Friday, September 18, 2009

Under the bridge

I didn’t want to tell you this because it probably is a low point of my life but here it goes…

The week after I came back fom Canada, I went out with some people and we went to 2 or 3 bars in Sendai. We were quite the group and I’m usually never the last one to leave because I have to take the stupid last train. But that night, everyone left before me, a good 90 minutes before the last train. So I stayed at the standing bar. There was a good crowd, some ghetto ass folk I never met before so I said ‘Fuck It’ I’m staying’. Ernie, the owner of a bar in Sendai (Aptly named Ernie’s bar) was doing a good job of convincing me to miss the last train and continue partying. But, as I do 90% of the time, I came to my senses and decided to run and catch the last train.

I got a seat on that train, which is quite the feat, because it’s usually full. 5 stations to my station, 18 minutes. I tried reading my book, but I was quite drunk and I always hated reading on moving things (Ok, I was drunk). So I closed my eyes and fell asleep. I woke up a minute later and decided to put an alarm on my phone in case I fell asleep again. Closed my eyes only to we woken up by a train driver in an empty train at the end of the line. This being the last train, I quickly realized that I was in trouble. I was in a town called Shiroishi, often called Shiroshitty. It would cost me a good 150$ and up to go home by taxi. So I did the only thing a person like me can do when they get stuck in a situation like this: I stole a bike. It took me a long time but I finally found a bike that was unlocked. I rode around and discovered the darkest corners of Shiroishi, testing this new bike to see if it could survive the long ride home (about 2 hours, on a good bike). When I realized that this bike wasn’t locked for a good reason (It was as shitty as Shiroshitty), I decided I would shift my priorities. I had to spend the night somewhere horizontal. I looked for a love hotel: None. Not even a bench. Not even a park. So when I crossed the bridge I came to the conclusion that for a GHETTO event, I might as well sleep like a ghetto boy: Under the bridge.

I slept on the sidewalk, under the bridge. For an hour. Then I laughed for an hour, thinking my mom would be proud. Then I rode the shitty bike for an hour. Then I spent 40 minutes in a convenience store because it was cold outside. And then it was time for the first train. The moral of this story?
A moral? What do I look like? Hans-Christian Andersen? Just don’t fall asleep on the train like an idiot.

Yours truly, the village idiot

ps: I returned the bike… but in a different place. Beware. You never know where Montreal-North ghetto boys might be walking.

Friday, September 4, 2009


It is in my nature to be interested by freak natural phenomenon. Probably because of my university background and the interest I’ve always had for anything remotely resembling a natural disaster. I remember freaking my friends out when I told them I couldn’t wait for my first earthquake. Just when they thought I couldn’t be stranger, I go and tell them I would enjoy having survive to a ‘Big One’. One where I could help with the rescue of my poor neighbors trapped under the rubble. And then they would give me the keys to the city, and then I would go on the Today show and marry Carmen Electra. You know what I’m talking about, right?

Anyways, we are indeed in typhoon season now and the typhoon number 11 (Goldorak or Morrdakk or some stupid name) promised to be a big one. The TV people kept talking about it, my teachers were talking about it. I started to get pretty excited!

‘Man, a typhoon! And they say it will come in around Sendai… And I live near the coast! Yes!!!’

My excitement only got better when I got an e-mail from the Canadian embassy telling me to be careful, to stay away from coastlines and to expect pouring rain and high winds and to watch out for landslides… YEAH! Kickass, a landslide! I wasn’t asking for so much!

It started raining at like 2 pm. When I left school at 5, they told me to be careful and that they might call me if the typhoon makes too much damage and that I might have to come in later than usual.

‘My oh my!! This all sounds like a great time… I can’t wait!’

So I told my friends I’d be on my balcony looking at the spectacle, waiting for the disaster to happen! Well at 10 pm I got bored, it was just steady raining since the afternoon. I went to bed and woke up at every hour, on the hour to maybe witness the end of the world. At 2 am, it wasn’t even raining no more. What a load of bullshit. Woke up at 6, everything was… normal. I went to school under the sun and asked my teacher (Mr. Shoji):

‘Hey, what the hell happened with that typhoon?’

His answer:

‘It went away’

AWAY???!!! What the fuck man? It’s not a stray cat. It’s not a cold sore. It doesn’t just GO AWAY!

‘It flew away’, he repeated.

Well I’ll be damned, I guess that in Japan, a typhoon is just a weird bird or something. After the FIASCO that was the solar eclipse, I get screwed over with a typhoon now. Bring on the earthquakes, because last time I checked, I still wasn’t married to Carmen Electra.