Monday, January 30, 2012

Bruce Lee LIVES!!!!

January 30, 2012, 12:00 PM ET.Why Bruce Lee Has More Kick Now Than Ever.


Bruce Lee in ‘Enter the Dragon,’ 1973.“From my point of view, the 20th century gave us just two icons who rose above time, space and race: There was Muhammad Ali, and there was Bruce Lee,” says documentary filmmaker Pete McCormack, explaining the rationale behind his two most recent projects, the feature documentary “Facing Ali,” shortlisted for the Academy Award in 2010, and its new followup “I Am Bruce Lee,” which hits 160 theaters across the country for special screenings on February 9 and 11.

It’s an assertion that instantly prompts thoughts of obvious alternatives (was that a muffled cough from Mohandas Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr.?) — but the truth is, it can’t be dismissed as hyperbole either.

Ali and Lee were rare and similar figures: Exceptionally charismatic individuals who thrived in the spotlight, and who earned their permanent place in history by both embodying and overcoming the contradictions of their era. They were unifiers and provocateurs, paramount warriors who preached peace, racial role models whose impact reached far beyond their own communities.

Both were named to Time magazine’s 1999 list of the 100 most important individuals of the past hundred years. And yet, when the list was unveiled, there were those who groused about Lee’s inclusion. A martial arts movie star? Alongside the likes of Winston Churchill, Albert Einstein, Bill Gates, and, uh, Gandhi and King?

Well…yes. “I Am Bruce Lee” is essentially a 94-minute-long argument that Lee was more than worthy of recognition among the century’s greats, and frankly, it’s a convincing one. The documentary is a cascading chain of reminiscences from friends and family (including wife Linda Lee Cadwell and daughter Shannon, inner-circle member Dan Inosanto and goddaughter Diana Lee Inosanto), tributes from students and fellow fighters of many styles and generations, and vivid celebrations of his legacy from an eclectic mix of celebrities who claim him as a personal inspiration: NBA superstar Kobe Bryant; filmmaker and former BET chief Reginald Hudlin; actors Ed O’Neill (“Modern Family”) and Mickey Rourke (“Iron Man 2″); skateboarder Paul Rodriguez, B-boy Jose Ruiz, and Black Eyed Peas member Taboo.

Interspersed with the talking heads and moving bodies — the interviewees prove that it’s impossible to expound on Bruce Lee while standing still — are samples of his life and work, including personal clips and images that have never before been seen on screen.

Together, all of it makes the case that the biggest source of Lee’s impact wasn’t his onscreen performances, but the unique philosophy he formulated and preached, and that has made converts of individuals from an amazing range of backgrounds — what you might call a way of thinking that leads to a way of moving that leads to a way of life.

The belief system behind Lee’s art, Jeet Kune Do, was rooted in resourcefulness: “Use what works, and take it from any place you can find it”; in flexibility: “Don’t get set into one form, adapt, be like water”; in simplicity: “Express the utmost with the minimum”; in action: “Knowing is not enough, we must apply. Willing is not enough, we must do.”

But most of all, it’s one that was steeped in a defiant antiestablishmentarianism, a rebellion against the status quo that walks in startling lockstep with the sensibilities of today’s cultural and political moment.

Some of what he said sounds like it might appeal to the Tea Party right: “Not a daily increase, but a daily decrease: Hack away at the inessentials”; “To hell with circumstances — I create opportunities”; “A big organization is not necessary….all members will be conditioned according to the prescribed system; many will end up as a prisoner of a systematized drill.”

But though Lee was a firm believer in the power of the individual, he was if anything the inverse of the Ayn Randian self-interested superman, contemptuous of the lesser beings around him. He told his disciples that “the successful warrior is just an average man with laser-like focus”; he stressed to them that he wasn’t their master, but a “student-master,” still constantly learning from them and from the world — “you can consider someone a master when you’re closing their casket”; he reminded them that “real living is living for others.”

Lee abhorred the elitism of the martial arts world, refusing to issue belts or to imbue his lessons with quasi-mystical ritual. He was relentlessly egalitarian, teaching anyone and everyone who wanted to learn and was willing to work, regardless of size, shape, background — or race: Early in his career in the U.S., he came into violent conflict with the incensed heads of other Chinese martial arts schools, who demanded he stop initiating non-Asians into their secrets. Lee thrashed the representative they sent to challenge him, and continued instructing whomever he wanted.

