May 13, 2013
Alex Paul
Do you miss someone right now? Why?
It is currently 1:11 AM. I am sitting on my bed, thinking about who I miss and why I miss him or her. There are, of course, the typical answers: my mom, because she cooks food for me; my dad, because he also cooks food for me; my boyfriend, because he pays other people to cook food for me. But who do I really miss right now? Who do I want to be with more than anyone else in the world right now? My dog. I adore my dog. In fact, I love her so much that I might just be inching my way towards being the crazy dog lady of A-Phi-O, but that’s okay. Know why? Because my dog is awesome, and she’s worth every bit of craziness. She is the sprinkles to my cupcake, the straw to my fountain drink, and the ketchup to my chicken nugget; she’s not necessary, but she just makes everything in my life that much better.
I remember when my boyfriend adopted her in the fall. I was there when he took her home for the first time, and I laid down on the floor with her and hugged her and pet her all night. At first, she was just my boyfriend’s dog, and I was just the girlfriend who was helping the old Husky adjust to apartment life. But then I kept talking to her in a baby voice (the way most weird dog owners do) and spoiling her with Milkbones and French fries when my boyfriend wasn’t looking, and she eventually became our dog. She became the old, fat, fluffy bundle of joy in our lives that demands our undivided attention, and she always gets it.
So why exactly do I miss her? I miss her for the fluffiness of her fur and for the way her fat jiggles when I scratch her back. I miss the way her tail wags and the way she howls and whines when she sees me for the first time in a long time (which, in reality, can be from just a few hours to weeks at a time). I miss the way she whines and scoots closer to me when I stop petting her. I miss the way she dreams in her sleep, barking at all those dream squirrels and eating all that dream bacon. It seems silly, but I really do miss my dog when I’m not with her. She is always able to brighten my day, no matter how gloomy or stressful it is. A day with her is always a day well-spent, even if all we ever do is sleep and eat. Going over to my boyfriend’s apartment and seeing how excited she gets when she sees me – knowing that she’s that happy and excited just to see me, even when I just saw her the day before – that’s why I adore my dog. That’s why I will always love and miss her, because I know without a doubt that she will always love and miss me, too. 

Alex Paul

Do you miss someone right now? Why?

It is currently 1:11 AM. I am sitting on my bed, thinking about who I miss and why I miss him or her. There are, of course, the typical answers: my mom, because she cooks food for me; my dad, because he also cooks food for me; my boyfriend, because he pays other people to cook food for me. But who do I really miss right now? Who do I want to be with more than anyone else in the world right now? My dog. I adore my dog. In fact, I love her so much that I might just be inching my way towards being the crazy dog lady of A-Phi-O, but that’s okay. Know why? Because my dog is awesome, and she’s worth every bit of craziness. She is the sprinkles to my cupcake, the straw to my fountain drink, and the ketchup to my chicken nugget; she’s not necessary, but she just makes everything in my life that much better.

I remember when my boyfriend adopted her in the fall. I was there when he took her home for the first time, and I laid down on the floor with her and hugged her and pet her all night. At first, she was just my boyfriend’s dog, and I was just the girlfriend who was helping the old Husky adjust to apartment life. But then I kept talking to her in a baby voice (the way most weird dog owners do) and spoiling her with Milkbones and French fries when my boyfriend wasn’t looking, and she eventually became our dog. She became the old, fat, fluffy bundle of joy in our lives that demands our undivided attention, and she always gets it.

So why exactly do I miss her? I miss her for the fluffiness of her fur and for the way her fat jiggles when I scratch her back. I miss the way her tail wags and the way she howls and whines when she sees me for the first time in a long time (which, in reality, can be from just a few hours to weeks at a time). I miss the way she whines and scoots closer to me when I stop petting her. I miss the way she dreams in her sleep, barking at all those dream squirrels and eating all that dream bacon. It seems silly, but I really do miss my dog when I’m not with her. She is always able to brighten my day, no matter how gloomy or stressful it is. A day with her is always a day well-spent, even if all we ever do is sleep and eat. Going over to my boyfriend’s apartment and seeing how excited she gets when she sees me – knowing that she’s that happy and excited just to see me, even when I just saw her the day before – that’s why I adore my dog. That’s why I will always love and miss her, because I know without a doubt that she will always love and miss me, too. 

