Thursday, April 10, 2008

Random Blog Spotting

Have you ever clicked on the "next blog" option at the top? It gives you a random blog. I'm all about random anything. I used to love the feature on Yahoo! that you could click on and it would give you a random web page.

Most of the random blogs are in other languages. Of the ones in English, about half of them are family-oriented, like for only your family to read. I like the ones that, like mine, don't really know what is going on and just write random shit.

Here are three that I found today that I thought were insanely interesting. I'd like to give a disclaimer that, unless you're the kind of person who will run across traffic to pick up a soggy page of a 13-year-old girl's diary and enjoy reading it, these pages might be really boring. If we're like-minded, I welcome you wholeheartedly.


This one's in French, BUT OH MY GOD THIS BABY IS SO FAT!!! Her parents seem so trim. France is strange.


These people are from my hometown, and they began this blog to chronicle their adoption of a baby from China. As you might know, I tutor a lot of Asian people and I spend a lot of time talking about Korean and Japanese culture, and especially cultural differences. The tone of this blog is really simple; it all reads like the captions in a scrapbook. But what is fascinating is what they assume and what they leave out. Like they off-handedly mention visiting her town so they could learn about her culture and tell her about it. This is an obviously thoughtful and kind action, but how on earth could you tell a child about "her culture" to begin with even if you lived in the place for a year? What makes that her culture if she grows up in a completely different one? Plus, the blog concentrates on the little girl they adopt, but she has a 8 or 9 year old brother who gets these short snippets. At one point, after writing about the little girl for awhile, they say "we can't forget about Evan!" like they have to remind themselves.

Bonus: there's a serious subtext of anxiety about bonding with the adopted child.

The thing is, I totally respect these people. They've put so much of their energy, money, and heart in to doing this. And ultimately I don't really know how valuable it is to be aware of cultural differences in a situation like this. I'm not knocking them, but it is pretty damn interesting. And the SUBTEXTS! GOD!


I don't want to give this away, just read it with a depressed Eyeore voice. I totally lol-ed.

And apparently this blog format is extremely popular. I'm so lazy. Whatevuh.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

"I like a game of ping pong"


Maybe it was that the bar was over-heated
Or maybe it was because I was still sick with a cold
Or maybe it was just that I felt guilty for skipping class

BUT it is possible to get all hot and sweaty while playing ping pong.


That cross-cultural onomatopoeia prevailed and "table tennis" is the term for boring Penelopes who have clean white panties and are xenophobic.


I like turning my head to the side and showing a coy smile while I imitate my former Chinese students when I asked them what their favorite sport was. (You must draw the term out and lay on your best old-Chinese-lady accent.)

"I like a game of ping pong."

It sounds like it's straight from a Berlitz travel tape.