June 2006

My mom wrote me an email at 9am this morning, saying that at that time 30 years ago, I was 15 hours old.

I must’ve been ugly. But I bet I had 10 fingers and 10 toes! And I bet they counted them!

Did you guys ever count your own toes, after realizing that you’ve never actually counted them before so maybe you’ve been an eleven-toed freak all along but you never realized it? I did, when I was 10, and I’m glad to report, I have 10 li’l piggies.

When my childhood friend Sandy was turning 30 last month, I called her to wish her a happy birthday. In the conversation, I asked what time she was born, and then noted that she wasn’t actually 30 yet, she technically had a few more hours. She said, “But I was born in Taiwan so technically, I turned 30 yesterday.” “Oh yeah!” I said and laughed at her for being old already. And then it hit me. I was born in Taiwan, too! Damn it, I’ve been 30 for 3 days already, then.

That title up there was for all the confused blog readers. =D I didn’t realize I was vague about my birthdate.

I picked up Mr. W and his friend at the airport last nite. They really didn’t catch any fish. “YOU explain it to my dad,” I told him.

It was a great day today. A couple minutes past midnight this morning, Navy Girl Vanessa called and left a voice mail to say happy birthday, and then early this morning, at like 7am, my childhood friend Sandy called and sang Happy Birthday to me. Mr. W rolled over in bed and said, “Someone beat me to singing happy birthday to you?” After I hung up with Sandy, Mr. W sang happy birthday in my ear while hugging me in bed. It was soooo cute. And then my friend Erin called, sending me birthday wishes. And then Vicky called and we chatted, but she didn’t realize it was my birthday, altho she did later and called back and left a voice mail apologizing for being a crappy friend. Haha, I didn’t even realize it until then that she didn’t say happy birthday. Hee hee, I just got a call from Edgar just now wishing me a happy 30th and remarking how old I am. He’ll get his…in October. And I got the birthday voice mails from Diana and my mom. All day long my phone was ringing and it’s about to die on low battery right now. I’m unexpectedly happy for someone who just turned 30 and has become *gasp* a GROWNUP.

Lemme backtrack some. Yesterday evening was my first bellydancing class. Man, there are a lot of fat women in that class. I’m glad they’ve taken the initiative to get some exercise in a fun way. I realized that since I can already do dancing that isolates my upper body and my hips, bellydancing was not that hard for me on the first day when we went thru 7 or 8 basic moves/steps. The only thing that was hard for me was the shimmying, because as a fat-conscious chick, I’ve spent most of my time trying NOT to make my fat shimmy. I did work up a little sweat in the end when we were doing moves nonstop. It’s gonna be fun.

Before bellydancing, I got online to check Mr. W’s flight status, since I had to go pick them up right after class. As I was doing that, I got an email notification that Jordan had just written me. A line in her email said something about hoping a package she sent gets to me on time. Package? I stood up and walked out the front door to check the gate (my ingress and egress are usually done through my garage, so I don’t go by the front door), and there was a big white box sitting just inside my gate. Inside was an awesome care package of a comedian DVD she’d told us about when we first met on the cruise, a relaxation CD, a Jimmy Buffett CD (she was making fun of me on her blog for not knowing who Jimmy Buffett is), a book of love coupons (no, not the raunchy sex shop kind, the nice Hallmark kind), body scrub, and body butter. A bunch of confetti metallic stars fell out of the box also; I recognized them from the handfuls of them she put in my birthday card, which she mailed separately and I received the day before the package. I listened to Jimmy Buffett all the way to the airport picking up Mr. W and friend, and then I had to turn it off cuz it turns out Mr. W hates Jimmy Buffett. Haha.

