Wednesday, June 11, 2003


Fulfilling my cultural dosage for the year, I attended non-club, non-bar, non-party related events. I guess I've been yearning for unfrequented recreation- that happens when you overdose on the habitual scene. Two steps away from checking myself into C.C.C. (Clubbing Cure Clinic).

Sunday: Spoken Word Battle. I haven't been to one since college; I used to go then; admittedly, because it was free for students. Real World: Admission Fee. Seemingly, the poetry slam exceeded their political jargon. I did not attend Berkeley in the 60's- I do not have that overzealous anti-war sentiment. Is it wrong that I don't? Is it wrong that even on 9.11 I attended class to get missing notes from a fellow politically inactive classmate while the masses congregated out in front of Sproul Hall lifting signs, rallying for peace. Is it wrong that the only direct interruption I felt was my regularly scheduled programs?

Monday: Korean Cultural Song and Dance. Act 1, Scene 1: 15 drummers thumping against their rice papered hour-glass shaped instruments. Banging echoed into the crowd, acoustics resonating through the lobby area. I fell asleep. How does that happen? How does one fall asleep not only to the beating of over a dozen drums but to the sound of their cultural heritage? How is one cat-napping at the rumble of one's ancestral wars are being produced. The historic, emotionally invested music that once provided a haven for Koreans to evade from their adversaries managed to lullaby me into temporal coma. My defense, such a steady beat allows for a conducive sleeping atmosphere.

Tuesday: Wine Country. I toured through the Napa Valley for some wine tasting, more like sipping in my case, over-cheesed pasta, and abstract art exhibits. I don't get abstract art. Where does one draw the line between priceless abstraction and senseless scribbles? What was art to me was the landscape, the breath-taking views of the Sonoma mountains. The serene quality to the area enticed me to have a cigarette out in the fresh-open air. Simple physics: fresh air--> bad air: mountainous area--> smoking area. Except, one major glich, the absence of a liquor store in all of Napa County.

So, I conclude that I might not have what it takes to appreciate some of the finer things in life, at least according to convention. Here I am at the Poetry Slam Nationals and I'm disappointed that there aren't enough lyricists rapping about sex, drugs, and rock 'n roll. Then at the sound of ritualistic folklore, I snore. Finally, at one of the pristine wine sites, I'm vigorously seeking an am/pm mini mart. Perhaps, I need to check myself into a different kind of C.C.C., Culture Cure Clinic.

Or, maybe I just haven't found my cultural calling. This new conscience applies guilty weight of limited exposure to life's treats and treasures. Heading into the kind of summer I had last had in middle-school, I find myself free. Free of classes, jobs or any other adult obligations. This would be an ideal time to hone in on some interests/skills. Perchance, I will actually try one of the interests I listed on my grad school app, or brush up on a passed pastime or even be advantageous with the sundry surroundings of the bay area and further exploit the city that I have been bridge-crossing only for the shops and bars. Or, possibly, I find contentment in other less tradition-rooted, custom-oriented endeavors. I like my remote. I like my DSL. I like my friends. I like my bars. I like my routine, my daily route. Nevertheless, I believe it's wise to veer off course for a self espial. The past three days were unexpected exits. Now, I know to get back on the road and continue on until another foreign promenade entices to me to pull over.