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Food and Party Time in Beijing

June 7, 2014

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Oh gosh! I’m writing this blog post before I’m even done editing the video. There’s so much footage for us to edit and I’m not even sure what I’m going to include or not. I’m just really excited about what our trip was like and I want to talk about it.

Why We Were There

Why go to Beijing, you might ask. We were surprised when we were invited as well. YouTube is blocked in China, and so I wonder why would anyone want us there if they don’t know who we are? Here’s why: the event was actually organized by people in Germany, people responsible for the Frankfurt Book Fair. They were organizing StoryDrive Asia in China. The point of the conference was to talk about Transmedia and different ways of storytelling. We, then, were invited to talk about how we include you guise in our videos.

Basically, the idea behind it is that we’re not like Game of Thrones. You can’t call up the directors and say “hey! Joffrey’s an asshole! Kill him right away!” Old media is very much a one way street. For us and our videos, though, we try to be more of a two way street. We answer your questions in our TL;DRs, and we respond to your comments in the videos as well. We take your votes for Kpop Music Monday. We chat with you guise and open your packages during LiveChats. You guise aren’t our audience in a traditional sense. We treat you more like friends we’re having a conversation with. There you go. That’s the gist of our presentation. Of course, it had us being more active and moving around the stage and showing videos and stuff.

We were presenting right after a really famous lady talked for an hour about the importance of incorporating discussions of Chinese characters when you try to tell foreigners what China was like. She was very, very, very, very thorough. She’s a professor, so she gave a very formal lecture. Then us two dorks came up on stage and ho-hummed and jigged for a bit. Ta-da! We never claimed to be professional :D

But, really, we had a fantastic time there. The presentations we listened to were awesome. We made some really good friends there. I hope they’re reading this today. Syd, Colin, Triona, Gavin, Pete, Claudius: you guys were awesome! We’ll hopefully visit you when we go to Europe this year!

Ahem. So, outside of the presentation, we did other stuff

The Other Stuff We Did

WE ATE A LOT. Did you get that from the video? We ate lots of food. That’s really the most important thing for us whenever we travel to other countries. Tourist attractions are for tourists, not for locals. We don’t want to experience that. We want to do what local people do. So we eat everything we can find. We’re not afraid to get diarrhoeas as well. Give us the local experience! Fortunately, this trip didn’t result in any of that, so…great success! And also, too much information!

We went to a really cool bar that Robin emailed us about, Great Leap Brewing. Seriously the coolest bar we went to in Asia. Korea’s microbrewing scene is starting to grow, and we know a few places that make good beer, but this place had not only lots of great beer, but it also had a GIANT bar with a great vibe. Check it out if you’re in Beijing. I’m not sure how to describe how to get there. We just hopped in the Rickshaw and had our babysitters take us there. Yay!

We Break Weather Everywhere We Go

When we were in Canada we brought about -40 degree weather, which was a record, and we also brought an ice storm that broke Christmas. Then we went to Japan for a weekend and brought about a record breaking ice storm. Then, for our few days in Beijing, we brought about record breaking heat. Whyyyyyy???? LA, be prepared for the carnage coming your way. We realized that we have a special mutant power to ruin weather. Call us by our new mutant name: CALAMITY!

We Took Lots of Pictures

Also, we have so many pictures! Hopefully you like the pretty layout we just put in. Check it out!

We Have Bloopers

We had like two hours of footage but didn’t air all of it. Here’s some of the stuff that didn’t make the final cut.

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  1. I love Peking Duck. In the States, whenever my family and I would go to a Chinese restaurant, we had to order it ahead of time. After I moved to Toronto, my parents, aunt, uncle and cousins were all out for Chinese food and I found Peking Duck on the menu. Imagine my surprise when I realized we didn’t have to give them notice that we wanted it. I ordered it. They brought out the entire cooked duck to show me (which grossed one of my cousins out a bit) before they took it away and cut it up. Hot damn, it was delicious.

    5 years ago
  2. This is awesome you guys! I’m moving to China in two months and I’m tempted to make a Facebook album called ‘Chinese Food’… haha.
    Hope you enjoyed your stay!!

    5 years ago
  3. Just in case you wanted to know, the words on that Coke can in the photos translates roughly as “Broken-hearted people, don’t listen to slow songs.” No idea why that’s there but hey, it’s China.

