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Wednesday, April 30  
10:48 PM : : ok. this needs to be said. because i must speak for my generation at least once a month (you voted me in, you probably just don't remember). the best show on television right now. even more than the nba playoffs, or sportscenter or my lovely lana, is hands down: punk'd. if this is not the greatest show ever it's at least third behind crocodile hunter and iron chef. at least as far as initial sucking in is concerned. when you first watched suicidal steve irwin jump after crazy reptiles, you could not turn away. when you watched iron faced morimoto whip up squid ice cream, you were entranced. when you see celebrities getting messed with, you are hooked!

this is so beyond words. it's like pop culture clashing with our baser instincts. well no. that would be xtina. maybe it's more like pop culture just clashing. i love watching people get punk'd. i love the intro for the show. i even have to say, i love ashton kutcher. strike me down now zeus. but no, he is damn funny. and this show. it's hilarity with two eyes, seriously. if you don't have mtv, get some cable. if you don't have atv, get a home. if you don't have electricty. oh well. sucks to be you.

i love being a pop culture whore.

2:52 PM : : friends are but borrowed blessings. they add value to a life, but they are not the meaning and end of a life. in the same sense, those who hurt us can disrupt the rhythm of our lives for a moment, but they can’t alter what’s intrinsically there.
-just a girl-

Tuesday, April 29  
10:06 PM : : don't front. this shit is cooler than hell. for the geek, the jock, the nerd, the dork in you. it's the coolest thing since. since. i dunno. it's cool. you can move everything around and don't forget to scroll down. see the space slug man! sick. the full site is here. ridiculous. the world amazes me. i am also easily amazed. obviously. (the site is down or gone, the cool one with king kong and the buildings. shiza.)

10:18 AM : : twenty on twenty. i'm reading an old newsweek from january. about the affirmative action stuff going on at the university of michigan. michigan, being a "highly selective" public campus is a prime test case because the university relies on numerical admissions formulas, which can be obtained under the freedom of information act. while the article was interesting and informative, it also revealed to me the DDT secrets and details of the michigan admissions policy. their numerical system is probably equivalent to many of the large public schools, like the UCs, university of virginia, university of texas and most state universities. so pay attention and listen real closely how i break this down.

first off, out of a possible 150 points, 110 are for academics. that includes a possible 80 points for grades and 12 points for standardized test scores. admissions counselors then add or subtract points for the rigor of the high school (up to 10) and the difficulty of the curriculum (up to 8 for students who take the toughest courses). applicants can get up to 40 more points for such factors as residency in underrepresented states (2 pts) or michigan residency (10 pts, with a 6 point bonus for living in an underrepresented county). being from an underrepresented minority group or from a predominantly minority high school is worth 20 pts. so is being from a low-income family. the same 20 pts are rewarded to athletes. students also earn points for being related to an alumnus (up to 4 pts), writing a good personal essay (up to 3 pts), personal achievement (up to 5 pts) and participating in extracurricular activities (up to 5 pts). men in nursing can also get an extra 5 pts. admissions officials say the scale is only a guide; there's no target number that automatically determines whether a student is admitted or rejected.

the first thing that one might notice is that standardized tests are worth only twelve points. twelve freaking points! are you kidding me? the way they talk about the SATs, as the holy grail of a high school education, it should be worth more than twelve points. at least fifty. if not more. under the umich system, it's worth more to be an underrepresented minority than getting a 1600 SAT. it's worth more to be a scholarship athlete than getting a 1600 SAT. but we already knew that. it just kind of shocks me how much all the crap is worth. personal achivement, personal essay, extracurricular activities are worth a grand whopping total of thirteen points max. so all those hours you spent at key club and honors club and dork club and whatever club. those hours are worth maybe five points. maybe. and that's if you took your achievements or extracurriculars to the national level. if you were a schlep like me, you probably only got one point for extracurriculars. do you know how many lunches and afterschool meetings went into getting one measly point? shiiite.

it's better to just have a parent who went to michigan, that's an automatic four points. then you get to be a cool "legacy" student. heck, even being a male nurse is worth five points. i wonder if they retroactively take off points for being a seven year male philosopher. and look at residency, worth ten points. sixteen if you're from some way out there part of michigan. dang-o. but that doesn't shock me, because the children of taxpayers deserve to go to their home state's public university. but geez man, ten points!

most of the people i know did not choose michigan as their school of choice. it was their safety school or their back up. everyone at michigan wanted to go to some ivy league or some other top tier school. nobody has michigan as their first choice (unless you are from michigan, in which case, michigan is great). all the californians and new yorkers who end up at michigan didn't get into nyu business school, or ucla, or berkeley or stanford, ivys or whatever. if you were like me, you sent out some applications to reach schools like rice and duke and hoped they wouldn't use your transcript for toilet paper. and then you found yourself at michigan. freezing and homesick and freezing and homesick and grumbling.

so how did i get into michigan? 70 for grades, 12 for standardized tests, 10 for quality of high school (thousands of dollars wasted on private school education will buy that for you), 8 for difficulty of curriculum, 3 for essay, 3 for personal achivement, 1 for leadership and service. infinity for intangibles. a grand total of 107. another hypothetical person from michigan, with parents who went to michigan, from an underrepresented minority has 34 points before any grades or achievements are even factored in. that's kinda nuts.

why do they not tell you this kind of stuff in high school? this would have been useful in structuring my high school life. i wouldn't have wasted my time on extracurriculars and studying for standardized tests. i would have boosted my gpa to astronomical levels. actually. no. i probably wouldn't have. but still. anyway, this is still relevant to us post-undergraduates because for some public graduate schools, the same type of admissions numbers are used. so i just wanted you to know. because knowing is half the battle. or maybe less if you're applying to a public school.

Monday, April 28  
10:54 PM : : um. i was reviewed at the weblog review some time recently. thanks bluiser.

at first anachronic appears to be the weblog of your average joe. the layout does nicely, there are some links, photos, wishlists etc along the side navigation bar and the writing is lined up neatly and inoffensively on a white background. but it's when you begin to read that you realise you'll be sticking around a lot longer than you were expecting.

jon describes himself as a "philosopher, almost." so considering i stereotype all philosophers as rambling and argumentative, i found his original, to the point and often witty writing refreshing. through his posts you can often pick up his mood and thoughts at the time. topics get clumped together, such as several posts in february relating to high school. more recently jon writes about asian culture, encompassing asian-american films/movies, stereotypes and family. his sharp perceptions make for fascinating reading.

there is a simple but effective design. i've seen the same layout used in other weblogs but the colour choices work well. going through the archives you can see that jon changes his layout quite often. my favourite is headed with an image of a leafy suburb. whilst a frequently changing layout can be a sign that there is more interest in the layout than content, here it just seems to show the author's interest in his blog. overall, the current layout is nothing flash or unique, but is carried off well.

to get all philosophical, almost, everyone is fascinating and yet there are so many dull blogs out there. anachronic is an exception. in the words of rowan williams, "we can't assume that any human face we see has no divine secret to disclose." as jon shows us through anachronic, some people bring this to their weblog better than others.

2:09 PM : : no, i totally agree with you. preparation h does feel good on the hole. for the record. i detest austin powers movies. yes, i quote them alot. yes, i think they're funny at times. but mainly only because james and victor do funny impressions so i'm doing impressions of james and victor impressing mike meyers. but i do not like austin powers. he is hardly funny. some of it is funny. but a chuckle here and there doesn't translate to "liking." i'm not even gonna link to an austin powers site. whoa. rebel me. rebel you.

on the whole, i don't like quote unquote stupid movies. geez, i just did quote unquote typed out, cool. aniwaise. stuff like american pie, dude where's my car, it's over there, turn around, you're retarded, dumb and dumber, something about mary, the farrelly brothers as a genre. they just have no appeal to me. once again, the type of humor that attracts me are not flatulate and defacate ones. not to make any judgements here. oh who am i kidding. i'm judgemental. i think all those movies are drivel. mindless crap for the mass audiences of america. sucking up your nine dollars and seventy five cents for an hour and a half of long hard tubes and sea men. they're not films. they're only movies. it's just entertainment and pop culture. there is nothing redeeming about them whatsoever. when i pay money to watch movies i demand sarcasm, wit and tongue in cheek. or i demand make believe super heroes trussed up in tight black leather.

i am not against the people who watch these movies. just against the movies themselves. i realize that these movies exist to make money. so i will not complain. i realize people enjoy these movies, so i will not hate. but dang man. don't like these movies.

however, i am afraid that the longer i use austin powers' quotes, the less immune i will be to his humor. then i will one day, in the near future, be espousing the hilarity of austin powers and his cronies. that's like my greatest fear. oh lord. shoot me now. that's so un-pc nowadays. oh lord. bomb me now. oops. oh lord. give me a super contagious death dealing virus spreading like wildfire in the country of my factory. now.

