The True Legend Behind Mulan

The True Legend Behind Mulan

The real-life warrior behind the story of Mulan sets an example for a truly strong woman.
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Fun fact: Frozen wasn’t the first Disney movie to say you don’t need a man to save you. Mulan far preceded the Arendelle sisters, and I don’t think this story gets enough attention. Sure, I may be a little biased; the movie came into the world in the same year I did, and the animator for Mushu is an artist in residence at my college. Nevertheless, the story is still greatly underappreciated.

While now appreciated in certain groups for its feminist message, Mulan actually did quite poorly in theaters. The movie was based off a poem entitled “Ballad of Mulan,” which is thought to be based off of a real female warrior. There is some debate over which exact Chinese female warrior it was, but there was one I found most intriguing. Her name was Fu Hao, and she was what we might call a total boss.

Fu Hao had a host of titles, including Lady Hao, Lady Fu Hao, Mu Xin (after she died), and Fù Hǎo. In the Shang Dynasty, which lasted from 1250 to 1192 B.C., King Wu Ding would take wives from neighboring tribes to build allegiances. Fu Hao was one of 60, but she stood out and rose through the ranks. She led many military campaigns, winning a decent amount to boot! She commanded up to 13,000 soldiers, as well as had two important generals, Zhi and Hou Gao, serving under her. She was one of the most important military leaders in her time, if not the most important. And she did all this while still being a wife and mother. Her high martial status can be seen in the sheer number of weapons that were found in her tomb. Fu Hao was also a high priestess and an oracle caster; there are many sacrificial bronze vessels and tortoise shells that have “prepared by Fu Hao” carved into them. She even had her own estate on the borders of the empire and earned the king’s confidence in her. No wonder someone made a poem about her.

In the “Ballad of Mulan,” the heroine is named Mulan. She was modified a bit for the era it was written in, so her story is not quite identical to Fu Hao’s. Basically, Hua Mulan fights in the war because her brother is too young and her father is too old. After 10 years, she denies any military honors and goes home. Her family is overjoyed to see her and her comrades finally figure out, after 12 years, that she is a girl (it took her two years to walk home). They kind of kick themselves for not noticing but don’t mind beyond that.

Between real life and the ballad, quite a few differences exist. As I said previously, this woman was a woman of the times she was written into. First off, Mulan is not a queen. Also, while there is ambiguity to whether or not Mulan hid her gender, Fu Hao’s was never a secret. I am not sure how long Fu Hao fought, but I assume that it must have been more than 10 years to gain the influence she did. Fu Hao was in a different dynasty, but since the author was writing the poem for their own time, that’s to be expected. Interestingly enough, the rulers at the time it was written were not Chinese but rather Turkish. Likely due to this ethnicity shift, the Northern Wei Dynasty is marked with political instability and intense cultural and social modifications.

Between the movie and the ballad, there are not as many differences. Instead of Hua Mulan, we have Fa Mulan. The ballad does not specifically state who Mulan is fighting, but we know from the time period and location that it was not barbaric Huns from the north. At least Disney gives a shoutout to Mulan’s little brother with her dog, Little Brother. In this movie, one could argue that Disney has actually enhanced the story with their modifications. Both Fu Hao and the original Mulan did not have to face the punishment that could come from being a woman in the army. All they had to do, which admittedly was daunting, was fight a war. Mulan of 1998 had to face a disapproving society — to the extent of death penalty in the barren snow-covered mountains. She faced that challenge and was given another noble motive of saving her father from certain death. In the emperor’s great words, “You stole your father’s armor, ran away from home, impersonated a soldier, deceived your commanding officer, dishonored the Chinese army, destroyed my palace, and you have saved us all.” Despite the costs, Mulan fought for what she believed in. Both Fa Mulan and Fu Hao are women to be admired.

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Cover Image Credit: Her Campus

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35 Major Life Facts According To Nick Miller

"All booze is good booze, unless it's weak booze."
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Fact: If you watch "New Girl," you love Nick Miller.

You can't help it. He's an adorable, lovable mess of a man and you look forward to seeing him and his shenanigans each week. While living the infamous and incomparable life of Nick Miller, and obviously Julius Pepperwood— he has learned many valuable laws of the land. And, although Nick refuses to learn anything from anyone besides his mysterious, old Asian friend Tran, he does have a few lessons he'd like to teach us.

