Simon Z

Ask me anything   "Keep moving forward."

My name is Simon. I blog about finding purpose, lifehacking productivity and self-improvement, social inequality, food, dance, and the amazing people in my life. It's all a bit random but you might find something interesting along the way. :)

Personal Goal: The 4 things we should say more often to live happier lives:
  1. Thank you
  2. I'm sorry
  3. Forgive me
  4. I love you

My Tags:
http://illustratographer.tumblr.com/post/96046253605 →

illustratographer:

Intersectionality: the study of intersections between forms or systems of oppression, domination or discrimination.

Something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately, especially within the context of my personal experiences as a gay Asian male in a misogynistic/homophobic, white supremacist’s…

— 20 hours ago with 137 notes
#reblog  #truth  #race  #minority  #exoticization  #fetishization 

nateswinehart:

Being good to each other is so important, guys.

(via summer-soldierr)

— 20 hours ago with 165304 notes
#reblog  #lessons  #life  #comics  #empathy  #understanding 
Generation Later, Poor Are Still Rare at Elite Colleges - NYTimes.com →

Quick thoughts: (1) I think that the incentive structure for top schools needs to change (since colleges are not rewarded in ranking statistics for increasing access to low-income students but would still need to bear the cost of financial aid, that could otherwise be spent on faculty) and (2) outreach efforts need to be increased to counter the problem of low-awareness in low income communities (which, I think, will ultimately come from the non-profit organizations mentioned such as Posse, QuestBridge, etc.).

— 2 days ago
#links  #readings  #thoughts  #nytimes  #college  #low-income  #accessibility  #education 
Chicken tempura takeout bento box from Ageha. Wow so much yummy food

Chicken tempura takeout bento box from Ageha. Wow so much yummy food

— 2 days ago with 4 notes
#me  #food  #japanese  #bento  #box  #sushi  #tempura  #photos 

Intense surgical procedure with magnetic tools

— 3 days ago with 2 notes
#surgery  #me  #computers  #ssd  #samsung  #macbook  #apple  #laptops 
12:12pm Monday Life Updated

Updates:
- Last night, my phone died while I was writing a long life update post and wouldn’t recharge. My computer has been dead for two weeks now. I was frustrated that I lost my draft but glad to be disconnected.
- I finished “Ender’s Game” last night. Such a good book.
- I’m grateful for this past weekend. Glad to have found a friend group with people at the same intersection of many of my interests: community-building, board games, fitness, moderate going out, Legend of Korra. Such a happy coincidence.
- I worry that some of my friends’ boyfriends might feel insecure.
- It’s my last weekend in NYC.
- I spent time this weekend with a friend that I met once before. Very few prior interactions. One memory was a subtle suggestive remark that he made during a conversation after my then-boyfriend went to bed. I brushed it off because I didn’t want to instigate anything. I don’t have enough certainty to know if he meant anything malicious but he’s an otherwise extremely well-spoken and well-meaning guy so I’ll assume it was nothing. It’s still a memory that sticks with me and makes me a little uncomfortable.
- I worry that I’ve become more sure of my beliefs and convictions but that it makes me less curious about other people’s beliefs.
- I also worry that I’m becoming vapid: I find it more difficult to maintain friendships that do not have a certain level of interestingness or uniqueness. I still maintain that all of my friendships are important but I think I let myself fall into an attention-deficit stupor more often than I would like to.
- I’ve started dating and having sex again. It comes with the expected good and bad and time-consumption. I typically am sexually inactive during the school year or when I’m working on something that I care about so it’s been a number of months since my last romantic/sexual anything. It’s been interesting but I think I’ll press pause again until I finish my masters.

— 4 days ago
#me  #life  #update  #books  #personal  #thoughts 
Another book that I’m falling in love with. I forgot after going to college how good it is to be engrossed in a book.

Another book that I’m falling in love with. I forgot after going to college how good it is to be engrossed in a book.

— 6 days ago with 6 notes
#me  #photos  #enders game  #reading  #books 
"The best allies are those who do not think like everyone else. That is why when you seek companions with whom you can share your enthusiasm for archery, trust your intuition and pay no attention to what anyone else may say. People always judge others by taking as a model their own limitations, and other people’s opinions are often full of prejudice and fear… Join with all those who experiment, take risks, fall, get hurt and then take more risks. Stay away from those who affirm truths, who criticise those who do not think like them, people who have never taken a step unless they were sure they would be respected for doing so, and who prefer certainties to doubts."

It’s 4:49am and I just got back from drinks and board games with a friend. We played Avalon. On my way home, I’ve started reading “The Way of the Bow” by Paulo Coelho on my phone recently. This is some solid advice in chapter 2. Paolo Coelho is quickly becoming one of my favorite writers, after I read “The Alchemist” and starting this book.

"The best allies are those who do not think like everyone else. That is why when you seek companions with whom you can share your enthusiasm for archery, trust your intuition and pay no attention to what anyone else may say. People always judge others by taking as a model their own limitations, and other people’s opinions are often full of prejudice and fear… Join with all those who experiment, take risks, fall, get hurt and then take more risks. Stay away from those who affirm truths, who criticise those who do not think like them, people who have never taken a step unless they were sure they would be respected for doing so, and who prefer certainties to doubts."

