Monthly Archive for December, 2004

Goodbye 2004, Hello 2005.

Click to embiggen Joz's large head for 2005!Well, we are sitting in a gorgeous hotel room in Silicon Valley this New Year’s Eve, debating if we should ring in 2005 downstairs at the bar, or if we just want to hang out in the room.

Regardless of what we decide to do, I am grateful to have been able to spend the day with people I care about (Yoshi & Yoshi’s parents, as well as stkyrice & AiYahh), and that I had a chance to talk to both my Mom and Bro (who are both in So Cal tonight). The only thing that would’ve been better is if I had been able to talk to Dad in Taiwan & to lob a call to Grandma (but I forgot to call before her bedtime).

I *DO* know one thing we will not be repeating from last New Year’s Eve, and that would be our wonderful Hotel Nikko Nakedness Debacle (click this link if you missed it), although it was nice to get a free certificate for a free suite out of it all.

Happy New Year from Yoshi!Nonetheless, I’m going to get offline now and spend the last few minutes of 2004 offline (heaven knows I spent most of the past year ONLINE!). Here’s a little Happy New Year picture from me to you. And, I even got a little Happy New Year cameo from Yoshi, who is holding the Happy New Year hat from behind the mountain of pillows on our bed.

If you look carefully at the picture of me, you might see some stains on my shirt (around my boobage area). They are my souvenirs from having lunch with Yoshi, stkyrice & AiYahh this afternoon in Japan Town (SF). You may even be able to tell that I had tempura ramen at Sapporo-ya and then mango ice cream at Mitchell’s Ice Cream for dessert.

I think it’s terribly apropos that I am ringing in the New Year with food stains on my shirt.

Anyway, we hope that you ring in the New Year safely & have a wonderful, happy, healthy, prosperous 2005! See you on the other side!

The Christmas presents I opened last night…

So spending Christmas away from Yoshi & Yoshi’s parents means that I don’t get to open Christmas presents until we go up north for New Year’s.

It doesn’t bother me because it means I get my Christmas when it’s over for everyone else. Nyah-nyah!

If I get a chance to take pictures, I’ll post them. But I might not, so here is a list of things that I opened up last night (in no particular order):

-A (heavy) round cheeseboard/cutting board, with handles
-A gift certificate for a full massage at Kabuki Springs & Spa in SF
-A “spa take-out” kit. Candle, soaps, puff, etc. in a take-out box.
-A pair of Pooh slippers
-A pair of Pooh and Eeyore socks (with treading that says “Friends”)
-An emergency flashlight thingy

…and some other stuff…

I just found out the mochi is ready, so I’m going to go eat now…

Ooops, can’t stay long…

I was going to come online and blog about getting up & hitting the road early (ok, so it was really Yoshi who drove) and how we’re now in San Jose and only had rain during the last half of the trip, but I am being told I have to open my Christmas presents now…

No L.A.

I read about the Adidas 35th anniversary Superstar Cities Series on Josh Rubin’s blog. To celebrate this anniversary, this series includes 7 customs dedicated to the cities most responsible for making the Superstar a success.

They are Berlin, London, Paris, NY, Boston, Tokyo & Buenos Aires. Each design features a trademark unique to each city.

Oh well, it’s not like I’d have bought “I *adias logo* L.A.” Superstars, anyway. I wonder what “trademark” L.A. shoes would’ve had though.

The Power of Blogging (or something like it)

Here are two stories that illustrate the power of blogging.

The first is a story about blogs which are posting first-hand accounts of the tsunami devastation. It features links to worldchanging.com and sumankumar.com.
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow/974504.cms

The second story is from Fortune magazine & it talks about how companies cannot afford to ignore blogs.
http://www.fortune.com/fortune/technology/articles/0,15114,1011763-1,00.html
Features mentions of Xeni Jardin, Jason Calacanis, Robert Scoble & others.

Now what? (A completely separate subject than that in the previous ‘Now what?’)

I have been wondering why there was a faint smell of gas in my office all afternoon.

Now that I hear banging and hammering and (you guessed it) cursing, I know that my friends “heating professionals” are back in our basement again. My guess is there is something wrong with one of our neighbor’s heater and the “professionals” have been summoned back to fix whatever they couldn’t fix in the first place. Nice.

It’s been pretty chilly in L.A. lately and it rained really heavily last night. Even though I was tempted to, I haven’t been brave enough to turn on our heater.

