Wednesday, November 25, 2009

mad men circa now

(Mad Men, Season 3, Episode 12)

(Sally Ryan for The New York Times: David Greising, the deputy editor of the upstart Chicago News Cooperative, and Sharene Shariatzadeh, the business development director, hung the company's sign as the editor, James E. O'Shea, right, planned how to compete with The Chicago Tribune.)

Please support your favorite publications. But don't fear what is to come. As they say, necessity is the mother of invention.


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

woman warrior

Ever since I learned about the Terra Cotta Warriors in my history books in grade school, I've always dreamed of seeing them. The first emperor of China (Emporer Qin) was obsessed with fear of the afterlife. He built an army of terra cotta soldiers more than 8,000 strong, each crafted by hand and with exquisite detail. When he died prematurely, he was buried in a secret tomb surrounded on all sides by thousands of warriors, generals, chariots, horses, archers, musicians, entertainers, and even terra cotta animals. True story.

The army was not discovered until thousands of years later ... in 1974. Can you believe that? 1974! A group of peasant farmers discovered them while digging a well, and today archeologists are tirelessly excavating and reconstructing the soldiers one by one. Many were destroyed with time, and due to a peasant uprising just a few years after the emporer's death, but miraculously, many are well-preserved and you can go see them in China--a silent army standing guard for thousands of years.

I intend to go see the actual site in China some day, but today I got to see a small portion of them at the National Geographic Museum in D.C. I've been excited all weekend. Was I really going to see the ACTUAL Terra Cotta Warriors? Could it be!?

When we finally entered the room with the first terra cotta soldier, looking so solemn while holding the reins of a beautifully crafted horse at his side ... I teared up. Yes, I am that big of a dork. But I was simply overwhelmed by the opportunity to see these artifacts that date back thousands and thousands of years, to 209 B.C.!

The emperor was obsessed with preserving himself well into the afterlife, and I'd say he succeeded, beyond his wildest dreams. Could he have ever conceived that thousands of years later, this girl, a descendant of korean peasants, growing up oceans and eons away from his royal palace, would tear up at the sight of one of his warriors, and contemplate the character of a man who many years ago lived in such fear that he needed an army of thousands to grant him peace?

(that face says, OH MY GANDHI)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

allow me to introduce, HJ

I have lovely friends. HJ, in particular, is a real doll. lol. Actually, she's not a doll--she is an amazing, strong, brilliant, inspiring, lovely woman and I had the pleasure of working with her for 2 whole years! Alas, she went to Minneapolis, I went to D.C., and now our daily lunches and coffee breaks are no more.

I miss her terribly, but am so happy to be able to keep up with her via phone, email, and her blog, HJ's Haunt.

Her most recent post was truly inspiring. Here's an excerpt.

Tough skin


But recently I’ve also realized that I’ve toughened my skin in other areas—namely my singleness. Singletons have to, at least a little bit, to survive! Dating is not easy. First, there’s the fear that he just will not think you’re attractive enough. And then, let’s say, you get lucky and you actually find him attractive and he’s clearly digging you...then hold on. Just you wait. Something will fall, because it always does. It always has. I mean, we’re single! Something has always gone wrong! Either he stops liking you, you stop liking him, he hurts your feelings, he never calls back, he freaks, he stands you up, he moves away, he doesn’t understand, he needs anger management, he turns out to be psycho! (Yes, I speak from experience.) Perhaps he even says you’ve elicited a visceral feeling in him! Something goes awry. And I can assure you that misreading intents and desires is much more painful than misspelling a name. So, don’t you worry. I have grown tough (read: cynical). Me and one of my single friends don’t believe he’ll actually call. We don’t believe we’ll actually fall for someone. We think the chances of something lasting longer than a coffee date, let alone three coffee dates, is slim to none. We’re not stupid. Fall for something once, twice, but three times? C’mon! We’re smart girls. Sure, we’ll date, but we won’t believe. We must protect ourselves.

So, when someone does call, when he does show up, when he does’s a single girl to respond? How do you not fear a misspelling and wait for the complaining emails to fly?

