#SorryAsianParents

A goofy kid just trying to make sense of the world while trying to be Asian American


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Stage Name Comedy #02: Mental Health, Substance Abuse, and 3*tt Stuff

This is a quick video, I guess 40 min is quick, between Seth and I. The tone is a bit more serious than we intended due to the subject matter. We start off the convo with male anal foreplay and end it with a bright note about mental disorders and substance abuse. I want to remind everyone we’re not doctors so we may get some details wrong and we’re not giving anyone advice about anything. We are just talking about our experiences with alcohol, depression, social pressure on how to handle our emotions as a “man” and how I’ve experienced difficulty coming to terms with my *shudders in my computer chair* feelings as an Asian American male. I also apologize for my pj’s and shitty Internet connection.

Also, why does YouTube new uploading program kinda suck?


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Stage Name Comedy Ep.00

So my buddy, Seth Austin, and I started a YouTube channel for vidcasting. It’s called Stage Name Comedy. We’re just some wannabe entertainers with our friends giving our unqualified opinions on current events or whatever else we find funny. This was just a mic check and testing out our format. The next recording I’m deff going to have better equipment.

Everything here is just for laughs and I’ll prob turn my lengthy blog post into video as well. We’re probably gonna make some enemies but I guess enjoy?

 

Well, this is two average joes giving our first unqualified opinion on interracial marriages, different levels of Karens, what two unemployed dreamers in La La Land have been doing, and the economy reopening up. Everything is meant to be jokes and fun so sorry if we offend, we did not mean


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Remote Learning Isn’t Working Karen!

***Names have been changed with respect to my friends.***

In the recent wake of the Coronavirus pandemic, American educators are scrambling to figure out a new normal as campuses prepare to reopen in August. In a virtual meeting, California State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond said it will be up to school districts to continue online instruction or return to in-person classes, or perhaps a combination of both. Though, if educators are going to continue with remote learning or a hybrid, we probably have to address some of the tomfoolery caused by this “solution.”

For instance, it seems like remote learning was only really beneficial for more affluent schools/students. (And, let’s be real here, rich kids are probably going to Lori Loughlin their way to college anyways.) But for everyone else, online education kinda sucks. The only finite thing we’ve learned from this byzantine experiment to save our fragile American education system was that both teachers and students were overwhelmed by the complications exacerbated by remote learning.

“I think the world needs to see that the teachers are breaking,” Jessica Lifshitz, Northbrook, Ill, wrote. What was meant to be a solution has only been a shower of tears for this 5th-grade teacher. The shift to virtual learning has put a tremendous strain on Lifshitz’s professional and personal life. In spite of her best ability to respond to an ever-growing list of requests from administrators, parents are blaming her and her peers for their child’s lackluster performance on social media. “And then yet somehow, we are made to feel, by the world, that it is still not enough.”

Talk about kicking a horse while it’s down. Needless to say, the transition was a mess. For real, for real, the Department of Education’s hasty-remote-learning-plan was just a fluffer for pissed off parents with no real end game. Thank you, Betsy. 

“It was just so clear that our school system had no real plans for the pandemic or how to roll out virtual learning at all,” Annie Tan told The New Republic. “Not that anyone expected any of this to happen, but to have no contingency at all and then to shift the burden to educators is demeaning and demoralizing.” 

In the midst of checking up with her students and their parents, the 5th-grade teacher from Brooklyn had to quickly learn the new software while simultaneously showing her students how to use it. “So because none of us teachers had ever used Google Classroom, as we were calling up students’ parents and checking in, we were also learning the system ourselves.” Again, remote learning wasn’t a practical solution for Tan; it was just another thing to worry about. 

A vital reason why Tan’s students had a hard time doing online assignments is because some of them actually didn’t even have the essential hardware to do the online assignments. Remote learning doesn’t work, if them kids can’t do the assignments! And when Tan put in the request for devices from the DoE, she had to wait over a month for them to arrive. “It was just crazy,” she said, which is probably a gross understatement. 

One would think technology shouldn’t have been a problem, right? Compared to when I was a teen, growing up having to remember phone numbers because I didn’t have a freakin PAGER, these kids should have been loaded with tech! 

But nope!

How can this be? This is America, we’re a first world country. We should be trying to tackle first world problems like picking the right Instagram filter or what to order off Uber Eats. Despite the recent plague of TikTok videos, a surprising number of American students don’t have sufficient access to technology. (Unlike those tech-savvy Japanese kids who gots giant robots and shit!) 

James P. Steyer, CEO of Common Sense, told USA Today that roughly about 12 million low-income and rural-based kids do not have adequate access to high-speed internet and modern devices. “Now that most American school kids must learn from home because of COVID-19, it is an even bigger problem,” he said. So if you’re poor or live in the middle of nowhere, you’re probably gonna have a hard time learning remotely.

But for Lifshitz and her students, their struggle with remote learning is much more than a technology problem. “I watched as my fellow teachers began to reveal the cracks that we had all been trying so desperately trying to cover up.”  

I believe the cracks she mentioned are about the learning inequalities between affluent and at-risk students. Lifshitz doesn’t outright say it, but, like how a televangelist feels an invisible holy spirit during a Sunday broadcast, I feel it. (I’m not trying to knock religion, but I feel some sort of fire when I see those saved jumping around after being touched by a preacher.) If you don’t know what I’m talking about, watch the movie Freedom Writers, or just check out the “Nice White Lady” sketch by MADtv on YouTube. Oh, and I also grew up poor and went to public school. 

But don’t just take my word for it. 

“The messy transition to remote learning in America’s K-12 education system as a result of COVID-19 pandemic has been marked by glaring disparities among schools,” Benjamin Herold wrote in Education Week. His piece reviewed a survey done by the EdWeek Research Center about inequalities within remote learning during the Coronavirus pandemic. Check it out, it has some sweet pictures of some sexy, sexy charts.   

