Tuesday, October 14, 2008
*Disclaimer: The ladies shown in the photo on the right are not myself or my GF...if we looked like that, we'd be in the porn business!
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
One Hundred Foods You Should (not have to) Eat
Taken From Sassy Femme
The foods I've eaten are in bold and italics. There are just too many that are too regional.
How about you? Blog this and bold the foods that you've eaten.
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare
6. Black pudding
7. Cheese fondue
10. Baba ghanoush
13. Peanut butter and jelly sandwich (grilled is awesome!)
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns
20. Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries
23. Foie gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn or head cheese
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper
27. Dulce de leche
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl
33. Salted lassi (mango lassi and sweet lassi)
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a fat cigar
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects
44. Goat’s milk
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
47. Chicken tikka masala
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal
57. Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV
60. Carob chips
66. Frogs’ legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings or andouillette
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost, or brunost
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
79. Lapsang souchong
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant
85. Kobe beef
90. Criollo chocolate
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
Sunday, August 03, 2008
I just came back from the aforementioned trip, courtesy of Uncle Sam! Overall it was a bittersweet trip, bitter because I have the sense that this will be the last trip of this sort for me. My company commander also found out about my orientation (but at this point, I'm just so tired so I am beyond caring about what she might do do me at this point... as far as she claimed that she opposed the "don't ask, don't tell" policy, you just never know what people are thinking.) I tried to act as responsible as a leader as I could, but also at the same time, I had a bad attitude towards the command staff because they were being one-sided and very inconsistent.
Those of us who are in the leadership positions flew out to Ft. Lewis, Washington a few days earlier for some last minute detail planning and also a ride in a Chinook helicopter, courtesy of the aviation unit to which our unit's now housed in. They flew us over Mt. Rainer and it was simply beautiful! I am waiting for the pictures to be sent over this way electronically so I can show some to you guys.
I also got a chance to finally meet up with my friend Cindy. We have known each other for the last 15 years and she swore that neither of us had changed... at least in appearance. I had dinner with her and her new man, Delaney... he's a whole 10 years younger than her and I just have to say that I'm so proud of her! They both are happy and living it up in Seattle... I wish that I had more time to visit with them!
Then I flew to Hawaii and spent two weeks there, the first week was very hectic, with my work schedule from 6 A.M. to 2 P.M... and an hour of commute time from our hotel to the work site.. I had to wake up at around 4 A.M. ... there were a lot of afternoons where I was just struggling to keep some kind of awake. I think I must have consumed just about all sorts of the so called "energy drinks" available.. and you know what? None of them work as claimed!
We finally had one day off, after about 6 schedule revisions.... and what army unit is a real army unit without one of these "mandatory fun day"? For that, we went to one of the local military hotels and ate at the exact same restaurant that we had eaten at the year prior.
More in the next entry...
Friday, July 04, 2008
The GF and I are going to an instructional kayaking trip tomorrow, and so we've kept it low key today. It's not exactly like we knew people who are having bbqs, that sort of comes with not knowing many people or having many friends here. The boob tube has been tuned to Turner Classic Movies channel most of today.
I am about to embark on my second annual training with my reserve unit, and I really hope that it'll be my last as an army reservist. This past year has been difficult for me, personal stuff aside, I also have realized that I lack the patience to cut through politics and red tape. Working for this unit feels like a whole bunch of people just got together and have been running around in circles without any purpose or reason. More on that saga as events warrant.
One of the things that I've also realized lately is that I'll need to find someone professional to talk about dealing with grief, loss, and just to make some more sense out of it all. I'd go from feeling numb and empty to really sad...and I never know when I'd feel either way. Not a very good for paving a way for a new life to make his/her debut into this world!
But most of all, happy 4th.!
Monday, May 26, 2008
To all the veterans of the past, present, and future, happy Memorial Day! I hope all of you were able to get some rest and relaxation in, think about some of your experiences as soldiers, and be able to look forward into the future.
This picture was one of the many that I've taken from my tour in Iraq, and I'm sorry to say that I don't remember who the people in the photo were, but I do remember the circumstances to which we had gotten there. It was in a part of Mosul, Iraq, and we had driven in a convoy to a local school to distribute supplies, as well as say hello to one of our guys who was not stationed with us but at another Forward Operating Base (FOB). These two guys were simply chilling between tasks and entertaining themselves with a harmonica.
