Monthly Archives: August 2008

More bounce (in california)

Back from my week-long family trip cruising through the West Coast, jam-packed with stops at Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Jose and San Diego. Lots of stuff to write about, not so much time. Woe is my life. For my own sake, a quick recap: adorable animals at San Diego Zoo, namely the panda bears which we could not pry ourselves away from even though they exhibited minimal movement; lots of food (finally consumed the greatness that is an In-n-Out burger); concluding that my camera-whoring tendencies are hereditary; treating our GPS as a sixth family member with replies and words of praise or disparagement to its commands; unsettlingly good weather; beautiful views (Golden Gate Bridge, the sight of which promptly triggered me and my sister to burst into our first-rate, albeit slightly shrill, rendition of the “Full House” theme song); discovering my animal counterpart in the elephant seal, quite possibly the laziest creature I have ever had the amusement of watching; too much Lee ladies shopping at outdoor malls; and falling asleep to the oddly enchanting Olympics music every night.

All in all, despite the lack of relaxation with waking up early and visiting a million places in a mere 6 days, the trip was absolutely wonderful and I came out enlightened of the West Coast lifestyle and with a renewed, overwhelming love for my family who I give unending kudos to for putting up with my bouts of brattiness and ingratitude. (Props to my friends too but you guys can drop me at whim – family’s pretty much stuck with me for the rest of my life. That means you Unnie, in case you kept good on your word and found this. I deleted all the trash-talking entries about you, by the way. Kidding kidding, this is really only my third entry. Damn my sluggish writing pace. I love you!)

Anyway, I’m really sad Shawn missed out on another gold medal tonight because I think she is the cutest thing to ever walk on two extremely toned, downright brawny legs. Although I was secretly pleased that she finally placed higher than Nastia. Nahhhstttiiiaaa. My sister and I like to say her name and draw it out in an obnoxiously nasal tone when we hear it on TV. Why her parents chose to shorten Anastasia to a nickname sounding awfully similar to an adjective that evokes revulsion is beyond us.

Oops, got to go before trouble for my tardiness ensues. School in a week. Ugh/Hooray!

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Bookworm wannabe

So as I’ve mentioned to a couple of friends, I had a pretty ambitious reading list for the summer. One that I’m sad but not surprised to say that has hardly been dented, let alone even half-heartedly attempted. Maybe it’s just my bad habit of getting easily distracted or lacking follow-through or having commitment-phobia (but to literature? That’s a first.. oh, and FYI I’m feeling rather dash-happy) Long story short, I need to read. My vocabulary is slipping, I’m having way too many of those “OH WHAT’S THAT WORD AGAIN? OH OH OH.. I KNOW! I KNOW. *cue 2 minutes of frantic brain-roving* Okay, stopped caring. I’ll look it up later (re: never)” moments, and instead of having stimulating discussions about books that friends mention in passing, all I can do is express my desire of having wanted to read said book at some point in time.

“Blue Like Jazz” is staring at me accusingly from its untouched position at the left of my laptop. The slightly discomfiting cover of Nabakov’s “Lolita” is resting at my right. WHAT TO DO WHAT TO DO. Blue Like Jazz will hopefully be finished by tonight. I’m ashamed that it even took me this long to read it. It’s fairly short and Donald Miller has a breezy, casual writing style which surprisingly proves complementary to his sometimes weighty tidbits on Christian spirituality.

Lolita’s one of those books that has always been in the back of my mind as wanting to read but it was only until my English professor briefly mentioned it again that I’ve been anxious and overly excited to start it. I’m only a few chapters in but Nabakov’s prose is seriously brilliant. The man is a literary genius. I know Lolita’s the most commercialized of his works, but you can’t deny that it takes one heck of a writer to twist a tale of pedophilia into something poignant and heart-wrenchingly beautiful. I sometimes even find myself, dare I say it, SYMPATHIZING with the sick mind of the protagonist in all his wretched, obsessive, lovelorn tragedy. It’s just further testament to the power of a novel- its ability to completely skew the societal perceptions of morality and create a world in which you are appropriately repulsed yet utterly, helplessly intrigued. I think the key is that Humbert Humbert (the narrator whom I am convinced is the precursor for Woody Allen’s suspicious keenness towards a similar demographic) never tries to justify his insatiable lust for the “nymphets” he so fondly euphemizes. He knows it’s deplorable. He knows that nothing legitimate could ever arise out of the situations he puts himself in. But this is his sustenance, what brings him to life; this is what feeds the frenzy and passion in his heart and though he builds a respectable reputation and image for himself, his inner turmoil is constant. It’s like that Latin phrase (my girlcrush) Angelina has tattooed somewhere on her body: Quod Me Nutrit Me Destruit – What nourishes me also destroys me. Suitable for Humbert’s misfortunes, I think.

(Sidenote: For the closet pervies, looking up Lolita on Google Images procures an interesting array of Myspace-worthy jailbait. And I really do love these dashes. You combine two seemingly unrelated words with a teensy little line and voila! A whole new pseudo-creative lexicon is formed. Ah! I did it again! I can’t stop and I don’t want to!)

One of the more innocuous results.

One of the tamer results.

Okay, I didn’t mean for this to turn into some kind of crazed Amazon book review but too late. And my opinion of the book could change entirely once I get past page.. 75. But for now, Lolita is keeping me thoroughly enthralled and I highly recommend it!

Will possibly write about real life later. Until then, don’t smother your pizza with crushed red peppers and oregano flakes right before an interview with a town official, during which you will be smiling excessively and be without access to any form of remote reflection. Just a thought.

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