    I wish I could have made it to Beijing in time to see you two :( 加油 anyway!

    5 years ago
  4. Oh man this was great. All that food just made me incredibly hungry! I have always wanted to try peking? Duck. DUCK DUCK oh gods, duck is so good.

    Also, nice GoT’s reference. I saw what you did there.

    It’s great that you two get these chances to travel like that and do all these amazing things.
    So luckyy~~~~

    5 years ago
  5. The MOM fish at the end of the bloopers made my day. Thanks guys XD

    5 years ago
  6. You guys are so fearless about doing new things! You’re the perfect couple to make travel videos.

    5 years ago
  7. You guys are awesome I always feel great while watching your videos ..oh yeah I made a drawing of Martina and posted it on Instagram I also mentioned you and tagged you in it you guys should go check it out and tell me what you think about it .

    5 years ago
  8. Wow, this food looks great! Maybe I will visit China someday..but first Korea (and your nasty coffee shop) and Japan. :)

    5 years ago
  9. I was salivating the whole time I was watching the video. How I wish I could eat those food too..

    5 years ago
  10. Wow! This was the ULTIMATE in food pr0n! It all looks so yummy and now I have a craving to go to Toronto go for giant dim sum Sunday brunch…oh, if only…… I think you were really lucky with the street food because (a) you had legit Chinese guides with you and (b) you didn’t try to go to the very touristy areas. A lot of street food is generally okay if the customers are steady but when I was in the Shanghai open market (very touristy), all three times I was there, I saw a vendor fish a half-eaten plate of food out of the trash, give it a quick lookover, then put parts of it on a new plate. Brrrrrr!

    I really like the quality of the video and content when you guys are just filming in the street without heavy makeup (probably would melt off anyways) and just capturing sniper shots of action as it happens. I know that you edit it later and the effects add fun but the pure camera action is usually so captivating.

    5 years ago
  11. You guys didn’t have rude and unreasonable chicken??? XD

    5 years ago
  12. I really love that you guys do videos like this when you go to other countries! It’s so interesting to see what other countries are like as well as Korea. I do have a question though: how do you guys wander around other countries and not get lost?! I have no sense of direction and would most likely be completely lost and wandering around the streets of China or Japan forever and never find my way back to the hotel. What’s your secret?!

    5 years ago
    • Well, it’s always a good idea to take the business card of the hotel/motel/hostel/whatever you’re staying in. As soon as we get to it we drop a pin on our iPhones. Then, we’re just set loose in an area and walk around until we get exhausted. Soon enough we find a street that has taxis :D

      5 years ago
  13. I’ve never been to China, but this video made me miss Taiwan quite a bit ;_; luckily I’ll be going back in a few weeks hehe ^^ If you guys ever get a chance to go to Taiwan, you’d probably go crazy because the food is just so good XD

    5 years ago
  14. Now we are talking about food culture I’m curious what kind of books people read in South Korea. Do they like philosophycal ones? Young adult ones?

    5 years ago
  15. I would have liked to see and heard more of the history behind some of the places you visited in the video in your blog post. Like why was that place considered hipster, what was the reasoning behind some of the food choices (other then peking duck hahha we knew about that), etc

    5 years ago
  16. I love Northern Chinese food so much T-T this was just gratuitous food porn for me XD

    5 years ago
  17. Min

    well hopefully you won’t bring about a record breaking earthquake, something that goes out of the richter scale… I’m going to be going back home to cali this summer, and that’s one experience I could do without. thank you. hahahaha. but really please don’t. XD

    5 years ago
  18. I loved the format for this video! It was a lot of fun to watch. And now I want to go and eat all of that food ><

    5 years ago
  19. It’s not even 9 am, and now all I want is dumplings. So much yummy food in that video guys!

    5 years ago
  20. I want to go to China to eat all the foods, but not to breath all the air. The sheer amount of possible natural disasters in California could be apocalyptic! Earthquakes, wildfires, drought (oh wait, that’s already happening)! Do not challenge the Earth spirits! BTW, I love how you managed to finagle a GoT reference by relating it to your presentation. Have you ever noticed finagle is a word people use, but never write down?

    5 years ago
  21. I couldn’t help noticing how Simon had a bit of stubble. I wonder how he would look with a full out beard and mustache.

