lately (05.15.20)

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

samglorious - anothertoast - shein matte oversized double hair clips barrettes

(oversized matte hair clips from SHEIN)

Helllllooooooooo. I’m writing this intro on Thursday night, from the dining room table, where I’m folded up on my chair in cute floral-embroidered sweatpants and an ancient, ratty sweatshirt that may have once belonged to my uncle. The cat is curled up in a softly meeping circle on a nearby chair, snoozing on top of my partner’s sweatshirt, while my partner is at his desk, partially hidden by a piece of cardboard we hung up so I wouldn’t show up in the background of his video calls.

Since my last update, I…

…finished reading all 12 available issues of Fence by C.S. Pacat x Johanna the Mad. It was a TREAT and I’m excited for more!

…finished reading The Princess Trap by Talia Hibbert. It was sexy! It was fun! I love consent!!! This book was written by a pan woman of color, whose writing voice was probably a huge factor in why I wasn’t squicked out by the sexual content, as I sometimes am in M/F romances. (The male love interest is bi, which also helps.)

…finished reading The Future of Feeling: Building Empathy in a Tech-Obsessed World by Kaitlin Ugolik Phillips. I didn’t really like it, but eh. It was largely about VR and how to build empathy into tech, but the author lost me within the first few pages because I have very little interest in listening to someone who thinks politics are a matter of opinion, not morality. When children are being held in cages and hate crimes are on the rise and people are being urged to risk their health to go to work in the middle of the pandemic for the sake of the economy, it is… literally a matter of morality. I just didn’t think the information in this book was particularly insightful, and I was disappointed that it took an entire book to basically say “People want to use VR for sex, but also for therapy” and “We need more diversity in tech.”

…started reading Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik (aka the author of several of my favorite Drarry fics), and it is SO FUCKING GOOD. It’s magical! It’s dark!! It’s feminist!!! I don’t even want to finish reading it because I don’t want the book to end!!!!

…somehow came across and read “unbelievable” by mullethyuck, a Bee Movie AU NCT fic where Mark Lee is introduced as “Mark. Mark Bee.” I truly love fandom.

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lately (04.30.20)

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

anothertoast - samglorious - oversized barrettes 90s hair clips matte

Uuuuugggggghhhhhhh.

It’s the end of April. A couple days ago San Francisco’s shelter-in-place order was extended through the end of May, which I’d fully expected to happen but which really bummed me out regardless.

I’ve been feeling mentally restless for days, partially because of the pandemic and partially because my body’s gearing up for a period and every part of my person is over-tender. I’ve got my NCT noise playlist on repeat and a batch of box mix brownies waiting for me in the kitchen. It’s helping, kind of.

Since my last update, I…

…finally used up my Eucalyptus & Mint Native Deodorant and am now moving on to the Sandalwood & Lemon (a seasonal scent from a while back). Now I smell like the inside of my dresser.

…had several days of migraines, which meant several days of Excedrin-induced insomnia. I’m really sensitive to the caffeine in Excedrin, and while it’s absolutely worth it to not have a migraine, it’s also really disorienting to be wide awake until 4 or 5 in the morning.

…went on another 6AM grocery trip. We were able to get most of the things we needed, but man. We’re going again later this week, and this is getting old real fast. But at least I’ll get to physically see my brother for a little while.

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lately (04.15.20)

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

anothertoast - samglorious - ya girl is breaking out

im breaking out from lack of sleep but i also rediscovered some sparkly black alligator clips in my hair accessory collection so who’s the real winner here? (it’s not me (it’s digiorno))

I don’t know how to start this post, but in all honesty I’m just gonna bang out words until I’ve covered these past two weeks, not because I particularly feel like it, but because I want to maintain my posting record so far this year. I’d much rather be working on writing the long-form fiction story that I’m hoping will eventually end up novel-length, but here I am, so let’s do this.

Since my last update, I…

…ate a few things that I didn’t actually make myself(!!), including a morning bun, cheesy bread, garlic bread, and an XL combo pizza. Our food choices were definitely motivated by 1) things we couldn’t or didn’t want to make ourselves and 2) things that could be easily reheated for virus-killing purposes.

Honestly, going to the bakery to pick up our online order of pastries was really nerve-wracking, I think because the space was so small. They had tape on the ground to space out customers, but I had to pass way too close to people who were definitely not acting in the best interest of others.

The pizza and garlic bread, we had delivered (yes we tipped high), so that was significantly less nerve-wracking. The place we ordered from has their own delivery drivers (which is good because I HATE the exploitative Uber Eats, Grubhub, PostMates, Seamless etc. business model), and I found out that they use ChowNow, which is basically an online ordering middleman for restaurants that can fulfill their own orders. The restaurant pays ChowNow a subscription fee for using their platform, which has a solid UI. I just think it’s neat and a way more sensible, sustainable approach than what the gig economy offers.

