almostwitty: (monkey)

Like me, you may one day be filled with the need to access Hong Kong TV channels via the Internet, and figure that buying a TVPad 4 is the best way to go about it.

But then when you hook it up to the Internet and your TV, you’ll see … this …

tvpad4

and wonder how on earth to get it to do what you bought it for. Especially if you don’t read Chinese.

Alas, I don’t read Chinese either but have figured out (through some handy friends!) the following:

if you imagine the grid of 9 icons like a telephone keypad ie:



789
456
123

Then:
7 is Live TV from Hong Kong (featuring TVB, ATV and CCTV channels)
8 is TV from Hong Kong with a 12-hour delay
3 is playback of live TV channels, channels for 3 days
2 is Hong Kong TV, a relative newcomer to television in Hong Kong
1 is on-demand TV
4 is on-demand movies

But do explore the other icons on the other screens. There’s YouTube and some movies apps that let you watch English-language Hollywood movies.

(Thanks to the folks at Facebook’s British-born-Chinese forum for their help!)

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (monkey)

According to a YouGov survey, they’re all examples of the “widest range of sexual behaviours”, in an article for BBC News.

Wait till I tell the wife this…

Captured on 1 Dec 2014

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (monkey)

Reddit throws questions at Steven Yuen, the sole Asian actor in The Walking Dead, in the modern version of an online chat.

Of course, there’s then a huge section where posters essentially post on the theme of “Dude! How did you manage to bang a white chick ?!”.

I understand and appreciate that it’s generally harder for Western-Asian/Chinese men to find a girlfriend, partially thanks to an image problem – you can probably count the number of famous and hunky Western-Asian male actors on the fingers of one hand. But you know what the bigger problem is? The oblique tendency of some Western-Asian/Chinese men to hide in their bedrooms nurturing their alienation and sexism in lieu of developing a personality that would attract ladies in the first place.

And yes, pot, kettle, black.

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (monkey)

While the UK modern-day adaptation of Sherlock was deemed to be racist against the Chinese by some people (I haven’t seen it so am saving it for when I feel like seeing things that friends say are racist), the US modern-day adaptation of Sherlock (which moves Sherlock Holmes to modern-day New York) is set to star Lucy Liu as Watson (at least according to the Hollywood Reporter and Den Of Geek).

While it’s a great step forward in terms of Chinese representation in Western media, it’s just a shame that Watson tends to be one of the dullest (albiet dependable) roles one can play. Even Martin Freeman can’t do that much with it.

I’m also heavily amused that both publications are trumpeting it as Watson changes gender!, as opposed to Watson changes gender and race! Which either means Lucy Liu and/or US media has transcended race, or that the Chinese don’t really count in terms of race representation…

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (monkey)

after all – where’s our parade? Our banner? Our anti-British-Chinese-racism organisation which gets plenty of funding and attention?

But if you’re thinking: “What? Racism towards the British-Chinese? In the arts scene? It doesn’t exist, surely?” – allow Elizabeth Chan to correct you in her Guardian article.

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (monkey)

Over one week in November, three British-Chinese actresses are bringing you In The Mirror in Central London – telling British-Chinese stories of identity, politics, belonging (and not) and parenting. And given that I know at least two of the three performers involved (at least via blogging), I’m pretty confident that it’ll be free of the cliches that does tend to surround British-Chinese theatre.

I’d go, but I’ll be in Hong Kong, irony of ironies.

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (evil)

If you happen to have a Permanent ID card from Hong Kong, you will probably have heard about the Hong Kong Government’s plans to give HK$6000 (about £500) to those who hold such a card. Amongst all the other hurdles us international types would have to jump (having the right card at the right time), there’s at least one major caveat: to actually get the money, you either need to have a Hong Kong-based current or savings account, or collect a cheque from a nominated Hong Kong post office and cash it at a particular bank.

Fortunately, I’ve got an email from the Bank of China in London (Chinatown branch) who say:

“We have been informed that we can open the account for UK residents who hold the Hong Kong Identity Card. We are still waiting for confirmation from Hong Kong on when we can start the account process.”

So they’ll let me know when the process starts, and I can let you know if you’re interested!

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (evil)

to be an extra in a film alongside Keanu Reeves. Although it’s unlikely that you’ll actually *be* next to him, of course – unless you’re extremely lucky in the way that I ended up next to Ewan McGregor in a 1990s film shoot…

Anyway, here are the details of what’s wanted:

From: laura@castingcollective.co.uk

Hi

Can you help us find ORIENTAL MEN & WOMEN age between 16 & 90 for a major new feature film starring Keanu Reeves that will be filming in London between April & June 2011?

We are looking for lots of ORIENTAL MEN & WOMEN age between 16 & 90.

If you are of an Oriental ethnic background and already on our database, PLEASE DO NOT come to the open casting as we have already suggested you for this film.

