Last week I had discovered that Dave was working on a mymind entry so I read it as he saved it. Don’t ask me how I knew, it’s kind of pathetic. There was one time when Dave was in Korea, he was working on an entry, and I was reading the partial one he had saved, and got impatient, and so I zwrote him to save the file as he typed (C-x C-s in emacs, C-o in pico) and I literally sad there reloading while I waited him to finish one more sentence and save the file. Pathetic.
Anyway, I had read a partial entry last week but then forgot about it, and today I realized that I hadn’t finished reading it. It was like a hidden treasure! Unexpected. And it turned out it was about how dope I am. It’s all true, of course. I am dope. Uh oh, I hope Dave’s friend who thinks we’re all prideful doesn’t read that. I’m just kidding.
I won’t go into my first exposure to Dave Hong. It’s all here. I don’t remember talking to him on the way back from church. But I do remember a joke he told at IV Fall Conference. That’s the first thing I really remember about him. What do Japanese people do when they have an erection? Vote! Yes, it was pretty inappropriate. Dave Hong told it. The other thing to, was, so it was pretty cold outside, but Dave was wearing like a T-shirt and shorts and Birkenstocks, and he would sit with his legs inside his T-shirt. I distinctly remember thinking what a dork he was. And also because he kind of heard us telling jokes and joined us without us asking/wanting him to, with his inappropriate joke.
Anyway, I’m pretty sure I first met Henry at Fall Conference. But I don’t remember. I do remember the first time I saw him after the conference, though. He was studying outside of Meyer with someone who I better not say in case I get in trouble. Anyway, the memorable thing was that he was dressed more like a yuppie than anyone I had ever seen. I mean, the Tommy Hilfiger long sleeve button down, khakis, the whole bit. To study outside on the lawn! I’m sorry, but I grew up in California (although I’m Texan) and you don’t dress like that to study outside on the grass. So my first lasting impressions were, 1) Henry is friends / hangs out with _____???!!!! 2) Why the heck is he dressed so preppie? 3) Why use hair spray if you’re just gonna comb straight down?
So Eddie I met the first day of school since he lived in Junipero with me. I was just briefly introduced, because his mom met my dad somehow. Anyway, that night, we had like a meeting in the lounge, and he sees me and comes up to me all buddy buddy, and he’s like, “What’s up?” And I was just thinking, hey loser, you’re not my friend, who do you think you are? Pretty harsh. I suck.
Charlie I met through the IV frosh group. We had our first meeting, and he was there. I didn’t really talk to him much. In fact, I barely remember if he was there. But I do remember the 2nd meeting. He wasn’t there. But he stopped by, and he was with a girl on each arm (Siu Ping and Angela Lim), all of them dressed up, and you know, Charlie’s a good looking guy, even more when he’s dressed up. Anyway, they just stopped by to say that they can’t make it (this is during the meeting) because of some cheese and wine thing in their dorm (they all lived in Cedro). You know, it was a nice, Siu-Ping-y thing to do. But I remember thinking, dang, that man is attractive, and a stud! Oh the other thing also is pretty much every meeting frosh year, Charlie would have to go to the bathroom at least twice during the study. Back me up on this Eddie.
What the heck, I’ll tell my Lorraine story. So I met Lorraine also because she lived in Junipero. I remember I met her Saturday night. Wait, first let me explain something. Coming frosh year, I wouldn’t say I was very friendly or sociable. I definitely grew in social graces/comfortability in college. Anyway, I wasn’t very socially ept. So I wouldn’t go out of my way to introduce myself, I was more passive, and maybe wait for people to talk to me.
So Saturday night, most people were drinking or partying or something, and you know, I’m not into that, good Christian boring boy. So I was in the cluster, e-mailing or something, and she was there also, on the computer next to me. So she introduced herself and I did too, and right out the blue she asks if I was going to church tomorrow. And I thought, hey a Christian, that’s great! So we talk and basically the only thing we had heard about was the Baptist Student Union meeting the next morning (they were the only group that had started to advertise then. Back then, frosh orientation was seriously long, like a full week. It was great. Like summer camp, no worries, just hanging out. Anyway, that meant it took a little bit of time to get things rolling. IV was still at Back To The Farm during Frosh Orientation.) so we said we’d go. She had this friend Jenn from home who she wanted to go with and I dragged Eddie.
So the next morning we go, the four of us walking along to Old Union. On the way, Lorraine tells… wait, let me reemphasize that I was very socially inept frosh year. I was just generally uncomfortable, and worse than that, didn’t understand propriety and what was appropriate and not in certain social situations. I know, I’m still bad at it, but if you haven’t known me for a while, I was worse then. Try and imagine it. It becomes easier to understand why the Anti-Chai page exists.
