April Showers…

M

ay bring May flowers to some, but to me they bring on the start of allergy season. I sucks, I tell ya’, totally sucks. The pollen in the air is thick and every orifice in my body is a waiting receptacle for these nasty things. It is killing me…

In March, when some of the tree pollen was increasing, I was deal with it. But Since the April showers of a week ago, the grass pollen has flourished and it is attacking me without mercy. My eyes itch, my nose is stuffed up and my throat is soar. I am losing sleep… literally. I can’t breathe so I wake up from lack of oxygen. Since I am forced to breathe through my mouth, my throat is dry and irritable and I am convinced that the pollen is having a picnic somewhere past my tonsils. I suppose my body is reacting to this infestation of pollen and I have had a slight fever for the past few days. And probably as an additional freebie, I have a headache. I am living in hell, right now. I had all these papers to grade this past weekend–82 to be exact–but couldn’t focus because my body was going bonkers.

Will someone shoot me? No wait, that was E’s line I think…

I’ve tried over the counter medicines, but they either make me drowsy or they make my heart race. I guess the non-drowsy meds like Claritin contain some kind of stimulant, but my body is super-sensitive to such drugs. My heart beat rises and my fingertips get numb. Kinda scary. This happens I have one too many cups of coffee. It would probably happen if I took those diet drugs as well. No stimulants for me…

Anyway, each morning I check weather.com to see the pollen levels for my area and groan to see that both tree and grass pollen are present now. Yesterday, I went to school thinking I could tough it out, but I was wrong. By the time I got home, I was a mess. Couldn’t breathe. Couldn’t see. Nothing. So today, I came to school in my mask. I also wear a baseball cap. People are staring at me, and I wonder if they think I just robbed a bank. M laughs, saying I look like the Morinaga Man, the guy who poisoned some caramel candy in Japan. He too wore sunglasses, a baseball cap and a mask.

*sigh*

But I know this will allow me to breathe better when I get home. So I will put up with (the perceived) slights. I swear, this is killing me.

April Showers…

M

ay bring May flowers to some, but to me they bring on the start of allergy season. I sucks, I tell ya’, totally sucks. The pollen in the air is thick and every orifice in my body is a waiting receptacle for these nasty things. It is killing me…

In March, when some of the tree pollen was increasing, I was deal with it. But Since the April showers of a week ago, the grass pollen has flourished and it is attacking me without mercy. My eyes itch, my nose is stuffed up and my throat is soar. I am losing sleep… literally. I can’t breathe so I wake up from lack of oxygen. Since I am forced to breathe through my mouth, my throat is dry and irritable and I am convinced that the pollen is having a picnic somewhere past my tonsils. I suppose my body is reacting to this infestation of pollen and I have had a slight fever for the past few days. And probably as an additional freebie, I have a headache. I am living in hell, right now. I had all these papers to grade this past weekend–82 to be exact–but couldn’t focus because my body was going bonkers.

Will someone shoot me? No wait, that was E’s line I think…

I’ve tried over the counter medicines, but they either make me drowsy or they make my heart race. I guess the non-drowsy meds like Claritin contain some kind of stimulant, but my body is super-sensitive to such drugs. My heart beat rises and my fingertips get numb. Kinda scary. This happens I have one too many cups of coffee. It would probably happen if I took those diet drugs as well. No stimulants for me…

Anyway, each morning I check weather.com to see the pollen levels for my area and groan to see that both tree and grass pollen are present now. Yesterday, I went to school thinking I could tough it out, but I was wrong. By the time I got home, I was a mess. Couldn’t breathe. Couldn’t see. Nothing. So today, I came to school in my mask. I also wear a baseball cap. People are staring at me, and I wonder if they think I just robbed a bank. M laughs, saying I look like the Morinaga Man, the guy who poisoned some caramel candy in Japan. He too wore sunglasses, a baseball cap and a mask.

