Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Former Pirates pitcher Masumi Kuwata again on Japanese Hall of Fame ballot.


Via Kyodo Photo.

On November 28 the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame announced its ballot for the Class of 2018, and former Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Masumi Kuwata (桑田真澄) again made the list. Kuwata, the first Japanese player in Pirates history, pitched briefly for Pittsburgh in 2007 as a 39-year-old rookie. He accumulated 173 wins in Japan, 106 of which came before an elbow injury in 1995 that kept him out for almost two seasons. Results of the Hall of Fame voting will be announced on January 15.

Tracing his career on his Baseball-Reference.com wiki page, it follows a trajectory common among Pittsburgh Pirates free agents of that era:
"1987-1994: The Glory Years," "1995-1996: Injury," "1997-2002: Post-Injury," "2003-2006: Further decline," "To the USA."
He pitched 19 games in relief in 2007 but was demoted to Triple A in August, two days after his family arrived in Pittsburgh to see him play against the Giants. He retired the following spring:
Kuwata, a baseball superstar in his native Japan, formally announced his retirement after the Pirates' 7-4 victory against the Detroit Tigers this afternoon, a game in which manager John Russell asked him to pitch one final time as a show of respect. But he declined.

"He told us he's pitched thousands of innings, that we should use that time to look at pitchers for our future," Russell said. "He's a class act, a true professional and a great human being. We wish him the best of luck in everything he does."

The ritual at the mound was meant to symbolize a farewell to the game. And, although Kuwata's impact in Pittsburgh was negligible, some in the assembled Japanese media were saying that this farewell would top their nation's news for the day.

"He's a legend in our country," said reporter Yasuko Yanagita, who broke the story of Kuwata's retirement for the Hochi Shimbun sports daily. "Everyone will want to know about this, and everyone will be surprised."

2017 Japanese animated film Mary and the Witch's Flower (メアリと魔女の花) coming to Row House Cinema, too.



The 2017 Japanese animated film Mary and the Witch's Flower (メアリと魔女の花), scheduled to play at Pittsburgh-area Cinemark theaters on January 18, 2018, will also play at the Row House Cinema as part of it's New Animated Films series from January 19 through 25.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Ariba hiring bilingual Chinese-English Procurement Operations Specialist for overnight position.

Pittsburgh-based Ariba is again hiring a bilingual Chinese-English Procurement Operations Specialist for an 8:00 pm to 5:00 am shift. An excerpt from the job posting:
The Customer Support Specialist is the face and voice of Ariba to our customers, building relationships in each interaction. Specialists help our customers maximize the benefits of Ariba solutions to facilitate a global exchange of goods and services in the world’s largest business to business trading community. They use their expertise and collaborate with team members and customers across the globe to provide detailed solutions that exceed expectations.

Chinese movie Explosion (引爆者) to continue in Pittsburgh through December 6.



The 2017 Chinese movie Explosion (引爆者), which opened in Pittsburgh on Thanksgiving, will continue in town through December 6. The Hollywood Reporter provides a summary of the film that closed the 2017 Shanghai International Film Festival in June:
More thriller than actioner, and influenced by stylish art cinema more than Hollywood, it starts off with quite a bang. In the claustrophobic bowels of a mine, a blast goes wrong and sends a flaming fireball racing through the shaft in a brief but effective disaster scene that leaves four workmen dead and the audience hungry for more.

Duan Yi-hong . . . is gritty and glammed down as experienced blast technician Zhou Yu-dong. He's stunned and injured by the explosion, but instead of rushing him to the nearest hospital, his gangster-boss Li Yi knocks him down for screwing up, then throws hush money at him. The four victims, who are seen only from their burnt feet, are quickly buried.

Zhou is too expert not to smell a rat. Exiled from the mine, he moodily hangs around a local eatery run by his eye-catching girlfriend . . . until he makes up his mind to investigate what really happened.
The movie plays in Mandarin with English subtitles. Tickets and showtime information are available online via Fandango. The theater is located at 300 West Waterfront Dr. in the Waterfront shopping complex in Homestead (map), across the Monongahela River from Greenfield, Squirrel Hill, and the rest of Pittsburgh.

