Dear Tourists of New York

Hi Rubberneckers! Here’s a few handy tips on street etiquette, which should be particularly heeded whilst in the clogged streets of Soho.  Since it’s apparent you are oblivious to everything but your own damn self, please take a few moments to read these notes and incorporate them into your pedestrian behavior, for the comfort of all around you and to avoid a rap in the mouth.

Omigawd look Honey! Places where you can get stuff in exchange for money!

Omigawd look Honey! Places where you can get stuff in exchange for money!

When walking down Broadway admiring the circus of consumption, please refrain from throwing your arm out to point at the Armani Exchange store or the singing quadraplegic in the wheelchair. There’s a 97% chance that someone is walking directly into the path of your grubby hand, and you will consequently poke them in the ear, eye, or general head region. I swear to christ this happens to me at least twice a week, followed by a blinding rage and pink eye.

Second: I know that, like a racoon, you are instantly mesmerized by all the shiny crap sold by the 11,000 merchants lining the sidewalks. But if you must gawk and paw at the goods, please go up to the table and do so, instead of stopping on a dime in the flow of foot traffic. There are lines of people behind you who must draw upon panther-like reflexes to dodge your buffalo ass or else find themselves victims of a human pileup and scuffed heels.

Third, when entering a train, please do not step in only to stop and park yourself directly inside the car doors. There are folks following who #1: need to get ON the damn thing and #2 must maneuver around to snag a seat, or at least a space to stand and a pole to grab because jesus h. lady, I got three bags of groceries and I been waiting 20 minutes for the damn 6 train and there’s 20 more pushy mean people behind me and if I can’t get on Imma miss this week’s episode of ABDC and then I’ll have to choke someone for real so for the love of jeebus move your white Reeboks and Century 21 bags the fuck inside!!!

These are just 3 suggestions to remedy inconsiderate tourist behavior, out of a list of approximately 47,000. We will save the other 46,997 tips for future posts, and we also welcome our lovely BCB readers to contribute below. Thank you for your time.


Slumdog Millionaire: Best Picture of the Year


We didn't last very long. I'm here in Cali, she's in Mumbai. Would her parents accept me? Where do we have the kids? If we raised them in Mumbai we'd need to pay for private school... I wouldn't know how to get around without knowing Hindi... She'd find it difficult to get acting jobs in the States, esp. since ER is being cancelled. And because Gurinder Chadha disappeared off the face of the earth, M. Night Shyamalan only hires white actors, and Jay Chandrasekhar only does comedies... It just wouldn't work, so I had to let her go...

We didn't last very long. I'm here in Cali, she's in Mumbai. Would her parents accept me? Where do we have the kids? If we raised them in Mumbai we'd need to pay for private school... I wouldn't know how to get around without knowing Marathi or Hindi... She'd find it difficult to get acting jobs in the States, esp. since ER is being cancelled. And because Gurinder Chadha disappeared off the face of the earth, M. Night Shyamalan only hires white actors, and Jay Chandrasekhar only does comedies... It just wouldn't work, so I had to let her go...

Slumdog Millionaires blew me away tonight. I could not believe how perfect it was. From its portrayals of the plastic bag collecting orphans running around the landfills of Mumbai, Bombay gangsters out for money, cash, hoes, and the distinct class differences between the rich and the untouchables of India. The irony of this movie really has to be that the director is Danny Boyle. Yes, THE Danny Boyle. The “Ewan McGregor swimming through the toilet” Danny Boyle. The “Let’s go to Thailand to find the perfect beach and fuck it up real good” Danny Boyle.  The “I never directed A Life Less Ordinary” Danny Boyle. It took a dude from Manchester, UK to make a movie that an Indian-born director like M. Night Shyamalan would most definitely have fucked up (YEA! I said it! Why? Cause M. Night “I don’t do surprise endings anymore cause they’re cliched” Shyamalan is directing an ALL-WHITE CAST in the Hollywood remake of your favorite “I thought I was watching Pokemon for the past 10 minutes” cartoon, Avatar


But this movie is perfect. from the three M.I.A. tracks mixed in with the Bollywood music score (Yes, I realize M.I.A. is Sri Lankan, but her music is relevant to all third world counties, regardless of  religions, races, and nationalities) to the amazing cast (I don’t CARE if those kids were made to look dirty and they running around picking up trash and getting their eyeballs burnt out, they soooo damn cccuutteee!!) to my next wifey, Freida “My parents named me after a mispelled celebrity mixed beans plate at a Mexican restaurant in Mangalore, India” Pinto.  


