Monday, December 21, 2009

Meat

Roasted pumpkin, green papaya salad, rice with lemongrass... these things are all nice, but you need a trip back home to Texas to put it all in perspective. This slab of meat will be my dinner tonight:


The beer is there for scale. And because I was drinking it this morning when I took the picture.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Modern farming. And vampires.

Spent last night at the honky-tonk getting drunk with old cowboys and discussing the best crops to plant in Farmville. Then took my parents to see "New Moon." Apparently my father is neither Team Edward nor Team Jacob, but is Team Pissed As Hell at Being Promised a 'Supernatural Thriller' and Instead Being Treated to 2+ Hours of Teen Angst. He's known for his violent diatribes, but the car ride home last night was particularly spectacular.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Home again

After 32 hours of travel, I'm finally back in Texas. It was a great trip and the time just flew by. I'd especially like to thank the two women who sat on either side of me (score! I had the coveted middle seat!) on the 16-hour flight from Hong Kong to New York for sleeping peacefully throughout the flight, thereby preventing me from getting up to urinate or stretch my legs for long periods of time. Oh, and I can't forget the drunk Rastafarian who sat next to me on the flight from NY to Texas - thanks for immediately passing out on my shoulder, then engaging in a five-hour-long flatulence session that had my eyes watering all the way to Texas. Sorry mom and dad, those weren't tears of joy upon seeing you again. I could barely see anything at that point.

So even with only three hours of sleep in the past two days, it's been an enjoyable morning back in the bosom of the family. Cleaned the chicken coop, collected the eggs, went to the feed store, and had a greasefest of a lunch (jalapeno burger and tater tots) with dad while we discussed whether Baudrillard's notion of the hyperreal is more relevant to McDonalds or reality TV and he filled me in on the progression of his plans to construct a catapult large enough to launch a grand piano over the river that runs through downtown. Good to be home again.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Home for the holidays

Looking forward to twenty-eight hours of transport tomorrow to go home for x-mas.

What the hell happened to teleporters? I was promised those as a child.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

I now understand so much...

Kelly and I hopped in a cab the other night and asked the cabbie to take us to Whitty Street. We pronounced it the typical American way - “Whiddy” Street. The cabbie was completely befuddled (and a little pissed off) until we handed him a map and pointed out where we wanted to go. “Oh! WHIT-tee Street!” And he proceeded to instruct us on the proper way to pronounce all of the roads we were passing. This was helpful, as we’re trying to improve our Cantonese. But then things got…strange.

First was his monologue on (we think) the difference between animals (for some reason he focused primarily on pigs - complete with pig noises) and people. It went something like this:

“Animal sleep-eat-f**k-sleep-f**k-f**k-eat! Person sleep-eat-f**k…THINK.”

Okay, we can agree on that.

Next came something like this: “You American. Next life, I Spanish, I Chinese, We same!”

Okay, all people are the same inside. I can get behind that.

Then it gets a little scary (it’s important to keep in mind that while he’s giving us this philosophical diatribe he’s getting more and more excited and paying less and less attention to the road so that he can make eye contact with us in the rearview mirror and punctuate his most important points with violent hand gestures):

“My father, if he calls right now and says I kill you, I need to know REASON.”

Wait…what?

Apparently this had something to do with the ignorance of people who haven’t had education, and rampant xenophobia in people over a certain age. I mean, that’s what we hope it meant. Because now he’s driving faster and faster and talking about killing us, and we’re just hoping he gets us to our destination without doing so (but he said he needed a REASON!).

The tirade continues, but degenerates into something about the Danish Mohammed cartoon controversy, which we can’t figure out the cabbie’s stance on.

We finally arrive at our destination and attempt to get out, but he keeps talking and won’t unlock the doors. Finally he lets us out, but rolls down the window so he can make one more point. Then one more. Then another. Bystanders gather to listen to the harangue. We both shake his hand, several times, then he belatedly pulls away and we’re left stunned and confused.

But at least now we know how to say “road” in Cantonese. *


* Actually, I forgot how to say "road" once he started talking about killing us. But at least I can pronounce Whitty Street correctly.



Sunday, December 6, 2009

Tram party

The earlier part of the day was spent suffering from food poisoning (Again. And no, I will never learn). But the evening was an improvement. One of the various modes of Hong Kong transportation is the tram. These can be rented for private parties, so tonight we spent a couple of hours on a tram tooling around the city. We had lots of beer, lots of food, and lots of friends. Some views of and from the top deck of the tram:










Afterwards, we ended up at a basement nightclub to see some local bands. A good one:

video

And a bad one:

video

Even if the music's okay (which it wasn't), the amount of hair gel caked on the singer makes it totally unacceptable.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Adventures in fast food

This morning I'm walking along, minding my own business, when I pass a McDonalds and see a sign for a new breakfast item - "sausage and egg cheesy twisty pasta." I must try it.

It is every bit as bad as it looks, which is not surprising in the least.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

The sandwich of life

Picnic at Hollywood Road park:


And the sandwich of life, containing (among other things) foie gras, Vietnamese ham, pork knuckle, and chicken floss:


I do not know what a "pork knuckle" is, but that was a damn fine sandwich.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Greasefest

Dinner at Temple Street Night Market:


Fried duck:

Oyster pancake:

That is all.

Isn't that enough?