Monday, November 27, 2017

Six films part of Studio Ghibli Film Series at Row House Cinema, December 1 - 14.



The Row House Cinema's next Studio Ghibli Film Series will run from December 1 through 14 and highlight the acclaimed Japanese animation studio. The six films to comprise the series are: 1991's Only Yesterday (おもひでぽろぽろ), 1992's Porco Rosso (紅の豚), 1997's Princess Mononoke (もののけ姫), 2001's Spirited Away (千と千尋の神隠し), and 2013's The Tale Of The Princess Kaguya (かぐや姫の物語) and The Wind Rises (風立ちぬ).

Ticket and showtime information is now available online. The single-screen theater is located at 4115 Butler Street in Lawrenceville (map).

Japanese speakers (and students of Japanese) wanted for recordings for local documentary on Daigo Fukuryū Maru, November 28.


The boat on display in Tokyo, via Daigo Fukuryuu Maru Exibition Hall.

A local filmmaker is looking for Japanese speakers (native and non-native alike) to record a few lines for an upcoming documentary on Daigo Fukuryū Maru, a Japanese tuna fishing boat that was contaminated as a result of an American nuclear weapons test in 1954.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Howl's Moving Castle (ハウルの動く城) in Pittsburgh area, November 26 and 27.



The 2004 Hayao Miyazaki film Howl's Moving Castle (ハウルの動く城) will play at Pittsburgh area Cinemark theaters on November 26 and 27 as the final installment of the GKIDS Ghibli Fest 2017. The distributor provides a summary:
From director Hayao Miyazaki, "Howl’s Moving Castle", is an Academy Award®-nominated acclaimed fantasy based on the novel of the same name. Sophie, an average teenage girl working in a hat shop, finds her life thrown into turmoil when she is literally swept off her feet by a handsome but mysterious wizard named Howl. But after this chance meeting, the young girl is turned into a 90-year old woman by the vain, conniving Witch of the Waste. Embarking on an incredible adventure to lift the curse, she finds refuge in Howl’s magical moving castle.

As the true power of Howl’s wizardry is revealed, and his relationship with Sophie deepens, our young grey heroine finds herself fighting to protect them both from a dangerous war of sorcery that threatens their world.
The movie will play at Monaca, Monroeville, North Hills, and Pittsburgh Mills Cinemark theaters on two days: the English-dubbed version will play on November 26 and the English-subtitled version on November 27.

"Death and Literature: Time, Sickness, and Writing," November 27 at Pitt.



The University of Pittsburgh's Asian Studies Center will host Dr. Robert Tierney and his talk "Death and Literature: Time, Sickness, and Writing" on Monday, November 27.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Storytime: Chinese & English, November 25 in Squirrel Hill.

This month's installment of Storytime: Chinese & English will be held on Saturday, November 25 at the Carnegie Library in Squirrel Hill.
Celebrate our city’s diverse culture as we explore new words through songs, action rhymes and stories in both English and Chinese. For children birth – 5 years and their caregivers.
It runs from 11:00 to 11:30 am and is free and open to the public. The library is located at 5801 Forbes Ave. in Squirrel Hill (map) and is accessible via buses 61A, 61B, 61C, 61D, 64, and 74.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Chinese movie Explosion (引爆者) opens in Pittsburgh on Thanksgiving.



The 2017 Chinese movie Explosion (引爆者) will open in Pittsburgh on November 23. The Hollywood Reporter provides a summary of the film that closed the 2017 Shanghai International Film Festival in June:
More thriller than actioner, and influenced by stylish art cinema more than Hollywood, it starts off with quite a bang. In the claustrophobic bowels of a mine, a blast goes wrong and sends a flaming fireball racing through the shaft in a brief but effective disaster scene that leaves four workmen dead and the audience hungry for more.

Duan Yi-hong . . . is gritty and glammed down as experienced blast technician Zhou Yu-dong. He's stunned and injured by the explosion, but instead of rushing him to the nearest hospital, his gangster-boss Li Yi knocks him down for screwing up, then throws hush money at him. The four victims, who are seen only from their burnt feet, are quickly buried.

