Nobody Drives in LA — So Why Are Our Train Stations So Crap?

There’ve recently been a couple of articles in the Los Angeles Times about the various state of local mass transit that have got me thinking. Mehmet Baker‘s “Metro is hemorrhaging riders. It needs to stop studying obvious fixes and start acting” appeared on Sunday, was good but many of the complaints voiced were the sort … Continue reading Nobody Drives in LA — So Why Are Our Train Stations So Crap?

California Fools Gold — Exploring Newport Beach

INTRODUCTION I finally got around to exploring Newport Beach. I say “finally” because that particular coastal city in South Orange County has held the top spot in the California Fool’s Gold poll for more than a year. You’d be wrong if you assumed that my procrastination has anything to do with unfortunate (but typical) Angeleño bias against Orange … Continue reading California Fools Gold — Exploring Newport Beach

California Fool’s Gold — A San Diego Neighborhoods Primer

INTRODUCTION 2019 is the sestercentennial of San Diego‘s founding. It’s also the vigintennial of my moving to Southern California — and yet, in those twenty years, I’ve probably visited San Diego no more than a dozen times. Why haven’t I visited California‘s second largest city more often? Certainly not out of any of the sort … Continue reading California Fool’s Gold — A San Diego Neighborhoods Primer

Pan-Asian Metropolis — The Art of the Benshi/弁士の芸術

From 1 March through 3 March, the Tadashi Yanai Initiative for Globalizing Japanese Humanities and the UCLA Film & Television Archive (with support from the National Film Archive of Japan) a three-day program titled “The Art of the Benshi.” Benshi (弁士; also known as katsudō-benshi/活動弁士 or katsuben/活弁) are live performers who accompanied silent films of Japan as well as … Continue reading Pan-Asian Metropolis — The Art of the Benshi/弁士の芸術

Pan-Asian Metropolis — 素食夜市小吃園遊會 Happy Lantern Green Night Market

The other day, Una and I went to the 素食夜市小吃園遊會 Happy Lantern Green Night Market — a 100% vegetarian (and mostly vegan) Taiwanese street food festival which took place in Alhambra. If that sounds on the surface impossibly niche, consider the following. Taiwan is the cradle of the night market. Taiwan is, after India, likely the second … Continue reading Pan-Asian Metropolis — 素食夜市小吃園遊會 Happy Lantern Green Night Market

No Enclave — Exploring Vietnamese Los Angeles

Metro Los Angeles is home to the largest population of Vietnamese outside of Vietnam. About two-thirds of the metropolis’s population lives in Orange County — home to the nation’s oldest and largest Little Saigon. Los Angeles County, on the other hand, has the third-largest population of Vietnamese-Americans but one which is less than half the … Continue reading No Enclave — Exploring Vietnamese Los Angeles

Pan-Asian Metropolis – Visiting Moonlight Forest

A couple of nights ago, Una and I visited Moonlight Forest, a lantern festival currently taking place Wednesday through Sunday nights at the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden. Its one of several local winter light festivals happening right now, along with Griffith Park’s LA Zoo Christmas Lights and Holiday Light Festival Train Rides, … Continue reading Pan-Asian Metropolis – Visiting Moonlight Forest

Vegetarian and Vegan Los Angeles

As far as I know, there haven’t been any comprehensive surveys of global vegetarianism and veganism. Nevertheless, it is generally accepted that India is home to the largest population and percentage of vegetarians in the world, followed by Taiwan or Israel. Vegetarianism is also popular in Austria, Australia, Brazil, and Germany. The US is not an especially vegetarian … Continue reading Vegetarian and Vegan Los Angeles

Pan-Asian Metropolis — Orange County’s Lost Chinatowns

INTRODUCTION TO ASIAN ORANGE COUNTY Today, Orange County is widely recognized for its prominent Asian-American population. There are significant numbers of of Vietnamese, Koreans, Taiwanese, Filipinos, Indians, Japanese, Cambodians, Chinese, Pakistanis, Thais, Indonesians, and Laotians living there, as well as many smaller groups. Metro Los Angeles (which includes Los Angeles and Orange counties) is in fact home … Continue reading Pan-Asian Metropolis — Orange County’s Lost Chinatowns