Dim Sum Diaries

Another BlogMadness 2003 Post...Again!

Voting for Round 2 has begun in earnest now. Read the entries, but of course I hope you vote for me. :p

Go check it out.
Lt. Smash comes out of the closet. I knew it!!!! I knew it all along!!!! Trying to fool us by having dinner w/ Peggy Noonan! Yeah right! ;)

Voting in Round 2 starts tonight! Go and check it out!

When Mir Stresses Out...People Die!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Okay, that's not really true, but it does seem that when I stress big time, I tend to get distracted. And then weird things happen.

But first I want to wish my Dad a happy Birthday today. Happy Birthday, Dad!! I hope you liked your present. :)

So today during my lunch hour I went to fill up my car with gas. However, I still had 50 minutes to kill before going back to work. There was a Whole Foods Market nearby, so I decided to go there and hang. I had the vague notion of stocking up on dry goods for the rest of the week. I went in and wandered around the aisles awhile. I gradually realized that this wasn't the Whole Foods Market I was used to. The market called itself "Wholesome Foods" market. Trickers. Oh sure there were still organic goods for sale, along with the stuff you see in every regular market. But on each aisle there were also a good amount of authentic Middle-Eastern and Asian goods. This wasn't the Americanized version of Asian goods either, it was the serious whole product is in Japanese and thus can't ascertain its use stuff. I was completely fascinated.

I think I had the most fun in the beauty section. They sold some Kiss My Face bath products (totally cool), so I picked up a couple of bottles. Eventually, I made my way over to the deli section. A lot of it was Persian food. Nestled in-between the electric samovars and rack of Middle-Eastern Music (my favorite was the bearded man with sunglasses promising Naked Nights) was a refrigerated shelf of drinks. One that looked promising was Zam Zam!, a milky yogurt soda. There was mint flavor and original flavor. Deciding that I needed to try something new, I decided to get the Zam Zam! original flavor.

I paid for my purchases and made my way to my car. Once inside, I excitedly got out the Zam Zam!. Shake gently, the label cautioned. I shook it heartily to make sure the yogurty goodness was evenly distributed. I untwisted the cap and suddenly the bottle exploded and milk white liquid sprayed everywhere. A string of colorful curses erupted from me. Some liquid got on my face (let's not make the obvious jokes here please) but my jacket got the worse of it. Luckily my dress clothes were spared. -_-

Most of it had already spurted out, but I had to have a taste anyways. I gingerly sipped some...and it was gross. It tasted like sour yogurt. I don't know, maybe I thought it would taste like soy milk or something.

So anyways, that was my lunch hour.

Note to self: don't buy any more mysterious bottles of Zam Zam! yogurt soda then shake like mad unless you want to get a faceful.

Well BlogMadness 2003 has finally started the voting process! I'm sitting this out because I automatically advance to the next round. However, I would definitely go and check out the various entries. Many are well-written and funny. Definitely check out my region Bills!

Its a bit of fun to brighten up an otherwise dreary workday.

In other news, I am eagerly waiting for Norah Jones next release, Feels Like Home. Its been pretty chaotic lately, so any chance to kick back and listen to some smooth tunes is always welcome.
We took the kids to the Natural History Museum today. I took some pics and posted them here.

PS - Added permanent link for photoblog under Misc. section
Yes....yes...just like Strongbad, I too get email from the seven readers of DSD from time to time.

And, like StrongBad, I will try to answer each email as honestly and thoroughly as I can. So without further ado, lets get started:

Dear Mir,

Even if you were illiterate, I would still visit your blog everyday!! In fact, if you were illiterate, you could just run a photoblog and that would be so cool! But luckily you are not illiterate. But you should start a photoblog anyways. And that would be so cool!!!

Toronto, Canada

PS - Is it a bad thing to stand in the freezing cold with no jacket on for 6 hours at night?

Here is my response:

Dear Rand_T (does the T stand for Toronto?),

Thank you for your email. Funny that you should mention a photoblog. In fact, I did start a photoblog today! I took some pics and posted them just tonight!


PS - I highly recommend getting a jacket of the Polartec variety.

The Terrifying Face Of The Other. Proceed With Caution.

So I've been perusing Paul's blog for awhile and one thing I found diverting was the title of his fave list of reads, Terrifying Face Of The Other (a bloglist). So then I thought, what would The Terrifying Face Of The Other look like? This, perhaps:

So there you have it, ladies and gentlemen. My lame attempt at humor.

Note to Paul: I hope you didn't find this offending. :p
BlogMadness has picked my Remember When entry as the top seed in the Bills region!

That's a good thing, right? I had to have a sports-minded male colleague explain the whole top seed concept to me.

Well its Chinese New Years Eve here. For me, it means a chance to share cultural traditions with my family. Since I live in Not That Many Asians Live In Da Hood-Landia (though ironically it was voted Chinese Food Capital of CA by some local paper, go figure), we don't actually celebrate it at my house. Why? do you ask? Why don't you have a giganto celebration at your house, Mir? Because I don't live close to a Chinese food market and I usually wait to go the da 'rents house to do all the celebrating.

