Monday, August 24, 2009

All right.

So it's been ages--yes, AGES--since I've last blogged. I have to say, not much drama going on in my life. I've been at my new job for several months now, and I'm so much happier. I'm no longer practicing law, but am working in a company. So now my role is not so much based on dealing with shit that has already hit the fan (litigation) but rather, preventing the shit from hitting the fan in the first place (compliance). So sort of legal. But not practicing law, exactly.

I'm so much happier.

And I'm still with the same guy. It'll almost be two years in a month. It's weird. Life is strangely drama-free when you're in a normal steady relationship without mind games. I'm not saying we don't have our share of arguments; but I don't feel that anxiety and neurosis I typically feel when I really like a guy. (See past 283,549 blog entries.)

So to the extent anyone is still reading this, I'm doing aight.

Saturday, May 16, 2009


I called my ex today just to update him on some good news. He was snide and dismissive. I really have no idea as to why I keep in touch with the guy. Is it delusional to think one can be friends with an ex? Obviously we each have moved on - he with his girlfriend, I with my boyfriend. And it's literally been six years since our relationship ended.

I suppose a part of my visceral reaction stems from his ability to get under my skin. He is very sarcastic and snide. Beyond David Spade.

Well, I always say we should cut out people from our lives who add nothing positive to our lives. I've done it before, and I'm more than happy to do it again.

Ok so maybe it was PMS

Because I don't feel obese anymore. Yay.

Saturday, May 09, 2009


I feel fat. I know, I know, every girl no matter her weight or waist size will think/say those same words, except maybe Olympic athletes and the starving kids in Africa my mom always talks about.

But yeah. I feel fat. I look down at my thighs and each of them are enormous. Gargantuan. I can literally feel the fat bulging against the inside of my skin. It is a palpable pressure of mass, pressing against my skin, threatening to burst from my body. Sometimes I imagine poking my thigh with a needle, thinking a stream of fat will explode from my thigh.

If only it were that easy.

I feel disgusting and fat. I look in the mirror and see fat. Thighs that curve outward, thighs that touch each other, thighs that humiliate me on a daily basis. Every time I walk in front of someone or stand in an elevator with someone or walk up the stairs, I feel like my thighs and butt and thickness are just huge big signs that say "Fat Girl Walking." I feel like they're looking at me and thinking, "She can't pull off those pants. Chunk."

And there's my belly. Oh, Belly. Muffin Top. Flabby. It is an entity of its own, yet forming an alliance with my thighs to make me feel and look fat.

I run my 3-mile workouts, and it seems futile. I fantasize about taking a scalpel and carving out all the fat, jiggle and wiggle from my body, and leaving nothing but Angela Basset-esque toned athletic slender.

I feel the fat everywhere. On my arms. On my legs. Clinging to my neck, hanging onto my back, pressing against clothes that are threatening to tear at the seams.

ARGH. I feel fat.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Last night's dream

Last night, I dreamt that my father was alive, and my mother had died.

I was in the house I grew up in, and I was looking in all the rooms for my dad. I knew he was somewhere. I looked in the master bedroom, and someone was sleeping there, but it wasn't my dad. It was a relative, I think. I went downstairs to the living room, and saw someone sleeping on the sofa. But again, it wasn't my dad, but another relative. Then I heard my mom's voice calling to me, muffled and distant, but from somewhere in the house. I followed her voice, walked upstairs, and discovered it was coming from my bedroom.

I opened my bedroom door, and there was my mother (presumably her ghost), sitting on the carpet, next to my bed, telling me casually there was my dad. On my bed, my dad was sleeping. I remember looking at his face, and saw that he had this pink plastic-like stubble on his face. They looked like tiny pink transparent flowers.

Then I started freaking out to my mom's ghost. I started bawling and saying how I had so many regrets and how I wished I said and did so many things before she died of her sickness. I was hysterically crying and couldn't get everything out fast enough.

And then...I woke up. After a moment, I realized, it was a dream, and it is my father who has passed; and my mother is still alive.

I'm not sure what it means. Now that I think about it, I wonder if those who were sleeping yet "alive" in my dream represented the dead. My dad's older brother did pass away, as well as my dad's parents and his nephew. I wonder if those sleeping relatives represented those passed relatives.

