Friday, April 24, 2009

A Rose by Any Other Name

"I like Madeleine," Jesse proclaimed of his choice for his baby sister's name. Mae and I are not convinced that he could be so sure, so we decide to throw him a few other suggestions.

"How about Madison?" I asked the boy. I actually did like this one. It is a very cool, very comtemporary name, I thought. "That's a silly name," Big Brother said with a chuckle. Mae concurred, shrugging her shoulders. Mother and Boy were right, of course. Most Malaysians are likely to think we named our kid Medicine - and no kid's name should ever be associated with sickness and suffering. There was also that little issue of how it would sound with our surname. Unfortunately, Madison Tan would sound like "Maddie Lays an Egg" in Mandarin. *sigh* And so this one was out.

"How about Elena?" Mommy asked. As a kid, she had always wished that someone had named her Elena. Of course, she probably also wished that someday a prince on a white horse would sweep her off her feet. And look where that got her. Nope, I didn't like Elena. Neither did Jesse.

After that, we were just throwing names just to see if he'd change his mind about Madeleine. "How about Augusta?" I offered. It was just a name from a list starting with A that I had found online. "That sounds like Octopus," the kid countered. And he just went on and on with his smart-alecky answers for every name we threw at him.

"Annette?" I suggested, reading from the list. "Annette is for catching butterflies," my clever little son said. And if my boy can catch a humour in that name, so will poor little Annete's school friends, subjecting her to a life of taunting and teasing.

It was one of our major criteria of rejection. No taunt-worthy names. We've known of too many people with names they parents must have chosen for them when high on drugs. Like poor little Diana Saw, or sad little Harry Kok, or poor little Chow Chee Beng.

So Madeleine it is. Sure, some cruel (but wildly creative) kid in school will probably think of something, but for now, we're happy to be calling her that.

Ah, Madeleine. Sounds like a nice French pastry. :)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Fat Hopes

"I know why you're trying to lose weight," the Wife said with a smart-alecky hmph, "Hmph!"

The fact is, I am.

When I hit my 30s, so did my waistline. And the way these things go, it just creeps up on you. One minute you're the kid everyone calls Bones, and the very next minute you're a tub of lard. I went from being a 50kg teenager, to a 60kg college boy, to a 75kg groom to a 91kg hippo during Chinese New Year this year.

For the last couple of years, I had been clocking in at 86kg - 88kgs. Wasn't going up, and I was certainly not getting any thinner. But then came CNY, the big-ass feast in my house, and I found myself at a whopping 91kgs. That's when I decided to shed some serious poundage. (But not before stuffing my face one last time on CNY leftovers, heh!)

Anyway, after weeks of counting calories, I'm now at 84kgs. It's That's 7 kgs down, but I'd really like to be 75kgs, or thereabouts. Or at least 80kgs by next month.

"You wanna be thin for your Baby Girl!" Mae said, as she laughed her ass off.

"Well, why not?" I asked the silly monkey woman. "Baby deserves to have a thin and handsome father."

Mae argues that Baby will never know the difference. But that's not true at all. Some day our little girl will grow up and when she gets her hands on her baby pictures, holding her in his skinny arms will be her thin and handsome Daddy. (Right next to her tubby Mommy, of course) Bwahahaahah!

It's probably time to hit the gym. Or I'll never hear the end of it.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Things You Never Wanna Hear

Trust me on this. There are some things you never, ever wanna hear your pregnant wife say.

Number 3
"Honey, can you bring home my placenta, once I deliver?"

What is the protocol for such a thing? Are they gonna bag it, tag it and let me take it back home with me? Or do I have to bring my own Tupperware?

Number 2
"Would you cook it for me?"

Seriously. Where does one even begin? I'm thinking, this is gonna need copious amounts of peppercorn and probably a whole lot of vinegar. Perhaps we can just take it like that, with some fava beans and a nice Chianti. Do they have anything on this on the Asian Food Channel?

Number 1
"You can eat some too."

Look, I am of the opinion that every woman deserves to be eaten by her man (or woman, I'm not judgemental about anyone's sexual orientation), but this is bordering on good taste and cannibalism. "No no no no no!" I protest. "I'll be good for your receding hairline," Mae hits me where it hurts. But no. I don't care if it turns me into frickin' Brad Pitt, I'm not having any, thank you very much.