Well, to be more accurate, I haven’t been brave enough to turn on our heater INTENTIONALLY. Last week, I came home to find that the ON light lit up, but no heat coming through the vent. And no matter what I did, I couldn’t get the light to turn off until a couple of days later.

That was when Yoshi wisely suggested that I plug in the carbon monoxide alarm that I had purchased from Costco about a year ago. Strangely, we found that the alarm wasn’t all that effective while it was still in the box.

Anyway, I took a picture of the CO alarm next to our stuck-on-ON ON-switch for our heater last week.

I hope the “heating professionals” finish up soon and that the smell of gas dissipates quickly. It should, seeing as all the windows/doors are open (except the ones in the office, which funny enough, are the only ones in the entire house that I can’t seem to open).

I also hope those dummies don’t decide to turn off our hot water again. Yoshi might have to boobie-trap the basement for the next time they come back.

I need to be in any room that is NOT filling up with poisonous gases, so I’m going to go watch TV or something now.

UPDATE: I can clearly hear one guy in the basement yelling “Son of a gun! Son of a gun! You are such an idiot!” Followed with more banging and shit. And now he’s kicking something metal around and throwing it against something else made of metal.

If anyone in L.A. needs a recommendation for a heating professional, don’t ask me.

Now what?

Ok, I definitely didn’t think through the whole “Mission: Use Egg Nog” plan, because I am now the proud owner of not one, not two, but THREE eggnog cheesecakes & I don’t know what to do with any of them. (I certainly wasn’t planning on EATING them!)

3 Eggnog Cheesecakes

So Yoshi was nice enough to take me to Bed, Bath, & Beyond where I got a set of 3 springform pans for $9.99 and a set of 3 cookie sheets also for $9.99. Then we went to the grocery store to pick up the ingredients I was missing for the cheesecake (cream cheese, nutmeg, butter, rum, etc.). Yoshi and I should never go to the grocery store when we’re hungry because when we were all said and done, we had spent $82 at Ralph’s.

$100 in one night, nice… Mind you, the whole point of this was not to waste two cartons of eggnog, which I estimate cost us no more than $5.

Anyway, once I decided I was on this mission, I had to finish, so Yoshi was brave enough to help me in the kitchen, where I had decided to make 3 cheesecakes at once (I did have THREE new pans, afterall!). I (mostly) followed this recipe I found at allrecipes.com.

Making the crusts was pretty easy because instead of crushing graham crackers myself, I had purchased a box of pre-crumbed crumbs that were ready-to-use. Since I didn’t pay attention to the box the 3 springform pans came in, I soon came upon glitch #1. The pans were not all 9″ pans (as I had assumed), they came in 8.5″, 9.5″, and 10″ sizes. I would have to tweak the quantities of the ingredients to adjust for the larger and smaller sized pans. No biggie.

Then came the fun; making the cheesecake itself. This proved to be tougher than I thought it would be because of two main reasons:

1) I don’t have any large mixing bowls.
2) I evidently can’t follow directions.

Since I don’t have a food processor, I opted to cream the cream cheese with a small hand mixer. You can guess how messy this task is if your mixing bowl isn’t big enough.

Also, I couldn’t figure out why my cream cheese wasn’t creaming properly. Well, it would’ve helped if I’d actually followed the directions and NOT put all the ingredients into the bowl at once. Yoshi helped by measuring out some of the ingredients because, well, I tend to not measure things… comes from learning to cook “Chinese-style” (I am not afraid to admit that the words, “What?! Recipe? I don’t need no stinkin’ recipe! And I don’t need to measure anything either!” have actually come out of my mouth). The first batch of cream cheese was clumpy, runny and just hadn’t mixed well with everything else. Oh well. I dumped it into the largest (10″) pan, the one I had already kind of messed up since I had kind of burnt the crust a little anyway.

Cheesecake #2 was only slightly more successful for the first. I had realized that I hadn’t properly mixed the cream cheese the first time, so I followed the directions exactly {well, except for the food processor part} and I “combine[d] cream cheese, sugar, flour and eggnog; process[ed] until smooth.” {Oh, and except for the “prcoess until smooth” part, because batch #2 was also clumpy (although significantly less clumpy than batch #1, but this was mostly due to the fact that Yoshi was patient enough to stand there with the hand mixer for a LONG time)}. That one went into the smallest pan.