Herold claimed “the most significant gaps between the country’s poorest and wealthiest schools” are “around access to basic technology and live remote instruction.” Basically, if you or your school have money, then you’re going to have a better chance with remote academics than poor people. “As it’s done with the country’s health care system, economy, and social safety net, the pandemic is exposing . . . the deep inequities that have long shaped American public education.”

*Cough* Aunt Becky and the college admissions scandal *Cough* 

Herold did point out that teachers in lower-income schools were more likely to contact their students and have a more creative curriculum. Like Dave Chapelle said, you better learn how to dance or something. So, good luck?

To be honest, I didn’t even think about how teachers felt during this pandemic until I came across Lifshitz’s blog. Everyone whom I’ve talked to assume that teachers have it good right now with remote learning since they are employed and working from home. But after speaking with my friend about her online teaching experience, I learned that it was quite the opposite.

“Yeah, it’s insane,” NorCal told me. “This huge equity problem has always been there, but this time it’s like, IDK, shooting at it point-blank.” So despite being in different states, these three teachers are having the same problems with remote learning. “It’s going to take years for us to recover.”

It’s a tale as old as time: poor kids learn bad, school hard. Growing up, the pressure to do well in school sometimes psyche me out. So it’s not surprising that these students, who are having a hard time with remote learning, are skipping online instructions.

According to a poll of 849 teenagers by Common Sense Media, a whopping 4 out of 10 students said they didn’t even bother with remote learning. Ditching class isn’t something new, but with modern problems, students are using modern solutions. 

“The absence rate appears particularly high in schools with many low-income students, whose access to home computers and internet connections can be spotty,” Dana Goldstein, Adam Popescu, and Nikole Hannah-Jones wrote in The New York Times. “Some teachers report that fewer than half of their students are regularly participating.” Researchers fear some students might be forced to repeat a grade or be pushed to the next degree prematurely if they do not participate with remote learning. 

Yeah, I screenshot this. I stand by what I did.

Took me 6 years to graduate . . . and yes, I ripped this off the Internet since I couldn’t afford to pay for the picture at the time . . . and yes, I know that’s a stupid face

Though attendance might not be enough if students are distracted during an online lecture. “You just can’t teach students who have their mics and screens off,” NorCal said. Remote learning just becomes the Judge Judy students put on in the background just to fulfill an attendance requirement. The lack of mental focus can affect a student’s motivation to learn and complete assignments. 

“I have 90 students; from each class, about 3-4 don’t look at the weekly overview of assignments that have the directions and resources like videos, etc. But you can tell that more don’t watch the videos from the type of things they ask.”

“The videos are 5 minutes and take me all day to make. It’s just a lot of f**king work, and I’m going insane,” NorCal said. Teachers put in a lot of hard work to ensure students have the right tools to learn remotely. So when a student doesn’t even attempt to use the materials created, it can affect a teachers’ motivation. “And I don’t even get the reward of seeing my students.” 

“They would be like ‘I’m struggling with this,’ and I would ask them if they watched the video,” NorCal said. “Typically, they would say no, and then I would tell them to watch the video and then get back to me. After that, they would magically do the assignment.”

 “They have an hour of work. If it looks like the students tried, then awesome. Done. It depends on the age.” NorCal said that some of her students ask questions as a means of encouragement, a little nudge, to get started on assignments. “Kids are dependent on teachers, yes. I get a lot of confirmation questions where they ‘ask’ questions like that. And I’m happy to be like ‘Yes, that’s right.'” This human relationship between a teacher and student isn’t as accessible with remote learning.

Another friend of mine, Cali, also believes remote learning is detrimental to a student’s motivation. “It makes motivating students to maintain their work ethic from a distance difficult,” he said. “I’d love to be able to interact with my students, but because of privacy laws, our district can only allow one-way communication (i.e., post a video to Google Classroom).”

According to the EdWeek survey, the social aspect of schooling is beneficial and can even help kids be more mentally present. “For many children, under many circumstances, the chance to talk with a teacher and see friends and receive personal support for social-emotional concerns remains fundamental to what school is all about,” Herold wrote. Seeing your friends on a computer screen or emailing your teacher might emulate that feeling but will always fall short. 

“I do miss being in school,” Kayden, a student, told me. “Having someone teaching you is easier than randomly doing it at home. Plus, I can’t see all those loud people that annoy me but are still my friends.”

Students in the Common Sense poll said they have a hard time focusing on school because they are worried about the coronavirus pandemic. 4 out of 5 teens said they have been closely following the news. More than 60% said they are afraid of contracting the virus or someone in their family will be exposed to it (which might affect their family’s income). 

Unsurprising, at-risk students or teenagers of color who took the poll said they are more likely to be worried about the pandemic. I understand if the last thing you want to do, when you’re a hormonal imbalance teenager feeling “more lonely than usual,” are some online classes and just want to post sad kitty memes. I do it all the time.

An Insider piece slyly suggested that schools should actually abandon the idea of remote learning since it may cause unwanted stress. “Many parents say they’re more concerned about the consequences of pushing their children too hard.” The author believed this pandemic could be a chance for students to relax and be kids. Schools out, baby. 

The report featured a career teacher, Christine Tyler, who is allowing her two sons to play Dungeons and Dragons with friends on Zoom. They are also learning Japanese and analyzing the stock market on their own time. Another parent, Andrea Pinkus, said that instead of fighting with her son (who has ADHD) and jeopardizing their family’s mental health, she rather skip the home school thing altogether and focus more on family time. 

These parents and teachers are just saying the hell with it. But what about the kids who can just throw their hands in the air like they just don’t care? What about the kids who don’t need to roleplay Dungeons and Dragons because their lives don’t need any more fantasy to raise the stakes since failing primary education is already stressful enough? 

