Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Let's wear costumes!!!

Yes, I know--I am vain about my blog. But I was thinking this morning, "I get dressed every day in (hopefully) something different, why not Bloggy? Bloggy wants to look good. And, too be completely honest, I wasn't very peaceful about the dots.

So, Bloggy will be dawning new clothes and accessories periodically. Don't let it scare you away; it's still Bloggy.

Speaking of wearing clothes, one of my dear friends is staying in town rather than moving to one of the original thirteen colonies and that makes me really joyous. (That didn't have anything to do with wearing clothes but I wanted a good transition.) I just wanted to make one brief remark about how happy I am that Craigery isn't moving to D.C.

Of course, I don't want to gloat in his misery of having to stay in the second most arid state of the union, but perhaps subtle phrases like bare feet and wading, costume parties, Turandot, hummus, whirling dervish, and existential quantifier will make him feel better. I know that I always run a couple of those through my head when I'm having a long day, or a brief spout of depression, and it makes me feel much much better.

Besides being an oh so charming older brother-but-not-your-brother, Craigery has many good qualities. Since lists are this year's new black, here's a Column of Craigery Qualities:

-Latin crab dancing (this is a highly technical and advanced form of Latin Ballroom and has yet to be featured on So You Think You Can Dance)

-Showing up extremely late but yet giving the impression that he's right on time and he couldn't wait to get there

-Laughing ridiculously into the phone for minutes at a time at absolutely nothing

-Noticing and complimenting great rhetoric, alliterations, and new shirts

-Becoming obsessed with inanimate objects but not feeling a bit bashful or insecure about telling people about it

-Making small talk without giving the impression that he's making small talk

-Supporting any sort of need to release the inner-child

-Good kisser (okay, I'm totally kidding about that, but I just wanted to make him gasp and HH has been begging for more DRAMA)

-Ability to make and maintain friendships with ANYONE

-Willing and gleeful to join in any spontaneous song and dance

-Okay with allowing me to describe him as "gleeful"

-Being honest enough to tell me that if I want him to read Bloggy then I have to talk about him. (Let's face it, we all like to hear our own name, but only Craigery will admit it.)

Friday, July 25, 2008

"You selfish, selfish girl."

I read an article in the newspaper that made some implications to the ultimate selfishness of blogs. Well, duh! Isn't that why we blog?

I personally blog because...(well, main reason is ProSc makes us but he never checks to see if we really are blogging; so, this is more like reasons I continue to blog)

1) I am QUEEN of my blog.
2) I can talk about pretty much whatever pleases me at the time.
3) I can be as e-lam as I want.
4) I get to nickname people various different names and they are just grateful I'm not exposing their real identity to the virtual public (even though Fuzzy Robot has a way of finding out who anyone is in the digital network. Be careful of F. Robot- she may seem harmless, but she's a stalking genius.)

Of course there are other reasons to blog but they are selfish too. Hum. So, in an attempt to add to the completer selfishness of my bloggery, here's something entirely about ME!!!

For being the youngest of five, I am naturally the most talented and beautiful. In a frightful frenzy of revenge my older siblings have tried to alter my perceived sense of self in unusual ways. Their favorite method: nicknames.

All of my nicknames and their derivatives:

Holly Berry
Sister Tips
Tian Jiemei
Sister Tian
Hollence of Arabia
Bits of Dew
Holly Rose Bud
Hai Ruo
Holly Woddle Doodle Oddle Day
Suber Baby
Waldorf (Yes, as in -Historia)

Now you understand why I am so strange.

Wikipedia has some interesting things to say about nicknames (notice that nicknames are either cruel or endearing and sometimes both; funny how those two feelings get mixed up):

"A nickname is a name of an entity or thing that is not its proper name. It may either be used instead of, or in addition to, the proper name. Not to be confused with a familiar or truncated form of the proper name, such as Bob, Bobby, Rob, Robbie, Robin, and Bert for Robert which is called a short name.
The term
hypocoristic or "pet name" is used to refer to a nickname of affection between those in love or with a close emotional bond, compared with a term of endearment. The term diminutive name refers to nicknames that convey smallness of the names,[clarify] e.g., referring to children. The distinction between the two is often blurred.
As a concept, it is distinct from both
pseudonym and stage name, and also from a title (for example, City of Fountains), although there may be overlap in these concepts.
A nickname is sometimes considered desirable, symbolising a form of acceptance, but can often be a form of ridicule."

