Monthly Archives: February 2007

A Long But Fast Week, Briefly Noted

It was an eventful week, so I’ll list a few things, not in any particular order.

*PK Cinema. I know my updates are already infrequent for this blog, PK Eats, and other projects, but after watching a number of movies in the past few weeks, I felt like I could enjoy them so much more if I had an exclusive space to write my thoughts on them. So a separate blog to store my ramblings on movies. Yet another addition to my mini-empire of self-indulgence.

* No Child… is a one-woman play about a public school in the Bronx starring Nilaja Sun. This is one powerful and moving performance about the inadequacies of public education in New York’s most neglected region. (Read New York Mag review)

* I managed to fall asleep for only 15 minutes at my first opera – La Traviata at The Met Opera. It was great to see that the tenor singing the part of Alfredo Germont was the Korean opera singer Wookyung Kim. The demographics were largely old white people and a bunch of Asians. Melanie and I overhead an old white woman ask an old Asian woman if she “knew” the tenor (we’re sitting way back in the Orchestra section), to which the answer was an obvious “no.” Although the intention was probably innocent, I was slightly annoyed by the white lady’s tone which seemed to imply that being Asian somehow made the Asian woman seem closer to the only Asian performer on stage. Excuse me old white lady, do you know the soprano? She’s white and so are you… hope I don’t sound like an angry yellow boy.

* Barrel launched a redesigned website for Cents Ability, a nonprofit we’ve worked with since November 2005. The changes were subtle in that we kept the structure and colors intact, but the graphics and content organization have drastically improved. It’s nice to see that we’ve learned a thing or two about making websites since our first try.

* Our Barrel business cards are going to look hot. We sent them to production on Tuesday and they’ll be ready next week. Who knew die cuts and blind embosses could be so sexy? And an exciting piece of Barrel news: we’ll be designing a website for author Saira Rao, whose debut novel Chambermaid will come out in June. Lawyers and law school friends, pre-order this book!

* Andy and I were able to get in some outdoor basketball action before tonight’s snow. Cardio exercise has largely been absent in my life since sophomore year of college, so I’ll take whatever opportunity I can to run and jump around. We play on Astoria Blvd. with the Tri-boro Bridge in clear view and have become accustomed to hoops with no nets.

* I’ll be puppysitting these two doggies for Esther in late March. Check this super adorable video of these two shi tzu pups.

Sunday was a very peaceful day, but I find it a bit frustrating that there’s never enough time to read many of the articles in the NY Times Sunday Magazine. The only piece I had time to read was about the dangerous risks of being too muscular. Not that I was ever super-muscular, but I’m a bit relieved that my routine has been more about pull-ups and situps rather than heavy weights. And the occasional yoga on my blue Nike yoga mat.

Thoughts from Butler Library

Yesterday, after meeting with a client in Morningside Heights, I decided to stop by Butler Library. Since I had lost my student ID a while back, I needed to apply for an alumni library pass, which cost me five bucks. Now I can roam the halls of Butler again and assume my familiar hunched-over posture on uncomfortable seats in the Reading Room. I feel productive here and compelled to get things done.

I’m back here again today after a visit to a printing shop downtown this morning with Wook. Since the Internet isn’t working at home, I thought I’d come back up here to get work done. What’s helped with my portability is my new red North Face backpack, which replaced my worn out olive North Face backpack of six years. I don’t think I’ve gotten as much mileage out of anything else – my laptop probably comes in at a distant second place of four years. With all sorts of side zippers and compartments inside the bag for iPod, pens, and other items, my new backpack operates as an office of its own. I really like it, although I wish it didn’t have “BIG SHOT” stitched on the back – a hiking slang word or mountain name would have been preferred.

So sitting here and trying not to procrastinate, I found myself wasting time on Bored@Butler, a nifty anonymous posting board where people who’re in Butler can sound off about anything. As you can guess, most of the talk is about sex – “someone somewhere is having sex right now”, “i wish someone would lick me all over”, “Chem makes me soooo Horny……”, “could use a ckbg bj right now”, etc. I didn’t know what CKBG stood for, but someone noted a few posts later that it was Cute Kinky Barnard Girl. I thought that was clever. It seems like the discourse is shifting towards thoughts on Obama right now…

Valentine’s Day Dinner with Melanie tonight at Ovelia, a newly opened Greek seafood joint a few avenues up from our apartment. Melanie actually went there last week with her cousin, but since it’s close and convenient (especially in this dreadful weather), we thought it’d be a solid choice. I’m almost done with Paul Auster’s Moon Palace, a very quick and thrilling read, and it’s the only novel of his I’ve read so far that has a prominent Asian female character. Her name is Kitty Wu and she’s made out to be a really pretty, smart, and sexy girl – a ballet dancer at Juilliard who dons on a tight chipao to excite her white boyfriend. I don’t think Auster exoticizes her in a way that’s offensive, but I thought it was funny that she wore a chipao since that reminds me of women at Asian massage parlors, not that I’d know anything about such women or such places. Anyway, I only mention this because I sometimes call Melanie a “kitty,” but now I’ve started saying “Kitty Lee” and encouraging her to buy a chipao. She rolls her eyes or ignores me.

I’ve been itching to write a Valentine’s Day short story for the past few days, but since the day is already here, I guess I’ll broaden it into a normal heartbreak/could’ve-would’ve-should’ve romance story later on this week. I opened a fortune cookie today at Sammy’s Noodle Shop and it said, “You’re going to get lucky tonight.” Maybe Melanie will pick up the tab. Happy Valentine’s Day!

And Into the Trash Heap

I spent a considerable amount of time tonight editing my MySpace profile after a bit of prodding from John Jung. It’s nothing to be proud of. In fact, I should probably be ashamed. But so many people use it and it’s been hailed as such an effective marketing tool, especially for indie artists, so I thought, why not — maybe there’s a thing or two to be learned from the experience.

The address is, in case you’re wondering.

It’s pretty much a self-promotional booth in the form of a webpage profile. I rehased a part of my bio from for the About Me section and added as many links as possible to my various sites along the side. There’s a certain feeling of guilt in a profile-building exercise – sort of like the feeling you get when you spend too much time in front of the mirror giving each part of your face too much attention. I felt especially vain when I selected the photos that would be uploaded, carefully adjusting the lighting and colors in Photoshop before sending up for public consumption.

I added John Mayer as a friend. I must be his two hundred fifth thousand something-eth friend. He’s my third.

I think I will use the blog feature of MySpace as a dumping ground for edited versions of my The Elusive Hope project from last year. I doubt the posts will become hot reading material, but among the millions who randomly browse through strangers’ profiles while picking up on many useless tidbits of info, there’s probably a chance that a handful of people will stumble upon these entries and maybe even take the time to read through. Yes, the ultimate self-promotional tool, the cauldron of vanities, and a not-so-discreet way to say “stalk me please.” Speaking of which, add me as a friend if you use MySpace, too.