Wednesday, May 17th, 2006

Legislator action figures announced

WAYNE, N.J

International toy seller Toys “R” Us announced a new line of action figures on Monday, all based on popular legislators from Taiwan’s parliament, which is world famous for its outlandish and sometimes amazingly death-defying antics.

“Kids across the globe have seen Taiwanese legislators duking it out on TV over the years,” said a company spokesman. “Many of them practically grew up on it. Now they can reenact legislative battles at home with our customized action figures and accessories, which include tiny lunchboxes, fruit and chairs that break away.”

The “Diane Lee” action figure even comes with a tiny glass, made to be filled with water or other harmless liquids and thrown at the “Lo Fu-chu” action figure, which features a wind-up left hook to defend itself.

“You can collect the whole set and send in a coupon for a carrying case that is also a fold-out legislature, complete with seats and speaker’s platform kids can spend hours battling over to see whether the blues or the greens win the day,” the spokesman added.

"You, too, can block an arms bill 87 times in a row! Just feel the excitement!" he said.

The toys will be made in China.


Local man named after salad fork

ZHONGHE

Chen Gen-hui, 21, prefers that his friends and family call him “Stainless Japan” after discovering how “cool” the words appeared on the back of a fork he happened to be eating with at an expensive restaurant in Taipei’s suburb of Zhonghe.

Chen asked his friend Wang Wei-wen, also 21, whether the name was suitably English. Wang spent several months studying in the US last year. “Sure, that’s fine. That’s a good name,” Wang reportedly said, before hurrying away from the table.

Chen’s parents are thrilled to find their son finally taking some interest in international matters. “It’s about time Stainless took a more mature few of the world,” said his father, who has been urging his son to get a job with a global business firm.

“Now, maybe foreigners will take him seriously,” he said, adding that people from abroad seemed to appreciate it when he introduced himself by his own English name, “Brad.”


DPP 'could' go to China, merely 'doesn’t want to'

TAIPEI

DPP officials responded to accusations of cross-strait ineptitude on Sunday by issuing a statement that it could be just as successful as Lien Chan and James Soong in opening up cross-strait links, but “it just doesn’t want to.”

“Sure, we could go to Beijing and hold high-level talks just as well as they could,” stated Premier Frank Hsieh at a press conference held to address the issue of what many see as a dire lack of self confidence with regard to cross-strait negotiations. “I know of many (PRC) officials who would be more than happy to sit down and talk policy with me.”

“It just so happens that I don’t feel the need at the moment,” he concluded, sighing for emphasis. Other officials cited reasons as too little time, lack of proper facilities in China, aversion to open sewers, bird flu, rampant spitting, and long flight times.


 

TOP STORY

Lee Teng-hui's giant, floating head

Lee Teng-hui becomes giant floating head,

gives speech

Reporters 'understandably concerned'

TAIPEI

Former president Lee Teng-hui surprised pundits on Tuesday by appearing at a Taiwan Solidarity Union press conference as a giant, gas-filled head, which floated over the podium with no visible means of support.

“Ever since I stepped down from the presidency, I haven’t been able to impress crowds the way I always meant to,” the TSU’s spiritual leader told reporters. “This way I can get my point across much more effectively.”

After his speech, which dealt with how he feels the Democratic Progressive Party should remember its roots and follow the TSU’s lead in declaring a greater “Taiwan consciousness”, the former president asked the reporters present if they had any questions.

Reporter Alice Yang of the China Times asked the former president: “Waaaaaaah?”

“Seriously, WTF?” she added.


SOCIETY

Taipei woman makes sure foreigner knows dog speaks fluent English

TAIPEI

Nita Wang, 43, who lives along Taipei’s Zhongxiao East Road, jumped at the chance to make sure that a random foreigner she encountered near her apartment understood how fluent her English was, but unfortunately, there was nobody in her immediate vicinity to talk to. In desperation to appear sophisticated and urbane in front of the impressionable foreigner, who was quickly approaching, she turned to her poodle, “Memmy” and loudly inquired, in English, how the dog was.

