November 30, 2005

Santa Emma

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Wednesday, November 30, 2005
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November 29, 2005

There was a time I loved to read so much that I wanted to be a librarian so I could live in a library and read to my heart's content.

Now I changed my plan.

One day when I get old, old, retired and has nothing to do, I think I would just buy a movie ticket and stay in the movie theatre and watch a chain of movies.

Especially if the theatre has a movie like "Walk the line". I can watch it over and over and over. If I get tired, I can just close my eyes and immerse myself into the music.

I wonder when Emma would be ready for such a black movie day with me? I can take her with me, before I get really old and before she gets tired of me.

Movie day

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There was a time I loved to read so much that I wanted to be a librarian so I could live in a library and read to my heart's content.

Now I changed my plan.

One day when I get old, old, retired and has nothing to do, I think I would just buy a movie ticket and stay in the movie theatre and watch a chain of movies.

Especially if the theatre has a movie like "Walk the line". I can watch it over and over and over. If I get tired, I can just close my eyes and immerse myself into the music.

I wonder when Emma would be ready for such a black movie day with me? I can take her with me, before I get really old and before she gets tired of me.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005
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November 23, 2005

Each and every Harry Potter books or movies comes out, it comes with a choir of exclamations about its financial magic and how better and darker it becomes yet again. You would be damned if you do not contribute your dollars and your humble opinions, for it is now a "cultural phenomenon", a thing that everyone talks about.

So I paid my due Sunday by walking into a theatre to watch the fourth installment of Harry Potter, "The goblet of fire".

I have to admit, I was not impressed by the first or the second, nor was I taken by the volumes of books.

I have to admit too, that I have already read a lot of reviews before I even watch the movie. All said that it is very "dark" and you probably can sense the hormones in the air.

I found both points (the hormone and the darkness) are true. Except that the wizards' ball is nothing magical (remember the banquet in the first Harry Potter movies? Where thousands of pumpkin laterns lit up the magnificent hall, with the headmaster having silver beard flowing like a fairy? And the food). The teenagers' giggling, blushing, small talk is really much too mundane.

The dark side, the central theme of the movie is much too dark and sinister for a teenager world too. But sure, if you are fighting against the world's biggest devil, you simply cannot have childish benign fights. From there, the movie goes to the category of end of the world and one hero thing...

I studied the characters. I think the growing-up Daniel Redcliff lost his cute elf-kind of boyishness and likableness. From time to time, he looks too angular or square for Harry Potter. Ron's hair looks too shaggy, he is really a teenager boy with too much hormone and crushing idleness and boredom. Harmoine still looks cute. But her make-up and dresses mirror totally the concept of 21st century's beauty, totally this world, totally muggetish.

Whatever. I paid my due.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

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Each and every Harry Potter books or movies comes out, it comes with a choir of exclamations about its financial magic and how better and darker it becomes yet again. You would be damned if you do not contribute your dollars and your humble opinions, for it is now a "cultural phenomenon", a thing that everyone talks about.

So I paid my due Sunday by walking into a theatre to watch the fourth installment of Harry Potter, "The goblet of fire".

I have to admit, I was not impressed by the first or the second, nor was I taken by the volumes of books.

I have to admit too, that I have already read a lot of reviews before I even watch the movie. All said that it is very "dark" and you probably can sense the hormones in the air.

I found both points (the hormone and the darkness) are true. Except that the wizards' ball is nothing magical (remember the banquet in the first Harry Potter movies? Where thousands of pumpkin laterns lit up the magnificent hall, with the headmaster having silver beard flowing like a fairy? And the food). The teenagers' giggling, blushing, small talk is really much too mundane.

The dark side, the central theme of the movie is much too dark and sinister for a teenager world too. But sure, if you are fighting against the world's biggest devil, you simply cannot have childish benign fights. From there, the movie goes to the category of end of the world and one hero thing...

I studied the characters. I think the growing-up Daniel Redcliff lost his cute elf-kind of boyishness and likableness. From time to time, he looks too angular or square for Harry Potter. Ron's hair looks too shaggy, he is really a teenager boy with too much hormone and crushing idleness and boredom. Harmoine still looks cute. But her make-up and dresses mirror totally the concept of 21st century's beauty, totally this world, totally muggetish.

Whatever. I paid my due.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005
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November 22, 2005

It is silly to say "ah, how time flies". But time dose fly.

Snow starts falling, winter has come, along with the number of holidays (cannot help wondering why all the important holidays happen to be in the cold and dark winters).

