As dull as it may sound, marriage is the keyword in this week’s gossip rags, as a bevy of female stars are rumored to be either getting engaged or are ready to enter a state of matrimony. The one that sounds most genuine involves celebrity sweetheart Patty Hou (侯佩岑), who has not been coy about gossip journos’ inquiries about her engagement party last Friday.
The paparazzi from Liberty Times (the Taipei Times’ sister paper) and Apple Daily quickly published reports profiling Hou’s fiance; on Wednesday. His name is Ken Huang (黃伯俊). He is 35 years old, resembles Nicholas Tse (謝霆鋒) slightly and makes an annual income of more than NT$12 million at Citigroup Global Markets Inc. However, the two rival newspapers have yet to agree on whether or not the man in question is an heir to family assets worth tens of billions of NT dollars. A positive answer will definitely make the modern-day fairy tale more dreamy: A beautiful woman lives happily ever after with her prince charming and his moneybags
Gossip hounds should already know about the three-carat engagement ring that Huang gave to Hou after they had been seeing each other for just four months, as well as Huang’s rumored romance with actress Ruby Lin (林心如).
Apart from the report of the Huang-Hou pairing, other nuptial news flashes have been rigorously denied by the parties involved. Did Maggie Cheung (張曼玉) become engaged to her German architect boyfriend Ole Scheeren on Christmas Eve? The 45-year-old actress’s agent says no. But gossip insiders assert the couple will get hitched soon.
How about the engagement party celebrating the union of veteran belle Rosamund Kwan (關之琳) of Hong Kong and Taiwan’s IT tycoon Pierre Chen (陳泰銘) held last Saturday? Never happened? And anyway, Chen was still married last time local paparazzi checked. As for Hong Kong’s former diva Cherie Chung (鍾楚紅), the 49-year-old widow personally denied the speculation about her upcoming wedding with a certain wealthy businessman from Singapore.
While Hou has found her Mr Right, Jolin Tsai (蔡依林) is getting cozy with fast-rising model Godfrey Kao (高以翔), whose previous claim to fame was his pair of delectable pinkish nipples, which he flagrantly exposed in his photo book. It’s only a matter of time before intimate comparisons will be made between Kao and Tsai’s old flame Jay Chou (周杰倫).
So what is the Mando-pop king, self-made film director and occasional actor doing with his love life? Not much. Unless you count the banter and teasing exchanges between him and supermodel-turned-actress Lin Chi-ling (林志玲) during the promotions for the fantasy adventure The Treasure Hunter (刺陵).
The way Pop Stop sees it, the real-life flirting between the two is more convincing that the on-screen romance that they share in the movie, which was killed by the embarrassingly coy lines and dumb jokes that filled the clunky script.
Finally, model-turned-housewife Hung Hsiao-lei (洪曉蕾) and her CEO-husband Wang Shih-chun (王世均) offer an example of a dreamy celebrity marriage gone sour. An outburst of violence erupted on Christmas Eve when a young man accidentally bumped into an inebriated Wang at a Cash Box KTV (錢櫃) outlet. According to a witness, Wang then beat the man to the ground with a beer can and kicked one of the man’s female friends in the head while shouting “don’t you know who I am.” Wang apologized afterwards and no charges were brought against him.
One month earlier, a widely circulated rumor claimed that there had been incidents of spousal abuse between the model couple, though both parties have denied the accusation.
June 29 to July 5 With women gathering rocks and men hurling them at thousands of rivaling neighbors, ritualistic stone battles were regular affairs for people living in Pingtung during the 1800s. Direct combat and use of weapons were prohibited to avoid serious injury, with the losers hosting the winners for dinner. These “guests” often acted rudely, and faced no repercussions for smashing windows or snatching their hosts’ possessions. These battles usually took place yearly, with a significant number happening every Dragon Boat Festival. The winners had rights to the losers’ banquet prepared for the festivities. Sometimes things would get out of
Taiwan’s rapid economic development between the 1950s and the 1980s is often attributed to rational planning by highly-educated and impartial technocrats. Those who look at history through blue-tinted spectacles argue that, for much of the post-war period, the government was staffed by Chinese who fled China after the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) lost the civil war “who had no property interests in Taiwan and no connections with a landlord class,” leaving “the KMT party-state more autonomous from societal influences than governments [elsewhere in East Asia],” writes Gaye Christoffersen in Market Economics and Political Change: Comparing China and Mexico. At the same
Certain historical statues have been disappearing in Thailand, but they are not effigies of colonialists or slave owners torn down by protesters. Instead, Thailand’s vanishing monuments celebrated leaders of the 1932 revolution that ended absolute monarchy in Thailand, who were once officially honored as national heroes and symbols of democracy. Reuters has identified at least six sites memorializing the People’s Party that led the revolution which have been removed or renamed in the past year. In most cases it is not known who took the statues down, although a military official said one was removed for new landscaping. Two army camps named after 1932
It’s impossible to write a book entirely in the Taokas language. There are only about 500 recorded words in the Aboriginal tongue, whose speakers shifted to Hoklo (also known as Taiwanese) generations ago while preserving certain Taokas phrases in their speech. “When I first started recording the language around 1997, I really had to jog the memories of the elders to find anything,” says Liu Chiu-yun (劉秋雲) a member of the Taokas community and a language researcher. The Taokas last month unveiled a picture book, Osubalaki, Balalong Ramut the community’s first-ever commercial publication using the language. The lavishly illustrated book