Feb 10

TCOB + Valentine’s Day + CNY

Now that I’ve handed in the essays for the contests I wanted to enter, I have lots of paperwork to take care of.

First off, my writer’s contract.  There’s so much to fill out!  But it gives me assurance that I’ll most likely get paid and that I’m one of their official “vendors.”

The guy who did my taxes suggested I start collecting my writing expenses so I could write them off next year.  I’ll have to go back and see if I had anything from this year.  Then I may start keep a spreadsheet.  (Yay, spreadsheets!)

Also, I got a NY jury duty summons.  I had gotten one back in August but postponed it till February.  I was worried that I’d have to actually fly back to New York, but I called the place and they said I just had to send them evidence that I do indeed live in SF now.  I wrote an anal little cover letter and need to make copies of stuff to send.

I also need to hit the gym and go to yoga.

* * *

Had a nice weekend.  My brother was in town so we got to see him a couple of times.  Otherwise I worked like crazy on my essays and MB played his new guitar all day long.

On Sunday, we were supposed to get dumplings, but didn’t feel like schlepping out to Richmond.  It was such a beautiful day, we decided to walk to Fisherman’s Wharf instead.  It was pretty crowded, but tolerable.

We wanted to eat at that seafood restaurant we tried when we first moved here, but they had an hour and 45 minute wait.  At first we thought forget it, but then decided to put our names down.  We took a leisurely walk out to the water, down this long pier.  The sun was setting, which was beautiful.

“Do you want to take a picture?” MB asked me.

I shook my head.  I find that with sunsets, my photos never live up to the real thing. I prefer to just enjoy it in the moment.

We returned to the restaurant a little early, but our table was already available.  It was such a lovely unplanned Valentine’s Day.  I noticed other couples around the restaurant, all dressed up and formal.  You knew they had been planning this evening for a while (like the young dressed up couple in front of In ‘N Out Burger: “I gave my girl a rose and took her to In ‘N Out!”).

To me, the most highly anticipated events never live up to expectations.  Weddings, anniversaries, and Valentine’s Day.  Why wait till a specific day to celebrate?  Why not just act like that every day?

Anyway, we both got the prix fixe dinner: soup or salad, a fish entree, and dessert.  At $30 it was a little overpriced, but the food was good and the service excellent.  I got the salmon poached in olive oil with rosemary and garlic.


Now I’m hungry.

Yesterday MB had to work so I was on my own.  YP and I had our long-distance photo expedition – the theme: good luck symbols of Chinese New Year – so I hoofed it to Chinatown and took some pics.  I ran into lion dancers and their noisy firecrackers, “bai nian-ing” at businesses.

lion dancer on grant street

Here’s the whole CNY set.

All righty, off to the gym!

Nov 09


Between NaNoWriMo and feeling a bit under the weather last week, I didn’t get out of the house much.  I didn’t even get to the gym!  But by the weekend, I was feeling better so MB and I made sure to get out of the house.

Saturday afternoon we went to Wicked Grounds, cafe by day, S&M dungeon by night, supposedly.   There’s artwork up of people in various (tasteful, if there’s such a thing) bondage positions, and some evenings they have events like “bring your human pet night” and “steam powered vibrator demos” (I can’t imagine how that works).

As a cafe it was pretty nice.  There were lots of tables, and the chairs were super comfy, opulent and nicely cushioned, though I’m sure a bitch to clean.  The menu is rather limited though that may be because they only opened in September.  Regardless, my steamed hazelnut milk was tasty.

Inevitably some of the clientele was annoying.  When we came in, there was this couple at the counter, a kind of dumpy guy way too old to be wearing a backwards baseball cap, and his half-Asian girlfriend with her standard issue hipster-girl glasses and, get this, cat ears.  Why was she wearing cat ears?  Halloween is over!

I wouldn’t have cared about them except the girl gave us a very weird look when we walked in, like, What are you doing here? and then was hanging all over her boyfriend at the counter, getting in the way of other customers (like me).

Then later I felt like they kept staring at us, but all they wanted were the ropes hanging off our table.  She came over and took one without asking (how did she know we wouldn’t want to use them?), and then the guy showed her how to tie knots for the rest of the afternoon.

