Asian-American athletes to watch at the 2016 Rio Olympics

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This August, Team USA will be headed to the 2016 Rio Olympics with over 500 athletes across 42 Olympic sport disciplines. Of these athletes, over 30, competing in a variety of sports including swimming, fencing, table tennis, and volleyball, identify as Asian American. Below are 10 Asian-American athletes to watch during the Rio Olympics. Keep their names in mind, as there’s a good chance that some of them will be leaving Rio with new medals.

Alexander Massialas

Born to a Greek father and a Taiwanese mother, San Francisco native Alexander Massialas is poised to win a medal at the Rio Olympics this year. Currently ranked the number one male foil fencer in the world, Massialas was also the youngest male member of the 2012 U.S. Olympics team.

He comes from an accomplished fencing family — his father Greg was a three-time Olympic fencer and his younger sister Sabrina was the first U.S. fencer to ever win a Youth Olympic Games gold medal. Massialas is currently a student at Stanford University and majors in mechanical engineering. He can speak Mandarin and attended the Chinese American International School as a child.

Gerek Meinhardt

Like Massialas, Gerek Meindhart is also a Taiwanese-American fencer. The two are good friends since Meinhardt’s mother Jane was primary school classmates with Massialas’ mom Vivian, and it was Vivian’s suggestion to have Meinhardt join the fencing club. While both of Meinhardt’s parents were architects and not fencers, Massialas helped coach Meinhardt for competition.

In the past, Meinhardt also played basketball. His sister Katie played the sport at Boston University (BU) and still holds the BU record for most points in a game. Meinhardt recently received an MBA from Notre Dame and works as a Deloitte consultant when he isn’t competing in the games.

Lee Kiefer

Filipino-American fencer Lee Kiefer is currently ranked third in women’s foil and was the first athlete to ever win seven consecutive individual titles at the Pan American Championships. Fencing also runs in the family — she is the daughter of a former Duke University fencing captain and has a sister Alex and brother Axel who also compete.

Kiefer is currently a senior pre-med major at the University of Notre Dame. Her father Steve is a neurosurgeon, her mother Teresa is a psychiatrist, and her older sister Alex is a Harvard pre-med student.

Nathan Adrian

This three-time Olympic swimming gold medalist will be back in 2016. In this year’s Olympics, Adrian will compete in the 50 meter and 100 meter freestyle events. Adrian is in a good position to defend his Olympic gold medal in the 100m, as he finished first place in that event at the U.S. Olympic Trials. This Bremerton-born athlete is half-Chinese and was honored at the Robert Chinn Foundation‘s Asian Hall of Fame. Adrian majored in public health and graduated with honors from UC Berkeley in Spring 2012. After he retires from competitive swimming, Adrian has expressed interest in becoming a doctor.

Paige McPherson

Paige McPherson is an Olympic taekwondo competitor of Filipino and African-American descent. McPherson, who won a bronze medal in the women’s 67 kilogram taekwondo event in 2012, will return to compete in Rio. While McPherson grew up in Sturgis, South Dakota, she comes from what she likes to call a “rainbow family.” McPherson is one of five adopted kids in her family — she has a Korean brother, a St. Lucian little sister, and two Native American siblings. McPherson attended Miami-Dade College and continues to train primarily in Miami. After the 2015 Pan Am Games Team Trials, McPherson got the chance to meet her biological brother. Once the Rio Olympic Games come to a close, McPherson hopes to meet more members of her biological family.

Lia Neal

Olympic swimmer Lia Neal identifies as both African American and Chinese American. Neal celebrates all Chinese holidays, and went to a Chinese pre-school program — which is why she speaks Cantonese and has studied Mandarin for years. This Brooklyn native won a bronze medal at the London Games in the 4 by 100-meter freestyle relay with Missy Franklin, Jessica Hardy, and Allison Schmitt. This year, Neal came in fourth during the 4 by 100 freestyle Olympic trials, allowing her the fourth spot in the 4 by 100-meter freestyle relay team. Neal is currently a Stanford University student, and her classmate Simone Manuel also made it onto the Olympic swimming team. This makes it the first time two Black female swimmers will swim simultaneously on the U.S. Olympic team.

