Monday, December 05, 2005

Lost in Translation

So, I went to the Christmas party and so starts the maximum hilarity... I love my husband, but sometimes I just want to smack him around. The two of us live in a marriage filled with half-truths and things we just never tell or forget to tell the other one...this doesn't disclude pertinent, useful information. This mostly comes from his side of things, and this new job and their Christmas party were not left out of this loop of mumbles. Hubby didn't bother to mention to me that the new company he works for is Japanese owned and that very nearly every person he works with is Japanese and barely speaks English. He also didn't mention to me that in the week he has worked for them he has become a master in the art of speaking broken English and making hand gestures to communicate with them. I suppose it is possible that he told me they were Japanese and that I just wasn't paying attention, as this is also something we do, not paying attention to each other when we should. Nonetheless, I wasn't really prepared for the festivities we walked into.

I suppose I should start by saying that Hubby called me at 2 pm freaking out because he was stuck at the customer they'd sent him to because some part hadn't shown up yet. He requested that I get ready, hop in my car and meet him on the freeway to save us some time because we live so far off the freeway and he was already two hours west of out house. This conversation ended with him calling me a bitch and hanging up on me for what seemed to be no apparently good reason and thus triggered in me a rage that can only be compared to a natural disaster (It doesn't matter which type, just pick one and imagine). I proceed to get ready with the dogs running around and trying not to get their hair all over me and then I head out to the garage to attempt to free my car, which was locked in their to keep it from getting hail damaged when we returned from our Thanksgiving trip to OH. I attempted to do this and failed miserably, hitting my passenger side mirror on one of the garage doors twice. I then proceeded to get out of the truck, kicked the tire, hurting my foot and then decided to take a break. I came into the house, smoked some cigarettes and went back out to try again, only to find that one of the neighbors friends had parked his large Dodge truck in my driveway leaving me no room to get out even if the damn car did get freed from the garage. I returned to my seat on the couch and smoked some more hoping and praying I wouldn't have an anuerysm. Finally, the truck was moved and instead of attempting to get the car out of the garage myself again, I called up Shortleash across the street and had him come over. It took him like two seconds to get it out and then the mockery started because I had cried for help and this is very incharacteristic of me. Not to mention the fact that he and I are having a very strange relationship lately with the addition of his Zoloft. So, the car was freed, and hubby called to tell me he was like twenty minutes from where we were meeting so I gathered my stuff for overnight, threw it in the back of the SUV and locked up the house. Took my key over to Shortleash so he could mind the dogs in my absence and damned near killed myself on the ice on his front porch. I lived and got into the car, driving with all my paranoia of the car just randomly exploding while I'm driving it to where I was meeting hubby. Hubby got there, tossed his stuff in the truck and we raced to the banquet hall in IL.

We walked in ten minutes late to one of the Americans giving a speech or something like that and then pointing out the fact that hubby and I had just walked in and that hubby had only been there a week and had already worked seventy hours. We also learned that they were holding dinner, waiting for us since apparently hubby is their new favorite person. We were then seated with other Americans that hubby is apparently familiar with, ate some really awesome food from the giant buffet they had and were regailed with the story of how none of the Americans can keep track of the Japanese people's names, especially the new twenty five year old spindle guy who is so aptly referred to by all Americans at the company as 'The Spindle Guy'. It was around this time that I found my breasts were not really wanting to stay in my shirt. It was a size small cami, which was purchased due to the not-so apparent at the time, weight loss I've seemingly succumbed to again. So I had to keep re-adjusting the thing to keep covered and not make a scene. Also, everyone was getting plastered because it was open bar all night. I did not drink due to my having taken enough cold medicationto kill a camel just to quell the nose-blowing. After dinner, there was more hilarious story-telling. Apparently hubby has been telling his new co-workers how anti-children I am and had actually told them if I had children I would leave them at the bus station. This, I was so unaware of, I nearly died of both laughter and embarassment in front of everyone. Hubby also paraded me around to meet everyone...not that it did much good. I'm not all up on the hand gestures to get a point across and I don't have the brain capacity to revert back and forth from English to broken English. Anyway, we continue on.