To Lee, boundaries and divisions, whether between styles or between peoples, were nothing more than a tool of oppression — and as Lee’s wife Linda says, “Bruce hated the oppression of the little people, which he saw everywhere: The Japanese occupation, the Boxer Rebellion, the foreign powers going into China. He just thought all of that was wrong.”

In the film, an animated Reggie Hudlin adds that Lee emerged at a time when the angry underclass was seeking out leaders and symbols, “counterculture figures to fight the establishment” — figures like Malcolm X, the Black Panthers, Muhammad Ali — and Bruce Lee: “When he fought Chuck Norris [in "Way of the Dragon"], Bruce Lee represented the entire Third World, all people of color, fighting the Western oppressor.”

In short, it’s fair to say that Lee was a badass of the 99 Percent.

Today, Norris has become a kind of conservative kingmaker, anointing right wing candidates he decides are worthy of his badge of toughness (he’s the one who famously called Arizona Governor Jan Brewer a woman who eats “scorpions for breakfast,” which she promptly used as the title of her now-famous memoir). If Lee had lived to today, might he be replaying their famous battle at the Coliseum in the political arena — giving progressive politicians the benefit of his personal magic to counter Norris’s fists of approval? Or would he, as Kobe Bryant jokes in the doc, be competing on “Dancing With the Stars” — and winning?

Maybe both.

“My dad didn’t see limitations, in himself or in other people,” says Shannon Lee, who served as the film’s executive producer. “He did what he did his way, and left behind an extremely unique footprint.”

Unique enough to last 40 years without fading, as trainer and expert Jeet Kune Do practitioner Teri Tom says in the film: “You’d think people would have forgotten him by now, but no — I think a lot of cultures have actually picked him up as their hero.”

In 2005, a grassroots youth organization in Mostar in Bosnia spearheaded a successful drive to commission and erect a statue of Lee in one of the city’s main squares, calling him a symbol of “the fight against divisions, and the struggle to bridge cultures — one thing we all have in common is Bruce Lee.” (There’s also a street named after Lee in the city of Drvengrad in Bosnia’s bitter rival Serbia, suggesting a broad-based Balkan fascination with Lee.) That same year, Lee fans raised over $100,000 to get Hong Kong, the city of Lee’s childhood, to erect a statue of him in a choice location by the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront on the Hong Kong Walk of Stars. A thriving theme park dedicated to Lee, “Bruce Lee Paradise,” opened in his ancestral town of Shunde on the China mainland in 2006.

But this year could see the way open for the biggest Bruce Lee memorial yet — a $50 million Bruce Lee Action Museum targeted for Seattle, Washington’s International District, which is currently under review by the city’s council. According to Shannon Lee, the museum would have a permanent exhibit of Lee’s life and memorabilia, galleries for visiting shows on themes related to his ideas, a store, theater, meditation space, outdoor training area, research library and cafĂ©.

And what better year to announce the museum than this one? Lee’s family and fans await the council’s announcement with bated breath. In the meantime, there’s “I Am Bruce Lee,” which is as good a reason to Occupy movie theaters on February 9 and 11 as any. Happy Year of the Dragon.


The truly amazing thing about Bruce is how much he accomplished in such a short span of time. He died in 1973 at the age of 32, with just five feature films to his name — one of which, “Game of Death,” was assembled posthumously around 11 minutes of footage shot before his demise. Despite this fact, Lee may be the only Asian American with household name status nearly everywhere in the world — he’s certainly the only Asian American on the Time 100 list of the century’s most influential individuals.

It really does make you wonder what he’d have become if he hadn’t died. Given his amazing drive, ambition and intellect, it’s hard not to imagine that his career wouldn’t have continued on its upward trajectory, to paraphrase one of Lee’s most famous lines, like a finger pointing at the moon in all its heavenly glory.

