|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, August 31, 2007
project 355: less than a hundred words
a day at home i mostly spent today.
less than 100 words uttered within a 24-hour span.
to admit it, i would hate:
but tonsillitis tis' getting to me.
i wish i was working.
i also wish i was better at poetry.
Thursday, August 30, 2007
project 355: an agreeable patient
(today's song is once again, courtesy of Gregory Chan. thanks dude. i heart indie.)
in my very humble nursing opinion, i seriously think that i'm a Godsend to this hospital if i were ever admitted. two very simple reasons actually:
1) i'm very accommodating by nature (a very good mantra for bottoms, by the way)
2) i'll save this one for the end (another equally good mantra for bottoms, by the way)
but i'm not joking about the accommodating by nature bit. because i'm really an obliging fellow. say if the surgeon were to have left his 12 inch subway BLT sandwich in my stomach after a tonsillectomy (as to why a surgeon would cut open my stomach during a tonsil op is way beyond my nursing comprehension), my gregarious 'we're all working for the same organization after all' nature would immediately kick in and start reassuring the guilt-stricken surgeon: 'Don't worry lah, Dr. Bee Al Tee, good thing you left it in my stomach. and you know the wonderful thing about stomachs: they digest! just let the gastric juices and peristalsis do their job and before you know it, tomorrow's input-output chart will be having an entry stating 'BO X 1 large amount of soft brownish fecal matter with plenty of seeds (it's a honey oat and there were jalapeños in it).'
any person in the right mind would have called their insurance agents and their lawyers straightaway and a negligence suit would perhaps have followed. as for me? nothing much lah. just up my morphine dosage post-operatively. and the administrative could do that same 'upping' for my salary as well....
still, i guess i have seen one too many cases of the Nightingales-turned-Nightingheil types in my career so far. they can be the cream of the crop when they are working in the hospital. but when they are ADMITTED into the hospital.... ooooh boy. gone are the gentle voices that kindly remind you to take your medication after meals. these nursing staff behave worse than a temperamental little Hitler. they demand to see the consultant. they threaten letter of dissatisfactions if things are not done their way. they think they have the power for head to roll simply because they know some random big shot in 'the management level'. they scream. they shout. they kick up a ruckus. it is indeed a plague.
the first day i set eyes on one of these creeps, i swore i would never be one of them.
and i'm glad that i stuck to my guns because i'm not the type that's cut out for waiting. the same reason why if i realize that i can't sleep within fifteen minutes, i would rather get up play some Xbox, watch some porn, have a cigarette and THEN try to sleep again (the cycle repeats itself until i fall asleep or have to go to work or decide to pop a Diazepam 5). well, waiting was one of the things that i expected to do while at the staff clinic. my previous experience with the staff clinic was nearly a year back when i needed my flu vaccination. to cut the waiting time and shorten the whole story, it took me two hours to get a free influenza jab. and there were only four other patients in the staff clinic with me back then and they were all flu or naughty illnesses (one of them was prescribed acyclovir). i remember reading a 2005 issue of Cleo. thank goodness it was the Most Eligible Bachelor issue.
i decided to go via the staff clinic route this time because truth be told, nothing says 'I'm Really Sick!' like a hospital-issued MC. ok, this one's even better: nothing says 'I'm Really Down With A Bad Case of Tonsillitis!' like a ENT-Department-issued MC (ENT - Ear/Nose/Throat). i needed the ENT referral so that i could FINALLY, for the first time in my life, lop off my tonsils and perhaps consider a career in deep-throating. that, plus cut down on the frequency i have my tonsils inflammed and thus rendering me part of the non-communicable public. the staff at the staff clinic were very pleasant, most of them being women in their late 40s and 50s.
and assuming that it's either my smashin' camel-colored loafers or the fact that i'm an auntie-killer, i got my subsidized, on-the-spot referral to the ENT within forty-five minutes. 'Hoi ham-sum! (this sent shudders down my spine and protective instincts to cover my nipples)' the sister in-charge of the staff clinic shouted to me. 'I got your reflel oredi! 2pm. you go to the ENT clinic. okay? no need pay so much! subsidized some more okay!!!!' i was surprised because no. 1: was that a wink? and more importantly no. 2: it's not easy to get a subsidized referral at such short notice because which Singaporean doesn't want a bloody fifteen minutes with the doctor at a discounted rate? i was actually resigned to a fate of having to speak to a dowdy ol' consultant (or as my church mate, Norman, once told me: the kind of men who are in
it was 12 noon and i had up till two hours to kill before my appointment time. so the next step in line was to show my sickly mug and put on my award-winning tonsillitis performance to show that i was deserving of my accumulated three days worth of MC so far. not very difficult when one ACTUALLY has tonsillitis. the sickening bit however, was having to explain to every single colleague i met along the ward corridor how i've been and why i've been on MC for that long when the last thing on my mind is making oral communication. fortunately, the ward was having a farewell party of sorts for one of the supervisors who was resigning from the hospital to leave for greener pastures where the koala bears roam and the Waltzing Matilda is sung. i made a quick announcement to the supervisors and staff who were there, all of them who could see that i looked like crap (i didn't style my hair that day for this purpose).
thank goodness for Pangkeng who happened to be there as well. he was the perfect exit cue from the awkward little farewell party. i gave him the international hand signal for 'I have tonsillitis and i need help in getting out of this lame farewell party... but not before i get a cup of iced lemon tea!'. it's very easy to do actually. all you need is your dominant hand, gather all your fingers together in a pointed bunch and indicate this signal to your close buddy who has a degree in deviant and foul language. straightaway he understood and without further ado, he whisked me out of the party room into the tea room, which was now filled with sofas, strong air-conditioning and at least ten nursing students preparing for the afternoon shift. thanks a lot brother. i fielded all their incessant questions and Pangkeng still got me my cup of iced lemon tea. so my heart melted at that. he also made a dour promise to accompany me for cigarettes if i ever got admitted into the hospital.
2pm came and I made the arduous trip went to the clinics for my ENT referral. i'm actually glad to say that it all went pretty smooth. armed with my NDS lite and a rapidly ascending fever, i wasn't sure if i should have taken my Ibuprofen just minutes away from my appointment. i've come to expect these fevers every four hourly. it's a bit like the movie Silent Hill: i can always feel it when The Darkness is nearing. the alarms in me start blaring. and that is when i ought to be found under the dark crevices of my bedsheets trying to keep warm rather than fight the fever with a couple of pills. i popped the Ibuprofen anyways.
cut the story short, i didn't say much throughout the fifteen minutes with the medical officer (she was the one who kindly agreed to see me via the staff clinic's recommendation). i was shivering and not really in the mood to elaborate about stuff. but these were the points that i could garner and agree with:
- take new antibiotics
- take a lot of ice-cream/slurpee
- avoid exercise and people
- settle the infection first and then we'll settle the operation in two weeks time
- there will be usually two weeks of MC after a tonsillectomy
- more ice-cream will follow after the tonsillectomy
- go and look for a consultant that you trust to do your op
i got a whole new arsenal of antibiotics, painkillers, some wonderful gargle, more ibuprofen, and i love this new addition: Difflam lozenges. these babies don't just soothe your throat, they fucking numb your tongue. they don't do shit to the tonsils, but hey, i'm not complaining about my tongue. and here's the killer bonus: i've got 5 days worth of hospital-approved MC! that means 5 more days of killing time at home, smoking minimally, eating minimally, finally being able to finish the third season of House and the second and third of OZ (yes Michael, i'm a slow watcher, can't say the same for the Cazzo films though). there were points during my fevers and chills that i actually considered quitting smoking. yeah, that's what life-threatening fevers do to you.
and here's the bit that i'm saving for the end - the second reason why i'm a real Godsend if i ever were admitted to this hospital (which i will prolly be). the subsidized consultation cost me $25. the medication set me back by about $44.60. all of which would have been heavily subsidized if i had the proper identification of my employment pass. all i had was a crumpled uniform in my locker, my name tag, and perhaps that superbug lodged in my tonsils.
i didn't have my employment pass with me.
