Monday, September 24, 2007

20 Questions from Uncle Dave

In a recent email, my Uncle Dave gave me some interesting topics of discussion for the blog. Many of them I had planned on writing about anyway, if I ever got around to it. I'll try to answer a few of them right now, and hopefully satisfy the rest later.

1. Is the internet my only source for current news? Yes, pretty much. Occasionally I will pick up a copy of The China Post, which is the only English language newspaper here. But I usually only read that to search for funny typos (i.e. 'sore like an eagle') or to inform myself about the latest health scare in Taiwan (a recent study reported that the majority of wooden chopsticks here contained a dangerously high amount of nitrates).

2. How do I stay updated on the latest celebrity news gossip? One of the many joys of living here is that I don't have to read about Britney Spears' child abuse case or how many men Angelina Jolie has slept with. However, while checking CNN.com I was very happy to hear that OJ is finally getting his comeuppins. I am desperately searching for his book about how he 'would' have killed his wife and Ron Goldman. Originally titled "If I Did It," the book was not picked up by a publisher. About a week ago, a bankruptcy court awarded the rights of the book to the Goldman family; in which they retitled it "If I Did It: The Confessions of a Killer." It was picked up for publishing immediately and was an instant bestseller.

3. Are McDonalds and Pizza Hut in Taiwan? Yes, and I have successfully avoided them so far. One of my favorite comedians, Dave Chappelle, has a bit about how he is self-conscious about eating fried chicken and watermelon in public because it perpetuates the stereotype that black people love fried chicken and watermelon. He's paranoid that while eating chicken in a restaurant he can hear white people whispering, "Look at him. He loves it. Just like the encyclopedia said!" In a way, I feel the same way about eating at Mcdonalds. I can just imagine what the locals are saying about me as I dip my fries into ketchup instead of the gooey, sesame seed filled sauce that they serve here.

4. Are Hollywood movies popular? Yes. However, by the time they are released in Taiwan, they have been out in the states for 8 or 9 months sometimes. I often wonder how much money they actually make at the box office and how much of a problem illegal downloading of films is; since that appears to be a very easy and common option here. Not surprisingly, there is also a wide selection of Chinese films. I get the feeling these are much more popular. One of the most famous Asian directors, Ang Lee, is Taiwanese. He directed Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.

5. How do most Taiwanese feel about America and Americans? Generally, Asia has one of the highest opinions of Americans. Due to strong trade relations with the US, we remain incredibly popular with Taiwan despite our refusal to support their bid to the UN. In fact, we do so much trade with them, that even though the New Taiwanese Dollar is not fixed; it hardly ever fluctuates against the US dollar. I also have learned that wearing a New York Yankees T-shirt will make me instantly popular among Taiwanese people. Thanks, Chien-Ming Wang.


Since I'm at a smoky, loud internet cafe, that's all I'll write for now. But I encourage anybody with questions to email me or comment on the blog. Sometimes I will witness something that is definitely blogworthy, but dismiss it because it has just become a part of daily life for me.

2 Comments:

At October 2, 2007 at 4:55 AM , Blogger steph said...

i'm pretty sure that i should make my way over there to become a fat and multi-lingual brazilian warrior with you. i am a shining star of indecisiveness. i'm glad you're having fun. keep blogging, blogger.

 
At October 2, 2007 at 4:55 AM , Blogger steph said...

oh, and brittany is, like, sooo last week! omg!

 

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