Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Cute Drinks and Immigration Policy

I despise flat soda, so I'm loving the mini 12-ounce Coke bottles, which stay nice and fizzy over the two or three days it takes me to finish them (I know, I know, the baby already drinks more than I do. But he drinks milk of course, not Coke.) The grocery store was out of them this week, so we ended up with these 7.5 ounce cans. They're not as good, since they’re not re-sealable like a bottle, but they sure are cute.

The glass shows how much I wasn't able to finish at dinner. Apparently, I have a 4 ounce capacity.

The Diet Coke can is just there for size reference. We bought a case for a party a while back, and since neither SwingDaddy nor I like the diet flavor, they've been sitting there for a mighty long time. Today, I noticed that they expired in May of 2009.

Did you even know that Coke can expire? Twinkies are rumored to expire after nine years, but I think that's not because they would taste stale. I'll bet it's because Hostess thinks the packaging will degrade after that much time.

I have a second topic today, one that’s so different from my usual content of cute children, Star Wars, dance reality TV, Star Wars, plush sealife, and Lego, that there’s really no good transition.

Xiaolin Mama
of Clever Girls Collective and Silicon Valley Moms Blog contacted me about the Asian American Voices Project, which has created a documentary that follows the stories – the successes, hardships, and hopes – of three Asian American immigrants in Silicon Valley. Despite struggling through language, cultural, and health care barriers, these individuals readily work to shape the local community. This piece explores the strengthening of community through the support of immigrant populations.

To paraphrase their website further, the short films are part of the Silicon Valley Asian American Voices project to influence policy to help the integration of Asian American immigrant communities and foster cross-cultural understanding among various ethnic communities.

Over half of the people with whom I work on a daily basis are immigrants to the United States. As technical professionals, they don’t share the dire financial struggles that many others do, but I know that from family experience being 6000 miles from one’s family and immersed in a foreign culture makes for extra challenges.

My parents were very fortunate in their immigration experience, but now that I am a parent myself, I recognize how much they took on to create a wonderful life in this country. They came and rescued SwingDaddy and me when my sons were newborns, and I’m sad that they didn’t have that same incredibly meaningful support when my sister and I were little.

I’m glad to see that this local project can have an impact on immigrants here and across the country, which leads to stronger communities across ethnic groups.

More information:

The film trailer.

The full film will be shown on Thursday, March 4 at DeAnza College and on March 20 as part of the San Francisco Film Festival.

There’s a contest for free tickets to the SF AA Film Festival at Asian American Voices Facebook page.

Xiaolin Mama writes about the project much more eloquently at her place too.


mayberry said...

I bet the diet coke could last another 7 or 8 years too!

Anonymous said...

I think that the expiry dates are often there to convince you to buy more. I doubt my chips ACTUALLY be bad in 4 weeks, it's just an 'optimum freshness' date to convince me to consume them more quickly. That is what I tell my husband when he complains about expired chips, anyway. ;)

And immigrants are my heroes. The courage that it takes to uproot your whole life and learn a whole new language and way of life inspires me. It saddens me when we don't give new arrivals adequate support. Or worse, we openly antagonize them. :(

Bob said...

Had a tough time when they changed the 12 Oz can to the narrower top ( 20 years ago? ). I had to throw away all the can caps and buy new ones.
You can see I can't finish a 12 Oz can in one sitting either. When/If the 7.5 Oz can gets popular, I'll need to get new can caps again. Guess that's part of the struggle too.

Cold Spaghetti said...

I popped in from another blog and wanted to say that I'm glad you wrote about this film festival and even more about your experience. I'm a US citizen, but I work in International Health and have moved toward doing more work domestically with immigrant communities. There is so much negativity toward the word "immigrant" and it is hard to help people remember that, actually, 'immigrants' have brought and bring and will continue to contribute beauty and wonder and skill and brilliance to every aspect of our country and communities. Anyway -- I just wanted to give props and say thanks. :-)