Oh snaps, here’s where we can see some of that disparity of learning inequalities between at-risk and affluent students everyone’s been talking about. I’m not trying to bash these parents; I’m just trying to look at this from all POV.

Compared to the students like the ones in the Insider piece, some students don’t have the luxury of having a parent working from home or learning Japanese when they got other shit to worry about! At-risk students don’t have the privilege to opt-out of remote learning since missing school can negatively affect their academic future. 

“It’s the same story,” African-American studies professor at UC Berkeley, Janelle Scott said in the EdWeek Survey. “Districts with more resources are likely going to be able to avail themselves of higher-quality instruction, and higher-income families are going to be much better positioned to support [remote] learning than less-resourced families who don’t have the privilege of staying at home.”

Also, only 18% of private school students reported skipping class in the Common Sense poll. Correlation? Naw, probably not.

“I see that in my own classes,” NorCal said. “Little boys are especially having problems with remote learning. Most of my [absent] kids are either ESL or little boys who just can’t time manage and do the work on their own.” On the plus side, she mentioned that her ESL families tend to spend more time with each other, especially Latinx girls. “In my ESL families, they are helping out their family while trying to do school work.” This is also reflected in the Common Sense poll “They are also overwhelmed and sad,” she said of her students.

Of course, educators only know what students and parents tell them. “Just yesterday, I was helping a girl who struggles with one-on-one live teaching, and I wondered why she hadn’t finished something,” NorCal said. “And her mom called me to tell me she was crying and couldn’t meet.” Without knowing for a definite fact what a students’ home situation is like, teachers can only try to provide the tools and hope for the best. “I don’t think she’s being abused. But obviously, she can’t handle the modified work. But in the end, I don’t know.”

No matter how available teachers are for their students, parents play a critical role in making remote learning a success. Unfortunately, some parents had a hard time teaching their kids because they are unfamiliar with the material or cannot use the tech. 

“Meanwhile, distance learning requires a lot from parents,” Anna North wrote for VOX. “Who have to make sure that kids have the tools they need, are using them correctly, and then help them stay on task and complete assignments in the absence of face-to-face contact with teachers and other school staff.” She also pointed out that some lower-income families had to share tech or were limited in areas within their homes suitable for studying.

ESL parents have it rough, but some parents who can speak English aren’t even trying to teach their kids. “With the school, things didn’t work. Nothing worked!” Jerry, 44, told N.Y. Post. “They were supposed to set up online classes, but it didn’t work. We don’t know what to do.” 

“Parents, including myself, are incredibly frustrated with the district’s lack of leadership in providing our children with adequate distance learning opportunities,” Bay Area parent Shanna Abeloff told the SFGate. “We are also incredibly frustrated with Rooftop’s lack of leadership in this arena as well. Our principals have not required our teachers to provide consistent, constructive work for our kids. “

I understand that not every parent wants to feel ill-equipped to teach their kids, but there is a sense of obligation to be, you know, a parent. Jokes. My father taught me every day when he was finished with work, even though it came with a backhand threat. Also jokes. Kinda.

Cali also had a hard time communicating with parents. “I can personally message them, and do. But so few choose to communicate regularly.” Without an open forum of communication, teachers cannot help plan their students’ success if they aren’t doing the remote learning. “It’d be great if more parents actually became parents during this time.” Parents need to have the teachers back and re-enforcing what the teachers are assigning or else nothing gets done! “The reality is that the majority of students sit at home and play video games/watch tv/listen to music. I do try and encourage my students to read every day, though.”

“Basically, parents want more and more. And I feel like nothing is ever enough.” NorCal spoke of her frustration with Chads and Karens. “Basically, I don’t want to deal with parents unless I have to.” She told me how some parents can be confrontational if they believe a teacher is giving them bad news about their child. “It’s sensitive to be told that your kid is struggling.” She also warns the possibility of parents hurting their kids or shifting the blame on you. 

NorCal gave me an example of a prissy comment a parent has said: “The work is boring and not good enough to keep my kid engaged.”

None of the educators I’ve spoken to said this, but some parents can be a bag of dicks. I know it’s not their intention to take their aggression out on teachers, but damn. Take some responsibility for your kids’ education, yo. To be fair, not all parents are dicks. The majority of them are appreciative, like the ones in this BoardPanda post.

 CNN reported how some young teachers are afraid of being fired after the wake of remote learning. “Oh, for sure, that’s gonna happen,” NorCal said. “There’s not enough money now. Budget cuts are def coming everywhere.” Her job is secured next year, but after that, she doesn’t know. It was hard to hear how someone with so much passion for teaching is shafted by the current model of online education. 

“Ah, man, I’m sorry. You just made me realize I might get fired. I don’t have tenure,” NorCal couldn’t help but get emotional when she spoke of the possibility of getting fired post-Rona. “My position was supposed to go into tenure after next year. But if they do decide to let go of teachers, I will go. It’s okay! Who knows?!” 

Recently, the U.S. government had approved $31 billion in funding for public schools. But I think the problems exposed by remote learning can’t be solved by just throwing money at it, hoping it crawls back into its troll hole.

Lifshitz suggested that educators must have a difficult conversation with parents and students to better understand the situation and make better decisions. “Complex problems cannot be solved by simple rules and mandates,” she said.

Tan also believed the conversation to reopen schools should include teachers.  She said teachers were not “interviewed about how we thought remote learning should go,” but they are still the ones “rolling it out.” She is tired of how “Teachers are constantly left out of education policy and of making decisions about” on how to educate their students.

So, what have we learned about remote learning from the past few months? Teachers are crying, students are just mentally checking out because, believe it or not, they are emotionally intelligent, and parents are pissed. On top of that, people might get fired next year. Truth be told, remote learning has been nothing more than a digital band-aid the Department of Education used to reassure parents that their child will still receive their tax-paid-underfunded-public education. 