Lee’s legacy is something that’s already tough to live up to: “I’ve studied martial arts, but of course I’m not anywhere near the level of my father,” laughs Shannon Lee. “Still, people assume I’m a lethal weapon anyway! Sometimes people come up to me and I have to correct the impression — look, I’m a mom and a businessperson, and no, I can’t kill you with two fingers and an evil look.”

I get that all the time myself, Shannon. Maybe it doesn’t help that I’ve written a book called “I Am Jackie Chan.”

The Tao Jones Index

Must-click quick-hits from across Asia and Asian America: Year of the Dragon Edition

Party Rockin’ Lion Dance: Or make that “tigers,” given that this East meets West meets WTF New Year’s performance, set to LMFAO’s “Party Rock Anthem,” was sponsored by Singaporean brewmeisters Tiger Beer

New Yarn Dragon: Stephanie Jessica Lau, expert in amigurumi (the Japanese art of crocheting stuffed critters) gives you step-by-step instructions on how to make your own maxi-cute mini-drag

Angry Birds Seasons — “Year of the Dragon”: The Angry Birds have their own animated webseries! In this episode, Lunar New Year festivities go awry for those pesky pigs.

“Avatar: The Legend of Korra” Scene Leaks: If you’re a fan of the original animated TV series “Avatar: The Last Airbender,” you’ve been waiting for more nuggets about the upcoming sequel, set seven decades later and due this year, with Korra, the next Avatar after Aang, as its protagonist. Well, wait no longer: This action packed sequence, featuring Korra going Bruce Lee in what looks suspiciously like Chinatown.

“The One-Inch Punch”: A brief documentary by Victor Tran on the secrets behind one of Bruce Lee’s best-known feats — the so-called “one-inch punch,” a close-up fist-drive that could send an adult male flying across a ring.

What’s your take? Leave your thoughts in the comments.

GO AVA!!!!

So proud to say I learned everything I know about PR from this woman.  Ava...congrats to you and I cannot wait to read more and see more from you!!!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

LA Chinatown Parade - CNY 2012

Happy New Year!!!  2012, Year of the Water Dragon!!

Headed down with the girlfriend to LA's Chinatown for some dim sum and to catch the Parade!

Here are some highlights of that....good times!


I really have this obsession/love for Chinese Lion Dance.  When I have kids, I want them to join an association and learn how to do it. I really just love it.








had a great afternoon and boy am I tired.  Maybe I can take a nap now...hope so!

Hiking in LA - Lave ave/Pasadena

OK OK...I know it is super annoying to "Love LA" outside of So Cal.  But really...we are the best when it comes to perfect..and I literally mean perfect weather.  Here we are at the end of January...I can post this little trip...

Lake Ave/Pasadena Hike to the top!
There is a trail here in Pasadena at the top of Lake Ave.  It takes you all the way to the top of old hotel ruins.  Apparently the hotel burned downed 2xs and the second time they just did not rebuild it.  It is a gorgeous site and a great workout.  2.7 miles ONE almost 6 miles round trip and a few hours kicking your butt.  Here are some highlights.

The entrance

Shots on the way up and up....



proof my fat ass hiked up 2.7 miles...ugh...


old railway that took you to the hotel...



left over rail junk...






Hard work getting up there but it was worth it once I got there.  Good stuff and great times. I am glad my girl made me go all the way up!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Vanilla Ice goes indie

Sometimes work is so rewarding...this is one of those times.  I was able to book this bit with THE SOUPTV.COM with Vanilla Ice to help promote the 2nd season premiere of his DIY NETWORK show, Vanilla Ice Project!  We shot this in an Echo Park bookstore and it was HILARIOUS!  I have some personal video that I will post up later once I load to Youtube.  Rob is a super cool dude and this was so much fun to film.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Happy Chinese New Years WOD - 1/22/2012

Awesome Chinese New Year Eve Afternoon, pretty much perfect So Cal weather to workout and walk.  Here is the WOD-1/22/2012:

Warm Up
1000m Row-4:12 (not great)

8 minute workup to max 3x deadlift
-135# x 3
-185# x 3
-225# x 3
-255# x 3
-275# x 3 (end in 8 mins)

Every minute on the minute for 15 mins. If miss, rest for remainder and start at new minute:
3 x burpee
4 x push up (hand release)
5 x sit ups (I cheated on these with less than strict form)
6 x air squats

1-11 unbroken
12 -  missed and rested
13-15 - completed
So I missed ONE...out of the 15. Not too shabby!

