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Friday, October 13, 2017

Taiwan's Football Revolution is BOOOOOM!

Taiwan Defeat Bahrain



Taiwan managed to put in an astonishing performance in Gary White’s first competitive fixture as Taiwan manager.
From the first whistle they were all up in Bahrain’s shit, while Bahrain looked like they were expecting another cake walk. Unfortunately on one of Bahrain’s forays up the into Taiwan’s half early in the game their attacker went at the Taiwan defence, done the left back like a kipper then realized he was never making a pass, or a shot from the angle he found himself in. So he did what most footballers do in the 21st century and threw himself to the ground rolling around like he'd smashed in the back with a brick for a pen. Scabby, scabby indeed. It got tucked into the corner, the keeper – who was bloody excellent all night and apparently not picked in the past because he is a mad bastard – got very, very close to keeping it out.
At that point we assumed it would be game over for Taiwan as is the norm for the national team. Taiwan battled like men possessed in the first half to make sure they wouldn’t concede anymore. They achieved that aim and got to half time only 1-0 down. Heads did go down for a while like usual, but amazingly they didn't let in goal, after goal, after goal.
New manager Gary White must of said something mesmerizing at half time because Taiwan came out even more determined than in the first half, and went on the attack throughout the whole second half. Even though they were piling on the pressure they didn’t seem to be getting enough men in the box to attack the final ball, and it looked like father time was going to dish out a brave and gallant defeat which Taiwan are masters of.
We entered the last 5 minutes of play and you could tell people were really proud of how much the team were battling, and felt proud - but sad for the team...then

BOOM! GOAL! 1 BASTARD 1!

No one saw that coming, the stadium went batshit and we went batshit, all around was absolute batshit.
At this point your thinking just keep it tight and take the draw, but Taiwan kept throwing bodies forward. It was kitchen sink time. We’re thinking god just see it out for a draw will you, don’t mess up like usual………

BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM!

2 BASTARD 1, IT’S 2 BASTARD 1!!!!

EUPHORIA!

A winner, a bloody winner! Taiwan managed to hold and win, and the whole stadium went batshit! More batshit than the equaliser.
Taiwan football needed that, it needed a big win, and it needed excitement!
Taiwan’s football revolution is here, and the sight of Gary White with the ultras' megaphone thanking them all for coming out only created more of a buzz!
The Stinky Tofu Bowl Revolution marches on, next month Turkmenistan, and then the World!
(Photos Credits - CTFA and ELEVEN Sports)

Is Living in Taipei City All it's Cracked Up To Be?

I lived in Taipei for 7 years.  Is it all it’s cracked up to be?