I don’t know how to fix the American Education system if remote learning is still around when school opens. But I do know that it’s not the Flex Tape solution many would hope. I could repeat what Lifshiz, Tan, NorCal, or Cali have said, but at this point, I would just be a broken record. Maybe we should pay teachers more? Whatever, I’ll just leave you with some words from NorCal, “We’re [teachers] just sad and upset; I cry almost every day.”

PS: Here’s a funny rap video to end this post on a light note.


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Reopening The Economy During The Rona: The advice of medical professionals or a fresh haircut, what’s more important?

 

***DISCLAIMER*** I want to say that before you read this thing, just take it with a grain of salt. I’m not an expert in health or economics; I’m just a guy stuck in quarantine with a lot of time. These are just my opinions and you should live your life how you want to . . . well, only if you don’t harm anyone by coughing on ’em. Man, I have so many feelings. ***DISCLAIMER***

Coronavirus. It’s still happening. State governors are trying to manage the number of new cases, flattening the curve, by implementing “social distancing” rules. Unfortunately, this controversial method has caused many citizens to lose their jobs, hurting the American economy. Boy, I would hate to be one of those “credible” news sources and government officials who publicly made comments downplaying the Rona . . . Huh? What do you mean Fox is trying to change their Coronavirus coverage history? And what? Those government officials actually profited off the Rona by selling a bunch of their stocks right before everything came crashing down?

L.O.L., almost had me there. Wait, that actually happened?

Oh, moving on, I guess.  

After a few weeks of cabin fever, some people have had enough! Across the nation, a mixed bag of the unemployed, racists, and Karens have gathered at their city halls to protest “Shelter in Place” laws to reopen the economy. Despite the warnings of many health officials (and lives lost), the protesters believe their financial well being is more important than the threat of a pandemic.

With more than 26.5 million Americans filing for unemployment insurance, it’s hard not to empathize with their economic concern. But if we were to go back to work, we have to consider what’s more important: the American economy or the potential lives that might be lost from reopening too soon? yup, priorities

Sad to say, they do have a valid argument. Then again, there are those assholes who want to reopen because they want a fucking haircut. These shallow reasons are disrespectful to medical professionals and to the lives of those this virus has affected or taken. There’s no reason to tell those who have put their lives on the line to go fuck themselves because you want to go golfing.

Putting economic fears aside, protesters often support their reopen agenda by claiming that the coronavirus has a “low death rate” when compared to the flu.

According to Live Science, this statement might be false: “Though the death rate for COVID-19 is unclear, most research suggests it is higher than that of the seasonal flu.” When compared to the 0.1% death rate of the common flu, the death rate of COVID-19 is almost 10 times more. 

“Since this disease is caused by a new virus, people do not have immunity and a vaccine may be many months away,” Lisa Lockerd Maragakis, M.D., M.P.H., senior director of infection prevention at John Hopkins wrote. In a review, she suggests how some cases of COVID-19 can be more fatal than the flu. “But at present, it [mortality rate] is thought to be higher than that of most strains of the flu.”

The National Review also reported that 34,200 Americans died from the flu in 2018-19. As of right now, the number of coronavirus deaths is well past 50k. Soooooo, yeah.

In spite of science, many radical news sources (and unfortunately the president) still preach how the “flu is deadlier than the Rona.” But hey! What do these scientists doing clinical research know? Facts aren’t important if you have the power of Christ on your side. You know what spreads faster than this “Chinese Virus”? Misinformation!

I can’t believe I have to say this: FACEBOOK IS NOT A NEWS SOURCE! It’s the cesspool of information. An alarming 62% of Americans get their news from Facebook and other social media platforms

 

While Rona Deniers echoed about “low death rates” on social media, doctors and nurses in New York were scrambling to store their “low death rates” in freezer trucks. It’s easy to forget how each tally of death used to be a living person when you’re throwing numbers around.

Dr. Colleen Smith felt how human the rising death rates in Queens can be. She said the medical staff at Elmhurst Hospital struggled without help from the federal government. She expressed her concerns about the availability of beds and the risk of medical professionals being exposed to a virus they have yet to understand. But, whatever, it’s her job and what happens in N.Y. doesn’t affect small grassroots towns. Right?

Melissa Steiner, an I.C.U. nurse in Michigan, described her first day in the pandemic as “working in a war zone.” In her video, she broke down in tears as she recounted how the overwhelmed staff had to make do with limited supplies. But since the number of cases has gone down, she shouldn’t have to worry about having another horrific 13-hour shift. Right?

Some protesters are saying that “people are going to die anyway, so we should just reopen the economy.” I’m sure Keiko Neutz’s family (a family who had to say their goodbyes through a series of video chats) would think sacrificing a few lives just so some people can have a bowling night would be ok. Right?

Muhammad Siyab Panhwar (a cardiologist in Louisiana who watched his patients die) and Calvin Sun (an emergency physician in N.Y. who is frustrated with how the federal government handled the pandemic) should be used to telling family members their loved ones died from the Rona by now. Right?

Wrong! Mother fucker! *You have to read that in a Samual L. Jackson voice*

The increasing number of angry protesters has started to interfere with many medical professional’s jobs.

“It’s unfair for the people who have to go to work, every single day, especially at the hospitals,” James Smith, an employee for Sparrow Hospital in Lansing, MI, said in a viral rant. He is frustrated because his ambulance was blocked by the protester’s cars during an emergency. “If y’all don’t take your asses home, this is what I’m mad about. Y’all are idiots. I can’t do my job.”

Photographer Alyson McClaran captured two people in Denver wearing scrubs counter-protesting the reopening protesters who were protesting the government “Shelter in Place” law with a protest of their own by blocking the road. Boy, that’s a handful to say. One of the counter-protesters told Westword that her name is Jo and is a physician assistant. In an interview with TIME, McClaran said she “[believes] they were health care workers.”  

