Workday Reading

The Workday Reading: April 15, 2016

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1) This story about wealthy Chinese immigrants buying Ferrari’s like I buy lattes lit a deep fire of loathing in my heart.  Because when your home country cracks down on corruption, just move to Canada to live that Fast and Furious life. (The New York Times)

2) Tired?  Belle’s new under-eye concealer trick: Mix this Laura Mercier Radiance Primer with this pinky concealer from NYX, and then, layer on the Maybelline Age Rewind concealer, and set with translucent powder.

3) To Hell and Back Again: A Day with the Marie Kondo-Method (of Tidying Up).  This article has the funniest, most amazing quotes.  For example:

At several points in the book, she describes emotional agony and breakdowns that occurred due to several tidying challenges in her life. I respect the woman, but yikes. The KonMari Method may be effective, but so is therapy.

4) Chilly evenings mean spring sweaters.  This scallop-stripe pullover from BR is so cute.  I also like their Italian linen cardigan with a longer, open style.

5) Are D.C.’s happy hour venues ripe for a terror attack? (Stars and Stripes)

6) ASOS has this $89 Oasis structured pencil dress for the office.  This lace crop top midi dress is perfect for a spring wedding (also in petite).  For plus-size ladies, this Paper Dolls knot-front dress is a must for cocktail hour.

7) Facebook has seized the media, and it’s bad news for everyone.  (Most enlightening article I read this week.) (Wired)

8) I love my Gentle Souls Break Your Heart sandals (so comfy), so I’m going to give their Dana flat a try.  I’ll report back.

9) Celebrities, they’re just like us, they also bring reporters to their best friend’s weddings so they can conduct an interview in between the salad and the cake. (Vogue)

10) Moon River has affordable, cute pieces for summer.  This $65 white lace dress is so pretty.  This versatile contrast trim top would look great with jeans, shorts, or a simple pencil skirt.

11) I love District Taco.  The co-owner’s rags to riches story only makes me love it even more.  (And crave breakfast tacos…) (CNBC)

12) This Alexander McQueen chiffon coupe jacket and coordinating skirt are the stuff dreams are made of.

*image found here.

LEAVE A COMMENT

    27 comments

  1. Sarah says:

    This: “As people share fewer updates about themselves, the company says that 600 million people see a news story on Facebook each week.”

    I have noticed this as well, and it really bothers me, because I DO want to see stuff about people, NOT news. I get my news from NPR! Ugh.

    April 15, 2016/Reply
    • Belle says:

      I think it’s more about filtering the “news.” What “news” stories do you usually see on Facebook? Woman saves baby from burning building, octopus escapes from zoo, Justin Bieber shares cartoon coloring book on Instagram, President Obama to forgive student loan debt.

      Unless it is a HUGE inescapable story–Paris terror, etc–what you see on Facebook is “news,” not news. And that filtering is encouraging reputable outlets like CNN and WaPost to print salacious, silly crap in their online additions to generate the clickbait they need for Facebook. It’s a real problem.

      April 15, 2016/Reply
      • Addie says:

        Agreed, it’s a huge problem. I’m so tired of click bait. I won’t click on it if I have any suspicion that’s what it is

        April 15, 2016/Reply
  2. Anonymous says:

    RE #1: “1) This story about wealthy Chinese immigrants buying Ferrari’s like I buy lattes lit a deep fire of loathing in my heart. (The New York Times)”

    I wonder if this would this even be a story if they weren’t Chinese. It’s not as though this (wealthy moving offshore) is a phenomenon specific to only the Chinese. I didn’t know having money with slanted eyes was worthy of such venom.

    April 15, 2016/Reply
    • Belle says:

      What upsets me is that people are hiding their ill-gotten wealth in a foreign country because China is cracking down on corruption–it’s totally fine we exploited people to become billionaires because we’re only flaunting our wealth overseas. Also, it’s horrifying that anyone would raise their children to believe that limiting them to $150k for a car is somehow teaching them responsibility. Whether it’s Paris Hilton or another wealthy heir, the fact that this behavior is broadcast on reality TV and social media as something to be consumed as entertainment is also incredibly disturbing. So it would be the story regardless of their race. The reason it matters that they’re first generation Chinese immigrants is that they immigrated, not for a better life or to contribute to Canada’s society, but to hide money.

      April 15, 2016/Reply
      • Anonymous says:

        Yes, I understand that the concept of ill gotten gains being flaunted in sickening. However, I think it’s important to critically think about the intention of such articles and media attention which ultimately serve to instill a xenophobia and hatred against Asians period. There are plenty of Chinese who come to the US having earned their fortunes fairly through hard work and want to give their children a better life. Just as it wouldn’t be accurate to characterize all the refugees into Europe as rapists it would be inaccurate to do the same in this case.

        April 15, 2016/Reply
        • Belle says:

          Sure, I agree that a person who already disliked Chinese people could take this article and use it to paint every Chinese immigrant with a wide brush. But regardless of the race or nationality of these people, the extravagance is the real story.

