got a devil's haircut in my mind...
does anyone know that song? can't give eprops, but i'll give you a hug if you can guess it!
seriously, though, i wanna get my haircut. i even consulted emi about a particular cut! she's been my fashion stylist from the beginning. but it's taken forever to recover from the last one. my rainforest of hair is no longer. no more hair. now if only my armpits would do the same. ahahahhahahaa. EEW. <gracie!>
i fell for this song because of mandy. i can't believe it. but i really like it. maybe i'll learn to play it one day. maybe after i'm done with
learning to breathe
hello, good morning, how you do?
what makes your rising sun so new?
i could use a fresh beginning too
all of my regrets are nothing new
so this is the way that i say i need you
this is the way that i say i'm
learning to breathe
i'm learning to crawl
i'm finding that you and you alone
can break my fall
i'm living again, awake and alive
i'm dying to breathe in these abundant skies
hello, good mroning, how you been?
yesterday left my head kicked in
i never, never thought that
i would fall like that
never knew that i could hurt this bad
so this is the way that i say i need you
this is the way that i say i love you
this is the way that i say i'm yours <gracie!>
okay, about my trip since i don't wanna be a slacker. i'm not really good at descriptions, but i am good at making lists, just ask marisa. i think i tortured her with them. those swift kicks to the buttocks were only out of love...but those listmaking parties? pure torture. :).
1. jay is a wonderful host. although don and i snickered like five year olds about his historical tour of the hyundai corporation (did you know that the og hyundai was a construction business?), jay selected key places for us to visit to get a sense of the social, historic, and gastronomic places in seoul. he also kept us safe with rule #1: keep a copy of your passport on your person at all times. and he kept us informed with his traveling philosophy. you gotta ask him about that one.
2. the food. there was a lot of it. did you know that there are 8 different ways to prepare pork in korea? i myself tried 5 of them. :O!
3. the caffeine. if you don't know, i'm a caffeine fiend. i'll be the first to admit that i am addicted. luckily i didn't have to hold back in korea. wonderful little vending machines that go down so smooth make you ohso happy for only 25 cents! the monetary equivalent of a starbucks would be fifteen of those lovely goodies. there are also other refreshigly sweet yogurt and juice drinks too!
4. jay has wonderfully generous friends. it was truly an honor to be pampered by them. i've met so many wonderful korean nationals! all of them treated us to different types of korean food. we got to do typical seoul-itish things. one friend even lent us his apartment for our entire stay. even still, i wonder at their judgement...they all seemed to think jay was the typical american: politically concious, analytical, and incredibly intelligent. i am none of those things...hmm, i'm starting to feel like a shmuk.
5. fashion: my first day in seoul, i noticed all the women wearing the same lavender eye shadow. is this coordinated? why wasn't i informed? most women seemed to wear buttoned shirts buttoned to the top and pumps. again the feeling of shmukness.
6. chejudo. a favorite vacation spot for middleclass koreans off the southwest coast of south korea. i feel priveleged to have gone there, when so many are not as fortunate. jay generously afforded don and i one afternoon to decide what we would like to do. i randomly picked a volcano crater out of lonely planet. it turned out to be a beautiful, albeit strenuous, hike in platforms and a skirt. the views were breathtaking. i've heard it's the best view of the sunrise...if there is a next time, i'm definitely planning for that trip.
7. i love the public transportation system. stupid fart we have here in the bay area doesn't even compare.
8. the shopping: jay took us to three main open markets. one for traditional handmade things, and two opening late at night. the first night we attempted to go to the largest and oldest market in seoul, we got there at 10:30p, AN HOUR before opening. that's some crazy mad shopping. this has to be where the phrase, "shop till you drop" originated.
9. the cars are all hyundai! to accomodate all the cars, the apartment compex we were staying allowed double parking with the agreement that if you double park, you leave your emergency brake off. if you are blocking someone's car, then they can push it out of the way. amazing. can you imagine that here in the states? i wish i got a pic of that.
10. personal thoughts: while traveling, i made a note to picture myself either in korea or japan for an extended stay. don and i have talked about living abroad for so long. perhaps seoul will one day be home.
1. emi is a wonderful host. do you get the sense that there is a pattern here? but seriously, i can't believe she only kicked me once during my entire stay! though i must say i did not kick HER.
