Sunday, October 25, 2009

Hugo's


Getting burgers at Hugo's was awesome. Hugo's feels like an underground speakeasy. It even has an old timey piano.


Purple Haze was on tap!


































Get your crepes on! This demonic looking desert is the viciously delicious grasshopper crepes made from: mint chocolate chip ice cream, chocolate syrup and thin pancakes. You like thin pancakes right Ricky Bobby?

Friday, October 23, 2009

Yoshi da cat





Yoshi is Nick's roommate Christian's cat. He is not as cute as Molly but I like him. I haven't had an allergic reaction to Yoshi yet.

Post-Modern living.


Nick describes his domicile as post-modern. I like that you can't hear the neighbors unlike my old apartment at Paradise Lakes.

Petey Ramone in AR



Fall colors...weird.



Hey ho let's go...in Arkansas.

Fayetteville!



Fayetteville's downtown is beaut. Very old style.




Nick rocks out!








I'm visiting my homey Nick Barber in Fayetteville, AR. We had a killer dinner not at Uber Burger but at Doe's where I scarfed a 2 and one half pound porterhouse steak! It was an eating contest with myself.






Sunday, September 13, 2009

Calling Hong Kong!



Bruce Lee's statue is located on the Hong Kong Walk of Fame which is very similar to the Hollywood Walk of Fame. I love Bruce Lee and appreciate his creativity and charisma as an artist. Game of Death wouldn't be the same without Bruce Lee. Lee is easily as famous in Hong Kong as he is in America.

That's the Hong Kong Harbour behind me.



Density is one word I would use to describe Hong Kong. Since I'm a super nerd 2000, I will tell you that I thought of Judge Dredd's MegaCity1 when I first arrived in HK. I kept that observation to myself...until now.



Growing up I remember reading, "Made In Hong Kong" on all my favorite action figures. The mysterious city of Hong Kong were always destined to meet. Now that I've been to HK, I want to go back.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Dortitos


The Doritos in China were weird looking. They were classified as D1 (nacho cheese), D2 (Taco) or the mysterious D3 (civet cat...just kidding. I'm not sure what D3 was).
The delicious Diet Jolt Cola like drink Pepsi Max is just called MAX in China. I thought you might like to know.
-P.S.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Movies in China







"I like movies cause I like 'em." -Yogi Berra

I agree with my second favorite baseball player of all time when he made that statement.

When I was in Guangzhou I watched some fantastic movies.

Two movies I had already seen: Wolverine and Star Trek.

One was new: Blood Brothers.

When I visited Beijing Road, Candy and I saw Wolverine. Two tickets to an afternoon matinee was 80 RMB or $11. Pretty cheap.

In China, the movies have assigned seating which is weird.

Smoking is everywhere in China, including restaurants which is weird for me because Phoenix has a smoking ban. I don't smoke and it's kind of new for me to have people smoking everywhere. I was glad that the movies were no smoking.

Trailers are shown in the movie lounge before the movie. I saw a preview for John Rabe a movie about the Rape of Nanking with an all German and Chinese cast plus Steve Buscemi.

The concessions at the movies are a bit different too. At Bejing Road there was McDonalds, KFC, Chinese food and also a more traditional type cinema concession stand. Outside food is tolerated.

The best part of the experience is that the popcorn in China is like Kettle Corn that you would get at the State Fair. Delicious!


Wolverine was great. I'm a huge Wolverine nerd, so this made the third time I saw it. Oddly enough, because I saw the movie before I noticed that in China scenes were missing.

The part where Striker and Wolverine talk in the hospital was much shorter than the first time I saw it. Maybe this scene showed authority in a bad light.

A day later, a young guy on a mo-ped was selling copies of movies that are still in theaters. I guess this is kind of old hat now that we have bit torrents and so forth. Bootleggers are still crawling around though.


Blood Brothers was this great Hong Kong action/drama that was produced by director John Woo (the Killer/FACE/Off and Hard Target).
I watched it on Guangzhou TV when Candy was sick with a cold. What a good time! I just went down to the 24 Mart, bought some water, chips and Tsing Tao beer. Beer and potato chips are universal. Cinema makes me feel at home.



