Umbrella Revolution Wall 2014

Umbrella Revolution Wall 2014
Admiralty, Umbrella Revolution 2014

Friday, November 28, 2008

The Terrible Two

Keohi has a lousy habit of hitting his guests. He also takes their toys and he decides that whatever toy they are playing with (usually one he has ignored or forgotten about) is suddenly his favorite toy and he grabs it from them.

Today with Ella and Isabella he did just this.

Yesterday he was so happy that he tried to climb on my back when I was sitting and then he headbutt me as hard as he could on the top of my spine. My back is still sore today. That's 30 pounds straight into your spine.

Mad=Hit Someone. Happy=Hit Someone. In fact, hitting just seems to be an overall expression of joy, sorrow, and upset...

Thug Baby.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Very Late-Thoughts of Private and Public Education and Grading

Very late now and am getting rather tired. Thoughts on writing and teaching. Very often the skills that are required for one are not required for the other. While they are always grouped together and I have done both, I find that in each case, the demands of one crush aspects of one's self that necessitate cultivation in order to excel at the other.

I am thinking that a year ago I was working 70 hours a week teaching and lesson planning and grading. It was not the work itself that was exhausting but the politics of the work that were rather tiresome. This many of this grade was to be given or not, and the repercussions of doling out grades were severe. I thought of this a lot because actually what ends up happening in the private school education system in the US is that money ultimately buys admission to elite universities. Does this mean I do not stand by the education that a private school can buy? Absolutely not. As a product of both public and private education I can see the merits of both, but it does mean that I know that the stakes in the US are heavily weighted AGAINST any student coming from a poor background or from a school that lacks funding or support.

Money buys education in the US. Money buys status. Money buys too often your path in life and those who say that it does not, that the US is a meritocracy are really not examining the US education system very closely.

Let's say that you were student A at some dinky poor rural or urban school, who happened to score well on your standardized tests. But your grades were given by someone who was a strict grader. Let's say out there in Smallesville USA there was an old-fashioned non-grade inflater teacher. Well, tough luck for you because you won't make it into the top school because someone who bought a $40,000USD education who scored the same as you and whose school is known, and whose faculty is told that such-and-such grades must be given will beat you out of your place. The situation is in no way equitable. This does not mean that either student is a better or worse person, it merely means that should you have the financial means to enter the educational stream that has a direct line to the top US universities, you will inevitably gain a place at some uni that has some clout because the teachers at your school will follow the grading guidelines which are pretty much as follows--as far as I can ascertain. The higher the tuition the pay, the more that it is assumed that you are a) in an intelligent competitive academic environment and b) that you can therefore perform at this level and so c) the unlikely reality that you will get anything lower than a B grade on your transcript. So maybe you get a B at Elite School, but the perception that a B at Elite School is probably better than an A at the non-elite school. Is this necessarily so? Maybe, maybe not. It could be that the C grade at the Elite School is really an A grade at the Non Elite School. Or it could be that the A grade at the Non Elite School is an A grade at the Elite School. These factors are really determined by the individual teacher, but at most elite schools, heavily governed by college admissions the grades are ultimately called by the departments and the school itself. Actually, it's the parents that call it as the parents are the ones who pay the tuition and thus make the decision about this kind of stuff.

What you also get at private schools versus public schools is often a strangely insular way of thinking. I offer as an example my experience as a 5th grader in Penn Eleemntary School in North Liberty, Iowa, a farming community. In 5th grade we studied and learned about South Africa and apartheid, in the public school in 7th grade we studied (yes, superficially) the Palestinian versus the Israeli conflict. When I hit Andover in the 9th grade I might as well have been talking to people from another planet. Not only did anyone I encountered failed to even know what apartheid was, but most had no idea about the complications of the Palestinians and almost every one of my female dormmates laughed when I said I supported the Equal Rights Amendment--back in 1977, a hot topic for all junior high students--girls and boys, at least in Iowa. Now these fine young minds could quote the Iliad at the age of 14, but I had to wonder and still do about the ramifications of being so sheltered from the currents of the time due to their curriculum that they did not know in the least what was happening in the world around them.

