Vancouver’s Hapa-Palooza Festival Celebrates Mixed Heritage


The term “Hapa” generally refers to an individual who is of mixed race with some Asian or Pacific Islander roots. Needless to say, growing up and identifying as a Hapa is an extremely unique and sometimes confusing experience. (Remember when elementary exams asked you to bubble in your ethnicity? Talk about confusing!) Thankfully, Vancouver aims to celebrate and bring awareness to the unique experience with the Hapa-palooza festival, the world’s largest celebration of mixed heritage and hybrid identity.

In recent years we have seen a large increase in the Hapa community. In America, for instance, the mixed-race population is growing faster than any other. A Korean American photographer was inspired by this and created the photo series “Mixed Blood,” which may be the future of many American families.

Canada has also seen a large growth in the mixed race population. NBC News uncovered statistics from Canada’s 2011 National Household Survey and reported:

The percentage of couples in which one spouse or partner is a member of a visible minority or both are from different visible minority groups has almost doubled in the past twenty years, from 2.6 percent of all couples in 1991 to 4.6 percent in 2011. The same survey shows that 1.97 percent of those who identified as Asian and 62.8 percent of those who identified as Pacific Islander also identified with another racial or ethnic group.


With citizens so rich in diversity, Vancouver decided that it was time to celebrate the Hapa community. After all, it has very little awareness despite the fact that identifying as a Hapa may cause confusion and an identity crisis.

“Canada prides itself on being a multicultural country, and Hapa-palooza explores the blending of various cultures and backgrounds,” says Zarah Martz, co-founder of the Hapa-palooza festival.

The festival has performances, panels, art and, most importantly, it serves as a space for the Hapa community to converse with others who also identify as mixed race.




Julie Chen Reveals Her Grandfather Was A Polygamist With Nine Wives And Countless Mistresses


It’s that time of year again– It’s secret week on The Talk which means the hosts build up the courage to tell  their deepest, darkest secrets to the world.

“My secret is a secret that has haunted me for many years,” Julie Chen said with great effort on Tuesday’s episode of The Talk. Chen specifically shows an unbelievable amount of courage here. After all, revealing her other secret had hurtful results.

Last year, Julie Chen revealed that nearly 20 years ago, she had undergone plastic surgery in order to push her career forward. Unfortunately, this big reveal was met with a storm of negative responses from people who believed this move was denying her heritage and was efforts to look less Asian.  Despite the harsh criticism and negative comments, Chen mustered up the courage to tell yet another dark secret.

“My mom tried to keep this secret from me and my two sisters for a long time. For as long as she could,” Chen said slowly. “She was afraid for me, personally– it would damage my career goals, my dreams of being a broadcaster, my reputation. For the record, I did get her OK to tell this secret…My secret that I have been harboring for years is that my grandfather was a polygamist.”

According to Chen, her grandfather had nine wives, even more grandchildren and countless mistresses. Chen then reveals that her uncle had twenty children from his four wives.

Although Chen never met her grandfather, she knew of the emotional toll polygamy took on her grandmother who had to watch her husband take on more and more wives. Chen also described the emotional toll that the polygamy lifestyle had on her mother, who ultimately chose to have a monogamous marriage.

“It is a family secret, which we all have. The reason we all have family secrets and the reason we try and keep it a secret is because it’s often something that brings shame to the family — and my situation is no different.”

Fortunately, the experience appears to have brought some relief to Chen who was finally given the opportunity to share her secret. She tweeted:

Watch the emotional reveal below:


Kenichi Ebina’s Awesome Michael Jackson Dance Tribute


On September 18, 2013, exactly one year ago, Kenichi Ebina won the hearts of many, many fans while competing for and winning the eighth season of America’s Got Talent. With hypnotic dance moves and a humble personality, what’s not to love?

The 40-year-old, Japanese dancer was rewarded with $1 million as well as his very own Las Vegas show. Recently, one of his most mesmerizing performances has been making its way around the internet. This performance was a tribute to none other than the King of Pop, Michael Jackson.

Now I’ve seen a number of people try to recreate Michael Jackson’s dance moves, but their skills usually pale in comparison. This is where Ebina stands out. Not only does he nail Jackson’s moves with ease, he even throws in his own moves as well.

Titled “MJ is Forever Alive,” the tribute has Ebina dancing along to some of Jackson’s most beloved songs and even has an accompanying video montage which can be played along with his performance.

The best part of all is that this video was taken at the San Francisco HipHop DanceFest 2009– years before Ebina won America’s Got Talent. Despite his younger age, it is clear that he has natural talent and ability. Check out the awesome MJ tribute for yourself and tell us what you think.