May 13, 2013
Michael Chong
Do you miss someone right now? Why?
Dear Tammy,
Every day I don’t see you grow pains me but I know I had to leave for college and had to hope you would grow up to be an independent well mannered young lady. I miss being able to watch Criminal Minds with you at night and then trying to scare each other as we brushed our teeth. I also miss making fun of you when you were studying for SATs, I miss being able to make fun of you for being left handed, and most of all, and I miss how you were always smiling when you see me. I know we fought when we were young but now as we both enter the adult world, we have gotten closer but that time period was short lived when I had to quickly pack up and leave for UC Davis. Having you as my little sister has honestly been one of the best things that have happened to me in my life. I still remember when you were born I tapped on the thing the hospital put in you and you started to cry and then tried to use my hand to make you stop. I remember when I told you to take mom’s favorite teapot and throw it on the ground and then me telling on you. I sometimes beg dad to let me see videos of us younger in Alabama playing in our 1-acre backyard and us chasing each other across our play structure. You are so talented in your art drawings I wish I could be half as talented as you so I could at least stop drawing stick figures. Stay strong Tammy, you have a bright future.
 
Big Brother,Michael

Michael Chong

Do you miss someone right now? Why?

Dear Tammy,

Every day I don’t see you grow pains me but I know I had to leave for college and had to hope you would grow up to be an independent well mannered young lady. I miss being able to watch Criminal Minds with you at night and then trying to scare each other as we brushed our teeth. I also miss making fun of you when you were studying for SATs, I miss being able to make fun of you for being left handed, and most of all, and I miss how you were always smiling when you see me. I know we fought when we were young but now as we both enter the adult world, we have gotten closer but that time period was short lived when I had to quickly pack up and leave for UC Davis. Having you as my little sister has honestly been one of the best things that have happened to me in my life. I still remember when you were born I tapped on the thing the hospital put in you and you started to cry and then tried to use my hand to make you stop. I remember when I told you to take mom’s favorite teapot and throw it on the ground and then me telling on you. I sometimes beg dad to let me see videos of us younger in Alabama playing in our 1-acre backyard and us chasing each other across our play structure. You are so talented in your art drawings I wish I could be half as talented as you so I could at least stop drawing stick figures. Stay strong Tammy, you have a bright future.
 
Big Brother,
Michael

May 6, 2013
Regina Mayta
Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned.
When I was younger, I never really appreciated the little things. One important life lesson I have now learned is to always value each day and to not have your life go by too fast. I know it’s very trite to say that you need to “stop and smell the roses,” but until this year I never realized how true that statement is. As each year goes by, it seems like the years go by faster and faster. In order to be truly happy, people need to take time and appreciate what they have and not dwell on what they need to fix in their life. Life is way too short to worry and be unhappy. People really need to learn to live in the moment.
For example, around this time of the year in the past, I was just counting down the days until summer vacation would begin. Nowadays, I don’t do that at all. I’m doing my best to get the best college experience I can have because I know I can never experience freshman year again. I regret not living in the moment in the past because I now know I can never experience those things again. It’s kind of surreal when I realize I can never go back and experience high school again. All I have now are memories and I now know that it is important to make memories that you would want to cherish forever. What is even more surreal is that my freshman year of college is almost over. So, instead of counting down the weeks until summer this year, I am living each day to the fullest and trying to make as many great memories as possible in the little time that is left this school year.

Regina Mayta

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned.

When I was younger, I never really appreciated the little things. One important life lesson I have now learned is to always value each day and to not have your life go by too fast. I know it’s very trite to say that you need to “stop and smell the roses,” but until this year I never realized how true that statement is. As each year goes by, it seems like the years go by faster and faster. In order to be truly happy, people need to take time and appreciate what they have and not dwell on what they need to fix in their life. Life is way too short to worry and be unhappy. People really need to learn to live in the moment.

