Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The best of Horacio

Ajumma thinks about football once every four years and that's during the World Cup. The World Cup is as exciting as the Olympics, but without Michael Phelps. Last week I mentioned to my cousin that I hope to attend the World Cup in South Africa in 2010. Brad, who has been living in Africa for the past six years, told me the hotels are almost sold out so I better get my ass in gear. Well, I just learned that my favorite referee, Horacio Elizondo, is now retired. This makes not being at the 2010 games easier to stomach. Here are my favorite Horacio moments from 2006:

"There will be no balls stomping on my field."

"There will be no headbutting on my field."

Easy grip design?

These dog chews stopped me dead in my tracks at the grocery store. I wonder how they got past the marketing execs. Surely some sort of redesign is in order.

* Delightful matchbox design *

I am in love with the matchboxes by the husband and wife team of Driscoll Design. Their whimsical designs feature cute graphics on four sides and are sparkle with hand-applied glitter. The fun doesn't stop with the boxes, though. The sturdy matchsticks come with black, red, pink and blue tips. I found mine at Digs in Northfield, Minnesota.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Adam Beach takes aim at dinosaurs

Last April, NBC reported that Adam Beach would not be returning as a detective on Law and Order. Since that time Beach has said he'll be starring as Turok, a Native American dinosaur hunter. Beach says, “He’s the first Native American superhero that I ever looked up to,” he said. “He basically [comes from] a family where they’re protecting our universe from an alternate universe that wants to take it over. He uses his wits, and his might, and his special bow and arrow to take over the world.”

Does this mean Adam Beach is growing his hair long, again?

Monday, December 29, 2008

Miso happy

This is how you can tell we've been to California.

You're going to need shades

Thank goodness for the recent rain in Southern California. Besides making the landscape greener, it pushed out the smog for a few days, made the mountains visible, and left buildings shiny. Yesterday Los Angeles warmed up to a perfect 66 degrees.

Looking up Grand from the Walt Disney Concert Hall in downtown

City Hall

A lovely outdoor garden at the Disney Concert Hall

"Peace on Earth" by Jacques Lipchitz at the nearby Dorothy Chandler Pavilion

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Today in LA

There's quite a bit of creative Obama street art around Los Angeles. There are many smokers, too. More young people are smoking in LA than I remember from when we lived here.

I've called in two dead dogs to animal control during my vacation. One morning a brown pit bull was lying in a gutter on Whittier Blvd. What a shame. The next day I saw a dead black and white border collie on the inside lane of a busy highway overpass. A dog wouldn't find its way up there, a human dumped the poor thing. California can seem wonderful, but these are reminders of the trashy side of life there.

Make cupcakes, not t-shirts

We parked outside Johnny Cupcakes on Melrose, yesterday. Ajumma was super psyched to order a cupcake or two, and then I discovered that Johnny Cupcakes is a streetwear company with a pop-punk bakery theme.

Ho, ho, ho, here's your burger

Rick's Drive In & Out in Whittier, CA does it up big for Christmas. Santa, his sleigh, and reindeer sit on one end of the display and Jesus in his manger sits on the other.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Hello from Little Tokyo!

See if you can find the old man putting someone in a headlock.

I finally tried Pinkberry today. The fruit is awesome, but their original yogurt tastes tart. Pinkberry's staff is sure friendly, though. They must be instructed to greet customers like we are their biggest crushes.

When Ajumma and hubby stopped at the Japanese American National Museum to see the Dreams to Dream exhibit we were told we were the second Asians from Minnesota to visit today.

Obama Mania

Buttons sold in Little Tokyo, Los Angeles

The problem is you

Here's a sketch I drew of me angrily knocking on an airplane restroom door. About 15 passengers were waiting for the two stalls on our flight to California. Only one of the lines for the restroom was moving. The door to one stall didn't budge after 10 minutes. When my husband first knocked there was no answer. I got up there and knocked so loudly I'm pretty sure the people in first class could hear me. It turns out there was some dude in there. When he finally he hauled his ass out the door I was in the other restroom. I could hear him chewing out my husband and the other passengers, though. Apparently he was saying stuff like it didn't matter how long he took because the restrooms are first come, first served. I am fairly certain that if I had been there when he came out of the restroom, air marshalls would have been waiting for one of us when our flight landed.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Asian American cops needed in SoCal

Although Census Bureau's statistics show that the Asian American population grows the fastest of all ethnic communities in Southern California, Asians have nowhere near enough policemen from their own community, to serve them. The China Press reports that, according to Census numbers, in the cities of Walnut and Diamond Bar, where Asian Americans comprise more than half the population, and most Asians are Chinese, there are only two policemen able to speak Chinese. This makes it difficult for new immigrants without English to communicate with the police. Joaquin Lim, mayor of Walnut City, and from the Chinese community, said that for his community, being a cop is seen as a dangerous, not very good job. And that's a tough notion to change quickly. Police officer Alan Liu said that in Asia, police work is often associated with corruption and violence. When he joined the force nine years ago, his parents were totally against it, but now they no longer think it's a bad occupation.

