|i could go on for 40 days and 40 nights about my blog title and bore you to bits and pieces with 10,000 different ideas i actually had for the name of this blog but because of the 500 characters limit that is imposed upon this mechanism which, by the way, is supposed to promote free speech, i shall shorten it to just two words basically describing what the hell this is all about and who this hell belongs to.|
Friday, July 28, 2006
i used to detest coffee.
so strong was the hate that if i had the guts and funding from the Hilton coffers, i would stage a protest outside the nearest 'Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf' outlet. we would all be holding posters and placards with anti-coffee slogans, demanding for 'Coffee Bean' to be struck out in the corporate name and logo.
but the greater question is actually this: 'WHY did i hate coffee so much?'
for one, it wasn't the taste that i disliked. yes, i could never understand why people have to drink coffee with milk, sugar or perhaps a galleon of condensed milk. i've seen people who add so much sweetener that it's more like sugared water with 1% of coffee in it. which then defeats the purpose of drinking java in the first place.
not forgetting that i felt betrayed by the fact coffee was made out of beans. just below my hate for coffee ranks beans. so combine beans and coffee, and you have quite a big amount of hatred going on in there. every sort of bean i hated except baked beans (which was rekindled after watching Brokeback Mountain apparently, sausages and beans, they were seen eating). beans are sort of greasy and gross. i always imagine myself eating squashy bugs whenever i chew on beans. bugs without the 6 legs, that is. uggh.
but back to coffee. it was, i think, a way of resisting the motion at home. everyone in my family drinks coffee. the mother and the father and the brother. all three of them cannot start the day without a caffeine boost. the father drinks black (repsect!). the mother drinks brown (eww). and the brother drinks white (ugghh). 10 years down the road, you'll see my brother doing stunts for the Diabetic charity show. so please remember to dial in your donations.
i was the only one at home who was adamant about English Breakfast and Darjeeling. and not forgetting to mention that i was the only one at home who was gay. it all prolly clicks into place now. ahhh.... he's gay, sissies drink tea, and yada yada blah blah, e=mc2. but the teenage years were some really tough ones for me, struggling with my identity and all that teeny-bopper aunt agony crap. and it all seemed to boil (is that a pun?) down to a cup of tea versus a mug of coffee.
but all that changed when i discovered the magic of these 3-in-1 satchets. these things were handy given that my line of work involves being in the jungle for days on end. a caffeine burst to me is as welcome as a protein burst, if you know what i mean. i know that 3-in-1 coffee is an insult to gourmet coffee beans and i'm totally agreeable with that. but after drinking it for nearly 11 months solid in brunei, i'm totally addicted to that stuff. i'm suspecting it's the chemical and preservatives that i'm really addicted to actually. corporate products, tsk tsk. and let's not forget the packaging too.
the pink dollar is definitely involved when it comes to coffee and packaging. given that this is the age of the faux metrosexuals and psuedo-urbanites, it's hip to be gay. and this applies to your coffee as well. my favourite brand of instant coffee comes in three different flavours ranging from Mild to Rich. and the various mascots for each flavour come in one gay guy, one bisexual guy and a redundant and skanky woman in yellow that's trying to seduce both the gay and bi guy but looking very unsuccessful (hello???? not interested!).
this one's a closet case
i actually bought this particular brand of coffee because of the mascots. and plus, they actually tasted really good (the coffee, not the mascots, you perv!). this branding of coffee as gay is actually a pretty good technique to market your product. i mean, we all know that the gay guys know everything about 'the good life'. so who else to be a better coffee connoiseur other than the gay people?
as for my coffee addiction, i've just discovered a good wireless cafe in the city that serves coffee with a dark chocolate base and enough whipped cream for a S-M orgy. coffee, chocolate, wireless and blogging. sigh. if only i had those macots now.
