Archive for February, 2012

Keanu Reeves, Where Are You?

A few years back, I posted this picture:


If you remember the 8oz. Burger Bar that was on Melrose, and if you had a large enough party, you probably recall the large table that stood between the two rooms. What you may not know is that the table had drawers, and the drawers had notes stashed inside, written by other patrons. The note my party decided to contribute was this:


I made a joke about leaving a love note there with vague hopes of meeting my next boyfriend (a la “The Lakehouse”). After all, it doesn’t get any worse than popping letters into a box and hoping that someone else will read them, right? (And hopefully won’t show up a year or two in the past for a soon-to-be traffic victim to read.) It’d probably be safer than posting a personals ad on Craigslist.

These days I’ve gone back into the world of online dating. It’s part of the process to get back into a normal lifestyle after last year, but man, it’s a lot of work. Right now I think I’m attracting the ones who are ready to just jump into a full-blown relationship, with a focus on marriage by next year. That’s all well and good, but I’m finding it tricky to communicate with guys clearly. If you’ve taken the time to fill out sections of an online dating profile, I’d like to think that you also recall what it was you wrote about yourself.

For example: one guy put in his profile that he spent a lot of time around the Third Street Promenade area in Santa Monica. Having run out of steam in the “ice breaker” part of our emails, I thought I’d mention that I used to hang out there a lot as a teenager, with some commentary on how much it’s changed in the past fifteen years. The response I received was along the lines of, “I have no idea what you’re talking about.” Confused, I double checked his profile, found the specific line, and quoted him in the next email.

I didn’t realize you were referring to something I had noted in my profile. Woops! Yeah, usually when I go out there I just go to the Barnes and Noble and read for a while.

It was probably bitchy of me to go back and quote him, but hey, that was about you. Or so you’d like for me to believe. I stopped talking to this one – if it’s not coming back to mind right away, then who knows how much else is “true?”

The next gem came from another guy: you seem like such a sweet girl…where are you from originally. Would you be interested in talking more…?

Two things made me grit my teeth:
1. Punctuation was not constant. Having spent years studying English, occasionally contributing to two geek culture blogs in the past, and the added pressure of Asian parents makes for a Grammar Nazi.
2. I wrote in my profile that I’m from Chicago but grew up in LA (which is probably too much information). This section is at the very start of my profile. If you didn’t take the time to read it and just looked at my picture, I have a pretty good idea of what you’re looking for.

I thought I’d give this guy the benefit of the doubt and looked to see if his profile was written the same way. It had pretty decent punctuation and wasn’t worded at all like his email. Little warning bells went off: if your messages don’t match the writing style in your profile, then I’m going to pass.

The following day, this popped up in my inbox: i noticed that you took a look at my profile but i didint see any response mesaage from you….i guess you just arent interested in this great guy. lol

Once again, lack of punctuation was a deal breaker. Also, I’m not quite sure where the “lol” is coming from – maybe a sarcastic laugh at my poor decision to not connect?

Dating is a tricky thing, especially at the starting stage. Where’s Keanu Reeves when I need him?!

This Is Harder Than I Thought It Would Be

I don’t blog as much as I used to. Possible reasons:
1. The people who got me started on blogging on a non-Livejournal website rarely blog these days.
2. It’s all about micro-blogging. (If you want to stalk me on Tumblr, you can do it here. I don’t post regularly on that site, but this could always change.)
3. Not working in some form of customer service doesn’t really bring in fresh ideas/funny stories.
4. Working in entertainment is kind of neat, but you can’t really talk about what you’re currently working on. (Confidentiality agreements and all that.)
5. I don’t feel like my writing style is up to par these days.
6. Death does not get easier to process as I get older. (Not my own mortality, but the taking-away of people part.)

When things really throw me for a loop, I tend to revert back into things I’m familiar with, and a lot of that is compromised of pulling out books and journals from my teenage years. On a whim, I pulled out this book:

I received a copy for my 11th or 12th birthday and read it dozens of times. Eventually I moved onto the harder stuff (Haruki Murakami, Junichiro Tanizaki, Ryu Murakami), and Banana Yoshimoto became my go-to book when I wanted something girly to read.

After Lisa’s passing, I went through my bookshelf and pulled Kitchen to read. I knew it was going to be an easy read: no elaborate storylines, no drama-filled love affairs, no violence. It’s a book I could read just for the story.

Or so I thought. Right off the bat, there was a death of a close relative, followed by the stages of grief. All I could recall was the transsexual mother and a budding love story.

I’d never see my own grandmother again. Never again. I don’t care for the loaded sentimentality of those words or for the feeling of limitation they impose. But just then they struck me with an unforgettable intensity and authority.

That’s just the English translation. I have no idea how close it is in the original Japanese text, but those sentences really struck a chord in me. And then there’s this:

To the extent that I had come to understand that despair does not necessarily result in annihilation, that one can go on as usual in spite of it, I had become hardened. Was that what it means to be an adult, to live with ugly ambiguities? I didn’t like it, but it made it easier to go on.

“Moonlight Shadow” is a short “encore” story that also deals with death and grieving (and had somehow completely slipped my mind). In this story, a young girl gets to “say” goodbye to her boyfriend who was killed in a car accident. Because she lost her love so abruptly, she finds immense relief in being able to wave goodbye to his spirit.

It sounds cheesy to write this (and I’m wincing as I type this out), but this book literally pulled me from a dark spot. There were so many times I came across a passage where I wanted to shout, “THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT I’M FEELING RIGHT NOW!” There were a few times I came across a passage that gave me hope about dealing with last November and December.

I’ll never be able to be here again. As the minutes slide by, I move on. The flow of time is something I cannot stop. I haven’t a choice. I go.

I just came across that line while looking up passages I wanted to include here. Absolutely love it.

The next post will hopefully bring me back to my usual smart-assed self, especially since I’m doing the whole online dating thing again. But in the meantime, thanks for sticking with me while I’ve been in limbo.