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.


Thanksgiving: excellent stuffing, perpetually stuffed.

So, my Thanksgiving was nothing short of awesome, but maybe too short.

Again, it’s always the same time of year where I remember that I have much, much, much to be thankful for. I’m not allowed to complain about anything because (abridged list): I have a mom, family, and God who loves me, I have friends who love me, I have a healthy and functioning body (not sick yet), my brain still works and I will succeed, I’m going places, The Economist, all Kashi products, Twitter, and things of the like.

Thanksgiving dinner was awesome too. Whole Foods cooked us the traditional dinner, and my mom made me turkey egg rolls (there are some in my suitcase, TSA better not have taken them). Delightful. It’s been a year since I tasted the awesomeness of my mom’s egg rolls, and it was definitely worth it. I will say that Whole Food’s stuffing was really good, because I don’t normally like stuffing but I liked theirs. Odd. And this year, I totally didn’t overeat, which was awesome.

The next day, I was a brave soul and did Black Friday at 6 am with my mom and one of her friends. Outrageous. We hit up one of the major malls in the area, and there were SOOOO MANY people at 6:00 am. Most of them were teenyboppers, which I am really surprised about. And the food court was open at 6:00 also, so you could’ve picked up some Sbarro to fuel your shopping adventure. How crazy is that?

I thought that with the economy sucking and in its current trajectory, people would spend less. However, I guess it makes sense that Black Friday sales went up 3%. More people have less money and want to stretch their dollar as much as possible, and getting up to pay $1600 for a 42” plasma TVs is worth it. But is getting that TV or Wii or Xbox worth someone’s life? I’m still really aghast and appalled at the fact that SOMEONE EFFING DIED after being stampeded by hundreds of people for cheap electronics.

 In my case, I didn’t have to resort to any violence. I bought a couple pairs of jeans for super cheap from Anchor Blue (don’t hate; I can fit in their jeans and I like it), 2 cute cardigans from Ann Taylor Loft (one was like $12), a patent leather belt from White House/Black Market, and a really cute silk scarf from Charlotte Russe (don’t judge; I normally think it’s a shitty quality teenybopper store but newsflash, they do have some acceptable accessories). Grand total: roughly $37! Yup.

I didn’t get nearly as much work done as I wanted to do, so that means I am forced to make the most of my time as much as I can. Ugh. 2 research papers due this week and 1 final, but at the end it will be Christmas break. Yay!!

I also didn’t see any friends from home this past week—it was just too short and crazy for anyone else other than my family. Football was a little disappointing. I kinda expected Seattle to lose on Thanksgiving (it’s SEATTLE), but I was hoping to be pleasantly surprised. But Oregon State losing to Oregon? By a lot?  Come on Beavs, what was that? Now USC will most likely go to the Rose Bowl = lame.

For now, I’ll be MIA for the next two weeks on matters of substance as I give 2 presentations, turn in 2 research papers, and take 1 final. Wish me well.