Sunday, January 28, 2007

Recovering from Addiction

There's been quite a bit of development since I last blogged, namely I feel MUCH better. I've never gotten the winter blues before not have I ever had mono, and I'm not sure if either of that is what I had, but needless to say, I feel upbeat and fantastic. You know what did the trick? Some good sleep. And when I say good sleep, I mean 15 hours of sleep. Yup, I got myself a whopping 15 hours of log sawin' this past Thursday night starting at 9pm, and didn't wake up till noon the next day. I don't if I've ever slept that long before in my life. When I woke up, I looked around, blinked a few times, and literally smiled like a crazy clown who just farted at a wedding: smug and proud. Anyways, since that sleep did the trick, my current theory is that the funk I was feeling was merely me being totally exhausted and not getting enough sleep, thus throwing me into this crazy depression. Anyways, thanks everyone for your words of comfort, whether through blog comment, email or in person. Things probably would've gotten worse if it wasn't for y'all.

On another note, I have discovered that I am a junkie. What kind of junkie, you ask. Well, let me tell you. It's not crack, it's not the Mary Jane, and it's not the bottle. It is caffine. These past few days, I haven't had my normal cup of coffee to jump start my morning. In the beginning, I was fine, but yesterday morning, I woke up with the world's worst headache. I popped a couple advils to silence the ringing, but only to discover the pain would return 12 hours later. As I rocked back and forth, holding my head, I took a couple more advil and went to bed. I was totally expecting the drugs to kick in, but my body pretty much ignored it and scoffed at me as if I had just taken pez for the pain. As I laid in bed, I was literally sweating and moaning and saying things like 'Oh the PAIN!!!' and 'Kill me now, God!!!' In hindsight, I think what I found myself doing last night is how drug addicts in rehab are portrayed in the movies. Anyways, I finally fall asleep, but to wake up with the same headache raping my brain. Through the pain and noise, I think to myself 'Chen, you're a junkie.'

Before heading to church this afternoon, I pop a couple more advil in hopes that it would give some sort of relief to the head pwning I've been getting the last couple days. Well, it did absolutely nothing. I manage to get through practice without passing out our puking, which I think was a pretty good feat. What I think helped me make it through was the smell of coffee being brewed. When that rich aroma penetrated my nostrils, I think I let out the highest pitches squeal that only dogs could hear. After practice, I put down everything and rush over to the bar and tell Melissa 'I NEED A FRIGGIN' COFFEE!!!!!!!!!' When I get my mug of liquid ecstasy, I take one sip and literally feel the headache melt away. When this happened, I was filled with both comfort and fear: Comfort because the pain was gone, but fear because my theory of being a junkie was confirmed.

Thursday, January 25, 2007


I met with my spiritual director today, and it was a pretty good session. I brought all of this mysterious baggage along and we prayed, talked, and prayed some more. I don't think I resolved anything, but being able to chat things through with a neutral party kinda helped.

One thing we talked about was taking a couple days and going away to some sort of quiet place, like a retreat center. I think I'm going to do it. I'd ask if anybody would want to come, but that'd kinda defeat the purpose of being alone. At the same time, I also brought up the possibility that I could be physically ill. Judging by my lack of energy and heightened fatigue, I'm beginning to wonder if I have mono. Of course, I'm no doctor, so until I see one, I will never know. But that's one thing we speculated that could be the cause. Plus, I know that when I get really tired, I can also get really emotional. How you like them Encyclopedia Brown sleuth skills?

As I have thought more about what exactly I'm feeling, I've discovered that it has an "I've-lost-something-terribly-important-and-I'll-never-get-it-back" feel. The only thing I can compare it to is the first time I went away for summer school at the ripe age of 12. I was in a foreign place, all alone, and my parents had just left. I remember unpacking my stuff, looking around, then all of a sudden feeling a tidal wave of anxiety and fear rush over me. I Instinctively try to look for my parents, but as soon as I realized that they were gone, my heart sank, and I began to cry. Right now, I'm feeling everything I felt then: Fear, anxiety, heart sinking. The only difference is I stop just short of crying, but if this continues, I may be doing that.

