Monthly Archives: September 2006

Monkey Funnies

A couple of things happened this week in school that made me laugh.
Sometimes right before the bell, if you have the monkeys lined up a wee bit too early, you can play games with them. I often play I-Spy or something like that. However, with my Debate class, sometimes we play Slaps.
You remember this game… one person holds their hands face down over the other player’s hands which are face up. The player with the hands on the bottom tries to slap the other player’s hands. If they miss, you switch positions. I don’t know how we started to play this (probably one of the kids said, "Teacher, do you know this game?"), but they freaking love it. I love that I don’t have to move, they constantly jerk their hands around, afraid of getting slapped and losing the game. It makes me laugh. Anyway, while we were playing on Tuesday, the girl I was playing against wouldn’t hold still, so I wasn’t even trying to slap her hands. Cindy must have gotten tired of this, because she ran over from the other side of the room, slapped the girl’s hand, and ran away again. Now I’m thinking you had to be there, but it was pretty damned funny.
On Wednesday, one of my kids in my four o’clock class sighed and crankily asked, "When are we going to read?"  To which another student replied, "When you shut your mouth."
And finally, Debate class on Thursday. They have been dicking around with which kids are in the class, so it is hard to set up teams. So we are back to doing discussion at the moment. Which allows for a lot of screwing around.  To keep an hour-long story short, during the discussion I ended up explaining the difference between Family Love (how they love Mom and Dad), Friend Love (how they love their friends), and Romantic Love (like when a boy and girl get married). Well, Minhyung had brought in a Disney book in English and asked if I would read one of the stories to them. I agreed. I asked Minhyung to pick out his favourite story and he chose "Robin Hood". So I’m reading along and I get to the part where they explain how Robin Hood and Maid Marian are in love. Gina turns to Minhyung right at this point and says, "So why is this your favourite story, exactly?"  HA HA HA!  It was priceless. And then to top Gina, Minhyung looks at her and says, "Well, I like everything in the story except the Romantic Love part, obviously."
These kids, man. They aren’t always learning the right things… but they’re always learning.

Friday's Feast

What is your favorite herb or spice?
Garlic. And now here is a conundrum for you… because I love garlic, which of the following do you believe to be true: a. I’m not actually a vampire (using "insomnia" as a cover story) or b. Garlic is useless as a defence against vampires?

Name a song you like but haven’t heard in a long time.

"Cold Cold Ground" by Tom Waits.

If you were to take just one minute to write down as many things as you can think of that you need (not want) to do, approximately how many things would there be?

Main Course
Tell something interesting about one of your family members (nothing scandalous, please, just something unique).
That isn’t scandalous?  Better keep to my moms’ side of the family….
Okay, my moms has a remarkable ability to sell anything to anyone. I’ve seen her do it… she’s amazing at it! Wait… that’s not very interesting, is it? Okay, here’s another one about my moms. She may want to kill me for posting this on the internet, but I often do things in my life just to make her feel like killing me. I’m keeping her instincts sharp as she slips into sweet senility (ha!). When I was a child, my moms won my first swing-set in a beer-drinking competition with our neighbour. True story!

What’s the latest you’ve ever stayed awake?

This is such a strange question to me. Does it mean on a work night?  Or any night?  Because once I was awake for more than four days straight in university (insomnia + stress + procrastination all semester + coffee).  Does that constitute "latest"? Or "longest"?  Because after the four days I believe I was in bed at a reasonable time…. This question is hurting my head. I need to get some sleep.

Sweet Procrastination

I should be either a: sleeping or b: marking tests. So I’m going to do this autobiographical survey I’m stealing from Shona’s MySpace. Thanks, Shona!

Part 1: 1st

What was your first job?

I started being paid to babysit around 10 or 11 years old. My first "get a pay cheque" job was at McDonald’s when I was 14.

Who was your first prom date?

First of all, we didn’t have proms. The closest thing we had was a school dance (usually a Muchmusic Video Dance Party – ROCK!) and I only had a "date" to one of them… to our grad dance with my friend Nigel. Seeing as how he had a girlfriend at the time, and I had a boyfriend, AND it wasn’t each other… I don’t think it qualifies as a date. Also, it turned out he was gay (less a shock for me than it was for his poor girlfriend at the time). And here’s the kicker… I have never been on a real date. True story. Both my long-term relationships started as friendships and the "relationships" that weren’t long-term were SO short-term (sorry Moms… don’t think on that one too much) that they didn’t stem from dates either. Those started more as "hey baby" moments at a bar. I need to get out more.

