Thursday, March 12, 2015

Week of 1/26/2015 Book Review (5) - East of Eden by John Steinbeck

I'ma get a little serious for this one, because I think this book warrants it.

East of Eden is essentially based upon the story of Cain and Abel -- the two sons of Adam and Eve. Cain is the older brother and had the gift of tilling the land, Abel is the younger brother and had the gift of being a shepard. They both gave God gifts reaped from their talents and God was like "ayo Abel good lookin' out my dude" and he neglected acknowledging Cain. Jealousy drives older brother Cain to madness and he ends up committing the first murder ever, on his own brother. Cain ends up being Satan's first roommate.


East of Eden takes Cain and Abel and weaves its structure and themes into family and interpersonal relationships that many can relate to. It's brutally honest and something that I really appreciated.

John Steinbeck's writing is masterful -- from how he describes the environment, to his careful character development, and to how he delicately delivers the story. Steinbeck's writing is a good balance of complexity -- it's a notch down from Blood Meridian Cormac McCarthy while still being able to paint robust sensory images.

The story was so engaging that it elicited strong emotions out of me while I was reading -- it was weird, but also welcoming. I get pretty emotionally attached when I watch movies (like wow I was like irritated the whole time watching 'Her'), but never really when reading. East of Eden changed that.

 East of Eden is the best book I've read in a long while. I strongly recommend checking it out.

5/5 (first one!)

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Week of 1/22/2015 Book Review (4) - The Time Machine by H.G. Wells

I'll be honest, this book was really just a filler book before I started East of Eden by John Steinbeck. This book comes in at a little over ~100 pages from what I remember. It was a very quick read.

Unfortunately the quick read wasn't very stimulating. This book is about a guy who has his homies over (AFTER he's "time travelled") and tries to convince them that he's built a time machine. The homies are like "wtf you talkin about dude? this guy's baked". Then he goes and shows the machine to them. He then regales them with his most recent adventure -- that of which, was quite boring. :(

The book was amiss of any true character development -- I didn't feel any attachment to the protagonist or any of the creatures that he met during his travels. I was on some "If he dies, he dies." Ivan Drago tip from Rocky IV. This was my sentiment while the main dude was crawling around:

I might be a little rough but I'm just being honest. I think this was the book that elevated H.G. Wells' popularity. I can believe it because it's a nice little story, but it didn't engage me enough intellectually or emotionally.

2/5 but I think I gave it 3/5 on my goodreads account

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Week of 1/16/2015 Book Review (3) - Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

I'm behind. Both in reading and writing, but I'm going to make it.

Week 3 of 2015 I read Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. It takes place in an alternate future where books are banned. The offense is so bad that any household that houses (lol get it) the books gets burned down to the ground. What a shitty world. But hey I like dystopian type stuff and I've been wanting to read this for awhile.

Enter Guy Montag, he's one of the dudes that is tasked to burn these books. It's ironic because they are called firemen -- again, alternate future. I'm not going to spoil it too much but he meets a young girl that makes him question his career as a destroyer of literature. Her youthful curiosity burns (lol get it) deep within Guy Montag. Everybody else in this alternate future is appeased by total pleasure -- accosted by a constant barrage of sensory haymakers.

Basically they are all zombified vegetables.

It begs the question, does he risk his cushy career or does he follow this feeling lit (lol get it) by the young girls embers (lol get it) of genuine humanity? Read and find out brah. It's worth it.

This was a good, comfortable read. Fahrenheit 451 is enjoyable and has some themes that resonated with me. Reading the book makes you more aware of the present -- how we have all these mediums to satisfy ourselves, to the point that we might forget about basic things. Basic things such as education, curiosity, love, family -- basically major things that define us as humans on this planet Earth.

It brings you back to reality by showing you a reality that could be.


