Friday, December 29, 2006

WCB 82 - Jus' One Mo' B4 I Go

I pulled down my suitcase so I could pack some things in it. This displeased Kamikaze, who senses he's going to be left alone again. He promptly jumped into the case, turned on his laser beam eyes, and threatened to zap my non-bionic leg off.
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See how far you can go on one leg there, Hoppy.

Actually, he's not going to be all alone. Once a day, two giggly excited middle school students will stop by to totally freak him out feed him, clean his litter, and change his water.

Still, I expect many a zapping when I return!

For more cat blogging, go visit - uhhhhhh, I don't know. I can't find the hosting schedule. Chances are here or here will have a link!

Oh, and Speaking of,...

Japan, guess what I found in the basement food court of the posh Lotte Department Store last Saturday?

A Sushi-Go-Round!!!!
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Love it! I thought this was a fairly festive looking pre-Christmas lunch!
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Those bigg'uns were hard to manage, seeing as I was under instruction from the dentist I'd just left to only chew with one side of my mouth. Still, they were delicious. Actually, I stopped by HomePlus on the way home to pick up some cat food and found that a Sushi-Go-Round had just opened in their food court as well! Bonus!

I'll be visiting a Sushi-Go-Round in Japan for sure, but it's good to know I can get my fix right here!

I'm Outta Here!

In a few hours, before the sun comes up, I'm off to Japan.

Posts may or may not appear from there, but I'd bet "NOT" is more likely.

Happy New Beer Year, everyone!

BBM - Holiday Edition

Many thanks to Stephanie over at Dispensing Happiness, for hosting this latest round of Blogging By Mail!

Every time I get a BBM package, my co-workers gather around, rubbing their hands together and licking their lips, urging me to "Bbali bbali, open it quick!" so they can steal admire all my food goodies! Well, this time the joke was on them, because there was no food to gobble up! Ha-ha!

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What there was, was a glittery Christmas tree ornament, a tea towel, 3 magazines about Christmas cookies, and a tin of cookie cutters!

Thank-you, Barbie2Be for the goodies!

Now, if only Santa had brought me an oven so I could make some of the yummy looking cookies!

Monday, December 25, 2006

The Seoul of Christmas

John, over at Long Time Gone, is home is the States for a couple weeks, enjoying the holidays with his family. Lucky man!

And lucky for us, he seems to be suffering the effects of jet lag, and is awake and posting to his site while the rest of America is asleep with all the sugar plums dancing in their heads. Please make sure to stop by and read the play he borrowed and reprinted from the Sunday Washington Post. It made me laugh!


I'm not sure who called me at 9:48 this morning, but I didn't answer. I was sleeping. When I finally woke up and looked at my little clock it was 11:11am, numbers which please me (not for their earliness which goes against my vampireyness, but because of their one-ness.)

I was wary of answering the phone today. I expect someone I want to talk to might call, it being Christmas and all, but I also was expecting people I didn't want to talk with to call. When the phone rang a few moments ago, I gambled and picked it up.

It was of the "I don't want to talk to you" variety. See, three of my middle school students had invited themselves over to my apartment today for a Christmas party. It totally was not my idea, they just approached me a couple times last week to tell me they were coming! These are very nice girls, and I like them a lot. However, hosting a party for them where they're going to chatter on in Korean and eat choccopies and maybe persuade me to buy them a pizza on Christmas at my house isn't my idea of a good time. So I fibbed a bit, and told them I had to meet my friend today.

It's early. I could maybe meet a friend today.

Hey, it's a beautiful sunny day. It' Christmas. I'm not feeling so moody. There are a myriad of possibilities today and tomorrow and so on.

Last night my 1st dream was a nightmare and I woke up terrified. A blood soaked killer had just come into the shower room in a hospital where I was hiding from him. However, in my second dream I was travelling along on the highway at about 100km/h without a car! I was running - but without moving my feet! Outstanding!

Fairly Crapmus

Yup. Merry Christmas to all you folks that aren't bogged down by loneliness and melancholy. Merry Christmas to those of you that are!

Christmas was always far and away my favourite holiday. Even the glare and threat of "wait til we get home" from my dad for whatever transgression I'd committed when I was a kid wasn't enough, really, to dampen my spirit. Even playing along with my brother as we got older, who had developed a deep hatred for the holiday, didn't deaden my enthusiasm for what Christmas was supposed to mean. (Yah, Jeff, I wasn't being completely honest when I wished you a Scary Shitmas. We both know that if we were to fully embrace "Festivus" as our family's traditional holiday; it would take half a year to get through the "airing of the grievances" and another half proving our "feats of strength.") Christmas good! Family bad. Somewhere along the way, the wires got crossed perhaps.

Well here I am in my fourth Christmas overseas. It's should be called "Not-Christmas" over here, really. Like the term my dentist used regarding my silver fillings, I am experiencing "micro leakage." Maybe even "macro leakage." My Christmas spirit has all but died, and the sad thing is I'm not sure what to do to get it back.

I'm losing hope. For anything and everything. And I find this terribly alarming. It seems like I'm grasping at threads of my blanket of optimism that is unweaving itself at an alarming pace. What the hell, world? What the hell, life? What the hell, happiness? Where did you go? You were real, at some points. At varying points. Why do I seem to go from numb to despondent these days? It's even worse when I think about how I used to feel about the holidays, compared with how I dread them now. What's the secret to unknotting history so I don't have to keep re-living these uncomfortable and unpleasant experiences? I'm Bill Murray these days. Screw Christmas, it's Groundhog Day.

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Oh blah blah blah. "Talk Talk" wasn't wrong when they sang "Baby, life's what you make it. (Celebrate it.)"

I use humour as a shield to convince us both that everything's alright. And it could be, but it's not. It's tragic, but yet still largely laughable. For me, that might be life's saving grace, because I don't feel very tied to anything else at this point.

I do wish you a Merry Christmas. Happy Holidays. Peace. More than that I wish you a Happy New Year. A good one. I think my year in review would be featured on some Bloopers TV Show. I hope the next year brings better fortune and more contentment, for all of us. But mostly for me. Because I'm selfish like that. Oh, sheeshhhh - alright. Goodness and love and serenity (NOW!) for everyone. It's on me.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

WCB 81 - Presents!

My friend Laura in Japan sent Kamikaze some Christmas presents! He got a toy mouse on a stick. The site of the little mouse's tail sticking out as I opened it sent Jane screaming across the room. She says she has a phobia of mice. I have decided to keep the mouse at work and scare her 100 times before I let Kamikaze play with it at home. My big boy also got a pack of grow-your-own-cat-grass, which he thinks is delicious. He got a cat blanket (pictured as it's folded up) and THREE new logs of corrugated cardboard he scratches. He LOVES them.
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He often sits Sphinx-style with his front end on the scratching block. Alternately he lies in his bed with his paw or paws on the block. I think he's afraid it's going to run away or something.

The last scratching block had been flipped over and was worn down to a pile of brown scraps. He was overdue for a new one, but you can't find them here! He was so excited when I gave him the new one he threw up his just-eaten food on it and then enjoyed his meal one more time. Cats are charming.

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Whatever. It's MINE. I know you're not going to want to play with it after its been barfed on. I'm smart like that.

For more Christmas cat bloggy goodness, please stop by and visit Tiggy the Tiny Tiger and leave some happy words for Tiggy's in a new city, and Sarah Jane, Tiggy's mom is having a rough time. I hope she and Tiggy have a Merry Christmas and a fantastic new year with a fresh start.

Oh, and have a look at Anne's gorgeous cats. The very pregnant Glinda-cat should be on a Christmas card! Anne was my recipient in the latest round of Blogging By Mail. I was thrilled to have been matched up with her, as I've been a fan of her blog for a long time!

Alright then, carry on being Merry, even though you know it enrages me.

Saturday, December 23, 2006


I like to consider myself a pacifist, but even at my age - I've just resigned myself to the fact I haven't come close to figuring my own self out. I find it interesting that I want to start punching Santa and never stop. I want to grind ALL the reindeer into salami and eat them on crackers, and I want to smush the elves beneath my shoe.

I want to wish you a Merry Christmas,....but more than that I want you to share in my rage and help me destroy anything red or green. Or Merry. Or Bright. And especially Jingelly.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Same-same, but different!

In a different part of the same country, on the same day, Kevin and I went through similar experiences dealing with the clowns, oops, I mean asshats oops again, I mean incompetent boobs uhhh bureaucrats who work in offices here.

I was all raw from a visit to the dentist where they jabbed me with needles so they could yank my gums down so they could jam a string around the tooth that they'd just finished drilling for a half an hour. So that's where my head was at.

So I went to the tax office with my friend to see if I could get a "hallelujah" about the ongoing pain in the ass I'm having at work.

Now, I don't speak Korean very well at all. But even I could tell that what the 1st guy we talked to was a pile of mumbo jumbo. Nice attitude there, Shifty McBalding. Hows about looking either one of us in the face? The only good thing this guy did was confirm that I am not registered with the tax office. I'd like to say I was surprised, but I was not. I was a bit disappointed. What I had hoped to find out was that I was indeed registered, and that the appropriate taxes (28,950 won per month) had been paid. Then I could get all inquisitive with my boss as to where the other 71,500 won I've been paying every month has gone. (Toward cookies?!?!?! I THOUGHT so!!!) But alas....nothing has been paid in my name. The guy went on to say "Blah blah blah blabbity blah blah." It was the same to my English ear as it was to my Korean friend.

He ended up sending us to another office.