40 years down at brunch?
i'm actually at a coffee house now. there's free wireless here. so i'm blogging and making observations at the same time. this particular branch of the coffee house is always filled with gay men. yah, the sunday type of gay men who take 3 hours to have brunch with the 'girls'. not that i have anything against them.
but listen to this. right in front of me, there's a gay guy of about 40 years of age. and he's doing 5 things at one time: smoking, eating a salad, checking me out (i'm trying to hide behind my laptop though), checking out the other gay guy (and his bf) 3 seats away from me and telling an awfully gay story.
the gay story apparently involves the words 'dior', 'chanel' and 'so that bitch said'. and 'dior' and 'chanel' were accompanied with faggoty limp wrists that surprisingly still have the energy to hold a cigarette. all his 'girls' are so engaged in his story. it actually reminds me of Truman Capote in the Oscar-winning and nominated movie 'Capote'. Capote sits on an armchair, telling a story to his captivated audience. and it's a story accompanied with limp wrists and a very effeminate lisp of tongue and loads of cigarette smoke. yah, basically, it's almost the same thing here. except that there's wireless and me.
which actually got me thinking about life 20 years down the road. am i gonna be wearing scarily loud and colourful shirts with hawaiian prints, telling Dior versus Chanel stories, puffing my life away on menthol lights and waving my hands about uncontrollably like a Tourette's patient? not that i have anything against such colourful old men. but it's just that i'm hoping that there's more to life than Sunday brunch at 40.
i hope that by 40, i can find a life partner and settle down. maybe a fabulous wardrobe with better choices than what i have now. and perhaps a nice house somewhere in errr... i dunno sweden. then we can go do the entire 'shopping at Ikea with my boyfriend' thingee like they do at Alexander Road.
Thursday, July 27, 2006
porn puns of the gay kind
most gay porn have absolutely hilarious titles. i just thought of one based on a childhood game of mine.
SNAKES AND LEATHERS
or if it involves scenes of 'golden showers', we can always have:
SNAKES AND BLADDERS
hur, hur... what a great childhood i must have had, eh?
Tuesday, July 25, 2006
LENT (viva, la vie boh-LEND!)
i hate lending people stuff.
especially stuff that belongs to me. stuff that costs more than $100. stuff that i depend on to function. stuff that i NEED and not WANT. stuff that makes my life more fulfilling and could make your life equally fulfilling too if not for the fact that i have it and you don't. stuff that..... aiyah! you get what i mean lah!!
and at the risk of sound like Days of Our Lives, i have to say that it's not you, but rather it's just me. the problem lies entirely with the fact that i have this inate mistrust and cynicism for the entire human race when it comes to lending people stuff. but then again, you can blame it on my chinky chinese genes and them being naturally stingy, calculative and selfish.
this thing about lending people stuff is especially poignant when it involves two factors, namely GUYS and ELECTRONICS. the very basic rule in lending guys your electronic equipment is to NEVER LEND THEM AT ALL. i have seen (firsthand), how perfectly new electronic equipment can end up in the repair centre just after 2 weeks of usage. and the worst part is this: owner usage is to borrower usage is 1:3!!
and here my gay little self is thinking that straight guys are naturally 'pre-installed' with a program to understand electronics. just the same way my brain can process the essence of Paul Smith stripes and Paul Frank monkey motifs (though i still cannot comprehend the ghastly rationale behind the LV Cherry motifs), a part of the straight guy's brain is wired to comprehend JAVA and hardware. i mean, i don't even understand what i'm talking about when i say 'JAVA and hardware'.
but like i said, i have firsthand experience of people wrecking my stuff and the stuff of others. sometimes, it's your buddy. sometimes a crush. how to get angry with them? look at the following case scenarios:
1) you spoilt my laptop!
my colleague who just came home from his home leave in singapore, brought back a spanking new laptop worth about $2.5K. his latest purchase was the talk of the town for weeks because it had all the latest technology of the times like Intel Duo Core processors, a webcam, an awesome graphics card, plenty of RAM and loads of HDD space (oh my god, i sound so straight saying that!). and of course, at my workplace, people are bored and they love to yap a lot. yap yap yap yap yap yap. the news spread, people started wanting to borrow his laptop to play games. and that was and is stil very typical behavior of the staff at my workplace here.
the first few weeks of my stay in brunei, people heard that i had a pretty good laptop. so of course, everyone wanted a piece of my lap. i didn't mind. in fact, i was more than willing to give of my carnal goods. and besides i was new there, i needed to socialize and the laptop made a good transition piece of conversation to sex. during the second week, the frqeuency increased (as in the frequency of people borrowing, not the frequency of sex). but it wasn't until the third week when 3 different people in one single day asked whether they could partake of the products of my loins. that was the last straw that broke the camel bareback. from then on, i would give sarcasm-marinated remarks to people who keep wanting to borrow my laptop for lame reasons like 'i want to surf internet' or 'i want to transfer photos into my thumbdrive' or 'i want to borrow lor'. but back to my colleague's laptop.
