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

No Enclave — Emerging and Unofficial Ethnic Enclaves of Los Angeles

The Los Angeles metropolitan area is widely recognized for its diversity, something which is reflected in its many ethnic enclaves. Those ethnic enclaves include ones that have been officially recognized, as well as ones which have only been colloquially recognized, and they’ve risen and fallen on waves of immigration and assimilation. The earliest of Los … Continue reading No Enclave — Emerging and Unofficial Ethnic Enclaves of Los Angeles

Greater Streets — Los Angeles Squares, or When is a Square Not a Square?

If you ever walk, bicycle, or take public transit in Los Angeles, you’ve no doubt noticed those nearly ubiquitous tan or beige-colored signs with brown lettering, a City of Los Angeles seal, and text designating an intersection or section of road a “square.” If you’re a motorist, you may’ very well have missed them, because … Continue reading Greater Streets — Los Angeles Squares, or When is a Square Not a Square?

California Fool’s Gold — Exploring Westwood

INTRODUCTION TO WESTWOOD Westwood is a neighborhood in Los Angeles’s Westside. It’s widely known for being home to the University of California, Los Angeles although locally it’s almost equally well known for its small shopping district, Westwood Village. People who’ve lived in Los Angeles longer than I are prone to speaking about Westwood with an elegiac tone normally … Continue reading California Fool’s Gold — Exploring Westwood