Saturday, September 30, 2006
Friday, September 29, 2006
Whatever, though, I still like Cao Boi, and he's managed to stick around in spite of his Loose Cannon Status. Last night they voted out Cecilia, who frankly was probably too normal for us to get to know better. I most enjoyed watching the new tribe dynamics play out between people like Jonathan and Jessica, who are apparently on opposite ends of the spectrum when it comes to their Survivor agenda. Jonathan wants to win, and Jessica, in the manner of Marquesas' Gabriel, wants to make friends. Maybe she'll start playing the game a little harder later on, if she lasts that long. She seems to be riding the right set of coat-tails at this point, anyway.
Other highlights: Candice looking mortified when the members of the old Aitu recounted Billy's ridiculous confession of love. As suspected, she meant the "We love you" (not the "I love you") as an offhandedly sympathetic response to his "I'm next." Also, the paint-filled eggs being squished at the tribe reconfiguration? Fantastically over-the-top, and made me nostalgic for Double Dare. Oh, and also, Yul saying he would save Becky with the immunity idol if it came down to it. Awwww. I think I really believe him, too. Married, babies! I'm calling it first.
Thursday, September 28, 2006
And I, once again being the Eternal Optimist, do not like when people say that.
But Monique, that chickie on America's Next Top Model, the one who everyone in the house can't stand? I kind of can't stand her either. She's 19, a freaking prima donna, and has a lot to learn. So in many ways it's not her fault. But is she ever going to learn? I predict no. And here's why: daughters, with their inate need and desire to please their mothers, will try over the course of their life to emulate and/or do what their mothers say is best. As Meg Ryan said in French Kiss, "Even people who say they hate their mothers love their mothers." And yes, these are blanket statements, but there's at least a kernel of truth there, so let's just go with it. In this case, it's not even up for debate.
Monique spent over 3 hours on the only house phone the other night, the last bit of which was spent sitting in the phone room and smirking to herself while listening to that "If you'd like to make a call blah blah blah beepbeepbeepbeepbeep" message playing over and over again. For much of the time, she was on the phone with her mother, and granted, she is perfectly entitled to speak with her mother, and even for a little bit of time if she's having a rough go of it (which, being a biotch, she is). She was informed politely, and then not so politely, and then downright rudely (deserved) that she is not the only person in the house who needs the phone, and others actually need it for reasonable, valid matters, such as getting an apartment deposit back. Monique, in response, screams back at the girls, cries to her mom and what does her mom say?
What does her mom say??
You just be the princess on the throne that you are.
And that, ladies and gentleman, is why jerk-faces, asshats, and worse, much worse, behave the way that they do: Bad mommies.
Wednesday, September 27, 2006
What I loved most about Gilmore when I first started watching it was the marked lack of dramatic plotlines. It just wasn't soap opera-y at all. There were conflicts, as must exist in any story to make a story, but it was all treated very realistically and with such finesse that the show never felt over-the-top or ridiculous, or like something you couldn't relate to. In fact, just the opposite: Star's Hollow felt like more of a place you'd love to exist in and could escape to any time you watched the show.
I submit that any crap drama that occurred Tuesday night, such as Kirk crashing Taylor's pretty car into Luke's diner, and Lorelai telling Luke that they're done, done, and done (which, I admit, was painful to watch), was an unfortunately necessary response to last season. The writers are now having to play the part of Clean-up Crew to clear up the depressing plotlines of last season, tie them off, and move on, back to the land of True Gilmore. It was more than a little ugly, it's true, the whole Luke thing, and I was always holding out for a Luke-Lorelai Happy Ending, but what other reasonable choice did the writers have after Lorelai's ridiculous retreat into Doormat Central and her infuriating decision to sleep with Christopher--and not even seem to enjoy it!--at the end of last season's finale. Sadly, Luke and Lorelai can no longer exist as a couple. We might as well just accept that, and move on to more reasonable (and delicious) prospects, i.e. Christopher. And why not. If Luke and Lorelai weren't destined to be together, than let's go with Lorelai and Rory's father instead.