Here are 35 facts of life according to 'Nick Milla Nick Milla':

1. Drinking keeps you healthy.

"I'm not gonna get sick. No germ can live in a body that is 65% beer."

2. Dinosaurs never existed.

"I don't believe dinosaurs existed. I've seen the science. I don't believe it."


3. A paper bag is a bank.

"A bank is just a paper bag but with fancier walls."


4. Having sex is similar to delivering mail.

"I'm like a mailman, except instead of mail it's hot sex that I deliver."

5. Moonwalking is a foolproof way to get out of any awkward situation.

Jess (about Nick): "Now he won't even talk to me. I saw him this morning and he just panic moonwalked away from me. He does that sometimes."

6. Using a movie reference is also a great way.

Cece: "Come on, get up!"

Nick: "No, I don't dance. I'm from that town in "Footloose."

7. There's no reason to wash towels.

Nick: "I don’t wash the towel. The towel washes me. Who washes a towel?"

Schmidt: "You never wash your towel?"

Nick: "What am I gonna do? Wash the shower next? Wash a bar of soap?"

8. Exes are meant to be avoided at all costs (especially if/unless they're Caroline)

"I don't deal with exes, they're part of the past. You burn them swiftly and you give their ashes to Poseidon."

9. IKEA furniture is not as intimidating as it looks.

"I'm building you the dresser. I love this stuff. It's like high-stakes LEGOs."

10. You don't need forks if you have hands.

Jess: "That's gross. Get a fork, man."

Nick: "I got two perfectly good forks at the end of my arms!"

11. Sex has a very specific definition.


"It's not sex until you put the straw in the coconut."

12. Doors are frustrating.

"I will push if I want to push! Come on! I hate doors!"

13. All booze is good booze.

"Can I get an alcohol?"

14. ...unless it's weak booze.

"Schmidt, that is melon flavored liquor! That is 4-proof! That is safe to drink while you're pregnant!"

15. Writers are like pregnant women.

Jess: "You know what that sound is? It's the sound of an empty uterus."

Nick: "I can top that easily. I'm having a hard time with my zombie novel."

Jess: "Are you really comparing a zombie novel to my ability to create life?"

Nick: "I'm a writer, Jess. We create life."

16. All bets must be honored.

"There is something serious I have to tell you about the future. The name of my first-born child needs to be Reginald VelJohnson. I lost a bet to Schmidt."

17. Adele's voice is like a combination of Fergie and Jesus.

"Adele is amazing."

18. Beyoncé is extremely trustworthy.

"I'd trust Beyoncé with my life. We be all night."

19. Fish, on the other hand, are not.


“Absolutely not. You know I don’t trust fish! They breathe water. That's crazy!"

20. Bar mitzvahs are terrifying.

Schmidt: "It's a bar mitzvah!"

Nick: "I am NOT watching a kid get circumcised!"

21. ...so are blueberries.

Jess: "So far, Nick Miller's list of fears is sharks, tap water, real relationships..."

Nick: "And blueberries."

22. Take your time with difficult decisions. Don't be rash.


Jess: "You care about your burritos more than my children, Nick?"

Nick: "You're putting me in a tough spot!"

23. Getting into shape is not easy.

"I mean, I’m not doing squats or anything. I’m trying to eat less donuts."

24. We aren't meant to talk about our feelings.

"If we needed to talk about feelings, they would be called talkings."


25. We're all a little bit too hard on ourselves.

"The enemy is the inner me."

26. Freezing your underwear is a good way to cool off.


"Trust me, I'm wearing frozen underpants right now and I feel amazing. I'm gonna grab some old underpants and put a pair into the freezer for each of you."

27. Public nudity is normal.

"Everbody has been flashed countless times."

28. Alcohol is a cure-all.


"You treat an outside wound with rubbing alcohol. You treat an inside wound with drinking alcohol."

29. Horses are aliens.

"I believe horses are from outer-space."


30. Turtles should actually be called 'shell-beavers.'

Jess: "He calls turtles 'shell-beavers."

Nick: "Well, that's what they should be called."

31. Trench coats are hot.


"This coat has clean lines and pockets that don't quit, and it has room for your hips. And, when I wear it, I feel hot to trot!"


32. Sparkles are too.

"Now, my final bit of advice, and don't get sensitive on this, but you've got to change that top it's terrible and you've got to throw sparkles on. Sparkles are in. SPARKLES ARE IN."

33. Introspection can lead to a deeper knowing of oneself.

"I'm not convinced I know how to read. I've just memorized a lot of words."