Yet these were and remain the minds that then stream into the elite universities and proceed to govern and make decisions in often powerful positions in the United States--not surprisingly, a nation known for its often insular ways of thinking, due to geography and its own mythmaking, which its citizens happen to believe (and that can be debated later). Would such find young minds develop an awareness of the other things that the public school kids known about? Maybe yes, and maybe no.

Is there anything wrong with this situation? Not sure, as both sides have their merits--if we are talking public versus private schools. It's not about right or wrong really, it's just the way it is and it will remain that way.

The crucial thing is for people to be aware that the US is not a meritocracy. It may be more than many other countries, but it is not an egalitarian society. Yes, we elected Obama--which indeed did restore some of my belief in the potential of the individual in our country, but we remain a nation of haves and have nots. And what is interesting is how our individual actions, such small actions as even grading an essay, or how one participates in academic life as a teacher or a student, is a reflection of what we believe about our country and about our ideas of meritocracy.

yadda yadda

BBQ#3 will take place this Saturday. Kind of getting into the swing of the routine of throwing these things now. The key is trying to get people to haul their behinds over to Mui Wo as it is so far from HK proper, at least according to most people.

Hey, our household now has 2 MUGS. That's right. Come on over for a wild cup of coffee...but only one at a time...I have used both. They both hold a cup of tea very nicely. And...drum roll...we are getting the oven hooked up officially in 2 weeks--just in time for holiday dinner. Hooray!

I feel like I should say something about Clinton as secretary of state. I am not happy about this choice. I feel that it is too much baggage all around and that Bill is somewhat of a liability. I understand why Obama had to do this and what his reasoning is, but this is still not good.

And another thing...I am really wondering about the US and Israel and the failure of the US to recognize the human rights abuses perpetrated by the state of Israel and the failure of the general population to really see the suffering of the Palestinian people. I have my own theory about this--the fact that the US is a Christian nation and all that might mean in terms of the relationship between Christianity and Judaism.

I think about this because I find Clinton to be too conservative in this area.

Finished grading my essays. A big switch going from teaching competitive young affluent high school students in LA to night school community college goers--most secondary teachers of literature trying to get extra qualifications, or the random banker or accountant looking to understand poetry for pure intellectual pursuit.
I can't say that one group is wholly better than the other or that one experience more fulfilling than the other.

I would like to recommend South African Merlot Djembe--excellent....seriously a nice bottle of wine.

Have to get back now to doing some lesson planning...

Keohi's vocab: growing exponentially due to an understanding of grammar and now he has full sentences--hot, cold, wet, tight, tub, over there, Obama, soup, his friends names--Isabella/Emma, seat, fork, ring, blue, yellow, mirror, etc...comprehension is high. He also identifies the letter O and the letter Z although sometimes he mixes up Z with V or N. Kind of interesting as I have not been compelled to teach him reading or do any of this baby education kind of stuff. I can't be bothered and don't believe in doing it. What's the point? Eventually all kids do read. He just likes the letters on his stuffed caterpillar. He is now Terrible. I heard that Terrible Twos last 18 months. He now runs really fast and jumps off things and lands in a crouched frog position. Very agile and athletic. Not from me, that's for sure....

Sunday, November 23, 2008

My Scrabble Points

Sad, but here are my recent Scrabble point highlights with my game against first-time Scrabble player Mee-ling a few weeks back. Figure that I should relish the moment as I am certain that she will beat me the next time. 44 points with my addition of the word QUIZ to my former words DRUGS and ZEN.
No comment on the word compilation itself...

