Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Hunter

Today I saw Orion.

It was my first time ever, clearly recognizing a constellation.
It was by the beach, right after a barbecue, and it was wonderful!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


The sky is purple. It is so beautiful.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

I love lists

Some thoughts and concerns over the past week:

1. I've steadily sabotaged my Morphology class, and my life, one minute at a time. Doing anything but studying even though it was what I needed the most.

2. Today I ate through most of a salad without dressing because I hadn't noticed that the dressing packet was hidden in the middle of the bowl. There were less than ten leaves left when I realized. I felt stupid.

3. Eugene told me that Korean-made Shin ramen is much spicier than Hong Kong-made Shin ramen. I found one at the supermarket and am cooking it as I type ("cook" being a loose term). Just opening the packet of spices and inhaling its contents has made me scared, but sort of excited.

4. I need to get better at Frisbee! Today's practice was pathetic on my part. They have this rule where you must pass to a girl before you can score, and as far as I'm concerned, it's valid because I suck! I dropped so many discs! I want to make that rule irrelevant, because I'll be able to catch and play that shit when it counts. Grr.

Friday, November 26, 2010

I guess they actually study here

In Hong Kong, not going to weekend social activities because "I need to study" is a perfectly valid excuse. They say "oh," nod in understanding, and let it be.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

I am not a good person 2

During the summers before eighth and ninth grade, I attended what we affectionately called "nerd camp." It was a three-week camp of intensive college-level courses, with class in the morning, afternoon, and evening, 3000 miles away from home (for me). It was an amazing experience that changed my life for the better.

For lodging, we were placed in dormitory rooms with someone from our class. My roommate the second time around, Meg, was noticeably different from the rest of us. She was fat when no one else was, clingy, and very much lacking in social skills; I asked everyone to write in and sign a little notebook I'd bought--you know--yearbook-type messages, and she wrote "I'm sorry, I really can't think of anything to say..." People were friendly at first but gave up and moved on very quickly.

One day in class, the professor asked us to pair up. It was something like--she would point to a person, and someone else would volunteer to pair up with said person. When she pointed to Meg, no one raised their hand or spoke up. The professor then asked her who she'd prefer to be her partner, but Meg remained silent and shifted in her chair. It was awkward. The whole time I was hoping that she wouldn't choose me. I was stuck with her all the time! This time I wanted to work with someone cool!

I took a quick glance at a boy I liked, and it was clear that he didn't want to be her partner either. This made it okay for me to do this horrible thing:

The professor, not wanting to waste time, asked Meg who her roommate was. It was an easy way to solve the problem. Immediately, the other voices piped up. Me, me, the roommate was me, of course. Meg looked relieved, and I scrunched up my face--an ugh face--short and gone from my face in less than a second, but a clear message to anyone looking at me, which was everyone. I am sure Meg saw it too.

*her real name is not Meg, but it doesn't really matter.

I've lost count

(of how many failed journal attempts I've had)

I need to write more.
I'm going to start an offline daily journal again, maybe put the good ones up.
Wish me luck!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Streetlight people

I was out eating dinner with a big group when Don't Stop Believin' by Journey started playing in the background. You could pick out the four Americans by the way they started softly singing along.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Hong Kong needs more sky

I was at an international students meet-and-greet party when I ended up talking to a Hongkonger boy. We went through the usual pleasantries, and he asked me how I liked Hong Kong. I said my normal answer: Yeah, it's pretty great, I like it here. He looked at me thoughtfully and--I can't remember exactly what he said in Cantonese--but it was something like, "Do you feel that there's kind of no sky here?" It sounded very poetic to me, caught me off guard, and I wasn't sure if I had understood. Perhaps he was talking about the thick cloud of pollution that always hung overhead here? "I mean," he continued, "there are so many tall buildings here that they block out the sky. Don't you think so?" He then said that he had lived in Hong Kong his entire life so far, but it wasn't a place he would want to stay. I was surprised--yes, with all these towering skyscrapers here there is no great expanses of  sky--but I sort of just took it as it was. I wondered if it was suffocating, living under concrete, bricks, and windows. He thought so.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Last night he slept

Last night he slept and he dreamt of trees. Of streetlamps and sidewalk cracks and the little weeds that grew in between. Of wooden cars and pink wheels and dusty bricks that grew eyes, then more eyes. He swam through oceans and space, a fitful sleep in which every turn was a thousand miles and every flip plunged him into new worlds, through glass and silk and mazes with never-ending subways. When the cool air hit him, he was standing on a cliff in the fall, then winter, and his sweat drops evaporated while his skin cells waved goodbye. The fan buzzed, and he heard the synchronized humming of reliable machines, beeping and lights. Silver equipment that fell away to sand, and dirt, and stones. Ceramic tiles. He fell in love with birds, huge birds that shaded the ground with their wings. Ice cream. A pretty girl who hid her face and blended into the ocean. A buzz, some ugly sounds. He heard what he thought were footsteps, stomping, thumping, bombs. Ah, construction. There is construction outside. An alarm. He left as quickly as he went through his worlds, his dream but a sliver of water vanishing down an impossibly large funnel, until nothing was left but some steam, some smells. Ah, the wall. There are the bumps on the white wall, the tack-sized hole that had always been there. The window, the trees outside, the sun. This morning he woke up, got dressed, and left.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

I am not a good person 1.5

Sometimes I really like myself; I think I'm great, I can do things, I'm confident.

