So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
Ethnicity. that of my father and his father before him
Location Altadena, CA
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The Link To Zanzibar's Past
This is my page in the beloved art community that my sister got me into:
Extra points for people who know what Samarinda is.
The Phases of the Moon Module
The Tree and the Telephone Pole
I Do Not Know Their Names
Today I am Young
A Night Poem
Siren of the Sea
If I Were a Dragon
To the Dreamers Leave the Sky
The Honor of the Oyster
Return From San Diego
A Late Summer's Night
Of Dragons and Men
The Edge of the World
The Snake's Terror
Metaphysics and the Middaymoon
Of Adventures in Foreign Lands
The Rogue Wave: The Unedited Version
Adventures in the PRC
Voyage of Discovery
Drinking the Blood of Goats
Ticket for a Phantom Bus
Os peixes nadam o mar
Three Villages Far Away
The River Weser
Children I Should Have Kidnapped, Part I
Let's Get You Out of Those Clothes
If Underwear Could Speak
Croc Hunter/Combat Wombat
Only My Favorite Baseball Player EVER
Aw, Larry Walker, how I loved thee.
M: Science and Exploration
T: Cook a nice dinner
Th: Parties, movies, dinners
F: Picnics, the Louvre
S: Read books, go for walks, PARKOUR
Su: Philosophy, Religion
The Reading List
This list starts Summer 2006
A Crocodile on the Sandbank
Tales of the Alhambra (in progress)
Dark Lord of Derkholm
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
The Lost Years of Merlin
Harry Potter a l'ecole des sorciers (in progress)
Atlas Shrugged (in progress)
A Long Way Gone (story of a boy soldier in Sierra Leone- met the author! w00t!)
The Eye of the World: Book One of the Wheel of Time
From Magma to Tephra (in progress)
Lady Chatterley's Lover
Harry Potter 7
The No. 1 Lady's Detective Agency
Introduction to Planetary Volcanism
A Child Called "It"
Is Multi-Culturalism Bad for Women?
Americans in Southeast Asia: Roots of Commitment (in progress)
What's So Great About Christianity?
Aeolian Dust and Dust Deposits
The City of Ember
The People of Sparks
When I was in Cuba, I was a German Shepard
The Golden Compass
Clan of the Cave Bear
The 9/11 Commission Report (2nd time through, graphic novel format this time, ip)
The Incredible Shrinking Man
The Elves of Cintra
The Gypsy Morph
Animorphs #23: The Pretender
Animorphs #25: The Extreme
Animorphs #26: The Attack
A Journey to the Center of the Earth
A Great and Terrible Beauty
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
To Sir, With Love
Alice in Wonderland
Through the Looking Glass
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
The Hunger Games
Shadows and Strongholds
The Jungle Book
Beatrice and Virgil
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
No One Ever Told Us We Were Defeated
The Name of the Wind
Tao Te Ching
What Paul Meant
Lao Tzu and Taoism
Sand and Sandstones
Lost Christianites: The Battles for Scripture and the Faiths We Never Knew
The Science of God
Great Contemporaries, by Winston Churchill
City of Bones
Around the World in 80 Days, by Jules Verne
Stranger in a Strange Land
The Old Man and the Sea
Flowers for Algernon
Au Bonheur des Ogres
The Road to Serfdom
De La Terre à la Lune (ip)
In the Light of What We Know
Devil in the White City
The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August
How to Be a Good Wife
A Mote in God's Eye
want to read: Last Hunger Games Book, Honeybee Democracy, The Bell Jar
Who's that handsome, mysterious gentleman?
Sunday. 5.6.07 10:28 pm
Act II, Scene 3
Sunday. 5.6.07 2:42 pm
A sparely furnished kitchen. Z sits center stage at a small table. Her lunch is meticulously spread before her and she is slicing things to prepare them to put on a small, simple plate.
C enters stage right. His hair is slightly messy and bleached blond and he is wearing a ripped white tank-top with with a neon pattern on the front, splattered with paint, and a pair of old athletic shorts.
C (shouting towards stage left): HEY! I don't know what to throw away! You have to help me!
K, off stage left: Just throw away the things you don't want to keep!
C: I want to keep everything! He turns to Z, as if seeing her for the first time. I'm throwing away my old clothes today. It's killing me.
K enters stage left and they exeunt stage right. Their voices can be heard offstage as Z carefully assembles her lunch.
K: What about this one! We can throw this one out.
C: NO!!! I love that shirt.
K: How about this one? It says... "Deep Purple"
C: What?! How can you even say that! That's a classic band!
K: It's old.
C: No way.
K: Ok, how about this one. Can we PLEASE throw this one away?
C: What! You like that shirt! You like that shirt!