*sigh*

But I know this will allow me to breathe better when I get home. So I will put up with (the perceived) slights. I swear, this is killing me.

Don’t You Think?

B

eing old(er) suggests more experience. And at 50, I have had my share of experiences. Some of it good, lots of it bad, all of it learning. Of course, that doesn’t mean I’ve learned my lesson well. I have bumbled my way through a number of bad experiences, some I have repeated a few times. As you might imagine, all these experiences fall within the very narrow scope of an Asian American male, so I should be the last guy to give anyone advice, don’t you think?

Still, some people come to me for advice. I have to tell them that I don’t know the answer, as most of the issues fall within the very narrow scope of their individual lives. The best thing I do is ask questions. As an academic, this is one of the few things I do well. So when a student comes to me with a question–What should I do when I graduate? How do I tell this girl I like her? How do I get this boy off my back?–I usually start by asking questions about their concerns: How do you really feel about it? How badly do you want to do whatever it is you want to do? Fortunately for me, the person will usually come up with his own answer, and I will look like a genius… which I’m not. Well, maybe just a little, not because I give advice, but because I don’t. People really have to take care of their own shit, don’t you think?

Advice seekers are not limited to my students. I get a few inquiries here as well, such as the following

Hey Onigiriman, could you please advise me on the old-fashioned (proper) form/method of dating. I recently went on a blind date with a girl and am interested in getting to know her better. I was brought up in a conservative household but with the dynamic area of dating I forget what is and should be proper? Thanks!

Posted 7/26/2005 at 11:36 PM by Cboy918

First, sorry to be so late, like eight months after your blind date. I meant to write this earlier, but i never got around to it. And besides, what the heck do you mean by old-fashioned? Are you suggesting I’m an old fart? Hrumph! Well, perhaps I am–ok, ok, I know that I am. Anyway, what was the question? Oh yeah… The proper form of dating…

I didn’t know if there is a proper” form. I presume you mean how to act, right? Some gys will take flowers, go to the best restaurants, whatever. These are nice, but behavior, I think, is more crucial. But we are all different. What one guy can do, another guy can’t. What one girl will accept as funny, another would consider an insult. The variables are too great. For example… hmm… let’s see… um… I was actually quite a flirt. I might be considered a flirt even now by some, but it has nothing to do with the words or the lines. It’s the attitude… and practice. I’ve been doing it for a long time, and so what I can get away with may not be so easy for others. But this is a topic for another post, I think.

There is one principle, however, that I try to abide by–I emphasize that this is something I TRY to do, because I am such a dork sometimes that I forget my own principle. Be that as it may, the one thing I always try to do is show respect. I respect her opinion, her ideas, her words, her values, and of course her body. I like to talk–God knows I like to talk–but I also listen. If she offers an opinion, I don’t toss it off, even if–particularly if–I don’t agree with it. I mean, it’s okay to disagree, but I don’t treat it as if it were useless discourse. I will ask her about it, probe her more, ask her to explain her position–politely, of course. I don’t force my opinion or values onto her, and I don’t talk about it so much either, unless she actually asks me. I sometimes catch myself talking too much when it’s too late–she’s either rolling her eyes already or looking right through me at the wall behind me.

Finally, I don’t touch her unless I am absolutely positive it’s okay to do so. I won’t hold her hands, unless she extends it for me to grab, like when we’re getting out of a cab. If she doesn’t mind my touch, she’ll squeeze my hand or arm a bit when she wants to emphasize a point; she’ll lean into me when she laughs, she’ll make an effort to sit next to me when we are in a group. She’ll signal something. The exception, of course, is “the handshake.” To me, this has always been the kiss of death. Been great talking to ya’. Please understand that this is the most intimate you’ll ever get with me. Brrrrrrrr.

