Spring cleaning’s not just about the house. After a season of over-indulging followed by months spent bundled up under a pile of layers, our bodies need some serious purging and purifying if we ever want to see the light of day.
ISSUE: Spring 2012
DEPT: Mind & Body
STORY: Audrey Staff
Seaweed is known for its detoxifying and restorative properties; birch as a skin toner and swelling reducer. Both are incorporated into the Seaweed Birch Wrapat Le Posh Salon, an invigorating wakeup call of a treatment. After an exfoliating dry brushing, the seaweed birch mask is painted on and then you’re wrapped in foil. Soon, your body feels like a giant Altoid — the mask is so cooling you’re practically shivering. A hot shower offers relief and your skin is left baby soft. Details Salonleposh.com.
Everyone from celebs to co-workers tout the purported wonders of the cayenne pepper-maple syrup cleanse. Personally, I think it’s an urban legend. I mean, a spicy, sticky liquid for two weeks? No
wonder you lose weight. Chef and nutritional therapist Gurpareet Bains, has a better idea. In his new book Indian Superspices, the Indian British author of the best-selling book Indian Superfood offers more natural (and tasty) detox remedies incorporating spices that metabolizefat, boost metabolism and suppress appetite. Try his green tea augmented with fat-metabolizing cinnamon and ginger, and appetite-suppressing fennel; the protein packed Prawn and Baby Spinach Quinoa Biryani; or the rich and creamy (yet “almost bereft of fat and calories”) Ultimate Detox Soup. (Go to AudreyMagazine.com/Indian-superspices for the recipe!) Details Gurpareetbains.co.uk.
There are plenty of hangover remedies. There’s only one that’s FDA-approved. Blowfish is hangover relief in a fizzing tablet you dissolve in water. Because of the effervescent delivery system, the results are more immediate: you rehydrate, a maximum dose of aspirin fights headaches, a neutralizing agent settles your stomach, and you get a hit of caffeine without the acidity of coffee. Staffer Y. Peter Kang gives us his minute-by-minute play-by-play:
10:52 am I just downed the 16 oz of fizzy water. It was not bad.
10:55 am Three minutes. Nothing yet. Still have a monster headache.
10:57 am Whoa, feels like my headache is actually a little worse. Wha??
11:03 am The tide has turned; I think I’m feeling better than pre-ingestion. Also feeling the effects of the caffeine. I can tell because I began reading an article about gold-infused peanuts with great interest.
11:26 am I am caffeinated, but I still have my headache. Started out a 7/10 headache; it’s now down to a 5. Not out of the woods yet.
12:05 pmThe headache’s down to a 3 — it’s dull and lingering. Caffeine was nice. Interesting alternative to drinking a cup of coffee and taking two Advil. Would try again.
Of course, the best hangover remedy is to not get drunk at all. If you think you’re drinking too much too often, you may need to detoxify from drugs and alcohol to achieve a full system cleanse.
Tara Miko Grayless, 35, was stressed out and suffering digestion problems in her job in the fashion industry. After a health food store owner educated her about the power of hemp, she decided to try it. According to Grayless, after several weeks of incorporating the super food into her diet, not only did her digestion improve, but “I lost 10 pounds, my energy levels skyrocketed and I was no longer overwhelmed by stress. My hair took on a new sheen, my nails grew stronger and my [dry] skin had a rosy glow.”
So the Japanese-Irish American started Happy Hemp to share “this gift with the world.” Touted as “the most nutritionally complete food source in the world,” hemp seeds are vegan and gluten-free, and boast nature’s highest botanical source of essential fatty acid (more than flax or any other nut or seed oil), says Grayless. Just sprinkle on yogurt or eat straight out of the bag.
And in case you’re wondering, no, you will not get high off hemp. “Hemp seeds have nothing to do with its distant cousin, marijuana,” says Grayless. “Hemp seeds are legal and you will not test positive on a drug test.” Snack away! Details Happy-hemp.com.