Sunday, April 27  
10:43 AM : : my weekend. as told through prismatic prism of tom hanks movies. to make a "what i did this weekend" blog a little more palatable. or just because i'm bored and have lots of free time.

1. splash - went up to scripps college on friday night to take a peek at mary's senior art show. having never been to a real art exhibition, i was looking for some culture. what i found was free wine, lots of interesting looking people and some very cool art pieces. ranging from multimedia displays to giant sticks of steel wool. i have to say, as much as i can pretend to "appreciate" art, some things i just don't get. reading the little placards on the wall helps, to get an idea of what the artist was thinking, but sometimes it's like "whut?" however, mary's piece was quite extraordinary. for many reasons. and she dressed to match her painting. in a vibrant pink and green sash ensemble.
2. that thing you do - it's true what they say in swingers, all the good bars in hollywood are in the butt fuck of nowhere. hollywood canteen was definitely in the butt fuck of nowhere but it was free, had no dress code, and contained nancy, visiting from new york. a combination lounge, restaurant, bar, hollywood canteen was actually pretty cool. i had a pretty good time dancing away and enjoyed some coronas courtesy of susan and her purse. yes, i'm a loser. i'm poor. i scrounge drinks off females. i'm going to bachelor hell. i know all this.
3. catch me if you can - we had to milk james of all his nfl benefits before he leaves so we got up way too early on saturday to attend the nfl quarterback challenge. we were vip man. that's how we roll. all the time. very important person. that's me. admittedly, not quite important enough to get into the food tent but that's what james' employee pass was for. getting unlimited free food is so damn good. combine that with watching quarterbacks throw gorgeous spirals one after the other and i was pretty content. some of the players were smaller than i anticipated (most of the wide receivers were little, and jeff garcia was tiny). some of them were way bigger (brad johnson has thighs like hams and jerry porter is way too big to be that fast). saw tom brady, who i think graduated from michigan my year so i felt a special kind of kinship and tried to give him a school spirited "go blue." he ignored me. we also saw orlando "the seven up guy" jones and traci "i have huge breasts" bingham. but i didn't know who m(r)s bingham was until we researched it later. i'm a big supporter of higher education as a means towards expanding the mind. i got my stuff autographed by the great warren moon. and by stuff i mean my vip pass. sickos. james was using his height advantage to reach over little boys and girls trying to get autographs. we, his adoring fan base, cheered him on. here's to being taller than your average ten year old. go james! we also were clued in to the "alpha male hand clasp butt slap" thing. i'll show you later. oh behave!
4. joe versus the volcano - a ghetto barbeque is defined thusly. starting at sundown, grilling with an electric grill. running out of power eighty percent into the bbq, at which point we moved to gaga's porch and set up camp there. we didn't have a sausage party (however, the ratio was like a bazillion to four) but we had kalbi. and some noodles. inspired by witnessing pro quarterbacks a few hours earlier, we tried to pretend we could be quarterbacks too. running around on grass is good for the soul. not so good for white sweatshirts. also, a nerdy barbeque is accomplished by pre-numbering plastic cups and having a package of floss at the ready. we are like so crazy man, living on the edge of preventing permanent dental damage. don't try this stuff at home.
5. league of their own - after the bbq, we played manly games of basketball in the backyard. with poor lighting, little water puddles and lots of grunting and sweating. sounds delectable doesn't it? there was a lot of trash talking, as usual. i believe trash talking is pretty much the best part of getting a bunch of guys together (on a tangent, girls should trash talk more, it's edifying). it's fun to scream and holler and make fun of people. especially if you're winning. there was some "hippo," some bump out, some one on one, some two on two. some hacking and wheezing. some plans to play again. btw, do not get in front of babbs when he drives. it's not a game when he drives.
6. big - james pulled out a keyboard and had an impromptu concert with gene and victor. there are really no explanations needed for this one. impromptu concerts are fun. especially if gene is high. or maybe he wasn't high. he was just gene. and apparently, the only song i really know on the piano (heart and soul) is in the "top five most annoying songs ever, as played by asian kids." what does that say about me?
7. the green mile - the celtics win, go up three to one on the pacers. go green.
8. road to perdition - the lakers also win, evening their series and staving off likely elimination. dammit.
9. bonfire of the vanities - watched better luck tomorrow finally. was better and worse than i thought. worth watching though, if only to have experienced slight scrawny asians gracing the big screen. i have so many spoof ideas in my head. if only i could be paid to make spoofs. then i would be rich. if only i could be paid to do nothing. then i would be rich. if only i could be paid.
10. bosom buddies - what happens when guys sit around a table and talk? what do they talk about? yes, you guessed it. technical specifications of cameras and their accessories. oh yes. titillating stuff. but that's how we like our conversations. detail orientated and informative. and oh, there was some talk about relationships and girls too. but all that will dribble in one ear and come out our mouths in a confused fashion. there is a new and improved "stock" system instead of the more generic "points" system. we are not shallow. we are just innovative.
11. apollo thirteen - still living at the pimp pad. the place where dreams come to die. the nexus of fun. where winners hang out on saturday (and friday and every other day) nites. i'm hoping to go home soon although i've enjoyed my stay at the home of the edible soy dog.
12. forrest gump - "life is like a box of chocolates." things come out of the blue that you never expect. which is kind of cool. friends who like friends you never woulda imagined. mulling over how two groups of friends becomes one. a little two block stroll in the afternoon sun. a friend surprising you with an "i'm getting married" announcement. text messages at three in the morning....
13. toy story - ....getting blt buttons from ces. which has inspired us to purchase a button machine. which means that we will be making cool buttons soon. yeah, i know, jealousy rages. get over it.
14. the money pit - and yes, i'm still broke. but thanks to my many creditors, i am still living. don't worry, i get paid on wednesday, and i intend to pay every penny back. so feel free to lend me money at any time. although i don't want to be that guy. that guy who always has to ask for money and so will soon be castaway from all his friends. who no longer like him because he is perpetually broke. doesn't sound like anyone we know does it?
15. you've got mail - and congratulations to all those michigan graduates of the year 2003. i remember when they were all little freshman and i was a little senior. look at them now. i have cards for you guys. but they aren't mailed or written in yet. so um. yeah. i too am a graduate of 2003 (hopefully), maybe we can look for jobs together. wow, will i soon officially become an alum? maybe then t brady will give me some love.

tom hanks was on tv everywhere we turned this weekend. so thus, tom hanks' movies were used. i'm still bored. how you doing?

