Photo Outrage
Jim and I were in the newest part of Taipei, the area around Taipei 101 - the tallest building in the world. The district there is full of bottle clubs, beautiful people, Hermes and Chanel stores... and THIS.


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Stray Observations
--I got charged for a plastic bag at a convenience store. I desperately needed it. But plastic bags are going to cost you out here, the Taiwanese are very earth-conscious.

--Someone blatantly cut in front of me in line at Starbucks. I forgot my brother Roger's cardinal rule. "This is Asia. There is no concept of a line."

--So this hospital is all kinds of purgatory-type places in one big building. There's the whole hospital-as-purgatory idea in the most obvious sense, since some people here are actually waiting to die, but there's more.

a.) The food court. I've always felt like food courts kind of sucked, but I don't really know why. While the food selections have been wonderful, being in the basement of the hospital to eat every meal is strange.

b.) There's this scary mega-waiting room where every family member whose loved one is in surgery waits together in rows of uncomfortable looking chairs. We're talking at least a hundred family members sitting idly in perfect rows, under a marquee with updates on the status of the patients --"in surgery", "surgery completed" -- and the time they first went under the knife. It is seriously like a more-depressing version of the DMV. Here's the HIPPA-breaking marquee:

-- We're having a lot of fun out here despite the strangeness of the hospital surroundings. Spending a lot of quality family time together before the surgery, which happens tomorrow morning.
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Back in Taipei
My half a year in Taipei back in 2002 was such a whirlwind, surreal time that those of us who became friends here call it "The Vortex". I haven't been back in five years, and a tumor the size of a banana that doctors found in my mom's abdomen has called me back. I am living in a hospital as we await her Wednesday surgery. Everyone's in good spirits, it's likely not malignant.

Living in the hospital is not so bad. I have my own couch to sleep on and a private shower. This would be a hotel if the rooms were nicer and I didn't share elevators with people connected to IVs. In the basement is a food court, complete with all the comforts of home - Burger King, 7-11 and Starbucks (ridiculously expensive on all parts of the globe).

The hospital is just north of Taipei, nestled in the mountains. I made the mistake of trying to run up a steep slope as part of a morning job. My lack of cardiovascular training was clear when the old ladies with canes passed me by.

I'll try to post some pictures soon, but the wireless connection in the hospital is pretty cranky. h
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Snippet from Stiles: Losing Edition
Me: I wouldn't want to be Chase Daniel this morning.
Him: Why?
Me: Uh, devastating loss, he threw a few interceptions, etc.
Him: He's probably got like three chicks in his bed. I guarantee he's got at least one chick in his bed, a couple might have fallen off on the floor or something.
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The Evil Mainstream Media Needs A Hug
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How About This for Outrageous
In another installment of OUTRAGE: Petty annoyances that are an absolute OUTRAGE, I present to you a store near my station.

Does there really need to be an entire store of fancy plants made of silk? Who are we kidding? Frivolous stores that sell useless crap. OUTRAGE.
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Lance Without Pants
Since this is Lance's hometown, we have to see/hear from/run into/interview him every few weeks or so. The other day he stopped by our station to do a satellite interview wearing a only the top part of his suit.

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Some Things Never Change
I found an old post from July 2003 on my xanga site (that was 67 Degrees 2.0, this version on blogger is 4.0). What I thought was kind of hilarious is the whole "sign of the times" quality to the posts, like this one...
Things that are not cool this week: My feminazi summer class, "where being heterosexual is socially conditioned, not a biological outcome." Too many vodka and Sprite's in St. Louis. Creed being overplayed, as usual, on the radio.
OK I guess the vodka part hasn't changed. If anyone is curious about the mention of the xanga site, I actually started blogging in 2000, back when these were called web journals. That original "blog" was hosted on livejournal. Then I got into trouble when my coworkers at the Taipei Times found it and started an office pool over which male I mentioned having a crush on on the blog. Nightmare. I moved to xanga, then to blogger, and this has been home for awhile now.
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