One other thing. I always try to be a gentleman. Yes, this is the age of equality. Men and women are equal. But since you asked me, and I AM old-fashioned, I will tell you that while men and women are equals, we are not the same, we are not identical. I hold open doors for the woman I am with. For M, I will open and shut the car door for her. She often opens the door herself once I park the car, but I will make every effort to shoot to the other side and open it for her. At restaurants, movie theaters, when we enter the house, it is always ladies first. Once, we were in DC on New Year’s Eve, and it was frosty. M wore a coat, but it wasn’t warm enough for her, so I pealed off mine to cover her. She looked nice and toasty. Unfortunately, certain parts of my anatomy still do not function properly to this day… just kidding. The bottom line is that you must be willing to do ANYTHING for her. And it starts with the dating and continues for as long as you are with her. I REFUSE to have someone talk behind my back about what a lout I was. I mean, holding a door open. How hard is that? I think I would look pretty pathetic if I complained that it was too much trouble. I’m sure to get a lot of crap from “Today’s women”, but I’m sorry, I’m old fashioned. So sue me.

In any event, these are the principles I try to follow even today. But these are my values, and I would never suggest that you should do the same. But there are worse things you could do than being respectful and gentlemanly toward your date, don’t you think?

Don’t You Think?

B

eing old(er) suggests more experience. And at 50, I have had my share of experiences. Some of it good, lots of it bad, all of it learning. Of course, that doesn’t mean I’ve learned my lesson well. I have bumbled my way through a number of bad experiences, some I have repeated a few times. As you might imagine, all these experiences fall within the very narrow scope of an Asian American male, so I should be the last guy to give anyone advice, don’t you think?

Still, some people come to me for advice. I have to tell them that I don’t know the answer, as most of the issues fall within the very narrow scope of their individual lives. The best thing I do is ask questions. As an academic, this is one of the few things I do well. So when a student comes to me with a question–What should I do when I graduate? How do I tell this girl I like her? How do I get this boy off my back?–I usually start by asking questions about their concerns: How do you really feel about it? How badly do you want to do whatever it is you want to do? Fortunately for me, the person will usually come up with his own answer, and I will look like a genius… which I’m not. Well, maybe just a little, not because I give advice, but because I don’t. People really have to take care of their own shit, don’t you think?

Advice seekers are not limited to my students. I get a few inquiries here as well, such as the following

Hey Onigiriman, could you please advise me on the old-fashioned (proper) form/method of dating. I recently went on a blind date with a girl and am interested in getting to know her better. I was brought up in a conservative household but with the dynamic area of dating I forget what is and should be proper? Thanks!

Posted 7/26/2005 at 11:36 PM by Cboy918

First, sorry to be so late, like eight months after your blind date. I meant to write this earlier, but i never got around to it. And besides, what the heck do you mean by old-fashioned? Are you suggesting I’m an old fart? Hrumph! Well, perhaps I am–ok, ok, I know that I am. Anyway, what was the question? Oh yeah… The proper form of dating…

I didn’t know if there is a proper” form. I presume you mean how to act, right? Some gys will take flowers, go to the best restaurants, whatever. These are nice, but behavior, I think, is more crucial. But we are all different. What one guy can do, another guy can’t. What one girl will accept as funny, another would consider an insult. The variables are too great. For example… hmm… let’s see… um… I was actually quite a flirt. I might be considered a flirt even now by some, but it has nothing to do with the words or the lines. It’s the attitude… and practice. I’ve been doing it for a long time, and so what I can get away with may not be so easy for others. But this is a topic for another post, I think.

There is one principle, however, that I try to abide by–I emphasize that this is something I TRY to do, because I am such a dork sometimes that I forget my own principle. Be that as it may, the one thing I always try to do is show respect. I respect her opinion, her ideas, her words, her values, and of course her body. I like to talk–God knows I like to talk–but I also listen. If she offers an opinion, I don’t toss it off, even if–particularly if–I don’t agree with it. I mean, it’s okay to disagree, but I don’t treat it as if it were useless discourse. I will ask her about it, probe her more, ask her to explain her position–politely, of course. I don’t force my opinion or values onto her, and I don’t talk about it so much either, unless she actually asks me. I sometimes catch myself talking too much when it’s too late–she’s either rolling her eyes already or looking right through me at the wall behind me.

