Tuesday, December 27, 2005

open house

I'm not in Korea. At least not now. I'm in Philly.



This is nuts.
My family had a blow out party. It was a success, completely fabulous. There were some people in attendance. And by people, I mean fantastic Philly powerhouses, brilliant intellectuals, beautiful people, artists, and funny funny people. People I haven't seen in forever. People I haven't ever seen but heard so much about. People I love and adore. People, just people.

Sometimes the community is just colorful.

Friday, December 23, 2005

to do

Though I might not get around to all of this I endeavor to:

eat food from Bonsignor (preferably empanadas)
get a smoothie from liquiteria. I really want from lucky's, but they closed ages ago. (Notice that the review is written by Nick Catucci)
buy lots of granola, deodorant, and toothpaste with fluoride to come back and sell on the blackmarket
eat falafel
have pizza from Two Boots
drink a mojito, or two
buy sexy panties and bras (nothing pink, or frilly, or with happy bears, or bows, or SUPER padding)
buy books or magazines (IN ENGLISH!) at St. Mark's Bookshop
play with Toys in Babeland
Jameson, on the rocks
see a movie at one of the Landmark Cinemas (Sunshine, Angelika, or Film Forum--prefrence on the Sunshine)
I wouldn't mind dancing
standing on a rooftop
seeing someone famous in the street
walk around the village, LES, and Union Square
bumping into Hotdog, the crackwhore from Tompkins Square Park, would top it off

Last time I saw Hotdog, she referred to me as "Skinnybitch," as if we were old friends and this is always what she called me. And the time before that she was trying to sell me a pile of hair in the subway station at Delancy Street. Gotta love her.

So, anyone care to join me?

Sunday, December 18, 2005

a year approaches

I wait for markers of time to reflect on change.
a new journal
a new year
a feeling that today is the day I get to start something new.

This is my 199th post...


I was having tea with my acupuncturist on Thursday. She told me that her philosophy /view on life is that it's a process of loss and that "nothing is too important to lose." She said, "I'm prepared to lose everything--my family, my job, my clinic--everything." Since I would define myself as a collector of sorts, this was profound.

I'm forgetful, so I collect evidence of experiences, people, and places to remind me that I knew/had them. I'd say that life is more like a process of collecting (experiences of loss included). I have an awkward relationship with the idea of attachment. I'm aware of what it does, but I don't reject it--or at least not nearly as often as I should. I wouldn't go as far to say that I'm in love with Seoul (and please don't tell NYC that I'd even go so far as to even speak of such a thing), but my new attachment is with this place the things and people I've come to know here. It has developed on top of the already existent attachment I had built for all the things and people I knew before I came here. Moreover, a layer of new attachment has grown over the self I knew before I came here. Has this place changed me? Am I different(how could I not be)? Am I ready to let go of that previous self? To reunite with that self? To contrast that self with the one who will be coming back to Asia?

I arrived in Korea on December 27th, 2004. I'm going home on the 24th... for a visit. How strange that feels. How good that feels. This particular concoction of excitement and anxiety is foreign. My anticipation leaves me restless at night imagining, planning, going over details, and giving myself reminders in my dreams. I dreamed that I forgot my passport at home. I dreamed of a hug I've been longing and waiting for--long and close. I dreamed I survived a building collapse--reminding me that no matter what happens, I'll be okay(right?).

I'm anticipating exhaustion, love, comfort, joy, difficulty leaving again, and a view of the change in me through the eyes of all the people I haven't seen in far too long. I've lost a year with these people and "home," while I gained more that I could have ever expected only for me.

The countdown begins... until the next marker. So now, I'm just drinking wine, and wastin' time 'till I get to be in the moments my mind has been intoxicated by.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

the good stuff

A couple months ago, Ji and Phil introduced me to bokbunjajoo (though on the bottle it says bokbunja in Korean). It's this great raspberry wine. I wasn't really interested at first, though I'm a big fan of raspberries. Now it's all I want to drink.

15% alcohol, cute little deep burgundy colored bottle, reasonably priced, and it's served in adorable little glasses. FABULOUS!

