Monday, November 2, 2015



It was time for a change of pace, and since changing jobs and moving out of my apartment isn't enough, I'm also moving onto a new blog space.

I can now found posting on a lunar schedule at:

Thursday, August 20, 2015



Over the summer, I was at a wedding for a friend's friend of a friend where I knew one person for certain, and had a passing acquaintance with one of the groomsmen. This took place at a posh winery that had an "inspirational talk" prior to the dinner. I was not impressed. The term"Inspirational Talk" carries a dubious sheen.  It covers a potentially vast and probably boring territory of possibilities, and I wanted to walk around the winery, whereas now to be polite, I had to sit in a dim room and watch videos on socially responsible entrepreneurs in the Philippines. 

When the videos ended, the lights went up and a man appeared. He was British entrepreneur Dylan Wilk. He was lively and mischievous, and had a penchant for driving over the speed limit. He had been so successful at his prior career that he had retired early, and Human Nature was a company he was managing as a retiree. The goal of Human Nature, at least one of them, was to raise the poor out of poverty. Along the way, this company he and his wife Anna Meloto-Wilk, the founder, have put all their savings into this company and possibly set in motion a minor tidal wave of change. 

At the back of the room were lip balms Wilk had brought with him that he was giving away for free. He asked for nothing, he expected nothing, he was just there to provide an inspirational talk. 

Wilk himself is the perfect salesman. He creates a little itch somewhere in that part of your brain that you can only scratch by googling. Then comes: How can I help? What can I do? 

Here is the site where you can buy Human Nature products.

And the Lip Balm? I'm not a fan of the bright green packaging, but it's high quality stuff.  

Tuesday, August 18, 2015


I discovered comic books way back when I discovered Jim Lee, the artist for X-men at the time. There have been other artists since, they shuffle in and out but the characters remain the same. This seems to be standard practice in the comic world. Lee has moved on - to what, I don't know - I had a short attention span and un underdeveloped sense of loyalty. However, I would probably not have been drawn* in if it weren't for Lee. And once you've been hooked, you stick around. At least for a little while. While I was in this mutant world, I developed loyalties - this character but not that one. This villain, but not the other. 

One of my favorite characters was Psylocke, I loved her psychic knife, her ass-kicking skills, and the fact that she was born a blond and then sometime "turned" Asian through Ninja magic (I'm not kidding). She has featured in exactly 0 of all X-Men films. I consoled myself that this was better than being cast badly by an actress I loathed, which would have been a slap in the face.

Now, the day has come. Olivia Munn has benn cast as Psylocke. I don't know if this is good. I just know her as someone who's been on the cover of Maxim and has a rabid male following as an object of lust. She also appeared briefly as a correspondent on the Daily Show, and I thought she and the writers were on a different comic wavelength (She wasn't funny.) But who knows? I honestly have no idea who should have been cast. They would have to be able to project both "altheticism" and "sexy female ninja warrior." Maybe she'll be amazing. I want her to be amazing. Correction: I want Psylocke to be amazing.

Source of photo above.
Psylocke, drawn by Jim Lee
*Pun intended

Thursday, August 13, 2015


Untitled It has been awhile since I've out with a pack, carrying at least 30 pounds (I don't weigh. Don't see the point.), and I could feel my body complaining for days afterward. Warren Lake, near Truckee is a beautiful trail, and like all beauties, it's difficult. About 14 miles roundtrip with a mad scramble towards the end. You could do it in a day hike, but then it would all be a rush both ways. Get in, get out. Move move move. 

I do this to relax, you know. It clears the head, and I've needed that badly as of late. It always feels like I need it badly. I was listening to a podcast the other day that said you need to treat sleep like food, as an essential bodily need. I've disregarded that little gem for years and it catches up. I think it catches up in the way you think, in the places your mind wanders towards - dark places. Your body longs for sleep, and it will get it from you or make wakefulness unbearable. 

