California


Having one’s wisdom teeth removed is like traveling to another world. You sit in a chair, receive a little shot, breathe in some special gas and when you return, your whole life is changed.

As a result of lack of teeth – I must make a little menu for myself (and anyone else out there who’s starving from the new lack of a couple of wisdom teeth). In French, a wisdom tooth is are called “un/une dent de sagesse”. Can I say “les dents de sagesse” then? I had mine taken on this past morning at 7am, and already ate some shredded chicken pieces because I was so fed up with soup.

Here’s my menu:

Appetizer
Steamed egg with chopped onions, cooled or luke warm in a bowl
Soft boiled deviled eggs with some cream cheese and seasoning
Chicken noodle soup
Seasoned, soft boiled or steamed veggies (carrots, broccoli, potatoes)

Main Course:
Buttered mashed (sweet?) potatoes and gravy with shredded chicken pieces
Pasta salad (Mac n Cheese or Fancy Mac)
Softly scrambled eggs and tomatoes over soft pasta
Scrambled eggs with cheese (and soft sweet Hawaiian bread)
Softly toasted white bread with hummus and toasted soft red peppers
Seasoned Baked Squash
Cumin Chicken legs, shredded (just add cumin and seasoning)
Garlic chicken wings with well cooked garlic cloves.
Tofu and gravy dishes (Mapo tofu without the spiciness!)
Ground beef taco center with softly toasted white bread or potato bread.
Soft boiled tea eggs
Salmon or salmon head soup ( no bones!)
Smoked salmon and Penne Alfredo
Jook of choice with no chunks
Polenta and beef stew with tender chicken or soft carrots
Creamy Chicken Campbell Soup
Clam Chowder in a Bread Bowl (eating only the softened bread)
Creamed spinach and egg salad
Soft egg with guacamole
Miso Soup
V8 on the rocks (to spoon) or tomato soup
Mild lentil curry on rice porridge (beware not to lodge anything in your incisions)
Tuna salad sans celery, on soft bread.
Soft veggie burger
Pate and fresh tomatoes
If you make soy milk, save the dried soy gregs and stirfry it with onions and chopped garlic.

Fruits and Dessert:
Sweet iced tofu soup
Pineapples and juice (Pineapples have a numbing effect with the presence of bromelain)
Yogurt with soft kiwi or apricot and sugar (without the seeds)
Yogurt with soft smooth peanut butter or Nutella
Mango smoothie
Milkshakes or smoothies of choice – pina colada sans alcool
Cheesecake
Finger jello: coconut, almond, grape
Ice Cream sans chunks
Gelato or Sorbetto sans seeds
Baked Apple (very soft), stuffed with preferred flavorings
Apple Sauce
Brie on Banana
Iced Black tea and cranberry juice (avoid the sauce, or anything with seeds like berries)

But in the end, it’s just “eat what’s at hand that makes you feel comfortable.”

As for me, I think my sedation was so odd. They froze my inner elbow in order to prick me, and then I felt sleepy within 10 seconds. It must have been a twilight sedation because I was semi-aware of the operation but didn’t care about it at all. The operation felt like it took 1 minute total, and my sense of time was completely gone. I only felt one sharp pressure at one time, but it wasn’t even painful or undesirable. I didn’t even care. I don’t even remember how I got from the dentist chair to the resting bed, even though I remember walking on groggy feet with my mom. It was really peaceful. I wasn’t even aware I had gauze in my cheeks.

I feel alright now, and the only pain is a slight buzzing from the top right (where I think I had an impacted horizontal). I am not taking any pain killers, and feel alright. I hope this stays this way. I don’t look like a chipmunk at all (although I suspect I do, thanks to the sensation in my gums from where they removed my right wisdom teeth). Overall, I feel happy that my wisdom teeth cannot bother me anymore or haunt my dreams with their crowding presence. I can’t help having a small mouth!

On a final note, I’m writing this entry at 5am because I have jet lag still, from my return in China. I’ve been up since 3am!