Blood Brothers was all in Mandarin, so it gave me a change to learn some vocabulary. I learned how to say older and younger brother. It was a really solid gangster movie.

Star Trek is great. The Chinese audience I saw Star Trek with totally loved it. What's more American than Star Trek. People often pass off Star Trek as the domain of nerds, but Star Trek is popular with everyone especially in America. You can't tell me that a Captain Kirk bar fight is un-American!



Again, some scenes were cut from the movie. Star Trek was missing the scene where Spock was fighting with his schoolmates. They cut the part where the elders separate them.

The mall where we saw Star Trek was seven stories high. Awesome! There was an Indiana Jones mine cart ride near the theaters. I totally wanted to ride it but we ran out of time.








Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Kung Fu


I was surprised to see the very cool Bruce Lee-themed restaurant, Kung Fu, on my trip to Beijing Road in Guangzhou.

Being a big fan of the late great Bruce Lee, I was eager to try the food.

Before lunch, Kung Fu serves noodles and meat in a soup. I had pork and Candy had Chicken. I would have liked the pork to be a bit more cooked. The meat was served pink and chewy.
I had some lemon Pepsi with the lemon monster on the bottle which I got a kick out of.



I ended up ordering rice after the clock struck ten. I mostly ate noodles and rice. Noodles with chopsticks is a challenge, try it sometime. Candy was very good at it.




I also tried Kung Fu in the late afternoon a day later. Candy had some delicious pork and I had beef. This beef was of the mystery variety. However, I ate most of it.

Each entree was served with a soup that consisted of cuts of meat (pork, chicken, and beef) in a chicken stock and a small salad with an orange dressing. I avoided the salad because I was advised not to eat salad by my travel doctors at World Travel Health (top notch place by the way, if you need shots Contact Dr. Laura at (602) 863-3433) .

Kung Fu was very inexpensive. I think the cost was like 70 RMB for both of us. Not too shabby.






Sunday, May 31, 2009

Beijing Road aka Zhongshan Wu Rd.

Candy and I took a cab to the famous Beijing Road or Zhongshan Wu Road as it's called. The cab ride was only about $7-10 bucks. I wish taxis in Phoenix were that cheap.

First we stopped at Candy's apartment. Here is a view from her window.



I love the aging buildings in Guangzhou. I love that new buildings will be erected right next to the old ones. The pictures from Beijing Road itself will give you a better sense of the new and the old living next to each other.
Near Candy's house, she had a lot of small restaurants and produce markets.

At Candy's apartment I found that I could check my Hotmail account and bank account but my blog was blocked by China's firewall.
What happens when you are blocked isn't too exciting. You simply get a "page not found," message.

We went to Beijing Road and had a look around. What an impressive place. Beijing Road has a lot of the same shops that you would find at Scottsdale Fashion Square (Levis, Lacoste, and so forth).

Again there was a Las Vegas feel to new buildings and a very ancient feel to the old buildings. Often times I noticed familiar faces on the billboards. You can almost make out Zhāng Zǐyí from Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon there in the background.




The mall at Beijing Road is five stories tall and very impressive looking.








I saw this crazy looking ad on Beijing Road and Candy immediately said, "Wow he looks just like you."



The coolest thing about Beijing Road is that part of the original road has been preserved.




Thursday, May 28, 2009

Cowboy in China


Ni Hao!

When I was shopping on Beijing Road I was surprised to find a Levis store in the five story mall.

I tried a pair on and felt that they were a little tighter than the usual 501s and more expensive too.
The pair I tried on were 799 RMB or about $100 American. I've never paid $100 for Levis in my life. This blew me away. Who is buying $100 Levis.

I snapped a picture of the Chinese Levis Cowboy and left the store.

After leaving the store I saw a bunch of ads for Levis Indigo on buses downtown.

By the way, jeans in Mandarin translate out to "cowboy pants." For some reason I loved that.

Here's a picture of me wearing Candy's Crocs in her apartment while my Cons dried.

The Food Of Guangzhou Part One



Whenever my friends travel the first question I usually have for them is, "how was the food?"
When I got back from Guangzhou I got the same question from my friends.
Here is a quick account of Guangzhou's food.

At first, when the passport agency suggested that I just eat McDonald's in Guangzhou, I thought, "man forget you! I'm going to China, I will max out on Chinese food all the time."

