long-distance relationship

best friends makin' it work

Archive for January, 2010

warm thoughts

When the weather outside is brutally cold it is rather difficult to think about anything other than the fact that ten minutes ago I couldn’t feel my face.  Even now lying in the warmth of my bed, I have yet to recover from the Rudolph Red Nose syndrome that accompanies such frigid temperatures.  As the number one topic on my mind, I have, over the course of the day, voiced several complaints that in some form or other communicate the sentiment “Fuck, it’s cold.”  And for some reason, the number one response to my frosty frustration was “Wait, Rohini, aren’t you from Colorado?”  Yes, I am.  What the hell does that have to do with anything?

After four years of attending school in Providence (and Yang attending school in New York) I’ve come to realize that East Coasters have little to no clue about what Colorado is like.  We are not all the skiing mountain men who eat trail mix and beef jerky while singing Kumbaya by the campfire.  Well, okay, Yang does love her beef jerky, and I enjoy the occasional bowl of trail mix, but the rest of it, hell no.  And contrary to popular belief, this Colorado “cold” has not transformed our normal human skin into blubber.  My fellow Coloradans, I sincerely hope you never have to suffer the same annoying presumptions we have had to endure.  But if ever approached with the “Aren’t you from Colorado?” tude, no need to worry.  You can steal from some of the comeback responses I’ve had to use.

– It’s ten degrees below zero.  The only Coloradan who doesn’t mind this temperature is the resident polar bear at the Denver Zoo.  And I’m pretty sure he’s from the Arctic.

– Fuck you.  Can I have my gloves back?

– We get 300 days of sunshine every year.  The other 60, I wear a coat.

– I’m Indian…and I’m not homeless.

– You’re from California.  Why are you sweating?

– Last I checked we still have heaters in our cars and homes.  Oh, and other than my standard weekly snowshoeing escapade, I don’t WALK OUTSIDE in the WINTER.

– See that flame in the middle of the Kumbaya-singing group?  It’s a fire.

– No verbal response.  Shove ignorant comment maker into a mound of snow and run for it (physical exercise will warm your body right up).

Please feel free to use some or all of these responses (My personal favorite is the last one.  Bonus points if you make that happen).  It’s time for us to set the world straight.  When I say I have cold feet, it’s not because the thick-skinned Coloradan is hesitating on the decision-making front.  My fucking feet are cold.

My nose is slightly less rouge now than when I began to write this post.  I can therefore shift my complaining to more important subjects (i.e. my thesis, school, the rundown state of our apartment, money, the geographical distance between myself and Yang, and Camilla Parker Bowles).


the ugly


Now that you’ve laughed at this picture, please take a moment to read the following instant message conversation.

01.28.10 @ around 2:30 pm

An AIM conversation between indihindibindi & chinesechekirz

chinesechekirz: what should iw rite?
i’ve got nothing
indihindibindi: hmmm
let me think for a second

chinesechekirz: aw i dig the new profile pic
indihindibindi: haha
i love it
i thought it was time for something new
i look ridiculous in it
which i love

chinesechekirz: no you dont
indihindibindi: and you look good in it
chinesechekirz: you loook cute
indihindibindi: which i love
i mean i look funny
i really wanted
to make the other one
of me in the man shirt
looking like a man
my profile pic
but hello game kill

chinesechekirz: hahaha
game kill
indihindibindi: it’s so funny though
i seriously laugh
every time i look at that picture

chinesechekirz: hahahaha
i know me too
ok ok what do i write
i’m laughing out loud in the bus
just thinking about the picture
indihindibindi: hahahaha
i know
it’s seriously an amazing picture

chinesechekirz: ok i know what i’m writing about

I was suffering from blogger’s block when Rohini and I had this conversation. Thankfully the blockage was only temporary. Rohini, my muse, came to the rescue without even knowing it.

