See ya.

Well, I’m done. This blog has run its course. It got to be more of a burden (har har) than something I wanted to spend time doing. I had all sorts of things I wanted to write about and couldn’t. I’d worry what people I knew IRL would think. I have SO many completed yet unpublished posts, it’s not even funny. I suppose this has essentially become a private journal, so I might as well take it offline.

I hate when bloggers say shit like, “I’m leaving but I might be back so keep checking.” Or “I’m going to take a break, and may or may not be back.” So I am telling you now, I am leaving. And won’t be back. I never back down from my decisions. I’m pretty much done with Burden of Thought anyways. I don’t feel as burdened with thoughts as I used to be before I was a mom. Now I can’t stand people who think too much.

So what’s next? I’m not sure. The next thing will be either a completely public blog or a completely private one. None of this half-assed shit.

I’ll be removing some of my posts or maybe all, I haven’t decided yet. In the meantime, I’d love to keep in touch with whoever wants to keep in touch with me. You can email me at burdenofthought at gmail dot com.

Thanks everyone, it’s been fun. I’ve met some really great people through this blog, and for that I’m grateful. I hope to “meet” more of you one day.

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The Death of Cecil the Cat

We’ve finally moved! Yay! I thought we would never close escrow. But we finally did last week, and have been moving little by little since then. One more round trip and we’ll be done! Now I have to unpack and organize…before AJ’s sister and family arrive in less than 2 weeks.

So, I really should be working on that right now instead of reading through my old journals and English assignments. Actually, I skimmed the journals because teenage me is really quite embarrassing and I can’t read them without cringing.

But I had fun reading my creative writing assignments, and I thought I would share one with you all. This was written at the age of 12, and the assignment was to write a poem in the style of The Wreck of the Hesperus by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. (It’s funnier if you are familiar with this poem.) Everyone had to read their poems out loud. The class then voted on a winner, and I won. Here it is in all its glory (re-reading it today, that “the” in the last stanza was bothering me so I crossed it out):

I was a morbid kid.

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Cuteness Overload

I couldn’t resist sharing. This totally made my day.

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My current obsession

This post is going to be kind of out there. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

So I tend to get into these phases where I obsess over something and will research everything to do with it and tire everyone around me by talking about it nonstop. You lucky people are next!

Lately I’ve been obsessively watching 歌仔戲 (Taiwanese Opera) clips on YouTube. Taiwanese Opera is the only art form that originated in Taiwan, and is performed entirely in Taiwanese. It is kinda similar to Beijing Opera (think Farewell My Concubine), but without the screeching. It was most popular in Taiwan during the 80s and early 90s when the operas were broadcast on TV. I grew up watching these with my parents.

I love Taiwanese opera because the stories are so romantically tragic. Like, over the top. I love the clothes, the hairstyles, the singing. Unlike the musicals we’re used to here, there are only a few basic tunes that they use for all the operas. I love them all, but I am partial to the weepy sad ones. I know, I’m pathetic.

In the TV series, the main male roles were mostly played by women. There are male actors, but they’re usually peripheral characters who don’t sing. I’m not sure why, perhaps it is because the movements have to be fluid and graceful, which are more natural to women? I don’t know.

Anyways, watching the videos has led to an odd mini-crush that I’ve developed on one of the singers – a woman who always plays men – when in her male form. I especially love it when (while in male garb) she does typical masculine things like sit with her legs wide apart. Yeah, it’s a confusing crush.

Here are a couple of clips where “he” looks especially — is “cute” the right word here? Even though the quality isn’t great, they’re short and kinda give you an idea of what a Taiwanese opera is like. The tune in the second one is my favorite. In the tragically sad scenes, they slow it down a lot and sing it in a weepy voice.


When I showed these to a friend, she was like, “Which is the guy?” Har har, friend. In the first, the man is the one not wearing pink. In the second, the man is wearing all gold colored clothes. As a man, her gestures are a bit more masculine, though still very graceful, and she uses a lower voice. Her chest is bound and she’s wearing shoes with thick soles to make herself taller. I hope you all know how much I am controlling myself from embedding a ton of videos of this singer.

Has anyone ever crushed on a celebrity and fantasized about some scenario where you meet them and they fall madly in love with you? Yeah, I’m having a hard time with that sort of fantasy involving this singer. It’s not that I wouldn’t be attracted to a woman, it’s just that I’m not particularly attracted to this woman when she is not dressed up like a man. Plus, those clips are from a movie that was filmed 30 years ago. She’s much older now. So basically, I’m only attracted to her dressed as a man in 1981. It doesn’t get more unrequited than that.

