Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Losing masculinity



I think in this age, we have too many chemicals and processed food floating about. It is messing with us guys’ hormones, seriously, I swear.

30 years ago, when food was more natural and less processed etc, male hormones were more or less intact. Hence males retained their masculinity.

Today, with the abundance of hormones, chemicals, processed food, preservatives, etc, male hormones and various trigger switches are all going haywire. Guys are no longer as hairy, we are no longer sprouting beards and whatnot, our voices are less deep and are squeakier, we are more moody and whatever.

Just the other day my basketball playing friends were telling me, and mind you, these are big tall strong guys, that they were feeling, and I quote, ‘hormonal’. I’m like, WTF? The consequences of urban living. Hormonal!

Must better start eating less chicken rice and more natural foods. Best to go live on a farm. Even so, with the fertilizers and pesticides, there are no guarantees.

Childrening

The worst thing is feeling guilty over one’s treatment of one’s mum. Sometimes I just wish my mum would stop inadvertently, unintentionally, annoying the hell out of me.

I know she means well. I know she cares. But why can’t she obey certain instructions I have, instead of just bulldozing her way through?

I want to, and try to be a good son, but I always end up having that strong guilty feeling. It really sucks.

When you have just 1 parent, it puts so much stress and pressure additionally on you. For instance, when you are married, she will have to stay with you. What if your spouse also has just 1 parent?

And how do you control your temper when she does not act rationally or sensibly, or does not take care of her health?

They say parenting is a tough job. I agree. But so is being children.

I hate ulcers

I hate ulcers.

It is bad enough I look like a frigging idiot, as it were. Bad haircut, terrible features, everything bad aside, to add to it, I’ve got, for the past several days, the worst and most painful ulcer on my upper lip. It’s on the left side.

Just the other day, Joanne remarked curiously and in a state of genuine interest, “Ooh, your upper lip that side is curiously shaped!”. She was mildly excited, the poor girl. But I think she was just being polite, because it sure as hell looks hideous. It’s not obvious, not visible from the outside, but it has rendered my already swollen lips to golliwog proportions. This is so not funny or sexy.

It isn’t how it looks that really bugs me. After all, another spot of ugliness wouldn’t have much effect. It is like just another drop in the ocean, you got my drift? It’s more like…the crappy feelings in incites, the annoying ouch factor whenever I eat or as much as have anything come into contact with it.

The most comfortable position is to just sit there with my mouth slightly agape, lips not touching, to avoid the pain, and just watch as the drool slowly drowns myself.

To make things worse, I somehow, don’t ask me how, scalded my tongue, so that it is perpetually dry and feeling like it needs water.

This is a sucky situation to be in. May I ask that time fast forwards to 2 months from now? Please?

Get a job..really.

It is the fervent wish of everyone that they may be able to excel in the profession of their choice, preferably, interesting, socially useful, financially rewarding, intellectually stimulating, held in high esteem, etc.

I am suddenly, at this very minute, in an extremely and unaccountably frivolous mood. Hence, I shall indulge.

Most young male blobs today would choose professions in law, finance, banking, accounting, and for the less greedy, though not necessarily less ambitious, engineers. Let us pretend for a while that we could indeed have the profession of our choice, any choice. Let us remove the cloaks and gloves of propriety and social mores, and hence expand our scope of choices to more than what is merely ‘the best and sane choice among my limited options’.

I’ll start!

I want to be either an All Star (oh, only the top 30 best players qualify) professional basketball player in the best professional basketball league on the planet (if you don’t know what I am talking about, here’s an idea: Walk to the seaside and tie approx 1 ton of bricks to your foot, no make that feet, and then plunge in.), a member of a successful rock band (MCR would do just fine, thank you very much.), or, and get this, it’s a radical departure from the above 2 flamboyant choices, a popular and much read professional writer. I’d pick basketball player first, writer second, and rock musician third.

Snapping closely on the heels of the above of course would be that of self serving entrepreneur yuppie, most likely a free lancing IT consultant who lives in a block of refurbished and highly exclusive dwellings along the docks with a fantastic and splendid view of the river or seafront, with a sleek noiseless sports car powered by a twin turbo engine with a dual shaft top rotating twin cams and in-car surround sound system. Naturally, the apartment I live in would be outfitted with surround sound systems in every room, all remote controlled by a controller that I can pick up and utilize to activate my chosen play list every time I walk into the apartment. Naturally, it’d be decorated with sleek, plush, dark grey sofas, the floors would be spotlessly white, there’d be big screen doors overlooking the sea to let in lots of natural light, the bathrooms would have masculine black towels, un-named dark pastel coloured ceramic jars and bottles containing various toiletries, and a bath tub with Jacuzzi functions. I’d also be that sort of IT consultant, who gets to kick back and travel a bit, and write books in his free time, and pepper it with lots of lines like ‘in my consulting work, I … $20m dollars…45% reduction in…with a correlating 40% improvement in…’.

Yeah right.

