Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Mission of Burma

Where was I?

Burma. Border. Experiencing erectile dysfunction/desire for Marlboros.

Here's a rundown of what I bought in Burma:

Two pairs of Ray Bans: $3 for both
Wall-E and Up, DVD: $1 for both
Pair of Chinese Converse shoes: $8
Umbrella: $2

(It's been raining non-stop (no joke, it has not stopped raining) for the past two days. Woke up this morning to see that it had finally stopped. That was a long God whiz.)

Pretty happy with my Ray Bans. One pair is comically large on my face, like Groucho Marks specs. The other pair looks all right, is leopard print or something. Good buy

Wall-E and Up, which I took a gamble on, are both in Thai. It might be a few months before I can watch them. I know this because on the bus ride home (more on this later), I attempted to follow the Thai-dub version of the movie "Push," with little to no success. I know the character's names, but past that: what the hell was that movie about? I'm going to guess nothing, based not on my non-comprehension, but by the two characters that appeared to be Chinese men whose superpower was yelling very loudly.

(By the way, I think I recognized those two, from my wedding night).

Anyway, Burma. I was walking down a non-tourist street (where they don't yell "Hey, Brother! You want Zippo lighter?") when I WAS yelled at, from inside of a restaurant.


A Canadian teenager eating alone in a Burmese restaurant. Spoke perfect Thai. Eighteen years old. Had taken a year off before starting at a Vancouver university to bike through Southeast Asia. He kind of looked like a young John Waters, with long, scraggly hair, powder-white face, Adam Morristache, crazy person eyes. Very excitable.

I keep on coming back to Dennis Hopper in Apocalypse Now, but what I'm really referencing is this moment on The Jiminy Glick Show with Martin Short, where he's interviewing Dennis Miller, and Miller interrupts Martin Short (as Glick) and tells him how insane and demented he looks, and when he looks into his eyes he sees the look of Dennis Hopper in Apocalypse Now and thinks "Oh my God I am in the room with a crazy man."

That's the way I felt eating lunch, chicken fried rice with a fried egg on top. I nodded politely as the Canadian (I'll call him Sproog, for the sake of convenience) warned me against falling for a Thai girl, because they have this charm about them...(wistful silence)...

"Yeah, man, definitely."

Then he chatted up the waiter and reported to me that the Burmese economy was in the shitter. "This is their biggest bank note!" he said, pointing at 1000 Burmese note. "That's THIRTY BAHT!"


We walked around, met a jaded Burmese tour guide who spoke the best English I have heard in Asia (maybe because every other word was "fucking," "shitty," or "asshole"). He raged against the Thai people and how "soft" they were," and then railed against the government, chewing on Beet Root, which made his teeth beet red. Then he wandered away mysteriously. But I was so high off snorting powderized Viagra at that point that he might have legitimately said goodbye and I did not notice.

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