The guy at the "Tax Payers Advocate" Office was more suave and he had this to say: "Blabbity blah bee dibbly doo blah blah boobidy boppity boo la la la." That is a direct translation. Though this was the local branch of the NATIONAL TAX OFFICE, no one seemed to be able to give us a concise answer as to how much tax I should be paying. On their website it seems pretty straightforward. But the clowns folks we talked to at this office had varying ideas:
"You should shut up and pay 5%."
"If you make between 40,000,000 and 80,000,000 a year, you pay 28%."
"If you make over 80,000,000 a year you pay 35% taxes."
"If I look at your face twice, you pay 9.4%."
"If we throw these rocks against the wall and they make a sound like "clunk" you pay 68% taxes, but if you can find in this room the secret fuzzy purple hammer that makes a "boing" sound, you pay the random number in my head."

Apparently there is no direct answer for "If I make 2,000,000 won per month, how much tax should I pay?" No one would produce a number. The clown at the Advocate's Office sent us up to the second floor. There were 6 doors to 6 varying departments on the second floor. I felt like I was on "Let's Make a Deal," except there was no good prizes befing any of the doors. Did the contestants on that show actually get to keep the donkeys behind the doors? I used to think - when I was a kid - that it'd be pretty damned cool to win a donkey!) Only for me, today, all the doors opened up to clowns well versed in the "Run-Around Speak."

Oh, what I would have given to be able to yell speak Korean.

Finally, the two most important things I learned was (1) that I am indeed paying too much tax. (But, I knew that already.) and (2) It looks like my boss may have submitted bulk taxes for the hogwan to the tune of 5%. Probably, this is grand total of the income tax for all employees because we're a small school. I KNOW the Korean teachers aren't paying tax. It seems I may be paying all the income tax for all the employees.

Tomorrow is another call to the Tax Hotline for Foreigners (who initially advised me to visit the Local Bureau of Clowns.) Next is another dreaded conversation with my boss.

This beat goes on and on.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Working for the Weekend

Things are plugging along at work. I thought I'd give a little bit of an update.

Another payday has come and gone, and with it came another conversation with the boss about my tax and pension issues at work. My boss's husband is back from his long stint on a boat, though I've yet to actually SEE him. I was relieved he didn't come to this latest round of talks, as he doesn't speak English. Though he may be the director of the school in name, I doubt he has much to do with it these days. I was told, however, that he's pretty upset about the whole tax and pension thing, and that "he can't accept" the tax issue. *Bullshit,* say I. Let's get to the point, I thought, and questioned my boss.
"The 5% you take from my pay every month is for tax?"
"And you give that money to the government?"
"Yes." (What else could she possibly say? "No, we use it to buy cookies."
"So, whatever. I will visit the tax office and they will give me my money back."
She looked alarmed. "Did you go to the tax office?"
"No, but I will. I thought you could help me with this, but it's ok. I go there, fill out a form, and they tell me how much tax I've paid. They will refund my overpayment."
"I need to talk to my husband about this."

I called the National Pension office and confirmed that my employer and I would have to make back payments from the time I 1st arrived in Korea. Apparently my boss called the local Pension office, and they're willing to accept my enrollment from January 1st 2006. I suspect that would come with a bribe, as it goes against the law.

So, right now we're still at an impasse, but I'm going to push for a resolution before the end of the year. My boss suggested coming to some sort of middle ground on things, but I haven't decided if that's good enough. I know I'm stupid for not having realized all this stuff a lot earlier, but I just wasn't informed. On the other hand, it's my bosses job to abide by Korean employment law and not rip me off. Why should I settle for less? In less than 6 months, my contract will be finished, and the payout from my employer's contribution to the pension plan will be over 4 thousand dollars Cdn. And so far, I've overpaid more than 2.4 thousand dollars Cdn. in taxes.

I'm still trying to be very diplomatic and calm, but on the inside it boils my blood. Like Freddie Mercury sang, "I want it all. I want it all. I want it all. And I want it now!"

I like the new teacher, Joy, but I'm not so sure how well the kids are liking her. In the last couple of weeks, we've lost 8 students, and all but 1 have been Joy's. The middle school girls in my last class were really unhappy Friday. One of them had dropped out the day before because "she hate Joy-teacher." The girls told me that Joy's been rough with them, pinching and slapping them and pulling their hair. I saw it myself a couple weeks ago during the Speech Contests. I was sitting at the front of the room like I always do, and whenever I would shush a group of kids or lay my "Stoneface-Stare-of-Be-Quiet" upon them, Joy would amble over and knock on their heads or grab their ears. She would sit beside them and hold their hands, which was freaking all the kids out. This was, afterall, only her third day at the school!

But she does seem to be actually teaching the kids instead of chatting and eating snacks with them, like Gloria was prone to do. I wish I could convince the teachers to stop equating the sound of short i with the Korean symbol that's pronounced as a long e. I have such a hard time breaking that habit once the kids have had it drilled in by the Korean teachers. It's the difference between "slip" and "sleep," or "shit" and "sheet!"

Jane's strange, and we didn't have such a good week. She's not consistent in supporting me, and her mood seems to really dictate how helpful she's going to be when I ask her for something. Thursday night, she stood fixing a Christmas ornament for 30 seconds after I asked her for help with an unruly student. Finally she sighed and said, "What happened?"
Nevermind what happened! Just get the kid out of my class! (It's a long story and I don't feel like typing it out - but I had good reason to request the kid take a time out.) Just the day before, Jane urged me to kick out the students who keep making problems in this one class. She told me "Send them out! I'll talk to them!" and then I get no backing the next day. I just shook my head after Jane asked what happened (it was, afterall, the same thing that happens every class I teach with these kids) and said "thanks Jane!" and returned to class. Great. Now the boys have no reason to behave as they're aware there are no consequences for their misbehaving. So much for respectin' mah authoritay! I dread this class. (It's gotten worse since two classes were combined to make room for the group of middle school girls that Joy's kicking around.)

Just to end off on a strange note, earlier in the week, when I commented to Jane toward the end of the day that I was hungry, she cupped one of her boobs and offered me a drink. The more I think about it, the more weird it is. It's super weird, right?
Every time Friday rolls around I just can't wait to get the hell out of there.

WCB 80 Feed Me!

Big Kamikaze Kamakiri Kitty gets very impatient when he figures it's time for dinner. He starts meowing, sadly and quietly at first, but soon becomes angry and loud! He moves closer and closer to his empty dish until his head is practically in it. Just before I took this picture, he was lying with his paw in the dish and rattling it against the floor. Clunk, clunk, clunk.
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Alright alright alright, dinner's coming up - quit making such a racket!

For more weekend cat blogging, be sure to stop by kitchen Mage's site. It sounds like they're having quite a storm! And if you like many many pictures of cats, please visit Miss Ellie's Page. I always want more cats when I see all the lovely ones up for adoption on her page.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Puppy Dog Tales

Do you know what you get when you mix some of this:
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with some of this:?
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You get this!
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(Fuzzy Puppy!)

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Mom and Baby
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Dad and Baby
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Tail and Baby
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Now the whole family follows me to work everyday!

Friday, December 15, 2006

I Remember

Here's a favourite e-mail from my brother last July:

"Hey J-poo,
So you're supposed to be here in like 48 hours or something... Will you be providing flight details, or shall I rely on my friends at the psychic network?
I was planning on meeting you & driving you to the b-rab's place."

It reminds me I never did finish my Canada story. Let's see if I can before the year ends! ("b-rab" is my mother.)

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Hump Day

I phrased the final question in my previous post wrong. What I meant was more "How sad would I be,..." I'd be sad. I like my blog. I like writing. I just don't like it too much when it starts to feel like a chore, and I start feeling shitty because I can't come up with something to write about.

My bro's a good guy. I take his ribbing knowing that he was just kidding, and that he is very busy and hasn't spent enough time reading to declare this site shite. And besides, I may actually be slightly retarded. I mean, look at me in the deer hat But, my brother's determination of my retardedness comes more from the fact he's known me for so long and has lots of 1st hand experience with my doi-yoi-edness, rather than from anything he read on here, I'm sure. By the by, what I ate for lunch is fascinating. Every little thing I do is enthralling. I should know, the little voices in my head tell me so.


A perceptive guy I worked with back in the 90's once told me I was hyper-sensitive. I told him I was MOST DEFINITELY NOT, and then proceeded to get all sensitive, hyperalliticaly like, about what he'd said. I like making up new words.

Another morning at the dentist. Dr. Wee-Hands stuck thin rods into my canals and twisted them in good before yanking them out. It didn't hurt, so I didn't mind. I have to get a gold overlay on the tooth they're working on as "much of my tooth has been deleted." I shall be blinged. However, I'm going old school with a silver amalgam filling on the back lower molar they'll start to "delete" on Friday. It's $500.00 Cdn. for the bling, $25.00 for the silver. GAH!

After finally getting out of the chair, my friend and I stopped to eat some lunch before I headed to work. Mid-chew, the temporary cover they'd just put back on my tooth dislodged and I chomped it in half. That was quite unpleasant, as is the dentisty taste in my mouth I've had going on since.

I've got other stuff to write about, and I will. Shortly.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Blog Schmog?

Ever since I gave my brother this here address to this here blog I've found myself being far more self conscious about what I'm writing. I don't like it so much.

The last couple of days have been worse, ever since my bro implied my blog here is trite and fluff, and that I've got too much time on my hands. And then he said I'm retarded. Or at least I'm retarded when I post about what I ate for dinner.

