Well this is worrisome

Listening to: Kanye West ft. Bon Iver – Lost in the World (Tiesto remix) (HA I loved Bon Iver’s original Woods especially after the perfect use of it on Skins. I hated Kanye West’s bastardization of the song. But now I LOVEEEE the Tiesto remix of the Kanye/Bon Iver collaboration. Music is weird.)

I haven’t really tracked my expenses for almost a year now and before I didn’t think it would make much of a difference because generally when I go out, I just spend and don’t think about it because my assumption is that I could not spend more than I have in the bank unless I make some sort of drunken decision to buy a small sized vehicle. I stopped tracking my expenses after my trip to Peru because suddenly there was this big nebulous I’m not sure how much I spent these days and that uncertainty was somehow enough to derail my tracking for an entire year.

But about two weeks or so ago I looked at my bank account and realized that I haven’t gone on any international trips this year but for whatever reason, my bank account has NOT moved for THREE MONTHS. Which, I guess in writing, doesn’t seem that terrible but when I scroll through all my bank account transactions, it’s very worrisome to me that I’ve somehow spent about the same as I’ve earned, which means excluding rent and my monthly gym membership I’m spending OVER $75 A DAY OMFG I JUST calculated that and cannot believe it. Holy fucking shit what the fuck did I spend money on?!

I showed this to Amy and she goes “hm …. what happened around April 1st to cause the flatlining?”

WHO. KNOWS.

I appreciate the friends I have who appropriately respond with shock and concern and go “OMG what are you doing?!” to keep me from thinking this is normal spending behavior. Amy goes “HAHA at this rate, when are you going to buy your house?” and I was like “NEVER. Or tomorrow, if I want to buy a $40K house in Florida I guess.”

I had all these other random thoughts floating in my head but they’re all gone now and all I can think of is how I have no financial responsibility and instead of saving I am SPENDING money, GETTING FAT, and NOT EXERCISING.

Pretty good week

Listening to: Demi Lovato – Skyscraper

I’ve just learned that a good way to cure my inability to sleep (it seems a bit dramatic to claim that I have insomnia, in reality I probably just take too many naps during the day) is to open up this wordpress dashboard and try to write a post because all of a sudden the cloud of thoughts that I wanted to put down evaporate and instead I’m like wait what did I want to write ……….. mind ……. shutting down … sleeeeeeeeepyyyy …

I had a pretty fantastic past week. It was good on a lot of counts: work, personal, entertainment, health, food. I guess tomorrow I can try to hit readiing and shopping.

Monday: My company started a new summer flex program where we can work more hours each day and in turn get a whole day off. I opted for a 10 hour work day so 1 day off per week, and I get to choose the day too (as long as it’s ok with the manager). Everyone thinks Friday is the best day to take off which makes no sense to me because everyone anticipates Friday and Friday is the almighty JEANS DAY. So I ask for Mondays off. It seems like only Lindsay is the only other coworker who also realizes Monday is the superior choice, which is why we are friends.

I  decided to spend my first Monday off … hanging out with Lindsay. I went to her and her boyfriend’s apt, we ate pancakes and eggs that she made, then Lindsay and I took her dog for a walk around some lake in Union City and then went to a beauty supply store since her friend has a beauty license and can buy things for way cheap. I don’t know anything about hair nor do I think I really need special products, so I didn’t buy anything. I mean, I would of course like to be able to one day have the same hairstyle as Shay Mitchell but I suspect that it’s a one or two hour daily process which I don’t have time for.

Then we started watching the first season of Happy Endings which I just recently got really into. IT WAS SO GOOD. Love that show. I haven’t watched the second season yet but I think I need a small break before I start any more shows. It was an awesomely relaxing, do little to nothing day – AND IT WAS A MONDAY. Beat that.

I left her place at 5pm which was incredibly stupid because I ended up hitting Montague right when everyone else got off work. Got some books at the library, then grabbed dinner with Jessica (french dip sandwiches while watching episodes of The Hills) anddd that was Monday!

Tuesday: Was my one real work day this week. I got to the client at 8:30, worked until 6:30. This was also the first day I used my Vitamix and made GGS (glowing green smoothie – a term that Kathy and Marina got from some health book they both happened to read). I think I’m going to start calling these drinks KMI (Kathy and Marina Influence) because I would probably never have done this if they weren’t such fans of it. My recipe was: spinach, green leaf lettuce, two carrot sticks, two celery sticks, one apple, blueberries, half an orange, banana and ice. So on Tuesday I made a batch, filled up two thermoses of it, and spent the day finishing them off. I basically drink this every day and I think the green leaf lettuce gives it slightly bitter taste that I’m not fond of so I’m going to have to experiment with different veggies.