So today, Mr. W and I got up early and headed out to my birthday treat. He’s so sweet, we first stopped by McDonald’s and he picked up 2 Fruit n’ Yogurt Parfaits, and then by Starbucks where he got me a chai tea with soy (I didn’t even tell him my order, I was on the car on the phone with Vicky, he did really good). And then at Glen Ivy, we got to hang out all day in the pools, bake in the red mineral clay, and watch turtles eat leaves and swim with koi fish. After our treatments (where my therapist gypped me 10 minutes on a supposedly 80-minute treatment), we changed and went to the local Tom’s Farms, bought a ton of fresh organic fruit, and came home and he just made papaya/watermelon/apple/carrot/rhubarb smoothies. Yum!

After I hung up with Vicky earlier today on our drive to Glen Ivy, I remarked to Mr. W how nice it is that all my girls had called (I designated the caller group “my girls” with a Beyonce song ringtone, and that was all we heard all morning), and they/we are all happy in our love lives finally. Everyone’s getting somewhere or are at a really good place. Man, we’ve all had our tough times in romance, walked through hell and back. Now, everyone’s glowing all over the place. Yay for all of us! I don’t even mind turning 30 cuz I’m having such a good time. I mean, it helps that everyone around me are at least 10 years older than me at work, but I’ve also been feeling 30 for almost 2 weeks. People would ask how old I am and I’d say 30, or I’d refer to myself as a 30-year-old, and then I’d kick myself for prematurely aging myself. But generally, I think it’s okay being 30 if you’re happy with your life, content with where you are, and are surrounded by good friends.

Oh. And people tell me I don’t look 30, either. That helps. Haha!

I had a really good lunch. I convinced my gym trainee to ditch the gym with me and have a margarita, on account of my birthday. Another coworker joined us. The three of us had some girltalk and strong margaritas at a local Mexican restaurant. I first dropped my car off at the carwash next door to the restaurant, so it was a productive lunch. My car was so heavily coated with dirt and dust that it looked an entirely different color from its “dark emerald pearl,” as the manufacturer named it.

I haven’t worked out at all this week. Yesterday, instead of going to jujitsu, I went to Cingular after work and bought myself a new Nokia flip phone. The 6102i is Nokia’s first flip phone authorized for sale in the US. I was up till 5am reading the instruction manual to get to know all its functions. It’s an amazing little phone. I felt bad for replacing my last Nokia phone, but it really was on its last leg. All my previous phones, I’ve replaced when there was nothing wrong with it, I just wanted a new phone. I love Nokias.

Tonight is my first bellydancing class, and after that, I’m gonna go pick up Mr. W and his “fishing” buddy from the airport. He sent me flowers on Monday, calling it my “birthday week,” and my birthday surprise, it turns out according to a flyer he made and emailed me so that I’d get it on Monday, is a day with him at Glen Ivy Hot Springs in Corona, where I’d been to with my friend Erin, but I’d never used the services there. It was expensive enough just to get in. But he’d booked me a 20 minute scrub and an 80 minute massage. =) My man’s the greatest.

Ooh, and since I insisted on not doing a birthday shindig at work this year, my bailiff gave me a card with a giftcard to Bed, Bath & Beyond and my reporter got me 2 nice photo frames, a red coral bracelet from Costa Rica (she was recently there on vacation), and a very cute maple photo flip display. I can’t wait to print out photos to remind me of what great people I have around me.

Mr. W called me yesterday as I was driving to meet my parents for dinner.