For Cheesecake #3, I decided to forego mixing the eggnog in with the cream cheese until later. I mixed all the dry ingredients with the cream cheese and hand mixed it until it was smooth. {Except that in addition to not having any mixing bowls, I also don’t have any mixing spoons.} So I decided to mix “Asian-style!” and used a pair of giant chopsticks (the kind you use for cooking) and the plastic shamoji (rice scooper) instead. This was by far the most successful attempt. I was able to use the hand mixer after that to add in the rest of the ingredients and finally start baking.

Anyway, the baking process was pretty smooth {except for the fact that I forgot to start the timer when I started baking}. After a while, I was kind of wondering why my timer hadn’t made its intermittent beeps to let me know the timer was on. So then I had to kind of guesstimate how long to keep the cheesecakes in the oven. They came out of the oven eventlessly and sat on cooling racks overnight until this morning.

Then I realized I didn’t know what to do with them. I would put them in the fridge/freezer, but I don’t have an appropriate container to put them in (so they don’t get smashed). Luckily, it is really chilly in our house right now, so they are OK sitting in the other room for now.

So anyway, I am still trying to figure out “now what” about the cheesecakes, but since I only used about 3/4ths for the first carton of eggnog, I am going to attempt a batch (or however-many) of eggnog cookies later tonight. Hopefully those will be easier to store. {Wish me luck.}

(Cut & paste of the eggnog cheesecake recipe is below)
Continue reading ‘Now what?’

Mission: Use Egg Nog

I decided to take the advice of Keith, who suggested I make cheesecake & fl0w3r, who gave me the URL to find egg nog recipes.

I think between a cheesecake or two & a batch of cookies, I should be able to use up all 8 cups of leftover egg nog in the fridge.

Of course, I don’t own any baking pans acceptable for making cheesecake & we no longer own the various cookie sheets we used to have, so in addition to making a grocery store run to buy the ingredients needed to make cheesecake and cookies, I’ll also need to buy bakeware.

Or maybe I should just take Brandon’s advice, and just dump the nog?

Home Alone.

Don’t feel sorry for me, it was (mostly) by choice.

I was supposed to spend the day with my Mom and Bro at my parents’ home, but since I’m still coughing more than I’d like, I told Mom I would take it easy. I’d have liked to see my Mom again today, but seeing as I’ve spent time with her yesterday and the day before, I can figure out a time when I am not germy to go see her. When I am not germy, I would also like to see my grandmother, too.

I pick up Yoshi from the airport tomorrow morning, so until then, I’ve been free to cough and sneeze on everything without too much guilt.

I also slept in past noon & then slept another three hours in the afternoon. I guess I needed it. I’ve also been eating leftovers from Christmas Eve dinner for the last two days. It doesn’t help that I don’t have much of an appetite.

I’d really like to stop coughing soon. I don’t think it’s good that the bulk of my sustenance has been from cough drops and tea lately.

What do I do with all this egg nog?

I have a confession. I don’t really like egg nog. I’ll have some in small amounts, but I’m just not fond of it.

But I bought two whole cartons for when we had people over last week, but the mulled apple cider that Yoshi made was such a big hit that no one touched the egg nog.

The two cartons are sitting in my fridge, unopened, waiting for the expiration date to pass.

What a waste.

Holy crap!

My mom plays Texas Hold Em! I guess she learned by watching WPT on TV with my brother.

We were at Christmas Eve dinner at my Uncle’s home & after dinner, the poker table, chips, and cards soon took over the dining room, with the first game going to my youngest cousin.

So the second game (which incidentally STARTED at midnight), my mom decided to get in on the action when one of my other cousins decided to pass on another game and off they went with another 7 player game.

Everyone thought my mom was just joking around and didn’t know how to play. And then, after a few hands, she started scaring everyone because of her aggressive betting behavior (imagine jozjozjoz’s mom shrieking “I’ll throw in 10 more green chips!” in Chinese).

Unfortunately, she was also the first one out. She went all-in with pocket kings… my cousin had pocket aces (crazy 9-10-J-Q-K on the table).

Doh.

ON ANOTHER NOTE: It is 1am and I am still at my Uncle’s house. Not only do I still have to go back to my parents place to get my car, I am supposed to drive back to LA tonight so I can get up early and drive Yoshi to the airport in the morning. Even if I were to try steal the car and leave my Mom and Bro stranded here, I wouldn’t be able to get the car out of the circular driveway because whoever got here last decided it was ok to block everyone else in. Grrrr…

ANOTHER ANOTHER NOTE: As some folks have noticed, my blog won’t let you put the word “poker” in the comments. Acceptable variations are p0ker, p.oker, etc. Just don’t tell the spammers that!

