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Chinatown Kid

When I took my photography class last year, I felt drawn to taking photos of Asian Americans, perhaps because there is such a lack of representation of Asians in our media. While pursuing a photobook on Chinatown, I found myself with some great photos of children. Here are a couple of the most striking children I met. Continue reading

Gallery

spring break

I went to the beach this spring break and took some photos. Not the usual spring break beaches in case you’re wondering. First of all, it’s rare to have a nice sunny day at San Francisco’s beach. You never swim in the water because it’s freezing, has strong currents, and there are sharks. But the day I took shots were special — police of horses, cargo ships… Enjoy!

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“My Life On My Back”: GIRLS and Rape Culture

If you haven’t heard of Lena Dunham’s hit show Girls, you might be living under a bit of a rock. The show has been deemed something you just don’t find anywhere else on TV. Some people love it, some people hate it – some people hate seeing Dunham naked (she not only writes, but also acts, directs, and produces). Left and right, there have been lots of controversy buzzing around both her (not size zero body) and her show.

Lately, season two has taken a dark turn. (Spoiler alerts ahead.) The characters are more isolated than ever. After a failed marriage and hurtful encounter with her emotionally abusive father, Jessa has disappeared into thin air. She is a “free spirit,” but one carrying heavy wounds from her past. Shoshanna no longer has her “dreaded” virginity badge, but she has cheated on her first boyfriend who she “loves.” Marnie has been on a downward spiral since the beginning of the season: sleeping with a gay man, being downsized from her job, becoming a hostess, dealing with a gaping rift between her and her best friend Hannah, and entering a “relationship” because she wants Booth’s life. It seems she was on a slightly better note last weekend when she finally admitted her lifelong dream of wanting to be a singer – but apparently this translated to suddenly singing a terribly slow remix of Kanye’s “Stronger’ at her ex’s party. And then having sex with him. Meanwhile Hannah has fallen back into her OCD ways under the stress of a stalkerish ex-boyfriend (Adam) and a (e-)book deal that she has to finish by the end of the month. She’s so stressed that she punctures her ear with a q-tip. Yeah. That was a ridiculously painful scene to watch. None of the girls are in a good place. In fact, this whole episode reeked of self-destruction and awkwardness.

But the worst of it all is in the scene that people can’t stop talking about. If you’ve seen it, you know what I’m talking about: does Adam rape Nat? The episode begins with Nat(alia) and Adam having sex for the first time.  “I’m ready to have sex now,” she announces. They begin kissing as she lists all her preferences. “I like how clear you are,” Adam tells her. “What other way is there?” she asks. It seems that they are going to be a hopeful and cute couple. Continue reading

3D Paintings

Visual Reprise: 3D Paintings by Shintaro Ohata. 

Talk about innovative! Japanese artist Shinaro Ohata combines his paintings with his perfectly matching sculptures. He literally brings his 2D pieces to life. I love how the way he sculpted his pieces compliments the way he painted so well. Continue reading

Medical care makes you healthier…right?

Do you regularly see your doctor for annual checkups, scans, blood tests, and procedures? While most of us see this as a daily part of a healthy lifestyle, Dr. H. Gilbert Welch would suggest otherwise – in fact, he seems to suggest seeing the doctor more frequently can be harmful to your health. In his book,  OverdiagnosedMaking People Sick in the Pursuit of Health, he argues over the supposed benefits of today’s commonly accepted medical thoughts: early diagnosis is always better and treatment is always better.

What is overdiagnosis? It’s when you are diagnosed by your doctor with a disease and undergo treatment when you either do not show any symptoms or when treatment might actually be harmful. Can this be you? To be sure, Dr. Welch specifies that he is not against doctors or treatment (he is a doctor, after all), but he is against diagnosing diseases when the patient has yet to show signs of disease. He distinguishes that people who have diseases should be treated, but overdiagnosis is when you are not sure the disease will ever exhibit any symptoms (yes, even some cancers will never affect you) and will never cause any trouble. In such cases, treatment is extremely harmful the patient. Continue reading

Wealth Inequality in America

Wealth Inequality in America – YouTube.

I always hear things about how the wealth disparity in China if going to be the downfall of the communist regime. But what about America’s wealth disparity? I think back to the occupation movement. While I agreed they were the most organized movement, I really thought they had a point. And they were trying to do something! The last influential rioting in America was probably against the Vietnam war. Have we all become so desensitized to problems? Even when they affect us? We’re letting that 1% (or top 10%) get away with this. I can’t stand the arguments that they “deserve” it and that if we do anything, it’ll result in the “dreaded” socialism. Something is clearly wrong with the system. So what can we all do about it?

Personal Milestone: Thesis Completed

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Today I finished my thesis. Two copies handed in, both 71 pages and 20,270 words (one on super nice 25% cotton paper that is library archive approved – yah, my work is going to end up somewhere in a Harvard library, kind of crazy).

I know most people wonder what on earth am I going to do with all this literary analysis if I’m not intending on going to grad school, and there were a couple of times the past year where I wondered why I was writing a thesis. But it was actually a really great achievement. After printing my thesis, I was walking to the English department to hand it in, and I just felt so happy. I wrote this! I did this! It reminded me that it’s not so much whether I get an award, or money – it was that I applied myself to something and achieved something. Whenever I’m struggling with something in the future, wondering about its application or why I’m doing something in the first place, I’ll remember this moment.

Daily Dose of Reading

Here we go again! That time when I share all the (online) things I’ve been reading. 

The Best Birth Control in the World is for Men: When I began looking into birth control, I was appalled to discover that really, birth control is a “woman’s” problem! We’ve got IUDs, Implanon, daily hormone shots, pills, etc… And for guys? Condoms and vasectomy. It was infuriating and made me feel that getting pregnant was a woman’s issue. The guy just has to remember to be sorta responsible and supply condoms, but girls have to endure all this other crap to really feel secure. Well, guess what? The best birth control in the world is for men! I know! Spread the word! But no one knows about this and no one in America (to my knowledge) has it. Why? Maybe because guys are terrified of having anything close to their nether regions. Well guess what? Women undergo procedures to have IUDs, and those aren’t even as effective and/or easy as this procedure for men! Seriously, spread the word. It even fights HIV!

Gay Men and Christian Wombs: Surrogacy’s New Frontier: I thought this was fascinating mostly because I’m not Christian and it never even occurred to me that Christian women would decide whether it was moral to help give birth for a gay couple. Also, the thought of being driven out of a town because you might do that? Crazy.

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