Web Sites – Plan or Just Do It?

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So, in the recent year, I’ve been following the growth of a site – AlternationsNeeded, which spawned FitReview, which has spawned Hemmed.com – all focusing on petite fashion. One of my friends and I had an idea but we’re in the planning and planning stages, and while we’ve been planning, they’ve already pulled out two sites.

In your opinion, is it better to just “do it”? or better to draw up a business plan? (Which is what I we’ve been busy doing.) But I’m wondering if it’s better after months of discussion, to just throw it into the water and see what comes of it instead of drawing up a business plan? Granted, we still need to draw up how to market it, which is our biggest stumbling block, as neither of us are really in the fashion community. Maybe it’s time to just get our feet wet.

What do you think?

I’ve always wanted to create a few other web sites, but the problem is – the idea just isn’t there. Have you ever thought of doing something for fun that might lead to monetizing?

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If you knew you were going to die in 20 days, what would change?

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Wow, what a deep question that got sent out by the Daily WordPress not too long ago. I think if I knew I was going to die in 20 days, I’m not sure I would tell anyone. People would spend far too long feeling sorry for me, or mourning my death and that would just be wasted time. If I knew for sure that I was going to die in 20 days, I’d probably withdraw all my money and somehow set up funds for my parents and my brother, and then leave whatever is left to a certain charity.

I’d go visit my brother, hang out with my parents, call each of my friends just to say hi (and bye) one last time. I’d try not to dwell on my death and go out and enjoy my life – spend it on all the things that I think would offer a life experience. Go skydiving, go skiing, as long as those things were accessible and close to home. Take long walks by the ocean. Volunteer one of those days. Be with people, with nature, and just to enjoy the last days of my life by experiencing the life around me one last time. I wouldn’t be afraid to stand up for myself and to say whatever came into my mind because well, I’m going anyway.

Oh, and of course I forgot, but I’d quit my job so I’d have the time to do all those things. One of my favorite movies “Last Holiday”, explores the questions a bit – where the main character of Georgia thinks she’s got only a few more weeks left to live and she takes all her life savings out to fulfill her lifelong dream. Always timid and shy, she grows a back bone and stands up for herself, enjoys what she eats and finally takes a few risks to enjoy the life around her. I’d like to think that’s what I’d do similarly as well, except for the fact that I’m no cooking aficionado.

I imagine people would grow to be suspicious of me and my actions, but I really would try to hide it for as long as I could. It’s actually not a question I think of, and really hard to say until I’m actually at that point.

What would change for you?

What occupation did you want as a child?

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When I was younger, for the longest time, I can remember wanting to be a school teacher. As a self-proclaimed nose-in-the-book kid, I would pretend to be a librarian at times, and other times I would pretend to “grade” a sheet of paper, and then deciding whether or not it would deserve a “star” or some sort of sticker. Perhaps I liked the idea of telling people what to do. Hehehe….

It was some time around the age of 12 or 11 that that idea changed for me, upon hearing the news of how a teacher was poisoned by their student. The student had placed some chemical in her drink, or something like that. That made me decide I did not want to risk my life at the hands of the students I was teaching. Silly if you think about it, but hey, I was 12. If it were common, teachers would be dropping like flies left and right.

The other occupation I wanted to be when I reached high school was to be a psychiatrist. I did a lot of mediation in junior high, trying to calm the waves and fights between friends and even people I wasn’t all that well acquainted. (Had I known that a such thing called a mediator existed, I would have thought that would have been a more suitable job…). I also enjoyed analyzing people, helping people out with their problems. This spilled over into high school. Taking psychology was fairly challenging as I remember, but it didn’t deter me from wanting to become a psychiatrist. Nope, it wasn’t until my biology class was brought into OHSU and had the opportunity to look at cadavers and the person there was saying that all medical students had to be able to dissect a cadaver in the first year of training that I freaked and decided that perhaps psychiatry wasn’t for me after all. Psychologists didn’t make enough money for me to decide it was worth it.

