13.12.15

free speech, free decisions, whats the problem?



http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/12/09/he-called-her-a-slut-she-got-him-fired.html?source=TDB&via=FB_Page

oh dear. as bit of free time returns, i start to poke my nose around the world once again and hey, it's always full of surprises and semi-tragedies.  well, there are real tragedies as well, but those are sincere situations which deserves a bit more respect than what i tend to hand out on my blog posts.

the recent one is about aussie feminist writer and a man who was fired because he called her a slut.

the writer ms. ford wrote about chauvism.  mr. nolan wrote on her facebook, calling her a slut. ms. ford wrote to his employer (a hotel chain). the employer fires mr. nolan.

then the firework ensued.

many people are angry about ms. ford 'ruining' a man's life. im kinda confused.

1. yes, there is the right for free-speech in australia.
2. so a feminist writer can write about chauvinism.
3. a person can protest her point of view in public.
4. and a person may protest about a protesting opinion.
5. hotel chain is not run by the aforementioned feminist writer.
6. hotel chain is free to employ/fire whoever they wish, as long as the reasons stay in legal limits.
7. hotel chain decided to fire male, freely.
8. it is hotel's right, as a private company, to terminate employees that the company deems as damaging.

so what exactly is the problem?

and after all, if a job termination as a middle-level worker in an average company is a ruination of a life, i think life mustve been pretty good. this is not to diminish the difficulties that a person may face based on job termination- financially and mentally. however, it is a common situation among the general population- isnt it? many people get their jobs terminated for one reason or another. and many people find an alternative employment, and no, there is no guarantee that an employment will run in complete parallel to one's personal belief/behavior/philosophical world.  in fact, there is such thing as a professional commitment, and such commitment is accentuated because it may conflict with one's personal life (ex. dont feel liking showing up cuz you are hung-over and tired? well, this may lead to you getting fired, not because company doesnt care, but because company does not have an obligation to meet your personal requirement within the legal limit). and it was the COMPANY who made the decision to terminate his employment.

anyway. every coupla hours, im going back to the fb thread to read what people wrote for entertainment.  i do think this may be a case of schadenfreuden, but hey, im only a human... happy wknd, everyone!

7.12.15

Take time with a wounded hand 'Cause it likes to heal



https://youtu.be/V5UOC0C0x8Q
just over the weekend, i heard about death of one of my favorite singers, scott weiland.

his raw voice paired with the bands (stone temple pilots and velvet revolver) were a big part of my auralscape as a teenager.

or perhaps it was his continuous fight with his own demons- depression and substance abuse that made it even more real- a typical, therefore real, falling angel. angel with the wicked voice and the weird intoxicating mixture of glam and destruction.

during first couple years of my immigrant life, there were moments i felt lost, isolated and worthless. i do not think i had particularly strange teenage years. i dont think anyone had it easy. but perhaps it's the combination of his voice in the music and the strange collection of words in his songs that i built my symbiosis- with my north american life, with growing up, with english language.

back in korea, being an elementary school kid, i was not allowed to listen or watch pop music program. i didnt really care. in canada, in high school with very little friends, with no parents to guard the media exposure, i watched much music videos, hours after hours, doing my late night homework. all these bands spoke in tongues. they spoke of different world, through english. the destruction of strict definitions and grammatical grids, building of new imageries- so real that the reality seemed pale.

stone temple pilots, radiohead, alice in chains, nine inch nails, nirvana, pearl jam, blur, rem, red hot chili peppers, weezer, tool, portishead, beck, smashing pumpkins, the cure, depeche mode.

i built my vocabularies based on their words. of love. of fear. of rejection. of challenge. of dispassion. of death. of loss.

i ate their words, hungrily, greedily. the grating guitar, the torn grunge jacket, i chose, along with most sublime schubertian melodies, to be the songs for my days. the days i banged my head on the wall, i dreamed of my favourite singers, doing the same, leaving stains of life on that white wall.

and now, i am calmer, older. i sit with my arms on the desk, with fading scars, and think of my days that were filled with scott weiland's voice.

you spoke the words of my world that i could not conjure. you crooned and looked into the world through your metallic eye make up, knowing that there were many who also saw the world through distortion.  your voice helped me to console my own grief, night after night. as i built myself strong on these words, to grow through the words and music, to be able to stand and look into the mirror, not being afraid to speak, not any more. i so wish you are also still here, scott, to continue to speak in tongues, to live, and even with the faults of life, to live joyously-


And I feel that time's a wasted go
So where ya going to tommorrow?
And I see that these are lies to come
Would you even care?


what a loss. there'll be a small glittered empty void in my heart. you were too young to die, weiland.  you were too loved to die, weiland.  your fans. your friends. your family. your children.  only if you could have saved yourself, as you saved many from falling further.

http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/scott-weiland-s-family-dont-glorify-this-tragedy-20151207?page=2

6.12.15

dividends. loads and loads of it.


this semester, i play for a local community choir, every monday night. as the winter creeps on, everyone shows up through the darkness, steps light with excitement, to a beautiful church in midtown toronto.  i first got to know them as an assistant engineer, recording their winter and spring concerts. always interesting music and congenial people. liked them enough as an outsider, that once an opportunity came up to audition for the accompanist job, i jumped onto it.

re:choir members, i dont really know the individuals too well yet.  they are a bit older (than univ kids); they got stories and histories to share, but because the rehearsals run so efficient, there is not enough time to catch up on people! i find this bit funny. ha ha. may be next term, i can be more strategic to get to know them better!

what i do know is that the group works very well. that they got a great atmosphere and they really do want to/do sing out. every monday night. probably at home as well.

this season, they picked britten's ceremony of carols. not an easy music but incredibly beautiful. and they worked constantly. every rehearsal. i wish i could contain that energy in on a to-go box and share it at schools, where things can be little tired and little lost.

the main difference may be that they have lived. they have seen the wider world. that they know life does not always guarantee the chance to sing. to see beauty. and that beauty does not come to you necessarily in a silver platter. one must seek beauty and constantly crave it.

once we take beauty for granted,

it loses its luster.
it loses its leaves.
it shrivels to... mundane.

i thank them for having me in their group.

it's a good-paying job. im sure there are people who wanted this consistent, dependable income.  they did not have to choose me.

however, it worked out so that i am part of it for the fall 2015, and im genuinely happy to be there. of course, work should pay, but the kind of work that one does, determines the quality of the work required, i believe.

i tend to guard self from working purely for money.  living costs dollars and there's no shame in working. but if i am to work in a field where humanity is concerned, i should at least have my primary focus on being a good human- and be a good person.

i see too many people around me who can no longer see their work as integrated part of a larger entity- of society, of people, of humanity. then life digresses into boring and meaningless bits, such as paying bills, doing as least work as possible, dismissing peoples lives and stories, and the ultimate unhappiness and emptiness, which leads to anger, dissatisfaction, delusion and... changed persons.

it is not to say that i am better. i am as good as the company i keep.

this past friday was the concert and i was proud of it.
i write love letters and i will be so happy to see them tomorrow night, for a outreach concert.

life can be beautiful. i just have to keep looking for the beauty. and it helps tremendously to have such lovely people in one's life regularly. thank you, choir! how did i get so lucky!

*
hullo!
ive been kinda sickie so now i write... (sniff)
there's two more concerts and im looking forward seeing everyone!
the fri concert was impressive! (it was a super easy one for me as i just sat in the corner and enjoyed the intricacy of the britten ha ha)-
it was impressive because technical things were fixed and was presented in our best. the selections were beautiful.  the calmness of the backstage (with just enough buzz) was awesome.

and your energy during the performances- that was my favourite part.
anyone can sing anything on a given day, sure. and we all can sing, as humans. if we can distinguish people's emotions through the phone conversations, we can all sing, i believe.  but to sing with others, to learn new things and continues to learn, knowing that learning can be illusive (sometimes it works, sometimes it is back to square one, argh), and willing to put it out as personal and collective expression, that is a big investment.
and like other investments, there is no guarantee there will be any dividend at the end, haha.

and on friday, there was a great payout.
i hope some audiences took pictures. you all looked radiant and happy.
and you all worked hard. and you were proud.
so my hats off to you, choir,
i am so happy to be associated with you all and i really hope i can get to know you all better next year.  thanks for sharing yourselves so generously.
see you tmrw!