If there ever was a film that brought more attention to the ills that afflict a third world country without exploiting their people through undue depictions of violence (City of Gods), or stereotyped third world characters (Ong Bak starring Tony “You stole my village’s sacred elephant!” Jaa), or just plain stupid plots (any Jackie Chan movie that’s filmed outside of Hong Kong), this is it. Its not without criticism however, because many in India say the movie is passe and depicts only the crime/poverty angle of India. But this ALL INDIAN cast makes up for it in my opinion… But I might be totally off about this, and I welcome your comments. I’m clearly judging this film through the lens of a middle class male white guy from the good ole US of A. 


What else can I say other than watch it and cop the Oscar nominated soundtrack (its so weird that M.I.A.’s Paper Planes, which is basically about weed and the daily struggles of people of color hustling can fit so well in two different movies- Pineapple Express being the other). And check out the Oscars this year when this movie sweeps everything BUT best animated film and best foreign film (if its nominated for best film, it can’t be in his category). 



And to those that have seen the movie, I know the end credits are cliched, but come on, you know you stayed for the whole thing, yah!?


Just returned from DC, and I will admit I was on the fence about going at all. Because of the cold. And the crowds. The portapottie situation, and my small bladder and finicky bowels. And because I am an old lady that worries about these things. But we all worked hard to see this day come and the time to poop the party is not now. Not now, dammit! And yes, it was freezing, yes I had to walk for 3 hours hauling all my stuff across town due to Metro closures, and okay, my bum knee did start to hurt. And y’know what? Worth it!
Here’s my brief play-by-play from the whirlwind and enchantment that is Obama fever (minus the pics of me flailing at Rock Band in my friend’s uncle’s basement).


-Chucked my Chucks at the “Give Bush the Boot” blow-up doll. All kiddies should throw tied pairs over the Bush schnozz as an alternative to telephone wires.

-Made party banter with the man himself:

What's that you say B?

What's that you say B?

Ah! Your Commander-in-Chief wit! There is no end to it!

Ah! Your Commander-in-Chief wit slays me! Sssssnap!

My bad 'bout that farty smell, B. Totally me. Lactose intolerance can be awkward.

My bad 'bout that farty smell, B. Totally me. Lactose intolerance can be awkward.

-Look! We even have the same glasses! We were made for each other.

Although Obama's prescription is not a -11.

Although Obama's prescription is not a -11.

-Sleeping on a floor with seven people, to rise at the rump crack of dawn and march with millions to the National Mall.


-Favorite comments overheard in the peanut gallery: “Party time!” and “Are those the slut twins?” when the Bush girls came out. Also…”OOH Rahm Emanuel! Mmm! Obama sure did give us somethin good to look at for the next four years!”…”Joe Lieberman- that’s the traitor!  We know about politics!”

-Deafening cheers and claps of gloved hands sounding like thunder for Reverend Lowery’s perfect wrap-up: Lord…we ask you to help us work for that day when black will not be asked to get in back, when brown can stick around, when yellow can be mellow, when the red man can stick around, man, and when white will embrace what is right. The good Rev. brung it, and he brung it old school.


-Leaving the Mall with mobs of people, I hear “there it goes!” and look up just in time to see Bush’s helicopter lift off from the Capitol Building to the White House…for the last time. Forever and ever, amen.

Na na na na-hey hey hey-goodbyeeee

Na na na na-hey hey hey-goodbyeeee

It’s a celebration Bicoastal Bitches!