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
project 355: ill people make bad liars
(today's song is courtesy of Gregory Chan and his superb taste in music)
i like waking up at 9am in the morning and looking out the window to realize that it's raining cats, dogs, mice, roosters, ostriches, elephants, supermodels, politicians, plumbers, etc. today's one of those days apparently. it would have been a perfect morning if not for the fact that there's a lump in the back of my throat that's the size of a supermodel specializing in plus-sized maternity dresses. that and the fact that instead of feeling warm under these bedsheets, i'm actually shaking like an Osim Massage chair. and i'm not randomly using metaphors such as 'Osim Massage Chair' because my brain is not at maximum functioning capacity or simply because i'm on a Piriton high. no.... it seems that my body tends to shiver in some unexplained coordinated motion, as if there's some sort of National Day Parade mass display going on in there that i'm missing out on.
it starts with the lower limbs. i take a deep breath and it stops for about ten seconds or so. and then the pelvis starts doing a Shakira. another deep breath contains it for less than ten seconds, and then the torso starts convulsing. if Google Earth can look through HDB apartments, it would look as if i'm in dire need of an exorcist. one deep breath and twenty seconds later, everything stops for a moment. and just when i beginning to think that the coast is clear, the shakes come back in full force complete with fireworks and all three parts of the body convulse together in full force. alas, another deep breath does nothing but reset the whole process, causing the shakes to start back at the lower limbs once again. i spent most of the past three days in bed, taking deep breaths, shivering away and getting tired of not being able to sleep.
thus it was today that i decided to head out for some fresh air, rather than staying in that dark and dank room where both the brother and i exchange flatulence and bacteria on a daily basis. of course, fresh air also meant a cigarette, which i know many of you guys are tsk-ing away in disdain. 'This incorrigible smoker... tonsillitis already still want to smoke' well, okay if it makes you feel better, i smoked less than five sticks yesterday. my daily average is ten.
i wanted to have Nestum for breakfast. knowing that everybody at home is a big fan of Quaker Oats, i guessed that i would be hard-pressed to even find a sachet of Nestle nestled somewhere within the kitchen. sure enough, a quick rummage through the pantry where we keep all the dried goods revealed nothing more than oats, coffee, brown sugar, a huge tin of Anlene, some Splenda (i don't know where the mother gets these American products from), cocoa powder, instant noodles, and get this: a tin of Nespray milk powder. the mother purchases fresh milk from the supermarket on a daily basis. and the last i recall, there are no more children coming from the loins of the Teo family.
and so, armed with a mission and a pack of Viceroys, i made my way in the chilly drizzle of a Tuesday morning, to the supermarket nearest from home. of course it would have been perfect if not for a random stranger who attempted to make contact with me. this is one strange thing i have noticed about myself apparently: i attract strangers the same way oil lamps attract fruit flies. on working days, i'm like the walking street directory of the hospital complete with open-hand pointing gestures. on non-working days, i'm the most pleasant-looking thing to approach to spread the word of God. it's even worse on weekends when i'm the number target of the Flag Day Kids. not helping is the fact that i'm not keen to donate to any organization other than the SPCA. the kids bugger me all the way from Chua Chu Kang to town, all asking me to help the disabled, crippled and dying. i wipe their asses on a daily basis, okay!
today's stranger came in the form of a heartland auntie. she saw me once and she started giving me that 'i'm-stranded-in-Chua-Chu-Kang-and-i-don't-know-the-way-out' look. how could the customer service officer in me resist such an opportunity to assist the public? what followed was a conversation held in mandarin:
Auntie: Errrr... sorry ah. Can i teach you how to chant some sutras?
Me: What? (inhales cigarette)
Auntie: Can i teach you to chant some sutras?
Me: Ehrm.... I'm Christian? (exhales cigarette)
i couldn't figure out in time what was the mandarin equivalent of non-religious. thus the next best thing that the translator could think of to get rid of this bizarre stranger was Ji Du, the direct translation for Christ (i think). despite the cigarette, she believed it, i guess. because she skedaddled quickly, asking me to not get offended.
Monday, August 27, 2007
project 355: falling sick
my humblest apologies for not updating as regular as i should. this is simply gonna be a fast update. i'm shaking now. and not in a good way. you see, i've been down with a really severe case of tonsillitis. and this one's no ordinary one where i take a few capsules of Amoxycillin and i'm up and ready to do the shaking that i've so been missing out on for nearly a fortnight to come. this one boasts of temperatures as high as 38.5 degrees. this one makes swallowing as painful as eye surgery without the general anesthesia. to summarize, this bout of tonsillitis is pretty crippling.
not helping is the brother who's at home with me and doesn't bother answering the phone at all. i can be shivering beneath all that layers of blankets and comforters, but the brother will still be fiddling with his PSP, totally ignorant of the loud ringing of the phone. it's like his mind is conditioned to filter out phones. needless to say, the only phone he answers is his very own cellphone. but really, in my current state, i don't think i'm cut out to answer phones. simply because making conversation with an enlarged tonsil is like talking with a gigan-ormous lump of elephant shit in your throat. the general phone conversation for the past few days have gone something like that:
Me: Ar-O, Eo's res-ee-dence (Hello, Teo's Residence)
Person: Hi, can i speak to Mr. Teo please?
Me: E's nor ack ohm ack er mo-murnk (He's not at home at the moment)
Person: Ehrm... is Mr. Teo around?
Me: E's nor ack ohm! Nor ack ohm! (He's not at home! Not at home!)
Person: Never mind, it's okay!
Me: Shee bye (Sheesh... bye)
it's times like these that i wish i could shout to the brother 'Hello? Sick person here!'
of course, i would have to sound coherent in the first place.
it's throughout this time though, that several people have checked on me to see how i'm progressing. one of them even offered to brew some almond soup and drive down to my place with the herbal tonic. it's a bit cliched, somewhat like a scene out of a Hong Kong drama. but the selfish little bastard in me does not deserve the kindness of these friends. to these people, i'm grateful for them. not that they read my blog anyways.
and speaking of herbal tonic, Pang Keng and I had the following sms conversation just today:
PK: How u doin so far?
Me: Feel like shit.
PK: Ic. maybe you should take some western herbal tea.
Me: Like what? Chamomile is it?
Me: Fuck you lah.
i feel the chills creeping up slowly on me. time for some ibuprofen.
Thursday, August 23, 2007
because he's fucking bored, that's why he makes a mental connection between bubble tea and sex
believe me when i say that the most bizarre thoughts cross my mind when i'm in the midst of sweaty hotel room sex. maybe it's the very nice view of the nanny state's skyline, or perhaps it's just the memory pillows and five-thousand thread count comforters, but inspiration tends to hit at the most unexpected of moments. just last week, it was while lying uncomfortably on one of those pillows that had memorized the shape of my partner's gluteals, that the following thought suddenly crossed my mind:
phwoar. this guy has no gag reflex man.
of course, this post is not going to be about gag reflexes because it's difficult to write a wordy and theoretical post about deep throating. things like that are best tackled during practical sessions in a seedy budget hotel. it was after the deep throating and the 'mundanaties' of sex that while lying on a fresh pillow and listening to the pitter-patter of the other guy's pee splattering in the toilet that a more philosophical thought flashed in my head:
having too much sex really cheapens the whole act of it.
i have a feeling that many of us homosexuals or even the occasional nymphomaniac female can relate to a statement like this. then again, if you are wondering why you don't understand a single iota of the above statement, perhaps you need to ask yourself questions loosely paraphrased from the language of denial: 'Am i still considered by the general human population to be a virgin?'
and i use the term 'virgin' here very freely because in our modern day and age of liberalism, it is with much difficulty that one defines a virgin. i personally know of someone who considers himself a virgin even though he has received numerous blowjobs from various genders of the human races. but still, if the answer to the above statement is YES (i'm still a through and through virgin), or if you're in denial about it, OR if you're a regular reader of this blog, OR if you popped by here and bothered to read this post because you saw the words 'bubble tea' in the header and are curious to find out what sorta bullcrap Jon can spin out of a topic like that... then let me suggest that you take a gander, light up a cigarette, grab some coffee, and let me humor you for the next five minutes (depending on whether you can speed read or not).
for the rest of the night, the sex seemed to be very much interrupted by the occasional thoughts of how i could 'metaphorize' the act of sex being cheapened. not that sex costs a lot in the first place because condoms are cheap and a combined effort of spit from both parties make really good lubricant. it wasn't until much deep thought and perhaps even deeper throating that 'bubble tea' came to mind. and yeah, it was at that point that i came as well.
the bubble tea craze that was all the rage amongst the kids back in the late 90s. the late 90s for me though were really bitter-sweet ones. it was all about puberty, hormones, hair sprouting in the most bizarre places, the discovery of the pleasures of masturbation, etc. come to think of it, the only reason why it was so sweet was mainly due to the bubble tea. it was mostly bitter when i think back to the upper secondary school days. one particular incident that made me live in fear came to mind. apparently, i made the stupid attention-seeking mistake of declaring to a pair of heterosexual alpha males (HAMs) that i was the proud owner of a nipple piercing. i couldn't help but that that on that fateful day conversations like the one below were held on regular five minutes intervals:
(heterosexual alpha males at the school basketball court playing soccer; don't ask me, i rarely played sports during those schooling days)
HAM #1: Hey, pass me the ball.
HAM #2: No, pass me the ball.
HAM #3: Hoi (HAM #2's name)! Ball! Here!