W: We haven’t caught any fish. It turns out we’re really sucky fishermen.
Me: Oh, that’s too bad. Was it just a bad fishing day? I mean, was anyone else catching fish?
W: It didn’t look like it. There were a bunch of orcas swimming through and I have about 70 photos of that. But the people here kept complaining about the orcas and saying they’re scaring the fish away. So I’m sorry, there may not be any fish to bring back home.
Me: That’s okay. WAIT a minute. Are you just setting it up so that if I wonder why your fish box is empty and you’re not bringing any fish home, you can say you already told me that there weren’t any fish to catch?
W: I knew you were going to say that. I saw your post about Brokeback Mountain and I read that to [his “fishing” partner]. And I talked to Madame, of Madame’s Manor. I told her that my girlfriend was looking at the website and she thinks we’re doing a Brokeback Mountain guy thing because of the pictures of the rooms that’s on the website, even tho that’s nothing like the place we’re staying in. Where are those rooms? And she took me on a tour to those rooms and they’re really really nice. She said, “Oh, and you can bring your girlfriend and stay here when you come back!”
Me: WAIT a minute. Are you just setting it up so if I do go to that bed & breakfast and wonder why you’re so familiar with the room, you can say it was because Madame showed you the room when you were thinking of bringing me there, and it wasn’t because you ACTUALLY stayed in there with [“fishing” partner]?
W: Ha, ha. I have photographic evidence of every place I’ve been to.

I wonder what a photo of his friend’s ass would look like.

I keep saying San Jose when in reality, the time spent in SJ was very short compared to the time spent in The City, i.e. San Francisco. Early Sunday morning, Diana and I drove to Brad’s house and got there punctually at 8:30a. I got to see his house, meet his beagle Chloe (who tricked me into bending down and petting her and then she knocked me over and jumped on me and gave me French kisses), and meet his roommates. Then he drove us to meet up with other athletic friends of Diana’s at Crissy Park near the Bay Bridge to go to Muir Woods and do a hike. We got to Crissy Park at 9:30, the agreed-upon time, and I marveled at how punctual everyone else was who all pulled up to the lot about the same time, despite the necessary detours made because a major street, Market, was closed for the Gay Pride Parade (SF is so colorful, and not just because of the rainbow-colored flags adorning the buildings). A group of 8 on-time Asian people! Unheard of!

The original plan was to do a 5-mile hike through Muir Woods down to Stinson Beach, hang out at the beach, and hike 5 miles back. Partway through the hike, however, we realized that it was taking too long, and Brad needed to get back in time for his volleyball game and I needed to catch a late flight.

So we did the shortened version: a 6 mile hike which had us tripping over tree roots, poking at nasty 6-inch banana slugs, falling on our bleeding palms. My calves are STILL sore.

At one point, the 8 of us were in a row winding around a narrow mountain path, and Brad suggested that we should all sing something. No one had any ideas on a song singable that we all know. I suggested Sir Mixalot’s Baby Got Back, but only 2 of us knew most of the words. So we trudged on in silence, until somewhere ahead of me, I heard the whistling of a tune… it was “Heigh-ho, heigh-ho, it’s off to work we go,” from Snow White and the 7 Dwarves.

Another funny thing to stick out in my head was when I was the last one in the row, and for some reason they’d all stopped. I stood there a second and thought, “What if I wasn’t looking up when they stopped?” So I took a large and sudden step forward, said loudly, “OOF!” and smacked into the back of Brad’s backpack. “WHAT the–?” he said and turned around really fast. I was laughing so hard I was doubled over, and he said, “You scared me!” And then turning back around to face the front again, he said, “Whatever, it’s YOUR camera in the backpack.” Oh yeah, that reminds me, Brad didn’t bring a backpack and I was using Diana’s rather large backpack, so he put his stuff in mine and gentlemanly offered to wear it. I was the only one without a backpack, and it was nice. Everyone else was dripping in sweat from the excess weight and material on their backs. I bet that’s gonna be the last time Brad uses someone else’s stuff to hold his bottle of Gatoraide.

Dwaine met me at the airport and we went back to his house, where my car was parked. He’d had a great weekend, too. At his house, we raised a glass of wine to great weekends with great friends to give us perspective about what life’s really about. And then he continued to drink a few more glasses…and a few more…while I sorted through some mail he had piling up and we told each other jokes (actually, “performed” jokes was more like it) in front of his lit fireplace…with the air conditioning on. At 3am, I drove home, marking the end of a weekend in which I never went to bed before 4am.