It seems everyone I know makes a living in front of the computer, and the American Optometric Association confirms that 45 percent of all Americans spend more than five hours per day on a computer. Such prolonged use can lead to something called Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS), which may include eye strain, dry eyes, headaches, fatigue, blurred vision and loss of focus. Add to that the fact that Asian Americans have a very high prevalence of nearsightedness (myopia) — upwards of 70 percent — and are at higher risk for age-related cataracts, according to a 2011 study by Transitions Optical with Wakefield Research. In honor of Save Your Vision Month (March), optometrist Dr. Brian Chouprovides some simple lifestyle changes we can make to minimize our risk for developing eye conditions.
1. We must be aware of the harmful damage that can be caused by the sun’s UV rays. UV rays are present 365 days of the year, whether it’s sunny or cloudy. See your eye doctor annually for a comprehensive exam to check for eye diseases such as cataracts and macular degeneration, which have been linked to UV exposure. A comprehensive eye exam not only evaluates the need for glasses, but also eye muscle coordination, color-blindness and internal and external eye health, and can help to flag other health-related conditions such as hypertension and diabetes.
2. Wear protective eyewear covering the entire eye area with UVA/UVB protection, such as sunglasses. If you wear prescription lenses, try Transitions lenses, which are everyday eyeglass lenses that automatically go from clear to dark when outdoors to block 100 percent of the sun’s harmful UV rays.
3. Drink at least eight to 10 glasses of water each day to keep both the skin and eyes hydrated.
4. Maintain a balanced diet and be sure to eat fruits and vegetables containing vitamins A, C and E and beta- carotene — important for the body and the eyes.
All of spring’s filmy, sheer clothes are going to make an extra smooth body all the more important. Rose Wu of Oasis Day Spa in New York offers some tips for waxing after a long winter break.
Studies indicate that nearly 40 percent of Asian American women drink alcohol and, while that’s less than the 55.2 percent national average, we are at a higher risk for all sorts of medical issues due to our binge drinking. So why do we do it? Editor Janice Jann investigates.
ISSUE: Winter 2011-12
DEPT: Feature Story
STORY: Janice Jann
As I lean over the toilet bowl, my hair grazing the rim, I catch a glimpse of my reflection in the water. “Who is this puke-strewn girl, bleary-eyed and green-faced, with her pajamas on backwards, staring back at me?” I think to myself. I mutter, “Never again, never a—,” before nausea sweeps in.
There have been many morning afters like this in the years I have been drinking, each time steeped with more regret than the last. Most of my peers have stories like mine. Many laugh, “Who hasn’t gone through it?”
As normal as binge drinking has become, new studies indicate that Asian American women may want to hold off on that second cocktail the next time they drink for reasons more than just avoiding the toilet bowl the next morning.
Dept The Market
Issue Fall 2012
Hed: Here Goes Nothing
Ever wonder what you’d find on an online dating site? Pervs, fetishists … the boy next door? One Asian American woman does the (dirty) work for us in our inaugural O.D.D. (Online Dating Diary) column.
Online dating can be a daunting experience for both men and women, and even more specifically for an Asian American woman. Some may argue that Asian American women have it easy because they tend to
receive the most number of messages on online dating sites, but having X number of suitors does not necessarily make the experience any easier or better.
I’ve tried online dating before — for a whole week — before permanently deleting my account after receiving little more than creepy (and sometimes downright revolting) messages from various men on the site. At one point, a guy I had grown to trust a bit made a complete 180 — from a seemingly nice guy to one who confessed how much he liked to masturbate to my picture.
Ravi Kapoor’s The 5
The Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles (IFFLA) is back, this time celebrating its 10th anniversary, April 10-15, at Arclight Hollywood cinemas. IFFLA showcases the best in Indian alternate cinema and focuses on cultivating a diverse international audience for Indian films.