Somehow despite working for ten hours, I ended up going home and watching all of Girls in a day. I say it’s a pretty good show if it kept my interest for that long. I never read the articles where all the tv critics were raving about the new show and I never read the articles where all the tv critics took it back and hated the show and then I still never read the articles where the tv critics took back the backlash and admitted it was a good show so … thank god for that. I keep wanting to watch random scenes of each episode so I will probably buy this at some point. Also, it made me relove Robyn’s song from 2010!

Wednesday: My senior asked me to go to the SF office so I drove up there, basically to talk to her for ten minutes. I then spent quite a bit of time talking to people from cubicle to cubicle until a manager walked in and I was like “JENNY! Can I hang out in your office?” and she was like “yes!” and then she ended up giving me work to do. The good thing is, it was easy, chargeable work, and then around lunchtime I said I was hungry and she took me to lunch so – free lunch! Also, Jenny is another oversharer that I love to talk to. I learned quite a bit about her experiences with childbirth that day … We went to Gott’s in the ferry building which was kind of like organic hamburgers. I got the Wisconsin Sourdough which no joke tasted just like a Sourdough Jack, and the fries tasted just like McDonalds fries but I guess it’s organic so … that’s cool I guess.

When I got home I started watching the first season of Survivor. It is crazy how far reality tv has come. Half the people on the first season thought forming alliances was immoral and thought they were on the island just to have fun. People were even debating what the real goal of the being on the show was whereas after the season I think everyone can agree “I am on this reality show to make some cash.”

Thursday: The manager also gave me a tie out for Thursday and said I could work from home so I ended up waking up at 8am, doing nothing until 11am, leaving to eat lunch at Crepevine in Palo Alto with Julie and her audit team, and then working from a cafe until night time. In the end I worked the same number of hours but my day was WAY BETTER  than if I had gone to the office. Loveee when my job is flexible in a way that benefits me.

Friday: Was our intern event at Angel Island so I drove to SF, accidentally got there way too early at 7:30 but it was ok because other people showed up not soon after. We took the ferry to Angel Island where it was very Seattle weather, had some delish sandwiches, then got back to the office around 2:30 and that was our workday! I ended up leaving the office at 3:30 after just sitting around talking to people which ended up being STILL too late. I was going at a pretty good speed until freaking Redwood Shores and after that it was like 0-20 mph until Palo Alto. I always see people going on 101S at the end of a workday and think “god look at those poor suckers.” Well on Friday I was one of those poor suckers.

Saturday: Basically spent my entire afternoon watching Survivor. I made myself pancakes which were decently good. Then went to Mua in Oakland with Kathy, Marina and her BF and Lindsay and her BF. Mua is one of the cooler restaurants I’ve been to in a while – the kind that reminds me why Bay Area is awesome. It is in a rather ghetto area … but you don’t realize it at all once you walk in. I think this group dynamic is perfect HAHA Marina and her bf brought a bottle of wine which we shared and Lindsay brought us all homemade lemoncello in these super cute glass bottles she ordered online. The two couples have the most hilarious “how we first met” stories and first date stories. I love it.

Now I’m tired and it’s 5am. Sigh.

Weekend in quotes

*building the eiffel towel Lego set with Jessica*

Jessica: Look at this – it’s not 90 degree angles! I told you, you have to make sure they’re all aligned perfectly!
Me: I’m sorry! I was watching Pretty Little Liars in the background …
Jessica: Listen, you can’t just put things together anyway you like. You have to make sure, you’re doing … quality lego work
Me: ARE YOU HEARING YOURSELF
Jessica: Ok. I realize it sounds funny but I’ve seen kids buy the exact same Lego set and when I look at it, it looks like shoddy shit. You have to make sure this is a 90 degree angle. This is a 90 degree angle. This is a 90 degree angle. Ok? you can’t have it like this, or this or this
Me: Well I just want to do legos while watching Pretty Little Liars
Jessica: No. Listen, this is why I said we should have put NPR on the background and not Pretty Little Liars. You have to give this your attention to make sure you’re creating good, solid architecture

*yet another phone convo with my mom where I tune out for a few minutes and then realize I have zero idea what she is talking about*

Mom: So, what do you think?
Me: About what?
Mom: What should I do?
Me: Um……… why not?
Mom: Why not what?
Me: Ummm………
Mom: Should I stay or should I go?
Me: Well … don’t you like to try new things …
Mom: ……………………. Yeah that is true *continues talking*

*meeting up at Fat Angel with Kristen, Andria, Naomi and Leneve and updating each other on our lives*

Me: Well I really like my job now!
Andria: Wow that’s really good! I’m glad to hear you say that!
Me: Wait … I can’t tell … are you being sarcastic?
Andria: Well, you were really negative about your job before
Me: What?!
Everyone at the table: Yeah………. you were
Me: Oh. I did not realize

Kristen: So are you going to move to Seattle or not?!
Me: I don’t know! Sometimes I feel like, I would be giving up a lot of things in CA and I don’t know – I like the friends I have here and I have things to do
Naomi: You’re getting comfortable. NEVER. GET. COMFORTABLE.

