Showing posts with label contemplations. Show all posts
Showing posts with label contemplations. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Reprise

It appears I'm back to not blogging again. And so this is a quick fix to that problem. Sort of an instant redemption thing.

I recently met a blogger who told me he makes it a point to blog often. He's a pretty busy guy, doing sales and all, so he manages some time in between appointments. So far, it's worked out pretty well for him.

But me, I'm anal. I like to nitpick at the stuff I write, going over the sentences again, tweaking it a little here and there, molding it and crafting it. I like it to read just quite right, so anyone reading can grasp the meaning, as well as the emotions attached. Can't help myself, really. It's a career habit.

But today I'm gonna try not to do that. Or at the very least, let some of it slide. Like, despite how that last paragraph makes me sound like some wanky aging hipster wannabe, I'm gonna let it slide.

Ah, the hazards of speed blogging.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Calling Alvin!

I've been thinking; how is it that there are so many Chinese guys out there named Alvin? It boggles the mind.

I know no less than 10 Alvins - in all their many permutations of the name. There is the original Alvin. And then there's Alwin and Alwyn. And Elvin, of course. I also know an Alvern. And perhaps the most unique of them all, Alwynt. (I swear I'm not making this up.)

Somewhere along the Chinese anthropology, we decided that good ol' Ah Fook, Ah Keong and Ah Beng are just not cool enough. And so Chinese parents went looking for cool name to tag onto their kids. And we probably got some of these names from the Bible (the Christian names, as we used to call them), and a whole lot from Hollywood and other popular culture.

Which brings us right back to the question, where in the world did Alvin come from? As far as I know, I never read about an Alvin in biblical times. If he did indeed exist, he sure as heck didn't do anything important enough to be mentioned. Which leaves us with pop culture. There are only two Alvins that I'm aware of. There's Alvin the chipmunk, and Alvin Stardust who sang one sappy hit song in the 80s.

Surely your parents didn't name you after a chipmunk, did they? And who listens to Alvin Stardust anyway?

So Alvin, can you ask your parents?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Launching

The heavy oakwood doors swung open to Launch Complex 13A. Flight Director Mae Khoo steps onto the Mezzanine and pauses as she surveys the command centre, her team looking up from the floor below.

At 38, Mae cuts an imposing, although lately, a somewhat rubenesque figure. To commemorate the momentous day ahead, she wore dark slacks, a crisp white shirt and her signature white vest which her mother had made. Although crudely put together with low quality fabrics, likely a fashion disaster on a lesser female, Mae was a handsome woman who wore everything well.

She took a deep breath and walked to her command post. She switched on the console before her and put on her headset as a million little bulbs lighted up on the control panel.

"Project Madeleine flight controllers, listen up," she spoke sternly over the headpiece, "Susanna, give me a status report and the rest of you, a Go, or No-Go for launch!"

"Project Madeleine is stocked, docked and locked,"
reported Dr Susanna Huam, the head of Project Diagnostics, over the intercom, "we are Go for launch."

"Guidance?"

"We are Go, Flight"
confirmed Guidance Director Vivienne as she flicked her thumb up.

"What's the status over at Backup ?"

"Affirmative!"

"Domestic Maintenance?"

"Yes Maam, we are Go."

"Camera"

"Yes, Maam," came the crisp reply, "Camera is all set for launch!"

"How about you, Support?"

"Yes,"
replied Fraternal Support Department representative, Jesse Tan. It was his first launch as Head of Support and you could hear the nervous anticipation in his voice. "We are go, Flight," he affirmed forcefully, determined to make the his mark on the team. Mae smiles at the rookie and gave him an appreciative nod.

"Transport?"

"Transport is Go, Flight Director."

"Finance?"

"All accounted for, Flight"

"Over to you, Management,"
said Flight Director Mae as she prepared to call the launch codes. She flicked some switched as she waited. This was the last confirmation she sought. However, she was met with silence.

"Management?" she repeated. "What the heck's going on down there at Management?"

"We're... um..."

"Speak up, man,
" snapped Flight over the intercom, "are we Go or No Go?"

"Um..."
a voice at the other end trailed, "well, can we... um... we're not... um..."

"What is it this time?"
Mae barks into the microphone.

