You want to know how many movies and TV shows I watched en route and in India? A record too many. Sometimes twice. With hours of time to kill many days, I overdosed on cable TV in Asia.
- What Women Want
- No Strings Attached – Friends with benefits eh?
- Source Code – Changing time and crime with a chunk of brain?
- Due Date – HAHHAHAHAHAHAA
- Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls – The rhino part was hilarious, which I vividly recalled later when I saw a rhino at the zoo
- Van Helsing
- National Treasure – Inspired me to read the Da Vinci Code and finish it in record time (< 1 week)
- The Haunted Mansion
- My Mom’s New Boyfriend
- Hulk – How come the Hulk becomes a monster, his shirt pops, but not his pants?
- Red Cliff – Takeshi! Tony! It would’ve been better if I watched it in Mandarin, and not English-dubbed. It just was not natural hearing the Asian actors with Indian-accented English.
- Shanghai Noon – Lol, Jackie Chan, you have to love how he gets knocked senseless, but always looking confused and amused amidst the fighting.
- Rush Hour 2
- The Karate Kid (2010)
- The Social Network – Mark Zuckerberg is an awkward ass. I hope he does not read this.
- Repo Man – Premium on organs heh?
- Harry Potter Series
- Girl with the Dragon Tattoo & Girl Who Played with Fire
- Ingracious Basterds – Quentin Tarantino is GENIUS, flipping history upside down in this wacky flip
- (Curse of the Golden Flower) – Missed all but the ending where I see Jay Chou kill himself =(
- 007 – Die Another Day
- He’s Just Not That Into You
- The Ugly Truth
- The Lincoln Lawyer
- Ninja Assassins – just to get a kick out of seeing Rain’s hot Korean bod and ridiculous gory graphics
- Other Asian movies that played, but did not get a chance to watch: Jackie Chan’s Who Am I, Invisible Target, Ong Bak, King of Fighters, Flash Point
Mornings and evenings, I watched mostly culture and travel channels about food, India, and Asia. When I travel, I like to learn as much as I can about the culture and beyond. Not many channels were available in English, but even with the 10 channels I was left with, I maximized my time in the living room. My favorite channels were TLC (Travel and Living) and Fox Travel & History, plus the usual Discovery and National Geographic, and movie channels.
- Air Crash Investigates: Not the most comforting idea to watch a program about plane crash disasters.
- Medical Anomalies: Whoa, some freaky stuff in medicine. By coincidence, I tuned in to an episode on neurofibromatosis, when that day I saw a NF case at work! Another episode, I saw cases of antagonist diseases like epidermolysis bullosa (EB) and ichthyosis vulgaris (fish scale disease)… Google it, you’ll know what I mean.
- Guinness World Records: Are there that many records to break still? People seem to train like hell and inflate their egos, vying to crush a previous record and have their name in the books. Sorry for the previous record holders, because they just were not good enough.
- Scare Tactics: ROFL, victims are reduced to pulp and begging for their lives at times, all documented on national TV. Mwhahahaaha, other people’s fear becomes the nation’s laughter. Cruel and humorous indeed…
- Animal shows: One show about fierce, wicked, and clever predators who utilize speed, mind-control, strength, camouflage, vision, hearing, smell and touch. Like there’s this parasite that enters a snail after getting eaten. It then enters the mind, literally, hypnotizing the snail. The snail’s little antennas change into psychedelic colors, changing its behavior and making it vulnerable to predators. It emerges and wanders out onto tree branches, where birds see their favorite meal. Bam! It gets eaten. The parasite enters the bird’s digestive system and returns to the environment via bird poop. Another oblivious, innocent snail stumbles across bird poo infected with the parasite, and the cycle continues. Among others are owls with acute hearing that goes deep beneath the layers of snow, hammerhead sharks with peripheral and panoramic vision, preying shrimp that can break through glass, blind mole thing that feels its way through burrows, and vampire bats with extraordinary night vision.
Did you know cheetahs are the fastest animals, yet they cannot run more than a minute, or else the heat will kill them?
The preying mantis is a sneaky bastard. It hangs and hides until it’s too late for the prey. A hummingbird was flying and drinking nectar, and suddenly, the preying mantis strikes and decapitates the furry flyer. Yuck!
I saw many lions and cheetahs chasing unfortunate zebras, antelopes, yaks… Just keep on chasing until a weak one trips up and attacked at the neck. Ouch… Then the vultures and flies come to finish the job.
Elephants are dangerous beasts too, the third most dangerous I believe, goring several hundreds people a year, up there with the hippos. One tourist in China wandered into the mountainous woods to find elephants and video-record a live footage, only to get much more than what he asked for. Elephants do not attack unless they feel threatened. Four elephants blocked the only exit down to the bus and proceeded to kill the man. Stomping and yelling and waving their trunks, the elephants were forces to be reckoned with. The guy hugged a tree to make himself still and less vulnerable, except he got besieged and thrown off. The worst attack came when an aggressive elephant picked the guy up with its trunk and stuffed him in the mouth. The guy vividly remembered hearing a crunch as he was folded up and crushed mercilessly. Thrown onto the ground, he had an open gash across his abdomen, intestines spilling out. He laid there for a good 2 hours before rescue, and even then transport took an additional hour or so to get him the emergency care he needed.
