Thursday, December 31, 2020

Hey 2021, I know we're about to meet for the first time, but please don't be an asshole.

K, thx.

The end of 2020 is less than an hour away...

So much stuff went down this year, but—I need to not end the past nine months of messed up (and totally awakening) stuff in the same way it's been going. Rather than thinking about that or what didn't happen, I also find myself going back to the most memorable time of what I'm missing the most right now: being out and dancing all night. 

For going out and partying, I had an exciting era where my life felt solely dedicated this. It started exactly 20 years ago from this upcoming February when I was a senior in high school and had just turned 18. My cousin's friend who I had become friends with said his older sister was going to this club called Exit in the city (I think it might've been her birthday). He was going to go for the first time and asked me to come along because he didn't want to go alone. I remember feeling lucky because my birthday had just passed, so I didn't need a fake ID to get in like my friend. He lived in Flushing near Northern Boulevard and Parsons, and I recall going to his apartment first so we could all head into the city together. That first night at Exit changed my life. I ended up going there weekly for years. There was specifically this one corner near the dance floor where all the Asian kids hung out. After going there every Friday, so many of us became friends and would party together. Light shows, bunny hopping, dance offs, candy bracelets, blowing Vicks VapoRub onto each other's faces, DJ Tony Draper, like wow haha. To just be that age and doing that back in 2001, it was so damn fun.

Now, as I'm thinking about all that happened in 2020, all I can do is blast old party music in my room and dance. It makes me miss being on that dance floor again while having the time of my life. I felt completely free back then and life seemed like everything was going to be okay. The old space of Exit is Terminal 5 now. I haven't stepped foot in it since it used to be Exit.

Here are some old pictures of that infamous corner from back in the day.










"Rhythm ready."

From the song Rhythm Ready by DJ Tony Draper.

This song seriously gives me heart palpitations. It reminds of partying when I was 18 and dancing in UFOs so hard.
"Do you think you're better off alone?
Talk to me."

From the song Better Off Alone by Alice DJ.
When my mind goes there,
why am I still even staying here?

I had such a great lesson about something today and I am feeling mighty fine.

Yo 2020,
don't you come near me.
Tired of your stunts, see?
Had more than plenty.
Be gone in the morning,
cause you ain't friendly.
When the new year comes,
your end won't bring envy.
Good morning, and happy New Year’s Eve!

I just woke up from a weird dream and since it’s the last day of the year, rather than go back to bed to grab a bit more sleep before I start work, I thought I’d stay up.

I dreamt this good friend of mine who I care deeply about was in town and over my place. It wasn’t in the apartment I’m living in now, though, but his visit was such a pleasant surprise that when he spontaneously suggested we go party somewhere (although we knew we shouldn’t because of the pandemic), I immediately said yes. As we were getting ready, my middle sister came home and began venting about her rough day so we invited her out as well. The three of us weren’t sure where to go, but we walked around some industrial area while helicopters flew about above the Manhattan sky. The next thing I know, we’re in some secret warehouse party where everyone is dancing and having fun. At one point I find myself staring at this tv monitor of the dance floor and I watch my friend spot a guy he thinks is cute before making a direct b-line for this dude to hit on him. This sort of upsets me because I have a crush on my friend and I decide to leave the party to get some air. While I’m outside, I see the cops about to swarm the party and I try to text my sister and friend to warn them. That’s when all of the partygoers slowly start exiting the huge building and I eventually spot my sister. I ask where the friend is and she said he ditched us to hang with that new guy he had just met. The cops are trying to herd everyone in to these tents while making everyone change into hazmat suits but I grab my sister and say we still have to go party somewhere. I double check with her to make sure she hadn’t taken off her mask inside the warehouse at any point and she confirms she didn’t, so we slip away from the side and escape. We end up wandering these small houses and shops that remind me of the side streets of Khao San in Bangkok. The two of us are linked arm-in-arm with our masks on and trying to find someplace to grab a drink or some food but since it’s a few minutes past the NYC 10pm curfew, everything is about to close or is closed.We eventually stumble onto this small spot selling Jamaican oxtail about to close up shop but still has some customers dining inside. The storefront isn’t like one in NYC, it’s like an old school spot in Thailand where all of the large windows are open and circulating fresh air. When my sister gets in line to order and I go to grab us seats, that’s when I woke up.

I always wake up really happy when I have dreams about this friend of mine.

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

But the good news is that today was the first day in like a week or so where my Internet didn't have constant disruptions.

I'm craving good, deep, I want to know-who-the-fuck-you-are type of conversations.

It's funny because I feel like in my adult life, so many people always ends up telling me their secrets (and I mean everything). I'm always humbled to be entrusted with such precious info, but when it comes down to it, it's not really about the secrets. It's more about reaching this level of trust and connection, and that's what I'm really yearning for.
A bullshit thing I always ask myself is, why don't you just go let it all out by writing some fiction or some shit?

But it's like, who wants to do that when I can just be lazy and beached on my bed with a McRib dangling from my mouth.

The urge to party comes from the desire to be me.

I'm very in my thoughts and feelings today. Actually, I'm not sure how to feel... so I ate a whole bunch of crap food and overthought about everything of course. This perpetual state of being stuck lingers. I want to step over to the other side, but like where and how the fuck do I do that.

Monday, December 28, 2020

"That's the way everyday goes,
every time,
we've no control."

From the song Pink + White by Frank Ocean.
Had a cup ramen and now I'm snacking on some chocolate at my desk.

Every Monday this month felt like a Thursday, where a long week was had and the next day should be a well deserved Friday.
"If I get my money right,
you know I won't need you."