Friday, April 25  
1:14 PM : : you may be a cunning linguist. but i'm a master debator. how many times do we admit we're wrong? i'm sure we don't do it that much. excuses, logic, reasoning, "other factors." we probably use all of these to our utmost advantage to avoid that most quietly spoken of phrases, "i'm wrong, you're right." na na na. it feels so good to be right doesn't it? to crush someone's ideas and theories under your totalitarian boot. everyone takes such pride in their views of the world and their perceptions.

but seriously. sometimes, people are just wrong. no gray. no fuzzy pink. just wrong. and it's tough to admit that. half of being human is coming up with ways to cope with "i'm wrong but how can i spin it to be right?" many times when we engage in debate or analysis, does anyone actually change their mind? i will never convince anyone of anything. i can only speak until my tongue turns blue and my head drops off. sometimes, people will see your point and go "i see where you're coming from but i don't agree." or my favorite "i feel you..." but then maybe we walk away going "man, is he/she/it on crack or what?" is being open minded just listening to someone and seeing their point and then staying with ours?

when was the last time someone pointed something out to you and you went, "holy cow, you are totally right. i'm so wrong! i am an angel/bastard/hypocrite." it rarely happens. we conceive our own worlds and live in them and that's the last thing we're willing to give up. the biggest thing a man can do is admit when they're wrong. i'll never do this of course. i'll go down kicking and screaming before i admit i'm wrong. i know, it's a disgrace. but that's just how i feel. you're wrong. i'm right.

i mean, how do you admit to yourself that all your world is an empty shell? all the things you've processed in the past twenty four years have been wrong? can you even unravel all the layers of deception you've created for yourself at this point? or are we headed down a straight track, loaded down with our baggage and thoughts? is it a sign of weakness to say to someone "i'm wrong, you're right." i feel like that might be painful to some people. because it would be admitting that someone has the upper hand on them. that someone knows more than them.

before we open up ourselves to growing, don't we have to open ourselves up to criticism and change?

12:26 PM : : twenty seven percent. you are a geek liaison, which means you go both ways. you can hang out with normal people or you can hang out with geeks which means you often have geeks as friends and/or have a job where you have to mediate between geeks and normal people. this is an important role and one of which you should be proud. in fact, you can make a good deal of money as a translator.

speak to me people. i speak your language.

Thursday, April 24  
6:27 PM : : junior varsity blues. so the past couple afternoons i've been slumming it with the kids, watching hong coach his tennis team. it's so funny. brings back alot of memories. all the riff raff, all the joking, the talking. the big kids picking on the little kids. checking the scores of the games. the clueless kids just there waiting to go home. all the asian dorks hanging out in a corner, talking bout warcraft and counterstrike (and you know i wanted to go talk with them). one guy was particularly loud, making fun of everyone and everyone's sister. "dude, your sister is hot, have you ever seen her naked?" he even likes to egg on his esteemed tennis coach. i admire hong's ability not to clock this particular kid over the head. that is why i am not a teacher.

i remember my junior varsity tennis days. i can't recall much of the people or the events. just the general vibe of road trips, random talking, high school boys talking about high school things. playing chess on the team bus. oh wait, maybe that was just me. the tennis kids are definitely geeks. tennis gets no love. especially if you're junior varsity to boot. so there's a camaderie built out of "we're tennis geeks, we can semi get along." and hong is the ring master of all this. telling the kids to pick up the balls, encouraging some players, discouraging nasty comments. it's really funny to watch him. in his i'm too cool to be in high school sunglasses and his snow white tennis attire. it's really enjoyable watching your friends work from a position of authority. it's really all i can do to not laugh out loud.

and while we were playing basketball with his kids, i got clocked on the noggin with a lacrosse ball. bam. just like that. i did not, contrary to popular desires, crumble in a heap of agony and pain. in fact, i was just shocked and a little surprised. but i wasn't hurt. there was no pain at all and i was just wondering what the hell happened since i didn't see anything come at me. but to my naysayers, i think you're right, my head is pretty damn thick.

10:00 AM : : this here's a jam for all the fellas,
try to do what those ladies tell us,
get shot down cuz you're over zealous.
play hard to get, females get jealous.

a girl starts walkin', guys start gawkin', sits down next to you and starts talkin'.
says she wanna dance cuz she likes to groove, so come on, fatso, and just bust a move .
you're on a mission, and you're wishin' someone could cure your lonely condition.
lookin' for love in all the wrong places, no fine girls, just ugly faces.
from frustration, first inclination, is to become a monk and leave the situation.
but every dark tunnel has a light, i hope, so don't hang yourself with a celibate rope.

in the city, ladies look pretty, guys tell jokes so they can seem witty.
tell a funny joke just to get some play, then you try to make a move and she says no way.
girls are fakin', goodness sakin', they want a man who brings home the bacon.
got no money and got no car, then you got no woman and there you are.
-young mc, bust a move-

Wednesday, April 23  
5:05 PM : : feel the power. you know that rush you get? as you look down towards a fatty jump? or the one you get right before the roller coaster takes off, ready to tear apart your entrails? or how bout that fear kicking in as you prepare to skydive off a plane? none of that does anything for me. it doesn't make me feel better afterwards, even if i've emerged safe and giddy. i'm never like "wow, let's do it again!" the adrenaline rush isn't that exciting. or actually, it is that exciting, but i'm happier having never known that adrenaline rush.

i'm not too big on confronting my fears and conquering them. i prefer to cower meekly. yes, it's a shame, it's a pussy way to handle it. oh well. i'm not willing to dive off a platform just to conquer my fears. i know some people live for this adrenaline rush. it gives them a great sense of satisfaction to extend their boundaries, to see how far they can push themselves. me? i say, "go for it big boy, i'll call the ambulance and/or hand you the water at the bottom." some people want to be able to say that they did this or that once, even if they were piss drunk with fear. but no.

i'm safe. i'm staid. i'm, how you say in layman's terms, boring. but that's what you dig about me.

Tuesday, April 22  
2:49 PM : : who is this big headed disproportionate boy?
it's james!

Monday, April 21  
11:21 PM : : snow day (or) forty four steps to our home. it's been a long time, shouldn't have left you, without a dope beat to step to. i'm back. from one of the longer weekends in recent memory. skipped a few days of work, drove a few hours here and there. and now i'm back. back to work. back to living at hong's house (my mom is back from china and is quarantining herself because she's afraid of contaminating people). back to a work week that isn't even a routine yet, because i'm always trimming the hedges off monday and friday.

we went to mammoth this weekend. an eight hour journey on friday night, followed by eight hours of boarding on saturday and sunday (i sat out sunday though) and another eight hours back on monday. the return eight hours was interrupted by a collective skipping of works, an impromptu sleepover and a shopping trip to big bear for forty percent off snow gear. but let's start at the beginning because that's where things start.

we went snowboarding. a duh. the weather was perfect. warm, sunny and cloudless. the wind kept her halitosis to herself and we barely rocked in our lift chairs. the snow was for the most part beautiful. the people were for the most part not beautiful. the times were for the all part beautiful. it's been so long since i've boarded. almost two and a half years if my calculations serve me correctly. my knee hurt. at the end of the day saturday, my knees were humming and clicking in quiet agony. but fuck that, enough whining, that goes for you too.

boarding was dope. we pounded out so many runs in that first three hours. everyone sped along and there were no laggers (except for possibly *ahem* me). lynn and nancy have just taken the titles for "best female boarder" off the shelf. they can ride people. beware. there was a mild amount of trash talking too. about how fast james might go. and then there was a mild amount of shutting up when he went very fast. there isn't much to say about the actual boarding because you either know what i'm talking about or you don't. suffice to say, it was dope. blow by blow account available at victor's.

a few highlights. or actually. the main highlight. otherwise known as "the story that will probably be most remembered from this trip, even though there were many stories and many more stupid funny moments." on sunday, the nice people of mammoth dug out a huge ninety two foot long trench in the snow and filled it with h2o. the aim was for people to bomb down the mountain and powerglide over (via ski or board) and avoid falling into the thirty two degree water. with a little bit of egging and a dinner bet on the line, james and jeff went to do us proud. at first, we were sure that nobody could ever cross ninety two feet of water. ninety two feet is long as hell man. but people started making it. naked people, people in costumes, young people, japanese chick people, they were all making it. the majority of people weren't making it but still, it could be done. i had faith in james and he came bombing down the mountain and for the most part, made it. he splashed around near the end but he made it. jeff was a little more unfortunate. he didn't quite make it. but his dunk makes for a better story. and for better pictures (mammoth). this re-telling is about three percent as exciting as watching the real thing. watching the video (james, jeff, after) is about thirty percent as exciting as the real thing. in short, you missed out. the moral of this particular story is that jeff and james are men. men ya heard? and james protected his manhood from the evil snowball throwing kids trying to peg people. he put his hands over his crotch and hunkered down. he's got jewels in there don't cha know.

there is apparently a new brand of gear that is all the rage in our mini-snowboarding circle. jeenyus. james bought a sweatshirt. jimmy bought a sweatshirt. i bought a hat and a sticker. lynn and nancy admired our gear (and bought their own non-jeenyus related items). on a related reality commerce note, i am now collecting patches. because collecting things is the second best way to waste money on useless things. i don't have a theme quite yet. i used to collect patches of all fifty states. but i lost that collection. i am going to begin anew, afresh, astart, anow. i have a woolly mammoth mammoth patch as the first in my new collection. so i suppose i could collect patches of "places i've been" but that would be dreadfully boring. or i could collect patches of "prehistoric animals riding snow gear" but i have an inkling that those might be hard to find. so i might just have to open up my collection to "cool patches that i like or people send me. *ahem*"

anyhow. i like snow. i like boarding. i like trees. i like hanging out. i like eardrum busting music on road trips. i love gooold. i like avoiding work. they should make patches for weekends like these.