Tom Hanks is right now losing Wilson the Volleyball on TV. I don't know why I relate so much to the relationship he had with that ball and the profound sense of loss his character felt when it floated away.

Would I be sad if this blog just floated away?

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Oh Dear!

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My stupid computer is having issues and I'm going to have to get Mr. Computer Man to come sort it out next week. Hopefully he won't wipe out all my files like he did last time. In the meantime, I can't post any new pictures of Kamikaze for WCB, or any of the 31 pictures I transferred from my camera tonight.
Oh, but if you want to see some cat related stuff, visit Bellytimber, and definitely go see the most photogenic cat Upsie.
Carry on.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Dems da Dentists

%&#$@#& dentists. Ohhhhhh how I hate them.

I've started "treatment" on two of my teeth. So far it's been hellish, and it's only been the first day! I went earlier in the week, but that was just a look-see. Today was the first day of thrills, chills, drills, and pills. This is my second experience at a Korean dentist. The first was last spring and it was super quick, just a couple minutes to remove a couple chunks of tooth that had broken the night before eating evil popcorn. Here's some thoughts on how things are going so far.

Cheers for the nice modern establishment that is my dentist office. I'm going with a friend of mine in the mornings, driving about 25 minutes downtown so we can avoid the "country clinics" in our neck of the woods. "Sky Clin*c" looks all shiny and impressive. There are comfy leather couches in the reception area, and another room just off it with a few tables and chairs, a selection of newspapers and a complimentary coffee area, and free internet. Nice!

Jeers for looking very posh, but actually kind of falling apart. As we sat waiting to see the dentists, I joked with my friend that every infraction that displeased me was going to result in a percentage off my bill. I took 3 percent off for the pile of used kleenex on the coffee table in front of us. Another 8 percent came off for the broken sink in the bathroom that poured water all over my shoes. I even took off 2 percent because the "I" was missing in "CLINIC" over the reception desk.

Cheers to the dentists, especially the little one with the glasses and the wee hands, who took about 30 minutes explaining what was wrong with each of my teeth that need work. He used x-rays, models, and diagrams he drew on a pad of paper. His English was very good, and I was right is my suspicion that he was schooled in the UK.

Jeers to the dentists, for the same reason. About 10 minutes into my dentist's lecture, I started thinking how I wished he would clam up and spare me the science lesson. Enamel, dentin, pulp chamber, yah yah yah, just fix it Dr. Wee Hands!

Cheers for the technology! In between sessions and while waiting for the dentist, I flipped between Oprah Winfrey and CNN on a screen suspended right in front of my face! This "television" also works as a computer where they display x-rays and televised views of your mouth as it's being tortured treated.

Jeers for the cleanliness. The dentists don't wear gloves, and Dr. Spikey Hair who worked on me today was ping-ponging back and forth between myself and another patient three chairs down. Though I never met the other patient, I feel like I have, and his spit was introduced into my mouth via Dr. Spike's fingers. Mmmmm. Yummy. Looking to the instrument tray beside me, I noticed how all the pointy pokey silver tools were all jumbled in a pile together, instead of freshly autoclaved and laid out in even intervals. The little mouth mirror was smeared. Probably with the previous patient's juices. I polished it up with a kleenex. Ewww.

Cheers for the army of young female assistants in their tight red sweaters. Pretty!
Cheers for the 3 giant needles of anesthesia the dentist plunged into my nerve to deaden it. I hate pain, and Dr. Spike hooked me up every time I flinched.

Jeers to the throbbing ache that started around 5pm. today, after the numbness wore off. It extends from the top of my head, down the right side of my face and neck and off to the end of my shoulder. 800mgs of Ibuprofen and two little blue pills procured from my pharmacist (which have morphine in 'em! Hello!) haven't done nearly enough to make me comfortable. My head drums a beat of "Ow, ow, ow, ow."
Jeers to having to wake up 3 hours earlier than usual. Jeers to my fear of the dentist, which tenses me up so thoroughly I leave the clin*c feeling achey and defeated.
Jeers to root canals in general, and jeers to my silly little teeth and propensity to grind them under stress and while sleeping.

Jeers to another round tomorrow morning.
Cheers to it eventually being over.

What do we think about gold fillings? I think the dentists here are in cahoots with the gold industry, as they're like pushers for getting one's grill blinged up. I got talked into an eventual gold overlay on the tooth we're working on. It's expensive, but durable. I think it's going to clash with all my other silver fillings, though. At the very least, they're going to develop complexes and fall out of my teeth once I introduce this new "pimp-daddy" into their midst.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006


I love how different fruits come into season at certain times here. Certain fruits in season then become ubiquitous and are sold in vast quantities at the markets, from the backs of trucks, and by the wee old grandmothers lining the streets. Not too long ago, it was "beh" season - which is the Asian Pear. It's big and round and absolutely goes against what my mind figures as "pear shaped."

In Korea, someone might describe their plans as having gone "pear shaped," and buddy listening would say, "Oh. You mean like a big apple?"

My favourite fruit seasons are strawberry (late spring) and watermelon (summer.) (By the way, watermelons here are round - not football shaped. I think the spherical form is preferred in Asia, perhaps.) My least favourite fruit seasons are grapes (they're always blue grapes...were they green, that would be another matter) and those stinky yellow fruits shaped like small footballs, (which blow my spherical theory.) Ugh, they're nasty.

Anyhow, all that to say that now it's persimmon and clementine time!
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Two bowls of them there clementines will run you 5,000 won on the way to my school.

Persimmons? Hate 'em. Clementines - love them!
So does my boss's son, who eats about ten of them a day and leaves the peels all over the school. I like trying to peel them in one piece. Then I put the skin in the garbage, because I'm civilized like that.
(Oh, see the peels on the table in the picture? My boss's kid must've happened by earlier!)

Let There be Life

I don't know why, but I signed up for this on-line trial of some fertility-calendar program. I think it's natural to be curious about one's inner-workings eh? So every time I turn on the computer, or the clock clicks to midnight, a little window pops up and tells me how fertile I am and how likely I am to get pregnant.

Just so you know, I am ovulating right now and am very fertile. Chances are very good I will become pregnant today.

So, like, if you feel like dropping by and creating some life, just let me know. (Unless I've unwittingly signed up for the Immaculate Conception Trial Version, in which case nevermind!)

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Update - I'm Alive!

I'm okay. Kind of. Sort of. Almost.

See, I think what happened was that Little Flu went and told his bigger stronger meaner brother Big-Ass Flu that I'd been fighting with him. So Big-Ass Flu showed up Sunday to kick me around some. Either that, or I got food poisoning from the not very good lunch I had on Saturday. My friends didn't get sick, though. Then again, we didn't all eat exactly the same thing (I'll post about it very soon.)

The last couple days have been spent puking and sleeping and sipping apple juice diluted with water. Oh, and worrying that maybe I had meningitis. I googled vomiting and stiff neck and survey said,...

At one point yesterday I woke up from a sweaty nap and had just enough time to swing my legs over the side of the bed before I barfed all over the floor. (You should have seen Kamikaze's expression!) Lovely. I didn't even go to work today, so you know I was feeling bad. Hopefully I've turned the corner though.

I think the folks who live below me might be alcoholics. They're partying again tonight and their window is open. I can smell the mix of soju and cigarettes and men wafting up to my balcony. I think they're playing the "Let's Scream Our Heads Off and Fall Down" game now.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006


I mistook my initial symptoms which started Sunday as a bad cold when they, in fact, have turned out to be the flu. I went to work Monday because I could, and I was fairly upbeat despite only having had a couple hours of fitful sleep. I went today as well because - I don't know - I felt like I had to. Last night was a carbon copy of Monday, and I was a quite a bit crankier because I felt like a zombie. The kids showed me some mercy and were pretty well behaved. I think they were placing bets on when my head would explode off my neck during my violent coughing fits.

Reading about me being sick is ho-hum, eh? I've decided I'm sick of being sick, so once I recover from this bug, I'm going to get me a flu-shot. I'm finding it just too easy to catch viruses with the kids pawing me with their goobery hands. Today, a boy who's often acting up in class, mimicked my coughing fit by turning and hacking right into the face of the little girl beside him! I admonished him, "That's how viruses are spread!" Just to make sure he got the message, I approached him, pried his eyelids apart, and licked his eyeballs. That'll show him!

During the overheating portion of my fever today, I had a couple of interesting glitches in my 4th class. I had just finished dating my daily report as "Wednesday February 20th," (I've no idea why) and I turned to the class to speak. The sentence on-deck in my brain was "Let's take out our books," but what I said was, "Let's go to the zoo." I only caught the strange words when I heard the echo of them hanging in the room.

In other news, they did end up hiring a new teacher, which makes me happy. She seems to be nice so far. She's well traveled - but through missionary work, which was evident with her first pick for an English nickname which our school requires, "Faith." Jane kaiboshed the name, and I agreed, telling her she'd probably be called "Pai-suh." She didn't like my 1st suggested name of "Shaniqua-Lee-Madonna," so I ended up christening her "Joy."

For, like, all the fishes in the deep blue sea, as well as you and me.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

No Rest, and it's Dreary

I doze off for a few moments, but then I'm awakened by a violent coughing fit, or water leaking out of my nose like a faucet, or the fact that I've got cotton mouth. I'm a mouth-breather, you know.

