Racquet + floor = –“

   So tonight I ended up playing a bit of badminton, and sometime in the midst of playing, I did something extremely…dumb. Let me assure you, it was unintentional, as these things usually tend to be. As I swung at the birdie, my racquet slipped out of my hand and rocketed into the floor with a loud crashing sound. Too bad that wasn’t the worst of it. When I picked up the racquet I noticed a bit of a change, namely in the broken frame. –”
   For the next 40-ish minutes I had to play with one of Werblin’s racquets, which was basically a lot heavier and just nowhere near the same as my previously-healthy racquet. If nothing else, it was a bit of strength training.

   Time to get a new racquet…grr.

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   Hmm…I don’t remember the last time I slept so early (~11pm), and woke up so early (~6am) without the help of multiple alarms.

   Haha, yesterday night after getting back from the ROAR meeting (which I pretty much missed because I slightly over-napped and then the buses didn’t show), I decided almost right away to nap for a bit, before I went to sleep. That ended up turning into just sleeping, pretty much, until around 4am, when I woke up…then went back to sleep for another two hours, until now.

   So I’ve got around 3 hours before Business Chinese at 9:50, and I’m feeling relatively rested…got maybe 7 hours of sleep?

   Three classes today, and at night probably going to the taekwondo club meeting with DK again. That might not be the best idea, what with the performances this coming Saturday. Hmm, as long as I’m careful, and get rest, I guess.


2:21pm.
   Owned in Business Chinese today. –“

   Been a bit since the previous entry, but I’ve been keeping busy. Wednesday night, went to check out the Taekwondo club’s meeting, 9-11pm, with DK, who’s a member of the club, and also with Ashok and Ahmedul, who along with me were going to check it out. Basically, those two hours were a pretty good indication to me that I needed to get more of a workout than just intense walking to class or intense badminton once or twice a week (woke up massively sore Thursday morning hahaha.)
   Haha so, I’ve been working out my schedule, seeing if I’ll be able to fit in badminton at least once a week, possibly TKD once a week (club meets twice a week), eskrima at least once a week (they meet twice a week as well)…and then I need to set up a schedule for work study at the library, and figure out a time when I’ll be able to head to the Chandler Health Center to do at least an hour a week for ROAR.
   Yup…and about those rec classes, since for some strange reason they’re not offering break-dancing this semester and they’re only offering one (inconvenient) time for the intro ballroom class…grr. So I’m looking into taking some intro to Salsa/Merengue class, one of two times on Tuesday night. Hmm yeah, I’ll have to do what I can this semester, and then next semester…bwahaha. I’ll get hold of the recreation pamphlet right away. 😉

   So yeah, busy enough of a first week that I was actually sleeping fairly normally, relatively speaking, and busy enough that after getting home late Friday night (came home by train then headed to LD practice then got home late), I slept until like 6pm on Saturday. Well-needed rest, I think, especially b/c of Wednesday’s grueling workout.

   Heading to BCS today – during third period we’re giving an intro presentation of Lion Dancing to some of the younger classes, and then right after that we’re initiating some new Lion Heads, getting them ready for the upcoming Chinese New Year’s blitz of shows.

   Second week of this semester is stepping up…I’m game. Let’s see what happens.


   The little things do matter. Sometimes all it takes to make a day, break a day…something small.

   Hahaha…I can hardly believe it, but yeah. I do think…improvement indeed.

Spring semester week one…almost done.

   Ok first…my bad, I didn’t get to type an entry yesterday or get to modifying the xanga, as I’d mentioned in the previous entries – for one of them I ended up laying on the bed and falling asleep at night (at a super early time) before I could really do anything, and as for why I didn’t get to type that entry…dead tired from the first long day of classes on Tuesday.

   I’m glad to be able to report, though, that this time slight changes finally have been made, and an entry has been typed (as seen above and below.) New music, too – this time, swapped in David Tao (陶喆)’s 每一面都美. Wait for it to buffer, or just download it – it’s not bad, I think.

