take that 4

All of this food for a little over 56 dollars. If I take out the 4 meat substitutes, it would be even cheaper! Veganism doesn’t have to be expensive, but of course if all you buy is convenience food, the price can stack up quick.

Let’s start sharing our groceries and prices to not only show being vegan can be affordable and cheap, but also give some ideas on what to make!

It’s time to stop letting my feelings build up over time. It’s time to handle things as they come along rather than waiting until there’s too much for me to take.
—  4:09a.m. (via thoughts-at4am)

100 Documentaries7/100 || Exploring China: A Culinary Adventure - Episode 1

YEAR: 2012
WATCH: BBC | DailyMotion

OFFICIAL DESCRIPTION: “Chefs Ken Hom and Ching-He Huang undertake a culinary adventure across China, sampling its food, history, and culture.” - BBC

MY TAKE: This is a 4-part documentary, and I’m treating each part as a separate documentary because they differ so much and have very unique arcs, which is part of what I like so much about this miniseries.

“Exploring China: A Culinary Adventure” is one of those documentaries that Dean Pelton rails about at Abed in the Community episode where they make a Greendale commercial – “WHY ISN’T THE THING YOU’RE MAKING A DOCUMENTARY ABOUT EVER THE THING THE DOCUMENTARY ENDS UP BEING ABOUT?” (paraphrasing bc I’m not looking up the quote right now).

Ostensibly, Exploring China: A Culinary Adventure is about, well, exploring China through food, moving across the massive country from East to West, starting in Beijing and ending on the Tajikstan border. Like, first off, carte blanche, as a white Westerner, I was amazed by how… un-China-like so much of China really is, and I think I really needed to see that. I mean, it’s huge! And somehow even though I knew facts about how many minorities and dialects and regions there are in China, I never pictured them as distinct as they are, and I’m really glad to have been able to see it and correct that in my thinking and I’m impressed that a Western documentary like, went there and showed it.

But that’s not even what the “real story” of the documentary is – although it’s part of it.

The “real story” is, I think, multilayered, which I really, really love. There’s the obvious layer of the effects of the cultural revolution and IMMENSE inequality across China as you move Westward and away from Beijing. I love that in each hour-long episode, they go both to a city center and to a rural home within a few hours’ drive, and I love that it doesn’t ever feel like “tragedy porn” because they aren’t showing paucity or trying to be pitying – everywhere they go, there is food and there is pride and there is a distinct sense of self and place. In Part I, Ching-He Huang goes to a pork farmer’s home in Chuandixia, an almost-abandoned town 400 miles West of Beijing, to see his organic operations and cook with his wife [EDIT: Sorry, the pork farmer is in Episode 2 – this one is an innkeeper and his wife].

Yes: it is important to specify that she cooks with his wife, because another layer of the documentary – and one that I naturally think is particularly interesting and important – is, frankly, the devolution of Ching-He as they move further and further West over the month of their trip and she is treated worse and worse by the men in places they visit, especially compared to her older, male co-host. There’s another documentary about gender roles and the status of women in China that I’ve wanted to see FOR YEARS and still can’t track down (”Spilled Water”), and the clips and interviews I’ve heard from that piece really came back to me as I watched through this.

In Beijing, Ken and Ching-He are invited to cook in the white-coat, very Westernized kitchen at a high-end restaurant, and like… the looks on the faces of the employees (all men) as they watch Ching-He cook in their kitchen signal the entire force of this arc beginning. But, since she is a Chinese woman who was trained in England and works in England, you can see on her face right back that she knows those looks and how to ignore them.

(Spoiler alert: that changes as it gets more blatant, personal, and less Westernized-sexism(?) as they go. It ends fascinatingly in Episode 4.)

But that also introduces, or quietly underscores, the third arc, which gets a lot of airtime in this episode in particular, and that is that both Ken and Ching-He come from families displaced by the Communist regime and who are making their first real, extended trips back to China as adults with this series. As someone who is not an immigrant or the child of immigrants, that experience is one that I do not share, but it’s one that I think is vitally important to be able to, like, in the parlance that we used in my MFA program, empathetically imagine – as in, not like “oh I can imagine that experience,” but like, “I need to be able to create a frame of reference outside of my own privilege and assumptions so that I can understand the dimensional fullness of that status and how it affects all other experiences for that person.”

I think I’ve said it before, but I like best when documentaries force me to do that so that I can appreciate them the right way. So this series gets an A+ from me, although I do think there are a few scenes (particularly in Episode 3, when I get there post-wise) that exist in part to shock or ~gross out Western audiences.

Or I might just be particularly squeamish about bugs, which is definitely a true thing, so ymmv.

REC?: Yes. Obviously food issues apply, and a blanket trigger warning for discussions of Mao and the effects of his brutality.


anonymous asked:

how long does a typical art piece take you?

A painted piece takes about 3-4 hours, a lined&fully coloured piece (the kind i usually post) takes about 2-3 and a sketched and coloured in doodle takes 20-40 mins depending on how detailed i want it to be

anonymous asked:

I kissed my gf for the first time yesterday and it was kinda awkward and she said it was ok but I apologized so much and it's still giving me so much anxiety because she probably thought it was awful and I straight up missed her mouth that's how terrible I am at kissing but I still really liked it but I just wish it was better (PS I love your blog so much and you and your girlfriend are so cute)

1. First kisses will always be a little weird and awkward
2. Thank you v much
3. Kissing takes practice
4. I’m gonna be my girlfriends first kiss and I’m terrified