chang|e one's mind

i wrote a song… in my mind

Archive for September 2010

pleasantries

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do you ever exchange short pleasantries that you don’t really mean a word of?

besides the obvious,

“how are you doing?”

“good, and you?

“good”

no one means that right?  for all i know you could’ve just shot an elephant and spent some time in jail for poaching and you would still answer, “good”.  i actually take this question literally.  if i’m having a bad day, i’ll tell you about it.  i’ll say, “i’m not doing that great” or usually i’ll sit there and think about it for a little while (which is really difficult if this is one of those walk-by questions) and i’ll answer, “you know, i just lost my keys and i’m feeling pretty bummed about it.”

or, i LOVE this exchange:

“did you get a haircut?”

“yeah”

“it looks nice”

what the heck?!?!  first of all, awesome observation captain obvious!  although sometimes people ask me that i haven’t gotten a haircut.  hmmm… i think either way it’s not a good question.  if i didn’t get a haircut, it shows you didn’t notice that i didn’t.  if i did, it shows that you can clearly see (as everyone else can) that truly i did get a haircut and you just chose to ask to verify that my radically different hairstyle was the result of scissors and razors and not nature itself.  secondly, do you actually mean it when you say that it looks nice?  cause honestly, i don’t think i look good with a fresh haircut.  if it looked bad, would you have told me?  probably not.  for me, i acknowledge haircuts to myself.  and if i do acknowledge it AND it looks nice in my opinion, i’ll say, “nice haircut.”  that’s it.  no questions, no lies.  just a simple, subtle, “nice haircut.”  end of conversation.  if i didn’t like it, i just wouldn’t say anything.  but most likely it’s a third category – i don’t notice it and can’t tell if it’s good or bad.  i’m just horrible at noticing stuff.  but at least i wouldn’t lie about it.  if i got a bad haircut, i would like to know about it so that i don’t keep getting it cut the same way the next time i go.  you’re just allowing bad hair to keep getting cut that way.  stop the cycle people!!  please!!

i guess what i’m saying is, let not the pleasantries of our culture override the truth that is in our hearts.  i’d rather hear a “girl! your hair is so ugly, looks like your head threw up.”* than, “ooh girl, your hair looks sooo good” when you don’t mean it.  that only guarantees you’re going to see the same hideous hairstyle over and over again.

*of course, i don’t condone insults like this.  it’s a little too blunt.  try to be a little cordial about it.  or offer suggestions: it’s a little too short in the front, it’d look good if you styled it this way, i don’t think you can pull that look off, WHAT WERE YOU THINKING!?!?  ok i got a little carried away.  but you know what i mean.

Written by enoch

September 30, 2010 at 11:37 am

Posted in social observation

how to

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i’d like to start a separate blog with a bunch of how to… information.  i think it’d be very useful.  kind of like a wikihow or yahooanswers or something like that, only more dependable and more practical.

i don’t have a lot of information, but here’s a couple to start:

HOW TO…

…fix a toilet that keeps refilling: step 1. take off the lid.  step 2. see if there’s any leaks.  you’re losing water in your reservoir somehow which is causing your toilet to think it’s empty and therefore it must refill.  step 3.  if there are no visible leaks, your chain for your stopper might be too tight.  try loosening it (a little at a time, you don’t want it too loose).  observe for a little while (couple seconds to a minute) and see if the water level has gone down.  this fixed the problem for me.

…unscrew a faucet spout that doesn’t loosen: if you have a faucet spout that just keeps turning when you try to unscrew it, look at the spout itself and see if it has 2 small gaps on the inside perimeter of the faucet.  if it does, get a flathead screwdriver or pair of pliers to fill in one or both of those gaps and start turning it to loosen it.  it’ll take a little effort, but this should work.  you have to unscrew these spouts from the inside, it’s just as simple as grabbing the outside and unscrewing it like a normal spout.

…clean your mighty mouse without taking it apart (for macs): unplug your mouse. find a sheet of paper.  turn your mouse upside down so that the trackball is touching the piece of paper.  wipe the mouse over the sheet of paper so that the ball is rolling on the sheet.  do this vigorously until dirt particles come out.  you almost might need to clean the inner edge of the trackball when all the dirt has surfaced.  it should work like new after you do this.

