Friday, November 30, 2007

Everything is Art

To close out what has become Ajumma's Sports Edition, I'd like to note that all objects in this world can be transformed into art. Over the decades, skateboards have become mobile pieces of art that represent the personalities and passions of their riders.

Jeremy Klein is a big fan of Anime and has been skating on interesting boards for years:

Here are some oldies, but goodies designed for skater Steve Caballero:

A deck without graphics is still a deck. But it's wrong for kids to shell out big $$$ for skateboards with a pro's name and crappy graphics. Some skate companies aren't even trying anymore. They're leaching off of impressionable youngsters with an inferior product. Plan B seems to the most guilty of this crime.

Boys, you need a new designer. I can be in California in 3 hours.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Men, Never Complain About Your Bad Hair Days.

Just be thankful you're not Kelly Slater! Am I shallow? Am I vain? Yes and yes! So I can totally understand how agonizing it must be for Kelly to lose his gorgeous thick brown locks and become a regular old bald surfer. (He's never been known for his sparkling personality...mostly for his looks and the fact he can ride a chunk of fiberglass pretty well.) Kelly used to be so hot that it would burn people's eyes if they gazed at him.

Now he looks like someones semi-hot, bald uncle that you wish you knew when he was in high school.

You're thinking that it could be worse for Kelly. He could be a newborn calf ripped from his mother, forced to stand for days in a decrepit pen so small that he cannot even turn around, only to be slaughtered as veal. Or he could lie helpless on a cot in Vietnam suffering from the crippling birth defects of Agent Orange. Yes to all these things. At least the bastard can still surf!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Shia Needs to Quit Smoking!

Shia needs to lay off the cigs. Smoking is gross. It causes leathery skin and wrinkles. It can stunt ones growth. And smokers reak! Here's some incentive for Shia and others to quit the habit:

20 minutes after quitting smoking-Blood pressure and pulse rates drop to normal, and temperature to hands and feet return to normal

8 hours after quitting-Carbon monoxide level in blood drops to normal and oxygen level increases

2 weeks to 2 months after quitting-Circulation improves and lung function increases up to 30%

1-9 months-Cilia regain normal function in the lungs, increasing the ability to handle mucus, clean the lungs and reduce infection

1 year- The chance of having a heart attack is cut in half

10 years-Lung cancer death rate is about half of that of a continuing smoker.

And researchers have found that cats who live with smokers have shorter life spans than cats who live with non-smokers. Quit for your cat if for no one else, Shia! You look more handsome without the cig in your mouth, anyway.

Smoking stats courtesy of Blue Cross & Blue Shield

My First Thanksgiving in America

Originally published by New America Media, Commentary by Andrew Lam, Nov 15, 2007

A week before Thanksgiving 32 years ago, my father showed up on our crowded apartment's doorsteps in the Mission District in San Francisco. He was in his civilian clothes, and had a small traveling bag in which he kept his South Vietnamese army uniform, practically all that he'd brought from Vietnam. He was haggard and thin, someone I barely recognized, but he was alive. My mother, grandmother, sister and I had arrived at that same apartment only a few months before him, fresh from the Camp Pendleton refugee camp, having fled Vietnam two days before the war ended. We joined my oldest brother, a foreign student, and my mother's sister and her children. My aunt, who was not a refugee, had been married to a career diplomat who had divorced her. With us showing up, there were 11 in that apartment.

My first few months in America I suffered a recurrent nightmare. In dreams, I would be left behind in Saigon. Except for myself, the house is empty. I frantically search for my father when, suddenly, a few Vietcong enter through the metal gate. I scream and run upstairs. They give chase and one catches my ankle and again I scream -- and wake in cold sweat and tears as I stare out onto that dimly lit parking lot with the fog drifting, feeling confused and lost. My mother, who looked careworn, whose eyes were hollowed, didn't say it to us but it was easy to read her mind. There had been no word of father or his whereabouts. Father, a South Vietnamese military official, who opted to stay behind, out of his penchant to be patriotic and loyalty to his men, would fight on regardless of the outcome. I had heard her whisper these words to my aunt -- "Tu thu": defending to the death. Some nights I went to sleep, weeping; "tu thu, tu thu," I'd hear the words echoing ominously in my head.