34. It's important to live in the moment.

"I know this isn't gonna end well but the middle part is gonna be awesome."


35. Drinking makes you cooler.

Jess: "Drinking to be cool, Nick? That's not a real thing."

Nick: "That's the only thing in the world I know to be true."

Cover Image Credit: Hollywood Reporter

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Who Will Take Mike McCarthy's Place?

After 13 seasons, the Packers are in the market for a new head coach.

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When the Packers fell to the Cardinals 20-17 on December 2nd, I, along with most of Packer Nation, was aghast.

These weren't the Cardinals of Bruce Arians' heyday, or even of the storied Kurt Warner era. No, these Cardinals were led by a rookie quarterback who had thrown more interceptions than touchdowns and had a completion percentage of 54%. Their head coach was equally a rookie, and had prior to arriving in Green Bay, two wins to his name.

He left Titletown with his third.

In my mind, that was the straw that broke the camel's back.

Green Bay had seen a great deal of adversity throughout the 2018 season, and some heartbreakingly close defeats. It's not unfair to ask if the Packers could have a virtually reversed record, something like 8-4, if a few more penalties and turnovers broke their way. After all, even before dropping against the Cardinals, the Packers had lost to or tied the Seahawks, Rams, and Vikings, all playoff contenders, by a combined 5 points.

But losing to an Arizona team that has nothing to play for but draft position and its own pride seemed too much to me, and apparently too much to CEO Mark Murphy too.

Within hours, Head Coach Mike McCarthy was out of a job.

And while many rejoiced, I think they fail to see that the situation is much larger than just one man.

Was McCarthy's play calling stale and his tolerance of complacency backbreaking? Yes. But he was also a good coach, finishing with an overall winning record of 0.618. That's fourth best in a franchise history that spans 100 years. And while winning percentage isn't a perfect statistic, you'd be hard-pressed to totally discount it, especially factoring in the adversity the Packers faced from other quarters.

Just as former Packers safety Damarious Randall said: "They traded away all their good players." Certainly, that argument is there to be made, and it's one that I have made. Under General Manager Ted Thompson the Packers were lax to resign guys in the secondary that had a proven track record, such as Casey Hayward or Micah Hyde. That theory of dispensability has continued to some degree under Thompson's successor, Brian Gutekunst, with the Packers trading both Randall and Pro Bowler Ha Ha Clinton-Dix this season.

What's more, schematically there were things that weren't directly McCarthy's fault, namely in the retention of defensive coordinator Dom Capers far past his prime, but ultimately came down on his head as the leader of the organization. The ironic thing is that the Packers have actually improved defensively this year under new coordinator Mike Pettine, despite the sour win-loss record. They currently rank 12th defensively overall.

All of this to say, now that Mike McCarthy is gone, and Joe Philbin is (temporarily) leading the Packers offense, things won't necessarily be all sunshine and roses. Football is a team sport and just as getting rid of Thompson wasn't going to be a silver bullet, neither will be this move with McCarthy.

Someone has to fill his shoes. Someone has to take up the mantle, and what will be most important is hiring someone who can work creatively with Aaron Rodgers and Co. to put up the points that have been sorely lacking. After all, an offense that features such talent as Rodgers, Davantae Adams, and Aaron Jones, not to mention standout tackles like David Bakhiatri and Bryan Bulaga should regularly be putting up 30 points per game, not struggling to eke out 17.

Even more to that point, the defense needs to continue to come together. Mike Pettine has the Packers' young secondary working well, but given the amount of draft capital that's been invested into that area of the team in recent years, they need to be playing at top-notch quality. It's going to take a special kind of head coach to get them there.

I don't know exactly who will be McCarthy's successor. I'm doubtful Philbin will retain the role, given his mediocre experience at the helm of the Miami Dolphins and given that he's already been tenured in Green Bay for so long. Many have spread whispers that Josh McDaniels would leave his cushy gig in New England for the Packers, though given his past failures leading the Denver Broncos and his spurning of the Indianapolis Colts not 10 months ago, I'm somewhat doubtful that he's the right choice either.

The closing of McCarthy's chapter in Green Bay, storied and classy as it was, means a whole lot of uncertainty in the months ahead. The Packers had never fired a coach midseason before. Let's hope that Murphy's doing so is an indicator that the franchise is ready to make serious, quantitative change, not backslide into a bygone time.

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