For example, around this time of the year in the past, I was just counting down the days until summer vacation would begin. Nowadays, I don’t do that at all. I’m doing my best to get the best college experience I can have because I know I can never experience freshman year again. I regret not living in the moment in the past because I now know I can never experience those things again. It’s kind of surreal when I realize I can never go back and experience high school again. All I have now are memories and I now know that it is important to make memories that you would want to cherish forever. What is even more surreal is that my freshman year of college is almost over. So, instead of counting down the weeks until summer this year, I am living each day to the fullest and trying to make as many great memories as possible in the little time that is left this school year.

May 6, 2013
Surabhi Iyengar
Tell us a valueable lfe lesson you learned. 
On the outside, you see them as smiley, healthy people. Maybe happy even – they’re cracking jokes left and right; they must be “doing good”, right?

Wait until you hear their story.
On the inside, they’re lonely, they’re misunderstood, they can’t afford to even feed themselves – they’re hoping vitamins will keep them alive. They’re breaking, but they are so damn strong they fooled you to begin with. 
Everyone has a story. Some tell, some don’t. But just because someone doesn’t share their story doesn’t mean we’re not their audience. We still respect. 
Respect is interesting…it comes in different forms. Some like it in gestures, some like it in words.  Sometimes there are barriers, and people don’t get along with people, so respect comes in the form of a peaceful distance while acknowledging the fact that the person is indeed going through some difficulty.
Those were the stories I was told this year. I was confused. The girl everyone in the dorm knew – lonely? The guy you’d think has a problem with people, but no, because in reality, he’s just misunderstood.  The girl who offers her dinner to a stranger – starving next year?
And then we hear their stories. What do we do? We can’t change the climax, the plot; we can’t give them a happy ending.
I think the key is to respect. We don’t have to respect when we see them hit the ground, we don’t have to respect when we see the tears slip off their face. 
We respect now.
 

Surabhi Iyengar

Tell us a valueable lfe lesson you learned. 

On the outside, you see them as smiley, healthy people. Maybe happy even – they’re cracking jokes left and right; they must be “doing good”, right?

Wait until you hear their story.

On the inside, they’re lonely, they’re misunderstood, they can’t afford to even feed themselves – they’re hoping vitamins will keep them alive. They’re breaking, but they are so damn strong they fooled you to begin with.

Everyone has a story. Some tell, some don’t. But just because someone doesn’t share their story doesn’t mean we’re not their audience. We still respect.

Respect is interesting…it comes in different forms. Some like it in gestures, some like it in words.  Sometimes there are barriers, and people don’t get along with people, so respect comes in the form of a peaceful distance while acknowledging the fact that the person is indeed going through some difficulty.

Those were the stories I was told this year. I was confused. The girl everyone in the dorm knew – lonely? The guy you’d think has a problem with people, but no, because in reality, he’s just misunderstood.  The girl who offers her dinner to a stranger – starving next year?

And then we hear their stories. What do we do? We can’t change the climax, the plot; we can’t give them a happy ending.

I think the key is to respect. We don’t have to respect when we see them hit the ground, we don’t have to respect when we see the tears slip off their face.

We respect now.

 

May 6, 2013
Abby Snitovsky
Are you seriously happy with where you are in life?
Something I really enjoy is driving other peoples cars. Today I drove Henry Huangs car. It was really exciting for me because he drives a prius. I think they are really cool cars and driving it was really fun. Since I did this today I would say I am happy with where I am in my life right now. Since pledging for APhiO, Jennie Yau has been a constant form of joy in my life. She is one of my sponsors, and I am really lucky to have her because she is such a lovely human being. I have met so many new people that I have grown close to.  I have also grown closer to people I knew before. I really like having so many different people I can turn to for support who are genuinely happy to help me. Before pledging, I felt like I only had one person to tell everything to. My best friend Lily also goes to Davis, so she was one of the few people I had to turn to here. This caused problems between us and our group of friends because I would be really clingy to her. Now I have several different people to cling to, which I am really happy about. I never realized how much I leaned on just that one person. I am also really happy with my line. Everyone is so welcoming and I’m really excited for where our relationships will go. My big and my square are people that I really liked before, so I am really happy to be a part of their line.

Abby Snitovsky

Are you seriously happy with where you are in life?

