This weekend my car got broken into at church. I went to YAG on Friday at KCPC with, and then afterwards, a bunch of us (me, Irving, George, Brian Yue, Dave Chu, Jon Perkins, Peter Chung, Nina, Ellen, and Michelle) went crabbing near Golden Gate Bridge. It was a lot of fun. We got quite a few crab, and then afterwards headed to Brother’s on Geary. Good food, folks, and fun.
Anyway, I left my car at church (only Dave and Irv drove) and when I got back someone had smashed the front driver side window. I had left my bag, like a satchel type Eddie Bauer on the front passenger seat and they had taken it. Fortunately, all that was in there was a clipboard, a rebate coupon for a Sharp vacuum for $30, a guide to restaurants in San Mateo, a fork, and a book from work, Design Patterns. Oh and my journal, which was a bit of a loss. Anyway it was a bummer.
So it cost about $100 to fix the window. The thing I’m happy about though, and this may not make sense to you but it’s something that I’m glad about, is that it didn’t really bother me that much. I mean, I lost some stuff, and had to pay some money, but it wasn’t really a big deal. And that made me happy. I guess what I’m happy about is that I feel I’m not attached to material possessions. Like, sure I lost some money, but money isn’t that big a deal to me. I’m doing fine and I have enough for what I need so if something like this happens, well whatever; I’m not stressed about it. Does this make any sense? I guess what I’m saying is that I’m happy about my attitude with this.
Anyway, in a way it was an answer to a prayer. That same window had been annoying me because it had somehow got misaligned, so it didn’t close completely. I mean, it closed but it was off, so the back side wouldn’t be totally up, and when you drive there’s this loud whistling sound. I had to manually kind of push up that side to get it to close. And I was really annoyed about it and wondering how to fix it. Anyway, with the new window, it’s not a problem anymore. So it’s a little blessing. Expensive though.
I’m really glad that John has started posting his thoughts. I love thought pages. It really reveals a lot about the person. Anyway, as I read John’s it really makes me wonder what it was like for him and Dave to room together last year. Because, as some of you know, Dave is the great commentator. And he’s particularly perceptive of huffiness. And as you know, John is one of the most huffy people I know. Read his page; it’s great. There are some really great stories of John just getting really huffy. But anyway. What was it like for them to room together?
Because the thing is, the thing about social commentary is that it makes the situation more so. So like, when Dave says, “tense,” the social situation becomes more tense. When I was a kid, I remember sometimes I’d be mad, and my grandma was say, oh, Danny is mad, in Korean, and this would make me more mad. Anyway, if you call someone huffy, chances are, that will make them more huffy. So I wonder.
Anyway, about what Dave said, I think it is no coincidence that America is both the entertainment and hi-tech capital of the world. Because I mean, entertainment is a luxury, and to have more and more refined entertainment, you need to have a more and more luxurious society, and in this age, that’s happened through hi-tech; meaning America has gotten rich, and subsequently been able to develop its entertainment industry more and more by being the leader in hi-tech. Anyway, if you read what economists say, at least in little sound bytes on CNN or Newsweek, they say the reason we’ve been able to sustian so much growth without inflation is because the growth has been caused by technological innovation. But whatever, the last econ class I took was at San Jose State senior year of high school so what do I know.
Anyway I have a lot of ideas as to why America is the leader in so many things. And it’s really I think because of a lot of peculiarities of American society that no other society on Earth has. Here’s one – I think America is the most culturally diverse society that’s ever been. So I’ve mentioned this before, but I think one of the reasons that America is the best is basically because the best all come to America. Like so many smart people come from other countries to here and stay, and that’s where a lot of our progress comes from. My claim is that it’s not the people that have been here forever that have been making America great but more (but I guess not totally) the new people that come that spurs America on. I mean, read about all the successful people and those that made innovations or contributions and it’s like, so many of them were immigrants or children of immigrants, and it’s like, if you took that away, how great would America still have been? And it’s a situation that no other country has, you know? And that’s one big thing that has kept America great.
Anyway, I also have a belief that you get pushed to greatness as a society when you start from nothing. Otherwise, you just get too comfortable and old and established and there’s not enough motivation. So like, the old societies, they’ll never be like technological leaders ever again. Like England, Spain, Portugal. It will never happen. The best technological leaders today are like the U.S., Japan, and Germany. Anyway, Japan and Germany basically got wasted in WWII, and they had to start over, and it’s that (in my opinion) that spurred innovation in those countries and made them technological leaders. Same with Korea after getting wasted with the Korean War. Anyway, my claim is that with time, they’ll fade from being the leaders as things become more established and they get comfortable. They’ll be like Portugal and Spain after that old navy era.
So my thinking is, and it’s probably whack but, the reason America hasn’t had this is again because of that unique immigrant situation. No other country has the number and variety of immigrants constantly coming to it like America does. And these immigrants, they’re either really smart so they come here or staring over and in any case, they push innovation and keep America great. It’s pretty lucky.
Another thing that keeps America great, and the leader in so many areas, is its unique spirit. For example, there’s this frontier spirit, I mean, that’s been passed on since the New World age, just applied to different things. I think America has this spirit of innovation and being frontiersmen that no other country has. And this applies to everything, not just like technology. Like I think the Wright brothers and Thomas Edison, even Ben Franklin had to have come from America because they are just a reflection of this pioneer spirit. I think there’s this emphsis on the new and different in America that’s in no other place, I mean not as much.
So another claim is that we’re the leaders in entertainment because America’s spirit of the new is stronger than in any other place. So with like music, my claim again is that it’s more important to Americans that we be innovative. Like with other countries and cultures, an important thing to do is to preserve the classical style, to a large extent. Not that innovation isn’t valued, it’s just less important than it is in America. So like my claim is that in Korea we knock on them for all sounding the same and totally being a cheap knockoff of back American music, but my claim is that it’s just not as important to Koreans that they be innovative. But I’m just pulling this out of my butt now.
I had this dream last night. Somehow I had found out about this showing of Star Wars Episode II that few other people had known about. So I went there, and was really excited, and it turned out just to be this shamhead’s cgi movie, like a 10 minute short of what Episode II might be like. And he had a bunch of other movies like that also. So I was disappointed. Anyway, immediately after the short, they start this new movie, and I don’t know what it is. And I hear the theme song to Remington Steele, and see Pierce Brosnan on the screen. And I don’t see Rene Russo, but I for some reason know she’s there, and I figure it’s the new movie, the Thomas Crowne Affair.
The weird thing is, Michael J. Fox is in this movie, and there’s a scene where he’s tied to the railroad tracks like in the old westerns. Also, during the movie, for some reason the sound gets messed up and there’s no background music, just dialogue. And it’s something you rarely notice, but a movie feels really weird when there’s no background music at all. So I leave.
And the entire complex is playing these old unpopular movies. Old being like the 80s. And that’s all I remember.