ANOTHER ANOTHER ANOTHER NOTE: For anyone wondering, I was able to hitch a ride from one of my cousins, who dropped me off at my parents’ house at about 2:45am. By the time I got back to L.A. it was close to 3:30 and after showering and getting ready for bed, it was past 4am before I got into bed.

Yay! It’s on!

45th Annual L.A. County Holiday Celebration

The Holiday Celebration is about to start!

Yay, it’s Henry Winkler!

no hot water. again.

this is a post by yoshi. i can’t seem to sign in as me on jozjozjoz’s blog, but i still have to post this right now:

there is a little elf in the basement. he’s blowing out the pilot on our water heater every so often. just when we get comfortable with our new 40-gallon water heater and nice, hot showers and clean clothes, he jumps out of his hiding place and *poof*–blows out the pilot.

dunno why this keeps happening. but i’m pretty sure it’s out. and it’s a new water heater with this nifty little window to look through to see the blue flame of the pilot if it’s on. all i saw when i was down there earlier was darkness.

i’m a take charge kind of person but i draw the line at working with gas or electricity. i’m still convinced the lights jozjozjoz strung on the windows are going to burn the house down.

so no laundry is getting done, and i refuse to take a cold shower. i’ll just sit and wait for the gas co. guy to show up.

UPDATE: i’m an idiot. apparently someone set the heater to “pilot” instead of “on” in the basement. like the heating guys. i blame them for not putting it back on “on”. fuckers made me look like a dumbass.

Still coughing…

…not so much green stuff, but at least I never coughed up Christmas (green and red) stuff…

Coughing up green stuff

Ugh.

I’m still alive.

No gas explosion.

Just an explosion of an entirely different kind.

I’ll live.

I think.

Ahh, the smell of matches?

My friends, the “heating professionals,” were back again today.

I know this because of all the excessive banging and cursing coming through my floorboards.

Now I smell the odor of lit matches coming out of my gas vents.

If this is my last post because my building exploded because of those jokers in the basement, then I wish I had something more poignant to say for my last post…

Doesn’t anyone there have a dictionary?

One of my biggest pet peeves is the incorrect use of words. It is one thing to “play” with a word, but another thing to just plain use it wrong incorrectLY, or use it in a way that could be misinterpreted.

Here is a recent example from the so-called smart folks at PayPal/eBay:

Subject: Changes to Winning Buyer Notification Email

Date: Mon, 20 Dec 2004 12:39:43 PST

Less Confusion, More Convenience in One Email

We’re writing to let you know that after January 19, 2005, PayPal will no longer send a Winning Buyer Notification email to your eBay buyers. Instead, eBay’s End of Auction email will be enhanced to include all the information buyers require.

Today, many buyers receive two emails at the end of an auction or transaction—eBay’s End of Auction and PayPal’s Winning Buyer Notification. PayPal and eBay are eliminating the duplicity. (bold added by me)

Now your buyers will receive just one email with all the information they need including transaction details, payment information, custom messaging, and more.

du·plic·i·ty
n. pl. du·plic·i·ties

1.
—1. Deliberate deceptiveness in behavior or speech.
—2. An instance of deliberate deceptiveness; double-dealing.
2. The quality or state of being twofold or double.

[Middle English duplicite, from Old French, from Late Latin duplicits, doubleness, from Latin duplex, duplic-, twofold. See dwo- in Indo-European Roots.]

While TECHNICALLY, this word is used correctly (according to the second definition), the far more common definition of “duplicity” is “deception.”

It would have been a much better choice to use the word “duplication,” so as to avoid the connotation that ANY deception had been made on the part of PayPal/eBay in the first place.

[/rant]

Another Open Letter to Jozjozjoz form Professoreric:

Where are you? Look it is 1:00 and our baby boy, Mo Chin, is crying again, and once again i will tell you that i can not do the single dad thing while you are gallivanting around the city with your beer buddies, ogling some poor past her prime dancer at jumbos clown room. I mean we are out of formula, and rubber nipples for his bottle, and you have the freaking car so i can’t even load the kid up and go to the 24 hour Walgreen’s and take care of the business you were supposed to take care of. Baby, seriously… Hey! Look at me when i am talking with you!… was it something i said? is there someone else? What’s going on here? things were going so well. Ok i have to come clean about something, and maybe you figured this out and maybe that’s why you haven’t been coming home much lately… ok here goes, I’m gay. Ok i know this may come as a shocker, but it’s true. And to make matters worse, i am also a vegetarian. see, i have been feeding you gay soy turkey and tofu beef. At first i just added a bit, but you didn’t seem to notice the difference. so i just kept doing it. you know. i am sorry if you feel lied to, or betrayed. but i honestly think if you calm down and stop throwing things we can talk rationally about this. Baby please, i just got the baby to sleep and if you throw this lamp you will wake him up, and we didn’t fly to china go to that orphanage and refuse all of those abandoned squinting baby girls for our perfect little baby boy (an abandoned halfie left behind by some American GI) just so you could keep him up all night with your anger issues. I read this article in the advocate about domestic violence, and they say there are some places you can go for that to get some help… Ok, well now you need to go get me some ice so this bruise wont swell up too much.. look we can work this out… So what else have you been up to?
Continue reading ‘Another Open Letter to Jozjozjoz form Professoreric:’

