a serious discussion about the carrotless carrot cake

2 December 2011

me, greg saunier of deerhoof, prima aulia, and tamma febrian sitting down on a moderately filled hawker centre trying to solve the mystery of chinese carrot cake, principles of journalism, etc

G: so you guys work for this (uptothesky) festival?

One of us: no.

G: okay. you must be an artist. (talking to me)

A: i'm not?

G: oh really? then you are. (talking to tamma)

T: me? of course not…

G: you're not. (now talking to prima) you're designing websites.

P: yeah.

G: okay, so what do you do? (to me)

A: i'm a student. studying communication.

G: ah…communication. then why is our…our communication so poor?

A: yeah that's because i haven't enacted my communication skills yet.

(greg laughing)

G: okay. so what do you do? (to tamma)

A: well, make a guess! it's easy.

(to be fair, this is tamma. try to guess yourself)

G: hmm…you are a…barber?

All of us: WHAT? (choking, laughing, dying)

T: no, man…i have such a boring job.

G: boring? what do you do?

T: i work in a bank. (tamma should get his head slaughtered by his boss for this)

G: you work in a bank! that's not boring! that's what she wants to do! that's what you're studying, right? (referring to dara, their artist coordinator slash our friend)

D: hahaha, yeah, yeah

G: so you guys will be watching us tomorrow?

P: yeah, we actually are from a magazine…we'll be reviewing this festival.

G: you're from press? oh no!

oh no!

A: hmm, why?

G: first rule of journalism. if you're from press, you're not supposed to make friends with the artists.

A: why is that so?

G: because, because you see…when the artists start making friends with the journalists--which i'm NOT doing btw--don't you feel a little burdened to write a good article? now that we're friends, with my new yorker charm and all...don't you feel like you should write a good review about us? and if you don't, i'm gonna get mad at you!

A: oh, bias.

G: yeah, that's the word. bias. okay, what about this: you can design my website, you can deal with our finance, and you…you take care of the publicity. and then you can watch our show for free.

A: hmm, interesting.

G: so deal?

P & T: yeah, deal.

A: wait. your show or your shows?

G: my shows? what do you mean? we only have one show in singapore.

A: no, i mean. we can come down to new york and watch your shows for free…and then you pay the flight tickets.

(greg laughing)

G: hmmm this is nice.

A: umm, yeah. that's…carrot cake. i often eat that too.

(i can't speak chinese, in case you're wondering. but for the sake of it…)

G: yup. carrot cake. that doesn't look like carrot cake.

T: there's no carrot in carrot cake.

G: hmm yeah, i don't even know what i'm eating.

A: there isn't? i thought there is?

G: no, there's no carrot here…doesn't taste like carrot at all.

A: well, but i thought some of the real carrot cakes don't taste like carrot too…you know, the american ones. the sweet ones with cream and all. the real cakes.

G: oh yeah, that's true…

T: but there isn't supposed to be carrot there!

G: oh really? what's this then?

A: flour?

G: oh yeah, flour.

P: and eggs, some veggie…

A: and soy sauce.

G: yeah, yeah. so there's no carrot.

A: i still think there is.

G: okay. WANNA BET?

A: umm… (thinking twice) (or thrice) (or not really, just being a coward) AH i just remembered, yeah. there's no carrot in carrot cake. i remember a book with that title before. no carrot.

G: ha! and the book, there is a book about carrot cake?

A: no, well, it's just about singaporean food. you've just gotta have a very catchy title for it.

G: yeah, that's true.

("thanks for keeping up with our insults and stuff", said greg by the end of his band's show. i'm quoting him here, just in case...)

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