End Week 11

It is now 0038 and I just can’t sleep. So why not blog while things are fresh in my mind? Kill Bill is on; I’m typing during the scenes which suffice as playing in my head while listening.

Speaking of Kill Bill – and it’s actually the reason I’m watching it now – Jason and Sam and I were talking about KB I vs. KB II, the Japanese uncut version, O-Ren Ishii, the Showdown at House of Blue Leaves, and the real Hattori Hanzo. Pretty schweet stuff, man. (By the way, did you ever notice that when O-Ren decapitates Tanaka, they first show her holding her katana as if she’d drawn it with her fist facing up, and then when she’s turning to stand, she’s holding it as if she’d unsheathed it with her fist facing down? Lol.) It started with a song on the radio that had a bassline that made me think of the band playing before the Showdown.

I’ve never considered the radio as an ideal broadener of musical horizons, but lately Jason’s been greeting me with, “You’re as cold as ice…” and I just… blank. When Foreigner’s Cold As Ice finally played yesterday and Jason and I were both downstairs prepping, it was that kid-at-Christmas face again =) Rad, especially with his being so stressed and tired of late due to moving. I was very sorry to upset him by not bringing him any beef rendang on Friday. He keeps on telling me which dishes are the best out of everything I’m going to get to make in my next class and that he wants me to bring him some. “Look, it’s MCI, just tell Chef Yek that it’s ok for you to take some home.” “I’d like to see you walk in and tell Chef Yek that it’s ‘ok for [me] to bring food home.'” “Well if I’m gonna go there, I might as well just eat some there.” “So why don’t you just do that?” “I have work!” “In the morning??” “Oh. … What time?” “8.” “Oh. I’m sleeping.” “Well, then.” It was nice hearing about this past Wednesday, which was apparently Chardonnay and Viognier day. He was having such a time trying to remember how to pronounce Gewurztraminer last week, it was funny.

Lots of the funny stuff yesterday involved Sam and Jason. I still have to make a point of leaving or at least turning around when Sam’s reaching to pick up his knife kit from under the table at my station, lest I say something terribly uncharitable – I seriously can’t think of a way to say it charitably; how about, “I object to your apparently preferred level of your pants’ waistband”? – but just this past week, I’ve really started to enjoy having him around. Three such aforementioned incidences (probably ones a body would have had to be there to appreciate):

Sam and I were at one table, Jason at the other, and In The Air Tonight is playing. Jason accidentally drops something and verbally expresses annoyance.
me: Haha, that sounded like it was on purpose, like you were playing along! (It was at about… 3:41 on the track.)
Jason: What?
me: Yeah, it was perfect!
Jason: Oh, then I guess it was worth it, just for that! *accidentally drops something again* Ok.. how about that one?
me: Ehm…
Sam: No, not really.
Jason: Oh, darn.
And we all laugh.

Sam and I were going back and forth all night last night to each others’ stations to check out the various new stuffs, and also both of us trying to absorb as much as possible concerning Ricky Bobby’s and Jason’s going-ons.
Jason: Do you know how to do the pomme frites?
me: Yes… I think you’ve been over this with me three times already… *lists seasonings*
Jason: Do you want to make them?
Sam: That’s his way of saying, “I’m lazy – do this for me.”
Jason: What? No! I’m giving her a lesson! *Sam and I are laughing* I’m serious!

