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i realized that i like watching american idol with my parents. i wouldn't really watch this show by myself, but i really enjoy watching it with my parents. i guess it's all surface enough that we can all weigh in with our opinions without having any issues. and there are a lot of "safe" things to talk about, like what makes someone a good singer, what makes someone marketable, who watches american idol, whether the show's popularity is rising or falling... in contrast, i can't watch glee with my parents. i can't handle having to address race, sexuality, and size issues that come up. i guess part of it is that i really like glee and i don't want my parents messing with it. 

i think there's a delicate formula to finding something to watch with my parents. maybe we have to have similar kinds of interest in the show. maybe the problem with glee is that we come at it with different kinds of interest. 

another show that is good for us to watch together is soko ga shiritai. we have all seen each episode at least 3 times already, but it still manages to amuse us most of the time. now we have another level of enjoyment, seeing what we remember from previous viewings. i had thought that food shows would be good to watch with them because it seems like a pretty safe area, but i don't think my parents are as interested in food shows as i am. my parents also like to watch sports; i am less into that. i am mostly interested in seeing the names and the racial/ethnic/national breakdowns of players

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i forgot that blogs are for random thoughts. so here's one: i just realized that kea frequently rereads books. i'm talking fun books. like when he wants something to read, he'll just look through our shelves and pick up one of his old irvine welsh books or old fantasy or something. i, on the other hand, rarely reread fun books. this summer i actually reread the handmaid's tale and youth in revolt. it was kind of a big deal for me. i mean, i had to have reasons to reread them. i think i felt like revisiting these books that i had read when i was like 19 or whatever, partially to remember what i was like then i guess, to revisit these books that were probably formative of who i am. also, because it's been like 10+ years, it seemed worth it to reread them, like i really couldn't have told you much about those books before i reread them so it was kind of like reading them for the first time.

so i started thinking if this like said something significant about our personalities or something. but i think it could just be how we were raised. like i distinctly remember my parents giving me a hard time for rereading things, rewatching movies. they just see it as a waste of time, like you already had that experience and there are so many more you can have. i can definitely relate to that perspective, although i do think it can be worth it to reread/rewatch things too. and i wonder if kea often had to reread things when he was growing up because he couldn't get new books. let me tell you: books are hard to come by on the big island and i think, while both our parents thought we were weird for reading so much, i think his dad is way more chang and with my dad, he was always willing to buy me any book i wanted.

crazy dream

dreamt i was in an apartment/dorm/office thing. idk it was some shared space that i was in working on my laptop with some other folks. and it was on campus cuz there were all these people walking around outside, like as if they were going to and from class. this guy kept pointing a gun at the window but it looked fake and i figured he was just trying to get a rise out of people. like he was really trying to get people's attention and freak us out so i mostly ignored him. then he started shooting. so we ran away from the windows, out into the hallway to hide out. people called 911 and stuff. and then we were mostly just hanging out, like figuring out what we were going to do for the three hours while we'd be stuck in there. and i only had my phone and was sad that i didn't have internet on my phone. so i wanted to run back into the room and grab my laptop. and other people were doing this too so i did. and i found out my laptop had got shot, but it was fine. the case was just all like rugged looking. and i was like, "whoa good thing i got the metal case laptop." and then i was happy because i could post updates online about the shooter on campus. and other people were just like worrying about whether they'd have time to keep their plans for the night.

iPad vs. Nook vs. Kindle

Yesterday at Barnes Kahala they were totally pushing the Nook. Like we walked in and this dude was by the door holding one and all like "Have you seen the Nook?" Lol, it was sort of the kind of thing Kea and I hate, like pressure selling that we are sometimes not assertive enough to get out of, but after awhile, I think we were sort of interested. At first I thought the guy was holding a fake model, you know like they wouldn't give him a real one to demo. The screen looked funny that's why. But then I realized that it's like one of those screens that's designed to look like paper I guess. Someone told me about this. I forget who.

Then he told us that it now comes with internet connection so that you can check your email and stuff on it too. Plus it is like only $250. So I think I might actually be persuaded to desire one of those more than an iPad. It did look like he was having some trouble working it though, which made me wonder if it didn't respond quickly or maybe he was just not used to it. Also, I think academic publishers need to make eBooks before i will get one too.

I think it was a very smart move on Barnes and Noble's part to push this thing though. Like the iPad has so much buzz and I think something like the Nook or Kindle is probably just as good (and way cheaper) for someone like me.

being an aunty

My nephews are getting old and it's making me think. Most of K's brother's kids, for example, are teenagers! The oldest is 19, I think. Another is graduating high school this year and the triplets are freshmen in high school. We spent quite a bit of time with one of the triplets over spring break because he's living with K's mom right now. I guess I think of teenagers much different than I do kids. Teenagers are almost adults and I guess I think they should be treated like adults to a certain degree, but I think I forget how young 13-15 year olds are. I forget that they still have to ask permission for a lot of things, like things as basic as going out with their friends. But they're also tall! Like once they are my height, I feel like I have to accept their adult-ness to a certain degree.

