Judge Her by Other Criteria

•January 22, 2016 • Leave a Comment

What Hillary Clinton is facing is pretty unfair. Nobody questions the other candidates about their spouses, their marriages, or whether they treated the other person who was outside the marriage well. I think the one thing getting in the way of Hillary Clinton right now, however, is Bill Clinton.

He should not have cheated, nor sexually harassed or possibly assaulted all of those women. While I can believe some of them were paid off by the other party to cause trouble for Democrats, I don’t think all of them were.

It’s possible that Hillary had mistreated these mistresses, but I don’t think anyone would have or could have done anything different. Nobody, if she truly loves a man, first blames the man for sexual misbehavior, even though she maybe should have. Both the man and the mistress are to blame. Even if she did blame him, could she really have showed it without destroying his career? Having a family is a prerequisite of being President of the United States. The idea goes, if a man is good to his family, only then can he be good to his friends and country.

Some Republicans reason that, by keeping silent, she is able to pursue her own political ambitions. They’re trying to say this is opportunistic. Why is it opportunistic? Why is there an implication that, just because her husband was unfaithful to her and she’s a woman, that she cannot run for President of the United States? We shouldn’t let Bill Clinton’s past actions hurt her candidacy, she doesn’t deserve that. She also doesn’t deserve to be the one being demonized for attempting to save her marriage when Monica Lewinsky supposedly fell in love with Bill Clinton.

The media is trying to say that the way Hillary discredited the women who claimed sexual assault or harassment from Bill Clinton is ugly. I say it is par for the course. I mean, if she didn’t support Bill Clinton both politically and emotionally, then why should she be married to him? Would it have been better if she betrayed her husband for feminism? When seeking solidarity amongst women, it is not fair to pit women against their husbands. For any person, given the choice between the person they’re married to, and a person of the same gender, any person would choose the person they’re married to. Especially if that person of the same gender is trying to break her marriage apart.

Why would you expect that of anybody? Would you want a woman who betrayed her husband to run for President? Of course, that would mean that she cannot run, unless she has a new spouse. I think Hillary Clinton electing to save her marriage is admirable. I regret that Bill Clinton wasn’t more penalized, but given that there’s a whole other discussion about how men find it “cool” to brag about their sexual conquests regardless of whether or not there was consent, I think Bill Clinton’s actions are just part of the bigger problem.

I just want to make clear here that, I am actually an undecided voter. There are possibly reasons that Bernie Sanders may make a better President, but Bill Clinton’s actions and the Clintons’ marriage history shouldn’t be among them. I’m just a woman expressing her outage.

Overstimulated Rant

•January 20, 2016 • Leave a Comment

My head is filled with nonsense today. It could be because, since my supervisor deprived me of reading the Network + certification textbook during work hours (even though it is job related), I succumbed to the way everyone else deals with the monotony and listened to my iPod. My taste in music is very eclectic, and I had it on shuffle, so when it switched between songs, it was always a kind of drastic change. I probably also had my earbuds in for too long. I should listen to the music by album, next time. These things can alter one’s sense of balance.

I drank all the hot tea before stepping out into the cold, which I thought was a good idea, but then was told that it wasn’t, because my body would lower its core temperature to acclimate to the tea, and then to be hit with the cold, would just make me more cold. It turned out to be true, and I was very cold. Then I went back to my apartment, where it’s very warm because this building runs warm, and I had to adjust again. It made me a tiny bit dizzy.

Maybe I shouldn’t have given my neighbor my phone number yesterday, because he called all of 3 times, 2 during work hours. And he knocked on my door a few minutes ago. I texted back, “What is it?” because what can be so important that warrants 3 calls in one day, And a knock on the door? I just got home from work, I want silence and refuge from the chaos. He does seem lonely, but being a polite Asian girl doesn’t mean I’m the one to turn to satisfy loneliness. In fact, I’m rather neglectful of most of my friends.

To ease my imbalance, I ate a lot of cookies. Eating also helps when I’m feeling slight motion sickness from being on a plane, a train, or any type of transportation for too long. Today, to ease my boredom, I had gotten all my work done very meticulously, and then when I got a ticket at the last half hour of the day, I made fun of it. My coworker’s last name was close to the end user’s name, and it’s an industry he would like to, but the ticket was poorly written. For example, the due date was yesterday, so I made a joke about time traveling with sarcastic overtones and pretend sweet-valley-girl vocabulary. I’m not sure my supervisor found it funny.