We are hoping you can help by passing this information on to any Oriental friends/family who might like to take part and come along to the casting in the New Year. If you don’t know anyone suitable, please delete this email.

If you are ORIENTAL, not already on our database and unable to make the casting in January, please apply online instead @ http://www.castingcollective.co.uk/oriental and I can contact you with information of future castings for this film.

If you are NOT of Oriental ethnicity, please don’t come to the casting as we wont be able to see & you will be turned away.

WANTED – ORIENTAL MEN & WOMEN TO BE EXTRAS IN A MAJOR NEW FEATURE FILM
STARRING KEANU REEVES FILMING IN THE UK BETWEEN APRIL TO JULY 2011

WARRIOR PRODUCTIONS ARE LOOKING FOR ORIENTAL MEN & WOMEN AGE 16 TO 90

INTERESTED?
PLEASE COME TO OUR OPEN CASTING ANYTIME BETWEEN 10AM TO 6PM
ON SATURDAY 8 JANUARY 2011
AT
THE BOURGOGNE SUITE, HOTEL NOVOTEL LONDON WEST, 1 SHORTLANDS, HAMMERSMITH, LONDON W6 8DR

OR YOU CAN ALSO APPLY ONLINE

http://www.castingcollective.co.uk/oriental

& WE CAN EMAIL YOU ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

WE NEED LOTS OF YOUNG MEN IN PARTICULAR TO BE SOLDIERS SO ANYONE ORIENTAL WITH MARTIAL ARTS, HORSERIDING, ARCHERY, SWORD’S SKILLS ARE PARTICULARLY WELCOME. WE WILL ALSO NEED LOTS OF MEN & WOMEN ASWELL SO EVERYONE CAN APPLY.

IF YOU ARE UNABLE TO ATTEND THE CASTING OR CAN’T APPLY ONLINE, YOU CAN EMAIL laura@castingcollective.co.uk A RECENT PICTURE & ALL YOUR CONTACT DETAILS THEN WE CAN CONTACT YOU DIRECTLY WITH DETAILS OF FUTURE CASTINGS FOR THE FILM. OFFICE TELEPHONE NUMBER 020 8962 0099

PLEASE BRING YOUR PASSPORT, WORK PERMIT/VISA & NI NUMBER TO THE CASTING – WE HAVE TO PROVE YOU CAN LEGALLY WORK IN THE UK

WARRIOR PRODUCTIONS LTD
GOOD RATES OF PAY

Many thanks for your help.

Laura@CC

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (evil)

Over here in the UK, the most famous British-Chinese people on TV seem to be centered around fashion, with the likes of Alexa Chung and Gok Wan. My work colleagues kindly gave me a copy of his autobiography, and unsurprisingly there are a fair few things in common – although I plainly have no idea about fashion.

In Canada, there’s been three seasons of a reality TV show set in a Chinese restaurant, called Family Restaurant, which recently started airing in the UK too.

In America? They’re making an Asian-American version of that infamous reality TV show Jersey Shore, but set in Los Angeles’s KoreaTown instead. Given that one of the chief protagonists states on her Facebook profile that she “loves SEX and partying”, and that her email address is fookmi2000@hotmail.com, I think we can see where this is going.

There’s nothing wrong with sexy Asian/Oriental folk on our TV screens – it’d make a nice change – but it’d be nice to think there are other ways to get a show on TV…

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (evil)

So, being Chinese, I tend not to have moustache-growing capabilities. I tried once before, but it didn’t get very far.

With Movember, I thought I’d have a go again, on the pretext of raising money for prostate cancer research, a very worthy cause.

So please donate for all the sterling work I put into this, and for the vague notion that I could somehow look like this handsome chap.

Oh, and please donate some money towards prostate cancer research via Movember

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (evil)

I’ve always wanted to be a stand-up comedian. But after doing a mini-course on it and being part of a British-Chinese comedy sketch troupe, I’ve been aware that I have zero perfomance skills, and gave up on the idea, while trying in vain to groom my wife for the job.

And then I stumbled across Andrew Wong the stand-up comedian. He’s British, and at least half my age. Fortunately, he’s not a professional – but at the same time, his YouTube channel is the 19th most subscribed channel in the British comedian category.

However, I’m too far in to tell if he’s actually funny or not. Is he?

There’s also an Andrew Wong who was a ninja contestant on Australia’s Got Talent … who got mistaken for another Andrew Wong with suspected benefit fraud. Apparently.

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (evil)

For generations, we Western-Chinese people have lamented at our lack of visibility in Western media, despite being a fifth of the planet. Oh how we have longed to be treated like everyone else, to rise beyond our stereotyped kung-fu cousins going to Rondon or inscrutable fiendish Oriental mastermind who will rise above all others, possibly using our devious sexual prowess. Until now, our roles have been confined to being the token chef, token comedy chef with a cleaver, or token dude who helps the hero before being killed.