And other times I think, who am I kidding? I'm not like that main movie character who doesn't even notice social boundaries because of his big heart and naivety. I'm not like that person who has the presence of mind and the guts to do what he thinks is right when it really counts. There are times when I stayed firmly in line even when I should've stepped out. There are times when I wish to take something back as soon as it comes out of my mouth.

There are the moments I will never forget. The ones that come up every time I think, who am I kidding?

As soon as I turned away from that girl I regretted it, and as soon as I stepped into the classroom I wanted to run back out and see if she was still there. I would've grabbed her hands even if they were dirty and and I would've pulled her out. But I didn't.

I am not a good person 1

When I was in fifth grade, there was one time at the end of recess, when I was walking back to class from the playground, and I heard someone call out. I turned and saw another kid with a lot of freckles and brown hair cut into a mullet. I couldn't tell if she was a girl or a boy, but I later found out from our yearbook that she was a girl, and she was my age.

She called out and said, "Can you help me?" because somehow she had ended up tangled in one of the climbing nets. It was patient and it was a plea. She couldn't figure out how to get out. She was a "special education" kid, and I was scared. Her hands were dirty. Will she be clingy?

"Sorry," I said, after five agonizing seconds, "I have to go."
Then I walked away.

Friday, February 19, 2010


All these mini earthquakes used to be fun, but now they are starting to get annoying.
There are at least three a day, seriously.
Cut it out.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010


I was looking over the folder from my beloved old computer (oh desktops, how I miss thee), when I came upon a file where I had written a bunch of user names and passwords for various accounts. Among them was the user name and password for my old blog, circa 2004!

It's very exciting stuff and I can now confirm that it really was on this very site--except back then it was called eblogger and my URL was blogspot. It was called Senseless Babbling and that's exactly what it was--the slightly awkward journal of an eighth-grader. Wow! It's sort of like opening a time capsule. =)

This baby is now linked to my current account--on private though, of course.

Sunday, February 7, 2010


Sometimes I get this nagging thought that asks me, "What are you doing with your with your life? Where do you think you're going to end up like this? Why aren't you working on something to improve your life right now?

It's a horrible feeling.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Today is my birthday

It started off extremely boring and subdued, but got better as the day moved on.

I had a couple people remember on their own (no Facebook aid!).
I got more Facebook birthday wishes than I've ever gotten (they were more original, too!).
I got a surprise card and a surprise text and a surprise phone call.
"Happy birthday" was said to me in at least six different languages.
I drank good tea.
My brother wrote me a haiku.

It's been a very happy day. I'm looking forward to the year. =)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


I love the feeling I get when I listen to a foreign-language song I haven't listened to in a while, and find that I understand much more of it than I had previously. It's like a new discovery every time, and a satisfying proof of my improvement.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Spades, hearts, clubs, and diamonds


Okay, desktop solitaire just has an inherently lame vibe, but I feel incredibly triumphant. I've been slowly building my way for years, I thought it was impossible.

Haha! >:D

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Me ramener

It's surreal, to be honest.

There's this part of me that may or may not have existed, and I'm squinting at it, hoping I can grab it and make it mine again.

I came back from France three weeks ago--that's a month--a quarter of the time I spent abroad, but it feels so short, so lacking. And still it has taken that long for me to figure out how exactly I'm feeling.

At first, I said, "It's weird to be back in the US." I wanted to think that I had adjusted enough to French life that American life might seem a little foreign. There were little moments when this was true; keys in France, for example, went into the keyhole teeth down, and it was in this manner that I kept trying to open doors here. But for rest of my life, what I said wasn't true at all, at least not in the sense I had meant it.

I think that, as soon as I sat down in the London terminal for my final connection home, I had already started the short rubber band snap that would bring me back not only to my American way of life, but to the exact person I had been before I left.

A study abroad experience is supposed to be life-changing, right? And I did change a lot. I fell in love with the direction I was heading--an open, confident, friendly, risk-taking direction. I fell in love with the atmosphere, the architecture, the food, the language. I fell in love with the easiest friends I've ever made since kindergarten.

Back here, it's as if it has never happened. It's so frustrating that I could cry.

I felt so alive there, I thought it would be something that would stay with me forever, maybe just mildly influencing the rest of my life. But I feel as if my time in France is now completely removed from my current reality. France was a very isolated experience. When I left, I had a complete change of everything--time, ways to tell time, habits, scenery, history, people, classes, class schedules, transportation, language, money, air. Almost every part of my life was switched out for spiffy, French equivalents. And when I came back, I left everything behind.

After my return, I was treated exactly how I was treated before I left, which was not the way I was treated in France. Instead of asserting myself, I subconsciously switched back instantly--no matter what I consciously wanted. And it might have been easier, and I might have been in a "comfort zone," but I was always only comfortable alone this way and never comfortable with people.

I really want to go back. I miss everything, and I miss how complete I felt.

Maybe I need to give it a little bit more time. I hope that I can soon meet with some Stateside friends that I made there, and perhaps they can provide me with tangible proof of what happened. I hope so, because it was incredible, whirlwind, formidable, and I wouldn't trade it for the world.