HAM #4: No lah! Here! Pass me the fucking ball!
it may not look like anything was relayed, but believe me when i say that the underground HAM gossip network is an extremely subtle and potent one. before i knew it, there were enough boys in school who knew about 'a certain weak spot on this Jonathan's chest that can bring him to his knees in seconds'. i have to thank God (literally) for the precious pocket-sized Gideon's Bible which acted as my shield and my strength during those secondary school days. not only was it a staple must-have for every student during the daily assembly, it also acted as a subtle-yet-tactical pinch-proof layering that prevented quite a fair bit of aesthetic damage to my upper torso. i completed secondary school still with two nipples intact, albeit a tad larger in size and definitely more protruding than i remembered it to be.
but piercings aside, my upper secondary school days were definitely better than the lower secondary or the primary for that matter. those were the days that i was armed with a tad more leeway in terms of monetary independence. this led me to splurging daily on bubble tea, which was the craze back then. the high content of sugar and carbs coupled with the intense frequency i was consuming bubble tea led to me becoming rather 'gay-unfriendly' fat, on top of already being a 'gay-deterring' pimply geek from Nerdom. the end result? bad sex from older men of similar (or if not larger) body-builds as i was and plenty of second-hand smoke that i must have inhaled while cruising in the toilets.
looking back, the main target of the bubble tea craze in Singapore was the youngsters of the late 90s like me. back then, bubble tea had to compete with Playstation 2, Pokemon, the Gameboy Advance and many other electronic paraphernalia. setting the general pricing of a cup of milk tea with pearls at $1.80 (inclusive of an extra 30 cents worth of extra pearls) was truly a ripoff. even the adolescent child who spends a fair portion of his weekly allowance of Pokemon cards (like me) would know that. but which peer-pressured secondary school kids could resist the 'coolness' of being seen drinking the 'in' beverage of the 90s that was not only cheaper than a grande mocha frap or a regular McDonald's iced milo for that matter?
it started with one particular brand of bubble tea that hit the local scene. they had the card-stamping concept whereby for each bubble tea that you bought, you earned a stamp on a card. with ten stamps, you could exchange the card for a regular-sized bubble tea with no extra pearls. Singaporeans, being the kiasu hoarders that they are, couldn't resist this concept of free stuff. within months, the many entrepreneurial-minded people started setting up different chains of bubble tea stalls, all of them selling THE SAME type of bubble tea with THE SAME different variety of flavors at THE SAME prices and THE SAME concept of ten stamps for free regular bubble tea.
it was a tragic overkill because soon enough, the same kids that made bubble tea rise, bought and brought it to its rather swift and premature death. the pleasantly sweet taste of milk tea turned into a sickly-sweet one reminiscent of a drink that had six parts syrups to one part water. kids bought bubble tea not for the tea, but for the bubble that could double up as weapons of mass irritation. i remember a bunch of friends who would purchase cups of bubble tea (with the extra 30 cents worth of pearl), take the elevator to the highest level in a shopping mall, and start sniping their way at other unsuspecting members of the general public. the streets were usually littered with pearls, milk tea remnants and empty bubble tea cups. it was with that, that large chains of bubble tea shops started closing down and with the crossing of millennium, the bubble tea fad passed.
it's rather sad but this concept of having too much of a desired item at too often a frequency is very much true for sex. teenage millionaires, kids with platinum spoons (and perhaps various other child-proof cutlery) in their mouths, (insert random addiction) anonymous members, etc. if you have been following my blog for quite some time, you would have almost realized by now, that my version of 'sex' tends to veer towards the deviant. frankly, there isn't anything revolving around sex that i haven't tried other than animals and the vage. light bondage, authoritarianism, one night stands with strangers, the great outdoors, chem sex, etc. couple this gutsiness with my 'everything must try at least once' policy in life and you have someone who's willing to experiment when the opportunity (or whatever that is in one's pants arises).
that night, at the hotel room, i didn't fall asleep. i was thinking how sex seems to be not as fulfilling these days. i was bored of going through the entire routine of kissing, getting blown, reciprocating, doing the topping, coming and then cuddling each other to sleep. as i shifted to a comfortable position in the bed and placed the many pillows around to facilitate sleep, i couldn't help think that i was really getting bored of something that i used to like so much. oh well, i still can't complain about the deep-throating and the wonderful memory pillows though. i fell asleep that night with the pillows, one of them having memorized the shape of my head.
and i'm not talking about the thing that sits on top of my shoulders.
Sunday, August 19, 2007
because he's fucking bored, that's why he phlebotomizes during the night shift
before you start thinking that 'phlebotomizing' has something to do with a bottom with a preference for phlegm as an alternative and extremely deviant form of lubricant, let me reassure you that phlebotomy is far from what it seems. in fact, it's with reference to another bodily fluid and boy, do we have five liters of it to boot. nope, not cum (that would be quite cool though) and not gastric acid (which would also be quite cool; i would spew forth upon all the patient's relatives) either. i'm sure the medical professional knows what the hell i'm talking about when i say that the ancient art of blood-taking - phlebotomy - is an acquired skill. yes, phlebotomy, blood-taking, venepuncture, drawing blood; different names for the same thing.
i may suck at sports and i steer clear of street soccer courts for fear of stray balls coming my way. but give me a 10cc syringe and a 21g needle and i'm as dangerous as a leech with the CIA working undercover as a male staff nurse. that sudden rush of blood that comes when a needle pierces through a vein is what makes me giddy with pride whenever i phlebotomize. the hospital encourages the usage of vacutainer method to draw bloods. however, i'm of the third-world/old school method of patience, precise suctioning and syringes and needles. and this is the point where you can skip and perhaps take a five minute toilet break because i'm beginning to get all technical here. the old school method of syringes and needles is risky as it cause the blood specimens to hemolyze. pulling too hard on the syringe when drawing blood causes the red blood cells to break or hemolyze which results in inaccurate lab test results. which then results in more blood-taking. which then results in irritated patients. which then results in complaints. which then results in me perhaps losing my job.
END OF TECHNICAL BIT or if that wasn't enough for you, you could just wiki the whole bloody thing.
95% of the time though, i'm prolly too good for hemolysis to happen. which is the great bit about blood taking. you can do it any method you want. you can use two needles at the same time to extract blood from a patient. you can cut open the patient's arm and suck out the blood with the syringe and needle. any method you wants, as long as:
1) the patient doesn't mind
2) you get the blood
3) hemolysis doesn't happen
i take great pride in the fact that i'm a rather good shot when it comes to phlebotomy. take today for example, i drew blood from five different people (okay okay, i'm humbly exaggerating; it's more like nine) consecutively without missing a single one. i couldn't help but go giddy with my incessant boasting to all my colleagues when something like that happens. phlebotomy builds up that fragile patient-practitioner relationship in the medical context. when a patient sees a nurse making a successful attempt at blood-taking, he prolly starts thinking 'Wah, this nurse not bah ah! can take blood with minimal pain and with only one try!' he gains confidence and trust in the nurse. which generally leads to much ease when it comes to convincing the patient to make certain medical decisions. i wouldn't be surprise if there were a few patients who would let me deliver their children and their children's children and their children's children's children and etc.
couple my enthusiastic love for phlebotomy and an uber-boring weekend night shift and you have me trying to compete in a blood-taking marathon. i hate the night shift, especially the weekend ones. true, the weekend night shifts pay more and are more relaxing in terms of workload. but the weekend nights are prolly as exciting as watching surgery during my student days. and i'm digressing here. so you could go have that second five minute toilet break. i remember during my operating theater posting of the student nurse days. it was a very boring affair that i commonly thought of as 'as exciting as watching old people going at it'. the student is basically dumped into a designated operating theater to watch and understand the process of a surgery. from scrubbing up to the surgery itself to the important end of counting the total amount of gauzes, cotton swabs and surgical instruments used (this is to prevent malpractice lawsuits in case some ignorant surgeon left his Nokia cell phone behind in the patient's stomach).
of course, the operating theater is a rather small place packed with plenty of people. the anesthetist, the nurses, the doctors, the student doctors, the janitor, more student nurses and perhaps Death himself who lurks in every hospital corridor. it's not like those roomy affairs that you often see in House or Gray's Anatomy. everything is a boring shade of green and everybody seems to be crowding around one main attraction, a patient covered in more layers of green. obviously the patient is only big enough for several of the medical staff to crowd around. and since the student nurses are prolly as useful as that artificial potted plant that stands in your office corridor, it's seldom that they get to see anything else other than the surgeons buttock covered in more green scrub suits. most of the time, i ended up standing at one corner of the operating theater trying to look remotely interested in learning about the size of a doctor's gluts, not that i'm complaining.
and it's not like in the ward where you can go 'Hi, doctor, do you mind me assisting you in (insert random ward procedure?' this is surgery we're talking about where one nervous tic and a nick could cut through an all important artery and result in a spewing of blood the same manner i would do with gastric acid on a not-that-important patient relative. all in all, surgery is boring. and i'm in a fucking surgical ward. which crowns boredom with many crowns.
END OF DIGRESS (and please remember to wash your hands after the toilet).
so what's a nurse to do when he is bored during the weekend night shift? okay, so i smoked a few more extra cigarettes in the assisted toilet and checked my email for blog comments every hour (there were none apparently). but still, that doesn't help with the boredom. so starting from 5am, i commenced with taking all the bloods required for the day. i did nine bloods in the record time of thirty-seven minutes. most of them were easy. some were the tricky 'running vein' sorts that were prominent in people of the older generation. but all in all, i had a great deal of fun doing it. and most importantly, it helped to kill time.
blood-taking is such a sport of concentration that it requires intense focus and precision puncturing. which is perhaps why it helps kill plenty of time. i remember during the reminiscent regimental days of being a medic. i was attached to a medical center to learn more about how it works and the different departments and etc. it was generally boring, except that once in a while, a casualty came in with a bout of physical exhaustion or over-exertion. but generally, people there killed time by indulging in a sport of a different kind: self-phlebotomy.
and i'm not joking about this. i tried it myself and it's not exactly very painful but it puts you in an awkward position of having to keep still and draw your own blood from your very own cubital fossa. not an easy feat when you have several other medics competing to see who can draw 10mls of blood in the fastest possible time. hemolysis was not a factor to be worried about there.
what resulted from this competition was several laughs, several bumps along the arms and twenty push-ups for the slowest self-phlebotomist.
and well here's the last digression that i'm gonna do so you can grab those toilet rolls and start making that sacred trip to the lavatory. Pangkeng and i have our moments of blood-taking. we have our bad days, sure. but we certainly have our good ones too. there is minimal pain involved for the patient, the needles pierces into the vein without piercing through it, the flashback comes as smooth as a really good beer, and there is ample blood to be drawn. on these good days, we can't help but declare ourselves a crude but meaningful term.
we call ourselves Team Tampon. go figure.
