Day 293: Full Geek Mode

Full Geek Mode

Full Geek Mode

I’m in full geek mode right now. After the Star Wars The Force Awakens trailer debuted last night, I read a handful of Star Wars articles and watched youtube videos (and, yes, I watched the trailer dozens of times).

One thing that I stumbled upon that I absolutely loved was this quote from Felicia Day: “Geekdom is the joy of connecting about things you love without fear of judgment.”

I’ve been connecting with Star Wars for the last 24 hours, but I’m not forgetting about my other geekdom joys. I’m finishing (finally!) A Clash of Kings, I’m all caught up with The Walking Dead, and I just started James Doohan’s memoir, Beam Me Up Scotty.

The only thing I didn’t geek out on tonight was Fresh Off the Boat, since it was off the air this week. This is probably a good thing or else I might start getting my geekdom worlds mixed up.

Day 286: Must Win

After the Dodgers went up 3-0 against the Mets, my wife and I decided to go to our favorite Mexican restaurant for dinner. My wife asked if I was sure if I wanted to go and I said yes.

As we were driving there, the Mets scored a run against Clayton Kershaw and my first thought was, “here we go again.” I also thought about turning the car around, but we were starving and didn’t feel like making dinner.

Thankfully, everything turned out perfect: we shared our favorite dish, Kershaw broke his 7th-inning curse, Jensen saved the game, and the Dodgers get to play Game 5 in L.A.

And as an added bonus, we made it home in time for another hilarious episode of Fresh Off the Boat. I was as pumped up as Kershaw was tonight.

Day 279: Laughs in the Empire

After the show with the hilarious Jenny Yang.

After the show with the hilarious Jenny Yang.

Me and the missus skipped tonight’s episode of Fresh Off the Boat and the Internet after-show Fresh Off the Show. We’re not weekly TV series watchers, preferring to binge on shows on Netflix whenever we have time, but we always watch FOTB and FOTS.

Not tonight, though. While we missed the show and Phil and Jenny’s always-funny recap, we couldn’t miss Jenny at the Improv in Ontario. She was the host for an event that featured Asian American female comedians and that’s something we don’t get very often in the Inland Empire.

There was no way we were not gonna be in the audience tonight … especially after Jenny tweeted out a code for 50 percent off tickets.

We laughed, we were inspired by seeing each woman (and one man for “diversity”) own the stage, and my wife got a kick out of Jenny giving me a shout-out at during the show.

I like to think my wife thinks I’m cool (I mean, she married me and all), but having the host call out your name onstage? My coolness factor just grew exponentially and I finally get to use the hashtag #humblebrag.

Thanks, Jenny!


Day 272: Boy II Man

Boy II Man

Boy II Man

I have to admit, I was apprehensive about the second season of Fresh Off the Boat (yes, I still get repsweats). Would it continue to deliver laughs along the lines of the first season? Or would it fall victim to the dreaded sophomore slump?

Two episodes in and all is well in the Huang world. The show, despite losing the real Eddie Huang as narrator, is still cracking me up. And tonight’s homage to the Boyz II Men classic “End of the Road” was nothing short of genius.

Remember in the movie Swingers when the guys joked about the Goodfellas steadicam restaurant scene and then re-did it a few moments later? Tonight was Fresh Off the Boat’s moment, when Eddie is down in the dumps about Nicole then he’s suddenly living out the Boyz II Men video.

Hilarious … and it only got better as the Huang men later sang an acapella version, complete with the “Girl …” breakdown. My wife and i were literally laughing out loud.

Shout-out to Phil Yu, Jenny Yang, and the #FreshOffTheShow crew for the best after-show wrap-up on the web. Go here next week to join the party; the show begins about five minutes after Fresh Off the Boat.

Day 112: Fresh Off the End


Me, Jenny Yang, and Phil Yu on the set of Fresh Off the Show.

Last night I got to meet two of my favorite social media personalities, Phil Yu and Jenny Yang (as well as these good people). There was a screening of the Fresh Off the Boat season finale at the Japanese American National Museum, so Mrs. G. and I made the trip out from the Inland Empire. It was fun being part of the live studio audience for the Fresh Off the Show recap and review show hosted by Phil and Jenny. In keeping with the ’90s era of the show I wore my old Kobe No. 8 jersey for good luck, in hopes that ABC renews Fresh Off the Boat.

My wife and I always talk about how cool it is to not only have an Asian-American-themed show on network television, but also a fan show by and for Asian Americans. Phil and Jenny are the perfect hosts for the weekly review and discussion that followed each episode: they’re both intelligent, articulate, and funny. Last night’s wrap-up was more of the same, with a terrific panel discussion and free beer afterwards (unfortunately, the long trip home prevented us from partaking).

So, fingers crossed for another season of both shows. It just wouldn’t be right to end either after only one season. And I don’t want to wait another 20 years between Asian American comedies.

Day 99: Caught Up

The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead

SPOILER ALERT: I’m talking about The Walking Dead, season five (scroll down to continue)









We finally caught up with The Walking Dead tonight. Wow. I thought that things had slowed down once the group reached Alexandria. Thankfully, I wasn’t ready to give up on the show and the last two episodes were brilliant: tense, emotional, and action-packed.

Once the group made its way to Alexandria and tried to return to a pre-apocalyptic way of life, the series seemed to lose its steam. While the focus has always been on Rick, Glenn and Maggie slipped to the background, as did Daryl. Carol was more prominent and she’s never been more charming and menacing. Noah’s death was heart-breaking, just as Emily’s was at the midway point.

As the utopian Alexandria came crumbling down, the show got its mojo back. It was great to see Morgan again and how perfect was his reunion with Rick?

