Tuesday, 31 August 2010

#243: Whoa It Suddenly Got Dusty In Here...

Holy crap. Will Smith's kid just made me cry with his Chinese speechifying.

This hasn't happened since those damn bees in My Girl.

Monday, 30 August 2010

#242: 姐婆, 對不起~ 我不是故意的!

Due to circumstances beyond my control, I ate some fried chicken today.

It wasn't a lot of chicken...

Just a breast, a drumstick, a few wingtips...

So as to take steps to amend this infraction, I'm making up the difference by moving my last veggy day back one day to the 2nd of October.

If the family says I'm gonna do 49 days, then I'm gonna do 49 days!

I can do that, can't I? They didn't say it had to be 49 consecutive days did they..?

Sunday, 29 August 2010

#241: 30 Days.

Entering my actual real proper final month in Taiwan.

Guess I should get my act together and look into buying my plane ticket out of here then.

Saturday, 28 August 2010

#240: Stamina.

Did a 16hr bike trip today, covered upwards of 500km - essentially tracing the entire north eastern coastline of Taiwan.

Didn't plan on it, just kinda how the route panned out. Beautiful stuff.

Seems like a backbreaking trip. But like any seemingly arduous endeavour, it's all a matter of keeping the brain occupied so that it doesn't notice that the body getting pretty battered, choked and burned.

In my case I was concentrating on not flying off the cliff edges, avoiding drag-racing artic lorries and watching out for overtaking cars on the wrong side of the road, coming in the opposite direction.

It was a fantastic day! (^^)

Friday, 27 August 2010

#239: Own The World.

Think of a time, or a place, or a time and a place where you're most yourself.

Where you're at the best of your core, where the world can't touch you, where every slip is a fortune on the other side.

Everyone has a place, or a time, don't lie to yourself. That's important.

Think to that point, peel back the extraneousities, go right into the very essence of that feeling that made you then so, shiny.

Make it tangible, make it real, bring it out, don't bury it.

And then forget about it.

Coz like breathing, it only works properly when you're not thinking about it.

And like breathing, all you really need to know that it's always there, innate, just working for you in the background.

I'm not there yet, but I can't be far off.

I just made up the word extraneousities after all. ;)

Thursday, 26 August 2010

#238: Chicken.

Comfort zones are bad, bad things.

I don't think there is anything more harmful to progress, than the comfort zone.

Oh they're necessary, I'm not denying that.

I'd go crazy if I didn't get to have a cup of hot chocolate or a burn around some corners every now and then.

But comfort zones are wily things, if you're not careful, they'll grab you tight. They'll literally suck the world away from you.

Stay vigilant. Watch your backs. (O_O)

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

#237: I May Not Know Much About This World, But What I Do Know; I Know Well.

The tube top is a beautiful, sacred, enlightened work of precision material engineering. Their reason for enticement is not hard to see, so while there are those that would choose to wear one over a standard bra - It would seem they fail to realise that the very presence of bra straps defeats the essence and the sanctity of what makes the tube top so pure.

I'm not saying go bra-less - I fully support the need for support. In fact, I support the cause wholeheartedly, with both hands.

Some would try to trick and deceive by going with clear straps. This will only work if the choice of strap can truly hide the blaspheme. Shiny plastic straps are just no good, they hide nothing, instead merely catching the sun and drawing attention to what does not belong. Sheer clear matte ones have a greater chance of passing the test... but only just, given ideal conditions.

Two other options are immediately evident:

The first would be the strapless bra, another amazing feat of engineering, this time one of the structural discipline.

The second would be a matching bra. If the top is red, then a red bra, if it's purple, go purple, if it's pink with yellow polka dots, etc. etc. This, of course emulates the spaghetti strap top - in itself another great institution which should not be overlooked.

There is, however, one style in this humble author's opinion that trumps above all others:

In a single, elegant stroke it proves its ingenuity in first matching (often exceeding) the allure, and then actually steps further and adds class to the boob tube (astonishing, I know). It then continues by maintaining security while giving literal support in the same sense of sublime simplicity as the spaghetti straps.

