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A new TIME article comments on the recent boom of an unlikely literary genre: Amish romance novels.
With books that tug on heart and bonnet strings and tales characterized by “humility, plainness and no sex,” G-rated authors like Beverly Lewis (see her latest, The Secret, at right), Cindy Woodsmall and Wanda Brunstetter have quickly risen to the rank of bestseller–without so much as showing a little bit of leg.
Perhaps in a society like ours–one that has fallen south into a hole so shameless, explicit and oversexed that we recognize our pop stars by tampon string and teen moms write “abstinence advocate” on the occupation line of their tax forms–the only thing left to taboo is modesty.
This idea sends me into a small fit of inspiration. Maybe there’s room in this playing field for another new kid in town–the Repectful Asian romance novel!!! Could there be something to the kind of love that my Hardass Asian Mama always tells me about? The kind I’ve always assumed is simply too, er, storybook to actually exist in real life but clearly may make for a captivating literary tale?
You know it goes:
Girl studies hard. Boy studies hard. Girl concentrates on school, learns piano and violin very well, no room for boys. Boy and girl respect parents. Boy and Girl meet at school and do not talk because they are busy studying. She would think he is very handsome, but does not think about boys in order to concentrate on her studies. Boy and Girl finish school at the top of their respective classes and go on to become doctors. One day, after the last day of residency, Boy–now Man, walks over to Girl–now Woman. He says, “I have never met a woman with a family so honorable. And you do not want to become an old maid.” She giggles from beneath her surgical mask. In a true climax, they arrange a meeting with both sets of parents to discuss a proper marriage that honors both lineages. They also promise to have many sons that will bring honor to the family.
Oh, romance! DO WE HAVE A BEST-SELLER OR WHAT? I THINK SO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Filed under: Amish Romance Novels, Books, Concentrating On Studies, Hardass Asian Parents, Honor, Literary genres, Respect, Romance, Romance novels, Sexlessness, Shamelessness, Taboo, Tampon strings, TIME magazine, Trends
I don’t know a terrible lot about Bristol Palin, and hold high hopes that behind the scenes, she’s not much like her boorish, media-whoring mother. However, one increasingly obvious similarity between the two seems to be an inability to look the other way when it comes to negative feedback. Frankly, no Palin seems able to resist the urge to respond publicly to a negative review–and Facebook is the venue of choice for little sister, mom and self.
Margaret Cho’s recent comments about the elder Palin forcing Bristol to join the cast of DWTS provided such an opportunity, and naturally, Bristol jumped at the chance. This week, young Palin responded to Cho in a sweet-as-eskimo-pie open letter on (Surprise!) Facebook:
I will give my friend credit for creativity, and extra points for getting so many “facts” wrong in so few sentences. Let me be blunt: my mom did not “force” me to go on DWTS. She did not ask me either. The show approached me. I thought about it. I made the decision. After first worrying for me in terms of being exposed to those who hate us for what we believe in, both my mom and my dad became my number one supporters. Anyone who watched the show could tell I performed better, and I felt better about myself, when they were in the audience. I wanted to make them both proud, but politics had nothing to do with it. Loving my parents had everything to do with it.
Well hell, good for Bristol for taking it upon herself to clear up those nasty rumors, defending her family’s honor (all you AZN peeps can undoubtedly identify with that), and remembering to use spell check while she was at it! Fine form! Maybe we aren’t giving this gal enough recognition for being a strong person and independent spirit, with her own words, opinions and talent.
Bristol also used her creative noggin to inject a bit of humor into her letter, closing it with what some commenters are calling a “questionable” lesbian quip:
You say you “don’t agree with the family’s politics at all” but I say, if you understood that commonsense conservative values supports the right of individuals like you, like all of us, to live our lives with less government interference and more independence, you would embrace us faster than KD Lang at an Indigo Girls concert.
HUNH. What an interesting reference for a 20-year-old to make in 2010, what with so many fun lesbians/lesbian dabblers swirling around the pop culture PR circuit to choose from right now! Were I in her position, I imagine I might have chosen to mention someone more… au courant. Y’know, like Ellen and Portia or Queen Latifah, maybe Samantha Ronson, Le Tigre, Tegan and Sara, la dee dah, the list really does kinda go on and on…
But no, I suppose the obvious lesbian joke for a free-thinking millennial like Bristol to make would be one about KD Lang and the Indigo Girls. They were both huge in the nineties and she was, um, born in the nineties, so that kinda makes sense I guess.
I mean, it’s not like Sarah Palin’s writing those jokes for her or anything.
