Music of the Moment

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May Edition.

Chet Faker – I’m Into You (#Hashtag Remix)

Imagine Dragons – Not Today

EIGHTY NINETY – Three Thirty

Revolvers – ARMORS

Lights – Follow You Down

ASTR – Cannonball

Kiiara – Intention

Battle Tapes (ft. Party Nails) – Solid Gold

On Reconnections

imageHike #5 of 2016

10 years ago, we were jumping into the pool after formals in our underwear. We lost touch after I graduated and haven’t really seen or spoken to each other since. We reconnected recently because I reached out and now we’re hiking, in appropriate (and apparently matching) clothing, like civilized people.

See, here’s the thing about reconnections. Unless you ran into each other totally at random, one person made the effort to reconnect and the other person was open to it. It didn’t happen unexpectedly. It was a conscious decision. Let’s not romanticize it and make it something that it isn’t. It’s not fate. It’s not destiny. Not what’s meant to be but what you wanted it to be.

We Are All Kings

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Game 5 was a freaking roller coaster. One of the worst 1st periods I’ve ever seen the Kings play. Then a major comeback in the 2nd. Only to be crushed in the 3rd. My poor heart.

The last time I witnessed the handshake line, the Kings swept the Blues. We were on the losing end this time around, but it is still the best damn tradition in professional sports.

‘Till next season, boys 🙋

Go Kings Go!

On Healing

I saw this on Instagram and it really resonated with me…

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Instead of beating myself up for not magically getting over T, I have accepted my sadness and am continuing to let myself heal. It’s ridiculous to believe that such an abrupt change in my life wouldn’t impact me in any way. But day by day, it gets easier. Day by day, I feel stronger. On some days, I find myself wanting to cry, and honestly, that’s OK. For now, it really is OK to not be OK.

On Relationship Advice

An excerpt from The #1 Question To Ask Before Getting Married

What to look for in a partner: I once interviewed a psychologist for a column, and I asked him readers’ questions about what to look for in a mate. Without fail, his answer to almost every question was “choose someone kind, choose someone kind.” It was like a broken record, and I was annoyed. But you know what? Being with somebody who is fundamentally kind — to children and waiters and dogs — means that at the end of the day, they will be kind to you.

Knowing when to cut your losses:
Studies show that women who feel doubt before their weddings wind up significantly less happy. My plea to anyone feeling doubt would be to think about the future you want, not the past. Some people think, “I’ve invested so much already, how could I turn back?” But if you look at the future with this person and feel a significant kernel of doubt, you have to listen to that.

When reading this blog post, these two particular pieces of advice stuck out to me. “Choose someone kind, choose someone kind.” While this seems logical, is it really realistic? Am I cynical to think that someone who is kind to children, waiters, dogs, can absolutely not be kind to you? And regarding when to cut your losses… does it work the same way if you think, “I haven’t invested enough time, I should continue and see what happens”? When is enough, enough in this instance? How do you prevent crossing that thin line between I haven’t invested enough time and I’ve invested so much already?

Back To Basics

As a kid, I loved to read. I would sit and read on the library floor for hours and then go home and read some more. But as I got older, I made excuses not to read.

Piano (not really). Cheerleading practice. Friends. Movies. Parties. School (not really). Parties. Work. Parties. Gym.

Now I’ve come full circle. Reading has been a source of comfort and I can’t imagine my days without reading. I read before I go to bed, on weekend mornings while eating breakfast, and on breaks from studying. Maybe it’s because I live alone. Maybe it’s because I don’t have cable. Or maybe I’m getting back to basics and focusing on things that I truly love to do. I’ll take the latter.

On Moving Forward

“How were you able to tell me that you love me while you were seeing someone else?” I asked.

“I just pretended,” he replied, matter-of-factly.

At the time, that wasn’t enough for me. For someone who relies so heavily on logic and reason, someone who believes in the universal law of cause and effect, I needed a thorough explanation that connected all the dots and made sense. But what I eventually learned from this experience with H is that no one owes you an explanation, not even the person that you loved for the majority of a decade. You can bury yourself in the how’s and why’s or you can move on realizing that an explanation of any sort would just be a band aid, not a cure all for your pain.

