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Showing posts from March, 2009

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet

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I've written before about how Asians tend to overassimilate, since their ancestral cultures emphasize conformity. But of all the Asian ethnic groups in the United States, Japanese Americans are the ones who have assimilated the most. They have the greatest percentage of outmarriage of all the Asian American ethnic groups, and this is true for both men and women. Japanese Americans have married primarily white and Chinese Americans.

There are a number of reasons why their community is disappearing. Although the JA community has been in the US for a hundred years, it hasn't had a constant influx of immigrants, like the Chinese American or Filipino American communities. As a result, most Japanese Americans are third, fourth and fifth generation.

But a big factor in the assimilation of the JA community was, of course, World War II and the internment camps. Being marked as an enemy based on your eye shape had profound effects on the psyches of many Japanese Americans that have lasted…

Young at Heart, Mature in Mind

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I've been faking adulthood for 20 years. Seriously, I can't believe some of the adult stuff that I'm doing right now: owning a house, having a career, marrying my beautiful and loving wife, attending department meetings, etc. Sometimes I'm sitting in those meetings in the office, and I think to myself, "Damn, these old guys want MY opinion? Don't they know I just graduated college 16 years ago?"

The best way to be happy and wise is to be young at heart, mature in mind. This means you got to have a childlike attitude, where you're flexible, full of imagination and creativity. But you've also got to develop the skills of your mind. To do this, you have to accumulate more varied experiences, to develop your talents and your mental resiliency.

Dream like a child, focus like an adult. Some people have it the other way around: they've got the mental skills of a high school freshman who hates school, but the attitude of a crochety 74 year o…

Sibling Dynamics on the Amazing Race

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So last Sunday's Amazing Race episode was interesting. Yeah, it showed the usual breakdown of relationships under extreme duress. But this episode was interesting, because it showcased more of Tammy and Victor Jih and their slightly dysfunctional sibling dynamic. Here's a brief recap from Entertainment Weekly:

"On paper, Tammy and Victor are one of the smartest teams we've had on the race, and yet they made a huge blunder by aimlessly climbing a mountain while following the wrong markers. Victor simply refused to listen to Tammy. He'll have to change his approach pretty quickly if they want to stay in this race."

Victor was adamant that they were following the right path, while Tammy felt it was the wrong path, but just went along anyway with her brother's stupid and costly decision. They fell from a commanding first place lead to second to last place, which is really last place (since the team that comes in last place gets eliminated).

I hate to say thi…