I had a surprisingly eventful weekend. Went for happy hour Friday with a colleague from out of town. Had some great nachos and beer there. Went to the Folk Life Festival here on Saturday, out with friends Saturday night for Tamarind Tree and the Hideout bar afterward, a wedding Sunday and did some grilling at a friend's house today. On top of that, finished all my grading and assignment development for the class I TA.



Ever since it started warming up here, I've been trying to get back into running, mostly because it's free, doesn't require going someplace special, and can be done anytime. I need that kinda flexibility to get off my fat ass. I've worked up to doing 4 miles and getting home with energy to spare, so I'm going to try to get to 6 miles, and maybe work up to a half marathon, maybe.

The coolest thing about running in Seattle (okay, maybe the only cool thing since a fair weather runner like me doesn't get much fair weather here) is that one of our local Seattle Celebs, John Curley, former host of Evening Magazine for years and years and years is a triathlete. So he gives money to charities if you register to Beat John Curley and succeed. I don't think I ever will but what an awesome (and charitable) idea.

I'm thinking of doing the Furry 5K because I love the idea of running among dogs and it's money for the animal shelter.



Today I went to Green Lake and counted 21 turtles sun bathing on the logs and 12 tiny baby ducklings, 5 for one mom, 7 for the other, and many many many dogs. Yay, that made me happy!

This here is a story about a big squirrel helping a little squirrel and it is awesome. I love it when mother nature gives us opportunities like this to stop, forget about all the shitty things going on in our lives, and pay attention to her for just a moment.



I know that as with any major event, there needs to be a period of rest and recovery before you get yourself back on track. I defended my exams March 31 so we're coming up on 6 weeks now and I still feel like I'm functioning at only about 70% of my intellectual capacity which wasn't a whole lot to begin with since I mostly want to just sleep and eat carbs lately. Fuck. I have a finite amount of time before my funding expires. No funding means no tuition waiver which means I'd have to pay for taking credits while working on my diss if I can't finish it before my funding runs out. I hate that my money and citizenship/visa issues are all tangled up like this. It makes planning really difficult and leaves me none of the flexibility that permanent residents and citizens have like getting an off-campus job or taking a leave of absence or taking a little longer to finish.

Ah well, day at a time. I had a small success today in that I hooked up my digital converter to my new antenna and it worked like a charm. Cool. Now I have a handful of channels instead of just one fuzzy one.



It rained again today. Isn't it May? WTF? And when it rains, for some reason, the bus always runs late and then I end up both wet and late which is always an awesome way to start a morning.

Knowing full well that I don't deal well with bad weather - I get in bad funks and just want to eat carbs and cheese, and stay in bed - I'm not sure that living in the pacific northwest/western Canada is going to be a good long term plan. I can't waste 8 months out of 12 (2/3 of my life) being miserable. Something is not right with that. Man, I have a lot of requirements for where to live - weather, good Asian food, other Asian Americans, diversity in general, left leaning politics, mountains, water, good healthcare and education. I think this is a mystical place in fact. It's a combination of California's climate and Canada's government.

Meh, it's nothing I really have the luxury of thinking about anyways. I'm here til Decemer 2010 when my funding runs out. Then it'll be up to the gods. For now, teach, publish, and dissertate til I get this degree.

The process of exam preparation at least taught me some things I didn't expect to learn:
  • taking baths is relaxing and worth the work of scrubbing the ring around the tub left by bath bombs and oils
  • the first half of a book review is often a great summary of the book
  • writing happens faster when you don't agonize over every syllable as I usually do
  • pre-cooking a ton of food and putting it in single serve packets in the freezer is a great way to save time and eat better
  • this is an extreme test of your ability to manage your time, and more visibly, your ability to handle stress, so it's interesting to see how people deal with it
  • it's easier to get work done if you schedule yourself to be somewhere so that your day isn't so shapeless
  • at this point in our education, advisers with fragile egos can actually feel threatened by our knowledge, intelligence, and potential future contributions to the field, and the results can be nasty (learned from a friend. no one feels threatened by me, that's for damn sure)
  • academia is full of self-centered passive aggressive people with frail egos and poor social, interpersonal, and organizational skills (not on my committee but this is a frequently recurring theme I've noticed)
  • fatigue feels like it can be cumulative; I'm still tired