   So yeah. The first week of spring semester is almost done, and the feeling I have so far for the year is that it’s going to be a busy one. Not a bad thing…maybe.

   The schedule I’ll probably end up keeping:

   Intro to Lit. Chinese (part 2): MTh
   Business Chinese II: WF
   Calc. I: TF, W (recitation)
   Intro. to Organizational Leadership: TTh
   Law and Politics: MW, T (recitation, every other week)

   The two Chinese course are continuations of the courses from last semester. I just had the first Law and Politics lecture today, and though I’d been thinking of dropping the class, I’ve changed my mind – the course material sounds pretty interesting, and I think knowing some of this stuff could come in handy. What with this particular upcoming election, and just the whole…you know, living in the US kind of thing hahaha…knowing some of what we’d be learning could be cool.
   I’ve got some hopes for that Organizational Leadership class. We’re being taught by a Dean, of something in Cook/Douglas College, and she seems quite well-prepared to teach that class. Actually, I think almost all of the teachers I’ve got this semester seem pretty competent, so there’s at least that.
   I’ve been looking at my schedule, knowing I’m going to be mad busy (man all these courses seem pretty work intensive – Chinese is Chinese, I’ve never been the best of friends with math, Law and Politics has a big workload with five papers, quizzes and stuff, Organizational Leadership has projects and readings), and trying to figure out how I’m going to squeeze in time for badminton, ROAR, work study, and a few other activities. I’d grabbed the Spring Recreation pamphlet as soon as I got back, and though I see some cool stuff, I’m definitely disappointed to see that they’re not offering break dancing this semester. Hopefully…next semester.

   Yeah, I think it’s going to be a busy but interesting year. If I can balance the workload with the other activities, things’ll be pretty good, I think.


   There’s been change. Dare I say ‘improvement’ yet?

   So, something that steals a lot of time is clicking through links to find links to songs.

   Probably temporary new background song, “忘情水” (Wang4 Qing2 Shui3) by Andy Lau (劉德華 / Liu2 De2 Hua2), a recently-acquired song that, upon hearing it, seemed really familiar.
   I think I heard it before some time ago, though where I heard it is anyone’s guess.

   Hmm going to make some more slight revisions to the site after I come back from lion dance.


[1:43am]
   Well. Seems like I must’ve been tired after LD, b/c after eating some dinner I sat down on the couch in front of where I’d set up the laptop, then closed my eyes and promptly fell asleep for probably…a few hours, just woke up.
   I did tell myself I should sleep earlier today or at least tomorrow/today now, seeing as how the new semester starts Tuesday.

   Haha I think I’ll tweak the xanga slightly, then…we’ll see what happens.

   I got almost totally lost driving myself, my sister, and a kid I picked up, to Lion Dance today (Friday). What basically happened was, there was a road where I was supposed to go straight and ostensibly it would’ve taken me through a few towns to get to Bergenfield, from like Hackensack (meaning we’d go through like, Teaneck, etc.)
   So I got onto Teaneck Road – the correct road, -and did go straight…straight in the wrong direction. We hit the end of the road at this rather shady and unfamiliar looking place, and about then I figured it was time to pull out the map (I’d decided to bring along a handy road atlas that contains maps of Bergen and a few other counties.)
   That was when we discovered, as we’d begun to suspect, that we’d gone in the wrong direction. Oops indeed. My sister has probably lost what little faith she might’ve had in my navigating abilities.
   In all fairness, I hadn’t taken this exact route before, and it also was nighttime.

   Oh yeah…as if us being almost lost wasn’t enough, we almost got into an accident.
   On the way to us trying to head back in the right direction, I was driving along the road at the end of Teaneck Road, and this SUV on the right was waiting to make a turn onto the opposing lane on my side – the lane to my left. Whoever was driving that car…I don’t what they were doing, but I’m driving along, and they decide to slowly make their left turn as I’m clearly still barreling forwards. And not only did I need to slam the brakes (let me tell you, they didn’t quite slow our aged minivan as much as I really would’ve preferred), but I had to swerve the car to the right to avoid slamming right into the side of that car. I attribute some of that fast action to…whatever’s helped my reflexes.
   Neither of my two passengers made a sound (not that I heard, anyway, though maybe it was just very surprising), and I didn’t even think of hitting the horn, which the other person totally deserved. I just hope the person/people in that other car were startled. I mean, I could’ve slammed x tons of minivan right into the driver’s seat, if I wasn’t paying attention.

