Both Wandering Chopsticks and Ben & Suanne from Chow Times have tagged me for the "Five Things People Don't Know About You" meme that's been going around. Thank you guys for tagging me for this. It was a lot of fun.
- Certain readers have emailed me asking me if I'm Chinese or Japanese, since my blog icon is a samurai panda. I'm an American citizen, born and raised, but I'm ethnically Taiwanese-Chinese. I'm also a nine-year practitioner of the Kashima Shinto-Ryu and Katori Shinto-Ryu styles of Iaido, the modern day antecedent of Battoujutsu, which began as battle techniques centered around drawing and striking with the sword in one fluid movement. My current heavy work schedule, and the fact that the dojo I used to attend decided to switch sword schools after our sensei retired, has limited my ability to train in the past few years. However, I still run through kata at least once a week in our company's racquetball court. My brother drew the samurai panda picture on a whim a few years back. I liked it so much, I decided to use it as my blog icon.
- In high school, I was captain on the Speech & Debate team. As a result, I have a tendency to enjoy argument for argument's sake. I've been known to argue positions that I don't believe in simply for fun. I enjoy the battles of wits and the verbal repartee. This is a bad habit I've been trying to break for years.
- Before university, I only dated Asian girls. This wasn't by design, since there were a number of non-Asian girls I was attracted to. It just seemed to work out that way. Ironically, while attending the University of California, Irvine, which is known for its high percentage of Asian students, my girlfriends were all Caucasian. Since one of those girlfriends is now my lovely fiancée, Cat, I have no complaints.
- I'm the first son of the first son, and the oldest of my generation in a very very large, extended family. Loosely translated, my Chinese name means "origin of the source", which pretty much tells you what my grandfather expects of me. My job is to have lots and lots of kids and lead the family after my grandfather and father. Since Cat and I aren't sure we want kids right now, this places quite a bit of pressure on us. However, I'm determined to avoid having a child for the wrong reasons.
- My interest in food and food history was really ignited at UCI, when I had the opportunity to take a class on food history with Professor Yong Chen. A respected expert in food history and Asian American studies, Professor Chen ignited a lasting passion in me for all things food. If you're interested in Chinese-American history, I highly recommend his book, Chinese San Francisco, 1850-1943: A Trans-Pacific Community. It's a great read. I should note that Professor Chen and I became good friends while I was at UCI, and continue to maintain our relationship. As such, my opinion of his book may have been influenced by my respect for him.
(Guess which one I am.)
(Friend and team mate, TC, and I at the Stanford Invitational in 1996.)
(Even Cat's shadow is sexy.)
(UCI's Humanities Instructional Building at night.)
Since a number of my blogger buddies, such as Kirk from mmm-yoso!!!, Elmomonster of Monster Munching, and Rasa Malaysia, have already been tagged, I thought I'd tag a few more of my favorite bloggers whom I would love to learn more about. If I'm not mistaken, I only get to tag five, otherwise I'd just tag everyone on my blogroll. I love you all!
- Kathy of A Passion for Food - She's cute, smart, vivacious, and destined for great things in the world of corporate finance. What dark secrets lurk within her candy-coated shell of perkiness? The truth is out there.
- KT of Gastronomy 101 - Litigating defender of the elderly by day, passionate food enthusiast and student of Oenology by night. I'm dying to read more about this sexy LA lawyer and food blogger. That is, assuming she doesn't hunt me down and kick my ass for this intro.
- Henry of henrychan's Food Videos - Youtube sensation and food blogger extraordinaire, Henry isn't afraid to show the public his handsome face as he and his giggling camerawoman explore the tasty treats available in Los Angeles and the San Gabriel Valley. Time to spill the beans, Henry. Your fans await!
- Steen of Side Order of Ham - Delicious recipes with a quirky side of humor, Steen captivates me on a weekly basis with her homey and decadent dishes. I must know more.
- Tokyoastrogirl of Tuna Toast - Her food is gorgeous, her writing is innocent and sweet, and her hubby plays in a band. This rockin' bombshell must have a tale or two to tell. Time to share, honey. Dish! Dish!
Thanks again to Wandering Chopsticks, Ben, and Suanne for tagging me. I had a blast. As a side note, I just ate three tubs of che from Banh Mi Che Cali and I'm incredibly wired, which should explain some of those intros. Darn you, Kathy!!!