Long filled day, the second in a row of two. Lion dance practice in the morning to noon; then following was time spent organizing and carrying out last minute details for having a nice supposed ‘lunch’ with roommate and friends at that tofu place. It was pretty good, I guess. Any other day and it might’ve felt been even better.
   And when I finally had a chance to kind of think – the first moment where I guess I wasn’t doing or planning something, later in the day after I’d dropped off the final passenger – the thought that filled my mind was…how the hell did I make it through the day?


   I didn’t want anything to be awkward…told myself that at least I wouldn’t be. Don’t know how well that worked, but I thought it semi worked until later.

   I just kind of wish that there’d been a bit more connection. Just that, really.

   Maybe I should’ve tried harder…didn’t know what else to do, I guess…not the best in these areas without some cue. Not sure what was up.

…Sorry.

Still a bit uncertain as to how I made it through the day.

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Today:
   Waking up way too early to go Black Friday shopping (though there wasn’t much I wanted to buy…just wanted to feel the experience, I guess); small pre-birthday celebration for Steph, with tasty ice cream cake; and CSC Reunion.
   Reunion…a mini story by itself.

   It’s always good to see those friends of mine who live closer by, but I was so glad to see those good friends who live further away, who I haven’t seen in the longest time.


   The moon was so pretty tonight.


   Damn. In spite of myself, must’ve hoped, then.

In the Spirit of Thanks-Giving

   I just realized that while I still have control of the Internet-enabled computer…I should probably write some entry in the spirit of the holiday.
   Thanksgiving dinner was a quiet event, just the good ol’ nuclear family eating a meal together. The day wasn’t eventful at all – I just majorly slept in and haven’t been doing too much, so this entry will probably end up being the most interesting and worthwhile thing I’ve done today.
   I guess if there’s ever a day to think about how lucky we are, today works. Never hurts to count those blessings every so often…never, ever, take them for granted.

   I think there is…I have…a lot to be thankful for.


In the spirit of the day, I have some words.
   For the family – mother, father, sister: when they’re understanding or not, whether they’re at their best or not – being with me for these years, scolding, praising, learning, teaching…there’s only gratitude to those who have raised me into the person I am.
   For the friends: I find it hard to write something here, in large part because it’s difficult to express exactly what you’ve been. You’ve been close as family, helpful as any teacher, fun to be with, hard to get along without, and in the end you’ve had one of the greatest parts in making any day as good as it could have been.
   For the teachers, anyone from whom I’ve ever learned: your words and
actions – intentional or not, meant for me or not – have and always
will impact the decisions I’ve made and will make; affect the way I’ve
seen and will see. You’ve shaped my thoughts, sharpened my mind, shown
me the way to becoming the person I want to be. There’s only respect
for those who try to teach, and I can only try to repay you all by
continuing to learn each day and by passing on your gifts.
   For those who’ve cared: your care has affected me more than anything else has and can. Through your care, you’ve raised me to heights I never could’ve reached alone; shown me that there’s more to life than the chaos of the aimless or the silence of walking alone; helped me realize one of the things I seek. Just by being who you are, you inspire me and others, making the days worthwhile, making the world a better place. It is your opinions that I value above those of others; it is your thoughts that I like to hear; it is by your side that I wish to walk; it is to lift your spirits that I fight through thick and thicker; it is your happiness that makes my day, and your smiles that brighten mine.
   For circumstance: whatever has brought us here, given me the luxury of time to write this, the education that has allowed me to express thoughts, the fortune that has let me meet anyone I’ve met and experience all that I’ve experienced.
   For those moments of silence…in those rare occasions where the organized chaos of life is hard to bear, these moments are a brief but welcome respite, time to think, reflect, plan, organize, and prepare.
   For those shooting stars…the simple beauty, elegance, and all that they stand for.
   For the unknown, and the hope it implies.
   For the bad in life, in their depth and intensity showing us that there are things equally as good, illustrating for us the price of carelessness and reminding us to be vigilant.
   For the good in life – everything I’ve written, everything I haven’t, and anything else that hasn’t been included.

