Monday, February 20, 2006

Let there be art!

Good evening!

The arts are alive and well in Daegu, not that you'd know it from the choice of flicks at the Cineplex. While Brokeback Mountain and Walk the Line won't be there until March, tonight I had the pleasure of seeing Firewall. It was certainly -- um -- what I expected. Sigh...

But over the weekend, I attended the opening party of an artists' space that this cool expat teacher guy has launched. A bunch of visual artists will be displaying stuff, we're going to do poetry slams (I'm going to perform, judge, or most likely both, eventually), and the opening night party was lots of music, fun, good vibes, wine, artist talk, etc. He's really jazzed about getting us creative types off of our barstools and doing things together, and I wholeheartedly agree! I'm very excited!

Furthermore, I have talked with him about using that space to do a play. So, I think I will be doing a show within the next couple of months here, and I am thrilled about that. It is going to be very informal and small but it is going to be wonderful. Also it is undoubtedly going to keep me ridiculously busy, but there's nary a better busy than the labor of love that is putting up a show! Yes!

Meanwhile, my reading group launches this coming weekend. I'm still reading War and Peace for my own pleasure, but will be reading and discussing the Korean book Three Generations in the book group. If anyone happens to be in Daegu this Saturday and wants to drop by...

The book group will be early in the day; in the evening is pre-school graduation. Now, this promises to be a grand time. Ahem. My twelve 4-to-6-year-olds will be singing "She Wants to Be an Engineer" complete with chorus line dance moves. Then they will make indivdual speeches such as "My name is Thomas. I like robots" or "My name is Christina. I want to be an English teacher because I like markers and erasers" (she refers to our dry erase board markers, as fine a reason to make a career choice as any I've ever heard). Finally they will perform the play "The Enormous Turnip," in which I have a small but pivotal role. At the end, they all cry, "Linda teacher! Linda teacher! Come and help!" and I save the day and pull the enormous turnip out of the ground so we can eat it for dinner. Sorry I ruined the ending for you, there.

Yes, it's all just as delightfully ridiculous as it sounds.

The writing group Rachel and I started has been going well; we have three regulars now and two more hooked for our meeting this week, plus random not-yet-committed interest growing all the time. Unfortunately, last week I seem to have ingested some seaweed somewhere during writing group because when I got home I had my first bad allergic reaction in years! Weird, because we ate at a cafe where we've eaten before, and I even got the SAME entree I got the last time with no problems, a mushroom cream sauce spaghetti. The only place I can figure I got the seaweed would have been at Starbucks before dinner, if they used soy milk instead of regular in my latte or used the soy milk pitcher or something, because Silk soy milk, which is the brand U.S. Starbucks use, contains the seaweed extract carageenan. It was a pretty bad reaction for just carageenan, though. Hives, rash, major itching, swollen hands, the works. Good thing I was clever enough to bring Benadryl! I had to take more the next morning, too! It finally subsided after pre-school.

Also this past weekend, Robin and I traveled to Jinju, a city south of here almost on the coast. It is home to the Jinjuseong Fortress. It is basically a huge, walled park area with lots of paths winding around grassy knolls, shrines, temples, statues, a museum, a restaurant, hills, monuments, and so on. It sits in quiet splendor overlooking the city of Jinju and the Nam River. All in all it was a rather peaceful place, what with it being a fortress and all. It was the site of lots of death during the Japanese invasions in the 1590's. The museum was pretty informative and so were the sites scattered throughout the grounds. One sign's English seemed to be done by a different translator, and we really liked its melodramatic feel, with lines such as: "he gave his dearest life like the feather of a wild goose." It was awesome.

We even lunched on bibimbap in the restaurant and somehow I managed to convey in Korean my request for no meat, and what's more, they complied! I was like, wait, am I still in Korea? But sure enough, they brought one bibimbap with meat on top, for Robin, and one without, for me. Of course, they placed them in front of the wrong people, but we quickly switched and I ate a delicious vegetarian lunch! What do you know?

And now I am beginning week 20!!! That seems like a really huge milestone. Twenty weeks. Wow.

Hey, listen, if one of you is holding that $365 million winning lottery ticket and you're worried about whom you could share it with, listen, I'd be willing to do you a favor and help you out. I'd sure do that for you...

1 comment:

Catherine_G said...

Aw, Linda - did ya have to go and ruin the ending of The Enormous Turnip for me? I was on the edge of my seat!

I can't wait for it to open stateside. Hee.