February 21, 2012

Visiting High School

This strange phenomenon that happens whenever I visit the high school...I feel like I am reverting back to my old self. Not that I have an "old self", but I feel more self-conscious there. Not that I don't feel self-conscious at college. I still lack the confidence to look at people in the eye--still believing people are looking for my flaws.

High school has been over since 2009, but I couldn't help and feel nervous when I dropped by today. I felt like I needed to prove something even though it looks so different. It's like I haven't changed. The only news I had for my teachers was that I was going to Korea. As excited as they were for me, I was indifferent--it didn't seem like a huge achievement. I just don't understand why it hasn't "hit" me yet. Am I really going to another country next Monday!!??

Trying to get to the point, I felt so awkward being there. I've always thought that high school didn't make such a big difference in my life. But, when I felt so awkward standing there, talking about myself, I realized how high school students really made me feel...like I am never good enough. Ahh, I can't seem to explain...like always.

Oh yeah, I realized why I have been so adamant about not visiting the high school. (I haven't gone since last year--some time around my sister's graduation.) I think I hate talking about myself--like everything isn't boast-worthy. I have nothing to brag. I want to hear from them--not the other way around. It's like their goal is to nurture us into these amazing, phenomenal, life-changing people. It seems their lives don't change as much when they get older. And, they want to hear my drastic change.

It's just weird, how I expect people to change--including teachers. When I talk to them, it seems like their lives are on pause. Man, I make it sound like their lives are boring... It seems dull, always teaching the same things, going in a routine. We've always been expected to do great things as we are young, but why don't we hear about the amazing things that people do when they get older? Why doesn't it seem like they do anything else other than their routine? Am I being too quick to assume?

I'm just never going to be content--always complaining about everything. That's something that won't change...

February 15, 2012

Oxford Heels

It's a weird day today--sunshine, rain, and cloud. This inspires me to write a badly written story! As you all know, I'm a teaching assistant for communications history. There are more than 200 students in that class. I am there to help lighten the workload for my professor. What I do is facilitate study sessions, quizzes, and exams as well as correct and input grades. My work isn't particularly difficult (though inputting grades are a pain in the butt) because there is another assistant, Bev.

The very last day I saw Bev and Professor L was during Finals week. We had to go and facilitate the final. Anyway, Bev brought a pair of purple oxford heels. She said that she had a broadcast journalism final so she brought those to wear.

As Bev, Professor L, and I left the communications building after hours of frustration (because we messed up on the scantrons), Bev asked me to hold onto her heels while she looked for an umbrella. Professor L saw those heels, he said, "In my time, we called those--". Abruptly, Bev said, "I know, these are hooker heels." He laughed and said something along the lines of, "No. I was going to say, the boys and I called those fuck-me heels."

To me, they look like normal oxford heels--except in purple. I guess to other people, it's something else. I will never see what they both saw in those. What did they see that I didn't?

February 14, 2012

Love means never having to say you're sorry

It's Valentine's Day, and I have no lovers--no significant other to share this holiday. But, I do love everyone around me--friends, family, everyone who helped me be who I am. So, happy valentines day, all! I love you guys (even if you don't know me well). Ahh, I feel so weird, writing how much I love you guys, because I'm not exactly fond of Valentine's Day. Red is my least favorite color--but I'm starting to warm up to it--okay, whenever I see that color, I still can't help but turn the other way. As cliche as this sounds, everyday should be Valentine's Day! Dedicating a single day for love seems rather sad. Ohh, I'm not going to dwell and go on a badly written tangent that doesn't make sense.

So, over the weekend, I watched Love Story (1970) starring Ryan O'Neal and Ali MacGraw. I can't even describe it. It's a romantic film--one of the best, maybe (and that's not saying much as I do not watch as much as most people).

There was this one quote that lingered, even after I finished watching. "Love means never having to say you're sorry." Heard of that? I remember hearing this quote much before knowing that it's from this film. I can't help but ponder over this for a long time. Love means that I don't have to admit my wrongs? Is that what s/he was saying? Because, I feel like it's best to apologize even to loved ones when you're wrong. At the same time, if I am wrong, I don't want to apologize--I feel like people already know how sorry (and guilty) I feel from doing something wrong.

I wholeheartedly believed that we didn't have to say sorry after I watched the film. But, now, I disagree. One of the things we should be able to do is sacrifice our pride when with our lovers (whether significant others, family or friends) and admit our wrongs--even if they know we feel terrible. Just saying it makes things better. You know what I mean? Kinda, probably, I'm bad at this writing thing. I can't focus and get to the point.