Hubby was informed that since he is the newest employee, he has to do karaoke when we relocate to the karaoke bar owned by his boss' adorable and seemingly harmless, little wife. This karoke outting was also company subsidized (meaning more free drinks and possibly whores). This was about the time that I started to realize this was going to be a far less than ordinary night. So, all the American people, of which there are six total (This includes myself and another wife and another non-employee pizza delivery boy named Anthony who was this guy Nick's date for the evening - make a mental note that these two boys are complete jackasses) pile into two cars and head for said Japanese karaoke bar.

First off, take note that this place is in a strip mall. Don't ask me where exactly since I had already taken enough cold medication to kill a camel. We park, trudge to the door through the snow and go in. The others had been there before, but I was a little put off by the smell of fish and water damage. It took a little bit of time to adjust to the smell. There were many Japanese people there, and really it just looked like what I imagined a Japanese karaoke bar would look like. We sit down with the others at a grouping of tables reserved specifically for us and settle in. Hubby did his required karaoke and every time his boss sang we all watched intently and clapped when it was over. It also took a bit to get used to the fact that we weren't allowed to poor our own drinks, which is apparently a Japanese thing. A waitress dropped and ashtray and burned her self cause there was still a burning cigarette in it. She started freaking out and bowing and apologizing. I had no idea what to say about this or what to do other than to tell her not to worry about it. It didn't seem to help though. I think maybe she thought they would take her out back and whip her or something. Who knows.

It was about this time that a whole new group of scantily scad girls emerged from the back of the bar and started hanging all over the men. Our little group turned into The Scooby Gang and tried to solve the mystery of the Japanese Karaoke bar turned whorehouse. Hubby's boss actually disappeared with one of these ladies and was gone for about twenty minutes after which he returned to the table and promptly fell asleep. This same girl was then seen a little later in the bar with her legs wrapped around another man's neck. So, as far as we can tell, this is actually a Japanese whorehouse, which incidentally has Japanese karaoke! I immediately demanded that hubby give me his TREO and I started snapping pictures for evidence since I was sure the other two legs of the tripod would never believe any of this strange new fun.

[The pictures are really crappy cause they were taken with the TREO phone thing.]

This is hubby's boss doing the karoke. This is the one that went off and came back to the table and passed out...until it was his turn to sing again. He insisted on running up on stage every time someone was singing and putting the santa hats on their head.

This is hubby swigging Japanese beer by force. He kept ordering MGD, but they kept bringing him their beer. He was drunk already, so I don't think he noticed. One of the whores brought it for him when he was in the bathroom.
This is hubby talking drunken business with his other boss (This is the one who's wife owns the bar). He is also the tallest Asian I've ever seen. He's like seven feet tall and spent the night drinking saki and energy drink. This was a combo that kept me quite amused.
This is hubby and another one of the Americans, The Parts Guy. They were singing Bon Jovi's Dead or Alive, when the boss dropped the santa hats on their heads. They spent the night singing together as some sort of support system.
This is the strange array of snacks on the table. It was some kind of fake french fry like things, Hershey's miniatures (Krackle & Mr. Goodbar), Raisinettes, and some cheesey things. I think this is the Japanese's answer to bowls of peanuts and popcorn. The idiot boys I was put in charge of kept burning this stuff in the gel candles on the table...that is until the tequila shots started and it was much cooler to squeeze lime wedges on the candles and eat away the gel with the acid.

This is what came to be known as 'The Whore Stool'. All the trampy girl showed up with these stools and set up shop whoever they wanted to. The whore that brought hubby the Japanese beer decided she was gonna take up residence next to him...possibly a gift from his new bosses? Regardless, I gave her the evil eye until she went away. She did come back later to retrieve her stool a little later.
This is a portion of what became The Scooby Gang discussing the fact that we were possibly in a whorehouse when none of the Japanese people were looking. All commentary was done on the down-low due to the fact that the bar was owned by a boss' wife. We were trying to not offend the people in charge of the paychecks and employment. Although there was a lot more commentary going on down on my end of the table seeing as how I was sitting with two very drunk idiot boys and another wife.
We finally got the hell out of there around two and headed to the hotel. We got to the suite hubby had gotten and he decided he needed to have a pizza delivered and we joked about the whole weirdness of the night.

Here's what I learned...
-The Japanese are nuts and they love saki (This was the only word I could understand that one Japanese man repeatedly said...and he was drunk).
-I now have to adjust to another new culture.
-And finally, when someone says Japanese Karaoke Bar, they really mean whorehouse!


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