August 2004 Archives
August 30, 2004
To buy a ticket to freedom
I must put on these shackles,
For freedom comes at a cost,
Too grand for me to afford.
Ironically money has
The power to set us free,
But before we reap its rewards
We must be enslaved by it.
August 29, 2004
It's my first day at work tomorrow. I'm looking forward to it. There's a certain magic about downtown Toronto. The familiar skyscrapers infuse my soul with energy. I love my city.
Jenn, Mina, Ruby, Samson and a few others will be working close by, so I expect there to be lunch or after hours meet-ups.
Alan and I were planning on spending Labour Day weekend in New York. I still haven't bought bus tickets, or made hotel reservations. Alan doesn't sound very enthusiastic about the idea anymore, so I'll probably delay the trip until Canadian Thanksgiving.
Vincent and his girlfriend Susie are coming up from NYC for a visit in a couple of weeks. Places on his "must visit" list include Pacific Mall, First Markham Place and the Eaton Centre. Good food and Roots paraphernalia are also on their agenda. I better brush up on my hostess skills and be a good Toronto ambassador.
August 24, 2004
Friday, August 20, 2004 - Visited Japantown in San Francisco. Spent too much time at Kintetsu Mall and Miyako Mall, yet bought nothing at all. Watched a free jazz concert on Fillmore Street. Bought B.B.Q. pork buns, red bean buns and other Chinese pastries. Had Chinese hot pot/ Korean B.B.Q. at Hot Pot City in Milpitas.
Saturday, August 21, 2004 - Drove down to Santa Cruz. Sunbathed and flew kites at Natural Bridges State Beach. Went to Santa Cruz beach to see sea lions and eat fish and chips. Had mango ice cream at Marianne's Ice Cream. A disappointing trip to the Egyptian Fry's Electronics. Learned to drive Mimming's (manual) Honda S2000. Dinner part III at Sushi-go-Around.
Sunday, August 22, 2004 - Crepe brunch at Q-Cup, trip to Berkeley, and took photos of the San Francisco skyline on Treasure Island.
Monday, August 23, 2004 - Threw everything into my suit case and got drive-thru at Wendy's. Arrived at the airport with plenty of time to spare. The trip back home was uneventful.
Disaster movies are the best kind of in-flight entertainment. They showed The Day After Tomorrow on my way home from Calgary. Mixed with air turbulence, it made a freaky virtual reality ride.
August 19, 2004
Friday, August 13, 2004 - Last exam of the term. Half way into the exam, somebody pulled the fire alarm. I'm glad the professor didn't schedule a make-up exam because I had no intention of staying in the country, let alone Waterloo for another day. I won't discuss this at length since Mina and Rob have already done so.
Saturday, August 14th, 2004 - Got home (in Toronto) around midnight. Fired up the washing machine around 1:00 AM because I didn't have any clean clothes left to bring on my trip after going 6 weeks without doing any laundry. Scrambled around town buying last minute travel essentials, and replaced my brother's cell phone case at Pacific Mall (his original case was broken and he refused to return my phone because he thought the electronic components of his handset were damaged.) After I changed the case, he was more than happy to take back his own phone. Packed my bags in a world record 1.5 hours. Went to the airport and got really antsy while waiting in the U.S. customs line-up from hell. Five minutes after my scheduled boarding time, they called my flight number and everyone in line was temporarily preempted. Even so, we were cutting it awfully close. I got to the gate 5 minutes before take-off, only to discover that they delayed the flight for 30 minutes because of the customs line-up. Thank goodness it was a once-a-day flight to Denver. Had I been flying to NYC or some other city where they have multiple flights each day, they would have left without the passengers. Mostly uneventful flight to Denver. Watched Shrek 2 and ordered a dismal serving of tortilla chips and cheese dip for $8. I was pretty amused to find that Air Canada served red and white tortilla chips only. Arrived safe and sound in San Francisco.
Sunday, August 15, 2004 - Science field trip to Half Moon Bay. Examined all the creatures that washed up on shore. Played frisbee and basked in the sun. Visited 4 vista points along the freeway.
Monday, August 16, 2004 - Spent the day wandering around San Francisco. Walked (mostly uphill) for 5 hours straight. Had dinner with Mimming at Sam Wo, a hole-in-the-wall type place in Chinatown. Saw the birthplace of fortune cookies.