Also, the boyfriend made it very clear that he was chummy with the proprietress – who was super nice by the way – making comments and talking very loudly to her while she tried to work.  Yeah, yeah, you’re an insider, we get it.  Now STFU.

On Sunday we went to MB’s co-worker’s house warming party in the Haight-Ashbury area.  It seems to be mostly residential, except of course for Haight Street itself.  MB’s co-worker has a very cute apartment, nice and big with hardwood floors and good light.  It’s cool to see what places are like in other parts of town, though that would be a bit far for MB to get to work.

After the party, we walked on Haight Street a little.  It definitely has a different feel at night.  During the day, there are tons of tourists, but in the evening, all the druggy scrubby kids and weirdos come out.  There were people singing on street corners and the smell of pot everywhere.  I don’t think it’s that great.  I love street musicians but ones who are actually good, not some stinky kid pretending to be homeless while Mom and Dad sit at home in Palo Alto.  And if you’re white, you should not wear dreadlocks.  You really really shouldn’t.

We thought about eating in the area, but the only place we wanted to go, the Pork Store, was closed, so we just headed home instead.

Since next week is Thanksgiving, I’ll have to work double time this week with NaNoWriMo.  My book is moving forward though I’m not sure if it’s any good.  Trying not to think about that right now.

Oct 09

I see a pattern here

My San Francisco time has become far less exciting now that I’ve fallen into a pattern of days of writing broken up with errands and working out.

Last week I went to Japantown a couple of times.  I always think I’m going to find lots of groceries I want, but I never really do.  If I want all the Pocky and seaweed snacks in the world, then I’m set.  But I’ve yet to find something like M2M and their great wall of instant noodles.

Ah, M2M, how I miss thee.

Ah, M2M, how I miss thee.

A couple of weeks ago, I went to Chinatown looking for a good grocery store, but couldn’t really find one.  There are tons of markets, but they were all sort of, well, gross.  But I only looked on Stockton Street.  If anyone knows of a good (clean) supermarket in Chinatown, let me know.

Other big events last week, aside from my trip out to Haight Street, included eating lunch with MB (we like to get Japanese curry from Muracci’s), taking myself out to lunch at my favorite crepe place, Honey Honey, and buying a blanket.  In our sublet we have a down comforter, which is way too warm.  Hence, the blanket.

I went to the gym three times, and ran outside once.  There are two routes I’ve come to like.  Both start on Van Ness and head towards the water.  One path leads me to the Fort Mason Center and this very steep hill; the other goes down Bay Street and to the Marina, towards the Golden Gate Bridge.  I want to build up my endurance to reach the Bridge and back, which would be over six miles.  When I was running a lot in Central Park, I easily did the six-mile loop, but I’m out of practice.

This weekend MB and I spent a lot of time in the apartment working.  It’s good when he’s here because then I’m apt to work more.  On my own, I get cabin fever faster.  Saturday night we went to a party his workplace was hosting.  It wasn’t too exciting, but fun to talk to new people.  Also, it was my first time watching people play Rock Band. I can see how it’s addicting.

Afterwards, MB and I saw Astro Boy. It starts off incredibly boring, but turns out mildly entertaining.  There were some noisy kids in the audience, but that didn’t bother me since it wasn’t like I was missing some riveting dialogue.

Yesterday we took a break by walking out to Office Depot in Union Square.  I don’t really have a good work area set up.  The coffee table is too low, and the desk is tiny and flimsy.  The kitchen table isn’t bad, but I also want something like a simple folding table, basically a TV dinner tray, that I can put away while I’m not using it.  I also want to invest in a printer.  I’m kinda old school and like working off hard copies when I’m revising, and printing at FedEx Kinko’s all the time will add up.

That’s a long way of saying Office Depot was closed when we got there.  Closed on Sunday!  But people shop on Sundays!  We weren’t the only ones to stop there and be surprised.

Apropos of nothing, last weekend we went to this cafe to hang out, and the barista was the worst.  He served up our order just fine, but he talked constantly in this loud, game show host voice.  “Hi, and how are you folks today! What can I get for you! While you’re deciding, let me tell you about today’s prizes. . .a brand new car!!!”  The couple next to us were totally annoyed as well.