A scrub is a guy that can’t get no love from me Hanging out the passenger side of his best friend’s ride

But it seems as if in the midst of all this tension, protesters have started to harass nurses. In one of McClaran’s photos, the male counter-protester was told to “go back to China” by a woman leaning out of her truck. Real original. 

“We’re trying to do the right thing, and we don’t need to get attacked,” a nurse said in a video by NowThis Politics, “it’s not right to get attacked.” The video shows protesters shouting obscenities at nurses who are counter-protesting the reopening rallies.

 

 

“It really feels like a slap in the face to medical workers,” Alexis, a nurse from Denver, said. “I don’t want to be stuck in the house either, but that’s not the point.” It boggles my mind how some protesters would stoop so low by trying to discredit these nurses who are on a suicide mission to protect their ungrateful asses.

“And they are saying to open P.A., with no testing, it’s like they, they don’t care about life,” a nurse from Harrisburg cried when she found out people were protesting to reopen P.A. “They don’t care about the people around them and the people they love. I care about the people.”

 

Sarcasm aside, I want this virus to end, too. I’m going crazy. I want to do hoodrat things with my friends. But after hearing all these medical professionals’ emotional experiences, it makes me question what’s really important. Just look at this Saudi doctor who broke down in tears when his son tries for a hug. Heartbreaking.

“It’s disrespectful, narrow-minded, and ignorant,” John Austin, 32, from Los Angeles, said of the recent protest. He is one of the many who have lost someone to that cruel bitch, Rona, and does not want to risk any more lives. “We absolutely could’ve prevented many of the deaths had our federal government been more proactive.” 

 Austin is not alone. In an N.B.C. News/Wall Street Journal poll, nearly 60% of Americans are concerned that reopening the economy too soon will be detrimental. 

Dr. Fauci, director of NIAID, told CNN that reopening too soon can potentially lead to a future outbreak. And if we reopen the economy, it’s the workers who are at risk of exposure, not Karen. She only has to be out for her one-hour hair appointment before her brunch session with the gals, where she’s can’t wait to yell a whole quarantine worth of complaints to her server. #GETEXCITED 

And guess who has to go through the cycle of deaths and tears again? I’ll give you a hint, it’s not those pretty people on Grey’s Anatomy.

But let’s go back to that, the whole needing to working for a living wage thing. Yes, it’s horrible that many small businesses are shut down or in danger of permanently closing, but are there really no jobs available during hashtag CoRonaTime?

A sassy reporter also was wondering this when she asked N.Y. Gov. Cuomo about employment concerns at a press conference. And when he answered, man, he wasn’t having any of it.

“You want to go to work? Go take a job as an essential worker,” he said. Man, I haven’t heard a clap-back that hard since Charlie Murphy slapped the shit outta James Brown. Cuomo said that if you really want a job, you can find one. “It’s not just about you, you have a responsibility to me. It’s not all about you. . . and nothing comes before the public health risk of somebody else’s life.”

So, I guess when people are protesting for haircuts and golf courses, what they really mean is that they want you to go back to work and risk your life so they can get their first world privileges back. Cuz Merica! Fuck yeah!  

“It’s easy to dismiss the anti-lockdown protest as business,” Maia Niguel Hoskin wrote in Vox op-ed. She argues how some of the protesters’ ideals are racist and only benefit a select few while hurting the poor, working class. “And if they do return to ‘regular life’ and refuse to distance themselves, their overt disregard will impact the population most vulnerable to the virus – black people.” 

These people are “essential workers,” not sacrificial lambs

I mean, your Rona job doesn’t have to be permanent. You can drive for Uber, or deliver for DoorDash, or even set up an OnlyFans. And you don’t even have to get naked or do sexual stuff; some girls make a bunch of money from just showing their feet. Don’t let anyone tell you that showing your feet online isn’t a real job, cuz them dollar signs don’t lie.

Oh, the irony so real it hurts.

So there are jobs out there, money can be made. It’s not going to be easy. But maybe you’re not trying hard enough. Perhaps you just need to realize your worth and get whatever job you can right now to pay the bills. Oh, snaps, boomers! Doesn’t sound reassuring when you hear it, huh?

Behind all the jokes and comments I’ve, I believe the argument to reopening the economy so people can make a living wage is valid. And if you want to protest, go ahead, it’s your constitutional right. *Cough* Just like Pro-Choice and B.L.M. *Cough* Irony *Cough* With many states already starting to reopen, I know many people will begin to feel that FOMO.

 

However, if 60% of Americans and many medical professionals think that reopening the economy prematurely will jeopardize our chances of combating the virus, maybe we should listen. Or, at the very least, come up with a better reason than your First World Problem when protesting, selfish prick. 

PS, this song below describes my love for musicals and how much I miss my friends during the quarantine.


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Merry Christmas from Koko and Airec and Deadpool

By Airec Sype.

Howdy y’all. It’s been some time since we both have posted on our blog but here we are today. We both have been working on various different projects and still have been writing on different platforms. So it’s sad that we have been neglecting our baby. I (Sype.) am posting on this site because my credit card that was funding the payment for A Dark Minded Giggle expired and it was gonna cost me about 100 bucks to buy back the domain name . . . yeah, f*ck that. So I’m using this.

Let me start off with MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! Whereas most families are spending their Xmas together, my dysfunctional but functional Asian family is spending it not together (I’m sure there is a better word for that). Any who, I’m sure we will all be together right before I leave.

Some khao poon and sticky rice with chicken and Thai green chili lime sauce

Some khao poon and sticky rice with chicken and Thai green chili lime sauce

But what a better way to start off the freezing Xmas morning with some Forrest Gump, Asian food and a NEW DEADPOOL TRAILER!!! After being fed up with all the new X-Men B.S. movies that don’t get anything right (forever team Cyclops), this trailer gives me high hopes. Plus it comes out two days after my birthday, good ole 27.