So yes, the plots themselves weren't ideal. But the core and life of the show is back. I swear it is back. If you don't believe me, watch it again. And regardless, how much did we love some of the subplots, such as Sookie and Michel's wrestling match, Paris' SAT boot camp, and Babette washing her unmentionables over at Lorelai's. And you know, as much as I wish Rory would communicate with Logan a little better and ditch the Vapid, Doormat Pod Person Vibe she seemed to pick up from her mother last season like the Bad Habit to End All Bad Habits, I did think the rocket ship plotline was kind of sweet. And Rory's as back as she can be, really. The way she described Kirk's trip through the diner wall? Totally channeling the Ghost of Gilmore Past.
Okay mendacious: your rebuttal.
Dear Gilmore Girls Writers,
Please, please, pretty please don't make me eat my words. I'm already a little nervous looking at the summary for next week.
Cherries on Top,
Like hello, B-plots are you out there? I'll believe the new showrunner has redeemed True Gilmore if Rory regains a backbone, if Sookie is more than a symphatetic prop babbling about spiders, and well a host of other things like frogs falling from the sky and Kirk becoming funny again, driving a car into a diner does him no justice and frankly Taylor knows better! Besides i have no choice. It's the last season, unless we hear rumors otherwise so really i'm obligated to see this thing die.
I mean did you believe Lorelai when she was saying to Sookie: it hurts, it just hurt too much... I didn't. Lauren doesn't believe it. Luke couldn't even muster energy to yell at Taylor properly... everything just seems a tad off kilter. And Rory's letting Lorelai not talk about it and be so consumed with her own affair seemed wrong somehow... it's like when Lorelai mumbled, well you got to not talk about your thing so i get to not talk about my thing...will only work if the writers get their act together and continue to apologize for the last 2 seasons. Example: Let's just return to the way we were and try to play raquetball and surprise they're bad at it- how about subverting expectation and make them good at something. it's a tired joke. not to mention also that her fridge wouldve been STOCKED due to Luke's constant presence... there's no way she wouldn't have had ice. Are they even trying? And yes i guess i'm ultimately resentful of the Sherman-Pallindino doing such a spiteful thing- betraying the show like that- and Lorelai's dismissal of Christopher as a fucked up booty call seems to echo the sentiment- like why, why, why... ugh. gross. and that rocket thing was not sweet! it just reinforces the fact that they don't belong together- she still can't be honest about "not getting it"... and he's just trying to be cheerily optimistic. gah. (tickets for winter... who is he kidding! they're not freshman in college!)
well anyway i want to believe that the truth is out there, i really do. And hopefully the actors will remember what sort of show they're in and have a belief that the writers will adhere to some sort of rule of reality meets plausability meets hope for the future and not continue to ruin it for everyone. But truly that intro to next week leaves me with little inspiration.
Tuesday, September 26, 2006
So, I am acutely aware of the gift's current state of dusty un-use. I have no control over that. I should have expected less. I can't help but ponder gift certificates, and only gift certificates, for future giving. And, let me just say there is nothing wrong with gift certificates. I give them, I receive them, I think they're great. But I also take great joy in giving things other than, or in addition to, gift certificates, when I see something or think of something that's really perfect. In my mind, anyway.
Ruminating further, I realized something else. It was when I was pondering K.Lo and the other kind of "gifts" we are all born with. I wonder what hers will be. And then I was like, well what are mine. And I know--I know--writing is one of them. I mean, you know. I'm not claiming to be anyone or anything. But it would be silly for any of us to say we weren't given any gift at all when we were born, absolutely nothing that makes us unique, and so if I'm being honest, I at least have to acknowledge that.
So, not to get all religious (saving it for a future post--no, seriously), but how insulting is it to God if you don't use your gift(s)? Like, other than blogging, emailing, and the occasional journal entry, I have basically and intentionally shelved writing. Very intentionally, I might add. I have a whole treatise that plays through my mind on the matter, having to do with bullshit politics of the Writing World, I'm not The Best so why bother, all the stories have been told before, I have no stories to tell anyway, and wtf is the point after all. I'm serious, I could write a whole thesis on it all. It's just sitting there, crumpled in my brain, never to be spoken of, why I am not writing, why I won't write, etc.
