follow-up to a rant

This is a follow-up to the last ranty post.  I’ve been wanting to write it for a few days, but I was without my macbook for over a week and I finally have it back (yay!).

I was so aggravated by that HP article that I just fired off a post in haste and missed saying a lot of what I really wanted to say.  I so appreciate the comments.  A special thanks to Matthew for linking back to the post.

It wasn’t so much the actual 20 items themselves that pissed me off so much, but the laziness of the author.  As I mentioned in the comments section, I felt that it was terribly lazy of the author to compile the list that he or she did.  I don’t care if people put together lists – hell, I do it all the time.  But if you are going to publish an article on a major website that is going to have a large readership, then you better do some due diligence and put some effort into it and not produce a piece of doody.  The author did not post his or her name and one commenter on HP suggested that possibly the author was embarrassed to attach their name to something so asinine.  I tend to agree with that.

A better effort could have been made to compile a valid list of things that an unmarried person would not understand.  Such as the feeling of signing your marriage license – elation to marrying your love or dread of entering into a legally binding contract or apathy towards a relationship which has a 50/50 chance of working out.  Or any combination of those.  Those feelings I wouldn’t understand.

But aside from things associated with a wedding or being legally bound to another, I don’t know what there is about marriage that an unmarried, but serious, living together couple wouldn’t understand.  I’d argue that couples living together and/or with children understand what it’s like to be married, without being married.  The everyday, living together stuff – good and bad – is not necessarily reserved for married couples only.   To the married folks out there: what is there about marriage that I totally would not understand?  I’m not trying to be an asshole (at least not now) and I really would like to know.  Please enlighten me.

As for the whole “you would only understand if you’re ___” nonsense…it is usually a load of crap.  I know we’ve all said something similar.  I sure have.  But there’s that old adage about walking in someone else’s shoes that rings true.  You really wouldn’t know unless you walk in that individual’s shoes.

If I were to say, “you would only understand what it’s like being Asian if you’re Asian,” well, no, that’s ridiculous.  I understand my experiences being Asian.  I don’t fully understand the plight of all Asians worldwide.  I couldn’t even begin to completely understand a fraction of what Asians on the other side of the world or even in my apartment building deal with, nor would any of them fully understand what I go through.

Everyone is different with different experiences.  We shouldn’t generalize a population.

Anyway, I just wanted to elaborate beyond the original rant what I thought of the article and its subject matter.

 

mid-week rants

Oh hey, I’m back!  Well, with a new type of post…a mid-week rant!  Aren’t you lucky!

Earlier this week, Huffington Post had an article, “20 Things Only Married People Will Understand,” that was published on 11/18/13.  Many of you may have already read it.  I was a few days late in the game of seeing it, but it was posted in the Weddings section, so come on, really, why would I have seen it?  I found it after I saw others voice their objections to the article on Twitter.

There are so many ways this article and list incensed me.  Beginning with the first two sentences: “There are certain things in life you can’t fully understand until you’ve been through them yourself. And marriage is definitely one of those things.”  Exsqueeze me?  Oh, I’m sorry, I’ve been living under a rock and have never been exposed to married couples.  I haven’t ever been around married family members, married neighbors, married friends, married coworkers, married fricken strangers on the street, etc.  Nor have I ever talked to any married person about their marriage.  I have NO idea what marriage is like.  I can’t fully understand marriage because I’ve never been married.  Oh, please.  Having been married only gives you better insight to your marriage, not the institution of marriage as a whole.  And even that’s not guaranteed.

Then there’s the list itself, which is supposedly compiled from HP’s readers.  Now I get that it wasn’t one person listing out these tidbits and that they came from a variety of people.  What is so outrageous is that the author who culled the list believes that only married people can relate to the 20 gems he or she chose.  The majority of the list is not solely reserved for married people at all.  Having had or been in any variety of relationships could have you reading each and agreeing or understanding.  Not to mention possessing a little bit of compassion and empathy, and uh, maybe just being a human being, and you could get it.