“I don’t have time for your X-Men bullsh*t, Colossus.” – Deadpool

For those of you who doesn’t know, Deadpool -real name Wade Wilson, a play on . . . you know who from DC- is a fictional character from the Marvel Universe. He’s not a hero but more like an anti-hero who kills!!! Google it if it doesn’t make any sense. Well any who, in the upcoming movie, actor Ryan Reynolds will be playing the merc with the mouth. I’ve been waiting for this movie since they f*cked up his character in the lame Wolverine prequels.

But until the movie comes out, I guess I’ll just have to keep replaying the extended trailer and re-watching those little teaser clips of Reynolds mouthing away. Or this awesome one with Deadpool’s children handling skills.

Till next time and happy holidays from the both of us, Koko and Airec

this was a long ass time ago btw

this was a long ass time ago btw


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Bros v. Pros: The Mens Guide to EDC While Trying Not To Be a Douchebag

Here is a piece I did 2 years ago on EDC. Check it out and have a few laughs! Don’t take it too seriously.

Inside the Dark Minds of Koko and Airec

I know not really, but during festival season this becomes more and more true I know not really, but during festival season this becomes more and more true

By: Sype.

With only just a few days till the Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas, I think it’s time for me to provide some BROs v. PROs tips from my six years of attendance (embarking on my 7th year down the rabbit hole this year). This will be a continuation of my partner, Koko’s, blog post, “Hoes vs Pros: An Empowering Women’s Guide to EDC 2014.” So make sure you check her post out as well, she has a bit more information for the ladies than I do.

Before I continue on with this long laundry list of BROs vs PROs do’s and don’ts, I would like to say a DISCLAIMER!: I am not an expert in any field, except for the field of disappointing my Asian parents (which is why I created the hashtag…

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SNL Offends EVERYONE on the Internet with Teacher Rape Skit

A little follow-up post from my last post with the help of SNL

Inside the Dark Minds of Koko and Airec

By Airec Sype

The internet was lit on FIRE when Saturday Night Live premiered their skit, “Teacher Trail,” last week which displayed a fictional trail of a teacher who is accused of having sex with a student.

I’m usually a MadTV fan, but once in awhile I’ll come across a SNL skit that I didn’t find too over-the-top-witty and just damn right funny. This was one of those moments.

After watching the skit and hearing the outrage of the moms of Twitter, I didn’t find it offensive at all. It was just a satire on these hot female teacher rape cases (AKA every prepubescent boy-who-has-ever-watched-porn dreams). I mean, I wish I had sex with the cheer-leading coach when I was in high school, but I guess that rite is reserved for the chosen ones.

Harry Shuldman of the NYPost called the skit “tasteless” in his article. He provides some…

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Let Us Celebrate 61 Years of Jackie Chan: My first Asian Hero

(Jaaaackkiieee gots jokes as he post a hipsterized pic of himself on Facebook)

By Airec Sype.

Action comedian actor director singer Jack-of-all-trades Jackie Chan celebrated his 61st birthday earlier this month. So I have to mention it; how can I have a blog that celebrates my Asian American weirdness without talking about one of my heroes JACKIE CHAN!!!

Growing up in America, there were not a lot of Asian heroes for this cute little Asian baby, who was lucky enough to be born in this great nation (MURRICA!), to look up to. Most of the heroes I (or we) had were from the relic VHS tapes that translated kung-fu movies onto giant heavy television boxes.

When I talk to some Asians and Asian-Americans about Jackie Chan, I get the conciseness that you either like him or hate him. Some Asians dislike Jackie Chan (I know this is going to get annoying but it doesn’t feel right just using his last name; there is more power and status if I just keep saying Jackie Chan) because they don’t see him as a martial artist despite him having training in multiple of different styles. But then they’re Asians, like I, who loves this man.

The legacy of Jackie Chan is his ability to combine comedy and action. There is a sense of authenticity to his work because he does almost all of his stunts himself. Uproxx has compiled a list of his notable injuries. This is because he was originally a stunt man in old martial arts films. In fact, he got hit in the face by Bruce Lee himself in a failed attempt of a sneak attack.

However, behind all the action and laughter, Jackie Chan also has a sensitive side. During a press-conference, Jackie Chan reveals how he wants to do a movie about love. Knowing that this might not be the Jackie Chan we all know, he said, “I love to produce movie which I love where I can speak what I want to speak and do what I want to do. It is not all about making money.”

Getting hit in the face by Lee and breaking almost every bone in his body all in the effort of entertaining us, that is the man behind the legend. My favorite movie will probably be Legend of the Drunken Master. That movie has the perfect combination of comedy, action and Asian boys with daddy problems . . . Oh did I forget to mention that this man can SING!!!

Oh yeah, this man got it all.

Let’s go back to this idea of Asian or Asian American heroes. Growing up there really wasn’t much for us to look up to besides these kung-fu flying, fist punching, ass-kicking action heroes. Growing up in the 90’s, the idea of an Asian American in the mainstream media was not feasible.

I’m not saying that there wasn’t any Asian heroes when I was growing up, I just didn’t know about them nor did I have the mature mental capacity to appreciate them (not saying I’m mature, I still act like a frat-boy at times). I was introduced to Yo-Yo Ma while watching an episode of PBS Arthur, but I didn’t really know who that was. There was obviously Michelle Kwan who can literally fly on ice, but I didn’t like ice skating as a kid.

Growing up, I wanted an Asian Arnold, or an Asian James Bond. These were men that I could look up to! I didn’t want the Asian henchmen in the Rambo films who gets gunned down by starving POW to be my heroes. Fu*K those guys, they were WEAK! Or I wanted a swavey Asian guy who can come into a room and swoop the girl, not the creepy four eyed Japanese pervert that the white hero was saving her from.

