A Humbling Experience

There are certain things that a man should be able to do. I can't do them. Having a sense of direction, for example. I don't have one. When I first arrived in Korea I had to flag down a stranger to speak to my new boss on the phone and then follow said stranger back to my apartment because I was lost. I followed the stranger about 10 metres. I was right outside my place.

I am also incapable of growing a beard. I get a sort of porny looking moustache after 4 or 5 days but the effect is not what you might call rugged. Remember what the Indian lad in your class looked like when you were 12? Well I look like that. I'm 24.

As well as these severely emasculating qualities, I am utterly pathetic when it comes to DIY. I can't complete the most rudimentary of tasks. I once shattered my parents' bathroom light-fitting when trying to change a bulb. True story. So, quite silly was it of me to attempt some plumbing last night when already stressed out by some computer troubles. Let me explain.

My laptop failed on me the other night. It just wouldn't turn on. Bad news, obviously,  but I was mostly backed up and it wasn't that big of a deal. In fact, it would give me the opportunity to do something I had been planning on doing for a while and upgrade to Windows 7. I downloaded a pirated copy and read the instructions thoroughly before embarking on my quest while Kendra went to the supermarket. It worked. Kind of. My computer is a temperamental being at the best of times. In a startlingly obvious comparison to it's owner, it baulks at heavy work and has been known to scream - literally, scream - when asked to do two things at once. So, when I asked it to install a new operating system whilst simultaneously running Windows Vista it just went, "Are you bloody serious?" and proceeded to scream WHIRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR to the point where I felt it best to step away from it so that the inevitable explosion didn't do anymore damage to my, already flamboyantly shaped, face.

Anyway, with the computer bitching away and the screen looking like it was permanently in safe mode, I decided to have a break from it and take a nice, relaxing shower. I removed my clothes (easy, now) and swaggered into the bathroom with the manner of a fellow who can take any washing ritual in his stride. I turned on the taps and let the heartbreakingly lukewarm water flow through my fingers. Our shower has not been hot for a month or so now. I remember this being a problem in winter last year, but my apartment had a tap located under the shower head which, if adjusted, would allow more hot water through and sacrifice a little water pressure in order to get the heat back. Our new apartment doesn't have this nifty little feature however, as some smart-arse decided to install a bath tub where one doesn't belong thus covering up our Hot Water Displacement Faucet (I believe that is the correct technical term). On every day prior to this one I had just sucked up this frustration and satisfied myself with a little bitch about the water not being hot enough but, after the computer fiasco, I wasn't going to let any other inanimate objects get the better of me. I returned to the living room, stole a 100 won coin from our penny jar (nearly peeling my fingernails off in the process) and stormed back to the bath tub. With the water still running I inserted the coin into a screw located on the hot water tap which I was certain would allow more water through in the same way as the Hot Water Displacement Faucet. I turned and turned and turned and I remember very clearly thinking, just before the final turn as I felt the pressure build beneath my fingers, that there was no way the screw would be forced out by the water and fly into the air...

The screw was forced out by the water and flew into the air followed by a gushing stream of the lukewarm water I was neglecting to shower in. The stream shot directly into my face (that's what she said) and sent the screw into a graceful arc towards the bathtub with me scrambling after it to stop it falling down the drain. The water continued to stream into the air encouraging me to do my naked dance of panic which I hadn't busted out in a while. With water being forced into my every facial orifice, I tried gallantly to force the screw back into place which resulted in two more desperate leaps to save the screw from going down the drain. Finally, after - I swear to God - 10-15 minutes and a Google search on the one computer in the flat which didn't sound like a hair dryer, the screw was back in its little hole, albeit with a bit of black rubber sticking out and a not insignificant fountain of water creeping out of the side. I showered, in water that was now not only lukewarm of temperature but also low of pressure, and retired to my comfortable trousers to await the bollocking from my Canadian girlfriend.

"We've spoken about this before," she sighed, tossing a bag of peanut M&M's in my direction to keep me occupied. "What are you not to do?"
"DIY," I muttered, admiring my fluffy slippers and wondering, not for the first time, what a pair of underpants made with the same lining would feel like.
"And with me out of the house! What were you thinking?!"
"Sorry, Kendra. Want an M&M?"

She rolled her trousers up, oblivious to my warnings of geysers of terror, and faced the task with purpose. As I watched, she put the plug into the drain (pure genius) removed the offending screw, reorganised the little black rubber thing (a seal, apparently) and replaced it with a flourish and a condescending glance over her shoulder.

My computer still isn't working properly. I think I got water on it.

Love, Smithy x


Woah, there!

Shocked I was, today, as I loaded up my statcounter account to find I was actually receiving traffic. And only 20% of it was me re-loading the post to change the pluralisation of 'penis'. I thought I knew each and every one of my readers from my e-mail subscriptions list but that would appear to not be the case. This pleasantly shocking information led to my re-reading the previous post. And to feeling a few stabs of regret.

Now, for someone to attempt to preach peace and fucking love as I do, to then go and attack other peoples lifestyle choices is, I suppose, largely hypocritical. It's possible that I also became slightly too sensitive during one point and allowed a personal grievance to come to the fore and deflect from my original point. Life is about personal preference and as long as nobody else is getting harmed, I believe that people should be allowed to live their lives exactly as they wish to. It's none of my business. I apologise.

However, I stand by my original point that the male population of foreigners in this country are just a little bit strange. Not kooky strange. Not like, "Ooh those trousers are a bit strange". More like, "Ooh, you're making your choice of sexual partner based purely on their skin colour and the fact that you don't have to charm them because you don't speak the same language" kind of strange. I didn't like hearing my friend say that she was "scared" of Western men. I also couldn't realistically defend them to her knowing what I know.