After I walked about 3 miles around the Silverlake reservoir with my girl and her doggy.  Nice cool down.  Perfect perfect afternoon!  Now time for dinner at mom's!!!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

VIP - Ice Ice Baby

Yes VANILLA ICE is in the house!!!

I was able to meet and spend a couple days with the one and only VANILLA ICE.  I am working on the premiere of the 2nd season of his DIY Network show - The Vanilla Ice Project.  We did a couple days in LA for press and it was so much fun.

I was able to snap a pic with him while at the E! offices right before his interview!

Please watch THE VANILLA ICE PROJECT on DIY Network, this Saturday 1/21 at 10PM EST/PST.  Actually the channel will be repeating the whole season 1 throughout leading to the ICE MY HOUSE special and then the premeire episode!  Def follow him @VanillaIce and of course @DIYNetwork!!!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Awesome Inspiration


Thanks to my friend at work Fader for this video....I want this to be MY STORY.  I have alot of work ahead and I am very happy about my gains thus far but wow...I want this.

Brutal WOD - 1/8/2011

Today's workout...made me think of a great movie and a great scene in that great movie.  Who loves MY COUSIN VINNY?  So remember this scene when Vinny goes to the red neck to collect the $200...they get into a conversation and Vinny says:

Oh, a counter-offer. That's what we lawyers - I'm a lawyer - we lawyers call that a counter-offer. This is a tough decision here. Get my ass kicked or collect $200. Let me think... I could use a good ass-kickin', I'll be very honest with you... nah, I think I'll just go with the two hundred. 

I guess today was the day, I needed a GOOD ASS friend May and I did almost the same workout.  Here it is:

20 minutes AMRAP (As Many Rounds As Possible)
20 x thrusters @ 75#
20 x pull ups
20 x burpees

20 minutes AMRAP
20 x thrusters @ 115#
20 calorie row
20 x burpees

We both were able to complete 2 full rounds and a few thrusters.  I was able to get 7 before the 20 minutes and I think May was able to get over 10.  Not sure...but that was the hardest 20 minutes in a long time.  What a way to start the new year.  It was BRUTAL...I expect this Wednesday's GRACE attempt to be just as bad.  May and both are going to do it and get a baseline to try to improve.  We shall see!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

1/7/2012 - WOD

A good day at the gym.  Morning was misty and very cold but it warmed up and we did some good stuff in class this morning.

Jump Rope

WOD Part 1

Strict Dumbell Press hold for 3 count at top, 2 count down to shoulders x 8
Single Arm Ground to Overhead x 8 each arm
5 rounds
2 sets then rest for 2 min

WOD Part 2
5 stations for 1 min each rotate 2xs
Wall Ball
Sit Up
KB Swing (35#)
Box Jumps
90# Sled Pull Burpee


After class, I then headed for some Olympic Lifting aka my "techniques class."

I told my coach I want to attempt GRACE (30 x clean and jerks @ 135lbs) this Wednesday.  Maybe I should of kept my mouth shut.  So to prep for that here is what we did.

Clean Grip Dead Lift - 3 x 3 @165lbs
Clean Pulls  - 3 x 3 @ 155lbs
Power Clean & Press/Jerl @ 135lbs - 1 every 45 sec for 10 reps

Friday, January 6, 2012

All True...pretty much.

The 27 Rules of Conquering the Gym By JASON GAY..

.This is the time of year when even people who hate the gym think about going to the gym. Many of us are still digesting whole floors of gingerbread houses, and jeans that fit comfortably in October are now a denim humiliation.

Sweating is a good way to begin 2012. Exercise, like dark chocolate and office meetings that suddenly get canceled, is a proven pathway to nirvana. But if you're going to join a gym—or returning to the gym after a long hibernation—consider the following:

1. A gym is not designed to make you feel instantly better about yourself. If a gym wanted to make you feel instantly better about yourself, it would be a bar.