Yep the first couple of years were enjoyable…that’s granted but suddenly and slowly I started to realise is it all it’s cracked up to be? Living in the middle of a massive city.
Obviously to begin with it’s quite exciting, and when I say it’s a big city I am not saying it’s a mega city like Beijing, Tokyo, Jakarta, Seoul, or Shanghai etc. With the thoughts, feelings and questions raging in my noggin; here is what drove me to leave Taipei City for somewhere in New Taipei City that is not an extension of Taipei City like Banqiao etc.
Why would you? It’s so far? There’s nothing there! It’ll be shit compared to Taipei, Where will you eat? What will you do? God travel for 15 whole minutes, on an actual train and not an MRT you peasant!
Well I got sick of queuing for everything, crowds of people – people are still here just less of them, always rushing everywhere or being in a hurry to get somewhere or nowhere, overpaying for rent, renting a tiny box that doubles up as a bedroom – living room and kitchen, sick of city living, too much traffic, too much pollution, sick of annoying bastard neighbours, fresh off the boat hipsters constantly telling me stuff I already knew, sick of eye-spying neighbours; that will never stop, so re-entered the neighbours lottery, ‘better’ being the optimum word not ‘excellent’ or ‘wonderful’, rats that no one believed were there, reoccurring rat issues that no one was gonna deal with by still believing they weren’t there, cockroaches – endless amounts: flying ones, fat ones, small ones, baby ones, thins ones dead ones, flying out the moon door ones – if anyone got a dead roach bounced of their bonce I apologise, apartment problems, faulty pipes, faulty drainage, holes in the windows, the fake patio which should have been labelled crappio, never catching the bin man, a leaking washing machine, so then I left.
I moved to a small place in New Taipei City where the air is still shit, there’s lots of foreigners, the foreigners aren’t the desired type – yes they’re not white, it’s still close to Taipei City regardless of locals and people thinking their local telling you it’s miles away because it doesn’t have an MRT. Things are a smidgen cheaper, people are friendly and unfriendly in equal measure as they were in Taipei, the commute is longer because getting to Neihu is tragic, Neihu is a bastard to get to in the morning and it doesn’t discriminate against you regardless where you come from. The evenings are quieter unless there’s firecrackers or young wrong uns on scooters acting like you couldn’t batter them occasionally riding round like gangsters on scooters honking horns at stupid hours, quieter is the norm however, food is more local and harder to understand, old codgers are harder to understand because of their preference for using Taiwanese – sometimes it’s clearly intentional, parking is shitter but on the flipside anywhere is a parking space which isn’t dissimilar to anywhere being a parking space in Taipei until the end of the year is coming and the police realise they don’t have enough tickets to make their bonus’. Coffee shops are generally less busy unless it’s an evening or a weekend when every coffee shop in Taiwan is occupied by people studying or sleeping but not buying coffee. There’s equal number of night markets nearby – that’s two one new and one old but bigger in size which is grand if that’s your bag. The mountain is close, the mountain can be close in Taipei, but I have a mountain close without the added cost of ‘having a mountain close’.  The restaurants are more local, the people are more local too, there’s no pubs or clubs, hence the quietness. The night market is a traditional market, and the traditional market is a night market – which is obviously dictated by the time you’re stood there, there’s a smaller traditional market too, that one lives downstairs, for every night market there’s a traditional market too, Factories, more factories but not in my part. A railway station – close not far, a railway track splitting the town in two. One side is busy and the other is not, my side is the other. A park is close, it’s small and heavily populated especially in the mornings when the codgers take over, has a sexy new swimming pool that I can occasionally get to, it’s the only sexy new swimming pool so oddly you have to queue on weekends. A pool also lives in a temple on the mountain – that one is rank minging, more and more weirdos and stray dogs for normal people, equal numbers of weirdos and stray dogs for a weirdo magnet like me. More breakfast shops in closer proximity, you could go to a new breakfast shop every day of the week and not end them all in a month, the invention of the breakfast crawl, shitter than a pub crawl with way more beef!
So to answer the question – Is Taipei all it’s cracked up to be? Well that obviously depends on the person asking the question innit!?
I am happy in the out crowd. Peace out shitheads!

www.taipeimagpies.tw

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

OOh Cha Cha - Vegan and Gluten Free Food in Taipei

OOh Cha Cha - Vegan and Gluten Free Food in Taipei

Ooh Cha Cha - Vegan Food

Address - 台北市南昌路二段207號. No. 207, Section 2, Nanchang Rd, Zhongzheng District, Taipei City, 100.
Opening hours - 10:00 - 21:00 (Monday - Sunday)
Price - 150up.
Phone - 02 2367 7133
Website - Ooh cha cha
Facebook Page - Ooh Cha Cha Facebook Page