After proteins had already been brought downstairs and the kitchen was closing down… we had a deuce walk-in… and then another. The first arrived before Jason had started cryo-vac-ing stuff, and the second arrived after he’d already cryo-vac’d most of it. I’d been sent down for a flank steak for Ricky Bobby the first time around; JRod needed foie the second time, and asked Sam to run down for it, but he was busy with a salad, so I ran down, Sam at my heels.
Ricky Bobby: Woah, you guys gonna go together? Make sure you hold hands!
me: Whatever. *downstairs* Jason, foie for JRod, pleaseee.
Jason: Just one?
me: Ayep. Thank you.
Sam *catching up*: Look, you’re supposed to say, “Need foie, m***********!”
me: … I said it nicely and he still gave it to me…

Grilled prawns were on the menu last night, and we had an order or two that requested no heads. Ridiculous, I know, but hey! I’m not complaining, ’cause Jason grilled them off separately and voila, the absolute best part for we who know how to appreciate it =) Absolutely hilarious – Yards was so grossed out. Sam and I were enjoying our unexpected little treats immensely, and Yards was watching with this terribly amusing (to look at) *ew* look on his face, and trying to guilt trip us or something with, “You know you’re sucking its brains out? How can you do that???” comments. “It’s the best part,” was all he got from the rest of us.

Speaking of Yards, the big news is that I finally got around to punching him. Of course his conceited reaction was, “I’m surprised you didn’t break your hand.” “I’m surprised I didn’t break your arm.” “Oh, please.” Pax has not been officially established with words, but it feels like we’ve reached some degree of it. *shrug* Che sara, sara. There’s no hint of enmity, just a quiet, generally impartial, comfortable sort of air between us. He said I was the best and loved me for giving him apple scraps, and I… peeled and cored apple scraps and let him have them when he spotted them and asked for them? Sureee, why not. But hey, talking to me about things other than amuse and bread ends, plus goodnight and a fist bump; quite unexpected, but not unwelcome. He was sneaking looks over his shoulder for a little while after I punched him – “There’s a ninja over here, behind me.” (“Ninjas have no honor.”) – otherwise seemed none the worse for it, and it’s not like I put my hips into it, I was just walking past and stuck my fist out at the last second when I realized he wasn’t going notice in time. Of course that line, to JRod, started JRod and Ricky Bobby and Yards on the whole ‘numchucks’ thing again.

JRod: Numchucks. Uh oh, look out, she’s gonna go crazy again.

Ricky Bobby: People go numb when you numchuck them; why would it be nunchuck, that doesn’t make sense.

Yards: Listen, I watched ninja turtles for [x] years-
me: And you think it’s numchucks? Apparently you didn’t learn anything-
Yards: -and who has numchucks? Michaelangelo, yeah.
me: It. Isn’t. NUMCHUCKS.

At least they were laughing. There was a lot of laughing today on the other side of the wall, and lots of “EARMUFFS!” directives, but what no one seems to realize – or they’re just refusing to believe – is that if Jared has a hard time hearing me over the fan from where I’m standing and has to ask me to “step into [his] office,” then naturally I have an equally hard time hearing over the fan myself, therefore I never hear anything aside from the ‘earmuffs’ directive, because it’s the only thing that they make a point of calling out at the same dB as Yards’ calls for amuse.

Oh boy. The Time Warner story is being told repeatedly, and its apparently established relation to me. Here I am, over at pastry, minding my own business, and Jason happens to be walking into the kitchen from behind me. “Hey, Jared, so I called Time Warner…” and it begins. “Stop it,” I groan aloud. Jason’s smile just gets bigger and he laughs, then tells on. Well, I suppose if it gets a laugh out of the rest of the kitchen, it’s worth it.

That’s basically my general attitude now. If it gets a laugh out of everyone else, by all means. Like me being all smiley over the tinier pancakes. That got a really nice laugh. A sort of half pathetically exasperated, half terribly wish-you-could-but-really-can’t-help-but-be amused laugh. Good enough for me.

There are occasional exceptions, of course, like me saying we’re needing pretzels all week, then ending up being sent to go up the street and buy them on the fly, and subsequently being made to freak out momentarily by being made to think I got honey mustard when I know I stared at the shelf and then the bag for a full two minutes so as to make any mistake absolutely impossible. At any rate, the exceptions are few and far between.

