Saturday, June 27, 2009

Tired Of Being The Host?

I remember I hosted many of my friends’ get togethers for two years when I was a student at San Jose State University. I say about 60%-70% of us hanging out we were at my parent’s house. I hated being the host too many times. Many times we were loud my parents had trouble falling asleep. My family is a quiet family (-_-)

My last year at San Jose State University, my friends spread the places we hung out. Spreading and sharing the host responsibilities were good actions we were good friends. Most of us were in college and we didn’t have money to get our own apartments. We changed hung out locations to prevent overburden our parents’ house. In the summer time, two of my friends met two new friends at a gaming convention. We then hung out at one of the friend’s father small business because it was convenient including facilities and no worries bothering any family and neighbors. We all appreciated his welcome :D

I think back today and I realize some of us had advantages to be the host. My house was big to host all of my friends. My family and I had the tables, board games, and TVs for fun. Some of us didn’t have the necessary facilities and entertainment goods to host us. And a few of us parents don’t like having friends visit their houses which is messed up =\ Parents, how can your children become good people if they can’t have friends? Nobody can live life being alone. Parents, you’re not alone. Both of you got married O__O I digress.

Another factor to consider why some friends can’t be hosts include family situation such as too many relatives in the house; for example, the grandparents are sick and need care from someone in the house. Financial situation is another factor such as can’t afford to have people over to offer food and prevent higher utility bills. The friends who can’t offer their place to hang out must find ways to appreciate someone else’s place such as buying food and drinks, giving a birthday gift, paying gas money if the friend is driving, or bring games and DVDs. Never take a friends’ place, family’s place, or acquaintance’s place to hang out or to host entertainment for granted.

I'm growing up Finding Raymond Mar

Thursday, June 25, 2009

De Anza Journal Week June 22, 2009

Mon June 22

The instructor collected the workout cards for extra credit. I turned mine in. Great workout despite me being tight around my body. I was running late and I skipped the jog in my gym. I arrived a few minutes late and the instructor was late. Throughout my days in the workout room, the weather never reached over 90 degrees. Lucky!

Wed June 24

I got my workout card back. I use the workout card as reference when I go back to my gym to workout. The workout card has the weight numbers. I'm going to use my old workout and my new workout program.

The instructor had a 5:00pm meeting and end class early. I choose to use the limited time to find my new max bench press. I'm happy to say my max bench press is 200 pounds!! Yay!! I met a new classmate and we talked about our situations including my unemployed and him as graphics art major. The end of the class I talked to a classmate I regularly chat. We continued to talk about unemployment and her transfer to San Jose State in fall. We have our email addresses and we keep in touch.

After I showered in the gym, I walked to the Campus Center for my last burger combo. The cook and I briefly chat as usual. He always recognized me. I watched the World Cup qualifier game Mexico vs. Venezuela or Ecuador. I also browsed the web while watching the soccer game.

The final dance class we continued to learn the waltz. After class, I talked to a few classmates about dancing and free lessons including the salsa lesson in Japantown. Some of us continue to dance and we meet up at future dancing events.


The number one reason I went back to De Anza was to take Japanese. I dropped Japanese three weeks later. Today, dropping Japanese is the best choice I made in 2009. There is very little chance I take Japanese in the future. My priority is picking a second major: accounting, nursing, finance, or bookkeeping.

I learned in my Strength Development and Social Dance. Social Dance is a definite for Fall Quarter'09. Following and practicing a second beginner workout program I downloaded at was huge and helped me developed muscle. I asked the instructor questions from the second workout program. I follow the second beginner workout and my first beginner workout at my gym. And I learned a new warm-up exercise with the bar from a classmate. Excellent! Max bench press 200 pounds. So great!!! I weigh 165 pounds.

I want to take two classes in fall. I hope to pick a major for fall to at least get started working on my second major. During the summer, I continue to practice and learn dance and workout at the gym. Have a good summer!

I'm growing up Finding Raymond Mar

De Anza Journal Week June 15, 2009

Mon June 15

The coach announced he's going to check the workout cards on Wednesday. The workout cards are extra credit. The talk in the workout room was the Lakers winning the NBA Finals and World Cup qualifiers games. I hate the Lakers; however, thank goodness the Lakers won because the Lakers put the Magic out of it's misery.

Wed June 17

The coach checked workout cards and announced he collects the cards on Mon June 22 for extra credit. Finals week is next week. No final in the class. We meet on Mon and Wed for usual class on final's week.

There were a few lazy people who show up for class to get participation credit. They don't workout. Sad. Waste of time and money. In particular, there was a couple who enrolled and they never worked out. If I was a girl, I want my boyfriend to workout. Build muscle. Get a sexier body! Feel better. Going out with healthier men have advantages such as more energy, better mood, and longer sex! Girls adore physical men.

