Archive for the 'travel' Category


Me No Speak

Me No Speak ChineseMe No Speak Chinese

On your way to Beijing? Thailand? or Japan?
Here’s a great travel companion if you don’t speak the language.
Me No Speak provides a way for travelers to simply point and speak rather than trying to use phrases that we can totally muck up. They currently have three pocket size editions in Chinese, Japanese and Thai.
I love the idea of being heard without saying a word. Their nicely done website gives you travel tips too!


free land…in alaska?!

would anyone like to dream with me?
perhaps own a piece of beautiful america?

one of the places i’ve always wanted to visit was alaska. it’s just one of those places of pure beauty even at temperatures 60below. i definitely want to see the northern lights and climb mount mckinely. i thought this proposal that came out of a high school social studies class was a great exploration of how to boost a town’s dwindling population – give away one of the greatest natural resources that we can possibly have with the expectation to responsibly invest in that community. any entrepreneurs out there?

• Community of 300 offering 26 1.3-acre lots for free
• Lots go to first people to apply and pay $500 deposit beginning 9 a.m. Monday
• Winners must build 1,000-square-foot house within two years
• Idea for land lottery came from school project

oh my the possibilities…


ash wednesday redux

last wednesday we flew out bright and early to phoenix, az from philly. this is our first family vacation – wifey, baby and me. in packing i kept second guessing myself. do i really need to bring all this stuff? do we really need all these toys? i had desperately wanted to simplify my own personal packing. i can’t really simplify jayden’s. the thought of being that family you see in the movies or commercials going to the beach with three kids, the dog and the dad clumsily haulin all the toys, beach chairs, and the cooler from the mini-van, well it just doesn’t sit well with me. not saying i’m there yet but traveling with the family has its challenges.

setting out on our little journey was eventful. first, i had forgotten that i left my mega swiss army knife in my carry on. you can imagine how the TSA felt about that. i miss my knife. the seating arrangement was borderline claustrophobic for me. jayden sits on us the whole 5hour flight. well, sitting would be so heavenly. i didn’t premeditate that part of the flying experience. afterall, this was my first real family vacation. note – jayden is not one of those cuddly little children, angelic as he may appear. upon arrival, the airline had lost a piece of luggage, the most important one containing my wife’s belongings and jayden’s stuff. my patience wore. i wanted to yell. complain. throw a fit. i lugged the luggage we did have to the car rental place to further negotiate about trivial insurance additions and the choice of car (i mean, mini-van) with the youngin behind the counter trying to convince me to rock out in an SUV with the sun-roof. we exit the airport and immediately we were faced with bumper to bumper traffic. i can go on.

jesus called out the leading religious authorities of his time on caring mainly about cleaning up the things on the outside and their relentless pursuit of ritualistic holiness while on the inside continually they are corrupted by greed, self-indulgence, hypocrisy and wickedness.

last wednesday was also ash wednesday which marks the beginning of the lenten season, a journey of focus and reflection of our lord going to the cross. it should draw us deeper into personal discipleship. typically people give up something like candy, meat, or some sort of food that they enjoy as if we have to sacrifice good things to honor the most high. it has become trendy to give up stuff like instant messaging, the internet, tv or some other form of media. some people flog themselves to identify with Christ in his suffering. it seeps into our thinking that we have to be miserable. very often people miss the point. perhaps instead of giving up something or thinking we need to be miserable, we should focus on adding things – things that make us more like Jesus, getting closer to him, exalting him. put your christ on.

colossians 3:12-14
So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you: compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, discipline. Be even-tempered, content with second place, quick to forgive an offense. Forgive as quickly and completely as the Master forgave you. And regardless of what else you put on, wear love. It’s your basic, all-purpose garment. Never be without it.

philippians 2:1-18
1If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. 3Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. 4Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.
5Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:
6Who, being in very nature[a] God,
did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,
7but made himself nothing,
taking the very nature[b] of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
8And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
and became obedient to death—
even death on a cross!
9Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,
10that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.
12Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, 13for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.
14Do everything without complaining or arguing, 15so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe 16as you hold out[c] the word of life—in order that I may boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor for nothing. 17But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you. 18So you too should be glad and rejoice with me.