Finally, I don’t touch her unless I am absolutely positive it’s okay to do so. I won’t hold her hands, unless she extends it for me to grab, like when we’re getting out of a cab. If she doesn’t mind my touch, she’ll squeeze my hand or arm a bit when she wants to emphasize a point; she’ll lean into me when she laughs, she’ll make an effort to sit next to me when we are in a group. She’ll signal something. The exception, of course, is “the handshake.” To me, this has always been the kiss of death. Been great talking to ya’. Please understand that this is the most intimate you’ll ever get with me. Brrrrrrrr.

One other thing. I always try to be a gentleman. Yes, this is the age of equality. Men and women are equal. But since you asked me, and I AM old-fashioned, I will tell you that while men and women are equals, we are not the same, we are not identical. I hold open doors for the woman I am with. For M, I will open and shut the car door for her. She often opens the door herself once I park the car, but I will make every effort to shoot to the other side and open it for her. At restaurants, movie theaters, when we enter the house, it is always ladies first. Once, we were in DC on New Year’s Eve, and it was frosty. M wore a coat, but it wasn’t warm enough for her, so I pealed off mine to cover her. She looked nice and toasty. Unfortunately, certain parts of my anatomy still do not function properly to this day… just kidding. The bottom line is that you must be willing to do ANYTHING for her. And it starts with the dating and continues for as long as you are with her. I REFUSE to have someone talk behind my back about what a lout I was. I mean, holding a door open. How hard is that? I think I would look pretty pathetic if I complained that it was too much trouble. I’m sure to get a lot of crap from “Today’s women”, but I’m sorry, I’m old fashioned. So sue me.

In any event, these are the principles I try to follow even today. But these are my values, and I would never suggest that you should do the same. But there are worse things you could do than being respectful and gentlemanly toward your date, don’t you think?

Don’t You Think?

B

eing old(er) suggests more experience. And at 50, I have had my share of experiences. Some of it good, lots of it bad, all of it learning. Of course, that doesn’t mean I’ve learned my lesson well. I have bumbled my way through a number of bad experiences, some I have repeated a few times. As you might imagine, all these experiences fall within the very narrow scope of an Asian American male, so I should be the last guy to give anyone advice, don’t you think?

Still, some people come to me for advice. I have to tell them that I don’t know the answer, as most of the issues fall within the very narrow scope of their individual lives. The best thing I do is ask questions. As an academic, this is one of the few things I do well. So when a student comes to me with a question–What should I do when I graduate? How do I tell this girl I like her? How do I get this boy off my back?–I usually start by asking questions about their concerns: How do you really feel about it? How badly do you want to do whatever it is you want to do? Fortunately for me, the person will usually come up with his own answer, and I will look like a genius… which I’m not. Well, maybe just a little, not because I give advice, but because I don’t. People really have to take care of their own shit, don’t you think?

Advice seekers are not limited to my students. I get a few inquiries here as well, such as the following

Hey Onigiriman, could you please advise me on the old-fashioned (proper) form/method of dating. I recently went on a blind date with a girl and am interested in getting to know her better. I was brought up in a conservative household but with the dynamic area of dating I forget what is and should be proper? Thanks!