   I prefer awareness over ignorance; smiles over frowns; sincerity over deceit; moderation over excess; capability over helplessness; consideration over haste; deliberation over carelessness; depth over shallowness; security over fear; care over apathy. Those are what I prefer, but I understand you can hardly have one without the other. So I guess we take them together, in that package we call…life…and try to make the best of it. It might seem bad at times, but there’s so much to be thankful for anyway.

   So for all of the above and to anyone who’s ever had any part in making life as good as it’s been:

   Think of what matters to you, of who and what you care about. Count your own blessings.

   Thank you. And Happy Thanksgiving.


   ^^ Looking forwards now, a bit, to tomorrow.

   Happy Thanksgiving!

   Our wireless router is having some issues and dad’s been monopolizing this desktop for most of the day, haha, so I’m taking this opportunity while he’s eating to check email, etc. Internet access for the next few days might be kinda iffy unless I can find some other way to get things running.

   Possibly getting up early tomorrow (if my sister and alarms can get me out of bed) to try to do some Black Friday shopping at some mall, which I don’t think I’ve actually ever done. I don’t really need much nowadays, but ah well…see what the experience is like. Meanwhile, sister and friends are planning out like which stores to hit, what times are optimal…crazy.


   In a day it’ll be 104. Curious, eager, pensive…calm? *shrug* We’ll see.
  
   I wonder if it’s silence I’m waiting for.

   As each day goes by, I start to wonder, more and more…if this is what the new ‘normal’ is going to be like.

Fortune cookie of the (end of the) weekend

The art of a relationship is all in the appreciation.

Hmm. I think there may be something in that, this time. Appreciation…doable.

LEARN CHINESE – Good weather: “tien che haou” (a.k.a. ‘tian qi hao‘ in pinying)
   I’m still not sure whether they’re using Wade-Giles, some other kind of romanization…or if they’re just making stuff up, none of which would really surprise me.
   Also, I don’t see much ‘good’ in this upcoming week’s weather forecast. Looks kinda like dreary conditions for most of the week.

   Three days of class until Thanksgiving break! I’m looking forwards to it, for more reasons than just being off school. I guess I’ll see.

   CSC Reunion..


   — hey…sleep earlier! Hahaha…when you can.

   Weekend…I think part of the reason why my weekends tend to feel short is because Friday is mostly spent in class or in transit back home after class; then I tend to wake up too late Saturdays as a result of ‘catching up’ on lost sleep; then Sunday tends to be BCS/LD, and transit back to Rutgers. I guess it tends to feel like a one day weekend.
   Haha, I’m looking forwards to Thanksgiving break…Monday schedule Monday, Thursday schedule Tuesday, Friday schedule Wednesday…then break!

   It’s been some amount of time since I last sat in a car in a parking lot, thinking…since a few days after camp, actually, haha.

   I can’t believe it’s been so long…I can’t believe it’s been so fast.

   On the A bus back to Busch after the Microecon review session, approximately at 9:07pm while the bus was still on Rt. 18 between College Ave and Busch, someone started yelling at the bus driver to stop the bus and pull over – a student who’d been standing had a seizure and had fallen to the ground. Another student was already on the phone with the police, informing them of our location and what seemed to have happened.
   About five minutes after the bus had pulled over, an EMT or something drove up and checked out the situation. I think at this point the situation was stable – though the student was unconscious, he was breathing. So we sat there on the bus for a few more minutes, as some more EMTs/police drove over, and soon after, another two A buses were summoned so that we students could get back to Busch campus. When those buses arrived, we filed out of the bus, over the prone body of the unconscious student (it was at that point where I finally got a look at him, having not stood up before to see b/c there really wasn’t a need), and onto the side of the highway, then onto the buses and back to Busch.

   It was definitely unexpected – few people walk around expecting to run into these kinds of situations, after all. I’m just really glad that nothing worse had happened. These kinds of things…make you think a little. You’d hope everyone would react as helpfully, that help would arrive quickly…that you’d be ok and in good hands.

   I’m hoping that that’s the last event like that for today. Not that I couldn’t use a study break, but I’d rather that break come in the form of something non-dangerous.
  
   Super study time.