Opening Night Film: CHITTAGONG
Opening night is the world premiere of Bedabrata Pain’s drama CHITTAGONG and stars award-winning actor Manoj Bajpayee (PINJAR). The film is set against the backdrop of 1930’s British-occupied Chittagong on the brink of a youth led revolution, and tells the story of 14-year-old Jhunka who comes of age as he is faced with the ultimate questions of sacrifice, love, and the quest for true freedom.
Closing night’s festivities will begin with the screening of director Prashant Bhargava’s richly woven award-winning drama PATANG. PATANG tells the story of Delhi businessman Jayesh and his daughter as they journey back to his childhood home in Ahmedabad for a family reunion during India’s largest kite festival. Under the kaleidoscope of colorful kite-filled skies, a Pandora’s box of family drama and past conflict is exposed. PATANG has become a festival favorite playing to sold-out audiences worldwide and is making its Los Angeles premiere at IFFLA.
Umesh Vinayak Kulkarni’s THE TEMPLE (DEEOL)
Among the eight feature films screening will be India’s 2011 official submission in the Oscar™ foreign language category, Salim Ahmed’s poetic drama ABU, SON OF ADAM (ADAMINTE MAKAN ABU). US premieres include Rajan Khosa’s critically acclaimed GATTU which won a special mention this year at the 62nd Berlinale for capturing the ironies, the complexities and the vitality of India, and Umesh Vinayak Kulkarni’s inspirational satire THE TEMPLE (DEOOL).
Documentaries include the world premiere of Ruchika Muchhala and Faiza Khan’s fascinating look into Indian society with THE GREAT INDIAN MARRIAGE BAZAAR and the US premiere of Raffaele Brunetti’s MOTHER INDIA which intertwines four distinct stories about India’s booming fertility industry.
Back by popular demand are two shorts programs consisting of 13 films, including the world premiere of Anirban Roy’s AUDACITY (AASHPORDHA).
10th Anniversary Retrospective: LOINS OF PUNJAB PRESENTS
In honor of its 10th year, the festival is bringing back three of its past award winners as part of a 10th ANNIVERSARY RETROSPECTIVE. Throughout 2011 the festival asked the public to vote online for their favorite film from the past decade. The films that received the most votes and selected by the public to be screened in the retrospective are past Jury Award winners for Best Narrative Feature UDAAN (2011) and BLACK FRIDAY (2005) as well as Audience Choice Award winner for Best Feature LOINS OF PUNJAB PRESENTS (2008).
Bollywood by Night: AGENT VINOD
Also returning is the crowd pleasing BOLLYWOOD BY NIGHT sidebar which includes the highly anticipated AGENT VINOD directed by Sriram Raghavan and starring Bollywood superstars Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapoor and Abhinay Deo’s DELHI BELLY produced by acclaimed Indian actor/director/producer Aamir Khan.
Source: Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles
TICKETS AND PASSES
The 10th Annual Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles (IFFLA) runs April 10-15 at ArcLight Hollywood located at 6360 W. Sunset Blvd between Vine and Ivar. Festival and All Access passes may be purchased via the festival website.
Now in its 10th year, the Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles (IFFLA) is a nonprofit organization devoted to a greater appreciation of Indian cinema and culture by showcasing films, honoring entertainment industry business executives and promoting the diverse perspectives of the Indian diaspora. For more information: www.indianfilmfestival.org.
TV Guide Network roving reporter Audrey Cleo covered The Hunger Games red carpet premiere in Los Angeles last week. Here, the Malaysian-Chinese American girl-about-town gives us her a peek into her glamorous day.
As glamorous as reporting from a red carpet movie premiere can be, like many things in Hollywood, not all is as it seems. Sure, you’re hanging out with celebrities, hobnobbing with A-listers and dropping the occasional humblebraggy “Oh, it’s just my job to interview really really really hot people” tweet. And don’t get me wrong – that actually is the job. But you’re also multi-tasking the demands of your producers, your show, the star whom you’re talking to, and their handlers. Oh, and making sure you’re tracking all of this in realtime on Twitter and Facebook. The pressure is on.