Posted 7/26/2005 at 11:36 PM by Cboy918

First, sorry to be so late, like eight months after your blind date. I meant to write this earlier, but i never got around to it. And besides, what the heck do you mean by old-fashioned? Are you suggesting I’m an old fart? Hrumph! Well, perhaps I am–ok, ok, I know that I am. Anyway, what was the question? Oh yeah… The proper form of dating…

I didn’t know if there is a proper” form. I presume you mean how to act, right? Some gys will take flowers, go to the best restaurants, whatever. These are nice, but behavior, I think, is more crucial. But we are all different. What one guy can do, another guy can’t. What one girl will accept as funny, another would consider an insult. The variables are too great. For example… hmm… let’s see… um… I was actually quite a flirt. I might be considered a flirt even now by some, but it has nothing to do with the words or the lines. It’s the attitude… and practice. I’ve been doing it for a long time, and so what I can get away with may not be so easy for others. But this is a topic for another post, I think.

There is one principle, however, that I try to abide by–I emphasize that this is something I TRY to do, because I am such a dork sometimes that I forget my own principle. Be that as it may, the one thing I always try to do is show respect. I respect her opinion, her ideas, her words, her values, and of course her body. I like to talk–God knows I like to talk–but I also listen. If she offers an opinion, I don’t toss it off, even if–particularly if–I don’t agree with it. I mean, it’s okay to disagree, but I don’t treat it as if it were useless discourse. I will ask her about it, probe her more, ask her to explain her position–politely, of course. I don’t force my opinion or values onto her, and I don’t talk about it so much either, unless she actually asks me. I sometimes catch myself talking too much when it’s too late–she’s either rolling her eyes already or looking right through me at the wall behind me.

Finally, I don’t touch her unless I am absolutely positive it’s okay to do so. I won’t hold her hands, unless she extends it for me to grab, like when we’re getting out of a cab. If she doesn’t mind my touch, she’ll squeeze my hand or arm a bit when she wants to emphasize a point; she’ll lean into me when she laughs, she’ll make an effort to sit next to me when we are in a group. She’ll signal something. The exception, of course, is “the handshake.” To me, this has always been the kiss of death. Been great talking to ya’. Please understand that this is the most intimate you’ll ever get with me. Brrrrrrrr.

One other thing. I always try to be a gentleman. Yes, this is the age of equality. Men and women are equal. But since you asked me, and I AM old-fashioned, I will tell you that while men and women are equals, we are not the same, we are not identical. I hold open doors for the woman I am with. For M, I will open and shut the car door for her. She often opens the door herself once I park the car, but I will make every effort to shoot to the other side and open it for her. At restaurants, movie theaters, when we enter the house, it is always ladies first. Once, we were in DC on New Year’s Eve, and it was frosty. M wore a coat, but it wasn’t warm enough for her, so I pealed off mine to cover her. She looked nice and toasty. Unfortunately, certain parts of my anatomy still do not function properly to this day… just kidding. The bottom line is that you must be willing to do ANYTHING for her. And it starts with the dating and continues for as long as you are with her. I REFUSE to have someone talk behind my back about what a lout I was. I mean, holding a door open. How hard is that? I think I would look pretty pathetic if I complained that it was too much trouble. I’m sure to get a lot of crap from “Today’s women”, but I’m sorry, I’m old fashioned. So sue me.

In any event, these are the principles I try to follow even today. But these are my values, and I would never suggest that you should do the same. But there are worse things you could do than being respectful and gentlemanly toward your date, don’t you think?

Hoot, Hoot

I

have turned my life cycle upside down. I should be sleeping with the rest of the world, but I have been grading papers for so long at night that this is a part of my day now. I will go to sleep at 4 AM, 5 AM… sometimes 8 AM, then wake up anywhere between 10:30 AM and 12 noon, depending on the day.

I am living with less sleep than I ever had, and I worry sometimes that I might be shortening my life. I read somewhere–and this might all be a bunch of bull–that everyone has a limited number of heartbeats in a life, maybe something like 2.5 billion beats? If I average 60 beats a minute, I should live to be almost 80 years old, barring any other life threatening disease or accident.