From the song Nights by Frank Ocean.
Solutions.

Sunday, December 27, 2020

Sunday scaries,
don't freeze,
or dare me, please.

My friend Judy got me a rice cooker for Christmas this year. It's one of those fancy electronic ones and its cute size is perfect for a single mofo like myself. I just broke it in for the first time today, and it already feels better than the small aluminum ramen pot I was previously using to make rice over the stovetop. I very much enjoyed my meal before of rice and banchan with some SPAM and eggs I fried up, and am still full and happy from it. Lately, I've been craving simple Korean food to eat at home, so I'm thinking this new kitchen gadget will really come in handy for the winter.

I had a good Christmas this year. Last week, I woke up early on Tuesday to go to the CityMD near me so I could get a COVID-19 test. I wasn't feeling sick or anything, but it was a precautionary measure for the holidays. The line there was already super long even an hour before it opened, and it took me a little less than two hours to get to the front of it. Once there, they took down my name and phone number and told me they would text me in about six hours so I could come back and actually get tested. It was good that I got there early in the morning when I did, because I know a lot of people were turned away from a lack of availability. And luckily, it only took about three hours for them to contact me. Once I returned to the CityMD, I was in-and-out in about five minutes. It was super easy and fast, and I received my negative results via email within an hour.

Even though my parents live about 30 minutes away from me in New Jersey, I hadn't seen them in six months because of the pandemic. My family ended up not meeting up for Thanksgiving because we didn't realize that the lines for COVID-19 tests around then would be so insane. So we all decided to plan better for Christmas and try and gather now instead.

Spending time with my parents was great. Even though we talk on the phone regularly, it was nice to catch up in person. I had fun crashing on their couch while eating and drinking and doing nothing but spending time with one another. I think it really recharged me. I feel like I've been stuck in my room forever, just working and feeling isolated from so many things. To hug my parents and feel their embrace and hands in mine, I couldn't have asked for a better Christmas gift. Together with my sisters and brother-in-law, we ate so much food and laughed and chilled. 

I hope you all had a merry and safe holiday as well.

“I thought that I was dreaming,
when you said you loved me.”

From the song Ivy by Frank Ocean.
Radiator lullaby,
in the background while I cry.

Friday, December 25, 2020

Thursday, December 24, 2020

"You are now watching Mad TV."

From the show Mad TV now streaming on HBO MAX. Season 1, Episode 1.
Racket.
Gonna hack it.
Grab my jacket.
Real wack, kid.

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

"I already know how to survive—so, why am I worried?"

Said by Vicky Vox in her podcast Doing Great With Vicky Vox. Episode 48.
The only property I own is the space I rent out in my head.
My Internet has been spotty all damn day.
I guess it's perfect for the longest night of the year.

Monday, December 21, 2020

I am officially on vacation until Monday, and it feels like a Friday night.

I'm eating homemade chicken salad out of tupperware and drinking a Maker's with water. Party on.
"Stop playing, keep it moving."

From the song Be Faithful by Fatman Scoop.

Notifications off,
nothing lost or gone.

 Gutturally.

It's amazing how helpful memes can be. I've had plenty of nights this year when I'm lying in bed super late and just laughing my ass off from them. And I mean like the genuinely cracking up, laugh-so-hard-you-can't-breath laughing. The deep type where clutching your stomach to hold on for dear life is the only thing you can do. It's like you're completely free for a moment and filled with this intense joy. Holy shit, what a good time. The feeling has been on mind a lot the past few months. With it, my mind keeps going back to this early memory from high school. It must've been during my sophomore year, but I'm standing with a group of friends in front of the Flushing Main Street Public Library (which was pretty new at the time). I think we had all just eaten together somewhere nearby in Main Street and probably hung out at some cafe for a bit, and we were there to wait for the Q17 so one of my friends could take it. I only remember my friend Natalia being there, because out of all of us, she was laughing the hardest. I don't remember what we were talking about or why, but I was trying to be funny and had everyone doubled over, and that in turn made me laugh harder. We had all started laughing back while eating, and by the time we were at the bus stop, we were laughing so hard that we could barely stand. The sound of Natalia laughing especially made me happy, and this epiphany that someone could think I was funny while being myself, well, I still remember that. Knowing I was gay at that age and desperately not trying to stick out had me normally holding back a lot of who I was. And it was only while immersed in this circle (all-girls, and I am still friends with) did I feel allowed to be silly, therefore feel seen. Don't get me wrong, I grew up with two older sisters and usually had them laughing a lot about dumb shit too. But this was different, because I was still getting to know these friends, and usually stayed quiet as a form of avoiding rejection. It's funny how laughter can bring back the weirdest memories.

Rely on the wrong things,
defy what your heart sings.

When I shop, it's usually while knowing exactly what I'm there to get.

Sunday, December 20, 2020

Saturday, December 19, 2020

"다음번에 만나면,
못본 척하고,
지나쳐줘, baby."

From the song Happening by AKMU.
Dear friends,

I wrote a profile on how Legendary Rao’s in East Harlem Is Offering Takeout for the First Time in Its 124-Year History.

Check it out!

Dear friends,

I wrote about how The Karaoke Bars of NYC’s Koreatown Helped Me Find My Voice.

Check it out!

Dear friends,

I write about how Insamju Is a Korean Ginseng Liquor Often Overlooked by Younger Generations.

Check it out!

Dear friends,


Check it out!

A good Korean ballad takes me to places where nothing else can.

Having something really piss you off can be just the wakeup call you've been needing.