I thought about posting some really patriotic pictures that I could find on google images, and then I decided that I'd rather just pick one or two that came from my experience as a veteran. There are other pictures which did not depict the nice and easy going scenes....and I'd rather not focus on those.
To tell you honestly, I don't really feel that much like a veteran, one reason is that I am still serving in the reserves, and another reason is because I didn't want to become one of these people who just cannot leave that part of that experience or live at peace with their experience in the military. I treat my experiences in the military as a part of my life, like a school that I've attended, and the like. There were good and bad times that I've had, just like with all things in life.
I am proud to have served, and I still am, even if I don't usually get dramatic about it.
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
I did not post too much about my trip back to Taiwan to cremate my father. I needed some time to process everything....and I think I'll always be trying to process that experience. In Taiwan, they've used the Buddhist tradition to hold the cremation ceremony. So my sister, my stepsister (I'll write more about her in a later entry), and myself donned black robes and escorted a wooden container which represented my father from the small temple which housed similar containers and to the temple that the service took place. What I did not know was that my father's remains was placed on a stretcher in the back of the temple which also served as a kind of staging area for the remains of the deceased.
My sister and I had to positively identify my father's body. He was still, frozen, and his body looked a bit swollen due to the embalming and the freezing process. He did look like he was asleep. The whole ceremony involved a lot of incenses, bowing to the portrait of my father, Buddah, and there were a lot of chanting by the monks and the Buddhist nuns, in language that I could not understand. A lot of distant relatives, and my father's old friends showed up, even my mother, whom I have not seen in more than 10 years showed up.
There were a lot of crying, smiling, and exchange of thanks for the people who had showed up. At the end of the ceremony, my sister, uncle, my mother, and I went to the crematorium. One of the funeral directors for my father's funeral was more than nice, explained how everything was going to proceed, and what to expect to me, that was very comforting, and I'd like to thank her from where I am to where she is.
The conveyor pushed my father (in his casket) into the oven, and we were told to wait by this small resting area until the cremation process was completed. It took about a hour and a half. At that time, we were told to gather in this small room.....according to Chinese tradition, the oldest child of the deceased was supposed to pick up some pieces of the bone fragments and place them into the urn picked by the family. I didn't know what to think or expect.....seeing my father in the flesh one moment and then seeing his skeletal remains the next. When they wheeled him in, there were a lot of large joints and fragments of skull, and I remember especially his lower jaw bone...with teeth already gone. My father was a tall man, and his bones were quite strong, my sister and I definitely got our physiques from him! (Minus the boobs!)
I picked up a few pieces of my father's bones with these extra long chopsticks and place them in the urn, followed by my sister, and uncle. After that, they sealed the urn and wrapped it in this gold colored cloth. The urn sat on my lap as we drove to the temporary holding place of his ashes. It was strange, holding the remains of my father in my lap....I was trying to remember when I had sat on his lap when I was little, but that was sort of blurry.
It was a rough few days in Taiwan, battling jet lag, as well as trying to get through the unfamiliar customs of Buddhist burial. All the past regrets aside, I was really pleased to see that my father had a lot of friends, and that part of him will live on through his children. Even though we were not close, it still is a major regret that he will never see his future grandchildren....and not being the best at storytelling, it'll be hard for me to try to explain and describe those in my family who have passed on before they were even born.
Here is a picture from way back when, of my father (he was the oldest of three kids), my aunt, and uncle....from a much more innocent time (I'd like to think)...and one of my most preferred way of remembering him....young and innocent.
Tuesday, April 08, 2008
1. How long have you been together? It will be 9 years the 23rd of this month.
2. Who pursued who? I think I pursued her, I just stayed and didn’t leave her apt. after we first met in person.
3. Do you wear any type of wedding/commitment ring? We've both had rings for a long time now, but we need new ones due to fingers getting fatter I like plain rings but I think she might like a piece of rock of two on hers.
4. What was the hardest thing about learning to live together? Me eating stuff that she considers smelly. I’m a mess and she’s neater.
5. Who takes longer to get ready in the morning? I do.
6. Do you usually eat breakfast together? Only on weekends.
7. Do you ever share clothes? Yes.
8. Who does most of the cooking? We mostly eat out, but when we do cook we both cook, or she supervise and give instructions and I cook.