Me: I’m getting a little worried, my bank account balance has not moved at all for a few months
Kristen: WHAT?! Are you not saving ANY MONEY?!
Me: WELL. I MEAN. WELL. yeah. no. I’m not.

*on my Sunday, in which I went on a horribly hot, unshaded hike with Kathy, then went to Costco where we cumulatively spent $842*

About four different people who passed us on our way out of Costco: You’re getting  TWO Vitamixes?
Kathy: Yeah … we don’t share well

I’m not sure what my mom will say when I tell her I decided to buy a $400 blender but she was surprisingly ok with my $500 chair since she thought it was very comfortable. HAHA Also, this probably explains the quote two above

Kathy: oh my god I never told you this story. So remember one day when we were emailing each other while I was in Ecuador and you were like “travel safe!”
Me: Yeah. What, HAHA (mimicking Kathy) I got mugged!
Kathy: I DID
Me: WHAT?!?!?!
Kathy: I GOT MUGGED

*on my day off from work, which I spent walking around a lake with my coworker Lindsay, eating pancakes and eggs she cooked, going through a hair product wholesale store where her beauty school friend had a discount, watching Lindsay refill a prescription and sitting on the couch watching Happy Endings with her and her boyfriend for about eight hours*

Lindsay: My mom threw a party when I moved out of the house
Me: Like … for you?
Lindsay: Nope. She and my dad even had a drum band play in the yard and they invited all their friends
Me: Were you invited?
Lindsay: No! I helped set up and then my mom politely told me to leave

Lindsay: My mom always said “I don’t understand why people move when they retire. You finally have all this free time and you decide to move away from your friends? Makes no sense”
Me: That is true

Lindsay: So you wanted to watch Girls right?
Me: Either Girls or Happy Endings – I have no preference
Lindsay: You know what happens when you search for videos of “Girls”?
Adam: A whole lot of porn
Lindsay: He even tried to download “Girls (TV Show)” and it just turned out to be a whole file of jpegs. And then we tried to download Happy Endings. By this time our computer already thought we were looking for porn

Listening to: basically every major song in 2012 – What the Fuck

What the fuck indeed – it’s not even the end of 2012 yet so this video should NOT be made. That being said, these mashup songs are generally interesting for the first twenty seconds and then afterward it’s more interesting to just see the cuts of 20 different music videos into one. Is it sad that I think the most engaging music video clips are those of Britney Spears, who was probably loaded with mind numbing drugs during filming? Towards the end of the song I feel like pop music is just so much noise.

Finally finished reading: Edward Rutherfurd – New York

This 880 page behemoth is finally over! I’m kind of sad. Now I have that weird moment after reading a really awesome book where I simultaneously REALLY want to read a new book because I’m totally in the mood to read now, but I’m also afraid to pick up a new book because comparatively, my mind just finds them less interesting because it hasn’t been prepared to accept a new writing style and a new plot line yet. I don’t know if I would want to read his other books, only because New York is the location I know most about that he’s written about and that might have fueled more of my interest. The book made me realize how little I know about history because it’ll say the year and sometimes day and month when a chapter is beginning and I have no idea what it’s supposed to signify (other than the obvious 9/11 and July 4th). It’s kind of like when it’s announced what year the new season of Mad Men will be set in and I’m like “1966? What happened in 1966?”

Happy Endings

Listening to: Marina & the Diamonds – Primadonna (I’m so surprised she has hit US radio – I honestly thought it was Katy Perry in my car)

Every now and then I have a weekend where I decide I absolutely must watch some show, generally because I see it mentioned in some TV article or I randomly see some clip. For me, this weekend that show was Happy Endings. Due to a lack of options, I had randomly watched the Season 2 finale, without ever watching any other episodes, and fell in love after the synchronized dance sequence.

I will watch any comedy with a hilarious group dance. My assumption is that only shows where the cast legitimately enjoys spending time together will have synchronized dance routines. These usually take a ton of hours to rehearse and film, so I don’t think writers would be cruel enough to write one into a show unless they knew everyone was going to have fun with it.

