Chinatown’s Senior Citizens: The Original Hipsters

It’s no secret that fashion bloggers are most certainly on the rise these days. After all, who doesn’t want to see what’s trending in the fashion world?

While it’s nice to look at all these young bloggers pose in front of DSLR cameras, Valerie Luu understands that some of the best fashionistas are the ones you wouldn’t expect. Luu teamed up with photographer Andria Lo and translators Tricia Choi, Kat Wong, and Michelle Yeung to explore the streets of Chinatown. There, they uncovered some of the most underrated style experts ever: the senior citizens.

“Chinese seniors would get off and walk up Pacific, with purple puffy jackets, snapbacks, and sneakers you’d expect to see on a 20-year-old Missionite, not an 80-something Chinese woman,” Luu wrote. “Chinatown fashion combines urban utilitarianism with smart, unexpected combinations of prints and a use of color that just made me feel uplifted whenever I saw it. They’re fashionistas – worthy of any street-style blog.”

After interviewing the Chinatown locals, Luu discovered that many of these senior citizens have been fashion forward their whole life. Ask 82-year-old Man Ta why she wears jade shoes and she won’t say it’s because the color is popular right now. Jade has always been her favorite color. Ask 76-year-old Yu Tom why she wears floral print and she won’t say it’s to fit in. Bright colors remind her of her late husband. Clearly, this isn’t just for fashion — it’s a lifestyle. In fact many of the senior citizens admit that they wear snapbacks, beanies and puffy jackets simply to keep warm.

Check out some photos of these original hipsters and be sure to view the full photo essay here.

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Celebrate Earth Day With 5 of Asia’s Most Beautiful Spots

Last year, Buzzfeed released a list called “27 Surreal Places To Visit Before You Die.” Since it’s release, the list has gained over 8 million views and for good reason. All of the locations are undeniably breathtaking.

In honor of Earth Day, we’re taking a closer look at the five locations in Asia that made it onto this list.

 

1. Zhangye Danxia landform in Gansu, China

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The Danxia landforms are sandstone formations most known for, you guessed it, their vibrant color patterns.The are located in a remote region in northern central China. The mountains and hills retain such color because Danxia landforms are composed of red sandstone. Mineral deposits were compressed into rock for 24 million years thus gaining a colors ranging from deep red to yellow and green.

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2. The Hang Son Doong cave in Quang Binh Province, Vietnam

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The Sơn Đoòng cave is currently the largest known cave in the world and is located near the border of Laos and Vietnam. It is five times larger than the Phong Nha Cave which previously held the record for being the biggest cave in Vietnam. Although it was created 2-5 million years ago, the cave did not become public knowledge until 2009. Inside, there is a fast flowing underground river as well as cave pearls the size of baseballs.

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 3. Hitachi Seaside Park in Hitachinaka, Ibaraki, Japan

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This popular tourist destination has been given the nickname “flower paradise” because the 32,000 square metres of flowers look amazing all year long. With each passing season, a different variety of flower will blossom throughout the Hitachi Seaside park such as the Nemophilas. The popular, blue flower blossoms annually during springtime.

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4. Bamboo groves of Arashiyama in Kyoto, Japan

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These Japanese bamboo groves, located in Northwest Kyoto, are a tourist favorite. The gorgeous line of bamboo not only looks beautiful, apparently it sounds beautiful too. Amusing Planet notes “The sound of the wind in this bamboo forest has been voted as one of ‘one hundred must-be-preserved sounds of Japan’ by the Japanese government.” The bamboo in this grove is still used to manufacture various products such as cups, boxes, baskets and mats in the area.

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5. Kelimutu crater lakes in Flores Island, Indonesia

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Kelimutu is a small volcano central Flores Island of Indonesia. It has gained popularity because the volcano has three craters- each contain a lake with a different color. The lakes periodically change colors from red and brown to turquoise and green, independent of each other. The lakes are named Tiwi Ata Mbupu (Lake of Old People), Tiwu Nua Muri Kooh Tai (Lake of Young Men and Maidens) and Tiwu Ata Polo (Lake of Evil Sprits, or Enchanted Lake). The scientific explanation behind the colorful lakes  chemical reactions from the minerals in the lake triggers by the volcano’s gas activity.

