All My College Sports Knowledge Comes from AzNs from Pac-12 Schools

In response to the Fox News segment below, which mocks Asian American students by asking uninformed college kids about the recent addition of Colorado and Utah into the Pac-10 Pac-12, I would like to copy/paste fellow Cal Alumni Ben’s rant on the ever expanding Pac-12. Everything Pac-12 related I talk over with a few of my friends from Cal (who are all Asian Americans) and the level of discussion, however vulgar, has always been highly articulate and all parties very knowledgeable. We may not have won a Rose Bowl this century, but we sure do know every detail of Cal/Pac-12 football, from what Marshawn Lynch’s mother looks like in person (she was always rooting the loudest at Memorial Stadium) to which jr college player Coach Tedford was recruiting when he visited Butte College and found Aaron Rodgers (Garrett Cross) or which schools have the hottest cheerleaders (I’m not gonna answer this one).

So to Fox Sports Net and Fox News in general. Fuck you, glad you cancelled the POS show this broadcasted on. And next time, you should hire Ben here to rant on one of your shows cause he knows more about the sports and the football than Bob Oschat on any given Saturday (and USC on Thursday this year).  And I assure you, Ben is Asian.

(Note. this email is in response to AzN’s suggestion that if the Pac-12 expands to 16 by adding Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas and Texas Tech, we should have 2 divisions, determined solely by academics. Kind of a joke. And that USC should be in a conference that includes Stanfurd, Cal, Washington, UCLA, Utah, and Texas. An even bigger joke. Big mistake on my part, cause I received one of Ben’s infamous rants):

i refuse to put USC in the “academic” division.  fuck SC.  if that’s not a frat party school, then Berkeley is no better than the 22nd university in the nation.  oh, wait:

well fuck you too, US News.  they ranked USC #23, right behind us.  WOW.  whatever.  USC’s in the frat division.

otherwise, i hear you, 16 Pac teams would be weird as hell at best.  the upside would be that we could tell the SEC to stop fondling themselves all the time.  and then beat their asses in the Bowl Season (well, except for Oregon.  thanks, Oregon.  LSU, Auburn, Ohio State, Boise State, and then Boise State again the year before.  way to really hold down the fort during your big out of conference matchups, you fucking pussies.  honorary mention also to Oregon State, UCLA, and “why the hell are you in our league” Colorado.  really, awesome week 1 work, fellas.  that’s fantastic.  we all deeply appreciate it.  and SC and UW, you’re fucking LUCKY, you hear me?  pick it the fuck up so that it helps us more when we beat your little asses.)

anyway, god i hate Texas.  i mean, i fucking HATE them.  remember when Mack Brown hit the campaign trail to steal the Rose Bowl from Aaron Rodgers and Jeff MacArthur?  i’m not sure why i put that interrogative in the rhetorical–i mean, it was 2004.  my point is that i’m torn.  tons of money from the Longhorn nation would be pretty sweet–depending on the year, my hatred for the SEC is right up there with how much i hate Texas, Stanford, USC, the Big 10, Notre Dame, Miami, Florida State, and Urban Meyer, and Austin money would help us bury the SEC like the dogs they are.  oh, i forgot Bob Stoops and his “i think there might be crap in my pants” face he makes when they’re getting railed in another BCS game.

 back to what i was saying, would Texas in the Pac 16 mean that i’d have to try to root for Texas when they were playing out of conference?  i kind of like a team like 2010 UCLA showing up and knocking those fucks around in Austin randomly every few years–having three teams to hate the hell out of in my own conference might get a little overwhelming.  do you know how hard it is to root for Stanford or USC just because they happen to be playing Notre Dame or some fuck SEC team?  i don’t know how many complicated gaps like this i can negotiate.  

obviously it’d be weird to have teams in TX and OK in the “Pacific” division, but a bigger question is what the broader consequences would be.  everyone whines about how there’s no NCAA Football playoff, but what i haven’t heard anyone really talk about is how the BCS has basically paved the way for two major conferences every year.  that’s all there’s room for, dude.  you know how i know that?  because the fucking SEC gets like 4 teams into a BCS game every year while a couple of undefeated small conference schools get fucked just as bad as we did in 2004 when we had a once-in-a-generation QB on our squad and Mack Brown’s sleazy penis in our ass.  before the BCS, the Pac 10 and Big 10 were set in stone because no matter how many bribes those SEC fucks bought to win AP and USA Today poll votes to win end-of-season rankings, we still had the Rose Bowl and they could go fuck themselves.  now that those same bribed voters are the ones who get to pick Texas over a stacked 2004 Cal team that was a first and goal away from beating a #1 ranked SC in an otherwise undefeated season and send them to the Rose Bowl instead, what’s the fucking point of being in the Pac 10?  Oregon got fucked into the Holiday Bowl in 2005, a year after we did, because like us their only loss was to a #1 ranked USC and yet that wasn’t good enough to get them into the BCS.