Very strange.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

The perpetual issues of Love and Marriage

I read a haunting article, aptly entitled "Why it’s OK to settle for Mr. Good Enough," written by Lori Gottlieb. It was forwarded to me by my recently single (and thus newly cynical) friend. Basically, the article advises single women to avoid holding out for Mr. Perfect/Prince Charming/Love of All Earth-Shattering Loves. Because that man does not exist. And fine, if a woman wants to spend her twenties and thirties looking for that, she's going to find out the hard way that he doesn't exist.

The author identified herself as one of those women who learned the hard way.

She waited for the perfect guy, and met a few great guys who never lived up to the Mr. Perfect/Prince Charming/Love of All Earth-Shattering Loves-standard. And now at age 40 with a kid (via sperm donor), she is beginning to realize that her chances of marrying Mr. "Okay" have dwindled, for various reasons including her age:
What I and many women who hold out for true love forget is that we won’t always have the same appeal that we may have had in our 20s and early 30s. Having turned 40, I now have wrinkles, bags under my eyes, and hair in places I didn’t know hair could grow on women.
Really, these are things that single women do not want to hear. Single women want to hear that everyone waits for and eventually finds their True Love and it all works out in The End because that's how the universe works.

Ms. Gottlieb pretty much says this is b.s.

Talk about a cautionary tale. I'm not sure if I 100% agree with this article. It is somewhat inapt in my case given that I am in a long-term relationship; but I know from my past experience and my friends' experiences that Ms. Gottleib articulates some of the fears that single women today harbor, and really hones in on them. Kind of like the elephant in the room. Ms. Gottlieb pretty much takes the elephant out of the corner, shines one or two hundred spotlights on it, and yells through a megaphone, "Here is the elephant. Acknowledge it or die alone."

Not a book review

I just re-read The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald. The first time I read it was probably fifteen years ago, in high school, undoubtedly assigned to a class in an attempt to edify us about great American literature.

I could only remember two things about the book. First, it was boring. Incredibly, mind-bogglingly boring. And second, it had to do with rich people.

About a year ago, I attended an alumni event with a friend, and there they distributed complimentary copies of the novel. It was lying around one day and so I decided to re-read it for fun. This time around, I totally enjoyed it.

I could see why as a high schooler, I wouldn't be intrigued by or fully understand the book. I think when you're a middle-class to upper middle-class kid in the burbs, you have little idea what it means to be rich in the city, other than that you can wear nice clothes, drive a nice car, and live in a big house. But I think once you grow up and walk among the educated elite in a large city, you really meet people who are rich and who have formed their own ideas on the world and life by virtue of being rich.

There are various scenes in the book where the narrator, Nick, is hanging out with people who talk a lot without really saying anything. These people are rich (obviously) and well-educated. But the things they say are painfully vacuous and ignorant. Their lives are filled with nice homes and nice clothes, but are otherwise empty. I guess not much has changed since 1922.

I admit it is easy for people like me who are not rich to vilify the rich. I think F. Scott had a certain admiration and awe for the wealthy and their materialism; but at the same time a distaste for the vulgarity and ignorance. There was something romantic and yet very sad about the entire story. It really resonated with me.

In sum, I liked it.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

I seeee you

Yesterday, a curious thing happened.

I came out of my elevator in my building, and walked into the lobby area. The lobby connects directly to the foyer, which is enclosed in glass and connects to the street exit. Inside the glass foyer, the doorman sits at his desk with his security monitors and ushers visitors and tenants in and out of the building.

As I said, I was walking into the lobby area. The doorman was walking from another area of the lobby and walked toward the foyer. He spotted me also walking toward the foyer. He opened the glass door and entered the foyer. I was one foot behind him. Instead of holding open the door, or even giving it an extra push so it would remain ajar, he let the door shut behind him.

In my face.

Then I opened the door and looked at him over the security desk. But he wasn't there. No, he walked as far into the corner behind the security desk as he could, and cowered in the corner to avoid looking at me.

Yes, ladies and gentleman, my doorman was hiding from me.

Let's summarize: (1) He closed the door in my face, knowing I was right behind him, and (2) he hid from me behind the security desk. I couldn't understand why, when in the past, he had always been nice to me. Also, I had contributed to the Holiday Fund that administered bonuses to the staff during the holidays, so I know it wasn't because I was Scrooge McTenant. So why the Doorman Diss?