I just never thought of it in those terms, though, that it might actually be rude, wasteful, hurtful? not to use your gift. I mean, I'm not talking about taking a few months to watch a DVD after Christmas. Sometimes you just have to be in the mood for the movie, and it takes time. But to willfully put the thing on the shelf and say, nope, not using that, ever--and to the giver: eff you. Somehow that seems so wrong?
I don't know. This post is like, way too serious, and so I'm stopping now. Off to watch Gilmore and stuff like that.
Sunday, September 24, 2006
i left elated, all those endorphins or whatever floating around, and then i went to ROSS and found 3 shirts for $27.03. Could this day get any better? Well yes.
I went reluctantly to "Totally 80's" at the Bowl- for one, leaving the house after such a day seemed possibly too much- but i was wrong- after watching the entire audience sing along to "Tainted Love" by SoftCell- even after the lyrics fucked up on the screen was inspiring. my friend being silly on wine as she shimmied across the empty bench in front of us was priceless. i was also surprised that i knew psychedelic furs entire set including "prettyn'pink", recognized half of ABC's cash of songs including some song about a poison arrow only pinnacled by the electronica-futuristic musings of Human League... ending with "Don't you love me" was completely cathartic... even if a little to optimistic as a whole...
At the end of the night i went to say hi to my friend who works at the bowl and as i was waiting to get the guards attention Courtney Love sort of slowly cut right by me with an ease of someone who well- has a right to enter the artists entrance anywhere she goes and well has the pass to prove it. At this same moment my friend recognized someone who was with Courtney- a pretty boy named Branford, and he stopped back by to say hello as I wondered at the cosmic forces drawing us to jane weilen at that moment....
We laughed the whole mile back to my friends apt, nearly getting harrassed by a beligerant drunk, and practicing how my courtney love story would become increasinly more violent- and then courtney love pushed me against the guard and stormed passed me, and then courtney love shoved me out of the way spilling my wine on jane which started a shoving match btw.... and crowning this whole evening off- a guy nearly clambering out of his friends hummer, pointing at us and saying: There they are! I yelled back, "I LOVE YOU!" which seemed the only appropriate answer,and as he was driven away he yelled "I LOVE YOU, TOO." And i knew this had to be one of the best days ever for love and well being and everything else.
Saturday, September 23, 2006
In a word, YUM.
Friday, September 22, 2006
And I'm not sure how I feel about that Ozzy, either. He's smokin' hot, and yet, hmmm. It will depend on how he wears his cockiness throughout the course of the show. Will he be self-aware and entertaining about it like Rob Mariano, or will he be ridiculous, like John the nurse (also from Marquesas).
On the other hand, Billy! What in the world was that, during Tribal Council. He's in love with the girl from the other tribe? The one who said in an offhandedly sympathetic way, "We love you, too," when he whispered that he was the next to go? I'm kind of floored by this one. As was Jeff. Hee.
Last things: Hidden Immunity Idol? I like Yul so far, so glad he found it, but could the production staff craft some harder clues, or what. It's only week 2, for pete's sake. And then what about Adam, the whiny little white boy over on Raro's beach. I'm going to give him the benefit of the doubt and assume that was starvation talking when he said building a floor for the shelter was "stupid." Um, okay. Have you seen the show? Are you living out on the island now? Let's talk again in two weeks, if you're still around, and discuss whether altering the crap-ass place you sleep at night was worth the energy you had at the beginning. Eediot. Bigger idiot, though, for voicing the opinion. Best not to rock that Survivor boat, as witnessed by the night's tribal council.
Oh, and--what about Ozzy saying that Hispanics (aside from, apparently, Billy) inherently have an outstanding work ethic? Good stereotypes are acceptable and a source of pride, whereas bad stereotypes a person shouldn't even speak out loud and/or joke about, such as over at Puka's camp? Discuss.
anti-commenting-on-what-i-don't-know-enough-about (really trying hard),
anti-too-much-TV-and-too-little-reading (i speak the truth!).
basically, i've been trying to straighten up a little bit. but i don't know if it's really working because a lot of the time i just feel bitchier for it. like maybe i shouldn't cut back that much on the chocolate if it's going to put me in such a bad mood? i do feel good about reading more books and being responsibly thrifty and all that.
