Friday, 9 March 2012

40

So, I turned 40 years old recently. Not sure how I feel about that. I don't look 40. I don't feel 40. I certainly don't act 40. The year leading up to 40 was pretty fucked. So have the weeks following. I've been relating a lot to Louie C.K. I'm 40, a failed father and recent divorcee. I live in a foreign country because I'm too lazy to make an actual living in my own country and I drink far too much. Am I happy? Hell, no. Am I depressed? Not really. Do I care? Hmmm... maybe a little.

When the wife left, it was a little shocking to say the least. I was bewildered. I spent weeks analyzing what went wrong. I paced. I fretted. I shaved my head. Just before she left, I had just got screwed over by my last job teaching English. I was stressed out about that first, when I got bombed by my wife. I was incapable of finding a new job, I was gutted. I would wake up at 6 pm, eat, watch TV and go to the bar at about 2 am. I did that for months. I was awake for 16 hours a "day" like every one else, but I spent most of it awake at night, sitting at the bar, drinking beer and Jagger.  On the odd occasion I would find a sympathetic shoulder to cry on and usually take them home. These pathetic attempts at intimacy actually did me some good. My confidence found a new source. I realized that women still found me attractive as a 40 year old deadbeat alcoholic divorcee dad. I wasn't the worst one off. I once lived on the streets with no shoes. I met a guy with no feet. I took his shoes.

I'm often asked "If you hate Korea so much, why don't you just leave?" My answer is actually a couple reasons. First off, I'm white in Asia. I'm practically a god here. I just have to show up to an interview and I have the job. I could be wearing a dirty t-shirt and jeans, stinking of gin, incoherently drunk, and still get the job. Simply because I'm white, have blue eyes and speak English. I just cancelled an interview and the recruiter was shocked because I didn't want the job. She couldn't understand why I didn't want to teach English at 7:30 in the morning 2 days a week for $50 an hour. First, I usually go to bed at about 6 am, so I'm not getting up an hour later to teach. Second, for $50 an hour 2x a week, that only works out to about $400 a month, which barely covers my rent. In my current job, which is just design and editing, I don't even have to get out of bed. I just turn on the computer and people pay me the same rate per hour. I keep my own hours and it's more than 2 days a week. I know I'm being lazy and it's a first world problem, but shit-- I'm 40 and worked long and hard enough that I should be able to dictate what I do. I did what my wife told me to do for 6 years and where did that get me?

Now, before you get all defensive and bombard me with comments, hear me out. I didn't create this environment. The Korean government did. Parents crazy about education did this. They have created such a situation in their craziness, they have had to hire foreign workers to actually do all the work that needs doing, to run the country. Their children are too precious to work in a factory or clean up the garbage they themselves have thrown all over the street because of a lack of garbage cans. And then, they complain about the bad quality of foreigners, that again, THEY have let into the country. So, if you are a Korean and are reading this, stop blaming the foreigner. You did this to yourself by refusing to do 3D jobs, and getting so crazy about education that children are no longer allowed to be children and they study 16 hours a day learning shit they will never use and spending a fortune on it. As long as you're willing to pay me money, I'm going to take it. Thank you very much, now fuck off.

Second, because my wife left me with no contact for over a year, I've had to do everything myself. I have 9 years of my life here. It's a lot of baggage to get rid of. I have money tied up in my house. TVs, furniture, a dog. Since, when I leave, I'll be going by plane as there is no other way to get out of the country, I have to get rid of everything, get all my money back and find a home for my dog. No easy feat in a country that can't speak English, no matter how much money they spend learning it.

9 Years?!? How come you can't speak Korean? I can understand some of it, but I can't speak it because every time I try, Koreans laugh at me. They don't want to teach me Korean because they are too busy trying to get me to teach them English. My "ex"-wife spoke English all the time and whenever I needed to use Korean, she would translate for me. There was no need for me to learn Korean. There is now, but now I'm trying to get the hell out of here... where am I going to use Korean once I've gone? What's the point?

In addition to my laziness because I have it so easy, and my excessive baggage, I also have immigration problems due to getting drunk and fighting too much due to my marriage collapsing. The government won't let me leave. I'm under investigation for marriage fraud and I have to go to court and pay my fines. I literally couldn't leave the country if I tried. And I have tried on New Year's with three Aussie chicks going to New York...

So if this blog finds it's way to the netizens of Korea, fuck off. Vilify me all you want. You created the situation, and I took advantage of it. Some of my issues are my own problems, no one is perfect, but look in the mirror before you kiss my white ass. Eventually I can and will leave, but you will still be stuck in this bullshit country.

Speaking of leaving, since I am 40, still look in my early 30s and have a job that just requires the internet, my mid-life crisis solution has been to travel around the world or just to keep going until I'm too old or too bored. I have enough money from my shit here and the housing deposit to keep going without a job for a couple of months. I have a skill set (computers and graphics) that allow me to find a job pretty easily anywhere in the world so I can make money if I need it. And when I was younger, I did a lot of hitchhiking, so I know how easy it is to travel cheaply.

I haven't determined when I'm leaving, and I really can't because I don't know when all my legal issues will be dealt with. But as soon as I can deal with that and my wife, fear not fellow Korean netizens, I am out of here. Forever. Thank god.

Another new thing I have recently started due to my mid-life crisis, is stand-up comedy. I've gone to a couple of open mics and the response has been good so far. So, if you're in the Seoul area, and you hear of an open mic comedy, check it out, you may just see me.