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ramblings, rants & reflections

what is dark in me :: illumine ::

race ain’t no thang

i grew up searching for insights into my personality, mindset and future by taking magazine quizzes. you know, those ones that ask you questions like:

what is your ideal friday night?

a) where my girls at? jell-o shots!

b) curling up in my favorite easy chair with a good book

c) hanging with my guy at a local eatery

d) working

after answering nine or more questions just like this, you find out if you’re a pretzel, breadstick, cinnabon, or churro. and your life is forever changed with this revelation.

fast forward to 2017 and the era of endless online quizzes that cull your social media profiles for information and also bestow mind-blowing divinations regarding who you were in your past life or what hairstyle you could tooooootally rock — as if you didn’t know.

so when i saw the quiz that analyzed my face, features, and skin color (i mean, how much more scientific can you get?) to reveal my nationality, i clicked faster than you can say “internet trolling.” in my defense, i’ve only been TOLD i am korean. no one has actually analyzed my face to confirm.

imagine my surprise when, after an eternity of watching those blue dots chase each other in a circle, this was returned:


At least Colombians still serve rice as their main meal carb, right? Maybe I’m related to Sofia Vergara after all. Now, I can walk with my true people who are allowed to be painfully averagely-good at math.

…. But really though, Colombian?  COLOMBIAN?

relationship goals

today, jon learned about bitmoji and we created an avatar for him. this is the text i got.


girls, if your guy doesn’t send you bitmojis of him holding your deepest desires (also somehow your worst nightmare), he’s not the one.

question for a monday

youngerself

you will.

establishing priorities

i reached a new personal shopping milestone:

instead of buying more happy planner accessories or yet another pair of old navy mid-rise pixie ankle pants, i decided to be a responsible adult.

so i bought 200 lbs of cat litter that will arrive in 1-2 days.

like i said: milestone.

toothless
poop your heart out, baby.

when you know, you know

i saw a “modern family” clip of everyone confessing the moment they knew their spouse was “the one.” some admitted it took them a while and others knew right away. i started thinking about the moment i knew that jon and i would get married.

of course, that exact moment was very clear to me:

jon took me to utah’s lagoon amusement park for my birthday. it’s pretty much the closest place to a six flags or magic mountain in the mountain standard time zone. i love roller coasters and felt like cathartic screaming was birthday-appropriate. 

we drove down to utah on a friday night after work and stayed in a hotel so we could be at the gates when lagoon opened. before we drove to the park, we checked out hotel breakfast. and by “checked out,” i mean i set an alarm so i could be there the second the first hashbrown tray was set atop a benson burner. and then we ran down to the lobby.

hotel hot breakfast is basically one of my favorite things ever. i love the previously frozen reconstituted with whatever fluffy eggs (bonus if they are the pre-folded “omlete” with fake cheese stuffed inside) and toasting my own bagel and mixing orange juice with cranberry juice. hotel breakfast is just amazing. 

of course i loaded up my plate with all the goodies and we headed back upstairs, as i was practically salivating looking at the baby cream cheese container. i rushed into the room, sat my plate and cup down at the small room table, and went to eat my first bite.

and realized i neglected to grab cutlery.

i started with the random string of curse words and felt the sadness rise to my face at the thought of postponing hotel breakfast consumption.

then jon said, “don’t worry, i got you!” and handed me a fork. “i was watching you and saw you didn’t get one. so here.”

that’s when i knew jon is the one. he gave me a fork. 

and, he paid enough attention to the situation to be proactive instead of reactive. he has my back.

although jon reminded me that we had already been married for almost 2 months at this point. but whatever. when you know, you know.


when jon asked me to name my favorite part about our trip, i said “when you brought me a fork.” he rolled his eyes and seriously — to this day still — didn’t understand the significance of his actions. i asked him and he said, “when you kissed me on the ferris wheel.”