Kurt Warner is a Preachy Douchebag

As a Niners fan, I hate Kurt Warner. But he’s got so many other reasons to be hated on.  Including his fashion sense:
His shirt says Jesus Saves in Cantonese.

His shirt says Jesus Saves in Cantonese

And his LOVE of Jesus. And when I mean love, I mean he LOVES Jesus. Praying on the field, thanking Jesus instead of ever giving a real interview. And not just living a Christian life. We talkin an “everyone ELSE is going to HELL except ME cause I’m Christian” kinda Christian. You know, the real compassionate kind. Explaining to his teammates how they’re going to hell if they don’t believe in Jesus:

“No question. Especially when it comes to family members. There’s no doubt about it. I’m very, very worried about it. I’ve done numerous things along the way to try to lead them down the path that I believe leads to salvation, but many times to no avail.” And if you don’t believe me cause I don’t drop Jesus’ name like its Sunday everyday, check the video:

But to get a truly great idea of the genius we dealing with, here’s a video of him describing to us the difference between Jesus and God. Genius stuff:

And don’t forget his overbearing, anti-stem cell research, homophobic, mullet sportin’ wifey:

Kurt Warner's Mom, I mean... urm, his wifey

Kurt Warner's Mom, I mean... urm, his wifey

Asian Americans Love College

You ever look up a famous Asian American actor or actress on They always went to college. Always. It’s like their parents all made a deal with them in high school:


What? You want to acting? What you go do acting for? I don’t have time to see you in school play, how I know you do acting? Ok. You make papa happy. Ok? You go to college, I pay for. Study biology or accounting. Act on weekend. If you still like, ok. You do acting. But only after medical school. Or bar exam. 


Check out this list. Its like a 95% college matriculation rate among Asian American actors! Considering guys like Ryan Reynolds (Kwantlen College) and Brad Pitt (Univ. of Missouri) went to college, but never graduated, there’s a significant gap between Asian and White actors:  


John Cho: UC Berkeley
Kal Penn: UCLA (currently also teaching at UPenn)
Roger Fan: Brown
BD Wong: SF State
Aaron Yoo: UPenn
Ming Na Wen: Carnegie Mellon
Masi Oka: Brown
Garrett Wang: UCLA
Rick Yune: UPenn

(Asians really love UPenn, Brown and UC schools don’t they?)


I think a lot of this has to do with the success rate of Asian American actors. None of them are stupid enough to think they can drop out of high school or college, take the cliched “bus to Hollywood” and find an agent and get booked in a movie all in one week. They know its gonna be tough, and long, and most likely unsuccessful. So they act. On the side. On the weekends, at night. Take drama classes. And finish their degrees. Cause deep down inside they know Hollywood doesn’t give a Fuck if they went to an Ivy League school, as long as their eyes are slanted and skin yellow, they will most likely lose roles to some hot, white, high school dropout actor.

Oakland… always in my heart

i’ve been the embattled writer going back and forth with myself and the cowriters of this blog as to whether or not i wanted to publicly share my feelings, thoughts, emotions, and political opinions on what’s been happening in Oakland. but tonite, as i ran lake merritt, on what had to have been the most beautiful nite so far this year, i remembered why i’ve always been so enamored with this city. i love Oakland for all its simplicities, intertwined with its complexities. we don’t have the star power of an LA or NYC, or even an SF. we don’t have the big bucks of a Palo Alto, the hot tropics of a Miami, the early historical footprints of a Boston (albeit, a eurocentric one), or the sex appeal of a NOLA. but what we do have, which never ceases to fade, is pride. i’m not just talking about the “i *heart* fill in the blank city” pride, i’m talking about the pride that wherever you go, you’ll always be sure to assert that no, you’re not from San Francisco, you’re from Oakland. you embrace the glorified ghettoness, you own the experiences of living within the boundaries, and you forever hold a special place for Oakland within your heart. even those who have never lived in Oakland, but have made some affiliation with the city, look at the place with an undeniable fondness (after all the sh!t talking, of course).