One day after work my scooter was screaming...GET SOME PETROL!  Obviously I headed straight to the petrol station.  It took me past the trendy, hipster, Vegan Restaurant Ohh Cha Cha.  I had been to this place before and really didn't like it, but for some reason I decided to stop and give it another chance. If your not a Vegetarian or used to going to places that make hip and trendy menus, then you could be quite confused. 
This time round I ordered the rabbit leaves, in a bowl with some ginger and kimchi, as well as a cup of Oolong tea. Before ordering I didn't realise the ginger was going to be some kind of square block on the plate.  It looked and seemed a little odd but it actually tasted great.  The flavour was a bit weird at first, but grew on me as I ate more.  Then when I ran out of little ginger blocks I was disappointed they were gone. As for the tea, the mug they put it in is like a mug for giants.  I reckon ordering a tea here is worth it, due to the size of the mug. Even though you cannot refil as they don't plop a teabag in it or any tea leaves.  I guess they don't want you sat there all night as they've only got a small space with a handful of tables. 
I am the first to confess that I am no expert on hipster-vegan food, but I did really enjoy those gigner blocks. I would really highly recommend trying the ginger and kimchi. On the menu it's called a Beet Ball Bowl, if you do go to check it out, they're weirdly fascinating and taste intriguingly good.
As I wasn't finished my cup of tea, I decided that I should treat myself to a cake for eating healthy.  Which kind of defeats the point I guess.  The cake I ordered was a raw cheesecake apparently. I didn't even know cheesecakes came raw, so I had a google search and it seems it has no cheese at all. It's made from almonds. It was odd that it was almonds and not cheese because it tasted like cheese, which I suppose was the objective of making a vegan cheesecake. To taste like cheese.


A lot of their food is gluten free, which will be really good for my mother when she comes back, as she has a gluten intolerance and most food in Taiwan has gluten in it. This place is a godsend for those folk with the same problem as she has I assume.
It is located right next to Guting Station at exit no.2 and is very easy to find.  Enjoy.
- See more at: http://www.taipeimagpies.tw/news/item/news/ooh-cha-cha-vegan-food#sthash.vwJqzOjL.dpuf

Monday, February 6, 2017

Pre Season has Been Hit and Miss

Pre Season has Been Hit and Miss

With the new OTPL season fast approaching our preperation hasn't been the best so far if I'm being honest. We have only managed to play one friendly since last season vs Shane and even then we ended up putting out a mixed bag of a team, combined of ex players living in other parts of Taiwan, newbies who haven't played before, old players, and random mates.  This only managed to get the number up to 12 players for the game meaning we were justified in only playing 1 friendly due to so many people taking a holiday.
The friendly ended 4-4 which was a pretty fair result.  The first half we were very good but the team got tired in the second half and we were completely overrun by Shane at times with a lack of options from the bench. 4-4 was a fair result, even though I read on their report that it ended 4-3 to them and our last goal was after the final whistle.  
We didn't play anymore friendlies because the Chinese New year was early.  So we had a break due to Christmas and the New year, then after another couple of weeks it was the Chinese New Year holiday. There was also a pre season tournament involving some teams from the league but we couldn't muster up a squad to play in the two day competition.  So we had to give that a miss also. 
On top of not playing any friendlies, we also lost our kick about pitch due to Fujen University rebuilding the stand for the Universadite Games. This has meant we haven't got to practice so much since the end of the season. 
Fortunately we found a new training pitch at Taipei European School on Yangmingshan Mountain. Unfortunately the new training sessions have also been interrupted due to the holidays.  
The last bit of news we could of done without was our goalkeeper telling us he wanted to play outfield.  After we refused he informed us that he would be joining another team so he didn't have to play in goal.  This has left us a week from the opening of the league with no keeeper, which is never a good thing. 
With all these issues and problems going on before we start the season, we have still been working hard behind the scenes to try and keep our training sessions going and recruit new players.  So far it has been hit and miss but we will be entering the new season with the same grit and determination we finished the last as we look to again finish no lower than top 6, with a target on top 4.
Keep on, Keeping on lads! 
- See more at: http://www.taipeimagpies.tw/news/item/news/new-otpl-season-2017#sthash.BJOKdL1i.dpuf

