Thursday, October 16, 2008

Oy!

Hello all! It’s Mo, and I’m back due to an overwhelming demand of my return from some of our more faithful readers. Okay, that may be all in my head, but whatever, two people noticed (and commented) I hadn’t been contributing, and to me that represents 100% of the people who subscribe to our blog. As for my absence, well, I guess I just really didn’t have much at all to say, at least at the time, but a few things have happened that you may want to know about like . . .

The world is coming to an end (for some reason, word wants me to end this sentence with a question mark). Please don’t all run for the exits at once. As that blind wanderer in the music video for Black Hole Sun and many more seemingly crazy people throughout the history of the English language have more poetically put it: The End is Nigh. My declaration is not meant to place my personhood alongside those who society wished to deem non compos mentis, but instead to make you aware of the impending termination of the world as we know it . . . maybe. It seems the only people who can lead us out of these darkest of times are the great men and women of our nation’s Congress. I haven’t seen any meaningful images on Ghanaian television (most of their archive consists of George W. Bush’s photoshopped head atop what looks like Jesse Ventura’s body during a Summer Slam from ages ago provided to them by the US State Department) but I’m wiling to bet their newly mandated hero-capes look marvelous, especially Barbara Boxer’s! MEEOOOW! Anyway, I do know that they were going to pass a bailout plan, but it didn’t pass the first time around due to the absence of the demand for a time machine, the creation of which is paramount to fixing this dilemma. Since I receive news about two weeks too late, I’m sure that everything went swimmingly since I am still alive and this blog still exists, though someone should tell . . .

Bank of America, since they haven’t gotten the news that the world is still in one piece (physical if not monetarily) and Katie and I are still alive, and as such are still waiting for the ATM cards that were supposed to be in our hands so many yesterdays ago. We haven’t yet told many of you our circumstances, so please sit in for the first act of our play, tentatively titled Fuck You Bank of America. We went to BoA at the end of August to start a bank account with them so that we would have unfettered access to our money via an agreement they had with Barclay’s. This agreement allows for innumerable ATM-only withdrawals with no fees, both non-bank and exchange rate. We were given temporary cards and were told they would not expire until our permanent cards were activated, which would arrive in no less than 7 to 10 business days. Cool right? Well, when they said our cards would be valid until we activated our permanent ones, what they really meant was (the following is the actual fine print from the agreement we signed when we opened our account: “On the 30th day after the issuance of your temporary card, the day you will go shopping at one of the only supermarkets in Ghana and have an urgent need to access the funds you so willingly gave to our aegis, we will confiscate your card. When you call us to ask what exactly happened, we will disavow any and all information given to you by our Staten Island branch manager (though we will acknowledge her authentic demeanor by virtue of her pant suit) and come up with no meaningful explanation as to the whereabouts of your permanent cards and only say that they were mailed to the address given to us the day after you opened your account. To make this up to you, we will “EXPRESS MAIL” to you in Ghana a newly minted permanent card without explaining that the quoted term means “regular mail” and only seems important. We use it only so that you will leave our operators to the institution-wide “Minesweeper Challenge” that only happens every other half hour at BoA. Furthermore, when you realize this, we will put you on hold for an hour and then promise to FedEx your card to the US Embassy in Ghana. . . I think you get the idea so please sign below.” Apparently the Greatest Depression has left BoA either so drunk with power from buying Merril Lynch (is that the one with the bull?), or broke for the same reason. Either way, it’s evident that their new mascot should be the outwardly-facing bird, telling their customers what they can do with their time . . .

Which goes by so slow and so fast here. The daily things we do (run, eat, poop, etc.) are done at the same time and at the same pace since we arrived in bongo, lending a sense of a slow passage. Yet, when we look at the calendar we realize that we have been here nearly 1/5th of the total time we will spend in-country. Somewhere, off in the distance, someone is playing Tracy Chapman, who is unbelievably and surprisingly popular here, but I digress. Work on Katie’s project is going well, and we are just waiting for the dry season so that we may have more predictable travel accommodations when going out to the more remote boreholes. In the meantime, Katie is calibrating her gadgets and familiarizing herself with those that need not be calibrated so that when it’s time to shine she looks like a star and not a turd. I’m dong what I can to help, but since strength is not yet needed (which I have in spades, mind you), I sit prettily in the back, filing my nails and reading my books. And now, a picture.

5 comments:

Patrick said...

dear katie and mo (in no order of importance, by the way. and that does not mean the aforementioned order is in any way of non-importance).

It sounds like the rainy season is, well, rainy. But, have no fear, fenders will soon replace the fixed gear hub (or "fixie" wink (k)wink, nudge (k)nudge) crowd that seems to be so abundant here in austin. If I had to guess, the new rage might just be bar-end shifter, knobby tires and practical saddle bags. Did I mention fenders? You guys are so trendy. Smart, to boot!

p.j.s. ave.

davetrainink said...

Seems like things are going well for you guys. Rock on. I've been out of town constantly and reading your posts reminds me that I'm really just down the street from the house no matter what corner of Texas they send me too. Thanks. Love you guys.

Oh, by the way, front Stealth hub finally got here this week!!! Looks sexy. Just built it up today. Riding it tomorrow.

Take it easy guys.

Sarge said...

if you could have written that well when you were in high school, I wouldn't have had to wordsmith your college entrance essays. Glad you're both doing well. Sarge

tadpole said...

Mo, that's all well and good but let's hear from Katie every once in a while! It's good to hear from you.

songspell said...

Hey guys! I'm sorry BoA is treating you like that... hopefully you'll get your cards soon!

Stay safe. :)