2. was so lucky to celebrate emi's birthday with her friends (fellow jets and japanese nationals). they are all so cute and clearly adore emi. but then again, who wouldn't? i also learned that they like to EAT. my kind of people.
3. emi humored me by watching japanese tv with me. i was really intrigued. we watched mtv and other music channels. some of those punk rock bands are pretty good! but those pop stars with sunglasses that try really hard to look stoned--annoying. emi said the trend now is to look like a super cute 12 year old. i dunno if i qualify anymore...maybe i should have been in japan a few years ago. i would have passed, i think!
4. went to tokyo for a shopping spree. emi's friend junko set us up in the penthouse of a really nice hotel. we almost stole the robes they gave us. and we had a nice view of the tokyo tower.
5. in tokyo, we ate at a european fusion restuarant. it was pink! i'm beginning to wonder if japanese like pink. those pinky mints sure are good. we each had a drink that left us wanting more but not the slight bit tipsy. that's right. you better believe it..
6. sticky pics. emi and i took three rounds of them cuz we couldn't quite get it right. we left our first and worst at the hotel in tokyo--the cleaning ladies were in for a real treat! even our best i kinda ruined with my scary faces. i always thought they were weird, not scary...but they turned out kind of demonic. hmm. gotta work on that smile.
7. 100 yen sushi. even i ate my fill of sushi. man.
8. buffy goodness the first night i arrived in japan. i brought over three episodes of angel and one episode of buffy for emi and her new buffy fanatic disciples. marisa was kind enuf to delete the commercials from the first episode, but happened to place the buffy after all the angel episodes--intentionally, we though and continued to curse but still watch all the stupidstupid angel episodes. we also read two buffy magazines (yes there is such a publication) cover to cover during my stay.
9. the ocean views near emi's house are beautiful. i can't believe she lives right near the ocean! we tried multiple times to see the sunset and a view of mt. fuji, but to no avail. the soothing ocean winds were enough for me, though.
10. personal thoughts: i personally found japanese culture to be a little bit rigid. but that's prolly the slacker cali girl in me talking. i am thankful that western ideas and thoughts have not completely overtaken the world and that so much of japanese culture has been maintained.
final thoughts: the timing of our traveling plans (a feat in itself) and the weather (something we could not change) really worked out well for us. someone must have been on our side. ;). while i am still suffering from jetlag, i am so thankful for this opportunity to travel with close friends. thank you jay and emi!!! <gracie!>
<5:25 PM> i just gotta report that don and jay and i are eating well. over here we got breakfast, second breakfast, noonsies, twosies, afternoon tea, supper, dinner, midnight snack, ...need i say more? don's goal is to gain 10 pounds. i don't think we'll have a problem there. <gracie!>
man, it's like a blogging frenzy i got over here. i haven't blogged like this since i first started. phew.
don and i went to the river delta tonight. it feels so good to study the bible. i really miss it. i've had these urges to just go to any study just for the sake of being able to study the bible with fellow brothers and sisters. and i've given into those urges. but it's never quite the same studying with strangers that will remain strangers. the delta seems promising! hopefully this will be a place where strangers will become family.
the bible study was on ezekiel 34:1-24. we talked about god's justice and how that is visible (or not so much) today. many good points were raised, including how sad it is that god's vision of the kingdom, where the most powerful serve the weak, is completely turned upside down in our world view today. that bad shepherding leads to injustice for the sheep, and that this angers god and he will bring justice and punishment to those shepherds. yikes. that his anger is not only reserved for shepherds, but also for sheep--fat ones anger him tons. double yikes. and also that everyone hurts from injustice as a part of the body of christ. so many lessons, in so little words, and so little time. no pretenses here. i love it.
i know some of you have been worried that i haven't found a church yet. some of you may think i'm going through some kind of phase. frankly, i have been far more worried. it's something i've been trying to figure out for a long time. and while i haven't reached conclusions of clarity that come with hindsight, i can safely say that this is not a phase. i really feel like god is leading me through this time of molding, this time of shaping. that it's in his plan. most importantly, that it is his timing. thank you to those that haven't judged me--it has not gone unnoticed nor unappreciated.
i hope the river delta will be my home. but if not, i have confidence that god has chosen one for me. <gracie!>
it's funny how modern technology is addictive. don and i just recently bought a sonic toothbrush. for two weeks, i was still getting used to it. but then i left it at sam's. and now i am crying for it everyday. i want my toothbrush back. i am seriously anxious for the day it comes back to me. i guarantee you it will be a happy day when i get it back.