Then I figured it out: The man's in love with me. Now bear with me for a second.

Clearly, he freaked out when he saw me - donned in my t-shirt and sweatpants, my hair swept up in a loose bun, my face in its pimpled glory. What was he to do in the presence of such beauty? At that moment, when he saw me, he completely forgot who he was or what he was supposed to do. So he did what any insecure man in love would do: He ran. He decided to run inside the glass foyer and pretend he didn't see anything. But oh no, the hot pimply sweatpants girl was coming this way! What to do? Hide! So, despite the fact that the area behind the security desk was literally 10 square feet, he found the furthest corner of the security area, and cowered. "Hopefully, she didn't see me," he undoubtedly thought to himself.

Oh but I did, Mr. Doorman. I did. And now I know the truth.

Monday, April 06, 2009

Tale of a Second Grade Nothing

The three of stood in line at the elementary school library: a black boy, Tyrone, a white girl, Stacy, and a yellow gal, me. Tyrone turned around toward me and began pulling his eyes sidways and diagonally, saying "ching chong ching chong!" He then burst into laughter at my chinkdom.

Stacy laughed a little. She then saw me standing there unaumused. "Hey, Yellow Gal," she said, "you should say to him, 'At least I'm not black!' "

"Really?" I said.

She said, "Come on! He made fun of you, and you're just gonna take it?!"

"Fine," I said.

Then Stacy tapped on Tyrone's shoulder. He turned around. "Yellow Gal has something to tell you."

"What?" he said glaring at me.

"At least I'm not black," I said.

He then exploded. "Why you gotta talk about my color? Did I talk about your color?"

"No, but you talked about my race--"

"DID I talk about your color?"

"No, but you talked about my race--"


"Excuse me, is there a problem?" A librarian hovered over Tyrone, Stacy and me.

"No," we all said.

"Okay then," she said, and walked away, leaving us alone in silence.

This incident happened more than twenty years ago, and I still remember it pretty clearly. As I reflect upon this memory, I find it fascinating that it is so analogous - or perhaps applicable - to race relations today. "At least I'm not black"? Stacy was basically telling me to say "Yes, it sucks being a chink, but at least I'm not black." And I said it -- accepting my own inferiority but trying to assert some superiority over another race -- all under the lens of one blonde-haired blue-eyed white girl, who remained unscathed throughout this dialogue and division.

Perhaps a more sitcom ending could have been Tyrone responding to my racist statement "At least I'm not black," with "What's wrong with being black?" And I could have said "What's wrong with being Asian?" And then all of a sudden all three of us would get it, and then we'd throw our arms thrown over each other's shoulders, the frame would freeze on that image, and the studio audience would clap and the credits would roll over our faces with the theme music.

I guess life ain't like an 80s sitcom. But, I'd like to think that we're making headway. It is, after all, 2009, not 1986.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

L as in label

I just watched the pilot episode of The L Word, which seems to focus on the lives of several lesbian/bisexual professional women in L.A. It was only the pilot, and it was recommended to me by Netflix, due to my Sex & The City fanaticism and my favorable rating of the movie "Saving Face" (a film about a Chinese-American lesbian in NY). I wonder how accurately the show portrays 'real' lesbians. While I found S&tC entertaining, I don't think the majority of single professional women fall neatly into the characters and plot lines of Charlotte, Miranda, Carrie or Samantha. Part of me suspects that The L Word tries to sensationalize lesbians in L.A. the same way S&tC sensationalizes being single and straight in N.Y. Both shows seem to boast a cast of beautiful sexy smart women in a big city, just trying to be happy.

One of the story lines in The L Word focused on one girl, who was a transplant from the Midwest, and then 'discovers' that she is gay. I found it fascinating that a girl didn't know until she was in her twenties that she was gay. After some googling, I realized that there are a number of resources for people who discover later on in life that they're gay. I know it's nearly impossible for me to imagine because I've been straight my entire life. But I can't imagine what it's like to think you're attracted to one gender and only have sex with that one gender, and then later realize well into your twenties that you are attracted to another gender. I can't imagine how difficult it must be, and almost traumatic or shocking to one's identity.