Friday, April 18  
12:46 PM : : each of us inevitable
each of us limitless - each of us with his or her right upon the earth
each of us allowed the eternal purports of the earth
each of us here as divinely as any is here
-walt whitman-

freaks and geeks. a small face studded with piercings was the first thing i flipped to. i switched away from it, because i figured it was some mtv programming about some new metal band or whatever. but then i realized the face belonged to a small adolescent girl. in high school. and that she was a lesbian. and that mtv was showing school's out: the life of a gay high school in texas. i have to admit, the piercings unnerved me. the girl, angel, had piercings everywhere. between her brows, through her ears, in and around her nose, on her lips, everywhere. it was easy to dismiss her as a freak. especially when she was followed by the boy with aids, the boy growing breasts and the boy hoping to grow breasts. this was not your normal television programming.

this was mtv.

this was the hour long story of a year long journey into the lives of a handful of kids rejected by society, public schools and even families. all stuck together under one non-profit roof to get that most basic of needs, education (oh, and food and water and shelter). this is the type of programming that you watch with a grimace and look over to the next person on the couch and go "gosh, they're so fucking weird! ewww!" but then you start to get drawn into it. you see how much these kids have to put up with. the way they talk, the way they analyze, the hopelessness that they feel, the realization that they are different and outkasted. the sense of family that they promote among themselves because they are alone on a suburban island of freak and they have to band together for support.

and then you start to maybe get angry at society. because of how blind society is. not just towards gay high school students, but towards everyone. blacks, whites, asians, women, cool people, weird people, dumb people, old people, hungry people, short people, tall people, pierced people, people people. and then you start to get really angry and sad about how much of this goes on. maybe not to this extreme. but it happens. and then you start to think about the types of people that you discriminate against. and the types of people that your friends discriminate against. and the types of the people that the church discriminates against. and the types of people that discriminate other discriminators. and you end up getting angry at everyone. for a flaring hot split second, the whole world is a ball of hate, mucous, and compost. and there's not much to do about it.

and your heart goes out to these kids, who are so fucking weird, but yet, so fucking more real than you could ever hope to be. and you have to have the utmost respect for them, because they are trying to be whoever they are, even when everythiing is on the line. dress up in women's clothing, put on makeup, pierce yourself, do it all despite all the negative attention you get. that's strength. that's staying true to yourself. that's putting substance before style and function before form.

i don't think enough people do that. i know i try to accept everyone but there are some things i just can't handle. i'm down with weird and "unique." but old people freak me out. dirty skanky smelly people freak me out. disabled people freak me out. i'm sorry. i can't do anything about it. but i guess the question is, can we? can you? can anyone?

and i'm not even talking about the extremes of society. but the little differences that make up our social network. the kid that listens to weird music. the kid that walks weird, talks weird, smells weird, thinks weird. is weird. can you handle it? can differences be cool instead of unnerving? or do we ostracize because it's easier? for the most part, i'm a pretty decently normal person but i feel like i can relate to rejection. or am i just kidding myself? am i incapable of understanding because i'm usually accepted? or am i the one able to say "fuck you ostrasizer!" because i'm generally very accepting? anyway. don't hate. procreate.

Thursday, April 17  
1:00 PM : : your own personal jesus
someone to hear your prayers
someone who cares
your own personal jesus
someone to hear your prayers
someone who's there

feeling unknown
and you're all alone
flesh and bone
by the telephone
lift up the receiver
i'll make you a believer
-depeche mode, personal jesus-

the man with no sin. so do other religions (the ones that believe in jesus as a man but not necessarily savior) accept the fact that he never sinned? or was he just a sinner like rest of us? does that make him not Jesus but rather just jesus?

12:57 PM : : one fifty yo. "the figure of one fifty seems to represent the maximum number of individuals with whom we can have a genuinely social relationship, the kind of relationship that goes with knowing who they are and how they relate to us. putting it another way, it's the number of people you would not feel embarrassed about joining uninvited for a drink if you happened to bump into them at a bar."

this number seems kind of large doesn't it? one hundred and fifty people? do we even know a hundred fifty people? not just as acquaintances, but people we would perhaps call friends? this is a very interesting observation for me. because i've often thought about at what point are you too saturated with people. if this is true, the number is somewhere around one fifty. this is the limit to how many people you can be involved with at any period in life. one hundred fifty is the number at which you can remain in contact with and still call them your own personal community. or perhaps this number seems excessive because it means one whole community, and not necessarily your own personal definable sphere of community.

in order to build healthy communicative relationships, is this the number to aspire to? i feel personally that one group cannot be too big. about thirty is pushing the limit for interconnectivity and positive feedback and interaction. once you near thirty, it just starts to get too diverse and unwieldy. or maybe that's just because my experiences with large communities is about thirty interconnected people. then again, for most of the bigger culture shows, it was around one fifty to two hundred people, but that was mostly a few different groups who rarely had to interact so i'm not sure if that counts.

it's something to think about. if maybe we're hardwired by biology to accept one fifty as our natural limit.

Wednesday, April 16  
1:49 PM : : i'll tell you what your problem is... you brought your queen out too fast. what do you think, she's one of these feminists looking to get out of the house? nah, the queen is old-fashioned, likes to stay home, cook, take care of her man, make sure he feels good.
-george costanza-

1:42 PM : : how can you trust a man who wears both a belt and suspenders? man can't even trust his own pants.
-once upon a time in the west-

Tuesday, April 15  
1:02 PM : : you'll need love to light the shadows on your face. so me and victor are having an aim conversation about who guys and girls turn to in times of need. and why they turn to a specific gender. when you turn to a girl, you expect them to be good at being supportive and nurturing. they know how to make you feel better and how to say the things that are good to hear when you're down. guys in general aren't so good at that. they are more straight up and have less patience for the weepy i feel you type of comfort.

i for one, am not so good at the weepy i feel you comfort. i substitute listening for comfort and support. i can listen for quite awhile, until the rains stop in spain if necessary. but i'm not that great at just being outright supportive. because if i feel like someone is wrong, or they just need to suck it up, i tell them so. this doesn't exactly win me bonus points in the comforting friend category. and sometimes people need this, so they choose not to come to me. but i would like to imagine that they come to me for an easy ear and if necessary, some opinions and perspectives.

but i've also noticed that i'm probably more patient with girls. because maybe deep down i feel that girls need to be comforted, or that girls want to be comforted, so thus i become more comforting. but with guys, i'm just like "ok, tell me what's on ur mind, let's talk about it and resolve it." by no means are my guy friendships the typical "we both have to be unemotional tough guys" but there is a difference between how you comfort guys and how you comfort girls. plus, girls are prettier. so that helps with the patience thing.

another thing we noted was that while girls are more comforting, they are also more aware of social graces and can be catty. listening to you one minute and then disparaging you behind your back the next. that is also a reason some girls only go to guys. guys won't listen to you unless they want to. some girls feel obligated to just because. then again, some girls turn to guys because they don't have that many close and trusted girl friends. in a similar way, some guys don't have the type of guy relationships to allow for comfort and nurturing.

when i turn to someone in my times of need, i rather like it when they're straight up. when they bring the thunder and call me out on where i'm wrong. i prefer that no bullshit comfort. most of the female friends i go to give me that "man-ish" kick you in the ass to make you stronger comfort. and i love them for that. some people i suppose, want actual comfort. but my preference is for the give it to me harsh comfort. and so that's why i do it that way. because i assume that you come to me for that particular reason, knowing full well that i'm incapable or unwilling to give the weepy comfort. everyone needs both kinds of comfort, i just only do well at one of them and not the other. see, i'm not a girl. despite some popular misconceptions.

this is still an ongoing conversation. but victor's at lunch. and i don't eat lunch. so i'm blogging. which goes to prove that blogging can replace all four major food groups. so really, all i need is water and blogging to survive. although food will do in a pinch.

by the way. i love you all people. especially today. even if i don't comfort you.