Don’t get me wrong, I still believe that everything happens for a reason, but instead of letting that reason hold me back, I’m learning to let go and move forward.

Two

It was 1996.
Dolly the sheep was successfully cloned.
Mad Cow Disease hit Britain.
I started watching hockey.

I turned on the TV one day and hockey happened to be on. Normally I would have changed the channel, but for some reason I felt compelled to keep watching.

It was Kings vs. Avalanche. The game was fast-paced. The scoring went back and forth. The Kings won in OT! I was hooked!

And though the Kings didn’t make the playoffs that year, I became a fan. Two months later, I watched the Avs raise the Cup and wondered when I would see the Kings do so. Little did I know that it would take 16 years and a revolving door of goaltenders…

Hrudey
Dafoe
Storr
Fiset
Chabot
Legace
Potvin
Passmore
Huet
Cechmanek
Garon
Labarbera
Cloutier
Burke
Brust
Aubin
Ersberg

Quick

The highlight of those years, a memory that I often replayed in my head, was when Adam Deadmarsh eliminated the Red Wings in OT.

It was that memory that I recalled after Jarret Stoll scored the OT goal against the Canucks in 2012. Instead of losing Game 7 of the next round, the Kings went on to win the Stanley freakin’ Cup! In historic fashion no less!

Two seasons later, the Kings are champs again, making even more history this time around!

Two championships.
My team.
The Kings.

Is this real life?

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Yes. Yes it is.

Comfortable, adj.

After nearly half a year (if not more) of not picking up my Kindle except to recharge the battery (because you know, you always gotta be prepared), I decided to do some reading this weekend. I fully intended to finish Game of Thrones but The Lover’s Dictionary showed up first on my list having been the last ebook I purchased. What can I say? I’m fickle.

I started the book late Friday night and continued today after Pure Barre. As I finished the book, I could not help thinking about my own relationship.

The first word that comes to mind to describe my relationship?

Comfortable.

I recently had a conversation with another couple about a fight they had. He wanted to work out with her. She didn’t want to work out at all. His rationale was that if he went alone, it would mean more time away from her, more time that’s not spent together.

That’s interesting, I thought. Henry and I see each other in the morning and then not until about 11PM at night. I have work. He has school. We both work out at night. Henry also works during the day most weekends and our weekend nights are spent either grocery shopping or cooking. I never thought of this as a problem until somebody else pointed it out as a potential problem in their own relationship.

Is this a result of being together almost 7 years? Did I care before and not so much now?

Are we comfortable, or too comfortable?

The Cut

I finally cut my hair! FINALLY!!!

It’s been about a year and a half since I last got a hair cut. My hair grew to be so long, almost long enough for me to sit on! I promised B that I would get a hair cut before her wedding and I’m so so so glad I did. It feels damn liberating.

I didn’t go all long hair, don’t care for nothing. No, no. I donated about 10 inches of my hair to Pantene’s Beautiful Lengths Program in honor of my aunt who passed away from stomach cancer earlier this year.

The last time I visited my aunt happened to be a few days before she passed away. She was basically skin and bones at that point, almost unrecognizable. I sat beside her, holding her tiny hands, trying desperately to be strong and hold it together. I don’t think I was doing a good job because she started consoling me, at which point I started bawling. All illnesses and diseases are horrible, but even more so when it is a loved one who is suffering.

Music For My Soul

Since everybody and their moms was at Coachella last weekend (and more of the same this weekend), I thought I’d dedicate a post to music.

I love music. And I appreciate all genres.

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I started my relationship with music at age 4 when I learned to play the piano. My mom has told me a bajillion times that when I was born, she looked at my tiny little fingers and declared that I had “piano fingers”. Um, right, whatever that means. For the better part of a decade, I truly enjoyed playing the piano and learning music theory (I passed the CA Certificate of Merit, Level 9). But practicing 3 hours a day for so many years took it’s toll and turned something I thought was fun into something I HATED with a passion since I had no time to do what I really wanted to… like, you know, hang out with friends and watch TV. So, like any other kid entering their rebellious stage, I quit.

