Grades reflects everything but you

>> Friday, June 25, 2010

College Grades. They say that it reflects your overall potential in the real world—that is, grades in college sets your habits towards success in the corporate world; this reflection portraying a hypercompetitive society is otherwise defined as your career. As a result, it supposedly showcases your competency when exposed to the challenges that surround your professional and personal life.

But grades do not reflect the letter reinforcing the status quo. Rather, grades reflect the learning experiences behind each individual–-the struggle(s), the success, and the new insights gained from these many lessons. As a freshmen climbing up the ladder that would soon reward me with a college degree, my goal when taking a teaching writing course was to become a writing tutor. But my professor said you could only become one with an A in the course.

An A? How do you define an A with poor instructions on writing elaborations and introducing theoretical approaches that does teach students how to pragmatically assess other’s writing assignment? You cannot, even if you exhaled vapor that spews rage at your teacher’s face, when he claimed you did not “properly follow the instructions.” However, I soon realized grades does not reflect not your progress on your goal, because it reflect all the problems that you are set out to vanquish with degrees. But you could only combat these issues, once you look beyond the grade by examining your learning experiences.

So, grades means nothing when defining your performance, because your personal traits and interest defines your career, and therefore defining your overall potential in your chosen profession. And to those inexperienced individuals hungering to dent the fabrics of society with their idiosyncratic ideas, do not confine your potential to a standard that supposedly outlines success: just do it—in my case, I courted writing tutors and asked them about their experiences with teaching writing--because, in the end, the only grade that could define your performance is the one you give yourself. But you could only figure out which one is appropriate by reflecting back on your experiences.

*This is the first post from our newest writer David Pan. Read more about him in our "about us" section.

Dating and Relationships: 005

>> Friday, June 18, 2010

Wait Time.

Waiting; it’s one of the hardest things to do when it comes to relationships. I can think of two important instances where this happens. The first can be that you’re waiting for your special man or lady to come along. It’s supposed to happen out of the blue and catch you completely off guard, or at least that’s how the movies depict it. It’s usually around this time that you figure out, “Why does everyone else have someone to care for? Why is it that everyone so much happier than me? When’s my prince or queen going to come along and sweep me off my feet?” (If you’re looking for an answer then stop reading because I don’t have it. And to be completely honest, no one does for that matter.) The result is commonly hitting a slump in life and repeated attempts to get over that hump. But frankly, if not carefully dealt with, the individual will distant themselves to avoid being that third wheel. Sometimes it’s just easier to be on your own then to be surrounded by couples. Unintentional and instinctive isolation of sorts is what I call it.

Or, in the other scenario, you’re waiting for the person you’re already with to be ready for the next step in the relationship. Whether it’s commitment, marriage, or having children, it all takes some time. This is arguably one of if not the hardest part of any real relationship. Not quite defined as a slump, but more of a rut in dire need of repair. It’s confusing because the facts are clear that both parties care very deeply for one another. It’s like having all the correct codes in for a software program, but it still refuses to operate properly. The indifference towards moving forward or the inability to accept change is what causes tension to begin with. Simply, this rut in a relationship is a draining process waiting to boil over from frustration.

Of course let’s not fail to mention what’s behind door number three. It’s that you’ve already found the one, but he or she is already taken or not interested. It’s a bitter truth to swallow combined with the ramifications stated above. I guess this post would beg the question, “When is it going to be my time?” Someone once told me, all that time you spend waiting doesn’t even compare to the moment where it finally happens. Don’t worry friend, it’ll be worth it, soon enough it’ll happen.

Once

>> Friday, June 11, 2010

Mom was right in saying that everything is worth trying at least once. The motherly motto has survived to this day, and is never more present than when it comes to food. Yes sir, that’s right, food. One of my biggest pet peeves has to be the picky eaters I somehow surround myself with. I swear there are just times that I have the urge to shake them silly while forcing them to swallow some exotic dish. It irritates me that people like that are so stuck in their ways that they miss out on life.

Not only is it annoying to me but it’s also rather a slap in the face if you think about it. By cooking for someone you have made an impact on them whether you like it or not. Preparing a meal is an act of love towards another individual, especially when you’re not the one eating. It’s a delicate combination of love, time, and energy all wrapped up into a tightly broiled bundle. Pushing aside the dish before evening tasting the work is like a rejection to partake in the essence of the meal. If sharing a meal with another person was once considered to be a covenant, then imagine what the chef and diner relationship should represent.

Everything from fried flies, ox genitals, or brown things with funny names you can’t really pronounce so your friends tease you about it relentlessly. (You know who I am talking about and it’s not my fault I can’t pronounce vowels!) Each and every creation in a kitchen is worth at least a single try. You never know when you might find something you love. As for now I am off to enjoy some chicken feet soup the old man prepared. Yummy!

Birth of a Foodie

>> Friday, June 4, 2010

The best by far; without doubt I am from a city of foodies that specializes in each and every cuisine. Go into any San Francisco restaurant and you’re bound to find something unique and different. This is a city that caters a menu unlike any other in the world. I very much do believe that by growing up in this town I was truly able to appreciate food. Not just the fact of being blessed by having a meal on the table every night. But also the ability to have such a wide variety ready at my finger tips. Food was and continues to be such a cultural cross in understanding different backgrounds. It was through the city that I formed the following principles:

-Rice is not just a staple for the world. It’s a staple source of food for me too. Call it anal or even blame it on my Asian upbringing. But not having rice on a regular basis is like not having Christmas once every year.

-Life is not just comprised of supermarket bread. We’ve got everything from buns to rolls to loaves to baguettes. They’re cooked in ovens, steaming racks, and other contraptions I can’t pronounce. And if you’re an old timer in the city: French bread = Sourdough. Clam chowder + bread bowl = Genius

-Everyone does it differently. Thinking outside the box of normal and breaking barriers will set new menus and trends. People who dared to be bold and test the rules invented things like California rolls, barbecue chicken pizza, deep fried twinkies, and of course garlic fries.

-Soup is not just soup. Soup is not just that bowl filled with liquid by the side of your entrée plate. Soup can be a meal. Soup is a carefully crafted explosive combination of sheer perfection. It is made with a love and fills the soul with fuel.

-Simple, fresh, clean- the basics. Sometimes the best food doesn’t need to be extravagant. Simple ingredients tend to make the best tag teams of dishes. Sometimes quality trumps quantity.

-There is no “best”. There are really good cooks and very good restaurants. But there can never be a king of the hill. Food is a never ending marathon. It is a constant search for who can make it better.

-Anytime is the best time. How about hot cup of tea in the middle of summer? Sure. Frozen yogurt on a chilly rainy afternoon? Why not? There are no rules on when to eat that certain something you’re craving.

**Well I must say it feels good to be hitting the key board again after a week or so off. Well here it comes, the start of summer. Now revitalized and re-inspired, we have a lot in the works so stay tuned this summer.

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