When I turned 21, I received a wealth of gifts. They included:
- sixer of Smirnoff ice
- knockoff version of Barbie’s little sister, Skipper
- 3 “Your first time coming here legally?? It’s on the muzzafuzzin’ house!!!” shots seeminly comprised of sugar and scope
- my first DVD porn
- 4.5 Appletinis (so hot right then)
- 13 unidentified flying cocktails
- framed photo of me with a bunch of swell college chicks in dresses holding up cocktails
SIMILARLY, on Korean Olympic speed skater’s Mo Tae-Bum’s 21st birthday (February 15), he received…
Filed under: 2010 Winter Olympics, 21st Birthday, Asians and Speed Skating, Best Presents Ever, Birthdays, Booze, Celebrasians, Everybody Loves a Winner, Glory, Gold Medalists, Gold Medals Rule, Honor, Hugging Does Not Come Naturally To Us, Hugs, Mo Tae-Bum, Similarities, Skaters, Smirnoff Ice, Speed Skating, the Olympics, Vancouver Winter Olympics, Winter Olympics
Respect for sports arbitrators are typically structured into the game itself. In baseball, for instance, respect for the umpire is built upon a tacit understanding; a player unhappy with a strike call can grumble all he wants, but the minute he turns around to confront and disgrace the ump, there’s gonna be T-R-O-U-B-L-E. In basketball, technical fouls can take a person out of the game, screwing up everything for the remaining lineup.
Still, I’ve always worried about the safety of sports refs–who at all times are making unpopular decisions in somebody‘s viewpoint–which is why I’m so glad that in American football, the refs (like my favorite python master, Ed Hochuli, pictured below) tend to be as burly as the players themselves.
Perhaps my conditioning to relatively good behavior in the company of referees explains the shock I felt eyeballing this CNN video– a clip of Tianjin football players pursuing and basically attacking a ref after a match in Beijing.
Thank bejeezus the man in blue had some legs on him–but the players in the vid could really stand to learn a lesson about sportsmanlike conduct. Sore losing is just shameful. Hell, I know Asians love to win, but shit–don’t we also care in excess about honor and pride?
Army Captain Michael Dung Nguyen has been charged with theft of government property and money laundering, for allegedly stealing nearly $700k of U.S. money, intended for urgent humanitarian aid and reconstruction in Afghanistan and Iraq.
U.S. Attorney Karin Immergut said an investigation began after Internal Revenue Service agents spotted a suspicious pattern with the deposits.
She said the charges indicate a “flagrant and reprehensible disregard” for military honor.
Reports say that Nguyen used the money to buy a number of items, including computers, a BMW, and a (puke) Hummer.
Oh, shame of all shames. If the Captain is convicted of these offenses it will prove that the man has a heart of dung. That he used taxpayer money to buy a really dung truck. And his military career is totally dung-zo. Alright, I’ve said my piece and now I’m dung.
What’s up, dude? How’ve you been? It’s been awhile since we last spoke, but rest assured that we’ve been thinking about you constantly and keeping tabs on your ass.
Not to be all up in your grill or anything, but what’s going on with you right now? Are you like, really busy, or preoccupied or whatever? We totally know you’ve got Olympics on the brain, but we feel like in the meantime you seem to be saying some weird shit and slacking on a lot of your really important duties. And if there’s one thing we’ve learned from our years of knowing you intimately, one should never defect on their duties. Right?
For starters, you poo-poo’d all over the decision to award the Dalai Lama the Congressional Gold Medal this week, with Foreign Ministry spokesperson Liu Jianchao saying that it “severly hurt the feelings” of the Chinese people.
“China urges the United States to take effective measures immediately to remove the terrible impact of its erroneous act, cease supporting and conniving with the separatist activities of the Tibet independence forces … and take concrete steps to protect China-U.S. relations.”
Geez, is that a threat? Dude, the Dalai Lama is our friend. He is the most peaceful bloke we know–we really respect him, and he gives us hope. We understand how complicated your relationship is right now, but please don’t put us in the middle of that–and please just don’t insult our friend. It’s sour and fucked up, it makes us really uncomfortable, and we’re simply not down with that shit.
Moving on, I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but some really fucked-up shit has been happening under your nose. Do I need to spell them out for you? Okay, D-A-R-F-U-R and M-Y-A-N-M-A-R. Seriously, where the fuck are you?
You are really the only country with the power to make any real impact in both of these situations, and we feel like you’re just sitting around with your thumb up your ass, thinking of different ways to make the place pretty for all of next year’s tourists. We don’t give a shih tzu about gold medals, dammit! We are sick and tired of this bullshit–namely genocide, oppression, and conflict!
Pay attention! It’s time for you to step up. If you don’t, it will severely hurt our feelings. We severely urge you to take effective measures in saving yourself from our disgrace, so we can be proud to look you in the eye again one day.
Diana and Jen
Remember, kids. Above all–be honorable.
It’s more important than money.
It’s more important than math.
In fact, a samurai would choose suicide before dishonor.
Be that samurai. Be honorable.
And most–MOST importantly, no matter what happens, maintain your honor.
Some people understand this concept very well. Like Ochi Yosuke, who refused to be disohonored by losing his title as Air Guitar World Champion to some other wind-strumming dude/dudette last weekend.
See how he did it:
I mean, if this guy wasn’t already an Honorable Asian, he’d be an Honorasian in a heartbeat.