22.11.15

Und hoffen, was sie noch übrig ließen, Doch wieder zu finden auf ihren Kissen.

melencolia 1, durer, 1954.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dvm7Hnii-6U&list=PL2FEA1645BA0A5D3B&index=17

tis a real turn toward winter today.
the lightest, but real flurries in the pale sunlight.
3pm afternoon is no longer full and round, but pale gold with hint of grey blue. and by midnight, the world is quieter. much more quieter. only the softest whispers of stars, if they havent covered themselves up with clouds.

we say hello to the decline to the next apex couple weeks ago, on halloween.  grey dove feathers fly into the door steps, with echos of once beating hearts.  and one night, leaves fall. they no longer dance with the wind. they break. they shred. tiny pieces. till no more.

tis a hard time, autumn.

i love the melancholia of autumn. i love the simple reminder, cinis in cinerem, pulvis in pulverem.  ashes to ashes, dust to dust.

without the dark night velvel blanket, i suppose the glistening lights and gentle shadows of people indoors wont shine outside. without the cold, there would be no great warmth that hugs one as soon as one steps inside.

i bike in the cold. but not in wind.
wind makes people drive irrationally. and drives people to have short temper. furioso.

Es schlafen die Menschen in ihren Betten,
Träumen sich manches, was sie nicht haben,
Tun sich im Guten und Argen erlaben

it's a particularly difficult autumn, autumn of 2015.

things are moving slow. some people are fading out, gently but surely.  and it hurts quite a bit whenever im reminded that two of my best friends are no longer in town. i calm self down, telling myself over and over again, that it's been the case, as long as i can remember, that i always had constellation of friends, never a small garden. and there he is, a gentle and royal friend, as he always  is. without him, it would be hard. and the great technology helps, connecting minnow to minnow, across the vast clear sky, where sun sets on different times.

i often imagine of going out and joining the merrymaking. but somehow, i stop, at the door.

i undo my shoe laces. and i sink into the deafening silence that only an empty house can sing out, full coloratura. is this what we call loneliness? or is it simply life?

journey begins from oneself and it will end in oneself.  so humming the tune of the winterreise, i sink into another bottomless pool of oblivion. melancholia.

https://youtu.be/KCodERikAqA?list=PL2FEA1645BA0A5D3B

Was vermeid' ich denn die Wege,
Wo die ander'n Wand'rer geh'n,
Suche mir versteckte Stege,
Durch verschneite Felsenhöh'n ?

14.11.15

hashtags save lives, i keep forgetting.

i will slap on some hashtags,
add colour filters to my profile pic,
and post some links.
cuz, im doing my part.

i tossed and turned in confusion last night. and today, the sun is already shining, reflecting on the lake, albeit loads clouds hover along the horizon.

out of habit, i check what the world is saying, over the web. i often try to tell myself this is normal, to see the world through the web.

so many memes. so many pictures. so many condolence statements. so many prayers.

i lost it for a few sec.

prayers? really? are you kidding me?
they blew up paris, in middle of their lovely friday night out, in name of god and we are sending prayers?  we are proud that we chose blue, white and red for our LEDs which illuminates our big and expensive civic icons?

concert hall, restaurants, national level football stadium, all quite expensive and 'nice' places to be. we, the haves, walked around in this feeling of safety, strolling, thinking of probably 'nice' things, like christmas, concerts, great food.



and then people showed up. and blew up themselves.
in name of the god.
and they may have been crazy.
and they probably called upon the lord.
and they likely hoped for the salvation from life.



cuz life was unbearable and difficult
and only 'help' they found was this.
THIS was their individual salvation.



no one who is happy becomes a radical.
they dreamed of lives they could not have, for whatever the reasons may be.  their lives were bare. to fill the emptiness, they filled it up with what we consider nonsense- of extremist religion, of promise for the next life in heaven.

why would anyone wants to go to heaven for SURE? anyone who lives in hell and felt that there's no way out of hell to normal life.

who robbed their lives out of riches- including the small, 'affordable' joy that we all think we are entitled to- health, safety, food, education, mobility?

we did.
we all did.
mea culpa.

you may say: hey i didnt do anything!

that says so much eh.

you wanted to fill your life with nice things? getting it cheaper? getting more of it? closing your doors to others? agreeing to the cheap oil prices because you felt you should pay less? not being aware of WHY people are angry in this world? and once realized that there are issues that make people very angry, what have you done? dont or did not know what to do?  dont have time to even read up on regular basis because economics is complicated and all politicians are thieves anyway and




YOU WONT MAKE A DIFFERENCE?




right. one did not know what to do EXACTLY so one sat on one's butt, continuing as if life is nice. and that does make it impossible to possibly understand WHY anyone would want to become a religious radical and kill innocents.

yeah, sure. nice life for you and for me. look, im typing in a comfortable downtown apartment and look at my middle class anger. hahahaha. but hey, im sharing it on social media. look at this poetic irony.  i look at myself on the mirror. i laugh. what a ridiculous human being.



THE EIGHT BOMBERS.
THEIR LIVES MADE ALL THE DIFFERENCE NOW.
8 people.



paris is the unlucky victim last night. paris paid for our collective complacency and lack of action with blood. those who died, they were at the wrong place for the wrong time. and we are all part of this problem.  locking doors wont help. cuz our little safe house, it's a straw house, built with blindness and deafness to the rest of this world.

lebanon. iraq. kenya.
they didnt even have the flimsy straw house walls...

oh at right times, those places are such nice places to be. only if there are no terrorists. how dare they. so we send prayers with hashtags. the most 'aware' generation, right? thanks to technology. and im a happy participant. i mean, look at our lovely non-real tribute to remembrance day. what did we remember? we say 'sacrifices.' but yeah, we remembered and it wont be on the menu today. too expensive.  and yeah, what difference can one make. why dont we just conceptualize it? it makes us feel awesome and compassionate.



cuz, you know, hastags save lives, didnt you know?





13.11.15

ce soir, pas de lumière dans la ville de la lumière.


from eiffel tower cam, lights out, 5:09am, 14 nov 2015.

paris burns tonight.

just like back in the days of the french revolution,  the days of the storming of the bastille (14 july 1789; 82670 days since then),  the september massacres (2-7 september 1792, 81520 days since then). also, the day of 9/11, 2001 (5176 days since then).

many shouts of anger and resentments, worries and fear echoes throughout the darken sky.  all over the world. pointing fingers. locking the doors. screaming revenge. declarations. fist shaking.

i cannot help but to think of the irony, of the parallel universe, as i dig back to the old notes...

Many other factors involved resentments and aspirations given focus by the rise of Enlightenment ideals. These included resentment of royal absolutism; resentment by peasants, labourers and the bourgeoisie toward the traditional seigneurial privileges possessed by the nobility; resentment of the Catholic Church's influence over public policy and institutions; aspirations for freedom of religion; resentment of aristocratic bishops by the poorer rural clergy; aspirations for social, political and economic equality, and (especially as the Revolution progressed) republicanism; hatred of Queen Marie-Antoinette, who was falsely accused of being a spendthrift and an Austrian spy; and anger toward the King for dismissing ministers, including finance minister Jacques Necker, who were popularly seen as representatives of the people.
Doyle, The Oxford History of the French Revolution (2003), pp.73–74

we point fingers. we blame the ISIS. the nutcases. religious radicals. however, i cannot help but to think of the roots of support for the few self-interested radicals who heads these movements; the people who become the radical fighters. people who sacrifices their earning and time for this cause.

these people, in another world, wouldve loved to live like you and me. in a comfortable house.  with electricity. with no worries for starvation. of safety and opportunity for education. dreaming of mobility and freedom. no, not dreaming. living with it, every second of every day.

switching out a few nouns on above paragraph by doyle, i cannot help but to look myself in the mirror. mea culpa.  what is to be done now? what could i do now? tomorrow? next week?

it's a dark night in paris.

ce soir, pas de lumière dans la ville de la lumière.