here's what is really bugging me, though. all of my life, up to and including the now, i feel like my biggest bane has been this: i don't feel listened to. just as a person, i don't feel many times like people are really listening, which makes me feel vastly unimportant. obviously it's a give-give situation in all relationships, and it is so not fair to make a blanket statement that says no one out there is listening. i have many friends who listen quite well (love you!), and on the other hand, i know there are times when i could and should listen better, too.
i used to be super-quiet and not talk at all, and then it would enrage me that no one was listening. but really this was very short-sighted of me. of course no one is going to listen if you don't speak. you have to put the words and the feelings forth in order for them to even have a chance at being recognized, swallowed, valued. dur. so i tried, and am still trying, to straighten up in that respect. i believe i've improved. maybe not in all situations, but i have to believe that i'm markedly less reticent than in the past.
it's a dog-eat-dog world out there, with everyone competing to be heard, and i realize this too. everyone wants to feel listened to, and so they speak louder and/or verbally elbow their way to their forefront. it doesn't mean their opinions, stories, ideas, sentiments, etc, are any more valuable--or that the softer-spoken/more ignored people's words are any less valuable. it just is what it is.
so maybe what i most want is to add another "anti" to my list, which would be:
really, any or all of these would be ideal and would make me feel so much better. because damn, what a downward spiral occurs otherwise. like, being heard less makes me want to speak less, which will really encourage the problem of being heard less, et cetera and so forth. and then there is the question of a person's value when little or nothing is heard. (that one gets dangerous.) and also, the self-absorbed, intensely negative urge to take away that gift of listening if it's not returned? basically it's just bad news all around, and in all roles: friend, spouse, sibling, child, and (gulp) parent. citizen of the world.
so, yeah. i'm going to go read a book and watch the fish.
Wednesday, September 20, 2006
Unfortunately, I despise haircuts. And even though I've found a stylist who I really like and who gave me the Best Haircut Ever last spring, I'm still hesitating. Every moment of the experience, from shampoo to blow dry, makes me feel some degree of awkward and many degrees of uncool. I wonder why something so easy and common has to be so hard?
But, if I wait much longer, I'll lose so much hair I won't have to worry about haircuts again, like ever. Hummm. I must weigh these options carefully.
Bottom-feeders are apparently pretty smart for aquariums because they do the job of eradicating algae much more thoroughly than you ever could with a scrub pad. They've got plenty to eat, you've got a clean tank, and everyone's happy. Normally, unless they happen to be name Dwight K. Schrute, they lay low (literally) and keep to themselves.
So I was thinking, wouldn't it be fantastic if we were able to keep little creatures in say, our bathtubs, to keep it all sparkling fresh? Little mildew eaters. I'm thinking they could be cute and charming but keep to themselves in the manner of the House Elves. Not to insult Hermione and stomp all over House Elf Rights. But it would be the most beautiful of symbiotic relationships: free food, employ, and room and board for the little creatures, and a shower cleaner than a bottle of Tilex and a lazy scrubbing arm could ever get it.
And then if we could have creatures whose sole love and purpose in life was to eradicate Hair of the Bender and similar, that would be great too.
Tuesday, September 19, 2006
:wearing a white HardRock T-shirt: PARIS (circa 1996), jeans that are not the best fit but somewhat baggy (holes in ankle on right from bikechain), sandals.
:chewing Extra Spearamint
:drinking iced tea
:stretching head to right to quell rebellion in left deltoid
:pondering when to go kite flying, finish quilt, update website, get cardboard, finish wingsofthedove, unresolved conflict, painting toenails pink, dyeing hair and when to fit in a hike, end of job, purchasing chicago ticket, saving money, how many times to workoutthisweek (4).
:resolved to: read tonight, work on quilt, not exercise, say no to lard cookies (as i said yes twice last week), eat a peach, help someone brainstorm their writing, store the compliment that i'm good with minutia so that it'll make me smile throughout the week, further resolve to beat this minutia thing to death.
best examples of minutia this week: go to the first look section of "My Name Is Earl"- Crabman pours pixiesticks into a glass of water without comment to make koolaid. brilliant.
Monday, September 18, 2006
- the taste of garlic in my mouth from LUNCH. garlic fries though magically delicious and good for you should be used with caution and possibly with some curiously strong mints, which i had noneof. so every few hours the presence would reassert itself harshly as i smacked my mouth.
