Sunday, January 28, 2007

A new tradition: yellow card questions

So, today I'm missing my third estimate of when I would finish grading exams. If I lower my standards, I may still finish tomorrow. In celebration of that realization, I am blogging.

You may recall that I have recently started a couple traditions, which seem to be suffering some continuity problems. Well, in the spirit of lowering my standards, I am starting a new tradition, and this one is easy, so if I can't do this one, I will officially be a failure, and you can banish me to Hainan forever. (Pretty please? Seriously, that used to be a not uncommon punishment, back in the good old days.)

And now for the show! In this activity, I draw a random question from the stack of conversation question cards that I use for my oral English classes, and then I answer it! Isn't that exciting!

So, the "yellow card" question for today is:
"If you could have any car you wanted, which car would you choose?"

Well, that one's a lame question. Especially here, since a car would be pretty pointless. (Where would I drive it? Where would I park it?) Oh, and apparently I'm not allowed to get a driver's license, since I'm color blind, and according to the legal code here, color blind drivers are unsafe, perhaps because (it is said) they can't tell the difference between the red and green lights. (1) I can tell the difference between red and green lights. I've never had a problem with it in the US. (2) People here don't pay much attention to the lights anyway.

Um, so where was I. Oh, if I could have any car... I would want a car that is clean enough that I wouldn't feel wasteful driving long distances, and small enough that parking wouldn't be too hard. The main reasons I might prefer a car over a moto is for long drives, or in bad weather. Although the convenience of being able to carry around more than a backpack amount of stuff would be nice too.

In view of these factors, I think I choose a Smart Car. Plus it's super cute, isn't it. I would like to show you the picture of Slowlane and Jeorge with one we saw in Berlin, but that photo is not digital, and is sitting in a box in San Diego. Please imagine it. Thanks.

Tune in next week for the next episode of The Yellow Card Question!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Monday, January 15, 2007

My Movie Career Begins

Evil Soldiers from nebulous foreign country
A Pakastani, an American, a Palestinian, and an Irani, as Evil Soldiers from Nebulous Foreign Country

About two hours east of here is a city with several "film industrial parks", consisting of permanent film sets, with neighborhoods of replica buildings in various styles. There is a small but steady market for foreign extras, and there are a few agents who specialize in recruiting foreigners for these roles in made-for-TV movies and commercials.

This weekend I began my acting career by appearing in a TV movie, playing the role of an evil soldier from a nebulous foreign country. I appeared in three scenes, mostly seen carrying a rifle, chasing after one of the protagonists. We also kill someone off camera and steal some treasure. It seems the part was made directly from the stereotype of the greedy, dull-witted foreign devil.

For most of the day, I was just having fun hanging out with the other foreigners, and suffering in the cold. But towards the end as it began to sink in what sort of character I was supposed to be, and afterwards as I tried to imagine how someone watching the movie would see it, I feel like I have acted wrongly. And it's a given that I acted badly. My career can only go up from here, right?

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Switching to New Blogger

So I suppose I am switching to the new Blogger system, which means all my fans that are subscribed to my feed should tell their subscription software to look in the new feed location.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Top 10 Reasons For Not Updating Your Blog

10. An earthquake has shut down the internet, and it's painfully slow to access the blog authoring page. (News saying the internet is back to normal is an evil lie. It is better than a weak ago, but still very slow.)
9. Most of the things you might like to post about involve showing photos, which, due to said internet freeze, cannot be uploaded.
8. End-of-semester crunch time.
7. You're still looking for a license plate that ends "000".
6. You're still working on compiling your New Year's resolutions.
5. You need to wash your hair.
4. As a white heterosexual male native-English-speaking college graduate of US citizenship and Protestant upbringing, you're feeling self-conscious about drowning out less privileged voices and contributing to cultural hegemony.
3. Now that Time Magazine has made you, as an internet content producer, the 2006 Person of the Year, you feel you can rest on your laurels and seek self-fulfillment in some other arena, kind of like Yasser Arafat did after he was made 1993 Person of the Year as a peacemaker.
2. You are feeling disillusioned about your blog-posting abilities, comparing your 100 posts in three years to your sister's 200 posts in one year.
1. You've decided there's no better way to annoy your sister (short of flying back to visit her and tapping her on the shoulder unceasingly.)