notable quotables II

"I feel like I'm listening to robots jumping on a trampoline."
-Nate Dawg describing Hot Chip's "Ready for the Floor"

"Jessie, I'm not stressed. I don't give a shit. It's done...but next semester, I'm going to sit in the front row of classes, take notes, and not fall asleep!!!! I'm going to do it!"

-drunken Alex after finals

"Who the fuck has finals on Sunday?"

-everyone who doesn't go to school with me

"I don't like people enough."
-Baishi complaining about not hanging out with enough people, but realizing...

"Why the long face?"
-Baishi's pun about my facial structure. go figure.

almost back to this place.


notable quotables

"jessie, if china takes over the world, can i come live with you?"
-nicole g.

"oral histories are just an excuse to get together with people you admire without it being creepy"
-gordon mantler + class

"you think i'm so dumb, jessie. i hear it in your voice"
- implied by adam sap.

(looking through photos) "oh my god! JC is indie!?"
- adam sap take two.

"i've always wanted to be indie, but i thought you had to be skinny!!"
- dj

(note: i'm officially the dumbest person ever. i just figured out today how to change the font size and color of text. all i had to do was click "compose" instead of "html" on blogger. hence, my experimentation with today's post. it's rocking my world. congrats, jessie tang)


Common Courtesy

For the most part, I try to stay as friendly as possible with customer service personnel. I really do. I say "thank you" a lot, I attempt to ooze every last bit of reluctant warmth I have into my phone conversation. I even wish them a good day back.
That being said, I hate it when Travelocity/Delta screws up my flight. yet again. forcing me to stay on the phone with them for an unnecessary half hour.
Why would they change my flight from something that made sense to something that didn't make sense? How can I depart Salt Lake at 4:30 p.m. and get to Atlanta at 10:00 p.m. when the connection flight in Atlanta leaves at 7:00 p.m.? Whyyyyyy?
Fortunately, the customer service guy on the phone from (you guessed it) India was super friendly. But at one point, I caught myself getting frustrated and basically asking them why the F--- they would change a correct flight to an incorrect flight. He then promptly reminded me that it was Delta who changed it, not Travelocity, and he was only here to facilitate me.
That made me feel really bad. Even though I know it's not the poor guy on the other line's fault that my flight got messed up, I held him personally accountable. I latched onto him as my emblem of despair. In my mind, he was the exact person who flung this entropy at me. Oops.
This was a friendly reminder to myself of the fact that I should not hold grudges against customer service representatives because really, they had nothing to do with the shitty service their--or other--companies provide. They are just the one responsible for fixing all the damn problems.
My apologizes, guy in India. I hope you're reading this.


P/C 2

Lovely weather--a tad chilly. Comfortable. Sun warming my face.
Almost Thanksgiving--the long haul is almost over.

Fires in Diamond Bar--pray for everyone's safety and health.
Sleeping at 6 a.m.--my new bed time? Gosh I hope not.

My love for long dashes--simply wonderful.

Currently listening to: Sia "Electric Bird" && Culture Reject "Beach"


Pros & Cons

As I told JChorng the other day, I'm going to start (somewhat) daily blog updates with a list of pros and cons. At first it was going to be two pros and one con, but this week is sucking so much it should just be all cons.

-Officially lactose intolerant. Can't believe 90 to 100 percent of Asian-Americans are. "Common symptoms, which range from mild to severe, include nausea, cramps, bloating, gas, and diarrhea." Let's just say I experienced four out of five of those symptoms. Couldn't go to bed. Woke up queasy. I can't believe Ben&Jerrys and brie would do this to me!! I love cheese...
-Failed PubPol. More of a disappointment to myself more than anything else.
-Overwhelmed. Seriously considered dropping out of school yesterday. Legit.
-Missing the fam&&friends.

Pros (trying my hardest to dig for them):
-A wonderful weekend behind me. Thanksgiving ahead.
-It's Wed! Getting over the hump...
-Sister sent me the cutest e-mail. Apparently, middle school in the 21st century is too different that I won't be able to understand it. Fact: I went to middle school in the 21st century. My sister has got it wrong!! But I guess I didn't see kids smoking in the bathroom or making out at parties, so she wins.
-Wonderful friends (JAxt, LPowers, VLella) who have got my back all the time.

