Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Sweet Chariot

red riding hoodlum

On Saturday, I collected my new ride.

As I drove her away from the showroom, there was this little sense of awe that crawled up my spine like the elastic band of a cheap underwear. Sure, the car was pretty amazing, but that wasn't quite the reason why I felt the way I did. Okay, okay, maybe a little. But mostly, I just felt like a lucky sonuvabitch blessed.

A car is a symbol. For some folks, cars represent status. For others, it signifies freedom and independence. And there are those who consider their cars an extension of their genitalia. Small penis? Nevermind, get a big fancy car. Heh! But for most of us working stiffs, a car is a milestone - a reward for not quitting early.

Together with a bunch of friends I have been working for myself and now, eight years on, I have a nice little car to show for it. As you can probably tell by now, I must not be terribly successful at what I do. Otherwise I'd be swimming in money, and getting driven by some fancy single-digit number plate German car by some tall blonde Swedish chick named "Hands-On" Helga. *ahem*

Still, it ain't half bad and I am grateful. Grateful that we weathered some pretty big storms along the way. Grateful for the opportunity to do our own thing. Grateful, even for the crash of '97 that left us out on the streets with nothing and no choice but to start all over. Grateful that our work has always put food on the table - sure it's not champagne and caviar, but we're never hungry (*ahaks*). And of course, grateful for the new ride - and oh, what a sweeeet ride.

Someone up there is definitely watching out for me. Sing with me now... swing low, sweet chariot...

Friday, January 20, 2006

Meme of Four

I've been avoiding memes lately. But when Minishorts gives you a meme, you'd wish you were dead you do it. So here goes.

4 jobs you've had in your life
Construction Worker
English Teacher (ahaks*)
Graphic Designer

4 movies you could watch over and over
The Shawshank Redemption
A Better Tomorrow
Back to the Future
Timecop (shut up!)

4 TV shows you love(d) to watch
American Idol (it's back, yaaay!)
The Simpsons

4 places you've lived
Petaling Jaya

4 places you've been on vacation to
Medan, Indonesia
Adelaide, Australia
Phuket, Thailand
Hong Kong

4 places you would rather be
At home watching TV
Sungai Wang (don't ask)
In the cinema
Any 5-star hotel

4 of your favourite foods
Char Kuey Teow
Paan Mein
Cha Soba
Salmon Sashimi

4 websites you visit daily

4 tagged
Bonnie (new kid on the blog)
Stevo (evil sibling)
Gina (dumbass - hahaha!)
You (yes, you)

Thank God it wasn't Meme of 24. :P

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Nanny Cam

It's 4:20am. I'm watching The Practice and eating tapioca chips. I'd go back to bed but I suspect the kid will wake up for milk soon. For some reason, he's stopped eating his solids again. He might be teething. In any case, feeding him can be infuriating, especially since he can now express himself in the negative by shaking his little head vigorously, going, "Nonononono..."

It's so frustrating that I sometimes wanna grab a handful of porridge and stuff it in his face. Heh. And he's my kid. Can you imagine if he were not? I sometimes worry that Roma might vent her frustration by bopping him on the head when we're not watching. Or worse.

Which is why I'm in the market for a NannyCam. Any suggestions, anyone?

Monday, January 16, 2006


Today, on the way back from lunch, I was confronted by a young Chinese fella selling durians. The guy waves a fruit in my face and asks, "You wanna buy my durians, Uncle?"


That's life for you. One minute you're young, hip and happening; and the very next moment, some 20-something year old durian seller is calling you Uncle. And I wasn't even wearing anything Uncle-ish. Then again, I'll have to admit, I'm no longer in touch with what's cool and what's not. *sigh*

Anyway, the whole episode has led me to conclude that I missed the part where I grew old. Until durian guy pointed it out to me, of course. So I guess many people grow old but don't realise it. Those are the ones you see wearing the latest teenybopper fashion despite the fact that they're in their 40s. Those are the ones who buy Porsches despite having just celebrated their 60th birthday. Those are the very same ones who wear sleveless t-shirts and plenty of silver, sport a pony tail and ride down the highway on their Harleys. I have this to say: It's never a great idea to wear sleveless t-shirts when your age spots are showing.