In dance class, we learned the waltz. The techniques we learned were intermediate. The instructor did a good job teaching the intermediate moves. The class learned quickly. There is no final in dance. We meet at the usual schedule for the last class meeting during finals week.

I'm growing up Finding Raymond Mar

Saturday, June 20, 2009

My Solution To Solve Problems

There are so many problems today. Poverty, health care, discrimination, environment, economy, the list goes on and on. Everyone has an idea, an opinion to solve the world's problems. Everyone's solution is not a fix-all problem. Common solutions are everyone must get an education, reform the government, more business regulation, universal health care, go green, raise taxes on the rich, eat healthy and exercise, and innovating technology to solve tomorrow's problems.

My solution is not a fix-all problem. My solution is not a fix for the public. My solution is for individuals. What is my solution? The answer is cooking ^__^

Yes, my solution is cooking! Think about it. Women who want to win a man's heart must go through his stomach. Likewise for men. Women are impressed men cook. Cooking is a skill everyone must know. Cooking takes time to learn. Lots of time. Cooking involves creativity. Your make a meal with your hands. When you cook, you control what you eat. Eat healthy, cook healthy.

I believe people are in better moods, feel great, happy and being the best when they eat a good meal. People feel great they cooked a meal for themselves and for others, and the others feel good. Everyone feels good =) The good mood and the happy atmosphere spread in a family household, a group of friends, co-workers, and new people getting to know each other. People in good mood are better able to handle individual problems including stress. Good food equals great positive energy! Great positive energy spreads anywhere a good spirited person goes. A good spirited person tackles any problem individually or universally. The more individuals are in a good mood, the more likely people are in a good mood and we solve problems XD

I rate my cooking skills as "survivable." In other words, I know enough cooking where I live by myself and I take care of myself. I take control of what I eat. I always learn new ways to cook food. I desire to learn new ways to cook. I innovate my cooking. I learn a new recipe. I learn a new technique. I learn a new tip. I learn a mistake.

If you don't know how to cook, start cooking. Buy a beginner cookbook and start cooking. Go to the grocery store and buy fresh food and ingredients: meat, vegetables, spices, grains, cooking oils, etc. You're not going to be a professional chef overnight. There is trial and error. The more you cook, the better your cooking skills are.

I'm growing up Finding Raymond Mar

Friday, June 19, 2009

This Week With Raymond Mar

The week of June 8 reminded me of my sophomore and senior years in high school. Those years my daily life in and out of school were neither satisfactory nor being despondent. I had happy days and I had sad days. The happy days cancelled the sad days. No matter what happened each day I felt "OK, I survived today smiling or frowning."

This week was so-so. Here's what I did in the week:

*I attended all my classes. The workouts were good. I was running late on Monday and no time to jog in the gym. Wednesday I jogged and arrived a little bit late. Social Dance we learned the waltz. I already know the basic waltz. The instructor taught intermediated waltz and the class learned quickly.

*I attended my dermatologist appointment late Monday morning. My eczema gotten worse and my harmless warts were infected. I felt depressed because my face was getting red, yet I was upbeat because the side effects assured me Accutane is working. For the record, I'm not suicidal! I'm not. The dermatologist prescribed me a medication for my infected warts. The medication cost $273 for a 12 day supply. I couldn't afford it.

As of today, I'm surprised my eczema and the infected warts improved. Wow! I'm applying moisturizer and another topical cream my dermatologist gave me for my eczema. The dermatologist also gave me a one day supply for my infected warts, and the infected warts seems to be treated.

I must use disposable razors. I purchased a 52 day supply at Costco. The razors spread the virus causing infected warts to other parts of my face.

Other side effects I experience are stiffness on my neck and back if I stay in a position for a long time and being thirsty.

*I started to read "The Invention of Hugo Cabret" by Brian Selznick. I continue to reread Seinlanguage by Jerry Seinfeld.

*For anime, I'm watching K-On and an old series Strawberry Marshmallow. I'm reading D.Gray Man. I didn't have time to catch up on Bleach.

*Email, Facebook, blogs, and forums I'm active all I have little time to check and update.

*I did little sewing. I just couldn't get myself into sewing.

*I attend Thursday night free Salsa lessons instead of Friday night free Salsa lessons. The instructor for Thur is beginner friendly.

*I played some Team Fortress 2. I have a better understanding why some people who feel depressed play video games. I admit after playing I felt better.

*Purchased Frank Sinatra double CD "My Way" and "Live At The Meadowlands." Good music to help me self-practice ballroom dancing.

