October 31, 2007

Today marks the last day of October. It is the devil's holiday. Geri, it was great seeing you yesterday. It's been almost a year. Don't forget about the little folks at NYU. I had no idea it was 2-for-1 drinks. Now I know where to go for good food and happy hour drinks.

October 30, 2007

Yes, dance music gets me going on the treadmill. Deborah Cox has a new single out. It's this anthem about dancing your butt off. It sounds like all of her other stuff. Nonetheless, it made my 30 minutes fly by. No more cookies for my co-workers. They complain that I am making them fat. Last night's discussion on Vietnamese food at Asia Society was quite entertaining. I enjoyed listening to the panel, especially the moderator. He became "best friends" with all the female panel participants. We bypassed the staircase and used the elevator to reach the food tasting area. I think we skipped quite a few people to get to the food. The food consisted of banh cuon, goi ga, bun thit nuong, and goi cuon. Some people did not get a chance to taste all the food. If an event offers student tickets, buy them. Nine out of 10 times, the usher will never ask for your student ID. They will be too busy tearing your ticket stub to get you in the theater.

October 29, 2007

I now know how to check my blood pressure thanks to the health fair in the LES yesterday. I met a Chinese lady who lived in Cholon. She asked for my full name. She gave me Chinese names in both Cantonese and Mandarin. My name sounds very similar to the Cantonese version. I expected the community center to be outdated and neglected. However, to my surprise, it was well kept with several community activities going on simultaneously. I finished "True Evil". It should be made into a movie. I turned down Cafetasia because I ended up grocery shopping. A half gallon of whole milk is now $2.99. In little over a year, the price of milk has jumped significantly. I still have some mula left on the BR gift card that Joel gave me. I have my Halloween costume. It will be constructed on Wednesday.

October 28, 2007

The weather finally cleared today. It was a nice walk from the 6 train to my office. I dropped off some things for Agnes. I also need to finish Greg Iles's "True Evil" today. I am almost done. The story takes place in Mississippi, more like Natchez and Jackson. He also mentions the New Orleans area and its landmarks. It's refreshing to see a story centered around Mississippi and Louisiana. The last few books I've read have taken place in New York and at exotic locations around the world. One of our neighbors left a Christmas card on our door. In addition to wishing us a "happy holiday" (it's way too early), the neighbor wanted us to keep the noise down as we walk up and down the stairwell. Is that crazy or what? How would they know the noise is coming from Apt. 5D? Also, isn't the stairwell a common area where people are expected to talk? Now I need to tiptoe as I walk up and down the stairs. I cannot talk on my cellphone or to anyone else. Yeah, right! The neighbor did not even identify herself/himself. They signed it as "your neighbor".

October 27, 2007

Halloween is just around the corner. I'm debating on whether I should dress up as Facebook or a tourist. My goal for today is to find a store-bought costume or inspirations for a creative costume. Happy Birthday, Thoa! Sorry that I did not stay for your cake. I'm sure it was delicious. The BBQ from R.U.B. was excellent. My favorite was the cornbread (not a BBQ meat item, but nonetheless, it was excellent!). We stopped by to see the Killing Phantoms perform at the Sidewalk Cafe. I made some new friends on the bench. We were there for the same reasons. We took the M15 bus home and made a pit stop at Pinkberry. I think I am hooked now. I prefer mine with no toppings. The place was unusually empty because of the constant rain. Thao, see you next Sunday on 1st Ave! Listen for my cow bells!

October 26, 2007

We ate at Room Service in Chelsea last night. The girls were 40 minutes late. Instead of taking the 1 train, someone decided to take the 6 and walk "crosstown". I had my first Singha beer at the bar and finished the second one at the table. It was 2 for 1 happy hour. The girls drank Chelsea Rainbow. It's a mixed drink with all the colors of the rainbow. How appropriate considering the restaurant's location. Van barely drank her drink. The poor girl is a light weight. Van's birthday mousse cake tasted more like 3 Musketeers than actual chocolate mousse. It was on the house so who's complaining. I got my flu shot yesterday at Palladium. Rafael and I did not listen to Mrs. Skiba. I anticipate diarrhea within the next couple of weeks. Tonight it's off to Thoa's shindig to ring in another year of her life. We may stop by Phuong's concert, but not too sure yet. It depends on whether the weather lets up. I'm surprised the subways have not flooded considering all the rain we've been getting.

