Dim Sum Diaries
My neck has been really sore lately. Since my favorite local nail salon (where they wax my eyebrows and mustache) offers reflexology massages for the feet and back at a decent rate, I decided to nip in and get a halfer on the ole neck and back.

And no, not with a happy ending, you bloody pervs.

I've been going there for almost a year now, but they always ask without fail, "Are you Chinese?"

I just smile and say yes.

"Oh! Annie (the regular masseuse) is on vacation. The massage guy is Chinese too! You guys can talk to each other!" the Vietnamese guy who runs the salon tells me. Did I mention he always tells me that Annie is Chinese too after he asks if I'm Chinese or not? And I know he recognizes me (because I go there every 2 weeks), but I digress.

"You speak Chinese?" he further inquires.

"Yeah, I speak Cantonese," I reply.

Just then an older man walks out from the back. Let's call him Bob.

"Here is your client. She's Chinese!" Vietnamese guy immediately informs him.

(NOTE: MANDARIN WILL BE DENOTED BY LOREM IPSUM because I don't understand it)

"Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Pellentesque consequat sem vitae elit tempor tristique," Bob greets me (remember its MANDARIN he's speaking) as he smiles broadly.

I smile weakly. "Guang dong wah?" (You speak Cantonese?)

"Ah...Donec scelerisque varius lorem. Fusce magna nulla, sagittis vitae, lacinia vitae, interdum in, dui."

I sit in the massage chair and point to my neck and lower back.

He looks me over and starts talking, I only recognize a few of this words (denoted in bold). "Etiam adipiscing ipsum nec odio. Vestibulum feugiat faucibus est. Curabitur dolor purus, dictum et, fringilla vitae, consequat quis, eros. PAIN mattis. Quisque sagittis SLEEP WRONG ON PILLOW est at dui?

It's been so long since I've heard anyone speak to me in Chinese (and it's not even the same dialect), for some reason, my brain panics. I've forgotten how to say "Yes" in Chinese. Bloody fucking hell. The only thing that keeps flashing in my brain is OUI OUI OUI OUI OUI OUI OUI OUI, like a neon sign. Weirdness. Have I mentioned that I speak better French then I do Chinese? It's an effort not to say OUI. I just nod instead.

Bob did a great massage, working/pounding my neck the way you tenderize a piece of meat, so its much better now. Apparently it was quite an athletic feat on his part, he was breathless and sweating by the end of the half hour.

At least I knew how to say "Shi Shi" (thank you in Mandarin). And I recognized his "Buh Kuh Chi" (Your welcome).

Oh and last week I was with the Rents at dinner where we met up with my Uncle. A flurry of conversation in Chinese ensued. I just sat there, soaking it up, and it was a little strange to make that mental transition back to all Chinese, where I could understand everything they said. Very strange, at least to me anyways.
I don't know what it is, I hit my mid-30s and all of a sudden I develop this fascination for older male singers who have a folksy bent. For example, James Taylor. I adore him! Give me another 5 or so years, I will become a die-hard Tom Jones fan, go to all his concerts and fling my panties at him. But until that seminal conversion, I'll content myself with going to see Dougie Maclean in concert tonight at the Birch North Park Theater!!!!

I'm excited, Hubby is grumpily reluctant to go.

"Who is he again?" Hubby complained.

"An awesome Scottish singer. He wrote Caledonia? The unofficial song of Scottish nationalism? Its on that Celtic Woman CD you love so much? You know, the one you bought me for my birthday then stole so you could listen to in your car????"


Exactly right.

I know he'll like it anyways, because every cultural event we go to, he always ends up admitting that I have flawless taste in art, music, etc. and that he ENDED UP ENJOYING HIMSELF. :p
I wish I had more to write about today, but I really don't. Other then going a bit fitness mad...in which I've purchased a yoga mat, a pair 2 lb and 5 lb dumbells, a step stool work out thingamajig (who would've thunk a piece of plastic costs $30), a clock to time myself, cheapie training shoes from Walmart...and oh about 8 FITNESS DVDs. I think I bought like 5 of them, the other 2 came with the fitness crap. Am very pleased with the results so far, my arms now each have a recognizable tiny, muscular bump which I think is DA BOMB. I'm ready for Venice Beach now, baby! So far I think my favorite and most effective DVD is from The Firm. And I am losing weight.

