Thursday, December 29, 2011

2011 fun times



These are some of the memorable moments from 2011. I noticed that champagne has been a leitmotif of this year, well, who am I kidding, every year.

Dinner at Txikito, a tapas resto in Chelsea, drinking lots of rioja, eating tiny pieces of food, craving pizza immediately after dinner

Having a champagne fueled dance party at my friend's place and then showing up several hours late to a friend's bday party at Von. Whoops.

My friend Chris's going away party at Bowery Electric followed by oysters and vino at DBGB

Erica's bday boozy brunch at Bondi Road, karaoke at Planet Rose, cocktails at Death and Co

Having a mini photo shoot with Sabbie and Ainga that involved lots of champagne, red wine, and the most delicious lamb

Valentine's dinner at Zenkichi and cocktails at Hotel Delmano

Dinner at Liz's new apt

GLOC launch party

Cherry blossom festival in DC

Billy's Limelight after party at Bowery Hotel

Walking over the Williamsburg Bridge*

Karaoking at Karaoke One 7

Making a roast chicken*

Launching my cooking web series*

Meredith's animal print party

Helping out on set of Lisa Frank video

Governor's Island*

UCB Sketch Show where we actually had an inflatable bouncy castle on stage

Kayaking and eating crabs in Maryland*

Surviving Hurricane Irene

Going to Ottawa and Toronto all by myself*

Getting a new job!

And of course, thanks to Erica and Alan, discovering the awesomeness that is WALKING DEAD!

*things i did for the first time :)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

night bird



I'm trying to figure out what to wear for New Years Eve! This photo from French Vogue shows my ideal outfit: gold, sequins, and cigarette. I also loooove the photo below. If there's anything I love more than sequined dresses it's a MINI sequined dress.



I might wear a sequined strapless top with a sequined mini skirt.  There's no such thing as wearing too many sequins on NYE, right??? I need people to be able to find me in case I stumble off somewhere.

via 

Monday, December 26, 2011

2011 songs

I decided to join in on the Reverb prompts this year and take some time to examine 2011 and all the things that made it so special. I think it's good to pause and reflect on what you've done over the year, because as you get older, you'll notice that all the years will start to get muddled together like mint leaves in the bottom of a mojito (mmmm mojito).

So these are songs I listened to or sang constantly this year and will remind me of 2011. Some of these are old school tracks that seemed to pop up a lot this year. You know you're old when you listen to the same music all the time!

Britney Spears- I wanna go

Britney Spears- Dance Till the World Ends

Rihanna- We Found Love

Maroon 5- Moves like Jagger

Robyn- Call Your Girlfriend

Bruno Mars- Grenade

Far East Movement- Like a G6

Carla Bruni- Quelqu'un M'a Dit

Sergio Mendes-Magalenha

Nelly- Hot in Herre

Missy Elliot- Pass That Dutch (oh god, this song will always remind me of the first time I hosted Harold Night at UCB. We decided to have a dance off with an audience member and I danced to this song! I was so nervous that I chugged two beers before going on stage :)

LMFAO- Sexy and You Know It (I didn't actively seek this song but it was hard not to enter any bodega or cab without hearing this playing)

And, of course, Adele.

You can find more prompts here.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

character: wendy, the wedding toast



This is a character I'm working on. I just improvised the lines and didn't do any editing, so apologies to people who expect brilliance on this blog.

I'm kinda fascinated by people who give wedding toasts and do nothing but talk about themselves.

ho, ho, hizzo



I'm off to my cousin's apartment in Brooklyn to spend Xmas eve with my mom's side of the family. It should be a bunch of Koreans sitting around and drinking Johnnie Walker.  I'm responsible for bringing a veggie side dish palatable to kids sooooo I guess that means french fries???

Happy Hoe-lidays!

Ha.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

one year



One year ago, Boo and I went to go see Blue Valentine. The most inappropriate, inauspicious movie ever for a first date.

I remember being nervous because I wasn't even sure if it was really a date (Boo insists that he explicitly asked me on a date but who's side are you on, people?!).  We had been friends for a while and that's why I was so confused on the exact terms of this outing. Especially when it came to what to wear. What if it wasn't a date and then he would wonder why I was so dressed up? Hello, dilemma!