As Mrs. G. and I binged on the final few episodes, it reaffirmed my taste in television viewing: I’m a binger, not a weekly show type of guy (except for half-hour comedies about an Asian American family). We began the second half of season five in real time, watching each episode as they aired. After a few weeks, we decided we liked watching episodes a handful at a time. Not only can we watch when we want to, but it’s easier to follow the story. For me, it’s easier to remember characters and details when I’ve seen them hours rather than weeks before.

Now that season five is over, I’m ready for season six. I won’t be watching the premiere, though. I’ll watch it a few weeks later, along with another handful of episodes.

Day 97: Fresh Off the Happy Hour

Tacos and cupcakes, yum!

Tacos and cupcakes, yum!

Mrs. G. and I didn’t feel like cooking tonight, so it was time for Taco Tuesday at our local taqueria and cupcake happy hour at our local designer cupcake shop. The food was good, filling, and inexpensive, but more importantly it was devoured in time for our favorite show: Fresh Off the Boat.

I’ve talked about my love of the show before (here, here, and here) and while watching the after-show Fresh Off the Show I learned that the final two episodes are airing soon. It’s been a critical success so far, which should guarantee its renewal, but you never know what Hollywood executives are thinking.

So, in keeping with the positive #RenewFOTB vibes on my Twitter feed, here’s hoping ABC does the right thing with this groundbreaking show. I want more adventures of Eddie and the Huang family. I want more diversity on the air. Most of all, I want more quality television.

Day 82: Looking Back, Looking Forward

Manny Pacquiao training run

Manny Pacquiao training run

Coming of age during the 70s and 80s, I was aware of the news and happenings of the time, especially when it came to pop culture and sports. I remember the controversy of Three’s Company (a single man living with two single women *gasp*), the Lakers perpetually contending and winning NBA championships, and the revelation that Darth Vader was Luke Skywalker’s father (oops, spoiler alert). I know where I was when Reagan was shot (junior high), then later when the Challenger blew up (high school). I recall waking up one morning learning that John Lennon had been murdered.

What I don’t remember? Much of anything to do with Filipino Americans or Asian Americans. Sure, I remember when Marcos was  overthrown and the rise of People Power (and the tale of Imelda’s shoes), but it was more in the context of world news, as in the Other news that wasn’t mainstream, or didn’t really matter. Maybe I wasn’t looking hard enough then, or maybe I wasn’t as aware as I thought. I would only learn the name Vincent Chin when I was in college during the 90s.

Today, though, it’s not uncommon to see my social media feeds filled with stories of Manny Pacquiao or Jeremy Lin or Russell Peters or any other Filipino or Asian. For middle-aged Filipino Americans like myself, to be able to debate whether or not a Filipino is the greatest prizefighter of this generation is akin to seeing the yellow, blue, red, and white of the Filipino flag planted in Mars. It was absolutely unfathomable then.

And yet, here we are today and Manny is about to take part of the biggest fight of this generation. Last night, a Chinese American led the Lakers in scoring. This weekend, during the NCAA tournament, the hero of the Maryland-Valparaiso game was an Indian American. During my workout this morning, I listened to a podcast interview with one of the funniest comedians on the planet, Russell Peters, as he talked about some of the racism he encountered as an Anglo-Indian raised in Canada.

I love the fact that George Takei has had a career resurgence so late in life and that his Facebook posts are the most re-shared among my friends. I love that Filipinos are frequently seen on the music-contest reality shows, from Jessica Sanchez to the Filharmonic. I love that one of the top sitcoms on ABC is centered around an Asian American family. I love that the name of the sitcom is Fresh Off the Boat, with all of the baggage that comes with such a loaded phrase.

Most of all, I love that for every Takei, Pacquiao, Peters, Lin, Fresh Off the Boat, and more, there will be even more Fil-Ams and Asian-Ams doing similar things in the future. I’m looking forward to those days, but will always look back to remember how far we’ve come.

Day 62: Three Fresh Things

Fresh Off The Boat

Fresh Off The Boat

1. I missed last week’s Fresh Off The Boat due to a previous commitment, but tonight my wife and I weren’t going to miss our favorite television family. It was another hilarious episode, with so many highlights: Eddie suffering the indignity of having his neighbor babysit him as he goes overboard on the sriracha, Jessica’s quotes from Caddyshack, Louis’ Coming-to-America-like McDowell’s move, Eddie’s dream sequence, the billboard, and “Buffalo Things.”

2. The only complaint I have so far about the show? The entire season isn’t on Netflix so I can binge-watch to my heart’s content.

3. There’s a Spotify playlist of the show and there’s plenty from the Golden Age of hip hop. Listen here for your dose of 90s music (Warning: some NSFW language).

4. I know I said three things, so consider this a bonus: A must-watch after each episode is Fresh Off The Show, hosted by Phil Yu and Jenny Wang. It’s a live recap of the show and it’s funny and informative. Check their twitter accounts on Tuesdays for the link to the live feed on youtube.

Day 48: Two on Tuesday

Statement of Accomplishment from

Statement of Accomplishment from

Two things that made my Tuesday:

1. I received my Statement of Accomplishment (with Distinction) for completing the U.S Department of State and the University of Oregon’s online course Shaping the Way We Teach English 1: The Landscape of English Language Teaching. I enjoyed this class on so much that I immediately enrolled in second part of the course that started last week.

2. I got another shout-out from two of my favorite social media personalities Phil Yu and Jenny Wang during their Fresh Off the Boat post-show chat. I could get used to these weekly 15 seconds of Internet fame. I’ll wait until at least next week before hiring an agent.