it definitely breaks my heart to see what Oakland has gone through, particularly within the last few years: a yearly heighten homicide rate, a dysfunctional city government, and an increasing gap between the poor and privileged. so it was not a surprise that the horrendous killing of an unarmed young man by a public servant, paid to “protect and serve” caused outrage among an already demoralized community. the additional lack of immediate response and appeal to the community by agency and city leaders led to subsequent rage of emotions, as captured by countless news outlets throughout the country. had it have been five years ago, i would have been out there in the streets of downtown Oakland protesting along with the rest of the enraged community.  yes, five years ago, i would have condoned the actions of disrupting the neighborhood and challenging the police who had yet again, failed the community. but that nite, i sat at home and watched it all unfold on television. i couldn’t help but be disturbed by what i was seeing. i thought to myself, had i gone bougie? had i lost touch with the community that helped raise me and my social consciousness? then i realized, no it’s not that i’ve turned my back on the community and city that have been my frame of reference for why i do the work that i do, it’s that i realized that at the end of that nite, after the flames in the trash bins die out and the last piece of shattered glass falls off the storefront, the community will continue to suffer.

we can’t afford to completely alienate ourselves from the powers that control the policies and decisions that enables us to provide a quality of life for ourselves, our elders, our children, and our future. but most importantly, at the end of the day, burning trash bins, smashing storefronts, defacing city property doesn’t hurt the people who hurt us, because they go home to cozy suburbs and fancy 6 figure salaries. it’s the already pain-stricken community that ends up paying for the remnants of the emotional outcry. it’s the already mismanaged public funds that comes from the community’s tax dollars that will be used to clean up the damages.  it’s not the salaries of the power hungry, trigger happy cops, it’s not the money already allocated to repaved the recently paved roads of the oakland hills or rockridge neighborhoods. it is our youth programs and social services that will get cut in order to allocate funds to resolve these issues. so i wonder, aside from declaring the community’s anger and frustrations, which i believe can be done through protest that doesn’t involve defacing anything (which was how the protest started off as), how does jumping on police cars and throwing over news racks do anything to progress the movement of social justice?

and i definitely disagree with the statement regarding how the storeowner whose business was destroyed was lucky that it was her business and not her life. as a child who grew up with two working parents who owned their own business, i know damn well that that business was our livelihood, it was our life. it was that business that put food in the mouths of four children and that clothed each and everyone of us. it was that business that housed us and put us through school. so for those who aimlessly went on to vandalize storefronts and looted businesses, i question your acts as standing up for the cause, but rather of going completely against the efforts of moving our people forward in a society that has constantly kept us back. i would even go as far as saying that in some instances, destroying someone’s business IS in fact, destroying their life. these weren’t posh, high end retailers, whose owners opened up shop just for kicks, that were being destroyed, these were people of color, women owned businesses that came to work the next day to see added challenges to keep their business afloat during this already hard economic time.

yes, the community is hurt and pissed off, not only because of the killing of the young man, but because of the historical injustices embedded in our community for years prior to the incident that took place on new year’s day. however, in an effort to realize that things have to change, and it has to happen beyond the actions that took place the nite of the protest, we need to take a serious look at who controls the policies that defines how we live in our city. who makes the decisions that allow our young people to go to schools with inadequate resources? who enables poorly trained cops with serious racial ignorance to patrol our streets? do we trust those people who have those powers? because that’s who ultimately pulled the trigger, not only on the young man that nite at fruitvale bart, but on all those who died before him as well.

so yes, you may think that chaos in downtown Oakland got your message across to the leaders of the city, but after you pay for the damages, what holds them accountable to implement any changes that will stop these brutal killings and the constant unethical practices of the police department? unless we put ourselves in a legitimate position to institutionalize these changes and be in control of making those decisions, we remain powerless and unable to progress. looting and destruction is not a means to an end.