How do you tell your best friend he or she really doesn’t sing that well, despite whatever strong beliefs he or she may have to the contrary? How do you tell your wife, husband, or partner that while you definitely appreciated the thought and the effort, he or she should take more care to put two cups of sugar, not salt, into the cookie batter next time? How do you tell the people in your home country they need to extract their heads from their collective asses and get their shit together? I’ll be honest on the first two: hell if I know. The last one, however, is a much easier conversation to provoke. Simply remind America using cold, hard facts that this self-perpetuating mythos that its the greatest thing to ever happen to humanity amounts to little more than a national circle-jerk. Actually, it’s even worse than that: we’re talking about a massive sausage party consisting of old, balding, obese men who’ve long since passed their primes repeatedly telling each other they’re still God’s gift to women and, since it’s so often repeated, actually believe it. That’s really sad, folks.
I have a complicated relationship with kids. I mean, in the aggregate, it’s a very good one, but there are definitely a few sticking points. It might help if you understood a little about what I was like when I was a kid, so I’ll tell you. According to my mother, I was an exceptionally clean child. As I understand it, two cakes were bought for my first birthday in case I stuck my hands into the first upon blowing out the candle–in fact, I think this is what my family was hoping I’d do for the sake of cake-covered-baby pictures. It was all in vain, however, as I refused to touch the cake; as it turned out, I didn’t want to get my hands dirty. My mother has told me that she never had to make me take a bath as I always wanted to on my own. I actually can’t remember a time when I haven’t thought going to bed without bathing was gross. I knew even then that I wasn’t a typical child in that regard, as most children seem to take the absence of parents as a cue that bathing can be temporarily suspended. Ew, gross. Come summer, entry into my classroom might become contingent upon being hosed down with Febreze. Continue reading
I’ve a confession to make. It’s a strange one, I’ll admit, but I think it’s important–maybe crucial–to understanding why I made the decision to move to the other side of the world. Here it is: I don’t like to travel. Crazy, I know. You may be thinking: “You mean you don’t like to travel and yet you traveled to a foreign country where you’ve never been before to live and work for a year? How mysterious.” ‘Tis true, I’m a man of mystery. And, by virtue of my newfound status as an expatriate, an International Man of Mystery. Boom.
Anyway, in the spirit of having majored in English AND communication theory in college, let’s unpack that, shall we? How does a guy who’s essentially a homebody end up moving to Korea for an essentially indefinite period of time? It ultimately boils down to my own definition of–and attitude toward my definition of–”travel.” When I think of traveling, I think of packing, flying, and lots of driving. I think of cheap hotels and endless eating on the go. I think of cramming as much activity, sight-seeing, shopping, and touristy shenanigans as possible into a week because you have to be back at work next Monday. That’s the kind of travel I hate. It’s mentally draining, stresses me out, and isn’t fun in even the most generous nuance of the word. If that’s what traveling looks like for you, feel free to go on without me. I’ll just kick it at home with the cat and we’ll have a ball together.