That is one of the things I was envious of as a kid, these white little boys had someone they could look up to; they were able to picture themselves as the hero and mainstream media reenforced that dream. So if I followed what the 90’s told me, I was bound to be a fu*king four-eyed henchmen who is perving on white woman while getting my ass-kicked by some white guy or just some nerdy sidekick who does all the math homework and robot stuff.

Blacks and Latinos were also lucky. Of course black kids had . . . well they had the whole NBA and hip-hop industry in the 90s to look up to . . . and Malcolm X and MLK. I’m not a complete racist here. And Latinos had Oscar Dela Hoya and Ricky Martin (before he came out). But there I was, thinking that my future can do no better than Mr. Miyagi. And he wasn’t even the main hero of the Karate Kid! THE KARATE KID WASN’T EVEN ASIAN! Thankfully Community fixed that.

I guess that’s why when Al from City Guys first appeared, I hung onto that character. He was one of the first Asian looking males on TV that I saw swooping girls off their feet. The same feeling of inspiration arose when I first saw John Cho in American Pie. Despite their small roles in the show or movies, their presence on the show gave me a light of hope that an Asian American male like me could one day exist in a mainstream American world where my role isn’t the nerdy foreign exchange student . . . and that I too can get cute white girls (but that’s not the point of this conversation.)

Of course now when I look at the Asian American, or just Asian in general, heroes of today, I can think of Jerry Yang, the creator of Yahoo!, or Margret Cho, or the Chinese who left their homeland and built the railroads/gold mines. I can think of people like that who risked their lives or did amazing feats instead of solely relying on action stars like Donnie Yen and Tony Jaa or any other yellow-skinned karate master. But lets not forget those two, they’re pretty badass. Oh, and that Asian kid from 21 and over, his chill-to-pull ratio was 5:5.

That is probably why when shows like Selfie, which has an Asian American male as a lead actor, gets cancelled I feel a little hurt inside. Or actions like replacing the Asian characters in movies like 21 and Dragonball: Evolution hurts the young Asian American community. I feel for the lost of an easy hero for young Asian boys to look up to, to picture themselves as a possible version of their future. Some say that the media is evil, but it was the quickest way for young minority boys like I to picture themselves in the American world. School and books and Asian doctors, pff. That didn’t matter growing up in the rough side of Visalia. Movies was our salvation for a potential better life. In a way, that sense of living vicariously through a fictional character allowed us to be hopeful of becoming a real American. It’s what the media told us.

Despite the lack of Asian males in the media, we still have mix-martial art fighters. But sometimes it’s hard to tell who’s fighting when two Asians are going at it.

Now looking at it in hindsight, we kinda all had a hero with us growing up. I didn’t realize it until I reached college and was able to think like an “adult.” My father kinda is a hero. Any minority kid can call their father a hero, a man who risk his life leaving his old country for a better life for his family, a man who slaves away at work so his children can have an American life/education. Well unless your father was a bastard, then this doesn’t apply to you.

Sure my dad was an SOB at times, but he was there for me and had my back. He didn’t know kung-fu or built robots, but he got his yellow ass over here and fertilized me on the great soil of America so that I didn’t have to make shoes for Nike.

I guess heroes are everywhere, it just took me a little while to realize it. If you’re Asian American, try to be a hero for the kids of tomorrow. Oh and I love you Jackie Chan.

 


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Coaching the Reach-Around

Here is a blog post that I published last weekend when I was on the toilet in Frisco/Denver because I was too scared to use the toilet at the cabin because there were girls staying with us and I didn’t want to scare them off. It’s that deadly . . . all them dim sum doesn’t help the cause.

Inside the Dark Minds of Koko and Airec

By Airec Sype.

A wrestling coach in CREIGHTON, MO, was accused of having sex with a student . . . it seems like this ole song and dance has been popping up more frequently these days.

But before you cringe and picture some old creepy man putting his hands on some hot barely legal teen that’s straight out of a porno, lets look at the accused from a pic that I’m ripping off of KTCV5:

she’s a wrestling coach? hmm . . .

This lady here is Megan Baker, 25 years of age, and her victim is a 17 year-old male. I first caught this story off of UPROXX. Although can we really call the boy a victim if he was clearly “bragging about it” to all of his bros about how he banged his wrestling coach on a school bus.

Here are some funny comments relating to this story:

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Exploring Microaggression: Is everyone a racist? Can Comedy Justify a Little Racism?

showing my asian booty by the bay bridge

showing my asian booty by the bay bridge

By Airec Sype.

Edited by Broscobar

 

“You’re pretty cute, for an Asian guy.”

One of the many phrases that I’ve heard in my life that opposes my ethnicity as an Asian-American. That disclaimer lingers in my mind; are they trying to flatter me and what attractive features I actually possess, or are they trying to sneak an insult about the lack of attractive features my ethnicity at large possesses?

If I’m cute, then why need to add a qualifying clause. Why the need for a justification!? I’m flattered, but what about all the other Asian boys? Dose she (and others who utter this phrase) think that the majority of Asian males are ugly, or weird-looking, or perhaps strange anime characters who belongs in J-pop bands?

Other statements like, “You’re not that smart for an Asian,” or, “You probably know some form of martial arts,” also resonates with me. Despite the last statement being pretty badass (cuz we AZN kick ass), it seems clear that there are plenty of stereotypes (positive and negative) thrown at my face constantly.

In fact, recently I’ve learned that these kinds of statements that includes an Asian qualifying clause, is a form of microaggression. Hell, I wrote a whole blog post about it a month ago.

It’s sometimes difficult determining which form of microaggression to praise and which to reject in an angry-minority-blogger-kind-way. Sure I’ll gladly accept the fact that you think I’m cute, but I will revile this common unholy standard of attractiveness for Asians and this belief  of a small penis!!! (>.<) !!!

So how do we determine what is OK to say and if the person who spoke the offense, if any, is at fault?

My buddy, Daniel, 25, of San Francisco, says, “Sometimes the person who committed the microaggression may not be aware of it, and yet it happens all the time when people use generalization based on race, gender, or use stereotypes.”