Project Management was most crucial for launch, and yet it was run by the most incompetent slob in the team. If ever there was a screw up, Mae could usually track it down to this department. And there had been plenty. Finance was stretched thin, thanks to this guy. Thankfully they managed to pull through at the last minute. There was also a lot of indecision on his part where Transport was concerned. And Support got very little support from this asswipe. Then there was the issue with Camera which almost resulted in Camera's absence from the project. And now this; right at the brink of launch, Project Management was not ready, probably due to something trivial, Mae thought.

"Answer me now, Management," Mae yelled, "don't make me come there and abuse your inner child!"

"I... I... I..."
the Head of Project Management replied, his face blue and his hands clutching at his crotch, his knees shaking vigorously, "I gotta pee."

...........................................................


4 days before the big day. Or anytime now, the doctor says. I'm nervous. Can you tell?

Monday, April 6, 2009

Out for a Stroller

quinny
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?

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Bad Moon Rising

I was reading in the papers today about a sudden appearance of thousands of mudskippers in Gurney Drive. Apparently, some experts think that this is an indication of the cleanliness of the beaches in Gurney.
GEORGE TOWN: Penang’s famed Gurney Drive has a new slippery attraction for locals and tourists – thousands of spotted brown mudskippers can be seen flipping and hopping around the 100m-long mudflat just beyond the embankment wall over the past several months. The presence of the amphibious fish is believed to be a telling sign of the cleanliness-level in the coastline.
So, thousands of these little buggers are here cos it's so clean? Or is there, perhaps, another reason? How about the 400 dead turtles washed up on Bangladesh's beaches just last week?
Dhaka, Feb 10 (APP): Thousands of dead sea turtles are found being washed ashore along the coastal lines from Cox’s Bazar to St Martin’s island in the Bay of Bengal with bruises all over their bodies. The mass circulation Daily Star, quoting locals in Cox’s Bazar reported Tuesday, over 400 female dead turtles have floated ashore over the last two weeks alone. Experts say that these turtles meet their death as they travel the stretch of nearly 120 kilometres from Sonadia Island in Cox’s Bazar to St Martin’s island to lay eggs on the shore.
And it doesn't end there. Hawaii's got some stuff up their beaches too. Although it's a monthly affair, it's a little creepy that suddenly 700 jellyfishes are washed ashore.
HONOLULU - Officials closed Hanauma Bay on Wednesday morning because of the monthly influx of box jellyfish that washed onto Oahu's south shore beaches. About 700 jellyfish were found on Waikiki Beach with another 100 on Ala Moana Beach Park, according to the city's Ocean Safety and Lifeguard Services Division.
I dunno about you, but I'm starting to think that perhaps our seafood is trying to tell us something. Philippines's got a phenomenon too with dolphins.
Manila, Feb 10 (Xinhua) More than 100 dolphins were found stranded at the coast of a northern Philippine town early Tuesday, the local media reported.
It doesn't end there. Dead whale in France! And this was just 2 days ago.
CHERBOURG (AFP) — A French fisherman found the corpse of a humpback whale caught up in his net, excited conservationists said Monday, noting that the species is extremely rare in Channel waters. "It's a historic moment for the region. You could count the number of humpback sightings off France over the past two centuries on your fingers," said Gerard Muger, of the Cotentin Whale Studies Group in Normandy.
And just 2 weeks back, hundreds of live fighting conch shells wash ashore in Florida.
It looked like an amazing phenomenon on Bonita Beach, but it was really just a quirk of nature. Hundreds of live fighting conch shells washed up on the sand this morning. Many were flapping their hard, dark foot as if signaling for help. The shells lined the beach along the dry sand and the wet sand just above the water line while even more rolled in the shallow surf just inches from the beach. “I’ve never seen it like this,” said Paul Salay of Bonita Springs, who said he regularly visits the beach.
I got a bad feeling somethings going down. It's too much of a coincidence for these things to be happening within just two weeks. I remember reading reports of marine life being washed ashore just before the Boxing Day Tsunami of '04, and I'm thinking that perhaps these events over the last couple of weeks may be some kind of warning sign.

I'm staying the hell away from beaches.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Politics

Let me first declare right here, right now that I am possibly the worst candidate for politics. So, if anytime in the future I should ever attempt to take office anywhere, you can print out this blog entry to make banners or placards to discredit me and destroy my campaign.

I have never seen 10 million bucks in my life. Heck, I've never even seen a million. But I'm pretty sure that if you offered me 10 million buckaroos, I'll gladly jump ship. In fact, for half the amount, on top of defecting, you can spank my ass and call me Mary if that's what pleases you.