Zhou is too expert not to smell a rat. Exiled from the mine, he moodily hangs around a local eatery run by his eye-catching girlfriend . . . until he makes up his mind to investigate what really happened.
The movie plays in Mandarin with English subtitles. Tickets and showtime information are available online via Fandango. The theater is located at 300 West Waterfront Dr. in the Waterfront shopping complex in Homestead (map), across the Monongahela River from Greenfield, Squirrel Hill, and the rest of Pittsburgh.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

New restoration of 1953 Japanese movie Ugetsu (雨月物語) at Row House Cinema, from November 24.



A new 4K digital restoration of the 1953 Japanese movie Ugetsu (雨月物語) will play at the Row House Cinema from November 24 through 30 as part of the theater's Poetry of Images series. The distributor provides a summary:
By the time he made Ugetsu, Kenji Mizoguchi was already an elder statesman of Japanese cinema, fiercely revered by Akira Kurosawa and other directors of a younger generation. And with this exquisite ghost story, a fatalistic wartime tragedy derived from stories by Akinari Ueda and Guy de Maupassant, he created a touchstone of his art, his long takes and sweeping camera guiding the viewer through a delirious narrative about two villagers whose pursuit of fame and fortune leads them far astray from their loyal wives. Moving between the terrestrial and the otherworldly, Ugetsu reveals essential truths about the ravages of war, the plight of women, and the pride of men.
Tickets and showtimes are available online. The single-screen theater is located at 4115 Butler Street in Lawrenceville (map).

Friday, November 17, 2017

Japanese electronic music artist Cornelius (コーネリアス) to play in Pittsburgh in March.



Japanese musician Keigo Oyamada, also known as Cornelius (コーネリアス) and whose newest music can be roughly categorized as downbeat, will play at Carnegie Lecture Hall in Oakland on March 10, 2018, as part of next year's tour of US and Mexico. The Andy Warhol Museum summarizes:
Beginning with his 1997 release Fantasma on Matador Records, Cornelius (the name is an homage to the Planet of the Apes) gained much critical praise as the “modern day Brian Wilson” for his lush orchestral/pop arrangements and quickly became an in-demand producer working with artists such as Beck, Bloc Party, and MGMT. Oyamada’s forays into scoring films include Scott Pilgrim vs. the World and the anime mega-film Ghost in the Shell Arise, as well as being a key performer in Yoko Ono’s reformed Plastic Ono Band.
Tickets for this Sound Series event are currently available online for $25 for adults or $20 for students and museum members.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Mochi Workshop at Pitt, November 18.



The University of Pittsburgh's Chinese American Students Association will hold a mochi-making workshop on November 18. It runs from 3:00 to 5:00 pm in room 630 of the William Pitt Union (map). Registration and $5 payment for supplies is due on Friday, November 17.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

"No war against the Democratic People's Republic of Korea!" November 18 in Oakland.



The Pittsburgh Anti-Imperialist League will host Derek Ford of Depauw University for "No war against the Democratic People's Republic of Korea!" on November 18.
Join a discussion on the origins of the current crisis and the movement against a new war by the US empire against the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, DPRK.

Our speaker Derek Ford, assistant professor at DePauw University, has recently returned from DPRK in August 2017 as an organizer of the latest "Korea Peace Tour", the last civilian tour to DPRK before the travel ban by the Trump regime went into effect. In 2016, Mr. Ford also travelled to South Korea representing the ANSWER Coalition as he participated in the International Forum on Peace and Reunification, visited political prisoners and held meetings with progressive organizations, and joined in several protests and actions.

The Trump regime has consistenly engaged in dangerous escalations in Korea, risking re-opening the Korean War. Such a war would risk millions of lives across Asia while sending many poor and working people in the US to do the killing and dying for the US capitalist class.
The event runs from 3:30 to 5:30 pm in the Barco Law Building (room 111) at the University of Pittsburgh (map), and is free and open to the public.