…open up a cd case (a little outdated i know): use your thumbnail or index fingernail and slide it across the front left side of the cd packaging (the space on the front face of the cd that goes the vertical length of the cd on the left side).  after this, it’s pretty easy, just unwrap the cover where you sliced it with your nail.  the packaging should come off easily.  the only tricky part now is taking the sticker off the top side of the cd.  you’re on your own for that one.

…use an intersection where the signal lights have gone out because of a power outage: i know this isn’t really a step by step process, i just think there’s a lot of people out there who don’t know what to do.  and if they do, a lot of people don’t follow it.  you’re supposed to treat it as a 4-way stop sign.  this means that the first person who gets to the intersection gets to go first even if there’s a lot of cars going in one direction over another.  if 2 cars get there at the same time, the person to the right has the right-of-way.

as you can see, it’s not complete, but maybe someday…  anything you’d like to add?

Written by enoch

September 28, 2010 at 12:10 am

Posted in from my mind

vacation

with 6 comments

i seriously don’t remember the last time i had a vacation, the last time i got away from everything just for myself and not for anyone else.  usually when i go out of town, it’s for a reason, for someone else.  i’ve been out of town to help my sister move, to stand in a wedding, to help more people move, to be with family.  that last one might sound like a vacation, but trust me, my family vacations are work and not relaxing AT ALL.

truth is: i don’t know what it’s like to take a break.  my mother is a huge workaholic.  i think in a way i’m similar to her.  i can’t take a break from working.  part of it is because i literally cannot or am not allowed to take a break.  between being a full-time student, a TA for 2 masters level classes, a “part-time” intern for a korean-american church (which, if you know anything about the korean-american church, is anything but part time), and doing work study to pay for my tuition, there isn’t much i can take a break from.  the other part is because i don’t even know how to go about doing it.

this season is the busiest i’ve ever been in my entire life.  and for some reason, i don’t believe any of my authority figures know/care about that.  maybe i can live vicariously through you guys.  could someone tell me what a vacation looks like?  i’m really intrigued by the concept.  i honestly have no idea what one looks like.

Written by enoch

September 21, 2010 at 11:28 pm

Posted in from my mind

reminders

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having the horrible memory that i have, i need all the reminders i can get.  sometimes i get an idea for a blog entry when i’m not around my computer.  as confident that i feel that i will remember such an awesome idea until the next time i open my laptop, i usually can’t remember after 5 minutes, if that.  what i’ve started to do was type them out on my phone or ipod or hand or whatever i can find nearby to somehow hold on to that thought long enough for me to remember how awesome my idea is.

the problem is… i am SO forgetful that no matter how many notes i write to myself, they mean nothing to me when i look at them later on.  “popcorn”?  what am i supposed to do with that?  what was i thinking?  did i really believe the word “popcorn” would trigger my memory?  then i end up deleting it from my phone, only to start the whole stupid process over again.

i have now evolved to write a MORE detailed reminder to myself.  something, no, ANYTHING to help trigger my memory to the awesome idea i had when i came up with the thought.  “popcorn gets stuck in my teeth,” now there’s something that might help me.

but the problem is… i am SO forgetful, no amount of detail will help me remember what my idea was.  i usually end up with a string of nonsensical words and typos that don’t mean a thing to me.  popcorn gets stuck in my teeth, ok, so what?  am i supposed to blog about that?  seems kinda stupid to me.  no one will read that.

i could use a new brain.  one that remembers stuff.  the past couple days have been filled with people who have told me stories of past instances when i did something for them or was present at some important event in their lives.  thing is, i don’t remember.  i don’t remember when i went shopping with you and you bought your first pair of chacos.  i don’t remember that time i saved you from a collapsing building.  it sounds like something i would do, but for all i know, all that stuff never happened.

i’ve told some of my friends that my brain is about 75% filled with song lyrics.  the rest is actually useful information.  oh how i’d love to not be able to sing as many songs in favor of remembering past memories and yes, blog topic reminders.