…made a no-knead loaf of bread using this recipe and this recipe Frankenstein’d together (with some tips for doing the 2nd rise overnight in the fridge from here), because we don’t have a Dutch oven but we do have an Instant Pot. We didn’t even have an appropriate container to shape the bread in, so our loaf kind of turned out looking like unsliced biscotti.

babys first quarantine bread - no knead no dutch oven loaf - quarantine baking

baby’s first quarantine bread

It may have looked a little ugly, but it was definitely tasty! I threw in a bunch of rosemary we’d frozen a few months back, and it was really good dipped in olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

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lately (02.29.20)

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

HENLO. I am trying to crawl into bed within the next hour and a half, so I’m cutting this intro short. Since my last update post, I…

…received a SICK whiskey (er… whisky) bottle from Spenser, from the Nikka distillery in Japan, with a SICK-ASS SAMURAI DESIGN. Look at it!!!

nikka whiskey samurai bottle

LOOK AT HIM!!!

…finally watched Parasite and couldn’t stop thinking about it for, like, a week. I don’t know if this description makes sense to anyone but myself, but it was… symphonic? Watching it felt listening to a symphony, with every moment important and satisfying and tantalizing, whether it was sparse (in terms of visuals or dialogue or symbolism) or rich and layered. Also, this is extremely beside the point, but Park So-dam is SUPER pretty, and Choi Woo-shik… is Hot. Not with this Ki-woo/Kevin haircut, but, like. It’s there.

…watched Train to Busan, which Choi Woo-shik also happens to be in. (To reiterate: He’s hot.) It was thoughtful and thrilling and really entertaining, and I loved it. If you’re wary of zombie movies because they fall under the general category of horror (as I was), don’t worry; this one gets a little gross at times, but it’s not particularly nightmare-inducing.

…rewatched Pan’s Labyrinth for the first time since probably 2011. It’s definitely still one of my favorite movies of all time, and I definitely still want Ofelia’s green dress.

…watched To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You, which was just alright. I’m not a huge fan of love triangles (or, uh, love wishbones?), and it was pretty much what I’d expected based on the book. On the one hand, it’s true that early relationships are messy and laden with insecurity and somebody always gets hurt, but on the other hand I was at least expecting Lara Jean’s outfits to be as cute as the first movie. They were not (they were… fine), and I was very disappointed.

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SuperM in San Jose (02.02.2020) – Concert Recap

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SuperM concert - stage photo - San Jose SAP Center - kpop EXO SHINee NCT 127 WayV - Baekhyun Taemin Kai Taeyong Ten Lucas Mark

(photo from SuperM’s official Twitter account)

TO THOSE ABOUT TO JOP:

This post is WAY too long, but I’m writing this for me, so I don’t even care (여긴 우릴 태울 stage).

Let the jopping begin.

On February 2, 2020, I jopped from Floor 1, Row 2 at the SuperM concert at SAP Center in San Jose. As the kids say, I had barricade. 😎

SuperM San Jose SAP Center - barricade floor seat - EXO lightstick Version 3 Eribong

(That’s not actually saying much, since the floor had assigned seating, and my section of the floor was only 2 seats deep, so everyone who wanted barricade got barricade. Also, SAP Center has a fairly big gap between the barricade and the stage, wide enough for a cameraperson and dolly to pass through with room to spare, so we certainly weren’t close enough to, like, reach out to the members in a desperate plea for a brief hand touch (which I’m pretty sure I would’ve done if I thought there was any chance they could reach me). But anyway.)

My seat was in the second row, on the far right (stage left) side of the floor, right next to the walkway that led from the main stage to the extended stage. I genuinely could not believe how close I was. The members walked by so many times, and literally every time, I completely froze up, as I am wont to do around EXTREMELY HOT PEOPLE.

But let me back up.

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lately (02.14.20)

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

I originally started this post with a recap of the SuperM concert, but I’ve already hit 2000 words and I’m not done yet, so I’ll be putting my concert recap into its own post. Aside from attending the SuperM concert in San Jose, since my last life update, I…

…finally added a collapsing archive to my sidebar. I’m using the Expanding Archives plugin, and while I wish it were as lightweight as the old collapsing archives that I had when I was on Blogger back in the day, it gets the job done.

…ate a Samanco fish-shaped ice cream waffle sandwich for the first time. It basically looks like taiyaki but is filled with ice cream instead of red bean! And it’s DELICIOUS!! The ice cream filling has this slightly crisp(?) texture (compared to your typical ice cream sandwich), which I really enjoyed. (After reading the name of the brand, my partner asked me “Is that your company?” -_-)

…read Reflection: A Twisted Tale by Elizabeth Lim. This version of Mulan begins with the snowy mountain scene from the animated Disney movie and turns into a journey through the Underworld to save Captain Shang’s spirit. Mulan’s character is awesome and strikes all my favorite notes about bringing your family honor and trying to be true to yourself and feeling confined by gender expectations. Also Shang does his usual thing and… acts like a whole bi baby when he realizes this dude in his regiment is actually a chick and has an internal crisis over why he was so fond of Ping. (I mean, not explicitly, but honestly what else would be going on in his head?)