9. Who usually takes out the trash? Me
10. If you have pets who usually does litter box or poop patrol? Me
11. Which one of you is more likely to answer the phone when it rings? We only have our cellphones, no landline.
12. Who's in charge of the remote if you're watching TV together? She is, I can't use the remote as well as she does.
13. Who usually drives when you go out together? She does, she’s better at it.
14. Which one of you takes care of spiders and bugs that get into the house? I think that's pretty shared.
15. Facing the bed, who sleeps on which side? I'm on the right, she's on the left.
16. Who usually checks the (postal) mailbox? Whoever gets home from work earliest that day.
17. If something breaks or goes wrong in the house, which one of you is more likely to either fix it or call someone to fix it? She does.
18. Who is generally the neater of you? She is, I’m a total slob.
19. Who handles the checkbook/pays the bills? She does.
20. What was your last fight/disagreement about? Her bugging mer about getting offline and getting things done.
21. When you slow dance together, who leads? Neither, I can’t dance.
22. What do you love the most about your other half? Her intelligence, her 1900 hotline voice, she smells good even when funky, she’s kind, animals love her, and her funniness.
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Sunday, March 23, 2008
I have to admit that I've had a medium scaled breakdown... thinking about how my grandfather would feel once he found out that his son is gone, just like that, also the slow and seeping realization that I will NEVER see him, hear his voice, or smell his foot odor (he had really bad foot odor) from the next room ever again... not on this green earth... just hit me like a ton of bricks.
I have dealt with the loss of a loved one once, but that event was not something that was completely unanticipated. I was devastated, but eventually, I got to a point where it's feeling more "okay" now than immense sadness. In this case, even though I was not close to my father, the regrets and little memories of him nevertheless are just as intense and the unexpectedness of his death is not only sad but confusing to me.
Some in my reserve unit, like my commander, have offered for me to call them anytime to talk should I feel the need to... but I know stuff like this just makes them cringe and very uncomfortable... so I simply thanked them politely. People at work have offered their condolences... but (not that I am doubting their sincerities) ... but it just feels so surreal. When I wake up, the first thing that comes into my head is "my father has died"... like some kind of reminder that this is not, unfortunately, a dream.
The GF asked me how I felt, because I don't always show my emotions on my face. I asked her how do you show sadness, confusion, fear, and regret on one face?
Thursday, March 20, 2008
I hope that he's in heaven right now with his mother, as some sort of weird coincidence, or some kind of pre-destiny, both mom and son had passed away in their sleep... I only hope that I'll be as lucky when it's my time to go.
Below is a short eulogy to him. I typed it in Chinese, my father never really learned much English while he was alive so I thought that I'd type it in Chinese so he'll be able to understand.
很難相信, 您昨晚離去這地球. 我抱歉,我們不是像父親和女兒能一樣緊密, 但我還是很哀傷的. 我希望您將平安的休息,並且對祖母說你好......您兩個現在是在一起....我肯定的在天堂. 很多人說,我們真正的相似.....我希望我能繼續您的優良,並且以某種方法使您驕傲. 我們將設法照顧繼母,您不要擔心! 到我們再見面時,好好睡吧!
Thursday, March 06, 2008
I haven't posted lately because not too much has happened lately. The GF and I are about to hit our birthdays in a few weeks from now. I have gotten that much closer to getting out the of service, my grandfather, although healthy, has been fading in energy and just general interest in things, the GF has cut down her work hours as an effort to maintain her sanity and have time to do some volunteer work that she has been wanting to do. I have been at my "new" gig now for about 4 months now....and while I'm okay with it, the sitting in traffic everyday kills me a little everyday.
Things are not that bad, and with the occasional trips out of town, there is actually some sense of excitement.
Like when we drove up to New Jersey to see "MacBeth", and then a visit to Kevin Smith's "Jay and Silent Bob's Secret Stash".....it was good to see the old home state!
For our birthdays, we are going to drive down to Asheville, NC...to visit with these two friends that we've met through blogging and we hope that it'll be a good trip and meet up! (We've never all met in person before.)
I am sorry that I don't have any newer and exciting detail....but stay tuned!
Saturday, January 19, 2008
Poor dog, now he's got two bald spots where the cysts were removed....looked like he had a lobotomy! He was also quite groggy for the next day and the half. It was sad but also a bit funny to see him stumbling around like a drunk!