Laundry day always feels like a reset in life.

A good STFU is necessary every now and then.

Friday, December 18, 2020

My room suddenly smells like shumai at this late hour and it’s making me wish I had some.

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

There’s supposed to be a big snowstorm coming.

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

"I request the most benevolent outcome."

Said by Vicky Vox in her podcast Doing Great with Vicky Vox.

Pantry.
Panty.
Pant.
Plant.
Plan.
Plow.
Plea.
Play.
Please.

Monday, December 14, 2020

America's first vaccination for COVID-19 happened today, but the country also past 300,000 deaths in the pandemic.

I'm so happy 2020 is coming to an end. Like, it's finally here and just weeks away.
Kimchi gloves,
hot,
peppery,
love.
Ferment,
get ripe.
Burst with crunch,
each bite.
Spoon it up with rice,
eight more than twice.

Saturday, December 12, 2020

I've been going out and partying since I was in high school.

At 16, it was while ordering bottles of Johnnie Walker at a Ktown club called News. As all the straight guys I was with tried to mack it to the older girls around us, I was doing shots and dancing. At 18, I was at Exit every Friday. And it's no wonder that after just working and stressing in my room for so long throughout COVID-19, it's nice to chill out and remember dancing as an escape.
Stop suppressing this feeling to party it out and have some damn fun!
Yo, fuck it! Let's party!
"Fantasizing all the time,
move your body next to mine."

From the song Your Love by Frankie Knuckles.
When all else fails, go for a walk.

Friday, December 11, 2020

Trying to answer a question you didn't ask.
"If your hands are shaking,
just turn them into jazz hands."

Sung by Angie in the Netflix movie The Prom.
"A distraction is momentary. An escape helps you heal."

Said by Tom in the Netflix movie The Prom.
“Hey you,
always on the run.
Gotta slow it down, baby,
gotta have some fun.”

From the song Stop by the Spice Girls.

Thursday, December 10, 2020

Whenever anyone tells me they’re sleeping well right now, I can’t help but feel jealousy and wonder.
Intentionally.

Wednesday, December 09, 2020

"In the web that is my own,
I begin again."

From the song Edge of Seventeen by Stevie Nicks.
Portion size?
Ha,
no more lies.
Be wise,
split the check,
but add fries.
"In the middle of my room,
I did not hear from you."

From the song Stand Back by Stevie Lyrics.

Tuesday, December 08, 2020

It’s just been truck after semi truck after truck after semi truck going to and from the GWB.
Hi, guys!

Hi, ladies and gentlemen!

Hi, hums (hyooms)!
IMVT = I'm Very Tired

Monday, December 07, 2020

I think hearing the blaring sirens of cop cars, firetrucks, and ambulances constantly all damn day and night since March, on top of motorcycles, horns honking, and engines revving from my street is starting to get to me...

Sunday, December 06, 2020

After spending a massive amount of time on the opening sentence of an article, checking the word count to see how much more you still have to go feels quite futile.
"If you could be mine,
we'd both shine."

From the song If I Ruled the World by Nas ft Lauryn Hill.
"Still livin' for today,
in these last days and times."

From the song If I Ruled the World by Nas ft Lauryn Hill.
"Life,
I wonder.
Will it take me under?
I don't know."

From the song If I Ruled the World by Nas ft Lauryn Hill.
Eat! Yo, no.
Cosmic.
“I WOULD LIKE TO BUY: Ativan! Xanax! Klonopin!”

Yelled on repeat by a woman I saw walking down the street today.

I can’t say that there isn’t something to learn from her strategy of being so straight up about what she’s looking for.

Friday, December 04, 2020

"It costs a lot of money to look this cheap."

Said by Dolly Parton.

Lately, I've been thinking about this quote a lot because it's so damn relatable when it comes to writing. 

Like, my gosh, I'll look at some paragraph or blurb I wrote for work and find it unbelievable that it took hours upon hours to get it that way. But when it comes down to it, I'm usually able to get my writing to say exactly what I want it to in the way I want it to, so the end result is satisfying.

Thursday, December 03, 2020

The cold side of the pillow,
listening to chill 90s Korean music,
been so tired all day,
slept only a few hours yesterday,
but in bed right now,
feeling dread,
if I lived alone,
I’d probably just start getting tanked,
or uncomfortably full,
good thing I’m not,
because it’ll wake the roomie, 
I hate having to use the bathroom at night,
small apartment,
big anxiety,
sirens nonstop,
I refuse to rot,
keep thinking dumb shit,
gonna pop,
it’s past 3 now,
horns on the avenue still honk,
people yelling on the street,
I wonder who else is up,
with similar thoughts.

Wednesday, December 02, 2020

It’s not going to appear in my brain on its own, so I need to read, hear, see, feel, and laugh it from somewhere else.
I miss going to karaoke.
My heart is beating out of my chest.

Tuesday, December 01, 2020

There are moments when my mind wanders, and I can get teary-eyed at the turn of a thought.
Are any of us ourselves right now?
Dear Ambien,

Do I mean nothing to you anymore?

Monday, November 30, 2020

Sometimes, you don't eat an entire box of pasta in one sitting.

And then lots of times, you do.

Saturday, November 28, 2020

You know that meme about, according to Albert Einstein, the definition of insanity being doing the same shit and expecting different results? 

I just realized how this relates to online dating.

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

"I put my lifetime,
in between the paper's lines."

From the song Quiet Storm by Mobb Deep.
Blah, fucking blah.
Wah, fucking wah.
Ha, fucking ha.
가, fucking 가.
"I was born to run,
I don't belong to anyone."

