Sep 25, 2008  •  In Art/Design, Personal, Photography

To Photoshop or Not?

We received the digital proofs from our wedding photographer, Danny Weiss, a few weeks ago. Since then I’ve been honing my Photoshop techniques on these gorgeous photos. A bit of desaturation here, some level adjustments there, and voila! Good post-processing can really help add emotion to a photo, or change the look and feel altogether.

J doesn’t understand why I do this. “I like ‘em au naturelle, baby!” he says.

What do you think? Do you like these photos before or after Photoshop?

Photo A, Before:

J looks exactly like his mother!

Photo A, After:

Photo B, Before:

Me sneaking up on J before he sees me for the first time

Photo B, After:

Photo C, Before:

When J saw this picture, he asked why I never look this happy with him. “Well, here’s photographic proof I do,” I replied.

Photo C, After:

I don’t think Photoshop is a necessary tool, because so many photos are already beautiful without it. In addition, I certainly wouldn’t be retouching all the pictures (Photoshop 1,400 pictures? Sha, and monkeys might fly out of my butt!)…however, I must admit that it’s fun and can be a bit addicting.

If you are a new reader, welcome! Just in case you feel like stalking me, you can see more pictures from the wedding here.

Sep 25, 2008  •  In Food, Personal, Recipes


I’ve been cooking a lot more in the past few months in order to save money.

Many women say that they do not have the time or energy to cook dinner after a hard day at the office, so I guess I’m lucky in the sense that I work for a non-profit and get to leave work at 5pm every day. I usually get home, have a bit of “me” time to relax, then start dinner. By the time the food is ready to be served, J comes home from work and we dig in.


갈비 (galbi, or Korean marinated ribs)

My famous linguini in in white clam sauce

된장찌게 (dwenjangjjigeh, or soy bean stew)

I have the best source for recipes: my mother. I know that everyone says their own mother is the best cook, but my mom really is a great cook. So good that her friends are always asking for recipes. So good that every Thanksgiving, she gets “orders” from various people for her famous turkey.


Beef 오무라이스 (rice omelette). The heart and smiley face are all messed up because J bought such a large bottle of ketchup that I had trouble controlling it. The smiley face looks a bit like Joker (why so serious?)

Digging into the Beef 오무라이스

I have posted pictures of some of my dishes on Facebook, and friends have been asking for recipes.


시금치국 (sigeumchigook, or spinach stew with clams and tofu)

감자탕 (gamjatang, or potato & pork stew)

게살전 (gehsaljun, or Korean style crab meat pancakes)

삼겹살 (samgyupsal, or sliced pork belly)

순두부찌개 (soondoobu jjigae, or silken tofu stew with seafood)

육개장 (yookgaejang, or spicy beef and vegetables soup)

Beef & vegetable curry over rice

돌솥비빔밥 (dolsot bibimbap, or rice cooked over a stone pot, mixed with veggies and beef, a fried egg, all mixed in a spicy pepper sauce)

So the question is: should I start posting some recipes on this blog? Is anyone interested? Perhaps I’ll create a “Recipes” section?

Whatever I decide, I know that I’ll never post the full recipe for my best dish, my famous 갈비찜 (galbijjim, or braised short ribs) – J has forbidden it. He says that only he has the privilege of being able to eat it whenever he pleases. So I guess if you want some, you’ll have to come over for dinner. ;-)

Sep 23, 2008  •  In Personal

NJ Transit Needs to Step Up with More Buses

Dear NJ Transit,

The faltering economy and high gas prices have driven a record number of commuters to the public transportation system. Each week I see the evidence of this as your buses become more and more crowded.

In the past weeks, however, I have become increasingly frustrated as bus ridership has skyrocketed. Buses zoom by my stop filled to capacity. Those of us waiting at the stops are forced to watch and feel powerless.

Take this morning, for instance. I walked back and forth between three stops over a period of 40 minutes. Over 20 buses passed at this time, each full and thus refusing to stop. The crowds reached 20-30 people per stop, growing increasingly agitated and some even shouting curses at the passing buses. In the end, I was forced to cough up an additional $2.50 (rendering my monthly pass useless) for a gypsy bus, which aren’t always licensed or safe…sometimes even illegal.

I realize that the price of diesel fuel has increased in the past year. However, the increased number of riders and the increased budget must offset that cost.

So please, PLEASE add more buses to the northern NJ/Hudson county lines.

Thank you,

A Disgruntled NJ Transit Rider

Sep 21, 2008  •  In Apple, Funny, Geek

Yet Another Thing to Love About the Mac

As soon as I switched over to the Mac years back, I bought a big-ass book on Mac OS X and trained myself on the ways of the force…err, Apple.

This book taught me many tricks that continue to amaze my friends, even to this day. However, I had never known about this Mac screen trick!

Do as the video tells you and try this on some Macs at the Apple store!


Sep 21, 2008  •  In Geek, Personal, Science

Japanese Goblin Shark

I am deathly afraid of most fish (and birds…shudder) but have always had a fascination with sharks. Swimming with sharks, or at least being shoved into a shark cage, is on my list of things to do before I die.

Here is a video of the Japanese goblin shark, once thought to be prehistoric and extinct, that was discovered last year. Check out the scary alien-esque jaw action!