However, some companies make it way too sweet or they don't know what they are doing and it just tastes nasty. SO, you have to get this one:

don't accept any imitations


The beer here is terrible. You have the choice of Hite, fondly called (S)hite, Cass, AKA "_ass," or OB, which of course can be referred to as B.O. For the most part these are just variations on the theme of beer flavored water. Thus, my discovery of bokbunja was like a shining moment in history--blog worthy.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

animal sounds

I have a particular fascination with the fact that the sounds animals make changes from one language to the next. I mean, I think a cat goes "meow" but the French say that a cat goes "miaou." In Korean a dog goes "mung-mung," and of course I have no idea why I think a rooster goes "cock-a-doodle-doo." That could possibly be the strangest one.

For more crazy animal sounds check this. And I can't leave out this guy, he makes great animal noises and funny faces too.

Monday, December 12, 2005

a massage gone wrong



I thought I'd go for a relaxing massage, and instead I came home with bruises like someone had given me the biggest hickey of my entire life--all over my back. The first half of the massage was a bit rough but felt kinda good. Then the second part included EXTREME CUPPING. There was a machine that had a suction cup attached to it that the woman repeatedly moved over my skin. Ouch.

Somewhere in the middle I quickly picked up how to say, "that hurts" in Korean (아파요). I showed my acupuncturist/Korean Doctor today, and she was appalled. She was like, "Don't do that again. It's not good for your body." Yeah, got it.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

faux grass and big beer

On a chilly Saturday night in Kagnam, I found myself a bit toasty from the beers in my belly, however still not quite warm enough for the weather.

Freezing our butts off, Mr. O and I discovered a sight that warmed our little hearts--an astroturf covered pole. Fake grass on a pole. Really. I have no idea what the purpose of such a thing is, other than to be a prop in fabulous pictures such as this one:



Mr. O (Mr. Mr. O if you're nasty), you are my favorite word pimp. You got SEN-SUH (a sense of style) like no other.


Earlier in the evening, at Herzen, we had ordered 5 of these things:



This thing came to the table flashing, smoking, and bubbling. It holds, I believe, 5000cc of beer. What a production! Then, somehow... how should I say this? hmmmm... one of the drunken idiots of our party smuggled/stole/"borrowed" one of these massive theatrical beer receptacles. I actually found myself disapprovingly shaking my head saying "foreigners... " OR, rather, I think what I might have said was "Gotta watch out for these white people these days. They're like the new black people."

It was noted, due to my mixed ethnicity, that I am the only one among the crowd that can get away with making a statement like that. Of course, I was joking and I thought I was hilarious, but you know it was somewhat uncharacteristic of my humor and in bad taste. Not cute. Just as much as I wished he would take back the beer thingie, I wish I could retract my statement. I'd replace it with something like a sharp disapproving look--the one I shoot my students when that act like complete fools, the one I've been perfecting over the past few months/years, the one I guess I'll have handy if I ever become a parent.

Lastly, the hair of the week:

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

panache

The word of the day, appropriately, is panache. One of my favorites. Now what's additionally fabulous about this word of the day is that it includes a quote from Eric Asimov, the food writer for the NYT. My strange connection is that in college I used to babysit one of his sons, when he went out to eat dinner. I kinda always wished he'd bring me dessert, but alas that only occurred in my fantasies.

Word of the Day for Monday December 5, 2005

panache \puh-NASH; -NAHSH\, noun:
1. Dash or flamboyance in manner or style.
2. A plume or bunch of feathers, esp. such a bunch worn on the
helmet; any military plume, or ornamental group of feathers.