It’s 4:49am and I just got back from drinks and board games with a friend. We played Avalon. On my way home, I’ve started reading “The Way of the Bow” by Paulo Coelho on my phone recently. This is some solid advice in chapter 2. Paolo Coelho is quickly becoming one of my favorite writers, after I read “The Alchemist” and starting this book.

— 6 days ago
#friends  #paulo coelho  #the way of the bow  #books  #reading  #life  #advice  #quotes 

There was a fire today on the bridge

— 1 week ago
#fire  #me  #photos  #nyc 

It’s 2:20pm. I am feeling hot hands for the first time in a while after eating a big falafel pita lunch. I’m also drowsy at work. Seriously what’s up with my metabolism?

— 1 week ago
#me  #food  #hot hands  #drowsy  #metabolism 
"From 18 to 22 you meet a lot of temporary people."

(via k4i23)

This is the most amount of truth I have ever seen in a text post.

(via bottles-and-booties)

(Source: mydeepest-fear, via folieadeuxcherie)

— 1 week ago with 163199 notes
#wow  #college  #reblog  #truth 
The dinner! My grandmother just told us about how in her teenage years, her mother used to tell her to bring small amounts of food to her grandmother in the next village by foot. Her grandmother had chronic coughing and that was their way of helping her even when they were so distant. 

I asked my grandmother to learn to write in Chinese, so I could one day read her happy memories. I’m worried about losing her stories.

I walked her home today. I was so happy that she remembered that she used to walk me to the parks that we passed by on the way to her house. She held onto my hand as we walked (not unlike the way I held onto hers when I was a toddler) with the rest of my family. I remember thinking that these are the rare moments that feel meaningful just because it’s family.

The dinner! My grandmother just told us about how in her teenage years, her mother used to tell her to bring small amounts of food to her grandmother in the next village by foot. Her grandmother had chronic coughing and that was their way of helping her even when they were so distant.

I asked my grandmother to learn to write in Chinese, so I could one day read her happy memories. I’m worried about losing her stories.

I walked her home today. I was so happy that she remembered that she used to walk me to the parks that we passed by on the way to her house. She held onto my hand as we walked (not unlike the way I held onto hers when I was a toddler) with the rest of my family. I remember thinking that these are the rare moments that feel meaningful just because it’s family.

— 1 week ago with 2 notes
#me  #family  #photos  #food  #grandmother  #dinner  #chinese  #memories  #stories 

It’s 8:26pm on Tuesday. I just got off work and I’m going to eat dinner with my grandmother right now. I’m really excited to see her. I tend to see her only once or twice per year, once for each time I am back home in NYC. I should have been better this year about visiting since grandpa died last summer. I feel guilty. I am walking through the streets that I did when I was a preschooler. Some vague memories surface of my tiny fingers wrapped around one of grandma’s fingers as she held many bags of Chinese vegetables, raw meats, and various other groceries in her other hand. I just passed by an old Chinese woman who walked down Canal Street hunched over. I worry that my grandmother might one day be like her: a woman who gave up her health working so hard to raise the next two generations of her family only to have done too well: having them be far more successful beyond the small farm and unhappy marriage that she was sold into that they have gone too far to do too many things that they don’t have the time nor proximity to honor her in her presence. I am now sitting at the restaurant. I miss the woman who raised me.

— 1 week ago with 6 notes
#me  #personal  #grandmother  #grandfather  #memories  #thoughts  #chinese  #family  #canal street  #chinatown 
Trim (computing) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia →

This is a quick overview of what I’ve learned from my few minutes of Googling on Trim, “a command that allows an operating system (OS) to inform a solid state drive (SSD) which data is no longer in use and can be wiped internally” (Wiki). Trim is extremely important to enable to increase the performance and overall longevity of your SSD. Unfortunately, if you own a Macbook Pro (MBP) like I do, and install a non-Apple SSD, Trim is not automatically enabled and that’s what led to the death of my original SSD through the build-up of too many bad sectors from excessive writes with no TRIM enabled. The best utility, according to my Samsung warranty agent, is Trim Enabler (http://www.cindori.org/software/trimenabler/), which costs $10.. I’ve mentioned before that I’ve replaced my Macbook Pro’s built-in hard disk drive (HDD) with a Samsung 840 Pro SSD and found that there’s a huge speed-up in the performance (actually greater than 10x speed up, but my original HDD was a piece of shit). If you’re interested in doing so, check out any of the videos on Youtube such as this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ui-eQuROHBk.

The two sections that I found to be the most relevant in the Wiki article about Trim are:

"…writing data to SSD media is very fast as long as empty pages can be used, but slows down considerably once previously written pages need to be overwritten. Since an erase of the cells in the page is needed before it can be written again, but only entire blocks can be erased, an overwrite will initiate a read-erase-modify-write cycle: the contents of the entire block have to be stored in cache before it is effectively erased on the flash medium, then the overwritten page is modified in the cache so the cached block is up to date, and only then is the entire block (with updated page) written to the flash medium. This phenomenon is known as write amplification."

"The Trim command is designed to enable the operating system to notify the SSD which pages no longer contain valid data due to erases either by the user or operating system itself. During a delete operation, the OS will both mark the sectors as free for new data and send a Trim command to the SSD to be marked as no longer valid. After that the SSD knows not to relocate data from the affected blocks during garbage collection. This results in fewer writes to the flash, reducing write amplification and increasing drive life."

— 1 week ago
#trim  #computing  #ssd  #trim enabler  #samsung  #hardware  #computer  #laptop  #macbook  #apple  #hdd