Dec 24

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Written by Allen on Wednesday, December 24th, 2008 at 12:58 am
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I almost forgot: it’s already Christmas Eve in much of Asia – so here is “Merry Christmas and Happy New Year” for everyone at Foolsmountain!

A little Holiday Treat:

And if you don’t believe in Christmas? No Problem!

We’ll toast you a Happy Hanukkah, Winter Solstice, End-of-Year Season: whatever you DESIRE!


[Note: the original video I had posted (see below) was pulled from YouTube courtesy of Warner Music Group 🙁 ]

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25 Responses to “Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!”

  1. Steve Says:

    Merry Christmas, Allen! I like your choice of music; another Italian American. 😛

    To everyone out there, happy holidays. Jerry, Happy Hanukkah and all the best over there in Taipei. No snow to shovel this winter, huh? I remember one Christmas night going to the Pig & Whistle over in Tianmu with my wife and sister in law. It was full of expats and the only place that felt like Christmas… well, it was more like a drunken Christmas. 😉

  2. Allen Says:


    There we go: I just learned something new again. I didn’t know Dean Martin was Italian American!!

  3. Wukailong Says:

    I wanted to say Merry Christmas to everyone here but was a bit lost in “PC thoughts” and fretted about ethnical chauvinism. Well – to everyone celebrating it, Merry Christmas! And to all others, have a great time anyway! That goes to Allen, Steve, Jerry, S.K. Cheung, admin, William Huang, Hongkonger, FOARP, Facts, A-gu, pug_ster, Netizen K and all the others!

  4. wuming Says:

    Merry Christmas and Happy holidays to all!

    I appreciate the open and smart minds that are often enough on display on this blog.

    But I am afraid that the coming year is going to be a tough one for many of us. The changes may easily render the hot subjects on this blog this year moot.

  5. miaka9383 Says:

    Merry Christmas, Feliz Navidad…
    I hope that next year will be better!

  6. Netizen K Says:

    Merry x-mas.

  7. Allen Says:


    Would you care to elaborate just a little what you mean by “But I am afraid that the coming year is going to be a tough one for many of us. The changes may easily render the hot subjects on this blog this year moot.”?

  8. wuming Says:


    There is a chance that the current financial crisis is still only the tip of the iceberg. Many of the problems of US (and the west in general, and hence the world) are more than just crisis of confidence, they are structural problems (Tom Friedman talked about that in his recent columns,) such as too much debt, not enough actual wealth creation (manufacturing) or fungible asset to back up these debt.

    The western governments have pull out all the stops for the current crisis, which means if next crisis hit soon, such as during the first half of 2009, then there will be no tools left to deal with it. The consequences then will be unimaginable, and there will be no safe-heaven.

  9. Allen Says:

    For a look at this past year, as well as the year ahead as relates to China – I thought this article in Asia Times did a good job.

    I also liked this article (also in Asia Times) summarizing the current state of US – China relations.

  10. admin Says:

    Happy Holidays, everyone!

    The economical crisis is real and I think it has already affected many of us. However, a crisis will not stay forever and it could be an opportunity as well.

    Harold James wrote an essay in the current issue of Foreign Affairs The Making of a Mess.

    Summary: The current economic crisis may have one winner: the Chinese financial model, which — together with the IMF — holds the keys to fixing the problem.

  11. ecodelta Says:

    It is in time of crisis when we can bring out the best in us

    Merry Christmass to all 😉

  12. wuming Says:

    @admin, ecodelta

    Let’s hope so, let’s hope so. I am desperately hoping that I have exaggerated the potential danger

  13. pug_ster Says:

    Merry Xmas everybody. I have certainly find this blog to be great, informative and good source of information. BTW, I found this blog on the net and this guy seems to put up alot of interesting stories, but nobody seems to go to this person’s website. I don’t know this person and I happened to bump into his website thru his posting in an NYtimes oped. Thanks.


  14. Jerry Says:

    @Steve #1

    Sorry, Steve, I did not see this until this evening (Fri Dec 26).

