Tuesday, May 30, 2006


OF THE CORN!!!!!!! Got the honor of experiencing a day of babysitting the 5 Goodyear children, and by 5, I mean the 3 little ones, Sam, Luke and Jake, and the 2 big ones, Nathan and Pernell. Just kidding.

Actually, I found the experience to be quite pleasant. The day began with the chatter of little voices at 7:30am. While being passed out on the couch from a hefty dose of Benadryl, I awaken to the sound of Sam and Luke eating cereal and talking about "stuff". As the Goodyear clan minus Jake leaves, I found myself in a daze from the combination of residual grogginess from the drugs and an addict's twitch for my morning cup of 'black crack' (got that from Ageman). After a shower and 3 cups of coffee, I was ready for what the day had in store. Shortly after this though popped into my head, Jake comes cruisin' down the stairs in his PJ's and bed head, and snuggles up to me. Let me just say this was an experience that made me look forward to having my own kids. Super yahtzee!!

After breakfast and 2 cycles through the same 4 episodes of 'Superfriends', Jake and I head out to pick up Luke from school. Originally, I was gonna drive, but couldn't find the car seat, so we walked. Bad move to the max, yo. Not only was it hot, but it wasn't me walking with the kids, but me walking with the kids on my shoulders.

We finally get back to the house, and start eating lunch. The boys both get a can of "pasta" with "sauce", and I throw down some left over salad, which I hope will do wonders to my severe constipation of a steady diet of FRWY grilled cheese sandwiches and Goodyear hamburgers. After lunch, the boys and I park ourselves in front of the TV and watch 2 more cycles through the same 4 episodes of 'Superfriends'.

Note to self: Superfriends = Evil.

Finally, when the boys get bored, we decide to build a fort. I was expecting something absolutely nutty, but it turned out to be a pretty fun excursion into the mind of a child. Not only do I find out that boys rule, but according to Jake and Luke, I discovered that girls drool. Fancy that!! Anyways, we go at this game of fort for a good 2 hours which entailed us protecting ourselves from the 'evil girls' and pretending to get caught in imaginary webbing.

Note to self: Fort = Exhaustion.

During my time with the boys, there were only a few incidents, all of which had Luke as the main character. Let's just say that I had to send him to his room 3 times.

Note to self: Sending Luke to his room = Hilarious.

3:25pm rolls around and I take the boys to pick up Sam. This time, I wise up and drive over. But what totally made the trip truly memorable was telling the boys that they could each bring one toy. Luke being the one who sweats, spits and urinates testosterone, he brings a plastic gun. Jake, being the one who sweats, spits and urinates something else, he decides to bring a pair of swimming goggles. Imagine this: One boy play shooting me in the back of the head, and the other boy staring chillin' and seeing the world through a pair of blue swimming goggles.

Note to self: Picking up Sam with Luke and Jake in the back seat = Priceless.

Now, I thought it was noisy with just the 2 boys and I, but never did I imagine that it could get even louder. Well, enter Sam, stage right. This girl can TALK!!!!!! Granted, she just spent an afternoon with giraffes, monkeys and yaks, but the conversation rarely stayed on one particular topic for more than 5 seconds. This girl's gonna either be one phenomenal story teller, or kill herself from a lack of oxygen due to the inability to stop talking. Anyways, the remainder of the afternoon was spent with the 3 Goodyear children. Albeit, it was a day filled with exhausting ventures, mind-numbing television and vivid imaginations, I must say that this was probably one of the best days I've ever had.

In conclusion, a final exhortation in the form of a note to self.

Note to self: A day with the Goodyear Children = Reason enough to consider getting a vasectomy.

Just kidding.

Margie and Pernell, thanks for letting me be part of your family today.

Sam, Luke and Jake: Thanks for letting me be your big brother today.