I hear it's an acceptable practice to eat your woman's placenta in some parts of the world, simply because it's good for you, but the whole idea is just plain icky to me. What happens if I develop a taste for it? It'll bring fresh meaning whenever I tell the silly woman, "I love you". It'll be like an episode of True Blood, minus any of the coolness and all the beautiful people in it. And of course there is that small detail of eating a placenta as opposed to drinking blood.

Anyway, as I write this, I have a colleague who has stated in no uncertain terms that she wishes to be invited, when we eat my wife. And we talk about it as though we're discussing livestock. Hahah! This is my wife we're talking about, not some pig, dammit. (I'm fighting really hard not to make some clever remark here, just so that I can live to a ripe old age. Haha!)

So, would you or wouldn't you? State your case in the comments, kiddies!

ADDED: Placenta cooking tips, in case anyone's interested. :P

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Baby Wants Out

"Look, Look," Mae calls out to me excitedly pointing at her belly. She had pulled up her shirt to observe our little girl in action, and the little tyke did not disappoint.

Baby was moving about in the belly, her every move visible as she stretched her way around Mae's overtly bulbous belly. Every now and then, she'd even yank at the umbilical cord or something, causing Mommy's now protruded navel to sink back in. It was the weirdest thing! Just like that extra-terrestrial creature right before it popped out of John Hurt's stomach in Alien.

"She's always moving upwards too," Mae complains, "and that always makes me want to puke."

I think she wants to come out through Mommy's mouth. Either that or via the emergency hatch though Mae's belly button. Which explains why she keeps on yanking at the ejection seat lever.

This is gonna be one fiesty little monkey girl. Just the ideal companion for the agile little monkey boy we already have.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Out for a Stroller

We're in the market for a stroller when we stumbled upon this thing of beauty. The Quinny Zapp is a Dutch-made stroller that works with a car seat. And when Baby grows up some, just say "hey presto" (and pay another 900 bucks or so) and Quinny Zapp magically turns into a stroller for toddlers. Best of all, it folds into a really compact little package!

This is currently going for RM899 at Planeté Enfants, for the structure and the Maxi-Cosi infant car seat. RM899 is pretty pricey, but then again, it is both a stroller as well as a car seat. After all, a good infant car seat is about RM300 - RM400, and a baby stroller is about that much as well, which is the argument I make to Mae. Because I'm totally in awe of it, this wonderous thing of beauty and genius. So much so, you'd think I was getting into it.quinny-zapp

And later, we can add another 900 bucks or so, and Baby can get into if until she's 5 or 6. Or we could take the whole lot now for just RM1699, as opposed to its regular price of a little over 2 grand. But damn, even at RM 1699 it IS a lot of money to spend on a kid.

But I want it so badly. And by that, I mean I want it for my Baby so badly. Heh. So badly, that I'm willing to starve my sorry ass for a few months to make this happen. Should I?

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Budding Artist?


drawing inspiration?

Every since Jesse could hold a pencil without attempting to ingest the damn thing, he'd been drawing. And, for a five-year-old, I think he's got potential. Then again, I am his father and am allowed to be biased so you'll forgive me. :)

If he ever develops this skill, let it be known that he got it from my side of the family. The Tan family are genetically creative. Jesse great-grandpa, my grandad used to paint movie posters in Capitol Cinema in Taiping. Yeah, way back before large-format printers, this stuff was hand-drawn, and my grandpappy was the man to do it. My uncle is also an accomplished artist, and Mom was always good in sketching and craft. I inherited a little of it too, which put me in my present vocation as a graphic designer. Jesse's Uncle Steve is also a pretty good artist, while his Uncle Jeff is... erm... well... a nice guy. Heh.

The shot above is the boy's sketch of his hero, Bruce Lee. He's put in quite a bit of detail here. Bruce has got hair, angry arched eyebrows, a mouth, 2 nostrils and five digits on each hand. He's also made sure to give Bruce Lee two nipples and a belly button. Hahahah! You can't teach stuff like this! No parent ever told his kid, "Hey, draw some nipples in there, and don't forget that bulge in his pants!" Nope, it's gotta come from his own observation.

Jesse also does a mean Iron Man. Yeah, that's my boy. :)