today has been one of those days where seemingly everything becomes inconvenient. i left the house without my cell phone (among other things, like my brain), and i am finding myself so sorely dependent on it.
a few years ago i didn't even use the phone all that much and now i need my cell phone with me even though i'm not necessarily using it? a month ago i was using regular toothbrushes and now i can't get a feelgood clean without my electronic one? what is this? <gracie!>
for a while i have been debating whether i want to pursue us-foreign-policy-related debates (why must everything be so difficult? ;).), given my emotions and my frustrations at my own inability to think and respond quickly. but just now i had a really good debate with one of my friends, albeit over aim. perhaps it is possible to have a meaningful discussion, despite opposing opinions. but at the same time i don't appreciate bombardment of opinions, unless self-subjugated. so by all means, if we are not in agreement, don't read the following since it is largely encouraging to me and probably fuels rather than dissuades me from peacefully protesting this war and other roguestate-ish foriegn policy.
that said, onwards with some quotes i thought were interesting, or rather, encouraging and persuasive:
"a standard argument is that we had to do something: we could not simply stand by as atrocities continued. the argument is so absurd that it is rather surprising to hear it voiced. suppose you see a crime in the streets, and feel that you can't just stand by silently, so you pick up an assault rifle and kill everyone involved: criminal, victim, bystanders. are we to understand that to be the rational and moral response?"
-noam chomsky, "rogue states: the rule of force in world affairs", 2000
i am finding myself respecting this man more and more, almost in danger of pedestal-placing, despite my background in ling. ;). within the same chapter, chomsky quotes another individual:
"the pressures eroding the prohibition on the use of force are deplorable, and the arguments to legitimize the use of force in those circumstances are unpersuasive and dangerous... violations of human rights are indeed all too common, and if it were permissible to remedy them by external use of force, there would be no law to forbid the use of force by almost any state against almost any other. human rights, i believe, will have to be vindicated, and other injustices remedied, by other, peaceful means, not by opening the door to aggression and destroying the principal advance in international law: the outlawing of war and the prohibition of force."
-louis henkin, "how nations behave", 1979
and finally, but surely not leastly, from reverend martin luther king, april 4, 1967, one year exactly before his assaination: "beyond vietnam: a time to break silence" <gracie!>
i've finally come to terms with the term (haha) "chinese-american".
when asked the question, "what are you?", my first reaction is "chinese". i don't consider myself to be american because many don't consider me to be. by my appearance alone, i don't necessarily seem to fit. so in that respect, i've never really associated my identity with being american. if confronted with, "where are you from?", directed towards my heritage, i will answer with, "i was born here (to make the distinction that i am a us citizen), but my parents are from hong kong." (though my dad is orginally from canton, china.) of course if i were to return to hong kong or china it is immediately apparant that i am not chinese; i am american. which leaves me... where? or more appropriately, who?
most will adopt the hyphen, the gift? of the melting pot, that we can aspire to be in both worlds, one foot in each, or many, as the case may be. but i feel like i am not firmly standing on either ground. which leads me to freely critique the things i find faulty with this country, without taking responsibility for being american, even though i am. so if i call myself purely chinese, i should then take responsibility for the atrocities china has done in the past. but i'm not even aware of them, save for some historical background i've read pertaining to the cultural revolution, but only because it affects my family.
i don't claim responsibility for anything. and i'm beginning to see that i am so very wrong in that regard. because whether people view me as an american, or whether i see myself as an american, is inconsequential. i am american by birthright, moreso technically, by citizenship. i benefit from most opportunities given us-born citizens. i could technically run for president. i live in luxury in the silicon valley. my comfortable and gluttonous lifestyle is allowed me because people are suffering worldwide. i must take responsibility for that. the only concience-free alternative is to revoke those liberties. will i buy non-sweatshop clothes? will i give up honayhonay my car? will i give up meat? am i willing to go all the way? <gracie!>
by far, this weekend's peace march in oakland was the most inspiring, fun, ...and tiring. it was a licensed march, so the oakland pd was actually escorting us to the final destination. to reenact an anti-war (vietnam) march, some marched from sproul plaza, ucberkeley to downtown oakland civic center. we had the opportunity to march with the coalition of peoples of color starting from mosswood park, and joining the berkeley crowd later. it was so incredibly awesome. i don't even know how else to describe it. along with korean and african drumming, philippino and african american chanting, and groups of korean, chinese, vietnamese, philippino, black, and pacific islander peoples, i was overwhelmed with encouragement.
