Interests:This will not be a ... "so today i did this, and then i did that, and then he said this, but i was like, no waaayyyy" kind of xanga. If you wanna kno what he said and what she said...then, ask me. Otherwise...ttyl
Lately I've been feeling social media fatigue. Yes, #firstworldproblems, but man, it feels like it's impossible to keep up, and I'm getting to a point where I just don't want to anymore. Facebook, Twitter, Youtube are already keeping me busy enough x2 between WF and personal (thank god Myspace tanked so we didn't have to keep up on that site). But now with tumblr, add on pinterest, instagrams, fancys, and every other trendy social media site/app popping up...I'm thinking enough is enough. And so, I return back to xanga...one of the earliest "social media" sites I started using, to complain. Does xanga count as social media? I'd say so, haha.
I made the above image to remind us how "simple" things used to be. Look at me, once again typing like I'm an old man. Well, if you don't recognize that window, then maybe I am to you. And if you do recognize it... yeah, we're not young teenagers anymore, haha. Shoot, we're so far removed that AIM itself has since begun shutting down. I remember how big a deal AIM was growing up. To me, this is where the internet generation really started to culturally change. IMing became the first step when reaching out to a girl, not calling. Getting a screen name was as valuable as a phone number. You could reach someone indirectly. Hours could be spent chatting to multiple people rather than being stuck on the line with one person. Passive conversation while multitasking was born. Typing skill become more dominant than writing. Running to the computer at the sound of the chime like Pavlov's dog. So much can be said about this communication shift...
And now look where we are. Everyone wants to share a video, a photo, a meme, a check-in...all the time. I'm not above this. I used AIM to its max capability back in hs and college, and I'm sure if I had fb and twitter in hs now I'd be all over that. (BTW, I can't imagine how bad hs drama must be with fb being around now. I mean, we already had bad hs drama and that was withOUT fb! But that's for a different post)
It'd be nice to simplify. Back to just one little Away Message box with a few choice quotes, links, and passive aggressive words, haha. Simplify. Ok, gtg.. gonna tweet and tumble this post out. #irony
I've always believed Tumblr may go down the road of Xanga/Livejournal. Being hot for a few years, then something new comes along, trends change and people migrate. Do you agree? Now that AIM doesn't exist, does everyone in highschool and college just use FB messenger, or is there something else? Everyone out of school uses gchat, I'm guessing high schoolers don't use gchat.
I love that most of you reading this post cant even comment because y'all don't have a xanga account. lol. Some are freaking out like, what is this strange corner of the internet I'm in right now???
I only get to come home once every couple of months for a few days at a time. My dad doesn't like this, saying that we have less and less time to be together. Therefore each time I come home, he makes me feel as though there is more and more weight to each visit. He'll reveal new stories about his past that he has never told me and give me new insight about heavier and heavier topics.
Tonight was particularly interesting because he brought out a photo album that he's never shown me before. Pictures of his family from a time that I've never seen. Until tonight I had only seen maybe 5 pictures of my grandpa (his dad) who I never got to meet, since he passed early, before I was born. But within this album were quite a few photos of him in his 20s, of when he was young with my grandma, and my dad and aunts when they were children. Decades confound to 40-some faded photos that looked like movie stills from a period movie. My mind was blown.
For some reason this particular picture of my grandpa stood out to me. He was roughly my age here. I look at this picture and I feel like I haven't done crap in my life. I see his eyes looking at me, and I can't even imagine what his eyes had seen in his time. The struggles, fears, and sacrifices he went through. And here I am, sitting comfortably at my computer. Could he have ever thought that everything he went through in his youth would eventually lead to me? Am I making him proud? Am I putting to good use all that he did so that my dad could have a better life, and then everything my dad did so that I could have an even better life? How do I honor this incredible sequence of events? I always ask myself these questions, and I think they're good for everyone to ask of themselves.
Generations of hardship and hard work have amounted to YOU. We will never fully comprehend, for we are a spoiled generation. Free to pursue our dreams and love in a way that our family before us never could have imagined. For this, make them proud. Deserve it.
This is my ye ye. My dad tells me he was one of the smartest in his village, making his way out of his extremely poor rural home through the military. He had many friends and told stories. He was exceptionally talented in calligraphy, leading to a job at the capital penning their important documents. He was a poet. And he could out drink anyone. My dad misses him very much. I really wish I could hear his stories.
When my grandma passed earlier this year, what made me the most sad and cry the most was when I realized how much of this woman I did not know. I saw on the pamphlet her birth year, "1922", a date that normally sounds like fiction or the beginning of a historical movie, but this a year she saw. I was in her life for a fraction of her time here. I thought about all the things she may have through decades ago, so important to my existence, yet I know nothing of it... such a shame. And while now it's too late, this just encourages me to talk to my parents more and hear their stories...because through this, I will be able to really understand and know them.
About 3 years ago I wrote a xanga entry following a particularly pensive night. Recent events of the previous year had lead me to a normal evening in my bedroom reflecting on things (read: people) who have come and gone in my life. I started writing and even went a little overboard by making a chart. After posting it, the response was unexpected. I mean, it was a really long and wordy entry; I didn't expect people to read it. But it got featured on xanga's front page (as if that even mattered in 2008, haha), but either way, I thought to myself that I definitely struck a chord.
