Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Gardens of the World

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One of my favorite things about living in Thousand Oaks is the abundance of parks here (second only to the proximity to a j.crew store). There are 4 parks and a botanical garden just running distance away from my apartment. And if I'm willing to drive during the weekend, I'm only a couple of freeway exits from the Gardens of the World.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Past

Have you ever read Directive by Robert Frost? I read it a long time ago and I read it again today. I found it hard to understand, but when I re-read it a few times I thought it was so simple and beautiful.

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It seems, at first, he is romanticizing the past. I was a little taken aback by that because I hear so many people reminisce about the "simpler" times and how everything was better. I think nostalgia is generally illogical.

But the key (and my favorite part) of this poem is right at the beginning.
Back out of all this now too much for us,
Back in a time made simple by the loss,
of detail
[...]
He acknowledges the ridiculousness of claiming the past is always better. The past is only made simple by the loss of detail. How true is that?

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I did a search for the analysis of the poem and it came up with this post. I thought this described the poem beautifully.
Don't we, at times, resent those that we love? And don’t we, for our own human reasons, cherish, and even cling to, painful memories? Why? Intellectually, it doesn’t make sense, and it’s into these impossibilities that Robert Frost descends.
Of course, I catch myself romanticizing the past all the time. It's emotions playing tricks on my mind, really. The human mind full of contradictions; remembering the past as a better time is just one of them.

Friday, July 13, 2012

On Training Cats

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I love training my cats. They enjoy our training time also. If I come home from work and we don't start the training right away they'll follow me around and meow like crazy! If I really don't have time or don't feel well, we'll just perform a couple of tricks, I'll say "All done!", and that gets them off my case.

Before I got cats there were lots of people saying that it's impossible to train cats. "It's not in their nature" they'd say. Well, I don't know, I'm pretty sure eating tuna is in their nature. They very eagerly try to do what I ask (even when I'm trying to teach them a new command) in exchange for a bite of stinky fish.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Cherry-Chocolate Cookies

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I came across this recipe in the Cook's Illustrated cookbook. I was looking for something that I could bring to my dearest friend's housewarming party. I love making cakes for people, but a three layer cake was unlikely to make it to South Pasadena in one piece, plus a cookie is something you don't have to cut and serve on places. So, a cookie it was!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The Day I Rode in a Convertible

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Today was the farewell lunch for my dearest coworker - KT. She is the lady who phone-screened me, who welcomed me to the team, who drove me to my first lunch at work. She is the only person in engineering who looks pulled together every single day. She rocks the wedges, the scarves, the dresses, and the cashmere wraps while the rest of us are clad in fraying jeans and college sweatshirts most of the time. If it wasn't for K, I'd be wearing pajamas to work.