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I had Chinese restaurant dinner last nite with my parents for my mom’s bday. Yes, yes, her birthday is days before mine. I consider myself a belated 24th birthday present to her. My mom said that she bought 3 pairs of slippers for me. She’d called me Saturday morning when I was at Diana’s house to ask what shoe size I wore. Basically she saw that I was wearing beach flip flops when Mr. W and I last visited my parents, and did not like the huge height difference between me and Mr. W, so she took it upon herself to get me flip flops with some heel. She says that she got them for my birthday. Interesting. I haven’t seen them yet. And then she offered to do a banquet dinner to celebrate my 30th, have 2 tables in a nice Chinese restaurant. That’s just weird, it’s not like I’m turning 50 or getting married. Then she said she had a big 30th birthday banquet in Taiwan before we emigrated to the U.S.. Both my dad and I didn’t remember that. Of course, I was only 6 at the time so I may have thought it was a goodbye for us dinner. But a banquet just seems way too formal and ceremonial. And it seems too adult. “But I still FEEL like a kid,” I said to my mom. “I know, you are a kid,” she said. “That’s because you’re not married,” my dad said. I didn’t know that that’s another thing I have to sign over if I’m married — my youth.

A coworker was selling Gold Canyon Co. jar candles as a fundraiser for her sons’ boy scout troop, and dropped my 2 items off in my courtroom this morning. I took a whiff of the scent called Ginger Lime and was instantly taken back to 1982. I was 6, freshly in the country, running around in our first apartment in Rowland Heights. The apartment complex was owned by my aunt and uncle, and all 4 adults were cleaning it after the last renters moved out. There was some cleaner they were using, I believe it was something similar to the powdered Comet or Ajax, that smelled exactly like this candle. The scent makes me think of furry foamy brown carpet, shelving paper with designs of mushrooms (which my mom cut out and gave me as stickers to play with), paneled tinted mirrors covering one wall with gold splashes on them.

Heh, so 80s.

Ooh, and a tan stuffed bear half the size of my 6-year-old non-English-speaking self, which had been left behind in the 2-bedroom apartment and which my parents/aunt had washed for me and gave me. The bear’s fur got spikey and ruined with the washing, and they couldn’t comb it out to make it fluffy again, so my other aunt knitted a brown shirt that looks rather like a smock for my bear to wear, and cover as much spikey fur as possible.

Heh, so ghetto.

We slept in on Saturday morning at Diana’s house in San Jose. By that I mean that I got up at 7a, went back to sleep, got up again at 9:30a and brushed my teeth, moseyed on into Diana’s room at 10:30a where she was just opening her eyes, and we hung out and chatted and then got ready to start the day. It was kind of like the ol’ college days if we both had late classes.

We called up Mike and made plans to meet up in the early afternoon. Mike and Christi were busy packing for their 9-day trip to Hawaii and running out of time as they were flying out the next morning, so I was really happy they made some time for a pearl tea meet at a really cute little outdoor shopping plaza. It was a lot of fun watching Mike’s brain gears turn when Diana would say certain things. Nothing goes over his head. We caught up on everyone’s lives, hypothesized on human behavior, and laughed a lot.
me & Diana in the Club One locker room
After we separated, Diana and I went to her gym to change and get ready for the night’s festivities. I’d like to note that MAN, is her gym hoity toity. It’s not my casual ol’ 24 Hour Fitness, it’s the exclusive Club One.
me hovering over Jimmy & Sabrina at Circolo
Phil & Diana at Circolo
We jammed from there to Diana’s friend Phil’s house, and he drove us from there to dinner in San Franscisco’s Circolo restaurant, where we met up with Jimmy and Sabrina, already waiting for us there. Very nice place, very delicious food, very fashionable gay waiters. I had the spicy tuna tatare appetizer, Chilean sea bass w/sesame tempura veggies, and the most amazing peppermint ice cream cake dessert with a side of chocolate gelato. Yes, and a mint mojito. This place had a lot more crushed mint leaves that I keep sucking up through the straw, but I believe it was tastier than The Melting Pot’s mojito. Dinner was well worth the $67 a head it came out to. Poor Diana didn’t have dessert; she can’t stand minty stuff, and the peppermint cake was so minty I commented at dinner that it was like brushing my teeth. Everyone else agreed.
me & Diana at the 18 Mighty Mountain Warriors show
After dinner, Jimmy and Sabrina split to go watch The Lake House while Phil, Diana and I walked up the street to watch the Asian comedy troupe, 18 Mighty Mountain Warriors. Hilarious show. Lots of Asian “inside jokes.”
Phil, Diana & me lounging at Medjool
When the show was over, we met up with Jimmy and Sabrina again at a restaurant/lounge-turned-bar/club after hours, a middle-Eastern themed place called Medjool. I’m sorry if you guys think I look skanky; I figured that if I’m not gonna wear this in my 20s, I’m not gonna wear it in my 30s.
our clan at Medjool
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I can't believe we're almost 30.  We were 18 when we met at UCLA orientation, which felt like 6 years ago, not 12.

