Thursday, August 26, 2010


From one ugly fish:

To one delicious dish:

According to Wikipedia's article on the order Perciformes, family Trichiuridae, there are 40 some species of this fish all around the world. Also called Cutlassfish, Hairtails, Walla Walla, or Frostfishes. They are silver colored, and because they look like a steel blade they've earned two of those those names. Now if I caught one, I don't think I would be comparing it to a shiny steel, but something from a nightmare. I would run first and wouldn't worry about cooking it.

Fortunately, this came freshly frozen and filleted, so there was nothing frightening about it at all. (Believe me when I say that getting a fish that has been filleted is indeed a joyous event here in Korea for us westerners no used to choking on bones)

Now go fry some up some sword-like nightmares and enjoy.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


Part 1. Chicago. 1972. This certainly seems like a dated political protest song (which it was), but these lyrics are still meaningful today, 38 years later.

Diaogue Filmed Live Arie Crown Theater, Chicago, Nov 1972

Q. Are you optimistic 'bout the way things are going?

A. No, I never ever think of it at all

Q. Don't you ever worry, When you see what's going down?

A. Will, I try to mind my business, that is, no business at all

Q. When it's time to function as a feeling human being, Will your bachelor of arts help you get by?

A. I hope to study further, a few more years or so, I also hope to keep a steady high

Q. Will you try to change things, Use the power that you have, the power of a million new ideas?

A. What is this power you speak of and this need for things to change? I always thought that everything was fine

Q. Don't you feel repression just closing in around?

A. No, the campus here is very, very free

Q. Don't it make you angry the way war is dragging on?

A. Well, I hope the president knows what he's into, I don't know

Q. Don't you ever see the starvation in the city where you live? All the needless hunger, all the needless pain?

A. I haven't been there lately, the country is so fine. But my neighbors don't seem hungry 'cause they haven't got the time

Q. Thank you for the talk, you know you really eased my mind. I was troubled by the shapes of things to come

A. Well, if you had my outlook your feelings would be numb. You'd always think that everything was fine.

We can make it happen.

Mr. Q above was sung by Terry Kath (RIP), and Mr. A was sung by Peter Cetera.

Sorry, this deviates from my typical food postings, but I just couldn't get this song out of my head today.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Android Forum

I went to the cell phone store two weeks ago, to buy a new screen protector for my phone. I left 2 hours later with an Android smart phone. I couldn't find any places among the websites here to discuss the Android from the expat's perspective, so I wasted a couple hours and threw up a forum website: The SeoulDroid, a discussion board for Android users in Korea.

There should be general Android discussions as well as Korea-related topics, so anyone can participate. Right now there aren't many topics, as I just opened it this weekend. Please join up and start some discussions!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


We've been working late at the office a lot recently, and I decided to do something special for dinner tonight. There is a Quiznos sub sandwich shop very close to my office. The last time I went (back in March, I think) I had asked them if they delivered. They said they did. So, I've had this take out menu here at my office waiting for just such a chance as tonight.

Wanting to be independent, I decided to order the sandwiches myself. Things went kind of downhill from there. First, they didn't answer the phone, even after several minutes of it ringing. As I was about to give up, I noticed a FAX number on the menu. Well, this is great. I don't have to worry about the language, I can just FAX in my order. Which I did. I waited 5 or 10 minutes, expecting to get a call back. Nothing. So I called back, and this time someone answered. He was very nice, said he received my FAX, but they don't make sandwiches there. Turns out I had sent the FAX to the headquarter office, not the store. But, he said he would transmit my order to the store. Now we're talking. Next I got a call from the store, and I was overwhelmed by her Korean. I finally gave up being independent and gave the phone to CH.

It turns out that in general, they don't really deliver. If you are in a very few limited office buildings, and order more than $50 of sandwiches, THEN they'll deliver. Quiznos is a little expensive here, but even with three sandwiches, I wasn't going to break the $50 mark. So the only choice was to cancel or go pick it up myself. Well, by this time, I was so worked up to have a hot, toasted Quiznos sandwich, I agreed to go pick them up in 15 minutes. Nothing else can go wrong, right? Wrong.

As I said, our office is very close to Quiznos. Normally it would just be a 5 minute taxi or less (it was raining). On the way, one must pass through about 2 blocks of pretty heavy traffic. Heavy did not begin to descibe the traffic tonight. It took over 20 minutes to go that two blocks. Total time took me about 30 minutes to get there, by which time any hope of eating a warm toasted sandwich was out the window.

Regardless, we had a good meal, a litle out of the ordinary, and I got one more blog post. And here's the back of the menu. Any fool with half a brain could see which number to dial...

Misc Photos

I still have been too busy at work these days. And changing over to my new laptop as well. Here are some miscellaneous photos I haven't had time to post from the past few weeks.

There's a "Mister Tofu" near my new home. This day my eyes were bigger than my stomach. Here you can see I made the mistake of ordering not only a bowl of tofu stew, but an extra side dish of an egg (it's basically a vegetable / cheese omlette). Boy, was this omlette huge - MUCH bigger than I expected. There was enough food here for two people, and I hated to leave half of my food (but I did).

Here is a small bucket/bowl a got over a month ago to go with the small air conditioner we installed in the office. This is a semi-portable unit, and requires you to empty a water resevoir periodically. We were told it would last for several days before needing to be drained, and when it needed draining, an indicator lamp would come on. To our surprise, the light has never come on. I even unplugged the pipe one day to check for water (maybe the lamp is broken), but no water. This new bowl is as dry as the day I bought it.

"From ???ing garden gather fragrance ??? of the vanished flower of a hundred years before"

"Little Flower -- but if I could understand What you are, root and all, and all in all, I should know what God and man is".

Hmmm, okay. And here is the aircon, er, air conditioner that this bowl is meant to service:

Need to do some Kolon shopping?

Years ago, when my eyesight was better, I used to carry around my pocket computer, the HP200LX. I still have it, and from time to time I turn it on to see that it still works. Back in those days, there was a very active international "club" of active users, and we still maintain a very inactive mailing list. Recently one of the members in Germany located what he believes might be the perfect HP200LX replacement, and turns out it is made right here in Korea. That would be the MBOOK by the UMID company.

Another member in Portugal wanted to get one of these new computers, and arranged for me to buy and ship it for him. But before boxing it up to go overseas, I took a photo comparing the old and the new. It's a nice design, but I didn't power it up. While I make jokes about my failing eyesight, I seriously wonder if I could even be comfortable working on this small of a screen. Anyway, I'll look forward to Alberto's report from Portugal in the months ahead.

By the way, my ruler is NOT crooked - the camera distored the image.