After about three days in Guangzhou, I was ready for a Big Mac. Why you ask? Well, you'll see.

The first day I woke up at lunch time and was ready for a good Chinese meal. Candy, being from Hunan, decided to take me to a Hunan restaurant first.

We walked through the torrential Guangzhou rain and found a Hunan restaurant with huge windows that looked out on the city. Guangzhou does not get much rain and the way the streets flood I believe it. Guangzhou and Phoenix have that in common, the way the streets can get all flooded out in a hurry during a big rain storm.



The menu was completely written in Chinese characters. Candy would tell me what I was looking at we would make selections together.
Some advice I have gotten is to chose entirely based on pictures but I believe you should get some clarification before ordering.
I pointed at more than one picture that I thought was beef that Candy told me was guts or goat face or whatever. Be careful or be adventurous, it's your call.


The first dish I ordered was a spicy Hunan chicken dish. The waitress said, "are you sure, this dish is very spicy."
Being a stupid arrogant Arizonan I said, "Bring it on. I'm from Arizona see, I put hot sauce on my Cap N' Crunch."
First off the chicken served was every part of the chicken: the breast, the neck, the gristle, the bones, etc.
The way you are supposed to eat chicken is to put the whole piece in our mouth and swirl it about and get the bones out. Then you are to eat the meat and spit the bones out on the garbage plate. At first, I loaded up Candy's plate with food and then said told me that the plate is for the refuse. The tiny rice bowl is for the good food. Often, Chinese people will just eat off the serving plate and it's customary to feed your date.

Ok, back to the chicken. Not only was it hot but this chicken was the hottest food I've ever had in my entire life. It was supernova-red-Hades-burning-holes-in-the-roof-of-your-mouth hot!
After the sweating and the panting began, Candy reassured me, "you don't have to eat that if you don't want to."

This wasn't like the time Scott and I had a bucket of habanero wings. Where the food was hot but it was our mission to put those wings to rest.

I found it difficult to separate the meat from the bone with my mouth in a four alarm fire.

Candy showed me a picture of what looked like a wagon wheel and told me it was lotus root. She assured me that lotus root was delicious. The root has a snap to it and has little spider webs come out when you break a piece off. It helped with the heat of the chicken but made me feel like I was on Star Trek.







Next, Candy ordered the delicious green bean and eggplant stir fry dish. I think of all the food I had in Guangzhou this dish was my favorite. Later, I had a version of this dish at another Hunan restaurant with potato in place of the eggplant. I ate almost of of this dish.




Of course one of the world traveler's best friends other than beer is of course good ol' Coca Cola.
If your MTV shirt doesn't tell your new friends you are American, the fact that you chug-a-lug the Coke will!
I love Coke and really everyone does. Even Joe Strummer has a coke in the Combat Rock picture on the inside cover.
In China, Coca Cola translates out to "to make mouth happy." During the trip I often exclaimed that coke was making my mouth happy, much to Candy's embarrassment/my amusement.

Guangzhou Zoo


Oh the Guangzhou Zoo was so cool!



2.5 million visitors can't be wrong.






Notice the University of Phoenix shirt. I was doing my part to get the brand out there.



Hey hey here's some monkeys! I believe them to be golden monkeys, but I'm not sure.



This is a killer crab of the deep sea variety. Candy told me that it kills man. If you are ever in the ocean and see him crawling, be polite!







In China no holds are barred. I was about 80% sure this cage was locked, so I took this picture while I continued walking.



Bears are at least 50% more lazy in China.



Get a job hippies!



Cheetah you are not eating any Cheetos like in the commercials. Where's your Ray Bans?
Black panther, you are even more lackluster than the Marvel comics hero of the same name. Way to go big cats!



Shark has gone to Cheeba Hut for a pinner and is sleeping on the job.



Sea turtles we love you!



Ape has never shot ape!




Bird on faux lake.



Mermaid show 2000.



The fish on the right stole my wallet. The blue fish on the left watched him do it. Which one is really worse...



Fish haiku by Peter S.

Yellow fish swimming
looking for some food to eat
rock n' roll high school



Are we done? Not yeti...no we're done. Thanks for checking out this zoo post.