but even still, these are my sad sad sentiments. there's no escaping the fact that i march largely for my own benefit because i haven't taken any other action than to march. i am earnestly seeking a god centered place where these views would be heard, welcomingly accepted, and perhaps voiced. does one exist?
this week don and i will check out the river delta, a small group within the compassions ministries at the river. i hope and pray we will find a home, or at least encouragement.
i can't remember any really cool posters, but here are some pics from that dayf: "10,000 March In Oakland To Protest War On Iraq" 10k eprops to anyone that finds sam, part of don's bald head, or meeeeeee! ;). here's a hint, though it's nearly impossible: look for red (be the reds!), and a tall, vertical red sign with yellow triangle border. <gracie!>
man i always forget what i wanted to post.
concerning the sars virus...that plane detained in san jose from tokyo with 4 reported cases of sars this week? 3 out of the 4 were taken to santa clara valley emergency room and checked out. it turns out they were misdiagnosed. no word on the fourth person.
i am still going to korea and japan. maybe i'm too young or naive, but seriously, the only thing that concerns me is the possible detainment and quarantine. i don't got time for that.
my dad's and sister's birthdays are coming up. don and i are going to treat them to straits cafe, a singaporean restaurant. my dad's concern was that chinese people would be eating there. (and he might possibly contract sars) i assured him there probably wouldn't be any chinese people there...except me. did he mean me? :( well, and my mom and my sister. <gracie!>
i can't believe i forgot to mention this. has the time flown by so quickly? last week my warehouse bid for 4 out of 5 dmb shows came through!!!!
i'm going to the gorge going to the gorge going to the gorge going to the gorge going to the gorge going to the gorge going to the gorge going to the gorge going to the gorge going to the gorge
man i should have done this warehouse thing a whole lot earlier. saves so much time and anticipation. not to mention undue heartache for not being able to get tix after standing in line for 4 hours. i guess in this case, my lesson is: fork over the money. <gracie!>
to all my fans out there: sorry i haven't blogged in such a long time. or it seems like it to me. but it's really only been a week or so. so i guess i'm my biggest fan. ahahahahahaha.
i'm turning into ...i was gonna put "a freak show", but i have to ammend that, because i was going to follow up with, "following in gus' footsteps". oops. but i'm really liking these puns. is this the korean in me showing through? ;). i saw this box of mints for making you fresh and minty AND feel good about yourself. they were called accomplishmints. ahahahahahahaha. i was actually laffing in the store...don was edging away.
for more punnies: we have been working on publishing manuscripts for our ongoing study. for the most part, i have no idea what i'm doing. so i've entitled everything "man!", short for manuscript, of course. (as in, man.xls, man.doc) it gives me great comfort.
lately i have been having really poor communication with people, especially marisa. the other day i said, "chachangmyun"; she thought i said "calamari". yesterday i said "cookie", she asked me if i said "mochi", and don thought marisa said "smoochie". the thing is, we were all sitting at the same table, not more than 2 feet away from each other. does anyone remember the telephone game? there are countless other examples, but i can never remember them. i can't even remember if i said "cookie" in the first place. which makes me think, why bother with what the person really said in the first place? it would certainly give madlibs a run for their money. but then it would be really sad.
on another note, i honestly haven't given my wussiness much thought lately. i think i was waiting for the situation at the rape crisis center concerning the need for a spanish translator to pan out before i made a commitment. but today i discovered that i am not even certified to be a rape crisis advocate! when i first started hearing about ongoing investigations at my branch of the rcc, i felt kind of detached because i wasn't really sure what everyone was up in arms about. but now that i realize that i spent 40 hours training only to receive invalid credidation, i am outraged.
i want to say that those 40 hours were wasted. but i think that's my reaction to feeling duped and cheated. i have met so many wonderful people through this experience, and i want to continue to support my local rcc. but i'm sad to say that i won't be taking any calls or going out on any more sarts due to my status. because of my lack of valid certification, i am no longer bound by laws of confidentiality, which in sexual assault cases, could be turned against survivors. so now i'm really unsure about what to do. <gracie!>