Impressive Story of American Anthem: The Star-Spangled Banner
After reading the story (the War of 1812) and listening to the anthem again, I found it so touching and impressive that i can't help sharing it.
(Hope spirits of deceased Thai patriots aren't mad at me. T.T)

'Sept 13-14, 1814: Held captive aboard a British ship while the Royal Navy attacks Baltimore, lawyer Francis Scott Key witnesses the nighttime bombardment of Fort McHenry. At dawn, when he sees the US flag still flying, an overjoyed Key immediately pens "The Star-Spangled Banner." Set to an English drinking song, Key's poem will become the official national anthem of the United States in 1931.

After his release, Francis Scott Key rewrote the poem in a Baltimore hotel room. It was printed anonymously under the title "Defence of Fort McHenry" before the Baltimore Patriot published it on September 20, 1814.'
(Story from 'The United States in the 19th Century')

***The Star-Spangled Banner***

Oh, say can you see by the dawn's early light
What so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars thru the perilous fight,
O'er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming?
And the rocket's red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.
Oh, say does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

On the shore, dimly seen through the mists of the deep,
Where the foe's haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines in the stream:
'Tis the star-spangled banner! Oh long may it wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle's confusion,
A home and a country should leave us no more!
Their blood has washed out their foul footsteps' pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave:
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved home and the war's desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav'n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: "In God is our trust."
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

*** Key saw the American flag still flying over Fort McHenry in Baltimore after a night of intense siege and bombardment by the British during the War of 1812. Seeing the flag was significant, for it meant that the fort survived the night without being overrun or surrendering***

Create Date : 25 พฤษภาคม 2554
Last Update : 25 พฤษภาคม 2554 21:01:35 น.
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Cloudy Christmas in Seattle Chinatown
...Written on December 25, 2010...

What I love about Seattle Chinatown on Christmas Day is every year most stores and restaurants in the area are still open for business. Those who benefit from this are some lonely aliens who have no family here and have no places to go on the happy holiday when almost all businesses in town are closed to allow employees to have a wonderful Christmas with their families. Unfortunately, I am one of those aliens :p

Once again, this Christmas 2010 I visited Seattle Chinatown in the early cloudy afternoon. While all other parts of Washington were falling asleep, Chinatown or International District was vigorously up and alive. Merchants were happily selling. And, at the same time, visitors were having a great time shopping or looking around. Restaurants still served a variety of Asian food and beverages as if it was a normal day. I walked around, shopped at Asian markets, bought three pretty goldfish as a Christmas present for myself, and stopped by Purple Dot Cafe, a Chinese restaurant on Maynard Ave S, for their super delicious Dim Sum. The restaurant was so busy that I had to wait in line for a while to get the first available table close to the door.

It was so nice to bring back my oriental lifestyle during the holiday season in the United States. The Dim Sum was very tasty as always. Winter breeze and sweet scent of Christmas all around amazingly gave me a festive feeling. Living by myself and away from my home country on the day most other people were surrounded by their loved ones was not bad at all. Right there and then, I felt so orientally Christmassy and wished every single day of year was Christmas!

Create Date : 15 พฤษภาคม 2554
Last Update : 16 พฤษภาคม 2554 18:41:49 น.
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Silly Positive and Negative Thoughts of the Day
Will give it another try with smelly spicy shrimp paste and some fresh veggies after the doctor changed my diet from clear liquid to ‘regular diet, as tolerated’. Hope my weak stomach is tolerant enough and I don’t have to get drowsy and fall as sleep for 24 hours due to an increasing nausea again this time. ;p

It’s worth it to learn how irresistible delicious spicy food is. Must thank the world for always giving humans unlimited chances to learn and enjoy things. This definitely makes our lives so wonderful and amazing.

In the meantime, still can’t believe how people are so happy with the death of Bin Laden. Life is not that easy. Things can be so unpredictable anywhere, anytime. Trying real hard not to imagine another retaliation. Ohhh how negative i am...

Anyway, no matter how bad or good Bin Laden was, I believe, in his whole life he had learned something just like we all human beings have. Learned to live. Learned to lose. Learned to be in pain. And got used to it.

Create Date : 15 พฤษภาคม 2554
Last Update : 15 พฤษภาคม 2554 11:03:14 น.
Counter : 243 Pageviews.

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Another 'Interesting' Experience in My Life
After surviving two rough and painful nights in the hospital outside my home country, I realized what I couldn't live without were my good health, support from all lovely people around me, and of course some money to pay medical bills for the part my health insurance plan didn’t cover. ;p

I greatly thankful for those who supported me as if they were my family, super professional medical team who took excellent care of me, and my health insurance plan that helped me pay most part of the medical bills.

It wasn’t too bad like I firstly imagined. Life will never go downhill as long as we live it without recklessness. Whatever is going to happen will happen. Be well prepared for whatever will unexpectedly come up. Then, it will just be another interesting experience in one’s life.

Create Date : 15 พฤษภาคม 2554
Last Update : 15 พฤษภาคม 2554 14:34:05 น.
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Lamb Green Curry at an American Bar on the AVE wasn't too bad :))
Tonight I got a chance to visit an American bar on the AVE (University Way, Seattle, WA, USA) in the neighborhood of my apartment and was tempted to try their Thai Green Curry after my third glass of Cabernet. Then, I ordered a bowl of green curry with lamb instead of chicken. After a while, a cute Egyptian waiter put a BIG bowl of steamed jasmine rice topped with Indian-American styled Thai green curry on my table. With an instinct of a waitress from Thai restaurants, I started to analyze all the ingredients and taste of that curry. Even though, it tasted kinda Indian and sour, it wasn't too bad at all. They put carrots and potatoes instead of Thai eggplants or bamboo shoot strips. To my surprise, I loved it! It tasted really good in an exotic way. I love the way they put cilantro instead of sweet basil in the curry, as the cooked basil leaves in many kinds of real Thai food, including my favorite green curry, always annoy my appetite. (This is my personal preference only. For anyone who loves sweet basil, please ignore this attitude.) We don't have to stick to anything traditional. do we? hehe ;p

In reality, humans aren't different from food. We cannot fake our identity. We cannot pretend to be someone else we aren't. We cannot fake who we are and where're we actually from. Just like this green curry, as soon as any Thais tried it, they would instinctually know the curry wasn't authentic Thai. But who cares? As long as it tastes good and even a real Thai customer, like me, loves it!!! ;)

Create Date : 15 พฤษภาคม 2554
Last Update : 15 พฤษภาคม 2554 10:58:23 น.
Counter : 230 Pageviews.

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