I am, of course, referring to the halter-neck top. It's pure art.


Tuesday, 24 August 2010

#236: I Am Become Hakka.

The house that I left when I first left England is no longer our house anymore, hasn't been for a few years now.

The house that my family lives in now doesn't really have a bed for me that I could call my own.

After my lease comes up on the 28th Sept, I will really be a guest wherever I stay...

Talk about going back to the ways of your forefathers!

Monday, 23 August 2010

#235: BYO Oyster.

Waitasec... Why am I limiting myself to just Argentina?

Shouldn't I check to see what's available in all of Sudamérica before I finalise just where I wanna plonk my bum??

Sunday, 22 August 2010

#234: In General.

Individuals are pretty smart.

People are frighteningly moronic.

Saturday, 21 August 2010

#233: Lofty Ambitions.

Since I'm 95% sure that I'm gonna be starting my own business at some point down the line - in deciding exactly what kinda business I'm gonna be setting up, I'm drawing from the knowledge of the two jobs where I reckon I was the most adept and had the most fun...

How does a Computer Troubleshooting Service Center / Coffeeshop Teahouse sound?

Friday, 20 August 2010

#232: Todo List.

- Finish out my contract.
- Pack up the apartment.
- Sell off extraneous bits (Anyone wanna buy a scooter, a motorbike or a dustbuster?).
- Figure out if I wanna pass through Bangkok, Bali or HK on the way back to England.
- Fly "home".

See: De-Clutter.

Thursday, 19 August 2010

#231: In The River of Darkness.

I don't function well when there is clutter on the mind.

Everyone needs a state in order to straighten things out.

Given that I neither drink reguarly nor can I smoke any kind of substance, I have a different kind of vice.

Nothing so uncommon, just an addiction to high speed corners and twisty bendy weavy turns.

Still found no better medidative release than a cruise through empty streets in a dead of the night.

Even cities that don't sleep have their witching hours.

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

#230: Consumption.

I relish the days when I get to do absolutely nothing. My coveted "Chill Days".

But there's a definite case to be made for the manic days. I can actually fall asleep at the end of those ones.

Good night!

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

#229: Uhhhhhhh...

Whoop, there's that blank again.

This would be that fire-gazing time. DND.

Monday, 16 August 2010

#228: The Eco Dookie.

Four days into doing the veggy thing, my #2's are gradually becoming more and more earthy green.

Kinda like a meadow on a rainy day.

Think I'll take a picture.

Sunday, 15 August 2010

#227: Grateful Days.

Taiwan may have become the place where I feel most at home.

But Japan would be where I met my greatest partners in crime.

As for England?

Well that'll always be the place where I was born~

Saturday, 14 August 2010

#226: Coz We're Men. And That's What Men Do.

A brief note of being careful, followed by a few awkward grunts and a snarky brush-off to negate the original note of affection. All while carefully avoiding eye contact with each other.

That's how my father and I always say goodbye to each other anytime we know we won't be seeing each other for a while.

Most of it is unnecessary - everything has already been communicated long before that second grunt.

I love you too Dad.

Friday, 13 August 2010

#225: Rituals.

I was alerted that my grandmother's funeral happened this week, I was then told that for the next 49 days, I'm not allowed to eat any meat or fish.

Not religious myself, but it's something I'm just gonna do for the family.

Guess I'm just gonna have to live on popcorn, seaweed and ice cream for the next seven weeks.

Thursday, 12 August 2010

#224: This Is The Difference.

With the others, I always developed this nagging feeling that I'd eventually be dragging them down.

With this one though, this one has a purity so complete that it simply overwhelms any corrupting influence I might emanate.

Instead, this one brings me up.

That is the difference.

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

#223: A Case For Nature.

Seeing my brother now really brings home just how much of a bratty handful I used to be when I was that age...

Not saying that now, I'm anywhere close to how I wanna be when [eventually] I grow up; but I'd like to think I've come pretty far from how I used to be before. But it took some pretty huge epiphanies for me to get to this person I've become today.