1.11.15

monkey drooling over sports broadcast

cred: chris graythen/getty images: new orleans, LA- nov 01
new orleans saints wide receiver snead #83 picks up fumble against the ny giants


today, at the gym, i saw a great record-breaking football game between ny giants and new orleans saints. drew brees, saints quarterback at age 36, has been under wry opinions about his age vs. eli manning, two-years younger than brees, top of the fame ladder with his brother peyton manning, star of the giants: they met eye-to-eye, setting new record at 6 touch downs each by the end of 4th quarter, game tied at 49, with only 36 seconds to go.

and those 36 seconds, none of it was wasted.  every second. play. play. play. breaking that 36 seconds with both team adding up to total offensive yardage of 1030!  considering that each team plays 16 games per season, and last year's total offensive yardage leader, saints, clocks in at 6582 (and the worst, oakland raiders at 4515), i think laymen, even i can understand the significance of the stat (and that both teams had real crap defense).

http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/14027913/drew-brees-new-orleans-saints-ties-nfl-mark-7-tds-eli-manning-newyork-giants-top-10-all-tds

i also really enjoy watching tennis-singles. as i type the word 'tennis,' instantaneously, i recall a few games that were amazing to watch: del potro vs. federer (winner), the famous semi-final at london olympics, that took 4 hours and 26 minutes.  and raonic vs. nishikori (winner) at last year's US open, 4 hours and 19 minutes of composure, frustration, strategy and drive...

i often meet people (many in arts) who say they are not interested in watching sports. i am the opposite in a sense that i do not enjoy playing sports much (prefers hiking, running, and other solitude, no-point game things), but loves watching big games.

in arts, well, in particular, in music, we often talk about difficulties, managing stresses, keeping our composures etc, as part of performance training. and yes, i think music explores many facets of this human desire- of competition, drive to perfection, and facing the uncertainties.  but it is impossible to watch oneself while being engaged in the activities.

so i watch sports.

today's game 5 of national baseball league, aka. world series. if the royals play that tenacious game play over the mets, they could take the title today. both teams want it so badly. and there's something very touching about this collective drive that makes people to go a bit faster, further, longer, even just for another minutes.

i admire and immerse myself in the drama of sports. and when i am back on music bench, often i think about these titans and the wills of the battles. then a big sigh of relief: like many, i will get through this ritual of practice and performance. and like many, i will find something, something new. may be something old.

something genuine.

the world is a beautiful place and as messy as it gets, human endevours are wonderful.
back to the game...

28.10.15

opera is not boring... nor old.

in the middle of idealogy-religious war zone in present syria, as westerners just lost the battle to the muslims, the lone woman jihadist, the greatest of them all, sulks in anger, for failing to capture her target boy.

of course, the male leader of the muslim fighters urge the female heroine to choose a man, as she's ripe for time and a woman needs a man.  she says sod it, unless the man-to-be is good enough to bring me my target.

conversation is interrupted by news of the westerners captives being rescued by the target boy. infuriation ensues and the new plan hatches, to lure her target to captivity.

while on scout, the target boy gets lost in the enemy territory, then was distracted by the muslim forces and was put under a heavy drug to render him unconscious. the female jihadist finds her target boy, but instead of killing him off, she decides to bring him back to camp, to keep as 'hostage,' out of personal interest.

falling in love, the female jihadist seeks the deep hatred in her heart, struggling to find the will power to kill him, resulting in self-exocism; in midst of the spiritual high, she makes the decision to let her heart follow love. apparition condemns her to her fate, whatever it may be...

captive boy's homies are on look out for him; dodging many combat obstacles, eventually they find him in captivity; by this time, the westerner has been brainwashed and re-educated, entrenched in love with the jihadist.  luckily, the female jihadist leaves for battle plan consultation and he is faced with his real identity, an anti-jihadist, with help of homies.

as he prepares to leave, female jihadist returns and they argue about what's the right thing to do.  he expresses great regrets, as though her world is no longer his and he must return to fight the jihadists, that he'll remember her, as beautiful she was.

he leaves and she's left in inconsolable turmoil.

**************
this was written in 1686 by an old french male, lully?  yes it was.  we went to see armide by opera atelier today. i was deeply troubled in my mind how little it mustve changed-

how the female heroines are always seen as the weaker beings, with feelings and emotions,

and that a woman, however great she is, that she needs a man to establish her identity, etc etc-

nevermind the present day conflict with western world vs. muslims
and the senseless violence and drug high culture of the battle field (afghanistan poppies came to mind right away)

but hey, the music was great and show was bright and beautiful, what a fantastic way to bring back the old school feminist rage in my little monkey heart, haha!  i am grateful for arts and special thanks to nolan, who brought me with his extra ticket! :)

congrats on great show and best wishes for the upcoming versaille tour, tafelmusik + opera atelier!
http://operaatelier.com/season/15-16-season/
two more shows on fri+sat, do go check it out!!

30.9.15

before we point fingers...(it's a bad form anyhow!)

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/01/us/pope-francis-kim-davis-kentucky-clerk-washington-same-sex-marriage.html?smid=fb-nytimes&smtyp=cur&_r=0

it's quite weird to see so many people reacting so strongly when the news of kim davis, the kentucky clerk who refused to do her job, met up with pope.  all the sudden, people are crying in despair, waving their hands and calling him a hypocrite.

whoa. chill out for a bit here.

1. pope asking kim davis to change in public would be a poor form. (that would be forceful, whether it's right or not). public shaming or condemnation is not a great way to convert people. remember this is the man who said: who am i to judge?

2. if the meeting was made public, it wouldve been swarmed by 3rd parties, either in support or outrage, which would change the nature of the meeting.

3. popes traditionally give out possibly thousands of rosaries daily. so pope giving kim a rosary is not out of custom, nor it means he personally supports kim.

4. apparently he said: '(kim,) stay strong.'  after all, yes, one should look right into the depth of their reasoning IF they would have any chance in the world in reversing their fundamental philosophy.  and to look into oneself, one needs to be strong.  being strong is not a bad thing! and being strong does not mean one is morally superior or even righteous.  if she is to keep her idea, she needs to be strong. if she is to change her idea, she needs to be strong. bullying someone to be weak, to be pushed over, is not a proper discourse.

i dont think there's reason to panic. weve been duped many times, but remember, he also met prisoners at heavy duty prison in philadelphia and gave blessing and rosaries. doesnt mean that he promotes people to go whack their rival gangs...

if pope francis really did inspire one, this small incident should not pop all their bubble.  if someone was mildly interested, yeah, it's also fine to gossip and pick faults.  i dont think he did himself any favour by agreeing on this meeting, but hey, a man is free to meet whoever he wishes. and if we are to point fingers at things that we do not personally agree with, what is the point of having individuals in this world?  if dalai lama met up with kim, would people have same volatile reaction? and no, he does not stand for an ideal man, he stands for a particular vision: to hold the will of christ in this physical world, and that is subjective, religiously defined, therefore cannot be a universal ideal. i donno.

it is a twisted time and it is an exciting time. it is a scary time yet it is our time.

rather than to fear, perhaps, we should eat fear for breakfast. after fear, courage tastes great.

29.9.15

let us be in peace, at this particular moment-



http://secondnexus.com/social/transgender-student-bathroom-battles/?ts_pid=2&utm_content=inf_10_94_2

i just had real good laugh reading some of the comments on dear Facebook regarding the idea of genders and bathroom access in high schools.  here are my thoughts in point-forms so that i do not leak sarcasm, as that is never my intention, to make fun of people.

1. transgenders having access to bathrooms does not have direct correlation to sexual offences in bathrooms.  in other words, equating transgender with potential criminal is logically wrong.  and all visiting adults are supposed to register with the school upon entry to school; therefore the actual pool of possible pedophiles would not change because of the access change (though other sex offences are still possible regardless of age).

2. regardless of gender, individuals' privacy is the issue here. the very idea of genital police in bathrooms is more disconcerting than anything else.

3. it is a cost and space issue to build/update bathrooms. but everything costs money anyhow. and this is important. nothing like that feeling of searching for a bathroom when you need one.

4. anyone who brings up one vs. many people's right, well, we have braille on elevators, aural warnings on cross walks, all-access ramps for non-walkers and nursing rooms/stations for lactating mothers. a majority does not have automatic right to dictate the minority. that's tyranny of majority.

5. i rather opt to be separated from crazies and illogicals. those people are the really dangerous ones, regardless of genders, genitals, whatevers.  and yeah let's not forget the ones who spray. i don't even want to know how that's even possible.