The funny thing is that the instructor on the DVD, Allison Davis must come from the south somewhere, cuz when she stretches, she says, "Oh, that feels nice."

Except she pronounces "nice" as naaahhhhhhhiiiiiccccceeeeeeeee. So now I say, "Oh, that feels naaahhhhhhhiiiiiccccceeeeeeeee" on a regular basis...have daughter saying it too...

So anyways...here are some Cool Links of The Day:

--Shocking murder confession found in a newspaper.

--Billionaire heiress socialite Holly Peterson gets paid 2 mill. to write one of the crappiest sex scenes I've ever read.

"I wanted to consume all of him. He lay on top of me now, and then, straddling me, tore off his shirt. Oh my god, that chest.

He looked so happy, like he was having a really, really good time.

Finally, "You still okay?"

"Hmm -mmm." "So." "Yeah?"

"You sure you want to do THE MANNY?" (bolded caps, my emphasis)

I burst out laughing. "Positive."

Readers' comments are pretty funny too. My faves:

Rollsroyceheadon: Coming up soon: her STD-packed sequel, The Fanny.

Gigi: I imagine Tony Danza and Judith Light are gonna have words with Ms. Peterson.
Performance of the night, Anya and Danny:

Oh la la Danny, tes mains....
Cool article about Hillary and the inner-workings of her campaign.
Both my sister and I share my mother's love of ballroom dance, thus it was only natural that we all adore the show, So You Think You Can Dance (Sis has all eps tivo'd). Its on tonight, here are couple of my favorite clips:

Anya & Danny - Jive

Conclusion? They did it RIGHT. Tush shakin' has never looked so good!

Jessi Peralta & Pasha Kovalev - Smooth Waltz

This is my favorite one of all I think...smooth waltz, very classy and floaty.

Conclusion? I take up ballroom dancing for you, Pasha!

Of course, I think Hubby pwns all!!!!

Why You Shouldn't Tell Your Mom You Are Dieting

Gah! 12 days into the 14 day protein-only regimen of the South Beach Diet, I give up. I have absolutely no energy most of the time and my body is strenuously rejecting my attempts to starve it of carbs.

"You know lions eat an all meat/protein diet," Hubby commented at dinner last night. "They hunt once, eat, then they snooze the rest of the time."

"Well, they also snooze because they are cats," I replied.

"All protein diet," Hubby stared at me meaningfully. "Sleep a lot."

So it was agreed that we would try to eat sensibly with some carbs and exercise. Bloody hell, it's a pain in the ass to try and lose weight or keep in shape when you have so many things competing for your attention.

When I went to visit Mum and Dad last weekend (by myself to wish Dad a happy Father's day), I made the mistake of mentioning the D WORD (dieting) to Mom. Let it be known that Mom is deliriously in full maternal mode, having discovered a few weeks ago that my sister is 3 MONTHS PREGNANT (Sis told her boss and co-workers already, this information is now considered FAIR GAME AND BROADCASTABLE OVER THE INTERNETS! Congrats, Sis!). Mom has knitted 4 baby blankets already, but I digress.

"Your still on that all protein diet??" She said with some horror. "I thought you were done!!!"

"No Mom, I'll be done this coming Thursday. Don't worry, I know what I'm doing, okay?"

"Hmmmmmm," she muttered, but she didn't say anything else.

So we went to this Chinese seafood restaurant called Bay Fong Tong. I tried to eat mostly meats and green vegetables, Mom gave me the gimlet eye when I refused a bowl of rice. "Its just not natural," I think I heard her mutter. In all fairness, I suppose not eating rice (carbs) would be considered unnatural for an Asian.