Since there aren’t really episodes on Hulu and I don’t know where to illegally find shows anymore I had to suffice with youtube clips and tumblr  gifs 😦

The character with the most clips on youtube is Penny (Casey Wilson) and she never disappoints

Dave’s another hilarious one

Need to get the season dvds and kick it

Today I woke up, decided I wanted to make pancakes, drove to Safeway to buy pancake mix, and then made pancakes. They didn’t taste exactly as I thought they would, I think because I used almond milk, but with each bite I thought they were actually pretty delicious. To ensure that I wouldn’t just throw away the mix, I kept putting more and more blueberries and strawberries in it, knowing that I’d be too cheap to throw away good fruit. That somehow took up about three hours of my day and after consuming my three pancakes I just fell asleep until 12:30.

Then I went to Philz for like six hours and continued to read New York which I HAVE to keep reading without stopping because 1) it’s that good and 2) there are a LOT of characters and I know from experience that if I don’t read a book for a day I won’t remember any of the characters the next time I open the book. It was like 90 degrees outside and I think the only time I will ever enjoy weather above 80 degrees is if I’m sitting under the tree shade of Palo Alto Philz’ seating area. LOVE THAT CAFE. (Unfortunately so do a ton of other people so it is quite crowded on the weekends).

This weekend was Bonnaroo and Youtube streamed it. I watched Blind Pilot on Saturday, and then today I purposely took my laptop to the cafe so I’d catch Bon Iver. AMAZING. It’s very strange to think we’ve come to a point where I can click on a little Google Calendar link to add to my calendar: stream the Bon Iver live feed at 3:45pm CMT for a concert taking place in Tennessee. Yayyyyyyy internet … finding more ways to keep me attached to the computer. I always love the layout of Youtube’s live concert pages … I remember being impressed by the Coachella one. They have super cute graphics and the layout is awesome!!!

I realized that the artists I streamed – Bon Iver, the Shins, Blind Pilot – are all bands I have already watched live this year HAHA So that’s one of the things I will miss about the Bay Area when I move: the good concert scene.

AGH how is it 1:30? I guess I don’t feel tired because I’ve taken two naps today. I’ve been in a more hermit-y mood this month … after my trip to NY I looked at my google calendar and was like HOLY SHIT in the entire month of May, there was only four days of the month that I didn’t go out with friends (except the days I was in Monterey or NY alone). That is … kind of crazy … and tells me why my bank account balance hasn’t moved for a few months. At least it’s not dropping.

The Temper Trap – Love Lost (OMG HAHA I have never seen The Temper Trap perform – the lead singer is not at all what I expected him to look like)

Memories I wish I had captured in a pensieve

Listening to: Alex Winston – Host

I don’t know why but ever since my trip to NYC I’ve been a lot more pensive and emo. It’s one of those times where I think if I sat  and processed long enough, I’d be able to pinpoint the root of my emotions but it’s too daunting to actually figure out what’s bothering me, because then I’d have to actually do something about it, so I end up trying to busy myself with other things.

One of those things is making the following list. Lately I’ve been thinking it’s going to be a while before I experience a totally new experience. Until something major changes in my life, it’s going to pretty much be the same average life here on out. Not that it’s a bad thing. I’m in a comfortable spot. I’m not terribly unhappy with life but I just don’t think I’m going to experience any significant peaks in emotions any time soon because I don’t put myself in situations that stray very far from the norm. Basically the extent of my happy peaks lately consist of: finding a new hiking trail, eating a real meal, getting e-mails from coworkers at work.

Life just a few years ago sometimes seems so vivid, but I wonder if I’ve just made up a memory based on a few wisps of what I think happened. Most people know I have a terrible memory (my mom seems to love to say in a somewhat horrified voice “oh my god, you have a terrible memory,” I sometimes think as she says this she’s envisioning her daughter having Alzheimer’s at the age of thirty). But I’m sure no matter how good someone’s memory is, it’s nothing like the first time you experienced something completely new where you had no basis for comparison. Or maybe not a singularly new experience, sometimes I can’t even remember what it felt like to have something just be the norm, and when I try it just seems so abstract.

I would hope we never figure out the technology to entirely encapsulate our emotions and memories in a particular moment. If we somehow figure it out though, or if the wizarding world one day gives us Muggles access to the pensieve, these would be the memories I wish I could reexperience:

1.Faking sleep so I could be carried to bed
This is probably the youngest … oldest? … memory that I don’t even remember anymore, I just know I did it. I remember falling asleep on car rides home, whether it was hours long trips from vacation or just a fifteen minute drive from the grocery store. If I faked a deep enough sleep, my dad would carry me into the house and put me to bed. Sometimes I’d wake up in the middle of being carried and throw a fit. How dare you wake me up! I wanted to sleep in the car! Why are you disturbing me! Oh to be a child again. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to experience being so effortlessly carried to bed ever again in my life.

