June 25. Pleasures.

Seoul is a city of pleasures. I mean, it’s a brilliantly composed ouverture to heaven with all its incredible restaurants, comfortable private cinemas (DVD-bang), relaxing saunas, karaokebars, 24-hour-nightlife, well-kept parks, shining glass facades facing every street – and quiet Buddhist temple retreats.

I start resuscitating my hibernating writer side today, so blog entries will be less about what I did, and more what I did.

I am reading Plays because my friend Jean-Marie adviced me to do so. Today I am enthousiastic about Brecht’s “The Rise and Fall of Mahagonny” which has a very acceptable English translation made in 1960 for a planned staging by W.H. Auden and Chester Kallman. Now enjoy a few quotes from that play.

You’ve learned to mix your cocktails every way
You’ve seen the moonlight shining on the wall:
The bar is shut, the bar of Mandalay:
And why does nothing make sense at all?
You tell me, please, why nothing makes sense at all.

Clap your hands when a hurricane strikes:
Who cares for being immortal?
When a man can do just what he likes
Who’s afraid of the storm at his portal?

One means to eat all you are able;
Two, to change your loves about;
Three means the ring and gaming table;
Four, to drink until you pass out.
Moreover, better get this clear
That Don’ts are not permitted here.
Morover, better get it clear
That Don’ts are not permitted here!

Published by

Kamiel Choi

Dutch philosopher and poet, sometimes sharing thoughts on the internet.

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