mint mojito at Melting Pot, with fondue utensils and rose petal
I’m here! In San Jose! Yes, I know it’s 1:20 in the morning. My flight got in perfectly punctually at 8:40pm. You know what I’ve never seen before upon entering an airplane? The first passenger I saw rounding the corner from the entry into the cabin, a corpulent woman in the first row on my right, sitting in the aisle seat, was breast feeding her infant. Now, this is Southwest Airlines, which means that there is no assigned seating. You get in and sit wherever you want. This woman apparently chose to sit front and center, knowing she was boarding very early on and that 90 passengers are going to board after her and walk past her, and popped out her left breast and stuck it into her baby. It was like a hidden camera show, and I bet every passenger looked twice, thinking, “She can’t be doing what I think she’s doing,” and then upon realizing she is indeed doing what we think she’s doing, we all tried to look away nonchalantly, as tho we’d never seen what she’s doing. I don’t have an opinion about women breast feeding in public, but if you’re going to make 90 strangers walk past you, can’t you use a breast pump and bottle feed the baby during the 45 minute flight?! Or at least wait until everyone’s seated so we don’t all have to file past you and avert our eyes. How inconsiderate. Yeah, yeah, I know it’s natural and beautiful, but if I had a boob exposed without a baby to justify its protrusion, I’d be arrested for indecent exposure.
main course at Melting Pot
Wow. I did not expect to rant that long about that, or to even rant about it at all. Must be the mojito. I had my first mint mojito ever today. Brad picked me up at the airport and we met up with Diana at The Melting Pot for dinner. While on the plane, I was reading about mojitos and I wondered why I’d never had one. It looks so refreshing! And indeed it was. The fondue was delish, too. The three of us shared a 2-people multi-course meal, and that was more than enough food. It started with an appetizer of breads, celery, cauliflower, to dip into a cheese and beer fondue. Then the main course, lobster, filet mignon, chicken, shrimp, pork, broccoli, potato, zucchini, mushroom, to dip into a broth fondue and then into various sauces. Finally, dessert: chocolate, marshmallow and oreo cookie fondue with flaming (blue flamed) Bacardi 151 rum, to dip with cheesecake, brownie squares, cookie-coated marshmallows, graham crackers, bananas, strawberries, pineapple. I’m sure I’m forgetting some stuff. The table, when we got there, was decorated with red rose petals (real) and a card with my name on it. The restaurant wrote me a birthday card! Thanks for my birthday dinner, Diana!
Diana & I
Brad & I

My judge just offered to recess the trial an hour early (ONE HOUR EARLY!) to accomodate me so that I could still leave early. Wow, that is so huge! He normally hates any delays in trial, works right up to the hour and a lot of times, past the hour, just to squeeze in any little time he could. He also has trial attorneys start earlier than what others feel is reasonable given the attorneys’ other court appearances in the mornings. An hour is really, really generous. Yay!

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