Setting up the story
During the last few weeks of the last semester, neither Rohini nor I had anything remotely resembling social lives. Any time not spent in class or at work was spent in front of our computers and books. Rohini had a legitimately impossible workload, whereas I had done too much social living and school neglecting prior to crunch time. It’s a miracle that I even graduated. When I say this, I’m not speaking in funny hyperbole. I mean it. It was a miracle. I am a believer.

One way we maintained our sanities into these long, lonely nights of studying was through video chat. Unlike every other college freshman, Rohini and I weren’t privileged enough to have fancy macbooks with built-in webcams, and we resented every one of the dozens of freaky deaky PhotoBooth facebook albums put up by our peers. In retrospect, we believe our behind-the-times computers kept us grounded and humble for the first formidable years of college. Constantly redoing your work because your computer randomly shuts off does great things for your character and patience. You should try it some time. (We have since purchased macs and went straight for the prestigious ranks of the MacBook Pro. High five.) Although we were late catching on to the advent of the webcam, we certainly made up for lost time by video chatting an average of four hours a day (with pride). Sometimes our chats would involve dance breaks, singalongs, and catching up on our day-to-days, but much of the time it was just a comfort to see the other person on the screen as we stayed up until 4 a.m. Now if you’re reading this and thinking that’s weird, these girls are way too close, let me remind you that you’re voluntarily reading a blog by best friends writing about each other. If any of this is coming as a surprise, I’m sorry, but you only have yourself to blame at this point.

The picture
Two big things came out of these late-night virtual chats. As fate would have it, it was during these character-building conversations that we first came up with the idea for our blog. The picture that graces the top of this post, the one of rohini “in a man shirt, looking like a man” is also a direct result of one of these conversations.

In case you didn’t already think Rohini’s wonderful writing and good humor set her apart from everyone else, let me give you yet another reason to love her. While most girls cringe at the sight of unattractive pictures of themselves and immediately go for the camera’s delete button, Rohini adores them. You might even say she lives for them. If I’ve just snapped a particularly frightening picture of her, Rohini will take a look at it, laugh, and almost always say, “Love it. Put it up on facebook.” The picture that inspired this post is perhaps one of the all-time bests. Thanks to her selfless ability to laugh at herself, there are hundreds of such pictures available for your enjoyment. Rohini has in her possession several hideous, and i mean hideous, video chat session pictures of me, but has sworn to never show those to anyone else. She’s a good friend. I’m not nearly as charitable.

I can get “remove tag” happy on facebook, but these are precautions that I have to take if I hope to have a future in television. I’m not proud of it and admit to feeling like a fraud if anyone ever makes mention of my photogenic qualities. If only they knew.

I must also mention that Rohini, in her pursuit of unsightly pictures, is sometimes too quick to call ugly. Her current facebook picture is actually quite nice, not “ridiculous.”

I’ll end this post by quoting something a very wise, beautiful person once said.

“People should see the good, the bad and the ugly”
– Rohini

summa cum loud

Smoky Hill High School Graduation, 2006

Barring complete academic mayhem, and let’s be honest, those hippies at Brown will let you get away with pretty much anything, today is Rohini’s last first day of (undergraduate) class. The idea that Rohini might not ace a class is so unfathomable that making a joke about her having to stay in school one more semester wouldn’t even be funny, so I’m not gonna bother.

In honor of her first day back in class and in the spirit of making lists, I will now share with you a few of the numerous high points in Rohini’s academic career. In the spirit of funny, I will also include some of the lower ones. Enjoy!