I’ve gotten a lot of work done.  For my memoir I’ve entered the revisions for parts one through three.  Today I expect to finish four and five, which leaves me the rest of this week to do a final (fingers crossed) polishing before submitting to a contest that’s due on the 31st.  I’ve written four essays, which need revision.

As for errands this week, I need to return some jeans (thought I liked them; don’t) and possibly look for an aviator cap.  If we go out for Halloween, I may go as Amelia Earhart.  I got a bomber jacket for pretty cheap, and I think I can get away with clothes I already have for the rest, especially if I’m able to find an aviator cap.  Haight Street seems to be the place to look for something like that.  Too bad I didn’t think of it while I was there.

Sep 09

I’m a little sleepy so it’ll be a rambly post

Had a fun and active Labor Day weekend.

ES was in town. Friday night we met up with SB for dinner, the last time the three of us would be able to hang out in a while. I can’t believe we’ve been friends for so long – ES and I since senior year in high school, and SB and I since freshman year of college. I think ES and SB met sophomore year, and of course hit it off instantly.

The next day ES and I tooled around the city. I was planning on being all efficient and running errands, but the weather was so nice, I wanted to do something fun instead. We slept in and took our time getting out of the house. There’s this mural on Houston Street that I’ve been wanting to photograph so we stopped there first.

Next up was lunch at Cafe Colonial. Sometimes it’s stupendously crowded, but it wasn’t too bad that day. I got the cowboy rice:

It was really tasty but overpriced at $15.

We decided to head downtown to ride the Staten Island Ferry, which neither of us had ever ridden before.  We caught what I thought was the 1 downtown, but suddenly it was an express and before I knew it we were in Brooklyn.  Oops!  We got off, hopped the next uptown, and got off at Wall Street.  ES had never been there before so it was cool to walk around.

It seemed everyone had the same idea about riding the ferry.  When we got there, the waiting area was packed.

I thought the boat couldn’t possibly fit all of us, but it did with room to spare.  Most people were crowded at the railing, trying to get that perfect picture of the Statue of Liberty or the Manhattan skyline. I was satisfied with just one.

There wasn’t much to see on SI, at least in the immediate area of the ferry, so we just sat by the water till it was time to get back on.  This time I stood with ES by the railing, which was fun, except that this one girl kept smushing me with her backpack till I wanted to grab her camera and throw it in the water.

Afterwards we met up with YP and his sister for dinner.  We ate at Quantum Leap, this vegetarian place.  It was pretty good.  I got the vegetable tofu curry stew.  The sauce was excellent, but I could have done with more tofu.  After we ate, we walked over to Washington Square Park and hung out.  It’s really nice now that they’ve taken down the construction.

The next morning ES and I took the train together to our respective parents’ in NJ.  I had somehow forgotten everything I was planning on bringing – my laptop charger, my copyedited memoir, my running shoes – so I had almost nothing to do.  I mostly read.  Then later MB wanted to test out the web cam he had given my parents, so he Skyped my dad.  It was funny to see MB on my parents’ giant TV.

Today I caught the 12:43 train back to New York, and spent the day organizing what clothes I’ll be bringing to SF next weekend, what I’ll be donating, and what I’ll be moving to my parents’.  Took a little walk to the Container Store to return some crappy ass hangers and get some decent ones.  It was a mad house by the way, what with all the students back for the fall.

Now I’m pooped!  I woke up semi-early, around 8, and look forward to crashing soon.  Ah, how I love to sleep.

Just a few more days till I visit MB in Cali!

Jul 09

Enjoying a relaxing 4th of July weekend

Last week was tough to get through, at least the beginning, between being away from work for so long, the jetlag, and my cold. But at least it was a short week.

I asked my boss about working remotely. His reaction? Loud, prolonged laughter. I guess my company is stricter about it than I thought though I learned last night from one of my former co-workers that an admin on her team was somehow able to fenagle it. At least my boss said to build my case and he’d listen.

Tuesday night YP and I saw West Side Story on Broadway. I splurged for orchestra seats, a graduation present for myself, and had invited my dad for a belated Father’s Day gift. No interest. Then my mom said she’d go, but then she bailed at the last minute, saying that I’d be too tired to pick her up and drop her off at Penn Station.

Thanks for the support, Mom and Dad!