Best part of 11/11: Finding out Jordan doesn't type with his thumbs. New nickname: JAxt, the thumbless typing boy wonder.

Eno River. 11/8/08


Drip Drop

Listening to Rain (Bishop Allen)

Courtesy of JAxt for introducing me to them. I really like them and will be seeing them next weekend. Got to interview Justin Rice a couple days ago. The interview log will be up shortly on the recess blog. But this song is very fitting for the weather and of...life I suppose.

oh let the rain fall down
and wash this world away
oh let the sky be grey
cause if its ever gonna get any better
its gotta get worse for a day



1) Just came back from D.C. It was quite enjoyable albeit cramped sleeplessness, but that was also an experience in and of itself. We performed at a couple different homeless shelters, and people were receptive to our songs and message.
As for the downtime, the core topic of the trip revolved around relationships because two of the girls in the group were going through heartache. That really got my mind spinning about tons of stuff, stuff that make me more more affirmed and similarly weary. Some comments were made in a tone that resonated with why I'm turned off by Christianity sometimes. Condescending, one-sided, closed. It extended too far into uncomfortable territory to which I kept my mouth shut for the most part. I generally give people the respect of listening to their ideas, but it is unfortunate when that same is not reciprocated because they are too stuck to think otherwise. This was probably why I wasn't feeling the best upon returning from the trip, but all is well now. I was just slightly baffled.

2) On a more superficial note, I have been cleaning my room, and I can't believe how much clothes I have. I'm bleeding a little inside. I could probably go two to three months without wearing a new top, a month or two without recycling bottoms...it's basically torturing me as to why I still feel the need to shop. shoot me please.

3) Bike riding is fun...when one is not out of shape. Lesson learned: I need to to exercise more. Riding to work should not make me out of breath.




an acoustic version of the song that is worth checking out. precious.

sorry for the blog hiatus. life is just hectic right now, but in a good way.
can't help but keep myself busy.


It's all good in the hood

Just woke up. Opened the window next to my bed. Weather is brisk.
Portland is definitely a change of pace from NY.
Can't believe my summer is coming to a close, but I can't say it hasn't been good.
I feel like too much has happened since the last post, but I'll try my best to fill in the gaps.
currently: playing with my little cousins.
next post: coney island, siren, etc.
song tribute to alex beutel because it's what he's into: Dirty Sanchez - Fucking On The Dance Floor



recap: hung out with the infamous alice finally. and by infamous, i mean one of the sweetest people i've ever met. v, you did well on this one. our blind date went outrageously well.

ate some sushi. the owner/manager of the restaurant was cantonese. whipped out my bilingual skills to impress...him. he went on this rant about how the world has too many issues, but you can't blame them on one particular group or person.
alice's response to him: "but sometimes, you can..." that made me laugh.

went to see deerhoof. metropolic ensemble preceded them, and the entire time it was as if i were in a futuristic video game, the aliens were coming, and space odyssey was dawning upon us. plus, the shrieking noises just sucked.

and then...deerhoof. let me just say that they are worth seeing live. it makes me appreciate their music that much more. the drummer is a true prodigy--he played so hard the drum sticks broke at one point. the dissonance and tension felt so tangible and the energy built up made me want to go rock out with all the other long-haired stoners in the front.
the lead singer really is a small japanese lady. too cute for words. killed me every time she jumped up and did this kick move.
sidenote: watching people bob their heads in unison was a awwwwesome.

plans for today: siren. then whatever. stoked.

Metropolis Ensemble.

(they weren't that great)

(haha, i dont' think she'd like this photo)

prospect park

deerhoof, take one.

the drummer has trouble speaking. he spoke. like this. and paused. because he couldn't. put. his thoughts. together. but he's just so caught up with the drumming that it didn't really matter. went to add to their persona.

lalalalalala. incomprehensible english and japanese.


Meet me, meet me, over the mountain
Meet me, meet me, under the ocean
Cry out, cry out

(The Perfect Me)


Get in the sunrise, I want to get in the sunrise

mmmmmmmmm, yeasayer.
"Middle Eastern-psych-snap-gospel"

why won't i be here when they come.


