Not gonna be 'that guy'

A quick review of my most recent entries show that I was pretty stressed out, and I was in a terrible mood. They included either:
1. not so great news
2. me bitching

So I think it's time for a Positive Entry.

1. Work is giving me a bunch of design work, which I enjoy tremendously. I also received another raise with the new year, which is also nice.
2. My piano studio building process is slightly on hold, as I await the delivery of my new piano bench. Next purchase: footrest for the kiddies. Buying stuff for a good cause is fun.
3. No roommate yet, but Aaron and I successfully avoided being victims of the so-called "Nigerian Roommate Scam." I feel a bit stupid for taking the bait, but lucky that we didn't fall for it (entirely).
4. Aaron and I built and shipped a computer/printer to my mom, and as a result of this transit I've had multiple pleasant conversations with her on the phone in just one week, which I think made Mom really happy.
5. Aaron made a coat rack for our front hall, and I threw up a small shelf in the bathroom. Home improvement is fun.
6. I lost my sweater (which James bought), and found it a few days later. Finding things is fun.
7. This winter is abnormally warm, but we did get a small snowstorm yesterday, which I was able to ride through, and the town is pretty because now we have accumulation.
8. I'm going to see Toftie soon! WOOOOOOWEEEEE
9. I'm going to see Charlotte and Scott soon! WOOOOOOWEEEEE
10. We went to the new IKEA in Stoughton last weekend, and Aaron bought new silverware for me. I am so in love with the spoons. Nobody understands this but Alice. Although Toftie might, I could bring one and show her.
11. Seeing Toftie/Charlotte/Scott also means 10 days in CA and no work. WOOOOOOWEEEEEE
12. We're throwing a re-gifting party this weekend, which means fun times and good friends.

Neat. This feels really nice, this listing of positive things. Who's next?
  • Current Mood
    I'm ok! I'm ok.

My turn for holiday recap

This year I spent a week in S. FL over Christmas. I think I'll not do it again.

It's all pretty pointless - the family used to get together and have a huge meal, but this doesn't happen anymore. Last time James and I went home for Christmas, Mom was getting over being ill and wasn't up for a big gathering. This last time we were home, the family just all decided it wasn't worth the hassle. Mom didn't even break out the plastic tree this time. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day were both spent like any other day; we got up late in the morning, did our own things, and went to bed. I can do this in the comfort of my own home, in New England, where it is at least cold enough to feel like Christmas.

As always, the family was difficult to be around. Dealing with Mom is like having a 16-year-old who doesn't speak English. It's incredibly frustrating because we have trouble communicating, and she actually throws hissy fits. I also found out that she forged my signature in the past (and probably would again should the opportunity arise), which likely resulted in placing that weird student loan company on my credit report with whom I apparently borrowed $0 dollars from. There is a reason why I don't have children right now, and I really rather not deal with this until I'm ready to have my own child. She's a grown woman. And it'd help if she saw me as one, too.

My uncle gave us speeches about how James and I ought to go home more often, and that we moved away and it's as if they've "lost you to the world and we have no way of knowing how you are doing out there." So we come home for the holidays, and we do nothing. I don't get it.

They asked me what I plan to do with my degree, now that I've finished it. They asked me when I'm going to get a 'real job' that is related to the degree. They asked me just exactly what I got a degree in. They asked me when I'm getting my PhD and I had to explain that it was a terminal degree, and then explain what "terminal" means in this case. Whatever happened to just "Wow, congratulations, you've worked hard"?

I got to drive around in the Subaru quite a bit, which is really nice. It occurred to me that maybe I could look up some friends down in S. FL from my high school days, but I knew that I really didn't want to, and it made me miss the good high school friends who've all moved away (bless them). I got to see M&M; they miss New England, and I look forward to having them back in Boston in the future. It was great to spend some time with good people.

Some people say, "You get to go to sunny Florida for the holidays? How lucky! I wish I could get out of this stinky New England weather." To them I say, you haven't lived in the Florida as I know it.

James flew back up to Boston with me and spent about a week here. I got really used to having him around, the day after he left felt really weird to me. He suggested that I change my wardrobe to something more 'adult,' and to encourage that he bought a couple of shirts from Club Monaco for me as a Christmas present. I liked them fine, but knowing they're expensive makes a difference in how I behave. I got a bit of soapy water on the cardigan while doing dishes, and it freaked me right out. What happens if my whole outfit were expensive? I'd never do anything. I'd have to behave like a 'lady', or whatever. How boring.

New Year's Eve was spent at Joe's, it was a pretty good time, with some really weird people around to test my social skills. I got to spend quite a bit of time hanging out with Joe/Gina/Dave, and they're wonderfully fantastic.

Plans for the new year: Teach Suzuki piano. Yesterday I researched some pricing/studio policies in the Boston area and wrote up contents for my website, which I will build soon. Then I'll make and print out some fliers, spend a couple of days canvassing the Boston area, and then I wait to hear from people. Friends have been supportive of my choice to start teaching private lessons, and that is very encouraging. My family (with the exception of James) would rather I get a 'real job' because they feel that it isn't reliable income. I happen to think that I will be good at it and it will pay better than anything else I've tried so far.

So, good things are happening, and I'm hopeful. I think one of the main reasons why I moved so far from 'home' is because I knew that I would never reach my potential if I stayed close to my family, that their impression of what it means to be successful will cloud my judgment and affect the decisions that I want to make for myself in order to better ME as a human being. The Family unit in the Taiwanese culture is the dominant figure. I was expected to do what the Family decides is best. They really should have thought of that before moving me to the States and allowing me to think as an individual.

