thank you
pink shoes
reminiscene
I went through my blog and cleaned it up.

I feel like I've come a long way.

I feel like a new person; the me inside is still the same but some of the contents has been shuffled around, re-integrated... in summary, I think I got 'upgraded'.

My life for the past year has been such a whirlwind.

Thank you God for returning me to sanity and loving me.

I believe God will bless me and grant me forgiveness and happiness and everything else He has planned for me.

さよなら大好きな人
petal heart
reminiscene
A cover SPITZ did.
A very simple song.
Straightforward lyrics.

This sums it all.



さよなら 大好きな人
さよなら 大好きな人
まだ 大好きな人
Goodbye, the one I love
Goodbye, the one I love
I still love you

くやしいよ とても
悲しいよ とても
もう かえってこない
それでも私の 大好きな人
I am very vexed
I am very sad
But you won't return to me anymore
Even then, I still love you


何もかも忘れられない
何もかも捨てきれない
こんな自分がみじめで
弱くてかわいそうで大きらい
I can't forget anything at all
I can't throw away anything at all
I hate my current pathetic wretched self,
so weak and so pitiful


さよなら 大好きな人
さよなら 大好きな人
ずっと 大好きな人
ずっとずっと 大好きな人

Goodbye, the one I love
Goodbye, the one I love
I'll always love you
I'll always, I'll always love you

泣かないよ 今は
泣かないで 今は
心 はなれていく
それでも私の 大好きな人
Don't cry now
Don't cry now
Your heart has strayed far away from me
Even then you are still the person I love

最後だと言いきかせて
最後まで言いきかせて
淚よ 止まれ
さいごに笑顏を
覺えておくため
I tell myself that this is the last time
I tell myself that I'll go to the very end
Tears, stop.
So that you can remember my smiling face right till the end

さよなら 大好きな人
さよなら 大好きな人
ずっと 大好きな人
ずっとずっと 大好きな人
ずっとずっとずっと 大好きな人
Goodbye, the one I love
Goodbye, the one I love
I will always love you
I'll always, always love you
I'll always, always, always love you

Eulogy
spiral staircase
reminiscene
You want a physicist to speak at your funeral. You want the physicist to talk to your grieving family about the conservation of energy, so they will understand that your energy has not died. You want the physicist to remind your sobbing mother about the first law of thermodynamics; that no energy gets created in the universe, and none is destroyed. You want your mother to know that all your energy, every vibration, every Btu of heat, every wave of every particle that was her beloved child remains with her in this world. You want the physicist to tell your weeping father that amid energies of the cosmos, you gave as good as you got.

And at one point you’d hope that the physicist would step down from the pulpit and walk to your brokenhearted spouse there in the pew and tell him that all the photons that ever bounced off your face, all the particles whose paths were interrupted by your smile, by the touch of your hair, hundreds of trillions of particles, have raced off like children, their ways forever changed by you. And as your widow rocks in the arms of a loving family, may the physicist let her know that all the photons that bounced from you were gathered in the particle detectors that are her eyes, that those photons created within her constellations of electromagnetically charged neurons whose energy will go on forever.

And the physicist will remind the congregation of how much of all our energy is given off as heat. There may be a few fanning themselves with their programs as he says it. And he will tell them that the warmth that flowed through you in life is still here, still part of all that we are, even as we who mourn continue the heat of our own lives.

And you’ll want the physicist to explain to those who loved you that they need not have faith; indeed, they should not have faith. Let them know that they can measure, that scientists have measured precisely the conservation of energy and found it accurate, verifiable and consistent across space and time. You can hope your family will examine the evidence and satisfy themselves that the science is sound and that they’ll be comforted to know your energy’s still around. According to the law of the conservation of energy, not a bit of you is gone; you’re just less orderly. Amen.

Aaron Freeman “You Want A Physicist To Speak at your Funeral"


...

A fortune teller once told me that when I die, none of my beloved ones will be with me. What a sad and lonely death I shall have. But I shall still be with them. All the people I love, once loved, and never would have loved.

Angry post? perhaps.
Montage
reminiscene
Sometimes, I get very frustrated and irritated.

When people start telling me what to do, when people read between the lines when there's no such need to, when people purposely misinterpret what I say, when people argue over semantics (with me), when people start to attack me when it is obvious to them I didn't mean it that way but more of because I can't express myself quite well sometimes (either in English or Mandarin) --

and I think, why can't you give me the benefit of doubt? Sometimes people just shoot off their mouths and I do that too and I am very SURE you do that too. We all make mistakes.

