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目前分類:心情雜記 (124)

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Pardon my ignorance!  What exactly is “擦槍走火”?  I wanted to be sure that I am not judging people like some hypocrite, so I look up the dictionary.  The Chinese definition of “擦槍走火” is “做事因意外而導致預料之外的結果”.  Therefore, in the case of the Hong Kong police shooting at a teenager, what 柯文哲 meant was that the policeman was just cleaning the gun but somehow a gunshot was  ACCIDENTALLY fired without the trigger getting pulled, which pierced through a teenager’s lung, only a few inches away from piercing his heart.  It wasn’t meant to be.  The gun was not supposed to be loaded.  The policeman’s finger was not supposed to be near the trigger.  (Sorry, I can’t help getting sarcastic)


The English definition of “擦槍走火” is “a minor incident that sparks a war”.   In the case of the Hong Kong police shooting at a teenager, what 柯文哲 meant was that it was just a MINOR accident even though the teenager was shot through his lung, only inches away from his heart and was still hospitalized in intensive care.  Getting shot was ONLY a MINOR accident!  Indeed, a boy's life (in fact, any human life) is so miniscule in the eyes of the Communist Chinese and the pro-Beijing people.  

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I dislike Trump greatly.  Bill Prickett took the words right out of my mouth.  I couldn't have said it better myself.  Below were what he said in his article "Do I hate Trump?"

I find his egomaniacal superiority insufferable.
I detest his snide condescension and arrogance toward those who disagree with him.
I’m appalled at the way he demeans others.
I am disgusted by his obvious misogyny and blatant sexism.
I despise his racism and his blasé acceptance of white supremacy.
I loathe the extreme nationalism he promotes.
I am terrified by his petulant, unstable temperament.
I am sickened by his complete ineptitude to hold the office POTUS.
I think he’s uncouth, coarse, bad-mannered and crude.  

That said, I kind of support Trump’s action in his trade war with China, though it might come back to bite me as a consumer for which inflation might be triggered.  However, looking at a bigger picture, to me, national security is more important.  I can’t tolerate big corporations eyeing only for their own selfish short-term profits, giving into Chinese demand, nurturing a snake in our bosom (養虎為患), and letting China get whatever they want, stealing all the intellectual property. 

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I have a twitter account but I have only tweeted 4 times since 2009.  I still struggle to find the reason to tweet and the benefit of tweeting. 

 

Elisa English in Mineapolis

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Reading through some of my blog entries in the past, I found a response to my reader interesting.  I will post it here to share with you all.  It was related to “true blue will never stain” 清者自清,濁者自濁.  My response was that I do not care to be a true blue.  I am not a saint.  I react when attacked.  Though with history the final judge of our deeds, I do not live long enough to the judgement of the history.  I live the way I know how.  I have a lot of things that I don't agree with others. I speak what’s on my mind.

 

    It might seem meaningless arguing with someone.  Maybe life is too short to sweat over nonsense.  Like the book "The unbearable lightness of being", in any particular moment in time, our action is so transitory that it is light and meaningless.  However, the responsibility in each and every choice and action, over time, leads to everlasting consequences regardless of life’s transience.  

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    I was really surprised when I heard the hostess of a Taiwanese variety show "2分之一強" stating that her daughter had tree nut allergy because she could not eat sesame seeds.  I am well aware of what tree nuts are and what it means to have tree nut allergy.  My kids had gone through skin prick tests to determine what they are allergic to after some food allergic reaction.  Each year, we spend over thousands of US dollars to purchase the required Epi-pens for our kids.   It cost roughly US$600 for a twin pack of Epi-pens.  Each year, we have to purchase 6 twin packs, 3 for each of my kids - one for the school, one for after school care and one at home for ourselves.  So, a total of close to US$4,000 a year, just for the Epi-pens, which we have never used.  Anyway, this is to say that I am not a stranger to tree nut allergy and what tree nuts are.  We always look at the food label and ask before our kids taste any food to ensure that there are no tree nuts included. 

    That said, back to the show, we never consider seeds as tree nuts.  Her daughter could be allergic to sesame seeds (seeds allergy 種子過敏) but not tree nuts (tree nut allergy 堅果過敏). To state that her daughter has tree nut allergy because she is allergic to sesame seeds is incorrect and misleading.  Tree nuts include almonds, brazil nuts, cashews, chestnuts, filberts, hazelnuts, hickory nuts, macadamia nuts, pecans, pistachios and walnuts.  While seeds include chia seeds, flax seeds, sunflower seeds, pine nuts, pumpkin seeds, moringa seeds, sesame seeds, poppy seeds, fennel seeds, papaya seeds, hemp seeds, fenugreek seeds, cilantro or coriander seeds, apple seeds, marijuana seeds, and mustard seeds.  Though our kids are allergic to tree nuts, they are not allergic to all tree nuts and definitely not to seeds.  They cannot eat pecans and walnuts, but they have tried pistachios, almonds, cashews, hazelnuts without problem.  I like walnuts a lot though. 😊  Some people have confused tree nut allergy with peanut allergy.  They are not the same.  Peanuts are legumes (豆科植物).  Our kids can eat peanuts without any problem.  So as pine nuts, which are considered as seeds.  By the way, what are types of legumes?  Well, legumes include alfalfa, clover, beans, peas, chickpeas, lentils, lupins, mesquite, carob, soybeans, peanuts, and tamarind.    