Something I really enjoy is driving other peoples cars. Today I drove Henry Huangs car. It was really exciting for me because he drives a prius. I think they are really cool cars and driving it was really fun. Since I did this today I would say I am happy with where I am in my life right now. Since pledging for APhiO, Jennie Yau has been a constant form of joy in my life. She is one of my sponsors, and I am really lucky to have her because she is such a lovely human being. I have met so many new people that I have grown close to.  I have also grown closer to people I knew before. I really like having so many different people I can turn to for support who are genuinely happy to help me. Before pledging, I felt like I only had one person to tell everything to. My best friend Lily also goes to Davis, so she was one of the few people I had to turn to here. This caused problems between us and our group of friends because I would be really clingy to her. Now I have several different people to cling to, which I am really happy about. I never realized how much I leaned on just that one person. I am also really happy with my line. Everyone is so welcoming and I’m really excited for where our relationships will go. My big and my square are people that I really liked before, so I am really happy to be a part of their line.

May 6, 2013
Theresa Le
What is your biggest achievement?
I always strive to make my parents happy and proud of me.  At a young age, I thought that I could achieve this by excelling in academics since my parents always emphasized doing well in school.  At that age, I did my best, but I never felt that my parents were proud of me.  My parents never came to those awards ceremonies that they held in elementary and middle school.  They always had work (which is understandable to me now) and the young me was always sad that they were never in the audience clapping for me.  I continued doing well in school and only heard praises from my mom but rarely from my dad.  He wasn’t disappointed, but I guess my achievements were not significant enough for him to be openly proud of me.  It was in high school that this changed.  There was an animation program in my high school that lasted four years.  I entered that program and became really good friends with my teacher.  He always praised me for my works and openly showed that he was proud of having me as a student.  During my third year of high school, he encouraged me to enter an annual, district-wide art contest dedicated to Cesar Chavez.  I entered and won school-wide and later found out that I won district-wide.  I was happy about the achievement, but it was with art.  I thought that my parents would congratulate me like with any other awards I have gotten and things would go on, but this achievement was different.  They actually called out of work to come to the awards ceremony.  Both of them came!  From their looks at the ceremony, I knew that they were proud of me.  I don’t know from what, though.  Was it from winning the prize money? Being the best in the district?  Or maybe just being their daughter and doing my best?  It didn’t matter.  I made my mom extremely happy, and I finally made my dad openly proud of me. 

Theresa Le

What is your biggest achievement?

I always strive to make my parents happy and proud of me.  At a young age, I thought that I could achieve this by excelling in academics since my parents always emphasized doing well in school.  At that age, I did my best, but I never felt that my parents were proud of me.  My parents never came to those awards ceremonies that they held in elementary and middle school.  They always had work (which is understandable to me now) and the young me was always sad that they were never in the audience clapping for me.  I continued doing well in school and only heard praises from my mom but rarely from my dad.  He wasn’t disappointed, but I guess my achievements were not significant enough for him to be openly proud of me.  It was in high school that this changed.  There was an animation program in my high school that lasted four years.  I entered that program and became really good friends with my teacher.  He always praised me for my works and openly showed that he was proud of having me as a student.  During my third year of high school, he encouraged me to enter an annual, district-wide art contest dedicated to Cesar Chavez.  I entered and won school-wide and later found out that I won district-wide.  I was happy about the achievement, but it was with art.  I thought that my parents would congratulate me like with any other awards I have gotten and things would go on, but this achievement was different.  They actually called out of work to come to the awards ceremony.  Both of them came!  From their looks at the ceremony, I knew that they were proud of me.  I don’t know from what, though.  Was it from winning the prize money? Being the best in the district?  Or maybe just being their daughter and doing my best?  It didn’t matter.  I made my mom extremely happy, and I finally made my dad openly proud of me. 