What’s the first thing you notice about the OPPOSITE sex?

Physically? Smiles and necks. Serious business! Other than that, I dig on confidence and humour. Oft the two go hand and hand.

What was your first car?

A 1979 Hond Civic hatchback. White with blue stripes. And that wasn’t a typo back there – the "A" was missing off the back of the car. I bought it for $200 and sold it two weeks later for the same amount. Apparently the guy drove it just a few blocks and the transmission fell out.

When you snuck out of your house for the first time, who was it with?

I don’t remember doing this, actually. Sneaking around after I had left the house, sure! In grade 11 every weekend was all about Carey and I saying, "Hey Dad… can I stay at Jodi’s house?"  and "Hey Dad… can I stay and Carey’s house?" and then staying where we could (again, moms… don’t think about this one too much either… okay? We were always safe. Well, as safe as we could be. Welllll… we stuck together, at any rate!)

Age of first real kiss with tongue? 

I don’t remember the first one. I was a promiscuous

little scamp as a kid that liked to kiss all the boys in the neighbourhood. I was probably really young. Okay, I do remember one that was pretty early… how old are we in grade one anyway??

Who was your first Kiss in the Rain? 

I believe the first would be Bruce in grade 11. Especially if it is going to be "Kiss in the Rain" and not "kiss in the rain"… it was all meaningful and stuff when we did it. We were making up after a big fight.

Part 2: The Family

Where are your parents from? 

My moms is from Vancouver, BC and my dad is from Regina, Saskatchewan.  Did I spell Saskatchewan right?

Were you a planned baby?:

Mostly. The story as I remember it was this:  My parents planned on having a baby and so my moms went off birth control thinking it would take at least a couple of months. A week later she was preggers. So, I guess I was a planned accident. Best damned thing that every happened to you, eh moms?  HA!

Were you the first?:

And best. (I hope my brother doesn’t read this blog…)

What is your birthdate?:

April 5, (Aries) 1976 (Year of the Dragon)

How would you describe your family?: 


If you have siblings are you oldest, middle, or youngest?:

Oldest. And best. Didn’t I already answer this?

What are your siblings names?:

Brian, 2 years younger.

Which parent do you get along with best?: 

My moms. Even though my dad died a couple of years ago, I would have said moms anyway. I’m more like my dad, but I appreciate all my moms does and she’s the parent that I could actually talk to about serious things. Although I did have more spectacular fights with my moms. But that’s what happens sometimes when you are close to someone you love.

Part 3: The Friends 

Do you have more than one best friend?: 


Who are your good friends?:

In no particular order – Mike, Carey, and my moms would be top of the list as "best friends".  But the ones that I would consider "good friends"… Colin, Tricia, Jules, Andrea, Holly, Yen, Pam, Steve B., Erin, Orla, Brendan, Sarabrown, Amelia, Chelsea, Jeanine, Brooke, and Stuart.  After that, there are the "peeps"… people I dig most supreme but I wouldn’t call first if I needed to call someone.

What do you like to do when you are together? 

Well, each of them have different talents. When I am with ANY person (best friend, good friend, peep, or otherwise), I’m looking for retarded laughs and intellectual conversation. And if they will also buy me a beer… well. Well, well, well. They must be a good person indeed.

Do you share the same interests? 

To some extent. I can think of people I’m very different from (like Amelia) that I still think are kick ass and I can have "retarded laughs and intellectual conversation" with.

Which friend can you tell anything to? 

I don’t tell any one friend everything. Then they would know too much about me and have to be killed. I feel like the different friends I have fullfill different functions. Obviously, the things I would tell my moms is different from what I would tell Mike, and I don’t tell him what I tell Carey. I share the most about myself with moms, Mike and Carey though.

Part 4: Your Personality 

How high/low is your self esteem?: 

Middle to low, actually. I think a lot of people think I’m confident, but most of the time that is just bravado. I feel like I’m not all that bad, but I need to do some work to improve myself.

Do you get depressed about things easily?