Nathan: Um...got nuthin' for ya baby. Just messin'. Thanks for playin' fort with us kids.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

How I Feel

Have you ever seen the movie 'Tommy Boy'? There's a scene in the movie where Chris Farley and David Spade are sitting in a diner order food, and Chris is describing how he feels. He take a dinner roll, starts to pet it, then says he takes things too far and demolishes something beautiful. Well, this is how I feel right now. Through what I believe is a series of things I've done, I feel that I've taken something beautiful, a great friendship that had all the potential in the world, and destroyed it. I really hope this isn't the case, but I guess time will tell what the repercussions will be from my actions. But to be totally honest, it seems as if I've hit an all time low. It would seem to be really twisted to say this, but perhaps the silver lining to this situation is that I've learned A LOT about myself through this experience. I've learned that I can be WAY too forward, and because of this, not take other peoples' feelings into consideration. It's as if I'm an emotional steamroller, seeing things in front of me, but not changing direction for the sake of what I may roll over. I've also learned that I'm more in my 'element' when I'm with a group of people, but become this bumbling pile of goo when in a more intimate, 1-on-1 setting. I've always thought I was a people person, but perhaps this isn't the case. It's as if I'm afraid of people REALLY finding out about me, and letting people in. Granted, my initial experience here in Canada wasn't one of the better times in my journey, but you'd think that after 2 years, I'd be able to move past that. Ugh, I wonder if I need therapy.

Friday, May 26, 2006


Asian ingenuity.

Check us out.

Just you wait. In 5 years, we will be the source of our own power.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Almost Done

I took another carload of goodies over to Hamilton today. Thanks to the Neudorf's and the lovely Melissa Burleigh, I have places to store all my stuff and somewhere to stay between the time I move out and when I can move into my new place. Such nice people. Next on my list: getting Zoe to be my friend again. Apparently, I spooked her on Wednesday with an overdose of sarcasm and jokes. When I was at the Neudorf's today, she spent the entire time lying face down in their recliner. I tried to mend things between us by using my gentle kid voice and reading her a book, but I think that probably made it worse. Perhaps I will try a different tactic next time by goading her with some candies. Maybe some skittles or cotton candy. If that doesn't work, I will have to resort to hypnosis or some shock therapy, but hopefully it won't have to come down to that. But mark my words: Zoe and I will be friends.


Ok...this whole 'I can't sleep thing' is seriously getting on my nerves. I get home at around 11:30pm and being the evening ritual of preparing for bed. I floss, brush my teeth, change and rub my belly 16 1/2 times for luck and a good night's sleep. 1:30am rolls around and I'm wide away. I pop a benadryl in hope of being able to go to sleep, but so far, no dice. Some of you are thinking 'Benadryl? Who takes benadryl to sleep?' If you check the active ingredients of any over the counter sleep aid, you'll discover that they're exactly the same as what's in Benadryl. When my bro the pharmacist told me this, I thought he was lying. I mean, this is the same guy who said I have Diabetes because I once went to the bathroom after every ride. What he failed to realize was I kept chugging Gatorade on a cool day and instead of sweating it all out, I needed to pee it out. Genius my brother is. Anyways, I digress.

I'm really beginning to wonder if there's something going on. Perhaps there's something on my mind that's keeping me up at night, or maybe I'm finally facing the repercussions of drinking way too much coffee. Either way, I need sleep, and I'm beginning to consider some more 'radical' options to knock myself out. Maybe I should run head first into the wall and knock myself out, or pay someone to take a bat to my head come midnight. Or, I could possibly hire a myriad of jabberwocky to stick some friggin' forks into me, which will hence forth send me into a deep slumber. Either way, trying to get natural sleep has been failing me these last couple weeks, and desperate times are beginning to becon desperate measures.

I wonder if putting alligator clips on my nipples will do the trick.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

New Addition to the Family

Everyone, say hello to my new baby, Violet. Got her last night at the Spring Fling and brought her to class today and showed her off to all my friends. Isn't she pretty?


A friend of mine in class told me about a site called kijiji.com that's an online classifieds for different places in the world. I went to the one for Hamilton in search for a futon and a coffee table, and found someone who's selling both, and then some!! The added bonus is that the guy's selling the futon and coffee table for around $80. I'm gonna try to stop by the guy's place this weekend to check out his gear. Hopefully it won't be a dud trip.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

We Mourn

I received a text message from a very close friend in Singapore saying that his mother passed away today. She's been through a real long battle with cancer, and although it seems that disease won, the big picture is that she is now with her creator experiencing the type of peace and joy like never before. But still, I mourn for my friend's loss and will pray for healing to come over him and his family. Terrence, be strong my friend. Love ya, bro.

