Thursday, December 10, 1998

One Week in Bangkok

Dear Kanestergrammers,

Well, I recieved some backlash about cancelling theKanestergrams, so here is another, continued in asomewhat different tradition than before.


My first week as the Information Officer for theJesuit Refugee Service Asia Pacific has been botheventful and then again uneventful. I spent the first few days staying at the office here and getting familiar with staff and colleagues, and I am nowstill in the midst of a hectic orientation program. Conversely, I really haven't done much in relation to my job due to the fact that I need to become more familiar with the work itself. But it will all panout in due course I am sure.

And to top it off, I have already had two days off during my first week of work because of Thai National Holidays. It was the King's birthday this weekend,so we had Monday off for that (it was also the opening ceremony for the Asian Games, hosted here inBangkok) and then we had Thursday off for a holiday I am not entirely sure about.

SO on Thursday, Myself and several Jesuit scholastics(Jesuit hopefuls who have yet to take their vows) went on a bit of a tour of Bangkok, visiting the reclining Bhudda at the Wat Pho temple, eating Chinese food in the Thai tradition, and then a visit to the Grand Palace of King Rama, where the emerald Bhudda rests and the King of Thailand used to reside. A long day that was tiring on the feet and legs(whine whine whine....)

Today, I join several different agencies in preparing for a Christmas party at the Immigration DetentionCenter (IDC) where those who enter Thailand illegally are sent before deportation or release. We will be wrapping presents and preparing gift baskets. It will be my first of many visits to the center, and I look forward to it.

I moved in to my "condominium" which is really just an oversized studio apartment. It came furnished,but still looks a little barren. I have an awesome view of the city from my balcony and even have some palm trees - one on the balcony and I brought one inside the apartment to give the place a little color and flavor. It is a neat place to be and is very close to the office.

And the office....messy, cluttered, but slowly being sorted through as I make sense of my new environment and the world around me.


I am not sure how many of you know or have heard, and my parents probably don't want me making a big deal about it, but the family is moving from Marseilles Illinois back to Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. My father took a new job with Miranda Homes in Imperial Pennsylvania and that will bring the family back to our roots in PA. I am particularly happy with that. It seems that everything will pan out for my family and I will be able to bring the base operations of Kanester Central back to my old stomping grounds in the future.

THE OTTAWA SCENE (That's Illinois, not Canada)

Well, I saw many of you during my home visit before traipsing off across the world, and it was good to remind me that Ottawa is a nice place to visit, but not to live at this point in my life. Even though the family is moving to Pennsylvania, I intend to visit often and keep up to date with those near and dear to me who share the alma mater (correct terminology?).

I sincerely hope to give the Ottawa Daily Times exclusive rights to publish articles I will submit before others will publish it, provided my boss allows and the editors of the Daily Times get in touch with me. So far my offers have gone unanswered, and I won't keep trying.


I heard that I made the Christmas tape with my infamous "Truffle Schuffle" and a new rendition of "Twelve Days of Christmas". I miss hanging out with you guys, both those I survived Roppongi with in Japan and those who I certainly escaped Itaewon with intact from Korea. Good times and great pictures,which I soon hope to litter my office with. Keep me up to date.


Well, the gang or the friends. Steep has just wrapped up his directing venture with some high school kids in "Bullshot Crummond" and it looks as if it went off without a hitch. I take personal pride in Steep - he does well and carries a drive and ambition (and a weird sort of relentless dedication) that I try to emulate at times. Keep it up Steepdogg! I hear that Julia Jorgenson might be moving or rumors to the sort. Rod Swearingen and Aaron Giger sent a reassuring e-mail to me that reinforces the fact that a friend is a friend, always, any where in the world. They're in Reno Nevada hanging.

Marty Marincic is getting along rather well in the theater and SIU scene. I understand some personal works written by Rich himself are going to be performed, and it strikes me as rather impressive. I am assuming Matt Wrobel is still on the up and up at Dartmouth. You would think that buds like Kanester and Wrobs would keep up a bit more, but Matt gets all busy singing and doping up some songs and such with the noted a capella group "Dodecaphonics". Those who were with Matt in OHS choir - can you really believe it - Matt is probably one of the most successful singers to come from Ottawa high school in recent years (minus Carrie Williams of course) and to think that I never knew he could sing, and he only joined choir halfway through the senior year! Wrobs- You Da Man!

The stripes to shirts crew (ex-military friends)

It was good to hang out with Roger Hunter and reminisce about the good life in Korea. A bit nostalgic, but Roger has done well for himself, moving in to a trendy and awesome townhouse and working as a production manager for Darshan studiosin Washington


Those coming to Bangkok End of December: Shon Smith and friend
End of January: Dan Day (D-Day)
Springtime: Dan Millbauer?

STAR WARS: The Phantom Menace

This section is dedicated to my only love in life -STAR WARS. You can get the latest on info for the movie from this section. Those who want it - I'll send you the Samuel Jackson Top Ten sayings in the new Star Wars prequel (He plays a jedi in the new movie.) Release Date: May 21st, 1999

There are several newsgroups and clubs on line. Youcan even join a group who will be standing in line for shifts for a month at the Mann's Village Theater to get tickets to Star Wars opening gala. Contact me for info.The trailer can be downloaded at

I'll provide more interesting things in the future. Well, I hope that the Kanestergram is a little bit better than previous ones, even if it is a little long. Thanks for taking the time to read it and share in it with me, and I will continue the tradition as long as people express interest.


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