals.

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Commissioned by the prestigious publication, “Exotification R US” I’m about to give you the exclusive preview on my new photo essay, an expose examining the species, annoyingnae caucasianus, more commonly known as the “white people” in their natural habitats. Normally it is considered dangerous for people of color to observe this species in their territory. In the past, such investigations have sparked events known as “white flight”, where white people migrated from urban centers to the suburbs. However, I was able to go with a small group of white people, who served as the “gatekeepers”, enabling access.

I was able to observe the white people during a special event entitled “The Oregon Country Fair”, an annual three day ritualistic celebration, where white people from all over the region, and sometimes even further, come and partake ancient cultural practices and eat traditional foods, such as tofurkey.

This is what I’m told the locals call “a drum circle”. Drum circles are widely, widely loved by the white people. People haphazardly assemble with drums and attempt to create a rhythm (often unsuccessfully). Most of the drummers do not pay much heed to the other drummers, as it is often done with musicians, and instead opt to just bang it however the hell they please. Other people then begin to flop around, jump, and gyrate in strange motions that range from jerky to fluid. These movements are not necessarily confined to the bounds of rhythm. The proper attire, as this photo hints at, are Khaki shorts, Chacos, hair done in dreadlocks, and if you’re a male of the species, then a lack of a shirt is required.

Donned in a red conical cap, and wearing woolen boots in the middle the summer demonstrates this man as the leader of the drum circle.

Here, we are fortunate to be able to capture a shot of the elusive mating rituals of the white people. Here, a white male demonstrates his virility in front of a group of females. As what is popular with those of his sex, this white man is not wearing a shirt. Clad in only a loin cloth, the white male is performing “the cracka dance”, where he gyrates and moves his hips while being enveloped by a plastic hoop. The hoop represents the fertility of the woman, which the man hopes will envelop him someday, and will eventually lead to the birth of many little crackas (what white people affectionately call each other).

In white communities, robes like these signify positions of power and leadership. In this startling ceremony, white people perform a ritual spiritually cleansing children before they are sacrificed to the god of the whites…

…the One-Eyed Blue Booby of Imperialism

The final ceremony of the three day festival is the “March of the Whiteys” where the white people cover themselves in white powder, exaggerating their whiteness to ward off predators. Wouldn’t all that whiteness scare you too?

I hoped you enjoyed this rare glimpse into the world of the white folk. Peace, love and understanding!

Another good day

July 10, 2007

Why today was awesome:

-hung out with wonderful friends, many whom didn’t know each other but ended up getting along well.

-laughed alot

-a foodtastic day: thai food for lunch (Thailand Restaurant), decadent chocolate cake (Tartine), indian food for dinner (Pakwan), followed by honey lavendar ice cream (Bi-Rite)…….the last two days have been ridiculous food paradise!

-bought the fantastic game of “Pass the Pigs”, which I later played at a 24 hour cafe.

-Saw Charlie Chaplin’s “City Lights” on the big screen at Castro Theater, one of the most beautiful movie theaters I have ever been in.

-Will be in Portland soon.

Now I will go to bed, maybe I will dream that I am a romantic lead in an Asian drama.

Yay friends, yay for warm fuzzy feelings

Irrationally disliking someone is pretty fun. Grudges are pretty enjoyable too. Oh and I like judging people. These are all amusing activities, as long as you’re not too serious about it.

Mmmmm…..today’s dinner:

+

=

Yummy in my tummy

(I relied on artistic renditions of lobster and clams, since I forgot to do the Vivian-inspired activity of taking photos of the tasty foods I eat)

I can’t believe…

July 7, 2007

How much America’s Next Top Model I watched today. Cycle 7. A lot of women are bitches. Judging is based on storyline and not ability. Is my brain dying? Here’s my favorite photo from the season:

Today is also 7/7/07, which is why I must post. Cycle 7 on 7/7/07? Coincidence I think not.