- i put my gardening mind to work for a couple, the husband of which was a co-star in an awesome and adored show called A.D. and character name rhymes with MUSTER. There house is so rad- completely elegant... but there yard nothing but dust and wretched trees. So i got to wander around and point at things to rip out, things to save and be highly opinionated with a glass of redwine in my hand, despite the garlic- they even said i could sign off on the landscape architects design for their backyard in november- they might just be being polite but i have to think they really will ask my opinion. what lovely LOVELY people. and i met them at church and not a hollywood party. further awesomeness of thought ensues.
- a mutual friend was there which i didn't have a problem with but when all you want to do is talk gardening and ask get to know you questions... but then have to concede to that friend and her stories makes it hard- and i think it was actually making my left shoulder tenser than i thought- all of this sort of obnoxiously ruminated in my mind over and over keeping me up.
also longing for kite flying. the kite in my car- in the back seat. calling to me. all day. saying when will you deviate and break into song...
Sunday, September 17, 2006
So, good weekend. Went to 30th b-day party in Raleigh, where there was quite a crowd, and quite a feast. There were:
Maybe like 20+ people?
Lots and lots of bottles, including Skyy, Cruzan, Tanqueray, Jim Beam (yike), SoCo, Sauza, and something 100% Agave, which was quite tasty. And some lemon drop mix.
And food: Grilled spiedie-like chicken, brats w/ kraut, pulled-pork bbq, slaw, fruit skewers w/ chocolate & Grand Marnier sauce, chips & salsa, gorgonzola & pesto spread, chocolate chip cookies and cake. Lots of chocolate cake.
And a fire bowl outside.
Football inside, if you were interested in that (hee).
Two doggies, strangely not including our own (v. cute, though).
Also a 7-month-old baby, strangely not our own (also terribly cute). Our heads swiveled toward the sound of crying, followed by--oh yeah. Not ours...huh. She had a great time at Grandma and Grandpa's house.
Meanwhile, her parents lived it up. J.Lo realized it was his first time out of town since Easter (sheesh!). I took advantage of the time apart as well as nowhere to drive and had a little bit of this, a little bit of that. Ooo, and btw, good drink=Sunkist+spiced rum. Tastes like creamsicles. A few of us pondered mountain camping in about a month, around the time of J.Lo's b-day, and also another Raleigh party in a few weeks (woohoo!). We had an instigator in K, who had to leave early (boo) for being on call, but before she went would have some fun. Every few minutes: shot? Anyone want a shot? Another shot? And shots were poured, to the tippy brims. More than toasty, I toasted the last tequila and simply set it down while everyone tossed one (and two, in some instances) back. They were all too drunk to notice. And of course my super-power is invisibility. Stealth. Taking a clever page out of mendacious' book as well, I secretly drank a little, poured into the grass a little, this last drink, concocted by B, which was fruity and tasty but also lethal. I was done. J, though, was not and for a bit we escaped the party to walk a big loop around the neighborhood in the night, discussing the question of To Have or Not to Have Little Ones. There are no times as good in life as waxing philosophic with one's best friend. And a long-lasting party with very few bad vibes. Very late night, at (of course) my insistence, we lit candles and sang very loudly (much to B's dismay), and cut the cake. And nothing goes better with a good buzz than, um...chocolate cake? Everyone was like...chocolate cake+good buzz=yuck, and so turned right around, filed back out of the room, after the song. Well I thought it was fine, and three others thought it was fine, so we cut some nice big pieces and scarfed them down.
Saturday, September 16, 2006
- People with no sense of humor or snark.
- People who don't watch TV, like ever. Not even one little guilty pleasure show, such as Grey's Anatomy or Flavor of Love.
- People who seem to have chronic foot-in-mouth disease, and have no clue.
- Or worse, people who have seem to have chronic foot-in-mouth disease, and have a clue. You can kind of tell they're trying to dig you in order to make themselves feel better? I hate that.
- People who don't even try to be responsible, which--fine. Sink yourself. But don't try to bring someone else down with you so they can pay for your mistakes, too.
Hmm, I feel mildly crabby today. Or "blunt." Yes, I think it's blunt.