But after a little while, I realized I couldn’t give up music completely, so I picked up the violin. I had an easier time than everyone else since I had a musical background and was already able to read sheet music. For a couple of years, I excelled in my school orchestra, even battling for 1st chair. Then, I gave this up too because I wanted to be a cheerleader instead. Yup. Priorities.

Quitting both the piano and violin are two of my biggest regrets in life. If I could go back in time and slap myself, I would. Today, my piano is a source of comfort. When I get stressed, sad, mad, or even just bored, I sit down and play my favorite piece: Carl Czerny’s “The Art of Finger Dexterity” Op. 740, Book 2, No. 13.

So, what kind of music do I listen to? Well, even though everybody seems to hate the 80’s, I LUUUVRRREEEE IT. 80’s ballads, 80’s rock, 80’s pop, whatever, any 80’s will put a smile on my face. I listen to classical when I want to relax, pop or R&B when I want to sing, and hip-hop when I want dance. During my high school raver days, I was a major house head. At the end of high school and throughout college, I went through a punk/pop/emo phase, as did many around me. NFG, TBS, NOFX, The Starting Line, The Used, My Chem, Rufio, MxPx were on repeat. And now more than ten years later, there’s definitely some residual musical preferences from that part of my life.

My favorite song of all time?
It’s pretty much a tie between The Cure – Pictures of You and Depeche Mode – Enjoy the Silence

My favorite concert?
I also have two picks!

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AFI, Long Beach, 2006
We were sooooooooooo close to Davey Havok

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The Cure, SD, 2008
Robert Smith does not get enough recognition for being a great guitarist!

I had tickets to Depeche Mode, but my concert date was cancelled. I am patiently waiting for their next US tour….

Before I Kick

I’ve always thought about what I would include on my bucket list, but I’ve never taken the time to actually write it down. Reading through Dominick’s list inspired me to officially document my own. I, too, wish I did this earlier in life, but hey, it’s never too late to start.

1. Climb Mt. Rainier

source: visitrainier.com

2. Obtain PADI Open Water Diver scuba certification

3. Scuba dive around the world

a. Great Barrier Reef
b. Belize
c. Fiji

4. Learn to surf

5. See the Northern Lights

source: http://www.tntmagazine.com

6. Snowboard around the world

a. Mammoth & Northern California
b. Colorado
c. Utah
d. Washington
e. Oregon
f. BC, Canada
g. Wyoming
h. JAPAN
i. New Zealand
j. Argentina

7. Heli-boarding

8. CAT-boarding

source: http://www.valdezhelicamps.com

9. Perfect riding switch

10. Land a jump.. with rotation

11. Make a snowboarding video

12. Learn to ski

13. Learn to play ice hockey

14. Live in a treehouse

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15. Sky dive

a. Hawaii
b. Interlaken, Switzerland

16. Dog sled

17. Complete avalanche training, level 1 & 2

18. Climb Mt. Kilimanjaro

19. Hike Half Dome

20. Zip-line

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21. Explore each province of Canada

22. NYE Countdown in NYC

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23. Explore Europe

a. Hike Cinque Terre
b. Bike through Tuscany
c. Dine at Restaurant Guy Savoy, L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon, The Fat Duck, Pierre Gagnaire and Noma
d. Indulge at Laduree and Pierre Herme
e. Visit Stonehenge
f. Take a gondola ride in Venice
g. Take a Seine River cruise
h. Tour Palace of Versailles and castles in Loire Valley
i. ROME

24. Take a Mediterranean cruise

25. Tour Ancient Egyptian sites and cruise down the Nile River

26. Journey to Machu Picchu

27. Bike across the Golden Gate Bridge

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28. Train and compete in a triathlon (sprint)