    DOTHRAKI MAN WARRIOR HAS MAN HAIR ON MANLY WARRIOR FACE.

    5 years ago
  22. I thought I was the only one who got excited about food on overseas trips! That’s one of the main reasons I’m coming to Seoul next month. I really understand where you’re coming from, guys.

    5 years ago
  23. Why must I always watch these right before bed! I’m so hungry now T.T
    I think I’m going to have to sneak over to my boyfriends place to get some dumplings now! At least this time it’s food I have access too! :D

    also, that goldfish had me laughing for a good 5 mins… I may be over tired XD

    5 years ago
  24. I wanna go traveling with you guise….so much fun~ :3

    5 years ago
  25. This is making me crave Dim Sum D: and it’s 12am here! If you guys ever come to New York, I wouldn’t be mad if you brought a freak snowstorm, then I’d get a snow day from work and go see you guys! :)
    Martina, it looks like you were eating a zongzi, the glutonious rice wrapped in bamboo leaves; perhaps the sweet kind. Growing up I always like the savory ones my grandmother makes~ There was a entire holiday dedicated to eating that recently.

    5 years ago
  26. Yumyumyumyum these videos always make me want food. Quite honestly I can’t say I’ve ever had authentic Chinese food, I always grew up on authentic thai/veit/khmer food from my mom…sigh curse this small town I live in. ALSO Can’t wait to see you guys in California at summit!! Crossing my fingers for a disaster-less trip hopefully no wild fire/earth quake/sharknado incidents will occur. >,<

    5 years ago
  27. I’m am kind of extremely terrified that you guys will bring all of us in LA a big ass earthquake….

    5 years ago
  28. Hahahahaha, Fish singing EXO’s MAMA!!!
    OMG!! The Food, I kill for eating there…
    I guess now you are the new gods of weather!!

    5 years ago
  29. First, greatly appreciated “love is the moment” moment. Second, that restaurant/garden/lantern filled room makes me think a fairy home/garden. It’s so pretty. Glad you are back safe and sound. :)

    5 years ago
  30. I totally endorse your habit of going to foreign countries and skipping the sites to eat, as long as you get lots of gorgeous food porn shots for us! :)

    5 years ago
  31. I love you guys!! I like watching you explore! So please on your other adventures continue to film.

    Oh and “oppa” is “gege” (like guh-guh) in Chinese (at least in a general way they bother mean older brother)

    5 years ago
    • Guh guh? That’s awesome! “GUH GUH! BUY ME ICE CREAM!”

      5 years ago
      • Guh guh is correct but as far as i know(im sgpn chinese) theres no practice anywhere of using names like that other than to a direct relative, immediate older sister, younger bro kind of thing, if its used as a term of respect for someone outside your family, only one word is used, simon ge, martina jie(gee-yeah), the whole oppa unnie aegyo flirting thing doesnt exist in chinese culture, if someone uses ge ge on someone whos not their older brother, general consensus is gross wtf lol

        5 years ago
        • Haha yeah I didn’t really think it was used in the same way. Unless we’re talking about k-pop groups in China (EXO M and SJ M both use Gege when talking to each other in Chinese).

          5 years ago
  32. Well I really hope my parents come home soon because I am hungry now. Where you guys were looked really cool. But dem cars trying to kill you tho. Not cool. Wow 40 degrees, that’s *goes to google because American* GODDAMN THAT HOT! Jesus, does mother nature like to be a complete douche nozzle to you when you travel? I bitch when it was 90 degrees. I’m like really spoiled when it comes to non-changing weather.

    5 years ago
  33. WAIT NOOOOO… I HOPE THERE ISN’T ANY HEAT WHEN YOU GUYS COME TO LA. It’s been really nice lately. I kind of saw some June gloom today. :3 it was beautiful, beats all the heat.

    5 years ago
    • AS long as they don’t bring any earthquake with them, then I can take the heat lol.

      5 years ago
      • That’s true. There were a couple of earthquakes about a month ago huh?

        5 years ago
        • I’ve never experienced an earthquake and I don’t want to. But, knowing our luck, we’ll probably bring a big one :D

          5 years ago
    • Well, then, get ready to roast, CUZ WE GONNA BRING THE HEAT!

