Sunday, January 27, 2008

Mom's Year

This year is going to be the Year of the Rat. I visited the folks this past weekend in Little Saigon to check out the Tết festivities. The market was already congested with local and visiting Vietnamese families (a lot of my relatives are coming into town starting this weekend and there'll be a new addition to the family(!), I'll explain in another post). There was an air of excitement, it was absolutely festive. Tết is a time of excess. I love this time of year. It gets super busy the week before Tết. People are stacking up on food, fruit, candy, flowers, trinkets and firecrackers in anticipation for the holiday.

I remember as a child, I didn't have to go to school on Tết. It was my parents' idea. So cool. And I couldn't wait to get those red envelopes. No school and you are rewarded with money? WTF? That's like the ultimate as a kid. Total dream. These days, it's the other way around now that I'm an "adult." Now I have to save up months in advance to give to the little kiddies. They expect a lot these days.

Vietnamese take great care to start the New Year out just right which means wearing new clothes, having heaps of food at home, getting rid of old debts, ill feelings, etc... My mom said I can't even clean as that's bad luck; I'll be sweeping out any good luck. This will be very hard for me to do since I love to clean. It's a compulsion of mine. Luckily, I just cleaned my place so it'll be good until after Tet. Goodness.

The flower market gets bigger with each year. There's even going to be parade on Bolsa Avenue this New Year! Little Saigon is all you need during this time of the year. It's even better than being in Vietnam. I was gorging on everything; the food, incense, the flowers, the treats, the colors, the culture, the tradition. I love it so.

Yum yum rambutan. Yum yum muffin top.

Yum yum banh beo. The best may be found at Quan Hy.

Updated, these one dimensional paper clothes have gotten more stylish and modern; cool frames, mobile phones, flashy trainers... People burn these paper clothes as an offering to the dead so they too can celebrate with new duds for the New Year.

My family is going to attend this big cultural event NYE and my mom suggested I wear an áo dài. I'm down with that but really can't fit in any of my old ones so I was thinking of getting a new dress. Somehow I really can't really see myself wearing any one of these on the mannequins. I might have to try to lose weight so I can squeeze into an old one from like a decade ago. These are a bit hideous no? Could I rock it?

Went in for a spontaneous haircut. Told the lady to just chop it all off. Who cares. It'll grow back. Out with the old, in with the new.

Tunes I've been digging this past month.
1. Destroyer's Trouble in Dreams (OMFG, it's awesome. MY FAVORITE)
2. The Magnetic Fields' Distortion (I love Steven Merritt, so much beauty can be found through the noise.)
3. The Explorers Club's Freedom Wind (This is as pure pop as it gets and I love me some good pop music.)
4. Vampire Weekend, s/t (they're ready for grad school now.)

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Give Up

On the most depressing day of the year.... I'll be playing the saddest songs...
TUESDAY, January 15th




sink into sorrow again with your selectors…

Michael Stock
Jimmy Tamborello
Sam Cooper
Ben Barnes
Anh Do
+ other sad sounding souls

inside = tear soaked slow dancing, all-night long
patio = a deeply depressing sound session

FREE / 21+ / 9pm-2am

La Cita
336 S Hill St, Downtown
Los Angeles, CA 90013

...stop dancing & cry then start slowly dancing again...

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Just me and my BB

Tonight, I was told that I should just date my Blackberry as I was so preoccupied customizing my new Curve during Project Runway and well, I didn't really pay attention to the show or anyone else. I sat still and did not join in dissing/praising the contestants and their (un)well crafted garments.

I love my BB. I thought about getting the iPhone but I'm just not ready yet... It's hard to let a good thing go and there's no reason to right now. Not when one is deeply addicted to bbm. I've had relationships and friendships flourish and crumble due to this... It's a gift that keeps on giving.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Six ways, one way, half a dozen the other...

Four things I've noticed since the New Year:

1. I like being the fifth wheel. It's a new experience to be by myself amongst two other couples. I'm digging it. I think I get more attention that way anyways...

2. I think I like coffee again. I've had 3 different kinds of prepared coffee in the last 24 hours! It's made me feel really jittery in a good way. It's never (ever) gonna replace my eternal worship for tea but it's comforting on rainy days.

3. I'm still loving Bonnie 'Prince' Billy. I love his new covers record, especially this song.

4. I just started getting into watching DVDs (since I got an all region/all format dvd player). I know, I'm really behind modern day in this regard; I'm usually more on top of it but somehow... I highly recommend this Scott Walker dvd.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Fondue & Light Fare

So I don't know how it happened so last minute but I threw an intimate NYE soiree at my new pad. There was fondue and light fare and I even threw some of the Seasonal Blues in there! Seriously, it wasn't that bad. It was my first party and luckily for the guests, it didn't end in tears. Thanks to Easy for suggesting it (the one who also suggested this blog fyi). I found out capacity was 24, a lot more than I expected.

[Thanks Ollie for the mix cd and Hack Man. I didn't know we share a love for The Pastels.]

It doesn't get any better than both Yaos in one place.

Witty and Waxman, new couple alert!

Stacy with the Tibetan Singing Gong my folks got me for Xmas.

70s soft rock cardy duo

ds & Jen A. made an appearance even though they were both under the weather. Thank you very much.

It wouldn't be a party without TED.

This wasn't really taken on NYE but it sure felt like it. My bestest high school friends reunited for one night last week, Phuong and Kristen. Super rare, super super.

Feel the New Beat

I don't do resolutions. They are trifling, stagnant, meaningless. It's about what you do, not what you say. It helps if you can do both at once but that rarely happens.

You already know what I've been into last year so there's no need to do a top 10 best shows/best songs/best art/best books/best games/best films/best eats/best places/best friends etc...

But when I think of last year, here's what I remember:
soz, california, geriatric, cuddle up, delicious, acoustic mainlines, mint and ginger, seasonal blues, and yum yum, piggy's bum