Expat@Large

The Marquis De Sade In The Tropics

Posted in expats, humidity, Marquis de Sade, shit, Singapore, tropics by expatatlarge on April 3, 2010

First as tragedy, then as rubbish. One of the issues to deal with when you’re living in a tropical island… molds, mildew and fungi.

Damn.

Looks like there have been consequences of a spillage from the small ever-humming wine-fridge several months back.

Due to an oversupply, some of my books are resting directly on the floor, a step below the dining area where my wine-fridge sits. I (someone) had accidentally left the door of the fridge ajar and a considerable amount of condensation resulted. I mopped up the fridge but it looks like some water had trickled down over the step that I had missed.

I have preset the air-con to run two hours a day even when I’m not here to cut back on the humidity at bit so that it sits at around 40% or so, however that’s not enough to prevent mould growing in a WET book.

A well-thumbed Juliette and well-thumbed Justine have all their pages stuck together (this time without prostaglandins as glue), Shakespeare is looking tragic, Nicola Barker’s “Behindlings” is behind me now, Susan Sontag is going to have to write about mildew as a metaphor (not shown in photo), Roald Dahl has come to twisted end, The Great Labor Schism is not looking so great and, ironically, a tome on book-collecting, “Patience & Fortitude”, not worth keeping. A terrifically interesting book on the plague has swollen up and died… (the rat > flea vector was only determined 100 years ago, in Hong Kong, by an independent researcher who couldn’t get government funding or support.)

And I probably can’t get a replacement for the de Sade in Singapore. Is it banned here? I think it is.

Twelve books are beyond saving. What’s that? SGD$250- $300 or so.

Shit, damn.

At least this makes room for some other volumes currently sitting doubled on many of my other shelves.

Or no, perhaps I shouldn’t stack books directly on the floor. I have no insurance.

Vote: replace the lost books or not?

Sigh.

E@L

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You Must Get To The Bottom Of This!

Posted in arse, bum jokes, comedy, crying with laughter, Hitler, Rommel, shit, Spike Milligan by expatatlarge on October 21, 2009

Nothing like toilet humour… Further to my crisis of the other day, here’s Spike Milligan:

Jesus wept and so did I watching this!

And it was Spike himself, (at least the HongkieTown version on Facebook) who got me started on these classic clips…

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ADDENDUM

Oh, and the deep and uncreepy (despite having a ouija board tattoo on his back?) Creepy kindly tried to kill me by sending me a link to another guy’s arse-pain story – <a href="http://www.zug.com/scrawl/analbob/
“>Bob, the Anal Fissure… Funny? It’s so painfully amusing I was getting those fucking abdominal cramps again and almost died in the office chair. Or was that a dream I had while on the office chair? Ah dear, I’ve been either crying or dying all day it seems…

E@L

Robbed of Music! By an Arse!

Posted in anal fissure, arse, bum jokes, classical music, shit by expatatlarge on October 10, 2009

– Don’t start something you can’t finish, my uncle used to say.

I don’t recall if that particular uncle liked classical music, but I certainly do not like taking on the challenge of getting to the Esplanade (currently the world’s most inconveniently located Entertainment Centre) unless it means listening to some good floppy-haired cellists (can’t find the link to my or Izzy’s blog about the Russian Orchestra a few years ago, but this one will do – there seems to be a world-wide plague of floppy-haired cellists) and musicians of that ilk.

The Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra is in town and playing Beethoven Tchaikovsky tonight and I am in the toilet. Physically I mean. I am in the dunny, the loo, the crapper. My arse is grass and being attacked by a weed-wacker.

I’ve started , but no matter how hard I try, I cannot finish…

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Earlier, T was pissed off with work and SMS(short message service)’d to say –

– Let’s meet at Harry’s for a beer.

Actually, I was already on my way in a nice Mercedes taxi hoping for a bit of quiet time to finish reading that Krugman article on Friedman in the New York Review of Books from a few years ago (I’m still trapped in a “fuck I don’t know anything about politics OR economics” spin), but I made it sound like I was dropping tools and heading off for a TDIF (Thank Darwin It’s Friday) ale too. Dropping tools? It was already after 6, but this is Singapore, not Sydney where anyone at work after 4 on a Friday obviously hadn’t booked their yacht for the weekend.

We had one beer (metric pint = 500mls). Izzy came looking very sophisticated in a cute LBD (I don’t have to tell you what that is, surely?) with a white pleated scarf and a pair of scarlet 4″ heels that would plague her all night. We listened to T’s appalling geek puns and, this is where the mistake of our early arrival at the pub was made manifest; our glasses were empty and there was 20mins to go – WE HAD ANOTHER BEER. Before a concert, that is a MBM (Major Bad Move.)