At her best
– Rohini was a 4.0, thumbs up, gold star, smiley face student at Indian Ridge Elementary School.
Rohini was a consistent 4.0 student at Laredo Middle School
Rohini was a 4.0 student and ultimately one of the Valedictorians at Smoky Hill High School (this is getting boring, I know. Bear with me.)
Rohini was Laredo’s Sertoma Club “What Freedom Means to Me” Essay contest winner. The banquet was on my birthday, and I went with Rohini, her brother, parents, grandmother and Mr. Tafoya to sit in Rohini’s glory. While that awards ceremony was one of Rohini’s high points, it was one of my personal lows. I was so appalled when I found out Rohini lost the Grand Prize to some pale, sickly looking girl that I complained in a voice loud enough for the entire room to hear, “They only gave her the award because she must have cancer.”
Rohini won the Kindness Award with yours truly. I had come a long way since the Sertoma banquet. (See the related post)
Rohini won countless awards in Destination Imagination, World Affairs Challenge, Math League, Speech & Debate, and Model UN.
Rohini was accepted into the prestigious Brown University, among many other of the nation’s top schools.
More recently, Rohini was invited to join the Teach For America Corps
Snaps for Rohini!

At her worst
Rohini choked on her tears in 7th grade Algebra when she was handed a test marked with a red B.
Rohini cried in Home Economics class because she left pieces of her sewing project at home. This incident and news of the many other similar crying incidents, prompted Mrs. Hatch, the Home Ec Ice Queen, to ask Rohini’s mom if Rohini was being abused at home.
Rohini opened the floodgates when she realized she forgot to get a parent signature on her A+ 8th grade Science grade report. Mr. Coons, an otherwise unsympathetic teacher, gave Rohini the 10 points anyway.
Rohini sobbed in 8th grade Geometry when she got her one and only D on a test. I’m pretty sure the class average was an F.
Rohini gave in to Triveni’s pestering and signed up for Relationships in Marriage class. Did Rohini need this class to fulfill her health requirement? No, she had already taken Health.
Rohini realized she didn’t have her Social Security Number memorized and cried in the women’s bathroom minutes before the PSAT. Was providing one’s SSN a mandatory field on the personal information portion of the test? No, it wasn’t. That incident would be the last time Rohini ever cried regarding schoolwork.
More recently, Rohini waited until the last two days to work on a 30-page chapter for her thesis. Rohini ultimately received an A for her work.

Thanks to my coldhearted, tough love approach, Rohini hasn’t cried about school in years. I want to make one thing clear, Rohini didn’t cry because she was a grade-grubbing crybaby, Rohini cried because she gets disappointed if she doesn’t give something her best. She was and still continues to be her greatest critic. I, on the other hand, happen to be her greatest fan.

Let’s all wish Rohini and everyone else in the same boat a great last semester of college. Knowing her, she will have way too much on her plate, go to bed at ungodly hours, all while pulling off A+ work.

Cheers to Rohini!

a vegetarian ordering meat

no, the title to this post is not a sexual innuendo. it’s my real life troubles.  i consider myself a knowledgeable person.  i know football, movies, health (as dr. oz tells it), history, politics, and the current status of elena and stefan’s relationship on the vampire diaries.  what i don’t know i bullshit.

there’s one thing i don’t know and can’t bullshit: meat.


01.20.09 @ around 3:30 pm

an AIM conversation between indihindibindi & chinesechekirz

indihindibindi: is there another word for chicken strips?
chinesechekirz : hmm why?  chicken tenders?
indihindibindi : i’m trying to order them for a tfa thing and the guy wrote back
could you give me more clarification on the chicken strip…

chinesechekirz: what kind of chicken strips are you ordering?
like raw chicken?
idont know of a dish called hte chicken strip lol
indihindibindi : ok i’ll say tenders
tenders is a dish right?

chinesechekirz: chicken tenders
like longer than chicken nuggets
indihindibindi: yeahhh
that’s it

chinesechekirz: hahahaha
chicken strip?
indihindibindi : how the fuck would i know
chinesechekirz: hahahahaha
you shouldnt be ordering meat dishes
indihindibindi : dude
i know
i shouldn’t

a chindian friendship

Our dear friend Megan Reddish started up a funny little blog that we’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading. This post was inspired by the hilarious lists on her tumblr. Check it out.
Megan’s blog

(yes, we made this beautiful flag with the use of photoshop)

Yang’s Lists
Pros of having an Indian best friend
Indians are good dancers. Having grown up with Bollywood music and catchy Indian tunes with great dance beats, your best friend will likely move better than most people on the dance floor. MY best friend moves best.
All Indians are good cooks. Going over to their house for dinner means delicious food each and every time. Thank you, Usha Auntie.
Your best friend will share the Kama Sutra with you. All of it. Even the parts that were censored.
Your best friend will do a really great job of putting on a funny Indian man accent.
Given their affinity toward call centers, an Indian best friend will likely have great phone manners and offer you exclusive deals each time you call.
China is way cooler than India. For this reason, you get to feel superior to your best friend at all times.

