Ran into Casanova from winter camps on my walk home. He, Hyung and Umma were hiking on the university ground. They'd apparently seen me coming from a ways off -- Umma was loitering off to the side, trying to be inconspicuous, and Hyung had Casanova by the collar from behind, pushing him down the sidewalk toward me, as he struggled a bit. I pulled my earphones out and said hello.

Cuddle cuddle. Boys cuddling. Don't think I'll ever get over the cuteness of it.

"Is that Mom, then?" I know a maternal watchful eye when I see one, even from a quiet distance.

"Yeah. Mom."

"Hi, Mom!" I waved. She looked sheepish and bowed. I bowed back.

Made a bit of small talk, mostly involving me asking questions, Casanova smiling and looking down, and Hyung enjoying it all immensely, holding his little brother firmly in place in front of me.

Last week, as I was walking to the subway, I ran into another student with his mom. This mother wasn't shy at all and practically chased me down the sidewalk to announce that her son was one of my students.

Dunno what the moms make of me, but they seem to think I'm alright.

Today, Mr. C -- remember Mr. C? The one who said he'd learn English for me? -- well. Today, Mr. C came in to say goodbye. After a good thirty minutes or so of conspicuously avoided eye contact, he seemed to have decided he wasn't having anymore of it. Came over and rested his arms on the ledge of my cubicle, leaned way over. And, in spite of myself, as soon as I turned my eyes up, I know they turned on. I'm not good at casually glancing at people -- a real all-or-nothing situation, with the eye contact. And once I looked him square in the face, immediately completely engaged, I could see all of the nervousness and tension drain from it.

He had prepared the most lovely and grammatically perfect paragraph in English. He's going very far away -- four or five hours by bus. Back to his hometown. And, while he is happy to be going home, he is very sad that we won't be friends.

Titters started all over the office, seeing the two of us, heads together and whispering quietly in English. Fuck 'em.

He lingered for a while, and we just sort of looked at each other.

And I don't want to talk about it, anymore than that. You can kick yourself in the head all you want, but those who speak English speak English, those who speak Korean speak Korean, and those who do not speak one or the other.... well.

And now, to change the subject, and actually to drop it for good, a few more photos:

Paris, shoes in Paris.


The lovely Iva.


MikejGrey said...

In the immortal words of Nas, "Life's a bitch and then you die. You never know when you're gonna go."



I'm no Picasso said...

Thought we agree we weren't going to wear that word out?

That's already like, four times in one day.

Nas. What a legend.

MikejGrey said...

This one goes out to my crew in New York.

Yeah. He was anyway.

No more c-heads. I used my quota for the next four months.

I have 11 pages of crap for the first draft of my story. It's nearly crappily finished

I'm no Picasso said...

11205, bitches.

No more C-heads. If only you meant cuntheads, and if only you meant in real life.

Well I'd like to crapily read it, at some point, if you don't give a crap.

At least you're writing crap. Crap is better than nothing. At least so long as it isn't being published in The New Yorker.

MikejGrey said...

Now that John Updike is dead, maybe I can take his place at the New Yorker. At least it would be well paying crap. And then the Buffalo beast can make fun of me right before I die.

You can crappily read it as soon as I whip it into crappy shape.