December 2004 Archives

everything that has a beginning, has an end

What a crazy couple of weeks it's been. The week before last I scrambled to get my JET program application in by the Dec. 1 deadline. Thanks to my procrastination, I had to run all over campus to get all kinds of forms and signatures. Once I had all the proper paperwork and my recommendation letters, I had to haul over to my mom's work to hand her all of my stuff so she can overnight it to DC. All that scrambling around left me exhausted, but it felt good to finally have it done. All I can do now though is sit and wait and hope I'll make it to the next stages and ultimately get picked. I'm pretty much banking on getting accepted, so if this falls through I don't know what I'm going to do, and I really don't want to think about it. The unfortunate thing is I won't find out if I'll progress until around February, so I'll have to play the waiting game until then. :|

Last Friday I graduated from UT with a degree in Japanese (or as my diploma will say: Asian Cultures & Languages - Japanese). All in all it was pretty cool. My parents managed to reserve an area right near the front along with around 20 of my family members. Once I walked the stage I could hear them yelling for me. They were pretty loud. I'm the first person ever in my family to attend a university and graduate, so this was a really big deal for the whole family and it felt good to have that kind of support. It was also pretty cool that Ting and Onyee came out for my graduation and pictures afterward, even though it was kinda crazy once we got out of the Erwin Center.

Hook 'Em Horns!

The next morning I got up all early so I could attend the College of Engineering commencement ceremony. Theirs was pretty boring compared to ours. It was more formal and boring and didn't have any balloons drop down on the graduates at the end. I bought 2 air horns to blast when Rosie and Candace walked the stage, but all the ushers were taking air horns if anyone used them, so I had to refrain since I was sitting a few seats in front of an usher and the horns were brand new and cost me 10 bucks.

The day after that, Sunday, was the big BBQ with about 50-60 of my relatives in celebration of my graduation. It was held at Poke E Joe's and man was it good. I got about $325 total from my relatives as well as a giant Longhorn cake and some other UT goodies. I had to leave the BBQ early though so I could make it in time for Ting's graduation. I quickly said bye and thanks to everyone, grabbed the camera and air horns, and sped on over to the Erwin Center just in time to see Ting walk. Once I got there I realized that Ting had a pretty large cheering section of about 15-20 people. Once Ting walked the stage, we all stood up and yelled GOOOO TINGTING! and sounded our horns (we had 3 total). We were pretty damn loud, so loud in fact that we were mentioned in the Daily Texan (last paragraph) the next day:

"Associate Dean David Laude called another name - "Simon D. Sanchez." A group of 15 stood up and prepared to yell: "Tingting Geng." The screams and trumpet fanfares were the loudest of the afternoon."

It was just a small blurb, but pretty cool regardless. Only Ting could have pulled something like that. I felt kinda bad though because we were so loud that we kind of blew away the person that walked after Ting. However, as it turned out, it was Onyee, so in a way it was kind of a shared cheer. We were so loud though that an usher came up to the upper deck where we were and took up our horns. I managed to hide one of mine though, so it wasn't a total loss. ;) Afterward we took some pictures, then I headed over to Marco Polo to have dinner with a bunch of Ting's friends and family. It felt kinda weird though since I was the odd one out, being the only non-asian there. Everyone kept asking me if I liked the food (even though I've eaten there several times before), especially when they noticed I wasn't eating much (I was still full from the BBQ only a couple hours earlier). Afterward, they all went to go party somewhere, so I headed over to the Tower to get some pics while it was still lit with the 04 on it. So that about wraps up last weekend.