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

2015 Week 2 (1/18/2015) Book Review - Open by Andre Agassi

Here we go boys book 2!!! O lawd I'm buzzed off red wine but the show must go on

The 2nd book I've read this year is an autobio of the pro tennis player Andre Agassi called Open. I think I have a thing for autobiographies of athletes -- I read Mike Tyson's last year and deeply enjoyed that one. I played tennis growing up and also boxed a little bit in college so maybe thats why. Maybe I'm buzzed.

'Open' walks through Agassi's life -- from being a kid pushed into tennis, to his struggles being a pro, the controversy he brought to tennis, his successes, and his downfalls (within tennis and romantic chit). I always gravitate towards hard working people so I definitely enjoyed his anecdotes of the work he put in.

The book is definitely written in Agassi's voice -- somewhat confident/arrogant but also kinda whiny in the fact that he constantly complains of hating tennis and would be like 'OMG I suck I quit'. But I mean, understandable because he was forced into it. I would have liked to read more about the technicalities of his game and what he worked on to achieve his success, but I enjoyed the book regardless. He had his swag man -- his look back in the day was his way to hang onto his individuality that was stripped from him at a young age. Check this picture out:

Swag boy status if you ask me -- mullet, bright colors, jean shorts (!!!), Nikes. Funny thing is that he discloses in the book that his hair was falling out from an early age and actually wore hair pieces during tournaments -- it worried him so much that he almost lost matches because of it. That's why he ended up shaving his head.

This was a fun read. Definitely lightened things up after reading something so grotesque and grim as Blood Meridian the previous week. 4/5

Sunday, January 11, 2015

2015 Week 1 (1/11/2015) Book Review - Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy

One of the resolutions I made for 2015 was to read more. A good amount more. To the point where I'm going to attempt to read a book a week. I'll come clean and say that I started this book in 2014, but hey it's 2015 now and I finished it within the first week! Convenient!

These book reviews are pretty much going to be unfiltered -- I won't be editing these. They'll be a one-take thing because I feel like it will make the review seem like more in my 'voice'. Also, maybe because I'm lazy.

Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy is about the United State's expansion to the (wild) west. It follows a 14 year old from Tennesee and the things he sees. I'll say outright that this is not a pleasant book -- it is very gruesome. Easily the most graphic book I've read... maybe ever.

The reason for this is because the kid ends up in a ragtag band of soldiers that get paid for killing Indians -- they scalp them and trade them in for money, clearing the way for western expansion. Eventually they just kill everything and everybody, because scalps are scalps right? :(

The story follows multiple characters in the book, the main one not actually being The Kid, but arguably a man named Holden aka 'The Judge'. The author makes it out that this guy can do anything he wants with unparalleled skill -- from making bullets out of dirt, to copying pieces of art in his scrapbook and immediately destroying it. The guy's nuts. I've read discussions about there are comparisons between Judge and Satan, which I can understand now after completing the book. The Judge is just a reprehensible villain.

It's weird because he's such a bad guy, but I was captivated whenever the book focused on him. It may be the suspense -- I honestly didn't know what he was going to do. A good comparison would be the Joker from Batman (Heath Ledger version, RIP).

“Whatever in creation exists without my knowledge exists without my consent.”- Judge Holden
I enjoyed this book, but I will say Cormac's apparent disdain for punctuation and appetite for complex vocabulary made some parts difficult to get through. There were multiple occasions where I would read something and not know what I read (lmao). I had to get through them via context. This is the 2nd book of his I read, The Road being the first. I really liked The Road, more so than Blood Meridian.

I'll give this a 4/5, just because the way it made me feel weird.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

He crashes through the double doors and bursts into the night. He catches his breath while he looks around for his car. It's untouched and still under the street light. He inches towards the car slowly as his adrenaline starts to siphon out of his body in the form of steam and sweat.

He catches a glimpse of himself in the side mirror -- he still is wearing his rubber chicken mask. He used to care about his outwards appearance but those thoughts quickly fade when he's searching for answers, night after night. He's one step closer tonight.

