Beyond the Blog – An Idiot’s Tale
If you can take the bad language or dodgy opinions, one of the most entertaining K-blogs, if not blogs per-se, is An Idiot’s Tale. The shit floating in bogland is extensive and finding material which actually grips you, and Mr Wonderful grabs you by the bollocks, is rare. An Idiot’s Tale definitely meets my criteria as a writer and has an ability to say in a sentence something I might drag out to a paragraph. Even though I don’t agree with all his comments or particularly like the things he writes, I love the way he says them. And unlike other writers he isn’t afraid to be outspoken or controversial, which may of course be part of his plan but in doing so he provides a refreshing change.
Too many blogs are simply badly written travel diaries, often written for mummy and daddy or mates back home and often full of misinformation. How many more posts do we need on mud festivals or the latest girl band? Other blogs, often over rated, simply give information everyone knows once they’ve lived here a short time and while they might have an occasional use, are in reality no more the product of a ‘writer’ than is a bus timetable. It seems you become an expert on Korean society the moment you launch your first post, even if you’ve only been here a week. And everyone is a writer! Blogs provide the perfect place to blag about ones credentials. Yesterday, I found a blog where the author gave a complete run down of their CV: journalist, newscaster, playwright, writer, poet, teacher, Phd educated, bla, bla, bla… What the fuck are you doing teaching English in Korea? Worse, his blog was shite!
Unlike so many other bloggers, Mr Wonderful doesn’t claim to be a writer, indeed he seems to shun such a label and yet comes closer than most to actually being one. Not only is he able to take something as mundane as a mud festival and say something different about it, but the bizarre background image he has painted, through characters such as Dragon Lady, Children of the Rice, Jughead and Queen Elephant, are highly evocative. Mr Wonderful has created a strange world, you glimpse it through cracks, a photo here, a reference there; it’s a shady world hovering between dream and reality, a world that seems a little sleazy or seedy, of darkened PC bangs, drunken stupors and dirty bodies. The intrigue of An Idiots Tale, its allure, lies in the fact that you can’t establish whether is fantasy or fact – this is one masterful stroke of creativity. I still laugh at the strange and evocative phrases he uses – ‘off to the paddy’ field, ‘toad juice,’ get some coin.’
As for political correctness, An Idiot’s Tale kicks it straight out the window. No one is beneath being ridiculed and he has taken the Kings of the K-blogs and re-christened them. I’m Sorry, but I find Clissy Snowfrake such a funny name even though I know it’s origins transgress political correctness. If Mr Wonderful is insulting to others, he is equally as insulting to himself and only this week describes his new haircut as giving him the appearance of a ‘dick with ears.’
I like An Idiot’s Tale because it is short and punchy, offensive, provocative, rude, ignores the conventions of political correctness and has the ability to say so much in so little space and in this sense bears an affinity with Roketship. I like it because like a soap drama, it is full of bitchiness and intrigue all of which can be drifted in and out of, easily. Most of the blogs I read don’t inspire me to write or inspire me to write about them. An Idiot’s Tale does both. Though I know Mr Wonderful would despise me for trying to form a ‘circle jerk,’ I’m pissed of my blog isn’t in his Hall of Shame. If there’s one place I value it being, it’s there.
© Nick Elwood 2010. This work is licenced under a Creative Commons Licence.