And with a highly-anticipated movie like The Hunger Games, with legions of fans — many of whom criss-crossed the globe and camped out for days in downtown Los Angeles to catch glimpses of the actors – it can be a bit like working in controlled chaos, albeit the fun, glamorous kind with fake eyelashes and hunky guys with accents in Dolce suits. Here is my EXCLUSIVE Audrey Magazine red carpet diary covering the premiere of what’s poised to be one of the biggest movies of 2012 and possibly the biggest movie franchise since that other one with the sparkly vampires.
THE COSMOPOLITAN OF LAS VEGAS
ISSUE: Winter 2011-12
STORY: Anna Park
The stylish terrace studio offers plenty of eye candy inside, right, and out (yup, that’s the terrace view overlooking the Bellagio water fountains).
For someone who isn’t into gambling or tanning, Vegas never held much allure. That is, until The Cosmopolitan came along. Over-loaded with style in every velvet-tufted niche, The Cosmopolitan is just a year old and already one of the hottest properties on a strip of hot properties. Everything is geared towards a more chic experience, from stiletto sculptures and fashion wall art, to the mismatched chair lounges complete with vintage pool table. Even their take on the obligatory all-you-can-eat buffet, Wicked Spoon, is done with panache: an abundance of vegetarian options, delicate small plates and portion-controlled servings. (What other buffet offers roasted bone marrow on brioche toast, duck meatballs, or a made-to-order mac and cheese station?)
The hotel’s pièce de résistance, however, is The Chandelier, a three-story bar dripping in curtains of dazzling crystals. Sipping a toasted marshmallow cocktail ensconced within its twinkling walls is enough to bring out the girly girl in anyone. Details CosmopolitanLasVegas.com.
ISSUE: Winter 2011-12
DEPT: Plugged In
STORY: Melody Lee
When she’s not portraying the smart, witty Alice Valko in ABC Family’s The Secret Life of the American Teenager, Amy Rider is producing, directing and starring in her own web series, The Monogamy Experiment. Rider, whose mother is Japanese, gives us the inside scoop behind her not-so-secret life.
Audrey Magazine: Tell us about The Monogamy Experiment.
Amy Rider: It’s a film first and foremost, but we released part of it as a web series. It’s about a couple who’s too young to marry and decide to investigate whether people are biologically monogamous, so they try having an open relationship for 30 days.
AM: What was your inspiration for it?
AR: A lot of my friends have tried the whole open relationship thing and I just couldn’t wrap my head around how it would work out.
AM: What have you gained from the experience so far?
AR: I’m happy that I learned so much about what it’s like behind-the-scenes. I really, really like it. It’s very fulfilling in ways that I don’t get to experience through acting. I was challenged in a manner that I was never exposed to, but it was satisfying in other creative ways.
— Melody Lee
As the runner-up on The Voice, Dia Frampton, who just dropped her solo album debut, loves songwriting and recording. Performing? Not so much.
ISSUE: Winter 2011-12
STORY: Y. Peter Kang
Singer Dia Frampton has a major case of stage fright.
The producers of NBC’s The Voice, a reality TV singing contest which Frampton narrowly lost last summer, definitely played up the Utah native’s shy personality, portraying her as a shrinking violet.
In many cases, reality TV is far from reality, but for Frampton it wasn’t that far from the truth.
“I probably went pee like every five minutes before I went on because I was so nervous,” says Frampton in a telephone interview. “I think it’s just recently come to the point where I don’t enjoy performing very much. It feels wrong to say that — I love songwriting, I love recording, but when it comes to performing I get so nervous it’s not fun for me sometimes.”
But the 24-year-old, whose father is Dutch and mother is Korean, says she is working on it. She’s started to take acting classes to help conquer her stage fright. “It’s getting me to take myself out of myself and it’s been really helpful,” she says.
She doesn’t have much time to conquer her fears since she’s set to go on a 26-date tour in January opening for country star Blake Shelton, who served as her mentor on The Voice. Frampton, once part of indie rock sister act Meg & Dia, will play songs off her solo debut album Red, released by Universal Republic in early December.