Earlier I sat looking like a slack-jawed yokel trying to watch the Miami Vice movie. Talk about dreary. I couldn't understand what the hell they were talking about. The reviews here and here sum things up nicely. I especially like the latter reviewer's comment, "My cat has coughed up hairballs that make more sense than MIAMI VICE. At least a hairball serves a vital physiological function that makes the feline’s existence more pleasant in the long run after an irritating 30 seconds or so. Michael Mann’s big screen version of the uber-hip 80s television series is just irritating, and a lot longer than 30 seconds." Ha! I was never a fan of the TV series, but I watched a few episodes surely. Maybe my memory is foggy, but I remember the two main characters having some chemistry. I guess things change.

My local crap video store got some new videos today, which is why I picked up Miami Vice. Next up, I guess, is the (Oh, God) TV movie Icon, starring Patrick Swayze. Surely that will rock. My socks off. Whoo hoo.

Oh, and in other dreary news, it's been confirmed that there's been an outbreak of bird flu (HN51) and they're slaughtering loads of chickens as well as cats and dogs, which animal experts suggest is “a bit of an extreme measure.” From the article:
Another ministry official, Kim Chang-sup, insisted killing cats and dogs to curtail the spread of bird flu was not unusual.“Other countries do it. They just don’t talk about it,” Kim said, adding that all mammals are potentially subject to the virus. He declined further comment.

But animal experts disputed the validity of killing cats and dogs.

“It’s highly unusual, and it’s not a science-based decision,” said Peter Roeder, a Rome-based animal health expert with the U.N.’s Food and Agricultural Organization or FAO, who published research about cats and bird flu earlier this year in the journal Nature. “We’ve got absolutely no reason to believe they’re important,” he told The Associated Press.

Why are they doing this? As a precautionary measure? Why don't they just burn down all the chicken retaurants and replace them with kimchi counters? Kimchi combats bird flu, don't ya know?

In the Cold November Rain

I find myself under the weather.
I've got horrible cold in the cold November rain.
So I went to the doctor (and guess what he told me, guess what he told me?)
He said, "Girl you need an ass-injection and 20 pills a day!"

After my last class there was a stranger in the Teacher's Room. I greeted her in Korean and she replied, "Hello." I asked her if she was a mom, and she said, "No." Turns out she might be our new teacher. Perhaps. If they offer her the job. And she accepts it.

Meeting her made me think of a recent post over at Nomad's, about "looks" and qualifications when it come to getting a job here. I was aware of this applicant's wardrobe, for example. She wore a pink T-shirt under a pink zip-up hoodie and some jeans. Way to spruce up for an interview! Actually I was also kind of curious about how Gloria turned up for work on her first day - which was the first time I'd met her. She wore a white T-shirt with some crazy English on it, suspenders, (!) (are these back in style now? They always make me think of MORK!) tattery jeans, and a side ponytail. I mean, that's all fine; our workplace is casual, and I wear jeans every single day. But, on her second day, Gloria showed up to work in a black velvet dress with a bejewelled waist circa 1950's glamour garb. I wondered why she hadn't chosen that ensemble to wow her students and co-workers on the first day. Ah, well.

Back to our perhaps new teacher. The first thing I noticed about her was NOT her attire, it was her acne. You can't help but notice it; her whole face is covered in angry red blemishes and whiteheads. In another room, the boss and manager were conferring with each other, and though I'll never know for sure, I'd bet this was an issue.

When we were looking for our last new teacher, Judy wanted "young" and "pretty," not necessarily in that order. That's what the kids want as well, and they say so. I'd prefer that a new teacher actually be able to speak English, because I think that'd be a far greater attribute toward helping our students learn English. Alas, I am outnumbered.

This potential new co-worker speaks English well. I didn't speak to her for very long, and I regret not having asked her more about her experience. This was the first chance I ever got to be able to speak with an applicant, and I blew it because I was feeling so fire-lungy, nose-runny, and head-poundy. But I walked out wondering if they'll hire her.

I guess we'll see tomorrow!

I drank so much warm lemon-tea for my throat, and water because I feel so dehydrated today. I think that's good for my cold, but bad for my pants because every time I cough or sneeze I just about pee them.

And with that fun-fact, I say good-night!

Monday, November 27, 2006

Kamikaze's Revenge

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Yes. He is. Scary and mean. Every once in awhile Kevin makes fun of my pussy. Evil incarnate schmevil schmin,....

Look at this little kitten:
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So cute. So innocent. So definitely NOT evil.

You know who's evil? KEVIN is.
And my pussy is all growed up now, and is not going to put up with Kevin talkin' shit about him.

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Buaaaah ha ha ha! That's gotta sting!

People in My Neighbourhood

I keep running into a guy from Mongolia who looks a LOT like Astroboy. I wonder if he does that on purpose. He seems like a jolly fellow and speaks excited English to me for a few moments before hurrying away. This morning, he was buying a bunch of beer at the convenience store. He was happy because it was his day off, but tomorrow, he told me "I have za night shit for 7 days. It sucks!"

I'll bet!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

WCB 77 - Carrot Boy

That's a whole lotta carrot!
Kamikaze is all tuckered out from his day of pampering. Today we played and groomed and napped. It's tiring.
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So he's taking it easy, snoring in one of his carrots.

For more cattiness, visit the House of Mostly Black Cats, who is graciously hosting this weekend's WCB. It's number 77! Sounds lucky!

Thursday, November 23, 2006

My Cat's Out of My Bag

I had a little chit chat with my brother on the phone tonight and he finally outright asked me where my blog was. I wasn't going to tell him. I said "Find it!" Buaaah ha ha ha! But then I just told him and he was here in mere seconds. (I think his first comment was "What's this shit?")

So now I'm going to have to re-read the whole thing and edit out all the times I've called him an asshole.
I'm not going to get any sleep tonight!

I'm totally joking. I love my baby twin brother and he knows it.
Welcome to Bloggy Land, Jeff!


I don't know why, but I woke up Monday to find my apartment building was covered in ladybugs! It wasn't, like, a plague of them or anything. The facade was not slathered in ladybuggishness, but they were present and notably high in number to boot.
Here's Maria:
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And Angela:
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And Siobahn:
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Here's Crystal. She's funky in all black, with a couple blood red crescents on her back:
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In my third class of the day, I had just finished talking with the kids about how many ladybugs there were around and about the town, when one flew in through the open window and landed on my hand.
"SEE?!?!" I exclaimed!
This little lady, Katie, then climbed onto my fuzzy pink pencil.
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The kids now think I'm magic - a bit like Tarzan - able to communicate with and summon the insects forth.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Shout Out

If you're in the Toronto area and interested in seeing a surely fantastic and fascinating film, why not stop by the Innis Town Hall Theatre (on the U of T Campus, I assume) to see the latest work by my filmmaker friend Jason and his filmmaker brother Brett?!
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From the brothers' website:"Confusions of An Unmarried Couple offers a peak behind the doors of any relationship that hasn't quite figured out where it's going."
With free admission to boot, there's an opportunity you can't beat with a stick. I know I'd be there at 6:30PM on Sunday November 26th, if I could. There, at 2 Sussex Avenue is right where I'd be. I'd be enjoying a movie and eating some popcorn. Then I'd drag Jason down to look at the Christmas windows across from the Eaton Centre if they still exist. I'd buy him a bag of roasted chestnuts or some street meat because I'm nice like that. And then I'd drag him a couple blocks over to see the skaters at City Hall. And then to a bar for some frosty pints, because that just totally feels like home, eh?

A Photo Everyday

Have you seen this? A guy named Noah Kalina takes a photograph of himself everyday for 6 years. I've just seen this for the first time tonight, but it's pretty interesting!
Check it out here. He vows to take a picture of himself everyday until he dies.

Noah's a photographer in New York, and to see his photographs, visit his website here.

Cool stuff!

Monday, November 20, 2006


On Friday, outside the local Family Mart, I came across an unusual gorgeous site.
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It was a big beautiful dog.

Frankly, it's unusual to see a big dog in Korea (outside of a stew pot, BA DUM BUM!) But this big boy sat proudly in all his fluffiness and attracted A LOT of attention. I petted him and talked to him, "Yes, you're a good boy, you're a handsome fellow, what a smart boy!" and then asked to take his picture.

I was so impressed, I bought the owner a beer. And he bought me a beer. And we sat and talked about his dog with the help of my friend who translated.

The owner, after seeing a television show about Samoyeds, couldn't sleep for wanting one. Now he's got three adults, the one pictured - and his two wives. The "first wife" just had six puppies, so buddy's got a lot of doggies! I was so happy to see a well kept and obviously adored dog. The owner kept the dog's brush in his pocket and would take it out every once in awhile to groom him. This was one fluffy boy, so it was warranted! When the owner would disappear out of sight of the big Samoyed, the dog would sit up and cry, staring in the direction that his "dad" headed off toward. He'd only relax when his owner re-appeared. With me, the town's token white chick, and the big fluffy white dog, we were quite a draw, and had many visitors!

The dog lay down like a frog, with his hind legs spread out on the pavement. His owner explained he was still a puppy. You could see this because his ears were still a bit floppy at the points. When he is an adult, they'll straighten out to stand upright.
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They all live up on a mountain in my town. On a farm. Apparently the owner is going to visit my school soon with some sweet potatoes and some corn (neither of which I enjoy) and maybe a puppy to cuddle for awhile.
I'm looking forward to it!

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Let's Have Breakfast!

Saturday morning I went with my friends to the big Open Market. They had to buy some stuff for their restaurant, and asked me to come along. Seeing as it was 5:00 o'clock in the morning and still dark and cold outside, I was very "iffy," until the promise of a yummy breakfast was introduced.