          April 15, 2016/Reply
          • Anonymous says:

            Sure, extravagance is a story, but it’s important to note where the attention is. It’s not like we’re seeing numerous articles characterizing any other ethnic groups with such a broad brush. Exactly how many Chinese fall into this group out of all the immigrants? I would argue it’s an extremely small percent.

            It’s not like we’re seeing many articles scrutinizing the consumption of wealthy white or Jewish individuals.

            April 15, 2016/Reply
            • Belle says:

              I think the article does mention that of the lots of Chinese immigrant these are a small percentage. I think part of the reason you see so many articles on wealthy Chinese immigrant is because of their use of the EB-5 program to buy homes and receive a visa, the ostentatiousness of the spending, etc. are becoming more visible for many reasons. I’ve seen articles on white people and American citizens as well, many of them were related to a Wharton study on conspicuous consumption and race, others were related to how young teens from wealthy families spend money. But I do agree that right now, there are many more on Chinese immigrants than any other group, native or otherwise.

              April 15, 2016/Reply
        • Melissa says:

          But where in the article, or in any of the comments on this post, does it suggest that all Chinese immigrants are wealthy, or flaunting their wealth? It’s an article about a specific group of Chinese immigrants in a specific urban area, not about all Chinese immigrants in all areas. The points you are trying to make (or the argument you are trying to start) has no founding in the article.

          April 15, 2016/Reply
    • Melissa says:

      The article is specific to Vancouver, and the offshore investments that are pushing Vancouverites out of the housing market are by and far mostly Chinese. The luxury cars are part of that package. I, like many other former Vancouverites, can not afford to live there as I’ve been priced out of the market. It’s not unusual for homes to sell $100-$200,000 above asking, and we aren’t talking luxury homes. We’re talking homes that might sell for $200,000 – $350,000 in other parts of the country (Calgary, Edmonton, and Toronto excluded). That’s a direct result of of the influx of wealthy Chinese immigrants, and offshore purchases. That’s not xenophobia, it’s fact. The only real xenophobia here is your invocation of the slant eye reference.

      April 15, 2016/Reply
      • Anonymous says:

        So are you arguing for banning purchases made my people of certain ethnic heritage or price controls/price fixing of the housing market?

        This issue of housing is going on elsewhere including the Bay Area and media attention and stories focused on demonizing the tech industry has resulted in widespread vandalism of property and violence against these people. Articles like this really are no different in terms of their effect.

        April 15, 2016/Reply
      • Belle says:

        This is also happening in Seattle and San Francisco, so I think that’s part of the reason so many of these articles are coming out now.

        April 15, 2016/Reply
  3. Rhi says:

    I was in Vancouver last week and the luxury car craze there is crazy. I lived in Miami for years and Miami has NOTHING on Vancouver. My colleagues and I spoke about how odd it felt.

    April 15, 2016/Reply
  4. A. Zhang says:

    Anonymous, thank you for saying something. The idea of ‘loathing’ people, particularly ones already seen as ‘other’ for centuries in North America, hit me wrong too. The real scandal is what is legal, right?

    April 15, 2016/Reply
    • Belle says:

      I loathe the flaunting of the wealth. The idea that a girl played homeless for three days wearing $1,000 shoes. I never said anything about hating Chinese people, just this particular brand of extravagance. It could have been French Canadians or Texans, and I would have felt the same.

      April 16, 2016/Reply
      • MS says:

        Then why not just say it’s a story about “wealthy immigrants buying Ferraris like I buy lattes” instead specifying in your description of the article that it’s wealthy Chinese immigrants if your dislike is just of the behavior? I don’t doubt that you would still feel angry reading an article about other immigrants doing this, but I agree with the others that I was struck by your tone and choice of words. The fact that multiple people seem to be noting this maybe suggests you should at least take a moment to consider the possibility of being subconsciously biased against a groups of people rather than just arguing that of course you don’t overtly hate Chinese people. We all face and have to confront our own subconscious biases.

        April 17, 2016/Reply
        • Belle says:

          Because the fact that these immigrants are coming here to avoid corruption allegations in China is an important part of the story. The reason behind their immigration, which is tied to their nationality, matters.

          April 18, 2016/Reply
          • Anonymous says:

            I am glad someone else sensed the disturbing tone with which the author introduced that article.

            NOTE: This is not the first instance where this blog has touched on the various “problems with the Chinese.” What an unusual preoccupation with a specific ethnicity.

            https://www.caphillstyle.com/capitol/2015/06/02/the-workday-reading-june-2-2015.html
            9) Thousands of Chinese students were expelled from U.S. universities last year, mostly for cheating and bad grades. Cheating is so commonplace in China that a group of parents protested when the school tried to crackdown on cheating.

            -https://www.caphillstyle.com/capitol/2015/11/30/the-workday-reading-november-30-2015.html
            9) Chinese cash is flooding the U.S. housing market, driving up prices and contributing to instability. (The New York Times)

            The most recent comment obviously reveals more of the author’s true feelings on Chinese.

            April 18, 2016/Reply
  5. Jenn S. says:

    You don’t experience any settling (into fine lines) with the concealer trick? I try to be a one-step-wonder with concealer, but that approach may be what I need for special occasions or Important Days at Work.