Tuesday, August 17, 2004 - Laid low for a day due to aching muscles. Went on a double date with Steve and Kim at Han Sung B.B.Q. in Santa Clara. Even though it wasn't all-you-can-eat, it was still easily the best Korean B.B.Q. I've ever had. Then we drove up to a horseback riding trail on Mount Hamilton for star gazing. The park entrance is in a valley, which provided ample shelter from light pollution. The sky was so clear that we were able to see the Milky Way. Several moments after we got settled, we were busted by park rangers for being in the park after sunset. Luckily, we didn't get ticketed.
Wednesday, August 18, 2004 - Went to Hillsdale Shopping Center. At lunch, the cashier at the Cajun Grill tried to scam a buck out of me by insisting that my meal cost $1 more since it was a shrimp meal. I pointed to the sign behind her and told her that it was advertised as being the same price as all the other meals. She wasn't too happy about that and insisted that I had to pay $1 more. So I refused to pay her until she rang me up for the right price. Went to Palo Alto for dinner at a trendy Mediterranean restaurant. Had mushroom pizza and sirloin steak. Played Initial D and DDR Max 2 - 7th mix at the AMC 14 in Saratoga while we waited for our movie to start, then saw Harold and Kumar go to White Castle.
Thursday August 19, 2004 - Bought groceries at Safeway. Going on a nerdy date at Fry's Electronics, followed by poker night at Adam's.
August 17, 2004
August 14, 2004
A moment of silence for Andrew Frow, Mechanical Engineering student from the University of Toronto who died in a solar car accident on his way to Waterloo during a solar car tour across Ontario and Quebec to promote alternative energy technologies.
August 10, 2004
I'm totally psyched about my trip to San Francisco. It's a much-needed break after a gruelling 4 months of engineering boot camp. Plus, I have a new baby waiting for me when I arrive. The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W1!
I've used many digital cameras before, but this one will be mine, mine, all mine! I kind of bought it on a whim tonight (oooh, the dangers of online shopping!) but this was after 3 weeks of debating over whether I should get a prosumer camera like the Olympus C-765 Ultra Zoom or a cute toy like the Canon PowerShot s410. The only thing that made me think twice about the Olympus was its poor battery life. My only pet peeve about the Canon was the 30-sec/3-min limit on video length. Yes, I admit that they are very different cameras suited for different tasks. That's what made the decision even more difficult. In the end, portability won over functionality.
The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W1 is everything I wanted in the Canon PowerShot s410, and more... but for a lower price. It's slightly bigger than the Canon, but it
- captures less noisy images
- has a ginormous LCD screen
- uses 2 AA batteries (rather than a proprietary battery)
- has amazing battery life (just short of 5 hours with LCD off)
- has just enough manual features to keep me happy until I get a more serious camera
- and also transfers photos using USB 2.0 (instead of USB 1.1)
I even got a 512 MB Memory Stick to go with it (which also works nicely with my Sony Vaio notebook.) I'm so excited! Only 5 days left until I'm in California! Needless to say, there'll be lots of photos of my trip for sure!
August 8, 2004
(03:16:04) Jonathan Hacker: did you know that i admired you? because you were different, seriously.
That was perhaps the most touching (and not to mention unexpected) IM I've ever gotten from a friend. How often do people muster up the courage to express such thoughts in person?
August 7, 2004
- Baltimore, Maryland
- Little Rock, Arkansas
- Providence, Rhode Island
- Washington, District of Columbia
- Portland, Oregon
- Boston, Massachusetts
- New Haven, Connecticut
- Hartford, Connecticut
- Honolulu, Hawaii
- Baton Rouge, Louisiana
- New Orleans, Louisiana
- Worcester, Massachusetts
- Oakland, California
- Sacramento, California
- Chicago, Illinois
- Milwaukee, Wisconsin
- Las Vegas, Nevada
- Eugene, Oregon
- San Francisco, California
- Long Beach, California
- Corvallis, Oregon
- Cape Cod, Massachusetts
- Danbury, Connecticut
- Fayetteville, Arkansas
Notice that New York, New York is not on the list!
August 2, 2004
...the chances of eating raw meat by accident are greatly reduced.
Perhaps it's a sign that I need sleep; should stick to eating cereal or even revert back to living on a meal plan next term. In any case, I made a breaded chicken breast stuffed with ham and cheese. It tasted quite good until I got to a tough, chewy part. I thought I had over cooked it until I poked at it a bit and saw that it was still gooey and raw-looking.
And then I lost my appetite.