Dessert included a marvelous bread pudding and a fair
bananas Foster, the old-time New Orleans dish, which was
prepared with great panache tableside, complete with a
flambé moment.
--Eric Asimov, "New Orleans, a City of Serious Eaters."
[1]New York Times, July 4, 1999

It is... an inevitable hit, a galvanizing eruption of
energy, panache and arrogantly sure-footed stagecraft that
comes at a time when theatrical dance is in the doldrums.
--Terry Teachout and William Tynan, "Seamy and Steamy."
[2]Time, January 25, 1999

Although Black didn't have many friends and was not among
the school's leaders, he was likeable, had panache, and his
contemptuous tirades were rarely taken at face value.
--Richard Siklos, [3]Shades of Black: Conrad Black and the
World's Fastest Growing Press Empire
_________________________________________________________

Panache is from the French, from Medieval French pennache,
from Italian pinnacchio, "feather," from Late Latin
pinnaculum, diminutive of penna, "feather." It is related to
pen, originally a feather or quill used for writing.

movie binge

About a month ago I rented Talk to Her (Hable Con Ella) on VHS. I forgot that the subtitles would be in Korean. I decided to watch it anyway. I tried to listen carefully to the Spanish and meanwhile I read the Korean. My brain was swimming and I was only picking up fragments. I still don't really know what happened in that film. This evening, I considered renting it again, but quickly talked myself out of it as I realized that I'd jut be torturing myself (again). Instead, I indulged in an old favorite.



I rented To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar just for kicks. There's something about the trio of Wesley Snipes, as Noxeema Jackson, Patrick Swayze, and John Leguizamo as Chi-Chi Rodriguez--ALL IN DRAG FOR THE ENTIRETY OF THE FILM--that tickles me. There's even a part with RuPaul in it. I always say that you can't go wrong with Rupaul (or ODB, may he rest in peace).

I had a brief period where I would repeatedly watch To Wong Foo and Pricilla: Queen of the Desert. Okay, maybe it wasn't so brief, but I just couldn't get enough. Drag Queens on road trips! Boas in the desert, driving in stilettos, introducing small towns to the joys of drag! What more can you ask for? Okay maybe I'm divulging too much info here, but my lowest of lows with the movie binging thing include my extended relationships with Clueless, Blade 2, and (sadly) Bring It On!

I also sometimes go on a spree. Right before coming to Korea I ended up watching all these films with Paul Giamatti playing a middle aged, yet fascinating, loser like in American Splendor, and Sideways.

Other times my movie binges are completely random. I'm having a vivid flashback to a time when I had to pay late fees for two films my sister and I had rented from TLA. I believe the guy behind the counter announced that Juwanna Mann and The Sound of Music were three days late being returned. Ooops... I just wanted to watch Juwanna Mann one more time.

I may have the worst or the most bizarre taste and habits when it comes to movies.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

winter in hongdae


...at the perfect rooftop lounge to watch the snow fall.

Winter is here for sure. Seasons creep up on you in Korea. I was completely unprepared for what Seoul was serving up this Saturday--SNOW! My cute toesies took me to Hongdae to see an art show, and then they almost froze off. Hongade exists, in my mind, as a place of warm fun. It was the backdrop for hot memories. Thus, it was somewhat unsettling to see frost covering my summer chillspot.

The art show, Exposure, was nice... A bunch of funky foreigners with a sprinkle of multilingual natives hovering around boxed wine and mountains of used dixie cups. The main purpose for going was to meet Angelique Kuyper, another Philly native who went to UArts. She's a friend of a friend of my friend from highschool's mother. I met her email address sometime last year and she became one of those aquiantances I sporatically see in my inbox. After our extended distant virtual relationship, it was fabulous to finally meet her in the flesh.



I also made the acquaintance of a lovely woman named Rena. I found myself at Mary Jane's--a bar that in order to find from the park you go towards the university, pass two 7-11s, take a right at the second one, go down the right fork and you find a bit along on the left in the basement. I can't believe anyone ever finds it, particularly drunk people. Anyway, I spotted this lady across the bar and felt that she would be the type that I could pop the question to and get the right response from. The perfect moment was magically created as I emerged from the stall in the bathroom. There she was fixing her hair, adjusting her tube top. So, I asked if she wanted to play with one of my nipples; She was thrilled. I asked if I could take a picture; She readily posed. FABULOUS. My kinda girl.



Then I found this cutie on my way out showing Ji, Phil, and Vic, his nipples. He let me touch one. I figured it was an even trade.



and if you were wondering, yeah... my hair's black (temporarily)

Saturday, December 03, 2005

bottom of the fryer



Okay. What's that?