Monday, July 21, 2008

"Where Music and Fashion is Always the Passion!"

Bought two dresses over the weekend and it's all to blame on ProSc. I actually bought more than that but I don't want others to come to false assumptions about how much money I make because it would be, in a word, false.

ProSc is to blame because he's the one that gave the assignment to go shopping twice: once really dressed up in your bling bling, and once in your grunge. The point was to see if you were treated any differently, not to actually buy two dresses. Good thing I didn't go to a car lot.

I just like to shop.

Okay, I said it. Now, stereotype me in that mass of shallow women, but keep in mind that someday you will admit it too.

The first dress is a willowy blue with an empire waist that hits me about two inches below the knee. It is so innocent and romantic. It also looks great with my new collection of gold jewelry, compliments of Little Keebler. (She got me a really great pair of gold earrings for my day of birth.)

The second is the "momo" (thanks Jer for the NY adaptation of Mormon) version of the sexy little black dress. Little Keeb bought one two, that's how great it is. It does this really cool weave on the bodice and then swoops down with lots of material in the skirt for great fun when salsa dancing. Too bad the store didn't offer complimentary men to take you salsa dancing with purchase of the dress.

Anyway, as far as the actual assignment is concerned, I received the best service at Banana Republic, on my dressed down day. I did not even dry my hair that day, and I was wearing old flip flops which the clerk complimented. Maybe she felt sorry for me in my grungy mess and decided to be extra nice, all in the name of FASHION!

Chenko and Grandma went to Sears to buy a refrigerator. (We all went and saw Mama Mia together and laughed really hard at Remington trying to sing S.O.S.- good fun.) They reported that they walked through the store for about ten minutes until they were offered help. There were about five sales associates in the appliance department, all dressed really nice. Eventually, they were offered help by a young man dressed like he worked, according to Chenko, “in the back.” He was “so nice and cute, and did not wear a wedding ring.” His name is Brad and he is now my betrothed. What joy is mine. This is just like the time Chenko thought the UPS boy was cute and fitting for Heider so she began mailing lots of packages to Dallas in hopes that UPS boy would personally deliver them to Heider's front door.

Grandma commented that the other associates probably would have helped her had she been wearing her wig.

Good weekend.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

So You Think You Can Bollywood?

NOTE: I actually wrote this about a week ago, but never posted because I couldn't get the youtube videos to download. And, I tried on two different computers at various times. Sorry. I really am working on having more graphics and pictures and the like- I really think it will increase this blog's "viewership." Heiderhead and I discussed how cool it would be to be paid to blog; therefore, leading us into a discussion on ways to tempt people to my blog. We settled on making it PG-13 rather than PG, or maybe it's G. Hum. But that would mean my life would have to get a lot more exciting. You know, physical violence, passion, kissing (for HH), and other such "adult-themes." I'll work on it.

So, now that that's been said, here's my post:

I'm so thrilled. Why? 1) I love it when something you have loved for years finally catches on with the general public. Actually, I get kind of anxious inside like people are stealing my great ideas. 2) You can't help be pleased when two of your favorite things merge. (I will have you know that I use "merge" frequently when driving, as well as "protected permitted.")

You don't have to love this; you don't even have to watch the whole thing, but give it a piece of your heart for one brief moment and if you don't start bouncing your shoulders than you really have no heart but a large metal pump that circulates your blood and might as well make friends with other mechanical people like the Tin Man. In fact, once Nigel (he's the judge with the "weird" accent) starts talking then pause it so that you can bask in the leftover nuances of Bollywood.

(insert youtube video here; if you put "SYTYCD katee and joshua bollywood" in the search bar, you'll bring it up)

It just makes it greater that it is Katee and Joshua dancing it. Yes, I do watch SYTYCD enough to know their names and spell them correctly. But, I like ProSC, just think it's good manners to spell names right.

Last week on SYTYCD, Katee and Joshua did this contemporary piece by Mia. Oh it was so good that I wanted to rat my bangs really big and pin them in a bridge over my head. Yes. This dance is good for the "do I have a metal heart" test too.

(insert other youtube video; "sytycd katee and joshua mia contemporary")

The best thing about SYTYCD is that it's a family affair at my home. Chenko and Pod love the show too. More than me because I am otherwise engaged on Wednesday nights (meaning I can't get out of my church calling) and so I watch it on YouTube. Chenko and Pod are into the live-showing. When I get home, Pod gives me an update, and it's full of "features and benefits" (education application here). He tells me the facts and then he makes his own commentary.