Hmm. Maybe I am cut out for politics after all.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Old Guy

Old Guy


While waiting for my car to be repaired, I decided to take a quick breakfast at a Mamak Stall. When I got there, a little Chinese old man gestured to me to sit in front of him, and so I did. I have no idea why I did that, thought at the time I thought what harm could it do?

From what little conversation we had, it turns out that this Uncle lives in Jalan Ipoh, and every morning he'd hitch a ride all the way to Jalan Chan Sow Lin. It wasn't much of a conversation, since he didn't answer most of what I asked him but instead offered random bits of information. Like how Chinese New Year was 5 days away. Or how everyone should carry their IDs with them or risk getting arrested.

He also gave me the low down on public transportation fares. RM4.70 gets you on a bus to Seremban. RM70 is you take a cab. RM30 used to take him to Singapore where he used to work. But that was pretty much all the conversation we had, which he kept repeating, like how old folks are wont to do.

A hard-boiled egg cost 70sen at this mamak, so my new friend tells me. He then asks if I would treat him to one, to go with his Roti Canai and Kopi-O Ais. I obliged, of course. After all, how could you refuse a face like this. I did, however, evade when he casually hinted that no one had given him any Angpows for the Chinese New Year. I also took evasive action when he mentioned that he'd like a Chicken Rice lunch later. I thought that perhaps Uncle had identified me as his sucker of the day, for the day. (What can I say, I'm both cheap and cynical!)

When I got up to leave, I decided that I would pay for his whole breakfast and so I gestured the Mamak Guy over and asked him to charge me for Uncle's breakfast as well. But Mamak Guy would have none of it. Turns out that Uncle gets his complimentary Roti Canai and Kopi-O Ais from this Mamak Stall. Every single morning.

It humbled me. And completely restored my faith in mankind. Also made me feel pretty shitty about not buying him a Chicken Rice meal and an Angpow. (Although I rationalised that it was not CNY yet! Heh!)

Perhaps I'll try and bump into him this New Year and maybe give him an Angpow. And if conditions permit, a Chicken Rice meal.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Feeling The Love

Today, it was my turn again to pick Jesse up from school. I was running 15 minutes late and was still only on the way. And so I call the wife for a consult.

"Oh my God," the wife mocks me. "You're such a lousy father!" she said with an evil cackle. She was having a field day getting back at me.

Meanwhile, I was a little worried that my boy might start to panic when I didn't show up at 11:45 am. People say kids have this inner clock that tells them when their lousy fathers are late, which in turn launches them into a panic attack. But thankfully, Jesse was all happy and cheery when he saw me. But I figured I would explain myself anyway.

"Daddy was doing so much work," I explained. I further went on to assure him I did the best I could. He listened intently. "Daddy ran to the car like a crazy person and quickly drove here to pick Jesse up!"

He looked up at me, whimpered like a grateful little puppy and cradled my left arm, nesting his head upon it appreciatively. Then he smiled as he repeated after me, "Daddy ran like a crazy person to pick Jesse up". And with that little gesture I could truly feel the love.

My little boy loves me for just showing up. *sniff*

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

True Lies

"Ko-Ko Norman kicked me," Jesse lamented, "and I'm very upset."

Mommy had taken Jesse along with her to a friend's place and our little boy had been looking forward to it all day. Norman is 3 years older than Jesse, but he's a sweet little boy who had always accommodated Jesse. That is, until yesterday. Apparently.

"Norman didn't kick," Anie, our maid explained. As it turns out, Norman didn't touch our boy. He had merely refused to let Jesse play with one item in his stash and our son was miffed. I turned to Mae for confirmation and despite not being on the scene, she too felt that was probably what happened.

This troubles me.

Is our son framing Norman? Was Jesse so pissed off that he decided to seek revenge by framing an innocent kid? Where did he even learn to do that? He's barely 4!! Or could there be some truth to his story? I questioned him over and over and yet, he maintains his story.

I'm at a loss at how best to handle this. What if he was telling the truth? Shouldn't a father give his own son the benefit of the doubt? On the other hand, if I did believe him and he was lying, would this be the start of his life of crime?

*sigh* I don't know what to do. Maybe a little Chinese Water Torture will get some truth out of the boy.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Unremembered

jesse-daddy-0308
carbon copy?


I've been away from home too long.