I am trying to get psyched up for a big household week. For starters, I plan to get the case from the oven and haul my butt over to Causeway Bay--the most polluted and crowded place in HK, to go to HELP...IKEA. Then, I have to go look at beds. Keohi pulled out three buttons so now our futon is beyond lumpy. It's like sleeping on a very hard waterbed with no water. More like mud that dried. We've always had a futon but they don't sell any decent ones here in HK. The one Japanese place here has probably (it seems) been hijacked and taken over by a local cost cutting family because for $550USD this was about the worst futon I've slept on in my life. Then, yes...drum roll...I plan to buy ANOTHER MUG. We have been a one mug family for about...6 months. Well, briefly we had two mugs but that was about 6.5 months ago before one broke. Yeah, try being hospitable and offering people tea and realizing that you only have one mug. I also have to add to my vast wardrobe as I have one thin cotton sweater and it's now hitting 14-19 degrees around 60F here tops. My wardrobe is now so bleak that Keohi's nanny has kindly offered to give me a long sleeved shirt. She is a migrant worker from the Philippines. So you can imagine what I am looking like these days. I brought one suitcase only of clothes and they were all summer clothes except for my hiking boots and one pair of heels that I still have not worn yet. This paragraph paints a rather bleak existence and my friend Vanina just told me that I need to buy one more mug before she visits from Paris/Los Angeles...but since I have a year, I figure I can manage that.

But...my SCRABBLE configuration. Look and enjoy!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The New Drainage System

OK..it's a new drainage system. It flooded once here, in LTT and not that badly, so I have my doubts about the building of this system.

Am reading very very slowly AN INSULAR POSSESSION by Timothy Mo, one of my favorite writers. I have read all of his later books and the earlier SOUR SWEET which beats the hell out of the majority of Asian American writers. I respect and admire Mo's work--it does not pander to those wanting that delicious slice of Orientalism and is simply fine literature. The English language used to describe an area that was not originally English speaking.

Keohi's vocab seems to have been growing exponentially and he now makes small sentences: The ball is here. The moon is there. See the ball...etc...I think the grammar has just kicked in so he is really starting to talk...and when he can't fill in, as he couldn't when his friend Isabelle said, "Keohi!" he simply spits...

That's it...

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Goodbye to Green Fields, Hello Concrete

Yep, they are paving it all and will destroy the little stream in the front, and are making a tremendously big road. This is a reaction to the summer rains and the flood that occurred (what, once?) here in Luk Tei Tong/Tai Tei Tong.

So the answer seems to be to address the flooding issues by paving over the natural environment.

WOW That really solves it. Hooray. More pollution. Contributing to global warming. Destroying the natural wetlands and the fields where there are birds and all kinds of other creatures.

Impressive. Really thinking about that one...WHAT A JOKE. WHO RUNS THESE PUBLIC PLANNING OFFICES ANYWAY? It's like 1950s environmentalism. Building dams and ruining everything in the name of progress. I am sure some person here is making a pile of money from this project and in the process ruining one of the last remaining areas in HK that is rural and away from the city.

I am thoroughly disgusted already by the rapacity of the developers and other such ignominious individuals. This just repels me even further.

This is a city where a few people become exceedingly wealthy and in the process let everyone else live in the muck. I bet that 15 years from now the bay as we know it with the small local restaurants with blue plastic chairs and the old guys shuffling around and that lazy feel of a small town will have gone. In its place will be a mall with music blasting and huge cosmetic stores. And people will say how great it is and will comment on the lovely promenade and potted plants not knowing that all the real ones were killed in the process. I do not wish to be here at that time. I would never come back actually to see what they did to this place. It would be really depressing. What you have here is still very much how HK was over 15-20 years ago, a place with no tall buildings, no malls, no artifice. But it will change. And people will say that it's progress.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Birthday, Video, Capitalist Consumption