2. Give yourself a goal. Maybe you want to lose 10 pounds. Maybe you want to quarterback the New York Jets into the playoffs. But be warned: Losing 10 pounds is hard.

The New Year's push to lose weight is bringing crowds to gyms. Jason Gay offers tips to conquering the gym. Photo: Getty Images.

.3. Develop a gym routine. Try to go at least three times a week. Do a mix of strength training and cardiovascular conditioning. After the third week, stop carrying around that satchel of fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies.

4. No one in the history of gyms has ever lost a pound while reading "The New Yorker" and slowly pedaling a recumbent bicycle. No one.

5. Bring your iPod. Don't borrow the disgusting gym headphones, or use the sad plastic radio attachment on the treadmill, which always sounds like it's playing Kenny Loggins from a sewer.

6. Don't fall for gimmicks. The only tried-and-true method to lose 10 pounds in 48 hours is food poisoning.

7. Yes, every gym has an overenthusiastic spinning instructor who hasn't bought a record since "Walking on Sunshine."

8. There's also the Strange Guy Who is Always at the Gym. Just when you think he isn't here today...there he is, lurking by the barbells.

9. "Great job!" is trainer-speak for "It's not polite for me to laugh at you."

10. Beware a hip gym with a Wilco step class.

11. Gyms have two types of members: Members who wipe down the machines after using them, and the worst people in the universe.

12. Nope, that's not a "recovery energy bar with antioxidant dark chocolate." That's a chocolate bar.

13. Avoid Unsolicited Advice Guy, who, for the small fee of boring you to death, will explain the proper method for any exercise in 45 minutes or longer.

14. You can take 10 Minute Abs, 20 Minute Abs, and 30 Minute Abs. There is also Stop Eating Pizza and Eating Sheet Cake Abs—but that's super tough!

15. If you're motivated to buy an expensive home exercise machine, consider a "wooden coat rack." It costs $40, uses no electricity and does the exact same thing.

16. There's the yoga instructor everyone loves, and the yoga instructor everyone hates. Memorize who they are.

17. If you see an indoor rock climbing wall, you're either in a really cool gym or a romantic comedy starring Kate Hudson.

18. Be cautious about any class with the words "sunrise," "hell," or "Moby."

19. If a gym class is going to be effective, it's hard. If you're relaxed and enjoying yourself, you're at brunch.

20. If you need to bring your children, just let them loose in the silent meditation class. Nobody minds, and kids love candles.

21. Don't buy $150 sneakers, $100 yoga pants, and $4 water. Muscle shirts are for people with muscles, and rhythm guitarists.

22. Fancy gyms can be seductive, but once you get past the modern couches and fresh flowers and the water with lemon slices, you're basically paying for a boutique hotel with B.O.

23. Everyone sees you secretly racing the old people in the pool.

24. If you're at the point where you've bought biking shoes for the spinning class, you may as well go ahead and buy an actual bike. It's way more fun and it doesn't make you listen to C+C Music Factory.

25. Fact: Thinking about going to the gym burns between 0 and 0 calories.

26. A successful gym membership is like a marriage: If it's good, you show up committed and ready for hard work. If it's not good, you show up in sweatpants and watch a lot of bad TV.

27. There is no secret. Exercise and lay off the fries. The end.

Where's my infomercial and best seller?

Copyright 2011 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Monday, January 2, 2012

Premium Denim

Tellason...I have been fiending for a pair for a while, but I can never find a pair, this brand is a tad exclusive and hard to find.  But they make some of the best jeans around that rival the Japanese denim,.

Now I am not a true denim whore, but I do like to rock SELVAGE whenever I can.  My first pair of "nice" jeans was back in 2007 when I had my first pair of RED MONKEY jeans.  These were the jeans Jay-Z rocked and they cost a pretty penny.  Fast forward a few years I was able to grab a pair of Yoropiko jeans

then I was hip to the GAP 1969 collection.  FINALLY some Selvage jeans that were "reasonable" in price.  I picked up 2 pair of the Gap ones.  I guess I am snobby in the sense that I will probably NEVER own a pair of True Religion, and I do have a pair of Sevens and Diesel jeans that I got on discount at Nordstrom Rack, and I consider those my "cheap" jeans.

see the link below to a great article on Tellason which is a local shop in SF that makes some good shit...I am still looking to find a pair in the wild!