The first item talked about how monogamy may be boring, but it’s so much more fulfilling than being single.  I think my head actually exploded at this.  This is making assumptions, some insufferable.  That marriage =  monogamy.  That monogamy = boring.  That being single = unfulfilling.  Oh, OK.  The article got me there.  I am single and therefore, my life couldn’t possibly be fulfilling.  Only marriage can solve that for me.  Fucking please.

A few items talked about how you can simultaneously love and be utterly annoyed or angry with or dislike someone at the same time.  This is supposed to only apply to married couples?  Umm, how about towards family members?  Friends?  There have been plenty of times I’ve loved someone, but not really liked them at the same time and I’m not married.  Whoa there!  How did that happen?

How about the little gold nugget of being able to forgive and move on?  I’ve apparently been in the wrong my whole life and failed to understand that forgiveness only occurs in marriage.  Oops.  But hey, on the bright side, I don’t have to dole out any forgiveness until I’m married.  So, kiss my ass,  I forgive no one!

Then there’s companionship meaning more than sex.  I wouldn’t know anything about that, you know, being a pet owner that doesn’t have sex with their pet.  Or from hanging out with friends and family with whom I do not have the sex.

What about the concept of “forever”?  Hmm, “forever”?  I’m single, nope, never heard of that.  What is it?  Divorce lawyers can attest that fifty percent of married couples don’t know what it is either.  At least I’m not alone in my ignorance.

“Picking your battles wisely” or sometimes having to choose between being right or having peace – I’m pretty sure this is not exclusive to marriage.  I’ve had to let things go or waive being right in order the keep the peace.  And I’d suggest that anyone who deals with children knows well how to pick their battles wisely.

Someone mentioned the need for space being normal and necessary.  If there is anything I do know, it would be THIS.  I understand the need for space.  Give it to me and give me a lot of it.

How about marriage being great, but it’s hard work.  Well, duh?  But you know what also can be really great, but hard work?  A lot of things!  Cooking a whole Thanksgiving dinner by yourself.  Training for a marathon.  Raising kids.  Holding a job.  The list is endless and you don’t need to be married for many of them.

There’s the romantic who ponied up with “true love transcends everything else”.  Aww, how fucking sweet.  Because only married couples experience “true love”.  It’s like some crazy conservative Christian wrote that…”there’s no such thing as true love outside of the sanctity of marriage!”  Bitch, don’t even go there.

And you know, only married people understand the real definition of commitment.  Well, according to the Oxford Dictionary, it is a noun and there are two definitions: 1. the state or quality of being dedicated to a cause, activity, etc. and 2. (usually commitments) an engagement or obligation that restricts freedom of action.  Given that I can read and comprehend basic sentences, I’d say that I understand the real definition of commitment.

Someone offered up that open bathroom doors are something to get used to.  Umm, OK, I don’t get this.  But I will never get this.  Even if I am one day married, I will never agree to an open bathroom door policy.  NEVER.

And lastly, marriage is nothing like dating.  I’m pretty sure I understand the difference between the two.  I think a lot of people do, married or not.  That’s why one is called “marriage” and the other, “dating”.  Thanks for the heads-up, Captain Obvi.

eurotrip part quatre

Aaannnnnnnd more photos!  (really this is me being too lazy to write)

Les Catacombes
(Roughly 6 million bodies are buried in this ossuary beneath Paris.  Signs at the entrance warn against small children or those with a nervous disposition entering.)

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We waited about 45 minutes to get in, as they only allow 250 people at a time inside. It’s a 2K walking tour underneath Paris.

A worker named Décure carved this sculpture of Port-Mahon into the stone from memory - Uhh-may-zing

Workers carved this out of the stone.