When we arrived, the place was pretty much empty, and the adjumma cooking hadn't finished preparing the morning meal. No problem. One bottle of soju, juseyo. It's good to toast the start of a new day with shots of 21% alcohol.

Quickly, the restaurant started to fill up with "halmonies" - grandmothers, dressed in warm garb. These ladies, my friends explained, had shown up 2 or 3 hours earlier to set up their stalls. Outside were rows and rows of booths, mostly with buckets of live seafood or fruit and vegetables, but I bought some scrubby bath towels and gloves I'm going to send out for the next round of BBM.

A couple shot glasses later, and a huge tray of grub appeared. This is breakfast in Korea:
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Pretty self explanatory, it included 3 bowls of rice, and was a bargain at 4,000 won each. Especially considering refills were free. We had 3 bowls of those crispy fried green peppers in the back. They were outstanding! Then it was off for shopping in the market, which had opened (but it was still too dark for pictures) and some eating of clementines, and then home for some shut eye.

(Sorry the pic is so small! I wish Photobucket had an option to re-size to 400xwhatever, which is the perfect size instead of 320x240- which is the only option for "websites or e-mail.")

WCB 76 - Comtemplative Kamikaze

"Hmmmmm," Mister Laser Eyes thinks, "What should I zap next?"
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"I'm going out!" I announced.

I've already got a hole where my stomach used to be, and a bionic leg where my real one used to be. I don't want to get zapped anymore.

"NO!" thundered Kamikaze, "You will stay here and feed me dried anchovies one by one as you brush my belly!"

I barely made it out of the apartment in one piece.

For more cat-bloggy fabulousness, visit this week's host site - CatSynth.Com! Oh, and visit my buddy Sher and her beautiful cat Upsie and tell her to feel better soon, if you please. And if you have a bit more time, why not drop in at Skeezix Scratching Post and read all the cat stories. The one about Smudge made me downright leaky, but I'm a softie like that.
Thanks for stopping by, but you best be moseying along, or Kamikaze's bound to zap your eye out, or your arm off - or something equally unfortunate.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Jelly Team Fighting Pt. 3

Well, there's finally a bit of an update to report, regarding the little problem I'm having at work. I figured I was going to have something to talk about seeing as Friday was my payday and it was going to be interesting to see if my boss took the normal 5% worth of tax off my pay, or if she relented and levied the government required 1.5% worth.

What happened? Guess!

Okay. Don't guess. But for those of you that are in Korea or have been here, I'll bet you already know the answer. She stuck it to me, with the usual 5% reduction. GAH!

I thought that I might have a confrontation on Friday, but actually my boss came to me at the end of the day and apologized for not having calculated my deductions. So she hadn't paid me. That's the first time that's ever happened, but in a way I sort of understood, as we've all been busy and a bit frantic with no Korean teachers in da house. So Monday after work, she called me in for a sit-down.

She started off with the pension issue and included three other deductions I haven't been making, one being National Health Insurance. It only became mandatory in January of this year that foreigners be enrolled in it. I told her I knew about that. (To be enrolled in the Pension Scheme, you have to be enrolled in Health Insurance.) However, my boss said that enrollment in the Pension Plan just became mandatory in 01/06. Not so. Actually, as in my case - at a job with less than 5 full time employees, it became compulsory to participate in the Pension Plan as of April 1st, 1999. We debated on this back and forth a bit, with both of us finally agreeing to check our sources again. I'm going to put in a quick call to the Pension Office just so I'm super clear. So as it is on that, we've gotten to the point where we agree that we'll both have to make back payments. From when is unclear.

As for tax, sheesh, that was a mess. First off she started telling me that because I work in the countryside and tuitions are lower here, I'm not gunna git what dem dere city folk in da big Seoul city are gunna git. *HIC* I swatted that argument down by quoting an old Ministry song from the eighties, "It's the same, it's the same in the whole wide world." And by world, I meant Korea. (And yes, I do live with snakes and lizards and other things that go bump in the night.) Then my boss said that she called a bunch of other franchises in our outfit, and they all charge the same tax rate. Oh, and their foreign teachers don't complain! I told her that they are surely, as I was for so long, unaware that their being charged too much. Furthermore, I told her, I don't really care about what's happening at other schools, I wanted to talk about ME at THIS school.

She panicked a bit then, talking about the stupid contract I stupidly signed because I'm stupid, which had a "5%" typed in the ___ before National Tax. Ah well, I said, the contract is erroneous. The tax rate at my salary is 1.5%. She said she can't change the 5% in my contract, but perhaps next year when we talk about a new contract she can consider.

I fell off my chair and just about peed my pants, howling with laughter and disbelief that she was thinking I was going to sign on for a fourth year at this asylum school.

Actually, I didn't. I kind of pretended I hadn't heard what she'd said. "No, no, no," I said. "We can't leave things like this. I can't keep overpaying." Then I told her how we have to contact the Tax Office and they'll refund my overpayment lickety split, like. No problem. (Thing is, she most assuredly has not forwarded my full tax deductions, and perhaps not even ANY deductions to the tax office, so this idea is surely quite a problem for her.)

Then I dusted off some mad skillz I acquired in my four years at university and lay down quite a few arguments based on ethos, logos, and pathos, in that order. It was fairly effective, if I do say so myself, even if the biggest thing accomplished was that she realizes I'm not just going to keep putting up with this. I smoothed everything out in the end with some kind and comforting words. "We can fix this. I trust you'll do the right thing. Everything's going to be okay."

Further discussions will take place once her husband returns next month from his latest many-months stint as an engineer on a boat off Kuwait. I suspect he might still be my boss in name, even though I've only seen him twice this past year. He doesn't speak English either, so debating with him is going to be challenging, though I don't doubt he's going to try his best to lay the smack-down on me.

A few calls to various organizations would not only stir this pot, but light a fire under it as well. Really get things cooking, so to speak. But Jelly's not going to play like that. Nobody's gonna hurt anybody. We're gonna be like little Fonzies here. And what's Fonzie like? Come on people, what's Fonzie like?

That's right. Fonzie's cool!

Monday, November 13, 2006

Let's Have Dinner!

Date: Friday night, after work.
Participants: My big boss, the manager, big boss's bright but bratty son, and me.
Location: Big Korean resto that recently opened under new management.

Yah! Let's eat dinner! I have to say, that one thing I enjoy very much about Jane having joined our school, is that our getting together and going out for a meal or a couple drinks has increased GREATLY! Before, we went out maybe five times a year, usually after Market Days, and then maybe just one other time celebrating a new employee or Christmas or something. Well Jane seems to like to go out on Fridays, and I DIG that!

So this past Friday we went in search of a restaurant we'd been to probably a couple years ago. It was interesting- the pork was cooked along with a huge amount of kimchi on these large domes, as opposed to the usually flat grill. I was amazed at my boss's son ability to recall where the place was, even after all that time! Unfortunately, the restaurant seems to have gone belly-up. So I suggested we try another restaurant we've been to once before - again, ages ago. Our first visit was disappointing, so we never went back, but recently the place was re-opened all sparkly, expanded, and under new management, so we decided to give it another chance.

First up, some of the panchan.
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Mmmmm. Shredded greenery - I'm going to say leeks - in a vinegarry brine, onions and wasabi in more tart sauce, chopped salad in a goopy green dressing, thin slices of "mu" - (daikkon in Japan) white raddish in a pink sauce, ubiquitous garlic, and sesame oil with hunks of salt.
(I didn't do a great job of photographing all the stuff. It only occurred to me halfway through the meal!)
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I know this looks like a big red mess, but it's actually a crab - small and raw and smothered in spicy red sauce. This didn't do anything for me. (Except burn my mouth off.)
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Yook hwe! (Beef carpaccio) This is raw beef half frozen and cut into long rectangular strips, marinated with salt, sesame oil, green onions, chili pepper, garlic, and tossed with julienned Asian pears or cucumbers and topped with a raw egg yolk. This photo is before the tossing. I'm a little surprised I like this stuff. I remember in high school, my first encounter with smoked salmon shocked me "It's RAW!" But raw is good. Raw beef - good! Raw horse, though, not my cup of tea.

At first we ordered the "samgyupsal" - or pork belly. It wasn't good. Second up, though, we scored with some marinated pork attached to a bone at one end.
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In the foreground is some delicious kimchi and some even more delicious mushrooms. I had three bowls of mushrooms! The meat's just been placed on the grill. Let's cook it up.
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Mmmmmm. Let's wrap it up!
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Mmmmm mmmm mmmm! Here we have our meat bundled up with some kimchi, garlic, soybean paste, onion in wasabi, and sliced greenery. Pop it in your mouth. Yumtastic!

Finally, our meal was rounded off with cold noodles. Most times, when we go out for a grilled dinner, people either opt for a bowl of rice with a bubbling pot of denjang jjigae - soybean paste soup with tofu, or mool naeng myun - cold buckwheat noodles in ice with egg, fruit, a little meat and vegetables.
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This was delicious with its slushy ice, chewy noodles, and tangy broth.

Overall, we had a good dinner. We shared a little soju, and cheers-ed to hopefully finding a new teacher (or teachers?) soon. We're all exhausted. But full!

Sunday, November 12, 2006

WCB 75 - Mister Licky

Hi there. I don't know why, but when the big human I live with scratches anywhere on my lower half, I go into LICK-MODE.
Mostly I lick my paws and arms, but really I'll lick anything: blankets, a toy mouse, my human's hands and arms and pyjama pants, a big pile of dust, anything really.
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Lick, lick, lick.