so why not form a macro conference like the SEC?  what’s the point of holding to any sense of tradition whatsoever when there’s about a billion BCS dollars at stake?  i don’t know WHAT the hell would happen if the Pac 12 got Texas and Oklahoma on their way to the Pac 16.  what the fuck would the Big 10, Big 12 scraps, ACC, MAC, WAC, Big East and whoever the fuck else, what would they do?  they’d get steamrolled by the 16 team mega-conferences every year.  but why would TX or OK hold out and keep the Big 12 together?  the Pac 16 option makes WAY more sense.  i’d go so far to say that it’s inevitable, if not next year then maybe a few years from now, whatever.  goddamnit.  this is depressing.  fuck!  

The San Jose Flinch

My hometown. I’ve been critical of it in the past, most especially regarding the gender inequity (thanks Intel!). And I know I complain about the dangers of club hopping on First Street/Market and the dress to impress attitudes at the bar (No hoodies! No hats! No Sneakers! No blank shirts! Means no style and a lot of dudes wearing XXXL striped shirts and Doc Martins with baggy jeans). The long lines with 90% ratios of dudes to dudettes is also intimidating, not to mention the wall of girls inside that are only interested in dancing with each other or the homeboys they grew up with since birth. But the one thing I will say about San Jose that is much different than all the other places I’ve been to in the world is what I will dub the “San Jose Flinch”. Guys know what I’m talking about. The SJ Flinch occurs when you’re out at Glo, Agenda, Vault, Fahrenheit, VooDoo, Wet, Vivid, Taste or Toons (eat your heart out Vegas, the San Jo game has the one name club lingo down better than you!) and you accidentally bump someone. You (and him/her) immediately turn around and apologize. Profusely and quickly. The other situation? You both start gearing up for a beatdown. But in all likelihood, you BOTH apologize. Anyone that has spent some time in SJ knows that the likelihood of a fight is relatively high. And for those of you asking, San Jose lost its 6-year reign as the safest biggest city in America thanks to El Paso, Texas and Honolulu, Hawaii in 2007.

PS. Thanks car load of dudes for tossing a half empty can of Bud at me and my folks outside of the Children’s Discovery Museum last night. You are a scholar and a gentleman, and a wasteful drinker of watered down spirits.

9021Pho in Beverly Hills

judging by the menu, they might need more "tuong den" on that table. actually, a LOT more.

I’m not entirely against Vietnamese pho restaurants using puns in their names (Pho King in East Oakland comes to mind). And I’m not  against Vietnamese spots that don’t use accents in their menus; they confuse English-reading folks and are superfluous to folks who can read Viet, given some context of course (see 9021Pho menu). But you damn well better serve some good pho! Not that fusion crap (usually fused with more water and less MSG fish sauce). Cause this is the one dish that Americans don’t like when its watered down and prepared in a French-style bowl (ie. small portion in a giant white dish). So I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt 9021Pho in Beverly Hills, California. But judging by the Thrillist review, I have DOUBTS. EXTREME DOUBTS:

From the former chef of Michela comes this nook-like, modern casual soupery dedicated almost entirely to brothy Vietnamese deliciousness, with variations including Pho Ca (sliced tuna, onion, bean sprout, basil, and chili w/ chicken stock) and Spicy and Sour (shrimp, sole, straw mushroom, pineapple, baby corn and noodles in lemongrass, chili and tamarind broth); there’re also a few traditional entrees, like prawns wok-tossed with cilantro, garlic, and sherry vinaigrette over sliced tomatoes, and a peppercorn sauced filet mignon that’s cubed — so bring your TI-86.

Thanks RyRy.

Bay Area Diversity

My colleagues in the planning field are largely progressive and typically racially tolerant (and almost entirely white). But as Malcolm Gladwell taught us in Blink, our nonverbal cues are very telling, and I’m damn well sure I heard a hushed silence when this graph popped up at a Bay Area projections conference I attended (in a roomful of white folks):

You may think this was a graph of The Mission today, but its the Bay Area... of the FUTURE!

