Saturday, February 26, 2005

and then-- a gig appeared

Before I die, I will fuck a cloned sheep. Then I'll fuck the original sheep to see if I can tell the difference.

--Hunter S. Thompson*

I got a call from a certain Mrs. Kim, a friend of my Korean friend Jang-woong's mother. I've never met this person, but JW's mom referred her to me. Mrs. Kim had a proofreading job for me, and in the grand Korean tradition of last-minute madness, she said she needed the work done by early Sunday. It was a 15-page document. I'm charging her W150,000 for the deal, which is a bit more than I'd normally charge. I made a point of grousing to her that I was moving this weekend and that this really was a bad time, which was why my fee was more than normal**. She sent a hurt-sounding email that said, "I seem to be squeezing you," but she accepted my terms all the same.

I'm working on her document now. It's about art and Buddhism, so it's right up my alley. Wish I could copy and paste some of it here, but that wouldn't be sporting, since it's intended for some sort of publication, and it's a translation of someone else's work.

So along with packing up, calling a moving company, and getting my ass ready for the Sunday move, I've got this proofreading gig.

My boss, Imelda (not her real name), called me in the office today to give me my letter of release, to express-- yet again-- her discontent at my departure, and to offer to help me in any way she could. I've been forthright with her about the rocky job search, and she mentioned a nifty plan to give me more time to shop around. The plan is this: I eventually have to go to Immigration to let their office know that I'm no longer sponsored by EC. Once they're made aware of this, they have to truncate my E-2 visa length to give me only 15 days to find new work, after which point I have to leave the country to get a tourist visa. Imelda's suggestion was to delay my Immigration visit for a couple weeks, then get the 15-day truncation. So instead of visiting La Migra this coming March 2nd and being doomed to leave by March 17th (Happy pre-Saint Pat's!), I'll visit the office around March 17th and be able to stay in country until the end of the month. Imelda's been a nasty minx in other ways, but I'll give her credit for thinking this up.

Her plan also allows me to remain in country to receive my damn pay, only part of which I'll be receiving on the regular pay day, March 10th. According to EC policy, our final pay is partially withheld to the tune of W600,000 while EC combs our residence and our classroom to determine whether we've damaged their goods. I'm hoping they don't nail me too hard for my apartment, whose only real damage is a few small patches of mold on the wallpaper. I'll know by Monday evening whether I've been penalized. If all goes well, I'll receive most or all of my W600,000 on the 25th of the month.

In other news:

"Constantine" was an absolutely goofy film. I saw it the other night. The theology is hilariously crackerjack, though some of the special effects were cool, and the presence of the great Djimon Hounsou was a nice (if underused) counterweight to Keanu Reeves's off-key acting. The movie's got DVD rental potential, though; some moments are classic, such as when a soul ascending to Heaven gives Satan the finger, or when Satan cures Constantine's lung cancer (he literally rips out the tumors) so that Constantine has a chance to prove he truly belongs in hell. There's also a nice nod to Kevin Smith's "Dogma"; look for it toward the end of the movie.

Back to proofreading.

*No, not really Hunter S. Thompson.

**If you're in Korea and you need your shit proofread, my rates are:

W10,000 per hour PLUS W5,000 per page of your document. By some standards, that's pretty fuckin' cheap. College students tend to moan and groan, though.


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