My guess is that it's something on a stick, possibly a corndog, with fries, and whatever else was laying around, stuck to it. Though I applaud the love of food on a stick in Korea, I haven't built up the nerve to try this one quite yet. Maybe there are some things I can just skip.

Friday, December 02, 2005

failure

Today was great. Significant. Worthy of notice and remembrance. Today was the day I signed a contact for a job to work at a university in Seoul. This feels like an accomplishment. I got something I deeply desired and talked about for a long time.

I walked out of the gates of the University the way I walked down 5th Avenue after saying goodbye to my parents when they dropped me off at NYU. Then, I had said to myself, "This is my city now." I felt that I had made it. I reached the place I wanted to be. That feeling is fresh, hopeful, confident, and rare.

On the day of graduation I felt it too, but it was different. I was 23 getting my master's degree. I've said it before, it was the single most exciting and simultaneously the most frightening moment of my life. I had attained something I felt was great and felt the overwhelming pressure of having to do something significant and worthwhile next. I would have to continue to achieve or I'd die from the thought that I'd wasted all that time, effort, and money I and other people had invested in me.

I didn't gracefully move into a high paying glamorous job, lifestyle, and a fabulous apartment to go with it. Instead, my year in Brooklyn was spent grieving. I was mourning my previous existence and my old life. I had died a bit, actually a lot, and I simply existed. When I wasn't numb, I didn't feel much other than regret. Regret is the worst feeling to hold in your heart.

And upon reaching this place and time in my life, I walk forward, remembering my greatest failures and moments of rejection(an eight foot bubblegum machine, an attempt at being a curator, a pathetic public access show). I hope that I truly learned from them. I remember all the moments when I felt so immensely "less than" and humiliated. I look to the ways I eventually picked myself up after being dragged along on my face and hope that this won't turn into a situation where that will be necessary.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

ddong



This won't be the first time I've talked about poo, and it probably won't be the last, but the whole ddong thing is worth mentioning again just... 'cause it's funny! I came across a whole line of products by Dalki with this character, Dongchimee.

The pen has a pile of poo on the end where you click it. There is a picture on the body of the pen of the ddong man and a squatty toilet. I found some notebooks, so I bought them too. They have strange scenes of Dongchimee experimenting with poo. It seems that Dongchimee's side kicks are a creepy looking fly and a bunch of flying laxatives. Who's job is it to come up with this stuff? Who are you?


Monday, November 28, 2005

magic juice

I started seeing my acupuncturist again on a regular basis. The change in weather messed my whole body up. I went because my hands started to feel achy and sore. I'm an old lady on the inside. I can feel when it's going to rain from the bursitis in my hip and the cold gets into my joints and makes me crabby.

We started some new therapy. Moxa placed on specific points. I have gotten used to the smoking wooden bowls on my stomach thing, but this is different. The moxa is like a short stubby incense stick. They are about the diameter of a pencil and no longer than an inch. At the end there's an adhesive sticker that looks like a reinforcer. The nurse sticks this thing on me and lights it up watching it burn down to my skin. This is supposed to put heat into certain points that have too much cold. All I know is that it leaves a little brown stain on my skin for like a day and it still smells of moxa. I'm not settled on whether I like the smell or not.



A few of my coworkers have come down with sinusitus, and I'm pretty sure I have the same. I figured I'd see if I could go the more natural route instead of just taking another round of antibiotics like I have done so many times in the past. I got some acupuncture on points on my left leg and foot. AND then I got some crazy package of dry herbs and a thick herb drink. First I have to take the dry stuff (it has the consistency of instant coffee mix) like it's a shot and follow it with the witch doctor juice. The drink comes in a pouch and should be warmed slightly. I wouldn't say it's delicious, but I wouldn't say it's the worst medicine I've had to take.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

oosan



A couple of years ago I found the absolute cutest umbrella in a stationary store right off of Washington Square Park. Petite, pink, perfect. What made it truly unique was the little switch that made the LEDs on the points blink. I had to have it.

This umbrella made rainy days something to look forward to. I've been really good about holding onto this one. Only once before was I so good about an umbrella. I had a hunter green golf umbrella for about 4 years throughout undergrad. I left it on the subway one day. I was devastated about my umbrella situation until I met the hot blinky lady.