Looking back, I think I would have been overwhelmed by being a teacher. Then again, perhaps younger kids would have been more fun, but looking at how quickly young kids grow up, I’m not sure I would have enjoyed it as much as I would have thought I would. Having tutored a bit in junior high and volunteering with kids and helping them improve their reading skills, teaching can be a very satisfactory experience albeit frustrating along the way. As for psychiatry, I don’t think I would have difficulty prescribing medicine for others, but listening to people’s problems – which were at one time, my forte, is definitely not my forte anymore. I can no longer handle listening to them for hours on end. I suspect their problems would end up being my problems, therefore giving me stress and finding it to difficult to sleep on most evenings. Then again, it would probably give me the perspective that I have little to no problems if I were to listen to everyone’s mental issues for the rest of my life. It would be satisfying, but potentially dangerous for the psyche.

I do think that teaching probably would have been more suitable than psychiatry would have been for me. It would have allowed me to be a bit more creative, since my strong suits used to be math and art, of which I use little of these days. (More the art than the math.)

What did you want to be when you were a child?

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Do you prefer talking or texting?

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This question is something I often mention when conversing with my friends. Largely this depends on the topic and how busy I am. Ultimately, I’m pretty much an introvert and rarely am bored due to the amount of things I assign myself. The world is my oyster after all, and life offers a never ending string of opportunities to learn and grow that I often get restless when idling (unless I’m sitting in the movie theatre watching movies). Because of this, I much prefer texting when it’s just to convey the little things – appointments, an easy question, an easy answer. However, if one of my friends is trying to describe how she or he feels, or when the conversation requires more than just a few messages to get one’s point or emotion across, I much prefer talking. I mean, people who ask each other out on a date over text and even worse, those who break up over text should go take a few classes of how to be more personable, and learning about how to be successful with their lives, because I’m not sure if they will ever be successful if they value other people so low (at least in my humble cheap opinion.)

At the end of the day, I much prefer conversing with my friends and talking to them face-to-face. That’s the key here. I don’t enjoy talking over the phone, unless it’s the only method I have to communicate with them. I always feel as though time just disappears when I’m on the phone, but that’s partially my own problem since I have so many things I feel like I constantly have to do.

So the short answer is that basically talking is preferable when face to face and for more serious conversations and banter, but texting when it’s to convey a short comment, question or thought.

What about you?

If you could bring one fictional character to life for a day, who would you choose?

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The first person that popped into my mind was Anne of Green Gables. As a child, I must have read the books countless times, and watched the famed Anne of Green Gables film (which starred Megan Follows). It would be an odd experience, running into Anne of Green Gables in her straw hat and brown grubs in modern day North America. I think she’d be a delight to spend a day with. It would have been a lot easier saying Eeyore or Mickey Mouse, or even Remy from Ratatouille (I mean, who wouldn’t love the idea of having a rat cook for them? Okay… not everyone.) But I’m not sure I would get much out of Eeyore or Mickey except repeating to myself how cute they were.

Anne Shirley would surely drive me nuts – but I suppose it would depend on which Anne I was talking to – from which book. I suspect that I would most like to meet her when she’s at the teaching school – still full of sprite, but grown up from her days of being a bit, well, ridiculous, as Matilda called her.

So, who would you choose if you could bring one fictional character to life for a day? Honestly, there are so many choices, but since Anne was the first person that popped into my head, Anne it will be :)

Tossing items: minimizing!

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Item #1: White T-shirt Tank, aka listed as ‘Sexy women’s T-shirt dress #JG162white’
Reason to Toss/Donate/Sell: I decided to brave buying from these Hong Kong sellers from ebay selling the cutest Asian clothes online April last year. I thought the items would be more petite friendly (they are) but the sizing varied so much from item to item I would definitely not recommend it as it’s just a hassle to have to make returns back to Hong Kong. This one was a definite miss for me. (The other items I returned – could barely fit and it was just odd!) Too big (as you can see, not very fitted). Too see through, and all in all, not very practical. I never wore it once, and I don’t see myself ever finding a reason to wear it. (I’m almost embarrassed to show these pictures!)