In order to appreciate how ridiculously crazy this is, the 'rent aspect that is, you have to understand that Pamchenko and Podly never watch TV. (Oh, that was a big fat lie on Podly's end because he's a closet Treky. Actually, he watches more than that but we just like to keep it to the classics-so we tell people he just likes Star Trek.) However, Chenko never watches TV. She's a netflix gal. Once in a while she'll slip in some Masterpiece Theater- that's why I'm such a geek.

We started watching the show because a local is one of the contestants, Thayne. Thayne choreographed a dance for us when I was on the high school Dance Company. None of us could handle it, to say the least. Too hard. So, it gives me secret pleasure when the judges tell him he wasn't great. Now, Thayne is gone, but there are still two other Utah peeps on the show, out of the original four.

Speaking of the judges, Podly and I had a vigorous discussion about the judges on SYTYCD and American Idol. What the heck does Paula mean by "pitchy" and "tonight you were truth?" How can one be the entity truth? Say flat or sharp for crying out loud.

If anything, I'm glad for the mass production of reality television that's being produced. It's nice to be reminded on a day-to-day basis that at least I'm not lame enough to sign myself up for something like that. Then again, maybe if I was on reality TV more people would read my blog. The possibilities...

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Another Boring Post- Library Session (in disguise)

So, ProSc requested that we post all the memos that we send him on our blog, or maybe I made that requirement up in my mind. Who knows? After he changed the syllabus multiple times, I got confused and so to be safe- I'm posting my "library session" assignment. If anything, I feel he is not as liberal about this blogging assignment as he originally let on.

Actually, I'm not going to post the actual memo I wrote because 1) it was scathing, and 2) it's not good to show your true colors on a blog that's being potentially read by...wait... people that already know how mean I am. Never mind, I have to come up with other reasons why I'm not posting the actual memo. Reasons yet to come...

Let me just say that I think it's cruel and unusual how the Y requires in their freshman English classes a Library Tour. Remember when you were a freshman? I do, granted it was in Before Tian time and I am now practically a fossil. (Especially in my YSA ward- come back Jer! I miss you. Who will be the Sean Connery of the ward?)

Freshman-ness is already particularly daunting. New classes, new people, new freedom, new responsibilities. There is one feeling I think we can all agree on as required in the "feelings we all dislike" list: uncertainty. That is what freshman means to me- uncertainty. (Look forward to a new post primarily designed to record "feelings we all dislike.")

It's like the first time you go to class: You are pretty confident of your skills to identify a building on campus and locate the matching room number on the door with the room number listed on your class schedule that you just printed off five minutes ago to assure absolute accuracy. You enter the room, find yourself an "average" seat, and just... wait.

However, have you ever noticed how we all sit there sheepishly, sneaking glances at each other, wondering "am I really in the right place; maybe this is a graduate level chemistry class. What if it is? Will they let me out without mocking me, or changing my blood into lithium? Is that what really happened to Wolverine? He probably never felt stupid in a class. Maybe Wolverine would date me if I had lithium blood. Hum. What should I eat for lunch?..." And the next thing you know you feel completely stupid and uncertain about yourself and the immense possibility that everyone right then could read your thoughts.

Well, that said, I'm so glad I'm not a freshman anymore, if not for anything else than I don't have to take the library tour. I bet whoever came up with the library tour started with this thought, "Let's find a way to times by about 10,435 the uncertain feelings freshmen have about themselves and compound that into 45 minutes in the second most public place on campus." THEY (meaning the uppity ups at the Y) originally wanted to do a Cougar Eat tour, but realized that the likelihood of throwing books was less than that of food. Let's face it, you throw that book and you don't know how long you have to wait on the recall list before you get it back.

Monday, July 14, 2008

No good title for this post, oh... Weekend Assignment #2

Really like this quote that was in my technical communication textbook: "truth is the view 'which is fated to be ultimately agreed to by all who investigate.'" Harvard philosopher Israel Scheffler, Technical Communication, pg. 174

Feeling a bit sad because I just wrote a long blog including the memo I wrote for ProSc and then it all got deleted when I tried to post it, even though I saved it. Hum. Blogging has not been good to me lately. (Other things have happened but I'll spare you the details, especially because I have to post my memo and it is so ridiculously boring.)

