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tennis! [Jul. 20th, 2006|09:00 pm]
the Gong Family

[mood |jovial]

i played tennis today, for the first time in .. years?

could it have been so long? had i known, i would have played tennis with dae, when i was last in new york .. either that, or thrown the frisbee.

anyways, i played doubles with fellow math grads -- none of us are terribly good, but sometimes that doesn't matter. we have the same philosophy with soccer and with basketball: play is play, and if you're good, even better.

my groundstrokes are in need of much work; i feel as if i remember how the rhythm should go, but there's a split-second too much time and hesitating, i hit a off shot and the ball goes either into the net or out of bounds.

apparently, i haven't forgotten about playing at net. my reflexes are there, and my friends on the opposing team said good words about my play.
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short ruminations, while at home. [Jul. 4th, 2006|03:27 pm]
the Gong Family

[Tags|, ]
[Current Location |area code 631]
[mood |calmcalm]
[music |ottmar liebert - 'lilac sun']

happy fourth, lae-dae.
  1. driving is empowering, and very much so in suburbia .. where places be so near, yet separated by barriers of roads full of fast-paced cars.

    i see more bike lanes and buses on long island now, but that might be because i constantly look for them in ann arbor.

  2. comparatively speaking, i don't eat much meat or salt when i'm in ann arbor. i think i've eaten more beef and pork and lamb in these last few days here than i have for months in ann arbor.

  3. this might be a reaction to how we keep house, but i think i can say with certainty that when "i grow up," i'd rather not own a large house in the suburbs. more generally, i'd rather not give myself the inclination of owning too much stuff and clutter.

  4. i've forgotten that places can affect people. whether real or imagined, good or bad, i feel more like my old self when i'm here on the island.

  5. port jefferson harbor really is a nice place to walk around.
that's it, for now. more to come, perhaps.
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(no subject) [Feb. 17th, 2006|02:32 am]
the Gong Family
So I responded to Highland about a week and a half ago. Haven't heard anything from them since. So I made some phone calls and I emailed one of the guys that interviewed me. I got the response saying that they never offered me the position and they're still selecting the individual for the position. I specifically remember them asking for me to respond within a week after the interview and if I said yes they would make an official offer. I remember them saying "official offer" which makes me think that they made an unofficial offer. They claim that they told me to make sure I was interested in the position before they would take me into consideration. So that's that. It means I have to contact everyone who, like I had, thought I got an offer and let them know that in reality, I didn't. So I guess this post takes care of the three of you guys.

I guess I'll still be unemployed for an indefinite period of time.
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Job Search [Feb. 8th, 2006|01:14 am]
the Gong Family
I guess some may know and some may not know but here it is. I got an offer at Highland Associates. My friend forwarded my resume and I got an interview last week with two of the principals. We interviewed for an hour and they told me to think about the position and get back to them next week (which makes it this week to reply) if I want the position and then they'll write up the official offer. I interviewed somewhere else (URS) and was giving them a chance to get back to me before I accept the Highland offer. I called the Head Mechanical Engineer who interviewed me at URS and he was really nice. He was like, "go on and take the offer from the other company if you think it's a good deal. I'm not going to be selfish and keep you for myself. I can't offer you a job but if I could, I would but because of scheduling I can't get back to you until a month from now. Look out for #1, no hard feelings. If you have questions, call me and if you want to just shoot the breeze come by or call me. Keep in touch." That was the gist of the conversation with URS. I thanked him many times and am trying to keep in touch if I ever need it. Plus he's super nice.

I called Highland to say that I want the job. He was like "great, give us a couple of days. Thanks for calling back." That was the end of the conversation with them. He sounded really busy. I don't know exactly what that means. He offered me the position after the interview so I assume he can't take it away. I was hoping for a "when can you start?"