    Also – all this hubbub about the corruption/fleeing thing from Anon here? Talk about much ado about nothing. Nothing you’ve said has been questionable.

    April 18, 2016/Reply
    • Anonymous says:

      Funny how racial insensitivity against Asians is imagined, but if these series of articles were instead about African Americans or some other traditional minority the racial bias would be obvious.

      It’s great to know in this day and age that Asians are simultaneously mistreated and invisible/unrecognized as discriminated minorities.

      April 18, 2016/Reply
      • Belle says:

        No one is saying that all racial bias against Asians is imagined. I’m not even arguing that this article doesn’t contribute to such a bias. All I’m saying is that the nationality of these people, and their reasons for fleeing that nation into Western cities where their consumption has real, serious impacts on everyone (including other Chinese immigrants of less wealth and privilege), matters.

        April 18, 2016/Reply
      • Jenn S. says:

        It isn’t funny, actually. Nothing about any of it is funny. No one is suggesting that the Chinese or Asians in general do not face insensitivity or racism. But also, no one is suggesting that the circumstances discussed in the article are representative of either Asians or Chinese in general.

        Would you prefer the article go read like: “Some country who has enjoyed a considerable economic upturn is cracking down on corruption and shadily-acquired wealth, so people from that country are fleeing and going to Vancouver. It is causing issues in the Vancouver housing market.”

        Guess what – then readers are going to demand to know from where – and then locals, who know what’s going on, are going to share anyway.

        April 18, 2016/Reply
  6. Jenn S. says:

    Oh, another thought now that I’ve read the KonMari piece. The author says, “Marie Kondo, believing that her clothes are alive, thanks them for their good work and encourages you to do the same. I had neglected this practice, mostly because it’s dumb.”

    She’s wrong. Marie Kondo does not actually believe her clothes or items are alive any more than you or I do. What the author, and many people, fail to understand is the nature of that sentiment is just very Japanese. I totally understand why someone without familiarity with the culture would find it bizarre – but no, she doesn’t think her skirts have souls.

    All in all, its about practicing gratitude. Really, we could probably all stand to practice that a little more, tidying marathon or not.

    April 18, 2016/Reply
  7. M. Chen says:

    Oh for goodness sakes. Stop it. I’m Chinese-American and fairly active in Asian-American issues and I agree that discrimination against Asians tends to go unnoticed or unrealized by the press, but this not the case here. I also loathe Chinese immigrants who flaunt their wealth like this. I dislike wealth flaunting in general, but personally, I find it even worse in this situation because their wealth is ill-gotten and has caused massive societal and economic repercussions in China as anyone who knows about corruption there can speak about.

    Chinese people are fleeing corruption from China. This is factual. I worked handling visas in China for two years, when the corruption crackdown happened, we started seeing a significant increase in the number of Chinese going to the US and buying up property…we saw them suddenly move their children and family overseas. I interviewed an incredibly large number of people going to the US to give birth to ensure that they would have roots in the US in case anything happens in China. The fact that they’re Chinese is integral to the story because of their surrounding circumstances.

    Do other people buy property in the US, try to hide money overseas? Sure. But not to the degree that we’re seeing from China and therefore yes, it’s a story. The ridiculous fuerdai spending (which we also see in China) is just a symptom of the bigger story which the media is also covering. No one’s saying that all Chinese are like this…the stories don’t read like this…and when you try to pick fights where they don’t exist, they dilute our cause.

    April 18, 2016/Reply
    • Sara says:

      Agreed. I live in Seattle and it’s real. I have absolutely no issues with Asian people or Chinese people – or any specific group of people. But there has a been huge numbers of Chinese citizens buying homes in Seattle, paying all cash, and artificially inflating the housing market. Then they don’t even live in the home or rent it out. It sits empty and unused, and then there are bidding wars for homes in which the extremely wealthy (of any ethnicity or nationality) will win because they have huge swaths of cash to pay up front. This leaves middle class residents with no affordable housing due to the inflated housing bubble.

      It’s infuriating no matter who does it. It just happens that right now Chinese citizens are the bulk of the buyers. It has nothing to do with how they look or whether they’re good or decent people. It’s purely financial. I think in order to make housing more affordable to residents in these cities (Seattle, Vancouver, San Francisco, etc), the US and Canada should put protections in place so American/Canadian citizens aren’t displaced.

      April 18, 2016/Reply
  8. Sandy says:

    Without reading the linked article, the phrase “wealthy Chinese immigrants buying ferraris… Lit a deep fire of loathing in my heart,” struck me as off-key. You did not mention corruption, housing markets, or fleeing prosecution in that first sentence, so the only connection a reader had to go on for the cause of your deep loathing was wealthy and Chinese. Also since the tone of that sentence was so dramatically different than the rest of the listed items it stood out even more. (Why such loathing for conspicuous consumption on a blog that primarily revolves around shopping and consumption?) Your subsequent one-sentence mention of corruption didn’t really explain why they inspire such deep personal loathing either. I’m not accusing you of racism, and obviously don’t think you intended anything insensitive, but the way you phrased it was off-putting to me, and with a slight tweak of phrasing that could easily have been avoided.

    April 26, 2016/Reply