May 6, 2013
Jonathan On
Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned.
Expectations

     The number one expectation for a child in school: to get good grades. I was not an academically privileged child in third grade, so I was always around the 2.3 gpa range. However, my mother tried to promote me to try harder in my studies by offering a reward if I reached a 3.0. At the time, my friends would always brag about the cool toys they received from their parents, including a new laptop, if they reached a 3.5 or above. Ecstatic to show off to my friends, I tried to study (whatever there is to study in 3rd grade) to the best of my ability. At the end of the quarter, I felt accomplished because I managed to pull through and receive all B’s on my report card which added up to a 3.0. Usually having such low gpa, mixed with the generous rewards my friends received, I had high expectations for my reward. However, when I tore off the wrapping, my heart sank. The cheap hot wheels car that can probably be bought in the 25 cent machines in tapioca stores looked like nothing special and it was most definitely not something I could show off to my friends. Crestfallen from expecting a great gift, I pulled a tantrum and acted like a baby. My mother scolded me and said that I should be lucky to even get a new toy. From that point on, I lost faith in humanity and learned my most valuable lesson learned, have no expectations.|

Jonathan On

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned.

Expectations

     The number one expectation for a child in school: to get good grades. I was not an academically privileged child in third grade, so I was always around the 2.3 gpa range. However, my mother tried to promote me to try harder in my studies by offering a reward if I reached a 3.0. At the time, my friends would always brag about the cool toys they received from their parents, including a new laptop, if they reached a 3.5 or above. Ecstatic to show off to my friends, I tried to study (whatever there is to study in 3rd grade) to the best of my ability. At the end of the quarter, I felt accomplished because I managed to pull through and receive all B’s on my report card which added up to a 3.0. Usually having such low gpa, mixed with the generous rewards my friends received, I had high expectations for my reward. However, when I tore off the wrapping, my heart sank. The cheap hot wheels car that can probably be bought in the 25 cent machines in tapioca stores looked like nothing special and it was most definitely not something I could show off to my friends. Crestfallen from expecting a great gift, I pulled a tantrum and acted like a baby. My mother scolded me and said that I should be lucky to even get a new toy. From that point on, I lost faith in humanity and learned my most valuable lesson learned, have no expectations.|

May 1, 2013
Fan Guo
Are you seriously happy with where you are in life?
If life were to just pause at this one moment or if this time period just keeps cycling on, then yes, I would say that I am very happy with where I am in life. I’ve got my family, my friends, a roof over my head, food in the fridge, and a laptop in front of me. I am perfectly content. But life goes on; it does not stop for anyone. And where I am at right now? I am not going anywhere. I have no idea what I would be doing after college, or how I am going to take care of my parents, or how I am going to pay back all the student loans that college has brought upon me. I guess all that worrying is for the future. And future me is going to hate present me for not planning ahead. But I like living in the present. It does not take a lot for me to be happy. All I need is ice cream and my laptop and I will probably be content for the rest of my life. I mean yeah, I would love to travel the world and build a career and live luxuriously but to be honest, I feel like all of that is just extra stuff. I mean, less is more right? Wanting a lot in life is just making it harder to have a happier life. Keep your expectations low and whatever you get extra would just be a bonus. 
 

Fan Guo

Are you seriously happy with where you are in life?

If life were to just pause at this one moment or if this time period just keeps cycling on, then yes, I would say that I am very happy with where I am in life. I’ve got my family, my friends, a roof over my head, food in the fridge, and a laptop in front of me. I am perfectly content. But life goes on; it does not stop for anyone. And where I am at right now? I am not going anywhere. I have no idea what I would be doing after college, or how I am going to take care of my parents, or how I am going to pay back all the student loans that college has brought upon me. I guess all that worrying is for the future. And future me is going to hate present me for not planning ahead. But I like living in the present. It does not take a lot for me to be happy. All I need is ice cream and my laptop and I will probably be content for the rest of my life. I mean yeah, I would love to travel the world and build a career and live luxuriously but to be honest, I feel like all of that is just extra stuff. I mean, less is more right? Wanting a lot in life is just making it harder to have a happier life. Keep your expectations low and whatever you get extra would just be a bonus.