6. for people who quote 'reducing anxiety and confusion for our young children,' what do you think would happen once they are out of this current artificial greenhouse of school/home/helicopter parents? if we can't help them practice making choices, when would they actually learn to make decisions?  don't you want the young adults to practice facing differences and the consequent exploration/resolution of conflicts of interests?

this rigid anger against 'change' may be the real issue regarding the bathrooms.  people are uncomfortable to think beyond status quo.  not so long ago, women could not vote.  we had legal slavery (too bad we have black-market soft-slavery today).  we sterilized mentally ill. we continue to execute people.  we ripped babies out of families and sent them to residential 'schools.'  we have jihadists and crazies who say they are christians doing weird non-jesus based things (which is very different than being a christian)(a small example: ku kux klan is a christian brotherhood eh). united states of america holds 25% of the WORLD'S TOTAL PRISONERS.  we have bankers who broke rules and lost other people's money, only to walk around freely with no real penalties.  we have hate crimes.

whenever we want to be exclusive, we must be reminded of inclusiveness.

and after all, bathroom is a bathroom.
leave the politics out of it. let the people go into title-less stalls and do their business, as there's nothing quite like bladder pressure to make people do erratic things, including terribly dangerous driving.

28.9.15

huh? wha?


frustrated entry 1:

'... see, it is important to think about details, johnny.
"let's eat, grandma!" is a bit different than "let's eat grandma!"'

little kid squirms and then blurts,
'... but everyone know what i meant!
and my name is jonathan!'

hmm. squinting and scratching.

'but you know who i meant, jason.'

***
frustrated entry 2:

'... okay, jonathan, you can have 1,000 for your birthday party with friends.'

kid leaps into air with joy, cant believe his luck.  parent looks through wallet, gives him whack of dollar bills.

'... but dad, it's only 10 dollars, not 1000-'

'oh, well, it's only coupla zeros. they dont mean anything anyway. should be enough?'

***

and i sighed.





27.9.15

fiat lux. light fantastic.

the cyclists in yyz have worked very hard to get some bike lanes in town.  and now that we do have some bike lanes installed, a few people who are not true cyclists (yet) ( ! ) has been creating friction with the public in embracing the commute cycling culture by being exclusive- yelling at drivers, pedestrians, break road rules, etc.  this is not a problem caused by cyclists, but caused by people who creates sense of entitlement, people who wants to be exclusive.

recent refugee challenges (yes, this is not a problem for non-refugees, it's a challenge) is also dealt in similar fashion.  here we are sitting in our safe area, discussing and raising fingers about who we would let through and who should be left out.  i understand: a safe community is not a free commodity. it involves everyone's cooperation: taxes, legal honesty, procedures and the respect for the procedures and the willingness to spend the time and energy to make the procedure fair and open as possible.  however, a community is built on the idea of 'common,' and there is no need for it to be exclusive.

pope francis was visiting the philadelphia prison today. aptly named the city of brotherly love, he spoke simply. yes, you may be incarcerated. you may be separated but you are not forgotten. you still belong to us, in the community. within your families, friends, and anyone who believes in making mistakes and fixing those mistakes.  you are not excluded. you are included. you will return home. yes, home, not a house. a home.

most of conflicts tend to faction the involved population.  simplest being us vs. them.  it may be necessary to establish the dual peaks, for the purpose of identification, which hopefully will lead to examination, discussion and a current conclusion (as nothing could be final, YET). but oh it is so easy to forget that establishment of 'we' does not mean the rest of the others are singularly against 'us.' 

cyclists who wants rights of the road must earn respect, like any others, by non-cyclists. the established citizens of the nation, must admit the fact that by the very definition of being 'local' defines them as possible 'non-local' in the future.  if one is a traveler, an explorer, a tourist, we must let others to be a traveler, an explorer, a tourist. and possibly become 'local.'  if we have people who are separated from us for reasons of safety, social penalty and such, we must realize that they, though in physical separation, ex. jail, still do belong with us.

the recent pope visit to the states is bit like a wild fire. it's refreshing to see someone who is capable of evoking questions- genuine and important questions, about belonging to a community. with others. to remind ourselves what it is to live in civilization- and the important pre-requisite: to be civil.  and being civil means to rise (at least) to the minimal requirement, usually set by local laws, and to strive to rise beyond the legality, to be human.

it is a good day to appreciate the world. especially when things seem bleak, the light will remind us what it really is, to be a human. a shadow is an outline created by light. let us not forget darkness exists because of light.  

23.9.15

ikea, the enchanted land


ive been to many ikeas all over the world.

denmark. austria. uk. usa. czech. and canada.

every time the new catalogue hits the mail, i imagine many people picking it up, looking through fantasy houses, much like little kids imagining life in a doll house. they are pretty. they are perfect. then once you grow up a bit, usually old enough to run around the store without parental supervision, people often start to dream up scenarios in these tiny domestic vignettes.  hey in china, people even started to 'live' their day times in stores, sleeping, eating and who knows what. talk about living the dream.  one day, i hope to start composing a short scene for each spreads. i think it would be entertaining...

http://time.com/3814935/ikea-china-customers-sleeping

often i hear complaints about ikea products.  and it makes me laugh a little, as it must be so that so many of us have had (or still have and will have more of) these essential modular life furniture. and so many of us mustve build them as our 'first' adult things, with little hex key and supposedly helpful minimal graphic instructions

weve screamed at them. weve studied on them.  weve broke them. weve thrown parties with them. who have not had a billy book case? filled up a frakta blue shopping bag with various fillings? (my last fillings were broken up shed to the kip)

and yes, i do have to start my ikea visit at the cafe and i do always get a hotdog and a softie at the end of checkout. and yeah, cod roe tube and meatball take-homes rock. but man, the drama of the cafe.

i always see families. friends. young people. old people. people who are buying their first furnitures. people who are new to the country.  people who are entertaining selves, with laptop plugged in. parents with children, hoping to distract them with colourful childrens toys. cheap coffee and decent cakes and food.  i love the fact that all ikea stores start with cafe and ends with hotdog stand.

today in ikea, i saw:

young 20 somethings filling their bottles with little soda as they are leaving the area.  oh so very carefully. they couldnt resist a bit of naughtiness.

a couple checking out with tray of food, the girl sneaking in a last minute decision chocolate pie and the partner girl with a small but humorous sigh.

an old man with four ( ! ) meatball dinners. he sat down and unpacked his bag, took out four tupperwares and start to pack them. then left the cafe.

three girls in private school uniform and dad.  girls 'ewwing' dad for having meatballs. they are having veggie balls.

four teenagers eating the biggest meatball dinners, then polishing up a sandwich each, comparing chicken vs meat vs veggie balls.

little kiddie who ran away from moms' table, starting to finger lick all the used dishes at the 'to be cleaned' area. mom realizes, whisks child, then put him down at his own full dish of fish and chips. he isnt interested though.

all these vignettes.

i like spending my time in ikea. i like seeing a bit of fantasy and bit of reality.

and i walked out without buying any furniture! hooray me.
but next time, i prob have my coffee/cake and a hotdog/softie.
and may be another billy case.




22.9.15

about'em, genders.

i actually do look like this. haha!

for years and years, i wear newboy caps and generally wore whatever i liked.  the day mom decided to let go of her ritual of putting together my clothing, i see it as the day of liberation (of sort); too bad it was simply because she was too busy working at the dry cleaners 16+hrs a day, as first generation immigrants often do...

the overall effect of my preference was an unexpected one.  unexpected because i realized that how i look DOES define minor parts of my identity- to a degree it became confusing/interesting to others.

for instance, i wear jeans most of the time. and shirts. t-shirts, even. from working at the dry cleaners as kiddie helper, i bowed to never buy stuff that needs dry cleaning (reactionary, i know!).

i get my hair cut short, as i cannot stand seeing strands of hair on the floor. and no, im not going to be dedicated enough to chase after them. after all, they are long and thin, which means after certain length, they go limp and die.

i wear many hats and caps as i bike through town. nothing quite like a bit of hat/cap to keep your eyes from getting rained/hailed/snowed/dusted on.

i dont have a particularly feminine bust. genetics.

yes, i do have multiple piercings on left ear, but not the right. it's the non-stage side and i like it that way.

my backpacks are functional ergonomic ones. once in awhile, i think about having a little pretty bag and the thought of 'caring' for a bag in a crammed pub bathroom (ex. hold onto it on my lap and somehow get the business done), makes me laugh. and hey, if i see some unripe pears on sale (like my pears crunchy), where am i going to put them and carry home on a bike? on a little handbag?

so all these things added up, to a certain imaged identity. as end result, i get called 'sir' awful lot (especially in airport lines and such) and get asked if im a lesbian.

nah, it does not bother me. but it does make me wonder: why does it matter?  why are you calling me 'that?'

i think people call me 'sir' at public places probably not because they are interested in my gender but because they need to address me. it's a sure sign of 'hey,' completely devoid of any personal interest. they made their bet and they are wrong. who cares. all they really wanted to tell me is that they wanted me to use line no. 8 at the security check/bank lines/grocery shops.  they arent really interested nor have the time to figure my gender out. so that's all fine. i will get self to line no. 8 and that's that.

for the people who ask me if im a lesbian, well, there are two thoughts:

1. they are nosey: for some reason, not being able to determine other's gender seem to be a communal hobby. i dont understand. what is it to you? why does it matter?  the recent debate about 'all-gendered' toilets or transgender right for picking bathrooms, i mean... all-gendered is fine. that's what stalls are for. close your door and do your stuff. if there are creeps who are going to take advantage of the situation, well, THATS PROBLEM WITH CREEPS NOT TRANSGENDERS. get your stuff straight, afraid people.