Wonder if my brother will get those same kicks up the bum in his life too...

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

#222: Visions.

After dinner tonight, my Dad leaned back and rubbed his belly in satisfaction. I noted the almost perfect curvature of his mid-section and how it matches that of those giant yoga balls you see in gyms and healthy people's living rooms...

Then I realised I was witnessing my own future. (O_o)

Monday, 9 August 2010

#221: Smoothies.

One of the things I'm looking fwd to most when I get back to England is access to a proper kitchen again.

In particular, my blender. Ahhh how I've missed my blender. If there was just one thing missing from my life in Asia, it would be my blender.

Sunday, 8 August 2010

#220: Heeeeeeeeeeeee...

I get a lil bit of stick for writing out these daily inanities...

And yet it seems like people are still reading them...

Have I become the online equivilent of reality tv and pulp novels?? (O_o)

Saturday, 7 August 2010

#219: What's That Saying About "Careful What You Wish For"?

On getting back from Japan, I was about to say my traditional line, "Man, I need a holiday to recover from my holiday."

Then I remember that my family are in town and I'm actually still on holiday... Hah!

...this Holiday II is actually turning out even busier than the Japan part. Aiyorrrr! =/

Friday, 6 August 2010

#218: Walk More.

I keep forgetting that there are a loooootta beautiful little green places dotted around Taipei.

I go past them every day always thinking the same thing, "Gotta remember to walk here one day."

Granted I've been pretty busy, there's always something to do in Taipei. Always.

Had a chance to walk through one such area today, saw an old couple ballroom dancing, a young group streetdancing, a boy catching fish, a couple sitting in the grass and a dude talking to himself on the bench.

How did it become such a challenge to slow down more?

Thursday, 5 August 2010

#217: Where Are My Three Seashells?

Returning back to Taipei today I got back to my apartment and as is per normal getting-back-home-ritual I immediately sat on the toilet.

30 minutes later I realised I had been just sitting there staring at the toilet roll, thinking, "Why, why are the jet-spray-power-toilets not THE standard the world over yet?"

I swear wars could be prevented if these things became as ubiquitous as Coca Cola vending machines.

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

#216: Logistical Fun.

The FastPast system they use at Disneyland is a pretty brilliant way of maximising the time and the number of rides you can fit into one day that is primarily 90% queueing.

The only issue becomes that my head becomes filled with algorithms and numbers of standby times and which rides we can fit in before the next FastPast slot arrives and getting there as fast as possible.

Oh wait, that was pretty fun too! =)

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

#215: Aroma.

It's actually incredibly comforting to come back at the end of the day and find that the most commented on post on your fb wall was this:

Yup, we really are that close.

Whether some of us like it or not. =)

Monday, 2 August 2010

#214: Retention.

When I first got back to Japan, I thought I'd forgotten pretty much all of what little Japanese I had known before... but turns out that like my Cantonese when I'm in HK, it only takes a few days for it to come leaking back into the forefront of that hippo camping part of the brain.

Now I'm spouting out disjointed words and phrases I never knew I even knew... this time it's disjointed words and phrases in Japanese lightly sprinkled with flecks of Mandarin for even greater clarity in comprehension.

Think I'm about to invent my own language here...

Sunday, 1 August 2010

#213: Five Years Later...

The bride was one of the very first school managers I had when I became an English teacher. When I first walked into her school she thought I was the newspaper delivery boy, albeit a very smartly dressed one.

The groom was one of the very first foreign language teachers I'd ever met. He'd be the first of a loooooooooooooooot of people I met in that great place called The Hub. I still remember that one of the first things I learned about him was his love of Star Wars, that he read One Piece and that his relationship with the school manager was supposed to be a little hush hush (I also learnt that dating within the company isn't exactly encouraged... *ahem* =).

This would be an English wedding in Japan. Only natural for the groom to be walking around with a keg strapped to his back while dressed in traditional Japanese garb. (^^)v