Take it from me. From one uncle to another.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Goodbye Big Blue

ticket to ride

A couple of weeks ago, we bade farewell to our blue breadtruck.

Mae and I got our blue Citroen Berlingo during the Boxing Day of 2002. It was our first car as husband and wife, and after having spent a small fortune getting married and moving in together, it was all we could afford. Before Big Blue, I drove a cool Citroen ZX. It was a wonderful car but it was also falling apart - costing quite a bit to repair. And since no one would take in our ZX, we went back to Citroen who welcomed us with open arms.

Big Blue wasn't a cool car. You'd be forgiven if you thought Mae and I were in the confectionary business. And it wasn't terribly fast too. But it was a fun car and it served us well. We brought home Jesse's baby cot in it. We bought tons of groceries with it. We carried furniture in it. It was a heckuva spacious car that ran on very little gas.

So when we decided to let it go, we let Jesse get in the front seat one last time. He always loved getting in the driver's seat since there was so much to do there. And so he got up front and did his thing - flicking the switches, turning the steering wheel and fiddling with the stereo. Finally, we took him out and explained to him that we'd be selling the car. When he waved bye-bye to the car, it was almost heartbreaking. *sigh*

So yeah, Big Blue is now in the hands of her new owner. Our new ride comes next week. Hopefully.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

A Day at the Salon


Finally, at long last, Jesse gets his first haircut (Technically, Grandma had the first snip but let's never talk about that ever again). The boy had started to look Ozzy Osbourne and that can never be a good thing. And so we took him to the neighbourhood salon for a trim. Mae held him, while hairclips held his attention.

It was quick and painless for all concerned - except for Mae. The boy refused to have that big plastic sheet wrapped around him and so Mommy had to endure bits of the boy's hair all over her. As you can imagine, she was itching all over by the time he was done.

So yeah, we had a haircut and survived. The stylist did an okay job. She was able to sneak in a snip or two everytime Jesse was distrated and was all done in under 15 minutes. Clever girl. And cute too... *ahem*

The boy! I mean the boy. With the new hair and all. Heh.

Thursday, January 5, 2006

The Art of Manipulation

16 months. It's that age where kids have just begun to know what makes you tick. And Jesse knows.

"If I cry like this, maybe they'll let me flick that light switch a couple of times. Ah yes, it works. Suckers!!! Maybe if I cry some more, they'll let me fire up the gas stove."

And pretty soon, your kid is operating heavy machinery.

Fortunately for us, Jesse is a pretty lousy actor. You can actually see right through his fakery. He'd pull his face into twisted, convoluted expression of sorrow and let out the most fake-ish cry. For effect he might even crouch over some low furniture, striking a pose of tragic melancholy, resting his brow upon his forearm. Somedays the little monkey would even struggle to generate a crocodile tear or two. And somedays, he'd actually succeed.

How do kids know exactly what to do to get their own way? It boggles the mind. Do they learn this along the way? Or did the Art of Manipulation come with their original programming? This is a serious bug in the software.

For parents, the only recourse is a system re-boot. Though a boot to the butt is probably just as effective.

Wednesday, January 4, 2006

Ugh! It's 2006!

We woke up one morning and, lo and behold, it was 2006 already!

Mae and I pretty much slept right through the turn of the year this time around. We didn't stay up for fireworks. We didn't drink wine and eat cheese. Or run through an endless chorus of "Auld Lang Syne". Or do whatever else people do to usher in the new year. Instead, we slept.

Yup, our new year celebrations have been the same for the last few years. Fact is, after we turned 30, there was only so much we could do without feeling the ravages of time on our bones. Compounded to the fact that Mae and I are neither athletic nor healthy in our lifestyle, we just burn out pretty quickly these days. Yes, the wild party animal inside of me has been laid to rest for awhile now.

So what's the big deal about yet another new year? It's just a marker that we're another year closer to the grave. Hahah. So, no thanks, we're not celebrating the new year. We will, however, celebrate the close of another year. After all, surviving yet another year unscathed must surely be reason to celebrate.

So, happy new year, people. Glad you made it. :)