double trouble and bubble

i love pepperidge farm verona cookies. they're the oft overlooked fruit ones. The sidepanel of the packaging describes the Art of a Cookie, which i thought would be a pseudo-recipe...you know, like, with ingredients and what not (the finest handpicked flours, etc). instead, the first thing it lists is: THE SOUL OF A BAKER! oh yeah, find a baker, pluck out his soul, spray it thrice with the spit of the fire-bellied toad (bombina bombina), and there you have your raspberry filling.

my coworker is a goat. like a goat, rushabh is a herbivore, but other than meat, he'll eat anything. today, he ordered vegetable buns from crystal jade, and we caught him eating the buns along with the paper on which they're steamed. also, those extra 8 peeps that merrick left from yesterday? yep, rushabh ate those too, all while muttering about how mediocre they are. reminds me of that simpsons episode where homer accidentally boils his pet lobster (oh sob...i miss him...marge pass the butter).


you know where it's going

peeps are on sale at wellcome--$3 per pack of 5...
i bought 3 packs (very restrained), and forced our newest colleague (he joined 3 weeks ago) to chubby bunny them :-D. merrick, the colleague, is a very small guy who eats salad everyday for lunch. i had hope tho b/c he has a very mobile face. alas, he only managed 6 before the drool got the best of him. he spit the peeps into the trash. poor peeps. at least he left me some to microwave. RAARRR MONSTER PEEPS!



goccia, in a mad advertising scheme, just spammed me their menu for a 5 course dinner. apparently, for $888, i can eat things like "crashed potatos" (mayday mayday!), "crayfish foam" (rabies adds just that extra soupcon of je ne sais quoi), dried cod mousse, and warm cherry soup. maybe i should've gone into chefery after all. i'm a pro at funny names on funny ingredients. lessee...we could have such delicacies as flicked spinach in clownfish (pants) sauce, airbladder stuffed with foie gras, and for dessert, squirted cinnamon.

but seriously, why all the innovation in food? do ppl's palates really get bored? mine certainly doesn't. i can eat tomato soups till the cows come home (and then i'll have a burger thankee). variety, sure, i'm all for variety. but at the end of the day, gimme the good ole classics.

oh, and in an update in my life, i'm hungry (all the time. no, even more so than usual. usually, i'm not hungry but can eat an inordinate amount b/c in a past life i was (briefly) a goldfish (until i popped)...now i'm actually physically panging in my tummy constantly...and regardless of what i eat, i seem to never be full...which is actually quite nice, but still weird).

an initiative: i am trying to work the interjections "sweet soya sauce!" and "dagnabit!" into my speech. if you talk to me, pls help out by telling me shocking/disappointing things.


dreamcup 2008

they say a wise man climbs mt fuji once; a fool climbs it twice. therefore i did not climb mt fuji again (and now you know what kind of mood i'm in: rambly and irrelevant). but i did get my fill of calpis and onigiri. oh combini, how i've missed you. unfortuntely, i got my fill friday night, shortly after i landed, when i ate, let's say, 5 onigiri and an egg salad sandwich in a go (an onigiri is a tightly packed ball of rice roughly the size of my left ventricle--assuming i'm not some grinch creature with a triply small heart--poor heart, always losing turf wars to my belly and bladder--and poo to you anatomy takers who say my bladder is not in my chest cavity, mom always said i was a special one).

alriiight, away from the land of the fighting organs, we venture back to our heroine, who has embarked from a 4 hour plane ride to board a 3 hour bus ride, arriving at her hotel at 3am, to rise at 6am for a 50 min 9am game. and then we had a 5 hour bye till our next and last game of saturday. sunday promised a max of 3 games provided we didn't lose any, which we didn't, but i had to leave before our last one to catch my 3 hour train ride back to narita, which means, i played something like 100 min of ulty...which is the equivalent of one savage league game. let's just say the organization of the tournament left something to be desired. going back to the numbers: there were 60 open teams, 40 women's teams, 12 mixed teams (approximately), roughly 5 portapotties, 2 spigots for water, 1 big cauldron of soup, 1 mochi pounder, and 0 second chances. i guess in that sense, it was good that our games were sparse...i don't think i could've survived a real tourney with such meager field food.

the format kinda killed us--the whole tourney was purely elim. we were an expat team of women who are more used to playing mixed. we had never played with each other before, most of us are out of shape (or so we claimed), and honestly, i thought we'd be a team of swing handlers...as in that third handler in the ho stack who rarely touches the disc b/c some godsend boy always makes the dump cut, holds, holds, waits for it...HUCKS! plus, rumors were it'd be windy at fuji...and given my performance at kaimana, i wasn't optimistic about our disc skills in the wind. needless to say, it took us that first 50 min to filter into our roles. both teams had a fair amount of drops and throwaways; we had to learn to take the initiative for that first cut. i was surprised by how physically the japanese girls played given their size disadvantage.