      5 years ago
      • Oh noooo. I really hope not. Also, the place you guys went to In & Out is nothing like the In ‘n Out we have here. LOL you guys really need to try it. I recommend you guys go to the one on Westchester it’s right next to LAX. :D I hope I get to see you guys while you’re here! Enjoy your trip.

        5 years ago
        • We got really excited when we were told that we were going to In & Out in Beijing, and we were expecting burgers, but we were still very happy with what we got in Beijing, of course :D

          5 years ago
  34. Why am I watching this while on a diet???

    5 years ago
  35. So when my friends or family go and visit foreign/far away places, I tend to wish people:

    “I hope you eat many new and delicious things!”

    5 years ago
    • Exactly! Though, I know people that are really afraid to try different foods when they travel. But why?! Eat it all while you can!

      5 years ago
      • You can see pictures, watch videos, and read books about all the monuments from anywhere at anytime.

        But eating delicious things can only be done in-person! :D

        *Does a happy dance because she got a response from Simon and Martina.

        5 years ago
  36. awes.. i love the little fishy.. >(*o*)<

    5 years ago
  37. Well…you survived Beijing, congrats. You appear to have found some pretty nice places to eat, congrats. But….did anyone remark on how Simon looked as if He just stepped out of a Public Bath? Mongolia next??

    5 years ago
  38. Liz

    28ºC is breaking heat? Aw, that’s cute. lol Maybe because I live in Brazil and that’s the average spring/summer temperature and it’s not that hot.
    Anyway, all that food porn!!! I’m craving chinese food now. It’s 1 AM and I need some dumplings.
    Great videos as always. :D

    5 years ago
    • Actually it said 40 degrees celcius. 28 degrees was the average temp, not the actual temp. So yeah it was steaming hot there.

      5 years ago
  39. I really miss Beijing! Would you guys ever move there or is the pollution too much?

    5 years ago
    • I know we felt really sick from the pollution. If that was just a bad day, and if things are usually better, then I’d be ok with Beijing. If it gets worse than what we experienced, then I don’t think we’d survive.

      5 years ago
      • I think there are good days and bad.I lost my voice once when the pollution was particularly bad.

        There’s an app that measures air quailty every day (air qulity China), I guess you could just hang out inside on the bad days.

        You guys should check out the Hyperloop.It’s a dream come true for travelers.It will be able to get you across the world in a matter of hours. About two hours from Korea to Canida.

        5 years ago
  40. NOOOO!!!! WHY?! That song!! I didn’t even watch Heirs past two episodes and yet you torture me with it. See, that spot between my ear and my brain. It’s stuck right there and won’t go away. :(

    Onto the food. *drools* It all looks so damn delicious. I want to eat my screen. The duck looked amazing.

    BTW, is it wrong that I laughed my ass off at Simon burning his mouth a second time, even after attempting to cool it down?

    Glad you guys had an amazing trip to Beijing and were brave enough to the heat. It was 104ºF here today (which Google says is 40ºC) It’s been between 104ºF and 109ºF all week. It’s going no where soon. That’s summer for us but not this early on, not this early on at all. I fear July.

    5 years ago
    • I will bring 50 degree weather for you!

      Also, is it just me, or does Chinese and Korean cuisine not really care about temperature control? They just give it to you, piping hot, but not actually ready to eat. They want you to stare at it for a while so you can feel sad while you wait for it to finally get to an edible temperature.

      5 years ago
      • I’ve survived 46ºC, bring on your 50! I kid, please don’t. The sun might succeed in finally turning me to ash.

        Seriously though, what is with the scolding hot Korean foods? The first time I had galbi tang I thought I’d never be able to have a spoonful. I’d never received such a hot bowl of soup in my life. I kept eating the side dishes and rice, while longingly looking at my bowl of soup. A brand you hot dish I can understand but singeing food man, that really is just to get some funny YouTube videos. They need to invest in some food thermometers.

        5 years ago
        • At least you know the food is cooked… ? And I lived in Brazil and my host city was the most humid place in Brazil aside from the Amazon rainforest- it would be so hot, there was a solid week we had temperatures that didn’t drop below 40C- cold showers were a blessing but as soon as I would turn the water off a wave of heat would just crush me… Needless to say, once the temperature dropped to 25C I was wearing sweaters…

          5 years ago
    • *brave enough to face the heat

      5 years ago