Anyway, I’m actually glad I didn’t have to accompany my mother to and from the train station as it was pretty rainy that whole night, and of course YP was lovely company as usual. (Musicals are not MB’s thing.)

The production was very nice, and I got tingles seeing a movie I love in action. My favorite scene has to be at the dance – the “Mambo!” scene I call it – when they start off unenthusiatically going in a circle, then bust out crazy dancing. Tingles!

I have to say the lovey-dovey scenes between Tony and Maria kinda bored me (like they do in the film) though I totally cried during the Anita-Maria “A Boy Like That”/”I Have a Love” scene, as well as the ending. Some of it was in Spanish, including a couple of songs, “I Feel Pretty” and the “A Boy Like That”/”I Have a Love,” which I’m only remembering now wasn’t in English.

MB and I spent the day yesterday working on our respective stuff (coding and writing). That night one of my former co-workers had a going-away party. MB and I went with YP. It was fun though I wish I had had more time to chat (read: gossip) with the gals I used to work with.

Today MB and I will probably tool around the city, if the weather holds up. Last Sunday we had a lovely time walking down to the Brooklyn Bridge, across, and around Dumbo. I wish there was somewhere we could watch fireworks with not a lot of people.

Jun 09

Again with the memoir, and the weekend

Next two memoir installments are up.

MB and I were at my parents’ this weekend, getting in an early Father’s Day visit since I’ll be in London at that time.

Saturday afternoon we went to the mall. It’s fun to show MB my NJ stuff. I didn’t grow up going to that mall, but it’s one I’ve been to a lot. It’s also fun because he finds it fun too. And he’s so easygoing – he had programming to do, but he just brought his computer and sat in the cafe and worked while I was shopping. You’d think that wouldn’t be a big deal, but some people get really uptight about that sort of thing.

Then we got some ice cream, something I never did in high school: getting ice cream with a boy at the mall. It’s like I’m recapturing my youth. :)

My mother cooked a great dinner, as usual, and afterwards we watched a little TV, then worked on our respective stuff. I finally decided to put up a site for my writing. MB helped me with the technical part of it, and I’ve been adding the content. Here it is thus far.

Right now it’s a place for my short stories and essays. Eventually I would like to import the blog posts from here. So I envision the main page to be the “About” page with links to the writing blog and the personal blog. You can also see a list of my stuff under “Published & recognized works.” I imagine there will also be a page dedicated to my memoir once I get it into Scribd.

Sunday afternoon we took a nice walk down the road behind my parents’ house. It’s not that feasible for pedestrians, but at least there’s a bike path and a sidewalk for part of the way. We saw lots of animals – innumerable rabbits and chipmunks (so cute!); one deer, which at first I thought was a long-legged dog; and one turtle, which I had seen from a distance, wondering what it was.

MB was fascinated by the turtle. He picked it up to take it out of the road and onto the grass, and when he did, its head and legs popped out and wiggled around, which freaked me out for a second. Guess I’m not a wild life girl.

We took an eight o’clock train back. It was very crowded, but we managed to find two seats together. When we got back to the city, we took advantage of the cool night and had a little walk.

Oh boy, still lots to do before I leave for London on Saturday. I need a bunch of small things, like a plug converter for my laptop, and to finish up a few projects here at work. Luckily they are, so far, pretty easy, it’s just a matter of doing them. And I still need to get my independent study set up, though I feel less enthused about it. I still haven’t received feedback from my prof on my proposal so I sent him a follow-up checking in and saying I’d be open to doing it in the fall as well, if I’m still in New York. :)

Of course my parents had lots of questions for MB about the possible job. Plus my mother did that annoying thing where she asks a question, you answer it, and then she asks the same thing again just to make sure, as though the answer will suddenly change two hours from now. MB takes it all in stride and is much more patient than I am. In fact, a visit to my parents’ is always more fun with MB around.

Jun 09

Book Expo 2009

This weekend was Book Expo. Last time I went to the whole thing, even taking a day off from work. This year I thought one day would suffice.

I was a little late Saturday morning. The night before 1) YP and I had a our monthly photo expedition (the theme: NYC at Night), which involved sake at dinner, and 2) MB and I saw a midnight showing of Drag Me to Hell, which was good by the way! If you like those kinds of movies.