Seriously, this feeling is an absolute mystery which has caused me to wonder 'What is it that I have lost?' I'm no supernatural psychic that can see into the future, so I have no idea if I will be losing something soon, but this feeling of being alone is starting to wear on me.

Oh, and talking about being alone, I felt really bad because I really wasn't in the mood to talk, so I pretty much ignored Melissa on the ride back from Mississauga this afternoon. Sorry for spacing out on you, Mel.

Anyways, I've been fortunate enough to have found a song that's given some sort of peace and solace during this time. It's a song by a band called Dakona entitled 'Revelation', and being able to connect with it has helped tremendously.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007


I dunno what's happening lately, but I've been in this really weird funk for the last few days. It seems to be a combination of feeling drained, unmotivated, slightly irritable and borderline depressed. I've found that when I'm with people, I'm pretty good, although some people have had the "privilege" of seeing this side of me. But when I'm by myself, all I want to do is either sleep or cry.

Take today, for instance. The entire day, I really didn't feel like talking to anybody, but because I was at school, I really couldn't avoid it. But when people ask me what's going on, the truly honest answer would be 'I don't know', which to some would raise a few mental flags. Granted, I was feeling really tired and irritable, but I've usually been pretty good at fighting it off.

Then last Saturday, I found myself working the film event at the coffee house. The event was really fun and enjoyable, except for the unbelievably bad, tremendously offensive and completely unfunny stand up comedy routines that included such "jokes" as:

'Why did God create winter?'
'To kill the homeless.'

But amidst a room full of nice people, I was in that space where I really didn't want to talk to people, but didn't really have a choice. The worst part of it was trying to keep to myself while surrounded by fellow baristas Natasha, Miranda, Melissa and Curtis.

Even as I type this, I'm noticing that my whole body is beginning to feel really heavy, as if I'm on my last ounce of strength and fighting to stay awake, even though I'm not tired.

I'm not really sure what it is, although I have my theories. Maybe blogging about this will be an outlet that will lead to some sort of healing. Until then, I think I need to spend some time in stillness and quiet with God, cuz I have a feeling part of why I feel the way I do is because of something He's got in store that's just around the corner.

Me + Online Shopping = Apocalypse

Although online shopping is both cheaper and more convenient, it is also quite addicting. You can find a deal or stumble across something cool, and before you know it, the order's been placed for this, or this.

Anyways, need to reinsert the e-needle into my veins for a quick fix. Perhaps I'll see you in the digital cosmos. You can find me between the shoes and useless gadgets.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Sports and Wheels

A couple random and unrelated items:

A woman in Illinois induces labor so her husband could attend the Bears - Saints game. Is that love? Or is it insanity? I dunno, but the baby boy's healthy, and the Bears won, so I guess this couple is win.


My baby's getting old. She's all 7's on the odometer. Lucky? Or one foot in the grave? Either way, she's my sweetheart and we've had many, many fantastic adventures together. So until 'death do us part', we're stayin' together.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

The Money Link

For those of you who are familiar with the satire publication 'The Onion', this will be right up your alley. It's a Christian equivalent of The Onion. Enjoy, but beware: Reading this may cause uncontrollable laughter and urination. I'm on my 4 pair of draws today.

Wrestling for the Bathroom

When you've got 6 people sharing 1 bathroom and 1 kitchen, not only is it tricky, but it smells like death just vomited and crapped all at the same time and didn't have the courtesy to flush or clean up after itself. To top it off, earlier this week, the bathroom was literally COVERED in hair. I don't know where it was from (my guess it's a combination of facial and pubic hair), but it was all over the floor, all over the counter, and managed to clog the sink. When I walked in, I was about to pinch one off, but the sight managed to make me lose all desire to do my business. Hopefully my body didn't reabsorb my crap.