Then, another one of my coworkers was making a fake Chinese accent, and I told him how much I hated that accent, and how it was because my fourth grade teacher was making fun of the Chinese accent – this was the 90s, it was still alright to be racist like so – while teaching Year of the Boar and Jackie Robinson. I especially hated it because my white woman teacher at that time was saying the protagonist should apologize with both hands clapped together while bowing, “I’m so solly, so so solly!” when the protagonist was given a black eye literally. I mean, really? The girl gets beaten up, and not only does she have to apologize, but we also have to withstand overt racism from my fourth grade teacher, too? Being an immigrant isn’t hard enough without the lynchings, and then the being ostracized, and the glass ceiling that still exists now?

Trust me, while I am outraged and offended, I didn’t go off on a rant at my coworker, because I still have to see him tomorrow. He’s my trainer at my job, and if I want help, I can’t pick a fight. But it still doesn’t change the fact that he was being a racist just then. See, that’s the thing. I don’t believe a person is just plain racist, like they’re that way their whole lives. I think he was just being racist in that one moment, because before today and the context of that conversation, he was always kind. Sarcastically, and with a bad sense of humor that only he can muster, but still, always kind. And it’s also interpretation, like another Asian person might not care. But I really, really hate it when people, white people especially, adopt a fake Chinese accent. And that stereotypical soundtrack, the da, da da, da da, dun dun dun, beat. Real Chinese music has never sounded like that, where does that even come from? End rant.

Anyway, all of this just makes me more determined to study harder and make it. Like achieve the American Dream. A lot of Asian people have. When people are racist against Chinese or Asian people currently, it’s no longer because we’re the new kids on the block and we face nativism; that happened in the 1920s. Today, it’s because the U.S. and China have an uneasy economic relationship, and many white people feel that Asian kids raise the academic standards too much, and that the adults achieve too much purchasing power. That’s just the ones above middle class, though. For the rest of us, the Asian women are the mysterious and bad-for-you temptations that white guys shouldn’t afford, but some of them like us, and some of us like them (think Cho Chang). The white girls who take offense to this portray us as manipulative, bitchy sluts. My response to being called this forbidden s-word is to tell her that she should go home and work on her sexual confidence. Then there are the white women who go out with Asian guys. More power to them.

But really, my attitude about these kinds of tensions is mainly that I can’t be bothered. In fact, while the term “civil rights” should apply to all humans who feel oppressed in some way, many people don’t agitate for a cause. It’s because forming a nonprofit and working from the ground is effective only sometimes, like with race based aid programs, it’s more useful more often than not to have someone study to be a lawyer, get to know the legal system, and then share that knowledge to help the people they want. It’s better to take over the system using its own rules, rather than repeatedly complain to the system to change the rules, because then the current people in power can out-vote you.

Education! That’s the key to everything.

Identity Politics and MLK Day

•January 18, 2016 • Leave a Comment

Tomorrow is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, and I’m working. They were offering time and a half, how could I resist? It’s like less work for more money, because some of the carriers will be closed and nothing can be done with those tickets, but I’m going to be paid more for showing up.

That said, I want to take a moment to examine identity politics. Those are two fairly simple words that cannot even begin to encompass the amount of suffering that many people went through. I wouldn’t say that I’m one of them. Being a lower middle class Asian female has its own set of awkwardnesses, but knock on wood, I can’t say that I’m truly suffering. This means that I hold a certain amount of privilege.

Once, I had a conversation in high school with an African American (Moorish, Native American) male I was dating. He posited that there was no way I can understand a good portion of what he went through, because the common perceptions of black males in American society were that they’re violent, uneducated, poor criminals, whereas the Asian female only had to contend with being judgmental sexpots, but were considered rich, educated and submissive (ie. a non-threat). We had a fight about it then, and I was heavily dismayed, and we couldn’t understand each other very well, so we’re not together anymore.

That was then. Now, I’m actually inclined to agree with him that a “normal American citizen” finds black men far more threatening than a yellow girl. This is especially true considering the way the justice system is doing nothing about the police killing young black men in the street, with the preconception that they always carry a weapon, which has turned almost never to be true. There were riots, and there are agreements designed to curb racial profiling, but we will see if any good came of those. This line from the MLK’s speech still rings true: “We can never be satisfied as long as the Negro is the victim of the unspeakable horrors of police brutality.”

Even though Barack Obama is our President, which means the civil rights movement has progressed this far, there is still a lot of work to do. Racism clearly still exists, in the shooting of young black men, in the fear against people whose families came from the Middle East, in discrimination against citizens of Mexican descent, in flat negative media portrayals. Race is also just one facet under the broad umbrella of identity politics.

Sick Day

•January 14, 2016 • Leave a Comment

When a sinus infection took my breath away, I took a day off of work. Well, a half day, but seeing as I still couldn’t sleep last night till the wee hours of the morning, I didn’t have the energy to get up and face the office today.

The office, where it’s cold because the heat is spread unevenly and I wish it were turned higher, but then coworkers would complain because it would be too hot for them. The office, where as a fairly well paid electronic paper pusher, I stare in loneliness at the computer screen, as I continue to push papers.