Anyway, Lorraine tells as we’re walking, and we see the Hoover Tower, how someone had mentioned to her how the Hoover Tower is phallic, and how weird that was. And Jenn concurred, that’s weird. OK, the thing is, I was the one that said it. I don’t remember when I told it to her, maybe she overheard, but I did. So like, they’re walking in front, me and Eddie in back, and when Eddie hears this, he like turns to me and goes, “Wait a second, didn’t you…” and I’m like “Shhh!!!!!” If she didn’t remember who said it, that was fine with me.
OK, now let me explain why I made that sophomoric comment about the phallic nature of the Hoover Tower. My year, 18 people from Bellarmine got into Stanford. Pro-fro was a full week back then. I guess everything was longer then. Anyway, they had these T-shirts, and on the front there was a small drawing that included the Hoover tower, and seriously, it looks pretty phallic. It’s pretty bad. Anyway, so 18 of us got these shirts, and come on, it’s an all guys school. We’re moronic like that. So for a while the topic was all about hey check out this phallic drawing on my shirt. Ah, Bellarmine.
So John I met at late night. I had discovered the Donner Party that hung out there every freakin single night, and on occasion I would join them. Anyway, John was there one night, the night I met him. I don’t remember much of what we talked about, but I remember he said this phrase: “I’m a loser. Who cares?” It killed me. I can’t remember why. But yeah, that’s our little joke. He’s a loser, who cares. Anyway, the other impression of John I got from that night was that he had the strangest singing voice. I actually remember we talked about that that first night, and he said how his voice was so nice when he was younger and he sang in a choir or something, but puberty, you know.
So Andrew, I don’t know when I met him. The thing about Andrew is that it’s hard to remember him. Especially girls forget him, and he’s introduced himself to the same girl multiple times on several occasions. Anyway, I don’t know how I met him, I’m certain I forgot. I likely met him several times. But I remember that all of a sudden, I realized that he was in my Intro to Christian Ethics section. This was in the middle of the quarter. Which meant I had somehow overlooked him or just not remembered him for the first full half. Whoops. Sorry about that, Andrew. Anyway, an indelible early impression of Andrew is that he was pretty good about wearing his helmet and one day we were walking back from the Symbolic Systems Forum and he was just walking with his helmet on.
A random story, just because it’s coming to mind. No logical flow, these myminds. Anyway, as you know, Dave and Henry were pretty inappropriate frosh year. And they adored Chi-Ming. So they heard his brother, some guy named Chi-Hua was coming to Stanford, and they were pretty hyped about it during Pro-Fro weekend. So that weekend, IV meets on Thursday, and I guess they had talked about it, but during the entire early part, like before and during maybe? praise time, Dave is yelling, fairly audibly, Chi-Hua! You know, because he’s there. And people around him, every time he says it, are getting pretty annoyed, because frankly, it’s highly annoying, and they turn around and glare or whatever. So eventually he stops. Maybe he only said it once. I don’t know, I can’t remember.
The thing is, Henry is late that week, for whatever reason, and he comes in and sits down. I remember this because he sat near me. Anyway, one of the first things he does after sitting down is very loudly yelling “Chi-Hua!” It was hilarious. But the IV staff hated them. I know this story is inaccurate, but that’s how I remember it.
Anyway, junior year during one of Testimony’s shows, right before they start singing a song, I yell, “Chi-Hua!” Henry stops, slowly and deliberately turns his head and glares at me, and then continues. It was a highlight of my life.
OK, let me tell how I first met Kathy Yung. So winter break freshman year, there’s this guy in Houston, Roy Jacob, and he’s pretty into IV. He was a sophomore. Anyway, he wants to arrange like a Houston area IV gathering. So he does. The thing is, I have met none of the people before, except for Roy. And he lives in Clear Lake, by NASA. I don’t know if you know Houston geography, but Houston is a freaking huge city, and it takes an hour to get to Clear Lake, where he wants to meet. But only I have access to a car. The thing is, I don’t know Houston roads that well at that point, so I take mostly local roads to pick up Michelle Chai, Kathy Yung, and Loris Lu, all who live in the Bellaire area, and then another hour to Clear Lake. It took like 2 hours to get there. And I had to drive 3 girls I had never met before. Constantly looking at a map. I took from my house, Gessner south to Bellaire east. Totally inefficient.
When someone organizes a social gathering of people who don’t really know each other, there’s gotta be some kind of dominant social force, someone who’s in charge and makes everyone else feel comfortable. Does this make sense? Someone has got to be in the socially dominant situation and has to accommodate. Because those in the socially subordinate positions won’t want to assert themselves and take control of the situation because of their position. So if the socially dominant person doesn’t assert him or herself and make the situation comfortable, it will be really tense. OK, so what I’m saying is, Roy organized it, so he had to kind of take charge. Now Roy’s the nicest guy in the world, but he’s not good at this kind of stuff. Bottom line being it was a really tense night. I mean, I didn’t even know anyone there, and I was socially inept. Ugh. It was so forced. We had pizza, then watched the Rockets game (that was the season Houston won like 20 in a row to start the season. We saw the first game they lost.). Then we had nothing to do. So we pile into Roy’s dad’s van and go to drive to some nearby neighborhood, because they’re supposed to have cool Christmas lights out. Anyway, we can’t find it, or we do but it’s not as cool as the year previous, so we go back. Very tense. Then we went home. 2 hours.