When it was getting close to tune-up time we called for the bill. Typical for Harry’s, it took forever to get change and while I waited T and Iz went for bladder relief. When T got back, the change still hadn’t come so he waited and I went for a pre-show slash…

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NOTE: The next few paragraphs contain WTMI (Way Too Much Information). But people don’t talk/blog about crapping much (unless they’re German or James Joyce) and it’s such a big part of life… and hey I love toilet humour! so — Enter at own risk.

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I was feeling a tad gassy after wolfing that second beer, in fact I felt like I might need to take a dump. Man, what an inconvenient time! Instead I took a piss at the urinal and tried to squeeze out a fart. Sometimes a fart and a piss can take a lot of the pressure off, hold that inconveniently timed crap urge in abeyance for just long enough… to watch a concert orchestra for example. But no, this one needed to be attended to straight away. The next train down that tunnel was going to be the goods! But I’d only had a light breakfast and not much lunch, so I didn’t expect a major effort.

So, reluctantly, I ducked into a cubicle, dropped me daks and sat down. Slowly, shyly, a little cigarillo of a turd squeezed itself half out… and stuck there. There was not enough solid momentum backing it up to force the issue. I had already let out most of the gaseous components which meant I could not explode it out with another big fart. A bit dropped of the end finally, but most of the turdlet just oozed itself to comfortable (for the turd, not for me) and intractable positions deep into every fold, crease and niche of my anal canal.

Now remember the other week when I had problems down below? An UTI (urinary tract infection) means more than a burning urethra I had found out. It means massive bone-splitting, muscle rending, out-of-synch cramps that push you bladder down into your prostate and raise the innards of your intestinal chute in all the wrong painful directions at all the wrong teeth-clenching, involuntary groaning times. At that time, I got myself constipated because the spasms meant I couldn’t coordinate my shit extruding mechanisms to defecate properly… for five days. Oh fuck, that hurt. Bad memories came flooding back of a history of anal fissures(x2), one so bad that I was in hospital for a week (and my nick-name at work became Lord of the Ring, because I mentioned to someone that I had to sit on one those blow-up rubber rings – You’ve never seen one? You need to stay in more.) Anyway, it was bad. I thought with this UTI I was either getting another one, or that I had developed haemorrhoids from all the white-knuckle straining.

My arse has only just recovered thanks to the advice of a pharmacist in Plaza Singapura. Two words – nappy rash creme.

So here I am with a mushy chocolate cigar stuck in my quoit. Thank Darwin I am not in a Malaysian or Thailand or the Singapore heartland toilet with just my fingernails between, well, between nothing really. No baby-wipes, no nappy rash creme. At least I have toilet paper. There is two minutes to go before the concert starts and I have to extract myself from this toilet trouble in time. Cheap, rough toilet paper. Holy hell! And hell it was…

But even as I stood to do up my jeans, giving up any more wasted efforts, I knew it was not over yet. There was certainly something left, something horrible besides the rubbed-raw flesh of my sphincter. I had proof of Gödel’s Incompleteness Theorem: it was half-stuck up my bleeding arse.

Enough time had elapsed for Iz and T to be worried about me, and I saw T come into the toilet looking to see if I had had a heart attack, but I was already washing my hands thoroughly – for a second time…

– You OK? they asked.

– No. Read about it in my blog tomorrow.

And so we headed to the concert hall with minutes…

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Gone.

Our chance to get seated for the first piece was gone, as we were two minutes, maybe three, late. The lady was just shutting the outer doors and the band was already playing; we could see and hear it on the LCD (liquid crystal display) display above the outer entrance. You don’t expect this sort of punctuality in Asia! The tickets said 7:30, that means, seriously, move to seat around 7:30 because the actual music will start at 7:45ish. But not tonight – 7:30 meant 7:30, kaboom. We are dealing with the Dutch here!

It was a little bit OK for it became evident, as a small crowd gathered around the LCD that there were others in the same predicament. Being late I mean, not have the remnants of half a turd still stuck in their shit-chute.

The first piece by Wagenaar (sounds Dutch or Swedish – note the comment on YouTube = hoor de voor do goor de goor) was the Overture to Cyrano De Bergerac, and only 14 minutes long. So we miss that, so what?