losing the first game dropped us into some sort of beer bracket where we won the rest of our games for the tourney (if we won that first game, we would've matched up against fury). i mostly played handler, which is actually kinda terrific b/c the j girls all used a relatively flat mark that gave me a lot of backhand hucks. towards, the end, i was bold enough to try a flick huck, which went exactly where i intended, but was misread and not caught (receiver error!). and yelena, remember how you told me i needed to get low to throw upwind? i actually remembered this time, and i came home with a massively sore right quad and a two day limp, but at least my throws didn't do that fluttery crap anymore.

i have a theory that most j teams play the same ultimate. the better teams are just faster and connect a higher percentage of throws. so, playing j teams is like playing a video game--you get to choose your level. but regardless of speed/precision, they all make their first cut breakside from the front of the stack. if that doesn't get open, their next option is the openside in cut from the back of the stack, which will come in for a bit before it turns into an away cut up the side, which will recieve a loopy outside in throw. by our second game, we figured out a good switchy man d where the first man in the stack lines up on the break side of her girl, the second person covers io-ish, the last back is last back, and the second to last back covers in cuts. it worked well, at least for the level of teams we were playing.

by the second game, i had turned into the drill sargeant, running warmups and calling lines. not sure why, but women seem much more coachable than the mixed crowd i deal with in hk. maybe this is an unfair generalization, but what really struck me is the up calls, the counting of completed passes, the general encouragement and positivity. our team was a team of small egos (except mine) and hard workers. this is what salvaged the whole experience for me. we actually played very good ultimate, making the easy pass, dumping and swinging, cutting and clearing. we did a trap-dump drill, and then we actually implemented it during the very next game! we've been doing that drill for over a year in hk, and we still don't get it right. this tourney and kaimana make me realize just how much i miss women's ultimate.

and of course, i got to hang with katie wilson and her boobs (have we named them yet? and if not, why not? suggestions are welcome in the comments. hell, comments are welcome in the comments too). katie was sober the entire time that i saw her, but we still managed to get in some quality conversations about poop and butts. my favorite occurred while i was straddling her back, digging my elbows into her butt:

k: "can you feel that huge knot in my butt?"
me: "um, i dunno, i don't generally have lots of nerves in my elbows."

haha ha ha...ok, maybe you had to be there, BUTT (HA HA, um...) we had a good time freaking out the japanese bystanders. and she introduced me to some of her star teammates, which kinda went like this:

k: "hey guys, this is my friend lily"
me (waving frantically): "hi guys! wow! you're fury! wow! i mean, i'm not impressed, i'm cool, we're cool, yeah, cool. SNORT".

i didn't even try approaching sockeye...i might've pee'd myself. apparently, my living in asia has totally up'd the star quotient of good ulty players.

and now i'll pause and take a breath...


continuing in the theme of tidbit posts:

an email from jon:

on a lighter note, i've changed my cursor theme to 'dinosaur'. a little green dinosaur walks when my PC is busy. so cute.

that boy rocks my face.

AND! he just sent me a box of cupcakes attached to a huge dolphin balloon. to my office. in the bank. can you imagine me walking across the trading floor, with this happy dolphin bobbing above my head? (i actually put the dolphin in the plastic bag so you could only see it's tail sticking out, and now it's swimming freely under my desk). i can't stop grinning. i feel like such a kid with my cupcakes and my balloon. shall i name him seymour? seymour the wise.


where in the world is carmen sandiego

i've been going over 2007 travel for my tax returns...and i've done an impressive amt of skipping around since i've been here...

jul/aug: london
nov: perth (australia), manila (phillippines)
jan: hanoi
feb: bangkok
mar: malaysia
apr: atlanta
may: jeju (korea), tianjin
jun: shanghai
jul: boston/montreal
oct: phuket (thailand)
nov: manila (phillippines)
dec: lijiang (china)
feb: hawaii

and coming up this weekend: fuji city japan to play dreamcup!

sadly enough, i still can't find a lot of these countries on a map...southeast asia, pfffff...it's all french to me.



i'm thinking about changing my standard reply to "how are you" to "hungry". it's almost always more true than "fine/good" and definitely more specific. how much free food do you think i'll score? (those of you who were worried this would turn into a political soapbox, rest assured--my priorities are intact).


setting the trap

according to the NYT's political blog (which cites the AP),

...two Vermont towns approved symbolic measures Tuesday calling for the indictment of President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney for what they consider violations of the Constitution. The measures seek to have police arrest Mr. Bush and Mr. Cheney if they ever visit Brattleboro or nearby Marlboro.