Top 5 Men’s Fall Fashion Inspired by The Sudarso Brothers


The sun is still beating down on us here in California, but we’re hopeful that cool fall weather will show up any day now (and save us from our horribly high AC bills).

So before the chilly season shows up, make sure your wardrobe is up to date and prepared. For today’s #TBT, we’re going to show you some of our most favorite men’s fall fashion inspired by Yoshi and Peter Adrian Sudarso. Clearly these guys have it figured out– it’s a year later and we still love these looks.



1) The Leather Look
It’s like Christmas came early! The boys give us just a hint of the “bad boy” leather look.
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2) The Jean Look
In case the jean jacket craze hasn’t won you over yet, we’re sure this will.
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3) The Layered Look
Because layers are now officially our favorite part of Fall.
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4) The I-Didn’t-Know-Sweaters-Could-Look-So-Good Look

Its pretty self-explanatory.
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5) The Weather-Is-Confusing-Today Look
For the fall days when mornings are cold, afternoons are hot, and nights are cold again.
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To see more of the Sudarso Brothers (you know you want to) click here.



Adorable 101-Year-Old Man Just Became A Model


Don’t get the wrong idea about what sort of modeling career 101-year-old Kaoru Nozaki has. He’s definitely not flaunting this season’s menswear down the runway. Instead, his modeling career began when he had photographs taken showing what he loves to do most: Drink coffee.

Nozaki was well-known in his Japanese hometown. The kind man could always be found at the coffee shop (and we mean he was always at the coffee shop). Apparently, he looked so natural and calm while drinking his beverages that he piqued the interest of a gallery that happened to be running a “Coffee Cup Museum” exhibit.

The exhibit featured coffee cups from all over the world as well as an array of photos showing coffee drinkers like Nozaki. Dramafever reports Nozaki’s local community has been supportive and positive about his adorable modeling experience.

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Teen Invents Device to Help Keep Wandering Alzheimer’s Patients Safe


Kenneth Shinozuka is only15-years-old, but he already has a goal in life: He aims to discover a cure for Alzheimer’s Disease. Until that day comes, it seems that Shinozuka spends his time trying to find ways to make things just a little easier for patients with Alzheimer’s as well as those who take care of them.

Specifically, Shinozuka invented a pressure sensor that is worn with a sock (or on the bottom of the foot) and can detect an increase in pressure. This then wirelessly sends an alert to a caregiver or family member’s smartphone.

The ultimate goal of the device is to alert the caregiver if the patient wanders. NBC News points out an alarming statistic from the Alzheimer’s Association which says “of the estimated five million Americans with the disease, about 60 percent of them wander — and often become dangerously lost — as a result.”

Shinozuka came up with the idea for his device, called “Safe Wander,” because his own grandfather was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and often wandered out of bed. Shinozuka first used the device on his grandfather for 6 months and it detected each dangerous moment that he wandered out of bed in the middle of the night– all 437 times.

“I hope that my device will ultimately reach out to the tens of millions of wandering patients around the world and also relieve the burdens on their caregivers,” Shinozuka said.

Most impressive of all, Shinozuka came up with the idea and built the device from scratch. He’s currently testing it out in willing facilities. Many of the caretakers who try the device are delighted with the Safe Wander and say its much less obnoxious than the loud alarms used in most facilities.

“I’d like to solve some of the mysteries of the brain, and invent tools to ultimately, I think, cure Alzheimer’s and other mental conditions that our aging population suffers from,” says Shinozuka.

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10-Year-Old Crushes JROTC Cadet in Push Up Contest


If you’ve ever been told you “run like a girl” or “hit like a girl” or have done any other physical activity “like a girl,” then you should be quite proud of yourself. After all, when 10-year-old Kaylyn Mintz took part in a push up contest against an older, male JROTC cadet, she proved that doing push ups “like a girl” means completely owning your opponent.

Videos of Kaylyn Mintz have been spreading like wildfire across the internet. It’s all thanks to an Active Heroes fundraiser in North Carolina earlier this month. There, Mintz did not hesitate to go head-to-head against a male JROTC cadet in a push up contest.


Right from the beginning, it is obvious that Mintz is a force to be reckoned with. The two easily match each others’ quick pace. Eventually, the JROTC cadet begins slowing down while Mintz continues with her incredible speed and strength. Sure enough, she pulls out victorious.