Yes, but I blow off the depression (usually) just as easily. Life is more interesting with ups and downs… I would hate to take everything all "middle of the road". I love to rage and wallow in sorrow and get overly-excited and be nervous and all of those things.

Are you happy?: 

Most of the time, but I’m not content yet.

Do you live life to the fullest?: 

I try to… and I think I’m doing alright with it.

Part 5: Appearance 

Are you comfortable with the way you look?: 

Heck no! See "self-esteem", above.

Do you have any piercings?

Currently I have five. But I have been pierced nine times.

How do you dress? 

After I shower and towel off, I usually put on my underpants first. Then I remember that I need to boil water for tea if I’m going to drink it while I do my hair. Then I stand in front of my closet for a few moments, thinking about what shoes I want to wear. Because if I feel like wearing my sneakers, then I’m not putting on a skirt. If I decide I DO want to wear socks and shoes, I stare into my closet for a while more, lamenting that I don’t have more pants. Then I look around the floor for my jeans and check them for stains. Once my jeans are on, I pick out a shirt. Then I decide what colour bra I can wear with my shirt of choice. Then I put on my bra and shirt. Then I decide I hate the shirt I picked. I take it off and put on another. The first shirt usually ends up on the floor, which is why I always have so much fucking laundry to do.

Part 6: The Past 

Were you a strange child?:

I think so. I was a bit too smart for my own good (don’t worry, after about 7 years old I stopped getting smarter) and understood things that should have been beyond my ability to understand. I also dressed a little strange. I remember that in grade three I had a cowgirl outfit that I loved to wear. And I used to wear it to school. I didn’t kill small animals or anything like that, but I do seem to remember that I liked being at home reading by myself just as much as I did playing outside with others (maybe more).  Oh! Oh! And I don’t know if this is strange or not, but one thing I loved doing as a kid was building dams in creeks. Whenever we went camping (I’m thinking about Golden Ears Park) or picnicing (Bear Creek Park) where there was a small creek, I would work my ass off the entire time we were there, trying to divert the course of the creek with my makeshift dam of rocks and sand. I was fascinated by the idea that I could change the course of nature. Okay, did I actually start by saying "I don’t know if this is strange or not"?  It is definitely strange.

What did you use to love that you no longer do?:

My Archie comics. I think my moms still has them packed away for me though.

Do you have the same friends?: 

I’ve known Tricia since I was four and Julia since I was seven. We moved around a lot, so it was hard to hang on to friends.

Part 7: The Future 

What is your ambition?: 

Dudes, that’s why I’m in Korea. I don’t freaking KNOW.

Are you scared of growing old: 

What the hell? I thought I was old already! Getting old does scare me a little bit, but only because I worry about running out of time before I can do all the things I want to do. I mean… I don’t even know what the hell it is I want to do yet!

Do you want to get married?:

For sure. Probably not any time soon, but one day I would. I think it would be kick-ass to love someone so absolutely and completely that you are both willing to commit the rest of your lives to being in each other’s company. Man, I hope I can meet someone who is willing to put up with me for that long…

Part 8: The Outdoors 

Do you prefer indoors or outdoors?: 

Indoors. I love the smell of being outside, and there are things I like to do out there… but I also love temperature control and I hate fucking bugs. 

What is your favorite season: 

Fall can be amazing… like it is in Korea right now. Sunny with a bite in the air.

Do you like walking in the rain?:

Whilst on my way to work? NO. For fun… yes yes yes!

Part 9: Food

Are you a vegetarian?:

Not only do I LOVE meat (medium-rare please), but I hate vegetables. I have to bribe myself to eat them.

What is your favorite food?: 

Just one? Aurgh! Is beer a food?

What food makes you want to gag?: 

Number one on this list is perogies. EW! And I don’t want any guff from you swine… it isn’t just that I hate it, it makes me flipping GAG. BLEH BLEH BLEH!  Also high on this list: pumpkin pie, potato salad, liver…

What is your favorite dessert?:

Lemon meringue pie (made by moms).  You know what is a hard word to spell?  Meringue. True story.