For more cat related things, be sure to visit this week's host Skeezix, over at Skeezix's Scratching Post. Oh, and if you want some licky-action, come on over and scratch my nether regions!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

School Update

Well, the drama continues.

Gloria (the new teacher) has been absent since Monday. Her in-laws were hit head-on by a drunk driver sometime Monday morning and while her m-i-l escaped serious injury except for a backache (I think she's out of the hospital, but don't know for sure) her f-i-l remains in a coma. He may not make it, I'm told.

I hope he'll be okay. I've met Gloria's husband twice, and don't know what to make of him, really. The first time was a couple weeks ago after the Halloween party. The staff went out to have a welcome dinner for Gloria. I was lagging a little behind, but when I arrived to the table where Judy and Gloria were sitting, Gloria announced that she wants a boyfriend. I barked out a loud "HA!" and suggested maybe her husband wouldn't be too keen on that idea. Throughout dinner, her phone would ring and she'd look at it, make a face, and ignore it. I guess her husband finally had enough of being ignored, because suddenly there he was, looking not very happy at all, but bowing apologetically. He and Gloria left the restaurant to argue out on the street. When we finally got tired of waiting for them to come back (we'd finished our meal about 20 minutes before) Judy brought out Gloria's purse to her and the two were not seen again.

Monday morning, Gloria apologized and told me "please forget." I shrugged and said okay.

Last Friday we went out again, sans Judy who was in sunny Jejudo, and without the boss who had other plans. It was fun, and we took the party upstairs from the restaurant to the noraebang, where I rocked out "Gloria," by Laura Brannigan. It suits her far better than the Van Morrison song by the same name, (especially "you don't have answer, leave him hanging on the li-ine, oh-OH-oh, calling Glooooriaaaaaaa.") Then Jane left us, and the two of us went over to another HOF for some more soju. She can drink, that woman.

The husband called, she answered, and told him where we were. Call dropped. Subsequent call-backs were unanswered, and then, just like before, there he was. Glaring at her. Like, only briefly acknowledging me. I went into soothe mode, "Nice to meet you, glad you're here, please sit down, damn - you're a twitchy man, aren't you?" Seriously. His face was alive with tics and twitches, and I don't know if that's his normal look, or if he was just really wound up.

They didn't stay long, but soon after he arrived I excused myself to visit the ladies'. Gloria came crashing in a few moments later and went into the other stall where she made a hell of a lot of noise. Then she was begging me to please hurry. That's all she kept saying, "Please, hurry! Hurry up! Ohhhhh, hurry!" I thought she didn't want Mister Twitch to have to be alone for too long, but as I exited the stall I saw what the deal was. Somehow she had managed to completely unhinge the heavy metal door and it was all askew and pretty much on top of her as she sat on the toilet with her stockings around her ankles! I laughed and retrieved the door off her and shielded her until she could reassemble herself. Ha!

Since then, she's been absent. I don't know why, but I somehow feel like we might never see her again. I remember saying to Judy soon after Gloria started, "She's not going to last." There's no reason for it- just a sense I have.

Judy came in briefly Monday morning - after her 3 day long trip at the end of last week to Jeju to clear up some paperwork. Then she quit. Finito. Done.

So this week we've been without Korean teachers. It's just been me, the boss, and the BOSS. It feels like everything's falling apart.

An update on the tax and pension thing; after two weeks of nothing I finally asked Karen what was up with things. She said "I think I can't."
"You can't what?" I asked.
"I can't pay."
I was dumbfounded.

Apparently she can't make a decision without her husband. Granted, I didn't really expect her to suddenly adopt a British accent and say "Good jod, old girl! You've finally found us out. Here's your reward!" She's not strong enough to say she's going to stick it to me, so I think she wants hubbie there for moral support. Thing is, I get paid Friday. So this is bound to come to a head. If I see a 100,000 won deduction, we're going to have a problem.

We have a problem.
I have a broblem.
There are problems.

But I am a Wild Party.

Oh. And in keeping with the "things are falling apart" theme, my PC at home is broken. I can't spell check here, (at the internet cafe) and I may not be able to update for a couple days at least. Peace to you beasts.

Monday, November 06, 2006

What Do You Hate?

I woke up Sunday morning with something funky going on with my right ear. Today that funkiness has extended to my left one as well. It feels like I'm a bit deaf- but yet everything is amplified at the same time. It kind of sounds like I have the ocean in my head. Has anyone ever had that before? I have, and I'm sure I mentioned it before, but I'm too lazy to go back and look for it. It was sometime last fall I think.

So, what's worst about this phenomenon is that each of my individual students, who are chattering in Korean to each other or screaming my name over and over, now sound like they are TEN of the same student. Everything echoes and reverberates in the hollow chamber I call my cranium. It's overwhelming and had me in a frightful mood all day. To go along with the confusion in my brain, I had a decent sized headache and a massive sized toothache.

I've really GOT to do to the dentist. I've been saying I have to go for a loooooong time, but now I REALLY have to go. I'm fairly sure I require at least two root canals. I hate the dentist so much. It's quite possible I hate the dentist more than anything else in the world. I hate earwigs. And cilantro. And jazz fusion. My hate for these things, though, pales in comparison for my hatred of having to go to the dentist. I wish the dentist would knock me out with a big mallet before he goes to work on me.

On second thought, I hate war more than I hate the dentist.
Once, my friend Herbert almost reached his very large hand out to angrily choke me because I wouldn't engage in an argument (cleverly disguised as an intellectual discussion) on war, other than to simply state "War sucks," over and over. But SUCK it does. Thoroughly and utterly completely.

Thankfully it's fairly certain I'll never have to go to war. But to the dentist, go, I must.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

WCB 74

My big boy Kamikaze is all tuckered out these days. With the cooler autumn nights, he loves to either strecth out or snuggle up on my bed. Here he is looking a bit like a bat, I think.
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Yesterday during one of his many daytime naps, I snuck up and stuck the camera in his face before I poked him. Wake up.
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Wow Mister Kitty, those are some big yellow eyes you've got.
"All the better to glare at you with."

And here, I took his picture with my camera on its "drunk setting." Or maybe I was drunk. Or maybe Kamikaze was. Probably K, I, and the camera were all loopy. Party down K! Party on J!
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This weekend's WCB is being hosted over at "Lali et Cie!" who resides over on the French Riveira. Lubbly! Wobble on over there and check out all the pure kitty insanity!

Thursday, November 02, 2006


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I've just been feeling emotionally BLAH and creatively STIFLED. I want to write things. Certainly there are things to write about. I've opened up this "create a post" page numerous times over the past days and just stared at it awhile before huffily clicking the X. Other times I've written a few sentences, only to say aloud "Ah, SHUT UP!" before clicking the X.

I'll come around, though. I always do.

The situation at work is fairly egg-shelly. Nothing has been said regarding the conversation I had with my boss about a week and a half ago. If you don't know what I'm referring to, check out the previous posts. I'm sure this is not a good sign. Initially I was relieved after the conversation, just to have it "out there." As days go by, though, I'm getting more and more anxious about the lack of communication. Last week it seemed like my boss was avoiding me. She wasn't at school the three days after. She was there for Halloween (see previous post) but it was chaotic, and I didn't expect a tete a tete. Absent Monday, but present the last 3 days, she's still a little distant. I'll give her until next week before I bring it up again, but still, I'm not looking forward to it.

On Monday, I went downtown to do a few things and took a cab back to my neighbourhood. Near my friend's restaurant, I gave a "yogeeyo," signaling the driver to pull over and let me off. A woman in a white shirt and black skirt with funky thick black glasses and a young man in a high school uniform ran toward the cab as I exited. I smiled at them as she climbed in the front and he in the back. As I walked away, the cabbie did a U-turn beside me, across an intersection to head in the other direction. I was just a few steps further when I heard the squeal of tires and the loud BANG of a crash. A car, making a left turn and definitely traveling too fast, had smashed into the cab doing the illegal turn blocking the intersection. The cab had quite a bit of damage to the back right hand side, but the colliding car's right front was all crumpled and was leaking gas and smoking. Fire trucks, an ambulance, the police, a tow truck, and about 50 gawkwers appeared in mere minutes. No one seemed severely injured, but then again, no one seemed well- except for the driver of the car that smashed into the cab, who was on his cellphone the whole time. His passenger was extricated from the car with a neck brace and a stretcher. All of the taxi occupants climbed into the back of an ambulance, the lady and the boy both crying.

Eventually, I walked away feeling lucky.
But still pretty BLAH.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


Happy Halloween Ellybuddy.
Yep, it's technically over here, but where it counts- back in the Motherland, kids are probably glancing at the clocks in their classes at school, waiting for the bell to ring so they can go home, get their costumes on, and get to getting as much candy as humanly possible.

Halloween was celebrated at my school last Friday, and it was, ummmmmm, chaotic. Disorganized. Loud. But fun, I guess. Most of the kids seemed to enjoy themselves. This year, Jane had the idea to print up little invitations for all the kids. Inside, there was a list of all the activities that were going to take place. I thought it was a great idea, but the thing is that out of the ten events listed, five of them didn't happen.

The first couple games tanked, pretty much. I had put together the activities and I thought that I explained how they worked well enough. Jane said she understood. But, as I mentioned previously, her listening skills really suck.

First up was a "candy toss." I'd gotten three of those plastic jack-o-lantern things which were supposed to be tied to one kids waist or around their neck. Kids on their own team were supposed to be given a certain amount of candies each, and then they'd try to toss them into the jack-o-lantern. The kid with the container could move around, but not use their hands. The team with the most collected candies gets to keep 'em and distribute amongst themselves. That was how it was supposed to happen.