Monday, April 14  
2:07 PM : : it's rainy and windy right now in san diego. and that might be kind of annoying if i weren't stuck in a windowless back room. so rain or shine, it don't make no difference to me. i think my eyeballs are about to drop out of my head. would that be bad? i noticed today that we have a security camera monitoring the office door. i wonder if it's on. or if it's just there for decoration and deterrence. don't come rob this place. we know who you are. all your base are belong to us. we have nothing for you to steal either, so it wouldn't be worth it. you can come visit though. i'm really bored. obviously.

1:56 PM : : sting like a butterfly, float like a bee. insecurities. don't have a huge amount of those. mainly because of the way i approach them. instead of leading with the right, i lead with my flaws. self depreciation is not only entertaining, it's useful as a tool to deal with your issues. an incomplete list of my flaws: i'm flightly, i'm unreliable, i'm selfish, i'm lazy, i'm irresponsible, i clash. actually no, i don't clash. i make sure not to clash. colormatch your shit. don't clash man. it hurts my eyes. unless that's your style, clashing.

i've been lucky enough to be placed in situations where my security is assured. perhaps that's a sign of insecurity right there. avoiding places that breed insecurity. i stay in my comfort zones, i do what i know i can do and stay out of the places i can't hang. i'm quick to give props to talent greater than mine. embarassment is a bitch and i shy away from that. for example, i can't out flatulate my friends, so i don't do it. and i push them to stop flatulating so that i won't have to suffer from my flatulating inadequacies. i give in, you win. your ass muscles are more powerful than mine. actually, all your muscles are probably more powerful than mine. i can accept that.

i bandy all my flaws to the world so that you know them and i know them before they can be unearthed. i'm more than willing to admit what i'm bad at. no need to hide it. it's healthier this way. this attitude, of course, tends to lead to megalomania. as in thinking that you're greater than you actually are. if everything bad can be trivialized then you tend to see only your good, and think that will be enough to negate your bad. but this is not always the case, bads can outweigh goods. except in my case. because i'm always right. see what i mean? megalomania.

i've also been accused of living in a state of delusion. an alternate reality if you will. i'm not sure if this bothers me in the slightest. i'm waiting for that hammer to drop. that moment when i realize "oly shit. everything i've ever thought or done is wrong. all my ideas of the world are completely one eighty degrees wrong." but i doubt this will happen. this might qualify as delusion i suppose. but i'm hoping not.

it's like dating. if you lead with your charming great side, you are always living up to that image. but if you lead with your D game, there will be soft appreciation and golf applause when you bring your C game. it's a strategy really. low ball them so that expectations are dirt low. then blow them out of the water when you exceed those expectations. i learned that one from calvin.

i think most insecurities are bred in childhood. parents drive insecurities into you. academics breed insecurities in you. society breeds insecurities in you. friends breed insecurities in you. random strangers cooler than you breed insecurities in you. football stars and cheerleaders breed insecurities into you. but i've grown up in an environment where i've been able to avoid most of that. my friends have been ready packaged for me by my parents. my economic status has been ready packaged by my parents. my intelligence has been ready packaged for me by my parents. my culture has given me a role as the all important first born son. having a twin (who looks just like me!) has made me at least nominally interesting. i've been given many advantages to buttress my self esteem. not everybody gets that. and i can't decide if it's through luck or skill that i'm a relatively secure and carefree person. the metaphysical ramifications to that question are astounding. my entire worldview and philosophies are up for debate if the answer is luck and not skill.

a friend pointed out to me that i seem to be proud of my flaws. and said that that's almost as bad as being insecure about them. that got me thinking alot. i've constructed a persona that glamorizes my negatives. that can't be good. it leads to an unwillingness to fix those flaws. over acceptance of flaws is just as tragic as not appreciating your strengths. and i don't want to be tragic. i just want to be wealthy.

12:57 AM : : feeling bloated? got wide hips? saggy breasts? regressing penis/hairline? out of touch with life and love? suffering from the monday morning blues? have we got the solution for you. a site which breaks down which metrocard is right for you. does this solve any of the aforementioned problems? no. but i am not a miracle worker.

but i will be taking my non-miracleness to new york come may so this information might prove useful. may you say? yes i say. may. the nineteenth through the twenty fifth to be exact. so be ready. i come to you, big apple, to seize your corn.

Sunday, April 13  
12:48 PM : : "self esteem is the simultaneous recognition of our positive and negative traits."

this to me is not a bad definition of self esteem at all. because most of the time, we tend think of self esteem as something that allows us to recognize and elevate our positive traits. but we forget that the (more?) important part of self esteem is realizing our failings and coming to terms with those. that is why a person could be a great nine out of ten but still have low self esteem, because of the overwhelming inadequacy caused by missing that last tenth.

i think that is something asian kids have to deal with on a regular basis. or perhaps all kids have to deal with this. but the stereotypical asian kid, this is their bane in life. having to deal with and come to terms with never being a complete ten, but having parents who expect it. parents know that a ten is impossible, yet they push for it anyway. because pushing will always make it so, right? ack. enough about parents and asians and asian parents.

it's been of recent interest to me to figure out where everybody gets their self esteem. that moment, that period, that thing, that epiphany or disaster which made them realize, "hey i am who i am and fuck everything else." some people are gifted with it. most people gradually pick it up over time. some people never get comfortable enough with themselves to establish self esteem and that is sort of strange to me. i feel like most people should, by the mid-twenties, have a semi-decent idea of who they are and why they are. but then again, i understand that the curve for everyone is different. and that is a fascinating thing.

i want to ask all my friends where they first consciously got their self esteem. (as if self esteem was something you could "get" at the local mall or amazon or ebay. which would be an interesting idea actually. auctioning off excess self esteem. how much would you be willing to pay for that?) what types of moments and stories go behind them figuring out who they are. it's a process to be sure, but everyone comes into their own at some point, and i want to know where that transitional point is. it always surpises me when i think someone has a whole lot of self esteem and then we conversate and i find out about alot of their insecurities and such. is self esteem and insecurity related? is insecurity a lack of self esteem? hum.

the point is. that self esteem is something to be explored. my initial hypothesis is that the people with self esteem, probably don't think about it too much. they just have it, they don't worry about it where they got it. the ones who think about self esteem the most are the ones who feel like they lack it. so they have to figure out what it is before they can acquire it. that is the way it is with most things. those on the outside, make the best analysts and observers, because they know what it is like to not have something, and so are in a more objective position to break it down break it down.

everyone can relate of course, because none of us are black and white caricatures of people, we are real people (yes, it's true. i researched it). and the most common answer i receive from my question of "so, how secure or insecure are you?" is the response "i feel very secure in *this* area but very insecure in *that* area." and that is normal. we are imperfect and so we must have insecurities about our flaws. but self esteem as a general concept is more dealing with your overall vibe and not an offsetting tally of your securites and insecurities. everyone has those, but most people are still clearly separatable into those with self esteem and those who do not. i don't mean to make it sound like low self esteem is bad. having below average self esteem is probably quite excellent. many a kingdom has been forged from nothing less than a strong will and a pair of low self esteems.

back to the definition of self esteem. in my observations, the people who most personify self esteem are those people who are most comfortable with their failings. your lack of self esteem will always show, it may take time, but it will show. we will find you insecurities and tickle them. i promise you. you cannot hide. you can only become secure in your failings. and thus, gain self esteem in the process. nobody can hide forever. you must be seek-ed.

i think i want to make my first ever zine about self esteem. it would be a grand zine where confused, lonely and alienated souls could read about anonymous strangers' (ie. my friends) tales of "how i got my self esteem and ate it too." man. that is the best idea i've had all week. and to think, it's only sunday.