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(Source 1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
(Audrey Source)

This is What Happens When You Ask Miss America to Prom

Here at Audrey, we’re a big fan of Nina Davuluri. The 24-year-old made pageant history by becoming the first woman of Indian descent to earn the prestigious title of Miss America.

As it turns out, there’s an even bigger fan of  Davuluri. Eighteen-year-old Patrick Farves showed the world just how much he loves Miss America by asking her one of the most nerve-racking questions that a high school student can ask.

He asked her to prom.

Davaluri was visiting a Pennsylvania high school to discuss diversity, science, technology, engineering and math studies. As you can expect, Davuluri had no idea she would leave with an invitation to prom.

According to Huffington Post, “The senior at Central York High School stood up and popped the prom question, then walked to the stage with a plastic flower. Davuluri just laughed and the students cheered.”

Unfortunately, school officials had already warned Farves not to go through with his plan. As punishment for breaking the rules, Farves has received three days of in-school suspension.

While we certainly don’t advocate for rule-breaking, we understand Farves’ affinity for Davuluri. Not only was she Miss America, Davuluri proved that she is quite an individual to admire.  After winning her title, she quickly became the focus of discriminatory and racist comments on various social media platforms. The aspiring doctor was referred to, among other things, as “Miss 7-11,” “Miss Al-Qaeda,” and as a “terrorist.”

Did these harsh comments get to her? Absolutely not. In fact, she commented on why racism gives her even more reason to keep going.

“I grew up watching Miss America for years and years, and as the daughter of immigrants, I always thought to myself that I could never be that — because I didn’t look a certain way; I didn’t fit the model of what was up there on that screen,” she says. “And it shouldn’t be about race, it shouldn’t — but it is. To be able to stand up there, and be an example for other little girls that America is now a very different place, that’s everything to me.”

“I’d already experienced [racism] on a smaller scale when I won Miss New York,” she added. “It’s part of the reason I was so determined to focus my platform on diversity. But you can’t just scream in the dark, you have to try to shed light and awareness.”

Need even more reason to love Nina Davuluri? Check out our top 5 reasons.

Mindy Kaling Hates Birthdays

Well, maybe it’s a bit extreme to say she hates birthdays, but she certainly isn’t a fan of them.

Audrey Magazine cover girl, Mindy Kaling, is known for many things. She’s known for creating and starring in her very own TV sitcom, The Mindy Project. She’s known for being nominated five consecutive times for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Comedy Series as a producer of The Office and, of course, she’s known for her honest and outspoken opinions. So on Monday night, Kaling made an appearance on Conan to tell him her strong opinion on birthdays.

According to Kaling, her strict attitude with her workers have led them to call her a mean dictator. For what exactly? Apparently Kaling believes that birthdays should not be a big deal after the age of sixteen.

“My big thing is, you have to sing ‘Happy Birthday’ faster.” Kaling laughed. Kaling went on to say that with 200 employees, there’s always a birthday. Understandably, it must get tiring to sing the ‘Happy Birthday’ song everyday.

Kaling continued by joking  that she doesn’t buy her writers birthday presents because she’s already given them a present: Their job.

Check out the interview below.

 

Top 7 Health Benefits of Coffee For Women

I picked up a lot of things from college. I got a more clear sense of the person I want to be, I gained experiences I’ll never forget and I earned a degree that will help me move forward in this world.

Oh, and I also got addicted to coffee. 

While trying to juggle the all-nighters, finals and early classes, it eventually became difficult not to grab a cup of joe to get through the day. At one point, I realized that I felt a very specific emotion whenever I drank coffee: guilt. Every time I felt I needed coffee to get through my day, I would feel as if I was doing something wrong.

Originally, I believed that this may have a thing or two to do with my Asian upbringing. My parents, grandparents, and all my aunts and uncles warned me that drinking coffee stunts a person’s growth and trust me, I needed all the extra growth I could get. In general, there seemed to be a stigma around the drink.