I was only able to sleep an hour after using the netipot to calm the inflammation. During the time I struggled, there was Fairy Tail, an anime about a dragon boy in search of his father with his friends. There was League of Legends, where I was Ashe or Miss Fortune, conquering the bots and presumably saving the land from evil. We always assume the other team is evil. It’s a tempting oversimplification of the story. I also watched episodes of Pushing Daisies, where a pie maker struggled with his talent to bring the dead back to life for a minute without cost, and in the romance where he brought his sweetheart back to life, and all the consequences of that.

It occurs to me, that I indulge in all of these stories, because my own story is remarkably uneventful. I had my share of relationships, and I’m in one now, and I had went to South Korea, and Japan, and Italy. I still feel so ordinary, and while it’s somewhat comforting to know that I am just like everyone else, it also feels like I’m another little cog and drone in the system trying to save up money for something before I die. I want a house with a screened in porch, where the cat can roam, and where I can have a garden. It would have a dishwasher, and places for laundry machines. I can build shelves for my cat to climb.

These things seem so far off. I remembered I liked Miley Cyrus for awhile, because I wish I were her. Her life seems so easy, she has so much freedom. It was because she was born into a family already connected to the music, so she was heir apparent to all her parents’ contacts and influences. Then I realized, wishing I have someone else’s life and living vicariously through that wouldn’t make my own life better.

There’s snow on the ground, and I don’t want to go outside, but I should head to the market for some real food. One cannot survive on snacks alone, especially not when sick. The walk might do me good. Some medicine from the market might also do me good.

But really, I want time. I want complete control over my time. I want a part time job that’s pretty high earning, so that I can govern when I can sleep. The thing about that is, part time jobs don’t give sick days, or pensions, or paid vacation days. Part time jobs don’t give health insurance, or vision, or life insurance – not that I have much to leave anyone. Material things make a person comfortable, time lets a person feel young and in control, and I haven’t looked for anything spiritual in awhile, but really, I believe none of it while I believe all of it at the same time.


•January 6, 2016 • Leave a Comment

Tuesdays aren’t all that memorable, usually feels like only a lead up to Wednesday, which is the hump of the week. Not that today is all that memorable either, but I found a certain satisfaction in my work.

It’s not heroic or glamorous, but I do make a difference. I work for an business internet provider, and nobody can do anything without the internet nowadays. While I am a tiny (literally!) cog in an almost giant machine, the impact is felt when something goes wrong.

A lot changed in 2015. Granted, a lot changes everyday, but it’s harder to keep track of once I get lost in the activity instead of documenting them copiously like I used to. At the beginning of 2015, I let myself heal from a relationship that was doomed from the beginning. All the red flags were there, but sometimes I just want to believe in a good outcome so much that I will ignore all of them – for much unnecessary suffering. But now I can see the red flags for what they are.

Focusing on my work, I struggled against plain old customer service. It is never the technical knowledge that keeps me back. Then, without my noticing, a crush led to a series of conversations, which led to a relationship.

Scientific research (Psychology Today) reads that when a person falls in love, she feels euphoric, exhausted, endangered. For me, euphoria was being in his presence, exhaustion was 2 people sleeping in a twin bed, and endangered was either or both of us being fired, because it is an office romance. He was my direct supervisor, then he switched me over to someone else, but my whole view of the office changed. The more I loved him, the more I hated all my other coworkers for the disagreements I had with them over work related actions. Something had to change.

Then, I could no longer afford my old apartment in Cambridge due to yearly rent raises in Massachusetts. Searching for a new home was terrifying, especially because my needs are so specific. No roommates, under a specific dollar amount, cat friendly. Studios only. I had stressed deeply about it for a month or three before I was too upset to work one day, played hooky, and chased after a listing on craigslist. Thankfully, I didn’t have much competition (there were 2 other people, and one of them didn’t even want it). It is cat friendly. I also had enough savings to pay in advance the first month’s rent.

Moving, while completely necessary, was a hassle. You never know how many objects make up your life until you try to move. I guilt tripped my boyfriend into helping, packed it all into a U Haul truck, and met my family there who wanted to help. They liked the place. After all that sweat (it was deep summer!), I still had to actually set up the place, which took maybe two weeks, a little more. It shortened my commute to work by half, and is cheaper than rent for my last place, which is great. Since it’s privately owned and not a realty, I also (knock on wood) haven’t heard anything from my landlady about raising the rent for the new year.

That’s great. Awesome, even. However, I was back to being unhappy in a few weeks, because my romance and job dilemma had not been solved. I started looking for new work, kind of unhappy because I had just moved and liked the short commute so much. There is a solution: switch departments. It is a new job, because the duties are so different, but it’s the same company and building, so my shortened commute wouldn’t change. I also wouldn’t have to change the times during the week when I saw my boyfriend, because there is no location change. It was perfect.

