Saturday, July 28, 2012

Why do I do it?

I have this friend/coworker. For anonymity sake, let's call her big doe eyes. I'm very fond of those eyes. They remind me of my cat. (Just kidding.) Anyways- eyes, right. My favorite game to play when we're working together is to see how many times I can get her eyes to get all big from shock. My record is four, by the way, but I digress.

On one of our busy and stressful days (which seems to be almost every day now...) She looks at me with her big, beautiful brown eyes and she asks me "Are you sure you want to go all the way? How do I keep going? Why?" I don't know.... she just looked so fed up and so distressed- I mean.. I wish I could just.... squeeze her and hug everything away, y'know? But unfortunately.... life doesn't work that way. Or at least.... not enough.

I wish I could give her a straight answer something like "I do it for the money! Who gives a shit about these people? As long as I got my money, I'm happy!" And to a certain degree, that is true. I do do it for the money. I've realized early on that I do want to start a family- not any time soon, but someday. Someday. And times are tough now. So this kind of job helps. Maybe it's not the best, but it's reliable. Supposedly.

You know... as callous as this makes me sound, I have learned not to give a shit about a lot of peoples problems, but it's just part of the job description. People give me all sorts of sob stories. I put up with racists, drug addicts, rich people, ghetto people, retards, psycho's, hell, I even have a regular customer that buys syringes that brings in her crack-addicted baby every once in a while. And when I see that baby and I want to help that baby so bad, but the realization that I can't  makes me feel so powerless that I just want to cry. All of this while the management tells me to put on a fucking smile and say "Have a nice day! Oh yeah, and if you could just call this number and tell me how well I'm doing..." Fuck you retail. Just... fuck you.

If you just look at it simply then yes. It is about the money (and maybe a little of the status, but I'll talk about that later). I think... the misconception that people have (or at least young people) is that your job... defines who you are. But it doesn't! Not unless you let it. Yeah, there's a lot of shit that happens, but unless I fuck up royal, shit at work stays at work (unless you're like a manager or something... which I refuse to be). Once I leave those doors I am a free man. And I want to take advantage of that. Hey- I had chronic depression for a large chunk of my life. I'll be the first to admit that I can be a first-class narcissist, okay? When you have depression for that long you are a self-absorbed asshole, but if there's one thing that I've learned about being depressed for that long, it's that I should do everything within my power to stay happy.

As cheesy as this sounds, I'm finally at the stage in my life where I'm coming out of my shell, discovering who I am, what I like, what I don't. I'm rediscovering art, music, writing (even though I don't do it often) and someday, I want to get back to martial arts and fitness. The world is full of possibilities- and I want to keep this perspective! Of course I want to become a full-fledged adult, but I don't want to be one of those bitter people whom forget how to dream. Ever. There might be other jobs out there that give me the same benefits, but I feel that this would be the easiest for me since I already have my foot in. Is it worth the eight years of college, and me working my ass off everyday to get towards it? This is my tenth month averaging about four hours of sleep a day. In two weeks I'll finally have a month and half break and then I'll start the cycle all over again. I'll make it work. I don't have any reason not to.

But you know, probably the most important reason why I can deal with it is because I don't think it's going to be the end for me. I still have ideas on other things to do. Sure, the job I choose to do now is going to take up a large chunk of my life, but it's not too time consuming that I'm going to be married to my job, as well as fund my hobbies. Who knows, maybe I can make money off my art? If not that, maybe I can learn to invest in stuff so I don't have to work as much and enjoy. The main point, is that I don't feel boxed in and that I'm using it as a tool to open up other paths while being financially stable. I know this may not work for you, but it's my truth.

My second mom (another story for later) always tells me this: "The two most important things in life are a good wife (or partner) and a good job. A good wife to keep you company and to share your burdens and a good job to keep your wife off your back about paying the bills. (LOL)

 I want to be able to take care of the people who take care of me. Hell- I just want (to be able to) take care of the people I care about. And you know what? All I want is for you to just laugh and smile as much as you can. If it means cutting your hours, so be it. Be happy! This made me think about you when I read it and  I was gonna give it to you, too. But then I lost it. 'Cause I'm an idiot like that. I love you and your big doe eyes. Take care of yourself, okay?

