Shanghai, a foodie’s paradise. Within a city that has over 10,000 nightly mobile food stalls, the possibilities are endless when it comes to the ranges in taste, texture, and look of the snacks you’ll find. Catch my ten personal favorite street food items below (in no particular order of deliciousness):
Hip Hop. Rap. A subculture movement and music that spawned from black culture and originated in the 1970’s South Bronx is now global. I got the chance to catch up with one of Shanghai’s biggest rappers, Al Rocco, and the man behind the number one provider of Hip-hop in China, founder of Zhong TV, Stanley Yang to find out a little more about the rap scene in China.
Both Stanley Yang and Al Rocco have had extreme success in their careers. Rocco is a hip hop/trap artist who has been featured on the New York Times, Worldstarhiphop, Vice China, ICS TV, Hit FM Radio, TVB, Beats by Dre “Straight Outta” and has opened and shared the stage with the likes of OT Genasis, OG Maco, and Keith Ape. He has also worked with brands like Adidas Originals, SSUR, Jamesons, Marlboro, Redbull, Jagermesiter, American Apparel, Budweiser. His biography notes, “With over a million “over-all” plays towards the end of 2015, two of his latest projects “Raised in China” & “Red Money” have been nominated top 50 albums of China by That’s Shanghai & Smart Shanghai. He was ranked top 2 artist nationwide China on the Hip-Hop charts with his single “Red Money” ranking number one on China’s Spotify and Soundcloud, Xiami, in January 2015.”
Stanley Yang runs and operates Zhong Tv. China’s 1st ever hip hop / r&b / pop entertainment division, which facilitates audio and video content to the public and is credited for bringing the digital music video wave back in 2010, to China’s hip hop community. Producing over 50 original videos and having over 60 million total views on Youku ( Chinese version of Youtube), Zhong TV has also worked with the likes of WESC, Beats by Dre, Oakley, Nixon, Vans, Jordan Brand, Marshall Headphones, Urbanears and is responsible for discovering many up and coming artist.
No doubt, “gaming” is a global sensation. In China, PC gaming is taken to a whole new level, with 517 million gamers, surpassing the number of U.S citizens. I wanted to explore this phenomenon further, so I went to a gamers paradise: a “PC Bang.” I interviewed three gamers who live in Shanghai, China and one gamer who currently lives in the United states to find out what these PC sanctuaries are like.
Join me, Talia Smith, as I travel to Shanghai China, investigating the different facets of life in China. Today I’m taking a closer look into how China’s high school system influences the personal lives of its students.”
In America, we have pride parades. In China, there are covert fake marriage meetups for gay men to find lesbian women to marry. And this is just one of the abject differences in our cultures outlined in Inside the Chinese Closet, a gripping testimony of two parallel journeys through the veiled lives of LGBT Chinese people.
One, a lesbian named Cherry, tries to avoid dealing with children even as her mother desperately attempts to buy one illegally so she has someone to “take care of her when she’s old”. Her fights with her family become less pointed and increasingly unguarded under the scrutiny of the camera, and she even deigns to discuss her girlfriend. Growing up in a rural village, she is unable to even attempt to explain being a lesbian to people like her father- who she says would beat her to death if he knew.
Andy, a gay man “popular in the bear community”, or a specific type of gay male subculture, is trying to find a child. His father demands a child and he is determined to fulfill the request. When attempting to buy one from Taiwan, he discovers recent laws have made it illegal to take a child there. He turns to the fake marriage plot, meeting with several different lesbians and assuring them he will accept artificial insemination rather than, as one derisively puts it, “the natural way”.
What makes the documentary so chilling is the fact that these closeted LGBT people are not the youths we’ve come to know, struggling with their identity and figuring out how to navigate through the rainbow cities of America. These are middle-aged Chinese citizens, well into their lives and careers, who have known who they are for quite some time. They just can’t tell anyone- save for trusted friends and some, not all, family members. Another gripping film from the Human Rights Watch film festival, this will make anyone comfortable in the changing ways of America remember that Western ideals haven’t reached all corners of the globe.
Activism in China is no picnic.
On Tuesday morning, North Korea conducted its fourth failed attempt in two months at firing an intermediate-range Musudan ballistic missile.
Attention Disneynature lovers. Get ready to mark your calendars!