    Since we are on the subject of allergy, my husband has a different type of allergy, fruit allergy.  Pollen food syndrome usually occurs in people who are already allergic to pollens and suffer from hay fever, which is the case with my husband.  People, like my husband, have pollen food syndrome experience allergic symptoms when they eat certain fruits or vegetables. This is due to the similarities between the proteins found in pollen and those present in the fruits and vegetables. In the case with my husband, he is allergic to Birch pollen.  He has been eating apples for years but a few years after he developed hay fever, he can no longer eat raw apples.  There goes an apple a day keeping the doctor away.  However, he can still eat them if cooked, such as apples in apple pie or apple sauce.  Fruits that he can no longer eat now are apples, wax apples, cherries, jujubes, peaches, pears, plums, prunes and apricots.  The list continues to grow.  One time, he was offered a dried jackfruit snack and developed a allergic reaction right away.    

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My rambling for the day – about government mentality and bureaucracy

 

Can we tell who is telling more lies?  Obama or Romney?  Who knows?  However, fundamentally, you know what each party's focus is and that is what you vote for.  Also, I know it is not going to get better under Obama.  With Romney, the chance is 50/50.  So would I bet on that?  Yes. 

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People were suspecting that the Colorado shooter, an extremely talented guy, James Holmes might have some sort of mental disorders to explain the precalculated mass murder. Speculation that he has Aspergers or Autism flies everywhere. I don't know if James Holmes truly has any mental illness or developmental disability. Even if he has, it doesn’t mean someone else with similar illness or disability would be a threat to the society. However, I do believe that our education system is inadequate in preparing kids with disabilities in fitting in the real world and to interact with others.

I can’t praise my school too much. I really love the education that our school provides. In addition to within class and between class ability grouping, we also have a special education program especially established for the exceptionally gifted kids (those with IQ over 145) to address their social and emotional needs in regards to appropriate interactions with the world around them, to build empathy and to eliminate isolation. They often have field trips in the community to connect them to the real world. While the country puts on so much emphasis on trying to bring up kids who lag behind academically, we should also pay more attention to those extremely talented but socially incapable.

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My Rambling of the Day: Spring Cleaning / Got Suntanned!

 

 

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An Incident that haunts me

 

This might be an icident that will haunt me for life. Last time, I talked about decisions. We make choices each day and each choice leads to different consequences. When my son was about eight months old, he had to go through circumcision suggested by our pediatrician to prevent future infection. Our decision to not go through circumcision when he was born didn’t spare him from not going through the surgery in the end. Conducting the surgery at an older age is actually riskier no matter how small the surgery is. I am not a great mom. I make mistakes all the time. New to parenthood, I was still very self-absorbed. Even now when I have been a mom for over nine years, I am still the same self-absorbed person. That day before the surgery, inside the waiting room, I set my son on the table. The table was more like a file cabinet, with narrow surface. When my son sat on top of it, he was about where my armpits were. The cabinet was in front of me, so I could see my son right in front of me. Instead of paying attention to what he was doing, I turned my head to the right to talk to my husband, who sat at the chair next to the cabinet. There was a space of about a chair's width between the chair and the cabinet. I didn’t realize that I had set my son too close to the edge of the cabinet. In the blink of an eye, he fell to the ground. He fell from a height of approximately four feet. I was really devasted and went to talk to the nurse right away to ask if he needed to be examined for any head injury. The nurse looked at him and told us that since he didn’t vomit, he should be okay. Gas induction of anesthesia was later performed and he was completely out of consciencious when the surgery went on.

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Decisions, Decisions, Decisions.

 

      Recently we attended the 4th grade Orchestra Orientation and learned that students attending the program will be pulled out of regular classes once a week for about half an hour.  Initially, I thought that this was just another after-school program, but apparently, the instructors worked the regular school hours like any other elementary school teachers.  I wouldn’t object to my son’s attending the program, as I don’t think missing classes for half an hour a week would be a big deal.  However, just in case that he does lag too far behind on a particular subject that he will miss, we would like to find out how far advance we will be notified of the schedule for each week since the schedule fluctuates each time, and if skipping the Orchestra lessons is an option.  This will help us work out a plan with the homeroom teacher ahead of time.  It is comforting to hear that the lesson time will not interfere with any school testing.

