Monday, October 29, 2007


My aunt is in hospice loosing an almost ten year battle with cancer. She has fought a brave and courageous fight that makes me believe she is the strongest person I’ve ever known. Cancer is bitch and what it does to its victims is horrific. She has been reduced to a shell of her former brassy loudmouth self. The woman who used to drink Miller Lite from a can and yell at Patriots on Sunday afternoon now can barely lift her own head to drink from a cup of ice water.

If the cancer weren’t enough for her to deal with she has had to keep working up until the time she was to weak to stand for health insurance. She went through rounds of Chemotherapy and radiation all while working 40 hours a week as a nurse in a nursing home because if she didn’t she couldn’t afford to pay her rent.

What kind of society lets this happen to its own hard working citizens?

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Making Up

The past few months have been defend by the arguments I’ve had with family and friends. I am ruled but the god of war in both my son and moon, it’s not that put a lot of stock into astrology but I just saying. Fighting with people isn’t something that I am very proud to say that I have been doing, especially when the arguments have been over things that seem very silly in retrospect.

In March I had a blow out with my friend M, because I called her a hypochondriac. To my mind this wasn’t a big deal. I couldn’t have been more wrong. The argument changed from me saying something that hurt her feelings to me feeling like I am constantly giving her leeway on things that she never affords me. I said what I thought. She thought differently and we ended up not speaking for 7 months.

As they say it’s all water under the bridge now. The hard part for me and what I am trying to learn is how do I not keep creating these types of situations while having my feelings validated. Who do I not let things reach a nuclear level with out being feeling like I was the only one to compromise and give to only get nothing in return?

Regardless of the answer to the question I am very happy to be friends with M again. It’s made my work days a much happier.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

The Blog Thing

This blog has been gnawing at me for the past few months. I am not sure what to do with it. There have been things that have been happened in the past few months that have been worth writing about but I just have been lazy and not wanting to do it. Now I think I am ready to give it another go.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Legislators vote to defeat same-sex marriage ban

By Frank Phillips, Globe Staff

A proposed constitutional ban on same-sex marriage was defeated today by a joint session of the Legislature by a vote of 45 to 151, eliminating any chance of getting it on the ballot in November 2008. At least 50 votes were needed to advance the measure.

The vote came after House Speaker Salvatore F. DiMasi, Senate President Therese Murray, and Governor Deval Patrick conferred this morning and concluded that they have the votes to kill the proposal.

"In Massachusetts today, the freedom to marry is secure," Patrick told reporters after the vote.

The three leaders - along with gay rights activists - spent the last several days intensely lobbying a dozen or more state representatives and state senators who had previously supported the amendment but signaled that they were open to changing their positions.

Because fewer than 50 of the state's 200 lawmakers supported the amendment, it will not appear on the 2008 ballot, giving gay marriage advocates a major victory in their battle with social conservatives to keep same-sex marriage legal in Massachusetts.

Opponents of gay marriage face an increasingly tough battle to win legislative approval of any future petitions to appear on a statewide ballot. The next election available to them is 2012.

The Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders, the group that spearheaded the court case that led to the Supreme Judicial Court's 2003 decision to legalize same-sex marriage, issued a statement praising the vote.

"We’re proud of our state today, and we applaud the legislature for showing that Massachusetts is strongly behind fairness," said Lee Swislow, executive director Advocates & Defenders. "The vote today was the triumph of time, experience, and understanding over fear and prejudice."

Posted by the Boston Globe City & Region Desk at 01:23 PM

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

My Sister and a Juliana Hatfield Moment

Me: “Hey do you have Ma’s work number?”

Her: “Yeah but it’s in my cell phone so I will have to call you back.”

Me: “OK can you just do it as soon as you can because it’s about tickets to Florida.”

Her: (Screaming) “Yeah sure right after I’m done running around taking Gram to the doctor’s and George to hokey.”

“Click!” She hangs up on me.

Now I have this conversation with her about once every six months or so it seems. I call her and ask her a completely benign question only to have her completely blow up at me for bothering her on a day when she has too many commitments, none of which have anything to do with me.

Granted she was having a bad day. My grandmother has a stress fracture in her back. My sister was shuttling her around to doctors appointments, because none of the grandmother’s five children could possibly be bothered living up to there obligations when it comes to my grandmother’s care.

Three days later my sister called me ask me if I was going to my Niece’s dance recital. When we spoke I asked her if I she was going to apologize for hanging up on me three days before. Yeah, it was the wrong thing to say. She told she was having a bad day that if I couldn’t accept the fact that she was having a bad day that it was just too bad for me. And at that moment she was way to busy to be bothered with my selfishness, a story I’ve heard many times before. I went on to say to her all she needed to say was, “I’m sorry I hung up on you. I was having a bad day.”

Her response was, “I’m not doing that!” Then there was more screaming about how she had a bad week. The whole world is against her and how dare I someone with no children ask her to apologize. She was will with in her right to act erratically and I should be the bigger person and just not mention it.