Here it goes,...again (I made it small to emphasis how much I dislike it):


TO: ProSc

DATE: July 14, 2008

SUBJECT: Weekend Assignment (interview)

The following is a summary of my interview with Viona Budge- retired Human Resource Director of the old ZCMI that was located in Orem, Utah in the University Mall. The interview took place on July 13, 2008 at her home in Mapleton, Utah. The purpose of my interview was to better introduce myself to the world of business retail.

The interview started with some basic introduction questions. Viona began her work at ZCMI in 1973, a little bit after the store had opened. She was hired on as a temp to work through the May Day Sale in the accessories department. After a few weeks, management was impressed by her professionalism and moved her into an interview with the head manager. She recalls the interview going poorly, and feeling under-qualified and under-educated. However, at the end of the interview, she made small-talk about the sparkling geode set on the manager’s desk. He was thrilled by her geological knowledge and she got the position as his secretary. She worked the switchboard and PA system.

Viona advanced her way up until she eventually landed the position as the Director of Human Resources. She then had to fight to maintain this position as more, and younger, business students applied for her job. She was good at working with people though, despite her lack of education. However, she advised me to seek specific training in computer and accounting skills as well as organizational behavior. “I hired some turkeys,” she commented with regret, “and I should have made more fuss and noise.” She added without hesitance.

I found it interesting that the one thing she replied, when I asked her what she wished she would have known before she started her career, was how lonely it was. She explained that as you climb the corporate ladder, or any work-ladder for that matter, that you have less and less friends. You can’t associate yourself with any of the particular “clicks” because that may get you into trouble with a different department or group of people. A good director, manager, or CEO has to remain objective, especially with work-related friends.

As we ended, she recommended that I set some kind of “mission” goals before I take a job. And ask myself, “is this job a stepping-stone or where I want to end up and grow in?” And then be honest with those interviewing me about what my plans are. “Some bosses are okay with a high employee-turnover rate; they suck the talent out of them and send them on.” Viona remarked. To close, I asked for any last words of advice, “when you start something, finish it,” she stated boldly.

It was most interesting to interview someone, without a college degree, work her way through the 1970’s all the way to the late 90’s. She witnessed the technology boom and also felt the pressure of needing the college degree. But it was her innate ability to work with people that qualified her, and kept her qualified. “I prayed a lot,” she admitted, “some days I was praying all day long.”

In conclusion, as far as identifying specific skills needed for future employment, this interview wasn’t very helpful. In the future, I need to interview someone in a more specific job position in book editing. I didn’t have enough time to schedule and hold an interview. Maybe next time I could interview you. However, it was most interesting from the point of view of a Human Resource Director to know what employers are thinking when they are hiring new employees.


Tian Tian

Thursday, July 10, 2008

To Eden With Love

Sometimes I think about this sculpture. I haven't figured out why but she always pops up in my mind. Maybe it's because it's Rodin. Or maybe it's because it's Eve. Hum. It's probably the combination of the two.

I feel like Rodin can be so aggressive in his work but this conveys such a sense of vulnerability that it makes me feel better about my own weaknesses. I like to think this is Eve right after she has partaken of the forbidden fruit, before she has told Adam. She's so shamed and lonely standing there. It's appropriately tragically human. She has become all human, and more so, all woman.

Can you imagine what strength it took for her to give Adam the fruit? I have no such strength. I would have hidden in my transgression, and nakedness, probably snacking on fruit. But in those brief moments, or whatever amount of time, between Eve eating the fruit and her offering it to Adam, there rests a certain amount of power; power derived from knowledge. She is so utterly fallen but packed with potential it's overwhelming.
I can't stand it. I want to be with her, talk with her. I love Eve. I love Adam too, but more so Eve. And she has had to put up with so much criticism through the centuries. So, thanks Eve, for taking one for the team.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Weekend Assignment

Ah, I did it again: I made a title for this post before actually writing. Now you're thinking, "that's a very unexciting title." Well ProSc is the manufacturer of this post and therefore title-giver. (Note- I typically don't use the term "manufacturer" outside of retail, or other business-related, contexts; but, I watched the BBC series Cranford over the weekend, along with Remington, and one of the characters used this word in a context similiar to the one I'm using, and I thought to myself, "wouldn't that be fun to try out on a 21st century audience?" The series was fab, by the way, especially if you like to keep up on the British acting elite with titles. Wouldn't it be fun to be Dame Such and Such or Sir So and So?) Once again I have written more inside the parentheses () rather than outside, thus defeating the purpose.

