Entries from June 2008 ↓

Hear Ye, Hear Ye from Hong Kong

After two smooth flights from Boston to NY (1 hr flight with 3 hr layover) and NY to Hong Kong (straight 16hr flight), I’m now stranded at the so-fabulous-the floor sparkles-airport of Hong Kong with free wi-fi… gotta love the hi-tech’ness of the asians! as I wait for my final leg to take me to Shanghai. Apparently, harsh downpours in that area is causing the delay. Despite my 3 meals over here, I opted to grab one of my favorite dishes, beef chow fun courtesy of the airline as an apology for the delays- and it was delish!

But what I was most impressed with is the fact that the food is prepared in real bowls, plates etc and the airport has cleaning crews who go around with carts to collect and bus finished plates etc. back to the appropriate restaurant kiosks. And everything is left squeaky clean!

But even before all of that, upon boarding my flight for Hong Kong, the boarding attendant was collecting the boarding pass sleeves to re-use. I chuckled alongside a fellow American at how behind we are in our Go Green policies, compared to the rest of the world. And despite how many people there are in this airport right now, everyone is well-mannered and using their “inside-voices.”

Here are some quick (choppy) thoughts: I have actualized the definition of “bravery.” I’ve wondered, what in the world did I get myself into? But also know and feel it deep within my bones that this expedition is something that I’ve been built for; everything in my life, timing and all of everything I’ve done, has led me up to this journey; and I truly feel something magical will come out of it – even if it is for only a year’s worth of experience. A year to me now, seems to be both a short and long period of time, but there are a few personal goals I’d really like to achieve while on this side of the world (nuff said about that for now). I found it comical that upon arriving at the gate for my flight from NY to Hong Kong, I felt myself internally trip up over the little glimpse of what my year ahead will be for me as I was surrounded by “my people.” Reason for quotation marks around “my people” is that because well, they are, but they aren’t “my people.” In fact, they themselves, know that I’m not their people. Ie. while on flight, attendants would speak Mandarin and Cantonese up and down the aisle, however when they came upon the non-asians aka whites and… me, we were greeted in English. I of course, internally chuckled. Did I look that different? Was it my dress? (t-shirt, jeans, kicks – pretty standard flight attire if you ask me) My demeanor? This allll makes for a one great case study!

And! As you can see, I have access to my blog backend…Whooo Hooo!

It’s still all so surreal. Plus, I’m feeling jet-lagged and can’t wait to arrive at the school, shower and settle in for the night already. Ok, now I’m off to Gate 41, final destination: Shanghai, here I come!

. . don’t burn the day. .

Oh, The Places I’ll Go!

A lengthy one, but one of my all-time favorites from the man himself, Dr. Seuss!

Oh, the Places You’ll Go!