Saturday, April 12  
2:21 PM : : jan lays down and wrestles in her sleep
moonlight spills on comic books and superstars in magazines
an old friend calls and tells us where to meet
her plane takes off from baltimore and touches down on bourbon street

we sit outside and argue all night long
about a god we've never seen but never fails to side with me
sunday comes and all the papers say
ma teresa's joined the mob and happy with her full time job

am i alive or thoughts that drift away?
does summer come for everyone?
can humans do what prophets say?
and if i die before i learn to speak
can money pay for all the days i lived awake but half asleep?

a life is time, they teach you growing up
the seconds ticking killed us all
a million years before the fall
you ride the waves and don't ask where they go
you swim like lions through the crest
and bathe yourself in zebra flesh

i've been downhearted baby ever since the day we met
-primitive radio gods, standing outside a broken phone booth with money in my hand-

Friday, April 11  
12:35 PM : : nerd also nurd (nûrd)

1. a foolish, inept, or unattractive person.
2. a person who is single-minded or accomplished in scientific or technical pursuits but is felt to be socially inept.

word history: the word nerd, undefined but illustrated, first appeared in 1950 in dr. seuss's if i ran the zoo: “and then, just to show them, i'll sail to ka-troo and bring back an it-kutch a preep and a proo a nerkle a nerd and a seersucker, too!” (the nerd is a small humanoid creature looking comically angry, like a thin, cross chester a arthur)

nerd next appears, with a gloss, in the february 10, 1957, issue of the glasgow sunday mail in a regular column entitled “abc for squares: nerda square, any explanation needed?” the third appearance of nerd in print is back in the united states in 1970 in current slang: “nurd [sic], someone with objectionable habits or traits.... an uninteresting person, a dud.”

some experts claim there is no semantic connection and the identity of the words is fortuitous. others maintain that dr. seuss is the true originator of nerd and that the word nerd (“comically unpleasant creature”) was picked up by the five- and six-year-olds of 1950 and passed on to their older siblings, who by 1957, as teenagers, had restricted and specified the meaning to the most comically obnoxious creature of their own class, a “square.”

Thursday, April 10  
2:32 PM : : better luck tomorrow. a new asian american movie opens tomorrow. there has been quite a grassroots campaign springing up around it. this is seen as the first big shot for asian americans to get some play on the big screen. minus the kung fu and the usual asian shenanigans. will this be a big deal? will anyone see this movie besides asian americans? can it carry on the traditions set forth by the joy luck club, mulan and crouching tiger? so far, the reviews have been very good, despite the tv previews looking generic as all hell, it'll be very interesting to see how the general public accepts this movie.

it will be opening up in only a few select theatres and cities to see how well it does. if it does well, it would presumably go big. if it doesn't do well? it would presumably die. or fade into asian cult status like the debut did. and so our fate rests in the hands of the millions of people who may choose to watch bulletproof monk over this "modern" asian american tale. they say to not pander to the lowest common denominator but sometimes you need them the lcd. i'm curious how much money it'll take for there to be continued distribution.

a few years ago at school, we went to a screening of yellow, which was then the only movie i knew about that had an asian american cast and an asian american "theme." it was a pretty decent movie, solidly stereotypical and certainly not anything ground breaking, but it was a start. i'm curious how better luck tomorrow will compare. jason tobin starred in yellow and aslo stars in better luck tomorrow (i hate the acronym for the movie. "blt." ugh). another star the movie is john cho, an actor i wrote about a few months back. will any of the actors from this movie make it into the mainstream media? is this the beginning of asians breaking out into non-traditional roles in entertainment? will we finally have some asian american representation in film and television? perhaps the answers will be revealed starting tomorrow.

the fact this film did well at sundance and was picked up for distribution by mtv means that this film stands a chance. the hope is that this film is nothing like the guru and the outrage that surrounded its cliches and stereotypes. which brings up the question: is having piss poor derogatory representation better than having no representation at all?

Wednesday, April 9  
10:21 AM : : now gimme that toot toot and i'll give you that beep beep. in keeping with victor's thoughts on smart asian girls, i was talking to a friend yesterday about the role that asian parents put their children in. specifically, making intelligence and school so important in evaluating the "goodness" of a particular child. if a kid isn't inclined to be studious they are dismissed and sighed at. their failings at school are dramatized into failings overall. what does this do to the kid? it makes them hate school even more.

there is a distinct difference between your typical asian "smart kid" and the "dumb kid." (none of these terms are meant to be used derogatorily, however, they are said in a despicable derogatory manner. with lots of spitting afterwards for emphasis and punctuation) growing up in a very chinese-y community, it was always made very apparent who were the kids that were to be looked up to and admired. so and so got into here and there. she got a scholarship. he got an A. she's a doctor. he's a lawyer. whatever. i guess for some people this comes across as pressure. for me, i shut it all out at some point-- maybe around the beginning of high school-- when i decided that the cruising life is better than the studying life. and now look at where i am. but no, this is not a story with a moral.

it is instead about trying to figure out what happens to those kids who willingly disassociate themselves from the "we must be smart" stereotype. most of my friends growing up had alot of parental pressure to do well in school. but there were always a few people here and there who didn't get that kind of extreme pressure from their parents. i saw these people as anomalys and wondered why their parents seemed to put less emphasis on how they did in school. the asian parent is supposed to care only about their kid's grades. maim, rape, pillage, conquer, kill. whatever, as long as you got that A. intelligence was an overwhelmingly redeeming attribute. if you were perceived as smart and doing well in school, you were a good kid. anything short of that, you were probably a fuck up and parents talked behind your back. actually, parents talked behind your back anyway, but that's another subject altogether.

i think the intelligence thing is the same for both women and men. or in this case, girls and boys. however, it was like a good back up plan if a girl was pretty because then the parents could go on and on about that. it's a terrible thing really. and we wonder why we're so shallow. it's because parents will go "oh, she's not smart but at least she's pretty so she can marry a doctor." they don't actually say that. at least out loud. i think it is true that the first born usually has the greater pressure to excel. unless the first born fails, in which case the second or third sibling is goaded towards academic dominance. one family member must make it to a top ten school, otherwise shame would rain down upon one's ancestors. that's a confucious say. or a fortune cookie say at least.

back to the topic at hand. the asian kids (i don't want to generalize my chinese experiences with the rest of asia land, so excuse my use of the term "asian") who aren't good at math, who can't do school, who are talented in so many other ways. what happens to them? they either turn their "failures" into a joke, like "gee, i suck hard at math/science/school, haha, want a beer?" and they come to grips with who they are. or maybe they remain somewhat eternally ashamed of not being able to become a doctor, a lawyer, or a genegineer. i think alot matters what kind of environment your parents place you in. if all of their friend's kids are shoooting for stanford and harvard and whatnot, you feel pressure to go to one of those places. but if you are removed a few steps away from that childish competition, then you may not feel any pressure at all. or some kids are cognizant enough to elect out of the whole "my son's school is better than your son's school" thing. but you have to be in before you elect out.

i learned that part of what contributes so much to the chinese emphasis on education is the confucian system of civil examination. the only chance for many people to move up in the world was to take the civil service examinations (which were open to all) and to do well on them. that has influenced the way our parents continue to pound away with the theory that "studying is everything." well, studying is not everything. how do i know? because i don't study and yet i have everything. except a job, money, financial freedom, and parental respect. but hey. the world goes round once a day. sometimes twice on sundays.

Tuesday, April 8  
2:49 PM : : the definition of jiggy so you best to recognize
at the mall, i'm baggin up, much more than gear
victoria, be whisperin mad secrets in my ear
she wanted me to knock her in the back of foot locker
i chuckled as she kicked more game than soccer
others try to copy, i see em when they mock me
baseball cap bent, the fresh scent is issey miyake
-gangstarr, the mall-

welcome to the first centennial james and jon shoe off. having each bought two pairs of fantabolouso shoes, we now need an answer to "which set of two pair are the best?" so we come to you, our dear and fashionable friends, to settle the issue. keep in mind that it's nothing personal (or if it is, well, screw you) and no feelings will be hurt if you diss one of us. remember that you may only vote once and each vote could be crucial in determining the fate of one mexican burrito.

we love you all. shoe off 2003, it's on.

note: this email was sent to our panel of seven distinguished judges. so even though they are the arbiters of fashion in this particular competition, you the public can also make an important contribution to our shoe esteem. all proceeds are donated to feed the hungry.

