Tag Archive: China

Love and respect to Dr. Suess. I own nothing.

In any case, the reason for today’s post’s title is, simply, Vietnamese Week.

“But Ven,” you’ll say, “What does a children’s story have to do with Vietnamese Week?” And I’ll pat you on the head and show you this photo and you will understand:

This isn’t actually at APU and credit goes to whoever took the picture, but these are the same shirts sold at the Co-Op for 500 yen each. The campus was swamped in red for the last week, and the shirts sold out just about every day. I did not buy one, as I am a joyless miser who doesn’t support nationalistic things (I don’t even have a flag T-shirt for AMERICA, why would I buy one for Vietnam?). Anyway. So that’s Vietnamese week. As with Chinese week, there was an odd invasion of school spirit, random dances in front of the fountain, a flash mob of free hugs (which they ANNOUNCED to the WHOLE SCHOOL days before it happened, which kind of… misses the point of a flash mob), and lots of Vietnamese food.

Like Bánh rán.

This picture belongs to Gastronomy; we made these in AP House 2, but I forgot my camera. Looks good, right? Haha… well… the outside is a rice-flour paste, you know, that really sticky stuff that kind of resembles Silly Putty (only stickier) before it’s cooked. The inside is a combination of sugar, mung bean paste, and jasmine extract (you can add other things as well; we did, though I have no idea what). You pinch a bit of the filling in your hand, drop it on top of a flattened ball of the rice paste, and roll it into a ball shape. Then you cover the uncooked balls in sesame seeds and fry. Om nom nom. Don’t let the smell of the raw filling deter you.

The Vietnamese Grand Show wasn’t quite as flashy as the Chinese Week one, but it was interesting and well worth a watch nonetheless. You can find it on Ustream here: http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/23480748

The actual start of the show is at 13:40. Someone had Dreamweaver and wasn’t afraid to use it–before that, it’s just the introduction and a recap of the week’s events. Again, this show is well worth a watch, if you have the time for it. Our students and staff work very hard on these performances, and the quality of them cannot be denied. You have the added bonus of this show mostly being in English!

That’s all for today. I’ll see you all in July~


So APU is well-known for its international events and community… you know, our student base comes from 89 countries! Amazing. Anyway. To honor this love of international culture and exchange, APU hosts a full month of International Weeks every semester. During these weeks, special foods, shows, and events all take place based around whatever culture is being showcased for that week.

The first was Chinese Week. People wandered around in special shirts, made from imitation silk, that look just like traditional Chinese shirts. There were shows in front of the fountain and special foods sold in the cafeteria. And, best of all, at the end of the week there was the Chinese Grand Show in Millennium Hall.

You can watch the show here:


Yes, this was a big deal. Skip ahead to 4:30 for the actual start of the show.

The basic plot is a Chinese myth, where two people meet and fall in love. But their marriage is forbidden, so they elope. They are then killed for their ‘treachery’ and their son barely escapes, unable to find anyone to take him in. He sees many interesting and strange things in the city he finds, and eventually takes up swordsmanship with a prestigious teacher. He grows up to be a great fighter and vows to take vengeance on the one who killed his parents. He finds out that his mother is waiting for him on the other side of the Underworld and then vows to free her as well. Sound familiar? Well, China did this plot first. This myth goes back even farther than their writing system does, and that’s at least eight hundred years old…

It’s a very interesting show, because this myth is interspersed with all sorts of fun little extras. Namely the dances and the fashion show. Altogether it was a very interesting show and I greatly recommend watching it. (if you absolutely need a translation, I can make one, just comment and ask)