Pausing in midstride

   I’m not sure if it was because of the weather, the music I was listening to, general sleep deprivation, or some combination of the above, but on the walk back to Silvers after today’s classes were done, I felt for a bit that life was ok.

   I stood on a curb on one side of the parking lot in front of the apartments, looking up at the sky. Noticed, again, the return of the side of me who’s able to enjoy some simple(r) things, the side that’d been MIA for a bit of time and even now isn’t the same. Wondered if that return is a good thing, what it meant, if it mattered.
   Looking up, thinking of fog and rain, rainbows and sunsets, friends and fairy tales, I figured that the problems that life throws might not be so bad if you end up with a happily ever after. I like happy endings, but sometimes they seem hardest to get to. I suppose that the trouble and pain that one goes through makes them worth it, though. At least, I’d try to brave it to get to that light at the end of this tunnel.

   Hmm. It’s almost unreal how a few days, even a few hours, can change a person. Hahaha…if it’s a good change, then it sounds fine to me.

   Standing there, surrounded by chilly weather and life, the occasional words from pleasant songs quietly slipping past my lips, fond thoughts of interesting people in my mind…it was nice.

   If there’s anything I hate, it’s lack of knowledge. That’s something that I’ll probably end up repeating until it’s not a problem (read: a long, long time.) Doesn’t matter what it is that I don’t know – ‘not knowing’ is a major annoyance at best and deadly at worst.

   In this case, I’m referring to some of these things have supposedly have great medical benefits. Miracle drugs/products, things like that. When you’re in a foreign country, people are flocking to buy such and such product, and you might get caught up in the rush, think that that product is super, spend a lot to buy a lot, but…I don’t know.
   I sometimes think…when one of my parents gets excited about something, perhaps some new thing from Taiwan/overseas that’s the latest ‘breakthrough’ in medical technology or what not, supposed to be beneficial in whatever way…I’m skeptical to some degree. I don’t mean to burst their bubbles at all, but, maybe its part of how I’ve been raised. I tend to doubt in miracle cures, miracle drugs, stuff that…seems too good to be true.
   And like…I’ll tell my dad, I don’t think that you needed to spend x amount on y product. But he’s adamant in his belief, defends what he’s bought into, launches into the advantages of whatever it might be. And I’d tend to end up dropping the issue because it’s of little use trying to convince a person who’s made up his/her mind, despite the fact that there’s nothing to base the assumption off of other than word of mouth, that it’s good because others are buying into it.
   What I’m sure I know is that neither of us know. But only one of us is skeptical, only one of us is willing to consider the other side.

   Every so often I’ll run across an idea in a novel that I feel is important and worth remembering. One of these ideas that have stayed with me is that “People believe what they want to believe or what they fear is true” (Terry Goodkind’s Wizard’s First Rule.) Simple, maybe, and it’s something that if you think about, you’ll realize is true. But I guess like all facts, its value depends on how it’s used. If you understand this fact, you gain insight into the human mind and thus how to manipulate. But you also become aware, meaning it’s less likely to be used against you.

   People need to have at least a bit of skepticism, I think. I’d call it…having a healthy amount, meaning, enough to make you really think about what it is you’re considering buying into. We all need to be more aware.

   Sometimes a leap of faith is okay, sometimes it’s worth the chance or worth the try. And I don’t doubt that there are some kinds of truly amazing medicines or remedies out there (even aside from those amazingly simple and effective methods of sleeping enough, exercising moderation, and not rushing headlong into things.) But in our day and age, where few things are sacred and where anything that can be copied, will – it’s hard to know what to believe or put faith in.

   We should at least try to believe that…given these opportunities – the privileges of regular/higher/any education; a middle-class lifestyle; a relatively tolerant environment; and just growing up in a good part of America, that land of the free and home of the brave – that if we make the most of those opportunities, and are so inclined – that we can go out and make a difference.
   Yes, it’s easier said than done. Yes, that’s almost always the case. But what’s easily obtained is easily lost and in the end hardly worth having.

   I feel I make a small difference if I approach a day with a smile in my mind. We’ve got to start somewhere, I guess.


Good night.