Monday, February 27, 2006

acts of kindness

Just feeling a little thoughtful as I silently curse the apartment for not having hot water.

The other day, I was just aimlessly thinking, filling in blanks with whatever mad-lib memory I could come up with. And it's not too difficult to eventually think of my accident, because I still think about it even though it's behind me. The hip is a reminder, as is the scar, and the limp, etc. I'm not going to rehash on that. What I remembered was this person I used to work with at Tinseltown, Josh. He was an usher and just the nicest guy. There was a southern charm to him, even though he was from PA like the rest of us I believe. You could see him holding doors and answering with "Yes mam" to women and just being that good guy that no guy disliked. I didn't know him super well, but at Tinseltown, you kind of know everyone. We weren't great friends or anything, just the occasional chat here and there when he would work his lone Sunday shift. Anyways, while I was at HealthSouth doing rehab, I got visits from my close friends and family - Becky, Hanni, Melissa and Jessica, Patton, Ian, mom, dad, etc. And a few people who I didn't quite expect, like Charlie and a few Vietnamese people, although I wasn't surprised by them either. But Josh, he visited me all by himself. No one else there to take the awkwardness out of a tough situation. It's hard to see people destroyed and damaged and undeserving of their current life state. I was so touched that he visited me, because I felt I wasn't even a blip on his friendship radar. So to see him was just shocking and touching all at once and it felt like such a big deal. Yes, you could say, "Well Vonda, you got into an almost fatal accident and most kind normal people, whether friend, family, or acquaintance would feel compelled to visit and see how you were doing." And OK, I will give you that. But Josh... he went so above and beyond that. He was so sincere and heartfelt, telling me how upset he was to hear about this and how I didn't deserve this accident. Not only that, he asked around before he came to see me and tried to figure out what he could do to make me feel better and occupy my time. Do you know what he did? He went out and bought me the Cold Mountain DVD, and... Sex and the City Season 6, part 1 - the DVD I had been looking to buy right before my accident. I was floored. These are very thoughtful (and pricey) gifts. He did so much for me, a girl he saw once a week who chatted about aimless PA life. And... not only that... he also handed me a card and warned me there would be money in it. I couldn't take that money! But he wouldn't let me give it back or open it before he left. He said, I needed the money more, and since I wasn't working anymore, he would work for me. So the Sundays were now days he worked for me. I opened the card after he left... and well... I won't say the sum that was in there, but it was definitely several Sundays worth of work. I cried. I have never ever been hit with generousity like that before, especially from someone who didn't know me that well or love me unconditionally like family and friends. I cried for a while and finally, for the first time in several hard weeks, I felt truly optimistic. That memory is one I treasure and hold dear to my heart. I wonder where Josh is now. I think I need to do investigative work and dig and send him something. I don't think he knows how much he did for me. How his extremely small, but large, kind act altered my life.

It's moments like that that remind me how GOOD people can be. How great life can be. And how one thoughtful act can go a long way. I know this sounds so simple and trivial, but... be kind to everyone and especially thoughtful of those you care for. You never know who's life you might be changing.

Thursday, February 23, 2006


Several four letter expletives come to mind as I absorb the fact that my favorite on American Idol was just voted off. Boo to that! And yes, before you ask, "Well did you vote for him?" Oh course I did! At least 100 times. I know you all might find me a little lame for being such a fan, but what can I say? I'm hooked. Patrick Hall, we hardly knew ye. Good luck with your career.

I look forward to a chill weekend with laundry, cleaning, and my first trip to IKEA in ages. Relaxation is something I can't get enough of.

Everyone and their mothers and brothers and sisters and fathers have a birthday in March and April. I just went to Hallmark and purchased 10 birthday cards. Eight of those have been claimed already. Two are in cases, since again, EVERYONE seems to have a birthday around this time. Including me. :-)

Here's to hoping 23 is a ton more fun than 22.

Saturday, February 18, 2006


Had a super fab dream. Well not SUPER FAB, but nice. And I actually remembered it, which hasn't happened in a few weeks. Anyways, I see ______, whom I had a crush on all through high school, but never really talked to often enough. Actually, if you don't want to be bothered with trivial lame PG dreams about things that never were, I would just stop reading now. :-) Anyways, I was back in Erie, and we were just hanging out, and ______ then holds my hand and gives me a tender kiss on the head, the cheek, and then the lips. That's about it. It was nice. Then my brain short circuited the whole dream morphed into some action thriller without ______ in it anymore. What a shame! :-P

My highest Boggle score to date: 45! And that was against John and Lisa, who I consider to be pretty decent with their words. I was just beastly last night.

I was thisclose to being shipped to Houston for an on-site job for a week in March. But it fell through, so... another time, Texas, another time...

