Today was a bit frustrating.
It started out ok. Nice and bright. Xian-rui and I played ping-pong downstairs, and I managed to keep the ball in play for literally seconds at a time, a big improvement over the last time we played.
After Xian-rui left I took a shower and headed over to a Thai restaurant on Jinan Road where the “Little Bear Village” was having its annual New Year’s party. I didn’t know anyone there. Well, I did, online, but I’d never met anyone there face-to-face before. I was seated at the geeky table, apparently, with a few exceptions. I knew one guy from chatting online before. I noticed that there wasn’t a whole lot of animated discussion at the other tables. A round of weak alcohol seemed to help matters, as did the handing out of the exchanged gifts, along with a short introduction of each recipient.
I noticed a guy across the room who seemed familiar. And also very interesting. After the party broke up I went over and sat down at their table after seeing that one of the guys there had received the gift I brought. He turned out to be the cute guy’s little brother. We chatted for a while, and I was feeling pretty good about until I realized that he was already spoken for. What really smarts is that we’d exchanged messages online years ago but never got together. It’s too bad, really. He seems really nice.
So I left with my NT$200 red envelope and walked around the city’s alleyways for a while. I looking for a place to piss when I ran into an old acquaintance from the News. He’s still working there and was on his way to a bar that used to be Roxy 99.
It was still relatively early, and I decided to go to JB’s to watch Clay Soldiers on TV. The waitress switched the little TV in the corner to CTS, which for some strange reason was just starting “Free Willy,” as a drunk English woman put her ashtray on my table, sat down and decided to spray me with her repugnantly sweet perfume. As politely as I could, I refrained from punching her. I figured she probably had friends there and I didn’t want to miss the show over a bar brawl.
The time CTS had told me came and went, however, and no Clay Soldiers. I switched around the channels a bit, and then gave up. CTS was still showing Free Willy, and every time I saw that damn whale I just wanted to see a harpoon pierce its gaping maw. Preferably with the kid attached.
Discouraged, I waded through the crowd of soccer-watchers and left in time to catch the last train home. When I got online someone told me that they had seen the show, but very faintly on channel 11. CTS is channel 12. I’ll call tomorrow to see if they can explain what the hell was going on. Right now I need to take another shower and get this damn perfume off me.
UPDATE: DOH! It was on channel 11, one of CTS’s other channels. Oh, well. At least we’re being broadcast.