Saturday, March 26, 2011

Khuntien (Pontianak)

Khuntien (Kungdiang) is the local Teochew name for the Indonesian city of Pontianak which is located on Borneo (Kalimantan is the Indonesian part). From meeting Gaginangers in the past, I've learned that the city's Chinese population is predominately Teochew, with a Hakka presence as well. Apparently all Chinese in Khuntien speak Teochew, even some non-Chinese. The Teochew accent there is slightly different from what I'm used to, for example some words actually have -n endings (which is not typical in other Teochew dialects). Also, the vocabulary probably takes from Indonesian as well. In any case, it would be great to visit one day. Here are some songs from an artist who wrote some folk songs in Teochew. I wonder who the original artist is and where the original artist is now? I would love to learn the songs and give them a more modern/poppy/emo twist. Enjoy!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

2 Minutes in Sua:tao

Never been to Sua:tao? Or maybe you have, but only have two minutes to spare? Well, I have the thing just for you: A techno/game music-infused two minute tour of Sua:tao. Truly, the video doesn't do it justice at all - I wish someone would do a full HD video sharing all the awesomeness that is Diosua:, but I've yet to find any online. Maybe that's my next project? In any event, the video brings your from old town in Sua:tao to the waterfront, then to a small town (probably in nearby Pouleng or Dio-io:), then on a boat ride, puppet viewing, temple visit, grave visit, Teochew food all along the journey, and then back to the old city and waterfront. Also, I want to note that Diojiuchi (Teochew City) itself is in my opinion much awesomer than Sua:tao. With that said, enjoy!

Friday, March 4, 2011

UC Berkeley got Teochew

It's been a while since I was an undergrad (but only a year since I was a grad student), but college is often the perfect time to explore your TC-ness. Meeting new people who you might just be able to relate with (or even discover that you are related with) is awesome. In my neck of the woods, there's the UC Berkeley Teochew Association (TCA for short), a student-run group for Cal students who are Teochew or interested in Teochew culture and more. The group has been going strong for quite a few years now and I personally know many of the current and ex officers. They put on a lot of fun activities on campus and off. Check out this awesome music video they created: "Teochew People are Everywhere". Also their UCB-TCA YouTube channel with tons of other videos from their events.


Note: There might be a Teochew organization on your campus or perhaps you'd like to start one? Go to the Facebook Teo-Chew College Coalition (TCCC)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Multilingual and Multigender in Singapore




There is something hilarious, familiar, and ingenious about the way Singaporeans speak, no? It's like the best of all the Singaporean languages, wrapped up in the perfect package. It's awesome, it combines the Mandarin that I learned in school, with the Teochew that I grew up with, the Hokkien and Cantonese that I listened to/watched in songs and movies, and the English that I use everyday. That just leaves the Malay, Tamil (and other Indian languages), and of course the Hainanese. It's like a multilingual treat every time I watch a Singaporean film. So here is another one:

From Singaporean Director Han Yew Kwang is an interesting gender-bender film, 《当海南遇上潮州》 "When Hainan Meets Teochew ". Released in December of last year (a whole three months ago), the stars are a 'manly woman' and a 'womanly man' who fall in love. Yes, the movie is a comedy, and no, its not boring. I admit that I haven't seen it yet, but c'mon, check out the teasers/trailers. Has to be funny. My favorite trailer is no. 2. (the middle one). Oh and apparently there's a good deal of Teochew (and Hainanese) spoken in the movie.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Teochew Map

View Place of Interests in a larger map

Just in case you thought that this blog would only be about other people's stuff, I thought I would share something that I created for Gaginang. It's a Google Map of Teochew owned businesses, Teochew Associations, and other important Teochew community places - all over the world! Most of the information there is about places in the US, but you can help change that. The one place which would get a bit crowded is in Diosua: We'd have to list every business! So all you have to do is log into your google account then you can go to "collaborate" and start editing. Try to include more information than just the name and location. As with any wiki-type tools, the map is freely editable by anyone, but can also get messed up by spammers, so please help maintain the map as well.


Tuesday, March 1, 2011

The Last Peony Petal (Thai Drama about the Teochew Experience)

Botan is a famous author from Thailand who wrote the wonderful "Letters From Thailand" (1969) a novel about the Teochew-Thai experience. I discovered this book by chance at my local library back in 2005 and after reading the book (more than 3 times now), I've always wanted to find the movie adaptation of it. Thai people love their lakorn (ละคร) or serial dramas, so I thought I would search for it online. Low and behold I just found, "The Last Peony Petal", which, according to online sources, is based on another novel by Botan (perhaps originally a book?). Amazingly the gracious Wishboniko has provided not only the whole series on YouTube, but also with English subtitles! Awesome stuff. It's all in Thai, but with a good smattering of Teochew (people's names, pronouns, occasional phrases). Enjoy! Here is the playlist so you don't go crazy looking for all the different episodes and parts of episodes. There are 13 episodes in total.

Note: The video shows the opening theme, with the beginning of episode 1 at the end. Oh and I realized of course that Botan's name is actually 牡丹 Bhóudang, or Peony.

Update (3/2/11): I have finished watching the first episode, and the story seems to be moving along quickly and focusing on the young adults. It's pretty funny - and even more Teochew spoken than I thought.