The other side of Décure's carving

The other side of the carving

A worker named Décure carved this sculpture of Port-Mahon into the stone from memory - Uhh-may-zing

A worker named Décure carved this sculpture of Port-Mahon into the stone from memory – Uhh-may-zing

The quarryman's footbath contained crystal clear water that was used to mix cement

The quarryman’s footbath contained crystal clear water that was used to mix cement

Impressive tunnels

Impressive tunnels (I don’t know this couple.  Grrrrr, they ruined my shot!)

Oh, no!  I'm a little scared!  The sign reads "Stop! This is the empire of death!"

Oh, no! I’m a little scared! The sign reads “Stop! This is the empire of death!”

Err, a whole lotta French that I can't read.

Err, a whole lotta French that I can’t read.

First sighting of bones!  Not as creepy as I thought it'd be

First sighting of bones! Not as creepy as I thought it’d be.

We weren't allowed to use a flash, so many pictures came out blurry because I can't hold a camera that steady while the shutter remains open for what feels like 5 minutes.

We weren’t allowed to use a flash, so many pictures came out blurry because I can’t hold a camera that steady while the shutter remains open for what feels like 5 minutes.

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"Smile".  One of the guards/workers in the tunnels was kind enough to point out the next two skulls and hold a flashlight up so I could take a pic.

One of the guards/workers in the tunnels was kind enough to point out two skulls and hold a flashlight up so I could take pics.  This one still had teeth.

Say "ahhh"

Open wide and say “ahhh”

Heading toward the exit of the Catacombes.  By some miracle, I did not slip onto my ass while walking down these slippery tunnels.

Heading toward the exit of the Catacombes. By some miracle, I did not slip onto my ass while walking down these damp slippery tunnels.

La Basilique du Sacré Cœur de Montmartre

Steps, steps, and more steps leading up to Sacre Couer in Montmartre.

Steps, steps, and more steps leading up to Sacre Coeur.

View from the steps.

View from the steps.

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Couldn’t take pics inside and it’s a shame because it was beautiful :(

Train to Épernay

We got into the car that had separate compartments.  Luckily, we did not have an Italian speaking Fred Armisen humping our legs saying "mi scusi, mi scusi" and smoking a ciggy.

We got into the car that had separate compartments. Luckily, we did not have an Italian speaking Fred Armisen humping our legs saying “mi scusi, mi scusi” and smoking a ciggy afterwards.

I finally got some good pics of the French countryside!

More pics of the French countryside.

We’ve arrived!

Épernay, France

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We need to go that-a-way!

We need to go that-a-way!

Look at how pretty the visitor's center is.

The visitor’s center is so pretty.

It's like the mothership calling me home...

It’s like the mothership calling me home…

Just hangin' with my bud, Dom

Just hangin’ with my bud, Dom

Tix for tour and tasting

Tix for cellar tour and tasting

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Ooooh, so many bottles

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Nothing scary about these cellars.

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OK, so they may be a little dusty and dirty with cobwebs.

Finally, the tasting!

Finally, the tasting!

Yummy

Á votre santé!

Á votre santé!  (excuse the dirty glass, I’d already taken a sip…or a gulp already)

Of course, I had to take some pictures acting like an ass...Here's the first.

Of course, I had to take some pictures acting like an ass…Here’s the first.

And the second.

Pink!  Look at the cute pink insulation jackets for the bottles!

Pink! Look at the cute pink insulation jackets for the bottles!

Walking down Avenue de Champagne...selfie at Perrier Jouet.

Walking down Avenue de Champagne…selfie at Perrier-Jouet.