The Walnut police department is trying to get its percentage of Asian deputies on par with the county's overall population, Nguyen said, but another challenge is many Asians prefer not to be in situations where they have to be aggressive.

"A lot of them have a problem with that," he said. "When I went through (the academy) I wasn't used to it either. We're more reserved people."

But it is imperative to have enough Asian law enforcement officers on patrol, Liu said, because it can be easier for immigrants to trust police when there is an Asian officer or deputy present.

"When I show up, they start opening up when normally they would be afraid to say something," he said. "It's just easier on everybody."

Originally published in China Press and Whittier Daily News, 12/16/08
LAPD recruitment flyer from KoreAm magazine

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Cuddle up with a microbe

How is it that herpes is the cutest one?

Happy boba tee

The weather has turned sub-zero so I haven't been drinking boba lately. But here's a cute tee by Aimeekitty featuring the happiest pearls this side of the Mississippi.

This is why you don't mess with Koreans

In true Korean high drama, the ruling Grand National Party and opposing Democratic Party clashed inside the National Assembly today. The DP broke down locked doors with a sledgehammer and electric saw only to find furniture blocking their way into a meeting where the GNP was trying to ratify a free trade agreement with the United States. Proponents of the trade agreement, the United States' largest since NAFTA, feel it would benefit both economies. Opponents argue it would damage Korea's farming industry and America's auto industry. Scuffles broke out as the two parties used fire extinguishers and hoses to fight off one another. For more photos of the insanity see the Los Angeles Times.

Aja aja, Shinseki!

"I can think of no higher responsibility than ensuring that the men and women that who have served out nation in uniform are treated with the care and respect that they have earned."

-Shinseki accepting his nomination as Secretary of Veterans Affairs

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Scottie sighting!

Best Secret Santa ever

Ajumma has a history of getting the worst Secret Santa at workplace gift exchanges. This year my luck has changed having received a delicious cupcake decorated like a poinsettia.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

I used to have this hairstyle

Korean pop group Wonder Girls wear their hair in bobs while promoting their new cosmetic line.

X-Men Origins: Wolverine

Finally, we catch some glimpses of Daniel Henney as Agent Zero in the new Wolverine movie.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Ajumma approves: Momiji dolls

I poo poo'ed Momiji dolls when I first heard about them. Who needs dolls cluttering their home or workplace, right? After seeing Momiji dolls in a boutique in my town, today, I take it all back. Momiji are vibrant, solid and feature modern graphics. And the little wooden figures, most of whom are Asian, have a variety of faces. Momiji also sells dolls, mugs and greeting cards on their fun website.

Princess Leia week @ Art Jumble

Art Jumble hosted a Princess Leia theme last week. Artists submitted some very humourous renderings and, not surprisingly, many illustrations of slave Leia. Here's a drawing by artist Joy that reads, "After the rebel alliance disbanded, there was no more need for 'resistance.'"

"I'm Yours"

There are many covers of Jason Mraz's song "I'm Yours" on the web. This one is my favorite.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Brad Pitt in NOLA

Usually there's an old, wrinkled white person staring back at you from the cover of Architectural Digest. This month Brad Pitt graces the cover. He's helping the Make it Right organization build affordale and sustainable homes in the Lower 9th Ward of New Orleans. He can't believe how slowly the government is moving in helping those who lost their houses in Hurricane Katrina, three years ago. And I can't believe they're building right in the middle of a flood plain. Anyway, the building project combines helping others with Brad's love for architecture. See what kind of houses they're building at Make it Right.

Looks like Angelina is coming up the sidewalk for a visit.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Brusha, brusha, brusha

Aquafresh, Hong Kong style.
The second one is a good stretch for your quads.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

8 inch Boba Fett and Han Solo statue

Whenever I feel grossed out by the current Star Wars Christmas marketing I remind myself of their 1978 holiday TV musical and things don't seem as bad.

Charlie Bucket, where is he now?

Watched the fanciful 1971 film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory yesterday. It got me wondering whatever happened to young Charlie Bucket. It turns out that a grown up Charlie (whose real name is Peter Ostrum) is a large animal veterinarian specializing in cows and horses in Lowville, New York. Interest in the original Charlie Bucket resurged three years ago when Johnny Depp's remake Charlie and the Chocolate Factory was released. Ostrum intentionally keeps a low profile and rarely talks about his role in the 70's film.

There's something about Bruce

If Ajumma were a dictator on the scale of Kim Jong Il, my main operation site would be a tropical island filled with food, the arts and men who are da bomba. Bruce Campbell would definitely be one of those on the island. Mr. Campbell made appearances this weekend in Minneapolis promoting his new movie, My Name is Bruce. Many of his die hard fans braved the snow and below-freezing temperatures to see the comedy and catch Bruce at the Q&A after the show.

Friday, December 5, 2008