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bazaar“Here is your ramune! Do you know how to open it?”

“No; but I’ll use my muscles!” assured my 5-year-old customer as he flexed his arms on the countertop.

Staring fixedly at his glass-bottled soft drink, the young boy deliberated over how to enjoy his purchase at the 12th Annual Japanese Cultural Festival and Bazaar, hosted by the Japan America Society of Southern Colorado (JASSC).

Ramune, a carbonated drink originally sold in Japan by an entrepreneurial Scotsman in 1884, remains a popular drink during the hot and humid summer festivals in Japan. Though the soda is quite tasty in and of itself, the fun factor with ramune is that it is sealed with a glass marble. In other words, one must use the lid or “marble popper” to dislodge a marble seal in order to drink the ramune soda.

With a bit of guidance from a JASSC volunteer and some manpower provided by his father, the 5-year-old boy was able to taste bubbly, sweet success. Adults and children alike were greatly entertained by ramune. As marbles clinked, and bubbles and laughter filled the Stargazer Theater, the relative ease and beauty of cultural exchange was realized. The unique origins of ramune, its symbolic connotation of a playful Japan, its ability to initiate dialogue – all of these traits combined made the soft drink an ideal vehicle for cultural interaction at the festival.


It wasn’t all fun and games, but it was close. Colorado Dragon Boat Festival’s Asian Game Night fundraiser held at Kings Land Seafood Restaurant on Oct. 14 was a big hit with attendees, and truly proved that you can put “fun” in fundraising.

Along with great appetizers from Kings Land and also provided by BD’s Mongolian BBQ, there was a lavish buffet dinner supplied by Kings Land, free beer from MillerCoors and soft drinks from Pepsi, shaved ice dessert from Little Grass Shack, and of course, lots of fun games.

Guests spent the evening learning and playing different games including the Filipino shell game Sungka, Japanese card game Hanafuda, the Japanese strategy game Go and the Chinese game Mahjong. Each game had instructors on hand to teach newbies — one Mahjong table had Acting Consul General of Japan Hiromoto Oyama as a teacher all evening. In addition, CDBF provided a handful of fun carnival-style arcade games, like tossing “Dragon Eyes” (ping pong balls) into small fishbowls filled with water and goldfish or tossing bean-bag “Dragons” into a slotted board.


Several artworks that were painted live during the festival in July were auctioned off, and Martha Legocki, the grand prize raffle winner of an iPad2 danced a little jig to show off her excitement.

Mudra Dance Studio performed a few Indian dances and received an award for their 10 years of involvement with the festival. Derek Herman was also given a 10-year award for his help with the festival’s dragon boat races. And Dr. Rudy Lie was given his award as the 2011 CDBF Honorary Chair.

Jason Chen stayed late to finish giving out his insightful (and very popular) fortunes from reading palms and faces; and the mother-daughter duo of Abby and Camilla Rictor taught anyone who stopped at their table how to fold origami cranes, boats, frogs and even Harry Potter Snitches.

The atmosphere was relaxed and casual, and many people stayed the entire evening and chatted and networked. The event was a welcomed change from the standard banquet fundraiser that non-profit organizations usually host, and it appeared the attendees appreciated the fun atmosphere.

The Tibetan Cultural Exchange Delegation from China visited Washington D.C. and New York before stopping in Denver on Oct. 24-25.

Why Denver? For some, it was their first time to the city. They felt there was fascinating culture and diversity in Denver and were interested in the cultural preservation mechanisms of the city. Additionally, Boulder is a sister city of Lhasa, Tibet, the hometown of two members of the delegation.

Their visit included meeting with the Denver Office of Cultural Affairs, a special media interview arranged by Chinese American Post and a discussion at the University of Denver conducted by the Center for China-US Cooperation.

The delegation included: Ms. Hua Bi, Chief Editor of the China Tibetology Publishing House and Mr. Nimazeren, Vice President of the Sichuan Research Institute of Culture and History. He is also recognized as a “Grade One Fine-arts Artist” of China.

Bi said that the purpose of the visit is to promote mutual understanding and communication between the U.S. and Tibet. The delegation was particularly interested in the preservation of art and culture.