Recently, I went to get my hair cut and when I got home I realized I had forgotten my umbrella somewhere, maybe at the salon. Actually, I wasn't exactly sure if I had left it there... but, I figured I had just lost it. I bought a new cute frosty white umbrella out of necessity one day at a convenience store and decided to just move on.

I was near the salon the other day so I popped in and just asked if by any chance I had left it there and they still had it. Well... THEY DID! After a whole month and a bit. That never happens. Can you believe it?! REUNITED with a cute umbrella!



Another note on umbrellas:
I was in the GSMart and happened to glance over to see a group of girls all "testing out umbrellas." They were opening them up fully, pulling them over their heads, and swirling them all over(a laSingin' in the Rain). They didn't seem to be concerned about the fatc that they were indoors, AT ALL.

I thought that maybe they were just a little silly, but then I saw it again and again at other places. Though I'm not superstitious, I wouldn't do that. I guess it's just not common for people (where I come from) to do--unless you're letting it drying out in the tub. The bathroom is an exception to the rule for some reason. I realized how silly I've been all these years not to open an umbrella indoors.

where would you find pussy in the grocery store?



I still love miss pussy.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

megamachine



They're new, and they're huge. They have everything. You can use your transit card to buy snacks. The retrieval process is quite a production (there's a conveyor belt involved). Fabulous.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

silly service



Of course your booze should come with more booze AND toothpaste. Duh.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

and p.s. love...

I like spending my time with you. It makes it flow from one good moment to the next much easier--filling the space in between with anticipation and productive thoughts.

Friday, November 18, 2005

the joys of ESL (cont.)


Does the books are important for children?

The book is important for children. There is wise and many good ways inside the book. Read a book. we have a good brain and wise.

Book is have smart. All the book is have a energy to smart. but all the books are not. The comic books are instead bad.

Book is important for children besides the man. Many man said read a book to children. Man read a book to writting well and easy work in the company.

Book make language well. language is linking to book. If, read a book well. this people have language well. Apart study the language.

One day doesn't read a book. come out the spine inside the mouth lately People doesn't read the many books. Many people hardworking to read a book and become a smart!


The best part of this essay is, "One day doesn't read a book. come out the spine inside the mouth lately." WHAT IS THAT SUPPOSED TO MEAN?!? I couldn't string together a list of random words like that if I tried. It's looking like this one has a future in writing English signs or slogans for notebooks and other products that could potentially be featured on Engrish.com.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

fetish

It's happened. I don't know what it is exactly, but it happened. I discovered, via my webstats, that my feet (and legs) are on a German foot fetish site. This is so hilarious. Life just keeps getting funnier.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

potty


I was at the bus station and I had 4 minutes before my bus left. Though I didn't have to go, I had a terrible feeling that if I didn't go to the bathroom, I was going to have to go to the bathroom. I was expecting the worst. I thought it would smell terrible, or I'd have to wait in a long line, but it turned out to be alright.

Then I saw the foreigner toilet. They had one for kids, which I think is adorable, and then the foreigner toilet! I thought at first, okay maybe all of them are squatty toilets but this one is like a sitter. BUT that wasn't the case, they all were western style sit down toilets! Even the kiddy toilet.

I felt like I was looking at a WHITES ONLY sign next to a water fountain. For a moment, I considered stealing the sign. I realized it would have been a bit difficult and I didn't have any time to mess around. Thus, I settled for just taking a picture. I stepped outside my body, and saw myself taking a picture of a sign in a bathroom, and thought about how strange I must have looked. That's probably why they make separate toilets for my kind...

Maybe there's something here I'm not getting. Anyone out there got some insight on this one?

more nostalgia

from the Philly SEPTAdventure journals:

past my window. in my head. between my headphones. entangled in my thoughts. newness for my day. sugar for the coffee i don't drink. a drip of honey. slowly come to a quiet stop.