October 25, 2007

It rained today again. I wore my newly pressed pants. It looks like I'll have to take them back to the cleaners to get that nice crease. Last night's dinner was at Incredi. It's a pan-asian place in Gramercy. I ate the bo luc lac. Somehow, Xe Lua's bo luc lac tops everyone else in the city. After dinner, I ate some asian yogurt from a Pinkberry knock-off. I forget the name of the place, but I know it's "berry" something. The yogurt tastes exactly like Pinkberry's. They cheated me. I ate through the medium-sized cup and realized that the stupid yogurt girl failed to fill the entire cup. There was a big hole in the middle. I pretty much bought air and yogurt. I'm not sure if I want to come back. Why do they charge tax when Tasti-D-Lite doesn't? Louis finally returned my DVDs. I ate lunch at Menkutei. I ordered the wrong dish but ended up liking it. It's my new favorite noodle dish.

October 24, 2007

It had to rain on the day that I don't carry an umbrella to work. I ran from the gym to my office all wet. I stood in front of a fan for approximately 10 minutes to dry myself off. It was a combination of sweat and polluted raindrops. I finally got my permanent crown yesterday. It was my last of probably 5 visits. It all started with a toothache that led to a root canal. After the root canal came the temporary crown and finally, the permanent crown. Hopefully my next dentist visit will be a teeth cleening, which should be six months from now. Someone got played last night. No worries...you were able to front your boots for the world to see. We ate at Protester Grill last night. Always get the banana pudding even if you hate bananas. It's worth it! Giuliani betrayed the Yankees. Obama is not patriotic. Hillary is still on top. Should we mention any Republicans? Thinmaker is back!

October 23, 2007

Can today get any more humid? I know what you're thinking. This guy is always talking about how warm the weather is and how he hates it when people don't follow the rules. For example, people who exit the bus through the front doors should get reprimanded unless they are handicapped or walking with a cane. You should walk to the right at all times. It's just like driving. To pass a person on the street, move to his/her left to bypass him/her. Okay, enough of me bickering about petty rules. I am sitting at my desk drying off from all the sweat I accumulated while walking from the gym to my office. I could jump on the bus and get off at the next stop, but that's just being lazy! Someone crashed his car in front of my apartment building this morning. I heard some screaching, but no noise to indicate impact. A few minutes later, sirens from emergency cars started coming. I feel asleep when they came.

October 22, 2007

America has its first governor of Indian descent thanks to Louisiana voters. The second Elizabeth movie was as entertaining as the first. I used my silver voucher to watch the movie. I was not supposed to watch the movie because it was still considered a new release. I bought tickets to "Comeback Kid" and decided at the last minute to catch Cate Blanchett in all her glory. I am reading a new book that I checked out from NYU's library thanks to Samantha and Chang's excitement. People in Mississippi are evil (according to the book). Larry, I will miss our "office" chat, your presence, and your carefree attitude. We had an empty chair at Patsy's today. Agnes and I will continue our weekly ice cream breaks in the cold winter weather. It was always a toss up between coconut or green tea.

October 21, 2007

Goodbye, Sandrine! Hello, Brad! One friend leaves and the other one returns home. I ate my first of four Sprinkles cupcakes from Los Angeles. It was very good. I liked the frosting better than the actual cake. Sheela and I ate those famous fried pancakes. I learned something today. Those square-looking things on a stage hold live prompters instead of television screens. Tarina drove us to JFK. The new American Airlines terminal was not busy at all. It felt like I was standing at a futuristic space shuttle station. We said our goodbyes. Tarina took me back to the E train at Kew Gardens. The E line kicks ass in Queens because it stops at a handful of stops. I climbed up the escalator when connecting to the 6 train. It's cold!

October 20, 2007

I ate at Cafetasia again yesterday. Rain came down immediately. Sending a package overseas via the U.S. Postal Service is quite expensive, unless you use the international priority mail flat-rate box. Now I know. I don't know why I like to wear t-shirts in cold weather. I did that twice in two weeks. It's not a good idea because I am freezing when I get home even if the weather warmed up. Why buy books when you have access to a library? The Korean horror flick that I have been waiting on was good. I'm impressed with the Korean actress take on the Vietnamese language. Carolyn, come spend Christmas in New York. I realized after our weekly phone call that I will not be here for Christmas. I will of course be in New Orleans. I can't wait to try those Sprinkles cupcakes from L.A.

October 19, 2007

Sandrine was on time for her last dinner in New York! I actually came right after her. The chocolate fondue cake and quiche lorraine were excellent. My main course of beef skewer needed some work. I should have ordered the fish. Natalya did not bring the vodka as I had hoped. I had trouble sleeping last night. The fight between Izzy and George's wife never went down. Did Meredith receive a marriage proposal? My dentist affixed the temporary crown to where it belongs. I will try my best to chew on my left side. It was very humid this morning. The cold front should go through tonight and will give way to cool weather for the weekend. I'm off to JFK tomorrow via the red line.