“I am interested in how you preserve Native American culture in Denver,” said Nimazeren. “The Mayans and Incans contributed a lot to culture here, similar to Tibetan culture which is just one small part, not even mainstream but treated with utmost respect.”

“Tibetan culture is an intricate part of  the Chinese nation. The government attaches high importance to the preservation of monuments and temples.” The delegation frequently makes trips to the U.S., each visit with different personnel, in hopes of maintaining long-term exchange. The next stop for this delegation was to Toronto, Canada.

Twenty two hours from Denver to Hong Kong.  For me, this visit to one of the most beautiful cities in the world was a bucket list must do.

For my husband, this visit was his first trip back to the country where he was born. He left Hong Kong as a teenager and immigrated with his family to Colorado nearly 40 years before. Our trip now was inspired by the desire to visit our youngest daughter, Kalyn, who is studying in Singapore for the fall semester. Our daughter joined us in Hong Kong during her school break.

Over the next five days we learned to “keep to the left” and enjoyed some of the most majestic views of our experience – from the Tien Tan Buddha to the Ngong Ping Skyrail to the Victoria Peak Tram to the Kowloon Symphony of Lights over Victoria Harbor.

We inhaled dim sum at the Maxim’s Palace Restaurant, rode the Tung Chung MTR line (my husband’s name), and marveled at the contrast of old and new in his boyhood neighborhood of Tsuen Wan in New Territories. We rode a Super TurboJET ferry to Macau and explored the colorful city of Portuguese influence.


The concept of bamboo exists in the painter’s mind. Have a well-thought-out plan or a stratagem.

According to Records of Wen Yuke Drawing Bamboo by Su Shi of the Song Dynasty, Wen Tong who styled himself as Yuke, was a very famous painter in the Song Dynasty, He was very good at drawing bamboo. He planted bamboo on a large scale in his garden. He observed their growth and appearance in different seasons and weathers so he knew bamboo like the palm of his hands.

Whenever he took a paint brush to draw the bamboo, he already had the perfect picture of bamboo in mind and he could always paint bamboo in a vivid and lovely way.

From this historical story comes the idiom—“ Xiong You Chen Zhu”—the concept of bamboo exists in the painter’s mind. Now it is used to describe having a well-thought-out plan beforehand.

The concept of bamboo exists in the painter’s mind

Have a well-thought-out plan or a stratagem


According to Records of Wen Yuke Drawing Bamboo by Su Shi of the Song Dynasty, Wen Tong who styled himself as Yuke, was a very famous painter in the Song Dynasty, He was very good at drawing bamboo.

He planted bamboo on a large scale in his garden. He observed their growth and appearance in different seasons and weathers so he knew bamboo like the palm of his hands.

Whenever he took a paint brush to draw the bamboo, he already had the perfect picture of bamboo in mind and he could always paint bamboo in a vivid and lovely way.

From this historical story comes the idiom—“ Xiong You Chen Zhu”—the concept of bamboo exists in the painter’s mind.

Now it is used to describe having a well-thought-out plan beforehand.

I am a finicky eater.

There…I’ve said it.  It’s “out there”.

I’ve always been a bit squeamish about trying new things.  I’ve gotten better in the last ten years though.

I remember as a little kid, trying to explain to my mom from a scientific perspective, the real reason why I should not be forced to eat my veggies or other weird foods.

Mom, I have read that certain people have a genetic predisposition against eating bok choy and broccoli.  You’ll notice that whenever you’ve forced it upon me, an involuntary gag reflex immediately begins, which is basically a reaction to whatever bile or rancid weed you’re making me ingest.  This gag reflex, which occurs through no fault of my own, is obviously an indicator that my body is rejecting the vile, fetid, vomit-inducing substance in my mouth.

Honestly Mom, I love your cooking and I just wish I had the ability to stomach it and enjoy it as much as I wish I could.