His whitened knuckles finally loosen their vice-grip on his aluminum baseball bat. The bat clatters onto the ground, the sound piercing through the midnight silence. The bat still carries the dried blood of whomever obscured his way during his warpath for answers. He takes off his mask and throws it in the car. He stares off into the distance as the smell of blood and sweat seeps into his nostrils. He catches his conscious and gets into the driver's seat.

The streetlights strobe repeatedly throughout his car during the drive home. Silence, barring the occasional bump of uneven road. He wears a stoic expression as he plays back the previous warpath in his head -- the bludgeoning of anonymous faces, eluding knives searching for his flesh, the bullets whirring past as he surgically moved from cover to cover.

"Shit," he mutters as a shrewd smirk creeps slightly at the corner of his mouth.

He's become desensitized to the intense violence. He's been driven down the path where nothing matters anymore -- life is a tangible commodity to him now, he offers no solace. He just wants to find the answer. The same answers that has been haunting him for months now. His smirk goes away as he approaches his apartment.

He staggers up the stairs, mask in hand. The adrenaline has completely left him, replaced by pangs of pain at each step -- reminders of the of the previous hour's organized catastrophe.

The unkempt apartment's appearance and disarray serves as an extension of him. He disregards the mess and takes off his bloodstained baseball jacket as he contemplates getting it dry-cleaned. He decides it not worth it -- he'll wait until its all over. He throws the mask towards the coffee table and lays on the couch until the night strings him into slumber.

He sleeps through the next day to awaken to an intermittent faint light. It's his answering machine. He creeps out of lethargy and plays the message.

"Hello, it's 'Linda'... I need a babysitter right away. Got a few kids that need to be disciplined here. I'm at East 7th Street. Make sure you have a long talk with them, I really need someone to get through to these rascals. And like last time... please be discreet!"

His face hardens as he glances towards his mask. His body starts to slowly curdle with adrenaline. He grabs his mask and heads out the door.


Tuesday, December 10, 2013

New York - day 1

 this is going to look weird because I'm doing this from my phone,  but I'm in New York for the week.  took the red eye here,  probs won't take a red eye again lol  although I don't really feel tired right now. I think it's because I drink alot of water.  my gf is here with me and she's sleeping smh.  she doesn't drink any water.

 first thing,  we're staying at a really nice place on wall street.  my gf found it via air bnb  and it was roughly 200  dollars cheaper than a hotel.  I'll try to include pics later.  oh yeah  first time walking in we saw omeka okafor  who us used to  play for the charlotte  bobcats.  he opened the door for us it was on some king  chit lol.

 first thing we a te was  Katz,  fuark most apps sandwich in existence.  it was almost like we came from Seattle js for that (I wouldn't be mad either).  after that we were close to soho  so we went shopping -- I bought alot of stuff smh  at least more than I usually do.  to my credit I also got gifts for others lol.  oh yeah we saw a guy get knocked out by the nypd  bc he tried to steal a hat from tommy hilfiger  lmaoooooo get owned  nerd.  but srs the chip was like pinning him down on some wrestlemania  chit while people were tapping it with Thierry phones  on  some woooooorrrlllstaaaahhhhh  type stuff.

 anyway,  we chillin at the place now and I handled bathroom business so I'm relaxed chillin in my financial district studio reading books on business productivity ( srs). I think the guy were renting from is on his entrepreneurial thing and he has all the books on my list regarding productivity.  so ya I'm actually still reading on vacation which could be sad or really kewl depending on ur perspective.

I think it's kewl. k  bye  maybe again tmrw

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

How I Got My Family Banned From America On-Line

There was a time where the internet was slow, where it took 20 minutes to download a song, where literally all there was on the internet was information. This was before broadband internet -- this was dial-up. Before the Comcasts, Clearwires, Verizons... There was was only one real company connecting all of America to the internet. It was called America On-Line.

And this is how my 9-year old self got my family banned from America On-Line.

I was in elementary school. My family recently got our first computer --  a 166mHz Gateway2000. Being the curious, nerdy, Asian kid that I am -- I naturally gravitated towards it. I read all the instruction manuals. I played with all the packaged software (I spent hours on Encarta97). I could tell you anything about that computer.

