Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Escapades & Making Noises of Life

Last weekend was such a great escapade. I went to NJ for the weekend and stayed at a friend's parents' home. Her parents were out of town. I really enjoyed the central AC, outdoor jacuzzi, bright lights, and cleanliness. For once I could walk around and sit down anywhere without worrying about cat hair ending up on my clothes. I loved curling up underneath a thick comforter and just sleep comfortably throughout the night. It sure beated my ratty old mattress and blanket at home. As for the jacuzzi, it was heaven. What was funny was that we couldn't figure out how to turn it off. It had one of these electronic control panels, and we were pressing away trying to turn it off. It was getting late in the night, and we were worried about the noise possibly disturbing neighbors. We had no idea if the hot tub was noisy or not. In the suburbs, you really do need to consider noises at late hours unlike parts of NYC.

Off the point a bit here... My mother taught me to be conscious and considerate about different noises I make that hearing people can hear. To her, it was a way of being polite and considerate of others. I agree with not smacking your lips in front of hearies and so on out of respect and manners. Other than that, who cares? It's nice to just celebrate the noises of life. Sometimes I wish I wasn't aware of such things so I could just enjoy doing things more. I feel bad for hearing people sometimes because they hear things that might bother them. We just enjoy things more peacefully and often see more beauty that others might overlook. And, there are visual eye noises for us. I'm constantly surprised with finding out how much and what hearing people hear, take for granted, or just don't think about. For example, I was shocked to learn that people sometimes know when a woman is wearing a pad because the pad makes friction noises with the underwear and/or clothes, especially pads with wings. I was temporarily mortified and wondered who knew every month when I had my period cuz my pads were making friction noises. I kinda felt violated with the idea that my privacy was lost thru pad making music with my clothes. The way I found out about this noise didn't help either. I was at someone's home one night when attending an event that week. She's a close friend of mine. She made a joke about how I was noisy and all that. I asked her waht she meant. She was like... oh I can hear your pad when you walk and sit down. This led to a great discussion about what the heck hearing people do hear (G to X-rated) and how much in proximity it took for them to hear something. Since my friend signed, she was able to exemplify how things sounded through expressions. I told her about a story a CODA once told me. The CODA's mother got hearing aids for the first time as an older adult. The mother went to a public bathroom one time. The CODA was puzzled why her mother took forever in the bathroom. Mother came out and asked CODA why she never told her that you could hear people going to the bathroom. Mother was shocked at hearing people peeing and pooping in neighboring stalls. Since learning about that, I admit I've become "pee-shy" in small bathrooms with few stalls, especially if I am aware that other hearing people are there. I just like the privacy of not having others know my business in the ladies room. It didn't help that the CODA told me how she knew coworkers' tendencies. It was too much information and inappropriate, in my opinion. I'm glad that we are deaf. This reminds me of a question someone asked me few weeks ago. Out of the blue, this hearing interpreter asked me why deaf people often were quiet during sex. It drove him nuts because he said that part of making love was the noise that contributed to the excitement. I raised my eyebrows and sighed as my eyes widened. This led to another great discussion about noises and noise-making. The world sure is full of noises.

Back to last weekend.

On Friday, we went to the Woodbridge Shopping Center with the plan of checking out one store. We ended up shopping all night. I noticed that suburban malls tend to have better lighting and sometimes selections. The sales were great. If not for the closing hour, I would have shopped more. Saturday was devoted to just reading and working on papers all day. On Sunday, we headed into the city for Dave and Jasper's wedding at Central Park South. About 20 deafies showed up to witness their wedding. It was a mass gay wedding. Dave & Jasper were beautiful. It was also a great vee-vee opportunity seeing who the other couples were who got married. Mmmm. Afterwards, just headed to a deli for lunch and ended up talking for a long time. Missed the beginning of the pride march with the dykes on bikes leading the march. Nonetheless, made it in time to see hot latinas dancing on floats. Mmm! Left early because my mind was on the final papers and was also turned off by the inconsiderate self-centered tall gay men who kept on walking in front of everyone and blocking other people's views of the march. Aside from that, I enjoyed the spirit of the march and just being amongst such fun pride. I'm always interseted with who show up to watch the march, so I was looking at the crowds along the march route. Left the march early and headed for NJ to focus on my finals. Upon returning to the NJ house, I focused on schoolwork all night. Got up early on Monday to catch the train into the city.