2. they think im attractive and could possibly be personally interested: well, thanks. thatt's a compliment. and nah, im likely not to be interested. but hey, flattering.  and if you were asking me purely out of that burning desire to figure my sexual orientation, well, im so unlikely to be interested in you anyhow. so no worries. i got standard. yeah, i know. even I have standard. oops.

girl toys, boy toys. bathrooms. gender rights.

the real question is:
how do we let an individual to be an individual? what can we do to allow such liberty and joy?

if gramma wanna lable the grandgirl a tomboy, she WILL. hey, there will be all kinds of things that will be thrown at the kid during one's lifetime. they may be negative or positive. for instance, the loose term 'princess' really drive me crazy. but for some, it's a great compliment. if one can have a constructive argument or a session to share views, that's great. but when it's not available, one must remember, that the best strength we can cultivate is the identity of self.

let one be who they are.

and if someone else calls me sir today, i probably just say 'yes?'
they usually are embarassed. im usually chuckling.
which line for my groceries? 7? alright!

after all, policing the world seem to drive everyone whove tried to lunatics. being reasonable with the world, may be the key...


20.9.15

tragicomedy collection for a quiet sunday

*we all know what's gonna happen to george...

1. the most beautiful day with mostly empty schedule: perfect set up for delivery - waiting game.

2. when you tell them you wont need cutlery with your takeaway, they pack you several extra. when you desperately need something, anything, you cant find any.

3. that time you remember seeing a working pencil on floor and realize that it is just a recent past memory, as you then valiantly try to scribble something invisibly.

4. being smug about the last tea bag for your thermos and it literally explodes as you pour hot water on it.

5. the feeling of dire hope at ikea that surely, it WILL fit through the door.

6. earlier you need to wake, sleep tends to come later and later.

7.  as you complain about nothing being on telly and that you are getting outta house, the game with no action suddenly gets all the action.

8.  it wasnt a TTC token. it was a 10 cents coin. now what.

9.  spilling a cup of juice on paper towel roll.

10.  cant remember- did i just salt the dry mix for the bread or did i just remembered, to do it?

11. a normal sized person next to you at the theater somehow starts to expand in volume, quietly and exponentially.

12. water-saving toilets and flushing. at someone else's house.

13. congratulating self for remembering to pack that score in haze of sleep. realize it's not in the needed key.

14. getting all hyped from new ikea catalogue. then imagine all those little screws and a wee hex key.

15. the fat pants you were looking for, is the one that you are wearing right now...

16. returning from laundry. one missing fancy sock.

17. you made room to have one donut this eve. it's now late and all donuts are on manager's special, 4 four 2.50. you feel valiant.

18. taking things way to seriously then getting mad when someone suggests chill out.

19. the later the night is, hungrier one gets, and food, oh the glorious food.

20. as you decide to finally floss, gets out from warm bed, turn on the light, the floss roll says 'im empty.'

21.  with resignation, i bought a piano. my salvation is that it's a silent piano. so with right set-up, i cant even make a peep.


happy sunday, lovely people! :D
now somehow, the mixing console makes me sleepy. how does that work. droool.

19.9.15

blind love is not very helpful.

http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2015/09/obama-openly-mocks-american-catholics-with-radical-guest-list-for-papal-visit/

it is certainly a bit of a let-down to pick up my blogging after a rather flat, sensational article. argh! but as rant is a rant, well, i suppose it's appropriate!

the pope is on the move, he's on the go. he's a lovely man and ive loved every word and teaching he has shared with the world so far, breaking down bigotry when it has been truly blind to the bigots themselves. probably myself as well.  after all, if i was aware, i would not choose to stay a bigot*!

it's a rather memorable moment that he is visiting usa and cuba,  as americans are experiencing significant distress over politics of belief systems (though i may dare say that most of the conflicts are not essentially rooted in religions/non-religious, but from social inequality and inflexibility + intolerance), especially heading into next year's election (seriously, what was about that recent US bill that is going to de-fun planned parenthood?! wtheck?)  and that cuba is facing one of the biggest possible changes, opening its doors wide and wider to the world.

and to read such article (above), it's quite disheartening and worrying.  the writer, quoting the old school vatican official, who is not even named (why?), claims that the state is now mocking the church.

oh come on.

how was it disrespectful? all that was said is that list of guests wont be release to the public at this point, and that it may include people who may really need to talk to the church (and similarly, church would need to communicate with these people) about co-existing in peace.

if a guest list is to only include easy audience, i think the whole point of such visit is lost. the fact that pope will have a chance to meet the people who may have contrary ideas in neutral space is important, for everyone to respect the differences of ideas AND TO WORK TOGETHER.

if a catholic was invited to welcome dalai lama, would that be considered an insult? as we love people, we must accept that other people also may love the same people, despite of what may seem to be irreconcilable differences. i find the article a bit to close to war-mongering...

i think the pope is wise and strong man. i dont think he needs people-slamming by some bigoted writer who may have lost the sight of things in the name of love (therefore to protect, shield, separate the pope from possible conflicts and contraversies, much like people who tries to shield their loved ones from anything but impossible state of continuous happiness).  and he certainly would welcome the audience, with courage, i believe.

have a great visit, pope francis! i love your presence in this world very much.



bigot (n.) (Look up bigot at Dictionary.com)
1590s, "sanctimonious person, religious hypocrite," from French bigot (12c.), which is of unknown origin. Earliest French use of the word is as the name of a people apparently in southern Gaul, which led to the now-doubtful, on phonetic grounds, theory that the word comes from Visigothus. The typical use in Old French seems to have been as a derogatory nickname for Normans, the old theory (not universally accepted) being that it springs from their frequent use of the Germanic oath bi God. But OED dismisses in a three-exclamation-mark fury one fanciful version of the "by god" theory as "absurdly incongruous with facts." At the end, not much is left standing except Spanish bigote "mustache," which also has been proposed but not explained, and the chief virtue of which as a source seems to be there is no evidence for or against it.

In support of the "by God" theory, as a surname Bigott, Bygott are attested in Normandy and in England from the 11c., and French name etymology sources (such as Dauzat) explain it as a derogatory name applied by the French to the Normans and representing "by god." The English were known as goddamns 200 years later in Joan of Arc's France, and during World War I Americans serving in France were said to be known as les sommobiches (see also son of a bitch). But the sense development in bigot is difficult to explain. According to Donkin, the modern use first appears in French 16c. This and the earliest English sense, "religious hypocrite," especially a female one, might have been influenced by beguine and the words that cluster around it. Sense extended 1680s to other than religious opinions.