Went to Isabella's 2nd birthday last PM with Keohi and Stephen. Keohi's first social event thrown by a peer--sort of, her parents, really. Isabella is his little neighborhood pal--Keohi runs out the gate and tries to go to her house every morning.
Anyway, due to the length of the nap we arrived after many of the festivities had happened, but he had a swell time. The exception was the one woman who kept trying to chase him around and kiss him. He was clearly getting mad. He probably didn't understand this is how people act at parties, especially when adults get a little tipsy. Anyway, she didn't seem to get (despite having 6 kids of her own) that Keohi was getting pissed off at her. I can't figure out adults who like to torture kids like that by tweaking your ears. I distinctly remember getting mad at adults who would do things like pinch your cheeks really hard or want to pick you up or just plain bother you. I mean really, why the hell would anyone want to kiss a stranger anyway who keeps hassling you?

Mom being mom (me), Keohi got no chocolate cake (he didn't notice) but ate plenty of teriyaki sticks and plain pasta. He also saw his very very first music video. A Michael Jackson circa late 80s number--one of those concert videos. He really enjoyed it and was dancing and dancing. That's his first and last music video for a while. It's not like we get that programming. It's odd how TV mesmerizes--I realized this watching all the kids sit still blankly staring at the screen. This is how you train your child to behave in front of the screen. To sit still. To absorb. To be passive. But clearly, one must be trained to watch TV. Because if you are not trained, you would physically and otherwise react to the lights and sounds and images flashing and be prompted to move or run away, or something as there is nothing about television that is natural to what we are.

Computers are the same. I think it is the supposedly discerning educated parents who seems to think that computers are much different than TVs but again, it's about teaching passivity. They've charted how TV consumption at a young age yields children who end up more sexist, more racist, and more exposed to commercial influences than those who don't consume. I wonder how different computer screen time really is. Sure, at a more advanced level, we must interact with the screen--through writing, through reading, but for a child it is about absorbing images and the quick movement of the icons or graphics and the click of the keyboards. I show Keohi the computer (he doesn't like it really whenever I am writing on it) to show him slideshows of himself (which he loves) and then to talk to his grandparents or auntie, but now, since he can't read, don't see what the point is of him viewing the screen for anything else.

I remember watching TV as a kid--Captain Kangaroo, in particular, but the images were slow moving, not clipped. The Captain would read books out loud and talk to puppets or his friend Mr. Green Jeans. There were no flashing graphics, no commercial products you would buy. I sound like someone from another century, but I remember that I am.

Thinking a lot these days about commercial influences on society and how it promotes consumerism. What can we do to stop the rapacity? It's killing our planet, destroying our individual selves--pursuit of more, of better, of everything that is again removed from what we are as beings, as animals, as creatures of the earth.

What are we here for anyway?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Clothing Tags

Was obliged to buy a few pieces of clothing as I had carted nothing for cold weather here in April. So I head to Wanchai, to what I term the "box shops" which are shops that have factory overruns and clothes on racks that you cannot try on, and stuff in boxes. It ranges from J.Crew to Gymboree to Levi's to whatever else, but the rules about shopping like this in HK is that you can never really know what you will find, you can never count on anything being there later, so if you like it buy it then, and finally, you have to have a sense that it's an adventure or you're sure to get in a lousy mood in about 46 seconds...

So I bought a plain white sweatshirt (hoodie) for US$10, rather dull with the brand name of Street One

This is what was on its tag

Street One
VINTAGE. CLASS-1
DESIGNED WITH ENJOYMENT
MO2539-K-TU-T25

THIS GARMENT MEETS/EXCEEDS the QUALITY STANDARDS OF RUS BRAND


MARVELOUS GARMENT
Quality Guaranteed
WE MAKE QUALITY PRODUCK

Then I see it was made for the German market?

My guess is RUS BRAND must be a knock-off of Russell or something.

I would also like to know why people think that it is fine for young boys to have dull drab colored clothing in muted grays, greens, and blues, but young girls clothing is in bright colors of purple, pink and red.

I am finding this entire gender bias really offensive and backwards. You really have to make an effort or you will invariably fall into the hands of having a young girl or boy raised in an entirely sexist backward unintelligent manner due to the perceptions of marketing folks who determine what products are out there to purchase for children.

