Tuesday, September 14

Passport on a Plate

My stomach is my guide.

One of the greatest things about living in a culturally eclectic city like San Francisco is the food. Walk around the city and in a few short blocks you can hopscotch all over the world. Delicacies from the Chinese Hunan province on one corner, while spicy Indian curries are tucked into alley ways across the street.

Living in China Town this past year has opened my nose to smells that I hadn't fathomed. Plumes of incense and aged green tea waft between columns of spices and unidentifiable dried plant in Chinese medicine shops. Fish markets reek of putrid fish and as fresh Tuna are unloaded off of trucks onto bare pavement, you resolve to thoroughly wash every piece of meat you buy for the rest of your life.

After my year long education in Eastern culture, I've since moved a short walk away and am now enjoying the familial atmosphere of North Beach. It's known as the "Little Italy" of San Francisco and open-air cafes and gelato abound. I produced a piece about the transition between culinary cultures for those of you that can't join me in Washington Square for a cappuccino and gelato, or a glass of wine and plate of prosciutto and cheese.How does that sound?

Saturday, September 11

The Way We Move

I've got my eye on things.

I've learned in school that video is the new language. I'm currently in a class that revolves around journalistic short-form production and I'll soon be learning the tricks and subtleties of visual story telling. San Francisco is an incredible place filled with unbelievable characters. I've recently decided to share my remaining time out here with you, the viewer. Though I'll continue to think and write about my findings, you can expect to see more videos of the interesting things that I encounter out here on the left coast.

The most interesting thing I found today was some kind of Asian cultural festival in the Inner Sunset district of San Francisco. It was amazing how selflessly these children danced, so unconcerned about capturing the spotlight. I walked away thinking about how endemic this was to Eastern cultures, and how different we Westerners define ideas of self, community, social role, and purpose. Around the world It's easy to see that children love to dance, though I wonder what the differences and similarities are in their thinking as they move with the music.

I watched these kids dance and suddenly recalled the beautiful and perfectly synchronized dance performed at the opening ceremonies for the Olympics in Beijing. Perhaps cooperative dance is as familiar to children in Eastern cultures as a game of "Tag" is to Western kids.