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footnotefetish July 27 2014, 05:07

Puntitled No. 188

After a week in Oklahoma, I'm on the return trip to Tucson, checked in at a Days Inn in Albuquerque. I decided not to fly on this time so that I could give my new car a road test. So far it's taken on more than 1,500 miles beautifully. I think I like this car.

Having my own car with me on this trip also gave me a bit more latitude to explore Oklahoma City on my own. Ever since things with my ex have fallen through, the idea of moving to Oklahoma has been off my agenda and out of consideration. But now that both Debbie and my mother live there, it's conceivable that I could resume those plans someday--that is, if in her twilight years my mother needs more help than it's fair to dump entirely on Debbie.

Having been able to experience more of Oklahoma City on my own and not through the filter of my sister, I have to say I have a more favorable impression of it now. I checked out a couple of independent bookstores and a lot of new restaurants--and I mean a lot, since my mother's stuff still had yet to arrive by moving truck, meaning we lived on convenience foods for breakfast and restaurant foods for lunch and dinner. Oklahoma City has more ethnic food options than I previously realized. There are a lot of Indian and standard Middle Eastern restaurants. (By "standard" I mean those that don't claim to be from any specific region or country.) There's also Peruvian, Moroccan, Turkish, and probably a few others I'm forgetting, most of which I never ended up trying, either for lack of time or opportunity or lack of vegetarian options on their menu.

My favorite restaurant was Waffle Champion. The best way to describe it is chicken and waffles reinvented by white hipsters. All issues of cultural appropriation aside, their food is amazing. They make waffle sandwiches with a creative array of fillings. I had the Brussels sprouts hash. I think my mother had some sort of turkey chorizo. My sister, unfortunately, had to forgo a waffle sandwich and get a salad, since she has a wheat allergy and their gluten-free waffle iron was on the fritz.

Weirdly enough, I noticed that the waffle sandwich idea had also been taken up by at least one Vietnamese deli, with waffles replacing bánh mì in some of their sandwiches. There's some very unusual cultural diffusion.

The Vietnamese, I would guess, are Oklahoma City's largest Asian group. It's not surprising. It's a conservative city, so Vietnamese immigrants who were anti-communist and came here during the war years were probably some of the easiest Asians for the Bible-thumping, flag-waving, pickup-driving rednecks to accept. They could keep their racial prejudice in check just long enough to welcome them as brothers and sisters.

In a somewhat random way before my trip, the book Red Dirt: Growing Up Okie by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz ended up on my radar. I decided to look for it if I ended up at any bookstores and buy it if I found it. I ended up finding it and started to read it, though I didn't get very far into it. It's a memoir and thus a completely different category of book, but much like What's the Matter with Kansas? did for my home state, it tells of a more radical leftist past in Oklahoma's history. Dunbar-Ortiz writes about her family's Wobbly roots and her experiences growing up half Native American. (I think the title is a triple entendre, referring very obviously to the distinctive red soil of Oklahoma, but also growing up poor in a family that is part Native and interested in communism.)

Anyway, I bring this up because I think books like this challenge the simple red-versus-blue-state dichotomy and suggest that like genes that can turn on or off various characteristics, there are underpinnings to today's ideology, be it in Kansas, Oklahoma, or elsewhere, that are mutable. They've changed once. They could change again.

I almost think there's more potential for them to change in Oklahoma. I haven't looked at demographic trends over a period of years, but just glancing at the most recent population figures and whatnot, I think Oklahoma City could someday be a majority minority city. That could push politics in a different direction in 20 or 30 years.

Anyway, I should stop writing now. I don't think my thoughts have been very well organized, so I'll quit before they get too unruly.
dazzlingdespair July 18 2014, 02:55

Wae?

Why doesn't the world want me to watch "Vampire's Flower"? Is it really asking too much to want to see one teeny tiny little web series starring members of A-JAX (most importantly Hyeongkon) as vampires? I seem to be like a week too late in looking it up because the English subs used to be on Youtube, as recently as the 9th from what I can gather, but have since been removed. And I can't find it anywhere else. It's hurting my feelings.
dazzlingdespair July 17 2014, 17:18

It ain't easy checkin' out new groups

I've spent the last 2 hours since I woke up in a KPop fog.

Woke up just in time for the release of Block B's Behind Cut version of "Jackpot" which was famazeballs (was there ever any doubt?) and the second teaser for Infinite's "Be Back" (also looks amazing and the choreography looks like it's going to be at their level, unlike "Last Romeo").

Then I was like, time to start checking out some of these groups I've got sticky note-d to check out.

That has been a black hole of awful, let me tell you. @_@

Boys Republic = All kindsa no. Just... No. I have nothing more to say other than just no.

Topp Dogg = There's talent, BUT...
#1: I don't want to support STARDOM Ent. They can eat my dick.
#2: How the fuck many of them are there?!
#3: They are clearly supposed to be the company's new Block B and they aren't doing a very good job of filling their shoes. Mostly because...
#4: The songs are just bad. Like, I could probably still become a fan if they just had good music because, like I said, there is talent. It's just being wasted on crappy music.
And again, WHY ARE THERE SO MANY OF THEM?! *dead* It's unnecessary. 13? Fuck you. I'm not dealing with that.

A-PRINCE = First of all, I cannot get past how fuckin' ugly Siyoon is. Watching him try to be cutesy makes me want to vomit. Legitimately. And yes, looks are not the most important thing and certainly not how I judge the groups that I listen to, but there's a limit to what I can stomach, especially when there's no explosion of talent behind the horror movie face. Their songs aren't terrible, but they're very bland and boring and none of them are really very talented. They even made the song that G.O. wrote for them sound dull with their sub-par vocals and Siyoon's ugly no-lipped face. There's just nothing special about them.

I have to go to Bowen Center, but I'll pick up with the next group on my list when I get home. Fingers crossed.
dazzlingdespair July 14 2014, 18:48

Mini-update

First of all, there have been a plethora of changes to LiveJournal in my absence and I'd just like to go on the record as stating that I do not like them.

Moving on...

I was going to do a whole big "Where Have I Been?" update the other day, but it got sidetracked due to my mom calling me in a panic to tell me there was something wrong with her guinea pig, Kibum. I had to rush over and assess the situation. Sadly my conclusion was that he was dying. It wound up being a very emotional afternoon. I sat with him for a while and then decided to take my mom's dog over to my house so that Kibum could have some peace and quiet in his final moments. He died about an hour later.

Some people will look at me funny and say it was just a guinea pig, but we had him for over 2 years and he was a sweetheart of a piggy. He was never quite the same after my rat Zinger died because they had a very special friendship and definitely not the same since we moved. It was really tough to say goodbye.

So I'm just kinda taking a couple days to mourn and then I'll catch everybody up.

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