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Goalkeeper Needed

Goalkeeper Needed


With the new season just around the corner our only goalkeeper decided he didn't want to be a keeper anymore.  With him being the only keeper we have, and good in goal we refused and told him we really want and need him to be the keeper.  
Unfortunately he had already made up his mind, and decided he didn't want to be between the sticks this season, so has left to join an unknown team and will supposedly be playing outfield.
This leaves us searching for a keeper with only a week until the new season.  If anyone is interested in playing for us in goal.  Please get in touch as soon as possible! 
- See more at: http://www.taipeimagpies.tw/news/item/news/goalkeeper-needed#sthash.GibGQH1r.dpuf

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

艾茉蕾披薩店 - Amore Pizzeria

艾茉蕾披薩店 - Amore Pizzeria

Address - 羅斯福路四段140號.  No. 140, Section 4, Roosevelt Rd, Zhongzheng District, Taipei City, 100.  (Near Gongguan Station)
Opening hours - 11:00 - 22:00 (All Week)
Price - 99 up.
Phone - 02 2362 0808
Facebook page - Amore Pizza
The first I heard of Amore Pizza was in a newspaper article in Taipei Times.  They claimed despite Amore Pizza's shabby old looking brown interior this was one of the finest pizza establisments in town.  The Mrs. quickly looked it up and found out that it was located behind NTU close to the back gate.  This was a bit of a tricky spot to find.  When we eventually found it, it wasn't hard to miss the drab shades of brown that Taipei Times spoke of. 
I don't remember what we first had when we went there, but I am certain it was most likely pepperoni.  If a pizza place does bad peperoni then clearly they're not worth visiting again.  Luckily for Amore Pizza or some would say unluckily the pizza I ate that day was enough to keep me going back.
Amore Pizza, Salad, Gonguan, Taipei, Taiwan
Then suddenly one day we decided we wanted to eat a decent pizza and Amore Pizza was gone.  We hopped on the scooter and looked around incase for some odd reason we were looking in the wrong place, but it really was gone and we weren't going clinically insane.  
At this point I did think it was gone forever, and was rather disappointed because like most people I do love to have a decent pizza from time to time.  Apart from the usual suspects of Pizza Hut and the other cheap take away pizzas there really wasnt / isn't that much choice in Taipei.  
soup, amore pizza, taipei, taiwan, gonguan
Then one day from nowhere, out of the blue my Mrs. said, "Amore Pizza is open again".  It didn't close it just moved.  "HMMMM, Moved?" I said with some kind of sinister gleee that I would again be chomping on that good ole pizza of theirs...but where was it? 
Turns out it had a new location between Zhongxiao Dunhua, and Zhongxiao Fuxing.  This new location was as awkward to find as the previous one.  Jammed in the middle of two busy MRT Stations, but hidden away down the back lane like some sexy pizza gem that would make Pinky and Brain give up their conquest on conquering the world and wet their pants with excitement.
The other news was, the inside looked identical to the last one.  All that drab brown was there too, but who cares when good pizza is the order of the day eh?  You could look at those drab brown walls all day.  As long as they kept serving sexy tasting pizza.
pizza, amore pizza, gonguan, taipei, taiwan
THEN NO!!!! WHAT THE HELL!!!!!  It happened again.  It was gone, it was no longer hidden in the little back lane.  It was closed and gone!  And we were back to eating Pizza Hut.  We felt pizzerless which was the equivalent to a husband who's wife has ran off and left him for the 20 stone butch lesbian.  It's depressing...maybe not that drastic but you get the point, every city needs a good pizza place with a reasonable price. 
Never fear however!  My Mrs. came and saved the day again like she is the batman of the pizza world or some random shit like that.  She again informed me that Amore Pizza had upped and moved.  Again! This time it relocated to Gonguan.  It was lke Amore Pizza was trying to get rid of me and didn't want me to be a regular anymore.  
I was very pleased it was still alive, breathing and serving that goddamn sexy pizza.  This time they seem to have left the brown behind too and went for bright yellow.  This seems to be the best location of all three they've had.  However the secret is firmly out the bag this time, and the bright yellow decor is screaming, "SEXY PIZZA IS HERE BITCHES." Unlike indie music hipsters I don't mind the secret being out and I keep returning for more.  
They serve all types of pizza and pasta, including pizzas for one person.  I by far prefer the sausage and pepperoni.  The Mr's likes to get meatball pasta, I do believe she only gets the meatball pasta so I can help eat the salad and bread, which comes together with the pasta order.
meatball pasta, amore pizza, gonguan, taipei, taiwan
All in all if your looking for somewhere to eat pizza, that won't break the bank like some of the other 'trendy' looking places around Taipei you wont be going wrong heading to Amore.  I can assure you, it's even better than a lot of the so called trendier ones too.  Enjoy...Today Pizza!  Tomorrow the World!
- See more at: http://www.taipeimagpies.tw/news/item/news/amore-pizzeria#sthash.MSTUITYo.dpuf