And apparently studies were done that showed that most young children preferred pinks, lavenders, reds, and purple shades. This are all verboten for boys. I don't dress Keohi in girls' clothing but make an effort to have clothing and toys and other items around him and for him that are those colors. Why should he be consigned to navy blue at the age of 21 months? Why would I want train him to be inflexible and gender biased at his age? I don't get it. I can only conclude, as I usually do, that the majority of the population are idiotic and narrowminded when it comes to gender issues. Just because a young boy cradles a doll or wears a pink shirt does not mean that he will think he is a girl, nor does it mean that he will be gay. And if he is gay when he's older WHO CARES?! GEEZ! But wearing pink won't have anything to do with that--it's GENETIC and biological!

The weather is beautiful--Bay Area cool, breeze, sun, and a slight cool that wraps itself around your legs when you walk out the door in the AM. It's definitely the best time to be in HK. Visitors, you should come in October -- for balmy Hawaii weather or November -- for great SF weather.

BUREAUCRACY

Got a lot of it here. Went to the Mui Wo rec to sign Stephen and I up for this introduction class that is necessary to take in order to use the weight room at the local gym in town (free) that is on the 2nd floor of the recreation center. When I went there were only 3 spots left. They have induction meetings once a month from 7-10, very inconvenient. No wonder the place is always empty. Anyway, signed myself up and then I got the paperwork to sign Stephen up. He had to sign and fill out a form and attach a copy of his HK ID. Bring it back and the places are all full.

I ask if he can take my place.

I might as well have been asking the guy to move the building to the left. He had to confer with two other people behind the desk about this. They rattled on and on, a good 5 minutes before he came back and said, "No, it's full." I had to explain that Stephen couldn't take it next month and that I wanted him to take it that particular day coming up. The guy spends another 5 minutes discussing this, pausing in English a few times to tell me that he was trying to work on it. Finally I said, "Hey, he's taking my place, okay? What's the problem?" They finally agreed to let him take my place. THEN I asked if could be put on a waitlist. They had to discuss this for about 5 mintues more too. They finally agreed after another few minutes of telling me why this was difficult etc...

It kind of reminded me of the time I went to Macau with Kath and they refused to let Keohi in the women's dressing room because he was MALE and he was, at the time 18 months old!

Been thinking about Kafka quite a bit these days. Kafka would have a field day at the HK Cultural and Leisure Activities Bureau. Or at any of these governmental organisations.

OBAMA

Went to the big celebration last PM in Dublin Jack's. It was with the HK Dems. Nice group of people and everyone was in good spirits about Obama's win. Tried to explain to a few people how NAFTA really was not beneficial to Mexico and how it destroyed the MExican agricultural economy, but don't think I could convey the message properly. The border towns in Arizona and Mexico are really instructional and should be visited by more people to understand the complications of immigration, migration, and economics.

Since when do walls work? They never have...they usually cause the state more problems and cost them more money...

Friday, November 7, 2008

MAP of GOP as regional Party, Berkeley and MLK

Quite interesting. Imagine that I have lived in two of these areas and that Mom and Dad continue to live in one of them. The other day I found myself telling the story of my own family, of Dad in specific when it comes to how political leaders can shape individual lives.

When Dad came from Korea, his host American family the Freeman's in Berkeley, California were one of the first, if not only whites to begin a chapter of the NAACP, inspired to do so by Dr. MLK. Their ideas of an inclusive US coupled with the changing times of the US, and JFK strongly influenced my father, and thus my childhood. Dad and Mom have always voted Democrat, have always supported the rights of people of color and of women and of the poor. They did this not only through the choice of their political candidates but how they treated people. This idea is one that strongly influenced my own childhood. Dad often quoted Dr. King's speech "I have a Dream" and at the age of 9, I went to the pubic library, copied the speech from a book, and presented it to him in a folder of red construction paper. I remember how happy he was to receive this. My father remembers this gift as one of his favorites. Throughout his career he had a lab that encouraged diversity, employing people of all nationalities and ethnicities. Mom was always there too, to encourage us to experience all cultures through food, music, and art, and to emphasize the world as a global village.