There was the whole crazy couple of months of nights in the office. There was the company trip to Bali. And even when I touched down at KLIA on Monday at 6:30am, I came right back to work shortly after. And I have been at work since.

Last night was an all-nighter. And right about 6am this morning, I started to lose my mind a little, so I took a stroll around the office building. As I did, I thought about my little family. There was Mae, the wife. Long hair. Lovely complexion (most times). Strong nose. Nice eyes. Tall, almost my height. Slender. And sexy, as long as she doesn't wear those purportedly comfortable but definitely hideous checquered shorts she likes to wear at home.

Then I thought about Jesse. And suddenly, my mind just drew a blank. The wheel was stuck and the hamster inside was probably dead. I thumped the side of my head to reboot. I tried Alt-Ctrl-Del but nothing worked. Try as I might, I couldn't remember what my poor little boy looked like. Not at all. I got the name right, but the face just wasn't registering.

I panicked.

Thankfully I always kept a couple of his passport photos in my wallet. I flipped the billfold and there he was, just like I (can't) remember him. And then I quickly went back to my computer to look at our shots together.

*sigh* I don't think I can make up. Not ever. Looks like I'm gonna be wrapped around his little finger for eternity.

I gotta get my ass home.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Lim Kit Siang vs. Chee Cheong Fun

Haha. Okay, so the title is a little sensationalist but it pretty much sums up my first encounter with the man.

The year was 1988 (or thereabouts, I can't rightly remember). It was teatime on a weekday and I was just stepping out of my house to buy Chee Cheong Fun when I noticed a commotion down the street. A crowd was building along Harrison Street, Taiping where I lived.

"Cheebye!" I called out to my neighbour. His real name was Chee Wai, but I was 17 at the time and at that age, it was entertaining to make fun of people's names. "What the hell's going on?" I enquired, seeing as to how he was making a beeline towards the DAP office near our homes.

"Lim Kit Siang is out of prison!" he called back to me, "let's go!".

"Nah," I scoffed, "Today, I'm voting for Chee Cheong Fun." I was always more epicural than political. *sigh*

That night, I discovered that Lim Kit Siang has been in prison for some ISA charge. I also found that the man had been going in and out of Kamunting through the course of his political career. The selfish bastard that I was, I could never understand why anyone would risk jail for their beliefs. But like I said, I was 17 at the time and not too bright.

Today I have grown to respect Lim Kit Siang and his colleagues in the Opposition, if not for their person, then at the very least, their tenacity to keep fighting. The rewards have been a few, and yet they soldier on. So I thought, on this occasion of our 12th Election, I'd like to dedicate this song to Lim Kit Siang and the rest of you Opposition fellas out there:
ROCKETMAN - Elton John

She packed my bags last night, preflight
Zero hour, nine a.m.
And I'm gonna be high
As a kite by then

I miss the earth so much
I miss my wife
It's lonely out in space
On such a timeless flight

And I think it's gonna be a long, long, time
'Til touchdown brings me 'round again to find
I'm not the man they think I am at home
Ah, no no no...
I'm a rocket man
Rocket man
Burnin' out his fuse
Up here alone

Mars ain't the kind of place
To raise your kids
In fact, it's cold as hell
And there's no one there to raise them
If you did

And all this science
I don't understand
It's just my job
Five days a week
A Rocket Man
Rocket Man
I think it's quite the appropriate song for the Rocketman himself. Just so you know some of us appreciate. :)

ADDENDUM
I figured I should link it here cos it's a really wonderful song. Three versions: Kate Bush's, voted the best cover version of all times; a really weird one by William Shatner, and of course the original.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Lost

On Friday I lost my mobile phone.

I was sitting at the Caffe Cino outlet in KL Hilton discussing work. The damn phone must have fallen out my of pocket as I sat there on the sofa. I left the place and realised this as soon after I drove out of the parking lot. I immediately turned back, parked my car and ran up to the place. Needless to say, the phone was gone.

I enquired at the establishment but no one had reported a lost and found mobile phone. I made calls but no one answered. At one point someone did, but did not speak. Instead I was treated to a surround sound of the inside of someone's pocket.

So there. My phone was gone and quite possibly, someone in Hilton had found it but had decided to keep it. I'd expect this at Rumah Tumpangan Kiew Kiew (not that I ever go to someplace named Rumah Tumpang Kiew Kiew), but this was the Hilton, dammit.