Cons of having an Indian best friend
They’re usually vegetarian. You don’t get to share in the pleasure of eating succulent meat. I can’t count the number of times I have feasted on buffalo wings and hated that I couldn’t share my most favorite food with Rohini.
If traveling together, factor in an additional hour needed for boarding. Your friend will likely be strip searched by TSA.
While Indian cuisine is tasty, your friend will sometimes smell of curry. Don’t get me wrong, curry is delicious, you just don’t want your wingman to smell like it when you’re going out for a night on the town. Smelling like curry/b.o. would be considered a game-killer for the typical person, yet somehow my best friend still manages to get her game on.
Indians are way too into Mahatma Gandhi. Like get over it already. AmIright or amIright? If they have a really bad case of Gandhiphilia, your best friend might even go dressed as Gandhi for Halloween. Mine did.
Indians traditionally eat with their hands. This makes any attempt to teach your best friend how to use chopsticks futile.

Rohini’s Lists
Pros of Having a Chinese Best Friend
Mah Jong.  This ancient Chinese game isn’t just pretty tiles.  It’s actually quite entertaining and if your best friend is Chinese she might buy the travel version so that you can play a quick game in Brooklyn on the Fourth of July.  No better way to celebrate America.
Chinese families enjoy going out for dim sum lunches.  With a Chinese best friend you can tag along for these lunches and devour delicious vegetable chow fun, which let’s be honest, is chow fun times.
If you thought New Year’s was fun, try celebrating Chinese New Year’s.  Having my best friend got me VIP access to all the dancing, food and festivities at our local Chinese New Year’s celebration.
Telling a far-fetched story about a family with triplets and acrobats sounds far more plausible when your best friend is Chinese.
With Beijing hosting the 2008 Summer Olympic Games, having my best friend meant getting the hook up for official Olympics gear.
Ever tried to buy a Louis Vuitton purse in Chinatown?  If you weren’t with your Chinese best friend you were probably ripped off.  My best friend always managed to haggle down vendors to their lowest prices using her complete grasp of the Chinese language.  It is thanks to her that I have in my possession several knock off Chanels and Pradas.

Cons of having a Chinese Best Friend
Loss of “My people number over a billion” bragging rights.  You may have thought your people were special because of their reproductive capabilities, but as my best friend will remind you, you are not the only ones.
The Great Wall.  Yes, it’s big.  Yes, it’s old.  And yes, you can see it from outer space.  A Chinese best friend will remind you of the greatness of this wall and the superiority of her people.  But how great is the Great Wall?  Let’s just remember that there are other more beautiful wonders of the world (including but not limited to the Taj Mahal).
The Chinese are usually huge fans of acupuncture and other natural forms of healing.  While I can see the benefits of trusting in herbal medicine, sometimes I just want my best friend to pop two Nyquil and sleep in peace.
While drinking your best friend may experience what many call the Asian Glow reaction to alcohol.  Red looks good on the Chinese flag, but it’s not so attractive on the face.  Luckily, my best friend doesn’t need to be red to paint the town red.  We party it up sans glow.
Young Chinese girls tend to have a peculiar affinity for all things Hello Kitty.  You will inevitably receive several gifts of journals, pencils and stationary from the retail store Sanrio.  Will you have any use for them?  No.  But you will keep them at the bottom of your drawer because for whatever reason your best friend likes this crap.