What is your favorite restaurant?: 

Right now, "Kwa Kwa", which is a galbi (bbq) restaurant. But I really, really miss "The Verse" in Kamloops. It is a truckstop on the TransCanada that was terrible with unlimited refills of coffee (usually, bitchy waitesses wouldn’t serve us after a while) where we used to go and study for exams. Good times with my roommate de jour (Terri, who I had all my classes with) and later with Mike.  Lots of laughs and good chats and shitty, greasy truckstop food and gut-rot coffee.

Are you a fussy eater?: 

I don’t think so. My moms would disagree. See "what food makes you want to gag", above.

Part 10: Relationships and Love

Are you single or taken?:


If single, is there someone on your mind?

There is always someone on my mind.

Who is it?

Well, it could be anyone from Batman to a guy I saw out last weekend. And if it was actually someone that anyone reading this right now might know… as if I would ever confess such a thing. I don’t want that sort of information used against me. And I think it is safe to say that none of you know Batman or the guy I saw out last weekend. And if you DO know Batman… hook a girl up, eh?

If taken who is the lucky boy/girl?:


Longest relationship?

I should get a trophy for this one… and Mike should get some sort of statue erected in his honor. Now, the dates are a little fuzzy… Mike can correct me if I’m wrong… but I would say approximately five years, hey Mike?  From spring 2000 to early summer 2005? Poor Mike! Five years… when you put it that way… you deserve a statue AND a gift certificate to Red Lobster.

Do you think love is the best feeling in the world?:

I think love isn’t really a feeling, but that it causes a lot of other kick-ass feelings. And I’m not sure which of those feelings (or other feeling) world would be the best in the world. Right now I would settle for "rested". 

Are you in love right now?

Yes. With myself. But it is unrequited.

Do you believe in love at first sight?:

I know you buggers aren’t even going to believe this… but yes, I do. And I believe it happens all the time. I think a lot of people would say that interest and lust happen at first sight and then love can develop from it… but I believe you can honestly fall in love the first time you see a person. You just talk yourself out of it because that is so hokey and Hollywood. Then, if you do fall in love later, you say that you were interested in the person the first time you saw them. But I’ve fallen in love the first time I’ve met boys before… it just doesn’t always work out the fairytale way. Okay, okay. It has never worked out the fairytale way for me. But I still have hope that one day it will.


Did I mention that on Monday I while I was learning to spar, I kicked my younger master in the hip?  No?  Well, I did. Really hard. Which would be kinda cool (because I can kick hard now, not because I kicked him), except it hurt the piss out of my foot. And probably didn’t hurt him at all. And he has a bony-ass hip, my friends. But I’m all tough and stuff so I just walked it off.
Well, guess what I did tonight… I kicked our other master with the same damned foot and got him in the hand (I missed the pad he was holding). He got me right where I was already injured. Or, more accurately, I got me where I was already injured. Now that spot is puffy and bruised. But I can wiggle all my piggies so I don’t think anything is broken.
In Tae Kwon Do we have a test on Saturday. One of the things we must do is break boards. Well, our master PROMISED Brooke and I that we could use our hands and not our feet. Tonight he tried to talk me into kicking boards instead. Good thing I have an injury… now I don’t have to kick boards. He agreed to let me do the downwards-punch break instead. Bad news?  He says I should be able to break 10 of them. Now Brooke… if you are reading this… I don’t know if you would have to do the same. If worse comes to worse… agree to kick some boards and you won’t have to do so many.
Balls. I hope he was joking. But somehow, I don’t think he was. If I do break 10 boards, I will let you know. If I break my hand (at this point, more likely), I will also let you know.