Item #2: Victoria Secret’s Drop-Waist Belted Wool Coat, XS
Reason to Toss/Donate/Sell: Currently just $68, I love the look of this jacket. I bought it several years ago, but despite it being XS (which I can usually fit, especially if it’s a jacket), it’s too big on me. I think that’s true of almost all of Victoria Secret’s clothing – way too big. If it weren’t for the belt, it would look as though I was wearing a big poncho. Because of how much extra “belt pullage” I have to do, there is a lot more extra fabric that comes up. Also, even though white is a beautiful color (it’s more like ivory), it’s easy to get all sorts of stains and lint and fur on it. The coat is very heavy, and I love all the details (I like the button in the center on the back, and the button cuff on the sleeves – hence why I kept it even though it’s clearly too large), but it’s just not very practical in Southern California. I haven’t decided whether or not to sell or donate this one yet, as it needs to be dry cleaned if I end up selling it.

Other Items:
#4. I bought this Guess hand purse when I was in college and loved it back then. I’m still on the fence on keeping it, but I haven’t really used it much in years. I carry so much with me now a days it doesn’t make any sense for me to have such a rigid small purse. Not very versatile either, even though it is really well made. It’ll probably find itself on ebay.
#5. Charlotte Purse wallet. I love the idea of a small flat wallet, but I carry a lot of coins with me, as well as cards, and of course, it being Charlotte Russe, isn’t of the best quality, so the wallet will start bulging with too many items in it, and the pockets too rigid. I did use it pretty good for most of the year, but I’ve put this on the donate block.
#6. Naturalizer Prissy Sandals. As a bridesmaid for my brother’s wedding, I had to wear these sandals. I was hopeful they would be comfortable after all the positive reviews, but after testing them out at work, and then wearing them at the wedding, the straps began to dig into my foot. The same was said by the other bridesmaids. So, after wearing these a couple of times, I think I will try to find another home for these shoes.

I read a great tip once of how to figure out (with not much thinking or emotional thinking) which clothes to toss and clean out of the closet (of which I have yet to do.) Every time you have washed and worn an item, you put the hanger facing the opposite direction (for example, inwards) than those items sitting in the closet unworn/unused for a long time. After six months to a year (or whatever time period you think is long enough), go through those hangers that are facing outwards, and simply donate those items. Of course that would exclude special occasion dresses. I thought that was an excellent idea. People have even used separate closets as an idea, but I don’t have that many closets… :)

Any items you will be ridding of? What metric do you use to sift through to clear your closet?

Remove/Donate An Item a Day

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So, anyone who knows me, thinks that I’m always cleaning. (I’m not). I just say I need to clean, then I spend just a few moments focusing on one spot. I just yearn for a spotless, well designed room (the former of which is attainable, the latter not so much, given my heavy oak furniture). One of my favorite sites to visit is UnClutterer. I even have a simplicity blog with a friend (of which has not been touched in the last year or so, and I’d like to revive it, and crosspost it with my personal blog, and when suitable, my style blog as a “unclogging” of sorts journey.). As I was browsing the comments for DailyPost the other day, I came across someone who was trying to remove/donate one thing in their collection to contribute to simplifying their lives and their spaces a nd documented all the things they got rid of. I love the idea, so I’m going to try to do the same thing. Of course, I may not post everyday, but hopefully will show what I got rid of :)

Post A Week Challenge and other Challenges

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I came across an interesting tweet today about blogging better, and I came across this challenge – of either posting once a week or posting once a day. I decided to opt for posting once a week, because I post my movie reviews on ReelNerdChick.com and I’m really lazy as it is! There are some great topics at DailyPost that I will attempt to use.

Also, while browsing about how to blog better, I came across this challenge, of posting a photo weekly challenge – I challenge my photog friends to participate. You don’t necessarily have to post it publicly, but share with me! This week’s challenge apparently is “Boundaries”.

And one more challenge – it seems like more “life” like challenges. The latest is paying attention to your sense of hearing for that day.
A Challenge A Day

…now, off to eat some ricecake!