This morning, the camel's back broke. For the past little while, I've been carpooling with Melissa to Mississauga. I usually set my alarm for 5:45am, and meet her at 6:45am. As of late, the 3 dudes who live in the attic have been getting up at around 6am to get ready for whatever the hell they do. I've grown accustomed to being the only person awake at that time, but now that the house is jumpin' at 6am, it's been damn near impossible to use the bathroom. As I was preparing my morning cup of coffee, someone was already in the bathroom. As I was finishing up, the bathroom became free, to which my internal monologue squealed in ecstasy 'YES!! I ARE WIN!!!' I scurried back to my room to collect my clothes and towel and rushed back out into the hallway. As I neared the bathroom, I noticed the door was closed. Upon further inspection, someone managed to scurry faster than I and claimed the bathroom. Can you saw 'PWNED?!?!?!'

Anyways, the sooner I can get out of this place, the better. I wonder if anyone will notice if I relocate myself to the basement of the coffee house. I'm sure I can manage to take showers using the sink...

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


There has been some talk lately about getting people together to play basketball. So far, nothing's happened, which has caused great sadness to well up within my soul and severe muscular atrophy to overtake my thunder thighs. I don't think the issue is whether or not there people are interested in playing, but with finding a place to play. Does anyone know of a church with a gym or a place that's open to the public where I can showcase my slick silly ankle breaking crossover moves? My ever increasing set of man boobs thank you immensely.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Utterly Rancid

A little while back, I blogged about a site where someone would eat random items that most people would find strange, and perhaps repulsive. I have been visiting this site every few days in the hopes that Steve would eat something else. Alas, nothing new.

Fortunately, I stumbled across another site that is perhaps on par with Steve's shenanigans. No, they don't eat anything. Instead, they purchase different types of meats and leave them outside and document their daily changes with both pictures and words. A word of caution: some of the pictures got pretty gruesome, and even though I pride myself in having a pretty strong stomach, I was having a hard time with a few of the photographs.

With that said, please enjoy their scientific meat escapades, courtesy of the stinky meat project.

****EDIT**** It has come to my attention that this website is kinda old, so my apologies for not being up on the times.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Physically Fit, or Mentally Insane?

A 49 year old man rides a stationary bike for 85 hours and enters the Guinness book of world records. I don't think I've ridden a stationary bike for 85 hours in my LIFETIME, so I can't imagine riding it for 85 hours in one go.

The cool thing is that this guy did this for more than just himself. He endured 85 hours to raise money for an organization that supports families of police officers who lost their lives while in the line of duty. In the words of my D-troit peeps, 'This dude is mad baller, yo.'

I Heart Movies, Part 2

A friend of mine sent me this coupon for a buy one get one free movie ticket at the Cineplex family of theaters. The only stipulation is that they're valid on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays after 6pm, and the offer ends on January 25th. I haven't tried it yet, so dunno if they'll honor it, but it's worth a shot. Anyways, if anyone tries it out, holla back and lemme know if this deal works. Till then, here's the coupon.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

I Heart Movies

I'm a humongous fan of movies, not just because they provide a source of entertainment and sometimes provide a couple of mind numbing hours of vegetation, but more often than not there is tremendous depth found in this kind of art form. I have recently viewed several films that I must say have moved me, inspired me, caused me to wonder, and helped me catch a glimpse of real life in it's most rawest form. I'm not gonna go into too much detail about each of these films except that I highly recommend each of them. In chronological order, the films I have recently seen are:

Who Killed The Electric Car? This is a provocative documentary-style film that seamlessly weaves between the automotive world and the area of environmental issues. According to the film, the electric car was a kind of technology that existed but was unfortunately silenced and never really given the chance to flourish and play a part in offsetting pollution and the current oil crisis. In a rather "objective" way, the film makers unfold what can only be described as a conspiracy and reveals all the many facets of life, culture, society and business that brought an end to the short life of the electric car.

Little Miss Sunshine This has to be by far one of the better, if not THE best film I have seen this past year. I saw it 3 times in the theater, and if that wasn't enough, I bought the DVD. With a blend of humor, music, dialogue and chemistry that seems to be well on its way to being put on the endangered species list, Little Miss Sunshine crafts an experience for the viewer to enter the story of the Hoover family road trip. This film seems to encapsulate the tensions and awkward moments found in what our society would label as a dysfunctional family. Through sheer genius, the film manages to suppress feelings of pity and disgust and uncovers the fingerprints of grace, redemption and love that are found in even the worst of situations.