By the time you’re reading this post I’ll be in China already. However, a week or two ago I went home to visit my parents near Monterrey Bay. The day my parents picked me up, we saw a family of deer outside of my apartment window. Right on the street! Back in Minnesota, we could only see deer in the woods and they rarely visited yards (except for delicious feasts on our poor rose buds). Therefore, I was astonished to see them near an almost urban Berkeley campus. Perhaps they feast on the Rose Garden two blocks away? Roses definitely are delicious. Remind me to post a recipe for rose petal jam.

Anyways, one day as I was sitting at home writing my resume and doing other miscellaneous tasks….I felt the urge to visit the ocean. Why? Because the grumbling in my stomach reminded me of ocean waves hitting the beach. So I thought, why not bring dinner to the beach? It’s so nearby. I arranged the menu:
1. Steamed Rice (of course)
2. Yu Xiang Eggplant (Eggplant, garlic, onion, ginger, sezchuan sauce)
3. And…what else? We have two eggs left, some old green beans and apricots, strawberries, mangos…fruit galore!
I thought, apricots seem like they would taste well with the egg, and also look like the egg. I could beat the eggs with the scooped out insides of the ripest apricot in the bunch.
That is exactly what I did:

Apricot Egg and Peas:
1) Remove peas from beans
2) Beat eggs with apricot
3) Stir fry beans, adding salt, sugar and some water
4) When beans are soft, use medium heat and stir fry egg and apricots with mixture.

Eat and discover how well apricots bring out the savory flavor of egg and peas.


Enjoy a beautiful night by the ocean!

I went to the SF Gay pride parade on Sunday June 29th, and I just wanted to share the experience. I am straight myself, but this is a parade for everyone. I think all of SF was there today, and “everyone is so gay here!” quoting my gay friend John from visiting Minnesota. Also, Macy’s was handing out rainbow bandanas which I might use as a future furoshiki to make a bento in honor of my friend John.

We saw many bride pairs and groom pairs. We even received a couple of party favors. Some cute gay families brought their children along.
Isn’t he sweet?

And this is here is the Berkeley Free Clinic where I volunteer:

I’ll let the rest of the photos speak for themselves. Raunchy family show :-p.

Happy Thursday!

Last Thursday I visited the All Organic Farmer’s Market on Shattuck Avenue and Rose Street on North Berkeley. A complete novice, I spent my first half hour browsing and sampling all the in-season fruits they offered on trays. White peaches, nectarines and apricots are the best fruits in season aside from your traditional summer strawberry.

The apricots were so sweet, I could imagine substituting sugar with them rather than honey. I’ve never had such sweet ripened apricots in my life. I also sampled the most fragrant white peaches in the U.S. that day. I’m originally from Chengdu, China where 水蜜桃 (shui3 mi4 tao2) (asian nectar white peach or literally “water nectar peach”) grow seasonally. The flavor resembles that of a donut peach but the juice content resembles that of a waterfall waiting to explode.

First of all, I usually prefer nectarines over those orange American peaches especially since the latter reminds me of that boring flavor typically found in canned fruit salads. The flavor of the nectarines usually resemble the original peach queen of China (previously mentioned) more than American grown white peaches. But when I sampled the white peaches at this market, I bought 3 white peaches instead nectarines. The flavor was genuine!

There were also a complete array of garden grown produce ranging from chard, scallions and other traditional veggies. Yet aside from all the fruits and vegetables, I also saw a seafood stand and a booth offering organic butter and oysters.

Before I left, I stopped by the Highland Hills Farm stand for some stew pork meat. It was a fantastic price for such a hardy amount of fresh meat. My roommate and I cooked it for the following week and it lasted us through several stews, curries and a simple stir fry. The farm even offered a variety of eggs, displayed in a beautiful array of colors.

Finally, speaking of colors…have you ever seen such strange plants? Any botanists out there? I met these living creatures on my way to the market. What do you call this cauli-flowering tree and spikey-blossomed vine plant?

Finally, if you go to the website for the Berkeley Farmers’ Market there’s an event this Saturday the 21st of June if you’re interested in attending the Summer Solstice Salmon Celebration!