More likely, I’d be that type of backroom number cruncher type who labour for hours in a dark room, with 5 other guys all hunched desperately over their keyboards, trying to hack together a complicated ERP program, for which our company can bill the client RM12m (please add another 15% for after sales support and service) and give us our paltry salary of RM2.5k a month. And we would not be allowed to see sunlight at all, nor are we allowed out for lunches, and our meals would be passed to us through a flap in the door, not unlike a cat flap. And then we’d all leave work at 11pm and take our little motorbikes home to our low cost flats and spend a further 30 minutes scratching our heads and calculating how to stretch our dollar further and whether we can meet the next instalments on our car and home mortgage payments, not to mention the normal bills, saving for the kids’ education, insurance, and a host of other expenses which frankly speaking, when totalled, is enough to send me into a pit of depression from which suicide is the only way out.

But come, let us away in haste from such morbid thoughts, and back to the pipe dream.

So, professional basketball player. Money. Check. Do something I like. Check. Not environmentally and socially destructive. Check. In fact, as a form of healthy entertainment, it probably is socially constructive. What is not to like? You get professionals taking care of your fitness regimes, your nutrition and diet is professionally prescribed for you, you are paid millions and millions, you get to do a job that you’d gladly do for free at the local playground anyway, you are good and recognized at it, you get to travel, and you get to retire in your mid thirties, rich and comfortable.

Writer. I’m the first to admit I have no talent for it. None at all whatsoever. Short stories? I got no plot. Novels? No stamina. And no plot. I guess the only shot I’ve got is to be one of those National Geographic writers, or freelance travelling journalists. But no, I won’t risk a slow death in Iraq on international TV. And, no talent. Perhaps I could be a travel writer. Hmm…but seriously, as a writer, you basically book yourself a few months in some remote place ‘for inspiration’ (but you are, in fact, taking a holiday), walk around, poke around, do nothing much, have long seaside walks, put your feet up by the fire, then get down to it and write a couple hundred pages of your observations and various other bits, get a sucker to sell it, put it in nice packaging, bribe someone to write good reviews for it, and add at the back endorsements like “Best book I’ve read since Feb 2008. Hilarious, had me up in stitches. – Peter Tan”, or invent some white guy’s name, since Peter Tan doesn’t seem to carry much literary weight, hence “An absolute must, a can’t put down, one of the truly star writers of the generation. – Phillip Forest”, or some other equally posh name. Of course, any endorsement from something with a “Daily” or a “Journal” or a “Times” would help. Additionally, while we are at it, let me make another one up: “Great book. Best for reading when you’ve got nothing to do while shitting and you have read the obituaries 16.5 days in a row – Some-guy-who-is-shitting-and-has-read-the-obituaries-16.5-days-in-a-row”.

Ergh, got pulled from this excellently amusing activity to go and do some real work. Gotta stop here.

Bad Hair Day? Try 2 months.

Just when you think the ugly cannot get uglier, they go for a haircut.

Now, already as it is, my looks leaves much to be desired, hence, I need to hold together and desperately hang on to every little thing that could possibly create an illus ional and misleading effect that deludes people into thinking that I look better than I really do. So, forgetting that important point, I marched into the hairdresser’s yesterday, intending to obtain for myself one of those very close cropped crew cuts. You know the kind that closely resembles a very short military buzz cut (without the flat top), that many footballers sport.

I thought that it would make me look younger, smaller, and perhaps, more like a little round monk. But most of all, I just wanted the practicality and neatness.

So I jaunted into the joint, threw myself into the specified chair, barked out my instructions (in a very polite and kind way, of course) and settled back happily, and dived straight into the arresting Bill Bryson book that I’d brought. I was happily immersed in it when I happened to glance up while flipping a page, about 15 minutes later.

I glanced up and saw a stranger looking back at me. Now, for some odd obscure reason, I had no idea what a stranger was doing in my mirror, but I dismissed it and went back to my book.

For 2 seconds.

When I realized that the ugly mug belonged to me. And it definitely was neither a GI Jane or Sinead O Connor.

It was more like… what the fuck!?!

So I very demurely gulped, counted to 10, clenched my fists, and then asked in a very controlled manner, excuse me, is this the haircut I asked for?

Response: Yes. You wanted short n round all over right? And you wanted blah blah..x x.. blah..xx… right?

At this point I was visualizing an eternity and lifetime of squawking around in those brown paper bags with 3 holes cut in for the eyes n mouth, and perhaps, rearranging the neat little face of my hairdresser. What I wanted to tell him was ‘you sorry fishhead, you waste of earthly resources you, I wanted a close cropped crew cut, not a whatever hack job you call this is, you sorry wimp, don’t take your personal life crisis out on ME, you flipazoid!’.

Instead, what my real response was: Ah, but of course.

Don’t think I didn’t catch you, wiseguy. Perhaps my guy was distracted coz he was alternating between me and the leggy girl in very short shorts sitting directly diagonally opposite me, displaying her long legs very distractedly.

Luckily Bill Bryson is talented and funny, and I much preferred to focus on his talents. But I am afraid to say I cant say likewise for my hairdresser.

Nevermind.

I look like a Chinese coolie now. It is not so much a matter of vanity and of looking like a pimp. It is more a matter of not trying my damdest to sabotage myself further and further destroy all chances I have of emerging on the streets without incurring a snigger or 2.

I will b washing my hair everyday and soaking it in beer from now on. [Its been known to stimulate follicle growth.]

Speaking of which, I think my experiment to grow out a baby goatee has come to an unseemly end as well.

From strangers to friends to [you decide]

It is vital for a couple thinking of engaging in a romantic relationship to start off as friends. I can, on the spur of the moment, think of 3 reasons.