now we've just gotta find a way to lure bush to vermont...

and this is terrific (especially for garfield fans-the cat, not the president).



hillary 2008!

i'm not often political or meaningful in this blog, but i just read the democratic debate transcript from ohio...and maybe she comes across better on paper, but how can you not be behind hillary? she's got so much more heart. you can tell that she really does do her homework. she knows the facts, she knows the voting records, she knows the ins and outs of the policies. how can you not vote for such a hardworker? she's not as smooth in front of the cameras; speechifying doesn't come naturally to her...maybe she's a bit wooden, but to me, that makes her all the more endearing. to me, she symbolizes all that got screwed over in this country by the bush villain. plus, wasn't that the complaint against gore and kerry? that they weren't personable? isn't it time we voted for someone who ISN"T personable? someone who's a bit geeky, a bit awkward, but knows her stuff? i'll be frank, i'm not up to snuff on all the policies, but i trust hillary to represent me, and i trust her to KNOW what she's signing and to research the implications her decisions will have. i loved the clinton white house. i think they did a terrific job, and she was there for every bump along the road, so i know she knows what's involved. maybe obama will be a great president. maybe he won't. it's not really a chance i'm willing to take.


over the hills and thru the woods

this weekend was nothing if not adventurous. the hedgefund sales desk organized a paintballing outing on saturday, so a bunch of us and a bunch of clients bussed all the way out to tuen mun to shoot little pellets at each other. truthfully, it was a bit of a letdown. i mean, you get shot once and you're out, so it's not like lasertag when you can run around and shoot rambo style...instead, it's a lot of waiting in brush, waiting behind cars, and sniping. i'm not good at waiting, so usually, you'd see me charging someone and getting shot in the process. i guess my ideal of paintballing was established by that scene in ten things i hate about you (we miss you mr ledger). you know, when they're dumping buckets of paint on each other? anyways, my key moments were 1) when i unloaded a whole magazine into jon's back b/c i thought he was the bad guy and 2 ) when i shot a guy in the head as he made his suicide run at me, but of course, he had momentum on his side, so he emptied his magazine into me anyways. you know those scenes in movies when ppl get shot multiple times and their bodies flail in the air? yeah, that was me. those pellets bruise! (do i watch too much tv? hey, at least it kept me off the streets).

saturday night, hubert made his signature homemade lasagna, so of course, jon and i went over to eat. turns out we weren't the only guests...turns out, every other guest was there to carboload for an action asia race sunday morning. um...oink oink? yeah, so i get talked into doing this race...the only thing they tell me is that it's a 12km run/hike, so i'm thinking it's mostly paved, probably a mountain somewhere in the middle of it. turns out they call it an adventure race for a reason. the trail is maybe 1-2km of flat running, before you turn offroad, run another 1 km or so in a stream (like literally, jumping from rock to rock, sloshing thru the muddied waters, hoping to god that your ankles hold up), and then you climb up a construction site off the side of the highway up this hill. once you top the hill (which was pretty steep and unpaved), you're running thru brush, ducking the branches. coming downhill was pretty fun, the path swerves quite a bit and the trail is pretty steep, but there are lots of trees, so you can swing from tree to tree. my strategy was to run run run run smack into a tree run run run rinse repeat. and then it's another river. i actually turned the wrong way down this river b/c of some stupid fake red ribbon tied around a tree (red ribbons marked the trail). i think i lost maybe 10 mins here? yeah, that's why my time sucked. the second river was much more slippery. i was falling all over the place...one time i fell straight onto a branch...as in, it went up my nose. that hurt. i'm surprised my nose didn't start gushing right then. other times i'd get caught up in vines while trying to go thru the bushes...those suckers are tough mfs. some ppl got scratched up pretty good by the thorns, but my tights served me well (also i may not have been traveling as fast as them). to come out of the river, you have to run along a concrete drainage area (like the race scene in grease) before flipping over a chest height guardrail. i think that was my favorite part. especially since it meant flat running for the rest of the race. i'm pretty slow on the scrambling parts, so i wasn't tired much at all by the end...i think i passed 5 ppl in the last kilometer, racing a guy into the finish. final time: 2:17. awright, completion!

i skipped disc b/c i had a massive headache (probably lack of sleep+dehydration), so i missed playing pickup with shuangy. i did catch her at dinner afterwards tho, and i got to meet her boy! he's mit 2005, course 18, random so they complement each other well. he's very nice and funny, but he has some strange theory about damp kids in horror movies...riiight james. after dinner, we played a bit of rockband, talked about how fast smite is, and then i handed her some clothes+a map and saw her on her merry way. until jazzfest, shuangy!