Written by enoch

September 20, 2010 at 9:44 pm

Posted in from my mind

seconds to years

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one time in middle school, on a friend’s birthday, another one of our friends wrote “every birthday is another year closer to death” on the white board.  kinda morbid.  anyways, our teacher comes in and sees it and tells him to erase it.  he goes up to erase it only to find he accidentally wrote in permanent marker.  i think it came off over time.

the passage of time intrigues me.  maybe that’s why so many of my entries are about different things i’ve noticed as i’ve gotten older, wondering where the time has gone.

i look at college pictures of myself and am reminded of a more youthful me.  age lines on my face tell me that i’m not that kid anymore.  where has the time gone?  when i look at myself, i don’t feel any older.  i thought growing older meant being wiser, more mature, knowing how to navigate the world.  but as i get older i realize that i still don’t know how to do any of that.  maybe it’s that my expectations grow as i get older and so i’m always falling short of my newer, more mature expectations.  or maybe it’s just that i haven’t really changed since i was a hopeful young boy, still waiting to become a man.

all i know is that the world is not going to wait for me.  i learned that very quickly as most of my friends got engaged or married and even more quickly when half of all of my friends are currently pregnant or expecting a child.

the concept of time is so unique to me.  someone once said that it’s one thing that you can never get back.  there will never be another 10:32pm on sunday, september 19, 2010.  it’s gone forever.  was it wasted?  or used wisely?  what about the next minute?  or the next?  there will never be another minute like it.  i guess i’m wasting it now since i’m blogging instead of writing my paper (as is usually the case when i’m blogging).

Written by enoch

September 19, 2010 at 10:42 pm

Posted in from my mind

for love of the game

with one comment

my first love always has and always will be basketball.  when i was 5 years old, me and my best friend’s dream was to be in the nba.  i remember when i got my first basketball, i carried it everywhere.  i didn’t have anywhere to play, i would just dribble it up and down my driveway and shoot it against the side of the house.  i remember when my dad bought me my first basketball goal.  our driveway is anything but flat and we installed it at an awkward angle so there was only one spot you could shoot it from that was a straight shot.  i would spend hours outside shooting hoops by myself.  i grew up watching the charlotte hornets, back in the days with j.r. reid, larry johnson, muggsy bogues, dell curry, alonzo mourning (young alonzo mourning).  i just loooved basketball.

we would play basketball at church when i was in middle/high school.  even though i sucked, i still played cause i loved it.

the last time i played basketball was in college.  we would play basketball at church and even though i still hadn’t gotten any better since high school, i played because i loved it.  however, i stopped playing since college.  a lot of people don’t know why.  why a talented basketball player like myself would stop playing the sport he is so obviously awesome at.  there’s the reason that i tell people (which is true), but there’s also the reason that no one knows about.  i’ll tell you both.

the reason i tell people is that the last couple times i’ve played in college, my shoulder popped out of its socket.  it’s pretty painful and i couldn’t take it happening every time i played so i stopped.

no on to the deeper reason: i don’t like the way people get when they play.  myself included.  i hated the fact that people, my own brothers in the faith, would get so angry at me or other people who weren’t very good but just wanted to play because their team didn’t win or didn’t make a good play.  i hated that i would get so mad at myself for missing a shot, playing poor defense, making a bad pass, mishandling the ball, etc.  i couldn’t take it anymore, so i stopped playing.

encouraging words carry a lot of weight.  i think a little encouragement goes a long way.  on the contrary, a little discouragement can crush someone’s spirit.  i think it sucks that in order to play a sport, you have to already be good at it.  there’s very little patience for people who aren’t good or don’t know how to play.  i find it very discouraging that sports that i’ve played with people have a dearth of encouragement when i think that’s one of the places it’s needed most.

i don’t know whether or not i’m good at basketball at the moment.  i’d like to think that all the years i’ve spent watching basketball since i’ve last played have somehow made me a better basketball player.

Written by enoch

September 19, 2010 at 12:03 am

Posted in from my mind