Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Well that's not right.

Thanks google translate.

If this is true, then the sentance I'm translating says: "After class Andy went to eat lunch in a restaurant. Then he went to the bank to get some money and SHIT IS GONE." I hear you bro. My shit's gone all the time.

And yes, that is Alanis Morissette on the youtube tab. Don't judge me, my SHIT IS GONE.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Sun Dried Tomatoes and Chz Plz.

The Killer Tomato is a classic Montreal sandwich, rivaled only by the Smoked Meat sandwich and Me Between Two Dudes in tha Club sandwich. Jks, that's also called Smoked Meat.

I picked up some sun dried tomatoes in Taiwan and god bless, they are as good as I remember. For a killer Killer Tomato sandwich you need:

- A few sun dried tomatoes, soaked in H20 for half an hour (save this liquid for later)
- Fresh tomatoes
- Cream chz.
- Bread.
- Basil (optional, but highly recommended)

After the sun dried tomatoes have soaked chop them up in smallish pieces and do the same for the basil. Now smash both into some cream chz and then spread on both pieces of toasted bread. Add a layer of fresh tomato slices, salt and pepper, and enjoy.

The salad in the picture is fresh swisschard leaves, candied walnuts, kiwi, and green apple, tossed in olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

I also used the tomatoes to make a Sun Dried Tomato Basil Pesto. This time you'll need some chopped sun dried tomatoes, a clove of garlic, a bunch of chopped basil, some walnuts (pine if you have them) and olive oil. Then just blast them to smitherines with your mortar and pestal until they're a paste.

I used this pesto with spagetti and homemade ricotta cheese which is totally easy to make. Simply bring a pot of milk to a simmer, not boiling, never boiling, and then add a splash of two of vinegar (depending on your milk quantities) and a pinch of salt. The milk will start to curdle and after a minute of stirring you can just skim the curds off the top of the whey (just like Miss. Muffet!) and put them in cheesecloth or a sieve to strain for 40 minutes or so. Add a little more salt and your in ricotta goodness heaven.

Toss your cooked and drained spagetti with the pesto and some halved cherry tomatoes, the water the tomatoes were soaking in and top with ricotta. Boner in my mouth.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Thanks Wikimapia!

During an innocent search for the location of an ice skating rink (or, as we say in Canada, a skating rink) wikimapia showed me a little somethin' somethin' extra.

Russian whores at 35.88N and 128.586E. Right where I left 'em.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Week in the Life

Back from holidays, back to work, if you can call it that. Only in Korea would you have to play musical desk chairs becuase there's not enough computers for everyone in the one air conditioned office. While we were away I recieved a facebook message from my aunt asking how I was doing and what a typical week was like for me in North Korea.

My family thinks I live in North Korea.

I could assume this was an innocent mistake. I could correct her and give a brief geography/history lesson. But that would be big of me, and I'm so very very small.

Dear Aunty Pat,

Where to begin? In North Korea there is no beginning or end to our weeks, only days that turn into years, that turn into entire lifetimes. I'll start with Wednesday, because that's rice ration day. At least it was. Back when there was rice. Anyhoo...

Wednesday, 4:45am: I awake as per usual to the sound of the Dear Leader's voice from the loudspeakers positioned on both sides of my head. He has such a lovely singing voice, our Dear Leader. I take a quick bath in the rain bucket, saving the water to brush my teeth with after. Waste not, want not the Dear Leader says! Today I will go wait for our rice rations. Wish me luck!

Wednesday, 11:56pm: No rice today, America's fault. Not too worry though, the Great Leader will provide. He works tirelessly from beyond the grave.

Thursday: Today we must tend to the fields. The ox passed away of natural causes last week (we killed him for food, naturally.) Now my friend Min Su must pull the plow. It's funny because she looks like an ox. Unfortunately she's not nearly as strong so we will not be able to plant as much this year. Still, seeing her strapped in the harness like that was priceless.

Friday: Marching practice today!

Hope I'm doing this right!!

Tuesday: Tuesday already? Oh dear me, I think I may have blacked out from hunger after marching for 17 hours straight. I mean, not hunger, umm, I passed out from...happiness! Sometimes it can be overwhelming to be the happiest people on earth, but we try to grin and bear it.

Well that's all for now, I'm off to paint a 35 story mural depicting 112 ways the Dear Leader is the greatest man alive. I belive I'll be working on section #75: Our Dear Leader Has Such Handsome Toes.