After the movie, we went to Bar Bossa and got caipirinhas and awkwardly watched another couple making out at the bar. Oh, geez, should WE be doing that? Is this a date??? Someone tell me!

Luckily, it was a date.

I thought about whether or not I was going to write a sweet and sappy post about love and all that junk. I mean, I'm a die hard romantic. But who else wants to hear this stuff anyway? And then I thought, well, maybe people like me! You see, a couple of years ago, I was in a serious funk. One relationship had just dissolved. I was unhappy with my job. A lot of my friends were with significant others and moving in together.  I just felt really alone.

I remember spending so much time reading blogs (like this and this.) Say what you will about them, but good blogs help you feel connected, less alone, and say things like "omigosh I thought I was the only one who felt that way!" And I learned from these blogs that I really needed to be in a positive place before finding someone. And I learned that once I did the work on myself I would need to trust the universe that everything else would figure itself out.

So I worked on myself. I realized that I liked doing comedy so I started performing storytelling and taking classes at UCB. I went traveling. I decided to leave my job and look for a new one.  I didn't know what I was really doing but I knew that I was on a path to somewhere. 

It reminds me of this quote:

If you're looking for the love of your life, stop. They will be waiting for you when you start doing things you love.

I may have mentioned that Boo and I first met as work friends a few years ago when we used to work in the same industry. I remember him always being very nice but that was about it. Anyway, so about a year and a half ago, I was taking classes at UCB.  It was the first day of my improv class and I remember the door to our classroom opening, and I looked into the room across the hall, and there, seated next to the door, was my boo.

I look forward to watching more depressing movies with him.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

sick day

I'm siiiiiiick. I've been loading up on sleep, shin ramen, and reruns of Arrested Development. So basically Sick Jiji is no different from Regular JiJi. Ha.

Last night I loaded up on vitamin c and warm clothes and headed out to buy Boo's christmas gift. It is so hard shopping for guys! All ties look the same to me. Except red ties. Gross. Do you really wanna look like a Casino bartender?

Oh, and what's up with America pushing us to buy whiskey stones for men?? They've been in every single gift guide (I love gift guides even though they only guide me to more credit card debt) and are like the must have gift this year. I'm sorry, but who are all these men just drinking whiskey all the time and need their drinks to be permanently cold? I don't think the men of America need whiskey stones. Let's just get them to start drinking out of clean glasses first!


Monday, December 19, 2011

morning glory




The workaholic single girl is a tired trope but I still found this movie pretty amusing and inspiring. Although I could've done without all those scenes of Rachel McAdams running around in high heels. Do career girls really run around that much?? Cus then I'll never be successful.

Anyway, it's good to watch cheesy movies like this cus sometimes you need a feel good reminder that despite failure and rejection and disappointment, you just need to keep working hard and believe in yourself. 

Friday, December 16, 2011

mariposas



I am loving how jeweler Laura Melchior decorated her studio with framed butterfly displays. She manages to do it without making her place look like a Museum of Science gift shop. Que chiquitin!

Click the link below to check out more photos of her studio in Paris.

Via

Thursday, December 15, 2011

currently reading



I finished this book last week and wanted a book that was equally satisfying, with great characters and story.

I'm really enjoying The Imperfectionists so far. It's about the different characters running an English language newspaper in Italy and each chapter is told from the character's point of view.  It manages to be both humorous and touching--a killer combo for me.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

interview: julia wiedeman and angela dee of naked people





Hola mariposas! Today I am so excited to post my interview with writer and performer Julia Wiedeman and director Angela Dee and talk about their show NAKED PEOPLE, currently running at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre.

For those of you who don't know Julia, she does musical improv with her group Dumpster Tequila, performs burlesque around the city (Slipper Room, Galapagos, Webster Hall) aaaaaand won UCB's Dirtiest Sketch Contest TWICE.  She is a true mariposa (and for those of you who read this blog regularly know that is the highest compliment) and I wanted to ask her about the creative process behind her amazing one woman show.

If you've ever wanted to write and perform your own show or were too scared/discouraged, read this interview! Truly inspiring.

