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Showing posts from January, 2008

The Preface

Empty Suitcase: Milk for This Week


When I started cooking carbonara—Italian spaghetti with bacon, cheese, eggs, milk, and a little bit of cream—I realized that I did not have enough milk. Even though I just came back from grocery shopping—actually I went to the supermarket to buy milk but I bought a watermelon instead—I totally forgot to buy a carton of milk. Then, I heard my neighbor parking his car on the street. I looked at him through the blinds. Yes! A carton was in his plastic bag! He also just came back from his grocery shopping.

I had a conflict between perfect and burned carbonara in my frying pan. Should I ask him for a cup of milk…or not? My carbonara said “Absolutely,” but my moral mind said, “Is it a little weird?

I have lived on campus for years, so I have seen not only him but my other neighbors at the library, computer labs, or gym. Their faces are familiar but I do not know their names. So my neighbor with the plastic bags — I secretly called him Ross after the comedy …

The Preface

The Empty Suitcase
At an Airport

On the way back to America with two extremely heavy suitcases, a backpack, paper bag, and a certain-sized a plastic bag for toiletries, I took an eleven hour plane ride from Japan. At Customs, I carried luggage more than my weight—instant miso soups, my mother’s handmade beans, favorite chocolate sweets, green tea, new clothes, and tons of Japanese novels—I seemed to live in a jungle using a microwave and reading books.

At the entrance of America, I took off my jacket, shoes, belt, hat, and other accessories. I felt a wanting for music and a pole but I had never shown the feeling on my face. A security officer took my toothpaste from my plastic bag. I explained to her that it was Japanese toothpaste, and she said, “I know what it is.” My nearly empty toothpaste completed its mission by diving into the trashcan for the sake of the world peace.

I wished that the officer took my hand-cream instead. The toothpaste was nearly empty but I could have used for m…

The Preface

The Preface: Empty Suitcase

Happy New Year, 2008! Welcome to my New Year’s resolutions.

I will cook more often than taking out food from China House. I have lived by myself for years; however, I have never bought my own frying pan. Almost all of my cooking tools are from my friends who have a passion for cooking. I got a nice wok and a cookbook for my twenty-first birthday instead of bottles of rum. I was disappointed in the gifts. After a couple of years later, I opened the book for the first time and I looked at a recipe from the book, Karahi Shrimp and Fenugreek. I do not know where I can buy those ingredients; however, I will worry later when I get my frying pan.

I have decided to flirt a little bit more this year. The word, flirt, may give the wrong impression but I mean flirting for learning new ways of communication and having social experiences with others. I believe that if some people are good at flirting, they are also good at communication with anyone in any kind of situatio…