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September 4, 2007

好婆

Filed under: 往事如风 — Fei @ 11:33 pm

奶奶在苏州话里叫作“har-pu”。我不会说苏州话,就总是叫她“好婆”。她很小巧,很难想像她一人带大了七个儿女。她也很近视,我小的时候她还能配一副眼镜,看看电视。等到我大了一点,她连眼镜也不能配了,那时她就整天捧着一个收音机,贴着耳朵,听苏州评弹。

好婆以前住在怡园的后门,离观前街很近。那时每次回去都和她住在一起。由于年龄太小,很多事情都记不真切了。只记得好婆的卧室是临街的,从窗口可以看见室内的摆设——那些摆设从爷爷去世后就没有变过了。好婆和另一户人家共用一间大堂。我依稀记得那户人家在空闲时间给水果刀柄画图案。有一种铁水果刀两侧是贴了两块塑料,塑料内侧有一些简单的图案。那户人家就画那些图案挣些外快。画一个刀柄可以挣两分钱。这种第二职业在当时那个年代还是很少见的。好婆家在巷口,紧靠人民路。往巷子里再走几步路有一口井,井上有一个盖。那时喝的水都是从那井里打出来的。打出的水很凉,经常被我们用来浸西瓜。水浸过的西瓜真好吃。。。

也许是因为去的次数太多了,也就习以为常了。有一次爸爸和我去苏州就没有通知任何人(那时没有电话,联系很不方便)。我们像往常一样到了好婆的家,透过窗户向屋里看。爸爸突然觉得奇怪,怎么屋里的摆设不一样了呢?当时就觉得不对劲。幸好那邻居还在,才知道好婆一个月前把那屋子卖了,和七niangniang一起住了。我们就往七niangniang家走去。。。那段路可真长。。。好婆之后就一直住在七niangniang家了。

好婆离开过苏州几次,我刚出生时她就到扬州来带我。那时对她还是挺难的,讲话她听不懂,又水土不服。过了几个星期她就回去了。我第一次去北京的时候她也正好住在我大niangniang家。还去了附近一个公园照了相。

记得好婆八十大寿的时候大家又一次聚在苏州。我也只记得那时在七niangniang家吃寿宴时大人坐一桌,我们几个小孩坐一个小桌子。。。七niangniang家临时拼了几张床板,给我们睡。。。

好婆的身体一直挺好的,直到我上高一的时候。那时候物价飞涨,通货膨胀达到20%。。。七niangniang就买了很多米,屯在家里。可苏州多雨,不久后有些米就上霉了。。。七niangniang和好婆舍不得扔。。以为洗净了就没事了。。。结果两人都得了重病。。。七niangniang还年轻。。。住了很长的医院,挺过来了。。。可好婆年纪太大。。。不能用药。。。病就越来越重了。。。真不知道好婆那段日子是怎么过的,整天躺在七niangniang家的床上。。。住医院已经没有用了。。。一定很疼。。。那时候大家都知道好婆不行了。。。期间我还去了苏州一趟,说看好婆最后一面。。。那时整个路上的气氛都很悲伤。。。看到好婆后她就拉着我的手,叫我不要伤心。。。我就说好婆放心,病一定会好的。。。好婆还硬要塞给我一些钱。。。旁边大人都叫我收下。。。我就收下了。。。回扬州后还有人问我,好婆有没有什么祖传的宝物给我。。。我很有些不以为然。。。我们家一向清贫。。宝物又有什么用呢?。。。那次回扬州后不久好婆就去世了。。。也许是因为时间拖得太久。。有些麻木了。。只觉得内心空荡荡的。。也不是很悲伤。。。立刻又赶回苏州去参加好婆的葬礼。。全家都回来了。。一个人都没有少。。。大家都很忙碌。。又有很多传统的礼数要做到。。我也不甚明白。。。我就负责端着好婆的遗像,从七niangniang家一直到灵堂。。看好婆最后一眼。。。那时大大刚从桂林赶来。。。主持了葬礼。。。我们就绕着好婆走了一圈。。我也没哭。。。然后就到后面看着工人把好婆推进火化炉。。旁边几位niangniang哭的是震天响。。。好像不响就不孝顺似的。。。我的脑子空空的,什么也没有想。。。但看到那工人把好婆推进炉子的一瞬间突然发觉自己异常悲伤。。忍不住也哭了起来。。。出来后大家都看着烟囱。。。说当烟囱冒白烟的时候好婆就火化了。。。

