Long-form blog posts and editorials. Topics cover both personal and the world at large. 

Talking body - 10 things I think


1. Agent Carter absolutely deserves to have more series made. The brief first series of eight episodes was spectacular, and of course I adore the performance of Hayley Atwell as the titular character. I'd be extremely disappointed if it gets cancelled, not the least of which television would lose one of the scant few female-led shows. 

I think the short episodes run rather than a full 22 episode order works well for Agent Carter. The story was quick and concise, and there was more value to each episode. I'd be quite alright if future series maintains it's position as the stop-gap between fall and spring halves of Agents of SHIELD. 

2. Speaking of Agents of SHIELD, it'll return next week, and I'm quite excited. Inhumans are likely to get introduced for the first time to the MCU, and how will the world of AOS tie in to the upcoming Avengers film? I'm glad the producers decided to split the season into two halves: there shouldn't be any weeks off for the show from now until the end of May.

3. Turbocharging and hybrid power is slowly enveloping the sports car world, leaving those of us who lust for high-revving atmospheric engines in fetal positions, awaiting for the inevitable to arrive. You know the moment has come when Porsche and it's preeminent sports car icon the 911 will soon feature turbocharged engines exclusively throughout its range, sparing only cars with a GT3 badge at the rear. 

As an owner of a turbocharged engined car, I understand very well the benefits: the power you can extract from relatively displacements, and the low-end torque that is so wondrous when punching it out of a slow corner. Manufacturers are turing to turbos because of emissions: scavenging exhausts gases that would otherwise be wasted energy is simply more efficient (read: more miles to the gallon, less expelled pollutants.) 

4. Enthusiasts' gripe with the turbocharged engine is the sound, or lack thereof. When you place turbines in the route of the exhaust tract, engine noise is naturally going to be muffled as well. It seems the majority of automakers have yet to figure out (or bother with) how to properly tune the exhausts of a turbocharge engine to make it not sound like a vacuum cleaner. 

And that's the key: turbocharging is inevitable, therefore manufacturers need to allocate the appropriate research-and-development funding towards sound engineering. The sort of noise a car makes is one of it's defining characteristics; it's why people are so drawn to the rocky, gargling roar of a small-block Chevy V8, or the high-pitched screaming howl of an LF-A V10.

Engine sound - real, actual engine sound - simply can't be ignored by sports car manufacturers any longer (looking at you, BMW.) 

5. I used to poke fun at Derrick Rose and his propensity to get hurt, but now with the news of him needing yet another knee surgery, it has gotten quite sad. I genuinely feel bad for him, and it's a great shame because Rose's cranky knees stole from us a great talent that was bound for many great things. Now, we may never find out. 

Warriors fans must be ecstatic that Steph Curry's ankles are no longer a concern as they once were. 

6. Honda has fired its CEO, Takanobu Ito, due to the whole of the Takata recall fiasco (amongst other issues), and I applaud it greatly. As an auto enthusiasts, I was happy to see Ito go because for the longest time he absolutely gutted anything remotely sporting or innovative within the Honda conglomerate. 

Acura had a rear-wheel drive platform, a brand-new V8 engine, and a V10-powered NSX replacement practically production-ready, but those programs got the knife. There were never a successor to the wondrous S2000 roadster nor the RSX coupe, and the present Civic Si is a shell of it's former high-revving glory. Instead of a company run by engineers, it was overrun by accountants. 

The incoming CEO needs to take a page from their rival Toyota and inject some sport back into their product lineup. The new turbocharged 2.0-liter four, the 8-speed dual-clutch gearbox, and the soon-to-arrive NSX replacement is a good start. Time to keep it going. 

7. I take great offense to Apple's new skin-tone emojis. The one that's suppose to represent Asian skin-color is simply too yellow. We are NOT THAT YELLOW. Heck, I'm can be so pale at times that I'm a lighter shade that a few of my white friends. If my friends use that particular emoji when texting, I'm going to assume they've got jaundice and they need me to take them to the emergency room immediately. 

8. It's taken over a decade, but Bugatti has finally sold it's final copy of the Veyron hypercar. 450 cars in all, each carrying the hefty price of well over a million dollars. 

In contrast, it probably took Ferrari less than a month to sell out all 499 copes of its LaFerrari hypercar, each, like the Veyron, also costs around a million dollars. And buyers don't even call Ferrari to purchase one; Ferrari will contact you if it deems you qualified.

The power of the Ferrari brand. They truly are the automotive equivalent of Apple. 

9. The Oscars may have run a bit long, and NPH was out of its elements as a host (he's not one for comedy, I'm sorry), but the speeches salvaged the show. Patty Arquette's rousing speech for women's pay, John Legend and Common's passion for equal justice, Graham Moore's succinct "stay weird, stay different" rally cry, Alejandro Iñárritu's plea for fair treatment of undocumented immigrants, and Meryl Streep's heartfelt introduction to the In Memoriam segment. Those were all spectacular proses, and highlights of an otherwise dull award evening. 

10. Finally, Mayweather will fight Pacquiao on May 2nd, and I'm very much looking forward to it. It's our generation's Ali v. Frazier, one I'm definitely not going to miss out on as a sports fan. It will be the first instance that I'll be paying good money for a pay-per-view event.