 

Then realized it wasn’t an “Asian thing” at all. Nearly everyone I met seemed to have that same sort of guilt when they had more than a single cup of coffee. Who could blame us? Afterall, how can something so addicting possibly be good for your health, right?

Well now we can all take a sigh of relief. Those whispered rumors that coffee may actually be good for you apparently have grounded evidence after all. Let’s all celebrate with a cup while we go through the Top 7 Health Benefits of Coffee for Women.

 

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1) ANTIOXIDANTS GALORE
According to a study from researches at the University of Scranton, coffee is one of the highest sources of antioxidants. In fact, it’s the number one source of antioxidants in the U.S. diet. A single cup of coffee offers 1,299 milligrams of antioxidants compared to 294 milligrams found in a cup of tea and 76 milligrams from a banana. What does this mean? A study published in Annals of Internal Medicine reports women who drink 2-3 cups of coffee a day are 25% less likely to die of heart disease (for women and men, this percentage is still a hearty 18%). The antioxidants even help prevent diseases associated with the liver.

2) A CUP OF HAPPY 
Many women drink a cup of coffee as a pick me up. I’m guilty of dropping by Starbucks to get an energy boost or simply to feel more hyper. As it turns out, the long term effects are even better. A study from the Harvard School of Public Health found that women who regularly drink coffee have a 20% lower risk of depression. In fact, the more coffee regularly consumed (up to six cups), the less likely it was for the woman to gain depression.

3) HELPS YOUR SKIN 
A new study from Brigham and Women’s hospital discovered that women who drank more than three cups of coffee daily had a 20% lower risk for basal cell carcinoma/skin cancer (Men had a 9% decrease). Of course, this certainly doesn’t mean we should ignore our sunscreen.

4) BOOSTS PERFORMANCE
The New York Times reports that caffeine “has been proven to increase the number of fatty acids circulating in the bloodstream which enables people to run or pedal longer.” It is no surprise that athletes often consume coffee prior to a game/match/ etc. After all, coffee is a completely legal way of boosting one’s energy.

5) LOWERS RISK OF TYPE II DIABETES
According to Science Daily, the consumption of 3-4 cups of coffee a day was linked to a 25% decreased risk of developing Type II diabetes. The American Diabetes Association points out that this decreased risk is especially prominent with younger and middle-aged women. Of course, this is only when coffee is consumed in moderation.

6) LOWERS RISK OF ALZHEIMER’S AND PARKINSON’S
Studies show that coffee drinkers have up to 60% lowered risk of Alzheimer’s and dementia and a 32%-60% lowered risk of Parkinson’s. The lowered risk has been consistent in studies for years though researchers are still trying to pinpoint exactly why.

7) CUP OF SMART
Caffeine temporarily boosts cognition, especially when one lacks sleep. While we definitely don’t suggest swapping a couple of cups of coffee for a couple of hours of sleep before a test, caffeine will improve the performance of the sleep-deprived. CNN reports, “Reaction time, vigilance, attention, logical reasoning — most of the complex functions you associate with intelligence. And most Americans are sleep-deprived most of the time.”


(Source 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)

This Malala Portrait Has An Estimated Value of $80,000

A portrait by one of Britain’s leading portrait painters, Jonathan Yeo, has an estimated value of  $60,000 to $80,000. What’s so special about the portrait? It happens to have one of the most widely known icons of our generation, Malala Yousafzai.

If you don’t know who Malala Yousafzai is, then you ought to learn up. Malala was only a young girl when she became an activist for rights to education and rights for women. At the young age of 11, she began blogging about her life under Taliban rule. This was so powerful that in 2009, a New York Times documentary was filmed about her life. Her actions were seen as unacceptable and in 2012, Malala was shot in the head and neck by Taliban gunman in an attempt to murder her. The strong young lady survived and continues to fight for what she believes in.

The canvas, which measures nearly one meter by one meter, has been on display at the National Portrait Gallery in London.

“The funds raised will support the work of the Malala Fund, including helping young Syrian refugees in Jordan and girls freed from child labor now attending school in Pakistan,” said Malala. “I hope that whoever buys the painting knows that their generosity will directly help children in some of the most challenging environments in the world.”