-------

(right around "Nicetown" which is not exactly so nice)

fantastic. this must be my special day. the most spectacular thing decided to sit directly in front of me.
wearing a faux fur black jacket and a diamond earring.
an elegant older black man with a long grey mustache and BLUE eyes.
His loud magenta dyed hair, neatly braided in intricate cornrows zigzagging all over
his head. braids pulled tightly exposing telltale grey roots that creeped around the edges and curves of his fabulous coiffure.
YES, magenta. A hot bold magenta.
Captured
I caught myself staring.
-
I wondered what goes on in his head. What his thoughts sound like.
What does he says to himself before walking out the door each day?
I wouldn't mind crawling into that one, just for a few... see out of those eyes.
-
I thought he was fabulous. That day on the 23... I was 25
feeling old when I was reminded to live young always
as life passed by my window
i thought
smile at children, wear pink, dance, dream,
be the outrageous one
and love. just love.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Feminism...

Now also a bar in Hongdae. What will the Koreans think of next?



When I thought it just couldn't get any better, I found a bag at artbox I couldn't pass up. Prolific Milk yields milk, and all food products derived therefrom. Okay... Yes, it does ask at the bottom, "Were you bottle-fed or breast-fed as a child?" This was so strange I had to buy it. Then, I actually had to look up milch to see if it's a real word. IT IS! It's an adjective meaning "giving milk."

getting lost, finding art

With a cup of peppermint tea in my hand I set out in the early afternoon to find a specific artshow. I wanted to see works by Tim Noble and Sue Webster at Kukje gallery. I got lost and ended up taking a long scenic art tour around Insadong. It was a wonderful solitary artsy afternoon. I listened to The Philadelphia Experiment (the remixes) and wandered down tree lined streets littered with yellow gingko leaves and orange-brown maple leaves.



Once I realized I was far from the place I hoped to be I decided to check out where I was. I came across the Daelim Contemporary Art Museum. The building was interesting so I decided to check out the show, Our Mutual Crossing, with photos by Lee Won Chul & Andrew Wim Sheehy. The self-portraits were often of shadows. Something I've always loved. And a lot of the photos were taken of images reflected in water, puddles, mirrors on a car door, or windows. I thought this was a clever way to take pictures of people in public without them knowing. I thought about how you could set up pictures just as you wanted and all you had to do was wait for your random subject to walk into the frame.


As I continued on my detour I came across the Jean Art Center, that had a huge sculpture of a pumpkin with dots all over it sitting in the front. "That's cool. Wonder who did it," I thought. Turns out it's the work of Yayoi Kusama! One of my favorite crazy art ladies. I remembered going to her show LOVE FOREVER at the MOMA a while back. Man does she ever like dots. Apparently, due to some sort of mental illness, she's seen images of dots and flowers all her life. Her art is a way to control her world. I loved her room filled with strange little banana/phallic red polka dot pillow sculptures. I have no idea what the pumpkin is all about though. Regardless, it was like getting the update on an old friend, hearing that all is well. I left content.



I've been thinking a bit about artists as control freaks. At least creative control freaks. They want their vision to be pure, perfect. They want to have an environment, a medium, a platform to be the sole ruler of their universe. I guess it's kinda the same old story--that artists are narcissists with a god complex or something like that. Additionally, in many ways, I think that the art is what keeps many artists sane. It's a way to control themselves... maybe(?)

A block down the street, I found an empty gallery, Brain Factory. No one was even sitting in the gallery watching that no one stole the art. A show titled Tactile Illusion showed the work of Lee Ji Eun. Funky stuff, hard to describe.

I walked past the Blue House, where the president lives, and gazed past it to the beautiful mountains that stand behind all the guards, gates, and other hoopla. Finally I found The Joy of Sex, at Kukje. The drawings they featured were okay, but more impressive were the two shadow pieces at the front of the gallery. A Pair of Dirty Fucking Rats is a brilliant, funny, little piece. It's a pile of found objects, just garbage, strategically placed so that the shadow casts the image of these two lovely rats in the act.



Even more impressive were the paper cutout (sorry, no pic) mobiles. They cast the most intricate and fascinating shadows. So unexpected.