*I continue to work on the Fanime Con 2009 costume pictures.

Many people think I'm in a good mood, life is going well, and I'm doing activities despite me being unemployed. To set the record straight, there are days I'm not a happy camper, and it's happening more. Accutane? I doubt it. I get stuff done. I feel neither satisfied nor unsatisfied. I'm in the middle. It was like high school. I attended high school because I have to. I didn't complain and I didn't complement high school. I just did it. I just do it. I blame nobody for my lack of positive and negative feelings.

This week was plain. I kept myself busy. I had no sense of accomplishment and I had no sense of feeling pissed off I should have done more. The week could have been better and it didn't get worse. A new week is three days away. Hope for the best!

I'm growing up Finding Raymond Mar

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Accutane Day 135

OMG!!! I respect Accutane. I respect Accutane. I'm experiencing more side effects that is good because the medication is working ^__^ I went to my dermatologist for my routine appointment Mon June 15. I told the dermatologist my eczema gotten worse the last ten days. I apply the medication I received on my May appointment in the morning and before I sleep. My dermatitis on my hand is under control. New side effects are stiffness. If I stay in one position such as sitting down for a period of time, I experience stiffness on my back and/or neck as if I have arthritis. I'm getting more thirsty.

The significant new side effect is the harmless warts became harmful. The warts are infected and spread throughout my face. The dermatologist said the virus warts were caught on time. Liquid nitrogen was applied to the warts. The virus warts appear on my left side near the ear and my right side near the ear spreading to both cheeks. I must visit my dermatologist every two weeks for liquid nitrogen treatment, and the appointment includes a new supply of Accutane when needed. I asked how long does the treatment take. The dermatologist said "You don't want to know." Uh, oh =( And I must use disposable razors because I don't want to use the same razor contaminated with the virus.

I was given a prescription for the virus warts. It's Aldara, a topical cream I apply once a day on my warts. Unfortunately, the cost is $271 for a 12 day supply. Damn! I talk to my dermatologist for options. Do I need Aldara? Can I wait to get Aldara after, say, three liquid nitrogen treatments?

My face looks worse. I didn't expect the warts to be infected. When I see people with a face like mine currently, chances are they're taking accutane. I'm neither happy nor sad. It's a setback with a big reward when my treatment is completed. I know people who taking accutane and they're handsome and beautiful. I continue to live life. No changes. I still go outside and do my favorite activities.

I'm growing up Finding Raymond Mar

Monday, June 15, 2009

De Anza Journal Week June 8, 2009

Mon June 8

I turned in the take home exam to the instructor. I remember my days at San Jose State going to the bookstore to buy the scantrons and blue books.

Today's workout was one of my better workouts. I managed to get a good job at the gym before class. Unfortunately, I arrived late to class even though I exited the gym with good time. The reason I arrived late is because all the signal lights were red when I arrived at the intersection. A 20 minute maximum drive turned out to be 30 minutes. Terrible.

I talked to a classmate and the instructor after class. We discussed the California budget and the impact on classes and unemployment.

Wed June 10

I was running late and didn't have time for a jog. I drove straight to class. Workout was satisfactory!

After Strength Development and showering in the men's locker room, I headed to the Campus Center for my burger and fries. The worker recognized me every Wednesday night. I got my burger, fries, and soda combo, paid, and then I saw a classmate from my dance class. She asked if I wanted to watch soccer. I said OK. The soccer game was the 2010 World Cup qualifier. We talked about soccer and what sports we enjoyed watching. We also discussed the free salsa class.

In dance class, the instructor was out of town for a family commitment. Her assistant taught the class. We reviewed the Cha Cha Cha, West Coast Swing, and Salsa. We learned no new dances. The end of the class I talked to two classmates who have danced for at least two years. One of them told me how he learned. He started taking a class at Mission College, another junior college two years ago. He was hooked on ballroom dancing. He gave me more information on the free salsa classes at San Jose Japantown. The Thursday instructor is more beginner friendly. The Friday instructor is more intermediate and a show off. Some people who know how to salsa attend the free classes and/or take classes at junior college just to keep their skills sharp. He suggested I take the Thursday class because many people in the Friday class already know salsa. I take the Thursday class next week and try again for the Friday class.

I'm growing up Finding Raymond Mar

Sunday, June 07, 2009

De Anza Journal Week June 1, 2009

Mon June 1

The instructor emailed the take home exam. The 20 multiple choice questions scantron exam is due Mon June 8.

Today's workout was one of my better ones despite me being tired. I had trouble getting up from bed. I was recovering being sick after Memorial Day weekend. My muscles were tight. I had a few minutes to spare after working out my upper body for squats.

