Friday, June 23, 2006

En flagrante

I'm sitting on the edge of my bed, scanning for long-missing accessories amid the dirty laundry. Here's an uncapped marker. There, a rental renewal notice. I feel like crap, but circumstances are jolting me into an upright position of productivity. My mom called me a few days ago asking that I return home:

"We [the family] go to Yellowstone. You take care of business. And brother."

I reluctantly agreed; she deserved a vacation, being on her feet 13 hours a day (as she's apt to remind me).

A few hours later, she rings me again: "You want to go to Cuba?"

Hell yesssss!

I'm told it's a belated birthday gift. MArt is so jealous. But he's still going to housesit for me. A lovely gesture, no? Apparently, we're in love or something.

***

A few evenings ago, a met an Irish tourist at 3 a.m. who asked me out for coffee.

I agreed, knowing it would be acceptable grounds for MArt to break-up with me. But I did it anyway because I am prone to being courted randomly off the street and this one, this one seemed decent enough (although a bit sloshed). The man ended up being a hedge fund associate for Goldman Sachs. We ended up at a 24-hour cafe, talking about the state of world economics, specifically in the Middle East and North Korea. I asked him what he thought of the latter's goals, and made him elaborate on his company's intentions in that country, what America really has in store for that side of the planet.

"They're completely unrealistic. They're delusional, yeah?"

What I gleaned from him is this: North Korea's basically paying him and his ilk to invest in the country for the sole purpose of securing confidence. So it, unlike China, is paying him interest. A few years ago, I heard through the familial grapevine that N. Korea was cordoning off a tiny area to experiment with capitalism. My dad's older brother was in the running to manage it. Now, I get what it really is: an office block all the big players are vying for. But the catch is, it's also entirely owned by the Europeans, so from what I'm told, investing in it commercially only really benefits the EU. America, in turn, also gets rich(er). It's win-win, unless you're North Korean. And since the South acts as everyone's money lender to access the North, even they get something out of it. Gabby, as my companion was called, already put down $4.3 million, but thinks the North Koreans need to cop to their situation and realize that they're in a strategic position, geographically, to govern as the gateway to the East.

An hour later, he's declaring his love for me. "Sorry," I said, "but my man's waiting up."

"He is a very lucky man."

Apparently, I'm one hell of a woman.

The conversation was fascinating in its candid portrayal of American interests versus American rhetoric from an insider. Before slipping into bed with MArt, I asked him whether he thought my actions were opportunistic.

"Of course."

I'm a journalism student, dammit! It's survival of the best story; the only thing I have in my arsenal are contacts.

***

Why some women can be a fucker to deal with absolutely eludes me. I've always thought as sharers of vaginas, we were born to have some sort of affinity with each other. Well, Tuesday's linguistics final showed me otherwise. This boorish lady, whom I had never spoken to before, took an immediate disliking to me. She was sitting with three other classmates, all of them men, who were so kind to offer me a seat and a hand in studying for the test. Immediately, everything I contributed was aggressively put down by this woman.

"Did you guys get this question? Does it mean that since the current discourse drives the idea that the mind emerges from the brain ..."

"NO! You don't get it at all!"

"... from the brain, Chomsky suggests that we distance ourselves from it in order to discover the linchpin of the mind/body duality?"

The men all nodded, "Yeah that's it." And there she was, arms crossed, giving me the eye, seething. [Sarah said she felt her negativity the moment I approached the table. That's why she left 15-seconds in.]

This continued until 15 minutes before class started. That's when she really brought out the claws. I asked her what her plans for the summer was:

"I'll be working."

Oh, I said, surmising that it must be something to do with getting her M.A.

"No, work. As in, I have a career," she scoffed. "I'm 31-years-old."

I decided I was just going to fuck with her now: "That's amazing! You look great, like one of Kylie Minogue's back-up dancers!" I enthused.

By the time the professor waltzed in with the booklets, she had already checked off her "accomplishments" for everyone to hear, chewing on every sizeable chunk like she actually carried speech bubbles in her back pocket along with the stick up her ass:

"I'm married.

"I have a 4.3 GPA."

"I have a mortgage."

"My husband and I are buying a house."

All accompanied by the requisite eye-roll.

"How 'bout a windmill? You planning to get one of those, too?" I asked. She wheezed like I had insulted her 4.3-rated intelligence. I smiled and listed off its various practical uses: Grind wheat, bring up water from a well, as an environmentally friendly air conditioning unit, a hideout from zombies.

"I don't get it."

Smarmy bitch. *sigh* Laxatives will do her body good.

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