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Letting go

Just ignore the picture....

So a few weeks ago some asshole stole my laptop. I had all of my posts and ideas that I had stored so I could finally get this blog moving along but.. shit happens I guess. Anyways.

A little before my computer got stolen, I had finally made the conscious decision to finally let a precious friend/coworker go. I'm not sure when it started, but I had severe chronic depression. On top of that I went through various high school drama that separated me from my 'cliques', which only deepened my depression. I wish I could say that she was one of the people that led me out, but she wasn't. What she was, however, was someone that was there to help gain me gain confidence in myself that I wasn't as "off" as I thought I was. 

Fast forward to today . I still don't know what it was that caused the rift between us, but it's there. When I realized that we were never going to be as close as we used to be ever again,  the silence was.....deafening- not to mention painful. I try not to bother with her the few times we still see each other anymore. I had already gone through the five stages of grief. Maybe not in the same exact order, but I went through it. Hell, I'm pretty sure Anger and Denial cycled around a few times before I got to Acceptance. But I got there- eventually. When I finally did, the silence didn't hurt anymore.

I bought her a dozen cupcakes. She asked me why I bought them for her. I wanted to tell her it was a goodbye present. She would respond by saying "But I'm not leaving!" And then I would tell her "I meant as friends." But instead, I told her I just wanted her to know that I could never hate her. And it was true. I never can. But that doesn't mean I care about her anymore either. 

It's sad that these things happen. In a perfect world, everyone would get along and we'd all be friends. My father always tells me that you'd be lucky if you can have as many "real" friends as you can count on your hands. I'm starting to learn how true that statement is. 

But all in all, it's just another life lesson. The less time I spend worrying about her, the more energy I have putting into my other relationships- as well as budding new ones. I think that as long as I keep that in mind, I'll be able to find count one of those "real" friends with my fingers. I have to believe in that. 

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

What is Love?

I remember on a slow day, I was joking around with one of the pharmacy reliefs. To get a feel of what her personality is like, let's call her.. Amy Tan. She and my other coworker were talking about superficial  stuff that I couldn't stand, and for the life of me, I couldn't think of ANYTHING to change the subject. So I just blurted out the first thing that came to mind: "What's love?" She gave me that "wtf" look, but surprisingly, she actually gave me a genuine answer. Despite taking me seriously, her response was underwhelming. "Love," she said, "is living with your room mate and getting to have sex every once in a while." Wow. I wouldn't touch her problems with a six foot pole. 

Okay, I know real love isn't magical like girls think in The Notebook, and that it's a LOT more complicated than that. But really? Living with your room mate? Something about that wording just- how about something like "best friend"? and instead of "sex" it's "make love" or something along those lines. I wanted to be a smartass and ask her if love is "when a woman has four penises in her at the same time. Then stands over the men and pees on them, is that part of being in love too? Five midgets. Spanking a man. Covered in thousand island dressing. Is that love?" But I didn't because 1. She actually took me seriously and gave me serious moment. 2. Couldn't remember the exact lines 3.  Probably wouldn't understand the South Park reference. and 4. In that moment, pitied her more than I could ever resent her. I nodded my head and left the conversation at that. 

And that's pretty much what I want this blog to be about. Me, just trying to figure out what that four-letter word means. The ups, the downs, everything and maybe, just maybe, I'll find something more than just a room mate that I get to have sex with every once in a while. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The reason why I haven't written anything for a while.

 So, if you're one of the people I send this link to, you know that I have been in a state of suspended anger for almost half a year now. You guys probably know that for a few months longer, I've been averaging about four hours a day after working and going to school full time. You guys have probably noticed that the first couple months before my anger phase that I was doing all right. In fact, I was handling it pretty well and you could say that I was the happiest I've been for a long time.