a sure shot

Tonight as I watched over six straight hours of football (with quite a heart-racing finale), I came to three realizations.  Number one: While it is a dream of mine to someday marry starting Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez, watching Mrs. Favre cringe every time Brett took a hard hit (and boy that happened a lot) made me rethink my future vows of NFL matrimony.  Number two: I have far too much random football knowledge stored in my head.  While I hadn’t heard of the young star kicker Garrett Hartley before tonight’s overtime victory, I did recognize the washed up quarterback who held that winning snap, Mark Brunell.  I waste too much brain space with names like Mark Brunell or Tommy Maddox or Joey Harrington (don’t bother Googling them…there’s a reason you don’t already know their names).  Finally, number three: It is a crying shame that Yang and I never invested our naturally aggressive spirits into playing competitive sports. You know, deep down I believe that high school athletics really missed out on two MVPs when we walked past team tryouts to head for our debate club meetings.  Granted neither one of us can run a mile in under twelve minutes, and we both tend to cramp up pretty quickly.  Still, anyone who’s seen us play a game of Monopoly knows that we fight until the bitter end.  What more do you need to win a sports match?

Yang and I did dabble in the sports arena when in the 8th grade we signed up for a month of golf lessons.  At the time, a brief love affair with the primetime drama E.R. had inspired us both to pursue careers in medicine.  To prepare ourselves for the wealth and glamour of our future surgeon lives we thought it best to practice our shots on the driving range.  The lessons we had signed up for were intended for the 6 – 14 age group.  Little did we realize that a majority of the students in our lesson were on the lower end of this age range.  We were, undoubtedly, the oldest members of the class.  We were also, by a long shot, the worst players to ever pick up a club.  No pun intended.

Driving a tiny ball hundreds of feet into the air with the aim of hitting a specific target is understandably a difficult feat.  Making contact with the ball, on the other hand, you would think that would be cake.  Yet, on more than one occasion Yang and I found ourselves winding all the way back, bringing the club down with full force, then following through, only to find the ball in between our feet untouched by our strokes.  Every member of our group lesson grasped the sport better than we did, including a seven-year old crippled boy who had a mean drive.  After several hacking attempts, half hitting the ground and half whacking straight through the air, we would finally make contact with a ball or two.  They wouldn’t go far, but we took these shots as small victories.  Reasons to come back for the next week’s lesson.  Still, by the end of the month we were no more vested in golf, than Tiger Woods was in fidelity.  It was a lost cause.

Our brief stint with the golf club put a damper on any future athletic pursuits we might have considered.  We gave ourselves to sports and sports said no.  While writing this post, however, I came across an old Facebook wall-to-wall exchange between myself and Yang which suggests that there is hope yet for the athletes within us.  I’ve copied and pasted it below.

Rohini bitch…how was the us open?

Yang it was awesome. you know that i’m not even a tennis fan, but it was seriously such an amazing time. we have to go. i plan on going every year, you should join me.

miss you. see you soon i hope.

Rohini let’s do it. actually let’s brush up our own tennis skills and play women’s doubles.

Yang that is the best idea i have ever heard.

Rohini team chindia kicks ass against the williams sisters.

I’ll be the first to admit it; golf wasn’t the sport for us.  But the potential is still there, my friends.  Even though Yang is scared of flying balls, and I’m mildly asthmatic, the two of us together, we’re full of untapped athletic potential.  And this potential will be serving up aces on next year’s Wimbledon courts.


01.20.10 @ around 11:15 pm

an AIM conversation between indihindibindi & chinesechekirz

indihindibindi: dude i didn’t eat dinner tonight
should i have oatmeal right now
chinesechekirz: yes
oatmeal is healthy
and delivious

indihindibindi: hahaha
that looks like a combination of delicious and devious
chinesechekirz: hahaha
i know
indihindibindi: describes oatmeal perfectly
chinesechekirz: it does
i’d like to think we can also use delivious to describe ourselves

indihindibindi: hahaha
it doesn’t sound good though
try saying it
chinesechekirz: hahah
indihindibindi: we just sound like foreigners