Thursday, March 31, 2005

Return to a slightly more nuanced post

I love to watch Chris eat when he is hungry. In some strange way it makes me feel at peace, like I am making up for all the times when I am grumpy and inconsolable and take it out on him. Yesterday I took him to lunch at this tiny hole-in-the-wall Mexican restaurant called Dona Maria (pronounced Donya Maria I don't know how to put the squiggly t hing over the "n") that's run by a real Mexican family that makes their own tortilla chips and salsa. Chris ordered a burrito with shredded beef that tasted good. This place is one of the good things about Farmington.

Recently, my contempt and distaste for Farmington seems to have rubbed off on Chris who said he noticed the people here ARE rude and look at him funny because he doesn't comb his hair. He said when he was at the Home Despot (as he calls it) the other day he saw an employee that looked like a high schooler and he was tempted to tell her, "As soon as you graduate just get in the car and get the hell out of this town. Don't even bother to take off your cap and gown."

Now that spring is slowly making its way here, I'm beginning to see that Farmington itself isn't ugly. It has trees and streams and a lake. The trees are Japanese plum trees, similar to cherry blossom trees, and add a splash of pink to the streets. If you lean in close and smell, there's a faint hint of ume and that reminds me of home.

On the other hand, I'm still grossed out by the people here. By the way they seem so narrow-minded almost fundamentalist in their thinking, by the way such a large number of them seem to get trashed after work and end up driving around and starting fights, by the not-so-under-the-surface racism towards Native Americans. I guess I notice all of this because I'm new to the place. I can only imagine how much I didn't notice in Hawaii, how much I picked up just by being, and it was effortless.

Friday, March 25, 2005

One of my co-workers told me she heard people refer to Farmington as "Farmpit"; this may beat out "ass pit"

FARMPIT -- Today was one of those days I should have stayed home. I felt lazy and unproductive and all I wanted to do was knit. I'm making myself a mini-sweater and the front and back panels are complete. I'm making good progress on sleeve #1.

I wish I was one of those rich/creative people that could just do whatever they wanted for a living. Like today I feel like writing so I'll write. Yesterday I felt like knitting so I knit. And somehow I'd always make money.

I was very tempted to visit a fabric store so I could buy some material and do some sewing. But the hermit in me won out and I came straight home after work.

I cooked myself some angel hair spaghetti Chris was nice enough to pick up while he was here (because he knows I likes the angel hair pasta...) but I think I overcooked the noodles and since I don't have a strainer (this is completely besides the point, but I don't have a microwave either) the noodles were a bit soggy. I don't know what it is, but I cook better when I'm cooking for other people. I just don't feel the need to impress myself I guess.

Sunday, March 20, 2005

The real winner is Dunkin Donuts

FARMINGTON- Demonstrators for and against the war in Iraq took to the streets Saturday with signs and American flags. The demonstration marked the second anniversary of the beginning of the war in Iraq.

One anti-war demonstrator held a sign that read "A country cannont simultaneously prepare for and prevent war." A thoughtful and inspiring quote from famous genuis Albert Einstein, the impact of the sign was lost on motorists speeding by on Main Street, who probably got to "simul---" before passing right by.

Those supportive of the war efforts had more success with their "Honk if you support our troops" sign. Passing motorists actually obeying the speed limit began honking and this started a trend among drivers who probably didn't know what they were honking for. One of the pro-war demonstrators said they had made the signs "last minute."

The demonstration was mostly peaceful, with anti-war protesters at one point walking over to the pro-war demonstrators and offering them donuts from the Dunkin Donuts across the street. The pro-war demonstrators politely declined saying they'd already eaten.

But half an hour later, more pro-war demonstrators showed up at the site with a dozen Dunkin Donuts and a keg of coffee from Dunkin Donuts.

The demonstrators did exchange a few words, mostly civil, but no in-depth conversation was sparked and neither side was moved to change, or even question, their position. After an hour of sign waving and flag waving, they all packed up and went home ever secure in their position.

This promted the newspaper photographer, who at the time was stationed in the middle of both sides of demonstrators, to look around and comment, "I'd say the real winner in all of this is Dunkin Donuts."

For the photographer's version of events and to see a totally unrepresentative but nonetheless snort-out-of-your-nose funny picture of a war supporter, visit The Displaced New Mexican.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

This blog needs some color

So here's a photo of a little purse I whipped up with some Lamb's Pride Bulky yarn in kiwi:

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

dOrks are happy

It snowed so beautifully in Albuquerque yesterday and when I woke up this morning it was still snowing. That means icy roads. Thus I'm here instead of at work. I should seize this fortuitous free day with glee and gusto instead of wallowing in guilt because I'm not at work in Farmington.
But I do feel guilty. Thanks parents, for the guilt-ridden Asian upbringing.

The weekend has given me time to get my head back together and I no longer feel so defeated by this state...a state where men regularly wear cowboy hats and handle bar moustaches with no irony. I am still not to fond of green chile. I'd still prefer kimchi.