Jay Litherland

Jay Litherland is an Olympic swimmer majoring in business at the University of Georgia. He’s also a triplet – and has triple citizenship in the U.S., Japan, and New Zealand. He can speak Japanese and started swimming at the age of 8. At this year’s U.S. Olympic Team Trials, he managed to finish second in the 400 meter individual medley. Litherland won the second of two U.S. Olympic spots in the event, eking out the defending Olympic gold medalist, Ryan Lochte, by approximately a second. This will be the first time he will be attending the Olympics. He previously competed in the U.S. Olympic Trials in 2012.

Micah Christenson, Kawika Shoji, and Erik Shoji

These three athletes will be representing the U.S. Men’s National Volleyball Team at the Rio Olympics. Micah Christenson comes from a tall family – his father played basketball at the University of Hawaii-Hilo and his mother won three national volleyball championships at the same university. Anderson currently plays for Italian club team Cucine Lube Civitanova but won a gold medal with the USA team in the 2015 Men’s World Cup. Christenson graduated from the University of Southern California and will be a setter for the men’s national team. His full name is Micah Makanamaikalani Christenson, and his middle name means “gift from heaven.”

Erik and Kawika Shoji are brothers — and both will be at the Rio Olympics in the U.S. Men’s volleyball team. The Honolulu-born pair both attended Stanford University and played on the volleyball team when they were there. Their father Dave has coached women’s volleyball at the University of Hawaii for more than 40 years, while their mother Mary played basketball at the same university. Kawika is currently a member of Turkish club Arkas Izmir, while Erik Shoji plays for German club Berlin Recycling Volleys.

Taiwanese-American artist James Jean and Beats by Dre bring in the Chinese New Year

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Beats by Dre looks to bring in February’s Chinese New Year with its latest collaborative drop. Taiwanese-American visual artist James Jean was called upon to celebrate the Year of the Monkey with the Solo² Wireless. Its artistry is inspired by the popular proverb in “Hear no evil, See no evil, Speak no evil.”

Additionally James Jean’s work with Beats by Dre combines street and sophistication upon its upcoming product. You can expect the Beats by Dre x James Jean Solo² to release on December 30.

Model suing after Taiwanese cosmetic surgery clinic’s ad turns into a cruel meme on, claims it ruined her life

Model Heidi Yeh posed for this image which was to be used in an ad campaign for a cosmetic surgery clinic. However, an internet user gave it a different caption and turned it into a meme which spread like wildfire

Daily Mail UK (by Siofra Brennan):

A model who starred in an advert for plastic surgery says her life has been ruined after her image was turned into a notorious internet meme that went global.

Heidi Yeh, from Taiwan, is suing the clinic for damages after she posed alongside a male model as the beautiful parents of three aesthetically-challenged children. Their features were digitally altered to make their eyes look small and their noses flat, and the original caption read: ‘The only thing you’ll ever have to worry about is how to explain it to the kids.’

However, the photo made its way onto the internet where it was turned into a meme with the caption, ‘Plastic Surgery: You can’t hide it forever.

In an emotional interview with the BBC’s Cindy Sui, Heidi said that losing control of the image has ruined her career and her personal life.

A boyfriend split up with her because of the constant embarrassing rumors about her, and she had to endure people gossiping about her in the street.

I’ve broken down many times crying and I haven’t been able to sleep,’ she confessed.

The biggest loss for me is I don’t want to be a model anymore. Just because I’m a model, people can hurt me like this and I can’t fight back. I just want to hide.

Heidi, who had previously modeled for fast food chain KFC and Japanese beauty brands, originally posed for the shoot back in 2012.

It was intended to be used as part of a campaign for a Taiwanese cosmetic surgery clinic.

Heidi insists that her modeling agency signed a contract with US-based international advertising agency J Walter Thompson (JWT), stating that the image would only be used by one clinic in Taiwan. The agreement also allegedly ensured that her photograph could only be reproduced in newspapers and magazines. However, JWT subsequently allowed another plastic surgery provider called Simple Beauty to use the image.