Friday, August 17, 2007
because he's fucking bored, that's why he heads to the Red Light District (and not for the obvious reasons that you're thinking)
Geylang - Singapore's seedy red-light district that's filled with legalized prostitutes, famous good food and a constant flow of income and bodily fluids. there are prolly two reasons why the bored (and not forgetting to mention, horny) heterosexual male would visit Geylang, one would be of course to have a great time of intercourse, the other would be a great meal of either Teochew mueh (mm-weh) or Beef Hor Fun. i can already see several straight men pulling out those parangs tucked away in their pants (and i mean this in a literal way, not metaphorical) and brandishing it at the general direction of this blogger with constant denials that Geylang is solely meant for sex and food. yeah yeah yeah, there's other things like illegal gambling and contraband cigarettes and pirated pornographic VCDs on sale, but those are things that the men do AFTER the sex and the food.
now all the straight men are flocking to stand with the 'food' group.
i've always believed in not having to pay for sex. after all, if mommy and daddy can make babies for free, then why can't the typical man (or woman) do it with no baby-making intents and monetary strings attached to it? well you could argue that the concept of the gay sauna isn't that free as well, given that one has to pay a typical entrance fee ranging from 10 to 25 dollars depending on age and theme nights (tattoo/piercing nights anyone?). but i would like to say that one is paying for the environment and atmosphere and the increased chances of sex with other like-minded men, rather than the ACT of sex itself. that and the complimentary drink that comes along with the entrance fee lah.
so perhaps it's true that the straight men have it harder when it comes to looking for sex. for the typical heterosexual male, getting to bed a random woman involves a lot more than just an entrance fee. there's the dating, and then the wining and dining, and then having to consider whether the opposite party is a minor, and then having to hem and haw their way to the topic of 'overnighting' at someone's place, and then convincing the other party that 'the first time will always be a special one', and you've got to consider the intricacies of the female ovulation cycle (something which this male nurse hasn't grasped the concept of to this day)... all that jazz before one can see the jizm.
makes one glad to be gay, doesn't it?
i met up with The Magnus (#1 fagstag and proud proclaimer of the one-liner 'Fuck you lah!') for dinner and shishah several days ago at Arab street. we had a great meal of cheap murtabak which we washed down with several glasses of coffee, mint tea and a mixed fruit shishah. i did the most redundant thing of coupling shishah with several sticks of Viceroys, hoping to reach that smoker's high that has eluded me for several months. and to digress, it was while inhaling shishah and several puffs of menthol lights that i've realized that i'll be crossing the one year mark of being a smoker in just a few day's time. the 20th of August, to be exact. that was the fateful day i returned from Brunei and bought my first pack of cigarettes, a pack of cherry-flavored SKLs. they left a sickly-sweet odor of lacquer and potpurri on the fingernails. i've never liked them since. can't say that i like the amount of nicotine and tar in my lungs either.
but smokers being smokers, tend to have very clouded judgments. they will not listen to good advice and they will still want their cigarettes at the end of the day. and cheap ones at that. if cigarettes are expensive in Singapore, the cheapskate smoker will head down to Geylang to purchase contraband cigarettes. the local pack of cigarettes here cost at least $9.60. and they can rise all the way to $11.60 or more. it's ridiculous, given the amount of hospital bills we'll be racking up in the future when lung carcinomas start to set in. apparently cigarettes and sex were the two things that crossed both our minds when the spur-of-the-moment suggestion of a trip to Geylang was made. of course, i only had cigarettes in mind. but judging from the fact that we went there by cab, i'm sure that Magnus had more than the above-mentioned going through his head.
we arrived at the main arena of Geylang, a whole street filled with legalized prostitution dens all vying for the attention of the horny Singaporean male. there were various budget hotels lining the streets, all of them with tacky names like Fragrance and a personal friend that i visit on a regular basis: Hotel 81. even Fragrance was sub-divided into four different hotels: Crystal, Emerald, Pearl, Ruby. i couldn't help but think of Pokemon while traversing through the seedy underbelly of the red-light district.
it was on the way there that the Magnus started describing to me how sex was procured in the trade. the legalized dens are these houses that have lit-up lamps with numbers printed on them. each number with a lamp indicated a designated lot meant for business. pimps would normally be seen sitting outside these dens trying to attract customers. and believe me, it doesn't seem easy given that the entire street was filled with these dens. on last count, i remember seeing the number 37 on one of these dens. having walked past a few of these dens, one could see garishly lit neon lighting and glass paneling going on inside the dens. it's not exactly easy to make out what's inside given that there were walls place strategically in front of the entrances to these dens.
'It's like a fish tank concept. You go in, you see which girl you want that's sitting behind the glass paneling and then you go into a private room to have sex' explained the Magnus.
'Is it very expensive?' my curious mind asked.
'Forty dollars,' the Magnus replied with a smug look on his face that prolly thought: i have the best value for girls in town because these legalized women of the sex trade have to go for weekly HIV tests as well. 'Forty dollars for a full body and a shower scene' to which i couldn't help but giggle to myself.
'Yah. Shower, towel and then oral and fuck lor,' the Magnus replied once more, this time in a matter-of-fact kinda voice, as if every Singaporean man should know this little bit of information.
we walked a little further from where the taxi alighted us and lo and behold, we found ourselves at House No. 18. the Magnus asked for twenty minutes of my patience while he did what forty dollars could buy in Geylang. so there i was, left stranded in the middle of the red-light district, sitting on the corner of a sidewalk and puffing away to kill the boredom. i powered up my ipod and scrolled through my collection of thug-lovin' songs, deciding to finally settle with some Ludacris. in my little brain, i could imagine ah peks and prostitutes crumping away with their bling and tube tops to the words 'Yeet Yeet! Whoop Whoop! Why y'all in my ear? Talkin' a whole buncha shit i ain't tryin' to hear!'
i didn't want to wander too far as i was afraid that the Magnus might not have made his twenty minutes worth. not that i doubted his sexual prowess (he's the testosterone alpha-male type) but the thought of pre-mature ejaculation in men did cross my mind. so i stayed put at that same kerb for the whole of twenty minutes. i actually think it was more like twenty-five minutes because the Magnus seemed to be gleaming red after the whole forty-dollar session. it was either a steam-bath going on in there, or somebody just had a rollin' good time.
and so we walked deeper into the trenches of the red-light district. we passed several streets which the Magnus would point out 'Oh, this one's the China street and when we go further down we'll be passing the Thai streets soon'. and true enough, scantily-clad women with what seemed like surgically-enhanced boobs were dotted all over the sidewalks. some of them (the boobs) were precariously stuffed into tube tops that were so low that my hands were on constant guard to catch them if they ever decided to catch some fresh air.
we walked through this alley that had a bit of illegal gambling going on. it was rather fascinating as the people who manned the stalls were a collective bunch of mats, meenas, bengs and lians. they dealt cards with the professionalism of a Macau local and the dour face of the streets. emotionless. that's the word i was looking for. it's actually rather heart-warming to see a united picture of Singaporeans in something as illegal as this.
all this time while we were touring the streets of Geylang, there were pimps constantly touting their wares. 'You wan ger? Thailand, China, Pileepin, Ang Moh?' to which i would respond with a curt 'No, thank you' and just carried on. it wasn't until we finished with the gambling area that i saw three reed-thin ah lians dressed in costumes that were garishly mixed-and-matched together. they were loud, brash and constantly shouting things like 'Chee Bye, who wan?' to whoever wanted some. they looked a little haggard from shouting the whole night and you could tell that they were getting much money from all that effort. i made the mistake of walking too close to one of them who noticed me and went:
she stuck out one arm while the other was balanced upon her ah-lian sister's shoulder and tried to squeeze my nipples. and these were nails that were prolly fresh from the manicurist's. let's just say she struck the jackpot and i delivered the goods by blushing a shade of red accompanied with another curt 'No, thank you.' i can see why nobody wants those chee byes tucked beneath those micro-shorts.
i went home that night with sore nipples and my original mission accomplished. it felt good (the mission that i had accomplished, not the nipples), knowing that i had seen a different side of Singapore. plus it was reassuring that procuring sex, for the gay person in Singapore, is way easier and cheaper and simpler than the heterosexual.
i may be bored of being gay in Singapore, but at least i'm glad.