Well, as I said, we’re smart girls. So first, we make sure he calls, shows up, understands not just once, but twice, three, four times. Heck, let’s go for five! And then you pray—hard—that he will be able to put the period at the end of your run-on, callused sentence, even though you think it’s too late.
Amen, HJ! Dating IS hard, and keeping a soft heart is near impossible. But I am hoping for great, majestic love in your life. Love that transcends superficial, Hollywood romance and settles deep within your bones, your marrow, your being.

Monday, November 16, 2009

coney island with creamy skies

Chris and I were headed back to his neighborhood after church yesterday. When the doors opened at his stop, Chris asked, "Want to go to Coney Island?" Without a thought, I agreed and on the train we stayed, all the way to the end of the line.

It was lovely to be at the beach in the middle of November. We shared hot dogs, wedge fries, and a coke at the original Nathan's hot dog stand.

How was your weekend?

Friday, November 13, 2009

the uno and only

My sister. She is the joy of my life! If only she lived closer to me.
Here, she debuts her new haircut. Dare I say we look more alike as we both get older? That would be a compliment to me since she's the cute one in the family.

Alas, I never get, "you and your sister look so much alike!" It's more like, "you look exactly like your dad!"


lol. Oh well! Love you Uno!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Ellen and Dennis and Hijinks, Oh My!

Oh my Gandhi, I almost died when I saw this. Perhaps the funniest thing I've seen in a long time!

(via the lilbee)

stay cool, stay fresh

Check out what my super cool mother sent me for my birthday! You wouldn't know it by looking at her because she is now a very frugal lady and doesn't spend much on clothing, but she was quite the stylista back in the day. I can't tell you how many photos my sister and I have seen of my mom and yelled, Where is that outfit, mom!? We want it!

Well, that'll teach me. I should probably save some of my better items for my daughters, if God gives me any :)

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

ketchup, catch up

Hi folks, here are some backlogged photos that are just dying to be shown!

1. Army 10 miler: I was so nervous the night before that I probably only slept about 1.5 hours. It was really difficult, but I'm so thankful that I was able to do it! All in all, I finished the race in about 1 hour, 45 minutes, which is pretty slow, but oh well! I did it! I am considering doing a half-marathon (13 miles) in March, but we shall see my friends, we shall see.

(6:30 a.m., On the way to the race, trying to be superman)

(After the race, eating cantaloupe . Knowing that cantaloupe and Chris were waiting for me at the finish line sustained me from mile 4 to 10, hehe!)

2. Beef Bourguignon! As I mentioned before, Chris and I made this wonderful, tasty dish and I highly recommend it. Chris also made garlic mashed potatoes (his own combination of milk, butter, and boiled potatoes) and I made some crispy kale. It was LOVELY!

3. Planes. Not too far from National Airport is Gravelly Point Park from which you can watch the airport planes take off. Chris and I have been meaning to go for a long time and it was great to finally make the trek. It was also really bizarre and awesome to go to the airport with no plans for travel. Hehe. We walked through the terminal and I kept saying really loudly, "I'm so excited to go ice fishing when we land in Alaska!" And Chris shook his head laughing. I embarrass him too much, I think.

(Can you see the plane?)

(Yes, I realize I am a freak)

4. Finally, my birthday party! Yesterday, I celebrated entry into year 27 by having some friends over for mulled wine, hot cider, cookies, cheese, crackers, bread, and fun. It was great! Hat tip to Heather for her great mulled wine and cider recipes. The cider was an especially huge hit, Heather. Seems all mortals desire the drink of the gods. :)

(Cassie, the sweetest roomie in the world!)

(Mulled wine, so yummers)

Wish you could have been there.

Halloween Redux

I hope you had a good weekend. Chris and I basically celebrated my birthday all weekend long and made yummy dinners (beef bourguignon, after being inspired by Julie and Julia!), watched Where the Wild Things Are (really sad but fun), and even did a Halloween outreach with my church. It was a weekend of giving an receiving.

We went to Sojourners' annual Halloween party. Such a blast!

(My friend Tim as Mr. Schuster from Glee, my roommate Cassie as Quinn Fabray from Glee, and lovely Amber as a peacock!)

(Me as a '60s schoolgirl and Chris as a Tennis Jock ... jk)