October 18, 2007

I realized this morning that I used some old contacts solution. It has an expiration date of May 2007. No wonder my eyes are all red! My temporary crown fell out of my mouth yesterday as I was chewing gum. For a minute there, I thought I had a good case against the gum company for mixing a piece of rock with gum. The dentist meant it when he said not to have chewing gum touch the temporary crown. I am to go back in this morning to get the temporary crown cemented again. The permanent one will come early next week. These dentist visits have been non-stop. Chang, good luck with your deal this afternoon. I hope it goes through. Sandrine, tonight will be our last night together in New York. Let's try to live it up. Knowing me, I'll end up going home at 9PM. Sorry, it's the old man in me. Those Kid Nation kids are scandalous! I'm glad that Taylor girl was booted. Her cockiness caught up to her. Am I being harsh on a 10-year old? No, I'm not. She is way too mature and must be treated as an adult. I am rooting for Zach.

October 17, 2007

Agnes and I walked to the green market down the street. We were the "power couple". I ate leftovers from Yummy House for lunch. After work, I was off to the Tribeca Rooftop. Sheela, it was great working with you! We should have had more wine. I ended up giving my two sandwiches to a homeless beggar on the subway. I had change on me, but the beggar asked for something to eat. What better way than to give her real food instead of money to buy booze. Kal Penn was absent. Margaret Cho, B.D. Wong, and Cassie were some of the honored guests. The other Japanese guy on "Heroes" attended the charity dinner as well. I know what you did. You'll fess up when you return to the city. I guarantee it!

October 16, 2007

As if eating at Cafetasia for lunch is not enough. I had some last night. My new favorite dish is the Minced Chicken with Thai Basil. I'm taking a break from Chicken With Cashews. Crumbs cupcakes increased their price of cupcakes from $1.95 to $2.25 for the mini version. The regular size ones are now $3.25. I don't mind the price increase. They are still yummy! Speaking of yummy...I had curry fried rice from Yummy House for lunch. I fought with them to get the lunch deal for my fried rice. I won in the end! Did the Turkish kill at least $1 million Armenians during World War I? Obama irritates me. He preaches instead of talking. Who cares about washed-up celebrities dancing? What am I doing? It's none of your business.

October 15, 2007

All the "cultured" institutions were out on Battery Park this past weekend. I picked up some brochures and information about upcoming free events. There is so much to do outside of Manhattan. Julie got her postcard. John, I'll send some Halloween candy your way. Be sure to share with your fellow comrades. Mary, I could not find your stuff. Instead of those deep fried pancakes in the East Village, the new winner for best pancakes is The Pink Tea Cup in the West Village. Carolyn, your waiter served us. Enjoy the cap! Brad, no more internet text messaging from me unless someone is dying or dead. I couldn't stay awake to hear Sally Field ramble on about her sick son. Nathan, good to know you made it to California. I'll visit you in Burbank soon. It may be next month if I can get cheap tickets. World...Hold On!

October 14, 2007

Last night I spent Sandrine's last Saturday night in Chelsea and the Meatpacking District. We ate at Room Service. Sandrine did not show up until we ended up at the bar. We bypassed the "velvet rope" just so we can be surrounded by smokers. Yes, stupid people smoked in the bar. They thought it was so cool to kill themselves and contaminate everyone around them. The sun shined today. The Hispanics paraded up 5th Avenue to celebrate Columbus Day. Prior to that, I was in East Harlem at the City of New York Museum. The Frick Collection has awesome handheld narrators.

October 13, 2007

I'm not sure if I want to do off Broadway shows ever again. Last night's Greek performance was a bit weird. The main character rambled on about how upset she is with her dead father and her miserable life living under an evil mom. The ranting went on for almost an hour before the evil mom appeared. She worked the stage as if she owned it. Too bad she died in the end. A few people left during the performance. Nonetheless, it was worth it because each ticket was $4. Today I am meeting up with Anh Quan and Scott who are visiting from Dallas. The cool, fall weather is finally here!