Monday, August 13, 2007
because he's fucking bored, that's why this gay singaporean guy sings the chinese karaoke
i strongly believe that God created the human body with sound-making in mind. be it moaning, groaning, screaming or shouting, you have to admit that many people find 'you have the right to remain silent' an exercise in futility. it's always more fun to have sounds around than to experience a silence that is so deafening it puts a library to shame. the same goes for flatulence. assuming that all farts are smelly, a silent one will never be as fun as a noisy one. especially those accompanied with watery sounds and varying rhythms resemblant to The Chopstick Waltz.
clapping, slapping and smacking: three more sounds that our body can make. back in the days of the regimental life, i used to know this fellow medic who had a tendency to tell one too many dirty jokes in a span of an office hour. i would have gotten very irritated with this guy if not for the fact that most of his dirty jokes were actually funny. one of the less funny ones (but still very much applicable to body sounds) revolved around the word 'Plok'. he was inspired by this when he had sex with a meena who was over-endowed with ample hips. 'PLOK is the sound that you get when a mat scrrrrrrooos a meena buncit seahl!' i didn't exactly think it was funny but apparently he did. to the point that he wanted to make it a 'thing' between us. whenever we bump into each other in the corridor, a typical greeting from him would be 'Eh plok! wassup dude?' to which i would reply with great irritation by grabbing his ass and literally try to plok the shit out of him.
body sounds and vocals aside, it's really true that some people just can't shut up. or at least they don't know when to shut up. thank goodness that being a loner for most parts of my life, i'm a great fan of silence. one of those moments that i know to shut up would be when friends suddenly start rallying people to follow them on a karaoke outing. this normally happens on weekends when the movies are too 'englishy' for their tastes (Little Miss Sunshine anyone?), when they are done with dinner, when their girlfriends/boyfriends are not around for any physical fun, when they are too broke to go shopping, etc. in other words, on weekends when they are bored to their wits' ends. this is when i try to show them disinterested body language and subtle looks of disappoint to emphasize my disapproval of money being thrown down the karaoke drain.
i seriously dislike karaoke. not just because it's tacky, it's boring, and prolly enjoy it as much as i do going to church. nope. this tremendous dislike for KTV stems from two reason actually. karaoke you see, tends to expose my incapability with the mother tongue. given that a large amount of song in the typical KTV repertoire are either in mandarin or behasa melayu/indoesia, there's not much left for me to enjoy in terms of singing. give and take, there are the occasional current pop tunes from Justin and The Simpson sisters, but a large majority of them english songs are prolly too retro (Pet Shop Boys, Eurythmics) or too gay-friendly for my liking (Spice Girls, Madonna, Pet Shop Boys, Eurythmics).
for some reason, one would be hard-pressed to find Coldplay or say Travis minus one tracks at your local k-box. and i say this with much dismay. there's nothing better than crooning to the melancholic tunes of The Scientist at the end of a hard day's work. i've always wanted to do that last bit in The Scientist whereby Chris Martin goes 'aaaaoooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo' while holding a microphone. of course, my cheena friends don't really see it that way. most of the time, for social purposes, i end up picking what few chinese pop tunes that i know of. and it's not easy to sing them given my B4 standard of mandarin. it's almost like taking the 'O' levels Chinese Oral Examinations all over again, having to read word for word every single thing that appears on the KTV screen. sometimes i get the feeling that my cheena friends bring me along to karaoke outings just to see how this english-educated soul attempts the chinese karaokes. it never fails to crack them up apparently.
the other reason to back my ardent dislike for KTV remains with a monetary issue. a night out at the KTV can be quite expensive and this has been evidenced one too many time at the end of the KTV session. certain KTV parlors have hidden charges of snacks and hot towels that they serve in the middle of the session. and you don't even have to ask them to serve it, they do it out of their own accord. there was this one time when a group of five of us spent three hours at a KTV lounge and ended up with a $154 bill. it was scary. of course i prolly had a part to play in the expensive bill because i ordered several beers to help tide the session over. but that's the price to pay for dragging someone who isn't interested in karaoke to participate.
thus it was with ten days of annual leave on my hands that i was invited by several of my malay colleagues to a KTV session to start it off. not at the usual k-box, and neither at the copycat brand, Red Box, but rather, at some relatively unknown spot on the outskirts of town. actually it's not that unknown lah. it's behind Forum and just in front of Singapore's #1 mat-meena hangout, Hard Rock Cafe. and from what my colleagues tell me, this particular karaoke parlor is THE place for the mats to hang out when they are dying for some meena rrrrock and Siti Nurhaliza.
it's true that i can't sing the chinese pop tunes, but i seem to have this innate ability to do it better with malay pop tunes. give me a li'll bit of Peterpan or Radja and i'll be working the microphone like there's no tomorrow. somehow or other, when the words that i sing are romanized, i tend to fare better. of course, having spent thirteen months living with a bunch of mats in Brunei and being in two previous relationships with two malay guys helps too. somehow or other, i keep thinking that there's a mat somewhere within the recesses of my haram heart.
we spent the night attempting to conquer malay tunes with one of the colleague's fiance constantly plying us with beer and alcohol. beer, alcohol, malay. yeah. it's all very haram in there that night. and the great bit was that this particular fiances paid for the entire night's worth of KTV. a grand total of $184.34.
maybe karaoke ain't so bad after all eh?
Sunday, August 12, 2007
project 355: a boring week ahead
i like deviant. i like different. i like standing out.
in fact, it has become so ingrained in me that i don't really need to try too hard to stand out. i've accustomed myself to naturally do so. the things i say border on controversial. the shit that i put in my body is almost always taboo. everything i do seems to be a more. and there's nothing in me that's a norm.
i think i attribute this 'against-the-grain' way of life to my childhood, having tried too hard to blend in with the rest of the crowd. you know lah, youth and the extreme pressures of the peers. everyday is desperately trying to adjust to a new set of hormones and puberty, trying to gain a steady foothold in this world. there's bound to be casualties along the way and i'm glad to be one of them. i was the definitive nerd back in the days of school. fat, acne-ridden, uber-uncool and possibly quite pale from all the gaming hours spent with my Playstation.
that was then however, and this is now.
the good thing with age is that it tends to come gift-wrapped with hindsight and if one is mature enough, a better perception of things in general. one looks back and realizes that there's no point in playing the game that everybody seems to be working so hard at. not because i suck at playing the game (i suck at it actually), but rather, the ends simply doesn't justify the means. so why hate the playa or even hate the game for that matter? come to think of it, why be the playa when you can be the... game master (insert daunting theme of music)? you can change the rules to the game or you can even play by your own rules. hell you could even overhaul the whole thing and come up with a whole new game to play.
in light of yesterday's post about the plight of an uber-bored gay Singaporean man stuck in the placid little red dot, i intend to try something different. rather than just sit around and rant about how pathetically boring entertainment in Singapore is, i'm going to go against my grain, by going with the grain. in other words, i'm going to try different things that are out of my comfort zone. for this whole week, the posts that i'll be publishing will be centered around the theme of boredom: how Singaporeans kill boredom and plenty of free time, what they do and how they feel about it. stuff of the like.
it's indeed, going to be a Boring Week ahead.
Saturday, August 11, 2007
project 355: because he's fucking bored...
on saturdays, the typical macho mary goes for a morning/afternoon of Dragon Boating or a session at California fitness, some dinner in the evening, get wasted at the club during the night and finds himself awake the next morning in any other bed but his.
on saturdays, the average Singapore couple have a session of warm, raunchy, afternoon sex. they take a bath, they head down to town, they cuddle and make out in the trains to the extreme disgust of Singaporeans (even to the deviant and extremely liberal me), they have dinner, watch a movie, the guy sends the girl home, they make out in the lift once more, decide to have sex at the stairs and then the guy goes home (NB: they do the same thing the next weekend).
on saturdays, the run of the mill family brings the kids out to the local swimming pool. they splash around in the water, decide to leave when the kids get all pruny and out of control, they take the kids out for dinner at McDonald's, quickly bringing them back to put them to sleep. the parents ensure that everything is set and they begin their weekly ritual of unintended pro-creation. that is until the kid
on this particular saturday, this exasperated Singaporean who has gone on one too many dates with the standard formula of dinner + movies = sex decides to not head out. instead, he does what he does best: he writes. armed with a fresh pack of cigarettes and an extra laptop battery, he makes his way down to the nearest Starbucks in the heartlands. a venti iced caramel macchiato and a stick of Dunhill reds, he parks his ass at the smoking area and begins to rant...
Singapore is on hell of a boring place, isn't it?
despite the fact that we are a rather densely packed island with every single space filled with an eatery, a family-targeted mall, the next happening club, country club, (insert random photocopied tourist attraction), we are still a fucking boring country lah. food, movies, coffee, and the occasional clubbing aside, what else can you do in Singapore on a saturday or any other day for that matter?
okay give and take, we have very unique concepts of local attractions and past-times. take the Night Safari for example which i last visited back in ehrm.... 1990-something, i think. i didn't bother visiting it again for two reasons. it was bloody dark and all i mainly saw were silhouettes of animal and the occasional bat flittering about in the dark. and just one or two random bats, not like those that always fly out when the Batmobile enters the Batcave (new pick-up line people!). the other reason is mainly associated with the fact that even if they did import a few new animals into tropical ol' Singapore, it's still going to be more silhouettes and darkish looking creatures. hopefully a few more bats though, if the Batmobile ever decides to penetrate the inky darkness of the Batcave again.
but being part of the locals, one tends to know what tourist attractions to see and what to avoid. admittedly, i have never visited the Botanical Gardens before. yeah yeah, i have passed by regal gates of Singapore's most extensive mix of tropical flora and fauna many times in my life before. but you don't really need to be in town to see a clusterfuck of flowers and leafs together. in fact, pay a visit to your nearest heartland and walk down a random corridor of HDB apartments to find a jungle of bougainvilleas, orchids, bonsai, chilli plants, pandan plants, etc. it's almost a jungle out there. oooh... Tarzan.
we lack proper theme parks, the local clubbing scene is a tad on the overrated (not forgetting to mention over-priced) side, taxi fare is never cheap, petrol is bloody expensive and the locals are not exactly comparable to Playboy bunnies. which is perhaps why someone invented the concept of Makansutra and a whole other barrage of foodie guides in the ever-changing culinary scene of Singapore. food is apparently what makes Singaporeans go round, physically round, that is. our locals you see, are always on the search for the best in everything. it not exactly cost-effective to look for the 'Condominium with the best view of the Central Business District' or 'BMW with the Best Horsepower' or a hot favorite this one: 'Best Package Deal at the next upcoming computer/holiday/health-products/sex fair' (we've only had two sexpos in all 42 years of Singapore history). so what better area to source than the abundant availability of foods in Singapore?
the parents actually have a few church family friends who keep a handy copy of the Makansutra in their glove compartments. every sunday after church, these family friends make it a point to head down to a selected food outlet on the Makansutra to do a foodie test. does (insert famous food outlet) really serve the best (insert famous food outlet's speciality)? we're really just missing out the camera crew with close-ups on their lips, smacking away at dribbling bits of gravy and chilli.
eat, sleep, go out to town, shop a li'll bit, fuck a li'll bit more. that's what the typical Singaporean does. and you want to know what's the killer bit? you can do all of the above-mentioned in our neighboring state of Johor or even Batam.
at half the price (ie. currency rate).
well as the old Hokkien army saying goes:
ai pi, ai qi, ai tua liap ni.