kevin max, the violet burning, brennan strawn

mmmmm. drool. if anyone would like to join me for some soul food…find me here:
tues : may 2 : 7pm : kevin max [dc talk], the violet burning, brennan strawn at the knitting factory : nyc

if you’ve read my previous post, you’d know that the violet burning is among my most favorite bands in the world of all time. it’s quintessential music for your musik edjumakation.

listen to the kmax & tvb records in entirety:

i love my wonderful wife for letting me go.
btw. we celebrated our anniversary last week (4/27). we actually were able to have a date! as soon as jayden went down for bed we were off like bats. and no we didn’t leave him home alone. momma k babysat. whoah…we’re married. and we’re still married!
lauren, you are still my precious bride whom i cherish with all my heart and strength.
i love you.
Newport, Rhode Island

“All my life I have been looking for light I cannot find within me.” – the violet burning :: humm from the album, drop dead, 2006

i’m get so lost within the kiss of their music…i see stars everytime. see you there. xoxoxo


greetings from the big island

:: greetings from the big island — wish you were there ::

i tried to update from the islands to give y’all a day-to-day but we didn’t get wired. for 15 cents a minute, i decided it was more healthy to unplug for a while. i spend way too much time surfing that pipe, time to step into real liquid. the picture above records our lava hunt. yes, that is real 2000+ degree lava. we hustled over rough terrain (like that scene in chronicles of riddick) at sundown to get a glimpse of this ooze and make it back before it went pitch black. most visitors don’t get to see this at volcano national park. it was a pure marvel.

this was one of the most enjoyable times the wife and i had shared. i appreciated how she willingly pulled off some jennifer-garner-alias-esque action with me over this treacherous 3 mile terrain. i was moving like riddck trying to get to our final destination and back safe before it went pitch black on us. besides the terrain, we had to overcome the mix of our asthma and the sulfur in the air besides not having done much physical activity in quite some time.
“There’s only gonna be one speed – Mine. If you can’t keep up, don’t step up. You’ll just die.” — chronicles of riddick
it was really great how we strove together toward a common goal and enjoyed the reward together.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++notables +++++++++++++++++++++++++++

:: food ::

– plate lunches with kalbi for 4.95 is quite the bomb as are other asian inspired dishes like katsu, curry beef, etc. this truly is paradise. non-asians can’t grasp what a steal this is. there’s one in nyc on fulton street – hit up the L&L Drive-In.

– there needs to be a mos burger out here too. not much on the beef but it’s a nice spot to hit up.

:: folks ::
we enjoyed our time with our hosts. thanks for the prayers. i know you prayed for us.

even more neat was that we were able to spend time with the my old roomate dennis who’s stationed out here on the army base. i’ve lived with him longer than lauren so far.

and for you volleyball fans – we got to chill for a bit with the hawaiian star setter for UH — Kanoe Kamana’o
a very nice girl – – – AVCA National Freshman of the Year…Earned AVCA third-team All-American Honors…also named second-team All-American by College Sports Television…a first-team all-WAC and first-team all-region player…WAC and Region Freshman of the Year.

look forward to hearing more news about her in the future.

:: fun :: 
the big island is the one island that you can ski or board and go surfing all in the same day. woohoo. praise for islandsnow

of course… my favorite spot – the north shore. real waves. real surf. well, i wussed out. 20-30 foot waves are insane. but surfing, stepping into liquid is a pure spiritual experience.

now please return your seat to its upright position. mahalo ::.
it’s good to be home. truly. it’s sort of a reminder that it’s where we belong, just like heaven. we actually wished that we could experience the snow from behind our apartment window while we were resting on the fine sandy beaches. but oh, it finally feels like winter.

so set your sights on a memory bliss for these cold gray days ::

the view from our balcony at dusk   |   the place where we lay our heads

+++++ big thanks to jon for lending me his precious for our travels +++++


go west young man go west

“Man need only divert his attention from searching for the solution to external questions and pose the one, true inner question of how he should lead his life, and all the external questions will be resolved in the best possible way.”
– leo tolstoy

the forecast for oahu ::.