The doe-eyed singer collaborated with a number of notable names in the music industry for the album, including Mark Foster and Isom Innis of indie pop band Foster the People, and Isabella Summers of Florence and the Machine. On top of that, the first track off the album, “Don’t Kick the Chair,” features rapper Kid Cudi.
Frampton describes the music as pop, but with her signature. “It was kind of weird at first because I think pop is associated with bad things in a way,” she says. “When I think of pop I think of auto tune and people dancing around in their underwear, but I’m excited and proud. It’s pop done well and we tried really hard to keep what’s special to me.”
— Y. Peter Kang
Executive producer and star of the hit NBC series The Office, Mindy Kaling is taking over pop culture with a new blog, a new screenplay, a new TV deal, and her new book Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?.
ISSUE: Winter 2011-12
DEPT: Cover Feature
Photos Diana King
Hair Alex Polillo
Makeup Mylah Morales
Wardrobe stylist Karla Welch
Photo assistant Kevin Kozicki
Location WaterMarke Tower, Los Angeles Calif.
Editor Janice Jann
It’s hard not to be charmed by Mindy Kaling. For starters, the woman is hilarious. Ninety-nine percent of the things she writes, says, directs, and tweets makes you laugh. (Sample tweet: “I will never cheat on you but I may gain 100 pounds which is a different kind of betrayal. #unusual- weddingvows.”)
She’s also whip-smart. In her debut book, Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns), the Ivy League graduate, in her own words, “kind of killed it in college. You know that saying ‘big fish in a small pond?’ At Dartmouth College, I was freakin’ Jaws in a community swimming pool.” (Did we already mention she was hilarious?)
She’s thoughtful. She apologized profusely for constantly rescheduling our interview and called five minutes early so we would be able to chat longer. B.J. Novak, Mindy’s The Office co-exec producer, writer, star and friend, has said this about her: “Mindy has long been considered the best writer on The Office, and every actor on the show thinks she writes for them best. There is the extra little ‘smile’ that infuses her scripts, which is hard to quantify. As a person, she’s incredibly sentimental, more than anyone I’ve ever met, but she’s also incredibly sharp. She’s unabashedly both.”
These admirable traits have propelled Mindy into a force to be reckoned with in Hollywood. At only 32, Mindy has been nominated for an Emmy, published her first book, and sold a screenplay. She is developing a TV show, boasts more than 1.5 million Twitter followers, and relaunched her popular blog, TheConcernsofMindyKaling.com. About her packed schedule, Mindy simply says, “You make time for what you love.”
We chatted with the Indian American entertainer about everything from the audacity of having had a happy childhood to not getting stuck in a box.
Audrey Magazine: So Mindy, since I just finished your book last night and I pretty much know all about you, I guess we’re done with the interview.
Mindy Kaling: [Laughs] I’m glad you walked away feeling that way.
AM: Was it hard for you to crank this book out?
MK: At the beginning, it was very hard. I’m used to [writing scripts]. The book is very dialogue-heavy cause that’s my forte, but it was very daunting ‘cause I was thinking about all the great essayists. But no one has this expectation that I’m going to write this Joan Didion work of art — they want a book with fresh observations that’s funny and personal. That made it easier.
AM: Was it difficult for you to share so much about your personal life in the book?
MK: I’m a pretty open person in general, so I have the privilege of being open because my life isn’t full of tawdry details and wild stories. I can be very opinionated because I don’t have anything to hide. When I talk about my childhood, I had a very fun one. You get this weird problem where it’s like, nobody wants to read about someone with an idyllic childhood with great, responsible, fun parents. But that’s actually not true — people love to hear about that.
AM: That does seem to be going against the trend of what the current hot memoirs are about nowadays.
MK: There are a lot of female writers coming out [where] what’s intrinsic to them is a level of raunchy details, which I’m not all that interested in reading or writing. Hopefully, this book will appeal to people who don’t need that.
AM: You talked about a great childhood with your parents. What’s your relationship with them like now?
