Six Degrees of Separation

Yeah…  I’m avoiding doing my German homework again by writing another blog post.  Tee-hee-hee…

I guess the joke’s on me though, because my German still sucks.  :O

Anyway, I’m just going write this post and then will focus on studying German again.  I promise.  Ok, well…  maybe tomorrow.  But I will definitely get to die Deutsch lernen by the end of this week.

So…  last week I was having lunch with my coworkers when one of them mentioned that she had watched Fast & Furious 6 over the weekend.

“Did you know that the director’s my cousin’s cousin?” I mentioned to the group.  “Yeah, the director is Justin Lin, and I’m distantly related to him by marriage–not by blood though.”  

Of course, that prompted my other coworker to say that she wanted an introduction so she could become a famous movie star.  Didn’t I wish for the exact same thing when I found out, too.  But I’m sure he has no clue who I am, and that ship has long since sailed.

The whole thing started several years ago when my aunt and some other relatives from Taiwan were visiting Los Angeles, and my mother accompanied them to Universal Studios to do the whole touristy thing.  That evening after she came home, she mentioned how nice it was that my cousin was a director and got them all V.I.P. passes so they didn’t have to wait in any lines all day.

“Director of what?”  I asked.  I was thinking to myself, Director of Marketing or Finance or something like that.  My mother replied, “He’s a movie director. Say what??  I have a cousin who’s a movie director?!?!  Why didn’t I know this when I was younger?!  Argh…  he could have made me a movie star!!  Haha…  yeah, right…

My mother then went on to explain that I’ve met him before when we were little and he came over to our house with his parents.  Uhh…  I don’t think it’s fair to expect me to remember anything in my life before age five.  :O

So I looked him up on the internet, because obviously I’d never heard of this guy before.  After speaking to my childhood friend about him, it turned out that her fiancé was a big fan and let me borrow his DVD of Better Luck Tomorrow.  Hmm…  interesting stuff.  Hey, isn’t that guy Harold from Harold & Kumar?  LOL.

Anyway, life went on, I still never saw Justin again, he went on to direct bigger and bigger films, I eventually moved to Switzerland, yada yada yada…  and I kind of put him out of my mind except when his name would occasionally pop up for an interesting bit of trivia (oh, did you know I’m distantly related to him?)

For the record, our relationship (or the lack thereof) is as follows:  Justin is my mother’s sister’s husband’s nephew.  So that means we have no blood relation and are only distantly connected by marriage.  So in fact, I guess we are not even related, because technically he is my cousin’s cousin.  I’m sure there is a formal Chinese term for that somehow, but to keep things simple, everyone who is even remotely connected to me is just called “auntie“, “uncle“, “brother“, or “sister” in Chinese.  😛

This kind of got me thinking of the six degrees of separation.  Perhaps it’s not so uncommon to be linked to someone famous.  I mean, if I think about it, who else do I know that is relatively famous?  How about Kalpen Modi, whom I used to work with at UCLA Office of Residential Life (ORL)?   We used to both be Program Assistants (PAs) at Rieber Hall, organizing programs and events for all the students in our dormitory.  I think there must still be a snapshot in my parents’ house somewhere of all of us at Ed Debevic’s in our pajamas because it gave us a discount on our food.  I actually remembering having to borrow some nice, satin PJs from my roomie that night because I didn’t have any proper ones to wear to dinner.  Ah…  the good ol’ college days…

Kalpen since came to be known by his acting name of Kal Penn and went on to fame as Harold of the Harold & Kumar stoner comedy films and as Dr. Lawrence Kutner of the television program House.  He then left acting for a while and went to work for President Obama at the White House.  I have no idea what he’s up to now, but I’m pretty sure he doesn’t remember me at all and has no clue who I am.  :/

But still…  I’m remotely connected to someone famous.

My next remote connection to fame is going to be my brother’s wife’s brother.  What’s that relation to me?  Probably nothing.  Since I’m not in SoCal much, we haven’t had much interaction except for a few times hanging out at their parents’ home over Thanksgiving & Xmas a couple of years back.  I guess the last time I saw him was at my brother’s wedding last June.  (By the way–happy 1 year anniversary, J&J!  ♥)  But at least this guy knows who I am.  I’m “James’s sister“, ha!  I saw a couple samples of his work, and it looks pretty awesome.  So watch out, world!  My six degrees of separation is here to stay.  🙂

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One thought on “Six Degrees of Separation

  1. Pingback: Six Degrees of Separation – Part Deux | Step by Step

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