So when I installed America On-Line and got my family on the internet, I definitely thought I was hot shit. I was all over that thing -- reading up on all sorts of random stuff, going into all sorts of chatrooms on some "a/s/l" type stuff tryna get girl's pictures (I would say I was 16 when I was 9, felt like a badass), reading about what video games were coming out. I was hooked.

This was also the time where I was heavily interested in Magic: The Gathering -- a card game where you create your own deck to play against other people. A nerdy card game that I was getting my ass routinely beat by one of my best elementary school friends -- his name was Mykel. (srs)

I needed help at Magic. I needed to build a better deck. I needed to beat Mykel.

Naturally, using my America On-Line know-how (lol), I venture confidently into the Magic: The Gathering chat room. I stride into the room and my 9-year old self proclaims, "i ned help buildin my magic deck plaes help me".

No response by the 50+ deep quorum. I repeat again, "i ned help wit my deck please!!!" 

Still nothing.

Frustrated, I downloaded a macro program that pretty much hacked America On-Line and allowed the user to do things that weren't allowed. One of those capabilities was being able to e-mail mass amounts of people for any number of e-mails. I was going to e-mail these people in the chat room directly. I needed to get help with my Magic deck, and my 9-year old self was going to break the rules to do it.

I open up the program, select everybody in that chat room and indicate that I want to send 3 e-mails to each -- you know, a little feeler to get some interest (lol). I go to compose my message...

"hi my name is james i need help building my magic deck. i like red but i have alot of blue and green cards. please help"

Content and satisfied with my message, I hit send. I just sent over 150 e-mails in under a second. Asking for help. With a card game.

Not going to lie, I went to school the next day super confident. I was finally going to get the help to push me over the edge -- I was finally going to be able to make a strong deck! I got home and rushed to the computer -- I couldn't wait to see all the replies from everybody in the chat room.

Instead of being knee deep in Magic: The Gathering tips, I couldn't log on. It wouldn't let me. I got banned from America On-Line.

I didn't know what hit me. I was astounded. My papa made me call AOL and find out why we were banned -- it was because of those 150 e-mails. I was in deep shit, lol.

I just got my family banned from America On-Line by asking for help with a card game.

Safe to say I got grounded for awhile, lol.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Human Capability, Curiosity, and Imagination

I feel that having both an active curiosity and imagination is very important and should be cherished. I'm sure animals and bugs and stuff also are curious and have an imagination -- its just that humans can actually make "it" happen.

A spider can be like "Man, I wanna make a skyscraper!" but it physically can't -- it can make a really nice web though.

Humans can though.

That's why it lowkey saddens me that kids nowadays are being too absorbed and inundated with technology -- they are 'told' what to think. 

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

My First Art Show!

I put up a few pieces of my art last weekend, at a public place! *gasp!*

It is my first art showing. I don't even know if that's the right term for it -- it's not really an exhibit, it's not really an event, well it's kind of an event, but it's not really major...? Anyway, I felt that the term "showing" is appropriate because I am... showing you my art!

My art is being shown at Jewel Box Cafe in Northgate. More specifically, inside Thornton Place right across from the movie theater. You can definitely go there after a movie, look at my art, and get you and your date so aroused that you may reach first base. Maybe even second if you nastayyyyy...

I went in last Saturday night at 12 midnight to put it up while they were closing. The people working there are very nice and friendly and didn't question a random Asian dude defacing and vandalizing their walls. It probably also helped that I'm friends with them.

I was nervous at first, but I think my art is enjoyable. It is themed "Seattle and It's Surroundings". Basically me drawing things around or pertaining to Seattle.

The art is up now, you can go check it out. Let me know if it stirs any emotions within you (or bowels). If you're lucky, you'll find me there also -- creeping on people and making sure the art is on the wall straight.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Workout Progress 11/20/2012

Been working out for a while. Always been chubby but athletic my whole life -- made the decision to uncover what's under there AKA acquire aesthetics. I have been tracking progress (albeit sporadically) on another blog of mine that I never really publicized.

