10.29.2006

past and present

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It's curious how one weekend can provide so many moments of refreshing clarity.
...

I attended the West Coast A Cappella Showcase on Friday night, mostly to see how AiR was doing. I thought the group was progressing very well. This year, their style and character differs from any of the years I spent with the group, and it was interesting to see how the personalities of this year's group members influenced their overall look. They sounded good for it being their first concert, and I really enjoyed their performance.

On the whole, the Showcase was not as great as I had hoped it would be. Perhaps I'm being overly critical as a former Music Director. Perhaps not. Eh. At least it gave me something to do for the evening.

...

I've always considered the Showcase as a sort of a cappella reunion because so many alumns come out to watch. I ran into many people I had known from the a cappella circut while I was in school, and we all did the usual and requiste "how are you, and what have you been up to lately?" questioning. Hugs were exchanged, both false and genuine, and some broken relationships began to mend themselves.

I wish we could have talked more. Who knows when we'll see each other again?

She's nice, and I hope to run into her again sometime.

Maybe I shouldn't have talked to you. But I'm kind of a push over, and I believe that in time, things will be okay between us.

Remember that thing that happened? Well, it's done, and I'm done dealing with you.

Others, not so much.

...

After Friday night's show, I ventured over to one of the current AiR member's apartments on Southside to hang out with the group for a while. As people discussed the performance, the stresses and joys of being in the group, and college life in general, a comforting realization came over me. Though I still felt detached, it wasn't in that sad or angry way I was feeling earlier in the year. This time around, I am happy and comfortable with the direction my life is going.

I grew up. I guess that means I'm a grown-up now.

...

Last night, I attended a Halloween Party hosted by some of my co-workers at ETP. I debated for a long time whether or not I should attend because it would be on the same night as the West Coast A Cappella Showcase after party, which I had previously planned on going to with AiR. But when the time came to get ready for the evening, I chose to put on my Halloween costume and MapQuest my way to the party in the city. Having spent the previous night with AiR, I didn't feel like recounting my post-collegiate experiences to 50 more people. And though I know many of the people who would be going to the after party, the level of understanding that lies between me and them has shifted, and we have much less to relate to these days.

Circling the block of my co-workers' apartment and searching for parking, I began to feel nervous and question whether or not I had made the right decision. Though many of my co-workers would be there, I had not seen most of them outside of work, let alone in a social environment. I also felt kind of stupid since I had arrived by myself. But then I thought of how much more stupid I would feel if I just went home, considering I spent so much time getting ready and driving all the way out to San Francisco. I parked, sucked it up, and put on my smiley face.

I timidly entered the apartment and was surprised by how many people were excited to see me. I was given a tour and ushered to the refreshments table. As soon as I got settled and explained my Hogwarts student costume (which, tonight, came complete with a bookbag, wand, and two text books - Quidditch Through the Ages and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them), I was pulled into the living room, where my co-workers and I danced, sang, and laughed the next two hours away. I had a blast and a half and congratulated myself on my excellent decision making skills.

10.23.2006

boo bash

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The Halloween party went well, desipte the complications - housemates MIA, low attendance, broken glass, locked doors. It really was not as bad as it seems. The decorations were stunning (if I say so myself) and a good time was had by all. There isn't much more to say, so I'll let the pictures do the talking.


The decor


Roommates: Me, as a Hogwarts student; Joe, as a Ninja Turtle in disguise; and Ratha, as a goddess


Rosette gives our shots her blessing


Group shot


The entertainment of the evening: Pete, playing DDR in a tutu


Matt, as an Asian Austin Powers (thanks to the fake gross teeth), and me, either slightly intrigued or highly skeptical


Rosette "I'm a 70's Superstar" Diaz, Nathan "It's Not Halloween Unless Someone Dresses in Drag" Rossi, and Michael "This IS My Costume" Pourshalimi


The Pi's: Ratha, Kendra, and me

10.10.2006

in the spirit of the holidays

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As the weather changes and the air picks up a chill, I can't help but be excited by what the next few weeks will bring. I've always loved holiday season, which for me includes Halloween because, well, it too is a holiday. For the first time in about 5 years, I'll have the opportunity to enjoy Halloween to its fullest. It's repeatedly been dampened by impending midterms or papers. But this year, with no homework in sight, I'll be able to dress up and party like the rest of them. Not that I intend to party, really. Our house will be hosting a party of sorts next weekend, a tad early for Halloween, but I may decide to dress up anyway. Sunday afternoon was spent decorating the apartment - the first time I've ever had the opportunity to decorate a house since I was little (my parents gave up on Halloween years ago, when they decided they were too old and not scary enough to give out candy). Ratha and I plan on getting a pumpkin or two to carve, and I will certainly be handing out sweets on Halloween since we live near three elementary schools.

