Monday, January 28, 2008

Would you like to buy some documents ?

Aloha,

So I live in San Jose, and sometimes I do my shopping on Story Road near the Dollar Store, Ritmo Latino and Tropicana. (By the way, that dollar store is a rip off and nasty) Big parking lot in the shopping area. It's like a little Hispanic shopping mall. Good food, cute clothes. Unfortunately you have to deal with the men that loiter around the stores and in the parking lot.

But each time I go there these men approach me and keep asking me "Mica ? Seguros ? Documentos ? Papeles ? As I am pulling into the parking lot this guy starts coming towards my car. I pretend I don't speak Spanish.

I get into the mall area and another guy comes towards me and asks me if I want to buy "seguros" or "papeles". I'm thinking why the hell are these dudes asking me about insurance ? Why are they asking me for papers ? Ooh, that's right, they're trying to buy my documents off me and sell them to someone else. So I asked the guy in Spanish "I'm sorry about my Spanish skills, but you want to buy MY documents ? " The guy looked at me sheepishly, smiled, told me to forget about it and walk away. I asked him to please explain this to me slowly, but he didn't want to.

So I go home and ask my roommate about it. Turns out they were trying to sell ME false documents. "Seguro" also means "social security". So they wanted to sell me a fake social, a fake license, who knows what else. LOL, when they realized that I don't speak Spanish like them they backed off. I am not even Hispanic, not even a drop but I guess I can sure blend in. During that one trip I was approached three times.

Now I am really curious as to how much these fakes go for.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Do you have unclaimed money waiting for you ?

Hello My Lovelies,

Do you have unclaimed money waiting for you to claim it ? To find out, you should contact the Controller's office in your state. For all of you that live in CA like I do, here is the link.

http://scoweb.sco.ca.gov/UCP/

Just type in your name and city and see what comes up. I don't have any unclaimed money, but my dad and brother did.

On another note I went to the gym a couple of days ago. While I was there some guy was just sitting on the machinery and picking his nose. I looked at him and he looked right back at me with his finger UP his nose. Not only was it all up in his nostril, but he was moving his finger around like he was digging for gold. I was disgusted. I looked away and shook my head. Thank GOD that I normally don't use the equipment that he used that day.

See, I know many people pick their noses. But usually it's confined to when they are in their cars and you happen to be next to them at the stoplight. Or if some is picking their nose and they see you, they immediately retract the finger because they know that it is NASTY, not to mention socially unacceptable. Not the dude at my gym. Some people are just a real piece of work.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Freedom Writers

Hello All,

I just finished watching the movie Freedom Writers. I have to say that it is my new favorite movie. It is about a high school English teacher that teaches at risk teens at a high school in Long Beach. These kids were from a disadvantaged background and were integrated into the new school. The school administration did not know how to handle these disadvantaged children. They wouldn't give them textbooks out of fear of students destroying them on a tight budget. They also kept claiming that integrating the students from disadvantaged backgrounds was a big mistake. They felt it was a big mistake integrating poor Blacks, Mexicans and Asians with the more affluent White wealthier kids.

The teacher teaches them about racial intolerance after she caught one of the students drawing a stereotypical picture of a black man. She starts off by teaching them about the holocaust after she finds out that they don't even know what the Holocaust is. These kids were shot at, had friends killed from gang violence and still did not know what the Holocaust was about. She started them out by having them read the Diary of Anne Frank. The school would not provide the books to the students because they felt they would just destroy the books. Instead the teacher had to buy the books with her own money.

The students were so moved that they wrote to Miep Gies, the woman who hid Anne Frank. They raised enough money to fly Miep Gies out to their school and she came out and visited. Unfortunately another actress played Miep in the film.

The teacher also took these children to the Mariott where they had dinner with Holocaust survivors. The Holocaust survivors in the film were real survivors and were the same survivors that met with the real Freedom Writers.

The movie was very uplifting and real. The movie is pretty close to the real story.

I love Miep Gies. She is almost 100 years old and still living. I would do anything to meet her. I watched her documentary and she is a lovely woman. In addition to the Franks, she hid her dentist. In the documentary of Anne Frank, her dentist's son met her for the first time in the documentary. I cried when they met.

I love the Diary of Anne Frank. I read it first in middle school, about the same time as the Freedom Writers read the diary. I have always wanted to go to Amsterdam. It is my dream to visit, maybe live there.

When I was in Europe a couple of years ago I visited Mauthausen. It was there that I bought a copy of Anne Frank's diary and read it on the train back to my aunt's apartment. I felt that it was appropriate for me to buy it there, so that the store there could profit a little from it. On the train, I read the book again and couldn't put it down. I first read it as a 14 year old. About 11 years later, it was like I was reading a new book. I saw things differently, and even identified with Anne a little more.