I'm not where I want to be yet. In this picture, I'm probably around 185 lbs -- serious, my legs are huge. I'm thinking if I hit around 170 or 165 I'll be in there. The thing is, cardio is insanely boring to me -- it's not hard at all but it just takes time. I've been at a plateau for a while so I'm thinking I need to bite the bullet and do it. I have to accept that I'm an endomorph and pack on weight very easily.

I also changed my lifting program up yesterday so we'll see if that shakes things up.

If you haven't heard from me, seen me out of the house, this is why. This lifting thing, my personal art projects (I have an art showing coming up soon), reading, my family, my girlfriend and doggie (son) and throw in some video games -- this is what I've been spending my time on.

I'm still an extrovert and still look forward to hanging out with you all in real life, it's just that once I get into something I completely immerse myself in it.

I'm weird like that I guess. Gonna go lift now.

If you have any questions about anything, you can e-mail me at or Twitter me at @ayeforarthur

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Writing = Alpha?

I read on an internet forum that I frequent that writing everyday can make you more alpha. I'm skeptical (not sure if serious). Fortunately, I already have an established blog that I've been maintaining (albeit sporadically) for 4+ years.

I read that writing in a journal everyday helps you recognize your thought process, learn your own values, and figure out who you truly are. Basically, you're figuring out if your a beta or not.

For that purpose, I'm going to update. I'm just going to spew out words from my consciousness -- I'm not going to delete anything except for glaring typos because I probably have ADD and I hate when that red squiggly line appears under words. It's like a little red worm disease and I'm the only doctor that can cure it.

This entry will be disease free.

I worked today. I work every weekday. Work was fine except I have done everything I can do for all my assignments and projects assigned to me so I'm pretty much waiting for people to respond and give me more information.

That's was a very riveting story -- I shall preserve that memoir and unravel that tale to my grandchildren when the time is right.

I lifted weights today with my friend Emil. We got yucky on dem legs -- squats, lunges, leg extension, deadlift, etc. It was a good workout but more importantly, I got to catch up with a good friend.

I've been secluded from almost everybody I know except for my girlfriend and my dog Nimo. Reason might be because I live with them.

 If we didn't live together, I don't know who I would see. I can't put my finger on how or why I have been secluded lately -- I don't mind. I lied, sometimes I mind.

I would say that I'm an extrovert so sustaining substantial seclusion time feels odd at times. When I actually go out and it's like all that pent up energy gets released and I get on that yucky time. I guess it's healthy to experience both spectrum extremes.

Nimo ate out of the recycling AND the trash today. What a bad (kewl) dog. I get mad at him but he is so cute that I can't get mad at him. I end up just feeling worried and hope that he didn't eat anything harmful to doggies. I know for sure that chocolate and like onion oil (I don't know) are bad for dogs. I don't think any of that was in there. I'm more worried about the discarded coffee grounds. I noticed he drank an abnormal amount of water since I got home -- probably to wash down all that almond butter he licked up.

OK I should stop before I get too worried and calculating because I'm sure he's going to be fine.

I think this entry is long enough -- am I alpha yet?

I actually don't care. Maybe I do. But I feel that I owed it to myself and my blog to write something today.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

I Don't Like Scary Movies

Why do people like scary movies?

I don't like scary movies. I don't like feeling afraid. I don't like stuff popping out from corners. I don't like when movies take you into a house and go around corners really slowly. I don't like house appliances turning on by themselves at max volume. I don't like when the protagonist looks through holes or windows. I don't like masks. I don't like potato sack masks. I don't like people that run at you. I don't like seeing muddy footprints go into the house when you are on the 2nd story and home alone. I don't like it when the protagonists look through binoculars at other houses. I don't like alley ways. I don't like shadows. I don't like bathrooms. I don't like bathtubs. I don't like lights turning on and off. I don't like floating blankets. I don't like doors slammed closed. I don't like when the camera is super close to the protagonists face. I don't like baby rooms. I don't like rocking chairs. I don't like when the protagonist doesn't super beat them up when they are lying there. I don't like when the bad guy is 'fake dead'. I don't like basements. I don't like exploring the bad guy's "base".