1. What inspired you to write your show?

Julia: The inspiration to sit down and write my own “one-person” show came from a simple and direct reaction to watching other people’s “one-person” shows: An “I Can Do That Too” feeling. I see a lot of shows and have always enjoyed creating my own work so when I saw shows like Shannon O’Neill’s Prison Freaks, Michael Hartney’s So I Like Superman, Leslie Meisel and Megan Neuringer’s Love Can Suck a Dick and So Can I, Paul Down’s The Paul Down Syndrome, and Mike Still’s Dictator for Life, the most visceral reaction I felt, besides loving the shows, was “ME TOO!” The very personal and serious content of shows like Pam Murphy’s The C Word and Nick Ross’s Highly Involved Human inspired me to turn myself inside out to write a show; to try and say something while also making people laugh.

So I started thinking about my life and what experiences I wanted to explore and after a while it became clear that nudity was at the top of the list. I’ve been naked all over the place: Central Park, Times Square, stages up and down the East coast, the Metropolitan Opera, bars in the East Village and Brooklyn, modeling for art classes, all over the internet, etc. and as comfortable as I am, I know that there are people who feel the exact opposite of comfortable when it comes to nudity. I decided I wanted to discuss the varying degrees of comfort regarding nakedness and also how people define nakedness emotionally and physically.

i hate to lego

via capucha

things i am learning about myself

Being such an introspective person, I am constantly learning wondrous, new things about myself. Yes, all this navel gazing is causing my upper body to curl in like a cinnabon (why can't I stop thinking about these things?).

I'm sure you're all on the edge of your seats waiting to hear about the magnificent things I've learned about myself, so here goes:

1. I can't read "smart" books
For so many years, I've fooled myself into thinking that I could buy one of those classic books like Crime and Punishment or anything published by Signet and that I would actually dedicate the time and effort into reading those books, when really they just sit on my shelf, or better, the floor next to my bed, collecting dust, hair, and random toe nail clippings that failed to land in the waste basket. Whoops.

So if a book was published before 1995 and is associated with the words "epic", "masterpiece",  or "Dostoyevsky", I will probably never, ever read it.

2. I don't like egg sandwiches
I know, crazy, right? What do I eat when I'm hungover in the morning? But let's not get too far ahead of ourselves. I just don't like egg sandwiches that are made in New York. For some reason, I can only enjoy egg sandwiches that are made in LA. They just taste DIFFERENT there. Maybe it's because egg sandwiches in LA are usually made on croissants or have avocado on them or maybe LA chickens are just happier and more relaxed, but they just taste better. Now, this being New York, I could probably ask them to make my egg sandwich on a croissant with avocado but I just KNOW it will not taste the same. My taste buds are VERY discerning.

Bottom line: I don't like egg sandwiches in New York so don't get them for me, okay?

3.  I loooove anything with rosemary. I just do!

4. I HATE passing through Grand Central in the morning
I think this is the main reason I have avoided moving to Brooklyn for fear of having to make a subway transfer in Grand Central. It's crazy, busy, loud, and everyone looks depressed. It's just a sad, sad way to start your day and I absolutely hate it.

5. When someone asks me to make more of an effort to do something, I'll purposefully not make an effort to do it

If people ask me to show up on time, call more, listen, or just about anything that involves being a more conscientious person, I won't do it. I don't know why. Maybe I like messing with them or maybe I'm just a big A-hole, but part of me (let's face it, ALL of me) has no desire to be nice and fulfill the other person's wishes.

Why? I feel like NONE of us are perfect, so why should I make more of an effort in that direction? I think that's why I try not to be a confrontational person. I really dislike asking people to change or stop doing something because I really think that as human beings, we all have a really difficult time changing.

So this concludes part one of Things I am Learning About Myself. Remember, we are all works in progress/hopeless.

Monday, December 12, 2011

life of pi



Read this over Thanksgiving weekend. It saved me during the bus ride home when we were stuck in awful traffic.

It was a really fun, adventurous read. I seem to be drawn to tales about survival these days, not sure what that's all about. Also had some violent and gruesome scenes that made WWZ look like  a children's book. So obviously I loved it.