I started art again after a brief pause and found an amazing art teacher that I can really connect with. I was invited to write for a blog, and that really did respark my interest in writing. If you guys don't know this already, I really enjoyed writing when I was younger, but something happened in high school that killed my spirit and I just couldn't get myself to write anymore. I was getting out of my comfort zone and I really enjoyed my public speaking class. In fact, I was actually one of the stars in that class. I finally felt like I was making progress with my life. Do you know how awesome it feels when someone you were interested in walks up to you and tells you how much you inspire them? And then everything comes to a screeching stop because all of a sudden I'm too tired to go out. What a wasted opportunity. At least when other guys cock block you they do it on purpose. He's just oblivious.

I bought a brand new electric piano to put in my room and all it does is collect dust. How painful it is to go home, have a great idea for something and you can't even write it down because all you want to do is pass out on the couch? How frustrating it is when I go to my art studio with these little kids (who draw a WAY better than me by the way) and I'm nodding in and out of sleep while trying to figure out what to draw next and no matter how hard I try, nothing comes to mind. I mean seriously. It is so frustrating knowing that these kids are better than you and that the only edge that I have on them is that I can come up with ideas. Take that away and all you have is someone 2-3 times older with a broken foundation. That hurts. A lot. So much so that it feels like a part of me died. Seriously, I never knew that one guy could just screw up so many aspects of your life all at once.

I know I've been on a pissed off rampage for too long now. There's just so many levels that he offends me on that I just didn't know how to deal with my frustrations. I hate that I've strained my relationship with you guys. I've gotten some rest, and the lines are starting to connect for me again and for the most part, this is all behind me now so... can we start off again from before all this happened?

Monday, April 16, 2012

Ideological vs. Practical


So last Christmas night marked the two year anniversary of my decision to get into pharmacy. My girlfriend at the time and I decided to go on a three day trip to San Francisco. We had a blast window shopping, going out to random restaurants and just enjoying each other's company. It was our last night there and we were having some of that "after-pillow fight conversation." She teases me and says "Honey, I want....two boys and two girls." And I was like "No." And she was like "Okay.. three kids." And I'm like...."No." And with a sigh, she breathes "Two." And then I sigh, cave in and go "Okay fine.... two kids." Without missing a beat, she throws up in my face and I'm like "Babe... too soon!"

The next morning, I rush to the nearest pharmacy to buy some Plan B. (They don't call it "the morning after pill" for nothing.) Luckily for me, it was just the stomach flu. It was pretty obvious since she threw up like six times the rest of the night... but you can never be too careful. Unfortunately for her... she got the stomach flu. We took the Caltrain home and she fell asleep on my shoulder, exhausted from puking last night's dinner and then some. During that entire night, I had been so freaked out about what we were talking about earlier. I was pretty sure that she probably ate something bad (Oh all-you-can-eat Chinese buffets... y u make such good Peking Duck, but have such dirty kitchens!?!?) but in the back of my mind I kept thinking to myself, "What if?" I was in no position to start raising kids! Hell, I just turned 20 the day before! But these things always get guys thinking. Besides the chunk blowing, the past three days were literally the best I've had (so far). I liked being able to afford *the most* of our trip's expenses and fighting with her whether or not I was going to pay for something and that was what solidified my decision to seriously pursue my career.

These past two years, probably the most difficult thing for me was letting go of the idea that I won't have my "dream job" any time soon sink in. I think growing up (for me at least) I was led to believe that if I "follow my dreams, money will follow" and that you basically get one permanent job per lifetime and that most people hated their jobs and very few people do what they love for a living. This is probably still true. The majority of Americans I've met always tell me to follow my passions, while the Asians (Fobs) always tell me to pursue a career that makes money. The "idealistic" vs. the "practical."

Next year, the majority of students from my high school graduate year are going to graduate from College. Some are going to go to upper division while the rest will start looking for jobs. If there's one thing I've learned contemplating about work and happiness these past two years it's this: Most people my age don't know shit about what they're passionate about. At least career wise. And there's nothing wrong with that! You have the rest of your life to figure that out, but...! The real world isn't going to wait for you.

