Washington sips Taiwan tea
A Taiwanese tea ceremony was held at the Smithsonian Institution’s Freer Gallery of Art in Washington on Sunday. The event, organized by the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the US, was held along with a screening of the documentary film The Meaning of Tea, directed by Scott Chamberlin Hoyt, who visited Taiwan, Japan, India, the US and the UK to explore different tea cultures. Hoyt and his team visited Taiwanese tea farms and interviewed a Taiwanese tea ceremony expert, a teapot maker and tea growers to showcase Taiwan’s tea culture. Hoyt said he became curious about the origin of Taiwanese oolong tea after tasting some in the US. “Attending a tea ceremony can purify the human spirit,” Lin Ku-fang (林谷芳), a tea ceremony expert, said in the documentary.
Free jazz festival coming
Music fans will be treated to free concerts and performances by top artists from around the world this summer during the country’s biggest annual jazz bash, the “Summer Jazz” festival, the organizer said yesterday. The festival, to be held for the ninth year, will begin in August and will feature two free outdoor concerts and performances by Grammy Award winners Michel Camilo, Terence Blanchard, Ramsey Lewis and jazz band Yellow Jackets, the National Chang Kai-shek Cultural Center said. Daniel Shen (沈鴻元), a DJ who has introduced artists to festival audiences for years, said the four musicians represent four types of jazz music — Latin, contemporary, conventional and fusion — an ideal mix. The three-hour outdoor concerts on Aug. 19 and Aug. 20 will feature local artists as well as Japanese star Saori Sano and US jazz trumpeter Michael Philip Mossman. The festival runs through Sept. 9 at the National Concert Hall.
No ‘SlutWalk’ for Taiwan
Taiwanese women’s groups have no plans to organize a “SlutWalk” movement along the lines of international protests to combat the misapprehension that women’s appearances might explain or excuse sex crimes against them, local groups said yesterday. Even though local women’s rights groups are in favor of the global phenomenon and agree with the premise, there will be no such movement in Taiwan in the next few months. “We’re very much aligned with this appeal,” Taipei Women’s Rescue Foundation executive director Kang Shu-hua (康淑華) said. “We firmly believe that a woman’s appearance should not make her subject to victimization.” However, after discussing the issue with other foundation members, Kang said that she regretted that the foundation would not be able to hold a “SlutWalk” because there were not enough staff members to hold the walk.
German bean sprouts banned
The government yesterday announced that imports of bean sprouts from Germany would be suspended, effective today. Bean sprouts grown in Germany have been blamed for the world’s worst-ever E. coli outbreak, which has caused more than 35 deaths and has infected more than 3,000 people, international media reports have said. The Department of Health said the measure was taken merely as a precaution, as German bean sprouts have not been imported into Taiwan for the last two years. The department’s Food and Drug Administration said the import ban would cover both mung bean sprouts and soy bean sprouts.
Food delivery provider Foodpanda had 564 consumer disputes from January to last month and failed to attend many mediation sessions with local governments nationwide, the Executive Yuan’s Consumer Protection Committee said. In a news release earlier this month, the committee said that it investigated consumer complaints and mediations for Foodpanda and rival Uber Eats during the period, when the number of delivery orders jumped due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Uber Eats had 80 consumer disputes, the committee said. Of Foodpanda’s consumer disputes, 368 resulted from delivery drivers canceling orders after customers could not be reached, 108 were related to the quality or quantity
‘HONEYMOON’ IS OVER: A political science professor said that the Tsai administration’s popularity peaked after it successfully contained COVID-19, but is waning President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) and Premier Su Tseng-chang’s (蘇貞昌) approval ratings fell significantly this month in the wake of the government’s handling of the distribution of relief funds and stimulus coupons to people and businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, a poll released yesterday by the New Power Party (NPP) showed. The poll showed that 68 percent of respondents said they were satisfied with Tsai’s performance, down 8.9 percentage points from last month, while 21 percent said they disapproved of her performance. Her approval among respondents aged 20 to 29 fell 14.7 percentage points, the largest decrease when compared with other age
‘CHINESE CAPITAL’: Fanny Liu was found guilty of reducing the rent of a tenant in exchange for a vote for a KMT Taipei city councilor candidate The Taipei District Court on Wednesday sentenced Fanny Liu (劉樂妍), a former member of the now-disbanded female pop group Fantasy 4, to 10 years in prison for vote-buying. The court found Liu — who is now based in China and has made pro-Chinese Communist Party remarks — guilty of reducing the rent on a Taipei property she owned in exchange for the tenant voting for a Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) candidate in the November 2018 nine-in-one local elections. She can appeal the ruling. Liu in December 2018 reportedly lowered the rent by NT$1,000 after the tenant said they had voted for Taipei City
Passengers arriving at Taoyuan International Airport will find that most entrances to both terminals have been sealed off as part of its COVID-19 prevention efforts. Follow the signs and directions posted on the doors to find the nearest entry point. The airport has installed infrared cameras and thermometer guns at all open entrances, and all persons with a temperature of over 37.5 degrees Celsius are prohibited from entering the terminal. In addition, staff will take the temperature of those checking in to their flights in advance at Airport MRT stations A1 and A3. In accordance with the Centers of Disease