Komodo dragons can bite down with a powerful force, equal to the force applied if a hippo stood on a stiletto.
- Fun Asia: I love Janet Hsieh’s personality, hence I became a loyal viewer and fan! Pretty, bubbly, vivacious, and funny, she traveled far and wide, from the romantic beaches of Fiji & shark diving to exotic Thailand, Malaysia, and Mongolia. I wonder how it feels to be a traveler for a living and get paid for it, big time. Fun and money, what more could I ask for? That’s what I had going to India, not all-expense paid, but close enough.
- What’s With Indian Men: For example, the togas and Punjabi mustache twirl. Lmao… The constantly played opening music video is very catchy and hilarious…
- Oh My Gold: What a jaded show! The commercials would not stop playing! And reminding me how Indian women love their gold and jewelery. In the commercial, the host, Lisa Ray, travels India to experience India’s obsession with gold and jewels. In one segment, she is donned in gold: “I am wearing 6 million dollars worth of jewelery.” She is one expensive woman; I feel bad for her boyfriend, because she clearly has lofty standards.
I’m no fatty, but I have a great appreciation for good food. In actuality, I lost weight on vacation. Happens every time I go to a country outside of the USA, and that says something about the ‘land of opportunity’ and its expanding horizons.
- Food Safari: I came home with essential ingredients and recipes to experiment with from Malaysia, Vietnam, China, Japan, Italy, France, Lebanon, France, Portugal, and all over!
- Glutton for Punishment – This guy has only days to master the art of sushi/sashimi making and the nettle eating contest.
- Family Food Fight – It’s a tame show, but a hectic battle between multicultural bands of families. In mother-daughter, father-daughter, mother-son, father-son, and sister-sister combinations, families feature signature ethnic and home dishes to impress the judges and win the competition.
- Kung Fu Kitchen – Mixing entertainment and food and with agile hands, silken ease, and acuity, the Japanese and Chinese know how to put on a show and satisfy the palate! An Italian chef learned (and failed) to make famous Chinese noodles, la mian (hand made noodles) and dao sha mian (knife shaved noodles). A Caucasian woman learned the kitchen stunts of Japanese Teppanyaki, where the master chef does pepper shake and knife tricks, speedy chopping of bean sprouts, butter bowl maneuver, Mt. Fuji onion flames while cutting a meat without using the fork (only as a guide), flips, drumstick twirls, reverse salt shaker throw, synchronized swimming shrimp, and music using utensils. Whew! I was blown away. I’m going to have to experience this for myself to get the full kung-pow to my face and in my mouth.
- Andrew Zimmerman’s Bizarre World: He likes to explore cultures through food, the exotic and strange foods of the world that people usually dare to eat only for money on Fear Factor. He likes eating bugs, which are terrific sources of low fat protein. Apparently, they are delicious, prized snacks all over Southeast Asia, caught in backyards, deep-fried and spiced. Tarantulas, beetles, roaches, juicy larvae, ants… nutty, crunchy, and yummy I hear but too squeamish to ever try. Not even for money.
- World Cafe with Bobby Chinn: Haha, he is such a tourist, especially when he whips out his camera in public and takes pictures or videos in the wide open, not too far from what I do anywhere.
- Kylie Kwong – My China: She is one strange woman; her food did not look genuinely Asian OR appetizing, too simple and plain for any cultural appreciation. I also don’t think she spoke Chinese either. On the streets of Shanghai, she used hand motions and English to kick the street chef out of his streetside kitchen and proceeded to cook for curious pedestrians. She also chickened out of trying stinky tofu.
- Gourmet Central: This nutty Indian guy who cooks with mozzerella, parsley, muffins, ovens, strawberries, among other ingredients NOT found in India. I shopped at the markets… nothing of the sort.
- Indian Cooking Made Easy
- Exotic Eats
Random TV shows I stumbled upon.
- India’s Minute to Win It: My heart got a good beating from this show. Who knew everyday household items could be toys? A hunky doctor from Mumbai was deft with his hands and mobile with his booty, he had high hopes of going home with a whole lotta rupees… There was also an apple stacking game for Level 1. Every macintosh apple has five distinct bumps on the bottom and there’s a way to stack 4 up into a tower. Ghazi took out his Fuji apples and tried it =D Other fascinating games: standing egg with salt, cup relay, soda can balance and switch-a-roo, tic tac through the tennis racket, knocking off cups with balloons, shaking balls out of a tissue box attached to the ass, hands-in-the-stockings game, and much much more.
- Top Chef: Drama in the kitchen, and lots of it. I vowed to get away from American reality TV, but food always lures me back somehow.
- Modern Family: I got into this show, thanks to the persistent commercial showing Gloria belting a foul rendition of “Angel in the Morning”… LMAO Um, I cannot stop listening to the more pleasant version here – to be honest, I’ve been listening to this song on repeat while writing this post.
- Two and a Half Men: I got into Charlie Sheen too, the “Bad Boy of Television.”