I've been reflecting on why I find myself feeling the way I do about the passing of someone I've never met. I think it's because of the relationship I had the honor of developing with Terrence. During my time in Mississauga, as a whole, I found myself quite lonely and disconnected, and aside from a few people I could count on one hand with a few fingers to spare, I lived life on an island. In this atmosphere, Terrence was someone who I was able to know as well as feel comfortable in being known. So when the mother of my brother passes, it seems as if a part of me has been lost as well. Is this strange, or am I being hormonal? Either way, I hold fast to the God of love, grace and healing to fall afresh on Terrence and his father, brother and sister.

Guilty Rat

An incident occured this past Sunday at the Frwy that I don't really want to get into, but the repercussions has sent me into a tizzy. This incident led to me file a report to the authorities who promptly addressed the situation. The problem I'm left with is although people tell me it was the right thing to do, I feel really bad for getting this person in trouble. I'm quite certain that this person's actions wasn't intentional and no ill will was premeditated, but according to others, it was the right thing to do. But was it? Should I have let it go? Allow bygones be bygones? Hopefully the repercussions of that day's incidents will be for the good of humanity.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Sweet Digs

I got to participate in a different role at the Frwy tonight. Instead of sitting on my ass and watching things happen, I was able to help out with the music. Let me say that it's been a long time since I've played guitar with a band, and a great one at that. Jamming with Dave, Adrian and Mark for Jesus was awesome, albeit a sausage fest, but good times none the less. Because it's been a while since I last played electric guitar, I made a bunch of mistakes. Hopefully it wasn`t distracting to anyone. If it was, my apologies.

Afterwards, a group of us went to Slainte, and let me tell you, I think this place is hella hott. The interior decor and history behind everything really made this place be more than just a food stop, but an experience. I'm definitely gonna have to frequent this joint after I settle into Hamilton. Oh, and I discovered that I like Guinness. Not a fan of beer, but Guinness is a gooder. Go figure. Unfortunately, I don't think I have a liver because after about half a beer, I'm pretty much passed out on the floor. Hopefully someone will be willing to donate their to me so I can finally finish a beer in my life.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

The End of a Chapter

This evening was my last Saturday at the Journey. Although there weren't many people there, it was good to see those that were. These past couple years here have been a combination of learning experiences and challenging situations, both of which I would not trade for anything. It's been a real blessing to serve along side some really great people and to know that although my time with the Journey has come to an end, we are all part of the same Church and will always be partners for the Glory of God.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Best of Both Worlds

Got to go to the open mic nite this evening. There were some pretty talented people out there, but one in particular left me in awe. I don't know his name, but he was shredding things up!! He was at the open mic nite last week, and when I first saw him, I thought he was a hobo. Yes, yes, even Asians can be judgemental and stupid just like white people. Anyways, I really hope to see him play again sometime.

While we were cleaning up and getting ready to close and leave, Jen discovers that the basement had begun to flood. It was no tap water, but septic water. We started cleaning and Pernell arrives to check the damage. Randy's vaccuming with the wet vac and I'm mopping. After the majority was sucked up, I found myself spot mopping the remainder of the floor, all the while I've got Pernell and Jen watching me work. How typical: White slave owners watching the Asian break his back. After making a comment about this, Randy chimes in and says 'Now we need to get him working on the railroad.'

It's good to be the token Asian.

Sleep Never Felt So Good

Got home last night at around midnight, putzed around for about an hour, then went to sleep and didn't wake up until the morning. Feeling so refreshed after a junk few days of not getting much quality shut eye. Today's gonna be a good day.

On a sadder note, my boys, the Pistons, lost the game last night and are now down 3-2 against the Cav's. But I have faith, though, that they'll turn it on these next couple games and play like the champs that they are.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006


Working on 45 minutes of sleep. Just gave a sermon in class. Wiped like racing stripes after a shart.

On a different note, a friend sent this to me. Absolutely hilarious!! Want a taste of what us Chen siblings are like? Take a gander at this gem.

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For the last couple weeks, I've been having a really difficult time sleeping. Last night and the night Tuesday before have consisted of about an hour of sleep each night. I am currently in class and about to pass out, but can't because it would be too embarassing. I feel like the lead character in Fight Club played by Edward Norton who suffers from insomnia. Perhaps I need an imaginary buddy following me around to kick my ass so I feel like I'm loved and part of something. Any takers?

