Tag Archives: friends

Reason #465 Why I Dislike Facebook

Inauguration of Mr. Lincoln, March 4, 1861 (LOC)
Inauguration of Mr. Lincoln, March 4, 1861 (LOC)

This is a rant. Not about the lack of privacy or the company deciding what I want to opt into. This is a rant on the way people use Facebook.

I’ve noticed a disturbing trend among my friends to rely on Facebook for the dissemination of important life news. It is a trend that I see beyond my friends, with Australia serving legal notices through the social site. But I am really just concerned with the posting of news from my friends. Continue reading Reason #465 Why I Dislike Facebook

Doorways and Meander

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=phnL5WeSrvQ]

This is the trailer for the independent film a friend of mine, Mo Shirazi, wrote, filmed, and directed. I haven’t seen Doorways and Meander in this incarnation, but you can come and see it with me if you happen to be in the Pomona, CA, area July 11, around 7pm. He’s screening it for free at dbs256 Gallery Wine Bar.

So if you’re in the area and want to check out a movie in its early stages, come and hang out there! I’ll be posting my thoughts after the screening, and I’m looking forward to what other people think!

Bookmark Doorways and Meander

It Is What It Is, or How to Annoy My Friend

The other night, I was chatting with my friend, and for reasons that must have made sense at the time, I said “it is what it is.”

I learned very quickly the ire this phrase brings forth in my friend when he adamantly scolded “Never use that phrase again!”

I don’t know about you, but one of the many reasons I could never be in an organized hierarchy, like the military, is because my first response to orders is to ask why while plotting how to repeat my offense. Or at the very least irk whoever is attempting to command me.

But since this was my friend, I decided to simply ask why before I began plotting.

His argument is that the phrase’s redundancy renders it meaningless. “Of course it is what it is,’ my friend said. ‘You don’t say the car is a car because what else would it be?”

And I can see his point. The phrase is tossed around to appear intelligent or deep (another of his points). But that isn’t how I use that phrase most often.

One of the ways I use the phrase is in affirmation of the trueness of something. I’ve found that often people and things do not always act in the way they are designed or intended to. People can be unspeakably horrible to one another and we call them inhuman. This would be un-true in my head.

More frequently I use the phrase as a sign of my resignation to events beyond my control. It’s a kind of reminder to myself that there are moments in life that I cannot control, so I need to not worry or stress out over them.

And maybe my use of the phrase is laziness or lack of creativity with spoken English (I am a writer and reader and not a speaker). But I find it meaningful, and really, that’s all that I care about. What else is language for but communication, and who else do I have to communicate with more often than myself?

So I’ll continue to use the phrase for myself, and I’ll smirk at the way it would annoy my friend. But I will probably be more hesitant when I utter it, because my friend’s point holds true – it is redundantly meaningless. Whether I use it intentionally around him will depend greatly on how mischievous I’m feeling in that moment.

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J.D. Salinger

I read today that J.D. Salinger died, and I could feel the sadness in my soul. About three seconds after, my phone chirped that I had a text message. My friend Kristiana wanted me to know about Salinger’s death.

We both read Salinger’s work around the same time when we were finishing our undergrad degrees in English Lit. She was reading some of his other works at the time, and I was finally getting around to reading The Catcher in the Rye. She had brought it up somewhere along the way, and the way she talked about it, I knew that I would probably enjoy reading it.

I loved the story.

Like some who’ve written about Salinger today, I can’t point to the exact reasons why I enjoyed Holden or the story he weaves. Thinking about it today, I think part of what I love about the story is the desire to hold onto life as it is; the desire for people to stop taking a persona for the moment and be who they are.

Salinger has intentionally kept himself separate from the rest of the world, and I know there were some who hadn’t realized he was still alive until he’d died. The rumor is that he never stopped writing, even though he quit publishing his work. There’s a part of me that hopes he left directions for publishing those works. I guess because I don’t want his talent and style to completely fade with him.

I know I’m not the only one writing about their experiences with Salinger’s work today. This loss is one shared by many, and many are writing to honor an author they admired. What better way to shareĀ  this moment?

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Disneyland line story

Back in October, several of my friends and I were at Disneyland on a weekend. If you haven’t been to Disneyland on an October weekend in the last few years, you need to know that these are busy times for Disneyland. They have the park decked out for fall and Halloween, and they have special Tick-or-Treat with the Disney characters for little kids. This makes it one of the times of the year that everyone seems to show up at the park. All these people make for very long lines for the big rides.

Knowing all of this, my friends and I still decided to brave Disneyland. Having a group makes the insane crowds more bearable. Sanity in numbers.

We went for 2 reasons: the special Halloween fireworks and Space Mountain. And we had a blast.