Death to America,

Monday, August 23, 2010

Time passes quickly

Vacation is over and I'd love to tell you about that or where my relatives think I'm living (hint: not South Korea) but instead I'll share a little tidbit from my experience interviewing potential (Korean) English teachers at my school today.

Interviewer (me): In the class some students have a lower level of English than others, how do you think you will teach them in the group?

Interviewee: I sink low level student have bery low motibation. I will make them write bery muchee sentance.

Interviewer: Right. Okay...Thanks.

The the humour was exacerbated by the fact that the candidates had to sit at the far end of a long table, facing the panel of interviewers from a distance of about 10 feet, despite there being avalable chairs along the sides of the table. Not awkward at all.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Murdered in the City

Scene: Brittney opens the sliding door between the living/bedroom and enters the kitchen/everything else room.

Brittney: Oh my god it's murder hot in here.

Kyle is on the computer, unresponsive.

Brittney: It's sooo hot in here, it's like there's a fi- oh. my. god. you left the stove on.

Kyle grunts, or something.

Brittney: The butter melted all over the counter it's so hot in here.

Kyle: That could have been anybody.

Brittney: It's like a fireplace was on because there is literally a fire in the kitchen. You could have killed us all.

Kyle: I'll kill you somehow...bring me a kleenex, I sneezed on floor.

Brittney: Oh, wow, so you're going for the Darsh of the Year award I see.

Kyle: Quick, it's drying.

WE'RE GOING ON VACATION!!! See you in eleven days unless I get bored and spend the entire time on the internet.


Thursday, August 5, 2010

Eggs Benny

Due to lack of Korean options I've had to take brunch into my own hands. Risky business for someone who arbitrarily bite your head off anytime before 10:00am. Still, I will go to the ends and back for eggs benedict.

Hollendaise Sauce
- 3 egg yolks
- 1/2 cup butter
- tbsp lemon juice
- salt

I don't have a double broiler so this is how I got the sauce together, there are other ways if you are equipped for such things. Microwave the butter until it's bubbling. Separate the yolks and save the white for something else abd lightly beat the yolks. While the butter is still piping hot slowly add it to the yolks, whisking constantly. When all the butter pop it back in the microwave for 15 seconds at a time, whisking in between, until it's thickened. If you see clumps you've got to whisk the hell out of it to break them up. The lemon juice and salt and there you have it!

*CAUTION: this makes an obscene amount of hollendaise. As in people with heart conditions need not apply. I would scale it back dramatically in the future.


I have Jew envy, beucase all the coolest people are Jewish, obviously, so I make latkes and pretend I'm one of the chosen people.

Peel several potatoes and then run them through a cheese grater. Then strain them with a cheesecloth, or just squeeze out the liquid with your hands. Add 1 egg and a few tbsps of flour, form into cakes and grill in a bit of oil.

Throw it all together on top of toast with some ham and sauteed red peppers. Take the pictures, then go back and put twice as much hollendaise on it. Heart attack here we come.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Tell Me A Story

*The following should be read in a thick Korean accent and slow, simplified English for the parts of Andy and Myself, respectively. Picture if you will a Mr. Onioyshi a la Breakfast at Tiffany's (but drunk) in conversation with the redmedial kindergarten teacher at the short bus school.

*This story was told over the course of several hours, with each point emphasized and then remphasized for emphasis. I will shorten it here for your benefit. Enjoy.

Andy Shi: I am businessman. My job, trabel bery muchee. I trabel eberywhere, eberywhere.

Myself: Oh really? Have you ever been to Europe?

Andy Shi: Oh many time, many time. Don't ask me. I have go eberywhere. One time I took train from Switzerrand to Roma.

Myself: Oh wow, actually I've also taken that train-

Andy Shi: My story is special, prease risten. In train car was woman, I think to myself maybe she is Japanese, maybe she is Chinese, I don't know. I don't know. I don't ask. Then, she has a packagee. She open packagee. And, it was kimbap! I so surprisee! So I ask, "한국 사람임니다?" (Are you Korean?) "에, 한국 사람. (Yes, I am Korean). So surprisee! She giveh me kimbap, wooah, so delishee. It was after nine pm, eberyone leave train car, only we are continue. She tell me, she is go to Firenze, her husband is tenor singer. I go to Roma for business. She tell me, your white shirt is dirty at wrist and neck. I trabel for many days, so dirty. She tell me, I can washee it for you. I am confused, what she mean? But, I giveh my shirt to her and I watch her, she washee it for me. This is sad story... Maybe you can guess what happen?