   Hmm they’re lucky too, that I wasn’t drowsy, despite my ‘slightly’ unusual sleep schedule.

   All too often words and thoughts – inescapable at almost every other moment – turn to smoke and slip away when I place my fingers on the keyboard, returning only upon being forced, or when I step back.

   Third day of the new year and the first day back to the city. Today was pretty interesting – started off the day by reliving part of the old high school experience – the part where I wake up at around 6:20am and eat breakfast…it was so that I could get to Gabe’s house earlier, since we planned to take the bus to Port Authority and make our way to Lincoln Center from there.
   Hmm…hahaha, I did end up learning more stuff about the city, both from Gabe and from his friend Nelson.

   So basically Gabe and I got to Lincoln Center, bought tickets and watched the open rehearsal of the New York Philharmonic. They played/practiced two Mendelssohn pieces – Overture to A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Concerto in E minor for Violin and Orchestra; then Mozart’s Horn Concerto No. 2 in E-flat major; and finally Elgar’s Enigma Variations. I listed the specifics for those music aficionados out there who might know what I’m talking about.
   It was pretty cool – the second one, the Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, was really good, a famous piece that I’d heard before but never live. It all took from a bit after 9:45 until around 12:20, after which we met Nelson and then proceeded to our next destinations.

   Now…first Nelson took us to a place to eat, then we went to go look at some places. And those places…hahaha, were mostly high-class/exclusive places with…extravagantly expensive shoes. Though I’m not really interested in that, I at least learned some stuff as we took various subway lines, etc. Let’s see, some of the places we went to were Soho and Greenwich Village, and basically the stores Nelson and Gabe checked out included such names as “Stussy”, “Kidrobot”, “Bape”, “Billionaire Boys”…basically, stores with rather expensive merchandise, whose excessive prices apparently made them classy, as I was informed. Hmm…hahaha. I don’t quite get that, but sure – whatever people like, I guess.

   Ok, I don’t really want to take so long with this entry. Basically, the day was pretty full, I learned a fair amount of things, and I’m hoping to head back there soon. Even if it’s just walking around with Gabe and heading to places he wants to look at, I’m still picking things up here and there. Soon I might even be able to take the subway – and end up where I want to go! Hahaha…maybe. Working on that.
  
   Haha, I’m actually a bit tired, probably combo of busy day and getting up early.

   Mostly, hmm…I guess writing some of the entries I consider more interesting, like the one for New Year’s, is…somewhat calming, in a way. Once the entry is mostly acceptable, then I’ve usually turned over the thoughts and worked with the words enough times that I’m fairly satisfied that I’ve understood what I want to say and said what I mean.
   After finishing the New Year’s entry, I wondered for a moment if all the words above weren’t just a prelude, but then I think I wouldn’t have been able to reach the last part without first getting through all of that above.

   Ah well.

2008

   Somehow, when starting this entry – which I wanted to at least be mildly
interesting, or at least more so than the typical entry – I found it hard to
come up with fitting words.
   I feel like I should have a
better idea of what to say, but maybe it’s just because it’s not
easy finding words that can both commemorate the entire past year and welcome this new
one.
   As always…I’ll do what I can and hope that things will come out okay in the end.


   Hello, 2008.

   Even though you’ve long been expected, I still feel that you took us – or at least me – a bit by surprise.

  
Looking back now at 2007, it seems that despite the sheer volume of
events that the year had in store, in the end it would all be compacted
into just the most significant spans of time, a few distinct parts that
include: the end of freshman year in college, which was a generally acceptable end to the start of a new chapter; the China trip, a fast 30 days spent living, learning, and experiencing in a foreign but familiar country; CSC 2007, the very definition of an amazingly unforgettable week; and the start of sophomore year in college, which so far…has been coming along.

