Google: hain-lee

So I’ve seen multiple reminders for people who are looking for jobs to clean up their web presence because when companies perform background checks, they often search for your name on the web.

I googled my name and it seems pretty clean. The only embarrassing things that came up were a few youtube videos, but nothing “bad” persay. Seems that Google has already cached my website, but other search engines have yet to do that. Anyways, typing in “hain-lee hsueh” returns pretty accurate results. I’m a little bothered that my facebook pops up before my website does, but oh well. Then there’s some websites where my name appears on like HKN, a UN petition I signed a LONG time ago for Taiwan’s membership (this was because of a chain e-mail I got), and others. One interesting one is this directory site that has my name and city (along with Ann’s as well), which is kind of creepy, but the funny thing is that it lists my age as 29. Haha.

Now for more interesting stuff. If you just type in “hain-lee” in Google, it actually asks if I meant “haein-lee” and shows the top 2 results for that, one of which includes a facebook profile. Well, turns out it’s a girl. At least she’s kind of cute, but in any case I hope employers don’t get confused by that.

So the next logical thing I do is to google “haein-lee” and whaddaya know another facebook profile pops up. I click through, and it’s yet another girl. I’m not really thrilled about the fact that people with similar names as me are all girls. But at least this girl is cute too. PLUS, she’s a fan of The Dark Knight and of Disney movies. I approve :)

Anyways, back to “hain-lee.” The first two hits are legit – MY facebook and my website. The third hit is another facebook and it is, of course, another girl and she’s not even asian! That was kind of surprising.

After all that, I was relieved to know that I am still the only Hain-Lee Hsueh in the world. I like my name, even though most people can’t pronounce it right the first time and it was the source of all hanes underwear jokes directed at me as a kid.

Leisure Reading

So recently I’ve been trying to get into reading a little more, thanks to a certain friend of mine who might be the bookiest friend I know :p There are a lot of classics that I have never read before and I figured if I didn’t read some of them I’d be missing out on a lot of thought provoking ideas and I guess cultural enrichment. I read The Little Prince for the first time last summer liked it a lot because it’s written so simply but yet it’s really intriguing. 

But I’m pretty picky about what I read (like everything else). I attempted to read War and Peace and I started in the summer. I didn’t finish and read it on and off during last semester. But now I’ve kind of given up on it because it’s too long, it wasn’t all that exciting to me, and I couldn’t remember what had happened in what I read. So I unofficially stopped.

The good news is I’ve started another book, also a classic and recommended by my friend – East of Eden. I started maybe two or three weeks ago and I’m a little more than halfway through. It’s great. The character development is intense and deep. I love characters who are really perceptive, insightful, and in general have an acute sense of what people are like. Anyways, here’s quote that literally made me stop and say, “Wow, I really like that quote. Let me read it again…..Wow, I really like that quote. Let me read it again……Wow, I really like that quote. Let me read it again…..” Maybe part of it is because I had my moment of nostalgia recently last week, reading through my journal, but anyways, here it is!

“I can’t tell you how to live your life,” Samuel said, “although I do be telling you how to live it. I know that it might be better for you to come out from under your might-have-beens, into the winds of the world. And while I tell you, I am myself sifting my memories, the way men pan the dirt under a barroom floor for the bits of gold dust that fall between the cracks. It’s small mining — small mining. You’re too young a man to be panning memories, Adam. You should be getting yourself some new ones, so that the mining will be richer when you come to age.”

Isn’t that such a thought-provoking analogy? 

Random aside. There has been one symphony that I’ve always wanted to play – the New World Symphony, particularly the 4th movement. It’s just AWESOME. Ever since I first heard it I’ve wanted to play it. But what’s sad is that being in orchestra for so many years (starting from 5th grade until now), I’ve NEVER had the opportunity to play it. I mean yes, there is a TON of classical music written and a lot of is great and no one could possibly play all of them. But what kind of frustrates me is that orchestra at Cornell has been a letdown in terms of the repertoire, and that is entirely because of the personal taste of the conductor. I envisioned playing a lot of classical music in orchestra in college like I did during high school. But unfortunately for me, the conductor has a large appreciation for contemporary music, which I do not really share, and the repertoire has become increasingly more and more contemporary and less classical. 

I’m no longer doing orchestra largely for this reason, and it’s said because I’ll be graduating and won’t have much opportunity to play in an orchestra afterwards. I won’t be able to perform the 4th movement of the New World Symphony like I’ve always desired to :(

An Admirable Faith

So I’m quite behind in posting my reflections on the book of Joshua, which I finished reading last semester. Hopefully with better time management I can sort of catch up in Bible reading and reviewing lessons learned from Bible study, sermons, seminars, etc, and then try to post some for mutual edification. And as always, discussion is welcome.

I’d like to share something about Joshua that I find very admirable, humbling, and very much worth learning from. Those who are Christian know the character – after Moses died, Joshua was the one who lead the Israelites into the land of Canaan, and had victory upon victory upon victory over many of the nations inhabiting the land at the time. Joshua chapter 12 lists 31 kings that the Israelites conquered under Joshua’s leadership, with an army that had never seen war prior to entering Canaan. Sometimes we take this for granted because we’ve heard the stories many times, but if we really think about it, that’s simply amazing. Joshua was the man! Continue reading

Reminiscence

Ever get into one of those modes where you just start thinking about the past? Nostalgia, flashbacks, memories, all that sentimental stuff?