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eurotrip part trois

The photo tour of Paris continues…

Pont des Arts (a bridge on the Seine where lovers add padlocks with their names to commemorate their love and toss the keys in the Seine – GAG – no, but seriously, it’s really pretty, especially in the morning sun)

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I.M Pei Pyramids outside of the Louvre

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La Pyramide Inversée (and if you are a “Da Vinci Code” fan, Mary Magdalene’s body is supposed to be buried under the stone pyramid beneath)

Musée du Louvre

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Mona Lisa

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Venus de Milo

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Gorgeous ceilings

Hermes Fastening his Sandal

Hermes Fastening his Sandal

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Cool painting that I first saw and loved in 2004 and found again

statue

Providing a head for this headless statue

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Napoleon III Apartment in the Richelieu wing

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Architecture of the Louvre (the buildings themselves are magnificent and beautiful)

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eurotrip part deux

We had a pleasant three-hour train ride from Amsterdam to Paris.  I tried my darnedest to get quaint French county-side pictures.  I was trying to get the cute little town with the church and its chapel.  Out of god-knows-how-many-picture-attempts, I maybe managed to get a few decent ones.

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Arriving at our Paris home, we were met by the house manager, Mr. Marcel.  What a delight he was!  He manages the apartment for the French owners, who live, coincidentally, in New York City.  Mr. Marcel is a spry, charming 82-year-old who showed us the whole house which consisted of four floors, 5 bedrooms, 3 baths, and a roof terrace – a HUGE place for 3 ladies.  He was very helpful in telling us where to go in the neighborhood and how to get around.  On our departure, he called us a cab and saw us off.

Day 1:
Cimetière du Montparnasse (gorgeous, peaceful cemetery with really pretty and ornate mausoleums)

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Jardin du Luxembourg

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Cathédrale Notre Dame

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La Seine (right before the torrential downpour)

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Day 2:
Château de Versailles

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Tour Eiffel

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Champs-Éysées & Arc de Triomphe de l’Étoile

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Those are pics from the first two days in Paris.  I took over 1000 pics in France.  It’s such a beautiful city and my photo skills don’t do it justice.

Next up: the last few days of Paris.

eurotrip part een

I know you’ve all been waiting with bated breath for me to regale you with tales of my travels… [and eyes roll around the world]

I had a later start to my vacation, as I had planned to leave work at 3pm, I didn’t in fact leave until 5pm.  That damn work thing always gets in the way of a good time.  Coming from work, I took the subway/airtrain combo to the airport and while it was an easy and mostly smooth ride (except for that part where we stopped in the tunnel for 10 minutes right before my stop), it was a hot one.  It was in the mid-80s that day and the subway did not have fully functional A/C.  Needless to say, I was a hot, sweaty mess by the time I got to JFK.

As is par for the course, I proceeded to stand on either every wrong line or the slowest line checking my bag or getting through security.  What should have been a 20 minute thing, took me about 40.  Finally, finally I get to the brand spanking new, shiny Delta Sky Club lounge in terminal 4.  I settle down with glass #1 of free wine and my laptop, waiting for my friend, whom we’ll call Nova to arrive.

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After Nova arrived with less than an hour till we had to board, we proceeded to down red wine like it was our fucking jobs.  Oh and the free snacks.  I might have taken cookies to-go.  And two apples.  Anyway, four glasses of free red wine later, we board.  After the meal and a very short nap, a crying screaming baby wakes me.  And I am feeling hung over.  Know what’s not so fun?  Flying at 30,000 feet with slight turbulence, a screaming baby nearby, and feeling like you’re going to barf up the crappy pasta dinner you ate.  I turned the air on me, popped some peppermint gum and felt better.  Breakfast was served, but I was still in no condition to eat.  Miraculously, by the time we landed, I was back at 100%.

Getting through passport control and retrieving our luggage  in Amsterdam was super easy and quick.  I spotted our host (the owner of the apt we rented who was picking us up) even when we were not even close to our meeting spot.  Twenty minutes later, we are pulling up in front of our new home for 3 days.  The apartment was a cute one bedroom, but it was on the second floor and the steep, steep steps to it would pose a problem with our heavy luggage.  Somehow I wrestled my bag up.  When our other friend, whom we will call Demi, came and met us from her business trip in Rotterdam, I helped her carry her enormous suitcase up.