Then I declined to engage in a 2 mile post-dinner walk to the ice cream parlor with my Mom, Sis and Bro-in-Law. After trying to convince Mom that I really did work out earlier that day using a fitness DVD...

"You can't walk 2 miles IN PLACE in 30 minutes. Are you sure you really worked out?" Mom asked.

"YES YOU CAN AND YES I DID," I replied stridently. "It's 10:30 pm now, I'm going to bed now."

I should have known that this issue wasn't over...Mom was plotting something...little would I know...

At midnight, I was snoring peacefully and Mom knocks and WALKS INTO MY ROOM AND TURNS ON THE LIGHT. "I'm worried about this diet thing," she said. "You are going to damage your liver and kidneys and if you and your Hubby keep doing it what if you both die and then who is going to take care of the kids????"

"Huh? Mom!!! Its going to end Thursday!!! It's midnight!!"

"Well, I'm just worried about you. You need to eat carbs. Carbs are good."

"Okay, Mom. I'll eat carbs. On Thursday."

Seeing I wasn't going to budge, she said, "Okayyyyyyyyyy...I just worry, that's all. Good night now."

*Le sigh


We go to Macao Street Restaurant for breakfast, whose breakfast items don't include a lot of proteins. Its ALL CARBS. Mom, trying to be sneaky....

"Now see, Mir? I've ordered a nice fish jok (porridge) for you. The fillets are fresh, not frozen so it is VERY TASTY. Don't you want to have a bowl? It's very good for you?" she said, spooning a bowl of it for me and not really giving me a chance to refuse. She also had the power of this is Father's Day and thus you can't refuse mojo on her side, so I obediently ate it.

"And look at this cherng fun (fat, tasty, flat rice noodles fried) with XO sauce!! Your favorite!! It's so tasty! Why don't you just take a little bite?"

And so I succumbed.

Can someone tell me how my Mom can still pwn me when I'M 35 YEARS OLD?????????

Hubby just laughed when I told him this story. Hmph.
New review over at the other blog. Yeah its been some time. Life moves at light speed, am trying to keep up with all the changes. Work. Daughter switches between moody pre-adolescent and rowdy 9 year old, and its a handful trying to keep up with her. Someone has borrowed my copy of the How To Effectively Handle 9 Year Old Girls Manual, can they return it back to me please.

In the meantime, never get between a girl and her new toy (batteries not required).
And I turn yet another corner. Decided that eating out every night was not only hideously expensive, but quite unhealthy. Like Shakira said, these hips don't lie!! (though I'm sure she didn't mean it in the same way I do) Also, Cousin Nat is getting married in San Fran next month, so tis another motivator to lose the weight and look fabu in that pretty black eyelet shirtdress from Loft. Thus am trying the South Beach diet in which Hubby "volunteered" (involuntarily) to join up. We're still in the first phase, which we emphasize proteins and try to cut out carbs.

When broke the news of this Hubby, he said, "You are trying to kill me aren't you? Also, do corndogs count as protein?"

Surprisingly, he's been quite amiable about the whole thing and willing to eat the dinners I cook. His pants are looser, he reports. I'm doing the whole Excel spread sheet thing in tracking my daily weight. Results are very encouraging thus far.

Was going to try an aggressive exercise regimen, but then threw my back out kinda when tried a 15 minute Pilates routine. Like you try one set of reps of something, your fine. But you do it non-stop for 15 minutes, if you aren't in the proper shape, its likely to kill you!

"You aren't 18 anymore," tsked Mom sternly. "Don't try all those crazy things all at once."

Yeah, Mom. So working and working out is the thing these days, so leaves less time and energy for blogging. But I really do have a book I would like to write about soon....

In the meantime, enjoy Japanese style Tetris:

The following is a list of instructions to make your boss (preferably male, females tend to resist this more) your beeyotch (I've harangued Hubby over the past 15 years so much about shopping, he runs when I approach him about clothing opinions). I will use my "boss" (I use this term sooo loosely) B (male friend at work I like to torture who ok is also my boss) as an example.