All pictures were taken while it was sunny. In reality, temperatures ranged from hot to cold to hail. I don't show those parts. I would highly suggest just getting a GPS tracker and parking at the very beginning of the entrance. It's easy to lose your way, and technology can help.

Untitled Untitled

Thursday, August 6, 2015


 ‘Everything changes when you start to emit your own frequency rather than absorbing the frequencies around you, when you start imprinting your intent on the universe rather than receiving an imprint from existence.’ 
- Barbara Marciniak

Tuesday, July 28, 2015



This comes from the This American Girl blog. Her decision to run away and travel scares me. In a good way.

Every once in a blue moon, I will attempt a DIY, but only if it's really easy, like these.

I usually try something different, a new habit maybe, to break out of my routine. Routines are inevitable, we tend to fall into patterns, so try one of these just to change things up. 

A writing app that promises to save you from distraction.

An easier way to send files. I personally don't like dropbox.

On the bucket list! The pictures alone make this post worth looking at. And then if you can find the concentration, it's worth reading as well.

Fair trade rugs that go to help people in Nepal. As a bonus, they're not ugly. Sometimes, I'd rather just give money than buy something I didn't want to begin with.

Thursday, July 23, 2015


Outfit Ideas
Maybe it's because I used to wear a school uniform. Maybe it's an upgrade from jeans and a tee. Whatever the reason, skinny jeans and a button down shirt has become my go to. Silk shirts have the best drape, better than cotton (although there's nothing wrong with cotton), it just depends on how you want the shirt to hang.  

I was on Pinterest the other day looking at my Style board when I realized I was not in fact on my own board. I had been looking at someone else's board. She (I assume) had pinned almost the exact same images I had. It was a sad and sadly horrifying discovery. The realization that you are in your heart a style cylon. Then I came to terms. This simplicity is what I sincerely enjoy. It helps me meet my daily pleasure quota. I no longer have to check myself out in random store windows to appear as if I am browsing when in fact I'm just making sure I still look the same as I did in front of my closet that morning, or if something has gone terribly wrong in the interim.

I have found my peace. 

The Fashion Cuisine

Tuesday, July 21, 2015


"All sorrows can be borne if you put them into a story or tell a story about them."
- Karen Blixen

Thursday, July 16, 2015



Two things that have been on my mind lately, catching waterfalls and cleaning my mental thought processes. To help move this along, I've been reading/attempting to read Meditations by Marcus Aurelius (it's akin to The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up - but for the brain). And I thought I would share some excerpts.

"Spend not the remnant of thy days in thoughts and fancies concerning other men, when it is not in relation to some common good, when by it thou art hindered from some other better work. That is, spend not thy time in thinking, what such a man doth, and to what end; what he saith, and what he thinks, and what he is about, and such other things or curiosities which make a man to rove and wander from the care and observation of that part of himself, which is rational, and overruling. See therefore in the whole series and connection of they thoughts, that thou be careful to prevent what is idle and impertinent: but especially, whatsoever is curious and malicious: that thou must use thyself to think only of such things, of which if a man upon a sudden should ask thee what it is that thou art now thinking, thou mayest answer This, and That, freely and boldly, that so by thy thoughts it may presently appear that in all thee is sincere, and peaceable; as becometh one that is made for society, and regards not pleasures, nor gives way to any voluptuous imaginations at all: free from all contentiousness, envy, suspicion, and from whatsoever else thou wouldest blush to confess thy thoughts were set upon."

That is a very high bar, I think, to cleanse your thoughts so perfectly that you can allow yourself to be entirely transparent. You see the pattern: he lays out the common traps human pitfalls: envy, petty thoughts, malice and then lays out the standard: freedom from these hidden thoughts, thought which would otherwise make you blush in the light of day.  

Tuesday, July 14, 2015



Going to camp in the desert in summer is not the best idea I've ever had. Every picture is taken around dusk right before sunset, which offers the softest lighting, but that is not why I took them. I took pictures around this time because for most of the day it was dead hot, at least 100 degrees. You can feel yourself baking in the heat.   