The weather in Amsterdam for the most part was chilly (50’s F) and rainy or overcast.  One morning we had sun and I was able to get some nice pics.  Here’s a few from Amsterdam:

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Anne Frank House

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CHEESE!!!!! Grab your Lactaid. Lots of lovely, delectable cheese!

iam

Me in front of the Rijksmuseum and the “I am Amsterdam” thinga-ma-bob

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I did take a few silly pictures.  Otherwise known on this trip as “hey, take a picture of me being an ass or idiot.”

Heineken

At the Heineken Experience tasting room, we ran into a group of guys from the UK celebrating a bachelor party.  When I asked if I could take a picture of them, they said I should get in the picture with them.  Who the hell am I to say “No”?

ShoesFreaking awesome wooden shoes!

I took over 350 pictures over the 2.5 days in Amsterdam.  I’ll spare you all from posting them all here :)

Here’s my Amsterdam breakdown in bullet points:

  • Don’t need more than 2 days in Amsterdam
  • Red Light District is interesting (can’t take pics), in the sense that all the girls were very pretty; all were very made up; all were very thin; all had very big fake boobs; all sported a very bored look on their face; all had ciggy in one hand, cell in the other; all had belly button piercings; all had phenomenal lingerie
  • In the RLD, public urination is a common occurrence…look out for puddles and watch where you step
  • You meet some very interesting people in coffee shops
  • Skip Rembrandt House; waste of money
  • Loved Van Gogh Museum
  • Loved Anne Frank House; it’s such a sobering, yet interesting place with much to learn about beyond the Frank family
  • Rijksmuseum is overwhelming, but in a good way
  • Heineken Experience was fun…I mean hey, they give you beer
  • You don’t need the large sized frites.  It’s a lot of fries.  Unless you are sharing.
  • You will leave the city having PTSD from almost getting run over by a bike every 5 seconds and whiplash from swinging your head in every which direction looking out for said bikes

Next up…Paris!

pre-flight drinks

Cheers!!!!

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three days away

I am three days away from boarding a plane to Amsterdam!

I can’t even tell you how excited I am and how I’ve been waiting for this vacation.  Over a drunken dinner, three ladies said they were going to plan a trip to Amsterdam and Paris, and by golly, within 2 weeks, they chose the dates and booked plane tickets.

We’ve arranged to rent out apartments in both cities, as it was more affordable and convenient.  We’ve gotten our tickets for Anne Frank House, Van Gogh Museum, and the Heineken experience.  We’ve plans to take a canal cruise, hit the Red Light District and visit a coffee house or two.

For Paris, we are taking an afternoon trip to Épernay to visit the cellars of Moët & Chandon, house of Dom Pérignon.  I love me some bubbly!  We had originally planned on taking a side trip to Normandy, but it’s pretty expensive and is a super long day traveling and sightseeing.  Instead, we’ll head to Versailles.  Less morose and more shiny and palace-y.  Some, OK, a lot of wine and cheese and a stop in a patisserie are on the agenda every day.  I’m hoping all the walking will help off-set the caloric intake.

I’m a little nervous that I’m not going to be able to fall asleep on the red-eye over there.  I don’t sleep well on planes.  At all.  I plan on indulging quite a bit in the Delta Sky Club lounge prior to the flight.  Be on the lookout for drunk tweets from JFK :)  If I don’t pass out in a drunken stupor, I might have to add a little Benadryl to the mix for a little extra oomph.

I may have already gone a bit overboard buying things for the trip.  New DLSR camera, new camera bag, new passport wallet, new purse, new shoes, new makeup, new perfume rollerballs (convenient for travel!), new packing cubes, new this, new that.  But, seriously, it’s all stuff I need!  My suitcase weighs a bloody ton, that’ll be fun dragging around :|  I made sure, however, to leave some room for bringing home stuff.  Shopping in Paris?  Oui, s’il vous plaît!