Just yesterday, I deviated from the usual high-energy pop tunes that I use to accompany my evening workout and opted for Christmas music, which got me just as pumped up as any Kelly Clarkson single could. For me, much like any other person who loves this time of year, the holiday season is equated with long and aimless chats with friends, baking and hot chocolate, TV specials, time spent with the family, and lots and lots of singing. Wonderful diversions to pass the time away.

Along with all the holiday trimmings comes the trimming of everything that comes with the holidays, namely in the form of New Year's Resolutions. And this time around, I'm starting early. Like most people in the world, one spot on my list of things to accomplish is always devoted to the task of losing weight. Last year, I was quite successful, actually, shedding a substantial number of pounds and shrinking down a few dress sizes. However, the outcome was short lived due to a tragic and tumultuous summer that brought back old and unhealthy eating habits. But after seeing photographs after the close of Aida, I was dissatisfied and resolved to start my resolutions early. Granted, I'm not anywhere near where I once was: at a size 14 and on the larger half of the 100s scale, it's a wonder how I managed to maneuver in my 5'5" Pacific Islander frame. At least after having lost a lot of weight and gaining some of it back, it doesn't fill in the way it once did. My body has adjusted to its new form, and I don't look overweight like I did a year and a half ago. Anyway, the photos brought on a reality check, and since then, I've gotten back into the swing of things, which includes more healthy eating habits and sticking to a regular work out schedule. I'm proud to say that I have gone to the gym for the past 9 out of 12 days, and the results, though not grand, are nice. Things are progressing much slower than before, and I suppose that has to do with the fact that I'm used to the regimen. But I feel like this time around, the weight will stay off because I know what works and what doesn't. The ultimate resolution is to reach my weight goal sometime within 2007. And when it does, I plan to mark the occassion with before and after pictures and who knows what else.

All in all, things are good. And come this weekend, they will surely get better - rehearsals with ACLO are starting up again!

10.04.2006

new things, old places

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I've recently discovered the vast collection of musical theatre soundtracks at the Oakland Public Library, located a short four blocks from my office. In the past two weeks, I have made frequent visits and expanded my own personal knowledge of showtunes. In addition, I received iTunes Music Cards as a birthday gift from our friends upstairs, which have also contributed to my musical collection. I think this marks the newest phase of my performance life quite nicely.

ACLO's Grand Masquerade has been cancelled. Though I was disappointed, I consoled myself with the fact that my weekend could now be devoted to the trip to Lake Tahoe that my best friend had previously insisted I come on with her family. The last time Danielle and I went to Tahoe, we were seniors in high school. It was fantastic then, but now that we're 22, I'm sure we will find many more things to be interested in.

I'll soon be rehearsing for ACLO's 10th Anniversary Show, which plays one night this November. I'm excited to see and work with my newfound friends once again. Aside from ensemble work, I'll be performing as Ronette in a Little Shop of Horrors medley. Yeee, solos! It will be really nice to have something to look forward to, once again, after work, aside from my regular time at the gym. I miss performing, and I've promised myself to jump on every chance I get to do it.

Speaking of work, it's still as great as ever. I participated in my first Parent Night event last week, and it went smoothly. It's fun to be out on the road, touring with the troupe, and meeting the people of the communities we serve. Tomorrow, we're headed to Fresno for my first out-of-town. Supposedly, the school we're at this week is very enthusiastic about the program, and tomorrow's Parent Night is expected to host quite a large audience. I'm not as worried as I think I should be, but I suppose that's a good thing.

I'm looking forward to the weekend and Miss Saigon. Since I've been calling the box office so much about group tickets and show times, I've made friends with the box office manager, who once referred to me as "Kim's sister" and insists that we meet come Saturday. I was more than happy to oblige. In the world of theatre, networking is the way to go.