After my art excursion I went to see The Corpse Bride, and ended the night at a board game cafe with a bunch of fabulous people planning a party. All in all a good day.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

journals from the past

red brooklyn journal: truths and lies, but mostly unfortunate truths

I used to collect stamps. I'd daydream about discovering a stamp that was worth a considerable amount of money. I was also a girl scout for about 3 years. Until recently, these were the two most embarrassing/secretly fabulous nerdy pieces of my history that I adored. Now, I knit. I'm actually kinda good at it too.

-----

I want to put you in my pocket

I want to have two of you for breakfast
(along with a scoop of ice cream on the side)

I want to play under covers
kiss you silently
tell you I love you always

I like you safe on my skin. close. inside.
you are special like newness

over and over like the day then night
but then night again

I adore the mornings with you there

-----

There is a hum behind my thoughts. It's a faint organ echoing in a cathedral.

-----

A massive gelatinous slug like shaped mound of goo dripped from her pussy and splattered on the floor at our feet. As I wiped a bit of warm ick from my ankle, I concluded that this was, by far, the most horrifying and simply the nastiest thing I'd ever experienced. At least since the time a girl went down on me and in the middle of it all I discovered I had gotten my period.

-----

I had enough sangria and then I had another cocktail.
Enough meaning I lost count of how many because I was making conversation with strangers
then while waiting for the bathroom
I struck up a full discussion on the Bloomberg 2 to 1 bathroom ratio thing.
We delved into the depths of why women spend so much more time in the bathroom.
The conclusion was that women wash their hands.

I had so much fun last night I broke the send button on my cell phone. It cracked diagonally exposing the LED underneath. It was the sacrifice I had to give up to the gods of the party. Thou haveth too much fun and you must giveth away a piece of thyself... or rather thy cell phone.

Summer in New York is meant for being a sloppy mess in the streets.

-----

At the foot of the bridge
in the back of a cab
I remember where I used to live
where I once played
and the past hopes for my current existence
Whimpering another unconvincing pep talk
slow then fast
I lost track of where I chose my path
and where fate took over

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Gyeongju

pics from Gyeongju.



I went south for a little trip to Gyeongju with my adopted family. They're so cute. I went to some museums, tombs, and temples.

garden of headless Buddha sculptures

Then I took a walk around my neighborhood and finished up the roll with patterns, the lake, and long paths.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

the spell checker on blogger

doesn't know the word blog.

too many things

I have a gift for collecting little pieces of paper and other odds and ends that I claim are "really important." I don't know what to do with all this stuff, but I feel like I NEED it and if I toss it I'm going to regret it later. The piles have started to resemble mountains and so I started to hide the maps, quotes, letters, pictures, ticket stubs, etc. in drawers and folders trying to deny the existence of such a large quantity of crap. But it's not crap, that's why I hold onto all these things in the first place. I need to be reminded. I need to see these things. I need to know where to find the information quickly when that time comes. I keep telling myself I'm going to build the big ass archive, a scrapbook of sorts. But all the paper overwhelms me so I continue to file and hide.

the wall

MY NEW STRATEGY.
I've resorted to a bulletin board format to document, inform, decorate, and organize. In a way it does a similar job to what a blog does, just in a physical space with all my tangible stuff. It may be the start of a new artform/craft. On top of pasting I've started to use plastic bags as pockets to store loose items I don't want to make permanent, but removable. It's like a small window into my world.

I put up things I want to hold onto (like the shells I picked up on the beach in Pusan and the package of crushed red peppers from Pizza Hut my mother gave to me that holds a story much funnier than the actual item). It holds important info--from business cards to addresses and urls. There are things I need to keep till later when I'll use them, like money from Thailand, stamps, and funny stickers. There are things I want to remember. There are maps and calendars. There are dreams I wrote down, there are quotes, there are articles that caught my eye, and notes from books I read.

I'm going to continue to work in this manner till I have to leave this apartment. Then I can simply roll them up, stick them in a tube, and take them with me. I'm already on sheet number two.

the wall

zipper

I have all these random little things I've had for too long. I'm starting to make things out of them once and for all. Everything else is going to be thrown out! Create or purge!


my zipper necklace.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

nipples and breasts galore

Who could ask for anything more?
Whatever it is I think I see, becomes a breast or nipple to me... nipples, nipples, breasts, nipple necklace, breast cushion, breast change purse.