Another interesting characteristic of the show was its lens: its focus on the fact that the characters are Lesbian. In a strange way though, I sort of felt like that by grouping them into this category, it sort of dehumanized them. Yes, they eat food and have sex and like good books and have friends. But the show seemed to reduce them to "Lesbian." When a woman is drinking a cocktail, it is a Lesbian drinking a cocktail. When a woman is reading a book, it is a Lesbian reading a book. I guess while watching it, I couldn't shake that label off.

The only parallels I can personally draw are from being an Asian American (not white) and a female (not male). Does my race or gender define my identity? Or do they only define it insofar as they limit or expand my life experiences? If I see a show with a woman drinking a cocktail, is it a Woman or just a person who happens to be female? I think different Asian American females including myself allow our race and gender define us on a wide and varying spectrum. Some Asian Americans no doubt find their race merely tangential to their identity, while others find it fundamental to their identity.

Anyhow, as a straight girl, I am curious about the gay experience in this day and age - no doubt analogous to the non-Asian in an Asian American history museum who is curious about a different culture. Maybe the show aims to humanize rather than categorize or sensationalize. And perhaps it aspires to enlighten 90% of the population that gays, as humans, are human and thus have the same desires - the need to connect, have good friends, have good sex, and find love.

As a side note, I asked the Boyfriend if he's heard of the show and if so, if he thought it was good. His review of the show: "Hot chicks having hot sex. Awesome show."


Friday, March 13, 2009

Seven and a half miles

This is how much I walked today. No, this isn't a self-administered accolade or solicitation of props. After all, some people walk seven and a half miles to and from work everyday. Some people run thirty miles a day just for kicks. I by no means purport to deem myself the Bomb.

However, it is probably one of my biggest accomplishments today. Which goes to show how the rest of my day went. Or didn't go, rather.

There is a palpable Absence in my life, and I can't quite pinpoint what It is. I feel like there is something more to life than ... This. Sometimes, I wish I could be a mindless droid that finds simple contentment in going to work every day. Or follow my mom's suggestion and start going to church and making myself believe that Jesus is my Savior. Either of these alternatives would give me some purpose, and some source of peace and contentment. But I guess I know myself well enough that I can't well make myself believe or feel something I don't.

I like's ad: "Your calling is calling." Does everyone have a calling? Or do only certain people have a calling, while the rest of us waddle in our uncertainty and attachments? Do we make our own calling? Gandhi was who he was not because it came to him, but because he made it happen. Perhaps everyone has a chance to be extraordinary, but only few of us recognize this fact, and even fewer act on it.

So the question, what is one's calling? Gandhi saw an Absence in the world, and decided to do something about it. Admittedly, not everyone will accomplish the same as Gandhi; but contributions are contributions. I wonder what mine is. Or will be.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Tell me something

Even at my present age, an adult of many years, every so often, when I feel a thousand things press upon my chest like a single immovable weight, I just need to hear someone tell me, "It's going to be all right. Don't worry about it. It will all work out."

I just need to hear it. Even though I know there is no reason to believe that it will be all right and everything will work out, I just need to hear someone say it to me. I need to believe that it will work out, because if I don't, I feel like I will die.

Different people in my life have played the It's-All-Right Role in my life. Sometimes it is the Naysayer. Sometimes it is a girlfriend. Sometimes it is the boyfriend at the time. A lot of times though, it is my mother. She is the expert, because she is the Master of Bearing Burdens. I won't list all the things my mom has gone through in her 60 years of life, but let's just say it goes beyond the mere "I've had two papercuts in a row"-bullshit.

Now, if my mom - Master of Bearing Burdens - tells me it's all going to work out, then it's gotta work out. She has told me on numerous occasions that 99% of the things we worry about never end up happening. And even if it does happen, then it works out. So, she reasons, "don't worry." Because, after all, the act of worrying accomplishes absolutely nothing.

Suppressing a lifetime of over-analytical neurosis and a profession whose impulse is to anticipate everything that can possibly go wrong is no easy task. But I will strive nonetheless to be zen. To be chill. And I won't need anyone to tell me anything. Because I'll already know that it will all work out.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


I've thought a lot about things in the past few weeks. And I think I'm going to do something crazy. Like really crazy.

Stop practicing law.

Start being happy. And do something completely unrelated to the J.D. I earned.

Instead of talking about it and blogging about it, I'm gonna do it.

I think.
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