But not any more! Finally, we can tear off our shackles, unafraid to look at the TV in case Lisa Huo comes back, with Gok Wan giggling manically in the wings.*

For finally, a Chinese restaurant gets its own reality-TV docu-soap series. Ladies and gentlemen, I bring to you: The Quons.

Apparently, it’s been running for three years on Canada’s Food Network as Family Restaurant, but for its UK debut on the Good Food channel, they’re calling it The Quons instead – which seems a bit of an odd title change…

It starts Monday night at 9.30pm on the Good Food channel. Watch it.

* (Ob. disclaimer: To be fair, Gok Wan is bloody good at what he does. Too good.)

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (evil)

I am… The Token.

Well, unless another Chinese or Other person walks in. And then this happens:

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (evil)

After Morrissey called the Chinese a sub-species, quite a few people wondered why the British-Chinese weren’t getting upset or starting demonstrations against his words.

Is it a uniquely British-Chinese thing that we just don’t seem to get upset over anything? Or indeed, particularly inspired to help British-Chinese people get into Parliament, or even our local council?

Thankfully, it would seem not as this interview with American-based The Angry Asian Man proves… Mind you, he’s at pains to emphasise that he’s not an angry person himself…

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (Default)

As anyone who runs a blog knows, you tend to get a LOT of spam comments, which are luckily filtered out by most blogging systems. However, this particular one caught my eye today:


“the thing i like about asian women are those long flowing straight hair and those chinky eyes”


I really hope that’s not an excerpt from some poor chap’s dating profile, because I doubt he’s going to get much of a lookup. Imagine if your chat-up line was: “Ooooh I just love your chinky eyes”. That’d be pretty much the same as saying “Oooh I just love your nigger lips”.


(And yes, I thought about censoring the n-word from that sentence, but really, if I’m not going to censor the c-word, then I can’t then go and censor the n-word. Complicated racial politics that come into what was initially a simple blogpost about a spam comment. Oh dear.)


But then I wonder why Chinese women are so highly sought-after. Apparently, Egyptian men can now be added to the list of men around the world who want Chinese women. According to the article from Al Arabiya (which was also quoted in BBC News, but I can’t find the link now), Chinese women are prized for their “Obedience and loyalty”. I’ve got three sisters. None of them are particularly obedient, and I have the scars to prove it.


Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (evil)

As anyone who runs a blog knows, you tend to get a LOT of spam comments, which are luckily filtered out by most blogging systems. However, this particular one caught my eye today:

“the thing i like about asian women are those long flowing straight hair and those chinky eyes”

I really hope that’s not an excerpt from some poor chap’s dating profile, because I doubt he’s going to get much of a lookup. Imagine if your chat-up line was: “Ooooh I just love your chinky eyes”. That’d be pretty much the same as saying “Oooh I just love your nigger lips”.

(And yes, I thought about censoring the n-word from that sentence, but really, if I’m not going to censor the c-word, then I can’t then go and censor the n-word. Complicated racial politics that come into what was initially a simple blogpost about a spam comment. Oh dear.)

But then I wonder why Chinese women are so highly sought-after. Apparently, Egyptian men can now be added to the list of men around the world who want Chinese women. According to the article from Al Arabiya (which was also quoted in BBC News, but I can’t find the link now), Chinese women are prized for their “Obedience and loyalty”. I’ve got three sisters. None of them are particularly obedient, and I have the scars to prove it.

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (evil)

Chinese Christmas dinner Despite being genetically Chinese, I have no idea how to read off the Chinese menu. So I’m reduced to ordering off the English menu – which is fine and great, but vaguely-remembered childhood delicacies are rather beyond me.

So thank goodness for kake’s guide on learning how to read off the Chinese menu, which I will study with great interest. And then never have the courage to use – because what self-respecting Chinese person doesn’t know how to order off the Chinese menu? And if I get it a little wrong, I’ll feel far more embarassed than if I’d never tried in the first place.

Incidentally, while searching for an appropriate video, I found a ton of videos which basically show white and non-white people talking fluent Cantonese. Why ?! I mean, I find it oddly fascinating but surely not everyone else does? We don’t see videos of Chinese speakers speaking English (or Russian) with aplomb…

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (evil)

Ponders this article from The Times, 8 September 2010

Slurs and fading rock stars
by Sathnam Sanghera
Last updated September 8 2010 12:01AM

Why has the British Chinese community been slow to take offence at Morrissey’s comments on the attitude to animal welfare?

Morrissey was interviewed in a newspaper magazine last weekend, pictured with a cat sitting on his head, and remarking that the Chinese — the oldest continuous civilisation on the planet — were “a sub species” because of their “horrific” attitude towards animal welfare. I found myself drawn to the piece for two reasons, one slightly less solipsistic than the other: (i) the comedian Russell Brand has a cat called Morrissey, that, for reasons too complicated to get into here, was once mistaken by the paparazzi for my cat; (ii) the response of the British Chinese community.

