Monday, November 30, 2009

Coffee Talk

Getting high off strong a cup of Vietnamese coffee turning me into a deeper movie thinker than my usual self. It was Star Wars marathon playing since before midnight two nights ago. In the middle of trying to put myself to sleep, which I know was kinda futile from the amount of caffeine consumed, I turned the Star Wars watching experience into something more philosophical.

  • Starwars vs. Startrek, both are placing humanity as center of the stories. The history of humanity was applied heavily on their plots. However, Starwars universe feels real compared to Startrek's hygienic.
  • The fuse of military ranks in Starwars such as the use of admiral and general, captain and commander, applied to the same body of armed force, which thoroughly confuses me.
  • First time movie goer can figure out that the way to defeat the giant four legged robots during the scene of rebellion generator being bombarded is through its legs. The Imperial Troops should come up with something more suitable. It is heavy and it does not exactly have precise weaponry.
  • Princess Leia is the epitome of a woman I want to be. Smart, sexy, and ambitious.
  • The character of the highest Jedi master is played by a muppet instead of by a real person. What does it mean? God and the universe. I am so used to think of just life here on earth.
  • The anthropomorphizing of things such as R2D2 and C3PO as companions as opposed to just machines makes it romantic.
  • That the illogical side of man, the gungho attitude, is what separate us from being too calculated. But then there is a very thin line of that and simply being a fool.
  • I can see how Scifi jumped up technology. I always want to be in the forefront of this.

Late caveat, the above points are no means deep to most of you, just my coffee talking.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

A Couple Hours in Oakland

We served early dinner for some fifty senior citizens in a center in Oakland today. Some of them are homeless, some are not. The seniors must be registered with the center and then they would be eligible for dollar meal. Today it was green peas, corns, baked ham and dinner rolls, and due to our lack of information on legwork, no desserts.

As we were preparing for the dinner, they gathered at the tables and chatted with fellow tablemates. Coffee and tea were self-served and free. Occasionally, some of them came to us and asked for sugar, some asked for cookies to go with the coffee or tea. I brought out the sugar and moved the cookie jar to serving area. These proven to be illegal, as the receptionist, being a street smart, told us reasons why we are not supposed to leave those things out. Everything needed to be served because otherwise they will leave with the whole container for themselves. I paused not really understanding how one should behave wisely to somebody with a hard street life while preserving that person's dignity.

Some of us adults had reservation to actually interact with the people we served. "They smell," said one, the word "bum" came a lot from her. The Catholic school children who volunteers for their social hours seem to not minding anything though. Their parents taught them well. As for me, I volunteered the dish washing. The industrial dishwasher worked well as far as water and temperature go. The degreaser and bleach, on the other hand, seemed to be not properly sucked into the machine via the plastic tubes. We dried the dishes, mopped the floor, took out trash and left the center cleaner than we got in. An excellent team work with no unnecessary drama.

Afterward, some of us went together to feed ourselves dinner at a nearby Chinatown noodle place. What was sad about this is that we do not at all mind spending money for our meals, an amount that is nothing compared to what we get from our wages. That whole dollar the seniors spent on their meal this afternoon might be a big portion of what they have for the day's work. This also digresses me to contemplate about giving-- giving being the opposite of saving and spending. When we, the "haves", give, we tend to give from our abundance. That one story from the Bible about the poor widow that put her whole possession into collection basket tells us what might happen on the other side of the spectrum.

Speaking of Oakland, it is of course not the safest and cleanest city in the Bay Area. In fact, it is a whole different world from manicured community where my apartment and office are located. The sky is blue in my 'hood, the kids are playing in the park, people walk their dogs, and we put things on recycle bins. As I called my friend for direction--I was lost exiting a highway--I can clearly heard the sound of siren in the background. Another friend of mine was greeted with the view of a cop handcuffing a person as he exited the same highway.

All in all, I am glad for centers like this. We need to support people in need. A little of something, being time or money, goes further in this part of the world.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Love My New Mane

I woke up today and felt a sudden urge to change my hair style, as in urgent, I need some sugar, my blood sugar is low. I am not planning to drastically making it to a short style as Bibi will have quite a fit on it, but I need to have some layers cut in order to give more volume to my rapidly balding hair.

I did look up the interweb two nights ago for possible styles for a wavy hair like mine. This was my inspiration.

Here is after a quick trip to a nearby chain hair salon. This is my best hair cut to date. I love the bangs, I love the layers, and that the hairdresser managed to only take an inch off. I wouldn't be able to achieve this look sans flat iron though. It's okay, I have found new frizz control shampoo and conditioner that work wonder. They are "over the counter" (as opposed to expensive salon) products.

What can I say, I love it and Bibi does too as evidenced on his text reply to my mms "Hi you look cute! and clever..."

Is he on a hang over on Thanksgiving food? I mean I do look cute(r), but I dont think the new mane radiates enough cleverity. LoL.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

I said before and I said again. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. Partly, because it is celebrating life, friends, and family and also because everybody celebrates it. The celebration transpires beyond age, religion, gender, race, ethnicity, and [insert other other socio-economic, socio-politics attributes we use to classify ourselves].