But perhaps my expectation of the establishment is unrealistic. After all, the tone and manner of the place did take a dip when their famous heiress spent a few nights in the slammer. Heh.

The phone was a Nokia 6280. It's pretty worn out. But I cherish it, simply for the fact that it took plenty of pictures, many of which are still inside the phone. So... um... if you happen to spot any pictures of me with Cecelia Cheung or Gillian Chung on the internet, please destroy them. Do NOT forward to Mae!!!

Seriously though, I have pictures of my family in there. *sigh* I actually sent an SMS to my phone to appeal to the finder to mail my memory card back to me. But I am not hopeful, cos you can't expect a dishonest person to do the right thing, can you?

BTW, some of you might wanna SMS me your numbers.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

The Showtime That Almost Never Was

This is gonna be a long one. Hopefully the headers make it more readable.

Children like routines. That's what most parenting books will tell you. Because in routine is consistency and stability - all the things a child need to feel secure. Jesse is a textbook example of this. And quite unfortunately so.

Sunday was a big day for the boy. It was his kindie's year end concert and he was going as Prince Charming. But it would also be a day that breaks all conventions with him.

UNFAMILIARITY BREEDS CONTEMPT
First, he was going to school at 6:30pm. And he wasn't in uniform. And the "school" is also at our spanking new church building where the concert was being held. It was all too much for the poor boy to take in.

I had dropped Mae and Jesse off to park my car. When I called to find out where she was, I heard a child crying in the background. "Oh God, please don't let that be my child," I thought to myself. But God likes to mess with me every now and then. *sigh*

By the time he was ushered away to the kiddie seats in the hall, and we were seated amongst other parents he was still sobbing away - presumably because he thought we had abandoned him. And for the next two hours as show went on to entertain parents and kids alike, Jesse was okay one minute, and pining for his parents the next. I was miserable. Mae was miserable. And poor Jesse was probably the most miserable of all.

SMALL DECISION, BIG DECISION
Throughout the course of that time, I was two minds about what I should do. Do I spare him the misery by whisking him away, and also deprive him the opportunity to appear up onstage as he had so longed to do? (My boy lives for attention, I swear!) Or do I let him be and hope he's all okay by showtime? It was the simplest of decisions, yet this one tore me apart.

I decided to leave him be. Mae and I even stayed hidden as the toddler troupe passed up by to get up onstage. By then, his love for showbiz had surpassed his melancholy, and our boy proudly galloped onstage in full royal regalia.

I beamed with pride as I saw my little boy up on stage with his classmates, waving to the crowd. And like every idiotic parent, I was up there snapping photos of my boy with Jesse's Uncle Jeff in tow. That was when he spotted us.

A BURSTING DAM
"Teacher Lavender," he called out excitedly, loud enough for me to hear, "it's Daddy and Uncle Jeff!" But the discovery of his long lost Daddy was too much for him to bear, and there in front of the audience, I saw his composure slowly cracking. "Daddy is proud of you!" I cried out to encourage him. I probably would have made a fool of myself if weren't for the commotion of the crowd drowning me out, but I didn't give a shit. My boy needed to hear something encouraging.

He sucked it all in for as long as he could, until they led his group offstage. I made may way through the crowd in the most dramatic fashion, like one of those old Chinese movies where a father and son are reunited amidst a madding crowd. I knelt down and he ran towards me, jumped up on me, put his arms around my neck and cried buckets and buckets of tears.

"I wanna go home, Daddy," he sobbed. I told his teacher, then whisked him off to his legion of adoring grandparents, uncles and aunties who had come to see him. It didn't take him long to be a happy child once again.

LIKE FATHER, LIKE SON
Jesse is a little highly strung, and Mae and I have come to acknowledge this. Even so, this was a little puzzling to Mae. But it was all familiar to me. "I chickened out on my kindergarten concert as a kid," I told Mae. "Really?" she replied, and added, "shit." Or so I imagine.

But Jesse is way ahead of me. I never got onstage all those years back. But that, I will tell you more in another post.