As it turns out, Mintz is a competitive gymnast who trains 17-20 hours a week. She is currently aiming to try out for a position on the U.S. Junior Olympic team. Her family has launched a GoFundMe page to help cover expenses for her trip.

So the next time you’re thinking of challenging a young girl to a push up contest, you may want to make sure you’re prepared. You don’t want to face the same exhausting defeat as this guy:

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Photo courtesy of

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Newspaper Angers Bollywood’s Deepika Padukone With A Tweet About Her Cleavage


The beloved Bollywood actress Deepika Padukone was quite the topic of discussion this past weekend. Unfortunately, the attention was not because of her highly anticipated, English-language comedy Finding Fanny, which opened in the U.S. this past Friday. Instead it was about something completely unrelated: her cleavage.

It all began this past Sunday when the Times of India, a leading Indian newspaper, tweeted a photo taken of Padukone with the caption “OMG: Deepika Padukone’s cleavage show!” This was followed by a link to a slideshow of more pictures of the 28-year-old actress.



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Now if the Times of India thought Padukone was simply going to ignore the tweet, they were very, very mistaken. Padukone wasted no time calling out the newspaper by discussing it’s content and lack of respect for women.





The Times of India responded to the actress by insisting that they only meant to compliment her. They tweeted at her saying, “You look so great that we want to make sure everyone knew! :)”

In return, this fueled the anger of her fans who pointed out that when men catcall and objectify women, it’s not a compliment. Fans were so riled up that the hashtag #IStandWithDeepikaPadukone was trending in India. A number of other stars stood with Padukone and applauded her for speaking up. Among them was Audrey cover girl, Priyanka Chopra.     



After much controversy, the Times of India has taken down the tweet as well as the tweets related to it.



China Creates Separate Walking Lane For People Who Can’t Take Their Eyes Off Their Phone


Most of us are familiar with driving laws which prohibit drivers from talking on the phone while behind the wheel and texting while behind the wheel.  These laws are understandable of course– an overwhelming amount of car collisions occur due to drivers who are distracted with their phones. Now, apparently, the distractions of smart phones have gone beyond driving.

Last week, a city in China named Chongqing surprised their pedestrians by splitting the walkway in two. There appeared to be a designated cellphone lane for those who couldn’t keep their eyes off their phone and wanted to text, check social media or play games while walking. This lane read, “Cellphones, walk in this lane at your own risk.” The other lane specifically banned all cell phone use. Clearly, the lanes are meant to create a walking experience with less collisions.

So has it really gotten that bad? Are people so glued to their phone that they can’t walk without causing potential harm to others? Well, not quite.

As it turns out, this new cellphone lane is not the work of government officials. It’s actually painted by a Chinese property manager. Aside from showing off his sense of humor, the property owner did this to remind people of the dangers of walking while having their eyes glued to their phone.

Will people actually follow the rules of these lanes? Will these lanes be such eye-openers that more cities will think of integrating them into their walkways? Time can only tell. But for any of you who have accidentally run into a pole, trashcan, door or person while texting, this one’s for you.

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Photo courtesy of NBC News and Rocket News 24



3-D Printed Superhero Prosthetics For Children


A lot of kids dream about being a superhero right? Well, a non-profit organization called E-Nabling The Future, which designs and prints prosthetic fingers and hands for people in need, is utilizing 3-D printing to get some children one step closer to that dream. The idea behind the project is simple enough: Why have a plain prosthetic arm when you can have Wolverine claws attached to them? At least that was how Aaron Brown felt.

Brown, a 3-D printing enthusiast in Michigan, volunteers for E-Nabling The Future alongside others volunteers including engineers, physical therapists, designers, and people who are simply interested in the development and creation of low-cost prosthetic limbs for children. Brown introduced the modified prosthetic during the Grand Rapids Maker Faire and (as expected) it was an absolute hit. As Huffington Post very correctly points out, “Just because you’re missing a hand, doesn’t mean you can’t be a superhero.”

“People’s faces just lit up!” Brown said in an interview. “The kids went crazy over it. And don’t worry … the claws aren’t sharp! They are rounded plastic and just stick on and off with velcro.”


Recently, 3-year-old Rayden “Bubba” Kahae got to experience becoming a superhero (the E-Nabling way). Kahae was born with Amniotic Band Syndrome, which caused his right hand to develop without fingers. Thanks to E-Nable, he now has an Iron Man prosthetic hand.

Best of all, the prosthetic was within the family’s budget. Other commercially-made prosthetic hands can cost upwards of $40,000, but Kahae’s 3-D printed Iron Man hand only cost $50 to build and was sent to him for free.


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