One, it is wonderful to slowly find out, later on, how the development occurred from friends to having feelings, on the other party. And it is wonderful to learn how that concurred with certain phases you yourself was experiencing.

Two, occasionally, you can always look back at these times, and realize how back then you never thought you’d be together, and be reminded of the ache of that prospect, and that makes you all the more appreciative of having each other.

Three, it helps you to learn more about the other person as a person, as a character, and if the relationship breaks down, you are stepping down from the podium to a level ground of friendship, and not 2 strangers brought together just by feelings.

It is equally important for a young and growing couple to experience some growing pains, some misunderstandings, etc. It is at this stage that they are learning more about each other, discovering each other, and can still make the choice and decision of their compatibility, rather than waiting until the emotions get more complex and withdrawing the emotional stake would extract more from them. Also, if they pull through, they can always look back on this time as inspiration whenever they encounter cogency issues down the road. And finally, they are hence not painting a false and unrealistic expectation of eternal perfection, and when cogency issues surface down the line, as they are bound to, they are well versed in expecting and handling it.

As I always say, you choose to stay with who you stay with.

Male - O Grams - Attraction

Attraction is a very odd thing.

Some people say that for men, first there is lust, and then come feelings. Hence, men never fall for women who aren’t gorgeous and beautiful. And also this is no good, because the foundation of their feelings is lust, hence once they no longer find her attractive, they no longer have feelings for her. They say that when a man says that he has fallen out of love, he basically firstly thought that she was no longer physically desirable.

I beg to differ. There IS a legion of us out there who are more honourable. Granted, please do remember that most of the men you’d meet nowadays will belong very at home in the above paragraph, but there are, not many, granted, but there are, a few of us who befits the below descriptions.

Say Jack and Mary are friends. Initially, Jack probably never thought much more of Mary than as a friend. She was neither exceptionally drop dead gorgeous, nor was she ugly. She was a very normal girl to him. As friends, they spend time hanging out, doing things friends do, getting to talking a bit. So over time, when her personality and character has imprinted themselves on him, he begins to feel a fondness for her. It is at this point Jack starts to realize that at times, Mary is actually quite pretty and that at other times, she looks much better than originally thought. He attributes this to the fact that he never paid much attention to her, and now that he does, and has spent more time with her, he is able to notice her attributes. As time goes by and their relationship develops some more, this feeling also becomes deeper. Now, when he thinks of Mary, it evokes in him feelings of attraction and of wanting physical contact, such as stroking her hair, smelling her scents, etc.

Say by now Jack has strong feelings for Mary. He cannot help feeling the instinct to look after and protect Mary, to make her happy and to provide her needs and wants as best he can. Additionally, he is very attracted to her, and thinks that she is gorgeous and beautiful, and he can’t help thinking and feeling so. He thinks she has such great this and that and doesn’t see any flaws. And he can’t help articulating this to her, that he thinks that she is beautiful.

Some argue that had he not thought she was pretty, he wouldn’t have felt anything for her that was of a romantic nature. But that is wrong; because that assumes very cynically that every step of feeling along the way was deepened after a realization that she was prettier and prettier. This does not take into account the possibility that the feelings can happen in parallel that first the feeling comes, and then he finds her attractive. And as long as he continues to have feelings for her, and continues to love her, also in the verb sense of the word, he will continue to have wild desire for her and to think that she is very attractive.

This helps to explain some issues.

It is a strange human phenomenon that those whom we once found irresistibly attractive can fall by the wayside when we no longer have romantic feelings for them. Secondly, it also explains why it is difficult to feel strong desire for those who might be objectively and commonly judged as ‘better looking’ than our loved ones.

These 2 facts, and the possibility that they may be true for some men, are immediately dismissed from the word go, merely based on the fact that we are men, and are hence unfairly lumped into the same category as 90% of the other slimy specimens who unfortunately also occupy the same category.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Election

Most readers upon seeing this blog title, up til a fortnight ago, would instantly think of the HK triad movie which was a recent hit.

However, this post is not about that.

The upcoming Malaysian general elections will determine our government for the next 4-5 years. We deserve the Govt we get, some say. In the past, usually the Malays voted strongly for the national alliance party, and the other races against. However, in the last election, a significant portion of the Malays voted against the ruling party, but this was offset and more by the other races all jumping on the national alliance's bandwagon, thus giving the ruling party a victory by its biggest ever mandate.

It was a stupid move to make. The ruling party, already entrenched in corruption, incompetence and racism, took this to mean that their previous divide and conquer ways were succeeding wildly, and that their shameful system of modern day apartheid, disguised as 'helping a certain race' (really, what could be more shameful than that? They might as well wear bright coloured underwear on the outside proclaiming that this is an admittance of their failure as a race) is well favored, looked upon and endorsed. With this mandate, they proceeded on a free for all, further depleting the country of its resources.

However although I do not condone it, I can understand why those who voted for the BN did so. Triggered by fears of a racism driven backlash and a new wave of violence, cowarded into believing that their ricebowl was under threat and that only the BN could sustain their way of living, and afraid of an unproven Opposition, they decided to stick to the known evil.