That night, or poor little boy tossed and turned. "I wanna go home," he cried in his sleep, a few times over. Not even his nasty fall and the surgery had such an impact on him. I can only imagine what he must have gone through that night at his concert. :(

Friday, October 26, 2007

Mother-In-Law Day

Apparently, today is Mother-In-Law day, according to the Mix.FM. Some people say it's the 4th Sunday in October. Me, I'm just amused that there is a day to commemorate mothers-in-law. I wonder who decided it would be a good idea for a Mother-In-Law day. I'll bet it's somebody's mother-in-law. It certainly feels like the kind of thing a mother-in-law would think up. Just imagine:

Wife: Honey, aren't we gonna take Mom out for dinner this Mother-In-Law Day?
Hubby: Erm... I was thinking perhaps we should take my mom out.
Wife: You know I don't get along with your mother.
Hubby: This is the woman who brought your husband up, dammit!
Wife: I've lived with my mom all my life too.
Hubby: Believe me, I know the pain she must have gone through cos I live it everyday!!!
Wife: Well, if it's any consolation, at least your mother-in-law isn't a witch like mine!

This is just a dramatization from my warped mind. I assure you Mae and I have wonderful mothers-in-law. In any case, I doubt if we'll celebrate the day. It's yet another sneaky attempt to empty our pockets.

Monday, October 8, 2007

More Monday Blues

Today was just like any other day, except that it was special. As I got out of my car to go to work, there it was right before me, a hot steaming pile of dogshit. I hesitated, and then navigated myself carefully around it. This was an omen, if ever there was one. And the day went downhill from there.

I was sick over the weekend. What pisses me off, is that the effects of flu is so much more pronounced these days now that I'v passed the mid-30 mark. And the other thing that pisses me off about getting sick is that, for some sick twisted reason, I only seem to fall sick on Friday evening and conveniently recover enough on a Sunday night.

What gives, man?!? It's bad enough that I didn't manage to goof get a break from work, I actually get well enough to get my sorry ass back to work. Except that, I'm not well enough to feel great. Plus, I have this cocktail of pills to keep me drugged up and groggy for most of the day, except that I'm not doped up enough to be oblivious to the torture that is my Monday morning.

Afternoon comes, and along with it, a raging forest fire I have to put out at work.

And then, Mae calls. Jesse is down with high fever. "I think I'm coming down with something too." I know immediately that I must have spread some of my weekend cheer around.

At six, she calls again, and tells me that she is so deathly ill that she can't possibly drive home from my mother-in-law's house. Yes, Mae has always been a tad melodramatic about things but since this was my own undoing, I resolved to do the right thing. I would have to pick my family from MIL's.

I packed my Macbook into my bag and dragged my feet off into the sunset, muttering curses at my misfortunes. I sat in the car, my right foot still out the door and started the engine. And like one of those flashback sequences in the movies, the events of the day played out in reverse order in my mind - right to the very moment that I had arrived at work earlier in the day.

Instinctively, I glanced at pile of dog poo that had greeted me in the morning. Like me, it too had had a terrible day. What was once a proud random sculpture of dog excrement had now been reduced to a downtrodden pile of shit. As much as I hate to admit it, I felt a tinge of what can only be accurately described as schadenfraude, knowing that some idiot somewhere had stepped into shit.

Until I discovered, to a mix emotion of joy and horror, that I was that very idiot. And the evidence was written all over the sole of my right shoe. That disgusting pile of shit had waited all day to get me and it got me good. *sigh*

There was something strangely poetic about all of this, but it's hard to be poetic about shit. Still, if you feel so inclined, there's the comment box. :)

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

When Your World Turns to Shit

A few months ago, I blogged about this fella in my condo who jumped of his 4th floor apartment after a heated argument with his wife. He left behind a wife and two kids.

Yesterday, the family was in the news again.

The wife had moved out of the apartment shortly after. I supposed it must have been difficult to continue living in the place of their tragedy. Anyway, the family moved to a shophouse somewhere in Kepong. They also rented out a room to another young lady.

Yesterday morning, the ladies were found brutally murdered. They had been raped and stabbed. Her kids, hiding in their room were spared. But they were not spared the terrible trauma of seeing their mother get killed.

In just three short months, the kids has lost both their parents in the worst possible ways. I shudder to think how that must affect them. The kids will be living with a relative now. I hope they will turn out okay. I wonder how we can, as a society, help them.

We live in a pretty shitty world, and we could all use a little help now and then.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Riding the Dream Train

Jesse loves trains. Mae and I decided that the boy would probably get a big kick out of riding on one, so we decided that we'd take a day out on the town by train. Expectedly, the boy loved it.



This was his maiden voyage on the LRT. Since then, we've taken the train a few more times. And I expect we'll be doing the train thing for another few years until he outgrows the whole thing.