Ooh, I just remembered a funny tidbit about my bus ride from Maryland back to New York. Our bus dropped us off at a rest stop for a fifteen minute break. The driver explicitly told us that it was only fifteen minutes and after fifteen minutes he'd be leaving our sorry asses to enjoy the Cinnabons by ourselves (I added this part).

So we all get back to our bus by the designated time, the bus driver starts pulling out of the rest stop when someone tells him that two passengers are missing, so he stops. We wait five minutes. Then ten. People are PISSED. Like we were the last chopper out of Nam level of pissed. Finally, one of the passengers offers to go into the rest stop to look for the two people. They return. Turns out these doofuses thought the bus driver said FIFTY minutes, not fifteen.

The zombie apocalypse can not come fast enough.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

hasta luego



Mariposas! Hope you have a lovely weekend! Last night my girlfriends and I went to Ofrenda in the West Village. Definitely get their jalapeno margie. Soooo good. And sooooo potent. I woke up with a horrible hangover. I am ofrended. Ha. Ugh. It hurts to laugh.



Friday, December 9, 2011

living beyond my means

This is embarrassing.

But I maxed out my credit card.

And I had a very, very generous credit card limit to begin with. To thank me for my business and negligent spending, Amex gave me a $25 gift card.

WTF.

A gift card. A GIFT CARD? And twenty five dollars? Thanks, I think I'll use that to buy four chipotle burritos cus that's about the only thing a twenty five dollar gift card will get you in New York friggin city. I don't want your stinking, condescending "we know you just maxed out your credit limit" gift card, I want you to lower my interest rates or take me out to dinner sometime! I know I'm being unreasonable but I don't care!

Breathe.

When you max out your credit card, you start asking yourself questions, like "How did I get here?" "What the hell was I spending my money on?" "Improv classes cost me HOW MUCH?"

I'm so frustrated. I have no one to blame my spending habits and my poverty but me. I saw my parents struggle with money, living from inchoate paycheck to paycheck, and now I've inherited their same patterns. Not only that, but I committed myself to the life of an artist yet I'm spending money like those people who have health insurance. See, I can't even say that I'm spending like a Saudi oil mogul because I don't lead an extravagant life. It's pretty modest. I don't go shopping (okay, except for that one time I bought a winter jacket for my birthday and that is probably what tipped my balance over the edge SHUTUP) and I do the occassional eating out and happy hours, but either than that I lead a pretty modest existence so basically that means I can't even afford to lead a NORMAL life in New York.

I know it's gauche to talk about money. It's like those people who constantly talk about their diets. I DON'T CARE. But since I write about all my other artistic struggles I thought that I'd document the money aspects as well because making chedda is a very big source of stress/anxiety/insomnia for a lot of artists.

The reassuring thing is that I know a lot of other comedians in the same boat. It costs money to take classes. Put on shows. Hire directors, coaches. Drink exorbitant amounts to buffer the rejection, anxiety.

The unreassuring thing is that I don't want to be struggling my whole life. I don't wanna have to worry about how I'm gonna buy new lenses for my glasses while also having enough to cover my student loan and cell phone payments.

I tried reading about financial help online but it's soooo depressing. It's a lot of stories about people maxing out their ten cards, destroying their lives and their families. Egads!

Any suggestions for good articles or books that help you manage money would be great. I have a library card so I will not be spending money!

I WILL take control of my financial life!

Sobz.

currently reading


About twelve pages in, I already felt my eyes watering. Good thing I was only in a public place like my work cafeteria!  Among other things, Jhumpa Lahiri is so good at writing about the wonderful weirdness of being an immigrant.

Oh, and this book will also make you wanna call your parents. 

Thursday, December 8, 2011

karaoke is my therapy


Last night my friend was in town for a last minute visit and we set off for karaoke happy hour at Sing Sing.

I had had a rough day. Some random old lady yelled at me and told me to go to hell--happy holidays to you too ma'am. And it rained non stop. It was a good excuse to sing/yell my feelings out.