The last time I think that Dad and Mom were this excited about a president was when Kennedy ran. They were big fans of the Kennedy's. Kennedy's vision of America too was one that they embraced wholeheartedly. Poetry and politics, the ability to inspire youth--a new America...

OBAMA!





http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2008/11/5/13157/1286/456/654502

GREAT Obama Victory slideshow showing people around the world

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/11/04/reactions-around-the-worl_n_141187.html

Check it out. Here in HK, everyone is excited.

The dream is alive...that is the ephemeral idea of what the US is--after all, the US is not really a place, but an idea.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Election Day in HK

Keohi, C, and I went to Election Central on Chater Road. Given Mr. Boo's behavior, it is clear that he does not have a career in politics ahead of him. He popped two balloons very loudly, spilled orange juice, cried two times, and tried running away from his mom and the stroller. On the ferry ride back he kept calling FLOAT FLOAT for the orange markers that are on the beach.

He could not be contained. Clearly, he was excited by the events. So the morning was then spent rushing back to the TV in Mui Wo to finish watching the rest of the returns.

YEAH OBAMA!

From THE NEW YORK TIMES



November 5, 2008
Editorial
The Next President

This is one of those moments in history when it is worth pausing to reflect on the basic facts:

An American with the name Barack Hussein Obama, the son of a white woman and a black man he barely knew, raised by his grandparents far outside the stream of American power and wealth, has been elected the 44th president of the United States.

Showing extraordinary focus and quiet certainty, Mr. Obama swept away one political presumption after another to defeat first Hillary Clinton, who wanted to be president so badly that she lost her bearings, and then John McCain, who forsook his principles for a campaign built on anger and fear.

His triumph was decisive and sweeping, because he saw what is wrong with this country: the utter failure of government to protect its citizens. He offered a government that does not try to solve every problem but will do those things beyond the power of individual citizens: to regulate the economy fairly, keep the air clean and the food safe, ensure that the sick have access to health care, and educate children to compete in a globalized world.

Mr. Obama spoke candidly of the failure of Republican economic policies that promised to lift all Americans but left so many millions far behind. He committed himself to ending a bloody and pointless war. He promised to restore Americans’ civil liberties and their tattered reputation around the world.

With a message of hope and competence, he drew in legions of voters who had been disengaged and voiceless. The scenes Tuesday night of young men and women, black and white, weeping and cheering in Chicago and New York and in Atlanta’s storied Ebenezer Baptist Church were powerful and deeply moving.

Mr. Obama inherits a terrible legacy. The nation is embroiled in two wars — one of necessity in Afghanistan and one of folly in Iraq. Mr. Obama’s challenge will be to manage an orderly withdrawal from Iraq without igniting new conflicts so the Pentagon can focus its resources on the real front in the war on terror, Afghanistan.

The campaign began with the war as its central focus. By Election Day, Americans were deeply anguished about their futures and the government’s failure to prevent an economic collapse fed by greed and an orgy of deregulation. Mr. Obama will have to move quickly to impose control, coherence, transparency and fairness on the Bush administration’s jumbled bailout plan.

His administration will also have to identify all of the ways that Americans’ basic rights and fundamental values have been violated and rein that dark work back in. Climate change is a global threat, and after years of denial and inaction, this country must take the lead on addressing it. The nation must develop new, cleaner energy technologies, to reduce greenhouse gases and its dependence on foreign oil.

Mr. Obama also will have to rally sensible people to come up with immigration reform consistent with the values of a nation built by immigrants and refugees.

