Wednesday, August 31, 2005

ha ha! I'm an old fart!

Last day of August! As seems to happen every August 31, it's my birfday.

36 today. Three times around the Asian zodiac, dear friends! Haven't told my coworkers it's my birfday, and my Korean buddy JW never remembers the date (that's OK; I keep forgetting the date for his birthday), so today promises to be quiet.

I wish I had something cool to say about aging, something like, "I move slower than I used to," but as I always move slowly, lumber/waddling through life, that statement doesn't carry much weight.

I'm actually in the mood for some more of that awesome shrimp mix I made for the student bazaar, so perhaps I'll gallumph over to Lotte Mart near Seoul Station and pick me up some shrimp. Might want to pick up some fettucine while I'm at it, though I'm not sure Lotte Mart sells it. A trip to the overpriced Hannam Market is in order. Also have to get some butter. Hmmmm. Looks like I'll be making a day of it, just to find the proper ingredients for a Western meal. FYI-- frozen shrimp at Lotte Mart is significantly cheaper than it is at Hannam. But Hannam stocks real cheese. Yes, perhaps today will see some foodblogging.

Now, because I have no idea how to continue this post, I hereby present you two pics from my post-performance celebration, sent to me by a student just today:

All hail Mr. Pizza, the founder of our feast! (I had to insist on an onion-free pizza for my section of the table, which caused some bewilderment in this onion-loving culture. I'm OK with onions in Korean food, but can't stand them in pizza, spaghetti, and hamburgers unless they've had the hell cooked out of them and/or have been finely minced.)

My drama students-- the ones who showed up consistently for class-- worked hard. Even though the play was riddled with mistakes, the basic ingredient, fun, shone through during the actual performance. Everyone had fun: our meager Korean audience, our line-flubbing actors... even the expat English teachers cracked smiles when they caught some of the poorly pronounced jokes.

Special mention goes to Sujin, the student on the far right in both photos. The girl started off very quiet and shy, but got into acting as time went on. By the time we were ready to perform, she was doing slinky Yi Hyori impressions with gusto. Sujin gamely stepped up to take over parts dropped by students who abandoned the class. What's more, she's just an adorable person, one of my favorite theater geeks (well, she's more sprite than geek). I wish her the best with her studies.

In sadder news, our department head's mother passed away a few days ago. I found out too late to join the band of Korean teachers who went out to the hospital, sat with her, and then took her to a meal. This led to some interesting cultural static: I was in the teacher's office when the teachers came back from the meal. I told them I was hoping to give the boss a card and/or some flowers, and one of them furrowed her brow and asked, "Is that the American style?", to which I said, "Yeah, sort of." She said, "In Korea we have to do everything (daaaa heya d[w]aeyo, "eeeeeverything do have-to")." This gave me pause. Was I not doing enough? Would a mere card be considered insulting? Too late-- I'd already given it to the receptionist to give to the boss.

My mother wasn't very reassuring about the situation. "You should at least stick a couple hundred dollars in with the card!" she declared just this morning. Ha! As if I had a couple hundred dollars to spare!

I was shocked about this disturbingly Mammon-ic aspect of funerary custom and asked Mom, "Koreans give each other money when someone dies?" Mom was like, "Oh, yeah! Of course! Helps take care of funeral costs! Remember when Mr. Park died? His family got $5000!" Sorry, Mom, but I ain't got that kinda change.

Not quite sure how we segued from birfdays to DEATH, but I'm sure there's a higher meaning hiding somewhere in the above paragraphs-- a whole Da Vinci's Code of clues leading to some cosmic truth yet unrevealed.

But no time to speculate on that: gotta take a shit.

More later.



Anonymous said...

Hmmm... well, death aside, happy birfday!

Anonymous said...

Yo, Happy 36th birthday Kevin. You're making me hungry, with your talk of crustacean pasta, so I'm off to lunch...

Kevin Kim said...

Grab a few kids off the street, bash 'em a few times with a baseball bat, mix 'em with some noodles and we get Crushed Asian Pasta.

Or maybe that should be renamed Suckass Pun Pasta.

Come to think of it, there's a pasta place close to Smoo... might have to check that out.

Thanks, Adam & Charles, for the birfday wishes.


Anonymous said...

36 ticks eh? Grats sir.


Lorianne said...

Welcome to the wild and fabulous world called "36." Try not to party-it-up too recklessly. ;-)

Jelly said...

Awwww - I'm late, by Korean time...but back in North America I'm right on time. So HAPPY BIRTHDAY Kevin!!! Happy happy joy joy. All the best for your downward spiral to 40. Don't worry, I'm slipping down the slope after you in about 3 weeks.

Kevin Kim said...

Jelly, Joel, kangmi, Lorianne, John, Charlie,

Many thanks for the birthday wishes.


I'm in my mid-30s, so I think there's nothing quite like a nice, juicy steak jammed up a beautiful woman's ass.

And I've been a fan of the Good Shit since childhood.


impletqueen said...

It's your birthday here, although I think it's tomorrow there so you've technically been older than me for almost a whole day. Woot!

Happy happy joy joy. May your bowels be regular, your mind clear, your prostate of normal size, and your anus as talkative as ever. I hope that this year you climb mountains, go swimming, get laid, and realize what a cool guy you are.

All my best wishes for you, this year and always.