Archive for March, 2007


Saturday, March 17th, 2007

did i mention that this country has terrible body odor? in my opinion, it makes Liberia uninhabitable.

any culture that doesn’t use deodorant will smell pretty bad. now, couple that with a country that has no showers, and rarely bathes. even that might be fine, if it weren’t also one of the hottest places on Earth!

everyone smells disgusting, but the truly horrible part is that i’m almost getting used to it.

AFRICA Update. Day 12 of 29.

Friday, March 16th, 2007

I’m slowly figuring out this Survival of the Fittest thing. no, i don’t mean Fittest in the weight loss way. on the contrary, i’ve settled into a very nice eating routine here, consisting of American-ish food, consumed three times a day at The Royal Hotel.
i alternately eat pizza and hamburgers for lunch and dinner. for breakfast, i have coffee, hash browns, and a water with Airborne (that little immune system helper pill made famous by the stupid low-budget commercials starring C-celebrities from The Donna Reed Show or whatever, as they are pretending to be sneezing all over each other while sitting on an airplane).

i’m killing ants before they kill me. i’m numb to the slight sting of Deet, as i spray it on my entire body thrice daily. i keep the mosquito net tucked in all night. i can draw water from a well and take a bucket shower with moderate efficiency.
i still rub on the sunblock every day, but i do it discreetly, so i don’t look like a Minnesotan on vacation at Disneyland.

i ignore the people who ask me for money, or try to sell me something they carved.
i don’t buy cow meat from vendors pushing dirty little carts down the street.
i hand sanitize religiously.

i’ve found an internet connection that works.
i created little tasks to keep busy. currently, i’m reclaiming myspace by deleting acquaintances. sort of like breaking up, i guess. it’s a little sad but i’ve got to get over it. i never talk to these people. i’ve become a friend packrat, and it’s time to do my spring cleaning. and there’s no better place to do it than here in Africa, remotely, where i know i won’t run into them on the street.

enough said. back to the myspace pruning.

the heat is on

Tuesday, March 13th, 2007

although terribly monotonous, i sort of like that this weather is always the same. here, no one wakes up and turns on the equivalent of NY1 to check the temperature glowing in the bottom corner of the screen. they just wake up, put on a t-shirt, and know that it will be another f–king hot, dusty day in Africa.

where are my athletes at?

Tuesday, March 13th, 2007

Any TV marathon i’ve ever seen (i mean a Running Marathon, not back-to-back episodes of Eight is Enough) has been won by a very tall, skinny African.
i guess i expected to see more people running in these streets.

Toto Lied

Monday, March 12th, 2007

I wish I could think of more people to blame, but I guess I can only blame myself.
What was I thinking? Me, the guy who tries to take two warm showers per day. The one who bitched about Upstate NY being too wildernessy. I don’t stay in homeless shelters for fun. I don’t fly in things that aren’t jumbo jets. I don’t spend my nights camping beneath the stars. And I definitely do not like being bitten by tiny bugs (even when they aren’t malaria-stricken). Sure, I don’t like to talk on the phone or stand in line at the post office, but that doesn’t mean I want to spend a month of my life in a country that has neither.

Madonna thought it was a good place to get a baby.
Angelina thought it was a good place to have a baby.
And Toto wrote that song.

They made Africa sound so glamorous, and totally hummable.
Because of their blatant deceit, I am now forced to expose the truth about This Land in three verses (sorry, no chorus):

No Electricity.
No Internet.
No Water.

Maybe you’re saying to yourself, “that’s not a very good song. I can’t hum it. I can’t sing it.” Well, it might not be good as a song, but it’s even worse as a birthday/vacation.

Oh, and the other truth that I was unable to work into that jam… It’s so hard to stay in touch with anyone in a place like this.
And even as I typed that last sentence, I found a new reason to dislike Liberia. Forgive me, as I’m about to nerd this all up. Back where I said “it’s so hard to stay in touch with anyone in a place like this”, I had intended to hyperlink the word “anyone” (as I didn’t really mean Anyone, I meant Someone), but I was unable to hyperlink due to this funky internet connection. Sorry to clutter this all up with what should have been the behind-the-scenes details. Anyway, if you still care, you can physically type into your browser and delight in the results.

you gotta have dreams

Sunday, March 11th, 2007

i just had a dream about Andy Richter. we were standing around bullshitting, at a craft service table. he was complaining about trying to live on only a couple million dollars a year, now that his career has slowed down a little. i, of couse, consoled him. i promised that he would soon find another “star vehicle” and his career would return to its former glory.

anyway, i quite dislike Africa, where there is no television outside of my dreams. i awoke to slap bugs off my skin.

Driving in Liberia

Tuesday, March 6th, 2007

imagine a nation full of traffic merging and weaving like they’re leaving the stadium parking lot after a Dodger game…


Friday, March 2nd, 2007

Some woman, as she was leaving the bar, walked over and asked “did she give you my number?”
I replied with a lie, “she tried to, but she couldn’t remember it. She thought there was an 8. And she was sure there was a 1.”
Girl interrupted with, “do you have a pen?”.
Me, “no. but I have a straw and a napkin. are you MacGuyver?”
Me, “wait, do you have a parakeet and a bit of twine?”
Her, “no”
Me, “also, I’m in a serious, committed, long-term relationship. But do you want to go to my website,”
Her, “no”.