It is a sorry state of affairs when the country’s top gossip rag is reduced to peddling rumors based on tarot card readings, but the denials of Jay Chou (周杰倫) and former inamorata Jolin Tsai (蔡依林) have offered little room for creative (mis)interpretation. Pop Stop reported last week that Tsai had simply replied, “Getting back together? Thanks, but I’m not crazy,” when asked if she would be rekindling romance with Chou after a steamy onstage performance at a recent concert.
Next Magazine unearthed various circumstantial details about the frequency that Chou and Tsai have been in communication over the past half year and provided a report of Tsai’s sister Tsai Min-wen (蔡旻紋) visiting a tarot card reader and asking about Jolin’s love life. While the fortune-teller would not reveal the content of the consultation, he agreed to make another reading for the magazine, in which he revealed that the two superstars are likely to build on their recent good relations. The cards say that the Double-Js (雙-J) are about to become an item. But don’t hold your breath.
The dust is still settling on the 21st Golden Melody Awards ceremony that took place on Saturday, with mixed reviews of an event that was disrupted by heavy rain, time overruns and some uninspired emceeing. Harlem Yu (庾澄慶) has taken lots of flak since and has even promised to swear off future MC gigs.
As everyone already knows, pop diva Chang Hui-mei (張惠妹), better known as A-mei (阿妹), was the biggest winner of the evening, which according to the aforementioned fortune-teller, was a direct result of her breakup with basketball heartthrob Sam Ho (何守正), who brought bad luck to her career. Ho had the good grace to text A-mei to congratulate her, but local media are already designating him as very much a “former” boyfriend.
While most applauded A-mei’s recognition by the Golden Melody Awards (she received her first Best Female Mandarin Singer award eight years ago), consensus did not go across the board. There are some who beg to differ regarding the Golden Melody Awards given to David Tao (陶喆) and boy band 1976.
The girl group S.H.E and crooner Lin Yu-chia (林宥嘉), who were both given the cold shoulder by the Golden Melody panel, won recognition from HitFM’s Global Pop Music Charts (全球流行音樂金榜), who picked them as the most popular band and male mandarin singer, respectively, for the first half of this year.
Elsewhere, the news on the street is that actress Gong Li (鞏俐) has finally called time on her troubled marriage to Singaporean tobacco tycoon Ooi Hoe-seong (黃和祥). The story broke in The Southern Metropolis Entertainment Weekly (南都娛樂周刊) earlier this week and is now being coupled with rumors of a possible budding relationship between Gong and John Cusack, her co-star in the film Shanghai, which is currently showing in Taiwan.
In other celebrity news, things may be getting hot and sweaty, but in a good way. The rumored affair between aspiring actress Angelbaby, real name Yang Ying (楊穎), and successful actor and singer Huang Xiaoming (黃曉明) is now out in the open. According to NOW.com, Huang has used his connections to advance Angelbaby’s career in China, where the 21-year-old actress is currently promoting a “photo album” titled Paradise featuring pics of her in various states of undress while staying in Guam. Otaku, eat your hearts out.
Speaking of which, a new star has appeared on the otaku firmament. Meet Da Yuan (大元), real name Lin Ying-chen (林盈臻), who has leveraged her 32E breasts into celebrity status across the Chinese-speaking world. A recent spot on the CtiTV (中天) variety program University (大學生了沒), where her cleavage served as a more than adequate substitute for wit or personality, seems to have cemented her place in otaku heaven and secured a number of advertising contracts. She will now be going tit-to-tit with other big-breasted beauties such as Yaoyao (瑤瑤), real name Kuo Shu-yao (郭書瑤), and Tofu Sister (豆花妹), real name Tsai Huang-ru (蔡黃汝). Let the battle begin!
Sept. 21 to Sept. 27 If word got out that you were planning a wedding during the Martial Law era, the “Committee for the improvement of Folk Customs” (改善民俗實踐會) might knock on your door. Each borough in Taipei had at least one “agent” who kept a pulse on community happenings. They would visit the family planning the wedding with a letter from the mayor, touting the benefits of being frugal and not wasting money on lavish ceremonies, even encouraging the families to donate money for scholarships. The authorities also discouraged them from hiring musicians and dancers, who were often loud and
Community-supported agriculture (CSA) is a way urban households can obtain healthy produce, while helping to build a more sustainable farming sector in Taiwan. King Hsin-i’s (金欣儀) transformation from advertising copywriter to social entrepreneur began in 2008, when she visited a rice farmer who practiced pesticide-free agriculture. “He explained that we have to leave space for other species. At the same time, I realized that while big companies have budgets to spread their messages, farmers have few chances to tell the public about their beautiful concepts,” she recalls. Inspired, she quit her job and traveled throughout rural Taiwan for a year. King went
Every day before she starts her shift at a government hospital in Singapore, Farah removes her hijab — the Islamic veil she has worn since a teenager. Although minority Muslim women can freely wear the hijab in most settings in Singapore, some professions bar the headscarf — and a recent case has triggered fresh debate on diversity and discrimination in the workplace. Now Farah has joined a growing number of Muslims — who account for about 15 percent of Singapore’s 4 million resident population — calling for the ban to end, with an online petition gathering more than 50,000 signatures. “They told me
Let’s get one thing straight: I have never liked the name Ironman. Maybe it sounded good in 1970s Hawaii when endorphin-fueled athletes with military backgrounds argued who were fitter, swimmers or runners. Or perhaps cyclists, someone else had chimed in. There was only one way to settle it: They would combine the 2.4 mile (3.9km) Waikiki Roughwater Swim with 112 miles (180km) of the Around-Oahu Bike Race and the 26.2 mile (42.2km) Honolulu Marathon into a single one-day event. Whoever won would be known as the Iron Man. That I don’t like the name doesn’t stop me from participating, however. Nor from attempting