Sunday, October 31, 2004



Switchfoot, _The Beautiful Letdown_

Met a couple young Germans ("der Henry und Kristen") today in Starbucks. I was there to grade quizzes and heard the sultry strains of DEUTSCH over my shoulder. Bliss! I overcame my usual enjoyment of eavesdropping and introduced myself in DEUSTCH. They are both engineers from Berlin and apparently hang out every Sunday at Starbucks (on Zhonggang Rd. across from the science museum, FYI). They complimented my speaking, but I knew the truth: "Ach, es war einmal besser. (It was better once before.)" Wie schön, looks like I'll be hanging at Starbuck's every Sunday from now on, insh'allah.


Michael Moore’s _Fahrenheit 9/11_

I finally saw it last night. It was worth the wait.

I'm a basically conservative guy, I think, but I must admit I enjoy Michael Moore's work. Ignoring his, let's say for the moment, "overextension of fact and semi-fact" -- as well as my total ignorance of film theory -- I hereby assert the man knows how to make stunning documentary films. The scene of 9/11 "happening" without the usual images, but with only the noise – wow, I nearly had to leave my seat for air. Stifling. Haunting. Humiliating. I was the only USAmerican in the theater, so it was even more isolating. To everyone, mere tragic bizarre news. To me, a complete tragic bizarre end of the world as I knew it. Any distance from that event that I’ve had here in Taiwan was instantly vaporized last night.

Now, before any readers get all angried up about my frothing, liberal “Mooreonics” – I'm well aware of and and the MooreWatch. For the sake of argument (something I am NOT about to get into), I'm happy to grant – heck, let's be generous – 50% of F911's material is bogus. Assuming that's true, it's a shame for Moore's reputation and for dupes like me. But then again– What about that other 50% that's true? I refuse to miss a moral forest for factual trees. Moore, as far as I can tell, is happy to take hits as long as it ensures Bush takes an even greater hit.

Speaking of the upcoming election, let me now position myself for maximum angry egging vulnerability: I am not voting in this election. Mostly because the overseas voting process left me at a loss. That's not an excuse; it's just an explanation. But even if it were easier to accomplish, I feel like my hands are tied. I'd never vote for John "Abortion is my Motor" Kerry. But I have very little peace about supporting Bush. Ach, I'm simply TOO IGNORANT – there, I said it! – about the candidates and the issues, so I'm abstaining. A lousy move, I know, but there it is.

Astonishingly, blogging is way down on the TO DO list these days. This has been a VERY active weekend. Saturday morning I helped a friend assemble furniture in exchange for breakfast, then recorded dialogues for a lesson, graded quizzes, had a team meeting at Banner, saw _Shark Tale_ [a rare but undeniable animation letdown for me], came home to grade quizzes and read, went to F911, slept, woke up Sunday morning, went to Mass, returned home for my wallet, returned to Mass for my God, ate a small lunch, went to the gym, went to Starbucks, met a couple Germans, graded a couple dozen quizzes, went to the Shelter, came home, checked email, wasted time. And here I am. Inhale!

I'm sorry to be so mundane these days, but shtuff'sh got to get dun! My mind and soul are active, but my hands are too busy. Bye till later...

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