2. Bon Iver concert at the Greek Theater in Berkeley
This is one memory that was already slightly marred by my being an adult when it happened. I was watching my favorite artist, in one of the best venues ever. It was after he had released the Bon Iver album, which I loved just as much as his For Emma, Forever Ago album, so I didn’t have to sit through new, crappier songs, if he had had any. Maybe if I had been younger, I would have thrown myself completely into the experience. But at several points during the concert, I would think I don’t know how any concert could ever top this one. Still, hearing so many of my favorite songs, flawlessly performed, amongst so many other awed fans, is something I can’t recreate by listening to the album or even watching youtube videos

3. Getting ready for prom
Oh high school. It’s funny how much importance we placed upon one single night. I’m glad I was with a close group of friends to experience it with, and to my recollection, none of us were with romantic dates. We just all had our platonic dates, went together in a big group in a giant Hummer limo and had good, clean, dramaless fun. I kind of loved the moment after getting my makeup and hair done and putting on my prom dress and having my mom fawn over me. I had a white prom dress, so I think a part of me thought maybe this is what it would feel like if I got married one day. I loved the moment when one by one we arrived at Connie Y’s house and there was sooo much excited commotion. Hairspray, straighteners, curlers, bobby pins, corsages everywhere. Getting our TMV group picture was an amazing experience within itself and now I think the chance of all of us ever doing a family portrait like that again is basically nil, so I’m so happy we did it and I’ll have framed proof of it forever. And then at some point between all that chaos of how do I look?! omg you look so pretty! omg we need to do this! omg picture!!! it turned a 180 and we were having our prom dinner poolside and by tealight in the backyard. And this was all before we even got into the limo to go to prom. And then even before our prom NIGHT which I barely remember except leaving at dawn to watch the sunrise at Chantry Flats. I don’t think there’s any experience that comes even close to senior prom, in the sense that it’s a formal event but no one person is the center of attention, and I’m glad that for me, it was pretty much a perfect night.

4. First TMV dinner
I have no idea how this ever came about and maybe someone does, but at some point in our young high school lives someone thought it would be an awesome idea  for all the boys to cook dinner for us in Danny’s cookwareless apartment kitchen which until then, basically served as a microwaving station and storage for Danny’s mom’s ice cream pops (that we would all eat when we invaded). While I’m not too worried that these annual dinners will continue in tradition, more than half of us have moved out of Arcadia. We’ll never have the ease of driving just ten minutes to get together again. I’m glad it’s a tradition, but there’s nothing like the inaugural year of a tradition, where you have no expectations, no comparisons, and you’re just living in the moment.

5. Talking until dawn
I have absolutely no idea what we used to talk about for hours on end, sometimes until dawn. And by we, not just with TMV but all my various groups of friends I’ve ever had. I remember staying up until three or four talking to Chris, Connie W and Tony while playing Big 4 online. About what, god knows but there were a lot of laughs. Or AIM – the program that taught me how to type and that if you stay up past 3am and start talking to someone online, that’s when some real juicy stories come out. We certainly went over to Danny’s a lot, but I honestly can’t believe we spent that much time playing Super Smash or watching Asian dramas. What the heck did we use to do from 3pm  to 3am? I can’t even fathom what was going on in my life that I could have talked about for so long. And in any case, I’d probably be with the same people day after day, so it’s not like we were catching up after months of not seeing each other. We probably ate lunch together just a few hours ago! Nowadays I feel like all conversations follow the same flow: how’s work? are you dating anyone? where are you going on vacation? well if you’re so unhappy at your job, what do you want to do next? ok, see you next time! It honestly boggles my mind that any of us had that much to talk  about when we were young and I wish I could get back to that place, if only to know what the fuck was on my mind back in the day.

6. The first time you watch an awesome scene of a couple you ship on tv
I can probably rewatch a scene dozens and dozens of times (and definitely have) but nothing is quite like the first time you see a well-shot, well-written, well-acted scene and that is powerful enough to create weird little butterflies in your stomach or heart palpitations. Tumblr is starting to ruin this for me because I often see gifs of a scene before I watch the scene itself, but that’s my own fault for going on tumblr. It’s amazing how strong of a medium TV is (at least for me). Attach the perfect song to the scene, and dear god, it’s all over. There goes an hour of my life, dedicated to watching the same forty second scene over and over again.

