Sunday, June 21, 2009

Street Puncts

Hey, before I forget--if any of you need to launder illegally-gained money through a foreign bank account, let me know.

Last night for dinner I used the pointing method of communication to perfection. I pointed at the yellow noodles, and at the balls of pork, and at the clear soup, and I got all of those things, in a bowl, and a cup of ice water. I was quite pleased with myself, slurping my broth, sitting on the side of the superhighway (no joke), motorbikes zooming a few meters (that's Thai for "feet") from my table.

I point this out (Ha!) because this all has an obvious antecedent (that sentence has an obvious antecedent, too: I stole it from Lolita). At dinner on Saturday night, I ambled over to S--------- Street (I use those dashes not for propriety, but because I have no idea what the letters after 'S' are). I sat down in what I thought was one of my favorite noodle shops, with an English menu and delicious fried noodle soup. Turns out my memory, like most of my interpersonal skills, failed me, and I was stuck in this little cafe facing a receipt-sized piece of paper with about fifteen Thai words and fifteen check boxes.

Having learned from my mistake last time this happened (when I checked two boxes and got two mystery meats, which were not, as I had hoped, chicken or pork) I tried to say "chicken" and "noodles," but I did not know the tones, and so this was lost on my waitress/cook. There were five pictures of dishes on the wall, and she invited me to point at one. I pointed at some egg noodles, and then said "chicken" again. And then I said "chicken" again. And then, in the middle of the restaurant, I start flapping my wings, bobbing my head, and clucking.

Anyway, five minutes later my waitress brought out noodles and seafood. There were shrimp, I know, and then there was something white and waxy, like a human ear. Now, I'm not saying that for sure I ate a human ear; but last night, I pooped out a cochlea.

[Note: I told you there would be poop jokes].
[2: "pooped out a cochlea" is fun to say aloud. It's even more fun to say to waitresses. To one who does not speak English, "pooped out a cochlea" and "chicken fried rice" probably mean about the same, which is to say, little more than nothing.]

Moral of the story is, last night I got all up into the ingredients with my pointer finger. That sentence sounds more unhealthy than it is, but I have a point (Ha!): language is overrated. Not only would we be able to get as many basic necessities fulfilled without it, but we would also probably copulate a lot more.

And now I'm hungry. So call me Georges Seurat, because I'm about to go use my points.

So what the crap,


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