The Weekend

I probably should have done this sooner, but I was lazy. And now I’ll probably forget a bunch of things that happened, which would be a shame.
Friday after school I went to Tuekgong and it was actually a lot of fun. I started learning a really cool 360 degree kick that will look awesome if I can ever master it. That’s a BIG IF, my friends! But it was fun to learn. And I’ve started to learn sparring, which is pretty hard.
One thing happened that was pretty funny. I’m taking extra lessons to learn how to spar after the regular lesson. This means I am doing an hour and a half instead of an hour of Tuekgong. This is really, really tiring. Most days I run to Tae Kwon Do after all that. I have to leave the Tuekgong gym by 9:00 in order to make it. On Friday, I was exhausted, and looking at the clock. My younger Master (I call him Wayne) knows that I usually have TKD, so he looked at the clock too and said, "Oh, Tae Kwon Do?" and I said, "No."  On Fridays I don’t go. So I said to him, "Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday… Tae Kwon Do, yes.  Friday, no.  Friday… macjew."  ("Macjew" is "beer"). He laughed his ass off. Then he said, "Koreans… soju."  I mimed a hangover. He also thought that was funny.  I’m better at comedy than I am at 360 degree kicks, apparently.
After Tuekgong I went out for dinner with Amelia and it was a lot of fun. Mmmmm… grilled meat.
I woke up at a half-decent time and took the stinko-bus to Itaewon. The first thing I did was had a detox done. This was… strange. And cool. I stuck my feet in a basin of water in which the lady added salt and then put in this… thing… that looked like a fish filter. And then I just sat there and let the toxins get sucked out of my feet. And it worked. Boy howdy. The water was disgusting after I was finished. Ew! Then I felt too pure so I went to the Rocky Mountain Tavern for breakfast. Mmmmm… breakfast. After breakfast I stayed at the RMT and had a couple of pints and read my book. It was really chill and nice to be there. I was reading "Memoirs of a Geisha", and came across this quote:
"Hopes are like hair ornaments. Girls want to wear too many of them. When they become old women they look silly wearing even one."
I really like that quote. Starting at that point, and at several times during Saturday, I kept thinking on the nature of hope. I think hope is a lot like unrequited love.
While I was at RMT, I realized that I was pissing away my Saturday without finding out what was going on Saturday night.  So I sent a text message to Brendan to find out what the craic was. Turns out he was also in the RMT. He tried to take the piss out of me for not noticing that he was in there, but seeing as how he walking past me when he came in, I do believe that he is the one that sucks. Ha!
After my pints I headed back to Suji. Everyone’s plans were all messed up and no one knew what was going on. I wanted to go out so I gave Cindy a call and headed out with their group. We were supposed to be heading to Hongdae, but holy shit, did they go about it in the weirdest way. After a walk, a cab ride, a bus ride… and still not to Hongdae at 12:30, I decided "fuck it" and to head home. Balls on everyone. I hate when going out partying takes so much freaking effort. So I ditched the group and was looking around for a bathroom when Brooke called from a borrowed cellphone. They were in Hongdae. Balls! After some quick internal debate, I decided to head to Hongdae. Got some help from random Koreans and got my ass in a cab. Found Brooke, Chad and Woody at TinPan. It turned out to be a really fun night, so I’m glad I went. From the dancing at the club, to the street food, to the dancing in the streets… it was not just fun but memorable.
Normally, you know I would say something like "I sat around all day Sunday in my underpants, watching movies and praying for my death" after a good Saturday night. But I wasn’t able to do that this weekend. Very, very fortunately, Kees got us tickets to go see a FC Korea football match. It was kick ass. It was the first time I saw football (soccer for the foks at home) live.  I would definitely do that again. Thanks again, Kees.
Fuck you, Monday.


People with courage and character always seem sinister to the rest.
Hermann Hesse

Friday's Feast

Measured in minutes or hours, how much exercise have you had in the last week?
I’ve done four hours of Tae Kwon Do and six hours of Teukgong Moosool. And what feels like 1000 years of chasing wee monkeys around a classroom.

If you had to change your blog title to something else, what would it be?

Monkeys are Funny.

Name one television show you watched when you were 9-12 years old.

The Littlest Hobo.

Main Course
If someone gave you $50 to spend with the one condition that it had to be educational, what would you purchase?

$50 worth of beer. No wait! This IS educational. I would do an experiment with them. I would carefully record how many I could drink before I forgot to record how many I was drinking. Then, when I woke up the next day, I would add up how many I successfully drank before I passed out. Then I would publish my findings on the internet for your enjoyment.

Do you tend to prefer dark colors, neutral shades, or lighter/pastel hues?

Dark, deep colors. Especially red.