I think I’m finally getting sleepy. And the Showdown’s almost over, so I think I’ll hit the sack and watch the rest tomorrow. (I always thought O-Ren was prettiest in that sideshot right before she apologizes for ridiculing Black Mamba, where her hair, which was, of course, perfect when she began the fight, is then somewhat falling out of its perfect bun. Maybe it’s also the snow, the darkness, and her whispering which makes one suppose that she knows death is coming. It also makes her look so young… even younger than Yubari.)

~ fourteen hours later ~

Ok, here’s a sudden burst of extreme girliness – yeah… – but school’s started and I find myself not knowing what to wear on Mondays and Tuesdays. Wednesdays and Thursdays, I go straight to work, so I probably come off as some weird semi-goth wannabe on those days, and Fridays I’m wearing my MCI uniform, but then on Mondays and Tuesdays… argh! I never had this problem at MCI! At least, I don’t remember having this problem. Mother probably remembers better if I did. What I remember is the time I wore a white shirt and my super ripped up jeans and then one of those wrap-around skirts that Mama got me in Jerusalem as a dress overall and Josh stopped by the Summit in the morning where I was because the Honors room wasn’t open yet and had to ask me to stand so that he could inspect my bizarre choice of wardrobe. Seriously, though, that outfit took half a minute to figure out, I can’t believe I’m having this problem now. It’s got to be some twisted version of a hangover from that sudden burst of quarter-life crisis-ness with Stevo the other… month…

Speaking of Josh, mGbp for Kuyas. It turns out we have a decent amount of corresponding break time on Tuesdays, so we’ll be hanging out regularly. I really needed last Tuesday. Josh filled me in on his and Emily’s wedding plans and such, told me about the hike to the engagement spot, the particulars of the ring, etc. etc., and I vented about the terrible week 10 at work and laughed like I haven’t laughed in ages over… well… I was telling him about the desserts – he and Emily are coming to eat on Thursday!!! so hyper =D =D =D – and I guess I said, “lemon goat cheesecake” with the emphasis sort of being on the “lemon goat” part together instead of the “goat-cheese-cake,” and he stopped me with this look on his face. “Wait, wait. Lemon goat… cheesecake… OH! Lemon. And then goat-cheese, cake; gosh! I thought you were talking about a specific goat… I had this mental image of a yellow goat with this sour look on its face… *demonstrates* … and I was thinking, you cut it up and put it in the cheese cake?” It went on for a while… we took it pretty far… something about the head being mounted above the pastry station… and us using the yellow hide to make a hat that whoever was on pastry had to wear… I really really needed that laugh. I haven’t been broken in ages, and it was so terribly refreshing.

And speaking of being broken, I miss Stevo and Brad like crazy, especially after catching coffee with Steffy and talking to Nick. Bradley’s text-backs have been short and to the point, Stevo’s longer and more conversational, but sporadic. I was hanging out in Jay’s office before class on Friday (“Loser.” – Jason; “HEY.” – me), enjoying Chef Myatt’s stories of hardcore striking in Liverpool involving super glue in keyholes, vs. the current situation of having to have given notice before going on strike, and I looked around and realized I could never go back, not without Brad and Stevo there. And maybe even then, with all those girls… I’ve been having this conversation a lot recently, with Mom and Steffy and I think Josh and Michelle at some point, among others.