 

May 1, 2013
Katrina Avena
Would you rather be hurt by the one you trust the most or the one you love the most?
Love: To have an intense feeling of deep affection.Trust: To believe in reliability in someone or something.
The person that was patient enough to keep going gave so much effort, trust, and love to you. You toss it. You forget about it. You don’t listen. You cheat. How could you? You blame her. You blame others. Don’t you see that it was your fault? What happened?  She had dreams and a passion that she put aside all for you. Then you go around saying cruel things. How could you? She understands she’s also someone to blame. However, she should have left sooner. But how could she? When she ignored everyone for you, because that was what you wanted. You’re all she knew. Leaving meant starting all over again but with more caution. Who to trust? Who to love? Who to confide to? Who to turn to? Who knows? The person you love the most is the person you trust the most. Who else could it be? In all essence, isn’t love and trust related?
She trusted the man she loved the most. He hurt her. He broke her. What was supposed to happen now?
She stood on her own two feet and became independent. She learned her lesson. If she had to get hurt again, it would be okay, because the person she loves is the person she trusts the most.

Katrina Avena

Would you rather be hurt by the one you trust the most or the one you love the most?

Love: To have an intense feeling of deep affection.
Trust: To believe in reliability in someone or something.

The person that was patient enough to keep going gave so much effort, trust, and love to you. You toss it. You forget about it. You don’t listen. You cheat. How could you? You blame her. You blame others. Don’t you see that it was your fault? What happened?  She had dreams and a passion that she put aside all for you. Then you go around saying cruel things. How could you? She understands she’s also someone to blame. However, she should have left sooner. But how could she? When she ignored everyone for you, because that was what you wanted. You’re all she knew. Leaving meant starting all over again but with more caution. Who to trust? Who to love? Who to confide to? Who to turn to? Who knows? The person you love the most is the person you trust the most. Who else could it be? In all essence, isn’t love and trust related?

She trusted the man she loved the most. He hurt her. He broke her. What was supposed to happen now?

She stood on her own two feet and became independent. She learned her lesson. If she had to get hurt again, it would be okay, because the person she loves is the person she trusts the most.

May 1, 2013
Stanley Liang

What makes your heart flutter and brings a big cheesy smile to your face?Since I’ve never really been in love before, the only one thing comes to mind when thinking about my heart fluttering would be family.  I feel like I’ve always been pretty selfish person.  When I was young, I would hog the computer from my brother.  I would even steal all of the good flavored candies and leave him with the rest.  I would also have many arguments with my mom because she sent me to summer school.  You know the typical self-centered brat-like things.  But now, I feel like nothing would make my heart flutter more than seeing my family living happily together.

On the contrast, many things bring a cheesy smile to my face.  I love hanging out with funny people.  Nothing feels better than laughing with your mouth open but making absolutely no sound!  I also enjoy reading funny texts.  My friends and I would come up with the funniest texts, whip up some creative emoticon wombo combos, and make some really unattractive facial expressions.  It always makes me laugh in class, when there’s a super dry professor lecturing.  I also enjoy going through some of my old photos and laughing at the dumb things I do.  And boy I do some stupid things to entertain myself.  I also enjoy reminiscing the past.  Just taking a moment to think about how we were before and how we are now makes me feel all bubbly on the inside.  Life is too short to be miserable, if you’re not happy with something, change it!

Stanley Liang

What makes your heart flutter and brings a big cheesy smile to your face?

Since I’ve never really been in love before, the only one thing comes to mind when thinking about my heart fluttering would be family.  I feel like I’ve always been pretty selfish person.  When I was young, I would hog the computer from my brother.  I would even steal all of the good flavored candies and leave him with the rest.  I would also have many arguments with my mom because she sent me to summer school.  You know the typical self-centered brat-like things.  But now, I feel like nothing would make my heart flutter more than seeing my family living happily together.
On the contrast, many things bring a cheesy smile to my face.  I love hanging out with funny people.  Nothing feels better than laughing with your mouth open but making absolutely no sound!  I also enjoy reading funny texts.  My friends and I would come up with the funniest texts, whip up some creative emoticon wombo combos, and make some really unattractive facial expressions.  It always makes me laugh in class, when there’s a super dry professor lecturing.  I also enjoy going through some of my old photos and laughing at the dumb things I do.  And boy I do some stupid things to entertain myself.  I also enjoy reminiscing the past.  Just taking a moment to think about how we were before and how we are now makes me feel all bubbly on the inside.  Life is too short to be miserable, if you’re not happy with something, change it!

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