Congratulations!
Today is your day.
You’re off to Great Places!
You’re off and away!
You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes
You can steer yourself
any direction you choose.
You’re on your own. And you know what you know.
And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go.
You’ll look up and down streets. Look ‘em over with care.
About some you will say, “I don’t choose to go there.”
With your head full of brains and your shoes full of feet,
you’re too smart to go down any not-so-good street.
And you may not find any
you’ll want to go down.
In that case, of course,
you’ll head straight out of town.
It’s opener there
in the wide open air.
Out there things can happen
and frequently do
to people as brainy
and footsy as you.
And when things start to happen,
don’t worry. Don’t stew.
Just go right along.
You’ll start happening too.
OH!
THE PLACES YOU’LL GO!
You’ll be on your way up!
You’ll be seeing great sights!
You’ll join the high fliers
who soar to high heights.
You won’t lag behind, because you’ll have the speed.
You’ll pass the whole gang and you’ll soon take the lead.
Wherever you fly, you’ll be the best of the best.
Wherever you go, you will top all the rest.
Except when you don’t
Because, sometimes, you won’t.
I’m sorry to say so
but, sadly, it’s true
and hang-ups
can happen to you.
You can get all hung up
in a prickle-ly perch.
And your gang will fly on.
You’ll be left in a Lurch.
You’ll come down from the Lurch
with an unpleasant bump.
And the chances are, then,
that you’ll be in a Slump.
And when you’re in a Slump,
you’re not in for much fun.
Un-slumping yourself
is not easily done.
You will come to a place where the streets are not marked.
Some windows are lighted. But mostly they’re darked.
A place you could sprain both you elbow and chin!
Do you dare to stay out? Do you dare to go in?
How much can you lose? How much can you win?
And IF you go in, should you turn left or right…
or right-and-three-quarters? Or, maybe, not quite?
Or go around back and sneak in from behind?
Simple it’s not, I’m afraid you will find,
for a mind-maker-upper to make up his mind.
You can get so confused
that you’ll start in to race
down long wiggled roads at a break-necking pace
and grind on for miles across weirdish wild space,
headed, I fear, toward a most useless place.
The Waiting Place…
…for people just waiting.
Waiting for a train to go
or a bus to come, or a plane to go
or the mail to come, or the rain to go
or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow
or waiting around for a Yes or a No
or waiting for their hair to grow.
Everyone is just waiting.
Waiting for the fish to bite
or waiting for wind to fly a kite
or waiting around for Friday night
or waiting, perhaps, for their Uncle Jake
or a pot to boil, or a Better Break
or a sting of pearls, or a pair of pants
or a wig with curls, or Another Chance.
Everyone is just waiting.
NO!
That’s not for you!
Somehow you’ll escape
all that waiting and staying.
You’ll find the bright places
where Boom Bands are playing.
With banner flip-flapping,
once more you’ll ride high!
Ready for anything under the sky.
Ready because you’re that kind of a guy!
Oh, the places you’ll go! There is fun to be done!
There are points to be scored. There are games to be won.
And the magical things you can do with that ball
will make you the winning-est winner of all.
Fame! You’ll be famous as famous can be,
with the whole wide world watching you win on TV.
Except when they don’t.
Because, sometimes, they won’t.
I’m afraid that some times
you’ll play lonely games too.
Games you can’t win
’cause you’ll play against you.
All Alone!
Whether you like it or not,
Alone will be something
you’ll be quite a lot.
And when you’re alone, there’s a very good chance
you’ll meet things that scare you right out of your pants.
There are some, down the road between hither and yon,
that can scare you so much you won’t want to go on.
But on you will go
though the weather be foul
On you will go
though your enemies prowl
On you will go
though the Hakken-Kraks howl
Onward up many
a frightening creek,
though your arms may get sore
and your sneakers may leak.
On and on you will hike
and I know you’ll hike far
and face up to your problems
whatever they are.
You’ll get mixed up, of course,
as you already know.
You’ll get mixed up
with many strange birds as you go.
So be sure when you step.
Step with care and great tact
and remember that Life’s
a Great Balancing Act.
Just never forget to be dexterous and deft.
And never mix up your right foot with your left.
And will you succeed?
Yes! You will, indeed!
(98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed.)
KID, YOU’LL MOVE MOUNTAINS!
So…
be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray
or Mordecai Ali Van Allen O’Shea,
you’re off to Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting.
So…get on your way!
- Dr. Seuss

. . don’t burn the day. .

I Just HAD To…

Among all the warm Bon Voyage messages I’ve been receiving, I just had to share with ya’ll this one that came about. It’s perfect!! The irony of the chic up front and the words tacked on, LOL… Thanks JC!! :-)

. . don’t burn the day . .

Two Fingaz

The moment we’ve all been waiting for has finally come. My phone is off. My bags are packed. I am ready to enter a territory, unknown. [Cue "Twilight Zone" theme.]

Right now, I liken my overall motions and emotions to one of those long-lasting pinches that you get from your older siblings back in the young’un days. Upon initial pinch, you are awakened. Then the twist comes, and you feel more alive than ever – adrenaline, emotions all turning up inside-out. And what else is there to feel thereafter, but alert; alert for the next move from no matter which direction.

Awake. Alive. Alert.

I’m ready for The Next.