(want cheap, want good, want very big boobs)
cost it seems, trumps everything else in Uniquely Boring Singapore.
Thursday, August 09, 2007
project 355: out of the closet and straight into the water closet
i think i have a great affinity with toilets. for some reason or other, i always feel at peace whenever i enter the toilet. the mirrors at the sink soothe the savage libran beast in me who's always clawing for narcissistic pleasure. the toilet being a very private place, gives one all the time in the world to prod, tweeze and primp oneself to perfection before stepping out to face the harsh realities of the world once again. sometimes when i'm in the melancholic 'so-what's-it-all-about-Alfie' mood, i just stare at the mirror and imagine myself in an indie film, asking myself the same question that my mood begets. there's no better place for self-reflection than the toilet. not that i go around on a Narcissus streak, ogling at my reflection in toiletbowl water of course.
indeed, what's it really all about regarding my affinity with the loo? after all, the toilet, to the layman, is prolly as exciting as a nun whos idea of a striptease is the taking off of her headgear. well admittedly, it is one of the places where many of the more exciting aspects of my life have happened in. yeah, i realize that i sound as happening as a loser when i say that. not helping is the fact that the average human spends like ehrm... 4%? 4% of their lives using and being in the water closet. for me, i think i have practically used up 9% of life time doing various activities in the toilet. upon recollection, it's a place where i have pondered over many of life's little questions and learned a great deal about it even. of course, that could be my inquisitive and indie-film-oriented mind searching for the meaning of life in every paper-towel dispenser at the toilet. but still, it's something worth learning, no?
thus it is with this sentiment, that i shall humor you with my little shit-bits of adventures in the sacred place that we call, the lavatory.
One Straight Guy, One Gay Guy and Two Nipple Piercings
back in the polytechnic days of yore, i got to know this stocky cute guy from the drama club. before you think that this is another of those cruisy gay sex stories once again, let me just assure you that this guy's straight. of course, the gaydar back then was as effective as a gay man's satellite phone that kept receiving calls from the local bar that offered inexpensive lap dances from burlesque women. i simply couldn't tell the straight from the gay and vice-versa. back then, i generally classified everyone good-looking as gay and all the ugly chumps to be straight and boorish. a very bad code of classification to follow especially when the straight men these days are spending way too much money on eyebrow plucking and manicures.
anyways, armed with this faulty gaydar, i naturally assumed that stocky guy was gay because he was very tanned, rather cute and very outgoing by nature. the second ex-boyfriend was pretty close to him for a period of time. when i was with him, i tried extracting the truth behind stocky guy's sexuality after he told me about a rather questionable night spent with him. alas, till today second ex-boyfriend still refuses to shed any light behind that one-night-only incident. apparently, there was some touching involved, but nothing more than that. it was perhaps because of this mystery, that i was a tad misled and had a miniature crush on him.
well, this particular chap was very intrigued by my nipple piercing, which was what people remembered me for back then in the drama club. so it was to my surprise, that he approached me to do a nipple piercing for him when he found out that mine was a DIY. and here's a tip from one who has done it DIY before. yeah, you can do it for yourself, but who's gonna pay for the medical expenses when somebody else's nipple gets gangrene from your little bit of handiwork?
that was what i should have thought of when i pierced stocky guy's nipple. alas, the young are brash and foolish. and young i was back then. we locked ourselves in a handicapped toilet in school and i told him to strip. it was actually more like 'commanded' because the words i used were 'strip off your top' and in a really regimental tone too. so imagine, two guys, one of them with a nipple piercing and the other about to get one, locked in a toilet. it was a really questionable situation if we ever got caught in there. the one with the pierced nipple pinched the other's nipple and started poking a safety pin through it. it's amateur gay porn at best and a fetish xtube video at worst.
the bizarre thing was that throughout the whole process of the piercing, no single sound was being made. no grimaces of pain. no flinching whatsoever. just the act of piercing and a rather awkward silence that ensued. when we came out of the handicapped toilet, we acted as if we just happened to be in the same handicapped toilet at the same time with nothing kinky happening at all. it was a rather quiet part of school so there was practically nobody there actually. there was no follow-up being done.
it wasn't until two to three months after the nipple piercing itself, that stocky guy just casually mentioned to me that he took off his nipple ring because it turned gangrene. of course, one had to take into consideration the events that followed after the dirty deed itself. i came out to stocky guy and the aftermath didn't go all that well. turns out that he's pretty homophobic himself, but that could be back then. perhaps he's somewhat changed now, i haven't keep in touch with him for eons. to this day, i still don't know whatever happened on that night between the second ex-boyfriend and stocky guy in question.
i've always liked the concept of glory holes and i'm not saying this because i'm gay. a glory hole is an orifice of sorts, commonly found in the men's toilets. usually it's either burned, drilled, chiseled or scraped to the point whereby you could have a clear view of the occupant and his ablutions in the cubical beside you. obviously, such holes in the toilet are not meant for purposes such as 'excuse me, could you please pass me a new toilet roll?'. it seldom happens in the ladies, but rather a dime a dozen in the gents. in fact, i think the whole idea of a glory hole would have never evolved if there was never such a thing as homosexuality. after all, which decent woman would want to watch another woman peeing, cleaning up and flushing the toilet bowl? only the genetically carnal natures in men would allow that.
it was during my secondary school days that i started obsessing over cruising. cruising, in case you're the layman, refers to the act of searching for sex in public places and this is especially poignant in the gay circles. back in those days, the glory holes at the local shopping mall were practically big enough to fit an entire fist through. though come to think of it, the main aim was more like to insert a private part rather than an extension with five more extensions on it. it was during that time, that instead of focusing on math and science, i ended up doing intensive studies on the Human Anatomy. the male anatomy, to be precise.
while waiting to get picked up for sex, i usually got to observe the bizarre habits of people and their ablutions. people who had to poop squatting over a seated toilet bowl. people who tore strips and strips and strips of tissue paper while pooping. the more 'advanced' cases even had the luxury of folding them up into nice and thick vertical wipes. these tend to usually be the older generation of people. i vividly remember one clumsy guy who tried to squat over a toilet bowl seat and ended up falling. it sounded like he had one foot in the toilet bowl and mind you, this guy had already pooped.
to tell the truth though, i didn't really enjoy cruising for sex in the toilet. it's rather irritating having to wait around aimlessly till someone comes along. sometimes i brought along book to read while waiting for something to happen. but time still goes by as slowly as a certain song by Madonna. thank goodness for spas.
The School Urban Legend
no school, be it primary, secondary or any other tertiary institution, is complete without a relevant haunted ghost story. it seems that no matter the school, old or new, there will always be someone who has prolly died there before. every ancient school in Singapore was built on a Chinese cemetery. there used to be people tortured in the (insert random school room) during the second world war. the band room, the science lab, the home economics room, etc. what can i say? heard them all, alas, seen none at all. the most common of these urban legends however has to come from the toilet. for some reason, every person whom i asked about their local school legends, tend to more often than not quote a story revolving around a death in a toilet.
take my alma mater of ten years for example, Fairfield Methodist Primary and Secondary school. from campfire stories and the like, it has been generally agreed that Fairfield was built upon Chinese cemeteries and was some headquarters for the Japanese to torture people back in the WWII days. given the age of both the primary and secondary school (one of them is a centenarian), it kinda makes sense actually. now, throw the numerous students who had died in the course of education at the school and you have several classic school-based ghosts stories in the making. there was the famous one about a doll in the home economics room and a certain girl who passed away there. i can't recall the details apparently.
my primary school has a much more interesting history though. there was this disused toilet that was obviously meant for primary school kids. the sinks were below knee level and the toilet bowls were so small that the average adult would definitely have trouble trying to fit one butt cheek in. when i started school at Fairfield, i remember the toilet being closed, but never locked. this particular toilet was very near the hopscotch area where many kids would play before assembly. so you could imagine the number of boys who dared each other to enter the toilet. i remember the place becoming a storage for old fans and loads of unwanted school peripherals. it was dark and rather creepy actually.
now, the local legend that haunts this toilet was that of a young primary school boy. he was playing catch in the toilet with some of his friends when he slipped on a puddle of water and fell. his cracked his skull against the sink and eventually bled to death. sometimes at night, one could hear the boy's death cries while he wandered aimlessly around the toilet still trying to finish his game of catch. no wonder the primary school teachers kept shouting to the kids to not run along the corridors and especially in the toilet.
ghosts, glory holes and nipple piercings. i have done my fair share of toilet-related stories. now it's your turn to do the sharing.