回到扬州后。。父母就给其他人散喜糖。。按照苏州的风俗。。。高寿去世是件喜事。。是要庆贺的。。。可我觉得不值。。。这件事完全可以避免的。。但却发生了。。真是天有不测风云呀。。。那时我胳膊上戴着个箍。。。说是家里死人了都得戴的。。小时候太婆婆去世时我戴了一个红箍。。。这次我戴着一个黑箍加一小片红布。。。我打算一直戴着。。。但过了七天后家里人说过年不吉利。。就取下来了。。。但我爸爸一直戴了四十九天。。。直到春节后。。。

好婆和我爷爷葬在同一个墓里。。就顺便把墓翻修了一下。。。弄了个水泥墓。。。墓碑也重刻了一个。。。我的名字也出现在墓碑上了。。。以后我每次回苏州上坟就给爷爷和好婆同时上了。。。

September 3, 2007

Communiversity

Filed under: 往事如风 — Fei @ 1:38 am

前几天和几位朋友去了Millbrae的一个集市,整个一条街都是一个一个的小摊位。这让我想起以前在Princeton摆摊位的事。

In every April at Princeton, the university and the community co-organize a street fair, called, communiversity. The community sets up lots of tents in the Nassau street, while the university puts tables in front of the Nassau hall, used by the student organizations. For the first time I went to the event, I had a lot of fun… lots of people… it was sooo rare to see that many people in such a quite town as Princeton. Some people were selling snacks, some were selling little artifacts, and some did live performances… When I went to the event for the second time, however, I found something strange…. there was no single graduate organization table in the event… I suddenly had an idea.. that I could set up a table here to advertise Chinese culture… and at the same time to make some money… so… I started to plan for the next year… 

一年后我很早就和international center的主任打好招呼,说我也要摆个摊位。同时回国的时候采购了不少小玩意儿。和那个undergrad chair以ACSS的名义注册了一个摊位。。。这也算是我以公家的名义做了一点私事。然后就天天盼那天的到来。可communiveristy的前几天我收到一封信,说那天可能下雨,活动可能取消,要当天早上七点等最后通知。。。我的心顿时凉了。。。但还抱着一丝希望,盼着那天不要下雨。。。可事实是,早上果然收到通知说活动取消。。。那可是我plan了一年的活动呀。。。失望的心情就不用说了。可我看看窗外,只有毛毛细雨。等到九点钟的时候连细雨都停了。。。真恨美国的天气预报,一点都不准。。。后来听说别的社团更惨。。CSA买了很多dumpling,原来准备大赚一笔,最后只好自己一个一个的吃掉。。。

So another year went by. Having last year’s experience, I did all the preparations well in advance. This time, I applied a table under the name of CIGS… Because I was quite annoyed that the graduate students were excluded from the event at all, I complained it to the GSG…

我当时complain了两件事。一件是那时研究生院第一次学本科生,出了一本facebook,里面有每个新生的大头照。还把所有人按照国籍分类。。。可里面把香港、台湾都分列一项。我当时建议分类改成country and region。。。第二件事就是这communiversity的事了。。。谁知道这第一件事引起了很大的争议,台湾不用说了,一些人把Tibet都抬出来,说是什么occupied territory,于是又是一番争吵(我说话有时很sarcastic的)。。。而第二件事竟然没人提及。。。一年后第二本facebook出来之后,我发现更糟,香港并到中国里了,但台湾还是单列。于是又complain了一把。。。GSG没人理睬。当我把这件事report到ACSS board时,发现也没人理睬。。。只好作罢。。。有些事大家都不care,但还是要说的。。。这是题外话了。。。