27.6.15

all these colourful people

as i was running errands in pouring rain, i got stalled by the dyke march 2015 toronto.  waiting for a gap to cross, i thought how nice it is to see a big body of happy people.  lots of noise. lots of cheering. many kids and families, despite of the grey clouds that just opened up today.

then it stuck me hard: all these people, in a different place, could be fined, imprisoned and even sentenced to death, as they are right now, just marching, having a great time, because of their sexual identity.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LGBT_rights_by_country_or_territory#LGBT-related_laws_by_country_or_territory

quickly scanning through the list, there are nations that has death penalty for gays. here's a few i just read:

sudan (3rd offence for man, 4th for woman)
mauritania (last public execution on 1987)
nigeria (death for man, whipping/jail for woman)
qatar (for muslims)
saudi arabia (2nd offence merits execution)
yemen (married man to be stoned)
afganistan (death of long imprisonment)
iran (mature sane man, 4th conviction for woman)
brunei (by stoning)

regardless of whether the execution happens or not, the idea that all those people could been killed legally because of how they love, is quite shocking.

it is a touchy subject to talk about, as they (above nations) will point finger at tradition and religion, which leads to culture and moral as the main reason of the homophobic law; who do i think i am and who gives me the right to say it's wrong?

but i feel that no one should be able to judge another person's capacity or subject of love, as long as the act is consensual and it involves legal adults. of course, there will be grey areas and contestable situations. however, the extremity of the possibility of these joyous people being stoned death, is WRONG.

the u.s. supreme court just passed marriage rights for all 50 states yesterday.  at the gym, i heard some young (and immature in my opinion) boys talking about it briefly, about how silly and crazy these 'groomszillas' are going to be. i remember someone, from another generation, called homosexuality as 'decadence' and 'life preference' that stemmed from rich life we lead in canada.  i may be able to accept their reasons and preferences, as they are not required to agree with my belief and that free speech is important (as these were not hate speeches).  however, if i were to ask them how they would feel IF all these people were shut into prison, waiting for death sentence?

happy pride toronto 2015!

this march, as a friend said proudly, is not only a celebration, but a protest.  we cannot possibly imagine all the tears and blood spilled on this cause, to date.  people would have lost friends. family. love.  life. and even in canada, i dont think anyone is going to dispute that LGTBQs will face some degree of discrimination by the society, as true bigotry is impossible to detect by oneself, even if it is as simple reaction as someone staring at a non-traditional couple and making a fleeting comment. ..

it is us who have the riches and will to make changes that many may not afford yet.  and each step toward equality, how frivolous or 'flowery' it may seem, it is real and one day, i sincerely hope that we can also help others who may not be able to defend themselves or demand legal changes.

21.6.15

ivy-like dad

a good friend told me that i quote my dad all the time. i laughed and said 'probably.'  i think about that once in awhile, as it seems that we are quite close in my mind, though we rarely do things together.

my dad was brought up by single mom, post-korean war. he was too bright, i think, and too sensitive to grow straight as a child - bit like the way that vines grow, they are resilient and they grab onto things, wrapping around, rather than shoot straight into the sky.

he's demanding and curious. he can be quite adamant and inflexible.  as a vine plant, one would not let its end go so easily from (whatever it may be climbing on), and the plants, though easy to cut with a blade, they are so difficult to rip with bare hands.

the vines go into places and holds on. dad never had an easy thought. everything had been thought through, and the decisions, they add up into this whole being of who he is. i have never seen him make sweeping decisions or change opinions easily. in fact, we are bit cookie cutters- stubborn, questioning and often challenging.  there has been days where after a silly debate (on political debates and such), that we simply did not talk a word to one another. poor mother!

he brought us to see the outdoors as a child, almost every weekend. this is a feat for a korean dad, as they work so hard and long hours, committing to long commute and super competitive environment.  but there he was, schlapping three kids and rest of fam into a car on stupid oclock on sunday morning (they only had sundays off, if that), showing us mountains and sea, making us walk the whole way (even when someone's crying).

i always walked by him in the trails. why? simply because he said walking on the front of the pack is easier. you can make decisions if needs be without consulting everyone.  you can take rest to recover when slower ones catch up.  you get better view rather than someone's bum. you can look back and evaluate the status of the rest of the group- and if you see someone suffer, do something. do set a break. take their pack. go walk on the back for a bit with them. share your water. and you will have time to go around that corner that isnt part of the path, to take a look, without losing your own trail.

when you walk down the hill, if you think it's bit loose and you worry about falling, just run down. keep your feet light and pull your knees up. touch the ground, dont land, till youve got down to the end of the segment. dont fear. what is the worst thing that can happen? skinned knee? they will heal.

in 1992, when we moved to canada, mom dad opened up a dry cleaner. they worked mad hours. 5am start (especially in summer time), till 9-10pm.  while in high school, my job was to show up at the store right after school and work till the shop shut, almost every day. i couldnt say no because seeing someone work so hard and not sharing a bit of their work would be inhumane. i took summer courses to not feel guilty about working in the shop- haha, i did go back to it after school, day after day though.

it did drive me crazy however, to see that their long hours and hard life is something they were creating (partially). whenever we hired someone, it never lasted too long. or they would be marginalized- because mom and dad could not stand the quality of the work they were producing.  i tried to tell them just let small details go once in awhile. all the detail works you do (like wrapping all silver shell buttons with double-aluminum foils so that they wont break during the cleaning), ends up becoming mountains of small tasks. this is why we never get home before 10pm. checking every buttons on men's shirt (this is the cheapest item on the list, as they are machine-done; loss-leader) and sewing replacements on (like those extra buttons on cuffs that no one uses), this is nuts. particularly so, because those works were my job.

he would say: get it done.

we have not spent much time together.  with works, they were worn. then i left home. we have not seen one another much as parent-child till now. co-workers, consultants, yes.

but finally theyve sold the store last fall. and next wk, they come back from visiting south korea. may be things will change.

sure thing is that he does get quoted awful lot by me.  to thank him to plant those vine seeds in my mind- hmm, i dont know if i want to. being vine-like mind is difficult. nothing is straight. things always need to be looked carefully. one becomes resilient and demanding. surviving.

perhaps the best current conclusion i can make about dad is... he's real and he's always been. and i wish him less demanding days and a chance to prosper, to look straight and go into next phase of his life with ease.

it will be interesting to catch up next wk. happy father's day!

27.5.15

why record during practice? well because, make-ups...

working with one of my fav peeps today, i think i found a good analogy for practicing with recorder.  with the heavy technical and scientific emphasis on sports performance training, i often wonder why we, musicians, who are also a physical labourers, do not employ technology with similar level of enthusiasm...

i understand that there is this love of mysticism in arts. it's bit like wine critique.  though we dont really know how to quantify anything, even the basic idea of how ethanol works to get a human being drunk, we all know someone who can go off on qualitative alcohol evaluation (im guilty as well).  but you know, talking about such things as smells and tastes to describe a particular 'terroir,' one builds a set of descriptions that has not been standardized and i feel that in certain field, they would prefer keeping it that way.  bit like vodka fanatics talking about 'different tastes' of plain vodka, but vodka is supposed to have no ether or organic volatiles in the final product, just ethanol and water. there's a speculation that they may be talking about 'feel' of the vodka (as density of the brand may change the taste perception etc)...  bit like 'just play the music,' which kinda drives me insane.

so i digress. anyhow, today, i was talking that there are three things you need in your gigbag: metronome, tuner and a recorder.   she feels that  listening to recording may not be productive- aha. well, it surely can feel tedious and painful (mostly).  and i scratched my head for a bit. then came up with a new analogy.

close your eyes (what?)(please, let's try)
take your right hand, 
with index finger, touch your nose (easy)
now, touch your right ear (easy)
how bout corner of left eye (okay)
trace the curve of your chin (urrr)

so you know what your face's like, you dont need to look at it?
(yes?)

then, would you ever put on a stage makeup without a mirror and head out?

aha. the answer is a no.  even when we understand the structure of a piece (facial spacial map in the head) and came up with careful interpretation decisions (style of make up, how much make up, etc), one would never think about putting it on without checking the mirror-

recording is your mirror. or the closest thing. 

when you are executing, you cannot be a scribe. you are doing things.  so, whenever things get crazy and hard, do take time to do it slower, and record yourself, avoid the compound interest known as disguised practice (basically anything that really isnt practice) IF you are going to be practicing (because, noodling around is also fine option).

and her eyes lit up. her heart jumped. yay.   mine did too. 

it's not that i wanted her to do everything i say. i am not a teacher, i merely wishes to be a friend, to have a 'play.'  and because she's such a hard worker, i wanted to see if we could get more out of her efforts. and i think perhaps, this did convince the usefulness of recorder.

everyone learns differently and everyone has their own lives to live and enjoy.  however, along with the differences, we may share and be enriched. and man, her smile of agreement and curiosity made my day.  what a lucky monkey.

oh and for those of you who are bored, here's a wicked telly show on mind-training.
http://tvo.org/video/212947/redesign-my-brain