"Pedagogical Technology Mini Workshops, Part One: VoiceThread and Quizlet" with Department of East Asian Languages, November 17 at Pitt.

The University of Pittsburgh's Department of East Asian Languages & Literatures will present a "Pedagogical Technology Mini Workshops, Part One: VoiceThread and Quizlet" on November 17, featuring one professor from the Korean program and one from the Chinese. Kyungok Joo will present "Quizlet, Digital Flashcards for Vocabulary Learning."
This presentation will demonstrate how to create digital flashcards to teach vocabulary to beginners in learning L2.
Vanessa Ju-Chun Wei will present "VoiceThreading 101."
This presentation will cover basics on creating a VoiceThread and its pedagogical implications in a foreign language class.
The workshop runs from 12:00 to 1:30 pm in 4130 Posvar Hall (map).

Monday, November 13, 2017

SAP Ariba hiring bilingual Mandarin-English Operations Support Specialist for six-month position.



SAP Ariba, through a staffing service, is hiring a bilingual Mandarin-English Operations Support Specialist for a six-month position. Please note, these are overnight shifts of 7:00 pm to 4:00 am and 8:00 pm to 5:00 am in order to align with Asian office hours. Reviewing similar jobs posted to the SAP Ariba site provide more information about the nature of the work.

Philippine Nationality Room construction hoped to begin May 2018.



This month's Nationality Rooms Newsletter reports on the progress toward a Philippine Nationality Room.
The PNR Task Force has had a very busy year fundraising so that the construction of the Philippine Nationality Room can begin in May 2018. They held a Philippine Movie Marathon and on August 6 held a “Merienda Cena” (high tea) - Saklohohan” (rescue) fundraiser. PAPG and FAAP provided an entertainment. Josie Crooks provided music entertainment.

The PNR Task Force met the required minimum for the Facilities Management to bid for the construction of the Philippine Nationality Room. The Room is scheduled for construction in May 2018.
The preliminary designs of the room come from Popi Laudico, who writes:
The room is designed to incorporate the look of the traditional Philippine Bahay na Bato circa 1820.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

New anime film Fate/stay night: Heaven's Feel 1. presage flower (劇場版 Fate / stay night [Heaven's Feel] 第一章「presage flower」) in Pittsburgh, November 18.



The new Japanese anime film Fate/stay night: Heaven's Feel 1. presage flower (劇場版 Fate / stay night [Heaven's Feel] 第一章「presage flower」) will play at the Hollywood Theater in Dormont on November 18. Wikipedia has the closest thing to a comprehensible summary of the trilogy that begins with this film:
The story of the trilogy revolves around Shirou Emiya, a young and humble high school student who is forced to participate in the Holy Grail War, a fierce battle in which seven mages and their respective summoned servants are forced to kill each other in order to obtain the Holy Grail, an unlimited source of miracles. As the master of the servant Saber, Shirou allies with the prodigy magus Rin to defeat a threatening blood thirsty demonic force, which has been causing the deaths of countless people. However, Shirou's overflowing feelings for his close friend Sakura will lead him to a tragic journey of love, suffering and despair as the war reveals its deepest and darkest secrets.
The movie opened in Japan on October 14, and the Hollywood Theater is the only place in Pennsylvania showing it in November.

Tickets for the 2:00 pm show are available online for $15. The theater is located at 1449 Potomac Ave. in Dormont (map), and is accessible by Pittsburgh's subway/LRT at a block south of Potomac Station.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

New Pittsburgh Asian Dance Meetup.


via @YanlaiDance.

A new Pittsburgh-area Asian Dance Meetup has formed, with 40 members already on meetup.com.
We host Asian dance lessons, parties, and performances. We help people in the Pittsburgh region appreciate and enjoy performances arts of Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and other Asian cultures.
Those interested are encouraged to join the meetup.com group to be notified of upcoming events.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

International Career Toolkit Site Visit: WholeRen (美国厚仁教育集团), November 28.