from what i observed, the latop seemed to be more in the lap of others than the owner himself. it wasn't until about 3 weeks of lending and returning and installing loads of junk games that suddenly the laptop crashed. something about the graphic card and incompatability with one of the games somebody installed (for sure it wasn't my colleague). the last i heard, it was being sent for repairs at the local authorized service centre. that was about 2 weeks ago. the latest i heard from my colleague, it was still stuck at some part of brunei, awaiting repairs.
the thing about repairs in brunei is that they can't do the complexed ones in the country itself. the company has to send it to one of the outlets in Malaysia instead. and given the travelling time and the general lack of a sense of urgency, i keep telling my colleague that he can forget about getting it repaired. he ought to settle down here, get married, have like 5 kids before they call him back in the middle of his mid-life crisis to inform him that the product's warrenty had expired.
result: the relationship between both parties is now relatively strained. a perfectly good friendship between brah-thurs wrecked by carelessness and irresponsibility. and the owner will never lend stuff to the world again. tragic, right? and the laptop? repaired after 1.5 months of waiting and 15+ phones calls to the headquarters. ask me the brand, i'll tell you.
2) saved games
now, the worst type of borrowers are those that take advantage of you. you lend them once, they'll ask the second time. twice and they'll eventually start hankering after you for whatever item they want to borrow. eventually, you'll feel really bad if you don't give the guy what he wants. and thus begins a neverending story (cue stupid boy sitting on a flying monster enhanced by terrible special effects).
i have this colleague who stays in the bunk opposite mine. he would always pop over to borrow my Nintendo DS. and i will almost always lend it to him simply because i do not have the heart to reject anybody that as cute as him. though in my mind, the many posters of Malaysian FEMALE pop stars adorned on his cupboard tend to shatter any chance of him being gay.
point is, he borrows my games and plays my games. and when he returns the DS to me, my saved games will generally have been tampered with. in fact, the entire saved game had been saved over by him. meaning whatever progress i have made in the game is lost. there were other games where he (and i'm guessing here) didn't want to open a new saved game, so he just used my saved game and finished the entire game with it. like, hello? it's my game lor! at least let me finish it by myself lor! chee bye.
which is why, whenever he wants to borrow my DS nowadays, i always show him 'THE FACE'. that look of irritation and a thousand poisoned darts just flashes for a split second. a split second that's long enough for him to notice it. and it always warms my heart when i can see the guilt in him when he borrows my DS. in fact, all the darts and guilt have pushed him to go purchase a DS of his own. thank god!
come to think of it, he's not as cute as i thought anymore. in fact, he brinks on irritation and hate. there's something about spite and anger that tends to uglify your impression of others. that's ironically, the beauty of it.
so you see, a friendship is somehow endangered whenever somebody lends something to a buddy. it's because of this basic principle that i am very reluctant to lend anybody anything. if an electronic equipment is wrecked, i want to proudly and blamelessly say that I AM the one who destroyed it. not my friend. not some stranger i had a one-night stand with. not anyone else.
besides, i'm saving you from a thousand darts and a really ugly image of you. i think you ought to thank me by letting me borrow your PSP lor!
Thursday, July 13, 2006
idioms of tedium in a picturesque medium
i used to hate learning chinese.
learning chinese is a lot like reading the yellow pages and having to memorize it at the same time. two points worth noting on both issues:
1) i don't give a fuck.
2) why memorize when you can always refer to it as and when you please?
note that i USED to hate learning chinese. now, it's more like i REGRET that i USED to hate learning chinese. the problem with the mandarin cirriculum back in the late 90s was that it mainly involved rote learning. students had to memorize 1000 different chinese characters within a few months. and only less than a 100 are supposed to be spewed out as answers during the 'O' level exams. it was senseless and many kids didn't see the big picture of leanring chinese. i was one of them. during my upper secondary years, i had a really passionate teacher who was very witty and punny with her chinese idioms and such. and she was what kinda 'upped' my F9 preliminary exam results to a B4 post-O-levels. which i daresay is a miracle short of turning Evian into a Cabernet.
and one of my favourite chinese idioms back then was FANG MA GUO LAI. it literally means to release the horse over. but idiomatically speaking, it's basically a taunt saying 'show me what you've got'. as in,
Rapper 1: you think you've got more bling than me?