Friday, September 15, 2006
Favorites so far:
- Cao Boi, the sort of eccentric Vietnamese guy who banished his tribemate's headache with some violent-looking "old world" remedy. I'm nervous that he won't last long on the show because he's kind of weird and not as strong as the others, and therefore is an easy target. However, I love that he walks to the beat of his own drum.
- The way they jumped right into the action, Survivor Old School-style. Immediately we cut to the boat thrashing around on choppy water, and to Jeffy, our faithful narrator.
- That crazy chick with the dreads. I don't particuarly like or dislike "Flicka," but she's interesting, I'll give her that. I can't believe she let those damn chickens go, although they didn't really belong to the whiteys in the first place so...
- Jonathan Penner, the "writer." Oh buddy, if you don't write about being on the show, forget you.
- Exile Island. Even though I'm a little tired of the Exile Island angle, it looks super-scary this time around--scary in that there's nothing to it. It's a really small island, with a couple of trees, a bag of water, a flint, and a pot. I think that's it. What the hell would you do out there for 48 hours. Ugh.
- Jeff Probst, sans dorky hat. Until the reward/immunity challenge. I'm not sure who his stylist out there is, but if he could go ahead and do without the hat? That would be great, thanks. Although I suppose it does help with the sun and all. And I suppose his hat was better than Flicka's, which was, in a word, puzzling. Like she got in a fight with Barney and won?
No predictions just yet for a winner, but so far--dynamic personalities, interesting location, etc. Way, way better than Thailand. And that, at this early point, is all we can really ask for.
This naturally segways me to the camping weekend of yore. It was Saturday afternoon and mom and I had just returned from bike riding along the coast when my dad looked up from his computerized game of solitare to tell us that "a guy" wanted to know if we would share our campsite. I shrugged blankly. Mom looked confused. Damn that's ballsy. And we wondered what circumstances had led him to such a desperate position- Apparently dad, who usually has no concept of family felt bad for the guy bcs he had 3 kids and a wife and no where to lay his head- and as a fellow "guy" dad empathized with trying to please the family. Are you f-ing kidding me?! But anyway high on endorphins or whatever exercise causes besides well-being I didn't care. Mom didn't either. The guy came around again and we gave him the thumbs up bcs of course dad was going to have to "check with the wife" to see if it was okay... and when he again reiterated that he had 3 kids- it didn't seem to phase us. For some reason we were completely and utterly compliant.
So mom and I settled in and began to watch the Asian family as our own personal reality show: (We noted the recent purchase of a tent) and i had to, on several occassions stop mom from interceding on "their" experience. As we couldn't quite figure out what the boundaries were for sharing a campsite. They were on oneside of the 2 car barrior, we were on the other. We did learn that they were from diamond bar- and that's about 4 hours south and we also learned that they'd been to several campsites to no avail- now that's what i call determined. So we had to respect their moxy. We also noted the wife was quiet and didn't know too much English. The dad was an investment banker and had companies in a few parts of the world and knew about 4 languages. And that they were further set on camping as it was a surprise to the dad when he got home from his trip and that a hotel wouldn't do, despite the fact they could afford it (as their shiny white SUV lexus attested, yum- with leather interior). The kids were absolutely quiet- the 13 yr old typically mortified at having been pushed to this experience in the first place and was trying as hard as he could to quietly rebel. The 9 yr old was awesome and curious and the 3yr old was typically 3.
So night fell and we were happily watching Shanghai Nights, (as unbenownst to us our car battery was dying), and mom and i mused when their dinner would begin. As at this point it was at least 9 and on cue the dad appeared and explained haltingly that they had no fire pit on their side of the campsite and had inquired elsewhere but there was no means of getting one and would we be so kind as to let them use ours. Being still amiable we said yes and went also to fetch them our propane lantern as the night was now as dark as pitch. And we lent them a cooking table. And then slowly the invasion began. The 13 yr old sat beyond the pale, mortified or invisible. And the 2 other kids began to play around the fire. The camp chairs also delicately appeared as well as the cooler. And then the dad broke out his bad ass butane burner- shunning our humble coleman we'd offered them as well. At this point he offered us beer. Mom naturally said yes and dad and i both looked up and smiled but said nothing, which in most US places it means, hi- thanks. We acknowledge your fine offer but the one saying yes, she's the one who wants one. However before we could stop him, pop went each of the tops of 3 coronas. Not one.