29. Ride an elephant in Thailand

30. Feed/pet a panda in China

31. Walk the Great Wall of China and toboggan down

32. Experience Tsukiji Market and eat at Sushi Dai

33. Run…

a. 5K
b. Half marathon
c. Marathon (preferably NYC)

34. Get an MBA

35. Catch a concert at the Hollywood Bowl

36. THIS

37. Kayak the Colorado River

38. Sydney Harbour bridge climb

39. Host and cook multi-course dinner party

40. Raft class IV rapids

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41. Get on the kiss cam with Henry at a Kings’ game

42. Fire a gun at a shooting range

43. Collect Starbucks mugs from every place I visit (5 cups so far)

44. Swim with sharks (shark cage)

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45. Swim with dolphins

46. Take my parents to watch the Vienna Philharmonic New Year’s Eve concert

47. Watch the sunrise at Haleakala

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48. Relax in an over-water bungalow in Bora Bora

49. Finish reading Anna Karenina

50. Start and finish a 365 photography project

That’s it for now, but I’ll definitely be adding to this list. I’m looking forward to crossing things off in the near future! 😀

Smile

A rollerblading accident during the summer after 7th grade left me with two broken wrists, teeth knocked out of place and two permanent scars on my face (one below my nose and one on my chin). I spent that VERY HOT summer with a half cast on my left arm and a full cast on my right. 😥 Though my wrists eventually healed, I’ve had to deal with my snaggletooth and scars ever since. At first I was really self-conscious about my face and smile, but over time, I just got used to it.

I had the opportunity to get braces in high school, but I didn’t take it because I didn’t want to look like a dork. 🙄 Also, my parents would have had to pay for everything out of pocket since I didn’t have dental insurance. Increasing my parents’ financial burden was the last thing I wanted to do. I didn’t have insurance at the time of my accident so the bills for the ambulance, hospital room, x rays, out-patient follow ups added up to more than $6,000.

In college, getting braces was out of the question. Hello?! So not cute!

It wasn’t until I graduated and started working full time that I seriously considered getting braces. I had good insurance, had the financial means so … why not? I couldn’t come up with a good answer so in August of 2009, I made the jump.

Source: cartoonworks.com

Well folks, after 2.5 years, I’m finally braces free! I’ll have to wear retainers for the rest of my life and believe me, I will do so religiously – I’m not taking anything for granted.

Bad Apples

It really pains me to watch this video.

I don’t live in Vancouver. I’ve never even been to Vancouver. In spite of this, I can truly empathize with Vancouverites who are deeply saddened, outraged and embarrassed by the riots that took place after the Canucks lost Game 7 of the SCF. I know how it feels. I’m from LA. Hell, there are even riots here when we WIN!. I know how it feels to be unfairly lumped into a category (i.e. LA fans are “classless”) based on the media’s over-sensationalized coverage of inexcusable acts by idiots who do NOT represent the majority of the city’s residents or fan base. I know how it feels to desperately want to deflect blame and protect the city that you love.

I get it.

But come on Vancity, let’s keep it real. To claim that the riots were caused by anarchists and criminals posing as Canucks fans, as VPD Chief Jim Chu did, is completely absurd. I clearly see people in Canucks jerseys, new AND old (yes, I’m talking about the hideous Halloween jersey), actively partaking in the destruction of business storefronts. And I’m not buying the ridiculous explanation that these people were actually hooligans who spent money on jerseys just to riot after the SCF. As easy as it is to rationalize the situation, it is also illogical to reason that the rioters were not “true fans” because if they were “true fans”, they would not be rioting. First of all, the definition of a true fan is subjective, but more importantly, being a true fan does not necessarily mean you are a good person/have good judgement and vice versa. There are bad apples in every group, in every city. It is unfortunate that the rest of us have to suffer because of them.

Four Eyes

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My coworkers think I look better with glasses. Henry thinks glasses are sexy (on me of course :P) Me? I’m not so sure. I don’t think I’ll ever feel pretty in glasses because I’ll always associate glasses with the teasing I experienced in middle school… by the boy I had the biggest crush on no less.