I was supposed to get to the Jacob Javits Center by 9 but didn’t make it till 10. I caught the last half of The Librarian as Digital Diva, which was pretty good. There was a guy from the Boston Public Library who talked about their work with the Internet Archive, digitally archiving their rare works, which are otherwise not easily accessible to the public (you have to go the library, make an appointment, etc.).

One librarian in the audience hadn’t heard of the Internet Archive, and kept asking, “What is it? The Internet – ” pen poised. I dunno, that kind of seems like basic knowledge for a modern-day librarian.

Next I went to Independent Editors’ Buzz, which meant free books! I was a little disappointed by the offerings – one was a fantasy novel, the other a thin mystery from a debut author – but beggars can’t be choosers I guess. Seems I missed the mainstream editors’ buzz panel, which was Thursday afternoon.

The Authors’ Luncheon made up for that though. The speakers were Ken Aueletta, Dan Pink, Lorrie Moore, and Mary Karr. Lorrie Moore (Birds of America) and Mary Karr (The Liars’ Club) are two of my favorites. It was the first time I had heard Lorrie Moore speak, and she was freaking hilarious! Her writing is very funny, and she’s the same way in person, very droll and sarcastic. Mary Karr is funny as well. Dan Pink has a book about motivation, which actually seems interesting, and Ken Aueletta has a new book called Googled: The End of the World as We Know It, and has also written one on Microsoft and Bill Gates.

The giveaways: Mary Karr’s Lit, Lorrie Moore’s new novel, A Gate at the Stairs, and Pat Conroy’s new book. He couldn’t be there for some reason.

In the afternoon I was going to go to a couple of sessions. I went to one, something about online publishing in China, but it was indredibly boring. Maybe it was because the speaker’s English wasn’t very good, but it was just painful to listen to. So I decided to look at the booths for a change, which I didn’t last time because there were so many people, it was overwhelming. This year there seemed to be fewer.

I kept seeing people standing in line for giveaways, and before I never bothered. But this time I decided to since I was skipping sessions. No luck. The giveaways were only for full-fledged librarians and booksellers. Boo!

I guess it makes a difference if you go to the whole thing. Last time I went to every single editors’ buzz panel and author breakfast/luncheon, and got lots of goodies. Going to just one day doesn’t seem to be enough.

On another note, Ronald Takaki died. He was a premiere Asian American studies scholar and historian. I remember reading several of his works in college, including Strangers from a Different Shore, which I still have. Apparently the cause of death was suicide. He had MS for many years, and according to his son, “He struggled, and then he gave up.” Sad.

May 09


I have: work work, my independent study proposal, this delinquent blog post, but all I want to do is go shopping.

Had a nice long weekend, which now seems ages ago. Friday night we saw Terminator: Salvation, which, like Wolverine, had some good action sequences, but overall was pretty dumb. Saturday we spent most of the day outside, walking around the Upper West Side and having a picnic in Central Park. We also had a late lunch at Spoonbread, our favorite Southern restaurant. Short ribs, mac and cheese, and Spoonbread punch, yum!

Sunday was mostly a work day, coding for MB and writing (finally!) for me. Recently The New York Times ran a piece on Scribd, a document sharing system where authors can sell digital copies of their books. I used to not like the idea of self-publishing, or at least of having to pay to have my book published and handing out copies to my friends, like, “Look at what I did!” But I’ve gotten to a point that I just want to get my stuff out there, regardless of how.

For a while I thought I’d just throw it up on my blog, but since seeing that NY Times piece, I’m curious about trying Scribd out, once my memoir is done. It will be fun to market it via various channels. I don’t expect to make money off it. I just want see what happens.

Anyway, on Sunday for a break, we did a little shopping in Union Square, but it was so hot and humid, neither of us felt like staying at too long. That night AY and her boyfriend came into the city, and I met them for dinner (MB was too “in the zone”). We had tasty Japanese curry and then fancy Japanese desserts. I like Asian desserts since they’re not as sweet. I had a green tea Bavarian cream concoction. It was gooood.

Monday was more working, followed by a field trip up to the new Muji store on Port Authority. Wah wah waaaah. It was big but we weren’t too impressed with the selection.