I got the job, which was even more perfect. I didn’t take a pay cut, which added to my victory song even more. It’s been 2 months and change, and I’m pretty good at my new job, which is also great.

There is so much to be grateful for. The job is good, the pay is good, home is close to work, also close to boyfriend, the cat is fine. The boyfriend loves the cat and vice versa. Home is very warm, because I’m on the floor just above the boiler room of a really old building. This winter, I’m going to need that. I can reach out to my best friend and family when I want to. Before I moved, I bought a new bed from Ikea to accommodate both my boyfriend and me, and it is so comfortable.

I’m going to be 30 this year. My core self isn’t likely to change that much more. I want to keep everything that I have. I can’t say I earned all of it. Like most people, a lot of it is due to luck. My biggest stroke of luck is probably being raised by my ultra cautious and responsible mother, who carried both my sister and me through childhood pretty much as a single parent. I have all of this, because she was there for me. And this is pretty much bliss.

Nobody Knows Anything

•December 24, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Sometimes, I just can’t. The last post was a mental exercise, in that I was wondering what I would do if I were faced with all these questions, and these issues. I wasn’t speaking in front of anybody, but even to myself, I had faltered. Thinking about problems in a fair and humane way is actually really hard. It also made me feel like I’m likely a bad person.

I remember being in a high school class named Facing History and Ourselves. When the teacher talked about this “holy land” that seemingly members of three religions were fighting over, I had the thought that the U.N. should just close off that piece of land, and make it inaccessible to everyone. It should become an animal conservatory, similar to the DMZ between the Koreas, or the like. No one would enjoy that solution, but maybe it would be fair. Maybe it would stop all the destruction, because there is no more obvious evidence of higher powers than nature herself. Let that land be in nature, away from human hands.

Apple for President

•December 19, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Teach children to be curious, and to seek out knowledge with a skeptical mind, and you’ll have contributed to innovation and leadership for humanity. When something hurts, because some knowledge is painful, encourage everyone to process the emotions in themselves rationally, so as not to act blindly, recklessly and regrettably.

These lessons come with time, and experience, of course. The parenting style I most agree with is protective bystander-ism, where the parent is supportive of his offspring regardless of whether he agrees with her decisions – that is respect. There is a time to intervene, of course, and that is when that offspring hurts himself or someone else intentionally, or breaks the law.

That summarizes the premises on which I view the world. Here is my stance on the issues:

Women should be allowed the choice to keep a fetus or abort it, because the fetus is ultimately a part of her body until she lets it be born.

Everyone should be taxed the same percentage, which means that the rich should pay more. This will help with necessary social programs and the national deficit.

All humans should be granted equal rights. Proven criminals have some of those taken away, because they have abused those rights. Children and mentally unwell are largely under their legal guardians’ supervision. Otherwise, a person’s civil rights will not be impacted by race, religion, gender, and orientation.

Corporations are not individuals. They are to be subject to the law as organizations.

Nonviolent crime will receive much shorter sentences than violent crime. This excludes large scale crimes like corporate fraud. Large scale is defined in terms of how many people are impacted by this individual’s actions.

Education is necessary for everyone. Standardized testing should continue, but schools should choose whether to teach to the exams. Colleges should judge prospectives based on all attributes, instead of mainly scores. There will be affirmative action for colleges.

Clean energy is what we want. Oil is not clean energy, and involves drilling into the earth, with risks of spilling into bodies of water. We should innovate away from that, if it is possible.

There should be recycling in as many neighborhoods as possible. Everyone should re-use objects to keep the energy costs of the recycling plants down to ensure efficiency.

Citizens will undergo a background check before adopting. Sexual orientation will not matter. In divorce, children go to the better provider unless the other parent can prove he is better for the children. Children become full citizens with their own rights at 18. Anyone is allowed to marry anyone else, as long as there is mutual agreement.

Foreign policy differs according to country being negotiated with and issue at hand.

Gun control should be implemented in every state. Background checks for weapons owners, licenses required, freedom to carry weapons in citizens’ own territory – not public places.

Everyone should have healthcare, if not through their jobs, then through their state.

Gun control and homeland security will work together. Citizens will still have their privacy, because our intelligence is only skimming for anything that may be a threat, not the personal details of your lives.

Legal applicants for citizenship will be waitlisted. Illegal immigrants will be deported. Affirmative action rules will apply for each state. Only individuals with visas to stay for more than 10 years can own land, and those visas will not be able to be revoked.

The nation will go to war when there is an attack.

Food stamps will stay as a social program for everyone earning beneath 25k a year, individually.



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