So, the "Weekend Assignment" was to buy a stranger a coke and then blog about it. Well, I had to adapt the assignment to my current circumstance because the Y campus doesn't sell coke except for the caffeine-free kind which I just feel would be wrong to give a stranger. Something about that just doesn't sit right with me, can't explain it. So, I settled for a Snickers candy bar. I think a snickers bar is the most generally excepted of candybars and that I couldn't go wrong, but I'm open to arugment on that. I personally (wow, I just watched five girls walk out of a classroom and open up their cell phones at exactly the same time; it was so surreal and then I reminded myself that it was 2008) enjoy a Snickers.

In my pre-op plans, I most decidedly decided to treat a retail clerk. Yep, I have a little soft-spot in my heart for all those retail clerks. After my 3+ years at the 'Roc, I feel like us start at minimum-wage, no-collar, "I do this because 'some money is better than no money' (This I Believe)", bottom of the assembly line employees of corporate America should stick together. And you know what, I don't deny my time. I feel like my years in customer service has made me a much more accepting person. And I will always leave stores 10 minutes before closing. 

Anyway, I already knew where I would make my attack: the Cougar Eat. And it was so great. I just got in line and bought pop-tarts (they're the best bang for my buck and taste buds) and a Snickers and then gave the Snickers to the clerk who had already happily rang me up. She even gave me my coins before my bills, bless her heart. (If you don't know why that is important then you obvioulsy don't pay with cash enough.) And the best part is, all the candybars where the same price, so if she doesn't like Snickers she can switch it out. Come to think of it, she did look more like a Twix kind of girl.
Whoa, this is where I got the snickers wrapper pic from:

Thursday, July 3, 2008

And the last shall become first


Whenever people tell me they are an only child, I cry for them inside. But that's because all of my siblings are GREAT, and perfect for me. I wouldn't want one more or one less. Yes, I even will keep my high school arch enemy: Bunny. (Don't let her nickname fool you; she was an evil Bunny then. You always wondered where the children book series BUNNICULA came from now didn't you?)
Bunny and I didn't always get along, considering that she is the one closest to me in age and, well, let's just say that one of my talents is wearing her clothes. Sometimes, I will think back on Bunny and my "fights"; they were more verbal than physical which can hurt a lot longer than any slug. (She did once give me a black eye, but that wasn't because we were in opposition. Rather, we were attempting our own home-Olympics SLC 2002, and there was an athletic mishap on the couples' superman couch launch. You'd think we would grow out of it, but two weeks ago we were vaulting off each other's back side into the grand kids' swimming pool. Aren't we cool aunts?).
However, Bunny and I never fight now. She willingly (and will-fully, as I typically adverb that word) gives me her clothes, buys me opera and jazz tickets for special occasions, and always wants to hang out with me (that's the best feeling). In fact, only Bunny will rent all "Remington Steele" DVDs at the local library just to fire-up an old fetish of mine and kick off the holiday in style. Yes, that's right, we're having our yearly "Fourth of July and Remington Steele" party. This is our first year.
Other people don't understand my obsession with Remington Steele, neither do I. It's just one of those things that are totally lame but yet I completely love, and I will stand by that love. Only Bunny accepts this part of me. Bunny has a great talent for knowing what she and others are good and not good at; she willfully volunteers this information too.

Bunny: "I'm a good driver."

Me: "Yes, you are a good driver, Eve."

Bunny: "You're a good driver too, Holls."

Me: (thinking to myself) "Maybe that can be one of my talents.?"

Bunny: "Hide is not good at helping clean."

Bunny also always stands up for me against the "older ones" and the 'rents. It's strange, really, how she suddenly turned and joined my side after she graduated from high school. Maybe she feels like the job to criticize me should only be fulfilled by her. And, Bunny will let you eat all the tootsie rolls in her house, even when she is on a tight budget, including the flavored ones.
Anyway, so this was originally suppose to be a post about Barrister Joe because he's really great too and sends me flowers at worky for no reason at all, but I totally went a different direction than I planned. I suppose this is a good thing. Next time I'll have my title reflect my rantings and ravings rather than the other way around. Have you ever done that?: Thought of a good title for a book, poem, essay, blog, etc. but as far as the actual writing went, well, yeah, you get the picture.