    Steve, Happy Hanukkah and Merry Christmas to you, your wife and boys. Well, there was rarely snow to shovel in Seattle. Portland where I grew up, yes, there was occasionally snow. Chicago, where my daughter did med school and Detroit where she is now a resident: now, there is more snow and cold weather than I would like. San Marcos, where my son is, well, since it is your neck of the woods, I don’t need to recount the serious lack of snow in SD.

    BTW, this year Portland and Seattle have had serious snow, at least for them.

    BTW 2, Steve, my daughter was the cox for USC’s Women’s rowing team and I would trek every year to Mission Bay in March to watch the SD Crew Classic. I have 4 SDCC sweatshirts which I wear here. I miss the SDCC. It was the most collegial group of parents and rowing fans I have ever encountered. U Wisconsin marching band’s SD alumni would play every year, cheering on their team. Every year the Navy Seals would put on a precision parachuting exhibition. One time, the Seals had to rescue the USC team because their shell got swamped. The girls were thrilled. It was great. And I got to see a few SD Padre’s games, including Jake Peavy’s debut. Great memories of SD.

    I know where the Pig and Whistle is on Tianmu dong lu. I just don’t hang with expats or on that street. I live on Zhongshan bei lu liu duan down by Dexing dong lu. Furthermore, I don’t drink very much and rarely wander into bars, like never. Just ask my kids. Just not my style.

    I wish the best of holidays to all my fellow fools at FM, from the biggest fool of all here, me.

  15. Jerry Says:


    Waaaaahhhh! Warner forced YouTube to pull your video! ::LOL:: 😀

    And it was Dino Martino, one of my favorites! 😀

    Merry Christmas, Allen.


  16. HongKonger Says:

    The now 78 year old ‘Dirty Harry’ is back on the streets kicking bad guys’ arses again
    …well, sort of….

    Multi-Academy Award Actor-Director par excellence, Clint Eastwood, does it again, bravo!

    I had a wonderful Boxing day day-off watching “Gran Torino,” and I thought I’d share that with all ya fine FM folks.

    In “Gran Torino,” Clint Eastwood delivers a breathtaking performance in a by turns appalling and hilarious role that recalls great ghosts of Eastwood vigilante thrillers past. Playing Korean War vet Walt Kowalski, Eastwood spits, swears and seethes as a man who watches the world change from the front stoop of his Detroit house. Surrounded by Hmong immigrants (an Asian ethnic group from Laos, Thailand, China etc) he persists in calling “slants,” “slopes” and “gooks,” … Eastwood made me laugh so much without ever acting goofy, what a great performance!

    Merry X’Mas everyone!

  17. Allen Says:


    Oh – shucks! I guess I am guilty of IP infringement!!!

    I’m putting up a second video – we’ll see if Foolsmountain link brings enough attention to bring that video down also! 🙂

    Merry Christmas and Happy Hanuka Jerry!


  18. Jerry Says:


    Thanks. I haven’t heard Gene Autry in years. 😀 Brings back memories of my childhood!

    Ah, yes, the singing cowboy and former owner of the California Angels.

    Take care,


  19. Steve Says:

    @Jerry #14~ Ah, you are a Portland guy? My aunt and uncle live in West Linn, with one cousin in Vancouver, WA and the other working for Micron in Boise. The Boise cousin played wide receiver for Boise State back when Pokie Allen was the coach, and I found everyone in Boise knew him and had kind words to say about him. I grew up in NJ, went to Villanova near Philly and also lived in Albuquerque and Farmington, NM for a bit so those were my snow shoveling addresses, but in SD we just drive over to Palomar Mountain or Julian if we want to see snow.

    And your daughter’s a Trojan! We spend our holidays with another couple and their family, since both our families have no other relatives around here. Their daughter graduated from USC a year ago and is now working for PWC as an auditor. She can talk football as well as any guy and took a class or two with John David Booty; said he was egotistical and stupid. She likes Mark Sanchez much better. So as much as I love Joe Paterno and Penn State, I’ll be pulling for the Trojans come the Rose Bowl. One thing I’ve noticed about ‘SC alumni is that they stick together more than any other school with the possible exception of Texas A&M. If you go to a job interview and the USC alumnus boss finds out you went to USC, you’re hired.