I told T and Iz, who didn’t know it seems, that Cyrano was a real person. He was in fact well-known(-ish) as a pioneer Sci-Fi writer back in 14whatever (OK, he died in 1655). I had bought his Journey to the Moon and enjoyed reading it (in English!) in the cafes of Paris. Quite subversive it was – Cyrano was very critical of the French Church at the time, but got away with it, saying it merely fiction!

We went to our seats at the first break in the programme and listened to Nina Kotova play a cello piece by somebody called Theofanides that was like the soundtrack to a really scary movie. But as the deep rumblings of the drum and intense scratchings across the strings reverberated, my bladder immediately started to distend itself with the filtrations of THAT SECOND BEER! 20 minutes to go!

At the next break I had scramble across everybody in the row and get out quickly. Luckily too, because those parts of that cigar which I had been forced by the pain and frank bleeding to let lie, had liquefied nicely while I was sitting there and were now thinking of trickling into prominence in the windmills of my mind arse. Itchy, itchy arse. Yowser — full bladder, itchy arse! Back to the loo, and a big big sigh as everything was slowly, gently brought under some form of control.

By the time I returned (I had whispered quickly about “just getting over a bladder infection” to lady at the door as I nearly bowled her over in my rush) the next piece – Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody On A Theme Of Paganini – was well under way. The sympathetic door lady let me into the crying-room where I could at least see the performance and listen to it through little tinny speakers, but unhindered by the din of band that was playing upstairs in the main foyer of the Esplanade complex.

It looked great, the amazingly young 14 year old(!) pianist Conrad Teo was jumping around like a madman (as required by a lot of Rachmaninov, I am informed). But seeing it through glass and not hearing it properly made me feel that I had lost the opportunity to have the memorable experience of a really spirited performance. When it finished, Intermission was due. I went downstairs for a slash again, but found the foyer empty I came up. It must have been a truly great performance because I saw on the LCD display that the orchestra was still on stage and the audience were still applauding! This was obviously the centerpiece and the highlight of the night.

Sigh. I missed it.

The Tchaikovsky was good, was really good in fact – it was the 4th Symphony, and in the 2nd movement, there’s this beautiful rising/falling theme that goes da da daaa dumdum dur da dee dada dee da dum, then go down a tone and repeat; you’d know it if you heard it (starts at 1:21) – but having missed the the Wagenaar, AND the young kid playing Rachmaninov, and being uncomfortable for the second piece, I felt a little disappointed (with myself) and that brought down my appreciation of the whole thing. (I remember, now, thinking that from the our expensive seats in the middle of stalls perhaps you couldn’t hear the wood-wind as well as you might if you were seated higher up).

Overall I felt that my arse had cheated me out 50% of the concert and brought me down so I couldn’t appreciate the entirety of the night.

But then, as an unexpected encore the orchestra did a terrifically rousing arrangement of (what to me sounded like) Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsody – without a piano! Very spirited also, and it left me smiling.

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OK bum-story sorties are over, things were back to relative normality after that….

We gave up waiting in-line for a cab, or waiting on-hold to book one and walked for ages to get to the nearest MRT with Izzy in bare feet looking for a place that sold black flip-flops – fuck the Esplanade is dab in the middle of Transportation Nowhere – then walked for what seemed ages from Somerset MRT right through a fucking construction site to Orchard Rd…

– Fuck all this walking, cry my feet, as do Izzy’s… She got some plasters at a 7/11 and was OK then, but my neuralgic dogs can’t handle it all and they were barking!

But that persistent annoyance didn’t stop me pondering what would constitute a great day – golf in the morning, book browsing, reading and chatting in the afternoon, and going to a concert in the evening, all without having a sore arse to fuck it all up…. Just dreaming…

We got to Cuppage Plaza at about 10:45, hoping somewhere would be open (Singapore!! restaurants still shut way too early) and found that the small place T wanted to try out was still open. People even came in after us!

This was some great Japanese food – great sashimi (the hamachi – yellowtail – in particular was superb), yummy boiled pork-belly, shioyaki mackerel, and some GENUINE Kobe beef, OMFD, that really just melted in the mouth – Toothless grannies could eat that, said T. Reasonably priced for a Japanese food in Singapore too! Maybe that where a great place to end that perfect day too.

I have the name of the place, but it will cost you… OK, it’s called Nagomi.

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And for MY encore – the genuine Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsody No 2 – played as it was never meant to be by the peerlessly funny Victor Borge and side-kick…

E@L

p.s. Now, after having listened to Borge, I can’t tell if this the music they played or not!