The point is, I feel that they've never really moved. Geographically, they live in Florida, which is part of the United States. Legally, most of them are naturalized citizens, and they pay taxes, vote, whatnot. But they're doing their darnest to hang onto being a Taiwanese, mentally, emotionally, culturally, politically -- My uncle even said to me, "I think you're old enough to start reading about Taiwanese politics and understand what is happening to us." Who is this 'us'? Now, I am proud to be Taiwanese by birth, I gloat about the fine electronics and toys that come out of that little island, I respect and believe in the educational system they have going on there, and I absolutely love the cuisine. But the fact is: I Live Here. This is my home, and that decision was made for me when they yanked me out of Taiwan 15 years ago. So I adapted. And it's a bit hurtful and insulting that they do not recognize just how fully I've adapted, and continue to expect me to be a person that I am not.

So why did I go see them for the holidays? Why do I put myself around this group of people with whom I share nothing in common (except genes)? This is a place where I'm constantly told that it's preferable if I were more like someone else. Will I go again? Probably. Guilt is a powerful thing, and they are family. But I don't want to. Would you?
  • Current Mood
    apathetic arrrrrrgh!

So. Uh.

I've had known people who have passed away in my life time, thus far. A couple of grandparents, an aunt, a couple of schoolmates whom I considered acquaintances. I've also lost a couple of cats, and a bunch of fish, but they're really not people, at least not in the biological sense.

A couple days ago I found out that I've lost a friend. And it has me feeling weird. I haven't talked to her or communicated at all with her in the last 4 years, it was not a friendship that I was planning on maintaining, because, well, people grow apart. But she was my friend. We had fun times together. We shared many fond memories. I remember her voice, I remember specific conversations, and 'till this day I quote her, frequently. (She used to say "If it were up your ass you'd know where it went," whenever I would ask her if she has seen ___. It's such a silly thing but I find myself repeating it.) And she taught me how to make hemp jewelry. It's on my resume as one of my hobbies/interests, and it will stay. I have a bracelet that she made for me, a birthday present, and it had a black bead because "you always wear black and it goes nicely with your hair."

Shayna was the first of my friends to go. I've never lost a friend before. I'm not looking forward to losing more.
  • Current Mood
    emptier

And this one is just stupid

So, every question of the quiz was: "For 10 million dollars, would you ____?"
I answered "No" to each one and then it tells me that I would sell out for under 10 mil.
Um. No. I'm fairly certain you're broken.

On Average, You Would Sell Out For

$1,123,950

WHY AM I WEIRD

About the previous post -

The thing that bugs me, that these guys, probably, are not bad people, but somehow they decided to be assholes to me, and as a result I'll never think well of them, AND it makes the other dog owners that follow bike path rules look bad.

It has me thinking - this is something that I've noticed recently - and I don't know if anybody else does this: whenever I make a decision in public, I think about how that reflects the people that are somehow associated to me. If I'm biking, I follow the rules because I will be a fine representation of what a cyclist should do on a bike path. An extreme example would be that if I'm about to throw a fit in public, I think about how that reflects on the Asian race because the easiest thing the other person could say to me is "Fucking Asian bitch", and I won't give them the satisfaction. And the fact that I learned to speak English with little to no accent, so that I wouldn't get the stereotypical joke of mixing up the Rs and Ls from assholic strangers (because jokes from friends are perfectly acceptable and quite funny. and, 'assholic'. i like.). So I think about what I do before I do them and often the thought goes back to how my actions reflect on 'my people.'

So, am I alone in this? Does anybody else think this much before they act in public?

Two nights I slept on this -

and I'm STILL annoyed about it.

Monday night on the way home, I came across a man who was walking his dog on the bike path. The dog wandered aimlessly, sans leash. It decided to stop right in front of my bike as I approached. I broke, maneuvered around it, and said to the man,

"Please put your dog on a leash."

He said, "No."

I said, "It's the rule. You can get in trouble. And your dog could get run over." while biking away.

50ft down the path, a younger man was walking his dog. Overhearing the previous conversation, he says to me,
"It's a walking path, too."

1. Keeping dogs on leashes is the LAW for a reason. You'll be sorry when the next cyclist can't stop in time and the dog gets it.
2. To the first not-so-gentle-man, I can't believe you were so fucking righteous about how wrong you were, and I can't believe that you disregard the safety of your supposedly beloved pet by letting it run loose in traffic.
3. To the second man who gave me lip, it was none of your business, you're right, it's also a walking path, which was why I stayed to the right side of the path and passed on the left of the pedestrians, my beef wasn't with you because you had your dog on a leash, so why the fuck did you butt in when none of this concerns you?

I was so angry that I sped home on my bike as fast as I could and when I stopped I was shaking uncontrollably.

That poor dog.

So after sleeping on it, I'm not sure if I'm still angry at these people or if I'm more angry that my reply to them was weak. Maybe I'm just angry that there was a situation where I clearly was in the right, but I didn't stand up for myself.

Sometimes I wish I were 6'2", male, and a badass fighter (or at least look like one).

Due Dates

11/19/05 5:00pm - finish editing audio documentary
11/19/05 5:00pm - finish questions for focus group
11/19/05 7:00pm - have mountains of lo mein ready for said focus group/dinner party
11/22/05 5:00pm - finish re-editing audio documentary and gather all paperwork for thesis packet, submit to committee chair members
12/16/05 5:00pm - turn in all copies of thesis project and production book to graduate studies
12/16/05 6:00pm - treat myself to dinner for finishing grad school

almost there. almost there.