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The Semi-Regular Newsletter


Malaysia, February 14, 2000

One Day in KL

You might think it boring, but its better than a job!

Its dinnertime kids!
The KL party crew in action
They be tall, but no-one is at the top!
A modern engineering feat!
And I momentarily though of breaking IN!
The view from the outside
Clean, efficient, and boring
All aboard the future!
What I faced at the bus station
I took the train instead
I do not have a job, and beyond eating, no real daily responsibilities, yet all my friends are amazed at how long it takes me to complete what they believe are simple tasks. I'm tired of all the heckling, especially from the young lady who always wonders why it takes me days to call, so I'm gonna tell you what took up my time on an average day so you'll understand that traveling is very time consuming.

For this demonstration, I'm gonna pick Sunday, 13 February, 2000, because, as it was yesterday, the memory is fresh in my mind. Are you ready, because off we go!

0:00 Better known in America as midnight, I am walking somewhere between Chinatown and the Kuala Lumpur club zone, laughing with a group of Bahamians and random Africans I'd met earlier in a outdoor cafe. We are all a few beers beyond sober and in good spirits.

2:17 I've lost the Bahamian sister who wanted to reggae a little too closely by ducking into a different club, and I'm hiding out with a cluster of gay men who are rating the men of the club on a -1 to +10 scale. I rate a +7.

3:25 I'm stumbling up the stairs of my hotel, alternately bitching about the lack of lighting, the elevator that shuts off at 23:00, and the floor numbering system that gives me a ground floor and a first floor to climb, instead of just a ground or first, then second floor.

10:42 I know it is exactly 42 minutes after the hour, as the couple in the next room have awoken me with loud screaming that their train to Penang will be leaving in 18 minutes. They are screaming at each other as they pack, and I tell 'em to bitch at the station cuz others would like to sleep. This does nothing to calm their anger.

11:30 I am awake now, standing in the cold shower and washing off the sweat I awoke in. I have a slight fever and my throat is swollen. Seems I've caught a cold and last night's outing did nothing for my health. I dry off as I note that I need to shave, but resist the temptation to do it now, as the hotel doesn't have hot water.

12:45 I've just walked into an Internet cafe after a good brunch of Indian curries and rice. The local kids are busy killing each other in massive Quake III battles as I settle down to read and respond to 17 emails that await me. It will take me over an hour to work through them all, and another hour to write new emails and catch up on the latest CNN news.

15:10 The guards at the KL towers, the tallest building in the world, are receiving a full Wayan in Frustration broadside since, for some completely asinine reason, visitors are not allowed to the top of the building, unlike every other tall building in the world. I leave in disgust, heading for the city jail that is now a museum, just to find it too is closed. After cursing the country, and the idiots that run it for a few minutes, I calm down and head back to my hotel on the longest, fully automated subway in the world.

16:00 I am back in the hotel, sleeping peacefully as thumping base from the CD seller at the bottom of my building, permeates my body. I've grown used to this sound, although when I first heard it, I though American Indians were having a pow-wow in the street.

18:30 Fresh from my nap, I stare at my laptop with ferocious intensity as I manipulate my Macedonian civilization to dominance against the Shang, Greek, and Phoenician competition in a skillful round of the Age of Empires computer game.

20:00 Now, with bleary eyes from my battles, I grab a pen, some postcards, and my address book as I head to the same outdoor cafe of last night's beginnings. It's still drizzling when I arrive, so I hide under an umbrella, and consume the fired rice and broccoli put before me.

22:00 With two liters of Tiger beer in me, I am so engrossed in my current book, Catch 22, that I do not notice that the Bahamians have returned. We greet and catch up on the events of the night before. The sister, who last night was ready for me, is not present, having found a more receptive American for her attention. I am relieved, though I still decline their offer to repeat the previous night's outing.

23:15 Exhausted, I fill in my day planner for the 13th, and mark down the to-do's for tomorrow: buy a bus or train ticket to Singapore, mail letters I wrote over the weekend, and write this page for my website. I then curl up under my fan and blanket, lulled into dreamland by the same song the CD seller has been playing all week. 'Hey Barbie, Lets go Party.'

Malaysia, February 8, 2000

The Women Are As Diverse As The Country

Malaysian women dress from head to toe in sheets or shorts. Even her feet are covered! Take your pick, liberal to strict Sporty Spice, Chinese style Family first for these women When I stepped off the train in Penang, I was shocked, though not by what you'd think. Since I...

Malaysia, February 7, 2000

What a Lame-O New Year's!

Don't get your hopes up for a wild party on Chinese New Year's I wanted more than one! The freaks were out! Even the Euro's celebrate I'd been led to believe that Chinese celebrated their New Year's as we in the West celebrate ours. I've seen the Hong Kong movies,...

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Malaysia, February 3, 2000

Oddly Enough, Malaysia is Muslim

They ain't Arab though they is Muslim! Not Cinderella's Castle! Turning heads as they strut by Not a planetarium While in sitting on a beach in Thailand, I read Roots, and it struck me how Kinta Kunte was Muslim even though he lived in Gambia. In my mind, from the...

Malaysia, February 2, 2000

The Language is English

Don't think you'll learn a word of Malay in Malaysia He's fluent, but his wife isn't Serious about security I don't know a word of Malay. Now, I could blame it on the short time I've been here so far, only three days or I could blame it on my...

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Malaysia, January 31, 2000

Malaysia is the Mix Master

Amazing. A multi-ethnic island without ethnic animosity Yep, the Brits were here No, not Indian. A spacious and poor HK They don't look oppressed Happily Malaysian I don't know yet if Penang is representative of Malaysia, but even if the rest of the country is half as integrated, I'll be...

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