Moved Movie Stuff to -> ReelNerdChick.com; P365

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Since my personal blog was filling up with posts on movie reviews, and that I was felt confined with how much I could post in terms of movies as well on my blog, I decided to get a separate domain for all my movie related stuff, and then I can expand a bit more on other topics here. Please bookmark or add it to your feed!: http://reelnerdchick.com

It’s still a work in progress, so please bear with me as it grows a bit and expands! (Though the procrastinator in me might take longer in doing so :) )

I also re-started my Project 365 pictures, but those are strictly for friends only (hoping you guys comment). The site requires a password, so if you’re interested, I’ll let you know what the password is. All my other links can be found to the right under ‘reflections’ … if you get lost in the future ^_^


Jay Chou blowing my socks off at the LA Sports Arena – January 8, 2011

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This past weekend, I got the opportunity to watch one of my favorite musical artists perform. I don’t go to concerts very often and rarely am I willing to pay money to listen to singers perform except for a very select few artists. Jay Chou falls into the “select” few. I drove up to LA from San Diego and met up with one of my really good friends who is also a fellow Jay Chou fan and has been following Jay longer than I have.

There are many things I love about Jay, but one of the things I respect and love most about him is how meaningful and deep his lyrics are (in addition to the amazing compositions of those songs with absolutely wonderful melodies which is his strong suit). My mandarin is definitely not very strong, but I can understand his message and the passion that comes through with his songs. Don’t ask me which one is my favorite, because once I start, I may not stop in giving you an answer :) For those who are unfamiliar with Jay, he is a huge mega star from Taiwan, who is not only a singer, but the most amazing composer, pianist, rapper, and actor. In addition to playing the piano, he can also play the cello, the Chinese flute and zither, guitar and seems to be accumulating more talents throughout the years. He is currently trying to make his first Hollywood breakthrough with his debut as Kato in The Green Hornet, which I hope will be very successful (because I am a bit biased).

I haven’t really been able to listen to music much in the past year due to personal issues that would make me cry while listening to them. Also, I find Jay’s slow songs melancholic. So when his new cd was released, since I didn’t want to wallow in self pity or sadness, I didn’t really listen to the songs except for the very first time (though this was months after its release). Given that, I wasn’t sure how I would react when at the concert – if I would start to tear up (… I only did once, in Tornado, which is one of my absolute favorites, if not depressing as heck). Jay sung some of his songs from his latest Era cd, but he sung plenty of oldies and goodies with a good variety of upbeat songs (including one of my favorites from his last cd, 魔術先生 “Mr. Magic”) and slow ones.

The concert started off with a bang, with 4D effects, of a small ball of light that becomes Jay playing the guitar in the center of the dark arena. After a slow build up, fireworks went off and you could see Jay standing in the center, very dramatically, starting off with his first song.

Courtesy of Brian Y.

Throughout the concert, as one would expect, Jay showed off his various talents, from dancing, to a magic trick, with a bit of beatboxing (which knocked my socks off), and of course, a segment where he played piano (with an incredibly cool design I might add – it was white and looked very futuristic). He improvised “Flight of the Bumblebee” and put on a different twist to “Super Mario Bros”, both of which segued into two of his songs. The whole concert had a very “tech-y” feel, all of which highlighted his singing. He had several guests too off of his record label, including Cindy Yen. The duet was nice though, despite my not being fond of Cindy all that much.

One of my absolute favorite songs “Fragrant Rice” or (Dao Xiang 稻香), turned out to be the best clip I managed to grab. In the middle of his performance, he tells those that when they are working or studying abroad and miss home, to listen to this song. In general, it’s just an incredibly uplifting song, and will help those that are going through a difficult time in their life to try and keep things in perspective, that you can always go and think of home.
My Video:

Translation of Dao Xiang

My favorite segment that didn’t include him singing was the set of video clips he put together as his way to thank his fans throughout the years – those that were with him from the beginning or joined at some point in the past decade. It showed important firsts for him – first song, first movie, first directorial debut, and now his first Hollywood debut in addition to important roles and songs that he was a part of. Jay survived the many ups and downs in the last ten years, and he will continue to fight because he is Jay Chou. I was rather moved by this segment and thought it was really well done.