7. The dawn of Facebook
I don’t even really remember this, I just know it happened: when everyone was getting a facebook account and every time you logged in, you probably had at least one or two new friend requests. This was back when we REALLY cared about what was on our profiles because people could realistically sit there and thoroughly go through your entire profile if it were interesting enough. Nowadays, I pretty much never send friend requests, because either I’m unlikely to see the person again and don’t want to bother, or it’s a coworker and it seems odd to facebook them because it’s like saying “hi I know you from work and I want to see what you do in your personal life.” The funny thing is, even though I don’t want to bridge the work/personal line, I don’t even look at people’s profiles in detail anymore, and I’m sure no one looks at mine either. One, who has that kind of time. Two, most people have just accumulated way too much shit on their profiles, like thousands and thousands of pictures that’s too troublesome to delete. Three, no one really does anything that interesting on facebook at this point. Add on the confusing timeline layout, and I basically use Facebook for … honestly I don’t know what I use it for. I pretty much just have it so that one day if I look for a new job, the recruiter can search for me and confirm “yes, this person is a normal citizen of the world and has a normal looking Facebook profile page.”

8. Perfectly recording a song from the radio onto a cassette tape
This will never ever happen again. I can’t be the only one who did this but did anyone else feel the exhilaration of perfectly catching a song on the radio and perfectly pressing play+record on the boombox to record a song to cassette? Then, I was in POSSESSION of the song and I could play it as many times as  I wanted (after a few seconds of rewind). I’d sit and listen to Rick Dees Top 40, attentively waiting for the him to announce the next song and hope that he wasn’t going to talk over the beginning instrumentals. My god, I used to work so hard to steal music. It didn’t even feel like stealing – it was work.

9. The first time I read each Harry Potter book
I was and still am reluctant to buy things on amazon, so on the release date for Harry Potter, my mom would go to Costco and buy the book for me there. I’d then spend the next day in my room reading and reading, not knowing at all what would happen next. Can you believe that for at least seven days, parents didn’t have to think about their kids for a day because they were all sitting in their rooms reading? Well the series has come to an end and while you can reread the books all you want, and there’s still magic to them with each read, nothing compares to the feeling of the first read. Although I must admit, I once reread the Half Blood Prince and it took me an embarrassing amount of chapters (I may or may not have been past 3/4 of the book) to finally remember who the Half Blood Prince was. I guess in this case, my poor memory serves me well.

10. The first time I listened to Brand New’s Deja Entendu or Bon Iver’s For Emma, Forever Ago in its entirety.
Similar to Harry Potter, you never get to repeat the experience of listening to a great album in its entirety for the first time. For music, I think these are the two albums where I LOVED every song from the start. It’s a rare thing to listen to an entire album and 1) not be interrupted and 2) love the entire thing from the get go. You play the first song and think, yeah this is a good start. Then the next and the next, wow this one’s pretty good too. Oh this might be my favorite. Then you get past the halfway point and it becomes omg I hope this one is just as good. I don’t want there to be a dud song and it’s like an anxious fear that one song will break the spell, followed by surprised relief when it doesn’t let you down. Finally, when the album restarts on track one, I’m left thinking I can’t believe I loved EVERY song. Is this the entire album?! It can’t be over! At the time, you’re excited to have found a great album. But one day, you’ll be listening to it and think “I wish I could relive listening to this for the first time again.”

12. The last few weeks of every school year
One thing you’ll never have after high school is the comfort in knowing that you only have responsibilities for a set block of time: September through mid-May. And even those responsibilities aren’t that heavy, it basically consists of making sure you did your homework and studied enough for tests so that you meet a very straightforward measure of success. This is somewhat true in college but I think in college I was constantly thinking about what I had to be doing in preparation of next year (for the ultimate goal of landing a job), so there wasn’t such a clean line between school time and fun time. But in K-12? omg those last few weeks of school where you were required to go to school but school basically meant watching movies in class, hanging out with the friends under the false pretense that you might never see them again (you probably saw them all through summer anyway), running around getting yearbooks signed. Good god, those were the days. I don’t even really remember what I did the last few weeks, but I think that’s the luxury of it: we just did whatever, we had no concerns about anything. We thought we had worked so hard and we deserved these moments of goofing off. Now I realize we barely did shit but the reward was still so high.

13. Christmas in middle school and high school
I will never again receive as many gifts for Christmas as I did in middle school and high school. I always feel a little sad now when I go home for Christmas and see almost nothing under the decorated tree. The days leading up to winter break … jesus christ. I remember at some point I started to bring gifts to school in waves – every day I’d bring a few gifts and dole them out to my friends, in some premeditated order. I used to plan out when I’d buy my gifts by and when I’d wrap them by. I know for a fact I once thought who is CRAZY enough to do shopping a week before Christmas?! I will never procrastinate! Fast forward to today, where it takes tremendous effort for me to even remember posting on someone FB wall a simple “hey, happy birthday!” I guess this is something mainly girls experience, but what a delight. The day my family opened the gifts, it’d be me and my mom sitting under the tree for like an hour, a mountain of wrapping paper building up around us. Now the extent of my Christmas giving is Christmas cards, and I’m one of the rare people to do even that. At least I’m not yet at the point where I have to buy my friends’ kids gifts. Good god. Auntie Mel’s going to hand out boxes of fruit, just you wait.

