26 February 2007

On Dreams

I always wish I can remember more of my dreams, at least of the ordinary ones--only the vivid dreams stick with me when I wake up, like the ones in which spiders are crawling on my face, or the ones involving the boy I like. The ordinary ones, though, are usually about something I am really worried about--exams, presentations, my future, the like.

Last night I think I had a dream that I was playing in an orchestra (maybe the youth orchestra of my high school days, I'm not sure). I have quite a few of these "orchestra dreams," last night especially because I had just gone to a friend's violin recital, so you could say that my neck twinged a bit with the memory of a long gone bruise. (Okay, that's melodramatic--I was never good enough to have a real bruise.)

Anyway, I seem to have been living in the past, because in my dream famous composers who are already dead kept calling into the orchestra office, and my unrecognizable friend and I were appointed to answer the calls. They were calling about pieces that they had commissioned us to play (or maybe it was the other way around--we had commissioned them to write pieces for us to play?) I remember picking up the phone and realizing that the person on the other side of the line was none other than Dmitri Shostakovich. (What good ol' Dmitri was doing calling our orchestra, I have no idea) I shoved the phone onto my friend, and had a panick attack: "There is no way I can talk to Shostakovich on the phone! He's Shostakovich! I don't know what to say to him!"

And I thought my dreams had to do with my real life worries. I guess somewhere deep down I am seriously worried about what I will possibly have to say to Shostakovich if he ever calls me up.

22 February 2007

Youtube is down

OH NO. I had such great plans for this post, too.

It better be back up so I can watch the next episode of Death Note. Come ON.

21 February 2007

Hidden

For the past 7 days I haven't spent any time in my room besides the 7 hours I spend sleeping (and possible another hour here or there).

This is what happens when midterms roll around -- but for some reason it seems a hundred times worse this semester. Errrr I need to get out and do something, see something, experience something other than myself and the sounds of my brain.

Paul Rusesabagina (the real guy who Don Cheadle plays in Hotel Rwanda) is coming to Duke tomorrow to speak on ethics. Excited.

Sorry this is so disjointed.
Also, Happy New Year!!

08 February 2007

Why I didn't get to see Nicholas Kristof...

Nicholas Kristof, who easily earns awesome status in my book, came to speak on the Darfur crisis in Raleigh last Tuesday. And I missed it, because I was too busy working on a time-consuming but otherwise worthless assignment for physical chemistry lab. Just like I missed getting to meet Valentino Achak Deng when he came to a bookstore just minutes off of campus, because I had to sort out a ridiculous debacle with ordering books for classes.

I hate missing great opportunities because of stupid responsibilities. I think I need to do some re-working of my priorities.

We spoke about the possibility and practicality of U.S. intervention in Darfur today in my human rights class. What terribly vexed me, though, was that so many of my fellow classmates thought that intervention was impossible because the U.S. doesn't have the resources to commit to something that may very well turn into a long-term ordeal in ensuring stability in the region (if stability is at all a feasible goal). And as a result of incomplete intervention, the region will only descend into further chaos. This is a very valid point. But there is a very valid counterpoint as well: if we are going to be 100% certain that we have the resources to ensure the success of every one of our actions (which certainly wasn't something we considered with Iraq...) then we'll never be able to do anything.

This is a bad analogy for many reasons, but let's say you wake up tomorrow and decide to be 100% certain you won't fail before you do anything. Can you even get out of bed safely without rolling off, snagging yourself on your blanket, or bruising your knee on the corner of your bed frame?

There is such a huge difference between the students in my history of genocide class last semester and my current political science class. I'm a little disappointed, because the latter will probably end up continuing our history of hesitant policy-making in the near future. I realize there is a large difference between discussion of genocide and implementation into viable policy, but I wish it wasn't so.

04 February 2007

Focus?

Lately so many things have been on my mind that I'm finding it incredibly difficult to focus. Among the things I am trying to get straight are: what I'm going to do in the next three years, how I'm going to do it, and if my parents will agree what I choose to do (even if it means delaying medical school for a few years or, who knows, choosing not to go after all). I've also been consumed with how I'm going to divide my time this semester. It's so difficult to strike a balance between, well, everything.

It's the beginning-of-the-semester sorting, as usual.

I hate getting into this cycle of work that consumes me all semester-long. The substantial part of me that loves to work for the feeling of reward at work's end is appeased, but I miss the excitement of spontaneity. I've always been satisfied with a certain degree of routine in my life, but now I am beginning to tire.

Good Eats: Hot Wings

For anybody like me who loves chicken wings but is tired of paying $6 for a plate of 8 wings, here is a simple home-discovered recipe. For the marinade, you need: (the following are approximate amounts, you can add to taste)
  1. 1/2 cup soy sauce
  2. 1 tbsp vinegar
  3. 3 tbsp white wine
  4. 1 tbsp sugar (or to taste)
  5. 3 stalks scallions
  6. 1 tbsp chile paste / chile powder
  7. 1 clove garlic
Mix the above ingredients in a bowl and dress the chicken wings with this marinade. Leave about 1/3 of the marinade.
To bake the chicken wings: place them side by side on a cookie sheet and bake at 450 degrees, or grill until done.

When finished, the extra marinade can be used as a dipping sauce or can be spread over the wings evenly.
This is making me hungry...