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Capital Punishment

 

I believe in capital punishment but only under the following circumstances where heinous crimes are committed such as murders, an attempt to murder, and in cases of rape, assault, torture, mutilation and child molestation that affect the victim’s emotional, physical, or mental health and cripple someone for life.  I believe that death penalty is justifiable only in the worst crimes where it serves as a prevention of the very criminals from walking away to violently harm anyone else again and as a deterrence of any copy cat.

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Thank God!  She is not a Taiwanese.

 

中國時報大老闆蔡衍明, 聯合報系發行人王效蘭- 台灣媒體大亨接二連三說出認同中共獨裁政權的爭議言論

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On this day:  February 28th

 

On February 28, while we mourn the loss of the freedom fighters, we are also facing the ignorance of those who ignore the history.  How many lives have to be sacrificed for the slaughterer to consider it a massacre?  How many people have to be murdered for the murderer to consider it a tragedy?  Human lives are sacred and precious, be it one or a hundred.  Is it not a big deal if there were only 500 people killed?  Recently, Former premier Hau Pei-tsun (郝柏村) argued over the number of deceased freedom fighter in the 228 massacre (http://homepage.usask.ca/~llr130/taiwanlibrary/kerr/kerr.pdf) and stated that the history textbook painted an incorrect picture.  Let’s not argue if his statement was ever close to accurate (According to NY Times, the number of people massacred in the 228 event is roughly 10,000, which is twenty-fold greater than Hau’s   http://select.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F00E10FA3F5A147B93CBAB1788D85F438485F9 ).  I have to ask Hau.  Is it okay to kill you since your life counts only as one?  Is it justifiable to kill 500 people since they counted as a minority?  What were you trying to educate your next generation when your focus was on the number rather than on the cause?  Is killing okay if it is only targeted to a minority group? 

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Over the years, my blog readership has grown steadily.  I do not expect that there will be too many people reading my blog as it is neither interesting nor exciting.  In addition, I have kind of derailed from where I started.  I write more about my view rather than grammar explanation which might not satisfy some of my readers’ need.  Anyway, I am glad that you guys are still with me.  If there is something that you would like me to write about or something that you would like me to write more about, you can always leave me a message.  Though I limit who can leave comments on my blog article, I do not restrict who can leave messages to me.  As long as you are courteous and have a good intention and inasmuch as it is within my ability, your question will be answered.

 

As the number of my subscribers gets closer to 100, I am getting a little bit curious as to who will be the number 100 subscriber.  Maybe I should give that person some incentive to be the number 100 suscriber.  However, I can’t always tell the sequence of when someone becomes a subscriber since I don’t access my blog every day.  What’s more, sometimes, there is more than one subscriber in a day. 

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Minority

 

We seem to be the minority wherever we go. Our kids are the only two kids in their school with heritage tracing back to Taiwan. There are about 1,342 Taiwanese (0.5% of all Asian population in Minnesota compared to Chinese which is 11.4%) in Minnesota according to 2010 Census. We also fall in the minority group for voting a Republican presidential candidate compared to the majority of the Minnesotans since Minnesota has the longest streak, out of all states, of voting a Democrat in the presidential elections.

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Hollowing out Democracy Unwittingly

 

As we celebrate Martin Luther King Jr’s Day, I have something to say.  I seem to always have things to say whenever it is Martin Luther King Jr’s Day. 

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Male Chauvinism

 

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A glimpse of the different teaching styles through my son’s experience

 

Our kids were born to a Chinese-language immersed environment.  Both my husband and I speak Mandarin to our kids.  My husband learned to speak Taiwanese when he was in college.  Though he is a Hakka, he cannot speak the dialect.  I do want our kids to pick up some Taiwanese, so they can communicate with their grandparents.  I would mix Taiwanese and Mandarin when I talked to them occasionally.  It might be hard to get them to the point where they can speak Mandarin fluently let alone Taiwanese.  We can only do as much as we can to help them to understand the language/dialects.  They might never have the use of the language/dialects but that is not my purpose of introducing the language/dialects to them.  It is more about the fun of being exposed to different languages/dialects and learning the different culture as well.  My son also took after school Spanish class for about a year.   

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The important role of an educator

 

It’s been a while that I pick up my pen and write again.  There is something in my mind that I really have to let out.  Teaching is a sacred profession and I can’t say it enough.  I have recently taken on a volunteering position to lead a team of seven students in an after school program.  Even though it is an after school program, I am always looking for ideas on how to provide these kids the learning environment they need to be creative, to generate ideas, to come up with solutions and to feel challenged and interested enough to be in the program.   So, I was really shocked when hearing what my son told me today. 

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Stereotypes. 

We tend to have stereotypes, all kinds of stereotypes, and we all stereotype people to some degree.  For me, I like to think that my son is smarter than my daughter and I tend to only focus on his study since he is in a higher grade level than his sister (3rd grade vs. kindergarten) and since his is a boy.  Maybe it is not a stereotype but more an expectation on boys. 

 

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