Indeed, it is good to be home. Unlike Michele, I had an altogether wonderful trip home. First of all, I’m amazed at the power of the Internet. In times past, I sometimes used AmEx vouchers and it’s about $200 or so. Maybe slightly less.
At any rate, I bought my ticket home for around that price, with no special. Direct flight, too. My mom tried to find tickets the old fashioned way and couldn’t get anything close to that price. Plus, I’m sure you all know this already, but they let you pick your seats online. I picked window seats near the front, my personal preference. It’s all very dope. I’m very happy with it.
So you may or may not have heard but some people are upset with INternet deals that airlines offer, as it benefits the privileged, that is, those with Internet access, while the masses (the poor) can’t get access to it. There’s actually a big discussion about how the Internet revolution is really only changing the lives of the haves, and that it’s further distancing the gap. I don’t know. I just know that I could not believe I got such a great deal on my flight, and there is no way my mom would ever have been able to get that kind of deal herself.
So my flight was nearly empty, and I got an entire row to myself. It was wonderful.
As Eric has noted, there’s just something about being Texan that defies reason or explanation. Sitting directly behind me were this old couple and a woman and they chatted for most of the flight, and I swear, they talked about being Texan at least 25 times. It’s a big deal. I mentioned this to my sister and she was saying how she went to this play entitled: The Gospel According to Texas. Some parts were clever but others, you just had to roll your eyes. Unless you were Texan.
I don’t know, there’s just this pride associated with Texas, and once you come, you really can’t help but get caught up in it. There is not another state in the Union with the pride that Texans have. It’s really interesting. What other state has mall stores devoted to Texas merchandise? What other state advertises things as being “Texas sized?” It’s bizarre.
Where the heck does it come from? The fact that Texas was once a republic? But so was California. I don’t know.
Anyway, the differences between Texas and California always interest me. On the way to the airport, I was looking at all the billboards, and seriously, the majority of them by far were for web sites. It’s out of control. I mentioned that to my sister, and she’s like, huh. In Texas, the billboards are for DNA paternity testing places. Also on the way home, there were numerous billboards for strip clubs and vasectomy reversals. Nary a web ad to be found. Oh they’re there. But it’s a lot different.
And everything in Texas is just huge. I’ve mentioned this before. But size matters in Texas. There’s this one chain, it’s not a supermarket, it’s a hypermarket. Auchan Hypermarket. I’ve never been inside, but just looking at it from the freeway – it’s absolutely ridiculous. Every store is huge.
The churches of course are also enormous. I’ve been to First Baptist, Second Baptist, and Lakewood, and each of these are just a ridiulous size. Lakewood in particular – the entrance has like the flags of the world lining it. It just does not look like a church. And we all know about the bowling alleys in the Baptist churches.
And the movie theaters. In the South Bay, there’s like one big complex, the Mercado. It has like what, 20 screens? I believe there are 4 30 screen theaters in Houston, with more being built that are possibly even bigger. 30 screens! Am I wrong about this? I don’t think so. There are 2 AMCs and 2 Tinseltowns, I think, but I could be wrong. I don’t know, it’s crazy.
Another thing about Houston is that I’m a different person here. I think I’m more social here. I still have my loner tendencies but I do think I’m more social at home. And I think the reason for this is that whenever I’m at home, I pretty much have nothing to do but screw around, so I do. Whereas, whenever I’m at school, I constantly have something to do, something over my head, so I never screw around, never see people except incidentally and on other occassions. Here it’s like I see people every freaking day.
There’s another thing, also. When I’m in the Bay Area, I never know who my friends are. Not that I don’t have any friends, it’s just, I don’t know who they are. Does this make any sense? So like, say I’m bored on a Wednesday night. Who am I gonna call? I have no idea. I have friends, but I don’t know who they are. This probably makes no sense to you.
Whereas in Houston, it’s very clear who my friends are, so it’s clear who I’m going to hang out with. It’s people from church, Kathy Yung and Naomi. Jeff on the rare occassion. Oh and Michelle Chai. Anyway, it’s different when you know who your friends are. You know who to call up.
At any rate, I came home prepared to play. I brought home my Nintendo plus the pertinent games, assorted DVDs, a guitar and 4 weeks worth of laundry. I saw Chariots of Fire tonight. Good flick. But I’m sorry, it was just hard to reconcile the stuffy English character of the movie with a soundtrack performed exclusively on a Casio. Egad.
“When I run, I feel His pleasure.” A favorite line of Pastor Harold’s. You know what? When I screw around on piano or guitar, I feel His pleasure. Is that bold? I don’t know if I can explain it. But it’s the feeling that I’m taking full joy in the gifts that He has given me in a manner that glorifies Him. I don’t have to be playing worship music or anything like that. Just playing. It’s a great feeling.
Anyway, I’m just rambling because it’s 3 AM Central. There is no way I’m going to be awake for service tomorrow. Yike. Last thing. So for a while now, my mom has really been into a health food thing. She gets exclusively organic food. She shops at stores I did not realize existed, getting products I had never heard of before.
Anyway, I started doing the laundry because i literally have no clothes to wear to church, and what do we have? Organic detergent. I’m not joking. My mom. Jeez.
It’s insane how fast things pop up on the web. With David and Clara discussing online journals lately, I was thinking, and musing what if there was some online site that allowed you to journal? Where they give you web space and tools to put up your thoughts pages.
Too late. An article in Salon.com talks about one such site that’s up already. Check it out. It provides a host of online journal servies, including updating, guestbooks, and archival. And of course, as is logical, old entries are archived in reverse chronological order. David! Order yours in reverse you dorkus. Of course, me having said means there is literally negative probability that it will ever happen. Argh.