Yeo met Malala back in 2013 and painted the young girl in Britain. “I hope the painting reflects the slight paradox of someone with enormous power yet vulnerability and youth at the same time,” he said.

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Time Travel Through South Korea

Korean artist Sungseok Ahn was shocked when he paid a visit to Seoul, Korea. Many of the historical landmarks he had studied about had transformed into bright and shiny skyscrapers over the years.

These emotions inspired Ahn to create the art project “Historical Present.” The idea behind the project was simple. Ahn projected an old image of a popular site onto its current state. The pictures were usually taken at sunrise or sunset when the light is ideal for beaming.

Ahn got the black-and-white photographs of Seoul in it’s former state from an old picture book that was published by the Japanese government when Korea was under imperial Japanese rule. His projections have framed Seoul’s best known and historic surfaces such as the Gyeongbokgung Palace and the Great South Gate.

Using this method of “time traveling” and showing us both the past and present of South Korea, Ahn allows us to “question the way we treat our history and explores the dynamics between space and time at the same time.”

Ahn says this project is about “the “psychological void that emerges as we live our lives forgetting.” He adds that the project is a reminder that “someday…we’re [all going to disappear] likes people in old pictures. Things change and we’re gone.”

Though his words are sad and clearly mourning the past, the photographic in “Historical Present” are nothing short of beautiful.

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Julie’s Kitchen: Introducing the Food Collage

Here at Audrey, we’ve seen all sorts of art mediums. We’ve seen a Jackie Chan portrait made entirely of chopsticks, cultural art made from make up, and even stop-motion art using a tissue. Well Julie Lee is here to add her name to this list of creative artists.

Lee is the mastermind behind popular blog, Julie’s Kitchen. Her form of art? Food collages. Lee defies all parents who have told their children not to play with their food and the results are beautiful. Using goods from the Saturday Santa Monica Farmers Market, Lee creates captivating photography.

“My food collages on Instagram started out as a way to showcase seasonal and local offerings from neighborhood farmers markets,” Lee writes on her website. “It’s evolved into an ongoing project in the study of plant design, exploration of color theory, and pure, unadulterated food-love. Let’s be real– I like to play with my food. Thanks for letting me nerd out.”

The julieskitchen instagram account has nearly 60,000 followers and for good reason. Her photos are both beautiful and delicious. Check them out below.

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The Adorable Ye-bin is Back!

Do you remember this adorable little face? We’ll give you a hint. She isn’t afraid of strangers.

Yes, this is little Ye-bin. This cutie became a viral sensation when her video “Mom Tries to Teach Adorable Girl Life Lesson” hit YouTube and gathered nearly 9 million views. During the video, Ye-bin’s mother tries to teach her about strangers and being safe, but we get the feeling Ye-bin is so friendly that she would accept all sorts of sweets from strangers.

This time around, Ye-bin’s mother is trying to teach her how to say the phrase “I am scared.” Simple enough right? As it turns out, even the most simple of tasks becomes adorable with this little girl.

Throughout the video, Ye-bin struggles with the pronunciation of the phrase, but she isn’t bothered. In fact, she’s giggling the entire time. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a child say “I’m scared” with such a cuteness.

The video was only uploaded yesterday, but it has already gathered over 30,000 views. Check it out below.

 

 

Wong Fu Demonstrates “The Silent Treatment”

If there’s one thing we’ve learned about Wong Fu Productions, it’s that they’re great at calling us out on our habits.

One Wong Fu short made us think about “accidental racism” and had us reevaluate the difference between our interpretation of racism versus curiosity. Another video had us look at our habit of judging “creepy guys” from “romantic guys.” Another short even poked fun at our habits during dates.

This next Wong Fu short is just as funny and just as relatable. It highlights something we can all laugh about: the silent treatment.

Don’t try and deny it. You may say you’re great with communication. You may even say you never play games in relationships, but at one point or another, you’ve certainly given or received the silent treatment.

During a session of “Who can stay mad the longest?” with your significant other, have you ever thought about what he/she was thinking? Check out the hilarious video below and tell us if you can relate.