Monday and Tuesday were dead days before finals started. Not a whole lot happened then, just worked a little and stayed up all night writing my paper for EvoPsych, which was my last paper ever. The morning it was due I went to work so I could finish up the last little bit of it and print it and turn it in by 2pm. Apparently I parked illegally, earning me a nice $50 ticket. What a way to end my stay at UT. I was so pissed about the ticket (and still am), especially because the day before I parked in that same spot for about an hour and didn't get any ticket. This time I was there for about 15 mins and I get nailed with a $50 ticket. Grr, I absolutely hate parking at UT. I think that night I went over to the Vis Lab to see Minh and Tim's demo of the game they've been working on all semester for their gamedev class. Their's was easily the best game out of the three groups. Unfortunately the Vis Lab was all screwed up at the time, so nothing worked right. The projection was borked, the sound was lame, and there weren't enough seats in there, so I had to stand for the hour and a half or two hours that the whole thing lasted. My legs still hurt from that night.

Finals began Wednesday, but my final is tomorrow, so I wasn't too concerned with finals at that time. After work I had lunch with Ting, then she wanted to go study at Mozart's so we went there in the afternoon for a bit but we mostly just chatted, so not much studying took place. It kinda sucked though because I smelled like coffee afterward, and I don't like the smell (or taste for that matter)of coffee. Thursday was pretty uneventful other than more studying with Ting and eating too much pizza. After that I went to work but I don't remember what I did there. Friday was also uneventful other than the free food at work.

So this weekend I didn't really do anything other than bumming around at home and watching movies. Earlier in the week I bought the Matrix box set so I can finally see all of Reloaded and finally see Revolutions. Apparently I only missed the first 10 mins of Reloaded before, so there wasn't much new there. Revolutions was pretty good, although I could have done without the DBZ fight at the end between Neo and Smith. That part, at least to me, was just silly.

After that I decided to go look for a Japanese movie I've been dying to see, called Shimotsuma Monogatari, starring my future wife, Kyoko Fukada. I eventually got it and watched it last night and it turned out to be hilarious. Since there aren't any subs for it, I had to put my Japanese degree to good use and try and understand the Japanese. Despite my crappy Japanese comprehension skills (gimme a break, I haven't used it in over a year), I managed to get the gist of the movie. Basically the story is about a girl named Momoko (played by Kyoko) who lives in the farm town of Shimotsuma but is crazy about the lolita style, which is a type of clothing style you will find particularly in Harajuku on a Sunday afternoon. She regularly makes trips to Tokyo to shop for more of these clothes, and in order to support her fashion, she sells a bunch of fake Versaci and Universal Studios (Versach and Universal Stadium) clothes left over from her dad's business. One day a loud, abrasive, punk girl from a moped biker gang, named Ichigo, comes to check out Momoko's stuff and the rest of the movie follows their unlikely friendship along with their troubled pasts. One of my favorite parts is at the end when Momoko races off to find Ichigo and gets hit by a small truck, sending her flying in a spray of lettuce and pachinko balls. As she is flying through the air, Momoko thinks of the important people in her life and remembers she was off to find Ichigo, so she immediately gets up from the crash, and speeds off leaving the truck driver rather confused. She finds Ichigo being beaten up by her gang and (for reasons I'm not quite sure of yet) and Momoko can't stand it any longer and begins to scream. One of the gang members tosses her into a big puddle.

Don't ever piss off Kyoko

The highlight of the movie is at this point when Momoko rises from the puddle soaked, battered, and very pissed off (sharp contrast from her normal cute, frilly self) and begins to curse and yell at the gang, then proceeds to grab a bat and start swinging at them all followed by more yelling, cursing, and spitting, while Ichigo watches with her jaw to the floor in shock and amazement. Even though I only watched it because Kyoko was in it, the movie turned out to be pretty funny and now I'm considering getting the DVD.

Well that pretty much wraps things up. If you find certain pages on here don't work, please let me know. I had to modify a few things for the blog because this morning a stupid spammer bot hit me with 50 or so comments on here. They were a huge pain to get rid of but hopefully thanks to the preventative measures I had to take, they won't be bothering me anymore. Now I have to get to sleep. I have my last final ever in 6 hours. So much for studying.