14. Buying Scholastic books
Do they even do this in school anymore? I really wonder. (I also wonder what will become of libraries as we continue to move towards e-books). Who was the sick genius who thought of printing out catalogs of books on colorful, recycled paper and handing them out to schools. You could buy basically whatever you wanted because what parent would say “no, you can’t buy books.” You sit there and mark up the little menu of all the books you want, as if you’re ordering sushi, your parents pay for it, and then one day the teacher basically hands out the gift of entertainment which you carry home like little trophies.

I have absolutely no idea where I was going with this but it’s somehow past midnight and it’ll probably be 1am by the time I finish proofreading. I had meant to read (this is an awesome book) but instead this happened. If you’ve made it this far, here’s a hilarious gif and a picture. Thanks for your time

NYC: Days four to six

Listening to: Fibes, Oh Fibes! – Untitled

OH NOS days four and five I was too tired at night to blog. Hopefully I can remember things…

Day Four: Friday

I woke up and thought about taking the subway back to Clinton St Baking Co but I ended up waking up even later than usual so by the time I left the apt at 11:30, I just went straight to Wall Street. Not for anything touristy as I have already touched the bull – all in the name of finding the Milk Truck food truck for some grilled cheese. Amazingly, it was about 1:40 when I got there and they were still setting up (the person in front of me told me they usually set up much earlier). I was fourth in line for the truck and a line quickly formed behind me, which I still find kind of crazy considering it was well past normal lunch hour. I got a Classic with a Twist (Wisconsin gruyere, champagned vinegar pickled onions, whole grain dijon mustard on rye from Balthazar) and an Arnold Palmer, then found some steps to sit down and chow down. I wish I could have befriended someone in line and asked them to let me eat up in their office, since I think office buildings usually have the best view of a skyscraper city. But I can’t imagine someone would let a complete stranger follow them into their workplace.

Milk Truck food truck on Wall St and Williams: serving the good traders of NYC

When I told Kim this later she asked how much the sandwich cost and I proudly said “six dollars!” and she yelped “SIX DOLLARS?! FOR A SANDWICH?!?!” and then I thought about it and realized it actually was quite expensive for a truck with little overhead. Oh well. It was delicious, especially the Arnold Palmer which I want to replicate one day (honey camomile tea and fresh lemonade with chia seeds). After this and Asiadog, I think my mistake for this trip was trying to find delicious restaurants when I think my actual goal should have been trying to find delicious food trucks! I don’t trust Yelp at all for NY now because it seems like things that are $$$ are sometimes really not that expensive and would be considered just $$ in SF. And a lot of places with over several hundred reviews are more often tourist traps and I think their high ratings are inflated either because people just haven’t had comparable food before, or people were so hungry they thought the food was more amazing than it is on a normal stomach. The places I have really liked are all lower than 4.5 stars, which I’m usually more wary of in the Bay Area, and I haven’t really loved any 4.5 rated place except for Artichoke Pizza …

Classic with a Twist

Edit: I am now typing the rest of this while sitting in the JetBlue terminal at JFK. Thanks JetBlue – there are tons of outlets and free wifi in the terminal which is much more important to me than any number of snacks or tv shows they could offer on the plane. I am here over four hours before my departure, which is about 3.5 hrs earlier than I usually arrive at the airport. HAHA At least I can finally send out e-mails and write this entry. It’s not in the cozy little NYC cafe I had envisioned but it’s just as productive.

Ok so Thursday … I did Milk Truck then went back to Greenwich Village and walked around there. I finally found a record store that sells Sam Cooke vinyls but they were all for $40 and I don’t think I could really justify $40 for a record. I still feel like I didn’t go through all of Greenwich Village and wonder what else I missed but it is really confusing for me to walk around there. I kept hoping I would bump into Ryan Gosling, but if I did, I didn’t recognize him. Kim met up with me since she had finished her boards that day, and then we went to Chelsea while walking along West St, revisited High Line Park for some much needed lounging around, and then Socarrat Paella Bar which was SUPER CUTE and pretty yums and I had found via Yelp w/o people’s recommendations.

Socarrat paella

The restaurant was very narrow but deep, which is what I thought most NYC restaurants are like. The atmosphere is nice and it’s really like eating at a bar because there aren’t tables per se, it’s a long bar table and you eat facing across from your party (or potentially a stranger) and the lighting is nice and the servers have Spanish accents to make you think you’re not in America.