Anyway, that’s how I met Kathy. A very tense social situation. Her first impression of me was that I was arrogant because I guess I was bragging about getting an A+ in Chem 32. But somehow our friendship survived. I will never ever forget that night, though. Whew.
But for the life of me, I cannot remember how I met some people. Leo I met because Andy Lee brought him to FiCS one night. I remember being immediately comfortable with him. I don’t know why. Dave Choi I guess I met at KCU welcome night. I don’t remember meeting Ben, or Linnea, or Ohms. Janet Sekiguchi I do remember though. One night before school started, a bunch of us, like, me, Eddie, and some other people were hanging out in Jenny Yoo’s room in Trancos. I have no idea how that happened. I think it was through Lorraine, via Becca Chang. Anyway, we were there and Janet was there also, as she pro-fro’d with Jenny. So Ann Ku was also there, being Jenny’s roommate, and Stacy Cook stopped by to say how they were paired up to be our small group leaders that year. So it was kind of like an impromptu jam session. Kind of fun. But random. That was the night Eddie fell asleep and we couldn’t get him up.
I also remember meeting Jane Kim. Jimmy Ahn arranged a dinner in Manzanita, and Ohms, Karine, Linnea, Jane, Jimmy, me, and maybe Eddie or Dave Choi were there. Janet and Carrie and Juliet lived there so I think they may have joined us. Anyway, I was shocked, because at that time I only really knew my little dorm clique, but these chicks seemed to know each other so well, as well as a bunch of other people around. I realized they were totally into the Asian social thing, and I wasn’t, so I felt immediately uncomfortable. I remember Jane because she was the only one that talked to me that dinner. She was pretty nice. That sticks out in my memory.
Now that I think about it, I had a lot of fun frosh year. IV was pretty cool that year, because seriously, every single freshman Christian was in it. Except for Jenny Huang. The frosh small groups that year were just great. Like ours: Me, Eddie, Charlie, Siu-ping, Angela Lim, Angela Rafoth, Jelin Yen, Jen Lee, Lorraine, Scott Scruggs, Jonathan Smith, and sometimes Huck Dorn, Mina Kim, and random people. We eventually drove all of the white people besides Angela out, though. Jenny and Stacy led.
The Donner party small group, of course is infamous. Dave, Henry, Andrew, Val, Janet, Nathan, Alvin, Sal?, John, Eric Weiss, led by Bruce and Gloria. Then there was the Branner clique. Tilden and Nikki led, I believe. With Jenn, Eric Cheung, Chee Chee? and I can’t remember who else. There were 2 other Wilbur ones. One had Mark Lo, Erik, Arthur, Lee Kenyon, Grace Yang, Bernice Yau, Ruth Eliott, Sarna Renfro, Alex Kwan, Jen Yuan, and I think Robyn Norstrom? Led by Ted Hsieh and Rachel Kao. Then the other one had Lt. David Tay and Becca Chang among others. There was also the other Stern one, with I forgot the leaders’ names but Eli, Kathy, Tim Dalrymple, Sarah Lamanuzzi and some others were in it. What the heck were their names? The leaders. Anyway, some dope groups.
Unless you lived on West Campus. I don’t know anyone from there. Jenny Huang always felt left out, living in Ujamaa. Leo’s IV small group was the two leaders and him. Roger… something or other. Gene Lee sometimes came, and Andy Lee came out spring quarter also. But they kept meeting, even though it was only Leo. The Roble small group.
Anyway, our class frosh year was pretty unique. It, by the way, is the reason that All Campus Retreat was possible, and so successful. Another great thing about frosh year was Marathon. I really think it bonded the campus. I look in clusters today and it’s like, there’s no phenomenon like it. Snood? Come on. It was great when me and Eddie would play and there’d be some random guy somewhere on campus playing with us. Good times.
Sorry, this was probably only interesting for me. A trip down memory lane. Anyway, as I was saying to Dave, the thing that cracks me up about him is that every good thing that happens to him he thinks everyone else should do. Similarly, it seems like he’s saying you can’t get the wisdom and understanding he has without doing exactly what he’s done. So he kills me any time he says something like, everyone should go to Korea for a year. Everyone should take a break before grad school. Everyone should switch from IE to MCS while undergrads. Everyone should hang out more with FOBs. Everyone should get a haircut that emphasizes their male pattern baldness. OK Dave. Whatever.