Tuesday, August 07, 2007
project 355: sex, drugs, rock n' roll
i can't sleep now. i can't shit. i feel cranky. i keep grabbing my dick for no apparent reason. i subconsciously make funny breathing noises by inhaling through my mouth with clenched teeth. i keep clenching my teeth. i feel as if i'm permanently on tenterhooks. i am feeling very light-headed. my dick seems to have swollen up to 1.2 times its size. and worst of all, i can't orgasm. in fact, i have been trying for the past 2 hours, watching various forms of porn, putting a butt plug up mine, and even smoking three sticks of Marlboro Reds at a go. now you can add a sprained right wrist to the list of ailments i have stated.
apparently, this is what combining sex with chemicals and 98.7FM blaring from the radio in a budget motel does to you. the sex was fantastic. it was mind-blowing, having lasted nearly eight hours (i lost track of time). it was instantaneous horniness. there was this unconceivable urge to just fuck the first thing in sight, be it man, woman or animal. and i couldn't stop talking. i started off with my childhood days, ending up bragging about how terrible it was being a nurse in Singapore. there was even a point where i think i was hallucinating, seeing the most bizarre of things in the motel room. from childhood memories to current events (i saw Lee Kuan Yew and i was shaking hands with him over tea at the Istana). i talked to all my hallucinations, to which my partner kept saying 'What?'. when my partner talked to his hallucinations, i just started fucking him.
first time and prolly the last.
Sunday, August 05, 2007
project 355: church linguistics and bulletins
one of the saving graces of making the arduous trip to church on Sundays would be the church bulletin. xeroxed on plain A4 paper using a photocopying machine, the weekly bulletin is usually arranged neatly and folded into halves by whatever fellowship group is free to do on Saturdays. Saturday, being the day when the various groups from the English and Mandarin congregation would gather together for fellowship. indeed, it's a labor of love and people get to bond over the folding of these bulletins.
i remember when i used to be part of the local Youth Group, i rather enjoyed these folding sessions. there would be dinner, some sweetened drink made out of concentrate, and plenty of talk about video games, school and whatever whatnots that kids talked about back then. by reading the next day's bulletin before the rest of the crowd does, one is armed with information about the congregation. deaths, funerals, wakes, births, events, etc. all that is happening in church, all that is happening to the people in church, there's no better place to look for it other than the church bulletin itself. there will be the occasional bit of exhortation about hellfire and brimstone, but it's all generally tame stuff about being a better Christian and serving the good Lord. today's issue of the bulletin however borders on blatant censorship.
the church has a firm stand on what they label as 'charismatic songs'. Hillsongs, Jars of Clay, anything with a more sentimental tune or an upbeat tempo; all of them considered by the senior pastor in the church to be stuff that a proper Christian should avoid listening. it seems to be the viewpoint of the minority though, judging from the zealousness the congregation put in while singing the more sentimental songs. then again, they are not called 'sentimental' for nothing, aren't they? well, hymns tend to get stale very fast. after all, how exciting can an entire song made out of chords and chords and even more chords be? plus the language of the hymns are of Ye Olde Englande, i have an inkling that most of the congregation have not the faintest idea what they are singing. now, the big guy in the church wants every single song to undergo his strict scrutiny before it can be approved. can somebody smell the scent of Big Brother in the air?
but i'm sure that there's due reason for the church leaders to be worried and all. after all, for the first time in the tranquil setting of the family church, the peace has been shattered by a (few?) vandal(s). today's bulletin has a full page dedicated to an act of vandalism in the resource room. i have no idea what happened, or what was destroyed or even if an act of sacrilege was committed. but this i can be sure of: the board of elders are out to get the SOaB who did this sacrilegious act in the house of God. and the culprit is definitely one of the youth group members. 4:30pm to 7pm on Saturdays is the time that the youth group meets for fellowship. perhaps an accident that happened over the folding of the bulletins?
fed up with all the hardcore seriousness in the bulletin, i decided to excuse myself from the even more hardcore sermon. i found myself headed outside the church and having some alone time with my contraband stick of Marlboro. and guess what i found along the way back into the church?
the aftermath of the renovations. it's just sounds really wrong. context perhaps?
Saturday, August 04, 2007
project 355: a family 'crisis'
i have never heard the mother cussing in a very long time. and even if she did make use of words to express her extreme displeasure in something, it's mostly tame pussy cat words like 'stupid' and 'idiot'. when the mother gets pissed, her face just screws up into a bunch, sorta like a ginseng. and with that ginseng face, she contains her displeasure by swallowing it down into her system and thus rendering her the cool, calm and collected parent that she is. sometimes i wish i could tell her, 'Mommy, if you have anything you want to shout, please verbalize it. Don't keep it inside you, after you get breast cancer then you know ah!' but then 'breast' is not a pussy cat word. come to think of it, the only time when the family says out the word 'breast' is in church and that's in the hymns and bible (eg. Come seek respite upon my breast, child).
all that said, today is Grocery-Shopping Day for the Teo family. and i made the rare consent to accompany the parents on one of their trips to IMM. i've never liked going to that huge shopping mall where the main attraction is the Giant hypermarket and perhaps Daiso, a Japanese shopping outlet selling everything at the everyday price of only two dollars. you see, hypermarkets and two dollar shops are meant to attract the family crowds. everywhere you turn, you can't help but bump into children running amok in the corridors of the shopping center. in fact, you could throw a coin and chances would be that it would land on a kid eating an ice-cream. it would be quite cool if it landed IN the child's ice-cream. i hate children.
it used to be very tolerable as there was a Starbucks outlet there that one could chill at. most of the time, it was devoid of children. a laptop, a venti mocha Frappuchino, and perhaps an outdoor space for smoking and i would be at peace to type out another blog post before i finished my coffee. thank the heavens that the Guy up there came up with the concept of Starbucks. alas, the new IMM is devoid of any al fresco places with smoking areas. everything seems to be indoors, which can be quite irritating when the call of the Marlboro beckons.
the only reason why i decided to head out to IMM today was because i needed to get a new phone. the previous phone, a Sony Ericsson, had given up the ghost and the repair center was miles away in town. admittedly, it was laziness that motivated me to get a new phone. and a new phone did i purchase. i'm officially the proud owner of a Nokia N95 (insert Gary Oldman theme)! with 5 megapixels camera and Carl Zeiss lens some more! that basically translates into better pictures and hopefully a scandalous video worthy of xtube. those were the thoughts that run through my mind while i sat outside IMM savoring my cigarette and the N95.
it wasn't until i finished an indulgent second cigarette that my joy was shattered by a random stranger who suddenly sat too close to me for comfort. i looked up to see a young man decked in a blue polo tee and jeans and a cliche pair of Adidas sneakers. he was carrying a black bag that had a slit on the top and a lock at the side. that and a certificate of sorts accompanied with an identification card. before i could even say 'Yes?', he launched into a spiel about handicapped children and how they need money and impoverished families and how they needed even more money too. this is another reason why i avoid family-targeted shopping centers the same way one avoids a person with a severe case of halitosis. if there's one thing that i hate above kids, it's the donation people. because these days, the motivating factor for these donation people is everything but helping the impoverished. there are groups out there that pay young people to collect donations. it's even more sickening when you see the flag day kids toting their metal cans, soliciting monetary sums from the public in general. half their hearts are left at home with their Friendster accounts and PSPs that it defeats the purpose of flag day in the first place.
besides, the Community Chest takes ten dollars from my monthly salary. it's a hospital initiative to give back to the society and all that altruistic crap. having been in the nursing line for quite a while, i have realized that half the people that i try to help on a daily basis are not even keen to help themselves at all. yes, working in the hospital cheapens the whole concept of life and charity. i hand over ten dollars a month, which is way higher than what the average nurse in the hospital donates to the Community Chest (most of the nurses only donate a token sum of a dollar). of course, the donation guy who approached me never knew all that. so my rejection was taken with a great dose of scorn. not helping was the N95 with a retail value of $1095 that i was fiddling in my hands. as a side note, here's a word of advice for all the aspiring young people who are keen to make a career out of soliciting donations from the public. leave the smokers alone. i personally hate it when someone approaches me when i smoke. i hate it even more when someone approaches me for something when i smoke.
having chased the donation guy away with a firm 'no thanks, but thanks for asking', i finally met up with the parents when they finished with the groceries. and at this point, it would usually be my duty to push the cartload of purchases back to the car. which i did out of filial piety and mainly the fact that they are the ones paying for all the groceries. and here comes another reason to avoid the family shopping malls: parking space. IMM has six stories of parking and having avoided the place for nearly two years, it was to my surprise to see that they have expanded their parking premises with nearly a few more hundred lots. which is all fine and dandy for the car-owners but not that much for the gay son who's bad at psycho-motor coordination and trying to push a big and heavy shopping cart through the narrow aisles of the parking lot.
