There comes a point when everyone has been in China (or wherever you spend most of your days in disillusion) that you feel happiness. And then there are those times that you may recall when you felt very sad, depressed even. But let us not forget the most frequent and thought provoking of all memories – the ones where you think back and wonder oh yea.. how did that ever come to rest? What was the end result? And if you’re lucky the answer is not.. ‘That’s what caused me to be a hobo.’ Well, that’s not even bad.. compared to say ‘oh yea, that’s when I travelled down the road to complete institutionalized insanity; verifiable in everyway.’ Or perhaps ‘that’s when I learned breathing is a bad idea.’ Because both of these final results to a situation could be .. painful to say the least.
No no, you might think I’m talking about language barriers, but this is above and beyond simple language / communication. How can I put this… imagine.. .. hrm.. okay Imagine you had friends, right.. so you have some friends.. well even just one that’s okay.. that’s enough for this demo.
Now imagine your friend.. let’s call him Jack.. yes .. k so Jack is a good guy, right .. he is honest, plays volleyball, doesn’t wear short shorts.. and had a pretty good sense of humor(likes to sing the Spam song or something..) Anyway, for years or at least a .. whatever you think is a long period of time.. he’s trustworthy.. and will set you straight if you’re barking up the wrong street, and in this ever-changing world in which we live in (thanks PM and wings) he can explain to you what’s going on. It’s all sparkling and great. And if you are a woman and you happen to have sex with him.. maybe it’s even better? or a man.. I don’t know Jack so.. heheh I don’t know Jack.. really.. anyway. You get the idea.. it’s all ice cubes and rosé wine and who needs glasses! But…… you know.. there’s always pesky bumps along the golden road. And you start to realize after .. 3 months or.. whatever you consider your breaking point/tolerance.. (5 minutes.. years.. whatever) that you see your friend less than you see the back of your head. You say ‘Hey Jack.. dude what’s up with that?’ The reply might be something like this: "Advertising, answering machine messages, restaurant, interior decorating, business, more money, I need to sleep.’ Whatever your compadre’s occupation maybe.. you get the idea. Fair enough, I’d be tired teaching chimps, raisins, and bugle boys for 20 hours a day as well. But.. like I say.. back to your own personal breaking point .. e.g. 3 months… you start to think .. hey.. uh.. if this never changes.. I will never see you.. and I’ll be forced to cover the mortgage all by my lonesome for that house that I am going to design, build and furnish all by myself sometime in the future. Not to mention the days I’ll spend trying to get you to pay child support for your abandoned children.. which will surely follow. And that’s not cool. So you say ‘hey Jack, this isn’t cool.’ … Maybe adding ‘I don’t get it, do you still want to be friends/talk to me/see me/look at me?’ Now, what if Jack suddenly.. despite all those times he had so candidly told you anything and everything…. didn’t say a thing. ?
Then my friend, you would know what ‘ting bu dong’ really means. And.. probably start singing a Czech song ‘Voda ziva’ by some girl named Aneta to ease your pain.
c’est la vie.