What ended up taking place was that Jane gave a couple kids the plastic pumpkins, and unloaded handfuls of candies to the kids and told them to "GO!" Kids were just walking up to the jack-o-lantern and putting them in. Candies that didn't make it in were re-distributed to the kids, and once one "team" had no more candies Jane went "YAY!!" and the pumpkins and candies disappeared. "Wasn't that fun?"

Next up was the "spider web" which I thought was going to be a real laugh. We had 8 small balls of yarn, and the kids were each supposed to get one, stand in a circle, tie one end around their waist and then toss to another person who would tie that ball around their waist or leg or whatever, and this would be repeated until the balls were all tangled up and the kids were woven into a spiders web. Then, on "GO!", the kids had to untangle themselves, following their colour and gathering up their yarn until they were free. The winner would get a prize.

Well, Jane had the kids toss all their balls until they were gone, and then she told the kids, "Look! We made a spider web! Wasn't that fun? YAY!!" And then she told them to shrug off the yarn they had wrapped around themselves, leaving a huge crazy knot in the middle that we tried to undo, but finally gave up on, after helpful kids kept coming up, grabbing a clump, and running away - pulling the knot wickedly tight.

After that, I just totally gave up, and spent the rest of the day blowing up balloons for the dart room. There was no point to the dart room. The kids were popping them as quickly as we'd tape them up. "Yay!" shouted Jane. "You popped a balloon! Now go check out the 'Run Around With Scissors Room!'"

"YAY! You ran around with scissors! Now let's go to the 'Scream Our Heads Off Room!"

There was no "Bobbing for Apples," even though we advertised there would be and we had all the materials. Jane turned it into "Who Can Eat A Apple So Fast?" game. There was no "Scavenger Hunt." I don't know why. No Bingo, even though we'd made and laminated cool Halloween cards.

I spent a lot of time in the Craft Room, which went over really well. I'm glad I didn't let Jane ix-nay it. I coloured some cool ones for myself.
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My Rainbow-Gay Skeleton. He'th fabulouth!

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Ghosts and Pumpkins, propped up by Smokes and A Beer.
(Well earned, and after work.) Jane wouldn't okay my suggestion for a "Spooky Smokey Halloween Bar Room." Hmph.

These two boys, dressed as girls, shared the top prize for costumes.
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They're smart-ass terrors in the classroom.
I love the kid in stripes. He's been my student as long as I've been here and he's sweet and good natured and tries really hard. He's also rocking out the latest fashion trend in Korea, as was pointed out already at The Iceberg. Seriously, what's up with all the stripes?

Here's another couple of costumes.
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Of the kids that sported costumes, I'd say that more than half of them were "Scureamuh." Pictured is "Taekwondo Scureamuh." The little Skeleton is angry because she wanted to be a Pretty Witch, but the stupid Stationery Store across the street had sold out of Witch dresses. So she had to be a Pretty Skeleton.

Oh, and I was a CAT.
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"YAY!!" said Jane. "You all screamed your heads off! Now let's play 'Pull Jelly's Tail Off A Million Times!' Yay!! Try to get her ears too! Hell, just rip her apart!! Now we're having a party! YAY!!!!!"

Friday, October 27, 2006

Halloween, but I Can't Stay on Topic.

Tomorrow is our big Halloween party at my school. I still haven't really settled on a costume, even though it's 2 am the night before! HA! Actually, I'm sure I'll either go as a cat or as nothing. Most likely cat.

I stayed an extra 2 and a half hours after work tonight preparing the crafts for our craft room. We're making bookmarks, which I thought was a simple and easy thing to do. As usual, though, nothing is simple here. I had to work around two different paper sizes, which required a time munching layout that had to be designed. I hand-drew our school's logo on the master copy ten times. I thought that was a nice touch, thankyouverymuch, and also drew all the funky Halloween art to be coloured in and jazzed up by our students. Then the photocopier broke. Then the laminator broke.

These machines fit right at my school, which is falling right the hell apart. All the doors handles are broken from the kids playing tug-o-war with them between classes. All the cassette players are broken, including the one in the office that used to pipe out the same "Let's Chant" during every break and before classes. Frankly, good riddance. If I had to listen to "What's Your Telephone Number?" one more time I was going to flip my lid. Most of the chairs are broken from the kids leaning back or forward or sideways on them. It's rare that a day goes by that I don't have a student have their chair slip out from under them and they go crashing to the floor. I swear, one of these days I fear a kid's going to catch his chin on the table on the way down from a "lean-forward" slip and bite their own tongue off.

The toilet seat on the one "Western style" toilet is broken. The sink's been broken forever, so there's always a standing pool of filthy water in the middle of the bathroom floor. Which we all track back into the school. It's so gross.

I've gone off-topic. I was talking about Halloween.

I think tomorrow will be pretty fun! I hope! I put together all the activities and went shopping for a lot of the materials. Last year I helped a lot in the planning, but this year everything's been largely left up to me. Jane's been pretty helpful, though. I really like the woman. I like how she greets me with a hug. I like her sense of humour and the way she came in like a lion, rather than a lamb. Thing is, she's got a strong personality, as have I, so I think in the future we could have some conflict. If we do, I predict it will have something to do with her abysmal listening skills. Or her constant repeating of the phrase "you know?"
("I watched that, you know, movie with that actor, you know, the one whose married to, you know, that, you know, blonde lady with the, you know?")
NO, WOMAN! I don't know!!!!

She's not popular with the Korean teachers, and today bothered Judy so badly that in all likelihood tomorrow will be Judy's last day of work.

The new teacher barely speaks to me. I'm fairly sure the students barely speak English in her class. She has a verrrrryyyy laid back approach to teaching. She decided, in the middle of one of her Phonics classes the other day, that it was time for a 10 minute break. Suddenly I had her little student's faces all in MY window, sticking their tongues out at my students, until I roared at them to get back to class- only to find out that Gloria had told them to go watch TV. If she feels like she has finished her "lesson" she just lets the students go, regardless that the bell isn't for another 8 minutes. I mean, the littlest kids can't write the alphabet, you'd think she might be able to come up with SOMETHING to occupy them! I would have expected a little more PEP for a new employee, but she comes to school 20 minutes before classes start and does ZERO prep work or planning for her classes. She's out the door 3 minutes after the last bell rings too. And she's getting away with it.

Yesterday, across the street from my school, a grandfather became irate with one of the video games they have peppered all over the streets here for the kids to gather around and play. He beat it with his cane repeatedly. The loud THWACKing noise drew me to the window to watch him. A grandmother came up and argued with him for awhile and he screamed at her between lunging at the video game. The grandmother went away, and the grandfather got tired and lay down on the sidewalk and took a nap. For an hour and a half. Finally, the police and an ambulance came along and they heaved him onto a stretcher and took him away.

I expect that after he dries out over the weekend in the hospital he'll be bright and ready to step in as Judy's replacement. The kids can play tug-o-war with him while he naps.

I'm working at a circus.

Tomorrow will be fun, I hope. (Yah, I give up writing about Halloween.) It may very well not be, though. It's going to be the first time I've seen my boss since I had that little Monday chat with her. I think if she had her way - she'd never come back to school. I don't blame her. It feels like things are spinning out of control. But perhaps it's just me.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Jelly Team Pt. 2

I did end up putting the post that I took down back up. As you can see. It's beneath this one. When I woke up Tuesday morning after having written it the night before, I just felt really bad about it. There's no reason to, really. It's not particularly mean. It's not as if I'm grinding my axe big time. It is what it is, and it's the fact, Jack. But I do feel bad.

Partly I feel bad because I'm tired. In general. I don't want to have to fight - especially for something that should be given to me under the laws of the land. It's not like I went looking for a way to squeeze more money out of my boss. I happened to just stumble upon it.

But that in itself really bums me out. I feel like I have been so naive, and because I like self-blame, I've been kicking myself that I wasn't better informed. I guess that while I was teaching in Japan I got really complacent about things being on the up and up. When something was required from me by the government there, my employers were all over it. I trusted them completely, and that trust was well warranted. They treated me well.

When I first came to teach in Korea in 2002, I was very suspicious. Almost a little paranoid, really. Reading the boards over at Dave's had scared the hell out of me. I was expecting to come over here and be ripped off and taken advantage of. I wasn't, though. As time went by, I let go of most of my fears, and then after moving to Japan I totally relaxed. Over time, back here in Korea, I've developed a really good relationship with my current boss. Like my bosses back in Japan, I find her to be fair and reasonable.

So this current situation makes me nervous. And frankly, disappointed.

I did talk to her on Monday. I pulled her aside during one of my short breaks and we sat down and I started off by telling her I was sure I've been paying too much tax. I was really calm about it and told her I thought that this error could be cleared up pretty easily. All we have to do is fill out some forms, and the tax office will surely refund my over-payment. The thing is, I question whether or not she actually submitted my taxes to the government. If she did, I kind of doubt she gave them the full amount that I've paid over the years.
She said that she thinks all the franchises in our outfit charge their teachers the same amount of tax. I told her that very well may be, but the tax rate is what it is. You can't make up a new number that you're going to levy on your employees just "because." (Imagine if I were back home, and my boss decided to charge me 50% income tax! Puh-lease!) "So," I said, "No worries. I'll just need your help with the forms. We'll sort it out."