I also wrote an email to the university chair of the communiversity, questioning why he did not inform the graduate student clubs… and obviously, it worked… soon after my email, I received a notice asking for participating… and it also postponed the application deadline for graduate clubs for two weeks… at that time, I hoped that through this effort, the graduate clubs would be informed in every year’s communiversity… don’t know what the situation looks like today…

那天幸好是个晴天,我摆了两大桌的东西,有剪纸、丝巾、漆器、折扇。。。还穿上了从中国买的唐装。。。很有点小贩的派头。。。感谢那天有几位朋友帮我看着摊子,其中有一人还挺着个大肚子,这让我有机会转了转其他的摊位。。。。一天下来,发现剪纸卖了不少,但其他东西都没有怎么动。。。原来美国人还是喜欢剪纸呀。。。还是我其他东西的标价太高了?

This, is some kind of experience in my boring everyday life.. in retrospect, it was a lot of fun… I just don’t know when I will have another chance to get a table or tent to sell stuff in the street le…

September 2, 2007

爷爷

Filed under: 往事如风 — Fei @ 12:09 am

爷爷在苏州话里叫作”a-diaor”,可我却没有这个福气来喊一声“爷爷”。爷爷早在我出生之前就已过世了。他在我的印象中只是苏州郊外的一个小土堆。小时候我每年都要去苏州几次,而每年必去的地方就是给爷爷上坟了。那时候交通还很不发达,从市内到坟山要坐很久的公共汽车。路很窄,车也开得很慢。到站后,爸爸就拉着我的手往山上走。那时候要经过一小片树林,树都很高,阴森森的,很吓人。几年之后,树林都不见了,变成了一片竹林,还是很高,可觉得很有生气。等到上次再去时,坐着哥哥的车,全是高速公路,一下子就到了坟山,竹林也不见了,都成了墓地。剩下的一角也成了加工石碑的地盘。不过那都是后话。爷爷的墓地很难找,有时我们要分几路,从右走到左,一个一个的看。墓是在一棵小树的旁边,地是土的,墓是砖头垒成的,墓碑是一块花岗岩。父亲和我就摆上一些供品,偷偷烧几根香(山上是禁止点火的)。然后就鞠三个躬,有时还叩几个头。临走时清洁一下墓,把墓上和周围的枯枝落叶捡走,就下山了。如果夏天去的话蚊子会很多。下山时我的头上、胳膊上、腿上都是一个个的红包。我们于是又回到那个汽车站,去木渎转车去林岩山了。

爷爷在我的心中却又远远不止那个小土堆。我对他的了解也就是一些很老的照片和他留下的书籍了。爷爷很瘦,和我差不多。难怪我的niangniang们都说我长得很像爷爷。爷爷一生爱书如命,传说家里以前有几十箱的书籍,各种书籍都有。爷爷去世后,家里也没有什么东西,就把那些书籍分给他的七个儿女。我爸爸那时喜欢英语和古文,就把所有的英语书和一部分线装书给了他。说来惭愧,那些英语书我到现在还没有读过,古文书也仅仅翻了几翻。书页空白到处可见爷爷的点评。字迹无论英文还是中文都很清秀,更加让我惭愧了。由于我喜欢科幻小说,唯一认真读过的书是一本民国三十六年出版的《陆沉》。讲的是一个现代若亚方舟的故事。难以想像我竟然也读了一本繁体竖版的书。因为和爷爷没有接触,他就越发显得神秘。爷爷分书的事让我想到《射雕英雄传》里的中神通王重阳。王重阳一人武功盖世、独步江湖,但他的七个弟子却没人能敌过其他四位高手,他就创了天罡北斗阵,每个人独当一面,而七人联手就能重现王重阳的辉煌。。。