Indeed, apart from a spokesman for the Love Music, Hate Racism campaign, which in 2008 had received £28,000 from the former frontman of The Smiths, saying the organisation would not accept Moz’s help in future (“It really is just crude racism”), and an intellectual letter in The Guardian in which Dr Suet Ying Ho, visiting fellow at the Centre for East Asian Studies at the University of Bristol remarked that it was funny to read the Chinese being described as a “sub species” when “way back, when the Han Chinese first encountered white Europeans … they concluded white Europeans must be ‘sub human’”, there was no response.

Can you imagine the fuss if Morrissey had made such comments about Indians, Africans, or Jews?

The other day, in an interview with V. S. Naipaul, I quoted his wife, Lady Naipaul, complaining that her husband got no letter from Downing Street when he won the Nobel Prize for Literature, adding “you have to be a Jew” to get such an accolade in this country, and promptly found myself — quite rightly — apologising to The Jewish Chronicle for not having called her up on the anti-Semitic slur.

But the only time that I recall the British Chinese defending themselves in such a forthright manner was in April 2001, when 1,000 members of the community demonstrated in London against media reports that Chinese restaurants had started the foot-and-mouth crisis by using diseased meat. The British Chinese may amount to more than 400,000, be the largest such community in Europe, count famous names such as Gok Wan and Katie Leung, the Harry Potter actor, as members, and be the fastest growing non-European ethnic group in the UK, but they are also anonymous. So anonymous in fact that it doesn’t seem to bother them that we British Indians have hijacked the term “Asian” for ourselves. Why?

A Chinese acquaintance puts it down to three factors: the Chinese community is not integrated into mainstream British society because of language barriers; more recent Chinese arrivals have been illegal immigrants who, as demonstrated by the 2004 Morecambe Bay cockle pickers disaster, are invisible because they work in the black economy; compared to other ethnic minority groups in the UK, Chinese communities are decentralised.

But then, with thriving Chinatowns in Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle, Sheffield, Belfast, London and Aberdeen you could argue that the British Chinese are more centralised than most, albeit in a disparate way. And in some respects the British Chinese, who have been in Britain for generations, are highly integrated: the community has one of the highest inter-ethnic marriage rates in the country when compared to other ethnic groups, with 30 per cent of Chinese women marrying men from different races, according to the 2001 Census.

Basically, the low profile of the British Chinese is a mystery. All you can do is proffer hypotheses. Could it be that because about a third of the British Chinese live in London, where racial tension is minimal, they don’t feel the need to make their voice heard as much as other groups?

Or maybe it is because they are not particularly religiously motivated. According to a 2006 publication from the Office for National Statistics, 52 per cent of British Chinese people have no religious affiliation, and we all know that it is religion and faith that often leads to groups making their voices heard.

Or could the explanation lie in the success of the British Chinese? After all, given they have a record of high academic achievement (figures show that British Chinese pupils are more likely to gain five or more A*-C GCSE grades than any other ethnic group), given that they have the lowest school exclusion rate in the country (at 2 per 10,000), and given a British Chinese person is also more likely to possess a university degree, or be a professional, than the average person in Britain, they may not feel the need to defend themselves against the mindless slurs of fading rock stars.

Personally, I think it’s a chicken-egg equation. The British-Chinese community don’t bother complaining much because they know they’d just be ignored – despite being the third largest ethnic minority grouping in the UK, we just don’t seem to matter much to anyone. And conversely, the media don’t pay attention to us because we’re not doing anything worth sensationalising.

What do you think?

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (Default)

Thanks to @bloggerheads and b3ta for pointing me to this amazing late-70s UK video, celebrating the diversity of London by … having the great Derek Griffiths impersonate a Chinese man by pulling on his eyebrows and singing about Chinkies, with a popular UK song from 1969 celebrating the ‘melting’ pot’ of the UK.

Derek Griffiths, btw, was the amiable black host of many a childrens’ TV show back in the 1970s and early 80s. I feel like my childhood has just been urinated on. But I can’t stop watching it…

Mirrored from almost witty.

almostwitty: (Default)

Thanks to @bloggerheads and b3ta for pointing me to this amazing late-70s UK video, celebrating the diversity of London by … having the great Derek Griffiths impersonate a Chinese man by pulling on his eyebrows and singing about Chinkies, with a popular UK song from 1969 celebrating the ‘melting’ pot’ of the UK.

Derek Griffiths, btw, was the amiable black host of many a childrens’ TV show back in the 1970s and early 80s. I feel like my childhood has just been urinated on. But I can’t stop watching it…

Mirrored from almost witty.

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