A short sale is a real estate transaction where the lender receives less than the full payoff of the loan when a sale is closed. In the 2nd quarter of 2011, short sales were 17% of all sales in Colorado vs 10% a year earlier. An unofficial survey of the Metrolist database shows short sales account for over 20% of residential listings that have received a purchase offer. Add to this, a number of homes for sale are on the verge of becoming a short sale if the buyer offers less than list price or asks for seller paid closing costs which has become customary.

For all of us, the short sale is having a major impact on our economy by the effect it’s having on the real estate market. It seems beyond the capabilities of economists to accurately determine how it affects the economy due, in large part, to the politicization of the issue.

For homeowners, a short sale is an effective way to get out from under a home they must sell that is “under water” meaning they owe more than they can get from the sale of their home. Pros and Cons:

• Harm to the Seller’s credit is much less than a foreclosure.
• Lender may require Seller to make good on unpaid portion of loan.


Dearest Readers,

The holiday season is around the corner! As we rummage to find our winter jackets, it’s a perfect time to go through closets and donate any unwanted or unused items. There is no better time than now to be giving back to our communities and those around us.

Last month, we hope you had a great Halloween weekend and thank those who joined us at our Freaky Friday party. We are now looking forward to our Singles Mingle Speed Dating event on Sunday, December 4 at Volcano Asian Cuisine. This will be an opportunity to meet the fabulous singles featured in this issue.

Our cover story on Asian American bachelors and bachelorettes has been highly anticipated through word of mouth and by our fans on Facebook. We did some research to find the most eligible and eclectic group of Asian American singles, who we’ve joked will no longer be single, after this issue hits the stands. If you are interested in meeting any of these eligible singles, come to mingle in December.

This month, the spotlight is on Derek Okubo, Director of Human Rights and Community Relations for Mayor Hancock’s office. He shares that he never imagined having such a title but has always taken on challenges and enjoyed working with people of diverse backgrounds.


Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once said, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

According to some Asian American Studies professors, it might be time to worry.

“In the 21st century, people often times want to believe that the United States has surmounted or gotten beyond the problem of race,” said Daryl Maeda, associate professor of Ethnic Studies at the University of Colorado at Boulder. “That is the thing that makes it really important for us to study race today—to somehow counter this idea that we have become a color blind society.”

To Maeda, Asian American Studies have always been important, but because the subject of race in the United States is being so willfully ignored, it is now more important than ever to inform Asian American and Caucasian students about the topics.

What are Asian American Studies?
Asian American studies programs generally examine Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, their history, communities, issues and culture. Although curriculum varies from school to school, some colleges offer interdisciplinary programs allowing students to focus on a wide range of topics related to the experience of Asian Americans.

When Josephine Lee, associate professor of English and Asian American Studies arrived at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, an Asian American Studies program was non-existent at the school. It was 1994, after she had spent five years teaching at Smith College.

Lee received her Ph.D. in English from Princeton University in the late 1980s. She said that people of her generation became more interested in Asian American Studies during this time, which led to its growth in the 1990s. Lee helped found the University of Minnesota’s Asian American Studies program in 2003 and served as its first director.

Even though it is offered only as a minor at the University of Minnesota, the degree has led graduates into careers in law, social work, business, teaching, government service, journalism and more.


BoulderAUAsian Unity (AU), a student group at the University of Colorado in Boulder with the initiative to make a difference for Asian American students on campus celebrates their ten year anniversary this year.

“We want to help build a better inclusive community of Asian and non-Asian groups,” said Travis Kiatoukaysi, a sophomore business major.

Through offering academic support to students, sponsoring monthly events and working to educate the campus about diverse Asian cultures and issues, AU has been representing Asian Americans at CU-Boulder since 2001. The group was founded in hope to create awareness and help eliminate stereotypes about Asian Americans and invites all students to come together to get to know communities they’re typically foreign to.

Their most well-known event is Taste of Asia, a spring festival on campus featuring food from different Asian countries. AU brings together other Asian student groups on campus to make the cultural event a yearly success. Their annual fall retreat is October 7-9, which will focus on team building, communication and leadership, said Allen Nguyen, a junior business major.  AU has partnered with the Center for Multicultural Affairs to provide a workshop on how to be Asian American leaders.