Five months have gone since Emma left for China. Look back the days even months I spent thinking and rethinking, unable to make a decision, "should I let her go to China?", afraid to meet people's sympathetic eyes, struggling to justify and really try to find the answer, "will it do her good sending her away?", "what if, what if ...", "will it be better that she just stay and I manage...?" I am still a little guilt ridden, in this America, where moms are pushed to perfection to the degree of martyrdom

But, hey, what the heck! She is doing so-ooo good and she is so-ooo happy. She is amazing. She can recite so many chinese poems (my mom said about 10), and sing so many songs. She has grown so much. When she goes to the day care center, she eats without help. The teacher gave her great comments:"She is bright and happy, love singing, playing and going out..." She even gained quite some weight.

Maybe just because she is away that every little progress becom such miracles. When I called her, the one after anothers poems she recited gave me such sweet joy. The every little thing she does all gave me such pride.

Well, it has been surveyed above 70% of moms would always think their children are excellent. I am one of them.

Five months have gone. In another three months, she will be back!!!

Is it really a bad thing to let a baby leave her parents at a very young age for a short time period and let her be taken the best care of? I would disagree now. I know when Emma comes back, I will need some time to rebind with her, but I know I will do just fine.

5 months gone!

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It is silly to say "ah, how time flies". But time dose fly.

Snow starts falling, winter has come, along with the number of holidays (cannot help wondering why all the important holidays happen to be in the cold and dark winters).

Five months have gone since Emma left for China. Look back the days even months I spent thinking and rethinking, unable to make a decision, "should I let her go to China?", afraid to meet people's sympathetic eyes, struggling to justify and really try to find the answer, "will it do her good sending her away?", "what if, what if ...", "will it be better that she just stay and I manage...?" I am still a little guilt ridden, in this America, where moms are pushed to perfection to the degree of martyrdom

But, hey, what the heck! She is doing so-ooo good and she is so-ooo happy. She is amazing. She can recite so many chinese poems (my mom said about 10), and sing so many songs. She has grown so much. When she goes to the day care center, she eats without help. The teacher gave her great comments:"She is bright and happy, love singing, playing and going out..." She even gained quite some weight.

Maybe just because she is away that every little progress becom such miracles. When I called her, the one after anothers poems she recited gave me such sweet joy. The every little thing she does all gave me such pride.

Well, it has been surveyed above 70% of moms would always think their children are excellent. I am one of them.

Five months have gone. In another three months, she will be back!!!

Is it really a bad thing to let a baby leave her parents at a very young age for a short time period and let her be taken the best care of? I would disagree now. I know when Emma comes back, I will need some time to rebind with her, but I know I will do just fine.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005
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November 17, 2005

With plans made, guests invited, house cleaned, menu planned, turkey bought, recipes studied, we are ready for Thanksgiving!

Ready for thanksgiving

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With plans made, guests invited, house cleaned, menu planned, turkey bought, recipes studied, we are ready for Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 17, 2005
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November 11, 2005

This is a tale about magic. It is more about
a family's loss and magical healing than about the struggles of
an Irish immigrant family in America. Names like
"America", "Irish" have far less importance and relevance than
"magic" and "three wishes". Even though the characters
kept uttering "American dream", "Irish man", "Irish woman", so on and so forth.

Yet the sunshine of America, or in this case, New York, does gild
the junkie building where the family lives in. And the four
Irish people who make up the family are all good decent people without nationalities but with a lot of emotional/psychological baggage. They are all haunted by the death of Frankie, the son to the parents and the bother to the little girls.
Jonny is a hardworking, goodlooking, very very loving
father and husband, Sarah is a pretty, strong-minded, smart, very very loving wife and mother. And the two girls are understanding, a little precocious, heavenly good. And the neighbors? Even though they live in a junkie building in a rough neighborhood in Manhattan,
where supposedly all sorts of criminals converge,
no neighbors are bad, never done a bad thing, not in the movie.
And one of them Mateo is so good, deep, generous
wise, and supernatural that he is definitely not in the league of "everybody". It is not even easy to meet a person like this in a high class neighborhood. He happened to
be a very rich man too. In the end, he paid off about $32,000 medical bill for the family. And everyone in the movie is deep, spiritual, moodiness the questions of life, death and roots. And the big, dirty, empty, pigeons' house that the family creatively transformed into an artistic hideaway for the family? That's a designer's job.

But the movie is about magic, specifically three wishes or three major events, with each one more dramatic, more magic than another. The crossing of American border by posing as tourists is the first magic. The movie glided briskly through, ending
with a colorful depiction of Time Square and a joyous song "Do you believe in magic?". The second one, a very symbolic one, where the family put out every penny they have earned at a little toy stand, and they played a lottery sort of game, with hours after hours of losses and pressure mounting to improbable high, they won all their
money back and a ET doll. The events after the second magic are weaved into one big magic. The movie zigzagged along a path of dark side, then bright side, despair, then jeer joy. Some of them make sense, some not.