Myself: Ummm, well, I'm not totally sure...

Andy Shi: We made history... Can you guess what I mean?

Myself: Ummm, well, yeaaah? I think can guess...

Andy Shi: We made history... You can guess what I mean. Then she go to Firenze and I go to Roma. She tell me, I have to see you again. Not should. Have to. If not, I might die. She tell me, come back to Firenze. I will wait for you at train station.

*Side bar: I assume there were dates and times involved here, not just random waiting. These sorts of practicalities are lost in dramatic storytelling though.

Andy Shi: So after businessee I must go back to Switzerrand. I think berry muchee. I was 43 years old, she 34.

*Side bar: For those not in the know, this automatically means he was married with children, and possibly her as well.

Andy Shi: I thinkee so hard. I thinkee if I will see her again it will break her family. (*Insert dramatic hand movement. Break.) So, I don't get off train. I don't look for her. I never see her again... I miss her for 10 years. I repent, so muchee repent.

Myself: Wow...that's just like a movie. So romantic. Tell me, was she beautiful?

Andy Shi: I don't remember. The train was bery dim. Do you know what I mean? The lights were down. I cannot see.

Myself: Oh. Oh...huh.

Andy Shi: But I cannot sleep without woman. So I haveh bery many girlfriends. Ebery city; London, Baris, Bancouber, Moscow. But I have rule: no street girl. Never street girl. Bery dangerous.

Myself: Oh...yes, of course, dangerous. Umm, how do you meet your girlfriends then?

Andy Shi: My friends, business partners, they can find girl for me. Or I can go to embassy.

Myself: Embassy? 대사관?

Andy Shi: Yes.

Myself: Wow.

*Side bar: I did'nt ask what exactly happens at the embassy. Although curious, I'd just really rather not know.

Andy Shi: My rife askeh me, do you have girlfriend? I say, WHY YOU ASKEH ME THIS?!?! (*Abrupt topic change)If you want trabel, you just askeh you husband. (*Gestures to a man who is not my husband, or boyfriend.) He gibeh you money.

Myself: Ahh, thank you Andy Shi. I'll keep that in mind.

And so ended my conversation with Andy. He took down my name, email address and phone number at least three times. He told me that next time we meet he will tell me the rest of the story. The rest? Oh yes, he says this woman came back to Korea and tried to find him. She wrote a letter in the newspaper. Really? 신문? Yes. She wrote a letter in the newspaper to find out who Andy was. And he read it. Craigslist missed connections style, 25 years before it was invented. This of course sounds like a crock of shit and makes me doubt the entire story but that means my entire evening was a waste and so was the last tenish minutes of your life reading this so we're going to go with implausible, but true. Implausible, but true.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

On Sitting Quietly for Eight Hours Straight

Unknowingly and unintentionally, you will learn things about yourself. Such as:

1. I have the attention span of a fruit fly who forgot to take his ritalin after eating three to five sugar cubes.

2. Knitting is only as interesting as the other thing you're doing while you're knitting. If the other thing you're doing is watching a video recording of a Canadian radio talk show, then knitting's only getting a participation ribbon in this contest.

3. I am a person who would read Kayne West's twitter account. And I am a person who would consider the validity of "Fur pillows are hard to actually sleep on," (possibly true, but you should check if there's a just pea underneath) "Palace of Versailles is the shit" (I think that's exactly what Louis 14 told the architect) and "Office clothes are the shit" (do you mean business casual? If so, false. And if sweater vests and castles both fall under the category of 'the shit' we might need some sub-categories for reference. I'd say the historical architecture is a pretty big dump, while dress pants are more of a constipation than an actual shit.)

4. I am not above giving my computer screen the finger. Reason? I didn't like the search results it brought up for sweet and sour chicken recipe. New low? Or technology finally being put in its place? Probably the former.

5. I will stop and have a one sided conversation for upwards of five minutes with a very special 5th grade girl sitting on the school's stoop covering all of her visible skin with iodine. From now on she will be known as Strange Little Orange Girl.

6. That is all. For now.