Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Imperfect from now on & Vancouver Eating tour

So this has to be the greatest blog publishing from me, cause I recently turned 30. so its like 1 entry for each decade, also I always hear ladies talking about how its all "downhill from 30", I can only assume they are talking about blog entries.

So here it is: the eating tour, fighting girls and overcoming ethnic diff'rences.

If you’re Asian (and you probably are), its likely you have an unhealthy appreciation for food. Every time family and friends of Asian decent come to Vancouver the “sight seeing” largely involves seeing how crap they feel after scarffing down copious amounts of food.

Aunty Corrine (not a blood relative, but if you are indeed Asian, you know everyone older than you is “uncle” this and “aunty” that) recently came to Vancouver to visit. Her son and daughter had lived with us in the past on working vacations, the daughter most recently fell in love with the food in Vancouver.

pre trip preparations were like so:

Daughter: Mom, you’re going to Vancouver?
Mother: Yeah, I’m going.
Daughter: I’m soooooo jealous..
Mother: Ok so, what should I see?
Daughter: what do you mean?
Mother: well I want to do some sight seeing.
Daughter: Mom this is Vancouver, you go to EAT!

So I had to come with the goods and I planned the following eating tour for my Aunt.

1. First evening, something easy, Congee Noodle House for some solid Chinese food and the Seabass Congee was a hit.
2. Second evening, we pull out the big guns if you love fried chicken, Phnom Penh, in Chinatown where we had the fried chicken and many other great dishes such as papaya salad and mixed noodles.
3. Post Dinner, we went to La Casa Gelato where we all sampled a crap load of ice cream and enjoyed a waffle cone and double scoop each.
4. next day, we started by having a Purdy’s ice cream bar (milk choc and almonds outside) I had to stop my aunt from getting a splinter cause she was trying not to waste even a crumb of the nuts or a sliver of chocolate.
5. Same day, we went to Paterson Restaurant in Richmond, specialty is crab and they delivered big time, I don’t even like crab but man something about the preparation at this place, they must rub it down with crack cocaine or something cause I find myself waking up sweating sometimes thinking about that crab. To be honest, every single dish I have tried here has been great but if you go and don’t get crab, you’re a fool; my aunt was literally eating the crumbs off the plate. We chased this meal with a real taro pearl milk tea from Dragon Ball on 25th.
6. Next we went to Tandoori Nights on Fraser St, it was solid Indian food, truth be told, mom thought it was a different restaurant and we meant to go to a place about a block up, still the chilli chicken, Lamb Vindaloo and mutter paneer were all good, the garlic roti was nothing amazing.
7. On the weekend we hit the Dim Sum at Golden Ocean, we had the fried shrimp on the tofu pucks, and other excellent dim sum dishes. Please note her daughter May, thought she didn’t like “Dim Sum”, cause she thought deep fried sui mai is “Dim Sum” (they sell that in some fish and chip shops in Perth and label it Dim Sim, you cant make this shit up)
8. 2nd last evening we hit Cuu Long, on knight street, this is the Vietnamese place I go to the most, we had, avocado milkshakes and other bean drinks, Lemon Grass Chicken and Pork, spicy pork noodles and soup and our favourite dish, affectionately called #38.
9. Last night, I was forcing my Aunt to have Japanese food cause she said she hated it, I knew if she has good Japanese food her mind would change. We hit Toshi on 16th waited like 40 mins for a table and it was almost like a religious experience for Aunty Corrine. We had house rolls, grilled eggplant with miso, grilled fish, spicy tuna cones and some other good shit. She was shocked at how good everything was and said that in Perth, when she tried to eat sushi it was always fishy and even the sea weed would smell. I’m sure there’s lots of good sushi places in Perth, but I can understand, if your skeptical to begin with, just a couple bad experiences will lead you to think you don’t like that type of food.

And so concludes our eating tour.

How to fight Girls

If you’re from an area east of Burnaby, sorry to inform you there will be no actual physical moves detailed here.

I have had girlfriends, my last one decided that I would be the “one” so I became a husband, but one area I suffered in during each relationship is fighting. Its not really like guys to always “bring up shit from the past” that’s kind of more of a girl thing, in fact some do it all the time, when fighting and guys don’t even really notice it. But shit, if you did it just once, probably an anvil come a flying down and smashed your stupid skull.

Seriously it always happens to me, like I get in a fight, then later I was like “SHIT she totally just brought up a bunch of shit from the past, but now I can’t say shit, because it’s in the past” I realized that man is ill-equipped to identify when something from the past has been brought up, where women have some kinda goddam sensor “beep beep opposition has deployed issues occurring on date previous to today”.