Anyway, thats all. I apologise if I offended anyone. If you're still offended after this post then inherent in your taking offense is the fact that you have come to Korea because you can't get any back home in which case I frankly don't care if you're offended.

Oh, and I was swearing too much. Both mine and my girlfriends mothers read this. Sorry ladies.

Peace and effing love,

Smithy x


The Hunt

There is something going on in Seoul that I like to refer to as the Hunt. There are, of course, two parties in this Hunt. The Hunters and the Hunted. The Hunted are the single indigenous female population of this peninsula.

And the Hunters?

Socially-retarded western fuckwits who come here in order to shag as many Korean girls as possible since they are clearly unable to get laid at home and consider themselves to be somewhat 'special' in this country. They believe that the meek and mild little local girls are going to swoon at the mere prospect of their giant Western penises and put aside the fact that they are ugly as sin, rude, obnoxious and, as mentioned, socially retarded.

I once knew a particularly pathetic individual who referred to this affection for Asian girls as yellow fever. Fucking yellow fever. Does that not turn your stomach? The poor soul had flown himself over to the other side of the world in order to fulfill his lust for the Oriental. Unfortunately for this idiot, he chose to position himself on a bar stool of a particularly seedy joint in Okpo and allow the barmaids to shower him with affection (he's the type of guy that believes strippers like him, if you need some perspective). And then, when he declared himself to be in love with one of these girls - who would only ever drink with him in that particular bar in which they worked, strangely -  he would be baffled and heartbroken by the fact that they wouldn't sleep with him.

In Seoul, the Hunt is much more aggressive. The number of Western men is very high and so the novelty factor is much lower. There is still a ridiculous number of men who come here simply to fuck a local or 5 though and the internet forums for expats in Korea are full of people asking for tips on how to chat up Koreans or how to deal with their, frankly insane, dating rituals. Here's one for example.

Disclaimer - I am allowed to use the word 'insane' because, when I lived in Geoje, I was the focus of attention of a little troll that I worked with called Naya (she looked like Ronnie Corbett). After spurning her advances she went mental and made life very difficult for me. On the basis of this singular experience, I am allowed to make sweeping generalisations about entire races. Okay?

I saw another thread once that said something like,
Okay, I'm sorry to bring this up on a public forum, but I'm really embarrassed about it (best to bring it up on a public forum then, eh, dickhead). I was about to have sex with my Korean girlfriend last night (these hunters always refer to their prey as their 'Korean' girlfriends. Why? I don't refer to Kendra as my Canadian girlfriend. I might start doing.) and she took one look at my cock and ran out of the room screaming. I'm just a normal guy with a normal cock. Why is she scared of it? Why are us Westerners cursed with such gigantic penises? Yes, I've got herpes, and yes, I'm in the middle of an outbreak but that can't be why she was scared of it, can it? It has to be the size. What should I do?

Okay, I might have exaggerated a little but that was the general gist of it. There are too many people here that think like this. It gives us nice guys, who have never wanted a K-girl as we decided early on that each and every single one must be mentally ill, a bad name.

I had a conversation with a friend of mine about this. She is a Korean lady of around 30 who has spent a few years getting routinely attacked by these vicious hunters. She said that she is scared of Western men in Seoul because they are so clearly after sex and that she is only comfortable socialising with me because she knows I have a Western girlfriend and am not one of these 'yellow fever' sufferers. Kendra's noticed it as well. The men who come here are, with far too high a frequency, just a little bit strange. This is certainly not true of all. I have met some extremely nice people and I'm sure I will continue to do so. But these people who come here with this idea in mind, and insist on shouting around about how many 'K's they've knocked off'. I don't know, it just makes me feel a bit sick.

Why corner your market so specifically? If you're such a playboy, why not fuck everyone?? There are Pakistanis here, all kinds of South Asians in fact. There are Russian girls here and ladies from all the 'Stans. There are Japanese and Chinese girls, Mongol girls and girls from the Philippines. If you're such a socially capable hunk with a french baguette in your pants then why not go nuts? Fuck everybody!

Oh yeah...that's right...you can't. Because you are socially fucking inept.

Go home.


Where's My Hoverboard?

So, it's 2010. Twenty-ten? Two thousand and ten? Two-oh-one-oh? Ee chon ship? Who cares. It sounds bloody futuristic anyway. My life is passing me by.

So, anyway. Blah blah blah New Year's Resolutions blah. I have only two -
  • Quit smoking. (I sort of already did this but it has crept back into my drinking ritual and I enjoyed the moral high ground it afforded me when I wasn't smoking so I'm going to stop again. 
  • Write more.
Now, the second one is the important one because I enjoy writing. The problem is, I also enjoy Guitar Hero and I find that one is not conducive to the other. But need they be mutually exclusive? I can still write me a little suttin-suttin before throwing some shapes with my plastic Gibson, can't I?

Anyway, to this end, I have started a new blog. I know, I know, it's exciting. Try and keep your knickers on, girls. It's called Seoul Now and I will tell you no more about it as it is very much in it's infancy. Smithyblogs will still carry on but as there is no structure to this blog and no clear format to it, I thought I needed something different. With less swearing.

So, Seoul Now will be a weekly blog, posted on a Sunday and inspired by a magazine column I have been reading a lot of recently. Each week will have a key subject matter and I won't be swearing. That sort of fucking nonsense will be left to Smithyblogs where I will continue to spout off on all manner of subjects whilst making fun of the disabled.

A Happy New Year to you all,

Love, Smithy x