Why all the depiction of blood, ominous hard stares and silence? I held my breath when the scary Mateo made the first acquaintance with the two little girls. And the part where Johnny broke down in front of Mateo? The time the bills came at more than $32,000? Then it was paid?

Well, do you believe in magic? If you do, you will believe in the movie and feel happy. This is the form of blessings, if you believe in God.

The director is Jim Sheridan who also directed "In the name of my father" and "My left foot". I think I like these two movies better. I am totally unconvinced by the good luck that fell upon the family, the same way when I approached by religious people and was given a thousand examples of how people was magically healed from cancer or whatever. Am I cynical?

In America

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This is a tale about magic. It is more about
a family's loss and magical healing than about the struggles of
an Irish immigrant family in America. Names like
"America", "Irish" have far less importance and relevance than
"magic" and "three wishes". Even though the characters
kept uttering "American dream", "Irish man", "Irish woman", so on and so forth.

Yet the sunshine of America, or in this case, New York, does gild
the junkie building where the family lives in. And the four
Irish people who make up the family are all good decent people without nationalities but with a lot of emotional/psychological baggage. They are all haunted by the death of Frankie, the son to the parents and the bother to the little girls.
Jonny is a hardworking, goodlooking, very very loving
father and husband, Sarah is a pretty, strong-minded, smart, very very loving wife and mother. And the two girls are understanding, a little precocious, heavenly good. And the neighbors? Even though they live in a junkie building in a rough neighborhood in Manhattan,
where supposedly all sorts of criminals converge,
no neighbors are bad, never done a bad thing, not in the movie.
And one of them Mateo is so good, deep, generous
wise, and supernatural that he is definitely not in the league of "everybody". It is not even easy to meet a person like this in a high class neighborhood. He happened to
be a very rich man too. In the end, he paid off about $32,000 medical bill for the family. And everyone in the movie is deep, spiritual, moodiness the questions of life, death and roots. And the big, dirty, empty, pigeons' house that the family creatively transformed into an artistic hideaway for the family? That's a designer's job.

But the movie is about magic, specifically three wishes or three major events, with each one more dramatic, more magic than another. The crossing of American border by posing as tourists is the first magic. The movie glided briskly through, ending
with a colorful depiction of Time Square and a joyous song "Do you believe in magic?". The second one, a very symbolic one, where the family put out every penny they have earned at a little toy stand, and they played a lottery sort of game, with hours after hours of losses and pressure mounting to improbable high, they won all their
money back and a ET doll. The events after the second magic are weaved into one big magic. The movie zigzagged along a path of dark side, then bright side, despair, then jeer joy. Some of them make sense, some not.

Why all the depiction of blood, ominous hard stares and silence? I held my breath when the scary Mateo made the first acquaintance with the two little girls. And the part where Johnny broke down in front of Mateo? The time the bills came at more than $32,000? Then it was paid?

Well, do you believe in magic? If you do, you will believe in the movie and feel happy. This is the form of blessings, if you believe in God.

The director is Jim Sheridan who also directed "In the name of my father" and "My left foot". I think I like these two movies better. I am totally unconvinced by the good luck that fell upon the family, the same way when I approached by religious people and was given a thousand examples of how people was magically healed from cancer or whatever. Am I cynical?

Friday, November 11, 2005
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November 06, 2005

Where did you come from, baby dear?

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Sunday, November 06, 2005
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November 04, 2005

More and more American VIPs, senators, corporate CEOs or the like, are young or young-looking, good-looking, seemingly competent, smart and important. They talk in volumes, big and deep, funny, smooth and beautiful. Even the spouses. Like Obama Barak, "the audacity of hope", or John Edwards. I am always impressed and despaired by the quality and quantity of good luck they possess. In my company, from the president down to the slew of directors, they all are quite good at talking smooth, funny, sensible and important. I thought all Americans are natural when it comes to talking.

Then the emails of now resigned FEMA director Michael Brown are published. I scanned the pages, since most of the highlights are repeatedly quoted in news everywhere. I found only a few emails from this "brownie", mostly short, mostly small talk, trivial, vain, stupefying...girly. "Tie or not... Button down shirt". "Anything I need to do or tweak?" "Iam a fashion god". What???? Most news decried these as cheap jokes in a time of crisis. I see only idiocy and vanity...

At least I can take solace that not everyone is able to talk big and right, even in a time of crisis, even he/she may be and look like somebody.

Brownie and small talk

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More and more American VIPs, senators, corporate CEOs or the like, are young or young-looking, good-looking, seemingly competent, smart and important. They talk in volumes, big and deep, funny, smooth and beautiful. Even the spouses. Like Obama Barak, "the audacity of hope", or John Edwards. I am always impressed and despaired by the quality and quantity of good luck they possess. In my company, from the president down to the slew of directors, they all are quite good at talking smooth, funny, sensible and important. I thought all Americans are natural when it comes to talking.