SET ONE -- link
SET TWO -- link and link

and the winner is: in a landslide four to none vote, with three judges having not yet even voted, set two - aka my set - won in the official tally. despite the public voting overwhelming in favor of james' shoes, i am the big winner! me! me! me! ok, i'll stop now. remember, there are two "r"s in burrito. never forget that. peace.

Monday, April 7  
12:48 PM : : see i picks my friends like i pick my fruit
my ganny told me that when i was only a youth
i don't walk around trying to be what i'm not
i don't waste my time trying to get what you got
i work at pleasin' me
cause i can't please you and that's why i do what i do
my soul flies free like a willow tree
-erykah badu, appletree-

Sunday, April 6  
1:48 PM : : it's gotta be the shoes. shoes are the key to any fashion statement. without cool shoes, anything else you wear is just lacking. you can have a great top and bottom going on, but without appropriate shoes, you still have nothing. think a sundae without whip cream. or a porsche without wheels. it's pretty serious business, shoes. if you want to change styles, if you want to maintain styles, the shoes have it. pick a shoe you like and build from the ground up. rome wasn't built in a day but your wardrobe can be. with enough money, you can go from store to store, buying shoes, then pants, then shirts. at the end of the day, you will have an outfit you can be proud of and an outfit you can go out in public with.

currently for men, bowling shoes are all the rage. they aren't even the first generation semi-rounded bowling shoes anymore (those were hot last year i think) but the newer flatter ones. everyone knows what i'm talking about. the diesels, the steve maddens with the leather and the stripes. creme and brown are obviously the dopest colors but black isn't half bad either. with these shoes your life will change. find some matching pants (jeans or khakis) and off you go into the world of style.

it's hard to be a guy. there isn't a whole variety of clothes to wear. there aren't enough accessories or random things to wear. and if you do have lots of either, you run the risk of being "too with it" and that would be gay. which would be okay i suppose. because at least you'll look good. i admire the people who can dress well. the people who are together. i look alot at shoes. a shoe says something about a person. male or female. some girls always have dope shoes. some girls don't. it doesn't mean that they are bad people per se, it just means they have terrible taste in shoes. it's not as tragic as it sounds. really.

the problem with my shoes is that they eventually get dirty. i wear only white shoes. that's fun and all (especially after you spray them with triple thick dirt repellent) but you are bound to dirty your feet up at some point. after months of avoiding grass, mud and other stains, sometimes, one thing will just ruin your shoe composure. at that point i just let the shoes go. once they go black, you can never go back.

i say all this because i just bought two pairs of shoes this weekend. and yes i'm broke again but i have new shoes. and that just makes the whole world shine brighter. oh, and jimmy bought some heelys so he's about to either kill himself or be the coolest cat on the block.

Saturday, April 5  
1:05 PM : : jumping music, swift dj's
smoke machines and laser rays
look out weekend cause, here i come
because weekends were, werrrre made for fun
-black eyed peas, weekend-

there's this distance, from one weekend to the next. each approaching weekend seems so far removed from the last one. the cast of characters remain pretty much the same but each new weekend promises a different adventure, or lack thereof. i don't work hard enough to have to die with impatience on the weekends so i just roll with it and see what happens. i never know what i'm doing from weekend to weekend but invariably the days just fill up. it was only seven days ago that people were on break and elisa was here. that seems soooo long ago. like a distant memory. and it's barely been a week. and then not seeing victor and james for this single weekend was kind of weird. our xbox sundays have been almost ritual. and hong is away in michigan for greenies so that's semi-strange.

not that any of this changes things. weekends are still full of doing lots of jack nada. susan and michelle came down from irvine and we pretty much shopped at pacific beach on saturday. i bought lots. and i haven't spent any buying money in quite a bit. it feels good to contribute to the economy again. i got my tattoo retouched (it was pale in some areas). i got a totally undeserved parking ticket. um, we saw phone booth too. which was short, to the point, and pretty decent. the whole movie was shot in ten days, which must be a record or something.

there was three hours of karaoke too. that is alot of singing. that is alot of canceling and "nope, this song doesn't work, next please." there was also a bit of alchohol on saturday night, followed by a lot of passing out in front of fight club. and then i wake up and jimmy and gaga show up to present my feminine side with dirty weeds and cacti from the hike they just went on. dorks.

in short, all my weekends can be described in three words or less, or expanded into a blow by blow story. i'm not sure which one is more indicative of my true weekend. i do know that next weekend we will be making t-shirts. i know. jealousy rages.

Friday, April 4  
1:40 PM : : "it's mercy, compassion, and forgiveness i lack, not rationality." that's what uma says to vivica at the beginning of kill bill. lovely stuff. the more i look at those three things the more i'm appalled at why i was initially impressed with this statement. do i want to lack mercy, compassion and forgiveness? i mean, maybe missing one would still make me an okay person, but all three? i would be a killing monster. that would be cool, heh heh heh heh. beavis and butthead were retards, seriously, why were/are they funny? i must blog at some later point about things that are supposed to be funny but i don't find funny (eg. jim carrey, ben stiller, potty humor). the list is long and extensive. anyway.

i think maybe i was attracted to the fact that uma's character, the bride, wasn't lacking rationality, i was blinded by the light of rationale while ignoring the equally important human traits of mercy, compassion, and forgiveness. if i had to rank the four traits in order of importance and personal desirability, i would go (1) rationality (2) compassion (3) mercy (4) forgiveness. not that you cared.

hey look, it's a revolutionary human transporter, it's a segue way! incredible.

so assuming we were thinking with our heads and not our hearts (the heart can never think, it's biologically impossible, keep that in mind), a conversation from a few weeks back returns to me. the content of this conversation? "who would you cut from among your circle of friends." if life were survivor/battleofthesexes/thebachelor/theapprentice/americanidol/etc, who would you cut? stop the "i love all my friends" thing. you must choose one friend to jettison. say you have a circle of seven "close" friends, you must get rid of one, which will it be? maybe you guys are only friends for superficial reasons, friends because you are part of the group, maybe she's not a musketeer. would you rather be a fiendster as opposed to a friendster? does the term superfluous describe his/her job function in your life? on this day of fools, do you want to cut the tool or maybe the moltisanti? think about it. and then tell me. off the record, on the qt & very hush hush.

elimi-friend is a fun game isn't it? try it with every different circles of friends, ever decreasing circles of friends, try it with every possible combination of friends. this game is also more commonly known as the "who would i invite to my wedding if i had fifty guests, twenty guests, five guests, two guests." fun for hours, i guarantee it.

i got april fool fucked by the way. and it isn't as fun as it might sound. no details can be disclosed but man, are my sins just coming back a little bit too early or what? eric aquino life rule number two: karma always comes back. messing with people is not funny. well, it is, sometimes. only if you get the chance to pay it forward. kevin spacey and haley joel were really onto something there.

11:42 AM : : two things that make me really glad to be alive. night vision (and how it works) and colossal squids. especially the squids. sound downright nasty don't they? "its eight arms and two tentacles have up to twenty five teeth-like hooks -- deeply rooted into muscle and able to rotate 360 degrees -- as well as the usual suckers to ensure fish do not escape." wicked.

also, mcdonalds now serves dippin dots. proving once again that it was really ray kroc who created the happiest place on earth, despite the marketing done by walt's people.