K: No, C, I don't like this shirt. Or this tank-top. We should throw it away.
C: But I need tank-tops!
K: Nobody wears tank-tops anymore, honey. What about this shirt? It's a wreck.
C: That's my work-shirt, though, I use it for work.
K: No you don't, when was the last time you wore this?
C: But I need it! I need it for work!
K: C, honey, you don't even do that kind of work anymore. What about this one, this one is really ugly.
C: That's not ugly! I just bought that this year. That is a really fashionable shirt.
K: Yeah, fashionable if you lived 100 years ago. Give me your belts.
C: No, I can't throw out my belts.
K: You are so past the stage of your life where you would wear these belts, sweetie. What about that?
C: It's my cousin's. I have to give it back to her.
K: You haven't seen your cousin in 8 years. Give it to Z.
C: But I'm going to see her this summer.
K: Are you sure? Why don't you just give it to Z.
C: If don't see her this summer, I'll give it to Z, ok? But I'm going to see her.
Some 80s glam rock starts playing which drowns out their voices. Z has stopped eating and is staring at her perfectly chopped food and single plate. Scene.
Saturday. 5.5.07 11:52 pm
We're all standing there, waiting to eat the chocolate cakes. A is telling an interesting story about a vet friend of hers who takes in injured cats... so they always have the sorriest cats- cats with one eye, cancer surviving shaved cats, cats with tubes coming out of their necks.
"Enough, enough," her husband says. His arms are lovingly around her waist. She continues recounting the injuries of the cats a little longer. "Enough" he says, more forcefully, reminding her that we were about to eat cakes. Her story is winding down but not ending just yet.
He clamps his hand over her mouth to stop her from continuing. There is a little lull in the conversation, then she says awkwardly to break the silence, "well, what's next, then, are we going to eat?"
I wouldn't have said that.
No, I would have just killed my husband instead.
But then again, I would have probably divorced him more than ten years ago, before marrying him in the first place. Yes, yes, I think I would have left him the first time he ever tried to do something like put his HAND over my FACE when I was trying to talk. It astonishes me what some people put up with.
I am a bad person, but I love brownies
Saturday. 5.5.07 12:29 pm
warning: not suitable for children, or other people who don't want to read about butt-sex (discussed with academic detachment, of course).
So there is this gallery showing with art about women with AIDS and also information about AIDS in general, and so there was a presentation going on in the big auditorium that anyone could go to... and there were a bunch of journal papers on the table for people to read... and there was a huge banquet table of food. Some people were eating it, you could eat it whenever you wanted during the gallery thing, that went on for two days... so there were these brownie-bar things... they had graham-cracker crust and layers of fudge and then coconut on the top and they were sprinkled with graham-cracker-crust dust and brown sugar and they were just lying there... and nobody was eating them... and there were not enough people in the auditorium to eat them all, really, and... well... so.... I read two of the scientific papers on the table... one was about how much lube you need if you're having butt-sex... no, seriously, this was like a peer-reviewed journal article about the amount and the viscosity... I stopped reading that one... and then the other one was about how if you're married or in a long-term relationship or engaging in transactional sex (all in the same catagory) then basically you're just exchanging sex for money, security, a house, bodily safety, etc- so if you're a woman involved in any kind of relationship at all, it is a given that you're going to have to have sex (and this sex pretty much makes you a socially-acceptable form of prostitute, because you wouldn't have it if you didn't need to gain something from it) and since you don't really have control over whether you remain abstinent or not, or whether your partner remains monogamous, or whether he uses a condom or not... you have absolutely no control over whether or not you get AIDS. Hmm....
They have recently been arguing over this very idea on the Scripps College facebook pages, saying that because of the "power structure" that the only reason women give men sex is because that's the only thing they have that men want which will in return get them money, a house, support for their children, etc. So Scripps held a clinic for women to learn how to "pleasure themselves"... because even though sex itself is "beautiful and freeing and wonderful"... sex with MEN... or shall we say, GIVING up sex TO men, is evil, degrading, misogynistic, and should be stopped. So this way you can still enjoy sex (or aspects of it) while still "completely freeing yourself from the hetero-male-normative-insert-any-popular-phrasology-here-regime-of-gender-repression" as well.
Reminds me of this science-fiction book where the world was run by convents of women in different industries who just cloned themselves instead of having sex with men (in general they scorned, mistreated and looked down on men and didn't let them participate except peripherally in any activity of the civilization). The catch was that they still needed men to somehow "spark" the whole cloning process... so in return for "sparking", the women would occasionally have natural children with men that they liked so that there would be boys to replace the men in the next generation. The only problem was when a woman gave birth to a natural daughter. Nobody wanted the daughters because they weren't part of any clone-group and they weren't men. The story begins with a set of natural-born identical twin daughters. You can see where this is going. Oh, and did I mention that the men were all sailors? Yeah. You know you want to read it now.