Fortunately, Memmy heeded the inquiry with a short growl.

“I was so nervous,” Wang said, recalling the incident. “I was afraid Memmy here wouldn’t respond correctly. My god, I’d look like such an idiot!”

Ironically, the foreigner in question, it turns out, was a Russian businessman named Alexander Yaroslavsky, who speaks very little English but is fluent in Chinese.

“What woman?” Yaroslavsky, said when questioned by reporters. “Oh, that crazy lady? Da, she is, how do you say, a fruit loop?”


Man honored to be beaten up by vice president Lu

TAINAN

Chang Wei-han, 34, said he was “honored” on Wednesday to be on the receiving end of a beating from Vice President Annette Lu after the two scuffled over a women’s rights conference misunderstanding.

Lu had just finished comparing Taiwan’s diplomatic efforts to the adorable antics of the Japanese cartoon character “Doraemon” in a speech she was giving to the Taiwan Women’s Right Association in Tainan, southern Taiwan. After receiving some questions from the press she considered “embarrassing”, Lu lost her famed composure and quickly waded out into attending crowd, fists swinging. Chang happened to be one of the first hit by the vice president’s barrage and took a right hook and spinning kick to the face.

Chang, who placed first in many martial arts competitions when he was in college, admired the vice president’s technique and “pure, unadulterated fury” in combat.

“I am honored to be at the other end of Annette Lu’s ‘fists of fury,’” he told reporters, while nursing his bruises.


 

DPP chairman crowd surfs at campaign rally,

changes name

KAOSHIUNG

Democratic Progressive Party Chairman Yu Shyi-kun, endeavoring to appeal to younger voters, dived into a crowd at an election-related rally on Tuesday in Kaohsiung.

“Let’s see if James Soong can do this!” the chairman was quoted as yelling before diving off the stage at the rally into a group of confused would-be voters who, fortunately, caught Yu before he hit the ground. The DPP chairman was then passed, hand-over-hand, through the crowd before being returned to the stage, looking a bit rumpled and missing his wallet, but apparently otherwise unscathed.

Yu, whose Chinese name when written in characters confounds many word-processing programs, which simply put question marks in place of the obscurer characters, also announced that he would “follow the international trend,” and in the future be known as “Yu Shyi-?”

The new moniker would be pronounced “You Shi-whaa?*”

*Those interested in the pronunciation of the new “character” have been told to contact noted linguist Dr. Hubert J. Farnsworth of New York City for examples.


FASHION CORNER

Malls closed to men

Citing demographic studies and market reports, the malls of Taiwan have agreed to limit patrons strictly to females. Women already make up 70% of mall-going consumers, and men are seen more and more as largely “ceremonial” in their presence.

“In fact, they’re more of a burden than a benefit,” said Jezebel Yu, chairwoman of the Mall-goers Association. “They just sit around and complain, or storm around in a bad temper,” she added.

The association considered several methods to deal with the “man problem” female shoppers have to deal with on a daily basis, including a topical anesthetic, sleeping pills, and a “playroom” filled with video games, large-engined motorcycles and various tool kits to distract the men for their pillowcase/skirt/curtain-induced torpor.

“In the end, we decided to just ban them outright,” Yu said. “It’s better for them, and it’s better for us.”




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PREVIOUS EDITION

 

From the print edition:

28 women break out in spontaneous synchronized dancing, save kitten

Taiwan sits down, crosses legs

Typhoon denied access to China

“It’s time for a Chinese saying!” celebrates 20 years on CTS

Chen makes record by mentioning ‘23 million Taiwan people’ 23 million times

This article rife with speculation

Activists honestly have nothing better to do

Licensing for loudspeakers required

Top maker of shiny things dominates shiny thing market

 

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