Poagao's Journal

Absolutely Not Your Monkey

Nov 22 2001

Last night after work I rode down to Saints and Si…

Last night after work I rode down to Saints and Sinners to meet up with Dean, Graham and Mark, all old newspaper veterans. I ordered my new-found favorite drink, Lemon Lime & Bitters, but this unorthodox request came close to throwing the entire bar staff into chaos as they ran around looking for some information on what exactly an LLB was. I was asked whether I wanted the one that tasted good or the one that was for medicinal purposes. Fortunately they located the dusty tome in which such information is supposedly located and mixed up an excellent concoction for me. Yum. Their chicken melt sandwich isn’t bad, either, by the way. We sat around talking and I got several helpful suggestions on my book from Dean and Graham, who have looked through it a bit. I really need to get that done soon, hopefully before Christmas.

After a while we made our way over to a new place called “China Pa”, on Xinyi and Anhe Rds. It was Grand Opening night, and the outside was decorated rather garishly with balloons and ribbons. Mark and I were waiting outside for Dean, who had fallen prey to the desires of his bladder, to arrive, discussing whether we should go in first or wait. Mark wanted to go in first. A group of people all wearing orange shirts with the words “Chivas Regal” were loading a bunch of drum equipment into the back of a truck, and we wondered whether they were promotors for Chivas Regal or some sort of drum band or both. One of the Chivas Regal guys was a stocky Chinese fellow with the sides of his head shaved and the rest of his hair tied up in a ponytail.

Dean showed up, and we proceeded inside to find a bad movie set-like atmosphere filled with the kind of people who only go anywhere to Be Seen. They all seemed to have that arrogant yet slightly furtive expression on their overly made-up faces, and both the shady characters in Armanis inside and their Benzes outside intimated more than a little participation by members of the Taiwanese underworld. A terrible lounge singer act was busy on the small stage playing terrible 70’s lounge songs, and a shimmering water light made the floor glow purple and green in slow succession. The whole place felt dark and dank, cramped by the presence of too many fake people and little tables. Dean made the observation that the place felt like a place some parents had built and left to be decorated by their school-age children. Our presence caused a ripple effect of social indignation; it’s always fun to make rich people feel uncomfortable.

Unfortunately I had to go meet Kirk and retrieve my turtles, so I left not long after we had arrived. As I was walking back from Kirk’s place, turtles in hand, I got a call from Maurice, who acted in A Man for All Seasons with me a few months back. He was wondering if I would be interested in a play called “Kafka’s Dick” (a comedy). He said they’re having a reading this Sunday at Grandma Nitti’s. I said I’d be there. I’ve never studied Kafka before, but anything that makes fun of a famous author’s penis has to be interesting.

Later on today Seamus and I might go over to Dean’s new place and hang out, even though I feel like I have a lot to do now that I’m back in Taiwan. The main thing is going through all of my pictures from Australia, and writing a piece about my journey on the Indian Pacific, updating my photo section, etc. I haven’t really practiced sword for a month, so this Friday’s class is probably going to be both painful and embarrassing. I can’t wait. In the meantime it’s nice to hear once more the pitter-patter of little webbed feet in my room at night.

posted by Poagao at 2:17 am  

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