Now I'm trying to figure out the living situation. Don't want to commute. I've been doing some major number crunching with salary and stuff. If I live in Jersey with my friends (if eric moves out) then I have to pay both NY and NJ taxes. That's an estimated three percent more. All in all, it sounds like they'll take about forty-three percent off of my paycheck. That's a crapload with NY tax, NJ tax, NYC tax, Fed tax, etc. Turns out that I more than make up for the additional state tax with the low rent in Jersey, plus Dugay can just pick me up from the apartment when we both want to come home for however long she stays in NJ seeing as how I'd be right off of the Holland Tunnel. In the end, if my figures are correct and assuming that I stick to the financial plan, I still get to save some money. Otherwise, if I follow the one-third rule (1/3 of salary goes to rent) I don't have many choices to live in Manhattan and have my own room. Chances are pretty slim in Manhattan. We'll see what happens. I hope I get the job.
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(no subject) [Nov. 1st, 2005|06:24 pm]
the Gong Family

[Tags|, , ]

In midst of typing up study notes for my prelim, I realized lately that I've been eating a lot of Asian food.
  • For lunch today I stopped by this Chinese/Vietnamese place for their specials. Salty as sin; maybe I'm getting particular in my old age. \:

  • Yesterday I made stir-fry with broccoli and chicken thighs (with bones in 'em) and it wasn't until 11 or so when I was finished.

    I guess I needed the time to unwind, because it was a sh*tty teaching day yesterday. It was the closest I ever came to yelling at one of my students (and he would have deserved it, let me tell you!)

  • After stir-frying yesterday, I used the leftover bits of rice from the rice cooker and made congee ('jhuk' to us Cantos) with little dried shrimp, the bones from the chicken stir-fry, and a little barley.

    I wonder if Ma would be proud .. (;

  • This Sunday I had a little sushi for lunch. It wasn't worth mentioning, other than to carry on the Asian food streak ..
Also, my current notions of comfort food have changed: these days if I'm hungry, I imagine first a steaming bowl of beef pho noodles or Singapore rice noodles with curry.
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oh no! [Oct. 16th, 2005|01:49 pm]
the Gong Family

[mood |anxiousanxious]
[music |tears for fears]

my next and final race of the year is coming up this sunday! in a way i am excited, in a way i just want it to be all over with. i feel like i have been training forever, and i'd like to finally go out on a run without the pressure of pushing myself to work hard for a race on my mind. today was my last chance to run a semi-long run-- i marked out an 8 mile path and planned on timing myself to maintain an 8:30 pace the whole way, which i took to be good rpactice to pace myself one last time before the run. but i could only do 4 miles today...

...because ordinarily, my right shin muscle would only hurt if i break in new shoes, or if i am upping my mileage too quickly (these two phenomenon happen concurrently, so i don't know which it is). every once in a while, the muscle might flare up during the 1st to 2nd miles on random runs, but would go away after about a mile or so. but today, it flared up at the start of the 3rd mile, and never went away and even got worse! i thought that i could tough it out, but decided that it would be way worse to disprove that i am a ninny (keep running) and make it worse for the race. so i stopped and i could hardly walk normally! i thought my muscle was going rip right in half...i guess i should have seen this coming; lately the runs have been more challenging for my legs than it is aerobically (except the hills). i shoudl have known that maybe i needed to rest the legs a bit more.

my mileage actually went down last week, but the runs were pretty challenging-- i did some hills early in the week as part of a long run, so i realize that may have strained my shin muscles more than i thought it would. this week is taper week; not supposed to do anything too far or too fast in order to save energy for sunday. any thoughts on what i should do? i figure i would go out and bounce around for a few miles tomorrow to see how the leg feels, then do some speed work (not too fast) on tuesday, and then 5 or so miles on thursday. an easy 3-4 miles or so on saturday to keep the legs fresh and then get it all over with on sunday...

wish me luck!
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Home, where my music's playing [Oct. 5th, 2005|05:00 pm]
the Gong Family
Hey Everyone

I moved back home. Here I am sitting in front of the computer in my room. I moved some stuff around the room, Gog. I hope that's okay. I purchased (actually Ma did) a wireless card and am mooching off of somebody in the neighborhood. I'm careful not to keep my connection on when I'm not at my computer so that I don't kill other people's bandwidth so maybe I'll go unnoticed. I felt a little bit bad about it initially but after a while it doesn't seem that bad. It's much faster than Dial-up and I don't have to be on AOL to get online. For about 2 years now, I've stopped IMing and I didn't want to rely on AOL for internet at home because then I'd have to be on AIM unless I use Ma's or Ba's account. So this is best.