What's funny is that I don't think what I wrote about was that novel of an idea, people always talk about stage of relationships. But I guess the way I broke it down and presented it made it standout. After a few days passed, being in the field that I'm in, I decided to try to turn it into a script. In one night I wrote out 19 pages of a story between a boy and girl and their journey through the chart of stages I had drawn up a few days prior. This was July 2008. And it sat for one year, then another. Each time other Wong Fu work would take priority, and each summer I told myself, ok no really, I'm making time to do this. But it never happened. Finally last Dec I made it final, I would force the time in to make this at the beginning of 2011.
Finally this past March, Wes and Ted worked w/ me for a few days to shoot the 2.5 yr old script (some slight edits thru that period of time). Cathy Nguyen was so sweet and awesome to take her time to play the girl, and last month I finally finished and released it online.
The response was totally unexpected. Without sounding cocky, I knew that w/ our current subscriber/support base, that the short would eventually reach at least 1 million views, but to see it reach that after 1 day, I was totally shocked. Then over the weekend it hit 3 million. In a week, 5 million views. All of us couldn't believe that a 16 minute drama short film could reach those numbers on YT. I mean, YT is known for 1 min videos w/ cats and crotch hits. And again, I was amazed.
I found it fitting that I come back to xanga, where it started, to update and respond. It's scary to think that millions of people out there have received my message and opinion of relationships. Sorta makes me scared. We got emails saying that it really harmed their relationships, while other said it saved theirs. Some 50 yr olds and parents sent messages saying how even they were affected. Even my parents (who do watch our videos) were surprised to get this peek into my head.
Hopefully more positive came out of this piece than negative. As I've always said from the beginning, I wanted to make this video, not to condemn everyone's relationships to failure...but to let people know, that if it happens to not work out in the end, you're not alone, at all. Many people have been there, and there is still some positivity to take from a failed relationship, even if it takes time. (Also, I wrote this as someone in his mid-20s. I don't think 14 yr olds will really see relationships the way I do, so there's definitely going to be some misinterpretations of the video, lol.) And beyond bfs and gfs, the message applies to friends as well. We have so many people in our lives who were so close to us for some period of time, but because life happens, we drift. It doesn't mean those friends aren't special anymore.
If you haven't seen it yet, here it is below. "Strangers, again". And for further commentary on the short film itself, read it here.
This video is dedicated to those strangers in my life. To you, you, you, and you. I still think back often on when our paths were one, and I'm thankful. And I hope where you are (some further than others) that you are thankful too.
So much has happened in 10 years. I went from an underclassmen in high school, to a young adult working and worrying about his IRA. 10 years ago, Backstreet Boys and Britney were at their peak. Pokemon had JUST started to get popular. "Friends" was ruling primetime TV, internet was owned by AOL (dialup), and I had just gotten a Playstation.. 1. (I don't care if this dates me. I'm extremely proud of the time period I experienced my adolescence in.)
10 years ago I just started playing around with my family's camcorder. I was still 2 years away from driving, I just started making Asian friends in school, and I had never had a girl friend.
And now, 9 journals and hundreds of pages later, I've filled in 10 years with...life. Nothing is the same, (as it shouldn't be), and what occurred in all the earlier pages feel more and more distant, and more and more like stories of "someone", removed from myself. Though, I know it was me, at some place and time, writing (much neater back then unfortunately) my experiences and emotions down. And all these have formed and shaped who I am at this moment, typing.
What can I say as someone who has carefully documented my last 10 years of emotions and events?
Pain gives great potential for you to do amazing things.
Friends come and go, but it doesn't make any of them less valuable while they were with you.
The same way you embrace joyful and happy moments...embrace the suffering and difficult moments too.
Most of the things that we think are a "big deal" in our daily lives, probably are not.
Our parents are a LOT smarter than we thought.
Everyone should experience heartbreak at some point. I believe it's healthy and part of growing up.
Years really do get shorter and shorter, don't waste them.
..and contrary to #7... Take your time to figure out yourself and life. There is pressure, but remember #4.
I look forward to what the next 10 years will teach me.
The past few years I would say that I have probably flown a lot more than the average person. Usually because of tours to different parts of the country, or even short trips to visit home, I've become quite familiar with being on airplanes. And after being on so many flights, I've noticed something...during take off, most of the heads in the plane turn towards a window to look out. Young or old, cool guy or geeky girl...when the plane is going up, usually people are peering out the little oval of plexiglass to see themselves lift off from the ground, and the buildings and roads get smaller and smaller. They always look. And I believe this is because humans inherently desire to wonder.
Airplanes taking off is a perfect example to prove this. I mean, how often do we get to travel hundreds of miles an hour and actually elevate thousands of feet into the air. Not often. How often do we get to look at skyscrapers like they're toys, or see cities and mountain ranges like little cracks and bumps on the Earth. Rarely. And so, when we get the opportunity to actually experience these things, we peek, we lean over our seats, we push our face against the glass, just to catch a glimpse. Because we're curious, because we wonder.
Usually though, as we get older, we suppress this desire to explore, to see new things. Sometimes it's because we try to act like we're above it, only kids get excited over a window seat. Other times it's because pressures and stress from work, family, LIFE bring us down and make us two tired to even open our eyes. I've experienced both. But I think the plane is the one most common place, where everyone can't hide it or fight it... we want to see the view from 30,000 ft. We want to feel free, flying through a cloud. And that's when our inherent desire to wonder is exposed.
And this is why, despite the fact that I've been on countless plane rides...I'll still opt for a window seat, and I'll still snap pictures, even though I've seen the same views and sunsets so many times. Simply because...dude, c'mon it's cool!
Leaving the Bay. I see this the most, and I still always find it awesome.