This is the last week of the Summer I semester grind. I'm going to celebrate this weekend. That's for sure. Summer II semester will be less demanding. I sure am loooking forward to that one week break at the end of August. And I'll officially be halfway thru my graduate studies by then! Hurry up, May 2005! I miss having a regular paycheck, occasional sleep-ins, going out sometimes, and reading just because I wanted to read. Being a full-time grad student has been a rich experience and has its benefits tho. Sometimes it's important to remember that things sometimes seem greener on the other side. I'd rather think that both sides are green with the occasional brown spots and bumps. It's up to you how you want to address these spots and bumps or let alone view them.

This reminds me of Dr. Seuss' book, "Oh the Places You'll Go!" I read this book before high school graduation. I got it as a HS graduation gift. Since then, I've occasionally read it and appreciate it more each time. It's a great analogy of life.

Gotta get back to my papers.

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Back in July

I'll be back online more often in July after the Summer I semester ends. Summer II semester will be lighter with a more humane schedule. There's so much to do for this semester. Midterms were 2 weeks ago. Finals are next week. Hurry up, July 7, so I have more of a life again! Looking forward to having more sleep before I turn into a professional sleepwalker. In the meantime here are few news...

My brother graduated 2 weekends ago. I flew in and out that weekend. He's happy to be all done with grad school. Also met his new date, Diane. We hit it off and got along really well. Hope they last. She'd make a great sister-in-law.

Parents went to Ukraine for few weeks and returned. They're alive and well. They return to Ukraine this fall.

My aunt and uncle from Hungary are here for a 2 week visit before flying to Arizona for the summer.

That's about it. I'm about to begin the academic grind until 8:45 tonight. Let's hope my evening professor ends at 8:25 on time instead of 8:45 or 9.

Have a great summer, y'all!

Thursday, June 10, 2004

Chocolate Sprinkles

Lately, I've been noticing more chocolate sprinkles on the sidewalks during walks between the subway station and my home. Was there a recent upsurge in dog adoptions? run out of papers, bags, or poop-scoopers? or, are dog owners simply lazier with scooping their doggies' poops these days? These sidewalk gifts look like chocolate sprinkles everywhere as if a little kid got carried away with sprinkling.

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Oh, Woe is I

Oh, woe is I. Been sick for the past few days, and I am holding on to the hope that I feel better. The bathroom is my 2nd home these days. Come to think of it... I'd save money if I just rent the bathroom since I don't really need the bedroom, living room, and kitchen. *end of my egocentric dramatic exaggeration*

Emma's been stalking the pigeons outside the window. It's fun to watch her get into her crouching/hunting position. Only if she could actually jump out of the window through the air and land onto the neighboring roof to catch these birds. *picture Emma like a Matrix cat flying thru in exaggerated slo-mo before landing quickly and catching these birds a thousand times* (Only those who have seen the Matrix movies will understand what I'm referring to) By the way, Emma's my beloved cat in case you're wondering who the heck Emma is.

Is it just me or do the pigeons seem a little bigger? I wonder what their life spans and maturation rates are. It seemed as if it was only yesterday that they were smaller and mating like crazy. I noticed a reduction in mating frequency outside my window for few weeks. Now, there's an increase in mating activities. I cannot overgeneralize and assume that it's what's been going on elsewhere in the city.

Ack! Just saw someone in the Food Network building look outta the window. I don't know what she was looking at, but she was looking out in the direction of my building. Brought my window down for more privacy.

My brother graduates this weekend from Fuller University's seminary school. He will get a Masters in Divinity. He does not want to become a pastor or anything of that nature. He's been in school for about 5 years. Different things came up during his studies, prolonging his time in graduate school. I am thrilled that he's finally graduating this weekend. He just told me that it was hitting him hard that he was graduating and moving on. He's undergoing a transition now in terms of focus, finances, and relationships. Will also be meeting his new date, Diane, this weekend. Am curious to meet her since I've heard good things about her. It's the first time my brother wants to introduce a date to the family. Will go to the beach with my bro and Diane on Saturday.

Sunday, June 06, 2004

Living in a Cave until 5/05

I'll be living in a cave until 5/05 when I graduate from NYU. Some folks may note that I'm hibernating in the social world. As much as I love my acquaintances, pager and blogger buddies, etc, I am content with keeping in touch via technology for the time being. Grad school is an expensive and time-consuming investment. I want a high-interest yield and profit if you follow my analogy. Rare free moments are spent alone or with really close friends. Please don't take it the wrong way or accuse me of being a snob. I've always been an introvert, and this is probably the most introvert I've ever been in a while. The quietest folks are often misunderstood. Please don't misunderstand me or think you're not important to me. You're here in my heart, and I am not forgetting you. I will also try to blog more often when I can. I've got midterms this week which I need to focus on. Finals are only few weeks away. Then I'll celebrate few free days before beginning my next condensed summer semester.