Jay had about three encores, and here is ~the setlist he did (not positive on the order):
Dragon Rider, 龍戰騎士 Lóng Zhàn Qí Shì (From: Capricorn, 2008)
The Era, 跨時代 Kuà Shí Daì (From: The Era, 2010)
Snake Dance, 蛇舞 Shé Wŭ, Featuring Lara Veronin (From: Capricorn, 2008)
Love in B.C. 愛在西元前 Ài Zài Xī Yuán Qián (From: Fantasy, 2001)
I’m Not Worthy, 我不配 Wǒ Bú Pèi (From: On the Run, 2007)
Hip-Hop Stewardess, 嘻哈空姐 Xī Hā Kōng Jiě (From: The Era, 2010)
William’s Castle, 威廉古堡 Wēi Lián Gǔ Bǎo (From: Fantasy, 2001)
Mr. Magic, 魔術先生 Mó Shù Xiān Shèng (From: Capricorn, 2008)
Black Humour, 黑色幽默 Hēi Sè Yōu Mò) with Cindy Yen (From: Jay, 2000)
Fragrant Rice, 稻香 Dào Xiāng (From: Capricorn, 2008)
Sunshine Homeboy, 陽光宅男 Yáng Guāng Zhái Nán (From: On the Run, 2007)
Flight of the Bumblebee mix into
Tornado, 龍捲風 Lóng Juǎn Fēng (From: Jay, 2000)
Super Mario mix on the piano into
Fireworks Cool Easily, 煙花易冷 Yān Huā Yì Lěng (From: The Era, 2010)
Free Tutorial Video, 免費教學錄影帶 Miǎn Feì Jiāo Xué Lù Yīng Dài (From: The Era, 2010)
Time Machine, 時光機 Shí Guāng Jī (From: Capricorn, 2008)
Dad, I’m Back, 爸,我回來了 Bà, Wǒ Huí Lái Le (From: Fantasy, 2001)
Simple Love, 簡單愛 Jiǎn Dān Ài (From: Fantasy, 2001)
In the Name of the Father, 以父之名 Yǐ Fù Zhī Míng (From: Ye Hui Mei, 2003)
Can’t Utter a Word, 開不了口 Kāi Bù Liǎo Kǒu (From: Fantasy, 2001)

Give Me the Time of a Song, 給我一首歌的時間 Gěi Wǒ Yì Shǒu Gē Dè Shí Jiān (with beatboxing in the middle – so cool :P )
East Wind Breaks, 東風破 Dōng Fēng Pò (From: Ye Hui Mei, 2003)
Hero, 周大俠, Zhou da xia (From: Kung Fu Dunk)
Rooftop, 屋頂 Wu Ding with Lara
Nunchucks, 雙截棍 Shuāng Jié Gùn (From: Fantasy, 2001)

I liked that the mixes of the song sounded so different than it was on the CD, and it was clear that Jay was definitely not lip syncing due to all the improvisations and sometimes he just wouldn’t sing a few of the lyrics. It’s strange, listening to the concert again on youtube, I noticed that he sounded sometimes out of tune (in a few places), but from where I was sitting, it sounded mostly perfect. I think it’s a fault of the device recording it. Jay sounds stronger live than on those recordings.

Courtesy of Brian Y.

There was a special point in the concert where he used some sort of projection device so it seemed 4D. It is really hard to describe, but it was fantastic. It would seem like he was there, but not, and then the projection would change, the “windows would flip around”, and there he was, inside, singing. Very creative, all around. I totally loved the bits where he performed using one of his awesome skills – one song with the use of a Chinese flute, another with his guitar, and of course, the improvisations on the piano. Plus, he even used his nunchucks! I became a bigger fan of Jay that night, and I didn’t think at that point that was possible.

The last time Jay graced LA with his performances was 2007. This year I wasn’t sure if I was willing to pay the crazy price points and gave some thought about it before I finally decided to go for it. Well, having said that, I will say that in the future, I won’t be thinking twice before purchasing tickets for a Jay Chou concert (unless I’m broke :P ) He was an absolute JOY to watch in concert, and though I suck at reading chinese and singing chinese, I had a damn good time.

Flight of the Bumblebee (totally awesome) into Tornado:

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