    I’ve never attended the SD Crew Classic. I know the Olympic team trains in Chula Vista. However, I’ve worked out with a few SEALS over the years. A good friend of mine was a SEAL chief over at Coronado for a long time, and also a martial arts brother. Rick wasn’t a big, hulking type of guy, probably 6’2” and 175 lbs, so he was always the first one Marines would pick a fight with (Marines are always picking fights with SEALS) which was their big mistake, since he was the best fighter in his unit. For the Chinese guys out there, we studied Xingyiquan, Baguazhang and Chen Taijiquan together.

    I’m guessing Jake Peavy’s debut was over at the Murph. The new Petco Park downtown is a much better place to see a ballgame, though it can get downright chilly in the evening. Jake almost got traded to the Cubbies this off season but they pulled out at the last minute. No wonder they haven’t won a World Series in 100 years!

    I know what you mean about not hanging out with expats. The only times we were in the Pig was with my sister in law who lives near there, and we spent most of the time on the dance floor anyway. I noticed that whenever I met a customer in one of the expat hangouts, it seemed everyone went there on a nightly basis. To me, that made them all alcoholics. Not my crowd either; I’d rather go home to that good-looking wife of mine. 🙂

    Ah, you live over in the high rent district. Isn’t that considered a part of Shilin? My sister in law doesn’t live too far from there.

    Have you had a chance yet to visit Sanyi, where they have all the woodcarvings? It’s where my father in law grew up and south of Miaoli; I’m sure FOARP has visited there. If not, you might want to try it sometime if you are into that sort of thing. When my niece made her bat mitzvah in New Jersey, I got her a beautiful horse carving which she just loved. Here’s a link to the place: http://www.sinica.edu.tw/tit/arts/0696_Woodcarving.html

    @HongKonger: The film critic Roger Ebert gave “Gran Torino” a GREAT review, so I was thinking about seeing it anyway but your review put it in the “must see” category. Thanks for letting us know about it.

  20. HongKonger Says:

    More good movies to watch:

    X’Mas is over, so it is safe for me recommend Wil Smith’s heavy-hearted film: ‘Seven Pounds.’ Superb performance. The pace is bit slow but worth the time & ducats.

    Jia Zhangke: Capturing China’s Transformation
    by John Powers

    …it’s worth noting that Jia has no real peers. There is no filmmaker like him in India or Russia or Brazil. For that matter, we don’t have one in America, either. Where is the great movie about what’s happening in Detroit?

    It’s always hard to foresee how the future will judge today’s artists, but I do feel confident predicting one thing. In 100 years, people will still be interested in the films of Jia Zhangke,…


  21. pug_ster Says:

    I have just watched Gran Torino yesterday and I can say while the movie is generally good, but it is yet another movie showing how Asian American Males are portrayed in negative light. I just can’t recall an American Movie where they show Asian American Males are as American as American pie. When Asian American are shown in American Movies, they are portrayed as thugs, gangbangers, kung fu types, or some person from another country. Personally I can’t believe the kind of racial slurs coming from Clint Eastwood’s mouth.

  22. Steve Says:

    @pug_ster: Your complaint about Hollywood is patently unfair and you should apologize. Thugs, gangbangers, kung fu types and some person from another country? What about family owned Asian restaurants that serve snake, cat, dog, rat and goose with the head still attached? (with the obvious exception for “A Christmas Story” which blasts everyone and everything) Oh, and for Koreans, laundromats??? 😀

    Seriously, it’s true. You almost never see any Asian accountants, lawyers, business executives (well, a few of those but they’re actually smuggling heroin inside Ming ceramic vases). college professors or blue collar workers. I remember years ago when Amy Tan was popular, I picked up one of her books and was amazed that every Asian American husband was a complete ass while all the white Americans were model husbands. She must have been burned big time by an Asian ex-flame and decided to dedicate her life to destroying Asian guys in print.