Man, I don't like scary movies.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Fun Day Today

I hung out with two friends that I have not seen in a long time -- probably years.

Yeah, I think years.

We ate dinner at this place called Mr. and Mrs. Wok. They have great Italian food there -- very unique taste. The spaghetti there was called "yakisoba" and the meat balls were flat and came on a sizzling plate and was called "bulgogi". I recommend.

Plus the old lady came and laughed at my pervert jokes. Liked it so much she gave all of us extra candy at the end of our meal. Dum-dums to be exact. She is mirin' my aesthetics (read: admiring my aesthetics). She is also 50+ years old.

After that we got coffee and drinks and chocolate stuff at Chocolati. There we discussed the decline of America On-Line and speculated what was root cause of its demise. We also shared our past AOL screen names -- Jennyl was 'Oh Ship a Scooter' (notsureifsrs, read: not sure if serious), Nga was 'hoochiegirl86' or something along those lines (probs srs), mine was AJ Bingo 316 (I had an infatuation with wrestling at the time which may or may not involve Stone Cold Steve Austin).

I also divulged to them how I got my family banned from America On-Line within a month of subscribing. I was nine years old and it involves Magic: The Gathering. I promise I will write about it in a future blog post. Nga also divulged that her dates like to take her to cemetery's because "it's fun". I think that might be code name for boning (???) because cemetery's have dead people and dead people turn to skeletons and skeletons have bones. Two hundred and six bones, to be exact.

That's a lot of boning.

Nga got a new car called a Leaf and apparently it runs on only electrons. Naturally everybody drove it around the same block to see how it felt. Not me because I am asian and I don't drive very well and I also drive a mini-van.

OK, I'm done.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

How Spiders Walk

As explained by FUCKING_BUG_EXPERT...

That's a great fucking question, but not really.
Anyway, when spiders die, they typically curl their legs under them. Spiders don't possess muscles like that of insects and other animals, but instead what some would describe as some weird ass hydraulic system; fluid is forced to extremities, sort of like having eight penises for legs and getting boners instantaneously to walk around. So when a spider dies, its limbs essentially lose pressure and all sort of wind back up. Spiders suffering from dehydration will have trouble moving for this reason and sit in a similar fashion.
What is in the picture is either A) a plastic toy, or B) a spider that fucking drowned because it somehow lost its ability to scale porous surfaces, and its carcass sat their overnight to absorb the liquid.

Today I learned that spiders have 8 penises and get boners and stuff to walk on them. Am I learning right? Please advise.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

One Thing My Dog Has Taught Me

This is my dog.

His name is Nimo.

Nimo has taught me many things and continues to teach me new things everyday -- how to pick up poop, how to wipe pee, how to feed a dog, how to give water to a dog, how to walk a dog, how to pet a dog, how to play with a dog, how to dog a dog (wait wut?), how to try to get a dog to attack ducks at the nearby lake but not because the dog would rather sniff trees and pinecones.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Boogers - What are they?

What are boogers?

I could just Wikipedia 'boogers' but I think it would be more fun to just speculate and be curious about them. I also think that today's generation is lowkey spoiled that they have so much technology at their fingertips -- so much that the 'curiosity spark', the catalyst that starts the creativity parts of our brain, is waning. Imagination is stifled!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Chipped Tooth

I have mixed feelings right now -- I am reluctant to write this blog but I feel so obligated due to the recent turn of events. Check it out.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

What I did today

OK folks here we go this is a post where I am going to post what I did today. I think that is the point of these blog things.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

First Official Race - March Forth Fun Run 10K

Ran my first ever 'official' race this morning: March Forth Fun Run down at Greenlake. I signed up for the 10K which is like uhhhh 6+ something miles I could Google the exact mileage but I am lazy womp womp.

I haven't ran more than a mile in a couple months.