Making labels

Other than catching (up with) Stellou twice for brunch, the weekend has been filled mostly with the implementation of the massive project of assigning labels to all my old blog posts. It's very much going to be a work-in-progress for the next couple of weeks (at least!), because working backwards, I've only completed up to July 2006 so far.

Also, I haven't yet executed a massive republish command that will update the right-hand navigation for all extant webpages, so don't consider the contents of any particular label to be comprehensive.

Which reminds me that I wish I could rename "labels" to the more intuitive "categories" that Wordpress uses, but Blogger won't let me do that with an non-Blogspot site. Poo!


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Matcha madness

Shoot first, eat later

The thing about ordering pretty Japanese desserts with a group of friends who happen to blog (save one), is that when the pretty Japanese desserts arrive, everyone whips out their digital cameras to take pretty portraits while the precious ice cream is melting all over the dessert.

Meanwhile, the one who doesn't blog also takes out his digital camera (incidentally, the largest and most sophisticated one at the table) and starts taking pictures of us taking pictures of our desserts.

Well, now.

Eventually, we did eat the desserts and they were about as tasty as they had looked --- which is to say, very artfully put together, occasionally with mysterious ingredients (the dango tasted damn good but what the hell went into it, besides flour?), and satisfyingly sweet but not overly so, taking the cue from American-style sundaes without merely replicating them entirely.

Dessert, Japanese style

Now if we'd added the "raw honey" provided in the little juglet, that would've been overkill.


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It was gonna happen eventually

One of the occupational hazards of being an teacher is that one of your extremely competent (and hopefully not too frightful) former students might someday be your boss.

While this hasn't happened (yet), I knew that after I became a freelance writer, it was more likely that someday, somewhere, some student would be in a position to become my client. If I was lucky, maybe it would be a) a student who didn't have it in for me, and/or b) a project that I didn't mind working on.

Fortunately for me, when the opportunity did come round (thanks, suzie!), that's been true on both counts. The worst I've had to fear is that suzie will mock my copywriting because I know that she, like me, has a wicked ear for spotting the soullessly bombastic phrase or the abuse of adjectives like "unique" and "distinctive".

I think I used "unique" only once.


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First day hiccups

I'm not sure that it's good luck for the New Year to be standing by the roadside and repeatedly muttering, "Where the fuck are all the cabs?"


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A sign of the times, or something

Today's Urban Dictionary Word of the Day: gong xi fa cai (though they spell the last word incorrectly as "chai").

Never thought I'd see the day when a commonplace Mandarin greeting for the Lunar New Year would become an entry in a glossary of contemporary slang.

Happy Year of the Pig, everyone! May you enjoy much bacon and (since this is a Chinese New Year after all) fat piggy banks to carry you through to the next year.


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Procrastination, Chinese New Year-style

And so it was, that on the eve of Chinese New Year, I finally got my shit sorted out.

First thing this morning (meaning some time after 10 am), I bought the very last box of oranges available at the neighbourhood fruit vendor. He had a few other boxes on display, but said that they'd been reserved by other customers. 21 Chaozhou oranges for $8.50 --- not too exorbitant for an absolute last-minute buy.

Then I called my mother to tell her how many new dollar bills I need in each particular denomination for this year's ang pows. I usually rely on my mother for the new bills because banks only dole them out in huge amounts of like $200 worth of two-dollar bills, whereas I never need more than $80 worth (particularly once I factor in the leftover new two-dollar bills from the previous year's ang pow situation). However, I also usually sort this out well before the eve of the New Year.

Small-denomination bills settled, I had to go get some fifty-dollar bills from the neighbourhood ATM. Banks don't typically dole out fifty-dollar bills; they tell customers to go to the ATMs for those. But it seems (according to the reliable source that is my mother) that there's a shortage of fifties this year, so all I got at the ATM were used bills.

In feeble defence of my apparent procrastination, I should mention that I actually went to the ATM to get the fifties yesterday. However, this fails to factor in the fact that after eight years of giving out the same number of large-value ang pows (to grandparents, parents and siblings), I got the math wrong. Which necessitated today's ATM trip.

Nevertheless, the best thing about doing things at the last minute, is scoring the wickedest ang pows that one could give to kids. And they were free, too.

"Level up" ang pows

Funkiest. Ang pows. Ever.


Related Posts: Why I should not procrastinate, The afternoon: a chronology, *poof*, They won't throw me in jail for my birthday, I procrastinate, therefore I am

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To see if SFTP is working.

Edited to add (7:15 pm): It was, and now the DNS change has caught up too. All clear.




Boring website-related announcement

I'm doing some technical updates, which includes updating the DNS for this site. See you on the other side.




To resume

Friends who've known me since my pre-blogging days and who perhaps don't spend quite as much time immersed in the world of blogging as I do --- they've asked me before, how is it that I can put up my life on such public display on my blog, to have its minute details read by people I've never met and whom I may never meet.

My answer is simple: it's not my entire life that's on display here, it's just the bits and pieces that I choose to put on record, things that I can live with people knowing, that don't infringe on my own privacy or security in any way. The blog version of me is hardly the whole me there is to know.

Of the many things I don't write about, one of them is my relationship with Terz. It's an unwritten rule that I came up with on my own, to maintain my sense of equilibrium between public and private, between real and virtual.

And then sometimes things spill over into the public domain.

All of which is a long preamble to my saying that if you didn't know already from reading Terz's blog (also the most beautiful blog entry ever --- I'm not insensitive to that), here's the Cliffs Notes' version:

Terz and I are splitting up I am splitting up with Terz because from my point of view, we'd drifted so far apart I didn't know why I was with him any longer. Yes, this is what I really want. Yes, this is the right decision for me.

That's all I'm prepared to say here --- at least, at this juncture. Maybe someday I'll say more, maybe this is all there'll ever be on this blog about this.

Meanwhile, life, as they say, goes on.


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