Here's the cactus garden. The needles are so sharp that even a touch will break skin. So I took a shot in close up with my lens.

If you can stand it until sunset, though, you will get your reward. The weather goes from baking to perfect. And you can sleep in your tent without the rain flap, and watch the stars all night long until you fall sleep. Untitled Untitled

Tuesday, July 7, 2015


Source Destination unknown.
Feeling inspired by perceptions of pink today, even though it's a color I would rarely wear on my person. It's soothing on the eye.

Pink Salt Pools, Mexico
Below it's not technically pink, but it's close.
Dona Ana Beach, Portugal
Hut Lagoon in Australia
Bali, Indonesia

Tuesday, June 30, 2015


My Struggle
My Struggle, by Karl Ove Knausgaard
This book has taken over the entire country of Norway and is inching toward European Union domination. In the US, however, it may better described as tilting towards stardom. Any synopsis of the book I attempt will likely sound bad. The Struggle is the story of the author Karl Ove Knausgaard's life, an ordinary Norwegian life, told in retrospect. Each book covers a period in his life and each book is epic in length. As my friend described, "he looks like just another sexy European man."

The novelty of the book, at least part of it, is that the author lays himself bare. He allows himself to be truly known, in a culture where this degree of self disclosure is unheard of. Have you ever wanted to be truly known? Not simply the good parts of your life, but the bad and even the mundane parts. Could you go back and surgically deconstruct your life? Could you do it in a way that captivates your country? That is also how my friend described this to me: she could not put the book down, and the book looks to be about 600 pages and a good seven pounds, paperback. 

I'm going to delve in soon, to the first book in the series, and see what the fuss is about.

Thursday, June 25, 2015


Christoph Neimann.

This is wildly imaginative stuff. Call me a fool, but I thought the bottom image was an actual camera.

See more here.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015


Reed boat on Lake Titicaca
Lake Titicaca
Every five years or so even the best laptop will die, and when it does, you might want to check out this video. 

It's not necessarily the content of this article, but the intense searing emotion behind it. If words could scream, this is what they would sound like. I live in California, and I don't hold Silicon Valley in any particular esteem, but there is a mythology that some people like to build around that area, and this article rips that right down the center.

There is something calming about this article, it is the concept of minimalism mixed with pleasure. The two concepts don't often associate, you don't often think that simplifying can also be blissful, that is, until this. 

Did you want to learn a language? This is still being developed, but supposedly there is a formula to do this effectively. Apart from Rosetta Stone. Currently only French is available, but I would watch to see if more interesting languages come up.

The art of concentration is a lot one, and that is sad as someone who loves books, because what is reading but not the complete immersion of the self into this other fictional world, where hours can be spent playing in the endless fissures of your imagination? 

These are from Etsy, and they're made by hand. I hold a special esteem for cobblers. 

You can chase happiness, and you can find it. There is a way. 

I like the ideas expressed in their blog, often a complex concept presented with concise precision. So it wouldn't hurt to check out a few books from this list as well.  

Are you looking for unusual places to travel? Here's an idea, and it's a good one. 

Thursday, June 18, 2015



In San Francisco news, I recently saw the play Ondine at Sutro Baths, next to the Ocean. The play chronicles the love between a mystical ocean creature and a knight. It takes place in the open air next to the water, and you get to move from setting to setting along with the cast. It's freezing and wonderful.

These aren't pictures from the play itself. But in between location changes, cast members drape themselves artfully into the landscape for you to walk watch and admire. They also serve you meringues. It's one of the most unique experiences I've had in a good while.  

More information here.