777 means that today there’s the massive concert event Live Earth, that features simultaneous concerts on many continents, rallying for awareness for climate change. I read that the frontman for Muse said about the event “Private jets for climate change, not sure about it that seems to be a bit on edge really– that’s an issue really, so we need to think about it”, with others folks calling it nothing more than “feel-good environmentalism”. I also learned the term greenwashing today….and Bob Geldof is now mad at Al Gore being a biter.

Now that’s a lie. I don’t work at all. As a result, there’s no real distinction between weekdays and weekends for me except that more things close earlier on certain days, and employed friends have less free time on other days. Despite this, I’m still going to give the lowdown on my weekend.

On Sunday was the dam gio for my maternal grandparents. Dam gio is the celebration of a loved one’s death anniversary, and it involves a lot of family gathering together and eating copious amounts of food. My grandmother’s and grandfather’s deaths are a few days a part so we celebrated them together. I had two cousins, an aunt and two uncles over (others couldn’t come because they were sick). Ate lots of food, watched many things, bonded with my cousins.

My aunt taught me a drinking song. Here are the lyrics as best I can write them (since i can’t really do accents on this keyboard)

Lau, lau, lau
Moi co nhau mot ngay
Nhau mot ngay ta uong cho say
Do do do!

Nhau is this word that means when you’re drinking, eating and talking. A word that doesn’t have an equivalent really in English. It’s like when you go out with friends, eat during a long course of time, and drink lots of beer along the way. The gist of the song is “It’s been a long time since I nhau-ed to get drunk. Cheers!”. In Vietnamese, the equivalent of cheers is “do” (pronounced like “yo”). It literally means in or enter (like you’d use the word “do” when saying I’m going in the house), so the drink enters the body. Usually you say “1-2-3- Do!!” or if you’re particularly drunk and merry (like at a wedding) “1-2-3 Do 2-3 Do 2-3 Do!!!”.

I think it’s funny that my aunt taught me that, or more that in my family anything that has to do with nhau and do, everyone goes to me. After I came back from Vietnam, I used to say Do all the time. To them it was kind of weird cuz it’s usually what drunk men say, but hey it means I’m becoming more Vietnamese! Also, I kept on talking about nhau and asking questions about it (like do you have to go to certain kind of places to nhau, or just anywhere with food and booze? the answer is the latter). So now in my family I’m associated with nhau and do, aka vietnamese drinking culture. It’s okay, because I’m still the Americanized little girl who gets good grades, so my relatives think it’s more funny and odd than a sign of me being a sketchy drunkard or anything like that.

I saw a freakish amount of films in a short amount of time. Usually when my relatives get together the adults get drunk and sing Karaoke, and the offspring hide upstairs watching TV, eventually leaving the house to watch a movie on the parents’ dollar. At home, me and my cousin Tu who also has an affinity for Asian dramas saw this crazy Korean movie called “I’m a Cyborg but that’s ok”, which stars Rain, the Korean equivalent of Justin Timberlake. Unlike what I had anticipated, which was that it was going to be a sci-fi film about cyborgs, it’s about a romance in a psychiatric ward. There’s this woman who is convinced she’s a cyborg and refuses to eat because it’ll mess up her mechanics. Another man in the ward who thinks he has the ability to steal souls takes a liking to her, and needs to convince her to eat or she’ll starve to death.

Later me, Tu, my brother Thinh, and other cousin Ly went to see Ratatouille. It was sold out so we saw “Evan Almighty” instead. Not impressed but I love Steve Carell.

Also saw the film “Sicko”. Wow. Like all Michael Moore films, you need to take it with a grain of salt. Though it’s not a definitive account of anything, it’s a good way to start thinking about how healthcare functions, its problems, possible solutions, etc. Watch it! Then tell me and we can talk about it! I feel like I should rant about it, and talk about what I think about healthcare but I’d rather have a conversation about my reactions to the film right now. Maybe I’ll blog about it more in depth in the future.

Today I saw “Once,” a very non-traditional, bare-bones musical of sorts. I read one review of the film that described it if Wong Kar-Wai’s “In the Mood for Love” was made by Belle and Sebastian, an apt description. My thoughts about the film: Amazing. Simple. Beautiful.

Oh, I also bought some sorta expensive clothes for a lot less expensive prices. Good day.