thank goodness for gym training because i meandered and weaved through the parking lots without as much a scratch or an injury. not on me, but rather the cars. alas, the mother who was driving on the way back didn't have such luck. while maneuvering out of the squeezy multi-storey carpark, the family suddenly heard a sickening crunch coming from the back of the car. at this point, the mother gave a loud and piercing shriek before she started saying (and these were the exact words) 'Stupid idiot bloody shit'. Ooooh... the mother is quite the human after all. inside, i was laughing. outside, i was still reading my N95 manual on how to synchronize the phone via USB cables. i was actually glad that the mother broke her composure, because it gave her a more humane side. i could relate to that given the amount of foul language i use on a daily basis.
apparently, a car behind had followed too close for comfort. and when the general traffic stopped to allow pedestrians in the parking lot to cross, the car behind us had just crossed a road hump. it didn't brake in time and that was when the crunch time set in. the father got out of the car and so did the owner of the car behind us. i had a feeling there was going to be a problem of communication, the father mainly being apt at the English language, but not Mandarin. the owner of the other car had a very bad case of protruding teeth (the kind whereby you close your mouth and it still sticks out), which did not make conversing with him any easier at all. i respected the father for his gutsy handling of the situation because the accident happened right smack in front of the entrance to the shopping mall. EVERYBODY was staring. mats stopped smoking midway just to gawk. the heartlander aunties put down their bags of groceries so that they could get a better view of things. every other car that passed us also slowed down to stare. we caused quite a traffic slowdown during that whole time.
it was thus, that a settlement had to be negotiated. halfway through however, the father popped his head in and asked, 'Jon, can you please help me take some pictures of the car?'. this i could do with some enthusiasm because i am admittedly, rather self-trained in the art of photo-shooting via camera phones. i was thinking of beautiful five mega-pixels photographs. unfortunately, the battery on my new N95 had run dry. well, a photographer works with whatever environment nature throws him. the father handed over his 2.0 mega-pixels Sony Erricsson and the gay son dressed in his gayest best of a singlet and short shorts headed to the back of the car. i couldn't help but think that now the traffic was slowing down because of an exposure of too much flesh on a gay man.
having watched one too many episodes of CSI and Dexter, i found myself 'processing' the scene of crime. but television dramas never did any justice to the art of forensics. because there i was standing with the camera phone, looking for the source of the sickening crunch we heard from the car. there was none. the rear bumper of the family car looked perfectly intact. it was as if the crunch was just a random sound effect that the Guy up there threw down to make the mother use a taboo word. i wished that were true, but the father pointed out to me a portion of the rear bumper. aaaah.... and there was the elusive indentation. very slight, very invisible, but one could see the faint outline of the other car's license plate if under the appropriate lighting. i start snapping away, all the while listening to the father and the protruding tooth guy negotiating a monetary sum as payment.
it was really a bad case of Mandarin and the father was kinda stumbling through a minefield of the right words to use to describe 'dent'. it wasn't until the wife of Protruding Teeth got out of the car to help the husband that the tables were turned. the wife spoke in Hokkien which was the father's main language of converse during his childhood days. and if there was anyone who could speak Hokkien better, it had to be the father. i mean, the father can even pray in very fluent Hokkien and end with the Hokkien version of Amen ('sim zeng sor wan', i have no idea what it means exactly other than Amen).
i managed to grab five shots of the other car's license plate which was rather difficult as the bumpers of both cars were in danger of caressing each other. the father had by then managed to convince a hundred-and-fifty dollars out of poor Protruding Teeth. i felt bad for him, but glad at the same for the father. contacts were exchanged, insurance agents notified, a meeting time arranged and both families carried on with their lives. back in the car, the parents discussed the situation while i was progressing onto 'How to transfer pictures from your phone to the computer'.
'The stupid idiot was sticking so close to the car, there was bound to be an accident! That stupid shit!'
i'm beginning to like my mom. and believe me, i seldom refer to the parents with the word 'my'.
Friday, August 03, 2007
project 355: paul frank, paul frank!
i'm not a brand whore even though i'm a proud proclaimer of the anti-giordano/
baleno/hangten/bossini sentiment. and if you want me to walk the walk, you can come over to my house now and check my wardrobe. i don't own a single piece of apparel from any of the above-mentioned mass-marketed brands. okay i do. but those were very cheap christmas presents from the relatives a few years back. the only reason why they are lying dormant in my wardrobe, sealed up in ziplock to prevent the bad fashion from infusing with the others is that they make really good presents for re-gifting. especially the relatives.
still, just as everyone has a favorite position to be in when they get poked in the arse (i personally like the one where i lie prone while the dirty deed is done; it's good for doing homework), the same can be said for clothing brands and labels. it doesn't have to be one that you purchase or even wear on a regular basis. but simply, a label that one admires for its designs, artwork, concepts or even pricing. a favorite brand. being a rather indecisive freak who tells everyone he prefers variety, i have to admit a large number of favorites. but for today, let's just talk about one label so that you can get on with life, rather than sit here and read my rants.
so this particular label revolves around cutesy monkey motifs. they manufacture colorful panties with bizarre monkey prints on it. they design sleepwear printed with their trademark monkey face logo. they even design scrub suits for pediatric nurses with that trademark monkey. they have punny t-shirts. and they have dressed people in various popular television dramas from The O.C. to CSI to Punk'd. so many contributions to quirky fashion, how then, can i not adore Paul Frank for the brave ventures beyond the standard?
to put it simply, i heart Paul Frank.
in fact, i own more Paul Frank items than any other label in my wardrobe, falling short of the standard issues of Topman and Ben Sherman. my current wallet, which is a Paul Frank, is one that i can't bear to change after storing four years worth of financial assets, ATM cards, spa memberships, name cards, receipts, condoms, etc. it's small, it has very few pockets for cards and it's boringly black. plus maybe it's my innate 'Princess & The Pea', but it gives me quite a sore when i sit on it. i'm thinking it's the protruding condom that i carry with me all the time (life philosophy: you'll never knew when you'll get some). but the trademark skull and crossbones interpretation by Paul Frank Industries just says it all: i'm gay. i have a kiddy side in me even though i'm an adult. i like pirates. i prolly have scurvy too. aaaarrrrr!
beside the wallets, Paul Frank creates really unique time pieces as well, almost all of them never failing to make small talk. one of my Paul Frank watches has a picture of an indistinct crowd of screaming girls on its face and a rotating panel to act as a second hand. on the latter are the words 'I'm Big In Japan'. it's pretty eye-catching actually, judging from the number of people who have grabbed my wrist to read the indistinct message on the watch. this generally paves the way for conversations about Paul Frank and an awfully lame joke involving the average penile length in Japan versus mine.
the only thing about Paul Frank that kinda irks me is the fact that it can be quite difficult getting access to the full range of items for a collection. the only places which i can think of that stock PF are the local Flash & Splash outlets which also sell Quiksilver and Ripcurl and any other boarding brands that one can think of. that and the local Stussy boutique here as well. the nearest Paul Frank boutique from Singapore is in Bangkok. if i recall my geography lessons during my secondary school days, getting from SSG to BKK is not exactly a matter of walking distance.
lamentations about the lack of Paul Frank boutiques aside, i have to admit that i'm more of a fan of the women's line rather than the men's. the men's line you see, tend to be bordering on the edge of boring. polo tees with stripes placed at the usual places where stripes would normally be. humongous psychedelic prints that can cause seizures in toddlers. for the average consumer, boring/gaudy and a slightly more expensive price tag is not exactly very redeeming despite good brand recognition. Paul Frank clothes also have a tendency to be modeled after the thin, lanky types like Adam Brody. for bulky people like me with a body shape that resembles any other letter than a V, it's not exactly very flattering. which is perhaps why i steer clear of the apparel line, and focus more on the accessories.
there was a period of time where i actually contemplated the purchase of a red glittery wallet that had the trademark Julius face sewn onto it. thank goodness common sense and that 20% of straightness left in me went with the black scurvy one. i decided that i would leave red glittery wallets to the day that i started using words like 'Divine' and spelling out 'Glamorous' instead of saying it. sigh. if only i was a woman. i could wear all the Paul Frank that i want. but i know i'm going to regret it when i actually become one. plus i'm not a big fan of the Southern fish.
no offense though, but at least i was frank about Paul.
Wednesday, August 01, 2007
my cell phone decided to give up the ghost two days ago after i shut it down. the Sony Ericsson k750i had a full charge and yet it refused to start up. and you know how difficult it is to be without a phone in this day and age of wondrous modernities. i feel very disconnected and bordering on the edge of being a loser. like i was telling a friend yesterday, 'i can't even turn my phone on, what more then, the ladies?' my friend is straight.
being rendered phoneless is actually very liberating. you do not have to be at the beck and call (literally) of people who are constantly trying to contact you. neither do you have to reply any messages and constantly glance at the phone for any incoming ones. i must say, i pretty enjoy being without a cell. the only drawback so far would have to be the lack of a camera. which basically translates into no pictures on the next few posts.
but the cell phone is a NEED these days, and the parents insist that i remain contactable at all times. it was thus, that i inherited the 'family cell'. a battered old Samsung which the mother ardently used a few years ago. it has polyphonic ringtones, which is pretty old technology actually. and here's the thing that really made me burst out laughing in the middle of the morning after a tiring night shift. the opening screen featured the words:
The Lord is My Strength.
as if the parents haven't harped enough on Christianity, now the cell phone's batteries are preaching to me.
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