Thursday, September 14, 2006


Sorry, Mum, I guess this probably isn't the picture of your son that you've been hoping to see, but here it is, anyway. For the sake of experimenting with self-portraits, and to better convey my feelings about dinner this evening, I give you The Picture of Frustration at Monolingualism (go ahead, look it up, I guarantee you it's in the dictionary).

Dinner, as you might be wondering, was shared with my Chinese friend Super (of Red Sky fame), his girlfriend, and my fellow American CIEE student Meagan. What I had hoped would be an ideal opportunity to practice my Chinese, turned out to be me trying in vain to follow the conversation, and constantly requesting translations from my three bilingual friends. It's enough to make a man insane.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dearest Son,
I am now having qualms about your relationship - who tied that red thing over your facade?

What did you have for dinner?

14/9/06 8:03 PM  
Anonymous Ta Baba said...

Just threw the I Ching asking "What is one to do facing the obstruction of monolingualism?"

The hexagram CHIEN / OBSTRUCTION came up, with a lot of moving lines suggesting underlying change.

the hexagram pictures a dangerous abyss lying before us and a steep inaccessible mountain rising behind us...

...In such a situation it is wise to pause in view of the danger and retreat. However, this is merely a preparation for overcoming the obstructions.

One must join forces with friends of like mind...
unswerving inner purpose brings good fortune in the end.

The hexagram capturing the underlying condition is WEI CHI / BEFORE COMPLETION

The task is great and full of responsibility. It is nothing less than that of leading the world out of confusion....

At first, however, one must move warily, like an old fox walking over ice.

The hexagram that tells where the situation is trending is KUAI / BREAK-THROUGH

... a break-through after a long accumulation of tension

In a resolute struggle of the good against evil (monolingualism), there are definite rules that must not be disregarded....the struggle must not be carried on directly by force.

Finally, the best way to fight evil is to make energetic progress in the good.

Tried and probably knew all this already, but sometimes it's nice to have what you know instinctively, reaffirmed.

Or as George put it tonight, I am like a walking pocket bible.


14/9/06 11:34 PM  

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