Remember the LOUD drilling last week?

Not only is the LOUD drililng back, it’s being accompanied by its loud friends HAMMERING, BANGING METAL, GRUNTING, and SWEARING.

I didn’t blog about it last Thursday & Friday, but I guess the heating guys didn’t finish what they started and have been returning during the weekdays to basically bang shit around, drop it, and curse. Unfortunately, by the way they are swearing up a storm down there, I don’t think things are going as well as they’d hoped.

It is really weird that I can totally hear EVERYTHING that is happening down in the basement. I’m not certain why it’s taking so long for them to fix whatever is down there, I just hope they’re doing a good job.

If not anything else, maybe they will have completed preparing their demo reel to audition for Stomp.

Well, it finally happened…

Farewell, Fishie.

My final tiger barb, the last of them all, is gone. He went bye-bye today, but we knew it was going to happen.

He’d been doing the backstroke for quite a while and miraculously kept swimming, but he started to look really bad so we knew the time was close.

We’ve had this fishie for a long time… since at least two places ago, so probably about 3 years or so…

So long, Fishie.

It’s the end of an era. I went from a forty gallon tank, to a forty gallon tank + a small two gallon tank, to just a two gallon tank. Now to none. I’ve decided not to keep fish anymore. I get too sad when they die.

Swing, Santa, Swing!

Swing, Santa, Swing!Tonight we’re going to see our friends at GMCLA perform their annual holiday performance, definitely one of our favorite holiday traditions.

The program tonight is called Swing, Santa, Swing! and the program description is:

Get on the A-Train for a rollicking, rhythmic holiday ride with standards, show-stopping production numbers and songs of the season to warm your heart. Jump-start your holiday spirit and become part of L.A.’s holiday tradition.

For anyone who has never had the pleasure of attending a GMCLA concert, they aren’t kidding when they say “show-stopping production numbers.” If you go to their concerts expecting to see the Gay Men’s Glee Club, you’re in for a big surprise. Yes, you’ll hear a stage full of hundreds of men (not all gay, in case you’re wondering) singing, but also a performance beyond “just a bunch of guys singing.”

Last year, they staged (for the last time) the popular “12 Days of Christmas” using almost 30 puppeteers and over 100 large foam puppets, “The Foamettes,” and black light (conceived of by the amazing Phil Hettema). Here is a behind-the-scenes look at becoming a Foamette from Kenlin. I’m totally excited to see what they have planned instead this year.

If you go to this concert, leave me a comment and let me know what you think!

Swing, Santa, Swing!
Fri, Dec 17, 8:00 PM
Sat, Dec 18 8:00 PM
Sun, Dec 19 3:00 PM

Special One Hour Family Matinee
Sat, Dec 18 2:00 PM!

Alex Theatre
216 N Brand Blvd, Glendale
Box Office Tue-Sun 12-6
(818) 243-2539

All I Want For Christmas…

… is a Chia Shrek*.

Chia Shrek!

*Just kidding. Please, PLEASE do not send me a Chia Shrek. Or a toad purse. Or roo poo. Or a moose ball purse.

Yeah, don’t be getting any funny ideas, Michael. Happy only-kind-of-belated birthday!

Pancakey love from Hawaii

I am so lucky! I have the greatest friends! They send me pictures from their vacations!

First, I login to find that Mr Don has posted an Incredible picture of him & Spence at Walt Disney World with the Incredibles (cool sign, Mr. Don!)… then I find this in my email box:

It’s a pancakey (albeit ketchupy) “Joz Rules”, directly from Eggs ‘n Things in Waikiki from stkyrice and aiyahh (where they’ve been marathoning & vacationing all week).

Thank you,

As if there was any doubt!


From Walt Disney World comes this jozzeriffic message…




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