In lieu of a proper update, 2010 year in review

1. What did you do in 2010 that you’d never done before?
– have a real job
– pay bills, clean my house, basically things that grownups do
– live away from my parents

2. Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I lost that list, so I don’t remember any of them, so it’s probable that I didn’t keep any of them. That said, I’m only making one resolution, which is to be my true self.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
My friend Desirae, and Dakota Jaclyn is absolutely beautiful!

4. Did anyone close to you die?
Not that I know of.

5. What countries did you visit?
I stayed stateside for this one.

6. What would you like to have in 2010 that you lacked in 2011?
– I no longer view things from a mindset that I lack anything, so nothing.

7. What date from 2010 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
March 30, 2010 — My first day of work!

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Finally landing a sweet job.

9. What was your biggest failure?
It’s not possible for me to fail at anything, so nothing.

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MARCH RADNESS

I’ve been absent from a post in a while, but that was because I had the best week in a long time!

Yes kids, I am employed now. In journalism! Therefore, we must doubly rejoice! By the end of the month, I’ll be working at a TV station in San Diego where I will spend most of my time writing stories for their Web site. I’ll also be writing for their newscast and working on some multimedia (hopefully)! This is even more exciting because I have yet to see an SD news site with robust multimedia offerings (other than just video, but more like interactive infographics and such) and we can take the lead. It will be awesome.

So this means I’m packing up and leaving the rainy Northwest for a golden state of mind. But the best part is that I’ll be driving away from my hometown/everything I know and a city full of the finest microbrews in a new car! I just got a 2010 KIA Soul (titanium color) and it’s been fun to drive. It’s cute (according to my grandpa) and has pretty much everything I could need (Sirius, Bluetooth and a sunroof among so many things).

It’s been a whirlwind couple weeks. They’re getting their money’s worth of me in Smoothieland. In other coolness, I’m delighted to see these videos circling my Facebook News Feed:

Now if I can only get my bracket filled out, I’ll be all set.

Nothing like confusing a killer whale and a delicious dish

My mom is hilarious and I will miss conversations like this. She and I were discussing the city of San Diego one night over dinner.

Jess: It’s cool there. They have the beach, Legoland (not as cool as the real one in Denmark obviously) and Shamu!

Mom: Oh, you mean like the drug?

Jess: There’s a drug called Shamu?

Mom: Yeah, like Shamu-Shamu??

Jess: What are you talking about?!?

Hilarity for hours! Upon further research, I think she meant shabu shabu, which is delicious Japanese hot pot.

Another reason I’ll miss her is because she knows how to shop. Or as we call it, “investing.” I know I said I needed to cut back on my investing, but I argue that it’s almost my birthday (Feb. 25).

After church last Sunday we decided to go to Nordstrom Rack. With Rack, it’s clearly hit or miss. One day, there will be so many things (all the stuff you wanted in the main store but didn’t want to pay full price for), and the next day will have nothing. She went to get some shoes for herself and while she’s wandering around, she finds these gorgeous purple/reddish Frye Harness boots for $119! In size 6! Oh man, it was just like the wise men finding the Christ child.

Love these already!

The going rate for these fabulous leather boots is about $200, and for good measure. They’re well made and will last for years. The Frye company is the oldest American shoe company still in operation (since 1863), supplying boots for soldiers during the Civil War, Teddy Roosevelt’s Rough Riders and hippies in the 1960s (gotta throw those history tidbits in — it’s a given). They’ve had nearly 150 years to perfect the art of making the best boots.

I’ve only seen them in black and tan in the Nordstrom stores, so it was weird to see the plum already at the Rack.

But what makes things even better is that my mom let me use her $20 Nordstrom note, which brought my boots down to $99. Luck? Or divine intervention?

As the Nordstrom guy said, my mom and I have “black belts in shopping.” That doesn’t even begin to cover it. You may as well call her the grand master. She innately knows how to find the best deals on anything and hold on to her money as much as possible, which makes me believe that my frugal Asian mom and my future Jewish mother-in-law will get along nicely.

I’m also busy working on a Web site for a friend and staying positive about my life.

This is good. If anything, I have perfected the domestic arts. I can make excellent soup, do laundry, iron and navigate public transit.

Or if all else fails, I could end up taking this guy’s approach.

Only in Portland…

…can people feel it’s okay to leave your boss tearful voicemails explaining you didn’t go to work last weekend because you were so exhausted from being “really stoned.” REALLY? Who would tell your BOSS that? Apparently someone (who is a 26-year-old U of O grad) from my job just did that. Hilarious.

Maybe Portland is one of the few places where it’s cool to do that (seriously, anything goes here–otherwise, you will be accused of being a Republican). Living here is a love-hate relationship. I hate living with my parents. But I love not paying sales tax. I hate not being near any of my friends. But I also love not paying for anything. The list goes on.

Oh, and while I’m at it, I’m loving the Portland-speak dialect. It’s full on rad.

Facebook is the best

Yes it is. Only through it can I know intimate and life-shattering details (such as a pregnancy and subsequent birth or an engagement) about my former classmates without having to actually talk to them.

I know it sounds horrible, but it’s true. Many of those people are high school classmates who I had nothing in common with (you know how you know people but aren’t friends with them) except for the fact that I went to the same high school/college with them.

On the flipside, some people will do TMI on Facebook, and most likely, they are trainwrecks. Like I don’t want to know how many pounds you just lost and how some guy stood you up. Those are the kind of details I cringe to read, so good thing there’s the hide feature.

Also, I don’t like how it tries to make me write on someone’s wall. There is a reason I haven’t “reconnected” with a certain person. Or five. “Help make Facebook better for her. Write on her wall.” WTF? When did Facebook start becoming guilt-trip grandma?

It almost brings as much awkwardness as Bluetooth headsets.

From the city of [brotherly] love, indeed!

I am pretty much in love with this project, A Love Letter For You.

A Love Letter For You was started by Stephen Powers with the City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program and is sponsored by the Pew Center for Arts & Heritage through the Philadelphia Exhibitions Initiative.

Basically, people submit their thoughts on love, what love means to them, excerpts from their own love story, etc. Local painters come together and make those words happen on the sides of buildings (which are best viewed while riding the subway in West Philly). This means less ugly and neglected-looking buildings and more positive messages of hope and love.

I really like the concept of this. Something like it needs to happen in Portland. Or on a t-shirt. Or in my real life (future husband, if you’re reading, please propose to me using something like this).

It won’t be Valentine’s Day for a while. Still feeling the love?

(via Heavy Backpack)

More proof that Asians never age

Over the past few months, I have encountered this scenario many, many times:

Well-meaning stranger: So what do you go to school for?
Jess: Oh, I’m not in school. I just graduated in June.
Well-meaning stranger: Okay, so where do you plan to go to college?
Jess: No, no, I just graduated from college.
Well-meaning stranger: Oh, so this is awkward. I thought you meant high school.
Jess: Yeah, I get that a lot.

My mom gets a variation of this also, especially when people think we look like sisters. So, my friends have this theory: Asians just don’t age. When they do get old, they just instantly turn into cute little grandmas.

You know Hello Kitty? The cute cat from Japan? Homegirl is 35 now and she doesn’t look a day older!