Monday, October 24, 2005

a strange day

I made myself lunch. Then I forgot it at home. Not in the fridge, but all ready, in a cute bag next to the door. I put it down when I was putting on my shoes and didn't pick it back up. Strange, but I feel that this was the thing that just set me off for the rest of the day.

I often wonder if it is my students that make me insane and wacky, or if after extended periods of time in my presence I wear off on them and make them crazy. Maybe it's a bit of both. I always seem to encourage a little bit of chaos. I try to make them question stuff and spend a lot of time giving them opportunities to explore their creative abilities. I guess sometimes it gets a little out of hand, on my part or theirs, and I'm left simply shaking my head. Today was a perfect example.

In my first class I discussed why calling the Native Americans in our current story "Indians" could be offensive. Later, I had to address why saying "Teacher is an Indian! Teacher is an Indian" followed by hooting and sound effects that might have been in an old school cowboy flick (woo-woo-wooo-woo-woo), is considered culturally insensitive. Then I lost it and ended up lecturing my group of 8 and 9 year old students on why it is simply not nice to say "Indians are ugly." I'm not sure they were picking up all that I was laying down, but... well, it was interesting. I couldn't help myself. I couldn't just let it go.

In my second class we discussed religion. I didn't bring it up. One girl raised her hand with that curiosity and spark that looked like a real question, instead of the typical disappointing "can I get a drink of water?" She asked me, out of nowhere, "Teacher, you believe in God?" Now, one must realize that though these students have slightly more developed English speaking abilities than my first class, the vocabulary for this level includes words like telephone, suitcase, and upstairs. They hardly have the vocabulary to to discuss such a topic and they're only 12 to 14 years old. However, it was a fascinating conversation. Completely unexpected! One student boldly told me and the class that he's an atheist. To quote him he said, "No church. No god. Just me." He went on to say that he has belief only in himself. Hey, cool with me. A girl told me of the fights in her class at school between the Christians and the Catholics. And a third young lady actually said, "I believe in god! YAY!" I spoke briefly on tolerance in basic terms and moved on to describing the difference between the present progressive (I am walking to school) and the simple present (I walk to school everyday). It was so surreal.

My third class is the epitome of insane. The class of six fluent little boys... the fart obsessed 11 year olds... started a protest today. When Michael requested that we play a game for the remaining hour, of course I refused. I told him that we had a lot to cover and that it was simply crazy to think I would agree to such a thing. He decided to lead the class in a vote. When I told them that my classroom isn't a democracy, they decided to protest. They began to chant, "Democracy in the classroom! Democracy in the classroom!!" I thought this was a good opportunity to discuss different types of governments, so I went with it. In the end, I informed them that they were in my world, the realm of Miss Koco and their Queen would be obeyed or they would promptly be banished from my kingdom. Then one boy, rightly, called me a dictator and started a new chant "JOSH FOR PRESIDENT!" Then it started to get silly. Another boy wrote in the front of his book "Democracy Anarchie[anarchy] in the classroom. Follow the South Pole. YES!" and held it above his head. Meanwhile, Tom (who I always call Ted when I start to lose it) went to the board and announced that he was going to write a poem about snow. He wrote:

Snow. Oh white thing... you suck.

We were discussing the colors of the spectrum and the separation of white light with a prism during our science lesson today. I had written ROYGBIV on the board, which my little poet turned into an acrostic:

Redo
Oh!
Yes!
Great
Butt
India
Vote for Josh!

Oh, yes... my students are amazing. Brilliant little creatures. I'm crazy and so are they. This is what I do everyday. Some days are funnier than others, some days are crazier than others, and some days something gets completely messed up in the universe and everything and everyone is just strange.

Koco in Kagnam with Mr. Clar

James Clar came for a visit. He gave a talk at the Seoul Design Festival. That was cool.

We wandered around Kagnam for a bit and finally found a soon-tubu spot. Do I ever look cheezy happy.

Friday, October 21, 2005

hana, dul, set...

I'm having fun with my camera phone.





Koco teacher takes a pause. We're workin' the catwalk. John likes to play, too. Mr. O shoots himself. perfect.