With the triplets, I first met them when they were 6 or 7 years old. It blows my mind. They've gone from being kids to almost adults, but I was already an adult when I met them. I was about 23 I guess. K was giving the triplet a hard time because he didn't know who "Uncle Jake" was. Uncle Jake is K's tutu's neighbor and people used to joke that he was like her boyfriend. I guess he was like the old guy who would check in on her every once in awhile. Anyway, K was like, "What's wrong with you? Even Aunty R knows who Uncle Jake is!" But then I was thinking, when I started learning who all these people were, the triplets were kids. So in a sense, I have a head start on them. It just makes me realize how long I've been around them I guess.

K's sisters kids are 10 and 8. Their dad is Japanese so they have some short genes too, but the 10-year-old is gaining on me fast so it made me realize that he'll be a teenager soon too!  And I also realized that they don't fight as much anymore. I mean, they still fight, but it's different from when they were younger. It's more controlled. Like, they understand the consequences and they can control their anger to avoid consequences. I think there's a flip side to this too, like they also know what they can get away with and are better at it, but overall, I think it's good growth.

I don't know what the point of this is. I guess I am thinking about all my experiences being an aunty and all that I have learned from them. I really think I've learned a lot about child-rearing and how kids behave at different ages. I think it's always good to have theories of child-rearing, you know, ideas of how you want to raise your (future) kids. And I think that being an aunty has helped me to revise those theories. I think I have a better idea of what good kids' behavior is. You know, kids are rowdy and sometimes that's just how it is. So I feel I have a better understanding of normal amounts of rowdiness and normal amounts of fights between siblings and normal amounts of disobedience.

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went birthday present shopping for my six-year-old niece. really trying to stay away from girly things because as the only girl in a family with six kids, i think all she gets is girly stuff. and not just girly stuff but like Disney princess stuff. i am sure that at a certain point it's nearly impossible to avoid those things, but anyway.

we went to toys r us and it was pretty depressing. like the girls toys are crap. it's like all dolls. and not only that, but it's all like really heavily branded, like Barbie, Hannah Montana, etc. i know there is cooler stuff online but that stuff tends to be more expensive and you have to pay for shipping, etc.

even the stuff we were considering was girl versions of things, like girl Legos, girl Playdoh sets. On one hand, I'm glad they have girl Legos, girl Tinker Toys, girl Lincoln Logs because I do think the colors are nicer. I kind of like them better and I think she would too. Yet at the same time it's very silly. Like the Lincoln Logs, Tinker Toys, and Playdoh Fun Factory are exactly the same as the old versions (which I guess are now the boy versions) except with different colors. (the "girl" Lego set had like horses or dogs, which i thought was cute. and it had girl figurines which i think is probably a good thing).

anyway, we ended up not getting anything. on the way home, i was thinking that part of the problem is that with this age, they're old enough that they're gender-socialized--so there's a good chance they want girly stuff. yet they're young enough that you feel like you should still try to--i don't know--not give in to the ridiculous segregation i guess.

anyway, we came up with an idea--rubber stamps and glitter glue. i remember playing with these things when i was young. i guess they are girly but they are things you can do at least, versatile toys i think. at least something cool that you can do something with. something a boy might be jealous of even.


i saw choke and it was quite enjoyable. there was like a lot of stuff in it where you could tell they wanted to get certain things from the book in there but it was totally fun and stuff. i didn't really want to see it at first but some friends were visiting and wanted to go. and it ended up being better than the preview that was like "this is a movie about strip clubs."

i also want to see blindness and kind of want to see eagle eye too. idk, i am in the mood for some drama-rrific movies. ooh and i also want to see nick and nora's infinite playlist because it looks sooooo cute.

Back in Michigan and trying to be self-sufficient and productive

I got in at 9:30 am EST after flying out of Honolulu at 5 pm HST. I got only a couple hours of sleep on the plane--despite having the smallest, least-offensive smelling seatmates ever (a woman about my size and a 12-year-old)! Got home and slept from 11 am-1 pm. Then got up to get work done. My draft of my job application letter is due at noon tomorrow; I think I got a decent enough version finished. Oh yeah had to do that today because I have TA training from 9-12 tomorrow. So... hopefully I can wake up at 7 okay. This was very strategic: get just enough sleep today so that I can still sleep easy at 11 pm EST tonight. Supposedly breakfast and lunch (and coffee) for TA training will be catered though. Yippee!

I changed out the glass on our doors to screens. We were supposed to do this in May but never got around to it. Usually I make Kea do it but it was not too hard. Just screws and stuff.

The trunk of my car is stuck shut. It doesn't pop open and I've only got the valet key right now. But I swear the key used to go in vertical and now the opening is horizontal. So that's not a good sign.

I made some cowboy caviar (black beans, corn, green onion, cilantro, tomato, balsamic vinegar). I think that's going to be dinner. Oh yeah I went to the grocery store.

I swiffered the floors.

I need to unpack and work on my syllabus.

I need a haircut, I need to go to Costco, I need new tires.