In Vietnam, father was the center of our universe, and his absence left a horrible void. Across the street was the parking lot of the supermarket. My cot was by the dining room windows: I went to sleep every night watching the fog drift by, watching the soda pop machines glow in their eerie and seductive lights, listening to the wind, and fearing sleep. But then one afternoon the phone rang at the restaurant downstairs. Mother picked up the phone. On the other end was father's voice. She gasped. She cried. She was speechless. Then she laughed. When she hung up, she and my aunt hugged each other and cried. I watched from the counter, feeling both fear and elation. Father had survived and he would soon join us.

In school, a few weeks before father showed up, I'd learned the word Thanksgiving. "Ssshthanks give in," I repeated after my teacher, but the word tumbled and hissed, turning my mouth into a wind tunnel. A funny word, "Ssshthanks give in," hard on my Vietnamese tongue, tough on my refugee's ears. But Mr. K., my seventh grade English teacher, was full of encouragement. "Very good. Repeat after me. Thanksgiving."As I helped him tape students' drawings of turkeys and pilgrims and Indians on the classroom windows, Mr. K. patiently explained to me the origins of the holiday. You know the story: Newcomers to America struggling, surviving and finally thriving in the New World, thanks to the kindness of the natives. I could barely speak a complete sentence in English, having spent less than three months in America, but Mr. K.'s story wasn't all that difficult to grasp. But before my father showed up, I had no reason to be thankful. But that thanksgiving, my first in America, I did.

After Father, another aunt and her children showed up, the apartment was now filled pass its limit. There were 17 people in all. That Thanksgiving we ate on the floor, with newspapers spread out as our table. We wore clothes and ate turkeys donated by a religious charity. We talked and laughed and told stories of our escape to one another. There will be heartbreaks, of course, disappointments, and disillusions. There will be trips to Disneyland, to Europe. There will be marriages, divorces and births and deaths and family quarrels. Our thanksgivings these days are elaborate, celebrated in grand suburban homes with expensive cars parked in front and replete with wines and champagne. But the Thanksgiving I remember with the greatest fondness is the first one, when my father was returned to me, and we ate on the floor and wore oversized donated clothes, and I was just learning to pronounce the word.

Kal Penn in The Namesake

"The Namesake," the movie adaption of Jhumpa Lahiri's novel, is now out on DVD! The story follows an Indian couple as they marry and start their lives in America. It then transitions to the life of their son, Gogol Ganguli, as he grows up during the 80s. Kal Penn stars as Gogol. The book was a terrific read, so I hope the movie lives up to its namesake.

3:10 to Yuma: Time Waits for One Man

This poster for the remake of "3:10 to Yuma" blows my mind, it's so cool! Click here to see a larger view.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

If designing clothes doesn't work out...

Christian can always join a Korean hip hop group. Here a member of Epik High tries out the same 'do as Project Runway's designer, Christian. If you're not familiar with Christian, his dress design for Sarah Jessica Farter's new clothing line was panned by judges for being too 80s. The judges went on to say it was too short and form fitting for the everyday woman. Please! Name me one designer who creates clothes for the everyday woman and I'll name a successful model who's a size 8.

Say it together, "Toilet is Life!"

Last week, the World Toilet Association (sign me up for that club) held it's conference in Seoul, to promote better sanitation. Here is my advice for travelers to Asia based on my own visits to Korea, China, and Vietnam: Don't let your pant legs drag when you enter the water closets/port-o-potties/restrooms. There is no guarantee that there will be soap or toilet paper in the restrooms. I advise traveling with a small wad of toilet paper and some hand sanitizer. At least in Asia there's a lot of bowing and not much hand shaking!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

The Next Time I Get Married...

Everyone will be required to dress up as a character from Star Wars. Isn't the dude on the right taking himself A LITTLE TOO SERIOUSLY, though? Who is he supposed to be? Angry-I just killed my wife-and tried to off my twins-Anakin? No, man. You're the best man. Stop trying to steal the bride's thunder! Below would be the groom's extended family who show up in as Rebel Alliance pilots.

James Franco in Italian GQ

Some say James Franco has the smoldering good looks of legendary actors Paul Newman, James Dean, and Marlon Brando. You be the judge. Here James is modeling in the November 2007 issue of Italian GQ magazine. I'd say he's naturally hot in front of the camera without having to try so hard, like Christian Bale.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

You want gay hair? I'll give you gay hair!

