Thursday, February 18, 2010

public anger over movie theaters: further proof that taiwanese just can't think

recently the movie theaters in taiwan have insisted that no food be brought in from outside.and the TW public is angry over what in western countries (at least in the US) is a given.
movie theaters make MOST of their money from concessions. ticket prices by and large pay for the right to show the movie (the lease on the film roll). so it's natural that movie theaters would want you to buy their concessions.
but something bigger is happnening in taiwan, that is, the clash when class meets culture, or in this case when class meets the lack of it.
taiwanese always want things their way, be it letting their child piss on the road because they didn't want to walk 20 more steps to the restroom,or blocking traffic by running a tent party on a public street. and it's all ok, because it's the "taiwanese way". but what's worse is when taiwanese think they've gotten western culture down pat.
being a musician , i have run into the taiwanese "we know so don't tell us how" complex. the taiwanese capacity for "standard knowledge" without specific application is mind boggling. most of the people running sound systems don't know what they're doing, and are operating by second hand "everybody does it this way" information.
and if you try to point this out to them, they will brand you a "prima donna" or know it all, when actually THEY are the ones being obtuse.
i have come to the conclusion that in music at least, there are two ways to do things, the right way and the taiwanese way, and the latter is almost ALWAYS wrong.
taiwanese are like the spoiled children of a western culture. they think they know what class is but it eludes them.
i hope the movie theaters dont back down. I for one don't want to smell "stinky tofu" next to me while i'm watching Madagascar 4 or whatever.
this is one time when "power to people" has to take a back seat, because unfortunately, "the people" need to be taught what class is.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

how taiwan can ruin your health

1. air quality- i remember the first day i walked around in taipei: the whole city smelled like a gas station! there are just too many vehicles for such a crowded, damp place.

2. sweet drinks- not only the 500cc shops, but the sugary drinks at most restaurants. taiwan has a recently aquired love affair with sugar. sure it's not going to make THEM fat, but it will my half-irish, diabetes gene carrying ass.

3. cheap carboydrate bread- yes taiwan bread is yummy, but definitely NOT good for you. cheap white starch, loaded with sugar. in fact even whole wheat here is not whole. it's whole wheat ADDED to white flour.

4. too much rice- white, polished rice is loaded into "bien dang" s ( lunch boxes) because rice is cheap and filling, but the carbo ratio is totally wrong, especially for Westerners.
add to that too much salt and everything being fried in oil,and it gets yucky after awhile.

5. motherfucking stress- as a foriegner here you will have more than your share. from the occassional racist slur on the street, to bosses who want the impossible, to the threat of being beaten or run over by some idiot on the street, the pressure is always there and needs to be escaped from occassionally.
zombie students and psychotic girlfriends also add to the stress load.

6. uneven sidewalks, parked motorcycles, and sharp objects sticking out of walls- i jammed my neck back and had to see a chiroparctor because the goddam sidewalk suddenly dropped a foot!! i have also torn pants and cut myself on sharp objects sticking out of nowhere. same for parked motorcycles sandwiched together. a real NO NO when you're wearing shorts. burned my calf more than one time.

7. getting hit by a truck- a high possibility. and i guarantee you the guy who hits you will be a blue truck driving, betel nut chewing asshole (switch that to jerkwad taxi driver for taipei).

luckily taiwan has EXCELLENT health care and massage parlors offer full service.
what more can you ask for?

Thursday, February 11, 2010

why i'll never go back to traditional kung fu

in a nutshell, it was what bruce lee called "organized dispair". or rather it would be that if they had any organization, either in teaching method or in a governing body for it.
i spent 2 years in traditional wing chun, and 4 years in another style. though i learned SOMETHING in each, i never in that time was given THE SOMETHING, the keys to really understand how to use it.
that time frame was ridiculous. i can see someone spending one year learning the components of an art. the mechanics do take a while. but if after one year one cannot not even use it AT ALL.....?
of course, some taiwanese people will probably say that perhaps my teacher didn't feel i was ready, or worse, that he felt i wasn't a good enough person.
if by not good enough, they mean "not chinese enough", well i'm sorry. since when did the chinese way become the right way? are there no good people other than those who think and follow the chinese way?
and if you don't think i'm good enough, why waste my time? oh, i forgot. the fee.
then i started watching youtube for traditional kung fu vs MMA. needless to say, for all their training, chi kung, whatever, the traditionalists faired BADLY ( less than 8 seconds of badly)!! so if THAT's the result, perhaps i wasn't missing out on much after all.
also traditional kung fu is a pot of hypocrites. they talk about honor, but they really mean honor as it does right by them. a number of the people practicing kung fu in taiwan (via the temples) are pretty much hoodlums.
i have pretty much come to the conclusion that kung fu is actually a function of the temple/chinese masonic/mafia complex, and more and more come under the conviction that perhaps it is not something a person of the Christian faith should be involved in.
also during the time i was studying TCKF, my body was WILTNG AWAY!!! i was practing internal this and that, but i had NO MUSCULARITY WHATSOEVER. and i was getting fat.
the past year i have been studying with a chinese/american in wing chun. he is very modern, beleives in cross training, and actually has a CURRICULUM. there is no involvement with Daoism, temples, mafia, etc. i have been doing pushups, situps, deepknee bends, along with running, boxing class, and actually hand to hand drills in my wing chun class.
as you can guess, i'm a LOT HAPPIER. and i'm looking better. our class is enjoyable. no mysticism, just a lot of LOVE in our group.
and that's enough for me.