At least this is slightly better than when I was crushing on the cartoon version of Prince Zuko. That was just sad. I mean, there was no plausible romantic fantasy with that one. (And really, what is the matter with me? It’s a fantasy, why do I need it to be realistic??)

Anyways, I thought I was a freak until I read that another popular Taiwanese Opera singer, who is a woman and always plays male characters, has tons of female admirers who think she is “the perfect man”. I wonder how they fantasize?

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Just gimme an ETA!

The company I work for is a big software company. And because it is so huge, everything takes forever to do, and has to go through a gazillion approvals.

When I used to be a customer, it was frustrating. Now that I am an employee, it’s fucking embarrassing.

I cringe when I read through the histories of some of our open bugs. They tend to read like this:

  • Day 1
    Customer: Hey this isn’t working.
  • Day 2
    Support Person: Try this one really easy thing.
  • Day 3
    Customer: That didn’t work.
  • Day 4
    Support Person: Oh. OK, try this other little thing.
  • Day 5
    Customer: That didn’t work either.
  • Day 6
    Support Person: Oh. Um… lemme get back to you.
  • Days 7-8
    [Nothing.]
  • Day 9
    Support Person: Hey, I’m going to pass this to another person who can better help you.
  • Day 10
    New Support Person: Hi. I’m gonna need a day to read up on this bug.
  • Day 11
    New Support Person: Can you try this one little thing?
  • [Repeat.]

To be fair, a lot of the times the customer takes a long time to try what was suggested. And bugs are hard to troubleshoot because the support person doesn’t know what the customer has added to the base application (usually a LOT) so it takes time to narrow down what it could be. So it’s not always because of us that a ticket drags on and on. Still, speaking from experience as a former customer, the slowness of our responses is maddening.

This is what I’m dealing with at the moment: one of our customers is in the middle of an upgrade, but when they applied a recent patch to their test environment, it caused their application to crash. Obviously, they cannot go live without this being fixed. This bug has been open for over a MONTH, and we cannot get our engineers to tell us when they can get it fixed. I have been pushing them every day just to tell me when they can tell me when they can get it fixed. I’m not even asking them to tell me when it can be fixed! I just need an ETA on the ETA. The worst part is that the engineers are pretty certain they know what is causing the error. They just don’t know when they can fix it.

My manager says that because the engineers support so many different customers’ applications, they are extremely resistant to committing to any dates because another more urgent bug might come up.

So every day I writhe with embarrassment when I have to tell our customer that I have no update on their one single critical bug. I feel like they probably think I am totally useless.

Sigh.

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Filed under Rant, Work

Mute your lines!

I just got off a conference call where there were about 30 participants. It was a status call where one person reported the statuses of a number of items. Since only one person needed to do the talking, everyone else should have been on mute unless they had to ask a question. Instead, during the half hour call, we heard:

  • a dog barking
  • a baby crying
  • desk drawers being opened and slammed shut
  • random shuffling sounds
  • snoring

Yes, someone was actually snoring on the call. During the first 5 minutes. The call started at 9am, so it’s not like it was super early.

I don’t get this. Why don’t people mute when they aren’t talking?

When I first joined the company, I had to call into an orientation meeting where a couple of HR representatives did a presentation of the company’s policies. During the call, some guy put the phone down without muting and started having a conversation with a coworker. We could hear the conversation loudly and clearly, and the HR lady kept saying, “Hello? Can you mute? Hello?!” but the guy obviously didn’t have the phone in his ear. At one point he started talking about porn. It was very distracting. The presenter attempted to continue but kept losing her train of thought.

Some people.

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View from my kitchen window

Ramona's favorite spot

This was the view from the window over my sink yesterday. The weather was gorgeous! Today, not so much.

Our housewarming party on Saturday was a huge success. Luckily it did not rain, but it was cloudy most of the day. We should have had the party yesterday when it was all sunny and warm. Although people generally don’t have parties on Mondays.

This was the first party where we hired caterers, and I am SO glad we did, because I would have been a lot more stressed about feeding so many people otherwise. As it was, I got to relax and hang out with my friends and play with babies. All we needed to do was provide beverages.

We said 2pm on the invitation, but the first guests didn’t arrive till almost 3pm. Most people with kids left around 5-ish. Then the last non-Colombian left at 8pm. The Colombians stayed till 1am! I can be pretty outgoing when it suits me, but I was seriously done being social by 8pm. They discovered the karaoke machine and sang Latin songs from the 80s all night. AJ was loving every minute… he has really missed being around other Colombians and speaking Spanish. He recently met this group of people through one of his Colombian friends and they all get together almost every weekend. It’s been nice for him because usually we hang out with my friends who are mostly Asian.

So, yeah, the party is done. We’re officially back in LA!

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