This is the image that popped into my head when I read K-popped declared Kwon Sang-woo's new hairdo as "gay." This gentleman's name is Kim Jong-kook. He's a ballad singer in Korea, with super small eyes and SUUUUUPER gay hair. The man looks like an ajumma for goodness sake. I want to yell, "Hey ajumma! Give me some more kimchi and beer!" whenever I look at him.

You thought breakdancing died?

No, it just moved to Korea! Korean youth have been into breaking since the early 90s, and are now some of the most respected dancers in the world. Ajumma was surprised to find that breaking was still alive when one of her students chose the English name "Bboy." Behold, the wonders of Korean breakdancing.

Christian Bale in Terminator 4

My friend tipped me off that Christian Bale may be starring in "Terminator 4: Salvation" which is scheduled to open in 2009. Rumor is that Bale will star as John Connor who leads the resistance against the machines. (This sounds eerily like another "Reign of Fire" to me, folks!)
The last Terminator movie, "Rise of the Machines," left off with Nick Stahl starring as John Connor. John and his future wife were last seen hiding in a VIP underground bunker. John started giving the US military orders via a ham radio as the world went to hell around them. Neither director James Cameron or Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger are involved with Terminator 4 at this time.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

India's Celebrity PETA Campaign

Indian actor, Kahul Khanna, campaigns against India's exploitation of elephants. Khanna explains, “These majestic animals belong in the wild, but instead they are locked up like criminals – even though they’ve committed no crime. A more respectful way to observe these animals is through the fascinating wildlife programmes available to everyone on TV.” An elephant requires almost 200 kgs of food – and more than 150 litres of water – every day, yet many owners openly admit that they cannot afford to feed the animals this much food. Insufficient housing and care leads many elephants to severe behavioral disorders and self-mutilation, all in the name of human entertainment. Learn more about helping animals in Indian zoos now.

"Gay Boy" Hair?

K-Popped website recently referred to Kwon Sang-woo's new hairstyle as a"gay boy" look. Sometimes I wonder whether Korea exists on an independent plane apart from the rest of the world. If this style looks gay, how does that explain the rest of the popular male hairstyles in Korea, at which no one bats an eye?

Kwon Sang-woo's old hair:

And this doesn't look gay to you?!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Ellen Tortures The Rock

You know he's thinking, 'Remind me to kill Ellen.' He should have told her producers he's afraid of Brazilian beauty queens, or something like that!

Ugh, the spider link has been removed but you can still watch it here.  Photo via Popsessive

Shia Surfaces After Arrest

There's no break like a banana and cigarette break! Shia's been lying low since getting hauled out of a Chicago Walgreens by the fuzz, earlier this month. Here he is on a break while filming his new movie, "Eagle Eye" in Long Beach, California. "Eagle Eye" follows the story of a man who finds that he and his deceased twin brother have been framed as terrorists. Rosario Dawson also stars.

Lourdes Rocks the Unibrow

Madonna and her daughter, Lourdes, visit nail salons for pedicures and manicures all time. You know know those employees are dying to slap a some wax between Lourdes' eyes and pull it like starting a lawnmower. But for now, young Lourdes takes her place in the League of Unibrows, among members, Frida Kahlo and Bert, from Sesame Street.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

"Does this coat make me look more talented?"

Sarah Jessica Parker, have you no shame? I'm surprised you're not a friend to animals since you have that big horsey face and all. BTW, Zhang Ziyi already wore this monstronsity about a month ago. So much for cutting edge fashion.

Goldie, you are a washed up old B-lister, who never quite gave up the chronic. Sadly, it doesn't surprise me to see you rolling in an ugly fur coat.

Celine, I know you're an idiot since you married your 100 year old svengali manager. Shame, shame all the same.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Am I just getting old?

How does someone who once epitomized cool transform into an uptight funny-duddy?

Matthew Broderick went from being the coolest high school student on the planet...

to the uptight and obsessive guy in movies and on stage.

And John Cryer went from playing the dashing Duck Man...

to a high strung, buttoned up dad on TV's "Two and a Half Men."