I talked to the instructor before I exited class telling him I saw him on KPIX news. Last week, all the local news did news articles on all the local colleges regarding budget cuts, reduced classes, and fee increases.

After class, I went to the gas station to fill up my car. I applied a bottle of fuel injection cleaner before I filled up my car. Gas prices are increasing.

Wed June 3

I learned a new term. It's "Forced Rep." Forced Rep is when a spotter helps the lifter complete a rep.

I was running late. I didn't have time to run the treadmill at the gym. I ran the track two laps before class. I concentrated on workout my legs. Felt great!

The dance lesson we reviewed the Cha-Cha-Cha and learned the Salsa. We didn't dance any West Coast Swing. After dance, I met up with a few classmates. We talked about a free Salsa lesson in San Jose Japantown. I was interested. One of the classmates send me the info via Facebook. We meet up on Fri and hang out for dinner afterwards.

Later in the evening after dinner, I completed the take-home exam for Strength Development. It wasn't hard. I needed to quick read chapters 1-4.

I'm growing up Finding Raymond Mar

Accutane Day 124

I experienced more eczema. Eczema is red, dry-like, sometime itchy rash spots. The eczema was worse than the first time. The eczema was on my left side of the face between the eye and ear and the left side below the jaw bone and on the right side of the face between the eye and ear. It started on Mon June 1. Today, with moisturizer and a dermatologist prescribed cream, the eczema is disappearing. The picture above shows the moisturizer I applied for my eczema. The second time of eczema reminded me to continue drinking water and to apply moisturizer daily on my face.

The dermatitis on my hands is minimal. I apply moisturizer daily and before I sleep. I used the shaving cream my dermatologist gave me once. I'm using a cheapy shaving cream. I never purchased the suggested shaving cream sensitive for my eczema and hand lotion for my dermatitis.

I wore makeup for the first time at Fanime Con 2009, an anime convention in Downtown San Jose on Memorial Day weekend. The makeup covered my dilated pores and harmless warts. Wow, what a difference! Lots of people came up to me. I received the most attention while in costume since I started wearing costumes in 2004. We live in a society where looks do make a difference. It's sad. Further, I removed the blackheads on my nose as if I'm popping a pimple that is a no-no. What a difference after I removed the blackheads and applied makeup on my nose.

I have three pimples. One was on my left lower jaw bone close to my chin, the second was in my left ear just before the ear hole, and the third was on my lower back on the wasteline. I mention the three pimples, the eczema, and show a pic of my nose with blackheads on my next appointment.

I'm growing up Finding Raymond Mar

A Distraction To Crush The Anchor

Since Wed Jun 3 I'm experiencing an attitude and a feeling that's making me feel unproductive. There's something on my back slowing me down. It's like an anchor dragging me, and I don't know where the anchor is. It's like I'm riding a boat and I'm dragging something that's slowing me down. I look under water and don't know what's dragging me.

I have plenty of activities such that being bored is impossible. What am I doing? Here's the latest:

*Searching for a job. I'm still unemployed.
*Learning ballroom dancing. I practice one or two times a week. I get lessons at De Anza and from my sister. I know four beginning dances: foxtrot, waltz, cha-cha-cha, and tango. I have the desire to learn more dances and move up to intermediate.
*Working out. I'm taking a weight lifting class at De Anza. I know two beginning weight lifting workouts. I haven't done a cardio workout that I miss. I wanted to do a cardio workout on Fri. I didn't =(
*Sewing. I started learning sewing by sewing baby clothes. I finished sewing a pair of pants for my nephew. I'm sewing another pair using the same pattern. I'm learning by repetition.
*Anime. I'm watching Fullmetal Alchemist 2, K-On, Bleach, and 07-Ghost. I'm reading Bleach, Fullmetal Alchemist, Tsubasa Chronicles, Black Cat, and D.Gray Man. I'm researching two new costumes that are Allen Walker from D.Gray Man and Train from Black Cat.
*Books. I have no new books. Waiting for a Borders 40% off coupon $-) I'm rereading Seinlanguage by Jerry Seinfeld. My brother and sister gave me the book for Xmas a long time ago.
*Anime Expo'09. I'm preparing my trip to Anime Expo. I made the choice to attend just after Fanime'09.
*The others activities. Currently, I'm finishing Star Trek III. I watched bits and pieces. I'm watching Star Trek I-V from a VHS set my sister in-law gave my Dad. I'm watching the NBA Finals Los Angels and Orlando. I'm writing Blogs, check emails, and update my Facebook. I started hiking. I hike once a month. I like to hike more. And I'm working on editing the Fanime '09 costume pics.