22.5.15

silly musing on sexuality

sleep. food. sex.

the basic instant three-some of gratification. it does not need to cost much and the body, conveniently, is built to enjoy all three. in the blinking lights of the cities, far-reaching technology and this silly anxiousness of 'being in-the-moment,' i think it's safe to say that the sleep is often ignored and envied.

food, well, looking at the obesity rate of countries of various economical ranking (it looks as you wont face the obesity issue only if you are too wealthy or too poor; cheap calories and instant accessibility is tying most of the population's thought to its food consumption/process/acquisition) and all the screaming matches about weight/health/style (which are three separate categories and not necessarily interconnected), it still takes the place of the king of pleasure.

sex, this makes me laugh a bit.  it is in one's face all the time, they say. i suppose it's always on somewhere in the media (traditional and social), at the same time, really, all the time?!

i can appreciate the refinement that one needs to achieve regarding sexuality from the very young age.  the fact that even the conventionally well-educated parents take part in protest against the recent ontario sex education curriculum update highlights the cultural importance of sexuality (though i thought the recent protest had more to do with power control and largely, immaturity and lack of objective research; have you seen one of those 'translated' pamphlets that went around for certain minority groups? it's almost hilarious and fictitious. though any culture that's got issues with calling a penis a 'penis' and say vagina on telly has much bigger fish to fry, i presume).

the weird thing is, however, is this singular idea of sexuality.  as a definition, sexuality should include all issues that relates to personal physical intimacy and its context in individual's philosophy.  but the way that this word is whipped around is so limited and so silly, as it is so tightly trapped under one aspect: carnal activity.

i mean, yes, it is accessible to most of the sexually-reproducing organisms and there is even dedicated pleasure sensories built into it. it is only logical that people may spend much time pursuing sexual pleasure. but looking at the typical G27 world, an alien would have no problem defining 'our goal' as species as instantaneous sexual gratification. republic of penises and vaginas and everything in-between (and not much more probably)

i read an article about 'nude' performance and how it always manages to irate the public. it is understandable that 'arts' can evoke an individual's reaction, including that related to sexuality, but seriously, is that all that art is supposed to do?

as a person who may not necessarily think of sexuality much on daily basis, this enormous concentration of attention on politic of sex is quite entertaining and though rare, enraging.

i suppose the only way of counter-action would be through non-participation in this single-focused sex obsession, though this is different than being 'against,' non-participation would mean  simply being inactive. rather than yelling at the big companies making false promises through advertisement, i often choose to bypass the media (the medium of the advertisement).  so once again, snickering from my desktop eating a hot breakfast ( ! ), i stay amused and befuddled yet again with 'sexuality.'


oh world. you are amazing.

18.5.15

(a creative writing exercise shortie)


...


it was never of my choice, to be shoved into the cold, frightening world. when the light of the day first hit my eyes, i  screamed, for the burst of air.  separated from all things that were familiar, the fear grappled with my consciousness and only thing i could see was blurry, colourless world full of shadows and foreign touches.

soon, a single familiar voice soothed my ears.  as my blood pumped through my veins, against the gravity, as my lungs filled with this foreign air full of chemical smells, i cried in mix of tears and mucus.  without much fight, i resorted into a tiredness, the kind of tiredness where deep, darkness overtakes your mind. you dont remember anything. you dont want to remember anything.  nothing is certain. how i longed for moment of peace!

next time i gained consciousness, it was another moment in time, impossible to determine to actual speed of the day, i tried to grab onto something, anything... after a sharp cry that shattered the peaceful afternoon, rush of footsteps gathered around me. i was slowly picked up...

ive been subjected to this hostile environment, without any means of clear communication... my world was full of people who completely isolated me, surrounding me with this mystery languages. i sensed their joy and laughter- but it was never inclusive...

i knew when they were ridiculing me as i lay there, defenseless, in pool of tears.

they had great wealth, more food than they could possibly eat, however, i was left at their mercy. only at the peak of my despairing screams, they gave me meager portions, fed in a way that choked me painfully.

i screamed and screamed, i wanted to be heard. but they were deaf to my words. pointing and grinning, they continued into their merry-making. not a care in the world. i was silent. my words had no power. the animal instinct and instant gratification of feeding took my consciousness deep down into the sleep. i lost the course of time one again. only to wake up in a shameful situation, in pool of my own excrement.  shocked to the core of my heart, i could not comprehend the situation.  

the humiliation of being an animal, without means to communicate.

i bowed to self, to never forget this. to pay it all back. i tightened my jaw in anger and incomprehension.  life was brutal. there was no way out.

...


HAHAHA just a bit of sarcastic creative writing joke for a baby' first day out in the world. many of my friends recently had kids and somewhat uneasy about another friend who tends to unintentionally glorify the past, i thought it would be a funny thing to try. happy long weekend!

oh come on, it's clearly a parody...

10.5.15

silly thoughts on mothers day

i am not so sure she wouldve chosen me, if she had the choice.  after all, we are bit different- yeah, some pairs are similar to one another, some differs, but my decisions usually surprise her and her decisions are rarely readily acceptable for me.  

we butt heads all the time, it became normal to simply acknowledge rather than cooperate or assimilate our differences in all-issues (THANK THE LOARD FOR THAT).

during the years, i have thought of hurting her and i have hurt her, probably more times than i would ever know. and her words have hurt me, likely to the extend we cannot exactly explain. and i have swallowed back the lovely compliments i have for her at numerous occasions, cuz im silly like that. may be she knows about it anyhow, like proper mother-daughter-jedi-mind-trick.  i ought to say bit more, there, i just created a project. ha!

we have long way to go together, if average life expectancy is a believable thing, and i am glad she is finally taking care of self to be a whole person- walking, sleeping and hopefully less worrying. 

despite of all the dysfunctions of life, it is true, that i do love her deeply and she loves me.

often the most logical solutions are not the solutions applicable.  like many things in life, we dawdle and bumble along, good and the bad. and serious amo. of 'wtfs.' after all, as monday and tuesday passes, it's all 'wtf,' every week, ha ha!

i cannot detach nor can she. it is a nice thing to be bonded properly- just like gluing things together, one make abrasion on the surfaces before applying the glue, so that the pieces will stick better together. the grooves and uneven surfaces, imperfections allowing stronger bond.

first time in many years, she's not in town for the mother's day. so here it is.

much love to mom.  thanks for the years of love as well as anger, frustration, acceptance, rejection, silent fuming and not-so-silent outbursts. it makes it real. i know we will always have our discourses and that it is normal, because you trust me to speak my mind and you also let me know what you think.

it is great to have a real relationship with mom.
thanks mom!
thanks granny!
thanks moms!

love to all the moms in the world.  just remember, whenever your kid say something infuriating, it probably means 'i love you and i want you to love me.' simple as life gets.  and yeah, i heard you right. you do love me. teehee.

*photo cred: julia wimmerlin, from national geographic
http://photography.nationalgeographic.com/photography/photo-contest/2014/entries/wallpaper/nature-week-8/#/2

12.4.15

Nur meine Sehnsucht kann ich Dir klagen und meine Liebe


obsession.

as long as i remember, i always craved 'more than enough.'  when there's a situation, i chew them over and over again, rotating, revisiting, until there is nothing left but a tangled mess of memories.  if there's food craving, i am likely to eat it till i no longer can eat it- can't have just one fudgisicles, more like half-a-box over just two days.  with work, i often work from 'old' scores, to see if i could make anything else easier. i run through numbers, recordings, notes, not with any particular intention, but just because i cannot help it.

recently the local orchestra's been in a hot water over a cancellation of a soloist.  a soloist was contracted for a show. the hall was a near sell-out.  however, meanwhile, russia invaded ukraine and things got messy. built-up political pressure made management to cancel the contract, the soloist went to war with it through social media. all the sudden, it was a hot news among the locals and classical music scene. heavy words such as nazis and censorship were hurled around like snow balls, carelessly made and freely thrown, as if it was all children's game.

of course, it was like a children's game. but unlike a game, angry words were hurled with viciousness, with intention to damage, hurt and embarrass.

they cancelled the concerto, the hall was half-empty and the musicians, all the sudden being blamed by many faceless, nameless parties, played mahler 5.

i went on the second night; i wasn't going to. it was too politically charged. it was too scandalous. it is a busy time of the year.  blah blah.  but i did. because the hall was half-emtpy, i heard.

