Now is the time at AsiaPundit when we dance.:
I’ve wanted to bring you examples of Xinjiang’s pop culture for some time, but never got around to setting it up. That’s all in the past, though, now that I’m signed up for Google Video. So… ladies and gentlemen, without further ado, let me introduce to you the group that’s been bringing down the house in Uyghur discos all over Xinjiang, all the way from Uzbekistan, the beautiful girls of [Insert Band Name Here].
In the day job, AsiaPundit covers both real estate and automobiles. While the Shanghai property market can be fascinating, there is always something a bit more appealing about automotive events. That said, AP is pleased that the bursting of the property bubble may lead to more interesting property market events.:
Today on the Netease BBS: The 8th annual Shanghai Spring Real Estate Market, held last week at the Shanghai Exhibition Center, one-upped the booth babes of other trade shows with a real estate girl. As the BBS poster says (rough translation):
This is something that hasn’t been seen before in real estate fairs…Car shows have “car models,” sports events have “babes,” but having a female model stripped bare in this kind of an environment, will using these methods really sell real estate?
Commentators weigh in all sides:
“Whoever marries this woman is an idiot.”
“This is totally normal.”
“This is an artistic experience and they’re going to make a lot of money!”
“Are they selling real estate or sex?”
Technorati Tags: asia, china, east asia, economy, money, northeast asia
Noodlepie has a ranking of Vietnam’s 18 top soft drinks. AsiaPundit endorses the number-four ranking soursop juice and regrets that he has not had access to soursop juice since leaving Southeast Asia (soursop mixes very, very, well with gin.).
Beverage: Nuoc Mang Cau/Guanabana Juice (Soursop Juice)
Ingredients: Water, 35% guanabana (soursop juice), sugar, citric acid
Appearance: Ooh… this chap looks like a ready to go Ricard only with a more viscous body. I like.
Aroma: I’m getting a 1970’s punk-era cornershop sweetshop in Macclesfield, shelves behind the counter stacked with sweet jars. One kid in red bondage trousers is ordering a quarter of rhubarb & custards while his accomplice, decked out in a Siouxsie and the Banshees Happy House t-shirt, is stealthily nicking a bag of fizzbombs, a sherbert fountain and a pack of Chocolate flavoured HubbaBubba bubblegum.
Taste: Sits squarely in sweet territory, but fruity, syrupy sweet, not over sacharine yukko, barf, barf, sweet. The sheer thickness of the liquid is slightly off-putting. This might work better diluted with water, but it’s the fruitiest quaff I’ve sampled thus far.
If this drink were a politician it would be… Kenneth Baker. A bit slimey.
Our survey said… 7 out of 10 points. That’s 6 points for the promised-on-the-label 35% fruit goodness in a can and 0.5 bonus points because the name guanabana sounds like birdshit banana. I’ll award a further 0.5 points as, by rights, soursop should be dictionary defined as:
Soursop - noun, derogative 1. That filthy soursop from Accounts stank the whole bleedin’ place out. Someone who has just farted long and loud and without apology mid-way through an important meeting to discuss the relocation plans of a medium sized, Norwich-based, IT Consultancy. Non-farters present are commonly observed shuffling photocopied agendas, fondling cufflinks and checking PDAs. The soursop remains placid with a stoney expression that belies an inner feeling of immense relief.
Cost: 3,600VD or sod all.
Check out the numbers 18, 17, 16, 15, 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4 (again), 3, 2, 1.
Technorati Tags: asia, east asia, vietnam, southeast asia
Via Variety’s Asian film blog Kaiju Shakedown, a fascinating look at Malaysia’s censors at work.:
No one really plans on becoming a movie censor. Maggie (not her real name) left Malaysia to attend graduate school in the U.K. She returned to Malaysia to become a university professor but unable to find work she wound up at one of Malaysia’s few private television companies, sitting in a windowless room and watching movies. She’s not the official in-house censor, but her job is to make sure that Muslims in these films are not shown doing “haram” things: drinking, smoking, or encountering pork products. She has generated hundreds of pages of notes that read: “Scene in which the Koran is discussed in relation to belief in the supernatural needs to be further looked into.” When she started she was promised some training, but a year later none has materialized. It’s just her and a VCR locked away in a tiny office.
This is an entirely voluntary project by her television network, which wants to preemptively remove anything that might upset government agencies. This kind of self-imposed sensitivity is crucial in Muslim-majority, multi-ethnic Malaysia, but, at times, it can seem a bit over-zealous. If a movie shows a Muslim girl walking into a restaurant with roast pork hanging in the window the scene is cut in order to avoid offending Muslims.