It's a bit lonely here in LI. I haven't called up Xiao because that's not something I want to be dealing with right now. The car is out of order because of a flat and I'm going with Ma to take care of it tomorrow. Plus I'd just be going out by myself anyway. I mean, it's normal for me to go out on my own in the city but that was just a walk away. Here, I'd have to start the car and really make an effort to go out. It's not like in NYC. All I had to do was get dressed and step out the door. It takes so much more effort than that here. I know Dugay. You warned me not to get into too much of a groove staying at home all day and not doing much, just mooching off of Ma and Ba. On the bright side, I'll be going back into the city for a supper reservation with some people I know this coming Tuesday. It's a strange situation where I'm someone's date and stuff. I know everyone that is going to be there so that's good.

I miss my NYC homies. I've been smoking less and running more. I guess this experience is going to be good for me. It's lonely.

I wrote in my last email about my dream. Now, I haven't heard from many of you (only talked to Yeggs) but I'm not sure how my tale sounded. Yeggs mentioned how it sounded really depressing but I didn't mean for that to happen. Anyways, haven't heard from you all in a while. Take 'er easy.
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(no subject) [Sep. 1st, 2005|06:56 pm]
the Gong Family
I feel like I've had writer's/drawer's-block for years now. I suppose the proper term for drawer's-block is artist's-block but I hardly consider myself an artist. Now it's really starting to bug me. It's like the ink refuses to come out of the Papermate. Sucks majorly.

I had a point I wanted to post but I forgot it whilst trying to phrase the above paragraph just the way I like it. Ha, sorry guys, another time maybe.
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catching up on LJs... [Aug. 21st, 2005|04:31 pm]
the Gong Family

lovely hot afternoon out there today, yet i am too sick to go out there and enjoy it. caught a bug from someone on the plane (most likely) or in lab (less likely). thought i had it under control until the darned thing reared its ugly head at me last night during Tony's wedding reception and lasted til this morning...meanwhile i am catching up on blogs-- realized i had even read Dongch's to the point where everything posted on the page was new to me. as usual i feel a familiarity with most of the things Dongch writes about (except math!), and this excerpt is particularly tantalizing to comment on:

.... What is the worst feeling in the world:

A sequence of emotions, I'd say, though it mightn't be the worst.

For example, you could be angry at someone only to realize that really, you shouldn't, so suddenly you are angry at yourself but still angry at that same someone (provided you aren't gifted with an exceptionally good "Off" switch for your anger). But nobody likes to be angry at themselves, and not having a good outlet, you might snap at someone or something ..

.. and when regret settles in, you feel both guilty, yet still angry and you have no idea how to dispell it so that things don't get any worse.

oh dude, talk about a bell going off in my head when i read this. i can honestly say that this happens to me so often that it makes me very worried that there is something wrong with me because (i) that must mean that i get angry at people a lot, (ii) that anger is misdirected at people, which must mean that i have a tendency to blame others first when it is actually my own fault, and (iii) it can't be healthy to feel this way too often. in the end, i just end up shutting myself off from interacting with anyone (even Ari) and remove myself from society (listening to my iPod) because when i am mad at myself, i can't pretend to just be ok. i tried to explain this feeling to a few people in the recent past, and all they can conclude is that i am just plain old crazy and that i just think too much. of course, i didn't come anywhere near as lucid as Dongch put it in the above paragraph.

i had thought of putting up this comment on Dongch's LJ, but then again, i thought it would be nice to share this with lae-dae directly.
hope yous all aren't as "crazy" as i am!
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half marathoning [Jul. 18th, 2005|10:41 pm]
the Gong Family

i finished the half-marathon yesterday! multiple reasons to be happy:

1. did better than my goal of 9:00min/mile. i finished in 1hr 56min 47secs. woo-hoo! (but Ari beat me by over 1min)
2. the weather was not cold-- wore sports bra at 7am and was not cold at all.
3. finished in the top 15% of runners! (pictures available soon!)
4. i want to run another race.
5. i might want to attempt a full marathon :S (way in the future)
6. my scale tells me i am 114 lbs.

only a few reasons to be unhappy:

1. kind of ran it backwards: ran too fast in the middle of the race and slowed down at the end :(
2. my scale still tells me i am 17-20% body fat! i think it is wrong.

i'm going to register for the Nike Women's (Half) Marathon in October in SF. i think it'll be a beautiful course, and i am now wondering how much improvement is reasonable by october 23rd. that's probably going to be the hardest part-- how much faster should i aim for??

life returns to normal now, but i still plan on running a lot. amazing how i have been able to enjoy it and incorporate it as a part of my life! who wants to run with me when i get home (other than Ba)?
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