I sang Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey (I like songs where I can move my hand up and down in a dramatic fashion) and debated on whether or not to sing Bonnie Raitt's "I can't make you love me" but figured the kind people at this karaoke establishment did not feel like slitting their wrists tonight.

At one point, some revelers from an office party came in, all drunk and loud, and for a moment I feared they'd obnoxiously take over my sacred karaoke space. But they chose good songs that we all sang along to (Tom Petty's Last Dance With Mary Jane) and were super supportive when my friend and I sang. They even gave us their song tickets! Thanks guys!

Sigh.

This is why I love karaoke. It brings people together. It's cathartic. It involves many pints of Sapporo.

I think I'm ready to take on the world now. 

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

holiday traditions



As a kid, I loved the holidays, even though my family wasn't too involved with traditional Christmas stuff. We had a Christmas tree but not ever year. We didn't have Christmas food like baked ham or egg nog or gingerbread cookies. We didn't exchange gifts (I remember this being a source of stress during my winter break as I tried to figure out the the fake awesome things my parents got me when I had to report back to my friends at school).

So what did I like about it?

It was the only time Miami ever dipped below 60 degrees.
I liked snuggling in our Korean mink blankets.
My family would usually eat Chinese food and then rent tons of videos from Blockbuster. Hmmm, maybe it's not that my parents weren't into the holidays but that they were just secretly Korean Jews.
My dad would get a box of ferrero rochers and I would pop them into my mouth at every opportunity, leaving a golden hill of ferrero rocher wrappers.

And as I've gotten older, my family and I have carved out our own ways of celebrating. One time I visited and my mom drove us down to the Redlands where we visited Knauss Berry farm and ate their famous cinnamon buns.  And then we drove to the Everglades and gawked at sleepy gators. Maybe they weren't what you would call typical holiday traditions but they were special nonetheless.

But I still like to indulge in the cheesy, American holiday stuff. And for that, I can thank my friends for helping me achieve that goal. Last year my friend Meghan was visiting New York from Austin and she asked if I had any interest in doing touristy Christmas stuff and I was like HELL YEAH.

So we...

-Walked around Union Square holiday market AND the one at Grand Central.
-Meghan really wanted to get some Christmas tree ornaments so I remember walking around and at one point I said, "This might be too much Christmas for me."
-We walked up Fifth avenue and oohed and aahed at all the store windows with their holiday displays. I remember loving the window displays at Tiffanys.
-We walked to Rockefeller Center and admired the tree.
-Oh, and I took this cheesy photo. It's totes part of my vision board now!



-Then we felt like having fancy cocktails so we walked to the Algonquin and had Blue Moons cus those were the cheapest things on the menu!

And this year, Boo and his roommate invited me over to help decorate their tree so while we hung ornaments we listened to Christmas Carols and drank Blue Point Winter Ales. Check out the handsome tree!



I also bought some poinsettias and berries to decorate the apartment. They really make the place look more festive and bright and I hope I don't kill them like all my other plants. Geez, my apartment is just like Florida. Where things go to die!

I guess the good thing about not having any holiday traditions of my own is that I can make them up with each year and accumulate some fun, special memories along the way.

Except shopping for Christmas tree ornaments. Please don't ever make me do that again.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

the weekend in bites and pieces



Friday

Date night! Boo and I headed over to Da Andrea near Union Square but the wait for a table was 30 minutes. Egads! Who has that kind of time besides patient people? We were both starving so we headed over to Bar 6, a cute little bistro, and ordered the prix fixe (you know you're old when you get excited by things like early bird specials and prix fixe).

We ordered a bottle of Malbec. He got the roast chicken (a little dry). I got the veggie couscous (very yumz).  And it ain't date night without dessert so we ended with creme brulee and vanilla icecream.

As much as I enjoy staying in and watching Walking Dead reruns, it's also nice to go out some place and dress up. I wore a sexaaaay top and Boo didn't bring his back pack.

Saturday

I got my haircut at Takamichi. I have bangs again!

Afterwards, I headed over to Boo's place where he and his friends were in the middle of an exciting game of dice. I played two rounds and lost. How could I lose in a game that is about sheer luck and probability?? Does this just confirm that I have bad luck???