August 30, 2007

往事如风

Filed under: 往事如风 — Fei @ 10:10 pm

生活就如人迎面微风,即使人原地不动,时间却也象清风拂过面颊,带动衣衫,无声无息地远去,寻不了,觅不着了。而人却只能向前看,再向前看,连回头瞟一眼自己往事的机会都没有。只能睁大眼睛,专著当前,希望能够在微风扫过眼角的那一刻,收集一个又一个动人的瞬间,珍藏于心中、于脑海。

我,并不是一个记性好的人。过去发生的事都已模糊,棱角已不清晰,只留下一些影像。仿佛在看海市蜃楼,飘飘然,可望而不可及。可在内心深处我知道,我只是选择了不去回忆。过去发生的一切都深深的刻在我大脑的皱褶中,等待着一个机缘,重新被我唤起。

几天前saying发给我的那个link竟然勾起了我对往事的回忆,儿时的乐事、傻事又一幕一幕的展现在我的面前。很多事也只有我知道,我不说,没人会发觉它们的存在。可我又非常害怕自己忘却那些事,那它们就真的寻不了、觅不着了。我突然有一点冲动,得赶紧记录下那些陈年旧事。

这,便是“往事如风”的由来。

Disclaimer: The articles in this series may only be called “drafts”. They may be modified repeatedly. New materials may be remembered days, months or even years after the initial draft is finished. The drafts may only reflect my thoughts at the time of writing. It cannot be assumed that I possess the same thoughts at other times. As a matter of fact, I change my way of thinking quite frequently. The rules for this series are as follows:

1. Current events will not be recorded.
2. Issues affecting my current means of living will not be mentioned.
2. No specific names will be mentioned.
3. The drafts are totally biased. In fact, it is only my point of view.
4. The stories are solely for the purpose of recording the past. They may not be carefully crafted.
5. By no means the articles in this series may be copied or forwarded without prior permission.

August 28, 2007

Princeton Research

Filed under: 往事如风 — Fei @ 12:11 am

At a second thought… I have to say something fair for me… I did write a lot of things in the past years… How could a Ph.D. graduate without a paper? And actually I really like my papers… out of the four papers I wrote… I like three of them… and the other paper is really junk… I wouldn’t publish it except that my boss pushed me really hard… considering double counting… I have eight papers in total for my five years at Princeton… not really exciting.. but not bad either… and my last paper’s going to be published this Nov… then I will be finally done with my boss…

And…. did I mention I didn’t do much research… just enjoyed my life at Princeton all those five years? that’s actually the most exciting thing…. but my boss will be really mad at me if he hears it… still… I published several high-quality papers… at least I’m happy with them myself…

The first paper was a ground breaking one… thanks to my boss to select such a good topic… I was the one of the first few working on custom instruction synthesis for embedded processors… and it is a really very hot topic now… the good news is… all the papers later on have to cite my paper…. haha… now it has been cited a lot of times already… I just reviewed a paper for ASPDAC… cited my papers (happy)… but the their paper was poorly written… have to be sorry la… will review two more papers from VLSI design… haven’t read the papers though… but they both cited my paper… feel happy again already…

However, only my first paper was cited "reasonable" times… the rest of my papers were poorly cited… I just feel that my research was soooo advanced that no other group is working in the same area…. maybe I still need to wait for a few years before I can see some group working on similar things… I’m quite optimistic on that… my latter research was based on my first project… since all other groups are now still focusing on my first project… which I did six years ago… when they exhaust all the little things on custom instruction synthesis alone… they will sure move to custom instruction and coprocessor and MPSoC synthesis… that’s the direction… isn’t it?