An Inconvenient Truth From an unlikely mouthpiece spouts a plethora of facts and figures that serve as compass for why spring flowers are blooming in December and how the expression 'it's so hot you could fry an egg on the sidewalk' is no longer a figure of speech but soon to be reality. Like a drunken grandfather with a speech impediment, Al Gore dances seamlessly from story to story, fact to fact with the aid of his southern drawl and army of still and moving images. Although it took me a little while to get past the fact that this is the same guy who talked about a 'lock box' and claims to be the inventor of the internet, his impassioned presentation on the current global climate and mind boggling weather helps put together a picture of a mother earth that has been unapologetically raped and abused repeatedly by humanity with no remorse. Although guilt, condemnation and fear are typical vehicles used by communicators to reveal the errs of the listener, these modes of transportation were left in the garage. Instead, hope and an understanding of reconciliation was presented. By way of an unexpected wisdom and eloquence, this film helped me understand the role I have been playing in the issue of global warming as well as how the role can be reversed where destruction can be replaced by healing and restoration.

Dave Chappelle's Block Party If it wasn't for my buddy Al's recommendation, I would have not seen this film. Being a fan of Dave Chappelle, I have the utmost respect for his humor, as well as his desire to bring to the surface issues of racism, stereotyping and bigotry. Although his humor can be misconstrued as something that reinforces the same issues he is addressing, I cannot but hold his values and passions in high regard. With that said, this film is nothing like his show that helped him explode into the homes of millions of North Americans. Through his natural comedic genius, coupled with masters of hip-hop like The Fugees(this block party brought them back together!!), The Roots, Kanye West and Mos Def, with the heart of Brooklyn used as the backdrop, this film had me laughing, dancing, and falling deeper and deeper in love with the city. As I watching this film, I found myself thinking about Hamilton and Beasley, and how I love being a part of the Freeway and desiring to be a voice and hand of hope and restoration to people who have been forced into the margins of life. If this Block Party was able to serve as a wave of solace and be an interruption to the despair of the downtrodden, then I can only imagine what Jesus has in store for Beasley and the Freeway this year as he rolls out a party whose headliners are love, grace, mercy and justice.

Random Links

Here's a few random links that I found either interesting or farking hilarious.
MIT is offering free university and graduate level courses for anybody in the world to take. Check it out. You might learn something that could change the world.
Thanks to an unintentional slip of the tongue from late night talk show host, this site exists and is making me feel warm and fuzzy all over. Enjoy some fantastic man-on-manatee action.
I think this site has been around, but I still get a tremendous kick out of it. In a nutshell, it's like wikipedia for words. Here's a few terms to get you started on a journey to a more well rounded vocabulary:
I stumbled across Zach Braff's MySpace and found a couple things. First is a song by Imogen Heap that I can't seem to get enough of. It's called Speeding Cars, and my life is being transforming by it one play at a time.

The cast of Scrubs took clips of the Charlie Brown Christmas and overdubbed their voices to produce one of the funniest videos I've ever seen. Although Christmas is over, the cold weather's still around the corner so technically it's still kinda appropriate. Anyways, if you're a fan of Scrubs, this video will be right up your alley.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007


Upon arriving at school this morning, I checked my mailbox for any spam and dirty magazine subscriptions. Unfortunately, I had neither waiting for me. Instead, I find a small, brown envelope whose contents I have been waiting for with dirty anticipation. What is this, you ask? My new student visa that allows me to stay in Canada till the end of August, 2008. Yup, that's right, I'm legal, baby. If only for a short time, I'm here to stay and will make it my duty and passion to turn this country upside down with my dirty mind and foul mouth. Praise the Lord, eh?

Now with my renewed documents, I can freely go home and not worry about being pwned at the border. Can anyone say 'ROADTRIP?!?!?!?!'