When this happens, when shit hits the ceiling, when I get flak for no reason (oh wait, maybe 'flak' is not the right word to use...), I just think, fuck lah. Fuck you, you, and YOU.

Fuck all of you. Give me a break. Cut me some slack. Are you God?

Get off your high horse. Dismount your lofty steed.

I think I'm just cranky because I hadn't had enough sleep from that overnight flight from Beijing.

Fuck overnight flights. Nobody should spend an uncomfortable, cramped night in an economy class seat trying to catch up on some very much deprived sleep. And what's with the blanket smelling like old piss? Has SQ's standards dropped? It's not jet lag but apparently my body is not cooperating with my brain and I can't get to sleep now even though I very much want to.

Which reminds me of a recent bad spat I had with one of my close friends (so called 'close', but not really) and that ended the friendship. I'd like to say that I ended the friendship (or whatever she thought of it) and walked away angry but happy. Angry that I'd spent so much time and effort as her friend and happy that I've finally put an end to it; no more listening to her sarcasms directed at me because amongst the three of us I am the slowest and perhaps seen as a dimwit by her (I have the nickname of Windows DOS, how nice), no more of getting poked at for nothing because amongst the three of us, one has to suffer and die and that person must be me.

Why did I put it up with so long? Who knows. Maybe I am a saint. Maybe I was a saintly bitch.

But I'm glad that I walked away from that table. No amount of excuses given by our mutual friend will help because I know her well, and she knows me well, and we all know each other well enough that sometimes these jokes are not really jokes but uncalled for and were intended to hurt and draw blood and how much blood did she want to see before she feels good?

The only thing she 'lost' to me was probably only academic grades and some brain power but she certainly has a better life than me. And I can't forget this from her; polar bears are brown. Her lack of general knowledge is sometimes astonishing.

What am I trying to say?

There is no point trying to lie to your friend that you hurt him/her if you did it intentionally because everybody knows. It's much better to say sorry unless you want to burn bridges and not bother to salvage the friendship. But then again, if someone intended to hurt another person deliberately or carelessly, then that person is probably not worth your time and effort and love.

Why am I writing this down? So angry at my time wasted on her. Gah.

no, just no.
telephone
reminiscene
A girl called the office today. Turned out that she saw the job advertisement we posted online and she decided to call and try to make an impression.

Notice I used the word "try".

I asked her politely about the business of her call and was a little impressed initially because few young people would dare to pick up the phone and try their luck at getting jobs. This is an effective way (in my personal opinion) and definitely conveys a go-getter image.

However.

I asked about her Mandarin proficiency. I could not tell whether she was Chinese or not; the race doesn't matter as long as you can read well and speak fluently. She went on and on about how she's not Chinese but she talked to many Chinese nationals in her uni... so after listening to that bullshit for about several minutes, I asked her to give me a short self-introduction in Mandarin.

She was shocked and flabbergasted and didn't know what to say. Her Mandarin is okay but it's really conversational level. Not good enough for us. She didn't know many simple terms and reverted back to English. Also, while she was a very cheerful girl, she was too friendly over the phone and did not use formal polite English with me.

Phone etiquette says a lot girl.

I told her politely that her Mandarin is not good enough for our position but added that if she worked on it she might be better (to soften the impact) but I think, I wasn't direct enough, because she said this.

"Oh but don't you think they would be so impressed? Since I'm obviously not Chinese but I can speak Mandarin?"

-_-"

Why would I want them to be impressed with you? I want someone who can work, not someone who can impress but cannot deliver. That was such a bimbotic comment that I was flummoxed for a second. I then told her bluntly that her Mandarin is still not good enough and impressing people is not good enough too and that she can email her resume and we'll take a look.

That means no.

(no subject)
wtf?!
reminiscene
I'm going to a small city called Panjin in Shenyang (Liaoning province) this Wednesday.

Which is the day after tomorrow.

The weather forecast says that it's -3 celsius degrees at night. This means -5 celsius and worse with windchill. I was supposed to go to Urumqi too (but that failed) and even Urumqi is warmer than Shenyang now.

This translates to me saying "Fuck" over and over again.

FUCK LAH.

Don't Go Far Off, Not Even For A Day
shining lemon
reminiscene
Don't go far off, not even for a day, because --  
because -- I don't know how to say it: a day is long  
and I will be waiting for you, as in an empty station  
when the trains are parked off somewhere else, asleep.  

Don't leave me, even for an hour, because  
then the little drops of anguish will all run together,  
the smoke that roams looking for a home will drift  
into me, choking my lost heart.  