One of the good things about being from Hawaii is that snow still hasn't lost its charm. I couldn't resist grabbing a clump and throwing it at Chris as we were getting out of the car. And yesterday, I grabbed a handful off the porch and threw it aimlessly while giggling like a goof. Then I went and told Chris.

"I'm such a dork!" I said.

"That's ok. Dorks are happy," he replied.

And for now I am. Isn't it wonderful that life is made up of little moments?

Sunday, March 13, 2005

I hate it here and I've never been happier :o) :o) :o)

I spent the past two days actively hating Farmington. Not passively like when you don't like something and you mope around about it and cry when no one's looking. Actively. I went out of my way to drive Chris crazy by saying over and over again, "I hate Farmington. Farmington sucks."

"I don't know what to say," Chris replied. "You just keep saying you hate it and I wish I could help you but if you're just going to hate it then you hate it."

"Yeah, I hate it."

You can probably see the pattern developing here.

Today my miserable hatred expanded to include not just Farmington but the entire state of New Mexico. It goes sort of like this: I hate green chile. I hate Mexican food. I hate cowboy hats.

Finally Chris said he was afraid the next time he came to visit me I'd be t urning purple from holding my breath then he pretended to be me choking and said, "I hate New Mexico air. I'm trying not to breathe it."

And I said, "Hey, that's not such a bad idea."

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Funny guy

My new editor, I'm not quite sure what to make of him. There was a stabbing today and the photographer and I were out at the scene, unsuccessfully trying to piece together what had happened. The photographer called the editor to fill him in and told him that I'd tried to talk to some neighbors but they hadn't said much and didn't want to give their names. Then she asked if he wanted to talk to me. The editor said yes, and this conversation followed:

Me: Hello?

Editor: Hey.

Me: Hello.

Editor: Hello.

Me: Hi.

Editor: Hi.

Me: Uh, did you want to talk to me?

Editor: Yeah. But I don't want you to use my name you see....

Blatant play for sympathy

I don't want this to be another post about how homesick I am. But I keep thinking of my family and things that are familiar to me, yet so far away. I never knew places like Farmington existed outside of movies like "Erin Brokovich." Places where the Catholic Church blankets the lawn with little white crucifixes bearing names like "Timmy" and "Valerie" to commemorate all the babies -- millions, according to the Church -- murdered by abortion. Halliburton has several offices in this county and the men work hard and dirty then go to church on Sunday.

This seems like such a meats'n'potatoes town and I am used to Spam and kimchee. This is a place where the women have big 80s hair and washed out features and the men wear Wranglers and buckles. It's a fucking time warp. In Honolulu the girls almost dress like they're in L.A. and the boys wear slippahs and surf shorts and everybody has a tan or a sunburn. There's a Merle Norman cosmetics shop here, just like in Hawaii, only in Hawaii it's a fancy boutique in the Kahala Mall and over here it's behind a pair of dirty glass doors in a strip mall.

Some of these descriptions are colored by my homesickness. When I was in Hawaii, Hawaii didn't seem so great, so tropical, so perfect. And I never thought I fit in there. I was a dorky kid in high school, always wearing oversize long-sleeve T-shirts and ill-fitting jeans with my dirty sneakers when all the other girls had discovered their bodys and pushed the limits of the dress code in mid-drift and cleavage bearing tank tops. I was always at home with a nose in a book while it seemed every other teenager at my school was at the beach or at the movies or at the karaoke place. I swear, I hated Hawaii and believed with all my heart I'd fit in better on the sophisticated mainland.

But here I am, discovering what 99.9 percent of the locals that leave Hawaii discovered: They fit in in Hawaii, even if they are book worm nerds that never learned to surf or hula.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

I'm back

Guess what I got? Guess what I got? Access to my own Internet connection again. Woo hoo. Too bad I don't have anything of more substance to say to commemorate this momentous moment. I miss my family. Miss miss miss them til it hurts.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Sick in the ass pit

Guess what...I got sick again. AGAIN. It happened so suddenly. Last night I was shivering on my futon mattress sniffling into Chris' sleeping bag and fighting of chills and a fever. That's right, I don't even have a real bed to be sick and sweaty on. Funny thing is I didn't feel any hints that this was coming on. Today I feel much better but my throat is sore and my chest in congested.

About New Mexico, specifically Farmington: I don't know about this place. It's not very aesthetically pleasing and there's a high rate of cancer, possibly because oil is such a big thing here and people don't seem to be as environmentally concerned as they should be. Which leads me to my next rant: Gas in this ass pit* is $1.99! OK, I can understand paying more than $2 for gas when I lived in Hawaii (a place whose beauty I am really learning to appreciate) since everybody there pretty much accepted that we were paying more to get the stuff shipped over. But here I am in New Mexico, Farmington New Mexico, where oil is practically gushing from the land or so I've heard, and I'm still paying almost $2 for gas.

* I will try to refrain from speaking so negatively about my new home (new home, hopefully not for too long) as it is neat to be somewhere new and different. That said, it is still an ass pit. If you've been here and disagree, you've probably never been to Hawaii.