Is Anti-Semitism Prevalent in NYC?

The other night, during Ethnocultural Issues class, few people alongside the professor discussed anti-semitism. They strongly stated that anti-semintism was strongly present in NYC. I was surprised to hear this. I know that racism and anti-immigration is alive and present on a daily basis. I see unfortunately these happen all the time. I also experience audism from others sometimes. I asked few deaf Jewish New Yorker friends if they experienced anti-semitism here in NYC. All said no. So, I wonder how it shows. Are we not hearing things? I've heard and seen anti-semitism only once in a while from deaf folks who came from the Middle East, southern East Europe (e.g., Armenia with consideration to its war and politcal history), muslims, and a variety of folks who did not understand Judaism. Most of them were or are being persecuted for their faith or came from a background where they had bad experiences. It always bothered me whenever I heard these kind of remarks. I always asked questions in order to understand where they were coming from and hoped that my questions helped them think about what they said and how harmful it was. I usually am blunt with them about how I did not agree with them and judging a person on an individual basis without making accusations based on stereotypes, anger, hatred, or any form of "isms" they expressed. My question here for you is: how does anti-semitism show its face in NYC?

Movies

I've been watching many movies these days during breaks from studies and internship. These days, I don't socialize much. It's an escape where I don't need to concern myself with anyone and release stress vicariously through movies. During rare free times, I spend time with close friends or delight in being alone. Fortunately, one class (Ethnocultural Issues) required us to see one of the following two movies in lieu of a cancelled class. I brought 3 close friends in tow. First, we watched "I'm Not Scared," an Italian movie about a low-working class boy who stumbles across his village's secret. Later, we watched "Since Otar Left," a Georgian movie about a family affected by transgenerational trauma and humanity in post-Soviet Georgia. I strongly recommend that you see this movie. It's now showing at Quad Cinema (East 13 St ) and Lincoln Plaza Cinema (across the street from Lincoln Center). Few months ago, we saw a French flick called "Secret Things." This was far from what we expected, and we left with our eyebrows raised and the potential for bad dreams. It was disgusting in many ways yet thought-provoking.

On the home front, I've seen the following films: "Camp," "Cheaper by the Dozen," MacArthur Park," "Girl with Pearl Earring," "Mona Lisa Smile," and "Osama." There are few more I cannot recall. All of them were good in their own ways.

Now, I'm off to focus on my midterm papers and never-ending readings.

Larry, My New Neighbor

Got a new neighbor, Larry. Larry Flynt set up a new club right around the corner, complete with the ropes, red carpet, and bouncers with walkie-talkie headsets. I noticed an increase in cab and limo traffic going down the street, girls in the front seat of a cab chatting with the driver, and "well-dressed" high-call girls hailing for cabs at the corner. A friend and I decided to pass it while going around the block to park the car. We slowed down and prayed for a red light. While waiting for the light to become green, we gawked and stared at the door. We were curious about what type of men entered/departed our new neighbor's doors. We saw few men being turned away from the entrance. What kind of people do they allow in?

Happily Swinging

Last Friday, I was happily swinging in the Downing Street park. I was walking by with 2 friends after a dinner at 'ino. I'd walked past this Downing St gate many times and never bothered to look through it. We looked and realized that it was an enclosed playground, a hidden treasure in West Village. We went in and were delighted to be the only ones there. We climbed the equipments and played around like kids. Later, I spotted the swings, and we all went swinging. We reminisced about the playgrounds of the 1970-1980s and how things had changed since then. We compared our favorite childhood swing actions such as seeing who could swing the highest and jump off (which we didn't do this time around), swinging with our body arched back and hair slightly brushing the ground (which I did and resulted in my cash and cards flying out), and just swinging with the chains jerking from side to side like a twister. While laughing uninhibitedly (the real deaf laughter without hearies around to freak out with our high-pitched shrieks) doing a highest-swing race, an older couple with a toddler entered the park. We quieted down and just kept on swinging with huge grins on our faces. The older man kept at looking at us with a slight smirk. Just as we were leaving, we turned back to see him look around before getting on a swing to start swinging. :) Glad we reminded him that it was okay for anyone to unleash the child within and just happily swing away.