Where Fools Fear to Tread — A Snapshot of Scotland (Glasgow)

a In the spring of 2015, Una, Leonard, and I visited Glasgow, Scotland. I know that, had I had more time, I’d’ve liked to have also visited Edinburgh, Inverness, Orkney and elsewhere. In the past, I amused myself with the idea that on my first visit to the UK I’d skip England, instead limiting my … Continue reading Where Fools Fear to Tread — A Snapshot of Scotland (Glasgow)

Where Fools Fear to Tread — A Snapshot of the Philippines (Metro Manila and the Calamian Islands)

This past June, Una and I visited the Philippines. While she was born and raised there, it was my first time in the country and only my second visit to Asia. We spent a week in Una’s homeland before taking off on the next leg of our vacation, to Korea. The following is a record of … Continue reading Where Fools Fear to Tread — A Snapshot of the Philippines (Metro Manila and the Calamian Islands)

Where Fools Fear to Tread — A Snapshot of Taiwan (Taipei & the East Coast)

MY TRIP — INTRODUCTION In August 2010 I went on a trip to Taiwan. Like most Americans, I had little knowledge of the island in East Asia. In school, we learned that Taiwan was formerly called Formosa (although I don’t believe it was mentioned by whom). Later it became Taiwan. The Nationalists (the “good guys” … Continue reading Where Fools Fear to Tread — A Snapshot of Taiwan (Taipei & the East Coast)

Mini-Mallism — Los Angeles’s Asian Malls

I assume that for most Americans, thoughts of the mall evoke the 1980s or an earlier era, when certain classes of young teenagers longed to spend their free time eating at places like Sbarro or Orange Julius, shopping at Banana Republic or the Limited, watching Hollywood blockbusters at the multiplex, and feeding tokens to machines at … Continue reading Mini-Mallism — Los Angeles’s Asian Malls

No Enclave — Exploring Laotian Los Angeles

California has by far the largest population of Laotian-Americans of any state, 58,424 as of 2010. There are large communities in both northern and southern California, with roughly 7,120 living in the Los Angeles area. There they maintain a relatively discreet profile, reflected mostly by the presence of a handful of restaurants either specializing in … Continue reading No Enclave — Exploring Laotian Los Angeles

Swinging Doors — Asian Bars of Los Angeles

I’ve heard Vietnamese and Koreans friends talk about how much Koreans and Vietnamese drink. More than once have I found myself drinking more than I should, egged on by Thai friends, Filipino family, and in one case a Japanese salaryman. No one drinks like Europeans, though, and European nations predictably occupy the top ten rankings of alcohol consumption … Continue reading Swinging Doors — Asian Bars of Los Angeles

Pan-Asian Metropolis — Southern California Night Markets

One of the great things about traveling is seeing things in other countries that it would be nice to have at home, things like arts funding, betel nut beauties, caning, compulsory voting, developed cycling infrastructure, elevenses, free state colleges, green roofs, gun control, pub culture, universal healthcare, pot cafés, salted licorice, and trains that travel faster than mobility … Continue reading Pan-Asian Metropolis — Southern California Night Markets

Pan-Asian Metropolis — Asian-Angeleno Musicians

A comprehensive playlist of the music of Los Angeles would have to include film scores, cool jazz, surf bands, frat rock, folk-rock, Sunset Strip psychedelia, Chicano soul, country rock, hardcore punk, Paisley Underground, hair metal, gangsta rap, and G-funk. Lists of performers and bands associated with Los Angeles invariably include plenty rock groups, soul singers, and rappers. Inevitably, most are … Continue reading Pan-Asian Metropolis — Asian-Angeleno Musicians

No Enclave — Exploring Hmong Los Angeles

HMONG LOS ANGELES The Hmong are a stateless people who mostly live in Laos, Thailand, and Vietnam. Approximately 281,000 Hmong lived in the US, as of the 2010 census, and the state with the largest population is California. While most California Hmong live in either Fresno or Sacramento Country, several thousand live in Southern California, … Continue reading No Enclave — Exploring Hmong Los Angeles

No Enclave — Exploring Malaysian Los Angeles

According to the 2010 census, there were 26,179 Americans of Malaysian background. Malaysian-Americans consist of people of a variety of ethnic origins, including Malay, Malaysian Chinese, Tamil, Banjar, Minangkabau, Indonesian, Iban, Filipino, Nepali, Tausūg, and Dusun. The state with the largest population of Malaysian-Americans is California; smaller populations live in New York, Texas, Illinois, Virginia, and Hawaii. In Los Angeles … Continue reading No Enclave — Exploring Malaysian Los Angeles