From the song Midnight Sky by Miley Cyrus.

Sunday, November 22, 2020

Black out curtains,
two things certain.
Sunday in bed,
roll over instead.
Owls in the city.
Howls when you see me.
How’ll we teehee?
Don’t go, Mong,
chill, jeez.

Thursday, November 19, 2020

"Make me feel so good,
내일 기억할 수 있게."

From the song +5 STAR+ by CL.
"I can't stop thinkin' about you,
5 stars every time that you come through."

From the song +5 STAR+ by CL.
Know better.
Go-getter.
Real sweater.
Big fretter.
"I'm not sure what this could mean,
I don't think you're what you seem."

From the song Bizarre Love Triangle by New Order.
"There's no sense in telling me.
The wisdom of the fool won't set you free."

From the song Bizarre Love Triangle by New Order.
"Every time I think of you,
I feel a shot right through, 
with a bolt of blue."

From the song Bizarre Love Triangle by New Order.

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

I miss drinking and going out on weekdays—fuck the weekend.

I am home in my room.

I've had a few drinks, and in a way, I feel like myself again. I'm not stressed or thinking about work or anything for that matter. I'm just relaxed and okay with turning off the tv to sit with my laptop and simply be with some Philip Glass playing in the background.

Exhausted.

Monday, November 16, 2020

Earlier today as I was in my room working, I heard people fighting outside my window on Amsterdam Avenue. Honestly, this is not anything new—it happens at all times throughout the day and night (seriously), but I still decided to see what all the noise was about. When I looked to check out what was happening, there was a guy on a motorcycle driving down the street while being chased by some other guy. I don't know what went on between them before this, but the two were mad as hell and shouting profanities and threats at each other. At one point, the guy on foot retreated and began to walk away. Then the motorcycle guy drove off for a bit while still screaming shit about kicking the other guy's ass. He was still so heated, and that's when he made a big u-turn and began to drive back towards the other guy. But then surprisingly, he stopped himself. And then he screamed "the only reason I'm not going to fuck you up is because I miss my mom! My mom just died!"

Sunday, November 15, 2020

"How are we ever going to get out of this?"

Said by Eve in the series Killing Eve. Season 2, Episode 8.

Saturday, November 14, 2020

After posting about waking up to the wonderful smell of bacon last Saturday, I decided to get some air and go for a long walk. I was strolling down the west side around the 140s by the Hudson when at one point, I began to hear people screaming and banging pots and pans. My first thought was, hmm that's weird, it's not 7pm right now. I had put my phone on airport mode and didn't hear the news, but this was the moment when Joe Biden was announced the official winner of the presidential election. I switched my phone back to receiving messages, and saw all these texts from my friends and sisters. 

All I could do was start whooping at the top of my lungs and cheer on all of the people hanging outside of their apartments windows hollering in elation. What an incredibly joyous moment. I couldn't believe it, and felt this happiness and relief take over me. I ran back to my apartment to shower and get ready, and headed downtown by myself with no itinerary. I first went to the area around Stonewall, and omg, there were so many people there already partying it up in the streets. There was dancing and bottles of champagne popping open everywhere. Everyone was on the streets just spending this moment together, and it was so amazing. Cars passing by honked in celebration along with us, and you could feel this collective release of emotions from everyone. After four years of this fucked up and dysfunctional administration, we finally had new hope in knowing there would be an end to it all, and this very day would be day one of our new chapter.

I spent the remainder of the day walking around the city. Festivities of all kinds had popped up everywhere. Washington Square Park was friggin' lit! It was filled with people celebrating across the entire park. Next I walked further downtown and eventually ended up at Broadway and Houston. There was a huge crowd at this intersection and I could see traffic backed up in all directions. The large crowd had formed a circle and in the middle, people were dancing in jubilation and then we all started chanting support for racial justice and Black Lives Matter. I didn't realize this group was actually a march who had taken a momentary pause here. I joined them afterwards in marching down Broadway together, which had been cleared of cars for the group. Everything was so moving. We marched as the leaders guided us in more rallying cries of racial justice and residents of SoHo cheered us on from their windows with air horns and pots and pans. At one point as we were all walking south, I took a moment to take it all in. I could see all the way clear down Broadway to way more downtown, and it was so beautiful. To be there in that large mass, as we collectively celebrated together, just thinking about it again can bring me to tears. After converging at its end point of Foley Square for a bit, I headed off on my own and walked around some more.

After a long day, I came back home and luckily made it back right in time to watch Vice President-elect Kamala Harris and President-elect Joe Biden's acceptance speeches. 

Wow, what an unforgettable day.

Saturday, November 07, 2020

One of the perks of living five floors above a 24-hour deli is waking up to the smell of bacon wafting through my room window. 
Needy.
Weary.

Friday, November 06, 2020

I took a personal day from work on Monday to chill and had Election Day officially off, but it still feels like it's been a long week with emotions coming from so many sides of everything.
It's 2am on Friday during election week.

The results are still too close to call right now. Votes in Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania are still being counted, and I say COUNT EVERY VOTE. 

Change in America is coming, and I am so fucking excited.

Thursday, November 05, 2020

270 feels so close.
It really sucks when the only pseudo human interaction you had in your entire day was a video call that left you feeling like shit.
I’m in need of some really good conversation. Can we talk?
I know that doomscrolling through my phone late at night is really bad, but here I am.

Sunday, November 01, 2020

Look ahead?
Stay instead.
For I thee wed,
nothing but dread.