Anyway, that is all for now. My thoughts are scattered.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Hello All,

Well, I am back in school again. I took two classes last quarter and got As in both. I hope that I will do well this semester. I love my classes and my teachers. One of my teachers is a judge and heads up the whole Paralegal department. He teaches many courses and I try to take as many as I can with him. Right now I am taking Partnerships and Corporations. He really does a good job at explaining everything. This guy is a dictator in the classroom, but he is a good guy to have on your side. He gives legal advice to his students.

I am also taking Intellectual Property Litigation and so far I like what I am reading. That is the field where people can make a lot of money. I am not very technical, but we'll see how it goes. The teacher seems nice.

I am still volunteering for the Community Legal Services organization and enjoying it. I do some translation and do whatever the attorneys throw at me.

Other than work, school and volunteerting, I don't do much else.

I will write more later. My brain is a little scattered.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

A Sad Time In J Land, I am Sad................

http://journals.aol.com/demandnlilchit/Ishavedmylegsforthis

The above link is a link to Kim's journal. I think she has had the journal for about 4 years. She was diagnosed with Stage II Breast Cancer in July 2006.

I stumbled on her journal one day and loved reading her journal. She had a wonderful outlook on life and talked about her cancer treatments openly. If you scroll down the page you can see a picture of her and her husband. She also wrote about him a lot and how much of a good husband he was. I wrote an entry about her a while back and dedicated to her, and she found out because she started reading my journal and leaving me comments every once in a while. I lost touch with her after a little bit, but I still always thought about her and would read her entries.

She passed away on December 26, 2007. I am glad that her family at least got one last Christmas with her. I took a break reading journals for a while and when I came back to hers yesterday, I was heartbroken to find out that she passed away. I hope that the journal will continue to stay posted for a while. I have never met her, but I think about her a lot. I also feel really sad for her husband. She wrote about him a lot and he is a good man.

She fought so hard during her treatments. And so many things happened to her. She initially had breast cancer and it spread from one breast to another, and then to her lungs, over time. She had to go through so much and she fought with a warrior spirit. There were alslo times throughout her journal entries where things were looking brighter and I really really thought that she would beat the cancer. I just never really worried about her because I thought that with an attitude like hers, that she would surely beat the disease.

It's so sad. No one deserves to go through that. I have heard a lot of "miracle stories" and know many people that beat cancer. It really can be done. Sometimes it is hard to realize that this disease can kill, and sometimes the best attitude, intentions and faith still won't make it go away. Just because a person was taken by the disease does not mean that they didn't try hard enough or stay positive enough. If that were the case, she would still be here.

My friend's mother was recently diagnosed with cancer, but luckily she is a nurse and they caught it in its early stage. I really pray for her.

This can happen to any one of us. Sure, there are ways to decrease the risk of cancer. But in the end, it can happen to anyone expectedly or unexpectedly. I think it is a nasty game of duck duck goose.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

No One Should Have to Live On The Street

Hello All,

I hope you all enjoyed your New Years. I guess I did. I got sick again. But my roommate did take me out to dinner, which was nice. I am broke right now, so the extra meal was a bonus. I was supposed to go out to downtown Santa Cruz with my friend, but we didn't want to be out when it would be packed and people would be drunk and littering the streets with vomit. So I opted to stay in.

Anyway, I was checking my emails as usual a couple of days ago and one of our AOL Journal  friends, Winivere is in need of our help. She has lost her job seven months ago and hasn't found a new one since. She said that if she doesn't find a new one that she will be forced to live in her car.

She asked us to light a virtual candle for her in a virtual candle light vigil. That is how I found out about her situation. I knew that she was still looking for a new job, I just didn't know that things were looking so bad. You can read about her and her situation in her AOL journal: http://journals.aol.com/winivere2002/TheGlassBox/

I guess a candlelight vigil is a nice gesture. But it isn't going to put food in her cupboards or get her a new job any faster.

I was afraid of losing my job last year. I also have a lot of debt and seriously contemplated living in my car for a few months so that I could get back on track. I have entertained the thought myself, and it is awful. I couldn't actually imagine doing it.

So I am here to ask for help in helping our friend Winiviere. I have her address but don't know if I should post it publicly.

Here is what else can be done:

1.) You can e-mail her for her address: WINivere2002@aol.com

2.) You can e-mail me if you want it to be a surprise for her: Wallstreetsmart@aol.com

If you can't give anything, no problem. Maybe you can say a prayer for her ? If you are in a position and want to, whatever you want to give would be wonderful. Grocery gift cards would be one example.

Anywho, Happy New Year Everyone !!