My leg/hip is being funny... enough to alarm me. But I can't tell if it's a true problem or just an issue with the nor'easter/blizzard, and the now ridiculously freezing temps with the crazy winds. I am really affected by the weather, so... I should do my best to stay calm about my aches. Regardless, I should find a new orthopedic surgeon. Any recommendations out there for the Boston area?

I can't get Hopelessly Devoted to You out of my head. Blame it on American Idol.

First movie of 2006: Something New. It wasn't too bad actually. But I always enjoy a good chick flick.

Do you think you are a genius? Take this test and find out! In case you were wondering, I am a genius. ;-)

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

all about family

Our apartment is full of love. Third grade Valentine's Day love. I think us in our PJs with our kick ass Valentines is the best way to start this day of love. Lee and Lisa are practically like sisters to me. You wouldn't believe how much time we spent on those cards... probably too much time. But we're worth it. :-) (Also, holla to Franny for those wicked awesome pajamas! Sock monkeys rule!)

And now, you can see my sister Marissa and my wonderful niece Alexis. How cute are we?

And just to let you all know, the females are the ones with the brains and strength in my family. On both sides. :-)

Thank you's go out to my best friend Becky and Tony, Franny, and the Mullers for their wonderful Valentines that I got in the mail. And of course to my awesome cousins for the homemade cards chocked full of love.

I'm still looking for my valentine... are you him? :-)

Happy Valentine's Day!

Monday, February 06, 2006

nj sucks!

It's official. I hate New Jersey, especially NJ Transit. NJ bus drivers are mean and crochety. NJ bus riders are rude, potty mouths, and look like they either want to beat you up or mug you. And NJ, or at least Newark, is very run down and just not that great of a city. OK, so this isn't completely true of NJ, but my experience this weekend was definitely discouraging. The only funny story was when a 20something Latino sitting next to me on the bus struck up conversation, while drinking his Corona (!) and trying to light a cigarette (but no matches - shucks!). He asked, in his Mike Tyson voice, what my nationality was. When I said Vietnamese, he asked what that was... and when I explained how Vietnamese is Asian, he asked if we Asians were all the same. When I explained about how we are all apart of the Asian continent but very much our own cultures, he told me that I really taught him something new. And that he hoped to continue to learn new things and that I really helped him. Yes, people, I just taught a man how not all Asians are the same. Needless to say, NJ sucks.

Seeing my sister was pretty cool. She looked great! My niece Alexis is quite a pill. :-) I've only seen her once since she became of age to remember me, and I was in a hospital bed, looking like death. I love her for her forwardness. When talking about my sister's boyfriend, my 7 year old niece's opinion of him was, "Matt's lame!" And she spent most of dinner kicking me, poking me, and trying to get my attention. She also then gathered up rain in her hands and smeared in on my jacket. I hope that means in a kid way that she loves me too. You know, punch and kick someone because you like them. Right?

Way to go Steelers! I was psyched to see Hines Ward get the MVP. When you're a WR and play for a team like Pittsburgh, you don't get as much love. They are a running team, and as Ian said, they make WRs block. Crazy, huh? How about that gadget play? Just great. :-) I am pretty sure Mitch and all those crazy Pittsburgh fans are never going to stop smiling. Or at least not until the buzz wears off.

My cousin Linda (who is 2 months younger than me) is getting married in April. The wedding is in Austin. I haven't decided if I am going yet. It depends on who in the family is attending. Anyways, that isn't the part that is important. :-P Using Tom's description, I've got a slightly serendipitous chance to see Daniel for the first time in 5 years (actually an anniversary, since we met almost 5 years ago to that exact same week in Alaska). Should lead to interesting results. I think? :-)

I'm rewatching SNL and it's actually pretty good. Steve Martin isn't half bad. And, surprisingly, I am incredibly impressed with Prince. Enough to maybe go and get more of his stuff. Music, music, music. It's all I got lately. I am seeing James Blunt and Jamie Cullum in March. Awesome. :-)

Huge pet peeve: when people walk way in front of me. Yes, I have always walked slow. But now, I actually have an excuse. My walking is pretty decent these days, but I still gimp occasionally, especially where there is any sort of precipitation. Also, I am still short. I do not walk fast nor take long strides. When you are walking with me, please walk WITH me, not in front of me. Walking alone, 5-10 feet behind someone(s) is not what I call a good time. The most I will tolerate is a "Tom Muller cripple walk": you walk fast and then realize you are starting to leave me behind and stop to wait for me and then struggle to walk slow. At least I know you are trying to walk painfully slow because you actually want to walk WITH me and care. OK that's my last vent for this entry. Promise.

It's been an incredibly long weekend. Ups and downs, but for the most part, more ups than downs and that is what counts. And I won Scrabble again. The word that saved me: ninja. Can we say triple word score? Oh yeah! :-)

If you're bored, you should check out PostSecret. Maybe you'll see your secret.