Just listening to Frankie Knuckles here.
Step outside of yourself for the best reminder ever.
Let it out.

Saturday, October 31, 2020

Blue.

It just hit me,
you're shitting me.
Stop quitting, see? 
Bedridden-free.

Monday, October 26, 2020

"I would dance until my feet hurt, and I would keep going after that."

Said by Lil Buck in the Netflix docuseries Move. Season 1, Episode 1.

Sunday, October 25, 2020

"Listen to yourself, listen to your gut. Because only you know what's right for you. That's what being an artist is all about. Your power is in your individuality, and being exactly who you are. No two artists are alike, just like no two people are alike. That's why there's no competition in artistry, it's not about being the best or the biggest, the king or the queen—that notion is so ridiculous. That competition or comparison is actually the opposite of what being an artist is. As an artist, you should be in competition with only one person, yourself. You can't worry about what others are doing or saying. You have to keep that focus and stay true to who you are in order to be creative and make the best decisions."

Said by Jennifer Lopez in her audiobook True Love.

Out of touch,
out of space.
Out of patience,
out of place.
"Like a movie scene,
in the sweetest dream,
I have pictured us together."

From the song Waiting for Tonight by Jennifer Lopez.

Inexplicable.

If someone has been on your mind, let them know.

Friday, October 23, 2020

"Engine, engine, 
number 9.
On the New York transit line,
if my train goes off the track,
pick it up, 
pick it up,
pick it up!"

From the song Be Faithful by Fatman Scoop.
Greetings, from my little corner here on the Internet.

It's Friday night. The windows of my room overlook Amsterdam Avenue, a pretty major street, and there's plenty of stuff going on outside. Every time a car passes by blasting Fatman Scoop's Be Faithful, I feel happy. It takes me back to my young adult days of growing up in Queens and driving into the city on the weekends with friends to go party. But also, hearing the song just makes me stoked that people are still out there finding some joy, in despite of everything. I like to imagine that these cars have some fun destination (masked and socially-distanced, of course) they're heading to—or fuck it, even if they just want to blare music from their car while going for a drive, I'm all for that, too.

I was watching the final presidential debate last night, and when 45 called NYC a "ghost town," I couldn't help but roll my eyes. This is so far from the truth. There are still millions of people here going about their days and handling their shit. I mean it does feel quieter and emptier than normal at times, but walk one block over or wander the streets again the following day and it's a completely different picture. 

It's been a while since I left town. Honestly, the last time I was even on an airplane was early in 2019. I've been home everyday since the lockdown started, and while I'm itching to get some air and go away for even a weekend, I sadly wouldn't have anywhere to go. I also haven't gotten a haircut since March. I just don't have the mental capacity or bandwidth to even think about trying to get one right now. I've grown my hair out here and there as an adult, but this is by far the longest stretch. Living with longer hair is really different than shorter hair. I mean, the amount of my hair that I can now see shed is, in itself, a sobering reality and terrifying to witness. It's probably from me being in my late 30's, but I've come to see how precious hair is. And for every strand I see fall out and laying on my floor or laptop keyboard, my heart pangs. Damn, I remember being a teenager and always having barbers insist they thin out my hair a bit to make it look less heavy. Now it's good ole time that naturally does it for me. One thing I do like about having longer hair though is being able to push it back behind my ear. It's a novel feeling that feels so natural for some reason.

Thursday, October 22, 2020

I used to be able to drink two 40s with no problem, and now two cans of beer make me feel full.

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

All I do at home is lie on my stomach in bed and watch 50 minutes videos of people eating bomb ass food in Korea.

Sunday, October 18, 2020

There are so many moments where I feel like I'm looking back too much or reflecting on a time that has nothing to do with right now.

But then when I think about it, who the fuck knows what's going to happen in the near future? Even trying to entertain its landscape at this point in history feels pointless.

"Everybody's searching for a place,
where they can be known.
But I've found a place where I can do no wrong.
Everybody's loving me for being me,
but I never thought that I could be so free."

From the song Nitelife (Armand van Helden mix) by Kim English.

I decided to have some fried chicken and beer with soju at my desk here at home, so I am feeling good. 

Also, I usually eat fried chicken out of the box when I get it from my local spot, but what a difference it makes to plate it like a proper meal.

The past few weeks or so.















The election is only weeks away. On top of everything that's been happening in the world and in my life, I have this lingering anxiety from not knowing how I can deal with another four years of this administration if they win again. Shit is so fucked up right now because of them. I am mentally drained, exhausted, and tell myself to keep pushing on. But another part of me wants to eat in bed and tune everything out. I feel like soon after Trump was elected four years ago, dysfunction became normalized. And his absolute lack of competence and the onset of COVID-19 has just compounded that, on top of Americans having to contend with basically everything we see on the news on a daily basis along with all of fucked up racism Black people and other minorities in this country face. Seven months of staying home and quarantining with a recent uptick in cases all over America has made life feel like this never-ending cycle of hopelessness. There are days and moments where things might feel okay, but when it comes down to it, this pandemic is still happening—and as of now, 220,000 Americans have died because of it and over 8 million have contracted COVID-19. It's like, how does one even process this without breaking down into tears? We are living in a crisis. I am numb at this point and try and force myself to forge on with my days, but I have my moments. This continuous feeling of isolation and loneliness sometimes feels like too much. I mean, I definitely only felt the warmth of another body on my skin a handful of times in the past few years, but dealing with this same problem throughout 2020 definitely feels extra difficult. Whenever I am actually faced with (or allow myself to) to grasp the realities of right now or how life was before COVID-19, I can't help but shed tears from despair. I woke up today remembering the day after the 2016 election. I won't ever forget it because going to work that morning, it wasn't just me who was in shock. I remember getting on the subway and it was complete silence and stillness, even though the train was filled with people. In all of my life of living in NYC, it was a remarkable sight to see. Nobody was talking, nobody was staring into their phones, nobody was doing anything. Everyone just seemed paralyzed in a sense, unable to comprehend what had just happened. Just the thought of having to relive that trauma again feels overwhelming. I just want to make it through the rest of October, period. I'm not aiming to achieve or accomplish anything. All I want is to get through it as best as I can.
N95 face masks for the subway and enclosed spaces, blue medical masks otherwise.