Technorati Tags: asia, censorship, east asia, malaysia, southeast asia
Via Gizmodo, a Singapore-developed tech product that is far more useful than the remote chicken hugging device that the Lion City earlier developed. Here is a pocket lie detector called “the DeFIBulator.“:
There are two ways to describe the DeFIBulator: a portable lie detector, if you’re feeling sensational, or a portable tension detector, if you’re feeling honest. Developed in Singapore, it purports to measure varying degrees of vibration in someone’s voice to 65% accuracy.
Technorati Tags: asia, east asia, singapore, southeast asia
Also via Global Voices, Enda Nasution contributes an item on the protests against Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, the growing anti-Singapore sentiment and the opposition’s refusal to participate in the snap elections.:
Does general election ensured a truly democratic government? Is it a necessity? Or an election could come down to a level of merely a tool to keep certain people in power?
The answer, when in come to current political crisis in Thailand might be difficult, and it depends on which side are you on.
Technorati Tags: asia, east asia, northeast asia, thailand, southeast asia
AsiaPundit will agree with the guys at the Shanghaiist that "Snatch" is a terrible name for a nightclub.
And further, in regards to the club’s public relations - which has allegedly booked Mike Tyson for the opening event - AP will agree with Dan: "if he is coming, they are awful PR people. if he isn’t, they are awesome."
If no news is bad news, then the Snatch PR team had done a decent job of building up publicity for the club’s opening - though not much for its reputation - by getting relatively high-profile blogs to offer free advertising.
The club’s site is here, including annoying music, pop-ups and a Mike Tyson video.
Technorati Tags: asia, china, east asia, northeast asia
AsiaPundit is well out of his depth when it comes to Philippine politics, but Connie Veneracion at Global Voices has a useful summary of the issues - and the complexities - of the situation since the lifting of Proclamation 1017.
For those those who believe that a mere change in leadership will solve the country’s problems–the turmoil will end when Gloria Arroyo leaves Malacañang, voluntarily or by force. Luis Teodoro writes about a proposal by Senator Edgardo Angara who thinks there is a legal way of calling for snap elections. The Black and White Movement staged another “mass action” on Friday, March 24th, which the police forces did not even monitor–it was a picture taking event. Caffeine Sparks laments that the group’s latest slogan, Patalsikin na! Now na!, is “so…text message-y, as if it were almost a joke.” Interestingly enough, it is rather reminiscent of the burgis (bourgeois) practice of mixing Tagalog and English made (in)famous by colegialas in the 1970s.
For those who view the Philippines’ problems as mere manifestations of a deeper social and cultural malaise, there is no quick solution. Newbie blogger Arnel Endrinal points to 10 problems that have not been solved through the past five administrations, including the current one. Class interests make it difficult to draw up any program that will be acceptable to all–if the majority really cares about solutions at all. As Luis Teodoro sums it up–the middle class and the poor are equally self-centered. The middle class is too concerned with maintaining its lifestyle; the poor is “too focused on survival to care.”
The tension between the government and the media has not abated. Danny Arao writes about an urgent motion filed by the Free Legal Assistance Group (FLAG), a human rights lawyers’ group, for a speedy resolution of a petition filed earlier this month that stems from a pronouncement by National Telecommunications Commission head Ronald Solis to the effect that government can legally impose guidelines on broadcast news media.
Also of interest, Jove Francisco speculates on whether the casual dress of the Philippine presidential press corps says something about the press, or about Arroyo.:
Journalists assigned to the palace wearing jeans, trendy shirts and non-leather footwear is now common sight around Malacanang, specifically inside the Kalayaan Hall Press Working Area (PWA).
I’m one of those reporters who wear MAONG at least once or twice a week. (Ahem, ang palusot ko, lagi naming may formal wear ako sa crew cab ng team ko, just in case!) (Saka lagi naming sinusundan si PGMA sa mga rugged areas)
Now, why is this trend happening samantalang two administrations ago, taboo yan?
The answer came out during the meeting this afternoon.
Most reporters covering the presidential beat do not bother to “dress for respect” anymore because most of the main palace activities of the president are “restricted” in nature naman.
If not for “photo-opp only”, “in house coverage only”.
And there’s more: as time goes by the media’s access to President Arroyo has turned from minimum to nil. She hates ambush interviews. She tapes her declarations inside the blue room, closed door. She holds live round table broadcasts inside the blue room, but the reporters are now relegated to “usis”. Parang mga tao sa harap ng buffet table tapos biglang aalisin ang inaabangang pagkain. She leaves right after her broadcast, di siya pwede kausapin. Unlike before, the MPC can’t go inside the main palace ng basta basta to stake out for cabinet officials under the huge trees there. Soon, we will be transferred to the New Executive Building.
Technorati Tags: asia, east asia, southeast asia, philippines
Taiwan’s emKid discovers that you can get your very own Betelnut Beauty models at Blockbuster!
Technorati Tags: asia, east asia, northeast asia, taiwan, betelnut beauties
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Mao: The Unknown Story - by Jung Chang and Jon Halliday:
A controversial and damning biography of the Helmsman.
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