I’ve had enough of this bullshit. We have had fight after fight about her yelling at me for no reason then her expecting me not to say anything when she calls me however many days later and acts nothing ever happened. I am sure there will be more on this issue to come.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Yum Yum I Love to Eat

The very beautiful and most talented Nicole of sent out a shout out of sorts. Actually it was more like hey if you want to do this it would be great if not that fine too. She’s non-confrintaional that way, but lovely none the less.

Five places I love to eat.

Sushi Island, Wakefield, MA

My brother-in-law introduced me to this place about eight or so years ago, while I was living in LA. Whenever I came home to visit we would make a special trip for sushi. One of the most striking things about this restaurant is the number of Japanese people eating there, considering the low number of Asian people living in the area. As I was taught by a former Taiwanese coworker, the best way to gauge the authenticity of an Asian restaurant is the number of Asian people eating in it. It definitely passes that test.

The only draw back to his restaurant is it fairly small. Some nights they offer live jazz musicians for entertainment. If you aren’t feeling the vibe of who ever is playing unfortunately there isn’t a quiet corner to escape the music.

Some of my favorites are the salmon skin roll, agedashi tofu, and tempura green tea ice cream with read bean paste.

Tacos Lupita, Lynn, MA

There is a joke my father used to tell about going into an Italian restaurant. Some where you would find a picture of Frank Sinatra next to the Pope. If the restaurant was authentic the picture of Frank would be just a bit higher on the wall than the picture of the Pope, after all the Pope isn’t Italian. The same can be said for Mexican restaurants having at least one picture of the Virgin de Guadalupe. Tacos Lupita features her on their menu. This place looks like a taquria you’d expect to see downtown LA. I brought a friend from Texas there he said he felt like he stepped into a time warp.

They make an El Pastor taco that is so good I have never had any thing else from their menu. It’s the type of place that when I get ten feet from the front door my mouth starts to water.

Shabu-Zen, Boston MA

Shabu-Zen features Asian fusion hot-pots. It’s one of the hippest restaurants in Boston’s Chinatown and is almost always packed. If you show up after 7:00 pm you can expect a long wait. The feature a very modern design inside with a low bar that runs in a U shape in the middle of the restaurant and a high bar that runs along the side of the room. There are also tables available with a minimum charge of $75.

Hot-pots are a soup that you cook yourself. The standard broth as a miso type flavor to it they also have a kimchi version if like it a bit on the spicy side. Ordering here is a bit like ordering at a sushi bar. You get your individual pot and most of the food comes ala cart, expect for the meats which come with a side of noodles, veggies and a couple types of tofu. The broth in the pot is usually boiling so it cooks the thinly sliced meats very quickly.

I recommend getting the fish paste which is a mixture of ground white fish, scallions, and seasonings. The also have an extensive menu of smoothies and bubble teas. The green tea latte is delicious.

Agave Mexican Bistro Newburyport, MA

Admittedly Agave is a bit “para los gringos”, but I love it just the same. Agave is everything Tacos Lupita is not. You’d be hard press to find a person on the wait staff whose first language was anything other than English and the Virgin is no where to be found, which isn’t all bad because they are surely not going after a home cooked feeling. They are looking to attract that type of people you who love a Norman Rockwell painting perfect New England town which says, “If you aren’t driving a Volvo or a Saab then why are you here?”

First of the redeeming qualities is the salsa which they make themselves. Honestly I have thought of asking the waiter to skip the chips and to just bring me a straw. They also make guacamole fresh at your table which is a crowd pleaser. I also love the mole poblano for an entrée. Most places sever a very watery mole theirs is thick and very rich.

Pho Lynn, MA

When I first moved to LA one of my roommates was from Vietnam. His mother used to cook pho for us all of the time. However I didn’t know what was called until I moved back to MA. Every time I asked what she had cooked my roommate would either tell me, “You know it’s the same old thing” or “you’ll never be able to say it.” He was wrong on both counts.

Pho Lynn is a small restaurant in a transitional area with an annoying tile floor that makes it possible to hear the conversations on the opposite of the restaurant. It’s run by a little Vietnamese who will treat you like she has known you your entire life from the moment you first see her and you’ll fell like you’ve know her that long when she scolds you for not eating all of your vegetables.

The best features of this place are the sauces that the proprietress makes herself. My favorite is a mayonnaise tastes like it is mixed with vinegar and fish sauce. I asked her was in it but she wouldn’t tell me.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Never Good Enough

Today in the men’s room at my office I walk out of a stall to wash my hands. At the same time a coworker walks away from the urinal to wash his hands. We arrive that sinks at the same time. We start to wash our hands.

When I think I am done I look over at my coworker who must be performing surgery with the way he is washing. He makes me feel guilty. I keep washing after all I did come out of a stall and he was only at that urinal. There is no way I am leaving with him thinking I left the restroom with unclean hands.

I look over at him. He looks at me then down. He scrubs faster. I scrub faster. He gets more soap. I get more soap. This goes on for at least two minutes. My fingers start to prune.

Then I break. I concede and reach for a paper towel. I walk back into the office with a heavy head my hands will never be as clean as his.