Friday, October 16, 2020

I recently bought one of those clean linen type of scented candles. And my gosh, I don't know what chemicals they put in this thing but my room really does smell like I just pulled my clothes out of the dryer at the laundromat.

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

The line at the supermarket today was so long, it pretty much wrapped itself halfway inside the store. As it slowly moved along, I found myself in the frozen food section mesmerized. I couldn't stop staring at the insane amount of variety for Eggo waffles. Different flavors, shapes, cartoons characters, the options were endless. Like, wow.

Sunday, October 11, 2020

Happy National Coming Out Day!
The belly paid the bill.
The pals bewildered, popped pills.
The bobby pins screamed shrills.
Then the proper party helped heal.

If it makes you a better writer,
it makes you a better person.
If it makes you a go-getting fighter,
the destination makes it happen.

Weird weekend,
to contend.
No friends,
dead ends.

To care,
is to dare.
Risk what's spare,
hold tight, free airfare.

AOL Instant messenger.
Phone texts.
Grinder.
WhatsApp.
Group chat.
Slack.
Still no response back.

"If you believe in yourself enough, 
and know what you want,
you're gonna make it happen."


From the song Make It Happen by Mariah Carey.
"Here we go around again,
one more time,
will it ever end?"

From the song Here We Go Around Again by Mariah Carey.
It is 

(so)

much

easier,

to talk this way.
October feels spooky for reals.
There's a lot going on that makes me want to chill.
Often, even a sense of not knowing how to feel.
So I sit with my thoughts in the company of a meal.

Life is all about editing. So rewrite the story from the shitty version the voice in your head came up with.

It's Sunday,
rest, no way.
Just got here,
say hey hey.

Saturday, October 10, 2020

"You fill this night with me."

From the song Fill This Night by Clazziquai.

Tuesday, October 06, 2020

I’ve gotten so used to watching stuff and scrolling through things. But just listening to music is necessary, too.

Friday, October 02, 2020

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

“Hold me back!” I screamed to myself.

Sunday, September 27, 2020

So nauseous,
can't nosh this.

Thursday, September 24, 2020

Breonna Taylor deserves justice.

All of the other things I was worrying about earlier throughout the day feels so pointless.

Stomp in the streets,
step light in your apartment.

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Being home for most of each day, cleaning my floor daily is something that brings so much relief and pleasure.

Saturday, September 12, 2020

Friday, September 11, 2020

There are days when even nine hours isn’t enough to pull an opening paragraph out of my ass.

And without an opening paragraph, there is no second paragraph.

It’s late in the night and I’ve forced myself to step away form it. As I lie in bed, all I’m thinking about is why the fuck an opening paragraph is taking me so long. But then I’m realizing it’s because I know exactly what I want to say, it’s just taking a while to figure out how.

Friday, September 04, 2020

I’m at the point in my life where I notice every hair on the floor.

Wednesday, September 02, 2020

 We're all just one something away from everything.

"I'll cry about it later,
tonight I'm having fun."

From the song Cry About It Later by Katy Perry.

Monday, August 31, 2020

"Have you ever lied,
and just replied,
'I'm fine'?"

From the song Teary Eyes by Katy Perry.

Hey friends,

I wrote this profile that I'm very proud of. It's on Sylvia's "The Queen of Soul Food" in Harlem, which has been an iconic NYC institution and restaurant since 1962.

Please check out the article and share it with friends!


 Detach x 100.

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

 I forgot how to fall asleep.

Cry when I write,
cry when I read.
Pie in each bite,
sigh when I need.

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

 Slow down x 100.

"They said it wouldn't last,
we had to prove them wrong."


From the song Love Will Never Do (Without You) by Janet Jackson.

Monday, August 24, 2020

"I just want someone that's always gonna love me, no matter what. Someone's that's gonna hold my hand and never let it go..." 

Said by Slim in the movie Queen & Slim.

Friday, August 21, 2020

It’s 3:30am and I am still scrolling on my phone in bed. I’ve been having a lot of trouble sleeping the past few weeks. Then there are nights like yesterday where I had so many weird nightmares and kept waking up in the few hours of sleep I was even able to get.

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

"Martin: How else do you feel right now?
Eve: I feel... wide awake."


From the show Killing Eve. Season 2, Episode 7.

Monday, August 17, 2020

Fuck it.

And by fuck I mean eat.

Sunday, August 16, 2020

 Must be nice.

CC Bloom,
CeCe Peniston.
Yeah see-see twice,
Take pic, new medicine.

Thursday, August 13, 2020

Day 9 without a working fridge. What's life even about?

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

It's been a while since I've been excited as I am today, but Biden-Harris all the way!

"I want a hug."

Said by Kwame in the HBO show I May Destroy You. Season 1, Episode 10.

Monday, August 10, 2020

My fridge broke down last week. It suddenly just stopped working, but I can't say I blame it -- 2020 has been hard for all of us.

