A Day with the Harlows

Grace and I never really celebrated Christmas. But it was refreshing to have Jason and Alicia invite us over to help decorate their Christmas tree (which Jason insisted that he paid his left pinky for). To me, Christmas in America is just another opportunity for corporate America to push sales volume (through the roof!). CNN Money estimates:

The holiday shopping season is crucial for retailers, many of which chalk up 50 percent or more of their annual sales and profits in November and December.

Reference: The race for holiday bargains is on


On Black Friday this past November, Hanny and Widodo told the story of them spending two hours in line just to pay for their purchases. And that was around mid-night when the stores decided they’d start the sales early. This whole thing got so heated that Target even started a wake-up call service to make sure people go shop at Target in the wee hours.

So anyway… I just thought this whole Christmas thing got too commercialized in the U.S. that it’s lost whatever the original meaning of the day was. The only thing associated to Christmas/Thanksgiving are sales figures, bargain discounts, food, and football. I am sure Jesus Christ the Savior of guilty souls of this earth will really appreciate that when (and IF) the Judgement Day comes (it seems to be coming every 100 years but never really did… Whoever actually wrote the Bible must be thinking “suckas!” ).

Dang it… I drifted off of the main topic too far again…

The whole “mini event” of Christmas tree decoration was actually interesting. I have never helped decorated a Christmas tree before. Grace couldn’t help because she had to make sure Bryan stayed asleep; he was extremely cranky today at their house. He’s only acted like this maybe a couple of times before. We think he was just too overwhelmed with the new environment, being out of his daily routine and was really tired. Without fail, playing some classical music fixed him right up and put him to snooze mode almost immediately. This in itself deserves its own blog entry…

After having some incredible home-made vegetarian pizza, we watched “Kung-fu Hustle” per Alicia’s request. For some reason, some scenes in that movie are funny everytime I watch it.

Then we chatted about children (adoption, foster homes, childrearing in general), some politics, how drugs/medicine are so fricking expensive in America, and a bunch of other things. One topic Alicia brought up I thought was particularly interesting was the advancement on the research of AIDS. Apparently a group of prostitutes in Kenya seem to be immuned to the AIDS virus according to the PBS special they watched. Looks like a vaccine is imminent.

We promised to get them out to Milpitas for vegetarian dim sum. Yum! Looks like my aspiration of becoming a vegetarian may not be so lonely if we just hang out with them more… In search for a vegetarian dim sum for them, I accidentally found GrubGirl, a pretty cool blog on restaurants and food. Speaking of food, I miss Manhattan… Food selection is quite limited in California compared to the varieties in NYC. That’s something no city can ever take away from New York City…