MK: When I first moved back to L.A., I was so homesick I would visit my parents once a month. Then I became not so homesick and I would still visit them once a month. My parents are all-stars. I get so much out of our relationship, I’m just taking it for granted.
AM: Would you say you had a fairly untraditional Indian upbringing?
MK: One of the things that made it an untraditional Indian upbringing was that my parents didn’t meet in India — they didn’t have an arranged marriage. Another thing is they don’t speak any common Indian language so the only language they speak with us is English.
What was so great was when my parents were both younger, they had parents who kind of already decided what they were going to be and steered them that way. With my brother and myself, there was none of that. They saw that, at a very young age, I loved acting and writing and they kind of let me do that — not only let me do that but encouraged it a lot. Especially my dad. He was very encouraging of me following that path.
AM: In your book, you talked about a period in your life where you pretty much lived like a starving artist in New York City. How did your parents feel about that?
MK: They were slightly anxious. But in college I had done so much theater that they had seen and loved, and I would show confidence. I don’t know where that came from. I was so confident and I expressed that to my parents. They were like, “Great, she’s so confident about it, why wouldn’t we be?”
AM: Did you always feel like you were destined to become a writer-performer?
MK: As confident as I feel, it takes an almost comically confident person to be able to say that they were destined to be in movies and television. I don’t think I was destined, but I think I am of the personality type where the rejection or odds of something doesn’t scare me. Maybe it was because my mom moved to Africa at 20 by herself, but there’s a certain fearlessness that runs in my family for things where there’s absolutely no reason to believe that it should work out. I get that from my parents.
AM: You got your big break when you wrote the critically acclaimed play, Matt & Ben, spoofing Matt Damon and Ben Affleck. Have you ever met either actor?
MK: I’ve never met Matt nor Ben. They seem like pretty smart, cool guys. We did no research on them when we wrote that play so I have no idea what their personalities are like at all. Our portrayals of them were not based on anything real. It was definitely an absurdist play.
I bet they don’t even really know or remembered that this play existed. They’re both movie directors and famous actors. [Laughs] They just seem like nice guys.
AM: From that play, you got a job at age 24 writing for The Office with creator Greg Daniels. In your book, you write about your quarrels with Greg. Does he know you wrote about that?
MK: I was really scared to show that part to him. I don’t think any grown man wants to be seen fighting with his younger female employee, but I think the fact of the matter is that he doesn’t have a fighting personality, so that he would fight with me is kind of my fault. But it’s fine; we’ve come to an understanding about our volatile relationship. I noticed the people that I fight with the most, I have the longest relationships with.
AM: You two obviously have a great working relationship as you’ve just been promoted to executive producer of The Of- fice this season. Congrats! Do you have more responsibilities now?
MK: Now that the cast has gotten so big, I do feel more responsibility. There’s a thing called “running a room” where you’re in charge of everyone in the writer’s room. I used to be one of those people checking my Blackberry and now I’m one of those people annoyed at the people checking their Blackberry. I became management, which was interesting ‘cause that’s not really my personality.
AM: Speaking of management, you’ve also directed a couple episodes of The Office.
MK: The first time I directed, I couldn’t sleep the night before because I was so terrified. When you’re directing, you’re making more decisions. I had to make more decisions in a day than I had in the previous two months. To the point where you’re like, “Stop asking me questions, people.” You have to be very patient as a director and I’m a very impatient person. But I love directing. You have the final say. No one else can get in the way of that. Especially on a show like The Office where the network largely lets us do what we want to do, directing is fantastic. Especially if I’ve written and directed an episode. I don’t even have to run an idea by the writer — I am the writer. That’s a fully realized medium.
I would love to keep directing. I think it’s really fun and I think I’m good. It’ll be great to do other projects. I’m really inspired by my friends who direct their own stuff, like Lena Dunham (Tiny Furniture). She’s so talented and inspirational. She was the one who encouraged me to direct my own movie.