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

ALIVE AGAIN!!!! Temporarily

So, apparently, there's a computer sitting here in the basement of my place in Mississauga that has some wicked zippy internet. And this whole time I was mouring the loss of my little silver baby, Lazarus.

It hasn't been finalized yet, but I think I've found a place to stay in Hamilton. A few weeks ago I emailed a guy I met on an online classifieds called craigslist.com If you haven't checked it out, it is phenomenal. He just bought a place on the east end of Hamilton near Barton and Sherman and was looking for people to rent some rooms out. I went and saw the place this past Sunday, and I must say, wasn't all that impressed. Granted, the room is quite large and the price is uber nice, but the place itself is a bit bare. It's just a bunch of rooms with a shared bathroom and kitchen without any living room or common space. But after a day of pondering my options, I think I'm gonna take this place. Although the pot house had a very cozy feel to it and some pretty cool people to boot, the general concensus amongst those I asked said the weed bit probably isn't a plus. I'm gonna give the dude a call today and let him know I'll take it.

For everyone who has helped me look for a place, I thank you for all that you have done. Compared to some of the other moves I've taken in the past, this is probably one of the shorter ones, but the amount of support and concern that seems to ooze so freely from the Frwy pores has been tremendous. Again, thanks y'all, and as my time here in Mississauga draws to a close, I am getting seriously geeked about being able to call Hamilton home and y'all my new neighbors and family.

Thursday, May 11, 2006


The adapter for my powerbook just finally gave out. I've been ghetto rigging it for the past couple weeks, and it seemed to work. But just now, it started to spark and smoke, so I promply unplugged it. I've got a charger waiting for me back in Michigan, but until then, I need to figure out how to score some power. Anybody have a spare powerbook charger lying around? Till I pick up my new one, I will be a sad, sad man with no computer to keep me occupied. Oh, the misery!!!!!!

Huntin' For a New Crib

I was online today checking out the different listings the Spectator had to offer. Found 3 that looked had potentials, but after visiting these 3 places, only 1 of actually had potential. The other 2 had something else. Allow me to explain.

The first place was down the street from the cafe, so Paul and I walked down to check it out. First off, if you want to get anywhere in Hamilton quickly, never go with Paul. Not only does this dude know pretty much everyone, but pretty much everyone knows him. In fact, the guy who showed us the place knew Paul!! What a baller. Anyways, back to the place. It wasn't anything to look at. The first thing we see when the guy opens the door is one of the other dudes who lives there prancing around in his underwear. Not good. Needless to say, my mind was made up right then, but not to be rude, I looked around and asked a few questions, and promptly left. Although the location was really good, it was one of those place you'd find some really sketchy transactions taking place.

The second place was at Barton and Stirton. With my earlier experience, I did not have any high expectations for this place, but I was pleasantly surprised. The house was in a pretty nice area, and I walk up, and 2 of the people who live there were chillin' out on the porch. I meet 'em both and get a tour. Though the tour was quick, it was nice. The place was cozy and had character, so that was a plus. The room wasn't super huge, but it wasn't tiny either, so that was another plus. As I get ready to peace out, the person who showed me around said the only stipulation with moving in is that I needed to be cool with the other 2 roommates smoking mary jane in the house. I didn't know what to say, being that I've never lived with people who smoked doobies, so I smiled and nodded and said 'aite, that's cool.' But we'll see if that's the case.

As I rolled up to the third place, I was overcome by a feeling of absolute fear. One look at this place and I knew that it wasn't gonna be a fit. The paint was falling off, there were pieces of siding missing, and the screens were all messed up. But since I was there, I figured, I'll go in and check it out. The dude inside opens up the door, and it's a robust white haired man wearing nothing but a pair of boxers and a robe. My inner monologue was screaming 'get out now!', but I repressed it and went inside. All of a sudden, I was engulfed in this odor that was I can only describe as vomit inducing. It seemed like a combination of sweaty old man, stale urine, week old feces, and perhaps a rotting corpse behind one of the closed doors. Seriously, looking around the place and taking in the sights and smells made me want to hurl, and I have a pretty strong stomach. Needless to say, I was out of there pretty flippin' quick. As I was driving back to the cafe, my left hand started to itch. Hopefully I didn't pick up some nasty disease while in there.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Confessions of a Shoe Addict

I can't stop!! It seems like every chance I get, I jump from website to website looking for a new pair of kicks. Is that weird that I buy all my shoes online and not from a store? Currently, I have 12 pairs of shoes, and am looking for lucky number 13. Is there something wrong with me? I seriously hope not.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006


Chillin' at the Frwy cafe, and just had a real nice conversation with a lady who lives in the area. It seems the more time I spend in this community, the more excited I am to move here.