What makes these jeans worth $198?

Sunday, January 1, 2012
With the average pair of jeans sold in the United States retailing for $37, less than most city drivers these days spend on a tank of gas, it's easy to question the practical wisdom of dropping $200 on a pair of so-called premium denim jeans.
But plenty of guys are willing to pay that - or more - for jeans made of selvage denim and sold in stores catering to denim-buying men. What's the allure of a higher-priced pair?
"I didn't grow up with a lot of money, but my parents always said, 'We're too poor to be cheap.' Get the pair that lasts longer," says Howard Gee, owner of North Beach's AB Fits, which specializes in premium men's denim brands and also sells its own line of jeans for men.
Jeans cut and sewn from selvage fabric, made on old-fashioned shuttle looms that produce textiles with closed edges known for their durability, may cost more to produce than denim made using fabric created on the wider and more efficient modern-day looms used by the vast majority of manufacturers. But they are known for lasting longer than their cheaper counterparts, as well as for offering other benefits.
"They form to your body, you get your own natural wear patterns, they last longer, it's more environmentally friendly," says Tony Patella, who co-founded local denim label Tellason in 2009 with Pete Searson.
Tellason, which manufactures its denim in a SoMa factory, is one of a handful of denim labels producing men's jeans featuring selvage denim and other high-end details in small or limited quantities in the Bay Area. Others include Gustin and AB Fits, as well as Self Edge exclusives Roy Denim, made by one-man-operation Roy Slaper in Oakland, and 3sixteen+, a design collaboration with 3sixteen, a New York label that manufactures in San Francisco.
The notion that paying a little more may net you a sturdier product capable of lasting longer is one likely to appeal to many male shoppers, according to recent data from textile industry group Cotton Incorporated. While women are more likely to choose jeans based on style, men buying new jeans prize comfort, fit, durability and quality above almost everything else and far ahead of style or brand name.
Of course, practical concerns aren't the only consideration.
Says Tellason's Searson: "We just believe people should care about how things are made and where they're made."
The model: John Graham Mellor Slim Straight ($198, DDD). Made in San Francisco, using Cone Mills White Oak Selvedged denim in a 12.5-ounce weight made for the label, with thread from North Carolina and buttons and rivets made with a copper oxide finish by a Kentucky company.
Inspected by: Official stamp of approval made by either Tony or Pete, who inspect each pair.
Patch: Leather patch (back waist) by Portland's Tanner Goods.
Longevity: As it ages, raw denim forms to the wearer's body and develops its own natural wear patterns and markings. Raw denim is also unprocessed, so it not only wears differently, but does not involve chemical treatments or labor-intensive processes that artificially distressed denim requires.
Durability: Polycotton thread (pigskin-hued thread) for added strength, and 10 stitches per inch, a ratio similar to finely tailored menswear, also for strength. Reinforced stitching on belt loops and pocket corners.
Pockets: Bar tacks on pockets instead of metal rivets. Bottom half of back pockets lined with the same heavyweight twill found in front pockets, a.k.a. bags, for longer wear.
Logo: Back pockets feature a subtle "T" in dark blue thread, the brand's alternative to a logo or logo tag.
Hem: Chain stitching on bottom hem, and red selvage line is a sign that the jeans were created on vintage shuttle looms.
Seams: Busted side seams lie flat against the leg.
Extras: Free hemming service on any pair, regardless of where you purchased them. Extra-tall customers can custom order pairs with longer inseams.

S.f. denim resources


AB Fits (AB Fits, Tellason, Gustin):
Jack's (Gustin):
Revolver (Tellason):
Self Edge (Roy Denim, 3sixteen and 3sixteen+):
Taylor Stitch (Tellason):
Union Made (Union Made Indigo, Tellason):

AB Fits:
Roy Denim: Made by one man (Roy Slaper) in Oakland and sold exclusively at Self Edge.
3sixteen and 3sixteen+: This NYC company produces its denim in San Francisco and offers collaborative line 3sixteen+ designed with Self Edge's Kiya Babzani.