musicians of the orchestra was not in charge of such decision. at the end, the orchestra did get a shed loads of not-so-free publicity. the soloist got the cheque and publicity.  it made me wonder if there was a hope of marketing ploy. anyhow, the surest thing is that the musicians of the orchestra was left without audience.

i could've just bought a seat and not go to the concert. sleep sounded delicious.  buying a ticket is a form of support.  however,

nothing beats another bum on the seat.

so i had to go, after all. and i thought: hey, it's mahler 5. it's lovely.

and lovely things can break you.
hard, fast, brutal.

the apocalyptic, fate-laden trumpet opening. the grounding horn solos.  rolling timp heart beats and cardiac arrests of grand pauses.  wistful winds.  nostalgic waltzes, dancing slowly to halt.  feet that no longer bounces with joy on the floor.  mad life rushing through, trampling things underfoot in the second mvt. then the call of the horn that is the dull brass blade, spiked on chest, in midst of ghostly golden viennese triplets. then

the adagietto.

i am obsessed with this adagietto. the tears that started to fall onto the water. small rain drops, we've smelled them on hot earth from the scherzo.

i remember standing on the ground of lido, the graveyard of venice, on a sunny day. the trees with their leaves gently dancing whenever the occasional breeze went throughout hem. in contrast to the bustle of venice and murano, full of tourists and enthusiasm, lido was full of silence. lido probably still remember the silence of the pestilence days, annexed venice with slowly rising church of santa maria della salute, praying for the end of the plagues, people with losses in their hearts, death tolls rising.

ah, there, i saw pierrot. with empty hands.

he is calm. he is sad. he has lost something. it is not coming back. eternal loss. his eyes are full of acceptance- of sorrow. unspoken. as the life around him is bustling. continuing with zero regard for his loss. somewhere, mandolin plays. somewhere, the water of venice is marked with approaching gentle summer rain. passing through, not a storm, just hints of droplets. the same rain that came down when the red priest looked out.

https://youtu.be/Jw2WMGwkRmU

years have passed since vivaldi died in vienna (1741). mahler dies in vienna (1911).  mahler 5 sits in the middle of the symphonic cycle (considering no. 10 was not finished)(written 1901-02, mostly in summer holidays). in that 4th movement, adagietto, mahler bring down the tears post apocalypse.  the big flood and tears of god, after all have drowned post-babel.  alas, things lost.  on the 5th movement, just like the olive branch that the dove brought back to noah, things are anew (only to be stomped down by marching feet of fate, 1st movement of the 6th symphony, stark, set in a minor, the dark, lightless void). and there, pierrot stands, in lido, looking sideways. with empty hands (watteau, 1717-18)

and gently, the harp weeps. tears rolling down.

ah. this mahler broke me. there i was, wiping face with dirty hands. red-nosed.

in wake of bright sunlight of first real sign of spring, i am listening to mahler 5 adagietto again. and again. i smell the wet earth i smelled in lido. in that afternoon, wandering through the graveyard, seeing pierrot, somewhere there. and then i realize, may be it was me, looking at myself, five years ago, losing my little brother, empty-handed, after i finally gave him away to the priest, so he can lower him under the ground.  and so many other things I've lost and buried in my heart. each time, empty handed.  raindrops in my mind as the light warms the day.

obsessively, i listen.
again and again.

but
everytime i look,
pierrot's hands are empty.
oh spring. loss eternal.



Wie ich dich liebe, Du meine Sonne,
ich kann mit Worten Dir's nicht sagen.
Nur meine Sehnsucht kann ich Dir klagen und meine Liebe

How much I love you you my sun,
I cannot tell you what with words.
I can only lament to you my longing and love.
(mauler's poem for alma, for adagietto)

https://youtu.be/X4PzRI-bXBk?t=45m52s

2.4.15

orange bicycle electric


even the trees are waking up today, i saw it on my orange bike.

with faint salt stain, the road is now clear, safe enough to ride with skinny tires. squeaky bike: winter was long! yawn. stretch.

the sun lasts a bit longer, cold golden and pale blue sunlight gaining that hint of blushing day by day.  it is already near a full moon. night wind no longer brings tears into eyes. 

from hot cup full of cocoa, a stripy lovely straw in my iced coffee. the laughter bursting like little bubbles in the sunlight. people shiver a little less, perhaps hum a little more.

'i will sing the body electric.'

last day of classes today, hard to believe that time passed through, so fast. what was it like, the depth of the winter? already fading in the brilliant sunlight.

even jesus had to die to be reborn.
was it a fault of judas to kiss? without that kiss, there would've been no salvation.

one loses something, only to realize what it could have possibly meant.
one soaks self in the faintly appearing writing on the wall. what does it say? what do i want to see?
one laughs at self, with the drama that unfolds on each thin leaflets of the days, leaflets so thin that it will melt once the spring rain comes.
a changes a coming.

i dared to take a break in the midday.
and the day was full of beauty.
when that bitter sadness melts away on back of my throat, the sweetness ensues. in the pool of mixed things, refracted in the new born sunlight of spring days, prisms of days, people and thoughts, today was beautiful.

i rode on orange bike.
away and away.
coming back in a circle.
faster than i should, 
because
'i will sing the body electric.'

happy spring! easter's just around corner. sending much love from a little chrysalis being. perhaps it is the only way, to wrap self around and around, with gossamer-thin thoughts, feelings too fragile to speak of. as chrysalis is not dying. its heart beats quietly, not of the lost days, but of the lost days and the days to come.



30.3.15

silent day



https://youtu.be/ij5yRxvfnQY

another cusp point. the vernal equinox passed and it's bringing in languid sadness into the air, echoing the deaden silence of the deaths of the present winter.  as the snow start to melt away, the little memoirs of the cold, hasten and dark days blurring into nights come out to the sunlight.

gloves. hats. lost things.

under glistening melting puddle, once priced possessions now lie naked without owners, neglected, alone and dead, perhaps dreaming of their long lost other halves. where would those gloves all go? did they ever dreamed of being found and to be a pair again before they were discarded to garbage?

scattered fag butts.
cough drop wrappers.
dog poos left in shame.

the sun peeks through the heavy clouds.
but people continue to walk, eyes looking down to the ground.
though there is no ice to trip over anymore.

the melting sun also melts the ice i put on the cracks of myself.
i filled those in with indifference, faked confidence and desperate hope for approvals.
and today, they all melt, leaving me all cracked and broken.
the end of winter is passing and now i must die.

ah i pause the afternoon,
filled with melancholia and regrets,
fermata pregnant with sadness.

25.3.15

human resonance, a yearning

from a tangent point, an individual will progress through the chosen trajectory.

at times, the tangent point and/or the new trajectory may not reflect individual's wishes but life being slightly more complicated than we ever wish it to be, a set course, infuriatingly or amusingly, will never stay set. and things and people will go wherever they will go appropriately.

meeting people is a funny thing.  i often browse dating profiles for entertainment.  what is it that people are putting out as representation of themselves? when they are being sarcastic, is it the humour or the bitterness that is fueling it? when they say they dont take such writings seriously, how much of genuine sincerity can be found on personal profiles?  what are the expectations of the engagement- at what point, would you know youve connected, or it has/no potential, or whether it would be destructive or constructive? the questions go on forever.

when i went to see 'theory of everything,' i was really touched. beautifully shot, it discusses one of the most fascinating persons of our time: stephen hawking.

it is weird because for me, it always seemed a bit pre-destined, that his work on time-space relativity (that time is relative to space, therefore, as universe is still expanding, time is still changing and fluxing, therefore, if we are to retrace time and space back into the inception point, they would collapse into one another, to single entity- aargh tis the turtles! turtles all the way down!

and the man who is working on the concept, well, his worlds are collapsing. his physical ability, ever dwindling, defines him within his mind and very limited physical motions. it is eloquent, and tragic.  with collapsing mental and physical world, the struggle of hawking and his family/friends was portrayed beautifully.

i left the theater with tears in my eyes.  ah, would it be possible for a mere mortal to experience such depth of life? 

with visible and invisible spider web tangle, i ride through  the course of time. i never know where i will be, i can only project into the near future.  sometimes, in that long ride on a quiet silent water of time, all i wish is to curl up with a friend, seeking resonance.

after all, it is the universe that pulses through everyone's heart. 

if we are quiet, we can hear it.

the sound that is love.