October 12, 2007

"I slept with Izzy." Al Gore wins the Nobel Peace Prize. Will he run again next year? Sears just announced another product recall. I wonder if I should return everything I bought. There are way too many recalls. It's either the Chinese are producing substandard products or corporate America likes to keep us on our toes so we can be afraid of everything. Fear equals anxiety. Anxiety provokes us to do more shopping. We then feel relaxed and content with our new belongings only to find out that they will get recalled in a few months. It's this cycle of fear that sustains the consumer-corporate relationship. Madonna's "Hung Up" increased my speed on the treadmill this morning. I don't like the symphony. I'm not big on musical instruments. Thank you for your trip to the asian part of O.C.

October 11, 2007

I almost missed my Mandarin tutor last night. She called me while I was eating dinner. Somehow I missed her voicemail earlier in the evening. When will this humidity end? According to the weatherman, it should have ended today. That's what he said last week. We will have a couple more days of damp weather. The weather guys can't get it accurate here in New York. I guess Texas weather is more reliable. I have not decided on what to read as my next book. Sorry, I don't plan on sitting in the bathroom at 3AM crying my butt off. John, you have a sweet pad in China. I like how the balcony serves as the restroom, kitchen, and fire escape. If most buildings are under construction, when will class actually start? Hoa, do you have unlimited text messaging? For all of you who have sent me text messages to my cellphone and don't get a response from me, it's because I disabled the text messaging feature on my phone. In other words, don't send me text messages. I will not get them. Just call or e-mail. Thanks!

Laguna Beach (taken by a famous photographer)

October 10, 2007

I have a temporary crown on the side of my mouth. The permanent one will come in a couple weeks. Kudos to the exiled Tibetans who broke into a Chinese embassy in New Delhi! I skipped lunch yesterday. I ate a banana and chocolate croissant, a polish chocolate candy, and crawfish-flavored potato chips in the late afternoon. I still haven't received the pin to my new debit card. My rent check finally cleared. Speaking of which...my next door neighbor has not returned to his apartment. The landlord notices keep piling up on his door. I wonder if he is okay. I heard that he is staying with his sister in Long Island. Addison had no business posing in that picture. I talked in my sleep last night. I never remember what I talk about. It's insane! I can't wait for my candied grapefruit and spicy curry beef jerky from Vua Kho Bo! I made paper cranes last night. It's all about blowing the middle part!

October 9, 2007

Thanks to Rafael, I saw the sickest movie last night. It's called "Wrong Turn 2". Carole, did you think the "Saw" movies make you squirm? Last night's movie made me sick to my stomach. Everyone enjoyed the movie, including myself. I think the movie will be released later this week...poor Kimberly Caldwell. I ate at my desk yesterday. I think it will be the same scenario today. I'm getting a crown for my root canal. This is probably my fourth time at the dentist in less than two months. Addison looked awesome in that picture with the girls. Why was he all by himself? Chang, I support you. It's a wise decision to focus on one path. By the way, I finished "Nickel and Dimed". What's my next book, Miss Librarian? Brad, have a fun time in California. Don't have too much fun. I have spies in Cali and don't you forget that. I still have the image of Kimberly Caldwell sliced in half with her guts gushing out onto the road. TL, any luck on doing a Toan?

October 8, 2007

Without the added pressure of studying for an exam, I often find myself bored on the weekends. I slept for 2.5 hours yesterday. I woke up cheery and refreshed. That long nap killed me when I tried to sleep at 10PM. I ended up sleeping at midnight. I am almost done with "Nickel and Dimed". It's difficult having to raise a family on a low wage. Wal-Mart employees should unionize! I received the best birthday card yesterday night. It had something to do with next year's presidential race. Two-for-one burgers at Stand from 10PM to midnight every day. The cheapest burger there costs at least $9. The fries were crunchy and tasty! Don't eat the potato salad.

October 7, 2007

Thanks to Chang's $40 gift card to Bed Bath & Beyond and a couple coupons, I bought a new iron, rug for the bathroom, crest toothpaste, and a large bag of hand soap. Someone screwed up the old iron so I had to buy a new one. The old one was a freebie from a fellow neighbor nearby. Sandrine thinks my hair is too short. So does TL. I had a beer at the bar while waiting for the rest of my party of 4 to show up at Jules. A table in the garden took too long. We ended up sitting in a semi-quiet area towards the back. I had a late night dinner again. This time I ate salmon and mash potatoes at 10:30PM. After dinner, we went to Sin Sin. Joe wants another dog. I thought he was kidding. He was semi-kidding. I told him one dog was enough already. The place is already too small for Harvey. Not even one phone call today. My text message to say hello did not get a response. Julie, you are not a loser for getting off of work early and have nothing to do. Just relax and chill! When will this humidity end?