~ ~ ~

Apropos of nothing, you know when you’re on Facebook and find a friend from high school or college, and you barely recognize them, aside from the fact that they’re trying to squeeze their three kids into their profile pic, and you look at yourself, and you look and feel and act pretty much the same as when you were in your 20s, and you think, What have I done with my life? and I kind of want to kill myself?

Imagine your relief to find that 37-year old Winona Ryder looks almost exactly the same as she did in Reality Bites, and she’s not married and doesn’t have kids, and is still talking about Johnny Depp, and unlike “frienemy” Gwyneth Paltrow, seems to be living a life similar to when she was younger, rather than a pretentious organic know-it-all-y one.

A lot of people of my generation feel like they grew up with Winona Ryder. I was 14 when I saw her in Lucas, and a senior in college when I saw Reality Bites. Our lives pretty much diverged after that – I think it was Bram Stoker’s Dracula that did it – but I’ve always felt like we were living parallel lives. Me, Winona, and tens of thousands of other women our age.

She couldn’t find the right guy (been there), and then there was that whole shop lifting thing (haven’t been there), but I think most of us can identify with those days that you feel you can barely hold it together, like the woman I saw yesterday in her good shoes and wrinkled coat and too much eye makeup, asking shakily for Vietnamese takeout soup in a paper container, not plastic, and when told again there is no paper, just plastic, barely holding it together as she walked back out the door.

I think I’ve been in a stable place for quite some time now, and I hope Winona feels the same way. But still it’s a great comfort to see that, after all these years, we’re in the same boat. Except for the rich and famous part that is.

Apr 09

One of those non-stop weekends

Fun but busy.

Friday was completely dead at work. Almost no one was around, including my boss. Still, I got a few things done in the morning before working out, then hopped the train to New Jersey, where I’d be hanging with ES, who was in town for the holiday, and AY.

We decided to go around New Brunswick, home of ES’s alma mater and slightly closer to New York. It was cold! We shivered as we walked around campus. ES wanted to visit these junk food trucks. She got this hot dog thing. I wasn’t going to eat any junk but it looked good and she was sharing! So bad for us.

Before dinner we had drinks at this Asian-style bar and restaurant. The restaurants there are huge! I’m so used to shoeboxes in Manhattan where you’re bumping elbows with your neighbor. We had one martini each. I had a “saketini,” sake mixed with Grey Goose vodka and pear puree. It was tasty but strong. That one drink totally knocked me on my ass, and I basically drunk for a couple of hours.

For dinner we had what could be called American style tapas. The dishes were tiny and included stuff like mini-burgers, seafood “fritters,” and tiny gourmet pizza slices. Most of the food was really good, but we all agreed our favorite were these cheese bread puff things – which were free! We had about eight dishes total, plus dessert, and ES and AY also had a bit of wine, and the whole bill was still only about $60.

We were out pretty late. I caught an 11:30 train back and got home by about 1.

The next day I met ES and SB at SB’s place. It’s been months since I’ve seen SB and her daughter Ellie, who grows by leaps and bounds every time I see her. Now she seems so much older. I said, “Do you remember me?” and she looked at me like, “Dehr.” The kid is 4.

The weather was horrible that day. Cold and rain rain rain. We managed to find a place to eat near my old apartment. ES and I both had a full Irish breakfast, which was excellent for my hangover (yes for me, one drink = hangover). But I was definitely on a downward spiral in terms of eating junk.

Afterwards since the weather was so terrible, we went to the Met. Man, was it crowded! SB knew about an entrance that was slightly less crowded so that was good, but when we made our way to the main entrance to go upstairs, Ellie started to get overwhelemed by the crowds. I don’t blame her. I was barely holding it together myself. So Ellie and SB headed home.

Once ES and I got inside the museum, it wasn’t as bad. I always surprise myself by knowing how to maneuver the museum. First stop was the caf where we got some much needed coffee. Again, so crowded! But we didn’t have to circle around too much before two seats opened up.

Then somehow I was able to get us to the Greek and Roman gallery, featuring Perseus and his marble ass, always the highlight of my visit to the Met. We also checked out the fairly new Galleries for Oceanic Art, which I’ve never seen before. The coolest was this ceiling decoration that was enormous! From there we made our way to the Walker Evans postcard exhibit.

