Friday, August 28, 2009

Fighting over a dead man

My uncle lent me a book to read. Funeral Games, by Mary Renault. Difficult. Mostly because of the names. One might think that names aren't THAT important, but these are all Greek.

I think that many of the people in this historical novel snuff it throughout the latter half of the book. Probably okay, as I am less vested in them than in their environment. This is like a whodunit in which one by one they go to the woodshed, and don't return.

The author doesn't like women - Alexander's wives Stateira and Roxanne are dull and conniving, vengefull and vicious. None of the other women in Alexander's life are pleasant either. They're bitches, bitches, just bitches.

At least his scheming generals and friends are fairly emotionally honest about their greed and their hunger for power, brutally honest. Their honesty destroys everything Alexander achieved.

The nicest and most likeable character is probably the one man who dominates the tale by not being there - he's been dead since the beginning. Because his friends, lovers, and soldiers have such intensity for him, they remain rather human, and the story stays gripping.


Monday, August 24, 2009

Racist New Zealand pig woman!

This statement I found on the BBC site proves that some white people need an attitude adjustment.

"It's not like Vietnamese or Chinese cultures where dogs are farmed for food. "

[Robyn Kippenberger, Chief Executive of New Zealand's Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals]


Say what?!?

You mean vicious bigotted biased poisonous BITCH!

Firstly, most of us have NEVER eaten dog.
Secondly, we were civilized for centuries BEFORE you people stopped eating each other.
Thirdly, you tofu-snarfing vegetable loving racist, you guys invented systematic cruelty to animals - chicken farms, fur farms, modern pig ranching, veal, and force fed ducks.

So take your oh so superior white trash attitude about other people and stuff it in your ear, you offensive old cow! You stink!


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Mooncakes, yay!

I love mooncakes! Every year I can't wait till the mid-autumn festival rolls around, so that I can pig out on lots and lots of mooncakes. I really like the double yolk refined lotus seedpaste (雙黃白蓮蓉月餅 seung wong pak lien yong ywet beng) or the bean-paste (豆沙月餅 dow sa ywet beng) mooncakes, which can be found at Mee Mee (美美餅食公司) on Stockton, or at the Eastern Bakery (東亞餅家) on Grant.

The mid-autumn festival (中秋節 chong chau jit) is the fifteenth day of the eighth month, which is on October third. There's a whole lot of story about it and what it means. All you need to know is MOONCAKES!
Which are starting to become available now.

Lotus seed is lotus seed - does it NEED an explanation?
Dow sa, (豆沙 "bean mud") is ground boiled azuki beans with sugar and oil used as a filling for pastries. If you're white you probably won't like it once it's been explained to you, so eat it before someone tells you what it is.
There's also Ng-yan (五仁 five nut-kernels: pumpkin seed, melon seed, sesame, almond, and walnuts or peanuts) which has chunks candied wintermelon (糖冬瓜 tong tung gwa) mixed in. But you have to like it, otherwise you wasted your dollars!

1328 Stockton Street (between Vallejo and Broadway)
San Francisco, CA 94133.

720 Grant Avenue (btwn Sacramento and Clay, corner of Commercial Alley)
San Francisco, CA 94108

Six whole weeks of mooncakes. It just can't get any better. Yay!


Monday, August 17, 2009

Chinkiness and tinsel

On beautiful sunny days in San Francisco the European tourists bloom. You can tell that they are European, as they look different. And smell different. Sometimes very different. And be different I mean something else.
It's probably all that walking they do. Busts out a sweat.

But, speaking of smelling different, I've often wondered if the tourists like Chinatown for its colorful quantness - overflowing garbage cans, colored lanterns, Chinky-winky decorations, plastic and tinsel Chinesey decorative touches, or merely for the fact that a large number of yellow people are in evidence.

