Monday, July 30, 2007

Fruits and Wine

I settle for a glass of wine and relaxation before bedtime. I am disappointed that my wine is full of a fruity taste, like some horrible off season Manishevitz. It's sweetness is an insult to my palette and my tastes and sensibilities.

Sewing takes up most of my time this evening. There is fabric in my apartment. Tons of fabric, there are light slinky pieces, silks and cotton/poly blends chosen for the effect they will have on the eye and the smoothness as they ride against my skin. All weekend writing, writing, writing, tedious, meticulous writing that needs to be done, steals my brain and fingers from sewing; occupies my time. But the writing, I've agreed to do it, must finish, but the writing. It's the writing that eats at your soul. It has no flow, no movement no center of being. It is a future perfect impossible. Directions for a reader that will barely glance at my words on paper. Meaningless work.

This work steals everything else from me. There are no words, no stories, no sweet poetry, everything is robbed by the dull mechanical writing that I turn out. Writing for the readers that always know better. Writing for adult adolescents that will always find a way to do it that has nothing to do with me. Writing and writing. More tomorrow and the next day. Does it ever end? And where am I if I am no longer in my writing. I melt and the heat melts with me.

Korea is so very hot. So much hot that in the morning you wake in a sweat. You sweat in your cold shower. You sweat as you dry. You sweat as you walk to work. You sweat as you think about how hot it is. I keep a towel at my desk. When I arrive to work I towel myself down. I keep thinking I should just bring a change of clothes to work, change when I arrive. I am too uncomfortable with it though, so I walk and sweat and ruin my pretty clothes with sweat and towel off when I reach the office.

The Koreans stare at me. They cannot comprehend it. Sweat drips from the end of my nose and they ask if I'm sick. They prepare to rush me to the hospital. They bring me water and tell me to sit and rest. I'm going to die. There is water dripping out of every pour. The obvious conclusion is my untimely demise. Koreans don't sweat and don't understand the copious ability of a Hispanic to really get drenched. I towel off and smile and drink a glass of water and am needlessly polite until left alone.

"Korea is hot, but it does not burn hotter then my contempt." says Mono as we sit on a Saturday night. I drink nothing but ice water, I feel sick in the heat. He has a hot coffee and we sit outside and sweat and watch the Korean girls walk by. I listen to him expound on the nature of Korean heat and his personal contempt and I try to stifle my laugh and my annoyance and my appreciation of his wit. And even his contempt.

I go down to the Lonely Hearts Club as I must talk to the bar man. The basement den is cool, a welcoming icy cave. I sit to wait and people I know come in. I drink nothing but water the whole time. We talk and talk. "You know," says R- "I've been in India when it was 50 (Celsiuses) and the heat was nothing like this. Korea at 30 is worse than 50. Must be the humidity." We all agree and mumble into our cold drinks and try to huddle and hide away from the thoughts of the blisteringly torturous outdoors. The heat steals my thoughts like the perfunctory writing. I go home sick a half hour shy of midnight on Saturday. I'm sick. It's the heat, I think. Later I realize through the pain of a fierce headache that I am actually quite ill, a summer cold, unrecognizable because of the incommodious temperatures and the tedium of my work.

I feel better today and settle for a glass of wine to clear my head and to ease my overworked brain. I want a dry red, something bitter and clean, to cleanse my palette and relieve my enervated mind. And the wine is fruity and sweet like some sickly invasive tart in my otherwise dreary day. Maybe I need a good tart, something unwilling to comply with my vision.

Tomorrow I'll go buy some more wine and try again.


kodeureum said...

I recommend Valhondo Red from Spain. For 2,890 won at the Chilsung HomePlus you can't go wrong. It's great mixed half-and-half with Cheju orange juice but I usually save a few ounces for deglazing the pan after I fry up some tasty Costco Australian steak. Never buy the last bottle though!

Summer colds are a bitch, aren't they? I detest air-conditioning for that reason alone and NEVER turn it on at home.

total-spender said...

Thank god! I thought I was alone on this one.

By the time I reach work, I'm usually sporting 12inch pizza platter size sweat rings under my arms. Nasty.

Even with the air-con on full blast I can't cope.

Saradevil said...


Are you sure it's only 2,890? or Did you mean 28,900? Since Jinroo house *ahem* wine *ahem* is only 1,900 and that stuff can't really laughably be called wine I wonder. I will have to check it out though.


It is fu-muking hot.

kodeureum said...

I am sure. It is plonk but a dry proper-wine type of plonk, unlike Jinro which is judt grape juice with soju added. How are things in Chicago?