However, I will put up a few "decorations", perhaps clean the house tonight (not supposed to clean the house or take a bath the day of). I also indulged in my own New Year's "cleansing" ritual, which meant getting my hair cut, colored, eyebrows waxed, etc etc etc. A girl needs to look her best for Chinese New Year. :)

This weekend we will be heading to my parents house. There will be a big parade, a great opportunity for el kiddos to see the Lion Dance.

Here is a gallery of some of the sights and sounds that one may encounter during Chinese New Year (I don't live in S.F., but it gives you a good idea of the old school stuff that is pretty cool). Plus I get to pig out at my favorite restaurants.

By the by, Again The Magic was an EXCELLENT book. It was an emotionally intense book about a second chance at love (A good review of it is here). Though by the end, I wanted to slap the heroine Aline. I wanted to tell her to get over herself and just get with McKenna already, but of course it had a happy ending. And that is the most important thing.

Its here!! Its here! Its here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This is the most concise guide to the Democratic candidates I've seen in awhile!!!

All hail Lord Finistar!

(link via Ernie)
I found a bookseller that is already shipping out this little nugget of romantic goodness! The release date is not until next week, but by tomorrow it shall be in my hands!!

*Mir laughs an evil, triumphant laugh*

That's right baby, it pays to know where to hang.
How do you follow up a serious post regarding world issues? What would you blog about? Should we write another serious topic? Or should we be utterly shallow and post something humorous?

Sadly, Mir chooses to be shallow today. Take that, you stupid spam email!

Also, if your significant other is really pissed off at you, what are the chances that sending him (or her) this completely corny luvy-durvy card will piss him off even more (because its so corny)?

Actually, he loved it. :p
When you sit quietly under the moonlight sky, look up and find the North Star. I will be looking at it also, and imagine me next to you, even though we are far apart. You can always find me in the star.

wrote Army Sgt. Jaror C. Puello-Coronado to his wife in his last letter home before he was killed in Iraq. The U.S. death toll in Iraq now reaches 500.

I can only imagine what a soldier must face on a daily basis.

Kip from Long story; short pier (via Mithras) has something to say about the imposition of Shari'a law in Iraq.

I know that I mentioned Riverbend's entry before, but I wanted to give it a little more attention. She writes:

During the sanctions and all the instability, we used to hear fantastic stories about certain Arab countries like Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, and Qatar, to name a few. We heard about their luxurious lifestyles- the high monthly wages, the elegant cars, sprawling homes and malls… and while I always wanted to visit, I never once remember yearning to live there or even feeling envy. When I analyzed my feelings, it always led back to the fact that I cherished the rights I had as an Iraqi Muslim woman. During the hard times, it was always a comfort that I could drive, learn, work for equal pay, dress the way I wanted and practice Islam according to my values and beliefs, without worrying whether I was too devout or not devout enough.

I usually ignore the emails I receive telling me to 'embrace' my new-found freedom and be happy that the circumstances of all Iraqi women are going to 'improve drastically' from what we had before. They quote Bush (which in itself speaks volumes) saying things about how repressed the Iraqi women were and how, now, they are going to be able to live free lives.

The people who write those emails often lob Iraq together with Saudi Arabia, Iran and Afghanistan and I shake my head at their ignorance but think to myself, "Well, they really need to believe their country has the best of intentions- I won't burst their bubble." But I'm telling everyone now- if I get any more emails about how free and liberated the Iraqi women are *now* thanks to America, they can expect a very nasty answer.

BTW, as the Presidential race heats up and with the current situation in Iraq, I will probably post more political entries. Yay for you. :p
What do Ritchie Valens, Donkey Kong and game designers (who've probably smoked everything but their shoes) have in common?

(link via Ernie)
Riverbend discusses some troubling developments in regards to womens' rights in Iraq. It hasn't really gotten much press coverage, but it is still very disturbing.
I am currently obsessing over choosing a "perfect" preschool for my son, who is 3 years old. I go to visit one today. If you've been following this blog pretty regularly, you'd get the sense that obsessing in Mir-landia means repeatedly bugging Lo-Gung and my mom to endlessly discuss the possibilies and speculate about the minutiae of each candidate school.

Thus Lo-Gung is driven to drink (just kidding! he hides out in the computer room and pretends he can't hear me calling him).

My mom says, "Ai-yah! Why are you freaking out so much? You haven't even visited the school yet! You like to give yourself a hard time, don't you?"

Yes, I do, Mom. Yes, I do. :)
Note to self: Remember that you are an ABC, an American-Born-Chinese female who is more Americanized in culture, outlook and humor. Whilst driving to the local fast food joint, when you spot a female colleague (whom you chat with occasionally) power walking (Vietnamese emigre in her early '40s, with perhaps a more conservative sense of humor then you), it is not prudent to roll down the passenger's side window and yell out, "HEY SEXY LADY!!", then drive off.