Probably isn't the large number of yellow people in evidence - Daly city got the same, so does Mountain View. But NO BUGGERY TOURISTS!!!!!!!!!!!!! In fact, the Mountain View downtown area is almost entirely yellow people. Not even the guey low from the surrounding area go there much. It is far TOO Chinese.

But here in SF, we have just the right balance. Cute, colorful, exotic fripperies, plenty yellow people, and lotsa overflowing garbage cans (cause there are too many yellow people and not enough garbage men). So we get ALL the tourists. Who take pictures of the frip, the garbage, and the yellow.

Oh we are so lucky.


Sunday, August 9, 2009

Smells like flowers

It is strange what happens when it is summer in San Francisco. The smells change. Many of the downtown streets, which normally smell of pee, now smell of sewers. And some of the Chinatown alleys smell of incense and garbage.
The further down hill, the worse the smell. Horrible.

There is an alley near my house that smells of moss and sweet flowers, because it is overgrown and too far uphill for the street people (we mustn't call them bums!) to come. And the beer-drinkers haven't discovered it either. It is very nice in the morning when the sun comes out, which is around ten or ten thirty, after the fog.

I do not want to go in there any other time, only when it is bright. It is scary at other times. Sometimes somebody is sleeping under the bushes there. But you can't smell him if you don't come too close. I think he probably has somewhere to shower. He must like the flowers, I hope.


Friday, August 7, 2009

Kimura Sensei

On another blog I found mister Kimura - Kimura Sensei (木村先生) in Japanese. Mister Kimura is the teacher in an anime about seven girls going to a highschool in Japan. The anime is called Azumanga Daioh (あずまんが大王), meaning Azumanga 'great king'. Dai oh (大王) is the name of the magazine in which the manga on which the anime is based first showed up.
So the name of the anime is wrong, it should be Azu-anime Daioh (あずま アニメ 大王).

Also, Azumanga is a combination of the author's surname and the word manga (or anime). The author is Azuma (あずま or in Kanji: 東 but could also be written 吾妻) Kiyohiko (きよひこ or 清彦). He also drew Hentai manga and anime. Hentai means sexy or perverted. I have not seen any of those.
Azumanga Daioh is not about sex, and there is nothing depraved anywhere in it. Except for mister Kimura. Who isn't really depraved, being really rather innocent. And sweet. In an innocently sweet and totally pervy fashion.

The objects of his peculiar affections are the girl-students Kaori (かおり), also known as Kaorin, Ayumu Kasuga (春日 歩, Kasuga Ayumu), who is nicknamed Osaka (大阪), Chiyo-chan (美浜 ちよ, Mihama Chiyo), Tomo Takino (滝野 智, Takino Tomo), Koyomi Mizuhara (水原 暦, Mizuhara Koyomi), miss Sakaki (榊) , and Kagura (神楽) .
Mister Kimura is married. And myopic. His glasses make him seem a worse pervert than he probably is.

Kaori is sweet, short, and shy, and has a crush on Sakaki which is unrequited. Mister Kimura has a crush on Kaorin which is also unrequited. Thank god.

There are two other teachers, both female. Yukari-sensei (谷崎 ゆかり, Tanizaki Yukari), the English teacher; Kurosawa-sensei (黒沢 みなも, Kurosawa Minamo?), also known as Nyamo (にゃも) who teaches phys ed.
Yukari Sensei is not soundly based in the real world, or entirely emotionally stable. Nyamo is pleasant and po-faced.

The series is very amusing. Much of it is available on youtube, and Wikipedia has a lot to say about it too. That's where I found all the Kanji and stuff.


Wednesday, August 5, 2009


All along the streets of Nob Hill and Russian Hill the bouganvillea is in glorious color. Pinks and reds and purples, nice violent hues. It faces south. Bouganvillea only grows in south exposure.

These are very beautiful flowers, and there ought to be more of them in San Francisco. They make the summer seem special. I like to dawdle while walking home because I like being near them. So nice! Better than roses.