Then on to pension. Yes, I answered, it's in my contract. Yes, I replied, I get all of it back when I leave Korea. She told me, quite unconvincingly, that she'd never heard of it before. (*Bullshit,* I coughed.) (Just kidding.) She told me she was going to have to confer with other directors. I told her I expected that. Someone suggested that the conversation might go something like this:

BOSS 1: I have this one teacher. Ech! I just wanted her follow our school's systems.

BOSS 2: Yes, yes...

BOSS1: But she ask crazy questions... wanting to know how much tax she pay...

BOSS3: Oh, you get the bad teacha...

BOSS1: Yes, yes, very bad... I tell her: "You don't worry. We like family. I take care all."

BOSS2: Yeah, "We family..." That always working good for the good teacher relations.

BOSS1: But she no! She, "I have family. I want my tax!"

BOSS3: Oh, very bad. Bad, bad teacha...

BOSS1: I know! She not listen anything I insist. Now she makes trouble with the pension now and she not do anything I says.

BOSS2: You try, "It's Korean way,"? That usually stop the wrong thinking.

HA! Truthfully, though, I still don't want to believe that my boss is like those bosses. She said a couple of times she was embarrassed. I believed her. She looked it. She didn't want to have the internet addresses I had ready for the government sites detailing tax and pension. I told her to take her time and get back to me, and that I was sure we would be able to sort this all out.

But then she looked at me and asked, "What will you do if I refuse?"
I told her that for every day she doesn't make things right, I will kill one of our students. No students, no income.

I'm TOTALLY joking. I love my students.
No, I looked back at her and raised my eyebrows and shrugged.
She may have taken that as "I don't know," even though that's not what I meant.

So we'll see what happens. But I'm worried about it.
I'll let you know what's going on when I know. Keep your fingers crossed for a calm and fair resolution. Or else there's going to be a chaotic and riotous revolution.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Jelly Team Fighting

I took down that last post. Being stressed out makes me uncertain. I want to spend the day thinking about what good it is to blog about the mess I was talking about. Maybe there's no point, except to garner support - which I appreciate, thanks Nomad and Anon. Maybe I'll slap 'er back up there after some thought. Maybe not. Maybe I'll edit and be less detailed. Maybe I'll replace that post with a picture of a giraffe eating a fish. Who knows? For SURE, though, I'm over-thinking everything. All while intermitiently wringing my hands together, moaning, and cackling.

It's Back Up.

I learned something the weekend before last that's got me all in a tizzy.
That sounds so fluffy - it's more than a tizzy. I'm stressed out.
In short, I found out I'm being ripped off. I'm not sure if it's intentional or not, but it doesn't really matter. It started out innocently enough, as a conversation between myself and another English teacher. We were just talking shop, and she commented that after 3 years I'm going to get a nice fat bonus. "No," I replied.
"Not really, since I cashed out my 1st 2 year's bonuses before I went to Canada this past summer." (For those who don't know, foreign teachers in Korea recieve a bonus at the end of their contract equivalent to one month's salary. By Korean law, this doesn't have to be paid until the contract is completed, so it's a boss's right to delay if a contract is re-signed.) When my 1st year's contract was completed, my boss said she'd pay me my bonus in a couple days. I pointed out she didn't have to. I didn't need the money, and I'm honest like that. Or stupid. But she's a good woman, and I trust her.

Year Two came and went, and she was kind enough to pay me my full two years' worth of bonus when I asked for it. Cool. It came in handy for my 5,000$+ vacation. So I said to my friend- the other weekend, that I wouldn't get a massive bonus when I finish my contract next summer.

She said, "Well at least you'll get a great big pension payout!"
I said, "Huh?"

"Huh?" as in, "What'chu talkin' bout Willis?"
I had not ever heard about pension. Alas, it's in my contract I have never read since I signed it and sent it off over 2 years ago.

The deal is that 9% of my salary is supposed to be deposited toward a pension fund. It's a half and half deal, with me giving up 4.5% every month, and my boss contributing the other 4.5%. At the end of my stint in Korea, I collect it all. With 100% growth on my personal investment, it is not a bad deal! After 3 years, I'm walking away with 3,240,000won above the equal amount that I've contributed.

Problem is, I didn't contribute. And neither (of course) did my employer.
The kicker is that contributing to the pension scheme is required by law. Mandatory, like. For all foreign teachers here.

In my search for "what is pension?" I also came across an unfortunate truth. For foreign teachers with my rate of pay, the rate of income tax is a ridiculously low 1.5%. I apologize to my friends in Canada and the U.S. who are paying big fat income tax (I know, because I was at 30% before I came here) but I'm going to repeat it all blogger-emphasis-style. One. Point. Five. Percent.

Trouble is, I've been paying 5% for the past twenty-eight months. FIVE percent.
Five percent sounds like a bloody steal. I thought so too! But when it turns out you only need pay ONE POINT FIVE percent, five percent spread over time sounds nuts. And it is. So far I've over-paid almost 2 thousand dollars worth.

Everything about these facts depresses me. And I was already depressed. Like, not even in the "I'm feeling kinda depressed, I think I'll take a bath and have a hot cup of tea," kind of depressed. More like the,....

Oh, whatever. By all rights I should be popping zoloft and reviewing Rorschach images.

Jelly's got a fight on her hands. Jelly's up for the fight, Jelly thinks. Talking about myself in the third person is strange. Just one more, though.

Jelly's tired.

There's more to this story, and I'll tell you about it tomorrow. All I have is part two of the beginning of the story. The very beginning.
And so it begins.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

WCB 72 - Roundup!

Hey! Kamikaze! Come here!
What do you want? I'm busy.
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We're hosting this week's WCB! I want you to come over here and help me pick out some pictures of you to post.
Oh. Okay. How about that picture from Oktoberfest? That was some tasty beer. And the sausages and schnitzel! Mmmmmm!
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That WAS some tasty beer! And you, my handsome little man, take a mighty fine picture!
Why, thank you! Hold me closer tiny daaaannncer. Count the headlights on the higgghhwaayyy.
Kamikaze, quit singing and come help me.
Lay me down in sheets of liiinen.
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You had a busy day todaaaayyyy!
Alright, alright. You have a lovely voice.
Tell me I'm a Rock N' Roll Superstar.
Say it!
No! Quit fooling around and come over here.
Not until you say it!
Fine. You're a Rock N' Roll Superstar.
I AM, you know.
Sure. Whatever you say. Listen, hurry up! I have to get this done! People are waiting to send in their submissions for WCB!
No, YOU listen Missy! I'm the sheriff round these here parts. I say what gets done and when. Now you git along little doggy.Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

I think you mean little kitty?
Whatever. I don't like your tone.
Well I don't like your attitude. You're not being very co-operative today.
I don't have to listen to this.
Where are you going? Come back here!
Oh, that's it. I'm going to put up that secret picture of you.
Which one?
That one I took when I came home early and caught you "experimenting."
Well come back over here!
Fine, then.
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You're mean!
Ha ha ha! I know! But you're SO cute! I love you, my big boy.

Ah well, I've got to go kiss-up to Kamikaze who's not speaking to me. I'm sure he'll some around with a little Pounce and some brushing!

So here's the roundup for this weekend's WCB - Number 72!

*Check out Kai (who looks a little Kamikaze-ish, with a beautiful tail) escaping the tribbles below. Oh, that last picture! So sweet!
*Miss Ellie has a whole baseball team just waiting to be adopted! It's World Series time! Go Team!
*Over at Jelly Pizza, the little furry one finds a safe place to hide! Looks cozy!
*Tiggy has her own BLOG! Ah, Tiggy's just a tiny tiger, but she's growing up so fast. Don't make fun of her and her blankey, though!
*Oh! Make sure to visit Music and Cats and see the handsome Sasha smiling! Fresh blanket + warm radiator = Happy Cat!
*The lovely Upsie over at "What Did You Eat?" is looking fierce and gorgeous as always. She's overseeing the winter garden planting, now that her tomato-worm smashing duty is over.
*Glinda is looking perky and so alert over at "Anne's Food." Hopefully sometime soon she'll be making some cute faced kittens!
*Over at "A Cat in the Kitchen" there are all sorts of animals in the cat tree! It's like an aPETment complex!
*A couple weeks ago, WCB's theme was cats in boxes. Well, check out Madame Dutchess and Mr. Mao ON the boxes. Many, many boxes! Queen and King of the castle indeed!
*Bustopher and Harmon, at "Kate in the Kitchen" are all ready to play, work, and eat! Hey Bustopher, Kamikaze would call you if he had your number!
*Razzberries! Colin and Trixie have been feeling a little neglected over at "The Westering Hills." Welcome back to WCB, kitties! And Shannon, welcome back from your honeymoon in Japan! Fantastic! (And congratulations!)
*Oh! Close Encounters of the Furry Kind! Luna has a handsome visitor! Check out her sweet little voice, as she talks about this Peeping Tom(cat.)
*From "The House of Mostly Black Cats," we have Sanjee, the former feral but now furrily fantastic feline! Good to see you, pretty lady!
*When good cats go bad: it seems Noosh needs some time at a Finishing School. Miss Manners would not be happy with the paws on the table and the gobbling of the olives! Such big FEET you have, Mister Babaganoosh!
*Get a load of Fridolin and Maruschka over at Rosy's Yummy Yums! What a life! Spending your days in a basket all snuggled up and cozy. It makes me jealous, too!
* Awww! A sleepy kitty on a slipper! Aggie looks all tuckered out over at KAYAKSOUP! Linda is our gracious hostess for next weekend's WCB!
*Oh BABY! Lucky's sporting some fancy looking diapers at "These Days in French Life." Ha! Too funny!