My surrogate mother and I were having a conversation about a month about about how some Americans are too "care free" about how they raise their kids and that they put too much emphasis on "following their dreams." Although this is great advice when you're actually mature enough, as I said earlier, most people don't know what they want to do with themselves until well after college and as a result, most struggle for a while after college until they learn to get their act together. Even though most Asians have pressured to go into a profession they may hate by their parents, as James mentions earlier, we eventually learn that true happiness is success in and of itself and say "Fuck it! I'm not happy!" and choose a profession more to their liking.

My dad always tells me how impossible some things are, like becoming a musician, or an artist, or an MMA fighter. Although I agree with what he's trying to tell me, I think his wording needs to be tweaked. It's not that it's impossible, it's just that it's really hard to be successfully mainstream. I think the most important thing to tell your kids is to ask whether or not they like chasing something that they may or may not truly love while worrying about money and even IF they spent years cultivating their talents and working their asses off, there's ALWAYS that possibility that they may not make it....or if they'd rather be financially secure while trying to figure out what they truly care about. Like I said earlier, I like having money. I like travelling, I LOVE food even more and I like going out to nice restaurants whenever I want. I just started to get into cars and OMG I want a beemer when I grow up. I want need the ability to be financially ready just in case my future wife tell me that she's got a bun in the oven (even if I'm not emotionally).

The i8 is so beautiful I want to cry

I like drawing again. I like being able to play instruments, hearing my emotions transform into audible sound as I strike the notes. I'm at that age now that I can draw or play whatever the hell I want and no one will complain about it. Even though I'm working my ass off preparing myself to get into pharmacy school, I'm taking whatever free time I have to rediscover myself. So what if I'm taking a stereotypical Asian job? What's important is whether or not I'm happy... and goddammit I'm going to be happy.

Thursday, February 16, 2012


"I don't get it," she confessed, as she got out of the shower.

"Get what?"

"You said you hated your job. Why would you go further into the profession?" She had the cutest wrinkle in
her brow as she climbed into bed.

"I like the fat pay check."

"But every time I ask you about work you just scowl and bitch about how much you hate your customers!
And since when did you care about money so much?"

I chuckled to myself. "I haven't complained about work in months. Not since we were official- or not since the first month, at least." I shifted to my side to face her. "Remember when we ran away for Christmas?"

She slid a hand behind my head and grabbed a fistful of hair and gave me a kiss. "How could I not? Best. Three nights. Evuhrr... you could have gotten a motel instead though... "

"Yeah, but their beds wouldn't have been as nice, though," I said as I dived in for a kiss.

"Touché....but what about our little escapade?"

My iPod started playing this song:

"Oh... I love this song..." she started humming along.

"Yeah... it's a good song to dance to. Wanna have a go?"

"Honey.. its fucking three o'clock in the morning... and besides, I'm too worn out for that."

"Haha yeah.. come to think of it, I don't feel like getting out of bed for the next....while- I'm probably going to be really sore at work tomorrow..."

Her face brightened as she came up with an idea. "Well... we could at least cuddle and pretend like we're dancing, can't we?" She slid both her arms around my neck as I draped mine across her waist.

Side note: I remember being amazed at that time how a girl's waist could fit so perfectly around a guy's arm... it was like God made women's torso's for the sole intention of having a man's arm wrapped around it- or maybe God made arms to be wrapped around waists....ANYWAYS....

"You know... I wasted a good chunk of my savings account that weekend..."

"Yeah... I know," she said as she gave me a petty kiss on the cheek. "You maxed out your credit after paying for our room and buying me my jacket- which I still LOVE by the way..."

"So yeah... who cares if I don't like it? If it means I can spoil you whenever I want then so be it."

"What if I get too spoiled?"

"You have more sense than that. And besides, I still remember the look you had when I bought that jacket for you. I've never seen so much guilt and happiness plastered onto anyone's face at the same time like that."

Our faces had gotten so close together that I could feel the heat radiating from her as she blushed. "Dork!"

She punched my chest a few times. Silence. "I want to dance to this song at my wedding...."

"You'd be so beautiful my head would explode."

"Dork." Our foreheads touched and we moved in for another kiss. Kiss. Eskimo kiss. Kiss.