Monday, January 30, 2017

National Revolutionary Martyrs' Shrine, Taipei

National Revolutionary Martyrs' Shrine, Taipei

Address - No. 139, Beian Road, Zhongshan District, Taipei City, 104
So before I begin with this blog, let me point out one thing quickly.  I don't think this place is worth visiting on it's own.  That's unless your mad into this kind of history then you might like just paying a visit here without going somewhere else too. If your not that mental about history I would advise you to see this as well as other tourist places in the area like; the National Palace Museum, Shilin Night Market and Yangming Shan. 
Anyway I have known about this place for donkeys, practically since the day I arrived in Taiwan and had a google of what to see in Taipei.  For some reason or another I have never got round to having a bit of a peek at it.  
Due to my failed attempt to go to the hot springs due to it being the most crowded place I have seen in Taipei since the Chinese New Year holiday started, it give me the chance to eventually pop in here on the way back.
There was a massive lack of parking spaces.  We managed to find about 6 scooter spots in total about 10 minutes walk down the road from the entrance to the square, and that was it.  There were no car parking spots, and cars were just sat outside the entrance.  
We managed to get to the Shrine at a good time as they were in the process of changing the guard.  I managed to barge my way through the other tourists to get into a good snapping spot.  It's odd when they change the guard here, your not behind a fence like in London, there is just a little red ribbon.  There was a bit of novelty added to it all as some other bloke came out and corrected the guards uniforms for them when they eventually stood up on the little podium.  I thought it's probably a good job he didn't have a wedgie.  When their routine was finished we decided to go and have a nosey around the rest of the place.
changing of the guard, Taiwan, Taipei
As you walk through the entrance you enter onto a big square that is reminiscent of Chaing Kai Chek Memorial Hall without the Theatre and the Concert Hall.  Once you walk through the main square you arrive at another entrance.  This entrance is shaped and designed more like how a temple would look.  Inside this area there is a smaller square, and it has a big shrine area which is blocked off and guarded.  
National Revolutionary Martyrs' Shrine, Taipei, Taiwan
At the left of this area, there is another room with plaques.  On the plaques it looks like they have all the martyr's names who died fighting to create the Republic of China, if your not reading this in Taiwan and don't know the Republic of China and the People's Republic of China are not the same country.  The ROC equals Taiwan, and the PRC equals China, no matter what your told by Chinese media about them owning everything from their new man made islands to Haiwai...it's just not true.  Taiwan is an indpendent country.
Around the place, there were some small signs explaining different things like how the Canton Uprising was the Catalyst for the Republic of China being born. 
National Revolutionary Martyrs' Shrine, Taipei, Taiwan
The Shrine was generally interesting and good to see, but on the downside there wasn't much information around telling you about the history of the place.  This is why I would only plan a trip there coupled with a visit to the National Palace Museum (at the very least) which is close by. 
- See more at: http://www.taipeimagpies.tw/news/item/news/national-revolutionary-martyrs-shrine#sthash.HxXdw0Ll.dpuf