Behold, your Bay Area of the FUTURE! This graph does NOT reflect cities/neighborhoods like The Mission where the opposite is true.

That dip in White folks and hike in Hispanics is incredible. Right where those two lines meet is when the state of Colorado will get a huge spike in White Californians… Boulder will love those Far East Bay Pleasanton/Dublin/Concord folks pricing out Coloradans on housing…

California Apologizes for Anti-Chinese Laws

Since it ain’t never too late to say you’re sorry, the great state of California, in the spirit of recent DC apologies for injustices to Filipino World War II vets and for the institution of slavery, has apologized for the state laws enacted beginning in the Gold Rush era against Chinese Americans in California. According to, the laws “barred Chinese from owning land or property, marrying whites, working in the public sector and testifying against whites in court”. The bill recognizes and apologizes for those unjust laws and also notes the contributions of Chinese Americans for their work on the Transcontinental Railroad.


Although this is a great first step brought about by state assembly member Paul Fong, the next step, which is to have Congress apologize for the Chinese Exclusion Act, which still has xenophobic effects today and contributes to the perception of Asian Americans being aliens in our own damn country, will be a great feat to accomplish.

From Angry Asian Man.

San Francisco Jr. Realizes There are Gays in the Viet Community

Gayasians Represent!

Gayasians Represent, Represent.

Its about time.

Coming from a country that uses a French word for the term “gay” to emphasize how foreign the idea is (pe de) to having the queer community walk alongside with family members at the Lunar New York Tet Festival in San Jose is kind of a big deal. Props to the organizers, you’re doing a great job, but let’s try to beat San Francisco to the punch at some point, yah?

Asian Food Saved My Life.

A lot of people always ask what’s your “Desert Island” meal? I don’t think that’s a true indicator of your tastes, cause I can’t have a Peter Luger steak and my friend’s mom’s hot pot everyday. I think what your body won’t reject is what your real meal is. I’m talking about that moment when you’re sick as hell, back and forth from the bathroom and all your favorite foods make you want to throw up. (which is right now for me, that’s why I’m writing this).  McDonalds fries? yak, comes right back at you. Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles, you can’t even imagine the smell of maple syrup and fried food… California burrito and carne asada fries? No way, Jose. 


What you crave (and your body will only accept) is what you need. I’d like to know from you guys what your favorites are (leave a note in the comments section). As for me, its Pho (cliched, I know, but its genetic, I’m sure). But not just any Pho, it has to be Pho Tai Bo Vien (rare beef and beef balls):


Pho Tai Bo Vien. Tastes better in Viet Nam where the broth base has been simmering in bone marrow since before the Fall of Saigon.

Pho Tai Bo Vien. Tastes better in Viet Nam where the broth base has been simmering in bone marrow since before the Fall of Saigon.


Some other favorites that I need. When I’m sick as a dog, its gotta be Chao (or Congee Jook for my Chinese imperialist buddies). Its gotta be chicken or just lime and nothing else. When I’m well, and maybe hungover or tipsy, its gotta have intestines and hearts and (what the) blood clots and everything. Forreal, forreal.


Chao Ga (chicken). And its gotta be from my moms. In my own kitchen. And I gotta be in my PJs.

Chao Ga (chicken). And its gotta be from my moms. In my own kitchen. And I gotta be in my PJs.


And lastly, the ONLY other thing I can eat is Ruoc and Gio (shredded pork jerky and steamed pork sausage) and rice.


Ruoc on the left and Gio (or Cha Lua) on the right.

Ruoc on the left and Gio (or Cha Lua) on the right.


It wasn’t always this way. I use to be the kid who had my parents get me McDonalds Happy Meals before we walked into Pho restaurants. In hind sight, its hella embarrassing to know that I did that and I sure as hell wouldn’t let my future Americanized kids do that… And I used to bring ruoc sandwiches to school and trade ’em to the white kids for PB&J sandwiches (a delicacy where I was from). But you can’t escape from genetics. Cause I can’t eat anything other than Asian food when I’m craving shit or when I’m sick or drunk or hungover. In the wise words of R&B legend and other dubious fame, R. Kelly: “My mind’s tellin me no! But my body! My body’s telling me yes!”.