I’ll try to use train and plane time to transfer pictures to my computer and put together a post about the trip.  I’ll have a nice 8 hour plane ride home to get a draft ready for publishing :)

Catch you all later!

chubby bunnies and other nonsense

It’s been a long time…I know.  I apologize!

Boring stuff first.

Work is work.  It’s mellowed and not as crazy.

Dating?  What’s that?  I am not on any site currently and haven’t been for awhile.  Just got tired of it all and needed a break.

I did meet someone in real life who may be interesting.  It was at a work-thingy happy hour back in late June for the alumni of my college.  Not sure how to read him.  I was the first guest to arrive at the happy hour his company sponsored.  The company has its headquarters in the town where my college is and a lot of their employees are alumni.  I was chatting with some of the sales team, getting to know them, as I had never met any of them before.  He came up to us and inserted himself into the conversation and soon it was just he and I chatting.  Then he had to excuse himself and my two friends (whom I was graciously allowed to invite even though they don’t work in media, but simply because they were alumni, too) arrived and I went off to talk to them.  Later as I was leaving the party, I had to walk past him and I wanted to say goodbye.  I walked over to him and told him it was nice to meet him and talk with him and he said likewise and pulled me in for a hug.  A few days later I connected on LinkedIn to all the sales people I met at the party, for multiple reasons: 1) they are new work contacts, 2) their company is going to hold alumni events in the future and I want to ensure invites to them, and 3) I wanted a way to connect with the cute boy.  With the invitations, I made sure that I mentioned that it was a pleasure meeting and chatting with them at the Thursday night event, so that they would understand the invitation in context and would remember me for the alumni events.  While the others just accepted the invitation, the cute guy wrote back saying that he agreed that it was so nice chatting and that he looked forward to the next time we hang out.  We emailed back and forth a bit.   The last message was from him to me, so I guess it’s my turn to respond.  I’m not sure if he was being so friendly because he’s just a nice guy, or if he’s interested, or if he’s just being a salesman (that is his job after all).  I guess at the latest, I might see him Labor Day weekend at my college football game at Giants Stadium, because his company is going to sponsor a tailgate and I am totally going.  I should write to him this week, though, and maybe we can accelerate a meeting.

In other news, my bff’s little brother got married!  It was such an awesome wedding.  I laughed, I cried.  Such good times.

This past weekend, I went up with 4 others to the Berkshires.  We rented a house and went to see West Side Story (film being shown while the Boston Pops did all the music) at Tanglewood.  It was incredible – the movie, the company, the wine, the cheese.  The night before we found these enormous marshmallows at the supermarket.  I’ve never seen jumbo sized marshmallows, so of course I need to buy them because they are so ridiculous.  But you know what’s even more ridiculous?  Holding a contest to see who can shove two of them into their pie holes.  I suppose it was a tie between one of my friends and I, and even then, neither of us was able to shove the entire two marshmallows in.  But here’s a picture of how (un)successful I was.

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I am sorry for the scary no eyes look, but trying to be somewhat anonymous.  As if the blurred out eyes are the worst part of this whole photo!  Also, impossible to say “chubby bunny” with even just one whole one in your mouth (I’m not sharing that picture).

Here’s some exciting news…I am planning on going to Amsterdam and Paris with two friends in mid-September.  One will be in the Netherlands for work and the other friend and I will fly out and meet her in Amsterdam.  I’ve never been to Amsterdam and there are things that I didn’t see the last times I did Paris, so I am so excited.  I got the okay for the days off and hopefully in the next day or two, we’ll book our flights.  Woo hoo!

I think that’s it, kids.  For now, at least.  Till next time!

my spirit animal

Wow, I am totally Squidward from SpongeBob Squarepants.  Don’t know how I haven’t recognized this before. 

http://www.buzzfeed.com/mattbellassai/reasons-you-might-actually-be-squidward

Pretty much sums me up these days.

That’s all for today, folks…Now Get Off My Lawn!

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