It's not that I'm bored, not that I'm lazy, not that I'm lonely, not that I'm depressed. (Well, maybe I am depressed and it’s the accutane. Who knows? I'm not suicidal.) It's just that I feel behind, I feel I'm underutilizing my time, I feel I need to know and to do something now. I feel impatient. My sleep schedule is messed up. I slept at 1am or 2am and I wake up at 9am. Lately, I sleep at 1am or 2am and I wake up at 10am or 11am. Not good. And I got neck soreness such that it's hard to turn my face that happened on Thur Jun 4. It's time for a time out!!!

Today and possibility Mon and Tue, I continue to distract myself. I distract myself to remove and to crush the anchor somewhere on my back. The distraction began on Sat hanging out with my friends and watching movies and drinking chocolate milk for the first time since . . . gee, I don't think I ever drank chocolate milk before ~~ Some distracted activities are updating my expense database, changing the sheets on my bed, cleanup my desk, and play classic arcade games. Updating my blogs are the exception ;) I do anything to distract myself feeling unproductive and slowing me down.

There are better days ahead XD

Side note: The blog entry was posted without proofreading and editing. I choose to keep the blog entry as is directly from my mind as I typed.

I'm growing up Finding Raymond Mar

Thursday, June 04, 2009

How Do They Do It? How Do They Do It?

One observation I see daily is how some people blend easily in a crowd. The crowd is a bunch of friends, a bunch of strangers meeting for the first time, or a bunch of people in a party . . . any group of people. How do they do it? How do they blend in and bring energy and enthusiasm in a group of people? Charisma? Good vibes? Good looks? Positive energy? Tone of voice? Correct attitude? Funny? Luck?

I had a friend. High school educated, worked in retail, little overweight, 6ft tall, talked slowly, slow learner, and ten times more geek than me. In Anime Expo'99, he successfully got a press badge and watched the main events show from the side of the stage. Everytime we were together and with people, he attracted a crowd and he was an instant star. How did he do it? I have no idea.

I must be doing something wrong. Is it my voice? My voice is my voice. My looks? My braces are removed in June. My accutane treatment is half way completed. Wear makeup? Um, I think about makeup. Am I sending negative vibes? Do I act nervous? Insecure? Angry? I don't know. I'm wearing new clothing. I donated my at least 10 year old clothing. Obviously I buy new pants when I need to. I'm doing something to change and to improve my appearance. Do I need to improve my conversation skills? I say yes, I always improve my conversation skills, do anything to be more charming.

Am I portraying myself as too good a person? I'm too good? I'm too perfect? I'm not good. I'm not perfect. I have flaws. Maybe I do a good job hiding them and I don't realize it. Do I act and behave as a quiet person? Bad luck and bad timing I'm with a group of people and there is no connection between me and them? Do I scare people? I admit I laugh too much. I'm working on that bad habit. Do some people look at me as a nerd, a geek, and all of a sudden, they ignore me? I have bad luck I haven't met people like me to expand my long term circle of friends, my long-term friendships.

I want to be a person who attracts people. I don't want to be a person who chases people. I have many ways to communicate including texting, AIM, Yahoo IM, and Facebook to keep in touch. I want to meet new people. I want to portray myself as a fun and good person, and create long term friendships. Age, race, creed, education. Doesn't matter. I have a desire to meet new people. I want to be a "there he is person." I avoid the jerks, bitches, and people full of drama.

In Fanime 2009, I hung out with a few friends who introduced me to more friends. Some of them do it. They attract people. They're funny. They're the source of energy, source of fun, and source of enthusiasm. How do they do it? I'm still trying to figure it out. Confidence? Opening up? I had a few highlights being with them. What I did was followed how they were having fun. They were my models, my examples how to behave and to act. Oh, I did wear makeup when I wore my costumes. OMG, what a difference!!! People were coming up to me. I don't recall a past anime convention where so many people came up to me to talk, to joke, and to take a picture of me.

The lessons I learned regarding how people attract, retain, and earn friendships and being a friendly good guy are having the attitude of being cheerful, not being a stuck up. Have courage to speak up and everyone makes mistakes and say stupid jokes. Make sure what you say is appropriate; in other words, be tactful when meeting new people. Yes, I have lots more to learn.

Side note: I review my top five rules for daily living:

1. Don't criticize, condemn, and complain, and don't compare with others.
2. Don't act like a jerk or bitch.
3. Always speak calmly and be calm.
4. Don't daydream when driving.
5. Keep your head up high . . . look at the cute face when talking.

I'm growing up Finding Raymond Mar