This Thanksgiving I am celebrating it away from family, and sadly, Fiance. But I got a nice wake up phone call from the dude. It is like cuddling but on the phone--sorry, can't help to give out a TMI. Anyway, he woke me up to assist me on making a cornbread oyster dressing.

Bibi made this dressing for his church group dinner last Sunday. I just had an idea to bring it over to a potluck dinner tonight. Baking and cooking are perfect channeling of inner domestic goddess in me and of course I have a hidden agenda to show him off thru his recipe to the folks at dinner.

"Oyster? On cornbread as dressing?"

"It is a southern thing. Paula Deen makes it," he said on the phone.

I just couldn't believe myself for not knowing the existence of such dressing despite of electing my as an honorary Southerner. Also why are we calling it dressing instead of stuffing again? A little bit of education here. Compendium of people in the internet say that what the northern people call dressing, the southerner stuffing. However, the correct answer is that stuffing is when the bread mixture is stuffed inside the turkey, while dressing is when it is baked separately like casserole .

Two batches of dressing are done now and ready for the dinner tonight. Suffice it to say that it is rank up there on the list of meals I can eat everyday. I also made a pecan pie (with store bought pie shell) and green beans casserole (this one is totally from scratch) for the dinner. Both are using recipes from Cook's Illustrated that are spread illegally over the internet. I am thinking to subscribe for the magazine. Their recipes never fail to amaze me and it is such a joy to read it with all the illustrations.

I am going to have a mini work out in preparation of all the food before me tonight. And then I am going my way to drop off all the food at the host's before fleeting away to San Francisco for a 1 hour A&M-T-sip football game watching with fellow Aggies. It is gonna be a busy Thanksgiving but I am hoping I am experiencing a memorable one, my first one in California.

I am thankful for this year that are just filled with abundant blessings. For Fiance, family, friends, job, state of mind, health, adventure and chance to develop into a better human being.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 16, 2009


On the phone the other day...

X: Bibi, I have just learned a new word, miscogeny, ah, miscegeny, do you say it? *getting frustrated with my pronunciation, as usual*

Bibi: Is that what you are going to do to me?

X: Hi hi hi...yeah! I am going to be a proud miscegenator.

Bibi: Hi hi hi...

A Saturday in November

To have myself content with life is always simple.

A fall cleaning on Saturday with classical music playing in the background resulted in a better organized closet and mopped kitchen and bathroom floors. It gave me a chance to enhance some musical sense as I've never listened to Vivaldi's Four Seasons as a whole before. I feel completed to experience the progress and movement from one season to another and found them therapeutic.

Back at the closet, tops in hangers are now organized by colors. Folded tops, exercise clothes, house clothes, jeans and shorts are consolidated in one closet and refolded. Pants are hanging in one end of the second closet, skirts next to them, and dresses on the other end. What small amounts of towels and linens I have are placed on the farther side. This way, NY and Mama will have space for their clothes once they get here in January.

With the re-org (ha, eat that, company!) I get to see that I have too many clothes, yet I wonder why I never get satisfied. This was after gathering two full bags of throw away as they are just not passing for donation.

Mopped kitchen and bathroom floors attribute to a renewal feeling of the space. I always leave the blind open to display the beautiful autumn view from trees and falling leaves outside and also of the pots of Rosemary, Snapdragon and Marigold on the patio that somehow survive my so called green thumb. The soft lights from the lamp on the corner of the dining area enhances this comfortable ambiance. I am a homebody at heart.

As I was enjoying this serenity while munching on procured tacos from a nearby joint, I found out that gametime for one of the almamater's most anticipated games was an hour earlier than what I had thought it would be. I had to race myself to a sportsbar 15 miles away to watch it with fellow Aggies--an always amazing lot of over-educated people. It is not too over the top when Fiance pronounced this place Nerd Heaven.

After the game, which was unfortunately a sad one, I managed to gather the ingredients for a yummy toffee-almond-crackers concoction, recipe courtesy of a certain lady with unquestionable fascination towards pre-historic creatures. It had caused a bad case of toffeenza since.

This afternoon, I decided to plastic bag about 10 of them and put a silver ribbon as embellishment on each bag. Some lucky group of people will have them distributed to tomorrow night. As for myself, I cannot be left with these sweet concoction alone. This was what was left from my personal size pan within three hours of making.

I rest my case.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Thoughts about Work and Life

As we grow older, we gather life experiences. We categorize them, the good, the bad, and the everything in between. I have come to realize that in the end it is how we react to these trials and tribulations that matters. I think it is only wise to procure this kind of attitude in order to make sense of mystery of life.

Latest reminder of the epiphany is that I was getting mad at the news at work this week. It is official that job security is an egg perching on top of a rapidly breaking wall. I sheepishly thought that my whole future and happiness depend on having this job with its conducive environment and the chance to work on my exact field of study. To be losing all of these is unfathomable.

At this phase of the game, I blamed the greedy economy and most importantly, I started to question the decisions I made on life, the what ifs and what nots, and also on myself as a person. I am glad I bounced back to reality in record keeping time. So, as you are my witness, I have decided that I will fight for this life, come what may, with the Father, his Son and the Ghost on my side. And, you know what, I will have Bibi with me soon and together we are going to make it through.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009