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NAASCon, Day One

After arriving at our motel-room-straight-from-a-Coen-Brothers-film, Saffiyah, Nhu-Y, Vivian and I watched CNN's election coverage for a few hours and pigged out at Sweet Tomatoes (an all you can eat "salad buffet"... see Nhu-Y's entry below).

We got lost a few times while navigating our way to Emory, which is quite huge and beautiful (completely different from Barnard or Columbia). We made our way to White Hall to watch Vincent Who?, a documentary by Curtis Chin that garnered a lot of attention because of 1) its banking on Vincent Chin's legacy... see our Staff page 2) Curtis Chin's family ties to Vincent Chin 3) Its follow-up on the Academy Award-nominated 1985 documentary, Who Killed Vincent Chin?

When we walked in, Vincent Who? was already halfway done. The film's general format was a series of talking heads listing the impact that Vincent Chin had on their lives, spliced with scenes of those same interviewees (ranging from community activists, to lawyers, to journalists, to entertainers, to bloggers - Angry Asian Man and Sepia Mutiny!) in action. We missed this part, but at the beginning, the filmmaker approached several Asian American youths, asking if they knew who Vincent Chin is (the general answer was a resounding "No").

All in all, an interesting follow-up to Christine Choy and Renee Tajima-Pena's work, but it did very little to bridge the awareness gap between generations as well as between Asian American subgroups. I'm tempted to geek out about the bad sound and lighting quality, but I won't do that here. I forgive Curtis Chin those shortcomings due to a possibly limited budget.

After the film screening, I greeted some friends, then shuttled down to Holiday Inn with co-presenters Monna and Linda. We're doing a workshop called "Embodied, Empowered: Asian American Women". Nhu-Y with Bryan Lee (we call him Grandpa) are doing an AALDEF workshop called "Asian American Voting Rights and Political Participation". Vivian and Saffiyah are facilitating the Regional Caucuses (which, admittedly, we don't know anything about). It's going to be a ruckus.

Oh, and some Atlanta anecdote: they give their restaurants ridiculous names, like "Rise and Dine" and "Lettuce Souprise You". Linda came up with a joke for that one: "Knock knock." "Who's there?" "Lettuce." "Lettuce who?" "Lettuce Souprise You!"



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