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Anne Ku at Ilp in May 2001
Anne Ku writes about her travels, conversations, thoughts, events, music, and anything else that is interesting enough to fill a web page. She has written and produced two chamber operas, premiered in Utrecht, Netherlands. See her publication list for more.
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Ten years of analyticalQ, platform for self-expression

Chinese Seafood Banquet on Wednesday 18 March 2009 at 7 pm in Utrecht
We have now 2 tables reserved....

After ten years of blogging and experimenting with the flexibility of cyberspace, I nearly established a tradition of celebrating the birthday of analyticalQ, my first website and the mother of all my other websites, by having dim sum or some kind of Chinese banquet each year. This time, however, I wanted to do something quite different.

A banquet is what my late grandfather would initiate after the end of each school term and to celebrate birthdays or reunions. I grew up on banquets, or you could say, I got used to celebrating by banquets. At such 10 course round-table events, my grandfather would find the best dish and put a portion of it on the side. He'd say,"Save the best for the last." Economists would say that the last bite would give the least utility. Perhaps he was fighting the theory of diminishing marginal utility.

At any rate, I resisted the temptation to contact all my friends and analyticalQ fans for the 10th anniversary celebration. It would be too easy to visit my favourite Chinese restaurant in Utrecht, discuss the 10 course menu with the owner, create an event on Facebook, contact everyone else by e-mail or telephone, and issue the following invitation:

"You are invited to celebrate the 10th anniversary of, which was launched as a platform for self-expression. Brace yourself for a 10 course dinner of Chinese seafood galore. Bring your own booze and share with others. Reserve now by depositing 10 euros. Ten people per table. Vegetarian table possible if enough people subscribe. After one table is formed, the price goes up to 15 euros per person. After two tables are reserved, the price goes up to 20 euros each. Space limited. Don't wait!"

It would be so easy to do this, especially after introducing Chinese cuisine to my musician friends the last few years. It's not economic to order a 10 course meal without having 10 people sitting at the table. The Dutch overcome this with "rijstafel" (Rice Table) in set menus of certain Chinese and Indonesian restaurants, kind of like the Turkish meze or the Spanish tapas. But often these are pre-cooked. I am talking about a real banquet where each dish is freshly made and served in a big plate.

Instead of a banquet, I am going to host a rather sober afternoon tea party with other women who are also working on their first novels, either openly or secretly. It is truly self-expression as we choose to pour our souls on paper, over many years, in the back burner. Come to think of it, I have always wanted to go to a creative writing workshop or join a creative writing group. I love going on writing retreats, though I've only been to one in my life, a week-long "writing from life" course in Devon. It's about time I initiate events that I've always dreamed of participating in.

I've not totally abandoned the idea of a banquet. I've suggested that we get our partners to work in the kitchen --- to cook us a gourmet meal, not 10 courses, but 5.

15 March 2009

Related links:
What is self-expression?
analyticalQ fan club
Third anniversary
5th anniversary of analyticalQ
analyticalQ 8th anniversary
40 years of Arvon Foundation
Writing to heal the emotions
Remembering Devon
Writing retreat
Lasting thoughts