Oops.

Some oopsies I have made or others have made towards me this past week:

Not enough stretching: Tuesday last week I went to the gym with my sister, and after my typical upper-body workout, I decided to do some leg exercises since I hadn’t specifically exercised them in awhile. Usually I do leg press and calf raises, and leave the rest of the leg muscles to running, but since I had not done any running for a long time either, I thought I might work extra hard today to jump start myself back into shape. So I find the calf raise machine and do a ladder; starting weight of 50 pounds, increments of 20 pounds up to 130 pounds, 20 reps a set. I thought, no problem; I did the same thing the first time I went to the gym my freshman year, except with an end weight of something less than 130. So I stretched for about 10 seconds and did the calf raises.

The next day, my legs were sore (duh). The day after, they were more sore, but I could still walk fine. Then late in the afternoon, my calves started getting worse and it became painful to walk normally (but I still went to the gym that day haha). By night time I couldn’t stand up straight and iced my legs until I went to sleep. The third day after (Friday), I could barely get up to pee and had to keep my knees bent or else I’d collapse. I took the day off cause I couldn’t walk unless my knees were bent and my back was bent forward like I was 100 years old. I was kinda worried that they wouldn’t get any better by the time I had to fly out to LA the next day, but thank God after church on Saturday they started getting better (especially since I had to do a lot of standing around at the airport thanks to JetBlue’s superb service and allotment of workers at the check-in counters). Now my legs are almost better and I’m very glad; my sister hasn’t been able to not laugh about me being overambitious and weak.

I am my sister’s brother: Back in high school, one of my friends was looking for me after an orchestra concert and ran into my sister, whom she had never seen nor met. She saw a resemblance between my sister and me and so she asked her, “Are you Hain-Lee’s mom?” Well, a similar mistake was made at my cousin’s wedding in Malibu. I was walking with my sister as she was introducing me to some of her friends that she had not seen in some time. One of them saw her and said, “Oh Whei it’s so good to see you again.” As I lift the complimentary champaign to my lips, she gestures towards me and says, “And this must be your fiance!”

I forgot to submit my timesheet: Self explanatory.

Some random things:
– I ate at a japanese restaurant today with my sisters, my brother in law, and my brother in law’s dad (um…what is that called? Uncle in law? Or just uncle?). I could’ve sworn the hostess was a girl who goes to Cornell and lives in Becker House. She looked exactly like her. But I’m not so sure if she’s the same person because I’m pretty sure she saw me as she took all of us to our table and would’ve said something about the fact that I was wearing a Cornell T-shirt, but she didn’t. But I still think she is!
– And also, fart/poop jokes never get old. You know it’s true.

Random Updates

Edit: Updated my website with some pictures from Taiwan.

I got my first paycheck on Friday. Even though I knew I was making more money than I had ever made before, I was still surprised at how much the check was; I thought they might have accidentally paid me for two weeks instead of one, but I did the math and it came out to be correct. I was like…wow that’s awesome!

I think I can say with more certainty now what my internship position is; I’m a software engineer intern. My mentor said that we would discuss some Java things for me to do on Monday, since that’s about the only language I said I was familiar with. So, looks like no circuits or anything for me this summer, which was kind of what I was hoping for because I think I could have really benefited from it, but it’s ok. I don’t mind programming.

On Friday night I ate at my sister’s apartment; she and her husband Will cooked dinner and it was quite good. Afterwards, we decided to watch some of our home videos, back when I was 0-1 year old. There’s a recording of my brother’s fourth birthday, and we had a lot of church friends and parents over at our house to celebrate. My brother was such a cute kid; his face was so pure and innocent, and his smile so angelic and heartwarming. When everyone started singing happy birthday, he got embarrassed and covered his face with a paper plate.

After the cake eating and birthday presents, all the kids lined up in front of the pinata that my sisters made with paper mache. All the kids were so excited; the littler ones were allowed to hit it without a blindfold, but the older ones (older being like 4+) had to be blindfolded. Once there was a noticeable crack in the pinata, there was much screaming and yelling out of excitement. And once the pinata finally broke and candy started falling out, all the kids just mobbed themselves together grabbing whatever goodies they could reach. It was so amusing and interesting to watch with my sister, twenty years later.

As we talked about it, I realized that we were watching history; not just in the sense that it happened twenty years ago when we were babies, but also that not many kids celebrate their birthdays this way anymore. A lot of birthday parties for kids are held in places like restaurants or amusement parks like Chuck E’ Cheeses (sp?). And even the parties that are held at home rarely involve pinatas. Nowadays, it’s more technology oriented; watching a movie on a big screen TV, or playing video games.