The University of Pittsburgh's University Center for International Studies will visit WholeRen, an Oakland-based Chinese education and consulting company, on November 28 as part of its International Career Toolkit series. Registration is required and space is limited to 10 students.

Local documentary "Vietnam: Another View" on WQED, November 9 at 8:00 pm.


Father Dam Nguyen of Sacred Heart parish is featured in "Vietnam: Another View" (via Pittsburgh Tribune-Review).

Pittsburgh's PBS affiliate WQED will air a local documentary on the Vietnam War, "Vietnam: Another View," on November 9 at 8:00 pm. The channel has produced content on the war for years, and has compiled it into a single website.
In conjunction with the 18 hour PBS documentary series, The Vietnam War, WQED will produce and explore stories connected to the Pittsburgh area. The local content will focus on the perspectives of American troops and Vietnamese citizens - as well as those engaged on the home front. We will also include archival stories from our extensive reporting on veterans issues over the years. This multi-platform project will complement the PBS series while serving as a valued archive for our region.
The Tribune-Review writes:
Following the broadcast, WQED will host "Reflections on Vietnam" at 8:30 p.m. from the Fred Rogers Studio. Host Chris Moore will lead the discussion, part of WQED's multi-platform engagement project surrounding Burns' series on the war.

Panelists include Tony Accamando (Friends of Danang), Todd DePastino (Veterans Breakfast Club), and Dr. Nghi Nguyen (Vietnamese Association of Pittsburgh).

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

2017 Takashi Miike film Blade of the Immortal (無限の住人) to continue at Hollywood Theater through November 15.



The 2017 Takashi Miike film Blade of the Immortal (無限の住人), which opened at the Hollywood Theater in Dormont on November 3, will continue there through the 15th. A May 18 IndieWire review has a summary of Miike's 100th film:
With a body count in the thousands and a breakneck pitch that starts at feverishly intense and only builds upwards, “Blade of the Immortal” is certainly one of Takashi Miike’s most lethal works. But then, how else should a director with Miike’s talents celebrate such a milestone? You see, not only is his adaptation of a popular manga overloaded, overlong and gleefully over-the-top – it’s also the director’s hundredth feature film.

Based on Hiroaki Samura’s eponymous series, “Blade of the Immortal” follows Manji (local mega-star Takuya Kimura), a cursed samurai and unkillable killing machine who broods and maims his way across Edo era Japan. Thanks to the “sacred bloodworms” coursing through his veins, Manji can heal any wound and ages in slow motion, and that’s not the only similarity to a certain Marvel hero, as this film also hinges on the relationship between the older sell-sword and young girl he’s paid to protect.
Tickets and showtime information is available from the theater's website. The theater is located at 1449 Potomac Ave. in Dormont (map), and is accessible by Pittsburgh's subway/LRT at a block south of Potomac Station.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Korean karaoke night, November 14 at Pitt.



The University of Pittsburgh Asian Studies Center and the English Language Institute—currently hosting students from Gwangju's Chosun National University—will present a Korean karaoke night on November 14. From the Asian Studies Center newsletter:
As part of our partnership with the English Language Institute and the exchange students from Chosun University, we will be hosting a night of karaoke, food and fun in 548 William Pitt Union from 5- 8 pm on Tuesday November 14. Space will be limited, so please email us at asia@pitt.edu if you would like to join us.

Upper St. Clair School District hiring part-time Japanese teacher.

Upper St. Clair School District—ranked eighth in the state and fourth in the region, according to the latest Niche.com list—is hiring a part-time Japanese teacher.
The Upper St. Clair School District is seeking candidates for a .4 FTE Japanese Teacher at the High School. The assignment will begin on January 18, 2018. Interested applicants should electronically submit a letter of interest, resume, PA application, clearances, transcripts, Praxis results, copy of PA certification, and 3 letters of recommendation to k12worldlanguages@uscsd.k12.pa.us. Please put Japanese Teacher in the subject line. The deadline for applications is November 13, 2017. Prospective candidates will be requested to provide additional information.

"Natural Resources and the Making of Modern Xinjiang, 1907-1962" at Pitt, November 10.