Tuesday, June 16, 2015


Nepal bamboo and nature vegetables

Recently, there have been two habits, and only two, that I have decided to incorporate into my daily routine. Neither of them involves meditation. There have been a lot of articles about meditation floating around so I think everyone alive now knows that they should meditate. No, the two things that I suspect will improve my life are these:

This is a site where you to type in a word, which the site will then email to you at daily intervals until this new word becomes a part of your long term memory. I plan on keeping this open on my browser so that anytime I run across a word, I can type it right in. A good way to expand your vocabulary, yes?

I have this article saved onto my phone using the Pocket app and I'm going to review it every other day to make sure I'm still in alignment. I have no articles saved on this app. There are very few things I feel the need to read on repetition. What this article offers is perspective. It offers the concept of Stoicism distilled into 9 key principles, each of which is crucial to remind you how to live a life in accordance with your beliefs. Because sometimes we stray. Sometimes we need a way to pull ourselves back. 

Thursday, June 11, 2015


*help*  WE NEED A NAME!!!
A little after reading this article about transgender people choosing their names, I wondered, as I have since I had the ability to wonder, what I would choose to name myself if that choice were mine to have. What if the social custom was to allow people to name themselves as a rite of passage? You are called a generic term from birth, let's say "young one," the same as any other child. Then when you come of age, you choose a fitting name. I personally have two names, my American name and my ethnic name. If pronounced correctly, I prefer the ethnic name. It sounds beautiful with the right inflection. Unfortunately that never happens. 

There is a power inherent in naming. Actors usually get to choose a stage name that is usually more socially palpable than their given name.  It creates their outward persona, because as an actor, they are always hiding beneath a character. That idea has always intrigued me. So then begins a series of what if's. What if I had been born with a different name? What would I choose? And so on. Then the stage of fantasy came to an end. 

In reality, there are very few opportunities to change your name, it's an enormous hassle and in the worst case scenario may leave you open to an accusation of identify theft. One of the most common ways that you end up changing your name as a female,* is to take your husband's name when you get married. There are a few ways of perceiving this. You could see as an opportunity to become your husband's chattel (highly negative), or to transition into becoming a member of his new family (more positive). What if there were a third option? This could be an opportunity to define yourself anew, to emerge from your former self like a snake from it's skin, fresh and unblemished? 

*Or as Zoe Saldana's husband 

Tuesday, June 9, 2015


"I think that what our society teaches young girls, and I think it’s also something that’s quite difficult for even older women and self-professed feminists to shrug off, is that idea that likability is an essential part of you, of the space you occupy in the world, that you’re supposed to twist yourself into shapes to make yourself likable, that you’re supposed to hold back sometimes, pull back, don’t quite say, don’t be too pushy, because you have to be likable.
And I say that’s bullshit.
So what I want to say to young girls is forget about likability. If you start thinking about being likable you are not going to tell your story honestly, because you are going to be so concerned with not offending, and that’s going to ruin your story, so forget about likability. And also the world is such a wonderful, diverse, and multifaceted place that there’s somebody who’s going to like you; you don’t need to twist yourself into shapes."
- Writer Chimamanda Ngozi 

Thursday, June 4, 2015


Can you imagine a world lined with duck lanes? The Canal & River Trust, a charity association based in England and Wales did it for you. They painted a lane, just for show, that would protect ducks from passersby and busy days, because they can't walk as fast as you or I. 

More pictures here.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015


Instead of telling yourself to "Man Up," why not "Vag Up?"

I heard my friend E telling herself this other day and thought this was a genius way to shine a positive light on female genitals. There is already so many negative associations already out there. If you've ever heard a guy call another guy a pussy, that about sums up the current situation. 

So I would like "Vag Up" to become a thing, I want it to hit the big time, and then to become commonplace. I'm trying to do my part to set the wheels in motion. 

Alternately, and I don't know why this sounds more ladylike, I have known a man, a true feminist, tell himself to "vagina up!" It sounded darling. 