There are many other urgent problems that must be addressed. Tens of millions of Americans lack health insurance, including some of the country’s most vulnerable citizens — children of the working poor. Other Americans can barely pay for their insurance or are in danger of losing it along with their jobs. They must be protected.

Mr. Obama will now need the support of all Americans. Mr. McCain made an elegant concession speech Tuesday night in which he called on his followers not just to honor the vote, but to stand behind Mr. Obama. After a nasty, dispiriting campaign, he seemed on that stage to be the senator we long respected for his service to this country and his willingness to compromise.

That is a start. The nation’s many challenges are beyond the reach of any one man, or any one political party.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Obama Obama Obama

The big day. Tomorrow.

I made another Obama T-shirt for Keohi today to wear for the event. And hey, check this out! This is from Time Asia...it's me in the Obama shirt on the left. Wow, my back with an Obama decal.

:)

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1848514,00.html

Today we all got flu shots. Nasty bugs here in HK.

Did I mention that we are slowly going to be fried via an AM radio transmitter?

Bad air and radiation. It's the invisible stuff that is killing us.

OBAMA the countdown...begins

It's only a matter of hours now. All I remember about the last election was being in Tucson, Arizona thoroughly disgusted at the number of people in the creative writing program who were actually voting or supporting those who were voting for GEORGE W. BUSH AGAIN. Once is bad enough. But twice? Poets for Bush? I mean, c'mon.

Weak intellects. I will say nothing else.

Keohi will be watching the returns at Chater Garden HK Club Building 15th floor at an event for the HK Dems/Repubs, League of Women Voters and the other American and Am Cham groups. I plan on taking his photo next to an Obama photo. It will be his first major political event. Hooray. We'll watch 11/5 around 10AM-2PM...don't think I can haul my butt to Dublin Jack's for a drink later, but who knows.

A friend said she is being cautiously optimistic, but I feel very confident. Obama is not a savior, and is a pol, not the kind of spiritual leader that let's say King was, but I will say this: he is someone that Americans overseas can point to and say that is a fine example of what America can create and what America is.

Thinking of the French psychologist who said that America is not a place, but an idea, a dream. I think this is true. There are minimal things that I miss about America beyond my family. But I do think that the idea of reinvention is very strong there, and not the way that it is here in HK--reinvention focused on what you do for a living, or how you make money. America is also about reinvention of the self or spirit. It is that it gives people the idea that they can dream. Unfortunately, the dream can be more powerful than a sense of pragmatism, but nevertheless, this ephemeral dream is significant and profound.

Last week of poetry class. I'll be starting other work -- teacher lesson planning/training.

I plan on including information on my next blog about the AM power station being built on Peng Chau. Disturbing. The waves on this kind of thing cause leukemia in children. This, and all of the pollution. It's frustrating and depressing to me. The beach here is beautiful and so is the environment. I'm not sure why people are hell-bent on ruining it and destroying their own health and the earth.

So I took a hint from a environmentally friendly web page and was using my old Paul Newman pasta jar as my makeshift water bottle as my old one got lost or left behind and besides, it was probably leaking all kinds of chemicals. I got it from HArd and Soft. Who knows where it was from. I am supportive of Hard and Soft but I will not vouch for the ethics of Mainland China's product manufacturing, at least those that make it all the way to Mui Wo.

Anyway, so the jar...Chinese have a reputation for being thrifty, but you should have seen the reactions when I pulled out the jar from my bag and started drinking water from it. HAHAHA. Classic.

BAD NEWS: the castrating cow people are out and about trying to cull our lovely herd of cows. I personally can live with a few cow pies and the on and off again smell wafting here and there. They keep the grass short and therefore the bugs away.

New Keohi words: eat, hot, king, whale, kitten, flower, hat, seat, shoe, float. Oh, and "low" still means "tree" as that is the confusion from a book of adjectives...oh well.

GO OBAMA. GO OBAMA.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Palin and Evita HYSTERICAL

http://hk.youtube.com/watch?v=Bh9BmNuqeiQ