2016: the year of many steps

new years cause me to inhale slowly and exhale nostalgia; then panic sets in because what did i really do last year and what i am really doing this year and can it already be (insert whatever year it actually is) and is it time to die already.

yesterday was the lunar new year, and i experienced the same feelings of reflection and endless possibilities — followed by chest-tightening fear that life is not a game anymore: i don’t care enough to keep score, so my chances of winning expired long ago. spectators have moved on to younger, more hopeful prospects and people who value currency in the form of human spawn. what are my experiences, really, but a just another lap around a deserted board game with dusty dice and tipped over sand timer?

this morning over genmai cha, i reviewed my scribbly notes from a mary kay event yesterday. the dichotomy of my state of mind splayed before me: how can my heart swirl in sunrises while my hands routinely claw out my grave in cold ground? i cannot continue with my misalignment and expect to succeed in 2017. affirmations of united mind, heart, and actions are my goal in the coming year, as i acknowledge that 2016 was an exploratory year for me; i reached new milestones in my identity.

2016 was an inside job. before i welcome a new year, let me share a few tidbits from the last 365+ days to appease the sentimentalist in me.

 walla walla in winter


watching hawaiian dancers on the beach in oxnard, california


jon exclaiming “i have heard 10 different languages tonight!” while walking down the las vegas strip


being told i can have the year of my dreams at mary kay seminar in dallas … but realizing it could all end with an uber ride gone wrong


cheering for red in seattle


that time my heart grew five sizes too big


exploring swan falls


determining that, you guys, my makeup is ON FLEEK thanks to mary kay


and loving my family more than i would ever, ever admit to them.


to 2017: the year i start winning.

x,

a.

the edge

“There’s no honest way to explain it
because the only people
who really know where it is
are the ones who have gone over.”

-Hunter S. Thompson

walking in a winter undersea

winter blues are in full swing lately. boise broke snowfall records that dated back to the 1950s. maybe this is all part of a grand conspiracy to end my idaho residency and migrate south. or maybe, the sierra nevada’s dire need for a healthy snow pack exceeded my preference to wear ankle boots year-round. 

by now, the “winter wonderland” has condensed to a dirty, crunchy mess. imagine solidifying los angeles valley smog and dropping it by truck-fuls into parking lots and side streets that even snow plows don’t dare venture.

the main roads are paralleled with another type of filthy snow that resembles types of grimy sea features. please, just return the arid desert landscape that my sweat glands have become accustomed to. 

because i’m tired of the icy sea foam with dark cavernous eyes that leaches all warmth from my breath and productivity from my schedule.


snow coral reefs abound.


icy drafts have literally carved snow into jagged, wind blown banks — likened to pointy rocks that sink ships ashore.


oh, elusive 40 degrees: hurry back. 

or i’m joining whatever wretched creatures reside in this frozen cave and relinquish all hope from my soul (if i had any, prior to this season anyhow). 


to live and die in l.a.,

a.

heartwarming tale

my parents always encouraged me to be creative and to create. my mother would tape down a strip of wax paper on the breakfast bar, set out some markers and crayons, and leave me to dream up pictures and words to fill the blankness in front of me. other days, i would ask to have stories read to me repeatedly. i would memorize the story and when to turn the page to trick people into thinking i could read the words myself. 

when i was finally able to draw and read well, the next logical step was writing and illustrating my own stories. most were basically rip offs of well-known tales, like the frog prince or singing mermaids. sometimes though, creative genius would descend into my 6 year old mind and direct my hands to dictate plot-driven tales of unexpected turns and riveting emotion.

for example: 


the previously unpublished handwritten and illustrated “the story of charisse the spider.” (note: author’s erasures indicate that charisse was a “mudpie” in earlier drafts.)


illustrations ended.



the last page is a colored illustration, possibly inspired by a book’s dust jacket observed in childhood.

aside from the blatant grammatical errors from lack of a formal education (in the year 1991), the story is clear, concise, and ends as happily as circumstances allowed.

i don’t question that i was a special child. but i do wonder how my adulthood was decided based on my early preclusions to imagine such drama and palliative resolutions in print form. perhaps if i had feigned interest in watching rubber balls ricochet off my bedroom’s plaster walls, i would have discovered different ways to express my inner thoughts that were more conducive to socially-acceptable adult interactions: such as indoor soccer or running teams — and not blogging from a mobile phone on a saturday afternoon.

in any case, i have arrived at this self, however calculated and calculating. how have you augmented your childhood preferences in your adult proclivities today?

-a.

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