Then the emails of now resigned FEMA director Michael Brown are published. I scanned the pages, since most of the highlights are repeatedly quoted in news everywhere. I found only a few emails from this "brownie", mostly short, mostly small talk, trivial, vain, stupefying...girly. "Tie or not... Button down shirt". "Anything I need to do or tweak?" "Iam a fashion god". What???? Most news decried these as cheap jokes in a time of crisis. I see only idiocy and vanity...

At least I can take solace that not everyone is able to talk big and right, even in a time of crisis, even he/she may be and look like somebody.

Friday, November 04, 2005
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Seems like there will always be discussions, books, plays, movies about the forever young beatles. A month ago, I read about a Broadway play about John Lennon and Yoko Ono, two weeks ago I read about a new 1000-page-long biography about the beatles, today I read about a movie about exploring the psychology of Lennon's killer. Of course, there is always news about Paul McCartney, his music, music tour, wedding, wife and new baby. I even spent a couple of hours reading about his high-profile, highly successful designer daughter stellar McCartney. Not to say for days there were news about the death and funeral of George Harrison everywhere, anywhere. Was it two years ago? Not to say the many many websites already existed or are sprouting daily.

I am a moderate Beatles' fan. I like the beatles. I like their sweet, black and white good-boy images. I like their simple, innocent and exuberant songs. Of the four, I like John Lennon the most. Maybe because he died earlier and young. Maybe because most people love him more. Maybe because of the song "Imagine". Then I like George Harrison. Maybe because he is dead too. Maybe because his rendition "My lord, my sweet lord".

That is it. I am not crazy about them. I am not crazy about anyone. Or anything.

Stop here. Look back. Think hard.

I think I am forever in need of an answer to the question "what is your favorite ...?"
Favorite Food? None.
Favorite color? Do not know
Favorite song? Not sure
Favorite genre of music? Um, um...
Favorite books? Cannot remember
Favorite author? Hard to say
Favorite movie? There are too many... uh I forget
Favorite shoes, clothes? Nonexistent.

My problem is I do not go crazy about anything (well, I did accidentally, incidentally, coincidently, inexplicably, unfortunately end up in a psycharitric hell once. Thank God (even though I am atheistic) I am out). There is always this tepid feeling, "Ok", "Not bad", "I dont know". Or whatever I liked, loved, it quickly change. Things change, feelings change, like the change of season, or the passing of time, mostly unnoticeably or sometimes noticeably. Like music hits, movies hits, or whatever cultural hits, they do not stay. Like the frivolous anonymous millions of the cheap and insignificant, "the people", I forget and move on, collect and then throw off or lose.

The Beatles ... My favorite?

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Seems like there will always be discussions, books, plays, movies about the forever young beatles. A month ago, I read about a Broadway play about John Lennon and Yoko Ono, two weeks ago I read about a new 1000-page-long biography about the beatles, today I read about a movie about exploring the psychology of Lennon's killer. Of course, there is always news about Paul McCartney, his music, music tour, wedding, wife and new baby. I even spent a couple of hours reading about his high-profile, highly successful designer daughter stellar McCartney. Not to say for days there were news about the death and funeral of George Harrison everywhere, anywhere. Was it two years ago? Not to say the many many websites already existed or are sprouting daily.

I am a moderate Beatles' fan. I like the beatles. I like their sweet, black and white good-boy images. I like their simple, innocent and exuberant songs. Of the four, I like John Lennon the most. Maybe because he died earlier and young. Maybe because most people love him more. Maybe because of the song "Imagine". Then I like George Harrison. Maybe because he is dead too. Maybe because his rendition "My lord, my sweet lord".

That is it. I am not crazy about them. I am not crazy about anyone. Or anything.

Stop here. Look back. Think hard.

I think I am forever in need of an answer to the question "what is your favorite ...?"
Favorite Food? None.
Favorite color? Do not know
Favorite song? Not sure
Favorite genre of music? Um, um...
Favorite books? Cannot remember
Favorite author? Hard to say
Favorite movie? There are too many... uh I forget
Favorite shoes, clothes? Nonexistent.

My problem is I do not go crazy about anything (well, I did accidentally, incidentally, coincidently, inexplicably, unfortunately end up in a psycharitric hell once. Thank God (even though I am atheistic) I am out). There is always this tepid feeling, "Ok", "Not bad", "I dont know". Or whatever I liked, loved, it quickly change. Things change, feelings change, like the change of season, or the passing of time, mostly unnoticeably or sometimes noticeably. Like music hits, movies hits, or whatever cultural hits, they do not stay. Like the frivolous anonymous millions of the cheap and insignificant, "the people", I forget and move on, collect and then throw off or lose.

Friday, November 04, 2005
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