Given the size of the restaurant, you probably need reservations when it’s later at night

Listening to: The Mamas and Papas – San Francisco

Day Five: Saturday

We had planned out a total of eight places to hit up for Friday. In the end, we hit the following:

1. Clinton St Baking Co (this was my second time, I definitely didn’t enjoy it as much the first time because the wait was six times longer, my choice of potato pancakes was not as wise (I should have ordered the waffle) and the cute server was not there but it’s ok. Kim and I laughed about how ridiculous it is that we wait 60-90 minutes for a $15 brunch that you really could just do on your own for like $2, but this has become normalized in our culture)

2. El Laboratorio del Gelato (I saw this the first time I went to Clinton St but no one was in there and it looked too spotlessly clean so I didn’t go in. I later checked and it was highly rated on Yelp so I was like DAMN. They had rose flavored gelato which I was really excited for but after eating a little I realized it was not really all that rose flavored. It was decent but I really wish NY dessert places would make their own cones because homemade gelato/ice cream is not unique anymore and when I can make better tasting ice cream, I lose interest in these $3-4 scoops.

Gelato (rose petal)

3. Doughnut Plant (several people told me to come here and I’m glad I did. I got the Matcha Green Tea donut which was reallllyyy good and didn’t taste as unhealthy as typical donuts. I also paid $3 for it, which is by far the most expensive donut I’ve ever purchased)

The ghettoer but still delicious Chinatown location (as opposed to Chelsea)

4. Rice to Riches (a rice pudding place that was not what I had envisioned at all. I wanted something similar to the rice pudding I had bought on the streets of Peru, but this was more like the Yogurtland of rice pudding. Way too many flavors, all of them way too sweet, and it had the same futuristic, overly bleached look)

4. Union Sq Farmer’s Market (I bought five different breeds of apples and I think I purchased: Golden Delicious, Jonagold, Macoun, Honey Crisp and Mutsu. I am excited because I haven’t bought apples in so long, since the Fuji ones in NorCal often look ugly as hell. I was surprised my snotty Seattle self was fairly amazed with the farmer’s market. It’s pretty extensive and seeing sooo much edible greenery is rather impressive under the NYC skyline at Union St)

Union Square Farmer’s Market

5. Soba Ya (Kim had intended to take me to Village Yokocho which she said had the most delicious fried octopus legs, but as we got closer and closer, I was like “ummmm I really think this is where Laura’s cousin took me” and it totally was. HAHA So we just walked around and I felt like eating something refreshing and Kim had heard of Soba Ya so we went there. The soba noodles were just all right but there’s not really a way to truly fuck up soba noodles. I got some duck one (Kamo Namban, sauteed duck & green onion) which I told Kim “this tastes like hot dog juice” and she took to mean I hated it, but I did enjoy it. It just tastes like hot dog juice. BUT THE BEST THING EVER was this tuna sashimi wrapped in bean curd and put on top of super fresh guac. It was the most amazing appetizer and I’ve never had anything similar before … so despite the average soba noodles, this place wins for that appetizer)

Tuna Yuba Maki – tuna sashimi wrapped in bean curd on guacamole = DELICIOUS

6. Artichoke Pizza (recommended by many – it was pretty good with artichoke hearts, spinach, cream sauce, mozarella and romano cheese. The crust tastes like eating breadsticks, yum. I kind of want another one now but it’s probably one of the least healthy things I ate on this trip. Walking around East Village on a Saturday night was fun but it’s also one of those experiences that makes me question if I am properly living out my young twenties)

This may be the one thing I really crave from NYC

omg is that all? I thought we had seven places. We were supposed to go to Caracas Arepas but by that time I wasn’t in the mood for any more food and it had been the restaurant I was least interested in. We were also supposed to find a Waffles & Dinges cart but no time – too bad.

Day Six: Sunday

I met with my brother at Cafe Habana which really does have incredibly delicious corn. I have one left over and will be eating it around 5:30pm before boarding my flight. I guess it’s a little rude to break out my corn while on the flight, where corn juice will probably spray everywhere. HAHA

Cafe Habana Corn

I don’t feel like I went on vacation at all. Every day just felt like a Saturday and I never had a “omg I’m in NEW YORK CITYYYY” moment. It just felt like a normal Saturday where I walked a lot and ate a lot. Maybe an optimistic perspective is to say, I have awesome Saturdays in general then. This whole trip I have been most looking forward to watching the new episode of Pretty Little Liars on Tuesday. HA. Tonight I look forward to having strong enough internet to finally stream the latest episode of Cougar Town, and to finally read a book in the comfort of my bed. And then, WORK TOMORROW?! What is this work that I have not experienced since last Thursday?