The line for Space Mountain was somewhere in the neighborhood of 2 hours, which would have been miserable alone. But since we were together, we came up with ways to pass the time that entertained us. I would like to think that we also succeeded in entertaining the people around us in line, but, realistically, we probably only managed to annoy those who could hear us.

Since we had quite a bit of time on our hands, we opted to write the story round-robin, one word at a time. There were no other rules than each person had to provide the next word. The story ended up nearly coherent and completely ridiculous. But it was fun to make, and an interesting demonstration of the way that authors/editors/readers blend together. I’ve pasted the story below as written for you to read now that you have the context. And I made sure to get permission from all the authors. Enjoy!

Once in time there was a frog prince reigning he jumped carelessly into oncomming yaks whereunto he laughed uncontrollably annoyingly and became a terrible terrorist. Therefore, he exploded all up and everywhere splattered himself. The next morninging, marigold awoke astonished at all the carnage within her soup when suddenly jersten frog alarmingly fell into space cows flailing controllably. Then udders were climbing nowhere important untill bloody cows quiantly uttered “moooo.” The flawless marigold imploded colorfully! Remarkably this was never uncommon within jerstins dreams? But, convincingly nobody knew that marigold was nonexistent. Shehulk bore us septuplets while singing. Names: Chester Albert Fairfield, Willingtonsworth Saint, Flubber, Cauliflower jones, Xanadu Zee Willber, Colon, Supercalifragilisticsexpealladocious (the) Halifax Shitzbergger. Moreover, several safely committed flowers to the insanitorium.

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Lunch with friends

I had lunch today with a group of friends who I know from very different places, but through a sort of circumstances that can only happen in real life, they all over lapped and it resulted in a good lunch with lots of laughter.

Earlier this week a couple of my friends who are married to each other invited me to lunch with them. They are also friends with my cousin, and she was going to be there. (My friends have been friends with my cousin since before I met them, and I became friends with them in circumstances not including my cousin) We’ve all hung out before so this part was completely normal.

Well my friend works with one of my friends from college, so when she and her husband invited me, I asked if my friend from college could come too.

So there were 5 of us for lunch. My friends who are married, my cousin, my friend from college, and me. And there were some introductions, and the occasional filling in that occurs when friends spend time and there are others around who were not part of original moments.

While we were eating, I realized that these are the moments I love. When my friends all get to meet each other and spend time together and become acquaintances. It’s really the only reason why I try to throw parties. In my head, all my friends know each other, so I do my best to have them all meet. It makes the stories I tell better when the friends listening at least vaguely know who I’m talking about.

Plus, I find my friends interesting, so I think that more people should know them. The only way I really know how to accomplish this goal currently is to introduce them to each other. And today, because I had two friends in 1 office, I got to introduce some more of my friends to each other.

Today was a good day.

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Echoes

Maybe it’s that I’m in a transitional phase in my life, but I’ve been noticing the echoes around me quite a bit recently.

No, I can’t see sound waves (though that would be pretty nifty).

I’ve been seeing the echoes of people that I have moved to the outer realms of my life. Yes, some of them are dead, but most of them have simply moved some distance away. Some have even moved to the other side of the world. And some are simply on vacation…

Yet each of the people that I once saw on a very regular basis (some were daily interactions), despite the physical distance, have left a very distinct echo in my life.

I’m often crap at recognizing the echoes on a regular basis, and some echoes I will miss for months, but each echo, when I see it, opens the wound of the distance. I pause to remember; I pause to celebrate; I occasionally pause to shed a tear.

And though these moments where I embrace the echoes cause me pain, I do not discourage them. Because these moments help me to connect again, for even the most fleeting of times, with people who have helped shape me into me. And these echoes provide a way for me to remember and in remembering express gratitude.

So if I once saw you frequently, if I once shared with you my dreams, if I will talk with you again, if you have passed beyond all means of contact, know this: I am grateful for the echo you have left because you resonated with me for a time, and, in that resonance, you helped me find my current tone.

Amazing Writing

I have several friends who are much better and more consistent at blogging than I am. I love reading what they write because they are insightful, articulate, entertaining, informative and passionate pieces.

I hope they don’t mind that I’m bragging about them…

If you haven’t had the pleasure of reading their work, take a minute and check out these blogs:

Then We Came to the Blog

Laowai Chinese

Crews Family

Creative People

I was thinking today about how I occasionally trust people based on their creative works. I have a lot of friends that are very creative, and I am finding that if I see their work as honest, I trust them more. This happens even when I am just getting to know the person and we’re becoming friends. This is a very funny observation particularly since I tend not to trust the speakers of stories. So even though I don’t necessarily trust the characters speaking in a work, I trust the author as my friend. And I am finding that some of this friendship trust comes from what I can see of them in their works.

I guess I’m just a bundle of contradictions… I’m not that surprised.