wig wah my tremolo

I haven’t really bought any toys all year. I’m saving for a prison. But I miss not having several musical instruments lying around unused. Today I tracked down a decent sized cluster of musical instrument shops in the metropolis. There was a lot of overlap but I did spy this tasty looking Fender Jazzmaster:

I don’t know what I want to be though. I still and always will love the heavyness of dragging a jagged triangle of roofing slate across the electrical cables of a bass guitar. I like the idea that I could now buy such a vintage piece of technology as pictured, coupled with a warm amp and a million years of reverb/delay. And I like the visualisation of me in tights and a cape standing behind a chunky battery of keyoards n drum machines and sequencers and midis and a laptop. There were some interesting keyboards there today but I know FA about them.

Also I bought a coconut. It’s not everyday you see coconuts for sale here. I accidentally left it in a restaurant. It’s odd that folks here will eat practically anything that comes out of the ocean — but when it comes to coconuts they drill the hole, drink the milk out and throw the rest away. Inconceivable!

invincible frogger

I’m not impervious to the idea that I got this kind of sick because I’m sick of my job. I could’ve faked sick for a week but there’s no way my conscience would’ve let me — and I needed an out of schedule break. I’m sure things will get better – they always work out somehow but today it occurred to me it’s not that the job got worse this year, it’s just that it’s /a job/. It’s about this time of year – spring – when this lousy country starts to look half decent and I feel like bussing off to another unseen pocket of it.

It’s great getting all the sleep I want for a period longer than a weekend. I’ve had vivid dreams last night and today. Several back in my spiritiual home of geelong and the west coast; the pivot being where sea and land meet. Lots of vivid colours and I was continually cursing myself for not having my camera at hand. I was somewhere on a lonely country road. To the right there was a faded blue farmhouse that looked unlived in. Along the fence I saw 4 blue-faced witches walking in a line and I was impressed with how their colours set on the red of the rained-on pine needles underfoot. There were several large objects over the fence there — like a blow-up jump castle that glowed because it had lights in it. Other things too, but near each I saw a camera (same model as mine) lying on the ground. I thought about grabbing one but didn’t because of the witches… and they probably weren’t cameras at all.

I was on a lightweight, outboard motor boat that was skimming over the top of a wide, muddy, clay-red river. I could see fields and fields of silverbeet. It felt like a delta region a long way south of here.

heartless, heartless, heart~less

I’ve had a helly half-week. I thought I was getting better – all signs pointed to it. I went out for most of the day saturday and was fine. I went out on sunday with my Special Lady to see the cherry blossoms and although it was chilly I felt no worse for it — until we got on the bus to come back. Felt thoroughly cold and started getting the shivers. It didn’t stop until I’d been balled up in bed for an hour. Felt shocking the next morning so went back to hospital.

They took an xray and lo and behold, it seemed that I had fucking pneumonia. They really did keep me there that time. In my thirty-one years, this was the first time I’d had to be in hospital for something. All up, not a pleasant experience. There was only one doctor who could speak english. The nurses were nice enough but my brain quickly began to associate them with pain – nurse bring pain. Via needles mostly, putting stuff in me, taking stuff out. All kinds of tests, which were less invasive but still not pleasant. Hospital food must be crap the world over.

I had a drip in my arm and three (count em) bags of liquid attached to the mobile hatstand draining into me. It’s an automatic thing that once your in hosptal pyjamas and are wheeling around one of those things that’s plugged into you, your walk becomes decrepit and slow.

The other world drifted closer. I saw faces in patterned surfaces everywhere. Constant bizarre half-dreams. Fragments circled continually – like the phrase and notion of “socko the smallest snowball”. Most things they’d been pumping into me were ‘only’ antibiotics, but by the time they’d discharged me on Wed. morn I’d well had enough of their merry-go-round.

Two last things – it really is user pays. Everything I’ve had done – xray, dr. consultation, needle in the bum, straight after I’ve been guided over to the front desk and out with the wallet. Australia’s medicare scheme may be under attack, or have a few problems, but it’s a fuck of a lot better than here. Also, they weren’t at all interested in keeping me clean. I had to get a friend to bring my shampoo, towel, toothbrush etc. Then I examined the shower and realised it was woeful, so decided against it. On the last night (admittedly through my own fault ie. I ate a can of peaches and piece of cheesecake — too rich considering the situation) I threw up in the toilet. That is, mostly around the toilet, some in. A nurse came just after and could see and smell the situation, but did nothing or sent no one to clean it up. This charming little event also ended my 9 years+ winning streak of me v. vomit.

The thing that got me out of there was another xray which came up alarmingly bad. In the words of the specialist I was sent to see in seoul, it was either an advanced case of pneumonia or… terbuculosis. I shouldn’t have joked about such things last week. Thankfully this doctor was old, wise and good. He asked me how I was feeling. And the truth was that compared with Monday morning when I stumbled into florence nightingale’s place-to-die, I felt heaps better, not heaps worse, as depicted in the cold white and blue of the xray.