2,500,000,000 / 60 beats/min = 41.666 million minutes
41.666 million minutes / 60 min. = 694,444 hours
694,444 hours / 24 hrs. = 28,935 days
28,935 days / 365 days = 79.2 years

However, if my average heartbeat goes up, then the number of minutes I have to live go down. This logic seems to fit when regarding athletes. They are well conditioned and their heartbeats slow down to a crawl when they are not exercising, but they train hardcore and often raise their heartbeats to ridiculous levels–200 bpm is not unheard of–and they stress out their hearts. Track and field athletes who perhaps train the hardest rarely grow to ripe old ages. The same can be said for football players and marathon runners. When I think of really old athletes, I think of baseball players. Obesity is another example. The heart has to pump blood to fatty tissue as well as the normal tissues and so the heart works extra hard, and beats per minute go up. Obese people seem to die young as well.

Of course, I am not an athlete; neither am I morbidly obes–although I do admit to more fat than i should have–so I don’t really worry about this kind of stuff. But the heart beats faster when one is awake than asleep, so the less I sleep, the more my hearts pumps, raising my average to maybe 70 bpm. This could shorten my life by as much as 10 years.

Of course, this could all be a bunch of bull, as I said. And besides, there are all kinds of mitigating issues to complicate the calculation: amount of sleep and exercise at a younger age, amount of stress during the teen years, blah, blah, blah. So I could be fretting over something that I really have not control over…

But I do have control over some of it–if this theory is not all bunk. So instead of writing this entry on Xanga at 3:00 AM, I should be asleep… well, actually, I should be grading, but maybe I should not worry about it and go to sleep anyway.

Just another useless post of useless (non-)information.

O-yasumi

Hoot, Hoot

I

have turned my life cycle upside down. I should be sleeping with the rest of the world, but I have been grading papers for so long at night that this is a part of my day now. I will go to sleep at 4 AM, 5 AM… sometimes 8 AM, then wake up anywhere between 10:30 AM and 12 noon, depending on the day.

I am living with less sleep than I ever had, and I worry sometimes that I might be shortening my life. I read somewhere–and this might all be a bunch of bull–that everyone has a limited number of heartbeats in a life, maybe something like 2.5 billion beats? If I average 60 beats a minute, I should live to be almost 80 years old, barring any other life threatening disease or accident.

2,500,000,000 / 60 beats/min = 41.666 million minutes
41.666 million minutes / 60 min. = 694,444 hours
694,444 hours / 24 hrs. = 28,935 days
28,935 days / 365 days = 79.2 years

However, if my average heartbeat goes up, then the number of minutes I have to live go down. This logic seems to fit when regarding athletes. They are well conditioned and their heartbeats slow down to a crawl when they are not exercising, but they train hardcore and often raise their heartbeats to ridiculous levels–200 bpm is not unheard of–and they stress out their hearts. Track and field athletes who perhaps train the hardest rarely grow to ripe old ages. The same can be said for football players and marathon runners. When I think of really old athletes, I think of baseball players. Obesity is another example. The heart has to pump blood to fatty tissue as well as the normal tissues and so the heart works extra hard, and beats per minute go up. Obese people seem to die young as well.

Of course, I am not an athlete; neither am I morbidly obes–although I do admit to more fat than i should have–so I don’t really worry about this kind of stuff. But the heart beats faster when one is awake than asleep, so the less I sleep, the more my hearts pumps, raising my average to maybe 70 bpm. This could shorten my life by as much as 10 years.

Of course, this could all be a bunch of bull, as I said. And besides, there are all kinds of mitigating issues to complicate the calculation: amount of sleep and exercise at a younger age, amount of stress during the teen years, blah, blah, blah. So I could be fretting over something that I really have not control over…

But I do have control over some of it–if this theory is not all bunk. So instead of writing this entry on Xanga at 3:00 AM, I should be asleep… well, actually, I should be grading, but maybe I should not worry about it and go to sleep anyway.

Just another useless post of useless (non-)information.

O-yasumi