Random Ramblings

Well, today I introduced my halloween song for my Kindergarten kids. We are going to do "This is Halloween" from the Nightmare Before Christmas soundtrack. Should be tough to pull together, but it will be pretty darned cute if they can do it.
Everything I own hurts again from the martial arts. It doesn’t help when we spend an entire class falling down. I’m not very good at falling down. Go figure.
Even stranger: I am good at headstands.
In the cabs here, you cannot open the back door on the driver’s side. You all have to get in and out from the passenger side.
I watched the movie "The Forgotten" the other night. I had wanted to see it when it first came out, but then I heard bad things about it. My review? Meh. Okay, but not great. Worth the $0.50 I spent to rent it on VHS.
A while back Chad tried to restring my guitar for me. While he was doing it, the high E string broke. So he put the old one back on. He claims that it is the first time it has ever happened to him. Last Friday, the high E string broke while I was playing. Not that strange – the string was old, after all. Here’s the weird part… I went to the music store and bought new strings. Decided to change them all. While I was changing them – the high E string broke. I think it is a Corean Conspiracy to keep me from playing guitar and singing. Not that I blame them…
There isn’t much going on right now. Mostly, I’m just waiting for my China trip and getting pretty excited about it.

Best Cab Ride EVER

And when I say "ever", I mean in Canada or Korea.
Tonight I had gone into Itaewan to meet Brendan and retrieve my passport from him. And all I can say is this: Once again, Brendan, I AM sorry about the books. What can I say?  I’m retarded. We went to Namdaemoon (sp?) market and bummed around for awhile. Then back into Itaewan for food. We ran into Brooke, Chad, and Woody at the Rocky Mountain where we had ventured for chicken wings. Note: Their "creamy cool" wings are top-notch.
~Side Note on "Top-Notch"~
Brendan, I hope you learned your lesson about using the word "pretty" whilst in the housewares section. "What happens at Namdaemoon stays in Namdaemoon", indeed.
~End Side Note~
Had some wings and sat on the porch for a while waiting for the hurricane. It was supposed to arrive at 9:00, but it is now 12:01am and I have yet to see any action.  There’s being fashionably late, and then there is this. Come ON hurricane, let’s get going already.  After a while we went back into the pub and had some more drinks.  Later, we moved on to Bricx. Brendan left at this point and I had one more drink and then made my escape. I didn’t say goodbye to anyone (except Brooke – loves!) ’cause I didn’t want to make a big deal out of me leaving early. (Note: home by 12:00 isn’t just "early"… it is a fucking miracle.) So I headed out to find a cab.
I hate taking a cab under any circumstances from Itaewan to Suji (if you have been reading my posts for a while, you know why), let alone at night.  YIKES!   But, I had no other choice so I hailed a cab and hoped for the best.
And got the best.
I open the front door of the cab and asked "Suji?" in my sweetest voice with my nicest smile. He says, "Pundukchung, right?"  I already had my alien card out (the address is in Korean on it) but was so caught off guard I just said, "Uh… right."
"Hurry up and get in,"  he says.
NO WAY!  His English was great. So good that I asked him where he had learned to speak it. Well, get this: He worked construction with the Korean army during the Vietnam war.  He had to learn English while he was there, and still remembered it. Then he asked me if I liked music. After I answered in the affirmative, he apologized for only having music from the 50’s and 60’s. I told him that I was down with that and he popped in a tape. The song was "Unchained Melody ".  He asked if I knew it, which I told him I did. He said, "From the movie, Ghost. With Demi Moore."  I was impressed. Then *I* said, "by the Righteous Brothers" and *he* was impressed. This lead to a conversation about how I knew all those old tunes for my age (thanks moms!).
Then, get this. He SANG for me. Elvis Presley done by a retiree Korean cab driver?  Gold, my friends. Pure gold. He even explained the lyrics to me.
Once we were in Suji, he told me a joke.  And then, as I left the cab, he told me to "take it easy".
Some days, you aren’t sure you are making the right decisions (i.e.: leaving the party early).  And then the best cab ride ever happens and you feel good about everthing. Shit, I was still laughing aloud after I left the car.  It was a great way to end the night.  Cheers, buddy.

Friday Feast

What was the very last song you listened to?
Right now I am listening to "The Engine Driver" by The Decemberists. Rock.
What is one company/store/corporation you would recommend that people stay away from?
Walmart. Evil, evil Walmart.

On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being highest, how much do you enjoy having your picture made?

Zero. Take off.

Main Course
Besides a bookmark, what is something you’ve used to keep your place in a book?

Rubber band. My finger. Post-it note. Postcard from Cambodia. Ice cream wrapper. Etc.

Name a food that you like that most people don’t.

Brussels sprouts. True story.