The Natives Will Get It

Direct quote from the loony maintenance man today (we'll call him Bob). Bob called the Russians students at the graduate institute that I work at "debutantes walking around with their cupcakes." Bob was frustrated by the mess they made today. Bob thought they should eat their cupcakes near the dirt. Bob was talking to himself. Bob also said...
"The Natives Will Get It."

sidenote: I'm quite positive he told me last week, "If you were a native, you would wear your shoes."
fact: I had my flip flops next to me.
fact: I was sitting at my desk.
fact: I slipped them off because I was sitting.
fact: he had also said I was a horrible person at some point because of the shoe incident.
question: I don't look like a native?
conclusion: He thinks I'm "foreign," with no notions of American values and courtesy. Shame on me.
further conclusion: He made a racist comment.

But since he is a little off-the-wall, I'll forgive him.

I forgive you Bob. Thanks for making my days here so entertaining.


what i do at work.

Office Conversation, 1

Girl: "I'm so sad I can't buy clothes here for two dollars."
B: "It's New York."
G: "I can get it for $2 in Georgia!"
B: "But you don't go to Georgia that often."
G: "I don't care! I'm just saying."
B: "Yeah, you're a bargain hunter. Me too, but it's hard to find clothes in my size."
G: "You could find stuff at Ross"
B: "You want to take me shopping one day?"
G: "No, because you're a man and I'm a woman."
B: "So we can't go shopping together?"
G: "No."
B: "So if we were girl friends, you would take me shopping?"
G: "Maybe."
B: "I don't understand."
G: "You're a guy and I'm a woman. Guys should pay for everything. That's why you work."
B: "No...why do guys make money? To provide for their families."
G: "Yeah. That's true."
B: "But I'm not family. I'm just a friend."
G: "Still. Why do you think you drive a BMW?"
B: "Because..."
G: "Because you want to impress the ladies. That's it."
same G: "It looks like you party a lot."
same B: "Why do you say that? You're so judgmental."
G: "It looks like you party in Brooklyn."
B: "Why do you say that?"
G: "You just have that look."
B: "Actually, I don't. Just because I live in Brooklyn, doesn't mean I party there. I actually don't party anymore...I go to a lot of networking events."
G: "Ughhhhhh, don't use that term with me. I hate it."
B: "What? Networking events?"
G: "Yes."
B: "Fine...events."


I know my ABCs, part II

L is for love. Ah yes, the dreaded four-letter word that my friends and I always inevitably start talking about when sad/depressed/hopelessly romantic (basically, all the time). However, I would like to speak of L-O-V-E in a different sense right now.
For example, my love for the dance persuasion. My love for drunken dribble. My love for horrible Borat impressions that I left in SoCal (thank goodness for everyone). My love for late-night coffee. My love for Nine Stories. My love for the Hipsters, both in a loathing yet embracing sense. My love for the comfortable spinning and lulling that comes with drinking, when I rest my head and feel thoughts dancing because my body is too tired to do the dancing itself.

M is for Money. Fuck not having money. Worst of all, Fuck having a slight amount of money in the bank and fooling myself into thinking I HAVE money (when I don't). Fuck credit cards and how much a few swipes add up; internships that don't pay; college tuition that is beyond my control; the driving force wedging happiness and satisfaction further and further away.

N is for the things I'm excited about that are New. New York. the New Yorker. New people. New clothes. New blog entries. New friends on facebook. New music. New relationships with People. New scabs. New favorite phrases.

O is for wanting to be Old. True, the grass is always greener on the other side and I'm going to want to be 20 once I hit 27, but for now I don't see much use in being in this lame passover phase. Yeah, college is fun...but the "real world" is funner, in theory. 19 is great, but 22 is greater.

P is for Patience. Wish I had more of it, and I'm starting to respect people who have it (Elly would get this one...)

Q is for the worst letter to have in Scrabbulous.

R is for rambling, because I do so much of it, and people somehow can stand it.

S is for symbolism. Do you not agree that everything is symbolic in nature, one way or another? If one is true to their intentions, everything they do, say, think reflects those desires. Hence symbolic. Hence me reading into everything even though I tell people not to read into everything I do. But that could be symbolic of my personality...you decide.

T is for Tang. For those that don't know, I'm actually supposed to be Jessie Chen. So glad it isn't because I would be even more common on facebook. Tang is way cooler anyways, for the reason that I get cooler nicknames. The appeal probably ends there.