We also played a drinking game involving cards (you know you're old when you need a game to enable you to drink) while listening to the Four Tops station on Pandora. Can someone puh-lease have a dance party where you only play 60s music??

Then we played the song "Teach me how to dougie" and his friend Alithea taught me how to dougie. I think I can dougie now.

It was a really fun Saturday night. Between the parlor games and 60s music, I imagine this is how my parents would've spent their Saturday nights if they weren't being obedient Asian teenagers or something.

Sunday

Met up with my girl Erica and had brunch at Le Barricou. Did you know you get a complimentary basket of croissants if you show up early enough? (You know you're old when you show up to Sunday brunch EARLY and sans hangover.)

In the evening, we ordered Mexican food, drank some Malbec and watched Shaun of the Dead to make up for the absence of new Walking Dead episodes.

Then Boo and I read The Walking Dead comics. Actually, Boo read them while I peered over his shoulder and dramatized some of the dialogue. At one point he turned to me and said, "Do you think you could read the lines in your head instead of saying them outloud?"

Hmmmph! 

Monday, December 5, 2011

place of yes



I got a library card so now I'll be using it to check out books that I wouldn't want to spend money on.  The Grand Central Library branch is near my office so the other day I checked out this book. Thanks for your tax dollars, America!

It's a quick, entertaining read and also pretty inspiring and helpful. Talks a lot about staying true to yourself, believing in yourself and building your brand.

Oh, and the proper way to read this book is to light a Meyers lavendar candle and snuggle up in bed while slowly gnawing at the head of a gingerbread man.  I love Sunday afternoons! 

pretty lipstick



I'm digging the lipstick color; The coat looks like muppet pubes.

via

Friday, December 2, 2011

i'll just stop talking now

As you know, I love complaining about how tired I am (or as a certain friend would call it, "professional whiner") and I noticed that my fellow comedy friends never express these complaints even after performing in countless late shows (that sometimes involve running to another show in a different borough the same night) and I realized that I need to suck it up and tough it out.

But I will complain privately. After all, I don't feel adequate unless I have an uninterrupted eight hours of sleep. I think I was born with feline chromosomes. 

Thursday, December 1, 2011

hola

I write this on about five hours of sleep. Apologies for any typos and incongruent thoughts. I want salami!

I need to start learning how to balance my life better, particularly my meals. The other night I had a writing deadline so my dinner consisted of ginger bread cookies and a diet coke. Last night was a bowl of jasmine rice (it's the only thing in my fridge that is not a dessert) and a Yuengling. At least I'm not consuming the typical comedy writer's diet of cigarrettes and coffee,but there is, I'm afraid, the occasional helping of self loathing. Ick.

Some high lights and low lights and other random thoughts from this week:

*I have a stalker but he doesn't know he's stalking me.
I've walked the same commute to work for the past five years (yup, anyone could easily kidnap me if they wanted). And the same guy comes up to me and asks the kind of question that comes across like he's hitting on you/might be storing heads in his refrigerator.

For example, the first time he approached me, he asked, "Excuse me, are you a dancer with the NYC ballet?"

Ha, of course I'm not a professional ballet dancer (although I could totally see how he could mistake me for a long limbed, lithe beauty) and when I corrected his mistake, he still continued walking/talking next to me. Even when I pulled the "I'm listening to my ipod please go away" move!

And through the years he's asked me questions like "do you work at x" (no, I don't) or "don't I know you from some place" (yes, my nightmares) and last night he asked, "do you think it's gonna rain tonight?" How the hell do I know? And I really hope it doesn't cus I ain't got an umbrella.

What makes this so annoying is that I wanna be like DUDE, you keep acting like this is the first time you've ever asked me a question and I KNOW who you are but you have NO IDEA who I am!

Moving on...

* I'm now in that age group that buys fancy olive oil and gives it as a gift

* I just bought three pairs of socks so that increases my sock inventory by 300 percent.

*My fave undergarments are from The Gap. Seriously, they are so cute and comfy and girly and they do not have all this extra fabric like the ones from Vicky Secrets. You could wear them to the gym or on a date night and not be embarrassed that they look granny panties. I know, I know, what would you do without my breaking news?
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