Poagao's Journal

Absolutely Not Your Monkey

Jul 12 2006

I met up with Prince Roy and another Tunghai alum …

I met up with Prince Roy and another Tunghai alum from the prehistoric ages, Tyler, on Friday night after work. Tyler is visiting from Australia, where he studies Chinese poetry. He and PR were apparently interested in Italian food, so I suggested we meet up at the corner of Zhongxiao and Dunhua, one of my many old hangouts, and walk up Dunhua to Cosi a Cosi. It was a hot night, of course, and I sat on top of the MRT exit, which was occasionally subjected to air conditioned breezes from a nearby shoe store. Taiwanese stores tend to leave their front doors open, if they even have front doors, in the summer, resulting in slightly cooler sidewalk travel as well as the need for a forth nuclear power plant.

PR and Tyler showed up soon enough, though, and we walked up to the restaurant, which had seating as it was almost 9pm by then. PR brought his copy of my book, which I signed for him, and then he got a waitress to take a picture of all of us.

The food was good, though the portions were smaller than I remembered. We had a couple of pizzas and other dishes before heading over to a teahouse PR and Tyler had just discovered, the Wistaria on Xinsheng South Road. That being yet another of my old haunts, (in fact I lived there when I started this account) I’d walked by the place many times but never gone in.

We walked in and got a table in the main room, where we ordered iron bodhisattva tea, which was quite tasty, almost like steely, burnt caramel. The teahouse was an old, possibly Japanese-era two-story house, obviously once inhabited by an official or other high-ranking person, and had a nice pond and garden in front, though it’s a bit too close to the road for complete tranquility. I took some pictures of the tea as we talked, and before we knew it, the place was closing, just in time for me to catch one of the last MRT trains home. I said good-bye to PR and Tyler, who were talking about going to get their heads shaved if they could find a barber open late enough, and walked down Xinhai to Roosevelt Road, where I took some pictures of damp street grates in the lamplight.

Due to the tea, I stayed fully awake until the wee hours of Saturday morning. Unfortunately I had to get up to pay the rent the next morning, as my new landlord could only come that morning. So Saturday was a bit of a blur. That night, however, we were having a farewell concert for Zoe at Bliss. Sandman and I took a taxi over there, arriving at about 11pm, but the place was packed. We could hardly fit up the stairs to the second floor, where Zoe, Duncan and David were already playing. I knew Zoe was popular, but damn, I didn’t know she had that many friends. Prince Roy showed up; I’d invited him as he’d never heard us play, but I felt a little embarrassed about the crowd and the fact that it had basically turned into a huge, drunken tribute to someone he’d never even met. Not exactly a normal MBR show, but then, what is?

I spotted the other Ramblers at a central table, but I couldn’t make it through the crowd. It was crowded far past capacity; it was a good thing there was a fire station just around the corner, I thought.

Eventually it came time for us to play on the tiny stage. I got a much-needed amp for the bass, as the crowd had been noisy throughout all the acts so far. Usually we can get them into the swing of things, though. We played Summertime/St. James, and I wandered through my soloes wondering when I was going to hit a bad note. I started the day tired, and by 2am I was hitting bottom. The smoke was as bad as the Living Room, and everyone’s eyes were blurry, but we just kept going, like we were powered by something other than ourselves. Finally, around 4, we ground to a halt. I stumbled around the people laying on couches getting my stuff together, and crowded into a cab back to Bitan with Slim, Chris and Sandman.

I crawled into bed at about 5am, but had to be up again at 8 for filming on Sunday. Due to unexpected churlishness, however, we were done by mid-afternoon, so I took a ride on the crazy bike up the river, just far enough to get a glimpse of the big yellow and blue Ikea across the river in Xinzhuang, and back in time for a delicious barbeque at my friend Greg’s cemetary-side residence. Much meat was consumed by both humans and dogs, and again I was met with puzzled looks when I explained the whole housing situation. Greg pointed out the International Space Station as it soared overhead, a bright dot. He claimed he could make out a second dot, the space shuttle, attached to it, but I could only see a bright, fast-moving dot. It was impressive.

As things were winding down, a foray was being planned over to Athula’s, but I was too tired. The late nights and lack of sleep over the weekend have kept me a step behind all week so far. I’ve been late to everything except movies (Superman Returns and Pirates of the Caribbean -I liked both, but enjoyed the latter more). And now, I’m running late for work, and it’s pouring outside. One of these days I hope to catch up.

posted by Poagao at 4:17 am  


  1. I really enjoyed the show. I hear you ran into one of my colleagues on your way in. I told him later he missed out. I sure hope my car gets here soon. Once it does, consider it at the disposal of Renegade Province Productions, on the weekends anyway.

    I’ll do what it takes to get my foot in the door of the movie business. What I lack in talent, I make up for in obsequiousness and fawning celebrity worship.

    Comment by Prince Roy — July 12, 2006 @ 5:15 pm

  2. We’re trying to get our feet in the door as well, Prince. Of course, you’re welcome to join us in our efforts.

    Comment by TC — July 12, 2006 @ 5:17 pm

  3. You guys are a long way from the Jail Pub in Donghai Bieshu.

    Comment by Anonymous — July 14, 2006 @ 5:03 am

  4. Powered by something other than ourselves? Vodka Redbull did it for me.

    Comment by sandman — July 17, 2006 @ 5:25 am

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