But in all seriousness, the kind of stuff that the paper and the Scripps facebook group is talking about certainly must be true for some people, especially in some other cultures. Those women would probably benefit from a UNICEF shipment of cans of empowerment sauce and a copy of Destiny's Child Independent Woman Part I. But at Scripps College I don't see a lot of women being culturally pressured into trading sex for material goods. Ok, let me add: "against their will". I guess I was just raised by parents who said that you don't always have to do what your culture from time to time sort of implies you might want to look into. Or more likely, I'm TRaPPED inside the structure of male-oppression present on small Southern California liberal arts college campuses so completely that I can't even see it for what it is anymore!!! It's hard to see how this is possible, since according to students of the same institution who think if I am having sex then I am oppressed, if I'm not having sex then I'm "repressed". What should I do??? All of my actions are based on cues from my peers and I'm getting mixed cues!?! WHAt ShouLD I DO?????
But really the whole time I was reading this I was thinking, "If I learn enough from these papers about AIDS so that I can tell myself that I "attended" this free and open-to-the-public event, I can eat one of those brownie bars.
And WOW, it was delicious.
Thursday. 5.3.07 9:40 pm
So today I took Toku to the bike store because somebody bent his wheel in half while it was chained to the rack one night. The people in the office had been talking about it, saying it was an eyesore and asking when he going to fix it. Why don't you go and try to find to a bike shop in a foreign country and then try and speak a different language and get your bike fixed, office people???
Anyway, my bike hasn't had working brakes since around December, so I phrased it that I was going to the store anyway and I was wondering if he wanted to come too. Toku had to carry his on his shoulder the whole way because its back wheel doesn't turn anymore. As it turns out, it would cost less to buy a new bike than it would to repair it. So he had to carry it all the way back again, too. Plus he had to carry it an extra distance because the bike shop I led him to first has apparently been closed for several years... oops.
He was telling me some of the new English words he's been learning- his favorite is, "Whatchmacallit". He heard it on the radio and went and asked his English teacher what it meant. That's a pretty good word- "whatchamacallit". He wants to go to the mall soon because he wants to buy me a birthday present. He said before my birthday he went there and wandered around for a long time but he couldn't decide what to buy. I told him that I didn't need a present, but that we could go to the mall and play video games and arcade basketball, if he wanted. I taught him the word for "dandelion". In Japanese he said it was something like "tampopo", which is a nice name for it, too. The worst is the french "pis-en-lit" ... piss-in-the-bed? That's not a very poetic name for a pretty little sunny dandelion.
Yesterday I went to the gym for the first time in... a while. This guy kept appearing to do push-ups next to my mat. After a while I went over to the free weights and started doing exercises for my triceps and back. He came over and sat down next to me. He was listening to music. He just lay on the bench for a while, doing nothing. It seemed like he wanted to say something. Couldn't be about anything important- I wasn't in anyone's way. He seemed to be waiting for a break. Since I was switching arms, I decided to just do all my sets in a row with no breaks, just to mess with him. Finally I finished all three sets on each arm. I immediately started on another set of a different exercise. Finally he picked up some weights and started benching. I took this opportunity to get up and walk off just then. After a moment, he put down his weights and got up, too. I walked around the gym once and decided I was done- I went up the stairs. He couldn't see where I'd gone. I waited for him to find me. Then I looked back over my shoulder with a glance that lingered just long enough so he'd know I was deliberately catching his eye, and I smiled. Then I was gone.
I haven't practiced that one in a long time. It's important to keep these skills sharp.
har har har
Thursday. 5.3.07 9:21 pm
My dad reminded me of this awesome joke:
US Ship: Please divert your course 0.5 degrees to the south to avoid a collision.
CND reply: Recommend you divert your course 15 degrees to the South to avoid a collision.
US Ship: This is the Captain of a US Navy Ship. I say again, divert your course.
CND reply: No. I say again, you divert YOUR course!
US Ship: THIS IS THE AIRCRAFT CARRIER USS CORAL SEA*, WE ARE A LARGE WARSHIP OF THE US NAVY. DIVERT YOUR COURSE NOW!!
CND reply: This is a lighthouse. Your call.
Thursday. 5.3.07 12:37 am
A short note to the community
Wednesday. 5.2.07 12:10 pm
I think even though we are usually always really nice to each other on Nutang, I think we should be especially cognizant of how important it is that we are so nice to each other, because I don't think anyone here needs (or in some cases can afford to have) any more places where they go and people are mean to them.
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