However, in the last 4-5 years, things have gone from bad to worst. Cost of goods and essential items are rising at an accelerated rate, an unsustainable rate, if you look at the income of the majority of the population. [Granted, it is a time of global turmoil, fuelled further by the oil price instability and rise that is sparked and controlled by the shadow puppets and oil and weapons companies' moguls that dictate and pull the strings of the US President]. Race tensions are high, dissatisfaction is rampant, crime is strife and has surpassed despicable proportions, FDI is on the downward trend, foreign companies are pulling out their Msian operations, there is too much red tape to doing business here, confidence from investors is low, neighbours whom we used to be leaps and bounds ahead of are now our benchmarks, SMEs are struggling to survive, businesses are folding, the economy is stagnant, and the fat cats up there are getting fatter and bleeding the country dry, moving their own assets overseas.

This time round, sentiments are changing. The currents are moving and we can feel it. The agents of change are all busy at work. There is increased awareness of the state of the nation. There is a surge of anti govt sentiment from the ground. Many Malays are sick and tired of being used by the government to further keep the NEP around to enrich those in power or with connections, but not for them, the common man on the street, and they don’t get much of the trickle down benefits. Furthermore, to add insult, this implies that they are incapable of standing on their own two feet, and paints a picture of them as useless sods who stand around with outstretched arms awaiting govt handouts. Many Malays are saying enough is enough, lets compete on level ground. Of course, there is still a bunch who are happy to rely on cronies and easy money and have no pride. And these are the ones the govt loves, because as long as they exist, the govt has a reason to keep the NEP around, so it is a case of continuously giving them fish so that they can’t fish so that they can justify the existence of the fish-giving programme. Which is actually state sanctioned apartheid, a heinous and ridiculed act which they keep well disguised from the global view under a variety of names, none of which masks the fact of what they truly are.

At any rate, the govt is getting worried. As the recent Bersih and Hindraf movements have shown, there is a huge anti govt movement, gaining momentum and continuously pulling in more into their ranks. This is giving the govt cause for concern. They are clamping down on all freedom of information, arresting people left and right out of paranoia, and even announced an early election, in order to go to the ballot box before the eligibility of Anwar Ibrahim to contest, such is their insecurity. By right, the election should be held in 2009, but being held in early 2008 shows that the govt knows it cannot hold onto power much longer the way things are rolling, hence it is better to vote earlier while the wool is still covering most people’s eyes.

They are resorting to the same tricks. The newspapers are chock full with articles extolling the current government, and various comments by people on the street praising the government (you will hear nary a peep of any semblance of anti govt sentiment). The govt is handing goodies and freebies out left right and central, and suddenly various Malay federations are being given time and an audience with the powers that be, together with various incentives, in order to get their members on their good side. Previously, an audience with the powers that be comes with a minimum RM100k price tag to the 4th floor boys. The MIC, 2 months prior to the GE, recently held a day in Klang to register all those without valid ICs and birthcerts. In their years in power, they do it 2 months prior. They think we are idiots who can’t see through their blatant transparency.

The above tactics, which would work on the masses, who are basically gullible types who care only about bread and butter issues who accept their lot in life (hence a freebie can easily win them over), unaware that things could be so much better, together with various other means and ways such as phantom voters etc, will ensure that they will still capture a high number of votes. Furthermore, aware that there is a huge number of new-registered voters (who are anti BN, and have finally been pushed to the point of doing something about it), they have been holding back the assigning of these new registrees’ polling stations (perhaps til after the GE) so that they can’t even check where they are supposed to vote under.

At the end of the day, the above tactics will have a significant impact on the results. If you take into account as well that the placement of candidates and eligibility of certain parties’ voting locations and the voting split, you will realize that the breakdown is in such a way that the BN will definitely not lose. It is a guarantee.

The fact that many cowards are afraid to vote for the Opposition and rather remain status quo because ‘at least BN allow me to find food and survive’, and never take into account the others who are made worse off by this apartheid system, will also play a major role. Ultimately, it is the fence sitters, the non voters, and the brave, who we need to win over and deny them that two thirds, so they can no longer steamroll the Opposition and push through unfavourable motions with impunity without regard for the masses. That is all we hope for.

And if we still cant deny them the two thirds this time around, one thing is for sure: we never will. And I for one, do not deserve this government, so it will be off to other pastures I go. However, those who have ever griped about this govt, this is their chance to vote. This time round, either vote for the Opposition, or never voice out your complaints again.

We got what we deserved last time around. Lets not repeat the same mistake.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Radio Humor

Heard on the radio this morning by a popular regional entertainer that 1 of the problems with men and their wives is that wives love to talk, they talk a lot and very fast, ask questions, and then reply them themselves. And they talk without punctuations. Just talk talk talk, everything is talk while the guy is given no chance to talk. And he said the perfect marriage is between a blind woman and a deaf man.

Whoa!!!

That implies men will get uglier when they get older. Paunchy belly and all.

That will not be me. I can already notice though that many of my peers are developing or showing signs of starting that journey to middle-aged-man body. I must never allow that to happen.

Then another caller said men never listen, and that everything she says, is treated with a blank look. Unless she relates everything she says to cars, which is something he really loves. And deep inside men are like little boys, and they need to be loved as such as well.

Are we really like that?!

Letting Go

Came across this article recently.

Anybody ever held onto something for longer than they should have? It could be a share, a fund, a job, a car, a friendship and even a love-relationship.

And have you tried to let it go or considered letting it go, to no avail?