I sipped at mine and actually resorted to pouring portions of it out when no one was looking- and then appeared the plate of complimentary beer nuts. We were completely mystified, but we ate the nuts- and mom drank her beer. And the production began as the dad began to satay the most wonderful smelling korean beef, with rice and sesame leaves?... We watched them intently eat their food, without complaint or comment- and then btw cooking and eating a few pieces the dad came back over to us and said, a shot? and he held a bottle of 12yrs aged whiskey-scotch and began to pour one for each of us. We tried to refuse but as happens in these situations there's only so much saying NO that you can do before you give in or do some irreprable damage to foreign relations. We toasted to him and i decided to get this one over quickly and did a shot- but then he came over again and demanded we take a 2nd shot- my dad, had already given my mom his shot and escaped to bed without so much as a word- so that when "the dad" came back to offer us our 2nd shot he inquried after the wayward father-- and we mumbled excuses and i shook my head at so much a slight of leaving us alone in the company of strangers and no man for the dad to talk to- nevertheless- we'll do. He began to become more talkative and explained that his father had given him the whiskey tradition- and as we realized that we were in for the long haul as the cooking had not stopped that we would round the otherside of the table and be social. plus the kids had begun to ask us questions about the best times for fishing and why fire is fire... and mom became completely enthralled at needing her bill-nye-thescience guy expertise.
Then came the plate of Korean beef which we initally refused and of course politely accepted and ate- then 2nds, a different flavor, along with the sesame leaves... and yet another shot of whiskey 2 which i showed him my fuller cup and mom remarked that the whiskey had begun to eat away at the bottom of her cup and switched to her thermos. i traded glasses with her and he poured me another shot- we continued to watch this interactive television show as they threw corn in foil into the fire pit and roasted them up- we honorably got the first one, politely refused, then ate it- then they each got one and the dad went to give us a 2nd one. Mom by this time had had quite enough at being polite and waited upon and decided to try refusal as her only option- of course this korean investment banker was having-NONE OF IT- and the interchange went something like this: "No, you and your wife must eat this corn." IB: "No, you must eat this corn." M: "But the corn is so delicious, you must eat and enjoy your corn." IB: "That is why you must eat this corn, bcs it is so delicious.".... at this point i was laughing but if you knew me it was one of those, take the fucking corn before you insult the koreans, sort of laugh. She eventually took the corn and we ate it and it was delicious.
Afterawhile we muttered that the night of freefood and booze might never end as were both fading fast- and we both realized that to go bed as dad had would effectively be turning the lights out on your guests. Completely unacceptable. So we continued to rally our forces- well past 11, we're sure. The kids came and went, watching a movie with their mom in the Lexus. And the Dad after a time of small talk about what he did and who knows what, excused himself to put the youngest to bed and never came back... apparently having something in common with my father- then the 9 and 13 yr old piped up with even more questions- for instance: Why did Hitler rise to power? How did communism rise and fall? What is Human Relations (HR) and why do you work at it? (to my mother)... there were a couple more in there but that's the crux. Mom and i put on our teacher hats and told them about the peasant and working classes, marxist idealism, mob mentality and who knows what else. Eventually the 9 yr old excused himself to bed and then th 13 yr old politely did the same- explaining that they would rise early to catch fish in the morning... which they did, 2 small perch- but it was something. And we said they should definitely cook it-
Meanwhile mom had bought coffee from a girl for $3 next door- and both she and my dad launched into explanations about net profit and overhead... and said that perhaps she should lower her prices. She did. And her dad had no problem lending us his generator to jump our car, and refused my mothers employ to pay him. As we broke camp early for yet another long adventure which included 3 hats, 3 kites, a cracked but functional digital camera, fried seafood, a fruit-farm stand... and of course the mighty excursion into Carmel land, the Korean family moved in, inch by inch onto the picnic table to cook their breakfast... we said our goodbyes and shook hands- with smiles and waves out the window- i found myself feeling a guest to their courtesy, and said thank you, thank you, to having had such a lovely time.