Thursday, April 3  
3:02 PM : : go to college, a university, get a real job
that's what they said to me
but I could never live the way they want
i'm gonna get by and just do my time
out of step while they all get in line
i'm just a minor threat, so pay no mind
-good charlotte, the anthem-

so now that i am released into the real world, what to do? after some discussion with another recently freed compatriot, we decided that part of the problem is the lack of role models or mentors in our lives. actually, it wasn't so much a problem, as much as it was something to bullshit about while waiting hungrily for our chinese food.

the issue at hand is that we are all surrounded by our peers, or at least i am. there are very few people in my life who are significantly older and thus potentially "wiser." parents don't count. in fact, we think that as a result of having been raised in chinese homes, we ironically push aside our parents' advice as "nagging." we tend to dismiss elders and adults as meddling fools (we didn't actually use the term "meddling fools"). because of the constant barrage of things that chinese parents throw at you, we are conditioned to reach out to our peers and to scrutinize every potential authority figure. at least that's the way it is for me. i know it's not purely a cultural thing, but maybe it contributes to it.

anyhow. i have no one in my life who can serve as a mentor. when you are trying to escape from the beaten track, there aren't a whole lot of precedents for getting from point Y to point Z. you need to find people who have contacts, who have experience, who can help you, guide you. these people also have to be worthy of your respect. peers are great and all but there is a limiting factor that comes with hanging out with all peers. peers cannot adequately judge you (except in a jury). they fly alongside you and are undergoing their own issues and struggles and it is hard for them to lend extra perspective when their perspective is the same as yours.

a mentor however has been through the battles, has "seen it all." they are able to provide inspiration and insight. every student needs a teacher and without that teacher, our growth process is much slower. that is the way it is for any field of endeavour. want to start taking pictures? find someone to teach you. want to learn how to play basketball? find someone to teach you. want to find a job that doesn't involve a nine to five? find someone to free you.

this is by no means lamenting or crapping about the fact that i have no mentor. but it is an opening of my mind to the possibility that older people do have something to offer. college professors are brilliant people, yet i've never thought to engage one in conversation. i think there have been possible mentor folks around me but by not being open to the possibilty, i've never approached them in any manner. another friend pointed out that it wasn't that the world was lacking mentors, but rather that i lacked the vision or aptitude to engage the attention of a mentor type. after all, mentors don't come knocking on your door, you go knocking on theirs.

Wednesday, April 2  
2:37 PM : : i'm gonna git u sucka. about two weeks back, i wondered who owns hip hop. and now, i have my answer. these guys own hip hop. they have taken out a trademark on the term "hip hop." because of some law or other, anyone can trademark a word that is unique and not in normal everyday use. like three-peat (owned by pat riley) or xerox. hip hop, as a culture, has been appropriated by many people, but never as literally as this. it's sickening.

these bastards are very serious about it too. if anyone wants to use the word "hip hop" in a commercial way, they must request licensing, usually a few thousand dollars. throwing a party with the word hip hop in the title? cha-ching. want to name your website hiphop-r-us? cha-ching. does your radio station market using the words hip hop? cha-ching. your next album is tentatively titled "hip hop and me?" cha-ching.

that my friends is disgusting. a copyright attorney is quoted as saying that "it's a shame people went to sleep on this. i hate to say this but negroes had better wake up and start smelling the coffee. these people in washington are not playing." the company is expected to make five to eight billion dollars in it's first year. you must be shitting me.

on one hand, i must applaud the sort of capitalistic entrepreneurism that goes with such a bold move, on the other hand, i'm saddened. and angry. because hip hop is not just a word. and the fact that it can be coined and licensed and trademarked shows just how depraved it's all become. the owner of the company is also a staunch conservative and "some are speculating that gonahangya intends to use his ownership of the now trademarked term 'hip hop' to quiet down any sort of political movement that has been organizing around the term in time for the 2004 elections.

"everyone in america knows that you don't do business without protecting your assets. it's just plain stupid to leave yourself this wide open.. if the hip hop community is that dumb when it comes to business then too bad. don't make me out to be the bad guy." -richard gonahangya-

[addendum] o fuck. it's an april fool's joke. geez. richard gon-a-hang-ya? i feel great right now. oh! bend over? okay!

Tuesday, April 1  
10:12 PM : : in 1981 the daily mail ran a story about an unfortunate japanese long-distance runner, kimo nakajimi, who had entered the london marathon but, on account of a translation error, thought that he had to run for 26 days, not 26 miles. the daily mail reported that nakajimi was now somewhere out on the roads of england, still running, determined to finish the race. supposedly various people had spotted him, though they were unable to flag him down. the translation error was attributed to timothy bryant, an import director, who said, "i translated the rules and sent them off to him. but i have only been learning japanese for two years, and i must have made a mistake. he seems to be taking this marathon to be something like the very long races they have over there.

the one hundred best april fool's hoaxes of all time. some of my favorites are (14) planetary alignment decreases gravity, (17) the left handed whopper and (32) the true age of britney spears. and the one mark cuban pulled off today wasn't half bad either.

11:52 AM : : *sniff*sniff* while we're on the cleanliness and sanitary topic. let me get this out too. stop the public displays of flatulence. please. you know who you are. i will not reveal your identity(s) in a public manner. but you know what's up. say what? say what? say what?

flatulence. it's not fun. it's not funny. it's not sanitary. it's not appealing. it's gross. it's not conducive to conversation. it's not good for the soul. it's not nice. it doesn't make you a better person. it doesn't clear the air of misconceptions. it doesn't clear the air period. call me a prude. call me crazy. call me sensitive. call me whatever you want. but i declare a no farting zone around me. fart on your own damn time. i am not against natural bodily functions and processes. i am against flatulence used as sport. "i can fart louder/faster/more/smellier/crazier than you" games are not sold at toys r us for a reason. i could go on forever about this topic. or on the related "burping as sport" topic. but i won't. i will spare you, if you will spare me. thank you. i am not joking either. the serious tone of my last post still permeates this one. unless you were a skunk in any previous life, keep that back in check. otherwise i will febreze your ass. and then hand sanitize it. try me. i am not a bluffing man on this matter.

back to originally scheduled programming. actually, farting is sometimes very funny. but usually on screen, when you only get audio and video, and the more visceral senses stay unstimulated.

11:19 AM : : my hands are small, i know, but they're not yours they are my own. this is serious business i'm about to talk about so buckle up and get ready. wipe the smirks off your faces because i'm very very serious right now. very serious. everyone needs to, absolutely needs to, get some industrial sized hand sanitizer right now (is my repeating of phrases starting to annoy anyone? it's starting to annoy me i think). purell is to hand sanitizer as kleenex is to kleenex. the answer is c. see all the people in asia dropping like flies from this atypical pneumonia. derek has done some fine reporting from the far east and we need to heed his warning. don't think that this problem is just contained to planet asia. there are some seventy suspected cases of atypical pneumonia right in our very own country. fourteen in california. fourteen brother. one and four mashed together. that is alot. double digits man. like whoa.

don't be ashamed to pull that clear sanitizing shit out of your handbag/clutch/purse. it's a matter of safety. if you travel in urban areas and touch alot of people, use that hand sanitizer like it's the last thing between you and a mini-you. or perhaps a used-to-be you. you think i am exagerrating. i am not. if anything, i am controlled and with it. absolutely.

learn to scrub scrub scrub those germs and viruses away. nothing is better than removing 99.9% of your germs. sure it may make your hands smell like alchohol, or leave your skin all dry and sensitive, it may even kill some "good" germs, but forget those minor inconveniences. we're on the public safety tip here. if hand sanitizer can save the world, why not use it? come to think of it, buying some stock in purell may not be a bad idea either. i will personally purchase enough hand sanitizer to triple the stock in the upcoming week. i know people feel me on this one. je-yi especially. if you ain't clean, you ain't clean. that's an axiom for the twenty first century.

this is not a joke. this is not a public service announcement. this is serious. serious like cancer. serious like bubonic plague. serious like the flu epidemic of 1918. oh right, and there's a war going on somewhere in the world too. and there's a wee rabbit running free willy style around my garage. i'm not sure if it's confused or missing or dead or just pooping in my shoes. i left the garage open in hopes it would run out but how can you be sure that the wildlife has exited the room? not until you smell the rotting carcass will you know for sure. freak me.

disclaimer: i am not being paid to push purell brand hand sanitizer. my opinion is non-coerced and bias free. this does not however mean that i am closed to the idea of being paid for using purell products. in case anyone has that kind of clout. stay clean and sanitary people. peace.