Monday, May 08, 2006


I was chatting with a friend recently about a top 10 movies list. I'm sure this will be ever changing, but here's what I've come up with thus far.

Fight Club
Pulp Fiction
Dead Poet's Society
Harold and Kumar go to White Castle
Office Space
Sin City
Good Will Hunting
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Hotel Rwanda

What's on your list?

Sunday, May 07, 2006


Since moving to Toronto and leaving behind 2 1/2 years of being on staff with a church as a youth pastor, there've been so many times I've thought back on some of the choices I've made and things I've said, and have been left thinking to myself 'God's gonna have to pull some crazy redemption out his sleeve if He's gonna fix this mess I've made'. But there are those times like today that God sends little reminders of what an idiot I am for thinking that He's incapable of redeeming my mistakes for good.

I was on the phone earlier today with a guy who was a former student in Michigan and is now studying at Wash U in St. Louis. It was a really great time reconnecting and sharing our journeys that God's been leading us through. We talked about the great times as well as the rough times, but all the way through, it was an honest and real conversation between a couple guys who seemed to have gone from a student-teacher relationship to a brother-brother relationship. It's absolutely humbling to be given a glimpse into the life of someone God's working in, and to be reminded that God will continue to do His thing regardless of my choices, whether wise or stupid.

To my bud, Ray. Thanks for remaining on this journey with God and blessing me with a glimpse into what He's doing in your life.

Dalit Freedom, Now and Forever

Today was a day that seemed to be focused on India. From morning till evening, it was all about India and about what God is doing within the Dalit/Untouchables in India. As I find myself reflecting on the day, I'm beginning to realize that I think I've signed up for something that I don't know if I can get out of. It seems that ever since I've come back from India, there's been a stead stream of reminders God's been throwing my way. From sharing about the trip, to going down to Akron for a Dalit Symposium, to connecting with DFN Canada, to seeing the director of OM INdia and DFN US, I think being an advocate and spokesperson for the Dalit people is something that I probably can't escape from. And amidst being surrounded by a generation that seems to hate labels, I think this is one I don't mind having. If being labeled as a Dalit advocate means speaking out on the injustice and oppression heaped upon a people group that is larger than the entire population of Canada, then I plead guilty. If being a Dalit spokesperson means to raise awareness to the daily dehumanization and raping of the Dalit women, then I plead guilty.

After spending this day focusing on the plight of the Dalit and hearing about what kinds of progress has been made for their emancipation from the Hindu caste system, I am filled with hope, excitement and trepidation. Hopeful in knowing that God is at work regardless of whether or not I succeed or fail in doing what I've been called to do. Excited because I am not alone in this journey. And trepidatious because I still don't know what I'm doing. Before today, I've been thinking and praying about how to network and connect with people in Canada who share a heart for the Dalit, and today seemed to be the first time this thinking and praying became a taste of reality. Talking with different people after the gathering seemed to open a beautiful can of worms that I can't wait to sift through and use to fish for bigger fish.

God is good.

Friday, May 05, 2006

A Song About Me

This cut me to the bone. It's unreal how these words resonate with me so clearly.

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Wedding Dress
By Derek Webb

if you could love me as a wife
and for my wedding gift, your life
should that be all i’ll ever need
or is there more i’m looking for

and should i read between the lines
and look for blessings in disguise
to make me handsome, rich, and wise
is that really what you want

i am a whore i do confess
but i put you on just like a wedding dress
and i run down the aisle
i’m a prodigal with no way home
but i put you on just like a ring of gold
and i run down the aisle to you

so could you love this bastard child
though i don’t trust you to provide
with one hand in a pot of gold
and with the other in your side
i am so easily satisfied
by the call of lovers less wild
that i would take a little cash
over your very flesh and blood

because money cannot buy
a husband’s jealous eye
when you have knowingly deceived his wife

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

A Glimpse of India

If you haven't seen it already, here's the movie I made from the pictures and moving images the India team took.

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