Gil Asakawa's Nikkei View | Gil Asakawa
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How sad that Andrew Young, a man I (and many others) have admired and thought of as a civil rights leader, reveals that deep-down inside he harbors racist feelings toward other minority communities. The former Mayor of Atlanta and U.S. representative to the U.N. is African American.

200px-Bill_Clinton.jpgI'm proud to be a Baby Boomer, because of all the historical implications my generation has had. Not the usual stuff about living through the Vietnam war and rock and roll and Kennedy and civil rights and the space race (all of which is true), but more the fact that simply having such a large cohort of people growing up at the same time forced society and industry and business and culture to change to accommodate us all. Bill Clinton, who's the quintessential boomer -- the first avowed rock and roller (OK, so maybe playing Fleetwood Mac for campaign music isn't hardcore, and he didn't "inhale," but he's still more like us, than, say, the first George Bush or Ronald Reagan) who moved into the White House -- turns 60 this week, and the BBC had this interview with the guy.

When I wrote last week about the death of AOL, I may have been premature. Maybe it's just the start of a new chapter in AOL's lifespan. Take this Washington Post story today, for proof. AOL last week screwed up and released private information about its users and how they use the company's search engine. Significantly, the top search term entered by AOL users is "Google."

An interesting recent AP story raised the issue of what kinds of affectionate nicknames people use for grandparents. In Japanese, the words are "Obaasan" for grandmother and "Ojiisan" for grandfather, and many Japanese Americans still use the terms even if they don't speak much if any Japanese. But I have a confession to make. I didn't have an affectionate nickname for my grandmother.

Truly, it's the end of an era. My first online job, way back in 1996, was as Content Editor of AOL's Digital City Denver. It was a great time to be working on the Internet -- there was a palpable sense of excitement. Everything was new, and everything was possible. Never mind that AOL wasn't exactly the "Internet" (many 'Net folks pooh-poohed AOL even then), we were all missonaries preaching the online faith. Like the other handful of online companies at the time, we spent more than half of our long days meeting with potential partners, advertisers and content providers, as well as anyone who would spend the time to listen, to tell them about the Internet and how it would change their lives.

Candle_during_processionLast night I attended the tail end of an all-day event in Manhattan, and was glad I did. The event was a cross-denominational commemoration of Universal Peace Day, to mark the Aug. 6 anniversay of the bombing of Hiroshima in 1945 with an atomic bomb, and Nagasaki three days later with a second atomic bomb. The event started early in the day with speeches and music (Peter Yarrow of Peter, Paul and Mary was the most notable performer) at Riverside Park, but it went well into the night, so I didn't feel I missed anything. Besides, I got to the New York Buddhist Church on 105th and Riverside Drive in time for the Candlelight March to Riverside Church, where the event finished up, and that was the highlight for me.

The Indian community of Edison, a town in northern New Jersey, is split over racial boundaries. This article ran in the Newark Star-Ledger the other day, about a protest mounted by the growing Indian community in Edison over an alleged police abuse of an Indian man, and a counter-protest by non-Indians.

badsushi.jpgI've been looking for Asian restaurants in my area of Jersey City, and only having limited luck. Part of Jersey City is becoming "Hobokenized," which is to say, the yuppies are overflowing from Manhattan and settling in parts of New Jersey that are closest to New York. But my part of Jersey City, which is close to where I work in Journal Square, has not been Hobokenized. And it probably won't happen anytime soon. Anyway, the one Asian cuisine I found right away was Indian food. There's a concentrated South Asian community here and a stretch of Newark Avenue just off Journal Square is dotted with Indian restaurants. I've eaten at a couple of them so far, and they're great.