High /
Low (°F)
Precip. %
Jan 13
Sunny 80°/68° 10 %
Jan 14
Sunny 81°/69° 10 %
Jan 15
Sunny 80°/68° 0 %
Jan 16
Partly Cloudy 80°/68° 0 %
Jan 17
Partly Cloudy 79°/67° 0 %
Jan 18
Mostly Sunny 79°/68° 0 %
Jan 19
Mostly Sunny 79°/68° 0 %
Jan 20
Partly Cloudy 78°/67° 0 %
Jan 21
Partly Cloudy 77°/66° 0 %

aloha love ::.
lauren and i have been so blessed by the aloha love of our friends chad and kim. we hope to be able to bless them even more deeply with the love from God above. we’ll be spending 10 days concentrating on that. i hope to gain some fresh insight and vision during this time as well. this will be some serious r&r. a much needed re-creation.

Take this soul / Stranded in some skin and bones
Take this soul / And make it sing
Take these hands / Teach them what to carry
Take these hands / Don’t make a fist
Take this mouth / So quick to criticise
Take this mouth / Give it a kiss
– yahweh by U2


wonderful things ::. back from chi-town where we…

wonderful things ::.

back from chi-town where we spent some much needed time with good good friends. ain’t nuthin like food, folks, and fun. we saw all 20mins of bluesfest.

here are some of the most fantabulous things we came across ::.


a beautiful tribute to a hero / a public prayer booth / a caterpillar roll at sushi wahi / legosman and legoskid

more on the prayer booths :: this art piece is part of an annual sculpture exhibition on the navy pier walk, also one of the world’s largest outdoor sculpture exhibits headed by leading critics and curators to explore issues in contemporary sculture. there are 28 pieces chosen from artists all over the world. public art is extremely difficult to do.


prayer booths designated by a clasped pair of hands at the top of the booth lure in patrons who can kneel on a bench while their prayers are taped by a recording device inside. artist dylan mortimer created the prayer booths. inside, viewers will find a set of instructions: “To Operate: Lower the kneeler, rest arms at the base of the enclosure, and knees on the kneeler.” mortimer says he doesn’t know if people will actually pray there. “But one way or the other, I think it will get them to question prayer in the public realm.” the piece was also featured in kansas city in 2003. mortimer plans to head up to SVA in nyc for his graduate studies.

.::. ?upgrade? .::.

in an attempt to keep up with gmail yahoo has upgraded their services. i can always use another 100mb of junk mail. now i’ve got 2gb combined with a gmail account. it’s a disaster waiting to happen. which one is better? i haven’t really tested out gmail. help me out people…whats the word? oh, i hooked up another gig on spymac. so that’s 3gs.

urban hedonism planning ::.

it’s great to visit chicago with like-hearted friends where we can discuss issues like gentrification and a heart for the poor. i thought i was the only one who cared about such things enough to even try to double major in urban planning. at the same time going to such nice urban places always get me questioning, why am i here in nj? chicago is indeed a carefully planned city. it is attractive. however, there are incredible disparities between the rich and poor. the metropolitan area is becoming vastly middle-class with young urban professional transplants. why wouldn’t you want to live there? you have a gym, starbucks on the corner, jamba juice across the way, a pleasant night life, a piece of property that may appreciate up to 20 percent and of course a view of the lake. here’s the other side, one out of eight people standing in a checkout line at a chicago supermarket probably can’t afford to buy the groceries in their cart. more than 840,000 people live in poverty in the metropolitan chicago area, a number that would surpass indianapolis as the 12th largest city in the u.s., said the 2003 report on illinois poverty. there is so much development visually unfolding before our eyes as we walked around. almost every block. old warehouses becoming tomorrow’s condos. it’s beautiful to look at but in the books it’s truly unbalanced development. the people who are getting dislocated are not just those in the projects, the obviously poor, but it seems that there is no mid-range housing options for the city’s bravest-firefighters, social workers, and government workers. these are people like me, those who tend to the soul(s) of the city. this urban planning is bent on feeding the pleasures of the flesh. a new american dream has dawned.

[american born chinese pastor]
seeks to be that third place for those who are american born chinese [abc] in ministry.
here we may explore issues unique to the chinese church and doing ministry in that context
expand the intersection of asian american culture and christian faith
or simply expose what goes on in the mind of this abcpastor

this may be a bit ambitious or even naiive but i do hope that through the posts we can bring together different faith communities, passions for the advancement of the Gospel and the equipping of the body of Christ.

if you are an abc pastor or have any suggestions or would like to contribute to make this space evolve, just comment.


Feed the Ego

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