Give Me Your Name

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Photo Credit: dan from http://www.freedigitalphotos.net

LILY
This word – nay, the name – rolls off the tongue in such a casual way. Split into two syllables, it is at once soft in tone while harsh in the “soft-ness” of it’s consonance. More often than not, documents will return as: “Lilly”, “Lili”, “Lilli”, “Lillian”, etc. instead of “Lily”.
Is it that hard to spell 4 easy letters? L-I-L-Y.

My mom says she chose my name because she loves Lily flowers… specifically, lily-of-the-valley and tiger-lily. She truly loved lily flowers; growing up, we had lilies everywhere! As such, the lily symbolizes innocence, beauty, and purity. While my mom may have hoped I would grow to embody all of these terms, I unfortunately (and to her utter dismay) did not. Evidently lacking in grace, innocence, and soft-spoken manner, I apparently have yet to discover the “heart and soul” of my dear name.

And yet, my name written in Chinese isn’t for the characters for the flower: 莉莉. Instead, my Chinese name is written 立立.
立 = to stand straight
Before I began Chinese school, my mother told me she chose the dichotomy of my English vs Chinese name to be a pun / play on words. At the same time, she does not correct anyone who writes my name as 莉莉 instead of 立立. However, she hoped upon hope, that by naming me 立立, I’d be a much more upstanding citizen (and mostly so I’d stop slouching so much). [sidenote: As I’d find out later in our tumultuous middle school years, my cousins had thought that I was incredibly weird and horrid for slouching all the time. LOL.] As again with my American name, I have yet to live up to her expectations.

But, a name is a name. I am delighted with it as it makes for meeting another individual with my name (and spelled the way I spell it) always a great and exciting activity!

Response to “Daily Prompt: Name That…You!” Do you know the meaning of your name, and why your parents chose it? Do you think it suits you? What about your children’s names?

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#Patriotism in #Murica

“Are you patriotic? What does being patriotic mean to you?”

As an American citizen, this picture represents American patriotism to its n-th degree.

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Arlington

or also just as specifically…The White House

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White House after 17:00

Or even the Capitol Building – which has now been blown up on a ton of movies (even recently…which in and of itself has led to very racist Twitter and Facebook posts against Asians – we’ll save that for another post, possibly)…

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Capitol Building

All these are symbols of our supposed justice, freedom, and equality. They represent the ideals of ‘MURICA, right? Every time a person thumps their chest and barks that phrase out in both a joking (yet almost serious) manner, we are merely expounding our love for our American nation….no?

Is it patriotic, therefore, to discriminate based on race, gender, and/or (political) affiliation? Is it patriotic to disavow those who love whom they love? Is it patriotic to scoff and scorn others of a non-Christian/non-Protest religion? Is it patriotic to segregate our cities into little districts with the hopes of containing specific socio-economic classes, while spreading out in non-freeway-intersected suburbs. Is it patriotic to monitor one’s citizens? Is it patriotic to condemn those who expose a government’s corruption (ie: Edward Snowden)? Is it patriotic to call for “closed borders” while refusing jobs that could be yours? Is it patriotic to pay money to watch a “game” (ie: football, basketball) when that money could have gone towards scientific research or societal advancement (ie: NASA, NSF, NIH, public schools, infrastructure etc.)? Is it patriotic to continue to ruin the environment in your gas excessive vehicles?  Is it patriotic to disallow individuals the use of “soft” drugs while supporting huge pharmaceutical conglomerates that will not sanction some drugs that can have a great societal benefit but due to having the ability to “cure” and thereby decrease revenue, thereby never be made? Is it patriotic to send children to private school? Is it patriotic to decry our institutions and still seek to collect Social Security, pensions, etc.? Is it patriotic to continue funding an ever-expanding military, while still making even more cuts to scientific research and/or societal advancement? Is it patriotic to allow companies to patent and control whole genomes (and simple things, too) in order to increase their revenue in the supposed name of science? 

Spoiler Alert – Frozen Food Safety Monitor for your Freezer

It’s only ~$20 on Amazon. This would have been perfect back last year when our freezer defrosted (twice) because I accidentally over-packed it. We ended up having to throw everything out; however, this would have allowed for us to judge better what could have been saved!

According to the Amazon description: ” In the event of an incident (freezer door not properly closed, power outage or anything affecting your freezer), the 4 liquids will independently melt into lower chambers. Depending on the color of the liquids that have melted, you will know the recommended time you have left to safely consume your frozen foods. 4 liquids for 4 recommendations. In the case of an incident the liquids will melt in the following order: Blue = 14 days to consume your frozen food, Blue and Green = 3 days to consume your frozen food, Blue, Green and Yellow = 1 day to consume your frozen food. All 4 liquids: Blue, Green, Yellow and Red: Discard everything. From the last time you verified the FreezCube.”

Too cool! 🙂 Definitely going on my “Wish List”

US Food Safety

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Place Spoiler Alert into your freezer at home to reveal unsafe increase of temperature leading to food poisoning.

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Dr. JP Courchia,  Endocrinologist 
Spoiler Alert allows a thorough surveillance of the foods in freezers, which support healthy dietetic programs.”

Nicole S., Teacher
“After a long hesitation, I discarded all of my frozen food when my freezer alarm rang. What a waste ! Later, I came across Spoiler Alert in my supermarket, and I don’t hesitate anymore. I now know what to do in case of an incident and the solution is not necessary to throw everything away! Spoiler Alert is an intelligent innovation that I highly recommend to everyone.”

Dr. Maurice Moutot, Nutritionist
“Essential!…

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Lament of Labwork (1 of many to come)

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cuz ALL THE PLATES! (all rights reserved: L Yang)

Labwork finally started up again. Who knew?

After a fulfilling summer down at NC State doing awesome data-mining, social media, and food safety related projects (which I am still doing now, but on the side), I’m now back at VTech starting my thesis research.

What am I doing exactly? I’m not too sure…and here is where the frustration (more with myself, than not) lies. As many graduate students can relate to, the thing about doing a project is that (a) you never know when/if you will succeed or fail; (b) if you haven’t done something in awhile, the confusion of not remembering certain methodologies (added to the thought that you should already know what’s going on) can be disheartening and even tragic. I’m definitely falling into this latter boat, at the moment.

From the outside, my project seems simple enough. Tomatoes. Salmonella. Things growing randomly? What could go wrong?

Besides that…

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And the Winner is Cats.

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(All Rights Reserved: L Yang)

Victory is getting the Bulls-Eye the first time you’ve ever thrown a dart at a Dart Board. Do not fear, fellow minions, your fearless ruler shall allow you to win all the rest of the times now. Now, please don’t forget to bow as you exit.