1. Don't work, when in fact, you are supposed to be working. Decide to surf the internet, shopping for pretty dresses instead.

2. Remind B. that you have a super case of uber PMS (or PMT).

3. Go to favorite clothing website online, and link as many dresses as you can in IM at a rapid fire pace.

4. Buzz B repeatedly and ask him which one he likes best.

5. If B does not respond immediately, call him at work and say, "Fucker...give me an opinion on a dress now!!!!!!!!!!"

6. Verbally harass said B until he tremblingly gives you an opinion. If it happens to be the correct opinion then let him off the hook.

7. If it is the incorrect opinion, harass B further by repeatedly spamming the link of the dress you like until he agrees that in fact, that is the bestest dress he's seen in the universe.

8. Let him off the hook, or if feeling particularly evil, go to another clothing website and do it all over again.

PS-this is the dress I bought for my cousin's wedding in July. :)

PPS-Have a book review coming up shortly.
Hello my lovies, I've decided to start a new, evolving blog, Une Idée Fixe. This will remain my personal goofy blog, but I wanted to start a blog writing about books, art, culture, media etc...from a not necessarily angry Asian...I don't know, its a work in progress...we'll see. :)
Happened upon this little gem of a book recently and was much delighted by it. Basically the book details the twenty year correspondence between American writer Helene Hanff and British bookseller Frank Doff. She writes Marks and Co. Booksellers, querying about used books. He responds and the friendship that blooms between them is...for lack of a better word...awesome? Neat? Words fail me this morning as have not had full cup of coffee yet. Helene has fun poking at Frank's stuffy British reserve, her playful jabs at him resonate strongly with me (so much, at one point I wanted to say, dear sister!!!! because we seem to have that similar sense of humor).

One example (I'm just taking out snippets of various letters here):

WELL! All I have to say to YOU, Frank Doel, is we live in depraved, destructed and degenerete times when a bookshop--a BOOKSHOP--starts tearing up beautiful old books to use as wrapping paper...You tore that book up in the middle of a major battle and I didn't know which war it was...I want the Q anthology...Why don't you wrap it in pages LCXII AND LCXIII SO I can at least find out who won the battle and which war it was?

...Please don't worry about us using old books such as Clarendon's Rebellion for wrapping. In this particular case they were just two odd volumes with the covers detached and nobody in their right senses would have given us a shilling for them...

WHAT KIND OF A PEPY'S DIARY DO YOU CALL THIS? this is not pepys' diary, this is some busybody editor's miserable collection of EXCERPTS from pepys' diary may he rot. where is jan. 12, 1668, where his wife chased him out of bed and round the bedroom with a red-hot poker?...I will make so with this thing till you find me a real Pepys. THEN i will rip up this erstaz book, page by page, AND WRAP THINGS IN IT.

PS-Fresh or powdered eggs for Xmas? I know the powdered lasts longer but "farm fresh eggs flown from Denmark" have got to taste better. you want to take a vote on it?

As much shit she gives poor old Frank, she really does care about the people who work at Marks and Co sending them care packages periodically. Apparently it was wartime and food was rationed (one egg per person a month???), so meat and eggs were scarce.

Apparently there is a movie version of 84, Charing Cross Road, but I haven't seen it yet. I liked this book so much, I went ahead bought all other available books written by her, The Duchess of Bloombury Street (when Helene finally visits England to see her Marks & Co friends, but sadly Frank had already passed away), Q's Legacy, Letter From New York: BBC Woman's Hour Broadcasts, and Underfoot in Show Business.

The romantic in me wishes that Frank and Helene could've developed a romance and she crosses the Atlantic, and they find love, etc etc etc, but Frank is already married, and the friendship is strictly platonic.

Conclusion? This book is definitely a book I'd take with me to some desert isle if I was the last person on earth...etc etc etc...

In other news, am going to see Yellow Face by David Henry Hwang (he wrote M. Butterfly) when I visit the 'Rents next week. (Thanks Min Soo!)