austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,

And I do want to thank you for the ride

Today I had the chance to add yet another name to the list of people I've met online and in Singapore. I had thought there were a large number of people I'd met online and then met over here, but it turns out that's true only if you count five as a large number, and one of the people I knew online I had met before meeting him in Singapore. But it's still a rare treat although I'll keep his name quiet out of respect for the odd notion that potential employers with Google powers might stumble onto this.

We met up a touch late because I missed the best bus to get to where I wanted to go, and had to wait for the next, which turned out to be twelve minutes later. And then I wasn't quite looking for the right guy, as I had the idea he would be wearing shorts even though he was perfectly clear about what he was going to wear. I'm easily baffled by simple and unambiguous instructions. Fortunately, as I'm the guy in Singapore with a beard he was able to catch me, so all worked out fine.

We ate in a hawker center at a place called Botak Jones, which serves American-style food, and which has a web site that apologizes right up front for any problems or delays in ordering; their hype campaigns were a bit too successful. The menu makes for rather fascinating reading (``Double Botak Burger -- Doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out what we're trying to tell you here, two beef patties lah!'', or explaining Cajun chicken by going back to the British rule of Canada). (I had the Cajun chicken platter, he had the double Botak burger, whch turned out to be more burger than either of us expected it would be. Great fries, though.)

I'd like to say that it was a deep, life-changing conversation, but I don't really have those. It ended up more talking about how I found life in Singapore (turned left at Japan), things that I've eaten, how we're rather sure the cashier at Botak Jones said the food would take a half-hour or forty minutes but actually it took ten (maybe they're hoping to make people feel perfectly average service is great?), what I do to try convincing people I actually do know what Singaporean food is like (I've tried asking what it is I'm eating, but the answer I get is genre -- chicken, tofu, fish, et cetera -- instead of something I could look up in a book of recipes), what major tourist attractions he's never been to either, and so on. And besides the pleasant lunch I was able to give away a one-kilogram bag of Milo chocolate milk mix and a pair of umbrellas I got as gifts for mailing through Singapore Post. Lovely afternoon; we should've gotten together before.

Trivia: The radio show Information, Please toured the American Zone of Occupation in Germany after V-E Day, with a two-hour program including piano by Joe Kahn, vaudeville by Reginald Gardiner, and songs and recitations by Beatrice Lillie. Source: Quiz Craze, Thomas A DeLong.

Currently Reading: Rain of Iron and Ice, John S Lewis.


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