Thursday, May 21, 2015


I found this on a blog that isn't in English, but the use of lighting here transcends language. I'm not sure what the tea kettle is doing on the stove - that may be a bad idea and I don't support it, but right up above the stove are industrial lamps, drilled into the wooden beams, which is a cheap and inexpensive way to get light just where you want it.   

Read the full story (using Google Translate) here.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015


If you ever have the need, here is an online site to find editors and writing professionals.

Kierkegaard is one of the most prolific writers I have ever known. And his thoughts are unique, even mildly intriguing, so this article provides a nice introduction to the man. 

From Flip and Tumble. 

For those times when you are searching for a word, but you only know the definition, but not the word. 

I'm constantly on the search for quality, affordable outdoor gear that isn't ugly. To put it mildly, it's been a process. Clymb is an online flash sale site for outdoor clothing, gear, and adventures. It's one of the few (and only) discounts for outdoor gear I have found, and I am looking hard. If you use the link, we both get $10 in credit. 

This is a way to donate through the travel agency I used to travel through Nepal. I know that everyone at Himalayan High Treks has a genuine interest in directly helping this country, and returning people to work as soon as possible.  

Friday, May 8, 2015



The view from the roof of my hotel, The Tibet Guest House, a quiet oasis in the turbulence of people and cars, shops and scooters, lying in wait out there in the Kathmandu streets. I don't have any pictures from street level. As I learned on my first day, stopping makes you a target. Not for safety reasons - I don't wander around by myself late at night, it was just that the bright phosphorescent beam of my tourist origins shone out like a beacon when I stood still. It was hard right away because there were no street signs. If I turned the corner without looking, I might never have found my way back. So I tried to orient myself, and immediately, someone introduced himself, tried to tell me his life story (a sad one) and then tried to interest me in buying him food because - his words - "You can afford it! This is nothing to you!" And then he kept following me. So. 

So I learned to not stop walking, but walking itself was draining, because there were no sidewalks and no lanes. You walked on the same street as cars, people, and scooters going in both directions, and the road was not a generous one. Honking was almost a form of conversation.  

Tibet Guest House

This the wonderful courtyard of the aforementioned Tibet Guest House. I tried to wait until there were no people present to take this, so this is as good as I could make it. They pipe in classical music too, and it is just as serene as it appears.
Kathmandu through a crack

I took this through some slats in the hotel wall. They were decorative slats, quite beautiful in fact, and I wanted to capture what was going on next door. I wanted the frame of the slats around the lens.

Dasan festival tour

You see all these people? This is what it looks like when there are less people than normal milling around. You can see some are dressed up. It was the Dasan holiday, and most people in the city had already left to go back to their homes in the villages. This year's will likely be very different.


Wednesday, May 6, 2015


Line of Stupas
Stupa on the way to the forbidden parts of Kathmandu
As our guide would tell us, you cannot separate Nepal from Buddhism. This is true. Do you see the trails of steepled structures? Those are Buddhist offerings called stupa. I had never heard of them before and my own father is Buddhist. The structures lined Kathmandu in varying forms, from basic stone carvings to the dramatic structure with eyes - those are the eyes of Buddha watching you. They are all stupa. You will walk across pathways that are for stupa and holy structures alone. 
Kathmandu is overcrowded, and that is putting it mildly. Moving from the rural areas where most people are from and into the city center is a proper shock. Hiking was a paradise. You would meet no one for miles and you would wander around places only locals ever saw. Returning to Kathmandu was the opposite of that experience. All these people barely fit into the city and simply navigating your way down streets was an adventure. So many people, such insufficient resources, and yet so much land went to stupa.
Stupa temple
The eyes of Buddha
Here is the main stupa for one of the largest Buddhist temples in Kathmandu. Tiny people are at the base of it, so you can get a sense of scale. At the top, the eyes of Buddha.All stupas
Walking through here, alongside the Hindu offerings, the stupa, and the associated animals, was divine. You can't see it, but there are animal carvings in front of some structures, because some Hindu gods have an associated animal.
Stupas to gods
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