Monday, May 06, 2002

I had quite a full and varied Saturday. After a lovely brunch at Very Very Good Bistro with Linda and Eugenio, we went to FNAC, where Linda gave me a crash course in salsa, merengue, and ska music. One of the best ways to learn something is to be guided by someone who is very knowledgeable and can point out the best examples and describe the differences between them.

Afterwards, we went to their tailor. Lately, I have been hear a lot about custom-made clothes. My interest was piqued when the Asian Wall Street Journal ran a feature story on custom manufacturers in Hong Kong. Then, Tom mentioned his bespoke shirts. Later, while helping Wayne move, I learned that many of his suits were tailored in Taiwan. Linda and Eugenio are planning on getting essential career items done before they leave Taiwan, and invited me to go along. The tailor has a good track record and gives great deals to the two because of all the business Eugenio has brought them (the Latin American diplomatic community in Taiwan goes there because of Eugenio?s recommendation).

While advising Linda on colors and cuts, I, too, succumbed to the lure of well-fitting clothes. I am getting an Egyptian cotton white shirt made, with French-cuffs, covered buttons, and a monogram. And all this for NT$800--about what I paid for a shirt at the J. Crew outlet last year. I also learned I could get a suit made for about NT$10,000. There is no way one could get a custom-made suit for less than US$300 in the U.S. I'm thrilled.

Later, Don and I went to a party that I had heard about from a person that I met on Thursday. Upon arrival, we discovered that we were the only straight people at the party. The party was like any other party, although I suspect a woman was trying to hit on me--definitely a first-time experience. I found the experience interesting and amusing, and also distressing--not because I am homophobic--but because regardless of whether the interested party is male or female, there are responsibilities and courtesies that should be observed when one is not able to reciprocate to the overture.

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