My wife told me that for some girls, accessing a memory from the past is not like a guys, when they do, they have very detailed memories of the event; also the emotions they were feeling are revisited as well, almost as if they opened a book. For guys it’s more like, “I remember that day, she ruined my awesome rib eye steak with a fight about me not being nice to her friends”.

I’m trying to develop a method to even the battle ground, just a little.

1. Listen carefully, and when you can’t handle it, pretend to be listening: this will help to contain her anger, if she thinks your not listening, you’re in trouble.
2. Remain calm; keeping your cool is like winning half the battle, also it makes agro people even more crazy ( loads of fun )
3. Take you time before you open your stupid mouth, hey man, did she just attack you based on something that happened weeks, months even years ago, instead of lashing back with that cherry you have planned, just say something to the effect of “I think we should try not to bring up issues from the past” or simply “please don’t bring up stuff from the past.”
4. Lastly, right after she brings up something from the past and you called her on it, you should bring up something from the past. Hopefully she’s so shocked at your level of alertness that she wont think to call you on it.. if she does then you should apologize, and say that her doing bringing up issues from the past upset you and your judgment was clouded.

Like all turds, this turd needs polishing, so do what works for you, but don’t be a statistic.

88 Fortune Double Happiness Smile

I have a real love-hate relationship with China, I visited Beijing a few years ago, had a great time and thought it was lots of fun, the locals I was able to communicate with were friendly and the sights were impressive. I could talk for days on the problems with China, please don’t get me started. The treatment of people who are pushing progressive movements is scary to say the least, but I'm not here to speak on those problems.

I am here today to do my fellow imports a solid and help them 1) Integrate into other countries a little better and 2) explain the subtle art of Cheese-reduction. I am an Asian man, who lived in Asia for some of his life, has uncouth relatives and has done a reasonable amount of travel, which means right out the box, I am way more tolerant of cultural differences than say, a westerner who might be grossed out by public nose picking and is afraid of women who wear SARS masks all the time.

I have a few easy to follow steps to help them integrate into western society.

The Problem: Actions that may be perfectly acceptable in some countries may not be perfectly acceptable in others. In Vietnam you can get your ears cleaned in the streets by a dude with little metal spoons and ear cleaning tools, he puts the wax on your arm to let you know how dirty your ears are.

Aid: luckily for most cultures, cultural shit is "hip" now, (if I hear another person say feng shway I'm gonna spit blood.) westerners are eating dim sum, pho, curry, samosas and consuming lemon grass chicken in record numbers, this helps cause if people don't really like you in a society, getting white devils hooked on your sweet and sour pork may help to prevent a lynching.

I started making a list of things that bugged me but, the damn list got so damn long so I’m working on just a handful.

So here it is, a few pointers to help reduce your cheese factor and promote your integration:
1. Grooming in public: Nose/ear picking, tooth picking, finger and toe nail cutting is best when its not in a food place, public transport, I can recall a lady on a table close to mine cutting her nails once, not cool. I did think this was an “asian” thing, but I just had a meeting where a caucasian import was cutting his toe nails at the meeting, gross. Lets just say, no matter where you come from cut your nails responsibly.
2. Translations losing meaning, everyone in Vancouver knows about Pho Bich Nga, perfect example of a wholesome Vietnamese name getting lost in translation. Say you open a restaurant maybe its a good idea to ask around if the name is good and perhaps think of it in both languages before you commit.
3. Inside Vs Outside Voice: Cell Phones are remarkably good at transmitting your voice without you yelling into it and unless the other party is going deaf you really have no reason to talk that loud. I have literally hit the deck, cause someone walking close to me spoke so loud, I actually thought I was back in Nam.
4. At least attempt to obey driving laws: You know as well as I do that you can drive over that double line and maybe turning 3 lanes of traffic to 5 lanes is just good math, but if people aren't all doing it you are officially a hazard on the road.
5. Spitting: I love to spit as much as the next man, but exercise a little consideration, no one wants to tread in your massive gob of spit or be involved in a near miss or worse yet, a bulls eye.
6. Hair that makes you look crazy: My uncle in Malaysia has this mole on his face and this one really long hair coming out of it.. I asked him as a kid about that he told me it was “wisdom”; I think he said the same thing about copious amounts of nose hair. Mayhaps in Malaysia, a single thick hair running from your nose to your knees may make you as cool as a boy band, but out here, not so much.

So there you have it, this list could have easily been 1-100 but, really no one wants to read all that and also you can probably take the core ideas from this and just run with it.