U is for Urban. It wins over Southern hospitality, over the Suburbs, over...the not-Urban.
C'mon, Urban Outfitters. Urban Dictionary. Urban Legends. Only the best things in life are worthy of being Urban.

V is for visceral. A word I love because it sounds great. I want to be more visceral, and I want to be less visceral, all at the same time. Hopefully that makes sense.

W is for Webster Hall. The four-story dances. The Friday-night Amateur Strip Tease. The old creeps that lurk in the dark and take any opportunity they get to flash that priceless, pedophile smile. The trance music that made me take off my shoes and jump around. The discovery that Elly and I have the same taste in guys and are one-in-the-same in too many ways. The boy in stripes. The boy in plaid. The cheap-ass $4 shots drunken from plastic cups I use during Communion (a little blasphemous).

X is for Xtreme. I would like to live life to the Xtreme.

Y is yummy. Yummy $42 lunches. Yummy Asian fusion...I can't get enough of it here. Yummy coffee. Yummy lindor truffles. Yummy is a yummy word. Now say that 10 times fast. Now I feel like having gummy bears.

Z is for the Zoo. Life is a zoo and I'm just peering into each cage, figuring out whether I like the lions or the parrots more.


So apparently...

I need to write in a more academic tone.

Only 8% of the world's energy reserves are owned by international energy companies. The other 80% are owned by national governments and national corporations. The United States is sincerely and utterly fucked.

Attempting to concentrate for five hours straight is incredibly difficult.

Yesterday was a blessing in disguise. Love my friends.



I know my ABCs, part I

A is for academia and all of its lovely theoretical abstractions, where one sentence is supposed to be enough to preface all the chauvinistic BS contradictions that follow. That one sentence doesn't make the work anymore thoughtful or qualified.

B is for bathroom. Every time I step foot into a bathroom in NYC, I think to myself:
"Eight Million People Might Have Passed Through Here." Which leads me to think about

Contracting a plethora of unwanted STDs.

D is for my constant state of disillusionment as to waking up every morning and remembering I'm in NYC and that I'm having the time of my life.

E is for the elevators. The elevators at 92nd St Y (my home for the summer) are incredibly slow. The elevators in the subway are incredibly stank and wreak of urine. The Elevator Song is quite possibly the lamest thing created.

F is for facts. I love facts. I've been taking in a lot of facts this summer and here are a few from my readings.
Fact: 45% of the EU's budget is spent in agriculture, mostly payments to farmers. That's a $120 billion agriculture subsidy. That's sad.
Fact: America is a great place to get rich. Ratio between the earnings of a top tier American CEO and the average joe at a manufacturing company is 475:1. WTF.
Fact: Oxford commas are legit. I'm starting to like them. Sorry VW.

G is for golf and how 60 year-old-men should not try to pick up girls with the topic of golf because mentioning tiger woods and an invitation to drink wine in the same sentence just doesn't seem right.

H is for how I wish it were Hot. and not cold. and rainy. and not miserable.

I is for Ice Cream. FYI, NY has both Pink Berry and Yogurtlands now. Tasti-Ds is going to run out of business. Hip Hip Hooray for Globalization!

J is for June, Jessie, Juice and all the other wonderful things in life. Ha, shameless self promotion. P.S. It's my mom's birthday!

K is for Karaoke. Sad to say, but I think Journey's "Don't Stop Believing" is going to haunt me for the rest of my life, no matter where I am. Could of belted out Clumsy, Baish, but the American Idol-wannabes took too damn long.



Who Gives A Fuck About the Oxford Comma? Clearly, the kids who sat through a thunderstorm.

photos are out of order, but it goes as follows:
nice day at park. pictures at the pond, baishi with alice & friends, real lady statue.
crowded at the park. oh shit, rain at the park.
more rain. wetness. lots of wetness. no umbrella. baishi strips.
(note: in the large crowd photos, you can spot me and baishi in the distance...we purposely did this to create the allusion to Where's Waldo. Find us.)
running in the rain with the mob. crossing the stress with the mob.
rain dies down. we're still wet.

the result: unforgettable day on how our quest to watch Kid Sister and Vampire Weekend took an unexpected turn toward chaos, drippiness, and some lovely pictures.