The University of Pittsburgh's Asian Studies Center will host Dr. Judd Kinzley and his talk "Natural Resources and the Making of Modern Xinjiang, 1907-1962" on November 10.
This talk will focus on the central role that natural resources played in shaping Chinese state power and authority in China's far western province of Xinjiang. Based on his forthcoming book, this talk will highlight the often overlooked role played by an assortment of Chinese and Soviet state agents, as well as a wide variety of non-state actors, each of whom were seeking to stake their own claim to Xinjiang's lucrative natural resources. Their combined efforts to gain access to the region's gold, wool, petroleum, and rare minerals served to construct the foundations of Chinese state power and authority in this distant border region.

Dr. Judd Kinzley is a historian of modern China with research and teaching interests that include environmental history, state power, industrial development, and wartime mobilization. His research tends to center around understanding the connections that exist between state power and the natural world in various Chinese peripheral and border regions.
The talk runs from 3:00 to 5:00 pm in 4130 Posvar Hall (map) and is free and open to the public.

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Thai film Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (ลุงบุญมีระลึกชาติ) free at Maridon Museum, November 10.




Butler's Maridon Museum will present the 2010 Thai film Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (ลุงบุญมีระลึกชาติ) on November 10, as the final installment of the museum's Thai Film Series.

Friday, November 3, 2017

"Chinese Karaoke Night," November 10 at Pitt.



The Chinese language program and the Chinese Language Club at the University of Pittsburgh will present a Chinese Karaoke Night on November 10.
Songs you will hear:
对面的女孩看过来
对不起我的中文不好
中国话
小幸运
给我一个吻
再见
Backstreet Boys - I Want It That Way -- the Chinese version

and many more ~~~~~

Everyone is welcome!
It will run from 7:00 to 9:00 pm in Nordy's Place, located on the ground floor of the William Pitt Union (map).

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Ross Park Mall's Tiffany & Co. hiring Mandarin-speaking sales associate.



The Tiffany & Co. jewelry store in Ross Park Mall in the North Hills is hiring a Mandarin-speaking sales professional.
Required Qualifications
  • Experience in retail or luxury retail or relevant customer-related experience (e.g., hospitality).
  • Proven track record in achieving sales results.
  • Flexibility to work non-traditional hours, including days, nights, weekends and holidays.
  • Ability to work with a diverse client base.
  • Proficiency with Point of Sales (POS) systems, client tracking systems and Microsoft Outlook/email.
  • Must have authorization to work in the United States or in the country where the position is based.
Preferred Qualifications:
  • A college/university degree.
  • Graduate Gemologist degree or previous Gemological Institute of America (GIA) course work is preferred.
  • Proficiency in multiple languages.

APA Y-Advocate training for high school students, November 11 at Pitt.



The Organization of Chinese Americans will hold a half-day session for Asian Pacific American high school students on topics of leadership, community engagement, career planning, and financial responsibility at the University of Pittsburgh on November 11.

KDKA: "Increase In Asian Population Is Changing Region Culturally, Economically"


2015 Lunar New Year Parade, via @OCA Pittsburgh.

KDKA, the local CBS affiliate, has a quick look at the influence of the growing Asian population in the region.
“I think there’s always room for people to bring something specialty, something different, something more tradition[al], and introduce to the consumer,” said Mike Chen, the owner of Everyday Noodles.

When Chen moved here from Los Angeles 33 years ago, there were very few Asians in the city, but he says this new influx will be a welcome change in the Pittsburgh — both economically and culturally.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Chang Chun Chemical Corporation seeking bilingual English-Mandarin Sales Assistant in Pittsburgh.

Taiwan's Chang Chun Chemical Corporation is seeking a bilingual English-Mandarin Sales Assistant for its office in Wexford, PA.
Communicating with Headquarters in Taipei for order processing and shipment arrangement

To support sales function such as issuing purchase order, invoice or sales related documents

To maintain filling, updating and keeping of records

Managing stock inventory and sales operation as instructed by the Sales Manager

Handling customers’ enquiries and maintain tip top service to customers.