…received my group order for this adorable fuzzy baseball cap with bear ears (a la Jongin’s Instagram Live) and these tiny little EXO motto/slogan patches (“사랑하자” translates to “Let’s love”; one is iron-on and the other is sew-on)

exo kai bear hat - exo motto slogan saranghaja lets love patch sew on iron on

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things i liked in 2019

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

It’s been eons since I last made a blog post, and I feel overwhelmed at the prospect of recapping everything that’s happened since June, so instead, I will resurrect the spirit of 2016 me and list some things I liked in 2019. Here they are.

movies watched 2019: spider-man: into the spider-verse, a monster in paris, murder on the orient express (1974), little women (2019)

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, which, yeah, came out in late 2018, but I’m including it here because I didn’t watch it until this year. It was truly a delight for my eyeballs, and Miles Morales and his leap of faith got me right in the heart.

A Monster in Paris, a v. charming animated movie from 2011 that my partner and I randomly selected on Netflix one day. It was unexpectedly really, really funny, and I recommend it if you’re in the mood for something fun and a lil funky.

Murder on the Orient Express, the 1974 version with Lauren Bacall, Ingrid Bergman, Sean Connery, and Anthony Perkins. I tend not to watch a lot of movies made before the 90s, but the deliberate overacting and dry deliveries in this had me literally lol’ing.

Little Women, the Greta Gerwig version. It is visually gorgeous (whomst among us did not leave this film desperate for Jo’s entire wardrobe!!!), and the storytelling is so tender, with so much loving attention paid to the March sisters. Of Greta Gerwig’s films, I’ve only seen this and Ladybird, but the way she depicts her characters’ humanity, their imperfections and hopes and fears and their basic desires to be good people and feel loved – it all makes me so soft. I also really, really love that Little Women in particular is so effective at treating the ~little domesticities~ of being a woman with gravity.

tv watched 2019 - nailed it - travel the world on exo's ladder - 100 days my prince - busted!

Nailed It!, which is a very soothing combination of cringe-y scripted schticks, wholesome encouragement, and hysterically disastrous baking.

Travel the World on EXO’s Ladder, both seasons of which are sososo calming to watch, or as the EXOs would put it, Healing™. Basically, EXO goes on vacations and has to play games and complete missions to “earn” their food and spending money so they can buy souvenirs. It’s honestly kind of a joy to watch them all just… be together, messing around and amusing themselves and not being mobbed by fans.

100 Days My Prince, a Korean historical romcom series. I love it SO MUCH, and not just because EXO’s D.O. is in it. I guess I’m just a sucker for the fun combination of a fake marriage (and amnesia!) plotline + political intrigue.

Busted!, a Korean variety show that includes Sehun from EXO. (And Sejeong from gu9udan, whom I would like to be, and Park Minyoung, whom I would like to marry.) Basically, there’s an overarching plot involving implanted microchips and detectives and solving mysteries/crimes, and the cast members have to complete a series of absurd escape rooms, alternate reality games, and nonsense tasks to get the information they need. It’s so dumb, and I love it so much.

books read 2019 - know my name by chanel miller - red white & royal blue by casey mcquiston - the prince and the dressmaker by jen wang - station eleven by emily st. john mandel

Know My Name by Chanel Miller. She’s a remarkable writer, but you probably already knew that if you read her victim impact statement on Buzzfeed back in 2016. Reading this book was so, so incredibly painful, but it felt like something I needed to do – to witness her.

Red, White, & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston. I’ve seen some reviewers call this book too idealistic or unrealistic, but, like, the premise is that the POTUS’ son and the Queen’s son fall in love and cause an international scandal, so, like, I don’t know what else you’d be expecting. This book is QUEER and SAD and FUNNY and I LOVED IT. Also, speaking as someone who was once pretty sure I was straight, Alex’s internal monologue when he goes running is TOO real, and, speaking as someone who lost a parent too young, the pie crust analogy about “when your brain isn’t even done fully cooking” broke me, in a very sad and very true way.

The Prince and the Dressmaker by Jen Wang. This is a YA graphic novel with SUCH A BIG HEART. Basically, the prince secretly likes to wear dresses. I cried!

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel. This was on my to-read list for ages. It’s a story about the apocalypse, but rather than glamorizing the destruction and violence that an apocalyptic event would doubtless bring about, it takes a look at the best parts of human nature and our tendency toward cooperation, ingenuity, and hope. It gets a little philosophical about humanity at times, but it seems only fitting for a story about surviving the apocalypse. I really enjoyed this book and highly recommend it.

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