Kuala Lumpur smells like burp, but has redeeming qualities.

Published: June 7th 2011EDIT THIS ENTRY

And Siobhan will attest this, my digestive system, especially my gastrointestinal system, is hyper-functional. Sniff. Salivate. Masticate. Swallow. Breakdown. Et cetera, et cetera.

Kuala Lumpur is also hyper-functional. The city operates like someone whose eaten a greasy Ruben-extra-sauerkraut-extra-Swiss sided with heaps of fries and a pint of high acid grapefruit juice, then doubled over with acid reflux - a condition with which I am quite familiar. Traffic grinds to a halt on bloated freeways, tropical heat burns the concrete jungle, and the buildings sweat under the humidity. When I feel bloated, burning, and sweaty the sweet release of an acrid belch, or thirty minutes of them, is most satisfying. I am unsure what satisfies this city, but the smelly combination of old curry, car exhaust, Chinese food, and backed-up sewage which permeate its air remind me of an unpleasantly full-bodied burp. This city, in a word, stinks.

However, KL is a foody's (not that I would ever refer to myself as a, "foody" mostly because I abhor that word and it's lame-o Food Network origin) playground.

Malaysian homegrown coffee is offered freely and served deliciously muddy. It reminds me of my president: tasteful, sophisticated, economically reasonable, and, yes, mostly black and white. I laugh to think of French, Italian, and wanna-be-Starbucks coffee snobs dunking their otherwise upturned noses into $4-5 (or Euro) coffees while Malaysians drink at the source and on the cheap. It can be a little sweet though.

Malaysian food is influenced by Portuguese, Indian, Thai, Chinese, and a little modern Western style cooking. A completely satisfying meal can be bought for five Ringgit - a few dollars, so I find myself eating about five times per day. Despite the low cost and my Spartan cheapskate budgeting I have overspent my food budget everyday so far. I.e. yesterday I breakfasted, twice, on Nyonya, a style of cooking which combines Indian naan bread and Malaysian spices with Chinese complexity.

With all these delicious foods I feel kind of bloated at the moment. Siobhan, who arrived just this morning seemed pleased to see me, but clearly hasn't miss my eating habits or the ensuing gas.


28th June 2011

The days of yore
This post reminds me of your ill-fated 64oz-a-day ruby red grapefruit juice diet. I remember the howls of acid reflux as a young teen. Somehow that coincided with the high volume creamy peanut butter regimen, too. Surprising any of us survived the late 90's. I hope to see photos someday. Xia ci jian! CP

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