Friday, June 27, 2003

Just arrived in Berlin today, after a night in London.

Saturday, June 21, 2003

Travelling, so I won't be able to log regularly (well... not like I have been doing so to begin with but...). Am in New York City right now, and wishing to the depths of my soul that I came here for university and not @#! Chicago. And while we're at it -- I wished I'd finished my NS too before starting uni.

Ah well.

Also, I am now much much more reluctant than I was before to travel together with my parents.

If you would like to know, I should be done with roaming after July 15th. Ciao.

Sunday, June 15, 2003

Convocation was this morning. I am no longer a college student.

Just a bit more packing and I can leave tomorrow. I'm still having difficulty coming to grips with the idea that I am leaving the university and all the people that I have come to know during my time here, and am not coming back for years. A decade or two, maybe never.

I'm scared of these kind of changes, because I'm terrified that I have to face them alone.

Saturday, June 14, 2003

How do you say goodbye?

You can, I suppose, tell someone whom you've greeted, chatted with, debated with, shared opinions with, laughed with, seen around all the time that you won't be there when they come back after the summer's over. But what is this sense of loss settling into a quiet niche within me?

I'm sad that I have to go. It's impossible to stay of course, but I feel sad all the same. Because for those whom I've had the fine fortune to know here, I don't know when we'll meet again.

Haven't updated my blog for so long because of various graduation-related tasks that I've had to get done. All the things that have to be packed up and shipped out are mostly on their way -- but it was maddening in every sense of the word. For some reason I always end up reinventing the wheel and this time it was no different. Had no idea where to begin and no idea who to ask and so seized on FedEx initially. But shipping with them costs a @#! bomb. Then I discovered that the U.S. Postal Service has a book rate for shipping overseas, and thanks to the help of my fantastic parents I managed to ship the books that I didn't give/throw away before the post office on campus closed. Thanks also to God for not letting me flip out, for having the support of my parents, and for letting me be the last guy to get in to the post office before it closed. :)

I gave away a lot of my books. As I was throwing volume after volume out of the boxes it struck me how futile having my own personal book collection was. I rarely reread my books after all -- perhaps I should utilise libraries better and think very carefully about my furture books purchases. How hard that was over here and that was just with a smattering of book fairs throughout the year and visits to Powell's on 57th. A greedy urge to buy buy buy while the self-restraint that usually reins the consumerist impulse is suppressed by some strange moral belief that reading is good for you. Maybe it's better that I wasn't in London or New York...

Monday, June 09, 2003

Well well, what d'ya know. I did find a copy of The Trial of Henry Kissinger at the book fair. True -- it's not fair to single him out for all the abominable things the U.S. did during the Nixon and Ford Administrations, but it's a start to uncovering the reasons why hatred of the U.S. runs so high in many parts of the world. Wish more Americans -- particularly in the current Administration -- would pay attention.

On a side note, it seems that the author Hitchens has become a yes-man for the Dubya Admin. I know next to nothing about the guy of course, but I hope he hasn't made such a hypocritical choice.

I think I'll start on the book after I finish Murakami Haruki's latest collection of short stories After the Quake. Picked up the new softcover edition while shopping on Fri evening, before the movie. Excellent stuff ^_^

Saturday, June 07, 2003

At last -- done with classes. My last final for while ended at 12 noon Fri. Time to turn my attentions to preparing for my exit from Chicago.

Feels strange to have absolutely nothing to study for, for once.

Watched The Trials of Henry Kissinger this evening at Doc. Fascinating documentary. I'm compelled now to read Christopher Hitchen's book of a similar name, which inspired the BBC film. Perhaps I'll find it at the 19th Annual Printer's Row Book Fair this weekend.

What to make of the most famous American diplomat ever? I'm inclined to agree that he was as duplicitous and amoral as the film presented him as. The evidence is compelling, but more importantly I agree because in my opinion those qualities were what made him such an effective statesman for the times he lived in. His America was one that saw no end to the Cold War, was paranoid about the Communists taking over the world and so did everything possible to avoid appearing weak in front of other countries.

Hey, maybe things haven't changed that much since HK fell out of the public limelight. Now that's a disturbing thought.

Tuesday, June 03, 2003

City Trees

I have seen city trees
fight for air --
elbow each other
with their crooked arms
for a gulp of sky.

Even their spring
is hard won --
the pyrrhic victory
of scant leaf
from blackened branch.

I admire their slant on things --
the way they spire above
the small irony of fences
and tulips at their feet --
the way they stare down
the envy of windows --
the traffic of windblown faces.

They remind me
of what is not concrete,
what is in spite of what is.

-- Linda Opyr

Monday, June 02, 2003

Ugh -- I am sick and tired of thinking and writing.

No energy, no understanding, no love, no community, no confidence -- no happiness.