Sunday, August 09, 2020

I am looking for a husband.

"I hope you can find the time,
this weekend to relax and unwind."

From the song Escapade by Janet Jackson.

I can't believe I never realized that this song's message isn't about some fancy vacation, but something much simpler than that: enjoy your weekend.

It's amazing how so many American sitcoms and movies have scenes where characters are eating what appears to be Chinese takeout or Asian food with chopsticks, but there isn't an actual Asian person in site within the fictional worlds they live in.

To the people who made the decisions to include Asian food (but not characters) in those scenes, I just want to know the reasoning behind it.

Saturday, August 08, 2020

I started a new job in April. 

In a turn of events for my professional career that I couldn't have ever imagined in my wildest dreams, I am now the Editor of Thrillist New York. That means it's my job to be in the know about what to eat, drink, and do in New York, and as a hometown Queens kid from Flushing, I can't tell you how proud I am to be in this new role.

With that being said, the world is a very different place now, and thinking about what to eat, drink, and do in New York has changed completely since the onset of COVID-19 in March. I mean, even as I write this on August 8, I feel like life feels so drastically different from just a month ago. How I might've thought about certain things or what I felt like I knew from then is not the same as today, and I'm totally okay with that. This year just feels like it's been filled with awakenings of every kind, some that are heartbreaking to the core, and others that were very much needed.

First of all, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to take its toll everywhere. People are sick, people are dying, people have lost their jobs and livelihoods, and at this moment, there's no sense in when things will get better in the U.S. And then there's the second virus that's on the forefront of daily life in America: racism. The systemic injustices and racism that Black people face in this country is so wrong. Until the death of George Floyd, I never truly internalized the challenges that the Black community faces. And because of my ignorance, I didn't know just how dire things were. Even from growing up in NYC or having been immersed in Black music, television, and culture as a major part of my entire life, I still hadn't realized it. Being a kid in the 90's, I can recall the majority of every comedy stand-up special I watched by a Black comic having a part dedicated to discussing racism and mistreatment from cops, but I never registered just how fucked up it really was. But now I'm trying to do my part however I can, which includes educating myself, having conversations with friends and family, and knowing that not being racist is no longer sufficient in America, but being an anti-racist is what's truly needed in order for tangible change to happen. 

At work, I've joined together with three other colleagues for the Thrillist Diversity Committee. As a group, we are committed to bringing more diversity to our workplace. It's funny because I started my job remotely, which means I have never met any of my coworkers in real life. I'm grateful to simply be employed right now, but working from home in a new job hasn't been easy for many reasons, and I still find myself struggling with things at times. It definitely hasn't been a smooth road, but I'm enjoying myself and the growth I've been able to experience so far. I feel like the timing of when I started this job and all that's happened since can be seen as a blessing in some ways and a reminder to always stay on your feet. Fighting it or wanting it to be different is pointless, so I'm trying to approach things with a fun and flexible mindset whenever possible and am up for the challenge.

It's taken me a bit to sit down with my thoughts about all that's happened since April, but I look forward to sharing more stuff here on my blog. In the meanwhile, check out Thrillist New York when you can and some of the stories I've personally written like How to Support the Black Community in NYC, Thanks for the Memories Momofuku Ssäm Bar, and 7 Restaurant Openings in NYC You Need to Know

Wear a damn mask when you go out, socially distance responsibly, and most importantly, Black Lives Matter!

Friday, August 07, 2020

 "Soon, you'll be having fun."

From the song All For You by Janet Jackson.

Thursday, August 06, 2020

Process.
Practice.
Progress.
Praise.

Sunday, August 02, 2020

One motherfucking day at a time.
"Take the pen and rewrite it."

From Beyoncé's Black is King on Disney+.

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

"What I've learned is, 'Get back on what track?' It's a whole new track. It's not going back, it's not... you know, it's just all different, and it's different forever. So it's not getting back on track, but it's creating my next track."

Said by former First Lady Michelle Obama in her Netflix special Becoming.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Damn, where do I even start?

So much to freaking update you on...

Tuesday, July 07, 2020

Junk food,
funk mood.
Self feud,
so crude.

Saturday, July 04, 2020

As I sit here in the dark of my room on America's 244th birthday, there's a nonstop barrage of fireworks going off from nearby in all directions outside my window. Bursts of light fill the night sky with whistles and explosive pops. These are of course not from the annual Macy's fireworks show put on by the city, but from the local residents of Harlem/Sugar Hill instead. The noise of illegal fireworks going off nightly for the past few months seems to just fade into the background now, sort of like sirens from an ambulance or firetruck. But today's soundtrack does feel much louder than usual.

Wednesday, July 01, 2020

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

The past few weeks or so.

Black Lives Matter!











Beer and chips for dinner,
didn't turn out to be that winner.

Friday, June 26, 2020

Friday, June 19, 2020

"Juneteenth is the oldest-known celebration of the end of slavery in the United States. While it’s widely observed across the U.S., the holiday actually originated in Texas, marking the date in 1865 that news of the abolition of slavery reached the state (despite the fact that the Emancipation Proclamation was signed in 1863). During the two and a half year gap, slave owners kept this information hidden from slaves in order to reap the continued benefits of unpaid labor.

Juneteenth is still not recognized as a national holiday, but locally it’s celebrated with gatherings, parades, and feasts that specifically feature red foods and drinks. Barbecue, baked beans, watermelon, and red drinks such as West African Hibiscus tea, strawberry soda, punch, and lemonade made with strawberries or cherries make appearances on park and backyard tables around the U.S. every year."