Judging by his reaction, it's a dream come true for the boy. And all for just RM1.60. At his age, it's not difficult to make his dreams come true, especially since most of his dreams probably involve trains, Spiderman, elephants and birthday cakes. His wishes are gonna get tougher to fulfill as he gets older, when they start involving foreign countries, beautiful women and fast cars.

So, for now, we'll try out best to make sure he comes close to living out his dreams. At least then when he grows up, Mae and I can always say, "Hey boy, we did all kindsa stuff for you and now you'll have to love us for all eternity!"

I think I'm gonna go write a parenting book or something. Heh.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Last Rites

Apparently, Nirvana's Memorial Park in Semenyih is a really big deal. At least that what Mae tells me. For some reason, she keeps tab on these things.

Mae tells me enthusiastically, "It's so beautiful and grand that..."

"That you wished you were dead?"
I interjected matter-of-factly. Heh. But there is much wisdom in my wit. *ahem*

Ok. So you're dead. And your family buries you in a lovely plot of land with zen garden-themed landscaping, a cascading waterfall and a 30-foot statue of yourself erected in your memory. So what? It's not like you're gonna enjoy any of it. Besides, you'll really just be taking up precious space on the earth.

Me, when I finally go, I'm going down in flames. Literally.

I tell Mae, when I'm dead and gone, I'd just like to be cremated. And if she can find the time, to scatter the ashes out at sea. All I ask is that she makes sure that I'm really dead before they wheel my body into incinerator.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Old Man';s Ass

I'm not a terribly brand-conscious person when it comes to fashion and apparel. For that matter, as many who know me will testify, I'm not terribly fashion-conscious too. But, that's another story for another day.

Today, we discuss jeans.

Now, for as long as I have lived, Levi's are the preferred choice for jeans - or at least that's the propaganda I have been exposed to. Levi's are better. Levi's are well made. Levi's last longer. Levi's makes your ass look better, even for fat guys like me. It comes to a point where you don't even fight it anymore.

Until last weekend. Last weekend I decided to go against the grain. Let the lemmings wear their Levi's, I thought to myself. Me, I was gonna revolutionise my wardrobe. And so I strutted to Malaysia's favourite surplus store, F.O.S., grabbed a pair of jeans off the rack and headed for the fitting room.

I put on the new RM 39.90 jeans and whaddya know, I looked mighty fine (by my own limited standards, of course). I turned around to check out the back in the mirror when my whole world goes to hell.

There in the mirror staring back at me, was my ass, thirty years into the future. To get an idea what that looks like, go check out some 60-year old guy's butt and you'll know. Y'know the ones whose cheeks sag like a bulldog's.

Who the hell makes jeans like that?

I was so traumatised that all the way home, I has to seek constant validation from Mae on the age of my ass. "No, you don't have an old man's ass". "Are you sure?" "Yessssss-lah!"

Man. I'm never tucking in my shirt ever again.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

War & Peacenik

"That Mennis is a real rascal," Mae complained to me about Jesse's classmate. Apparently the kid pulled Jesse chair from under him just as our boy was about to sit down. "And right in front of me, too!"

"Why, that little shit," I replied, as images of unnatural child abuse crept into my head. Mae interjected, her voice vibrating with grave concern, "That's not the worst of it."

Crap. My kid was getting heckled by his classmate and there was more?

"Teacher Tze Nie is concerned as well," Mae told me earnestly. Apparently, his classmates tend to pick on him a little. They'd grab the toys he was paying with, or they'd pinch the goodies off of his lunchbox.

"He doesn't fight back," Tze Nie had told Mae, "or even protest or complain."

It hit me, then. My kid was a damn hippy-flower-child-peacenik. Sure, it's a good trait to be all peace-loving and stuff, but can a child survive like that?

"Maybe we ought to teach him how to kick some ass," Mae suggested. "Just for self defense," she quickly added.

But I didn't feel comfortable about raising my kid to be violent. Sure, I can't stand the fact that he doesn't stand up for himself, but on the other hand, I like my boy and his innocent lovey-dovey, turn-the-other-cheek ways. But what is a parent to do? Introduce him to the Way of the Dragon and rob him of his innocence forever? Or let him deal with it in his own time? Or perhaps something else, altogether?

"I'm gonna go step on Mennis' foot, maybe break his big toe of something," I told Mae.

"Don't be crazy," Mae said.

"The teachers might see you." Heh.