A Dig Into My Memory Box

I didn’t think moving boxes from one room to another would take me longer than I had expected. It could be partly ascribed to my prior ingestion of some heavy MSG-laden snacks which, according to my relatives, blindsided me with an unmotivated spirit. By the same token, I found something in which so worthy of getting lost while moving that this languidness was another reason for me to sit for 45 minutes to just dig through and reminisce. If you have some time, move off your mouse touch pad and lay your fingers on the arrow buttons on the keyboard instead; scroll down with me through some of the things in my “memory box” this afternoon.

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This is a photo of my cousins and I visiting Golden Gate Bridge together for the fist time. I remember I had just recently injured my wrist from basketball that week. We all look pretty young in the photo. One of us has gotten married and is raising his baby girl. Another is about to undergo that same ceremony. The rest of us including me are just praying against that day.

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Hahhaa….>.< Valentine’s Day. I should have noted the year on this one. It should happen somewhere in high school. Neither a crush nor a partner gave this to me. I saved this because how she gave it to me was very memorable, even though I can vaguely recall it. It was just a simple hand-over, but it was deeply felt by me. Thank goodness the candies have their wrapper. They are supposed to be gummy-bear chewy. When I felt them, they were hard and crusty to touch. Let’s not open it.

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One special un-working watch that I am still holding onto. It is from Pa. I got this roughly at the age of 11 or 12. I had an old man taste back then, somehow. I preferred styles like this as opposed to mades like Casio, which was a fad among my peers. This could possibly explain why a lot of people in highschool implicitly acknowledged me as an old head on a young shoulder as I can relate more to older people.God bless you, Pa!

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And the next thing I am sharing is this emblem. 4Seasons, so we called ourselves. If everybody each gets 15 minutes of fame in his/her life, some of my minutes have to be during the time of our abrupt existence as 4Seasons. Adopted from MTV’s America’s Best Dance Crew, our high school held its own edition of Best Dance Crew.  Here is the video of it.

During the time of our participation, there were only 4 teams competing. Though it was a small tournament, performing in front of the school and being the first season winner did feel really good. I still can’t believe we managed to put together our routines in such a short time.

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I think all of us know this one. Jansport. If you wanna be cool, you’ve gotta double-strap on a pack of this brand. But this realization didn’t dawn on me until later in middleschool. Meanwhile, what remarkable and will always remain in my heart about this pack is it was given to me by gramp, and it’s been around nearly as old as I am. Ok, I might have lied; it is mayble 5 or 6 years younger than me. I remember getting so antsy to go to school so that I could don the bag. Also, when I first received it, it was much bigger than me. I had to wait a couple years to properly piggyback this thing. Now, there are tears and it’s started disintegrating, but sweet moments with it are long-lived. God bless you, gramp!

what are some of the keepsakes you have in your memory box?

Chemical Philosophy: Electron Meets Happiness

Electrons are characterized by the energy states in which they reside. These energy states are further referred to be “quantized” as they are separated by precise amount of energy in different molecules. Coupled with the allowable angular and magnetic spins, each electron is very unique. Surprisingly, our happiness is no different. Happiness is also very intrinsic, subjective, and in a scientific term, quantized; what makes me happy may not do you any joy. The common praise: “you are very special!” may also owe its origin to this abstraction.

Just like the event of each excitation of the electron, upon each “excitation” of our happiness comes “relaxation” to its former ground state. Happiness is short-lived. We feel it in this second, it then diffuses away from us in the very next. An adrenaline rush, a smile that stretches from ear to ear, a momentary peace of mind and uplifted spirit, these are all we get. Then everything cycles again til the next stage of happiness is reached. “Could ‘the pursuit of happiness’ be founded on this very idea?” This may also very well explain why mankind is on an endless voyage to seek happiness because its happiness routinely reverts back to its “ground state”.

In Chemistry, electron is a mobile negatively charged subatom that brings about the system of an atom. It is also the main contributor to chemical bond formation in molecules, be them organic or inorganic. Being capable of moving up to the speed of light, 3 x 108 m s-1, electrons’ constant motions make it hard for their locations at a given time to be determined. But it is specifically this feature of the electron that could shed some light on why a living body should also be relentlessly moving and avoid idling. It is this feature that could possibly highlight the importance that to be moving is to be pursuing happiness.

We are a species that becomes harder and harder to please.

Take a baby infant, an open of arms of that of an embrace gesture or a smile will light up its expression. Take a preschooler, that gesture alone might no longer cut it without a cone of ice-cream, perhaps, in order to revive that liveliness. Then comes teenager and I think you get the idea. Instead, I’d like to take this space to admire moms and dads who are quite tolerant of their temperamental teens. In adulthood, we are now conditioned by goal setting. As we grow older and bear more responsibilities, happiness is now a measure of how successful we achieve our goals. In other words, goal accomplishment transcribes into a feeling of happiness. But imagine this. Run a 10k marathon for the first time, beat it, you feel spectacular. “I did it!” loudly and almightily. However, beating it for the second time might not abstract the same degree of happiness as you first did. The more and more you run this course, the more and more it becomes mundane to you, and the less and less you feel satisfied about your accomplishment. In fact, repeating this over and over could eventually desensitize your response to your achievement and take your enjoyment out of running altogether. The main point is the road to happiness seems to become more and more far fetched with respect to age and goal. And in this stage of adulthood, if we don’t set forth more goals that challenge us to stay in motion, we could become less and less happy, less and less satisfied with ourselves.

“Be an electron!”

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You will never find a static electron in this sphere called Earth governed by magnetic field. By the co-existence between moving charges and magnet, you will never find a charge, or an electron, that is never in motion. The fascinating nature with electrons is that they are always “looking for new opportunities”. Being loosely held by the nucleus of the atom, they are free to seek new electron clouds from other electrons in other atoms to form bond with, through donating-accepting or equal sharing, which is scientifically known as ionic or covalent bond, respectively. This “opportunity seeking” is a characteristic of electrons to challenge themselves to find ways to form a more efficient and energetically-favorable bond. “Can we find more ways to form bonds that will allow us to become more energetically stable?” is the mentality each electron bears. To electrons, the formation of a new bond, though earns them a feel of accomplishment and brief happiness, is only the start of a new challenge to form an even more stable bond. And so they achieve their goal given the right experimental conditions.

To be an electron, it is to never cease exploring new breakthroughs. To be an electron, it is never to cease pursuing the state of happiness.

“Be an electron! Pursue your happiness!”