I woke up at noon today after drinking all night. When I came to, I got high and hopped in my car to meet a friend. I was driving on the 605. It had just rained which was nice.
I put on Kanye’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. Good album. I switched back and forth between being in deep thought and yelling the lyrics out at the top of my lungs. Then I heard “Lost In the World” and all I could think about was how fast Kanye was running in that video.
I’ve been wanting to write, but I haven’t gotten around to it. Particularly, I wanted to share some thoughts on my trip to Maui, but I wanted to make sure what I was writing came organically and with everything that’s caught up to me since being on the Mainland, my mind has been consumed with other things. So it’s time to vent.
Things have been tough lately. I’ll spare some of the details, but life has been moving pretty fast. Sure, I’ll be vulnerable and forward with you. My finances aren’t doing so great and I just learned that one of my best friends who became addicted to meth is in jail. He has actually called me twice from jail on two separate occasions in a month’s time (I won’t say who, but those of you who know me well can take a wild guess).
That along with a million other challenges really has me stressed. Now, I don’t want to get too much into “I feel sorry for myself” mode on everyone, but I think it’s fair for me to express a little frustration.
A theme that has been present in my entire life has been a wanting and yearning to be like everyone else. It’s very tempting, and when you taste it, it can be very addictive. What’s funny is sometimes, we spend so much time trying to be different or unique that we end up becoming like everyone else. Maybe we wear different clothes, root for different teams, support different politicians, or listen to different music. But in the end, some of us are all doing it for the same reasons - attention, glory, fame. I’ll admit I’m guilty of this every day …
Funny story … Hawaii was quite an adventure. On the third day over there visiting my good friends Jamie, Aimee, & Raymundo (whom I’ve written about in the past), they took me to a certain beach. I want to say Big Beach is a little outside of the hustle and bustle on Maui. So you have a nice Big Beach with clear shores. There’s a big cliff we had to climb to get to this other certain beach called Little Beach. Aimee was adventurous. I believe she was about 5 months pregnant and came along with us to Little Beach. I’m glad she got to come along with us and I’m happy for her that she was able to experience that with her baby.
View of Big Beach on top of the big cliff.
Little Beach is a nude beach, so half of the people there were naked. I didn’t take my pants off, but our buddy Raymundo was all about it (pics to prove it). There were more dicks than titties. In fact, there weren’t too many attractive women on Maui at the time (or at least where I was looking there weren’t too many). I probably should’ve mentioned that we came to Little Beach on a mission. We were looking for drugs - psychedelics to be more specific. Aimee and Raymundo were adventurous enough to ask around and search for “stuff” … They got some shrooms. The people who sold it to them even had business cards and complimented Raymundo on his nudity. (In case you were wondering, Aimee did not take any shrooms with us).
The mushrooms came in the form of penis shaped chocolates wrapped in gold foil.
As soon as we got our hands on these, Raymundo and I ate one a piece. We spent a couple more hours enjoying the drum circle at Little Beach which is very similar to the drum circle in Venice Beach, CA except less people, more intense drumming, fire dancing and pyrotechnics, as well as the beautiful aesthetics all around us. It was sunset which made the whole experience all the more beautiful.
Drum circle at Little Beach. Most of the naked people are behind us or to the left of us.
On the way back to the car, we had to climb up the big cliff and on the way back down the cliff going to Big Beach, we ran into this white chick who I couldn’t tell if she was fat or pregnant, but she had broken or sprained her ankle very badly and needed help. I, being the nice little asian kid that I am, offered aid. About halfway through our walk, I realized that I had made a mistake and Raymundo, Aimee, and Jamie walked ahead of me probably thinking about what a poor sucker I was. The whole time on the way back to the parking lot all she talked about was herself. She was from South Dakota and kept calling herself a Kama’aina because she’s been living on Maui for two years and was complaining to me about how people don’t know the meaning of “Aloha spirit”. Once we got to the parking lot, I was met by her mother who instead of thanking me for helping her injured daughter to the parking lot, blatantly reprimanded her daughter for making friends with strange island people. And while they were arguing in front of me, South Dakota volunteered me to convince my friends to give her a ride to her car. I told her we didn’t have room and she insisted that she sit on my lap and I take her to her car. Her mom ran off somewhere, and that’s when I decided enough was enough.