When we left it had stopped raining, thank goodness, and although still chilly, the sun had come out. We walked a bit before catching our respective buses, mine downtown and ES’s to Penn Station.

Sunday YP and I had our photo outing. This month’s theme: optical illusions. In other words, use perspective to make it look like we’re holding the top of a building, or feeding a carrot to a giant statue of a horse (yes, we had props). I realized: I’m bad at perspective. I don’t know where the person should stand to make it look right. Or sometimes I do, but only by instinct. Anyway, it was pretty fun, but cold again! And very windy. Wtf.

For the rest of Sunday, MB and I just hung out. He had a lot of practicing to do, and of course I had schoolwork. I revised my paper, which didn’t take as long as I thought it would, and did some reading. We also watched a bunch of TV, and he made dinner, a tofu stir fry with veggies. Yum!

Next weekend is just me and MB. I feel like it’s been a few weeks since we’ve had a whole weekend to ourselves.

Mar 09

A live-alone-and-like-it kind of weekend

At the last minute, MB decided to go to this conference in Chicago. He was hesitant at first because of finances, but then he got paid for this consulting gig, and I encouraged him to go. I knew I’d miss him like crazy, but he hasn’t been to a conference in so long. Plus it’s a good opportunity for networking.

I didn’t have a lot of plans, just a photography outing with YP on Saturday. The theme this month was “self-portraits,” one of my bright ideas, which was hard to do, especially for someone with short arms. Neither of us were too enthusiastic, and ended up taking just a few pictures. Last month’s theme of “food” was better.

Aside from that I ran a bunch of errands: Whole Foods, the drugstore, the Container Store, the Asian grocery store. Dropped off laundry, cleaned the fridge, cleaned the stove. Got rid of my old shredder finally. MB has a smaller one so we definitely don’t need two.

Did some reorganizing using my purchases, folding mesh cubes, from the Container Store. I love them because they’re flexible so you can squeeze lots of oddly shaped things in them (like shoes), and if you’re not using them, you can just fold them up and hide then away. But I always forget how to refold them. It’s like origami.

Worked on homework a bunch. For Collection Development we have this annoying subject analysis assignment. For the library of our choice, we have to map out all the subject headings, including Library of Congress of Dewey Decimal classification, and then rate then according to the ALA codes in terms of depth and intensity.

I’m just going to wing it in terms of the ratings – I mean, who’ll know if they’re correct or not? – but I’m being a stickler about the LC headings. Do I dare say that I’m kind of enjoying looking up all the headings and subheadings and assigning neat little numbers? I guess that’s why I signed up for this gig in the first place.

My Thursday class, People Centered Methods and Design, is cancelled this week since we had an extra class earlier in the semester. Last week’s class was good. At first I dreaded it because I thought we’d have to present our projects again, but the professor just gave us feedback on the reports we had handed in earlier in the week.

Early on I was really doubtful about my project. Everyone else’s was so artsy – a dream archive with dreams depicted in sketches, creating an interface for a repository of digital photos, some type of exhibit in which the person would be attached to various strings and people could pull on those strings, which I guess demonstrates phenomenology, which I’ve only recently begun to understand as having to do with not just thinking or existing in a vaccum (“I think therefore I am”) but existing in the context of a “universe,” reacting to and acting in that universe, and in relation to other people (I know: hunh?).

In comparison mine was so pragmatic: creating a resource, like a wikipedia, to help people to learn corp speak and corporate language, skills that one must have to succeed in the corporate world but which are never acknowledged (only “good communication skills” in a general way).

But I think the professor actually likes my project. He gets exicted when we talk about it while with the others he either sort of rolls his eyes, or presses people to be more specific and concrete. In the beginning he was like, “Go with it!” to the people with artsier projects, but I guess since they are still so abstract, he feels they haven’t progressed as much.

This weekend I also did some reading at the NYPL. It’s out of the way from my place, but I love the quiet of the reading rooms, unlike cafes where people are yakking and there’s coffee spillage and crumbs. Nearby is the International Center of Photography. One of the exhibits there now is Weird Beauty: Fashion Photography Now, which was, needless to say, very weird but also fascinating. It’s funny how you can see those photos in a magazine and think, Whatevs, but seeing them displayed together was really interesting.

MB is back tomorrow. Yay!