Hawaiian Dance in Taichung

I took Billy to B&Q to buy some tiles for the wall in the computer room this morning. I want to reduce the echo in there so that I can make voice recordings. I found some small carpeted ones that I hope will work. I intend to spend the next week or so gluing them to the four walls in the room. If that doesn’t work, I may try the ceiling, too. If that still doesn’t work, I have no idea what to do.

It took us several hours and we got back home after lunchtime. Then, Billy and I began gluing the tiles to one of the walls in the computer room. A short time later, Shu Mei came in and said, “Do you want to go to the dance show with us?” Billy had told me that they went the day before, with President Li’s family. I said, “Didn’t you go last night?” She answered, “They have a different show tonight. They have a dance group from Brazil. I think it would be good if you went.” I really didn’t want to go, because I was in the middle of the tiling project. I told her that I would need a shower before going and she said, “We can wait.” Given the circumstances, the fact that she hadn’t spoken to me all week until this, I had no choice but to say, “Okay.” Honestly, I wanted to stay home and get as much of the tiling done as possible. I knew it had rained the night before and rain was expected again. Also, I’ve been to outdoor shows before here and it isn’t a pleasant experience for various reasons, reasons which I knew would be the same for this show. But again, I had no choice, given the situation.

One positive note about the show was the food before it. Outside of the open-air stadium, there were several food booths set up from Taichung restaurants, all of them foreign. All of the vend ors spoke English and their was a good variety of food, Mexican, German, and Greek. I had two burritos, while Shu Mei and the boys ate German sausages and nachos. Along with that, we drank strawberry and blueberry Slushies.

The experience of the show was actually worse than I had predicted it would be, though. The two MC’s actually took more time introducing the songs than the songs took themselves. We sat on wood-slat benches with no back support. Initially, there were few people. However, as the show progressed, the stadium became almost full. As Chinese people take baths just before bedtime, the body odor at that late hour was extremely potent. I almost threw up. We were in as good of a location as we could possible have had, but the stage was extremely far from the audience. It was so far away that we were forced to watch the show on the giant video screens, rather than the actual people who appeared very small on stage.

The first five numbers were traditional Chinese dancers, slow songs and slow dancing with no facial expressions. Things got a bit more exciting when the visiting dance group began. They weren’t from Brazil, though. They were a group from Hawaii. They were a house dance group from one of the hotels in Waikiki. There were two musicians/singers who invited everyone to their FREE show in Hawaii. Let me tell you, you get what you pay for in this world. Those two musicians sang worse than Sanjaya (from American Idol infamy) and the dancers, all five of them, danced worse than Lakisha (also from American Idol). The crowd “awed” a bit when the three female dancers shook their hips for a fast song, but most of the songs were slow and in Hawaiian.

Billy quickly became very bored and asked if we could walk around. I told Shu Mei that I was going to take him to the bathroom. She said to just have him “pee on the wall”, which is what she had Tyley do just minutes before. Because my butt was sore from the wood bench, and I wanted to walk around, I said I would take him up to the proper bathrooms. On the way up, I noticed a lot of boys were peeing on the wall, though. I wondered why they wouldn’t bring in some portable restrooms for shows like this. After returning to our seats, Tyley came over and wanted me to hold him, because he was tired.

Shu Mei could finally sense that we weren’t all into it, even though I had put on a smiley-face throughout and never uttered a negative word. She asked if I wanted to go and I, as usual, said, “Whatever you want to do.” Just then, there was a number which featured a fire dancer. She motioned to the stage and said, “Look Billy, look Tyley! Fire!” So, we had to stay through the three additional numbers that had that guy doing his fire dancing thing. You wouldn’t believe how out-of-shape this guy was. He had more flab hanging on him than I do. Even before the end of the first number, he was wheezing and sweating – and he hardly had moved. He basically just stood there and twirled about a stick that burned at both ends. That was what he did for the final two numbers, too. I thought he was going to have a heart attack by the end of the third drum-pounding number. He lay down and placed the stick on his extended feet. Then, he just stayed there, doing nothing. When the song ended, he got back up.

The crowd cheered, as if they just witnessed Moses parting the Red Sea. The only thought I had was that these people need to get out more. Obviously, they’re easily entertained. Perhaps I’ve just become jaded by having experienced a higher level of entertainment in my life. I know that is the case for humor. I don’t laugh at most jokes anymore, simply because I find them stupid. It takes a lot of intellectual structure for a joke to make me laugh. It is that way with all forms of entertainment. I don’t look down on people who are easily entertained by any means. In fact, I wish that I could be that way, too. But, I can’t. I’ve enjoyed those kinds of things in the past and now I just wish for something else. That’s all.

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