AM: You’re outspoken about your love of romantic comedies. Are you OK with the fact that they’re not really reflective of real life?
MK: I’m pretty aware that like any movie, there are people who you see that you’re like, “That’s just like me!” I think Judd Apatow did that with his films. People actually said, “Oh, I’m seeing people like me and my life on film.” But I feel like people don’t care. Who would want to go to the movies to see a perfect reflection of themselves? There are parts of the romantic comedies you do want to see, like, what’s the fashion going to be like?
AM: So what would be the ideal role for you?
MK: That’s a good question. There’s an ideal role, and [there’s] the role I’ll most likely get cast as. Everyone’s dream role is to be a part of an ensemble in a movie by the Coen brothers. A small part in something like that. That would be ideal.
AM: In a drama or a comedy?
MK: Right now, I want to continue in comedy ‘cause that’s in my comfort zone.
AM: There’s a lot of flack women in comedy have to take. If they’re funny, they can’t be too girly. If they’re too girly, they’re not funny. Or if they’re too into pop culture, they’re not smart, and vice versa. You’ve managed to get away with professing your love for Beyoncé and shopping, and still come across as smart, funny and someone people can take seriously. What’s your secret?
MK: I think we’re only putting ourselves in boxes if we think we can only be a certain way. I play a character that’s kind of silly and I’m Mindy Kaling who likes to go shopping, and I resent anyone who makes me feel like I can’t do that. We don’t all have to be Supreme Court justices. We don’t have to all play someone that has their sh—t together ‘cause that somehow makes women look better. I’d rather play someone that looks very real to me and have my fans think for themselves. I do get criticized by women who think that because of who I am, I shouldn’t talk about shopping or be an emotional person, and I think, “Why?” Now you’re just putting women in another box where they can only be a certain way. I think that’s too bad.
AM: With all the pop culture space you’re currently taking up right now, would you say you’re having a moment?
MK: [Laughs] I have been more busy — I don’t know if that’s having a moment. I’d like to be busy and stay relevant for the rest of my life. I feel like I have something to say and this is the first time people are listening, but I hope I always have something to say. Like Tom Hanks. He’s been having a moment for, what, 30 years? That’s pretty great.
ISSUE: Winter 2011-12
STORY: Elyse Glickman
The historic resort town of Hua Hin, Thailand (incorporated in the 1920s by King Rama VII), has authenticity in its favor, with local culture and natural beauty winning out over Phuket’s five-star flash and dash. Chiva Som, one of Southeast Asia’s most innovative wellness resorts, lies at the heart of this gorgeously unpretentious oasis, just a three-hour drive from Bangkok. Though it seems a little quiet at first, Chiva Som’s lush, fragrant compound opens like a lotus into a multi-dimensional, calming experience.
Chiva Som’s primary mission is to send guests home with a most lasting souvenir — better health habits, attained in most pleasurable ways. For this reason, personalization takes priority over pretension. Shortly after your first glass of crisp lemongrass iced tea made on-premise, a spa counselor will promptly set your personal wellness plan into motion, even steering you away from treatments you would pick if left to your own devices. Though a body scrub or facial may be tempting, the counselor may insist Reiki, Thai massage or their patented digestion- focused massage are more appropriate for your long-term well-being.
Fitness classes (everything from Thai boxing to Shaolin Wushu to golf), modifiable to every fitness level, are made more enticing with lush jungle greenery and laid-back fitness instructors. Chiva Som’s cuisine is delicious and informatively presented, with calories and specific nutritional benefits outlined in detail. Cooking classes incorporating a trip to Hua Hin’s food markets with Chiva Som’s chef are also available for an extra charge.
Though Chiva Som encourages guests to stay on property as much as possible, they do offer shuttles to Hua Hin’s bustling night market. An upscale alternative is the delightful Cicada Market (cicadamarket.net), staged only on weekends, featuring live jazz performances as well as handcrafted jewelry, clothing, textiles and objets d’art sold by their creators in a tidy maze of open air boutiques. Details ChivaSom.com.