"You know... ever since we came home from Christmas...I've been thinking a lot...."


"Well.. it's not that bad, I guess. The money's good and I barely have to take any work home so I don't have to waste too much of my time stressing about it. I just have to put up with people's shit while I'm there."

"But you still have to put up with assholes."

"Yeah... but when I go home and I see your face, I can think to myself....'Worth it.'" Our eyes meet and we smile fondly at another.

"You're too good for me..." She says as she breaks the gaze and looks down.

"What are you talking about? You're the one that took me in." I squeeze her... I'm not sure if it was because I wanted to comfort her or to comfort myself. Maybe a little of both.

"You sure it wasn't the other way around?" she inquired.

"Well.. what's it matter? I think we've straightened out pretty well."

"You've straightened out. What am supposed to do while you're gone? I can only take care of the house for so long y'know..."

"God I hope you're joking about the house work. I was thinking.. maybe like a part-time job?"

"Doing what? I refuse to be a bag girl or anything like that."

"You have a Bachelor's don't you?"

"Of course! But... I...just don't know..."

"Well... shoot. I'm sorry I made things so complicated for you. I just wanted to make things work out," I said as I brushed my thumb across her cheek.

"I know... I know..."she said as she clasped the hand that was on her face. "It's just... my parents..."

Uh oh.

"They pulled some strings.... and now I'm enrolled in some prestigious school in Korea..."


"Well.. do you want to go?"

"Sort of... I'm not sure. But whenever you talk about going to pharmacy school... it makes me want kind of want to get my act together too y'know?"

"Hey... I am far from getting my act together... and besides, it's all thanks to you."

"Well... right back at'cha honey...."

We didn't say anything for a while. We didn't need to. Enjoying each other's warm was enough. But something kept nagging at me....

"So... when are you going to leave?"

She hesitated. "Soon...."

I squeezed her again, still not sure whom I was trying to comfort.

"Hey... you know it's hard for me to say this, but...." I choked.

"I know... 'saranghamnida'...." her tears burned my face, but I still accepted her lips. How could I not?

Memorial Day, 2010 "fucking three o'clock in the morning"

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Amaretto Kisses

I never knew how difficult it was to to sit under the covers with someone. You would think that one would lay back and the other would just fall into place. That's usually the case- until blankets are involved. Then it becomes a sort of mish mash of tangled arms and legs. It took us a few minutes to untangle ourselves and to get comfortable, pushing and pulling each other while laughing at each other. She rested her temple on mine as we stared at the blank television screen, a pint of melting Haagen Dazs with two metal spoons sitting on the ottoman in front of us.

“Amaretto,” I said as I broke the silence whilst staring at the pint.

“Amaretto Almond Crunch. I didn't know you liked ice cream so much.” She laid her head back and smiled at me.

“Well... I like it because it reminds me of something.”

“Yeah? What's it remind you of?” she asked, staring at me with that kind of intense look that wouldn't go away unless I told her.

I smiled at her, trying to milk her curiosity as much as I could. I started to speak, stopped, and laughed. “You sure you wanna know?” She slapped my thigh and glared at me. I kissed her lightly on the lips and placed my forehead on hers. “You.”

“Oh?” the intensity in her eyes glowed brighter as she rubbed her nose against mine. “Tell me more...”

“The drunken you, when we first met,” I smile as I pulled away, trying to look nostalgic.

“Hehe, was I really that drunk? I don't recall. I just remember picking up some scrawny midget” She joked as she nudged my shoulder.

“Yeah? Well you know what I remember?” I say as I squeeze her.

“What?” she asked as she laid her chin on my shoulder.

“Amaretto. You wreaked of it." I look at her again and grinned. "You tasted of Amaretto.... with some Colgate Wisp...and a hint of tobacco. And your lips were super greasy. Because you wore too much lipstick. That's how I remember the first time we met.”

She chuckles as we squeeze each other. She gives me a quick peck on my cheek. “Well... I wasn't that drunk. Dork.”

What was your most memorable kiss like?

inspired by Mike Lee