Saturday, October 30, 2004

Finally back in Austin!

After driving on the highway for about 3 hours, with one occasion of car breakdown in between, I finally got back to Austin with my trusty dog, Ramen! Made it to the Bob Schneider concert (He looked like Matthew Fox from "Party of Five".), the opening act was this bad called "Dragonfly Jones", and collectively speaking, their music was pretty good, but the audience was pretty obnoxious, bumping into each other with full beer bottles, body parts, and most of them acted like they were pretty good looking. I've got one piece of advice, and that is, form-fitting clothing is not meant for everyone, so please consider it carefully before you put it on!

I had a good time visiting my folks, all things considered. When I was in Iraq, I'd hear from my family about how badly my folks were faring, my grandmother had stomach cancer and all the treatment had left her not only physically, but also mentally worned out. During this visit, aside from the obvious signs of aging (she's in her mid-80's), she looked otherwise healthy. I hope they'll be healthy enough to play lots of mah-jong, have a lot more arugments with each other, and nick-pick on me and everyone else in the family!

Packed away the ramen the I got in Chinatown, I am ready to tackle the challenges of the following week, getting the car repaired (again), hassle my old reserve unit, harass texas workforce commission, seeing the in-laws (not so much a challenge), and God only knows what else!

Not thinking of anything too profound at this point, I just wish that the election could be over soon, and may the best candidate win!

Friday, October 29, 2004


My car stalled and broke down today on Interstate 10, about a day after I had it repaired and lubed....just my luck, I guess. I'm not all that upset about it, I was planning to take my gal out and eat at someplace nice and have some "after dinner activities", but I guess they'll just have to wait until later, hopefully tomorrow night!!

She's going to take me to a Bob Scheneider concert, he's a local favorite, and used to date Sandra Bullock. Since I could pick the next concert for us to goto, I picked Wonda Sykes, but since then I found that her tickets are like at least $150 each!!!! Wonda, you're good, but not that good!

I found myself looking at the other day, partly to see if there were anyone that I know that's featured on the site, since I was with the same group when I was in Iraq, and partly for nostalgic reasons. I clicked on the "In Memoriam" icon and found that I actally knew more people that had died in the war than I first realized. It's the saddest thing, to see people taken away at the prime of their lives. I hope no matter who becomes the next president, that he will figure out a way to bring the troops back home. Deployments are just about the most unnatural thing in the world, they often tear apart relationships, and sometimes changes a person not neccessarily for the better. It's good $ but the risks that one takes are just too high.

Well, here's to another sleepless night!

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Texas workforce commission sucks ass!

I had decided to take some time off after my lovely vacation in Iraq, so I filed for unemployment insurance. Took the neccessary steps to get registered with Texas Workforce Commission, and ever since then, I've been dealt by them with a completly unhelpful attitude.

They needed a copy of my certificate of discharge from active duty, so I made copies and gave it to them, while assured by some unnamed representative that they will be making the effort to contact the army also to get the paperwork starteed. Imagine my suprise when I heard that they wanted another version of my discharge paper that was not given to me. How many different forms are there for the same information? When asked whether or not they've been trying to contact the army, the oh so friendly representative said "Where did you hear that from? I've never heard of such a thing?" Translation "Oh, we are just hired to discourage you from getting what you already worked for, our condecending attitude pays us our salaries!"

So, when I go back to Austin tomorrow from my folks', I am going to march to my reserve unit and ask how do I get a copy of the discharge paper that I don't have, and then, I am going to the website of my state rep. and write them a nice little letter of complaint. If I had learn one thing from dealing with the fine leadership that I was given in Iraq, it's that life to too short to take unneccessary bullshit from others, and sometimes, it just takes going up the chain until you get an answer......because everyone has a boss above them, even the president!

Aside from that, life has been just peachy today. I got my car fixed today and hopefully it'll take me for another 100,000 miles, got some Chinese groceries to take back home with me, watched some World Series baseball, and got lectured by my grandma about the virtues of being married with kids. (I get that every single time I go home, by the way, I was raised by my grandparents, my parents, to this day, has a hard time accepting the fact that they actually had us. My younger sister and I would go through years without talking to either my mom or dad, and vise versa.)

I love kids, but I am very fearful of ending up like my parents. I am aware that, I am so much like my father that it's scary! In terms of personality, some aspect of our looks, even the way we talk sometimes! (I'd say that's pretty amazing, considering that I didn't grow up with him around much.) If I do have kids, I don't want them to feel ambivalent about me, and not talk with each other for years on end. I will not expect them to take care of us when we get old, but it'll be a nice suprise if they do decide to do so. My girlfriend thinks that I am very fertile and wants me to have a kid by sometimes next many ways, I already feel like I am walking on a high-wire!

More about my family later, I think all families are unique in terms of their own particular dysfunctions, you just can't have one without the other.

However, in closing, I am going to re-iterate "Texas Workforce Commission sucks ass!"


I'm a 32 year old Chinse female who has not quite followed the life track set for her by her family or her culture. I barely graduated college, served as a enlisted soldier in the army, and, instead of being married with 2.5 kids, I have a Caucasian girlfriend and we are as married to each other for the past 5 years as can be...just not legally. I've got a dog and two cats that I just adore, and we all live in a small duplex in Austin, Texas.

I planned this blog sort of on a whim, just kind of like thought to myself "well, tonight's the night!" My girlfriend has her own blog, and she has always encouraged me to guest write in hers. I didn't plan on writing this blog as any sort of self-promoting thing, rather, just a way to maybe share myself and if I'm lucky, get to know a few others in the process.

I came back from a tour in Iraq (not the touristy kind!) about a month ago, I served in the city of Mosul. It's quite a famous city, about two hours away from Turkey, Jonah (the one who was stuck in the whale's belly.) is said to be buried there, Mary, Jesus's mother, supposedly was from there, and as of lately, the hotbed of many insurgent-driven attacks. I was a supply clerk to a almost non-functioning company, most of the people in my group were Arabic linguists. It's interesting, because right now in the army, there are just about no more Arabic linguists ready for deployment, so we are semi-famous for being that "last group" of linguists who got deployed.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not the military type at all, in fact, I look forward to finally getting out in a few months! I am not very comfortable when I am in a large group of people, and I just about always question authority, more so when they don't make any sense whatsoever, and that's a no-no if you want to thrive in the military or any large company, for that matter. I am, however, grateful for all the neat things that I got to do while I was on duty, like learning to handle a weapon, do patrols, drive a 5 ton, operated a radio, and not to mention meeting some of the most interesting and creative people that I've ever known!

I'll come back later and introduce you to Beth, and the rest of my immediate circle. I will try not to bore you with a lot of military jargons and my own nostalgia, because this is not a military blog, but there will be hints of it from time to time.