Aforementioned colleague is bound to be scandalized (and she was).

Update: I just talked to aforementioned colleague and she's cool. Her scandalized reaction was her way of getting back at me. :p
Lo-Gung (an ink-jet chemist), you've got some new competition. Its God.
A soldier's view of Saddam (via Andy Baio).
Mir is emotionally soppy. Mir is tired, that's why she doesn't write any new creative entries. She chooses only to spread the link lovie around. Maybe its because Mir experienced another romance novel binge this weekend (which makes for a very happy Lo-Gung, but that is besides the point).

So here is today's link love:

1) I never really got into Strong Bad, but this particular one is pretty funny. What can I say, I'm an Infocom dork. Also, you know you are waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay dated when I Love The 80s is your new favorite show.


2) I am feeling somewhat depressed about the current political situation in the U.S. I mean seriously, everyone is bitch-slapping the Democratic frontrunner, Howard Dean. On top of that, his head looks like my thumb. Or big toe. Its up for debate.

3) January 27, 2004 is the red-letter day. It is the day that Again The Magic, by Lisa Kleypas comes out. Yay!!!! And before any male dares to even comment upon this...I'd like to remind you that you've just read a ROMANCE *cough*Dan&Kate*cough* and you LOVED IT. So there. ;)
Check out the Euro boy bands of the 70s. Justin and Nick, take notes, will ya?
7.142857142857143% of me is a huge nerd! How about you?

(via Ipse Dixit)
The 2004 Bloggies are now accepting nominations for "Best Of..." weblogs. I think most of the weblogs that actually win are like those with thousands and thousands of readers. But if you like DSD and would like to see it nominated, then click on the above link and nominate me.

Yes. Feed my ego and help fulfill my plans for world domination. Its worth it. ;)

You are going to Marry Josh Hartnett. He is really
shy, but don't let that fool you. He is really
outgoing and sweet with those he loves and will
be loyal to them for the rest of his life.

Which male celebrity are you going to marry? (10 results that have pics!)
brought to you by Quizilla

Althought LOTR hottie David Wenham (Faramir) would do just as nicely. Rowl, baby!

(via firefly)
Finally, the truth about men comes out!
Just found this thought-provoking video via Mithras. It brings new meaning to the term an Army Of One.
What happens when you buy a fabu cookbook from amazon.co.uk but are unfamiliar with some of the British cooking terms used? For example, wth is a courgette? (its also French, yes I know) Do you look it up on the internet? Do you go to your fave chatroom and bug the hell out of the lone Brit guy in there (ha ha GM) until he caves and tells you what it is?

Nay. You look at the recipe ingredient list and compare it against the inset photo of your chosen dish until you get it by process of elimination.

Carrots? Check.

Fish? Check.

Chicken broth? Check.

Spring onions? Check.

Turns out a courgette is a zuchinni. I'm still trying to figure out what Weetabix is.

Plus, Brits have the coolest slang. I'm quite fascinated by it and have tried to incorporate it into my every day speech, with little success. For example, I called that same Chinese restaurant (see entry below) one day, all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, eager to practice some phrases I learned from various BBC America programs.

Pick-Up Stix Guy: Hello.

Me: Yes, I'd like to order some TAKE-AWAY (aka take-out) please.

Pick-Up Stix Guy: Huh?

Me: *Sigh* I said I want some take-out. Oh come on! Its such a doddle! Stop the flim-flam you git! Now I'm hacked off!! (okay I didn't say the stuff in italics but it makes for more interesting reading, don't you think)
Yeah okay, I just spent the last two hours reconfiguring my iBook. Re-installed all the software, etc etc etc. I guess it isn't a bad thing. I made some improvements to the setup. Acutally installed MS Office instead of just Word. Setup the security crap for the wireless router (apparently we never did that...took us half an hour to figure out what the heck we were doing). Redownloaded all my porn. Must buy one of those little portable bus drive memory stickie thingies that are like a keychain but hold lotsa memory so I can back up all the important files.

I guess I should buy the AppleCare warranty for real because I keep hearing all these news stories about iBooks dying after a year...lawsuits in progress...

All I have left to do is redownload my David Wenham/Faramir background for the desktop and take some anti-cough medicine...hacking cough is pretty bad.

Not making any sense because...well I'm coughing and typing at the same time...

Will write more later...now I have no excuse to write up an outline for a new story...I found a great muse/critique partner (randy mandy sandy dandy) and that's a great first step...
I just submitted one of my blog entries to this blog contest called BlogMadness 2003 (via Mike). Basically you submit what you consider to be your "best" 2003 entry, people read it and vote on it.

I'm still waiting for "approval" (aka they have to review it to ensure it is the real McCoy), and hopefully mine will be accepted. Knock on wood. :) I was going to submit Dan&Kate's story, but that's 3 entries, not one.

So if you have a kick-ass entry, then you should go for it.

UPDATE: Woo hoo! My entry is now officially in!! :)