I can be such a hypocrite--it took me forever to apologize to my sister the other day. I knew she was going to forgive me, but I couldn't apologize at that moment--it would give her the satisfaction. Also, I didn't think she wanted to hear the apology while she was shouting at me. Long story short--she wanted the apology. (I think...I don't really want an apology from my "lovers" because I know they're sorry. But you never know, because if someone did something extreme, like cheated on me, wouldn't I want them to beg for forgiveness. In a sick, twisted way, I want really rude people to apologize to me when they're caught because I know that the humiliation is enough to hurt their pride. That'll give me the satisfaction.)

February 13, 2012

Chinatown

Chinatown in Los Angeles has really changed. I haven't gone to Chinatown frequently since early 2001.

Today, Mum and I went to Chinatown to pay a visit to a shrine and ask for blessings. Afterwards, we went for a walk around the vendors to look for things for my trip to Korea. I wanted to get cheap, crappy quality items because the trip is costing me an arm and a leg. Also, I didn't take Mei's luggage while we were in Davis over break, so had to buy my own. Another thing I wanted to buy was a big purse that would fit my laptop.

The first vendor we went to had decent rolling luggages and purses. The zippers looked good and there wasn't noticeable damage. The saleslady said that the luggage was originally $40, but she was selling it for $35 for us because we were Chinese (hah!). The purse was originally $48, but she was selling it for $40, making the entire purchase $75. Then she said that she would make it $60 for us. Anyway, as you gathered, we didn't get the chance to haggle with her. All that price slashing was done by her. Since my mom was quite familiar with the way things work in Chinatown (because we use to live there), she felt the need to haggle. She was like, "How about $50?" The saleslady goes, "Sorry. No haggling. This is nonnegotiable." We looked at her weirdly (because that's not how things work). Mom persistently goes, "C'mon! $50! $55!" as the saleslady refuses. Then surprisingly, the lady goes, "Sorry, I'm not doing business with you if you want to haggle. Just get out." She said some mean things about how we were taking advantage of her (in Chinese). Pissed off, Mom and I decided to leave because that lady sounds crazy because she doesn't seem to want any business. I guess the saleslady does that a lot and usually the purchaser would just buy it at whatever price she set but we didn't. As we approached the end of the building, she started to shout, "Okay! I'll sell it at that price! Fine! You are the first customer of the day. But, I'll lose business!" and said more rude things in Chinese (that I can't translate literally here), but really pissed mom even more so we continued walking out. Then, she runs after us saying, "You won't buy it at that price? You are (fill in a lot of Chinese curse words)" Basically, she was screaming at us, calling us names, telling everyone that we were horrible (for not buying), and cursing at us. When I said curse, I meant, I hope you have a bad luck for the rest of your life (and I'm not saying what she actually said--it was so fucked up rude kind of cursing). Freaked out, I just wanted to go home, but Mom insisted that I looked at other vendors--"Not everyone is as crazy as her," she said. Boy was she wrong...

The second (and last) vendor we went to sold luggages for $30. He said that he'd sell it for $29 for us. I kept examining the luggage, but not committing because the first vendor still scared me. In the end, I kept trying to leave, but he was like, "Buy it. It's great quality--good brand. I have it too." I kept insisting that I'd come back another day, but he was like, "Buy it now at this price." In the end, I told Mom much louder, "Mom. Let's come back another day--like next week. I still have to look into my friend's luggage. It might work out." Mom said, "My daughter doesn't want to buy it now. Thanks for helping us." Looking at us angrily (like he was going to yell and hit us), the salesman calmly threatened us saying, "Fine. But, if you come back another day, it's going to be more than $30." After his nice little threat, we just walked out.

Oh man, Chinatown. Oh how you've changed! When we use to buy things in Chinatown, they vendors weren't as ruthlessly scary and rude as they use to be when we refused them. Did the economy ultimately made them into the people they are? I know they have to make a living, but still. Also, I know that these crappy quality items aren't worth more than $20. They should stop trying to tell us that faux leather is worth so much-- as well as the counterfeit items. I can't emphasize how the quality of things are so low--I should know, I own quite a few ripped up backpacks. Who did they take us for--tourists? Honestly, quality means a lot to me--which is why I barely own polyester nowadays. FUCK, I'm going back to quality again. I can't deal with this (scariness).

You know, I think this wouldn't happen in the weekends--when the vendors get busy. Maybe we caught them at the wrong time? They needed the money and I don't know. Fuck, why am I trying to justify their actions? I just can't help it. I feel like everyone is a good person and money fucks them up.

Ah crud, I'm just downright scared of going back now. Why was the first vendor so scary? Why did she have to curse and yell at us? I don't believe in this curse stuff, but at that moment, I felt scared for my life. It took me a long time to feel better. I just don't understand...

February 11, 2012

Perception.

Yesterday, we had a study abroad meeting, where our advisor showed showed us photos of Korea, answered our questions, I wonder how the other guys perceive me... because I feel really good about them. They seem like genuine people (that I can't compete with). 

