Poagao's Journal

Absolutely Not Your Monkey

May 21 2002

My MRT picture is, as predicted, now featured in t…

My MRT picture is, as predicted, now featured in the Mirror Project. Actually, that wasn’t too hard to predict, since they pretty much take any picture that features a reflection of the photographer. I still enjoy it, though. It’s spontaneous photography for the most part, since more and more people are keeping tiny digital cameras with them at all times, and anyway do you honestly plan to find a mirror to take pictures of?

My friend Mindcrime, aka Chris, has published his version of last Saturday, for all of you conspiracy theorists out there who are interested in a “grassy knoll” angle on that fateful day, as well as an account of his Episode II-watching experience. Unfortunately, audiences in Hsinchu tend to be a little more, shall we say, provincial when it comes to theater behavior, although there was one plastic-bag man in the theater when we saw the movie at Warner Village I came very close to throwing something at. Fortunately for him, I didn’t have anything throwable with me at the time. But such examples are far more rare in Taipei than they are in a place like Hsinchu, where, I suspect, you can’t even find frozen TV dinners. Then again, you probably don’t have as many insufferable snobs and arrogant business-types in the smaller towns as you find in Taipei. It’s a bit of a trade-off, in any case.

My roommate, not Lin Jia-wen but the Studio Classroom guy, said that they want to interview me for their magazine/radio program. He gave me a list of questions his co-worker, a Canadian guy, wants to ask me. Most of the questions are quite broad, subjects I could go on and on about, and honest answers could conceivably get me into trouble. Not that that’s ever stopped me before. Only recently have I begun to insert a little bit of thinking before opening my big mouth and inserting some portion of my anatomy. I suppose this is progress of a sort. The danger with knowing the questions beforehand is that, instead of thinking of reasonable answers that nobody will have a problem with, I tend to spend the extra time thinking up really sarcastic, stinging replies that might get people thinking about aspects of life here that they probably haven’t thought about before. And the problem with that is that most of the English-studying Taiwanese crowd probably doesn’t give a shit, while most of the foreigners here probably consider me a heretic, since my views do not often coincide with theirs.

Ah, whatever. I’m not going to dwell on it. They ask, I answer. Interview ends. I go have a drink.

Had dinner with my friend Jim, whose mother is Taiwanese and father African American, last night. Jim was born and raised in Taiwan, and never met his father. He’s a big, shy, beefy guy who works with foreign maid service in Kaohsiung. He had no place to stay last night, since many of the saunas are closed due to the drought, so I let him crash at my place. Talking with him reminded me that it’s been years since I was in Kaohsiung, the sprawling port city to the south.

I should take a three-day weekend or something and go down there to visit various friends, and just get away from Taipei for a bit as well. There’s a certain gritty electricity to a large subtropic port city. I spent six years of my childhood living a stone’s throw from the bay of Houston, and the smell of fishing boats, cranes and rigging always brings back memories of the flood-prone neighborhood where even the evacuation trucks wouldn’t dare enter during hurricanes. Mad magazines, Bubba Yubba gum, getting out of school and into fights with neighborhood kids, and raiding lobster traps.

I hated Texas, always have, probably always will. The combination of the weather and the attitudes made it a most unpleasant experience, especially after being ripped from a basically happy existance when I was in 1st grade in Florida and sent to hell in the form of James Bay Elementary School in Seabrook, Texas. I spent the next six years waiting for us to move back to Florida, and just as I was getting used to the area and the people, we did.

Maybe I don’t need to go to Kaohsiung right away.

posted by Poagao at 8:01 am  

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