He put me on some other antibiotics and I probably would’ve stayed there except there was no beds. That was fine with me – I wanted to go home and have a shower. Anyway, 24hrs later, one more round of antibiotics after a quick jaunt to seoul and I’m starting to feel better, intrepidly he says. I’ve been going to Asan hospital, which is Korea’s largest and one of the few places here that’s impressive by western standards. Considering that the only beds left were in $US 300 p/night rooms, or in the emergnecy ward, they could probably use another one.

shot him in the arse on the dance floor

Oh man I don’t know what I was thinking. I hadn’t been to a doctor in six years – not since my ear was blocked. Western doctors are just as bad as dentists. But I had a fever when my collegue suggested I should go – and, tripping, I thought Yes, I should.  I should’ve just gone to the yak guk (chemist) like I always do and got the pills.

The doctor could speak english and did for a little bit, but it was all rush rush and at the crucial part – saying something about an injection – she switches to talking korean. So I get this needle in my arse -= and I don’t know what it was, but I suspect a “flu vaccination” which is fucking ridiculous considering the flu is what I went there suffering of. Well.. I thought I had TB maybe too…

I felt a little okay last night but maybe that was just because my friend came around. Then this morning I get it wrong and go to meet the busses for the camp – and find out it’s not til tomorrow. Then I started to feel really crap, and was in achey agony all day because I thought the stupid injection was in some way about to help me.

I eventually went and got the cold n flu things tonight and felt pain-less half an hour later. Dumb hospital. And now I’m going to miss the camp because I had to make a decision if I could go or not this afternoon.

1 2 oh my god

I got caught out in some pretty nasty toxic, yellow dust storms last saturday and now I have bubonic plague. I am going to a local hospital this afternoon for the first time since being here. There’s no such thing as a G.P, or general practitioner’s office – it’s all at hospital. So if there’s an even longer gap between posts here, you’ll know that they did not let me out.

Plague aside, I think I’ve just being going through a rough patch. I had to drop one of my linguo subjects because it was freaking me out too much. I figure it’s not the students’ fault if they can’t keep themselves from talking. I am on da mic. now which will be good for the thorax. And the lorax. It’s unfortunate for the students at the back tables in the room because they automatically become apathetic troublemakers – it is unavoidable even for goody-goodies. There’s this one girl who I think of as Lord Nelson – something about the slight jowls and haircut; all she needs is a mascara moustache. And we had come to loggerheads recently after everything being plain sailing last year — it’s because she is at the back of the room. Anywho, she obviously felt bad about how I was giving the cold shoulder and did her best to apologise. This consisted of several bows. I shook her hand and begin to see how this drunkeness on the overstimulation of sitting at group tables will subside as they get just that little bit older.

Am off on a camp, or ‘field trip’ tomorrow to GyeongJu which is a town with a bunch of historical junk.

My favourite song at the moment is called ‘stalker song’ by king of woolworths. Go there, scroll down a bit and it’s in .mp3 or real format.

if dancing were a braindisease

I wasn’t joshing about the whole Putin thing. Unlike the many other projects boasted and started I will indeed follow though on this one.

Do you think that perhaps that was jorge borges problem – that he had these great ideas for novels but then when it came time to do the work the most he could be bothered with was a short story – and since it’s that (con)densed and translated it turns out really crap, or how I see it, boring to read? I’m like that too – but on one scale smaller. That is, I get idea for short stories and then they become half-arsed blog entries, or I get ideas for blog entries and they become nothing.

In any case, here we see our hero locked in fierce arm-battle with a well-toned lady train driver who is wearing a big watch. It is in Odessa, where Trotsky was born and the prize that the winner is getting is a watermelon. There are many photographers present. They are right to be there, it is a situation that deserves to be ‘take a picture’.

I get numerous wrong numbers on both my handphone and landline. It’s inevitable that in a small country with many people with many phones that wrong numbers will happen. I did once ask someone how to say “wrong number” in the local language, but have since forgotten. I do have grand plans to ask again, and write it down and stick the piece of paper on the bookcase near the phone. As yet these plans have yet to be realised.

As with all things, it must be a real novelty for the makers of aformentioned wrong numbers to get someone say, ‘hello’ – that is, a foriegner. I wonder if, for a moment, their think their friend is playing a trick, pretending to be some foriegner. But then the person just keeps saying ‘hello? hello?’, in a resigned voice, the kind of voice that knows that the call isn’t really for them — but they’ll keep saying hello? until the caller hangs up without saying sorry in any language — because it’s the polite thing to do.

Here are two more observations that are judgement-neutral. 1) If the zippers of my backpack are even a cm apart I will unfailingly be told by students, strangers, whoever, that my bag is open. In all instances I had been confident that the bag was not in danger of dropping its load. In most cases I dutifully unshoulder my backpack, see that there’s no problem but do up the zippers a bit more to satisfy whoever has made the effort to alert me.

2) People here have real problems with doors. There aren’t many ‘magic’ doors of the kind that have sensors that open the doors for you as you approach. I don’t know why. Most doors you have to push open to get through. The big glass n chrome ones I’m talking about. At right angles they can slot into a groove and stay stuck open. There can be a wall of ten sets of these doors, but if one door is standing open, the hordes will always bottleneck for that one. Always. Similarly, the rotating doors are troublesome. No one wants to give them a push to keep them going. I could understand if it was an, ‘I don’t want germs thing’, but it’s possible to push with your arm, your sleeve. THat’s what I do. I give it a BIG push.

I still have trouble with the city. Here is a list of the world’s countries by population density. Australia is at no. 191. South Korea is at no.12.