'Tis the season to give! And to share some holiday cheer and direct good karma your way, Hyphen's Food & Agriculture Editor Nina Fallenbaum Ichikawa writes to you, dear Hyphen readers, about how you can help keep Asian America's only print and online mag going strong. Thank you for your continued support -- there's no way we could do it without you!
From Sonny Le, a Hyphen advisory board member
For two million Vietnamese in America, our journey here began on April 30, 1975, the day the Vietnam War officially ended. The longest and one of the deadliest conflicts of the 20th Century ended 30 years ago this week.
Seems like every couple of months, we write about some radio DJs who say stupid racist shit on the air. This time it's two hosts on New Jersey 101.5 FM's talking about Jun Choi, who is running for mayor in Edison, NJ. Details here at Poplicks, where you'll also find a link to the transcript. (Hot 97's Miss Jones, by the way, is back on the air.)
Here's an excerpt:
Craig Carton: I'm using Jun Choi [said in fast-paced, high-pitched, squeaky voice] as an example of a larger problem.
Ray Rossi: and you know...
Carton: We're forgetting the fact that we’re Americans.
Rossi: You know that he’s going to get the... whatever that vote is
Carton: And here's the bottom line... no specific minority group or foreign group should ever ever dictate the outcome of an American election. I don't care if the Chinese population in Edison has quadrupled in the last year, Chinese should never dictate the outcome of an election, Americans should.
Guest post by Alex Nishikawa
Over the past few years there have been quite a few 'revisited' movies that somehow make their way into US theatres. Movies that originated elsewhere. Some are 'reinterpretations,' or '(heavily)inspired by,' while others are outright cut and pasted facsimiles of the originals (though they star actors who are a bit more "American" in deference to the American audiences). Some rather obvious examples are Amenábar's "Abre Los Ojos" (AKA "Vanilla Sky"), Shimuzu's "Ju On" (AKA "The Grudge") and Nakata's "Ringu" (AKA "The Ring").
Recently I heard rumors that "Holy"wood is planning to remake the Wai Keung Lau/Siu Fai Mak HK film "Infernal Affairs,"(Wu Jian Dao) with a star-studded cast directed by Martin Scorsese. The cast includes Leo "The Titanic Aviator" DiCaprio, Marky "Mark" Wahlberg, and Matt "One-hit Wonder" Damon, in addition to others. The original film has garnered critical acclaim for it's direction, storyline, production, and acting. I've seen the original and it is, in my opinion, worthy of much of the kudos it's been given. I wonder why a re-interpretation is necessary?
Some have said that the remake craze merely pays homage to the original directors/actors/producers. Others have said that they hope to spark interest in global cinema by doing such a thing (somewhat of a similar line of reasoning Sean Combs utilized in his blatant use of old R&B/Soul tracks in their entirety) in other words, getting people to start crate digging for movies. Still others say they hope to give access to ideas that may not be otherwise seen by the average mainstream moviegoer.
Perhaps recycling has so permeated our popular culture that it has even affected our movies and music? And this is not to say film producers outside the United States haven't and still don't bite US movies for concepts. It is, to all intents and purposes, a two-way street. What do y'all out there think about this phenomenon? I'm torn, sort of like Natalie Imbruglia.
When we say that Hyphen is a grassroots, by-the-seat-of-our-pants organization, we're not exaggerating. We do EVERYTHING ourselves. Not because we're particularly industrious, but because it saves money. Subscriptions, bookstore sales and advertising doesn't pay all the bills. Not even close. Our writers, editors, designers, illustrators and photographers generously donate their talent. We would like to pay these amazing people. But for now, we've got to pinch every penny twice. If you’ve ever donated to us, you can be assured we’re not spending your money recklessly. In fact, we've done some pretty ghetto things to stretch our dollars to the max (doing our part to keep that stereotype of stingy Asians intact).
With the scandal-ridden resignation of city Assessor Mabel Teng, Supervisor Fiona Ma will be the only Asian American to hold elected office at City Hall in San Francisco, one of the most Asian American of American cities.
Whoo-hoo! Issue 6 was just delivered today at 3 PM. Thanks to erin for holing up in her apartment all day, waiting for them to arrive. And thanks to Willie, the UPS guy, for helping us lug them up all those flights of stairs.
Subscribers, your copies will be in the mail Monday.
One fun thing about working at a magazine is that you get a lot of mail. Checking the mail has always been one of my favorite things to do every day. But unlike your mailbox at home, where you find a lot of bills, our PO Box always has something unexpected. The best are subscriptions from readers, an affirmation of our work. We love the scribbled notes. And your checks of course. But we really get excited about folks subscribing from a ways. No disrespect to our local readers in the Bay, but when mail comes in from Wisconsin or Maryland, our imaginations start to run wild. Who are you? How did you hear about us? What are you like?
From our Director of Photography, Seng Chen:
I'm a procrastinator. If there's a way to avoid something until the last second, I'll do it. The more important it is, the longer I'll put it off. On a last minute assignment, I'll procrastinate to protest of the lack of preparation of my taskmaster. Don't they know how long these things take? Once you factor in an appropriate amount of time for reading catalogs and watching TV instead of doing work?
But there are some things that have deadlines, real ones. The assignment might go away and you might be none the worse for it- because no one really, really expected it do get done - but you know you should have and could have done them anyway. Because they aren't about getting around your responsibility, they have an affect on other people's lives.
Eddy Zheng is in danger of being deported to China. Why should you care?
So I just got in from my doctor's appointment today. I'm totally healthy. In spite of that, I'll be taking 9 months of antibiotics, using steroid cream, (prescribed!) and getting a series of three shots. And wouldn't you know it, all of the above conditions are related to my Asian-ness.
Warning: this blog contains waaay too much information about my health. proceed at your own risk.
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