Well… I have to praise my boss… he was soo good at technology direction… and did research far before other groups… and especially the way he modified my papers.. //grin… he made comments on my hard-copy drafts only on my first paper… at that time, his red comments almost filled all the blank spaces of the paper… and I had to incorporate all the changes to the latex files myself….:( then he would give me another round of comments… well… that was the only time I needed to do that… since my second paper… my boss just asked for my latex files and modified directly…. and that made my life really easy… but it made me wonder whether he thought my writing was really Bu4 Ke3 Jiu4 Yao4 le…

The same thing is true for my dissertation!!! haha… I didn’t even take a serious look after my boss’s modifications… still… frankly… I spent a lot of time and effort to make my dissertation perfect… it was really MY work… it was MY research at Princeton… and I had to be responsible for my self… I wrote three pages of acknowledgment alone… coz I have soooo many people to thank for…. but even now… when I open my dissertation… I can still find something imperfect…. which make me pretty regret sometimes…

However, it did not always make me happy… I felt quite disappointed about my bosses for the book chapter I wrote based on my research… I finished it on Nov. 2005… just a month after my defense… and my bosses did not even look at it till the Feb. 2007… more than ONE year later!!! At that time… the editors were really mad at us…. damn… At that time my account at Princeton was deleted, and they could not find my original drafts… damn again… after finally the OIT people restored my files… my bosses did not even pay any serious edits and finished it in two days! What made me really disappoint is that they did not even send me a copy after the book was published… it’s $129… will cost me a fortune to get my book…. 🙁

Now, my Princeton research has concluded… and my new research is about to begin… after two years of adjusting.. and wondering… it is time for me to do something interesting… and innovating… I’m planning to write a paper on my project at Tensilica… and exploring what to do for the next major release… thank god… I finally can think about something interesting… I’m really tired of the slow pace of the company… and the tedious repeated work without any result… btw… did I tell you my current job is closely related to my research at Princeton! that’s a plus!

fingers crossed… for the future…

August 14, 2007

流星雨

Filed under: 往事如风 — Fei @ 11:11 pm

一年一度的仙女座流星雨又来了,这次正好是周末,又是新月。真是观看流星的好时光。。。于是就和一对couple朋友开车进山,想第一次看一看流星是啥样。

其实之前我也算看到过一次流星。那是三年前的夏天在death valley露营的时候。只是那时候温度极高,达到110度。周围的山峰呈现暗红色,显得有些恐怖。大家都没心思看星星。我偶尔抬头看看天,就看见一道一道的光从天空中闪过。不过也只有我看到流星,别人还嘲笑我。。。现在想来,那些流星可能也是仙女座的。。。因为那时也是八月初。。。

不过这次是专门去看流星的。我们开到一个大湖的旁边。当时讨论是否去一个很偏僻一盏灯没有的地方,那是看流星最好的地方了。可这种想法想想都觉得可怕,如果遇到老虎狮子什么的也就算了,最怕就是遇到熊了。于是我们就到了一个有一些灯,偶尔有车开过的地方。。。我们在那儿反复换了好几个地点。又不想灯太亮,又不想灯不亮(真是麻烦)。最后车就停在湖边的一个停车场内。。。我突然想看看晚上的湖是啥样的,便怂恿那对朋友一起去。刚走到湖边,就看见湖黑黑的,一点也不反光,像个黑洞,觉得不太对头。。。就不由自主的往回退。等过一会我想再看看清楚,那对朋友怎么也不肯去了。。。只好作罢。

看流星首先要看星星。抬头一看,wow,天上星星真多。中间那银河非常明显,在天空正中划了一条带子。可以说,这是我看到星星第二多的一次。这最多的一次还是我在上大学军训时。。。记得那天晚上刚下过一场暴雨,天上一点云都没有,灰尘都被洗去,空气散发出泥土的清香。晚上九点钟熄灯,suppose是睡觉的时候。可那时又怎么睡得着,于是就和几个人偷偷跑出来,躺在军营后自种田的田埂上,抬头看星星。那是第一次看见如此如此之多的星星。早已习惯了天上黑黑的一片,突然发现星星可以如此之多。看得我心里直发毛,真是越看越害怕。特别是所有的星星都集中在南半天球,北边硕大的空间只有寥寥几颗星。再熟悉不过的北斗勺子躺在北边地平线上,占据了整个北面天空,和南面群星密集的银河呈现鲜明的对比。看着北斗七星,想着以前看的武侠小说和动画片,又不由得害怕起来。可这次的北斗七星远没有上次看到的那么大,蜷缩在西北角,让银河占据了整个从北到南的天空。可能因为第一次的视觉冲击太强烈了,我怎么也不觉得这次的星星有上次的多,也许以后也不会有了。。。