With proper salutation, I throw two fingaz up and say, Peace! :-)

I’d also like to take the time to thank all who’ve shared with me their kind words and good vibes as I embark on this journey. Your enthusiasm, encouragement, interest and intrigue makes this whole experience that very much more exciting for me. So, thank you, thank you! And until next time everyone!…..

“Only those who risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.” – T.S. Eliot

. . don’t burn the day.

So Flippin’ Cool!

So amidst my last minute run arounds on top of Green celebrations, my bro and his girlfriend flew in for a surprise visit before my take-off. So Flippin’ Cool! and speaking of flippin’ cool, check out this “flip flop cake” they made for a recent event in their newly launched Minneapolis-based catering company, Cocoa & Fig.

MMMmmmmmmmm, FOOOOOOD!

Here’s a few more snap shots of their yummies:

Learn and see more about Cocoa and Fig here!

. . don’t burn the day. .

Summer Son

To ring in the 1st day of a great summer season ahead, here’s one of my little steamy faves – “Summer Son” from album The Hush by Scotland-native rock band, Texas, with female lead Sharleen Spiteri. Enjoy!

“Summer Son”

“When We Are Together”

Live performance of “Say What You Want” remix ft. Method Man

“In Our Lifetime” from album, The Hush by Texas (05.18.99)

. . don’t burn the day. .

A Year of CHANGE

ONE week from today, I will be in my final hours en flight, to touch down in Shanghai. AYE CARUMBA! While catching up with some hometown buds the last couple of days, my level of craziness has really kicked in. We collectively concluded: I’M PRETTY CRAZY. Dropping all of my home-comforts, taking leave from everything I know, family and friends, to venture to the other side of the globe in an area totally foreign to me (have never visited), to do something I’ve never done before (teach), not knowing the native tongue (Mandarin), and to do so, all by my lonesome. How’s that for some CHANGE?

But it’s not just me who’s putting CHANGE into ACTION. I like to surround myself with bold, forward-moving folks, so naturally, several comrades have also begun and/or anticipating new directions this year as well. Here’s a snapshot list from the top of my head:

  • KC finally made her move at during the Fall of last year to NYC.
  • MD started his move towards the end of last year – left his job and has already taken zen’spirational trips along with holding up his own on the indie level.
  • LL is wrapping up her 6 month non-profit term in Geneva, Switzerland as I type.
  • JL and LP are running their already successful catering company in Minneapolis.
  • NL and SL have welcomed their beautiful first born.
  • DT had crossed the pond to London this past January, and is all settled with his fish and chips.
  • EB moved out of his NYC apt and putting his duckets in place for a move to some other city in the US. Denver? Maryland?
  • DG walked out of her job with no real Plan B in place. Ummm BOLD!
  • JQ left her awful gallery gig and is hanging out with some pretty cool architects and pong tables.
  • AV is back in the entertainment business, working with Mr. Demi Moore – who woulda thunk?
  • KS peaced outta her job last month and is readying for life abroad.. London, Holland?? It’s all TBA, by the day.
  • JS is dressed up as a Blue Devil for her MBA @ Duke.
  • LR is on the verge of leaving her music industry gig to pursue law school.
  • RW should be Brazil bound, teaching English this Fall.
  • FO is leaving his comfy job to be his own boss.
  • NI completed her term serving our country as well as graduated with her Nursing Degree. She’ll soon be caring over our little kids in a city,state TBA.
  • BHO, Jr. becomes President of the United States of America.

Soooooo, what are you waiting for? Everybody’s doing it. WHAT’S YOUR CHANGE?

It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power. – A. Cohen

Change is the essence of life. Be willing to surrender what you are for what you could become.

. . don’t burn the day. .

A “C” of GREEN

WOW! is all I gotta say. I am typing this post with barely one eye open since I’ve been sleepless the last couple of nights – all for a good reason though, as my GREEN clinched Number Seventeen!