They also posted it on their Facebook page, and it quickly spread across the internet. The image was turned into various memes all poking fun at the people featured.

To make matters worse, a Chinese newspaper then used it to illustrate a fake story about a man who became suspicious about his wife’s looks after she gave birth to ugly children. He then discovered she’d had cosmetic surgery before they met and decided to sue her for deceiving him.

When I first heard about this from a friend, I thought it was just a one-off rumor,’ said Ms Yeh.

Then I realised the whole world was spreading it and in different languages. People actually thought it was real. Even my then-boyfriend’s friends would ask about it.

As well as the impact on her personal life, she said her modeling career went downhill because of her notoriety.

People refused to believe that I had never had plastic surgery,’ she said.

Clients would ask me if I was the woman in the picture. After this, I only got small roles in advertisements.’

She says she’s lost around $4million new Taiwan dollars – the equivalent of £80,000 or $150,000 US dollars – in earnings because of the meme. Despite repeated attempts by Heidi and her modeling agency, she only recently managed to get the clinic and JWT to remove the image from their websites.

She says they only acted after she made a threat to sue both companies at a press conference. Now, she’s pressing ahead with her claim and is demanding $5million new Taiwan dollars in damages. However she insists that money is not her priority, and that she just wants people to know the truth about the image.

A spokesperson for JWT told FEMAIL the campaign was created to ‘promote plastic surgery services in a humorous manner.

He said the company own all the rights to the photo including copyright, giving them full rights to edit, modify and use the image.

Our campaign was created for print publication in the Taiwan market. With technology, smart phone cameras and social media, however, even a print ad can go viral,’ he said.

We can’t anticipate what degree an impact it will have, how people will view it, and what they will do with it.’

But Heidi’s lawyer Chang Yu-chi said: ‘

We gave you the copyright and the right to edit it, but we didn’t give you the right to let another company use it, and to use it online.’

Legendary kung fu actor Tien Feng passes away (1928-2015)

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8 Asians:

Taiwanese and Hong Kong kung fu actor Tien Feng’s first movie was Happenings in Ali Shan back in 1949, and his last movie was Eros in 2004. During this half a century of acting, he’s worked with Jackie Chan on multiple films and was even in Fist of Fury with Bruce Lee.

NBA star Jeremy Lin to guest Star on ‘Fresh Off the Boat’

Charlotte Hornets point guard Jeremy Lin is following in Shaq’s footsteps, at least in his acting career. The NBA star has booked a guest-starring role on ABC’s “Fresh Off the Boat.

Lin, who plays basketball with the Charlotte Hornets, will play Chau, a worker with Louis (Randall Park) in a factory, who frustrates Louis with his opinions on the movie “Pretty in Pink.”

In the first look photo (above), it appears Chau will appear in a flashback from Louis’ less successful early days.

The series, set in 1995, revolves around 11-year-old, hip-hop-loving Eddie Huang (Hudson Yang) whose family has just moved from Washington, D.C.’s Chinatown to suburban Orlando, Fla., so that the family patriarch Louis (Park) can follow his American dream of opening a Western-themed restaurant.

ABC renewed the sitcom for a second season ahead of its Upfront presentation in May, along with fellow freshman comedies “black-ish” and “Galavant” (starring Karen David).

“Fresh Off the Boat” will return for Season 2 on Tuesday, Sept. 22 at 8:30 p.m. ET on ABC.

ESPN: Jeremy Lin says Hornets security didn’t believe he was NBA player

ESPN: 

New Hornets guard Jeremy Lin says he had trouble convincing a security guard that he’s an NBA player when he showed up at the team’s Charlotte arena.

The NBA’s first American player of Chinese or Taiwanese descent, Lin tweeted about the encounter Saturday:

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A Hornets spokesman said the team didn’t have any comment. The 6-foot-3 Lin signed with the Hornets in July.

Lin played at Harvard and went undrafted before making a name for himself during the second half of the 2012 season with the Knicks. His knack for hitting big shots and double-figure scoring average sparked the term “Linsanity.”