我们于是站在车旁,抬着头找流星。正当我们找得脖子发酸,灰心丧气的时候,我和一位朋友同时看到一颗很亮的流星,从北向南,顺着银河划过。我们立刻激动地叫了起来。朋友的丈夫没看见,吓了一跳,还以为我们看见熊了。。。这下气氛又热烈起来,大家又四面八方的找流星。。。可天气实在太冷。。。不一会我们都受不了了,躲到车内,看着窗外一小片天空。。。这种方法真是没有前途。。。瞪了半天,啥也没找着。。我又耐不住了,提议出去。。。幸好是有备而来,我把睡袋铺在车旁边的地上,三人睡下后又盖了一个睡袋。。。这下只露出三个头,正好对着天,可以舒舒服服地看流星了。。。

天上流星还真不少,不时就划过一两颗。。。每看到一颗,我们就尖叫一声。如果有人没看到,其他人就讲述看到的方位,方向,长短。。。以一种很得意的语调。。。那没看到的人就显得很懊恼。。。hoho。。。早就知道一个传说,就是看到流星的时候可以许个愿,如果许完愿流星还没有消失,那愿望就会实现。。。可这时又派不上用场。流星从看见到消失才区区0.1秒。。。反应都来不及,更别说许愿了。。。所以我只好wow,ya,wa,oh地乱叫。。。许愿的事就放在脑后了。。。看来那愿望是实现不了了。。。

我们睡的停车场有时还有车开过,车来的时候车头灯一闪。。。天上的星星顿时暗了下去,除了几颗零等星,其他的星星都被车灯压了下去。。。车走后天空顿时又明亮起来。。。这样车来车去我们都习惯了。。。专心看流星。。。突然,我们仨全都猛地坐起来,一阵狂叫。。。不是我们看到一颗特大的流星。。。而是有一辆车在我们旁边停了下来,准备开进我们睡的那个车位。。。把我们吓了一大跳。。。我估计那开车的也吓了一跳,突然从地上冒出三人来。。。只见他迅速倒车,停到离我们几个车位的地方。。。上帝保佑,幸好他踩的是刹车,不是油门。。。等车走后,我们又躺下,照看不误。。。

这样我们就看了一个多钟头。。。总共看到三十多颗流星。。。当时有点想看一晚上,又怕看着看着睡着了。。。然后又有车开进来。。那可不是好玩的。。想来想去,还是决定回去。。。我们就恋恋不舍地慢慢开回去了。。。

我知道在我熟睡的时候,又有无数的流星划过天空,陨灭了。。。结束了它们短暂而灿烂的一生。。。无常的流星如此,其他事又何尝不是如此呢?

August 8, 2007

一次唱歌

Filed under: 往事如风 — Fei @ 11:54 pm

说到音乐,我又由不得的想起以前一次唱歌。前一段时间整理以前普林斯顿的文件,发现那次唱歌的伴奏音乐和试唱时录的歌,本身就已经很感慨了。这次又听了Vienna Teng的歌,不得不说几句。

那已经是好几年前的事了。当时在准备春节晚会,里面有一个节目是对唱。一位很喜欢唱歌的女生要找一位搭档,不知怎么的就推荐到我头上来了。当时正好是梁主席当值,他的事我当然要出头啦,所以就答应了。我那时还有点窃喜,一直以来想唱一首很难的歌,总是找不到合适的人。。。现在有人送上门来了。。。//grin…所以我就和她谈条件啦,要唱某某歌。她一听,没听说过,不过还是很爽快地答应学。其实那首歌我也不会唱,只不过看起来挺难的,就向难度冲锋了。

