Director Justin Lin on Asian American Filmmaking

Check out this article by Justin Lin, arguably one of the better known Taiwanese American filmmakers who started out on the independent track with films such as Shopping For Fangs, Better Luck Tomorrow, Finishing the Game, and more recently has broken through the Hollywood glass ceiling to work on industry films such as Annapolis, The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift and Fast & Furious. Read his article: Am I 'retarded' for making Asian American films? In it, he discusses the making of…

Amateur

I am standing in a circle, being taught simple Portuguese lyrics. I only need to repeat the words - not necessarily grasp the language. As the words slip around inside my mouth and through my mind, I realize they are, well, slippery. It was quite an epiphany that’s hard to explain. I start to visualize my brain filling up with this and that. Language-wise, I came up with this. I am an amateur of languages. A lover of languages. A dilettante perhaps. It is almost an addiction in which I cannot…

The Cost of Public Outings

Today is Free Slurpee Day at 7-11. I like free things, I like Slurpees, therefore my sister (who has the same sentiments) and I went to the nearest 7-11: small, far from spotless, and located on a large boulevard calm on a Saturday night. The few people that were in there before us trickled out and we were left sampling the new Liquid Artillery flavor in peace. Mixing the strawberry-pineapple-lime deliciousness with Blue Raspberry and Wild Cherry creates a scrumptious blend with a tang, a bite, a…

ITASA West Coast and Midwest Conferences 2009

The following is a blog by Serena Wu reflecting on her experiences and thoughts after recently attending the Intercollegiate Taiwanese American Students Association conferences at the University of Southern California and at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. HoChie Tsai, creator of this website, teamed up with Serena Wu, who is one of the co-founders of mymomisafob.com, to present a workshop addressing generation gap and family dynamics issues. This piece is reprinted with permission…

A Papaya Story

When my dad was in the military, he served near a mountain covered with farms. There, people planted a lot of mangoes and papayas. But some of the papaya was wild and grew on their own, free. One day, a man from Taipei looked around and saw a big, red, pretty papaya. It was beautiful and delicious looking. He climbed up the wild tree and fell down because there was a bee nest in the tree. He cried and cried, and was sent to the emergency room. He ended up with a fever for a couple of days and…

Choosing Your Own Battles

It's easy for those who are conscious of their Taiwanese-American ethnicity, culture, and history to say that they would like to empower their people, but it's not easy to do it. I'm a senior in high school now and I've gone M.I.A. on you guys for a while. I live in a small town where I don't experience much culture outside of where I live, nor do I feel the life experiences regarding my heritage that I used to feel in a bigger city. That all changed very quickly. My school has an annual…

Obsession with Taiwanese Oyster Omelettes

The oyster omelette, more commonly known amongst us Taiwanese as 蚵仔煎 pronounced "oh-ah-tzen," has always been my favorite snack. My boyfriend, who is Japanese and Korean never had the honors of trying this luscious treat, full of crisp bok-choi and yummy oysters embedded in a chewy omelette. The best part is the red sauce smeared on top, the finishing touch, and also the most difficult part to master for aspiring chefs. We went to a cramped restaurant in Chinatown called Taiwan Cafe to try…