Natural Sleep Schedule

When I was younger, I woke up naturally around 8am. Even in the weekends when I was in high school and forced to wake up daily at 6am for zero period. But, somehow college screwed up my sleep schedule immensely, with the excessive cramming, essays, and going to classes twice a week. More recently, I have been waking up around 7am or 8am. And today, I woke up at 6:30am. I find waking up around 6:30am difficult to achieve, but today, it was so simple. So tired of doing nothing, I just went out for a run. I felt so pathetic running around the neighborhood, because I couldn't even run without feeling out of breath. I guess the only good thing I can say out of this is that I walked about 2.8 miles today! Another thing good about running is that I did not feel the guilt about life, death, and luck that I have been feeling a lot lately.

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pug2R4iswz0?hl=en"><img src="http://www.gtaero.net/ytmusic/play.png" alt="Play" style="border:0px;" /></a>
Your Hand in Mine by Explosions in the Sky

February 7, 2012

'Lette Macarons

'lette logo sticker

'lettepistachiomacaron

So, I finally tried 'Lette Macarons, yesterday! Please pat me in the back for finally, finally trying them. Oh, I am so not hilarious. I walked by the storefront while rushing back to my car in Old Pasadena. Deciding to be spontaneous, I walked in. Inside were rows of colorful macarons, which meant too many choices! Asking for a recommendation as I did in Euro Pane, the saleslady suggested salted caramel, caribbean chocolate, and pistachio. Remembering how much I enjoyed pistachio the other day, I ended up getting two pistachio macarons--one for me and one for Elaine. Long story short: they were not the best I ever had. I liked Euro Pane's more. Maybe it was so hyped that I didn't enjoy it as much. Or, I expected it to taste much sweeter...

February 4, 2012

Never Look Back

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One of my unofficial mantras that I always seem to follow is to never look back--whether it's the past or anything else. That's probably why I almost got into a car accident while driving to The Block on Friday! Because I didn't turn around to see if there was a car in the right lane. Seriously, remember, there are blindspots in mirrors!! AHHH!!!

When I went to The Consulate with the other guys (whom are going to Korea with me) on Wednesday, I felt so shameful for quitting so much and never looking back. I use to believe I had the ability to persevere? Ahh, frackkk, I felt so boring, so bland, so inexperienced, so young and naive, compare to them. They made me realize that I don't do anything because I want to keep it safe. My arguments is, is death worth the adventure? Is it better to live a boring, unfulfilled, long life or a short and adventurous, thrill-seeking life? Maybe it is their religious faith that encourage them to continue to believe in living. And my lack of faith is holding me back. I learned in Social Interactions that other religions believe that we (different religious people or Agnostics or Atheists) are not happy-- we are riding a tricycle and they are riding a bicycle. Perhaps that's my biggest problem--I'm not really happy? Getting off this tangent, I never really felt so guilty for giving up on the many things that I thought that were important in my life--musical instruments, photography, video editing, sound, lighting, everything.

Their discussion on photography and video editing made me squirm. When I slowly lost faith in myself, I quit. I stopped trying to improve. It is the constructive criticism. As much as I kind of understood what they were talking about with lenses, etc. I fear for the day when it sounds foreign to me. Frankly, I am already forgetting it all. 50mm 1/8. 35mm 1/4. 24-70mm 2.8. Okay, these are just names of lenses, but will I remember their functions? NO, of course not. Why am I so fickle? Why don't I stick with ONE THING passionately? Is it better to like one thing passionately or be well-rounded? I believed in the latter, but I am beginning to believe in the former. As much I experimented and understood things, I end up forgetting. As human as this is, I hate myself so much for being like this and am drowning in so much self-pity--just because of my inability to commit.

Perhaps the solution to this is to try and relearn everything. But, my fear is the judgments that everyone will have towards me. I can imagine what they think, "I thought she knew. Did she lie to me? What a hypocrite." The more I think about it, I really don't know anything. I thought I knew enough to be an amateur, but I'm just a beginner.

It's just, this is the way I've been brought up. I've always been taught to never look back. I shouldn't have blamed it on my upbringing. It's like the nature vs nurture argument. Maybe, I can't look back in the past to relearn because the past is so mortifying--filled with many embarrassing moments. Despite the past being the past, there are moments that I never want to relive. Sure, I feel nostalgic over many memories, but the embarrassing moments are the ones that I can't rid. They inhibit me from thinking back to what I learned. I can remember all the stupid moments where I tried to sound smart. Instead, I sounded like such a douche.

I always thought that dwelling in the past made it easier to never grow up. But, being a little stubborn and trying to never look back is so much harder. I'm so tired of it all. I give up. I'm going to try again, no matter how hard it is--no matter how much I hate the judgments everyone gives me. No more drowning myself in self-pity. I have to stop giving up, stop settling, stop trying to be perfect and start believing. Start by accepting the fact that I am human. Yes. I feel motivated, but for how long...?

Submarine Symphonika by The Submarines