看来那几天她日子挺不好过的,整天听那首歌。不过我的日子也不好过,找不到伴奏的MP3,连卡拉OK都没有,这怎么办呀。当时她还动摇了一下,考虑唱别的什么歌,不过都给我打回去了。。。最后工夫不负有心人,星期四终于从国内某个网站下载成功。。。一听,这是那首歌吗?怎么听怎么不像。给她一听,她斩钉截铁的说,是。这下我可慌了,自己要唱的,反而不会唱。遭她的白眼自不用说了。不过她还是个挺好的人,把她那部分唱好录下来,让我唱男声部分。这也可见她对唱歌的热衷程度。

星期五晚上我们第一次合练。自然又遭她数落一番啦,这个地方抢拍,那个地方走调。。。我怎么都听不出来?怎么真正唱歌和跟唱一点都不一样呢?看来我是遇到一位专业选手了。。。那晚上可真是唱了无数遍,还录下来听。甚至还想过假唱,播录下来的录音。不过录的效果都不好,只好作罢。那也是没办法的,第二天就要上台了,不练怎行?晚上我睡觉时耳朵里还塞着耳机,听了一晚上。

星期六自然也练了一白天。在她的教导下,我也对音乐有点感觉了。最后也能听出节拍,啥时唱什么了(有点夸张)。然后就准备服饰了,我对这东西一向没什么感觉。她问我穿什么,我就说穿blablabla。。她瞪着眼睛对我说,就穿这个呀。。。我当时没有反应过来,还说,春节穿红色挺好的。她也就没说什么了。到了晚上,我一看她穿的那个正式呀,就觉得我穿的不太配。不过那时已经没有办法,只好硬着头皮上了。。。其实我还是挺好说话的,只要她当时告诉我穿什么,我还是会穿的。。。

真正唱的时候发现自己表现挺好。歌的上下段中间有很长的一段伴奏,平时我在下段切入的时候总是拿捏不准。。。但真正唱的时候发现很容易就找到起唱的那个note。以前紧张的那些地方都被我注意到了。唱后的回馈也还不错。。。唯一遗憾的是到现在也没有看到录像,所以也一直没有从观众的角度看自己唱的样子。。。

从那以后,我总觉得自己有点对不起那位请我唱歌的朋友。。。提了那么多要求,又制造了那么多麻烦。。。我现在还记得,那时我告诉她要穿什么衣服时她失望的样子。。之后很久都感觉她有点怒我。。。不过我也知道没有这一回事啦。。。就我在瞎想。。。很久没联系了,那时整理文件的时候就聊了几句。知道她最近也要毕业了。。回国。。不由得又感慨一番。。。

自从那次唱歌后,有一点我是很肯定的了。。。那就是。。。再也不吹自己唱歌了。。。

September 26, 2006

儿时轶事

Filed under: 往事如风 — Fei @ 10:40 pm

有人说,在中国相隔两年出生的人就会产生代沟,以此来形容中国变化之快。我觉得这种说法有些言过其词。可我们必须承认的是,我们并不能完全理解在改革开放轰轰烈烈进行中出生的人的心境,也不能真正体会在十年浩劫中度过童年的人的辛酸。我们并不需要羡慕前者而同情后者。一个时代有一个时代的酸甜苦辣,喜怒哀乐。

几年前,一位朋友发给我一段网络广播:出生于七十年代。其实这更适用于在七十年代末和八十年代初出生的人。在此我谨以这段广播作为引子,引出我儿时的回忆,引出具有时代烙印的琐事。

September 20, 2006

My 9.11

Filed under: 往事如风 — Tags: — Fei @ 9:58 pm

September 2001, I just started my second year of Ph.D. study at Princeton University. The University sits in a quite little town 50 miles south of New York city, a town just escapes the crowd of the metropolitan, but is still convenient for a day trip. I just started my research projects, which were in collaboration with NEC lab, America. I was required to go to the lab once a while to do some experiments. The lab was not far from the University, only 12 minutes driving. However, at that time, I did not have a driving license, nor a car. How can I get to the lab? The answer is — bike. Sept. 11 2001, Tuesday, I planed to bike to NEC lab. After having a light breakfast, I packed my lunch and headed to NEC lab. When I biked near the math department, I met a friend. The first word he said was “Do you know that the world trade center was hit by a plane?”.