Why for the last two nights?? Well, Tues = Game-winning night and Wed = Me running around for all sorts + giddy for the next morning parade. See, in my lifetime, the C’s have won 4 championships. However, the initial 3 were when I was barely 1, 3 and 5 years old respectively. I recall growing up and watching late night games with my grandmother as Bird, McHale, Parish & Co. took care of business on the court. My grandmother is a huge fan of the game and I can hear her voice now cheering on Bird! My pops, too, had basketball as his #1 sport and was the quite the star back in the day in his courts. Then, of course I took up basketball in junior high and as a freshman in high school (and then cut the cord for track)…. but my point is…. There’s just something about this game; this game above all other sports that I personally gravitate towards. Don’t get me wrong, as a Boston-native, of course I was excited for the Red Sox World Series win and even as much as I love my Patriots, there is just something about basketball that makes it THAT much more special to me – At the moment, I fumble with the words to describe it. Plus, with living in NYC for the last decade, I never really had the chance to “celebrate” the Sox and Pats wins. (To set straight: I love NYC whole-heartedly, but I remain true to my Boston sports teams. You can thank my 3 older brothers for the sports-love in me.) So needless to say, I’ve been on an emotional high for my men in green, and was able to quench my high by attending the Rolling Rally Duck Tour Parade amongst the “C” of Green today, my first parade ever! – A pretty thrilling experience!

Though the parade started/left the Garden at 11am, we had already parked ourselves at 9:45am on Boylston and Charles Street for the midpoint stretch to mark our territory. Front rail/awesome viewing brought on this exclusive (a little shaky) video. Highlights: Pierce, Doc, Cassell, Garnett, Powe, Posey, Allen, Davis, Rondo :-) Enjoy!

Then our marathon sprint began, down the back-ways to Copley Square where we caught them once again. Here are some shots of Green along the way, errr, everywhere!!

Then our mad dash took speed again down to the Prudential Center to see the guys off!! CONGRATULATIONS, WELL EARNED AND WELL DONE!!

. . don’t burn the day. .

6-1-7!!!

PUMPED – HYPED – AMPED are the closest adjectives I can think of amidst my green-geeked-out state of mind right now!! June 17th…. 17th championship… 6/17… 617 Boston-area area code… One week away from taking leave from this country…. I am being sent off on an absolutely HIGHHHHHH note!!! After major heartbreak earlier this year on my dag’on birthday of all days in a little game called the Superbowl (Brady and I had a pact since he won his 1st championship on my 21st, but anyway….) ….. I needed this!! This city needed this!! and we did it in high fashion with a final 39 point game blow-out (131-92)!!! I was a little miffed that we didn’t close out on Sunday night on LA turf… then all that drama with the flight delay and window broken and Ray’s kids, and injured Perks and Rondo, then Ray gets poked in the eye that sent him back to the locker room for quite some time — We overcame it all!!! WHOOOOOOO!!! I’ll let the pictures speak …

oh and Special Note to CRAIG out on the West Coast: Ummmm where’s my check???!!! (hey, you started it! :-P )

and so many more….. #9 RONDO, #43 PERKINS, #41 POSEY, #0 POWE, #50 HOUSE, #93 BROWN, #28 CASSELL, #11 BIG BABY DAVIS, #42 T. ALLEN, #44 SCALABRINE, #13 PRUITT, #66 POLLARD

This is a TEAM first and foremost with rooted HEART, PASSION and GAME!!!!

Executive of Year – DANNY AINGE

(should be) Coach of the Year – GLENN “DOC” RIVERS

MO’FO MVP – PAUL “THE TRUTH” PIERCE!!!

and a popped bottle of my own…..

(Yeahhhhhhh I’m a little excited!!… but I am a little sad though too because, well, I’ll have no reason to shout at the television screen in the next few nights… Hmmmmm…..)

. . don’t burn the day. .

I LOVE MY BOYS!!!!

Straight from my dash with champagne bottle in hand, I am ALL SMILES RIGHT NOW!! YEAHHHHH BABY!!!! GO GREEN!!!!!

More descriptive post to come tomorrow after this night of celebrations *itches!!!

. . don’t burn the day. .