From the Thrillist story "Where to Find Red Velvet Cake in NYC, Just in Time for Juneteenth." By Kristen Adaway.

Saturday, June 13, 2020

Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter. Black Lives Matter.

Sunday, May 31, 2020

Dear blog,
do you also sob?
Where the injustices of the world,
makes your heart throb?

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Good morning.

I just woke up early from a real good night’s rest and am so hungry. The weather outside is looking beautiful and I wish I could just go to some diner or nice restaurant to have a bounty of food while people watching with a hot cup of black coffee in hand.

Monday, May 11, 2020

"Can't argue with these lazy bitches,
I just raise my price."

From the song Savage by Megan Thee Stallion ft Beyonce.
Sipping.
Dipping.
Tipping.
Zipping.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Happy Mother's Day.

While I'm not able to see my mom in person this year, I'm still grateful to FaceTime and call her regularly to tell her that I love her.

Here are some pics of my mom. I'm not sure when the 1st one is from but probably some time in Korea when she was in her early 20's. The 2nd one is from her wedding day. The 3rd is from some family event at a park in Queens in the late 80's or early 90's. The next is from my 2001 high school graduation at Francis Lewis High School. And the last one is from my sister's wedding in Flushing in 2007.

엄마, 사랑해!





Wednesday, May 06, 2020

"Ahmaud Arbery was a human being, a person, a man with a family and a future, who loved and was loved. The McMichaels took all of that away on a glorious Sunday afternoon in February. Who knows what Arbery could have become. He was young, his life a buffet of possibilities. Friday would have been his 26th birthday."

From the May 6, New York Times Op-Ed: The Killing of Ahmaud Arbery. Written by Charles M. Blow.

Ahmaud Arbery was murdered on February 23. Black Lives Matter!

Friday, May 01, 2020

Sunday, April 26, 2020

"Sometimes, you have to be stupid enough to start this kind of project. And then you have to be persistent, brave enough to finish them."

Said by Anders Solvarm in the Apple+ show HOMES. Season 1, Episode 1.

Saturday, April 25, 2020

“There’s no escape,
I can’t wait.”

From the song Toxic by Britney Spears.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Sunday, April 19, 2020

I went a little crazy partying at home with my roommate yesterday. I think being stuck in the house is starting to get to me, so I started my Saturday afternoon drinking screwdrivers with Everclear to then drunkenly stuff my face with pizza later in the night. At one point we ended up dancing along to DJ sets on YouTube which helped me work up an appetite. I know I was feeling tipsy because I've been living a dairy-free life for quite some time. So while devouring that pizza was pure bliss, I've been paying for it all day today. And although I hadn't had Everclear since college, it was the only booze my roommate had and I didn't feel like running out to the liquor store, so I was grateful to work with what was in the house. Adaptability is key in these current times!

Saturday, April 18, 2020

"Know it's good when you chewin' and you singin'."

From the song Captain Hook by Megan Thee Stallion.

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Knock knock.
Whose there?
Annie.
Annie who?
Anyhoo, I’m at home.
Knock knock.
Who’s there?
Annie.
Annie who?
Anyhoo, a yawn is a cough’s cousin.

Sunday, April 12, 2020

"I hope you don't mind,
that I put down in words.
How wonderful life is, 
while you're in the world."

From the song Your Song by Elton John.

Saturday, April 11, 2020

Show them all your cards,
and roll eyes real hard.
HMI = Hold My Interest

Thursday, April 09, 2020

Dear gray nose hair,

What is your deal?

xoxo,
Thwany

Wednesday, April 08, 2020

Megan and vegan do not rhyme.

Monday, April 06, 2020

Cereal.
Celery.
Caesar Salad.
You're my ballad.

Saturday, April 04, 2020

It's a nice, sunny Saturday afternoon here in my room. It feels like it's been pretty cloudy and grey out the past few days, so this burst of spring is much appreciated.

So, life rolls on. In the quarters that is my room, I work, eat, and sleep here. I spend way too much time of it lying on my stomach in bed with a device at my fingers and the TV on. But room life has been fine so far. I'm grateful to have some space to myself to process everything. Drawing my blackout curtains helps in feeling like I have my own little escape, and that even sometimes includes moments where things actually feel quiet. I mean it never gets completely silent, but with less people and traffic on the street, focusing on listening to one layer of noise coming through the windows does become easier.

But yes, another week with a stay-at-home order has passed. Businesses are still closed. People are sick in hospitals and dying. The virus is still spreading, and the CDC now recommends that everyone wears face coverings when they're out.

I definitely don't feel stuck in my room. I feel at home in my room. Thank you, room.
Used to.

Sunday, March 29, 2020

It's been almost three weeks since I began staying home. I pretty much have rarely ventured out of my place except to get takeout on my block or groceries nearby. I've been able to get on with what I have access to in my area and with delivery, but I really needed to restock on Korean ramen today, along with some other Asian stuff. So my roommate and I decided to actually get some air and walk to the nearest H Mart in the Upper West Side. It was about 35 blocks each way, and we stayed 6 feet apart from each other and anyone else we came across on the sidewalk. When we got to the supermarket, we stood in the line to get in with everyone spaced out 6 feet. Every time a customer exited the doors, the person at the front of the line went in. And when inside, things were fine. I like how the aisles weren't crowded, and I could just get my stuff and leave. I'm not sure when I'll go anywhere that far from my place again, but it was great to go for a nice long walk today. The weather was gray with a slight drizzle at times and I loved every moment of it.

Here are some pics from today's Sunday stroll.