Good news folks. Don’t blame yourself. Well, part of it is a lack of self control and super discipline. So it is ok. There is a scientific explanation to it.

Apparently, it’s all psychological. Hmm…isn’t it all?

I suppose Western researchers from the scientific community just keep on looking for new ‘scientific’ reasonings to explain why we do the (negative) things we do. While those with a shallow and superficial knowledge of religious faith will attribute events to God’s will/grand plan for us.

Either way is not right as it partly takes the blame and responsibility for our actions out of our hands. That way, we are merely making excuses, and eventually get to blame everything on everything else but our lack of self control and flawed decision making process.

There was a comic strip (Calvin n Hobbes...my favourite!) where Calvin and Hobbes were discussing how there was a grand plan by God and there was a concept such as fate…hence it is good to know that we didn’t CHOOSE to do the bad things we do, just that it was part of some plan or fate…hence we cant be punished for it as it wouldn’t be fair. And he said it is reassuring to know that.

Early morning

It's early morning, 8.05am, and I am off to work!

Must be full of zest for life.

Got up at 6 plus to send off the sister, felt melancholic, buried myself in various blog posts, exercised a bit (modestly, in the room) and now I am off to work.

Although it IS a bit of a zinger that my right thumb is barely functional as a result of a severe hit y'day while playing ball. Now, I've always been known to be one tough ass nut, but this was really painful. A re-summonning of an old injury.

I hate being hit. On the bright side (today everything must be viewed from the bright side) I accept that as a result of being so fast, so skilled, and so accurate, that this is what my opponents need to resort to do in order to contain me. *smug grin*

If I was single...

...I'd remember this website.

Note: If you are travelling solo, please be realistic and do not take risks with your safety!

IS he/she into you?

When you log into MSN, sometimes you get interesting articles. I seldom read it, but this one caught my eye. Let me do a test for you then. What a great service I am providing.

Is he into you?

If he is, he...

1. Closes the distance. YUP. But some men do this anyway to show alpha-male-ness and to impress girls. Esp true for Western values guys who sometimes don't understand the meaning of personal space and takes advantage of this being their 'cultural norm' to get cheap thrills.
2. Speaks softly. YUP.
3. Rounds his posture. YUP. Unless he is naturally rotund.
4. Talks slowly. YUP. Unless he is an engineer, in which case all bets are off.
5. Can't take his eyes off you. YUP but the desire to is there, but I don't actually keep staring, though I know many who do. Just be able to spot the diff between admiration and wanton lust.

If he is not, he...

1. Stands four feet away. Shy guys will do this naturally anyway so, not reliable.
2. Stands at an oblique angle to you. Again, shy guys might not even look at you.
3. Sounds like that guy in accounting. He might really BE an accountant...or engineer.
4. Stares at your mouth. Get out. Quick. Now! He is either avoiding eye contact or he is imagining obscene scenarios involving said body part.
5. Not in sync with your body language. Get out! Either he is so dumb, or he doesn't care.

Is SHE into you?

If she is, she...

1. Tilts her head. She does? I thought it was just a neat quirk! Excellent.
2. She takes a sip when you do. Isn't she just being polite so we finish our drink at the same pace?
3. She twirls her hair. Wow! Thought it was just another adorable habit. Excellent.
4. She gets a glow. Hmm...isn't it like the alcoholic drink, the lighting, or perhaps I annoyed her? Interesting.
5. Her pupils dilate. Never noticed.

If she is not, she...

1. Crosses her arms.
2. Places her bag between you two.
3. Speaks very fast.
4. Gives chin up smiles.
5. Strokes her neck.


Hmmm.....

Freak accidents

Of all the freak accidents that occurred, 2 come to mind instantly.

First one: A few years ago, I read in the papers of 2 French (I think) women who were outdoors and got caught in a lightning/thunderstorm, and sought refuge under a tree. Lightning struck, and both were fried to a crisp. Cause for death: the lightning had hit the metal lining wires of their bras. Key Learning: Girls, don't wear bras with metallic elements. Guys: Don't wear bras.

Second one: Did you know poop and piss that we discharge while on flights can actually be discharged from the plane while in mid flight, get frozen by the atmospheric conditions, and land on the ground and hit someone!? I never believed my mum's talk on this phenomenon until I read about it actually happening. Cause for death: Fortunately, none. Key Learning: It happens.


Crime Today

Crimes are always bad. Thy always leave you with a bitter taste in your mouth. Of course, with crimes, there are different levels of brutality and consequences. But certain types of crime sickens me most. It sickens me to my core when I hear of sex related crimes, crimes perpetrated on the young and helpless, on little boys and girls, and grown females who cannot defend themselves.

Read about this incident where this taxi driver in London picks his victims up and then rapes them. So far he has perpetrated this 35 times. 35 times! I hardly even dare ask whether he used protection and/or impregnated any of them. Can you imagine the horribleness of it? The poor girl, having a child in her that was conceived by this scum, and in that way.

And this girl who was walking home in London, and at her doorstep was stabbed to death and then raped multiple times. The disgusting thing is that the man charged in court with her crimes used, as his defense, the claim that he had sex with her when he thought she was merely unconscious, and not already dead, and that fact was only impressed upon him after the act. Furthermore, he went on to claim that he was interested only in Asian women. WTF?

And the multitudes of crimes that go unreported? Especially involving tourists in foreign destinations? Some people think that these are statistics, and that chances are it won't affect them. But isn't that what everyone thinks, until it happens to them?

