Leapdragon 2016 - Aron Hsiao Was Here

Monthly Archives: August 2007

Fucking  §


Never, ever trust your employer(s).

September is almost here…  §

…and when it starts, the most difficult two semesters in my life (i.e. the most difficult academic year ever) will begin. I am intimidated just thinking about it. I have never attempted anything like this before, and I don’t quite know how I will get everything done. I am about to/will be doing/will have:

– Two papers to submit for the institute
– Three full-on graduate seminars at the Ph.D. level to attend
– At least one intensive undergrad core course to teach
– One pedagogy/teaching methods seminar to attend
– One social sciences analysis job to work
– One writing/editing job to work
– One photography sideline job to try to maintain
– Am moving to a new apartment
– Am adopting a pit bull puppy
– Am working on planning a wedding in Poland
– Will be traveling across the country, virtually from coast to coast
– Will probably be traveling to Poland again
– Will be furnishing/decorating/housebuilding
– Need to study for departmental and Ph.D. comprehensive exams
– Need to maintain communcation with my friends (very important)
– Same with family (also very important)
– Same with my fiancé, in terms of “us time” (most important of all)
– Need to keep working toward submitting/attending publications/conferences
– Will be submitting a strong application for a research assistantship

These last two items may also add:

– Need to prepare presentation(s) and/or attend conference(s)
– Need to find time to help launch a department and/or do guided research

Finally, there is also:

– Need to continue with my own research (ABD by spring, exams permitting)
– Need to keep myself healthy so that I don’t collapse under all this weight

This is a lot. This is not just a lot, this is Everest. This is everything, ever all wrapped into one, with no extra time allottable or allocatable for anything. If I manage to succeed at everything during the next two semesters (i.e from now until May or so), I can do anything.


My fiancé is basically in the same boat. We will be busy as (as she says) two hells.

The scary thing is the thought that we could fail, at any of them. Looking at my list, at least, one is tempted to say that “something’s gotta give.” I hope not. Same goes for her.

Well, well, well…  §

The government now says that “realities” on the ground in Iraq require that they adjust their sights… the U.S. will now apparently be happy with “a government that functions and can bring security.”

That is, as I recall, precisely what we had in Saddam Hussein, before we caused the deaths of a million or so Iraqis and lost thousands of U.S. soldiers and hundreds of billions of U.S. budget dollars that did not go to rescue Katrina victims, that did not go to maintain anti-AIDS programs in Africa, that were not used for our failing education system, and that did not go to repair bridges and infrastructure here.

Um, how many hundred million citizens of the world (many in the U.S.) can now chime in with a loud “I told you so!” to the fucking Bush administration, who realizes now, years later, that mebbe Saddam’s goals and theirs weren’t so very different after all, in the face of “realities” and other such pedestrian things?

Hahahahahahaha… Ohboy.

Some days  §

it is damn near impossible to wake up.

I am sitting here trying to work and it looks as though I am sitting here trying to sleep.

Here’s a post  §

that isn’t at all abstract.

We are working too much and being too frugal. It is getting to me. Seven days a week, eight plus hours a day, same office, same subway train, same scenery. School starts in a moment and life will open back up. Classes, teaching, research, moving…

But for the moment there is only this office, small, wooden, spartan, cluttered, a bit dirty, being covered in newspaper ink and years. There is the office and a futon. It is almost enough to make one lose one’s mind. Sometimes lately I am snapping without meaning to, feeling far more stress than can be justified.

It can compress one beyond belief to have absolutely no variety in life. The last time I did this was when I was living in southern California.

At least hear the weather is different every day and I have reasons—good reasons—to do what I’m doing. That makes all the difference.

Sometimes  §

The universe closes in like a November sky.

Hoboy hojohn  §

skin . of . teeth


On dog breeds  §



What is the right thing?  §

I am confused, lonely, bewildered. It’s hard to work but I’m doing it. I don’t quite know what’s the correct thing and what’s not, for anyone. I am following my nose, but that feels about as random as anything right now.

Anyone want to explain to me  §

about how life works?


Tomorrowday  §

We on the outside, we prophets and idiots and malcontents, we have always been sand under saddle, problem to be dealt with, reason for discord, source of all problems.

There is nothing but to wander the globe.

Everything in its place and a place for everything.

To make the set of places is to manufacture the universe.

I don’t know. I feel today like I haven’t felt in quite a long time. I don’t know why. One never knows why one feels what one feels. One never understands quite what other people see in you when you are doing it. (Or indeed ever.) There is nothing in this universe to bring order to the inside of my head. There is nothing inside my head to bring order to the universe.

Everyone hurts. It’s a fucking REM song. I wish REM had never come into existence so that this could have been an original thought… although at the same time it was an REM song that made me feel better so many years ago…

I.Q. 45 don’t drink don’t smoke what do you do

I am late for work. I am late for success. I am late for a lot of things.

I am trying my damnedest to love the people I love (two different verbs, one spelling, one sentence). Often I suck at it. Okay, no better or worse than anyone else.

It’s a miracle there’s no nuclear winter.

The greatest word in the English language is



Present  §

Presents exist in two denominations: destiny and curse. They are imbued forever with the logic of the epic, whose heaviness makes the otherwise everyday both meaningful and beautiful.

Kitsch polemic  §

American values are independence, individuality, and self-reliance. This is precisely why we should suspect America. In fact, I suggest we suspect anyone who is independent, anyone who considers themselves to be a strong individual and anyone who preaches (or attempts to achieve) self-reliance.

These things are ideologically indistinguishable from imperialism and war.

Of course, these things are also essentially everyone in the modern world.

This is precisely why we should, above all, suspect ourselves.

Am I really that off-the-beam  §

or is it just everyone else?

Maybe  §

it is me, as everyone has always said, that’s broken.