I believe that part of embracing genuine femininity is understanding genuine masculinity and supporting it. The saying, “Boys will be boys, but men will be men if women hold them to the right standards,” sums it up pretty well. Part of good, solid femininity is having well-formed standards to hold guys to. And vice versa, mind; men of this generation need to start having and holding women to the right standards, too. I think it’s perfectly healthy to endeavor to hold one’s own with our opposites. But I feel that I shouldn’t have to hold my own with other girls. I don’t think it’s possible to have a healthy friendship with another girl that is competitive on any level [in ways that are not clearly defined by a third party, meaning ‘life’ stuff, not academics or sports]. What I’ve observed – and maybe I’ve just been lucky and in the ‘right’ crowds all the time – is that competition between what I would term two ‘decent’ guys is straightforward, very possibly rough and in your face, but fairly ‘clean.’ Between girls, competition just isn’t clean. It’s backstabbing, undermining, and a lot of nastiness; just like Michelle’s observation that if one girl compliments another girl on a particular article of clothing, their immediate reaction is to think, what’s wrong with it? because they don’t think the compliment is sincere; in fact, that it’s the complete opposite. And that’s why I’m close to very few girls, but they’re very special girls – Michelle is the absolute perfect example – because I don’t have to ‘hold my own’ with them; we’re never suspicious of each other’s motives. And that is also the reason that I cringe at the thought of being thrown into a [secular] dominantly female environment.

ANYway.

I think Saturdays are going to be my favorite work day of the week now. The rest of the week is just insane with school on top of work and training/getting to know/learning to like Kayla on top of everything. But Saturday… Saturday is nice. I can sleep in and focus on work. And I want to be able to focus on work; during the week, I want to knock out homework and work seems a slightly unwelcome interruption, but on Saturday, I willingly put the school-week completely out of my mind.

Uhm, so, I kinda trust my Chi-city Kuyas completely?
Matt: Ais, did you leave your sleeves at home?
JRod: She’s going to the gun show.
me: Oh boy.
Matt: Yeah? Is that thunder and lightning, Ais?
me: … This is thunder and this is lightning and you don’t wanna get caught up in this storm?
Yes, I posed it as a question, then realized what had just slipped out, and ran for it, “Whaattt??”s ringing in my ears from various hearers. I told this story at the dinner table.
Mom: Ais… you should probably find out where that line came from.
me: I got it from Kuya Karlo! I trust my Kuyas to not be bad influences…
That was on Friday. (Google isn’t revealing anything, btw. Trust me, I’m trying here, I could use some help.) Yesterday, Matt greets me with, “Hey Ais, I found your sleeves!” “Say whaa?” “Yeah, you left them in your locker.” “… I didn’t even know I had a locker…”

Garry and Doug say they’re going to get me mace for Christmas. Now we’ve got a joke about me hiding nunchucks in my combat boots. Hooray.

Steve’s been back all week and Zach made another of his unexpected reappearances on Friday. It was wayyy too much, with Yards’ and JRod’s voices sounding similar, Zach’s and Chief’s, and Jason’s and Steve’s, all at the same time. Too much, too much.

Actually, it’s sort of a weird one-way thing. Like, when I hear JRod’s voice, I know it’s JRod – I guess you could call his voice the standard – but when I hear Yards’ voice, I have to think if it’s JRod or Yards. In the Zach/Chief dilemma, Chief’s voice is the standard, naturally by default, and in the Jason/Steve predicament, Jason’s. I sorta tried to tell Jason about it. “Hey, Steve, apparently I sound like you.” “What?!”

Yeah… but yeah. I was heading up the stairs on Friday, and I guess I was spotted before I spotted the speaker; as nobody has really taken to calling me Aised Tea regularly – not to mention, I can’t even remember the last time I heard “Aisinator” – I realized the greeting had come from Zach before the visual actually registered. It’s always nice to see Zach, the interestingness (you know the dictionary does list interestingness as a noun? win) level of his conversation is equal to Jason’s and just as effortless and benign. Have I mentioned this before? Trying to get anyone else in the kitchen to talk about anything other than work without being reprimanded for asking too many questions is like pulling teeth, honestly.

Jason started using fortuitous again this week. He felt the need to assure me that he’d been using it for years and not just as a reaction to my use of big words. For the record, I do sincerely believe him. I don’t think I ever blogged about him calling me a nerd for looking it up after the first few times that I heard him use it because I just had a nagging feeling that he was using it wrong…

Of course there are a million things I’m forgetting to blog that I’ll eventually remember in the weeks to come. Or not.

Peace out.

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