Rapper 2: yeah?
Rapper 1: aight then?! FANG MAH GUO LAI!!!
(the DJ spins an electro breakbeat tune and the crowd goes insane)
one of the great ways i memorized this particular idiom was a pictureqsque scene that my chinese teacher described to the class. and basically, a picture paints a thousand words and a few million dollars if it's a Van Gogh. let's just look at the end product:
if you're chinese, it's punnier.
Monday, July 10, 2006
singaporeans and their books
i'm awfully backward when it comes to reading material. i can tell you the titles of the current 'hip' books you ought to be reading. i can tell you which books are crap and which books are prolly just a passing fad. i can tell you which chick lit ought to be considered as gay lit. i can even tell you which books are gay lit just by looking at the spine of the book (a useful ability to have when you're at Borders, cos it can get you laid). but the only thing that i can't seem to do is to complete reading a book.
i always seem to have a million and one other things to do and non of them are work-related at all. a date with my Playstation. a fling with my Nintendo DS. reading of the day's papers. gym. running. and not forgetting a quick browse through Newsweek and Time. but never enough time to read something else intellectual.
and it doesn't help that i'm an awful spendthrift. i have a tendency to buy loads of fabulous fiction from Borders and Times. but most of the TIMES, i don't even BORDER to complete these books at all (fact: people who don't complete books generally have a poor sense of humour, but still... HUR HUR HUR!). which is why the entire concept of libraries and borrowing is a much economical method for me to pursue some form of literature.
so it was with some joy that i stumbled upon somebody's copy of TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE on (ironically) the previous Tuesday. to tell the truth, i've actually been avoiding the book ever since it was published. Tuesdays With Morrie is so mainstream. it's one of those books that the cheena-piang people always use as a claim that they read books and enjoy English literature (other than 8 Days and FHM). i have seen countless cheena peeps using TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE and FIVE PEOPLE YOU MEET IN HEAVEN for 'favourite books' in their Friendster profiles. it's no wonder that Tuesdays and Five People are two books that have been hogging the best-seller list in our local newspapers for way too long a time.
it seems to indicate that singaporeans are just not very adventurous when it comes to books. whatever's on the POPULAR Top 10 Best-sellers will always remain that way. Why? because Singaporeans who go to Popular bookstore only want to purchase POPULAR books (refer to above point about people who don't complete books). it's like they're afraid of buying a book that sucks. or something that they cannot enjoy or understand. and it doesn't help that books are pretty expensive as well. a standard fiction novel can set you back by $18.99. a hardcover might push the prices to $30-$50. it's very costly for something that most people use once only. compared to CDs and DVDs.
come to think of it, it's exactly reasons like these that Dan Brown books can remain at the Top 10 Fiction list in Singapore for like weeks on end. the movie has already been released, the DVD is out, a million and one debates have been made about the legitimacy of Mary and all the meoribilia has already been auctioned off on E-bay. yet it stil refuses to budge from the top of the charts.
ok so i have to shamefully admit that i read almost half of the local best-sellers list as well. things like Freakonomics and The Curious Incident of The Dog At Midnight (or whatever the super long title was). and if you ask me, they were actually rather blah. popular reading material. but nothing that inspires you at all.
and with a debate now on whether we should have the natives to come teach us how to speak, it's not really helping the situation. few english teachers i know of actually read books. and even if they read, they reach for the mainstream ones. why? because they will CONFIRM be enjoyable reads. and they simply do not have the time to try new things. reading HAS to be enjoyable. not reading IS enjoyable. and yes, enough of the (branded)JC debator's tone of arguing.
we ought to get them ang mos to come and intro us a few good books. perhaps then the singaporeans will get some sense of what a GOOD book is. some Singaporeans think that J.K. Rowling writes really good books and ought to win a Pulitzer. appalling, i say. but ok lah, good in a summer blockbuster kinda way. but not good and inspiring in an Almodovar movie kinda way.
thus, we should be bringing on the natives, the brits, the good english teachers and professors. and perhaps in a decade's time, they'll all been stricken with a life-threatening disease. then we can all harrass them for good literature weekly..... on a TUESDAY.
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