As you may have noticed, I am posting things again on Write with Lightning after the successful conclusion of yet another journey overseas. I’ve travelled a lot, and I am always tempted immediately after a trip to write about it. I had less inclination to write a narrative of my time in Ireland because I already wrote it in my Wanderlust Ireland blog, but I still wanted to write about travel in general and my experiences as a world traveller—that is, the customs I absorb and the people whose lives I visited. I don’t have anything more profound to tell you about the famous sights I’ve seen than anyone else who has also seen them. The Eiffel Tower is brown. The Circus Maximus is a beer bottle littered field. Oscar Wilde’s grave is covered in lipstick kisses. Angkor Wat is old. Bethlehem is a slum. Continue reading
Tag Archives: thor’s day
The Average Joe
There were a lot of things he wasn’t allowed to like: musicals, dancing, wine, unicorns, cocktails, the colour pink, museums, sunsets, reading. And only a few things he was: beer, sports, sex, danger, gambling, smoking, machines. Because of this, he was the type of person no one writes a story about. No artistic hobbies. No secret hopes or desires. No existential crisis. Just one of those guys whom the main character irrationally desires or envies. The Stiffler figure. The party animal with great stories to tell. Great vapid stories. For a person like this to become the centre of attention to a literary audience, something outside of his normal routine had to happen to him. Continue reading
First Love’s Theme Song
It was the summer after Grade 11—or the summer of Final Fantasy X, Smirnoff Ice, Avril Lavigne’s “Complicated”, and Dungeons and Dragons 3rd Edition. I had won a five day trip to scout out the university that ended up becoming my stomping grounds for the five years after high school. My sylvan elf rogue is a great scout—as am I.
I arrived at the retreat in what I deemed to be perfect university student attire. I must have rolled a natural-20 in Disguise, or at least a 17 in Self-Deception, to warrant my success. As I walked around campus, old computer speakers lashed to the sides of my backpack scratchily, and between skips, played The Bloodhound Gang’s “The Bad Touch” as the theme song of my group: Team DC (Discovery Channel). I also brought badminton racquets to show off what I liked to think of as my cool, athletic side. The tunes and sports equipment apparently worked, because I met a girl Continue reading
Museum of World Religions
If you are ever in Taipei, do not pass up the chance to visit the unique Museum of World Religions. You will have to leave the comfort of the English-friendly subway system and take a shuttle bus from an unmarked-in-English bus stop to the mall where it resides. My Lonely Planet Southeast Asia on a Shoestring promised that it would have depictions of ten of the world’s most influential religions, but with a street-front entrance attached to the side of a mall, the museum did not look like much. I had faith in my yellow bible, and I’ll-be-damned if it wasn’t right. Continue reading
I have spent my life wandering: a tourist in the lives of others. I have become culturally homeless, absorbing the attributes and customs of the countries and the people harbouring me. I carry my anchor up and never look back to a place where it once lay temporarily moored. Each port is free of me, and though someday I may drunk-dial and stay the night, I’ll be gone in the morning.
This life has made me a wiser man: a mariner of the sea of humanity. I see the flaws in your life, and I will subtly help you to share in what I have learned. I know your long-distance relationship will fail. I know you’ll regret listening to your father and studying engineering instead of art. I know your religion is hurting you more than it’s helping. I know the plans you make now don’t mean a thing because they’ll change later. I know you want to have an adventure. I know you.
Face your fears and step off the cliff with me. Jump naked from the top of the waterfall. Swim closer to the shark. Hug the tiger. Eat the mushrooms. Talk to the girl. Write down what you dream. Write down something true.
I thought this life had made me a wiser man, but I never really learned. I was always waiting for a chance to prove my findings wrong, so when I met you, I set down my anchor, ready to ignore what advice I would have given to others. But you cut through the rope and set me adrift. Now my anchor is rusting on the ocean floor, and I don’t know how to stop again even if I wanted to.