“Really?” I asked. It was the first time I heard the story, very brief and vague. What kind of plane? Was it serious? Those questions were haunted in my head. I hesitated for a while, weighting the news, but I still decided to continue the trip. I had planed the trip for days, and should not be disrupted by an unclear message.

The bike route was surprisingly long, a lot longer than the car route. I biked on sand trails, crossed multiple bridges, as well as a major highway. 50 minutes later, I finally arrived at the lab. The lab was surprisingly quite. Only a few cars were parked outside. The entire 4-storey building seemed empty. I did not meet anyone on the way to my cube. Nobody was in the kitchen as well. A secretary’s desk was a few steps away from my cube. She was not there, but the radio on her desk was constantly broadcasting live news in low volume. Later on when I walked around to look for people, I only saw a few. They were all walking in the hallway and quickly disappeared around the corner. It was definitely not an ordinary day. To be honest, the scene was a bit scary.

I wanted to head back immediately, but that would waste several days’ planning, and 50 minutes biking. I tried to calm down and do some research, but I could not help reading the news on the computer: four planes were down, twin towers collapsed. News were updated in real time. I had too many questions in mind, too many questions unanswered. As a result, I did not do any research in the morning. At lunch time, I quietly finished my packed lunch box in the kitchen, alone. Then, I seated in my cube for a while, became even more uneasy. The radio still murmured in the background, but nobody showed up. Finally, I made the decision to go home.

Again after an hour’s biking, I got home at Annex. Immediately I turned the TV and computer on. I was a bit worried about my host family. My host father used to work in world trade center. But fortunately, his company moved to Jersey city earlier in the year. Still, I wrote them an email asking for their situation. They replied in a couple of hours. It was really fortunate. My host mother was in world trade center the week before to take classes, but both of them were fine that day. I was a little relaxed after reading the email.

I spent the rest of the day in front of the computer, or TV, or both. At that time, all major TV networks refrained from broadcasting the terrible scenes. I no longer saw the crashing of UA175 on the south tower, the collapse of the twin towers, even the flamed towers or Pentagon. Nothing really was new. However, I still constantly reading and watching the updated news till late at night.

After midnight, I fell asleep in my little cozy room at Annex, unawaring that the world was no longer the same.

September 11, 2006

Remember 9.11

Filed under: 往事如风 — Tags: — Fei @ 10:27 pm

911, the number we usually call when we are in great need, is now forever tied to a date, a date that may have changed history. On 9/11/2001, four US domestic commercial airplanes were hijacked. Two hit the twin towers of world trade center, one hit the Pentagon, and the other crashed in an empty field of western Pennsylvania. As a result, nearly three thousand people were killed, the 110-storey twin towers collapsed, and one side of Pentagon severely damaged.

Sept. 11 has forever changed the world, changed everyone’s life. People have passed from the initial panic, anger, united, to the more recent confusion, suspect, and divided. Now five years have passed since the tragedy. People have gathered pieces of information of that day. People have started to rethink the post 911 war on terror.

Recently, many TV channels cast documentaries to reveal the details of that special day. Movie makers did the same. In the past few weeks, I watched movie “United 93”, several documentaries on Discovery, CBS, as well as the ABC controversial “The path to 9/11”. I was very much inspired by the heroic deeds of the firefighters, port authority officers, and police officers. Ordinary men did unordinary things.

It is Sept. 11, 2006 today. I asked to myself: what I was doing on that day? What was my feeling? What’s my view on the war? Maybe it’s time to write something down — to help me remember this historic day.

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