    So pug_ster, I have a question for you. Is it true you are a thug and a gangbanger??? Or are you Jackie Chan’s stunt double??? 😛

  23. Jerry Says:

    @Steve #19

    Wow, Pokey Allen. Great memories of him at Portland State. He was an unforgettable, very memorable character. I had forgotten about his tenure at Boise State. May be a repressed memory. He died way too young at 53 years old.

    Speaking of another wonderful coach in Portland, I will also never forget Clive Charles, who I knew. He was the coach of the men’s and women’s soccer teams at the University of Portland. He took the women to the NCAA Championship game twice and won the title in his last year. He was a great guy. He died at 51.

    So you went to ‘Nova. Yep, my daughter is a Trojan. Yeah, SC alums stick together. At least at Microsoft. Once they knew my daughter was a Trojan, I met every USC alum who was at MS, in short order. Every one of them. Many of them were from India, like my buddies Maithili, Adnan and Pavaany. They, with me in tow, would trundle off to watch SC play UW at Husky Stadium whenever they were in town.

    My daughter would always laugh when it came to the academic level of most of the athletes. She was the #1 varsity academic all-star for her last 3 years (the first year she was JV); it does not take much to be #1 amongst the athletes at SC. She would just shake her head laughing. And the funniest is that USC would tout their academic all-star athletes at home games at the Coliseum. There would be her picture on the scoreboard. Funny!

    She would get an academic award every year from the Athletic Department at their annual banquet. Here was this little 5’ 1” girl (I am over 6’ 2”), amongst all of these giants. And Mike Garrett would give it to her every year. And she would laugh her ass off, realizing that she was not even a rower, she was the cox. ::LMAO:: 😀 Great memories

    Wow, a Jersey kid who roots for USC. I wonder what Al Einstein would think? 😀 I will have to tell my daughter. BTW, my son went to Oregon (UO). The intense rivalry between my son and daughter is amazing. The trash-talking is amazing. And this year, Greg is living in San Marcos. Guess what bowl game he is going to? I suggested that he could watch an even better game if he ventures to Pasadena on Jan 1. That started a torrent of trash-talk on his part. 😀 ::LMAO:: Ah, Pac-10 rivalries, you gotta love them.

    Yes, Peavy’s debut was at the Murph, out there in Mission Valley. I loved that you could take the “trolley” out to the park. I have never been to Petco. Gotta do that some day. I see that the “trolley” runs near the field.

    When I was in Chicago for my daughter’s graduation this last May, I went out to Wrigley with my son to watch Maddux pitch for the Padres against the Cubs. I loved it. The Pads had 2 Cy Young winners on the staff, at the time. Of course, Maddux was past his prime and has since retired. But the Cub fans cheered him fondly nevertheless, being that he started his career with the Cubbies. I love Wrigley Field.

    Yes, Tianmu (or Tien Mou) is part of Shilin district.

    No, I have never been to Sanyi or Miaoli. But I have read your stories. Wow, a Jewish niece.

    You know, Steve, I have read your many posts and it sounds like you and your wife have a great relationship. I have never had that kind of luck. I was married once. Not quite so happily. I just have never met the “right” woman, whatever that means. But then again, you seem like a much nicer person than I, so maybe it is more than luck. 😉


    Hollywood is all about marketing, money and fantasy. And too bad that AZN TV went off the air. I saw this one movie I liked, “Charlotte Sometimes”. I also liked Bai Ling’s “Face”, which was really different for her. Usually, she scares me, especially off-screen. That girl seems like a one-woman wrecking crew. Nice to look at but don’t touch.

    Regarding Asian-American role models, my kids were fortunate. They had a wonderful elementary school principal who was Japanese-American. And their pediatrician was a very caring Chinese-American. Real life, where it counts.

  24. TonyP4 Says:





    Happy 2009!
    ‘8’ is not a lucky no to me any more.
    Hope all the problems in 2008 will be gone!

  25. Maggie lee Says:

    Happy new year. 2008 is a hard year for chinese people. But we hope it will better in 2009. Remember : Tomorrow is another day. Good luck! Guys.

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