Closer to home, we have always heard of sex crimes, and I can already rattle off 5 from the top of my head. And these are merely the higher profile ones. And recently, this sick conduct has infiltrated playgrounds and young girls are going missing, with their bodies being found later with objects stuffed up their rectums. I had a lecturer, a very nice and pretty young lady, being a victim of an attempted rape, and when she fought back, she had a large stone smashed against her forehead. She was left mentally, physically and emotionally scarred, and has since become a recluse and has never been the same again.

If I ever lay hands on one of these perpetrators, I will make him wish he was dead.

The common thread running through these acts is that the perpetrators are never caught. In the high profile Cannie Ong's case, because of a legal technicality that the defense managed to find as a loophole, the guy may be walking free very soon from a dramatically reduced sentence. There is no conviction yet for the Mongolian woman's case. No justice. Nor is there any for Audrey Melissa, the high school girl who was brutally stabbed and raped in a tunnel while walking to school. Or the Malay lady in Hartamas who was found tied up and stabbed to death after various heinous deeds were committed on her. Or the Malay engineer who suffered a similar fate after a bus ride. And the 2 little girls who were kidnapped. And the recent cases where 2 young ladies were kidnapped in broad daylight in front of several witnesses.

The country is not safe. Crime is rampant. Law enforcement and vigilance and punishments are viewed as so poor that criminals openly scorn and disregard the law this way. Our life is really in our own hands. We cannot rely on the government or police force. Once a criminal attempts to commit a crime, physically, even a few girls will not be enough to fend off one man. Prevention as much as possible, and applying one's intelligence to be realistic and actively take one's own wellbeing into one's hands is the only way left to us, and if it means we have to cut down on our freedoms then unfortunately, that is what we must do, for if a crime does happen, regret is too late.

Family

Family is important to me. I am who I am as a result of a large influence on my upbringing by my family and extended family. We are a close bunch. We try to make each other better people although we ourselves might not necessarily be so, and thats what families are like.

The last few months was good. My eldest sister came back to stay, with my most beloved and wonderful niece. My youngest sister was back on holiday from her Masters in Perth. My second sister came back several times. And this being the month of Christmas and CNY and the NY, we had lots of family gatherings, which was great.

And now life returns to normal. The eldest has gone back to Beijing, the second is off on her travels with SIA, and the youngest is about to leave the house to the airport and go back to Perth. It's back to being just me and my mum.

I really wished I had spent more time with them. I wanted to, but that being a turbulent and whirlwind few months in my personal life, I didnt get to spend as much time as I wanted to.

The house is quiet again.

Living with my mum would be good if only she didnt get so difficult at times. I receive flak for being perceived to be unfilial but unbeknownst to all, is the fact that I indeed turned down job offers back in my beloved Melbourne, and also delayed my previously planned move to Singapore, in order for her to not be left alone. And in my other ways, I do care and let it manifest. For example, in influencing her to have a healthier diet and lifestyle. None of this is known, seen or understood. It's ok. I can take the fall and bad rep. At the end of the day, it is her not being alone that counts, not the perception of me. But the trouble is, she has to be easier to live with, which she isn't.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Regrets

Sometimes we reallly regret what we did, but what was done might be unforgivable and even if forgivable, not forgettable, and will forever be a thorn in our spouse's side, and then we wont be enjoying the kind of rship both should have and want. Regrets...

Did you hear about the HK celebrity scandal? Where EC went out with all these girls (not in one night of course) and then took photos of himself with each girl in all sorts of compromising positions. And then he got his computer serviced, and apparently, someone got hold of those photos and is now slowly releasing it to the press. So EC had to come out and apologize. And the girls, who I shall not name, had to initially deny it was them and then when it became clear that it WAS them, later on had to admit it was indeed them and had to apologize.

As a result of this, one of the girls, BBC, had her upcoming wedding called off by the fiance’s family, and another girl, CC, has so incensed her husband (another famous HK celebrity) so bad that he reportedly threw his wedding ring away in public and she fell on her knees to beg him back.

Lets examine this on a superficial level shall we. But first lets all acknowledge how dumb EC had been. Ok, now that’s out of the way.

I have been hearing 2 sides of the argument. Conducted a mini survey of sample size less than 10. From that unrepresentative sample, generally people fall into 2 camps.

1- The guys should not blame the girl and dump them because that happened in the past. They are theirs now, so if they didn’t cheat after they got together, then what happened prior should not be an issue. What he is now and where he is trying to go is more important.


2- Cannot. The fact that she has that personality/characteristic of sleeping around so much prior and has the personality that allows him to take all these photos of them is unacceptable and the fact that now the whole world has those photos of your spouse with another in those scenes is too much of an embarrassment. And, unspoken but it is there, is the fact that you will always be thinking whether she is still thinking of those encounters and whether you are being compared to her previous lovers.

Point #1 is true that yes she didn’t cheat on him after they got together, and yes, what happened remains in the past, BUT, point #2 in my opinion reins stronger. I find it harder to accept what is said in point #2 than point #1. this might be one of the only times that men think with their emotions and not with their heads.

So, whats your stand?

"Professional" attire

Professional attire. What the HELL does that mean?