After spending some time in Hawaii, the term “white people” was thrown around a lot by locals to describe people who feel entitled and act like they own the place (white or non-white, if you act this way, you are included). If you are planning on visiting the islands, please practice humility. You will make it a much better experience for everyone you encounter as well as yourselves.
Some creepy dude in a van was about to drive off and I quickly stopped him and said that this chick needed a ride. I shoved all of her stuff in his van. The back of this guy’s van was empty besides a mattress and a pair of nunchucks, but I threw her in there anyway and went on my way. And as I left the parking lot the shrooms started to hit me hard. It was pitch black in the forrest on the way back to the car and I was all alone. I felt like i was walking out of a rave, except there wasn’t any music and there were no people around. And just when I started to freak out a little, a calm voice from behind me said, “Hey, Chris Lee!”
Jamie had come back for me, and we left the beach …
I don’t know if it was the shrooms or if it was the universe or the island trying to teach me a lesson, but that interaction had everything to do with what I’ve been dealing with lately and only as I am screaming out Kanye lyrics in my car am I able to digest it.
Sure, it might not have been the nicest thing to shove that white chick in the van, but in the moment I felt that it was right to hold her accountable for being so inconsiderate. And besides, I had already done my part by helping this ungrateful white chick to the parking lot while lugging around a huge plastic tub of all of her beach stuff.
I have so many more stories to tell of Maui, but I’ll save those for another time. Moving back to what I was talking about before …
It can be tough. I don’t want to go down a list of things I wish were better about my life because at the end of the day I am truly blessed to have what I have, to know what I know, and to be who I am. But lately, it’s been tough to remind myself. I’m gad that I’m giving myself the time now to vent these frustrations out and to be able to look back on experiences like hanging out with my friends in Maui and digest those moments.
It seems so often that we are surrounded by chatter and opinions that should not matter. People act according to what will get them more hits, more views on YouTube, more likes on FaceBook or Instagram, more fans and followers, or what’ll get them more pussy or dick. I find it all the more ironically poetic that Kanye of all people helped me to realize this. It’s a very rare thing to find people who will do the right thing just for the mere satisfaction and fulfillment of doing what is right. What has me look at my situation and not lament or yammer about how difficult my life is, is the opportunity to be an example of someone who finds true happiness in doing what is right. You can call me proud or cocky if you want to. I’m not doing it so you’ll like me! ;)
On that note, I’d like to end with a quote …
I’m not a religious person, but this quote described the present circumstances well.
People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.
If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.
If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies.
The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.
Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.
The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
Think big anyway.
People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
Fight for a few underdogs anyway.
What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
People really need help but may attack you if you do help them.
Help people anyway.
Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have anyway.
… The Paradoxical Commandments by Kent Keith.
Michael Jordan, 6-time beer pong champion.
The power of perspective.
In school, they tried to teach us about poetry
I never understood it, so I never wrote it
So while the other kids spent time writing theirs
with their ABAB rhyme schemes
I spent my time absorbing inspirational quotes as if they meant something to me
Reading books that weren’t assigned to us and listening to music that those other kids didn’t connect with
Being something that no one else was
It was important to me
Then, I got older. Life happened. I fell in love … and out of it not long after. And things change
Those inspirational quotes make sense now. All of the books I’ve read, the music I’ve listened to.
I now have context.
And as I continue to grow and live, I find myself getting sucked into the same old mess that the other kids got into.
Now, we’re trying to figure out what rhymes with “cool”, what rhymes with “popular”, what rhymes with “sex” and “money” … a nice car, a good job title, a sexy bitch of a girlfriend to show the guys that you have “game” and to make the other sexy bitches want you.
Good thing for life and love. Now, all I see is poetry.
And that is the only thing that keeps me from being something that no one else is.
LakersNation zings the Clippers.
Found the perspective of the picture telling since the viewer is placed beneath both characters and figured I’d share it.