  
Time feels like it’s been moving a lot faster than it ever has, but I’m
pretty sure what’s actually happening is that we’re becoming more aware
of its passing. A few years ago, I wouldn’t have said that time was
moving quite as quickly. But then, a few years ago, I might not even
have noticed, and besides time didn’t matter as much then. Moments
didn’t have the same meaning or importance that they do now. Things
were, as they say…different.
   Everything nowadays, even a lot of what used to be familiar, seems new and a
bit different. If it just means that I’m paying more attention to things and am just more aware, then I’d be satisfied.
  
Now when time looks like it’s flying, it just says that I realize that
each hour in each day has the possibility of so much more. However that
time’s spent, it’s gone, so all we can hope for is that it’s been
well-spent.
   Each moment…precious.

   Resolutions…what
kinds of things can I resolve to do, that I haven’t already written in
some other entry, or told to a friend, or told myself? Hmm…I guess
there are a few.
   Since a bit after the return to CSC as an AC in
2005, after being taught a bit of (and subsequently forgetting) the
samba, I’d been interested in dancing – and since Rutgers conveniently
offers a large selection of dance-related rec classes, come spring
semester I’ve already been planning to sign up for and this time follow
through with some classes – ballroom dancing (probably salsa/cha-cha,
whatever else might be recommended or seem interesting), break dancing,
the like. Resolve to learn some kind of dance, mostly for my own
amusement.
   I feel like I should spend somewhat less time in front
of the computer screen unless absolutely necessary. Not like my life
revolves around the computer, but uh, it seems that it’s become the
fallback option in-between other things. Maybe I just mean, take more
breaks when at the computer. Resolve to do that.
   I’m sure in
previous years, even though I might not remember, that I always resolve
to work harder. Resolve to do all the reading I’m supposed to do.
   I should really normalize my sleep schedule, but I think that’s not
happening until I can deal with myself. I guess that’s in the works too.
  
Need to perhaps, move forwards in some ways. But yes, working on it,
sorting it out thought by thought, day by day, week by week. Things can
change pretty quickly.
   And finally…finding equilibrium. Maybe that’s a lifelong thing, though.
  
The difference between knowing and doing can be pretty big sometimes.
For the most part, I know what needs doing. But…finding the
resolve…myself?
   We’ll see.

   A pretty high bar has been
set, in a lot of ways, by some events in 2007. Hahaha, I guess as usual
the trouble stems from myself, mm? But I can’t help having high
expectations from myself and those around me, even if those
expectations aren’t always met. But when they are met, even
exceeded…hasn’t the trouble been worth it?

   My feeling
right now is that 2007’s going to be hard to top. But you know…I’ll
try not to expect too much (psh yeah right) and maybe, like with 2007,
I’ll end up pleasantly surprised.

   Happy New Year.

  
Sincerely, as always, from a thought-full, thoughtful…child…with a
possibly subconscious flair for the dramatic, a busy mind, and above
all a desire to improve himself and those around him.

   Cheers.


It’s taken a really long time, struggling to sort thoughts and emotions, fighting to walk forwards, but I finally understand:

   At the bottom of each word, thought, and action, now and then, was
nothing less than the deep and previously unrealized desire to fill the
emptiness; the sincerest wish for a close friend to share the silence
with. Understand, that in the end that’s all it’s ever been about, and
nothing else has been more important. Nothing has ever meant more.


   Maybe I’ll look back at all this in a
few months, maybe a year, or more, and wonder how such a small thing
could have such a large impression, how anything could affect me to the
point where months later I’d still be thinking, learning, growing…how
it could make such changes. From what I understand, though – it’s the
big things that make the lasting impressions.

  
   I resolve to do all I can to keep my closest friends, and to find
out what’s needed to make myself a friend worth keeping.