I Called It!

Sunday was Oscar night, which meant the moment of truth to see if my predictions on Hollywood Stock Exchange (www.hsx.com) would come true. I only made two extremely educated guesses with the assumption that awards such as best film, best supporting actor, etc. were already locked up, which turned out to be correct. It was too easy to predict Javier Bardem for supporting actor and No Country for Old Men for best film, so I decided not to waste my time on those categories.

Instead I focused my attention on best supporting actress and best adapted film.

Best supporting actress: Cate Blanchett was the favorite with her portrayal of Bob Dylan in I’m Not There. My pick was Tilda Swinton in Michael Clayton for her subtle, serious, and powerful portrayal of a corporate executive. Guess who turned out to be right? That’s right, I called it!

Best Adapted Screenplay: The favorites were Atonement and There Will Be Blood, two critically acclaimed movies that garnered huge amounts of Oscar hype. But my pick was No Country for Old Men. If you’ve read Cormac McCarthy’s books and seen the movie, there’s no way you could predict against the Cohen Brothers’ portrayal. It was like McCarthy wrote the movie himself! Apparently Entertainment Weekly and USA Today and everyone else couldn’t tell. But guess who was correct? That’s right, I called it!

So next time you need to put money on an Oscar category, come to me first.

Not Every Asian on TV is Chinese

In recognition of the awesome 4th season of Lost, which continues tonight at 9pm, I’d like to clarify the ethnicity of Sun and Jin because several people seem a little confused. For the record, they are not Chinese nor do they speak Mandarin or Cantonese. They are Korean and from what my Korean friends tell me Daniel Dae-Kim, the actor who plays Jin, speaks pretty poor Korean. I wouldn’t know the difference between good, bad, and horrible since I’m only half-Korean and my mother never taught me the language.
As for Hiro and Ando on Heroes they are also not Chinese, but Japanese. Not every Asian person on tv is Chinese. I don’t know how many people I’ve talked to that were astonished to here that Sun, Jin, Hiro, and Ando were all not Chinese. For those of you who knew, thank you for being educated and have fun watching Lost tonight!

Obama County, NY

On Super Tuesday Hillary Clinton won New York State’s vote 57%-40% over Obama. CNN never pulled up New York on their little interactive board that John King plays around with every time election night rolls around. However, if he did he would’ve seen that the only county Barack Obama won in New York State was Tompkins County 52%-46%, home of Cornell University and Ithaca College.

People here like to say we live in a 4 square mile box surrounded by reality. It couldn’t be more true. In Ithaca you have many professors, employees of the University, students, activists, protesters (many of them), etc. In total, these groups make Ithaca a relatively educated, liberal town. Move outside though and the woes of upstate New York hit you like you just got blindsided on the NJ Turnpike. Struggling towns periodically show up as one drives on Route 17 and the abundance of family farms fallen victim to agribusiness cannot be escaped. So it’s no wonder that Tompkins County, the majority of who’s population lives in Ithaca (and therefore works at either Cornell or Ithaca College), was the variation from the norm when it voted for Obama. (This is not to say that Ithaca doesn’t have the same problems affecting other small cities.)

Even from an outsider’s perspective, it couldn’t have been more obvious. Drive down Route 17 and you see houses with a Hillary poster in their yard, but none sported an Obama banner. Once you enter Ithaca, however, it’s a different story. And when you walk onto Cornell’s campus, it’s like “Hillary Clinton who?”. And then you know you’ve entered Obama County, NY.

What is that Burning Smell?

One thing everyone forgets to tell you upon entering college is the ridiculous number of times the fire alarm goes off in the dorms because someone burnt popcorn in the microwave. Freshman year, the obnoxiously loud (though they succeed at what they’re supposed to do) fire alarms sounded many times, none more inconvenient than at 2:30AM on a Wednesday during finals week. Why? Because someone burned popcorn.

Last night, at 4am Sunday morning, I am rudely awakened again by the fire alarm in my room and forced to walk outside into temperatures below 25 degrees in my pj’s, which consist of a t-shirt and gym shorts, where I proceed to wait for the fire alarm to cease making its BWEP BWEP BWEP sound so that I may hurriedly walk back up the four flights of stairs and climb back into my bed. Why? Because someone burnt their popcorn in the microwave. Why anyone was making popcorn at 4 in the morning is beyond my reasoning.

The whole point of this blog entry: don’t be that person that burns their popcorn.

The Best

I don’t remember what it was like when the Giants won the Super Bowl in 1991, so last night was something special. It felt great. It still feels great. And it will continue to feel great until the start of next season. The Giants (and Kevin Boothe) beating the Patriots makes it feel all the much better.

To all the Pats fans, congrats on going 18-1*, emphasis on the one and asterisk.

To the Giants (and Kevin Boothe) and all fellow fans, we knew we could do it, no one else did.

Record when it mattered: Giants, 4-0; Patriots 2-1. The 16-0 season, everyone could care less.

Talking About Our Houses

For DEA (Design and Environmental Analysis) 150 students had to map out the floor plans of their houses and present them in class. The homework assignment itself was somewhat fun since it required no reading and felt like something you’d do in an art class in high school. I don’t think I’ve used the right side of my brain since tenth grade.

What made this class interesting was that one of the students was from Ghana. So while us Americans were talking about front doors and hallways, he was talking about front gates, outdoor gardens, and corridors where they played soccer. His house represented those of Ghana’s upper middle class. There is a gate to separate the house from the street. After entering through the gate, visitors walk through a garden and then enter the house. The house from within varies greatly from the typical American upper middle class house not just in regards to decoration but layout as well. Rooms are situated in a different fashion, and there are gates inside the house as well.
Overall, it was just a great experience to hear the characteristics of a non-American, Western European house.