October 6, 2007

I weighed myself yesterday. I gained five pounds after a week of eating my mom's food. I also have a serious belly situation. It's time to be on a strict diet. Let's see how long this will last. For lunch, the guys went to Apple while the girls stayed behind for Belgian fries. I think Megan had fruit. I didn't see leftover fries on her plate. I ate spaghetti at 10:00PM...not a good idea! During my walk home from the restaurant, I ate a huge linzer cookie. Chang, please don't forget my camera. Hoa, I hope next week's episode will be better. It wouldn't make sense to mention you on here since you still don't have internet. What's up? Carole, good to hear from you the other day. I'll try to call you this weekend. You need to come back and visit all the Mexicans in your old town.

October 5, 2007

Today was my first day back at the "early morning" gym. It was quiet as usual. This morning's humidity did not help the already warm weather. We should be muggy for the next few days. I miss Vanessa's dumplings. I had dinner at Nha Trang Centre yesterday night. The bo luc lac was comparable to Xe Lua's. Hong-An, I'm still jealous because you screened all those great films. I can't wait for them to be released. I also bought some goodies for my mom.

October 4, 2007

I'm back at work today. It was a bit foggy and muggy this morning. The weather should be hot for the next two days. We should be in the low 70s next week. It's already October, but it feels like August. I often get confused whether it's Hilary (with one L) or Hillary (with two L's). It does not matter because Clinton is spelled one way. According to Julie, Hung Huynh won Bravo's Top Chef competition. Bravo must love the Viets! First it was Chloe, now it's this Hung guy.

October 3, 2007

It is 8PM and I am now adding today's entry. It's been a very long day. My flight from New Orleans to Chicago departed on time at 8AM. I waited in Chicago for an hour and a half before leaving for LaGuardia. When we arrived in New York, we taxied in the air for 30 minutes because of heavy air traffic. My luggage was the first one on the baggage carousel. Yes, I'm cheap. I took the M60 bus from LaGuardia and connected to the 4/5 train at 125th St. in Harlem. I transferred to the 6 at 86th St. I got off at my stop, which is 77th St. After the crosstown bus, I was home. The ride home took exactly one hour from door to door. Loan, I did not see the coffee cup you mentioned. I noticed a toothbrush in the restroom. Is it yours or Jenny's? I'm glad you guys enjoyed your time here in New York. Hopefully, I will be here the next time you come and visit. To the Nguyen family and Julie, thank you for a great time in New Orleans. Actually, it's not even New Orleans...more like Marrero and Metairie. When I arrived, I saw Addison wake up from his nap. The night before I left, I saw him doze off to sleep after a day of no napping.

October 2, 2007

We had lunch at Kim Son. Eddie took us to Miyako for dinner. Yes, I like Asian food. I can't do Applebee's or Chili's. Addison got his haircut. He did not cry. Julie woke me up this morning. Instead of meeting at noon, we are meeting a couple hours earlier at Cafe Du Monde on Veterans. Brad, I agree with you. Acupuncture does not work. Eddie has been bugging me to try some herbal medicine for hair loss. I declined. I have been eating non-stop since I got home. I even eat a little snack before going to bed as if dinner was not enough. The only time I am outside is to get in and out of the car. Other than that, I am indoors with central air. I leave for New York tomorrow morning. My flight connects in Chicago.

October 1, 2007

Yesterday I "went" to church. After lunch at Nine Roses, I met up with Julie and her kids at Cafe East in Metairie. I met her former co-workers. We drove to a grocery store in Kenner to buy ingredients for a wasabi salad. The store did not have many of the ingredients so Julie gave up. We went back to her place in LaPlace. We ate at Little Tokyo. I ended up not meeting with Mary and her family. Hopefully, we can connect when I'm back for Christmas. Loan and Jenny shopped for "luxury" goods in NY's Chinatown. Daniel picked my birthday cake. It was a Pillsbury ice cream cake that tasted like Baskin Robbins. Addison helped blow out the candles. Thank you for the cake, guys! I miss driving my car. When I was at the gas station, I almost forgot how to pump gas. It took me two seconds to remember. Jefferson Parish Sheriff Harry Lee died today at the age of 75. I like watching the Barefoot Contessa cook as I walk on the elliptical machine. My daytime entertainment has been either the Food Network or HGTV. The two channels are conveniently located next to one another on Cox Cable. The Huey P. Long Bridge is currently under construction. In a few years, it will be expanded from its current two narrow lanes to three wide lanes on each side of the bridge. The railroad tracks will remain untouched. Thank you to Kim Pheezy for providing the info (Chang relayed the news to me). Addison likes to shower with everyone.