It pisses me off no end when I think about the corporate world. I know I am supposed to change what I can and accept what I can’t. Well, I am not perfect, and am still in the process of mastering my emotion. At least I channel it here and not on others.

Ok, Alex, you tantrummy boy, what is it that pissed your royal ass off today?

OK. Why is it that girls have to dress a certain way in corporate circles in order to be passed off as ‘professionally attired’? ok, I have no problems with professional attire, but where is the line between professional attire and slightly too revealing? Is slightly revealing a precondition in order to qualify as professionally attired?

i mean, for guys it is pretty simple. A working shirt (not a t shirt, coz your not a slob) tucked in (coz ur not sloppy) to a pair of trousers (not too baggy, we aren’t teenagers) in to a pair of dress shoes (not slippers, we aren’t in the bathroom), will do. No tight shirts, no open buttons, no tight trousers.

But for girls? They have to wear a dress…a fucking DRESS?! That has a low neckline and high hemline? Revealing too much chest and too much legs. For work? Ok fine, that is an extreme example. How about fitting clothes, that are so tight. Why is it that straightcut grey slacks are not ‘professional’ but tightish pants which shows off curves are? Why is it that the top buttons must be undone in order to be considered professional? Since when did curves and all help to do the job? Why must clothes either be low cut or unbuttoned or figure hugging or short skirted or high side slit?!

I can understand if we are in certain industries. But hell, not in mine! And if it is a male boss, I can also see why she might be tempted to dress so. Although it just goes to show her character, as well as the company culture, and what they define the word merit as. But if it’s a female boss? Hell, whats her problem, is she a les or what?

Come on lets not claim ignorance here or whatever. Fact of life: girls look at cute guys. Fact of life: guys look at exposed flesh. i guess it is a valid point to desire to wear whatever one wants in the interest of not clamping ur style just coz of others' perversions, but does this not mean that ur ok with being oggled n lusted over? and knowing that that male colleague is peeking in places where his eyes are not supposed to be?

why must damn female bosses be so damn fussy? why cant they just let their female subordinates get away with long skirts, not tight clothes, and not revealing necklines?


Ok. This is doing nobody any good, so the ranting stops here.

Naive girls piss me off

It is a perpetual source of irritation to me that certain issues are not seen eye to eye between guys and girls.

I’ll name 2 here. One is a perpetual truth, and the second is something that was triggered quite recently.

1) Ask any guy especially those who have a brain, are perceptive and who are honest. Do you think a guy would be really nice to you if he had no designs? Will a guy really be super nice to you and be a super friend for 10 years if you were just a friend? There are only a very few specimens of such a species left crawling on this world. You are lucky enough to be reading the blog of one of them. *smirk*

2) It is an unshakeable truth proven through time that the search for sex is what gets males into trouble, and the search for ‘excitement, fun and thrills’ is what gets females into trouble.

Let’s elaborate.

Why do a bunch of males go on holiday together? Often it is the search for sex. They want to meet someone of a different background (be it race or creed), someone exotic, experience a romantic encounter; meet the perfect lady, etc. BUT no strings attached and when he leaves, he leaves her there. Basically, having a fantasy come true. Sometimes, of course, it is to experience the world, see the world, backpack, whatever. But given a chance for sex, these guys would take it in an instant. Although the original aim of the holiday was not to go for sex, but seizing it if the chance arose definitely is in the back of his mind. Hence, we can conclude that males on holiday are either looking for sex or will seize the chance for sex. And it is this that drives them to far out places, non mainstream commercialized tourist places, strange places, whatever, and it is these places, where people go missing on the regular and no one can trace them because it is impossible. So when males go off, they usually get robbed, or offend someone and get beaten, or get an organ harvested, or worse come to worse, get murdered.

With females, it is a little less blatant. No female will ever admit, even to each other, and often, even to themselves, that they are travelling in search of great sex. But sometimes, a spade is indeed a spade, haha, hence, sometimes they are not travelling to search for great sex. Let us examine why they travel. Ok, possible reasons include:

- have always seen/heard/read so much about it, hence want to go to place X
- want to do the kind of activities only place X allows
- want to live the kind of lifestyle possible in place X

Well, what is wrong with that, you ask. There is nothing inherently wrong with that. However, oftentimes, the kind of activities they want to do is the danger, not the idea of it. Say a girl goes out with the intention of getting laid. I have no problems with that. But there’s the other kind.

They like the idea of going to a place, meeting a bunch of people from other (supposedly more exotic places, hence a Nepalese or Bangladeshi is a definite no no, but a European or American..ahh..now THAT’S 'romantic' [as long as he is white]) countries, and then getting together and just chatting and chilling and hanging out, and then dancing together, going to parties, making them feel happy, high and desirable, and then, they just want to go home and rest, no strings attached.

I hate that. Call me a Chinaman, but I hate that.

It’s the stupidest dumb shit in the world. Girls like that THINK they are in control, and they just want to roll along and suck the fun out, and keep rolling and enjoying and sucking the fun and then when it gets a bit much, they want to backtrack reverse and go home. But they have not thought about the other party, have they?

And this is usually when rapes and ‘going too far’ situations happen, or violence, or worse still, they get conned off and drugged and then they are sold to become prostitutes in far off countries, usually Middle East or Eastern Europe, never to be seen or heard off again. And they cannot escape because they are reliant on the drugs fed to them, and those that are too brilliant, will just get killed. Who knows what kinda sadistic insane people are out there running an industry to suit some bizarre sadist fetishes?