I’m not saying necessarily that this is sad, even though it makes me feel that way a little. Watching movies and playing video games with your friends can be extremely fun. But I think it’s sad in the sense that all our entertainment has largely become commercialized; having a party at my house would be rather boring because my TV is older than I am, our desktop is spyware infested and runs as fast as a snail, and super nintendo is my video game console of choice. Kids would rather go out somewhere like an arcade than stay at home and swing aimlessly at a pinata. Very little of our entertainment is, for lack of a better word, homemade. In a sense, I think technology has made our idea of fun much more generic.

I think it makes me feel sad because the “good ‘ol days” of home-style fun seem to be coming to an end. But hey, maybe history will repeat itself.

In other random news, I have absolutely no sense of direction. I got lost getting home from the BART station. Thank God I eventually got home, even if I had to stop at a gas station and ask 5 people before someone knew how to get to where I was going, and then make a few illegal U-turns. Good thing it was kind of late so there weren’t many cars out…or cops.

After my other sister finds out, all of her friends will know and think I’m a clueless baby. Great. I can see it now; my sister animatedly pointing out my severe lack of sense of direction by talking about the time I couldn’t get home from the BART station.

Time to sleep.

First Week in California and at Cisco

Dang it; thanks to my webserver deciding to go down while I typed up my rather long blog post, I lost it. So now I have to type it all over again, except I’m too lazy so here’s a condensed version:

The most common question people have asked me this past week is: “How’s work, and what do you do?” I’m not kidding when I say it’s taken this entire week to find a semi-cohesive answer to that question because I’m pretty much totally clueless at work. So I’m in the Service Provider Routing Technology department, and within that department I’m part of the group that works on Mobility and Wireless services, and within that group I’m part of a sub-group that works on GGSN. What’s GGSN? Gateway GPRS Support Node. What’s GPRS? General Packet Radio Service. What’s all that? Well, that’s what Google is for.

Abstractly, GPRS is a wireless technology that provides service for mobile devices that use GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) technology, vs. CDMA techonlogy. What’s the difference? Again, that’s what Google is for, but the most tangible difference is that GSM phones use SIM cards and can be used in Europe where GSM is the standard, and CDMA phones do not. If you have Verizon, you’ve probably realized that you don’t have a SIM card, thus Verizon uses CDMA. GGSN is the interface between the GPRS and other networks, mainly the internet. So I guess it’s how people can surf the web and IM using their cell phones. If you want more details, consult Google. Basically what I’m trying to say is, I don’t really know exactly what I just said. But that’s ok; according to the author of Dilbert, the best jobs are the ones where you can speak complete nonsense and people can’t tell the difference, or something like that.

So what am I doing? Well, I’ve been answering every question at work beginning with “Do you know…” or “Are you familiar with…” with “Umm…no.” My manager wants me to eventually help out with writing configurations for the hardware we use in the lab for testing programs that people write for GGSN, but right now because I don’t know anything about networking or the UNIX operating system, I’m self teaching myself using…you guessed it…Google. I’ve been going through UNIX command line and Perl tutorials/references, and started reading a 316 page PDF file titled Introduction to Cisco Networking Technologies, which talks about basic networking concepts and terms, like the OSI reference model, what Ethernet is, what connection media there is, and more mumbo jumbo. It’s not particularly fun, but it’s not so bad either. After all, I’m getting paid to learn new things, which is a better deal than say, college. Plus, I can roll into work around 10 am, I get my own cubicle, and a brand-spankin new Lenovo Thinkpad T60 with a mini-dock.

Previously I used to think that I shouldn’t bother looking for an internship because I haven’t taken any courses of significant depth in engineering, but now I have a different view. Why? Because in terms of knowledge (as opposed to say, using a programming language), none of the courses I’ve taken so far have directly prepared me for this position. The reason I exclude programming languages is because taking a course in Java better darn help me use it in a job. But things like networking and all this mobile communications technology like GSM and GPRS and GGSN? I’m not going to learn it in a circuits or transistors course, or an electromagnetic fields and waves course. If I waited till after junior year to start looking, chances are I’d still be just as clueless as I am now. Point is, you learn very different things from a job and taking more core courses isn’t necessarily going to prepare you significantly more for an internship (for a full time job after graduation, all the design and project courses will probably help a lot, but for an internship, the core courses we’ve taken so far aren’t gonna help all that much unless you look for a very specific position dealing with topics closely related to what you learned in school).

Anyways, besides work I’ve been hanging out with my sisters and some church friends. On Tuesday Alice and her brothers and her mom treated me to dinner, which was really nice of them. On Wednesday I had some not so great Korean food. On Thursday I ate sushi. On Friday I ate a late dinner at a cafe. Yesterday dinner I ate at an American Restaurant (Fenton’s Creamery) that made their own icecream and gave very generous portions. I had two very large scoops and my sister, doubting my abilities to scoff icecream, said she’d give me 5 bucks if I could finish. Thanks to my good taste, I was able to finish every last bit of the Coffee Cookie Dream icecream. It was so satisfying, but now I’m slightly heavier.

And now, looking forward to continuing reading the 316 page PDF file next week!