What does that mean? If I say that all Asians are good at math, then does that mean I’m a little bit racist? Or if I say that all Jewish people are good at saving money, does that mean I secretly think Jews are cheap? Or if I open a door for a random girl, then does that mean I’m secretly a misogynist? (Actually true story, some woman on my first week of college got upset at me for opening the door for her, pff. She should have walked faster if she didn’t want me to give her a taste of my gentlemanly qualities!)

This is all confusing, I’m sure. I, too, am also at fault for spewing negative racial, sexual, cultural and many other -als out there. Especially during a heated game of HALO! But I don’t think I’m a racist; I think I’m just a jackass in the nicest way possible. This does not stop me from using microaggressive Asian stereotypes as jokes or joke about other racial (or any other class of people) stereotypes.

Can an Asian make racial jokes about Asians? I’m sure I can; I’m Asian.

. . . don’t lie you P.C. America; we all do it . . . it could be in a subtle-behind-closed-doors form or in a vulgar matter . . . we’re (well a large sum of us) idiots, which is why half of the world hates us . . .

 

The Mexican is strong in my friends cooking

The Mexican is strong in my friends cooking

Here is an example of me exercising my microaggressive urges. A friend of mine, Martin, 28, a college educated man of San Francisco, made carne asada fries and I comment: “The Mexican is strong in you.” Did my comment imply that my friend is now a better Mexican because he can make these south of the boarder fries . . . hell yea. I won’t shy away from calling my statement a little racist. Like how I would post on my black friends Facebook wall, “Happy Martin Luther Kings Day.”

Martin returned the joke by saying, “My parents would be proud, Airec Syprasert.” Our banter is one that implies that he is a better “Mexican” because of his skill to cook a dish with a Latin flavor, instead of his career. This is the kind of relationships that me and many other people in the world have with their friends. We share a racially open alliance where one could use racial stereotypes to aid or hurt one another, all for a good laugh . . . or a stinging burn!

Comedians like Dave Chappelle and Kevin Shea also uses racial stereotypes in their jokes, but the general public views them as comics rather than racists.

Was it racist when Shea says, in the video, that black people have white people to “worry” about, or that the last Asian man on Earth would be chasing his dog for dinner? Yeah. But it’s funny! The comedy of truth. Even today the internet is popping up with numerous of blogs and vblogs ranting about how white people are oppressing blacks in America.

Here is Jimmy O. Yang with some more Asian stand-up. It’s funny but borderline racist.

In the name of microaggression, the blanket word that shines an ugly racial light onto everything American, it does seem like everything is a tad-bit-sometimes-always-a-baby-racist. But if everything is racist, then that’s bad right? If everything racist is bad, then why do comedians make racially profound jokes/commentary, or why do best friends throw offensive hay-makers and maybe an occasional n/c-word or two?

My Jewish friend, lets call him J-Friend, 24, graduate student at USF, believes that the people who uses the term microaggression are hyper politically correct people, claiming that everything is racist.

“Microaggression is one of those terms I can’t help but roll my eyes when I hear it,” he says. “I’m more callous than others but I think racist jokes, and even antisemitic jokes, are hilarious.”

So now with this new generation of “minorities,” we are faced with this racial line that divides actual racism and comedy.

Also, if someone refuses to see comedy in microaggression, then does that mean that person is a little bit racist? Can a person be so politically correct that subconsciously their mind is being microaggressive?

“In some ways though you are right; some people who proclaim to be the most non-racist are basically gentle racists,” J-Friend said. “Like the white Social Justice Warrior(s) f*cks who runs around being every ethnic minorities white knight calling racism everywhere. Like if you’re more pissed off than the supposed victims then it seems like you’re doing it more for mental masturbation than actual justice.”

I will admit that I dislike some of the white SJW at SFSU. I understand that some Caucasians have “white guilt,” but you don’t have to be the forerunner for every minorities battle. This eagerness to jump to a minority defense is what caused some whites to be accused of “march-jacking” the police brutality protest in the Bay Area.

I also cannot stand the minorities that claims that everything is racist. Even some people think Chappelle is a racist. This feeling was ever so true in my Asian American studies classes. Not everything is racist . . . Well let me rephrase that, not everything that can seem racist is meant with malice or harmful intent.

I guess this is why we have terms like microaggression . . . oooppp . . .

“I think racism just is the negative stuff that no one actually inherits or passes down or is proud about, while the positive stuff being cultural tradition type stuff that people are proud about and want to pass on,” Broscobar says, 25, graduate of UC Berkeley. “Jokes are a different matter though. Sincerity goes out the window and it’s all entertainment. Laughing at a racist joke is the goal because it exists in a vacuum; it’s not supposed to be passed on and no one is supposed to want to pass on or inherit the negative stuff.”

Intent seems to be the key factor when it comes to microaggression, everyday human interactions and comedy. When it comes down to it, it’s really hard to say what is right and wrong when friends are throwing blows at each other or when race, and other nouns of oppression, is used as a comedic trope. Race is a touchy subject and will continue to be one as long as there are ignorant people in the world.

However, this and the blanket term “microaggression” shouldn’t hold you back from making a joke, as long if it’s without malice intent (that word again). Comedy is just tragedy plus time right? So is it ok to laugh now? I also don’t think that my friends who says that Asians have small penises are all racist (I’m average when I’m not drunk, fyi), nor do I think they harbor secret racist feelings. They are idiots, but I guess they’re my idoits? Unless you’re like this Asian girls ex-boyfriend, then you’re just a f*cking racist and gets NO pass! So lighten up, throw some microaggression around . . . an intelligent person should be able to determine what is harmful or not: respect each other out there. Don’t be a jackass.

-Till next time, Sype.

-ps, I do think there is still racism out there, I’m just talking about a little bit of diet racism.