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Musings from the Edge of Forever

Note: This blog expresses only the opinions of the blog owner,
and does not represent the opinion of any organization or blog
that is associated with RONIN ON EMPTY.

Gone Fishin’


Fishing with Simon Yam

Although I’m not really going fishing and I’d never fish with Simon Yam, I am thinking about taking an undisclosed amount of time off from updating Ronin on Empty. Technically, I suppose this is an update, but let’s not get into a debate about semantics, okay?

So, why the hiatus? Well…

After spending several hours on the Alcatraz night tour this past Sunday, my girlfriend and I (along with a group of friends) returned to our parked car only to find the front passenger window completely shattered, our belongings rifled through, and some stuff stolen. It was a surreal and infuriating experience. It was also amazing to me how quickly my attitude could change from “sympathy for the plight of the incarcerated” to a full-blown thirst for Charles Bronson-style vengeance if I ever got my hands on the sniveling little piece of street vermin that broke into my girlfriend’s car.

But I digress.

So while I missed the Sunday update because of this incident, I have to admit that I felt a little burned out after publishing my top films of the 1990s last week.  I’d originally only intended a single post, but as it grew longer and more involved in the telling, I realized — as I was posting it — that I needed to separate them into more easily digestible, bite-sized portions. Too impatient to tease out the installments over a couple days, I just posted ‘em all the same day, so readers could take ‘em all in during one sitting, if they so chose.

But it’s not just all the work I put into the 90s film list or the aforementioned car burglary that’s got me feeling a little worse for wear. As some of you know, I’m a PhD candidate in Literature at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and not only did I recently get handed a stack of essays to grade by this coming Monday, but I also have to prepare for teaching section every week, which includes keeping up with a reading list that includes selected works from such American authors as Melville, Hawthorne, and Poe. If I wasn’t already pressed for time, there’s also the fact that I commute from San Francisco three times a week, which is more soul-sucking than I could ever imagine. There’s also some pesky research I need to do for my dissertation, which I’ve also started writing this quarter. Oh, and I should really attend to some creative work that really needs to be edited if I ever hope to be a full-fledged writer of fiction.

My life is also headed for a big change soon. My lovely and talented girlfriend was accepted into the PhD program in American Culture at the University of Michigan, and I’ll be leaving behind San Francisco and Santa Cruz to join my newly minted-Michigan Wolverine in Ann Arbor. Before long, we’ll be packing up our vehicles, bringing along the dog, and heading cross-country  this summer. The high rents of the Bay Area and Hawai’i will be a distant memory, as we’ll be moving into an actual house with a yard — perfect for a Jack Russell and a McMillin-made BBQ pit. The times they are a-changin…


I hope this extended slip into the biographical mode isn’t too off-putting for readers more interested in Hong Kong cinema, but it seemed appropriate to my goal of “drawing back the curtain” on this blog. In any event, I should clarify that this post isn’t going to devolve into some complaint-filled diatribe about quitting the site or doing something rash like that. In fact, it’s quite the opposite.

So never fear, there’s more coming from Ronin on Empty in the weeks ahead. All this stress impinging on my time has actually made me do a great deal of thinking about the content and direction of this blog. If Damn You Kozo! is the site’s de facto official blog, The Golden Rock is Kevin’s one-stop source for all the latest Asian cinema news, and The House Where Words Gather is Sanney’s venue to poke fun at the HK celebrity scene, then just what the hell is Ronin on Empty?

Sure, I wrote a mission statement of sorts when Ronin on Empty began, but I thought I’d use this short hiatus as a way to reaffirm just what the heck I’m doing here.  For one, I’m hoping to tackle ancillary material directly related to Hong Kong cinema. In other words…


Just kidding. While I’m definitely interested in HK-cinema related products that might tickle your fancy, this blog isn’t just going to be about merchandising. I just wanted an excuse to post a Spaceballs clip.

So, at the risk of “biting off more than I can chew,” here’s a sneak peak at what I have in mind for future installments of Ronin on Empty

*    *    *


My Research Interests! — Charlie Chan and Asian American Pop Culture

Charlie Chan and Number Two Son

Hong Kong and Asian Movies! (Duh)

Jackie and Maggie

 Hong Kong and Asian Cinema-related Books!

Sex and Zen and a Bullet in the Head

Hong Kong Cinema Soundtracks!

A Man Called Hero Soundtrack

Hong Kong Cinema-related Video Games!

Rise to Honor

Hong Kong Comic Books!

Oriental Heroes

Hong Kong Cinema-related Toys!

Jackie Toy

Sound good? If so, check back soon — I shall return!

7 Responses to “Gone Fishin’”

  1. CeeFu Says:

    :( I understand how the perils of academic life will suck the life out of your soul. Just so we know you are coming back! Otherwise, I’ll be sending Tony Leung Ka Fai to your domicile with a group of guys and a wooden box.

    When you get back, you will have to hip me to the Hong Kong comic books. Yeah, I got plans for that.

  2. dennis Says:

    sorry to hear about the breakin but it sounds like that’s way in the rearview already for you. take care in ann arbor and hope you return soon

  3. Rummy Dummy Says:

    Michigan? The reason rents are high in SF and Hawaii is because people want to live there if they have a choice. At least you’ll have plenty of time to watch HK films when the temp drops to -1000.

    And that’s Celsius.

  4. QQ Says:

    Welcome to the midwest - you’ll love it! Despite complaints about the weather, you will experience all the seasons of the year (sometimes 3x over). I hope you get to visit Chicago!

  5. Jeffery Says:

    Wishing you the best. Be sure and take lots of Tabasco. The yankees don’t carry it a lot of places because they can’t take the heat.

  6. r Says:

    luck with everything Calvin

  7. Sanjuro Says:

    Thanks everyone…

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