The Fortune Cookie Chronicles

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  • Archive for August, 2008

    Pictures from My Appearance on The Colbert Report

    Thursday, August 28th, 2008

    Here (finally) are some pictures from The Colbert Report when I appeared on March 4, 2008. (Thanks to Alexis Ohanian for taking them and for backing them up because I lost the memory card on which they were stored, so I’m actually putting them on the blog so I wont lose them.) And yes, the […]

    A Chinese entrepreneur introduces Fortune Cookies to China

    Tuesday, August 26th, 2008

    It’s funny to see the the way that people in China react to fortune cookies — with a mixture of confusion and amusement. As part of research for my book, The Fortune Cookie Chronicles, I went around China handing out fortune cookies to random people (my bellhop, people on the street, vendors) and recorded their […]

    Who knew there were Greek fortune cookies? A British lottery winner strikes it big.

    Monday, August 25th, 2008

    (From a while back. I am just catching up. An engineer in Britain played a lucky number from a fortune cookie he got in Greece four years ago and won £2,355,880 (about $5 million!). A smaller version of what happened in the United States and in Brazil. More surprising to me: That fortune cookies have […]

    Good Morning America Weekend: Fortune Cookies Aren’t Chinese

    Monday, August 25th, 2008

    Here is the Good Morning America Weekend piece that ran during the Olympics. Produced by Imtiyaz Delawala (who was on my school paper!) and correspondented by Juju Chang. Also involves Wonton Food. This piece that actually was initially discussed during the March release of my book. But they decided to peg it to the Olympics. […]

    What is a library memorial?

    Monday, August 25th, 2008

    What is a library memorial? Whatever it is, someone has created one for my book at Ford City Public Library. At first I thought, are either me or my book passed from this work? Then I realized it was in memory of Margaret A. Westwood from The Pontious Family . Maybe she liked Chinese food?

    I was hacked (with WordPress footer Spam) but now am saved

    Saturday, August 23rd, 2008

    In poking around my blog because of layout issues, we discovered I had a bunch of spam links in my footer. Like a hundred links to, with horrible things like cialis and viagra. About a month ago, I started noticing some very strange search queries bringing people to my site, like “pantyhose” and things […]

    My book is sold at the Olympic MPC!

    Saturday, August 23rd, 2008

    My friend from the WSJ told me he bought my book at the Olympic’ss Main Press Center bookstore.  So my book has a little piece of the Olympics!

    Fortune Cookie Chronicles, the Hong Kong Edition?

    Friday, August 22nd, 2008

    Google alerts just made me aware of a blog called Fortune Cookie Chronicles: Hong Kong. At first I thought it might be blogspam (I get these fake links to my site all the time), but this was a real blog by a real girl! The description: This blog will track my year-long experience in HK […]

    They have Chinatown in Chinacountry!

    Sunday, August 17th, 2008

    I was in Beijing and I saw a mall called Chinatown — 唐人街 (tangrenjie). 唐 refers to the Tang Dynasty, still considered the glory years in Chinese history. So Chinese people are sometimes referred to as 唐人, and è¡— is street. So it’s Tang Person’s Street. There is no consistent name for Chinatown in Chinese. […]

    ABC: The mystery of the fortune cookie’s history

    Sunday, August 17th, 2008

    Television loves fortune cookies as a result of the Beijing Olympics. I did a segment with ABC on the history of the fortune cookie with Juju Chang. I swear, fortune cookies and “man date” are going to be part of my obituary, or at the very least the college reunion report.

    Scorpions and silkworms?

    Thursday, August 14th, 2008

    From a Chinese-American classmate:   Sorry to miss your Today show appearance.  While you’re there and talking about Chinese food, can you get them to cover something other than scorpions and silkworms?  I understand the appeal of exoticism and all, but it’s hardly representative of Chinese food… and a little tiresome after seeing four or […]

    Did my Today Show (今日) hit from Beijing. Yay.

    Thursday, August 14th, 2008

    So the way they translate Today show in Chinese is 今日, which is literally “Today.” They have imported a massive operation over from New York (though only eight of their 50+ producers). The segment, produced by Cecilia Fang, was supposed to be a bit of a cooking demonstration. But then it rained tonight in Beijing, […]

    I’m in Beijing! And it is muggy and rainy.

    Sunday, August 10th, 2008

    The Beijing airport is supernice now. Met some nice Olympic-ish people on the plane. They stood out as they were lanky black men (track and former swimmer) that were at least 6’2″ (one was 6’7″!) among those of us who were decidedly closer to the earth. I’m excited to eat the Chinese food here (which […]

    Joe Grimm, recruiter extraordinaire, departure party at Unity

    Saturday, August 9th, 2008

    At Unity, about 100 people came to the departure of Joe Grimm, who I must say is the best newspaper recruiter that I have ever met, from his job at the Detroit Free Press. He’s touched the career of hundreds upon hundreds of young journalists (including me) — encouraging I first met him at AAJA […]

    Happy oh-eight-oh-eight-oh-eight!

    Friday, August 8th, 2008

    It’s my holiday. Sort of. At least people think of it as such. I was even asked to write a piece on the day for the New York Times , which inspired all sorts of radio interviews. Here are some of the notes I’ve gotten from people thus far. From a former professor: “Best wishes […]

    08/08/08 @ 8:08 a.m. on the Today Show

    Thursday, August 7th, 2008

    Supposedly, I will be part of a segment that will air on 08/08/08 @ 8:08 a.m. as part of the Today show. (Though now my friends report that it did not air at that time, and I’m not sure when and if it did). I’ve also had three requests for radio interviews on the same […]

    General Tso did not appear here.

    Thursday, August 7th, 2008

    George Vescey writes about how General Tso did not show up at the Times’ Olympic banquet for everyone who was sent to cover the games. As he writes: “Those of us who have never been to China have always heard that Chinese food is vastly different from what we get in the States — takeout […]

    A Fortune Cookie Chronicles book club at the Fortune Cookie Chronicles Powerball Restaurant

    Wednesday, August 6th, 2008

    This is very adorable. I got a great email leading me to the photo above. “I’m the organizer for my neighborhood’s book club. We read your book last month and then ate at King Buffet, which is one of the fortune cookie winning restaurants here in Lawrence, Kansas.” The photo is of them holding up […]