Monday, January 08, 2007

New York

Why, hello world!! It's been a while since I last posted, and a lot has happened in that time. I'm gonna hopefully get a chance to blog about the latest happenings in my life soon, but for now, here's a smorgasbord of my trip to New York.

I spent Christmas in New York with family that I don't normally get to spend much time with. I had an absolutely fantastic time with my cousins, aunts and uncles, as well as had great fun being a tourist in Manhattan for a couple days. A few highlights of that trip are:

* Visiting the Charmin store in Times Square. This is the same Charmin that puts out the toilet paper whose mascot is the bear taking a crap in the woods and then wiping its corn hole with the "softest paper on earth". This store is simply a place with approximately 20 public bathrooms that are stocked with Charmin TP. After every use, a Charmin employee enters the recently sullied toilet and cleans up whatever mess the customer left.

To get to the bathrooms, one needed to ride an escalator to the 2nd floor. As I was on the moving staircase, I look over to the people coming down, and every single person had a smile on their face. That was a good sign. After lining up, it was my turn to do my business. I enter the bathroom and close the door behind me. I was expecting the smell of feces and urine to rape my nostrils, but instead I catch the smell of flowers and baby powder. As I look around I expected to see shreds of toilet paper and urine stains all over the floor and toilet, but there was nothing of the sort to be found. Unfortunately I only had to pee, so I can't tell you how the toilet seat felt, but all I have to say is it was a really great experience.

* Hanging out with my cousins. The last time I saw all of 'em was at my younger brother Dennis' wedding a year and a half ago. It's always a really great time seeing them and realizing how important family is. Although people have different personalities and quirks, I've discovered that my family puts the fun in dysFUNctional.

Although seeing my family in New York was really great, I really missed spending Christmas with my brothers. Both of them stayed in their respective cities with the family of their significant other. This was probably the first time in a long time that we haven't spent Christmas together, so amidst all the fun and celebration, there was definitely something missing. Again, the importance of family is under appreciated in our culture today.

* Seeing old friends. I got a chance to hang out with Mogan, Leslie and Jason while I was in New York. Leslie and Jason are friends of mine from back in Michigan, and Mogan is a friend I met while on a trip to Nashville. All three of them are near and dear to my heart, so it was such a blessing to hang out with them and hear what's going on in their lives as well as chat about different things that are going on in our world.

* Getting sick...again. I've discovered that whenever I travel, I come down with some sort of illness. When I went to Denver, I caught a cold. When I went to India, I caught a cold. This time, when I went to New York, I caught a cold. Even as I type this, I'm constantly snorting mucus that's filling up my sinuses. Hopefully this sickness won't stick around for much longer because it's really getting on my nerves.

* Passing out on the NY subway. As many people know, when it comes to alcohol, I'm as lightweight as they come. The same evening that I saw Mogan, Leslie and Jason, we went out for dinner and some drinks. I ordered a beer, and it totally killed me. Of course, it didn't help that I only got about 4 hours of sleep the night before and walked around Manhattan for the better part of a day. Anyways, Mogan and I were on our way back to his place, and on the way, we were chatting, and I found myself dozing off while he was talking. I could only assume that Mogan noticed me dozing off when he said 'If you're tired, you should take a nap.' Usually I would wave off such absurd recommendations by saying 'Nah, I'm ok.' But that day, I heeded his suggestion and said ok, and promptly passed out. That was a sad day...

* I was on TV. During my first day of walking around Manhattan, I saw a big crowd gathered outside the television studio that films the morning news show 'Good Morning America'. As I mosey over to check out what's going on, I poke my head around like the tourist I am. As I'm looking around, I notice some television monitors, and as I stare more intently at them, I notice this Asian looking fella moving in unison to my movements. It took me a few more moment to realize that it wasn't some random Asian dude, but was in fact me on TV.

* I saw Uma Thurman. Yup, you read that right. The star from such movies as Pulp Fiction and Kill Bill volumes 1 and 2 walked right by me. I was just about to reach out and touch her, but thought that I'd rather not be sent to jail on charges of molesting a movie star.