Well, I’m in one now. And such bad timing too – this is going to throw off my sleeping schedule.

Anyways, what I usually do when this happens is take out my old journals and flip through some of the entries. I didn’t start a journal until 10th grade but a lot of the events that happened before (since 7th grade) I remember pretty clearly, possibly because a lot of that context is unconsciously included in the entries of my first journal.

So a couple random thoughts:

– I understand again why Jesus teaches us that we should be like little children. Now I’m in no way implying that high schoolers are little children or that I was an angel in high school, but my faith was definitely a lot simpler back then, and judging from my entries, I thought about God and spirituality a lot more than I do now, even though at the time I felt spiritually weak. I may not have seen or understood as much back then, but there’s no doubt that my faith was purely genuine.

– Family. I read about the time when my dad was thinking about changing jobs and moving back to Taiwan to work. When he finally did decide to make the move, it affected me a lot. I realized how much I took my parents for granted, and how precious family time was. It’s such a shame that so many youths in this society shun it, including myself at times. This was also the time when our family adopted Kuma. Man, I miss her a lot.

– And drama. Drama to the max. After my first experience “dating” (this was in 8th grade), I refused to get in a relationship (and I still do, but secretly I hope God will provide within the next couple years…I guess not secretly anymore). This isn’t to say that my first “girlfriend” (I put in quotes only because we never referred to each other that way at the time so I feel weird referring to her that way) was stupid and mean or anything; she was actually super smart and nice. But the way it ended (sorry, no details here) really hurt me and kind of scarred me for awhile. I know that sounds cheesy because this was in 9th grade, but I really felt legitimately depressed for months and had trouble sleeping. ANYWAYS, eventually I got over it and by the time 10th grade came around, the pressure to date and flirt was really overwhelming and I struggled a lot with crushes. There are two crushes that were particularly extended and that stressed me out the most. I tried so hard not to leak my feelings for them, but eventually they learned. Drama is so tricky. It makes you want to confess your feelings no matter how much you don’t want to. And I don’t care what anyone says anymore because I’ve gone through enough crushes to learn this for myself – KEEP IT TO YOURSELF. Saves so much unnecessary drama. It frustrates me to no end when people keep doing the same thing, thinking “oo but this time it’s different..” It’s not – you’re not ready yet. Did I mention I was cynical?

So that was a particularly winded rambling of some of the things I went through in high school. To conclude, I shall leave you with an excerpt of one of my journal entries that made me laugh out loud at myself. Obviously the names are altered to maintain anonymity and to hide the names of people I crushed on. This is dated Tuesday, March 16th, 2004:

Man, depressed about Sarah again. At lunch she was talking about asking this one person to the prom. She said to Lisa that he wasn’t asian, so that automatically ruled me out. She said it was someone Lisa knew pretty well and so my guess is John Smith. I officially have no life because I’m thinking about this so carefully.

Okay, I really need to sleep now. Oh, and happy birthday “girlfriend” :)

Chain Letters

Chain letters are fun. They started (for me) back in the days when AOL was synonymous with the internet and my only means of communicating online was via email (my parents disabled instant messenger — one of my friends commented he was sick of hearing “You’ve got mail” every two seconds). Anyways, many of you probably know there is currently a chain note going around facebook right now.

I find it really intriguing how this happens. I first caught wind of it when Shenny tagged me. I didn’t think I would actually do it either until a couple of my other friends from church started filling it out too. So I caved and filled it out, and tagged a bunch of my Cornell friends. Since then, it’s just been going around like wildfire.

Here’s a flattering thought. If we form a set of nodes consisting of all the social networking nerds (everyone that actively uses facebook) and break up everyone into two giant components (everyone at Cornell and everyone else), then I’d like to think of myself as the bridge connecting these two components by writing 25 random things about myself and tagging my Cornell friends. In the few days after I wrote it and tagged people, my friends all started doing it too, and for some of them it was the first time they ever took the time to fill one out. I know, how important I am! I think I’ve also spread it to my extended family by tagging my sisters, because now my cousins from all over the place are filling it out too.

Well the chance that I was the only bridge is pretty small but it was kind of cool to observe that. In the past 10 minutes that I’ve spent typing this, two more of my friends just tagged me.

Another random thought: usually chain letters are pretty creative. One that comes to mind has a series of questions and you have to answer them by putting your music library on random and writing down the name of the song. Or a series of personality type questions. Interestingly, none of those really took off in terms of people I know, and I never filled those out. But this 25 random things one is, to be honest, pretty LAME and UNORIGINAL. I mean come on, you might as well have the chain letter say “Tell me about yourself, and then tell other people to tell you about themselves.” The fact it’s spreading around so quickly and effectively is kind of mind boggling. 

Maybe it’s because it’s easy – even though the prompt is boring and unoriginal, you can basically say anything that comes to mind. I guess ease of use always outweighs everything else (Windows Vista comes to mind…as a negative example of what I just said).