Hmm…I don’t exactly know why I am so incensed with this. It is none of my concern. None of my business. I guess I am just angry that some people can be so dumb and stupid and na├»ve, and worse still, think they are actually in control, and think they can control a situation where there is another party involved.

How … naive.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Of trips and islands

I was looking forward to this business trip, up North, to Penang. Things were settling with Joanne, my progression with her and our relationship was progressing well and our plans to go to Sydney were being discussed on a much more concrete and solid basis, with our resignation dates all planned out. Career wise, things haven't been exactly roses, but keeping in mind the big picture, I was satisfied with its status and progress. Currently rolling out a national initiative that would soon place the entire distribution of our products directly under my control, I would then be able to use this platform to launch a drive into regional markets. Things were pretty much in control, happy, progressing well, and I had no complaints.

There is someone who was once a very big part of my past and was very important to me. However, that belonged to the past, we had our times and our era, but situations have changed and given the chances that we had to rectify things but let slip, there are no more chances as well. Feelings, the most important motivational factor for a relationship to have a reason to exist, is also gone. Hope is beyond reach. Trying to let her down as gently as possible, I have accelerated my attempts to point out to her the futility of her endeavours, and to tell her gently to move on and not waste her life pining for one who would never return, and to go and find someone whom can bring her the happiness she wanted but could not get from me. It is occurring to me that perhaps all this could be leading her on, and I think it is time to fully extricate myself, as holding on to the past is hampering the ability of the present and future to occur. Perhaps this is the biggest favor I can now do her, from a humane point of view, and given we had spent the better part of a decade together.

But my efforts and concentration and attention are now solidly on the present and future. Coming up here on this business trip, I was so looking forward to visiting Joanne's house and school where she grew up in and spent her formative (clearly presenting lots of experiences which shaped that character) years. Took the ferry over from the island to the mainland, and was filled with thoughts of those people in HK who take the ferry to the mainland, and to this Tony Parsons book where his character met his wife on one of those rides.

The ride was good, filled with good emotions, anticipation, memorable flitting in and out of possible novel plots ( my eternal wish: write a bestseller!) and was only occasionally interrupted by the Indian lady behind me rubbing her feet together while kicking my laptop. It was surely the most convoluted display of breastroke I've ever seen.

Dinner (albeit late) with Jo's mum went well, and it was great to feel her warmth and caring. Cullen was his usual sullen self, but I've come to expect it from Jo's cousins. Desmond is the one whom I really do care strongly about, and Cullen too, I am fond of him, but as for the Sydney siders, it is to my regret that I find no favour with those who find none with me. Yes, you can judge the sin, but you have to live your life by that Book upon which you strongly profess to be a strong upholder of it's Word. Really, let he who hath no sin cast the first stone, and let no man judge another man.

But nevermind.

So this was a good trip, and I truly did feel a slight thrill. Business trips always do that for me, though the last one down South was spoilt. But ah, anyway. This was was in the totally opposite direction, metaphorically and literally. Checked into the hotel, and had previous fantasies of taking a nice shower, a bath possibly, and wandering about with my laptop and perhaps sitting in the lounge or Coffeebean (that hot chocolate? It's to die for!) and typing away and blogging away. It's been a while since I have had this lifestyle of mobility and Internet access on the go with my laptop. And I miss it so!

In the end, more shattering revelations about my conduct and others' conduct and its implications on me altered the mood. And I ended up tapping away on the keyboard intermittently through the night, and now it is morning.

A hot bath (complete with jacuzzi, oh boy) later, and I shall post this off, from my room, before I head down to meet with Pat to continue Day 2 of work. Breakfast will be skipped, due to the lack of appetite.

Well, work beckons. Realities of life.

Irony

Life is sometimes quite ironic, and throws curveballs after curveballs at ye.

It was said, History is the consequence of characters meeting circumstances.

As an armchair critic, it is infinitely easy to sit there and poke holes and people, point fingers and take the horal high ground and claim what they would do if it was them. Sure. I also know what I would do if I was Adolf Hitler. The exact same as he. Coz then I'd BE him, shaped as he was.

Who is to say who is right and wrong? To really understand a man, it was said, get off that chair and walk a mile in his shoes. Then and only then have we earned that right to criticize.

It is a terrible thing, but yet possibly one that brings a sardonic smile to my emotionless lips right now, to find that attempts to spare everyone and let everything come to fruition as I have tried to let them know, is again, backfiring with dramatic consequences. In my efforts to bring about a peaceful resolution to the situation, yet again it has been realized (by myself) that my 'ends justify the means' tactic (which I unconsciously and unintentionally employed) is again hindering the arrival at the means. Trying to make things better and give what was promised and appease the parties involved, albeit dubious means, just dug the grave deeper.

Hence, efforts to bring about good endings have failed, and things must come to a head, a conclusion. And ironically, the endings have probably led to unintended endings and beginnings, and wrought irreversible damage on everyone.

What, oh what, have I done.

Of shut doors and padlocks

Everything was supposed to be perfect and beautiful.

But alas, it was not to be..

Methods that hadn't worked were discovered, more methods that were prescribed yielded the same results, and this last resort was attempted, and even this attempt was botched.

Hence there will be no further attempts. The door is shut.