Oh, may your silhouette never dissolve on the beach;  
may your eyelids never flutter into the empty distance.  
Don't leave me for a second, my dearest,  

because in that moment you'll have gone so far  
I'll wander mazily over all the earth, asking,  
Will you come back? Will you leave me here, dying? 

- Pablo Neruda (translated to English)

Give me a break.
drinking tea
reminiscene
I need to write this down. It's been on my mind for some time and I ought to let it out before I implode again.

Racism. I'm not saying that I'm not a racist; I am definitely not colour-blind but I do try to remind myself not to be so, and be more sensitive and thoughtful of what I say in public (e.g., Facebook) or to my social circle (workplace etc). It's all too easy to generalise to an entire race or stereotype anyone. Heck, stereotypes is a cognitive shortcut and I'm not saying stereotypes should be condoned but we all should be a bit more forgiving too.

But you know what? When I become the victim, it's not so easy anymore.

I am fortunate, being a Singaporean Chinese where there are many foreigner-expatriates working in this country and Chinese being the majority here. But even here, even on this little sunny island here, racism is real. From what I've seen and experienced and heard and read, it's very simple.

Whites -> Yellow/Brown -> Black

Western nations -> Asian nations -> undeveloped countries

It really gets to me when we start the hiring process. The interviewees of course do not know that my bosses are whites. They do not know that they are going to be interviewed by a white since I do all the liaising and phone-calling. And when they arrive, be it interns or part-timers or full-timers to-be, their faces and gait change the moment they see my blue-eyed white bosses.

My bosses probably do not notice this, but I can see the changes and the signals they are giving out unconsciously is:

- It's a white! Oh shit.
- This job is going to be good since the boss is a white.

They are more nervous and excited, and in their attempt to speak in better English, their anxiety shows through and it makes me cringe. They shuffle their feet, they touch their hair and fingers more than when they just saw me (it's got to do with the office layout). Their eyes light up, their cheeks turn a little red, the men might start to perspire, the women's voices become squeakier and damn, I think, come on, don't do this.

They are just people. They have their faults and good points just like anybody else. Don't disgrace the rest of non-whites like us.

Don't get me wrong; I have nothing against the whites other than I think they are bigots and xenophobic occasionally and my white bosses do say racist things from time to time. They do it unconsciously, and I don't blame them because they, just like me, and the rest of us, are hammered by media and propaganda that the whites have been saving the world since caveman days and they've brought technology to the human race and made everything else so much better on a daily basis, everywhere and every second-

But hey, you are an adult already. Read more, think critically, analyse a bit harder. Read between the lines, and if you can't, then read MORE. And what about your pride as a non-white?

I feel disgusted and shamed by these interviewees. Some of them perform well, some of them don't. Their anxiety get to them and they falter and mumble and trip over their own words. Oh the effects of adrenalin coursing so fast through their veins. It makes me embarrassed because they do not have enough interaction with whites and think they are better and more well-mannered and perhaps I was like this before too, but if you are reading this, continue on.

They are the SAME, just like us. I've seen really stingy and cheapskate whites that would put spend-thrifty Asians to shame. And at that moment, I don't see that person as his/her race, but that s/he is really a fucking stingy person. It's got nothing to do with race or colour or nationality but more of that person's upbringing, character/personality, or even their religious beliefs.

You know what bugs me?

The fact that these Asian interviewees are so impressed and excited that they are interviewed by a white, and that they do not know that one of their race/colour (i.e. me) was just indirectly put down by a white bitch who assumed that she was better than me because she spoke in loud, accented English (American/British) and it was obvious to me that she was just an airhead.

Not being able to speak in perfect, accented English does not make you lesser than anyone; it's the inside that counts. Your attitude, personality, brains... kindness, grace, humility etc.

One day, if ever one day, when China or India becomes the superpower of the world, the tables are going to be turned and situations reversed.

But then again, in this dog-eat-dog world, what matters is whether your colour matches the superpower of the day, right?

Ssshhh
Montage
reminiscene
Keeping Quiet, Pablo Neruda

Now we will count to twelve
and we will all keep still.

For once on the face of the earth,
let’s not speak in any language;
let’s stop for one second,
and not move our arms so much.

It would be an exotic moment
without rush, without engines;
we would all be together
in a sudden strangeness.

Fisherman in the cold sea
would not harm whales
and the man gathering salt
would look at his hurt hands.

Those who prepare green wars,
wars with gas, wars with fire,
victories with no survivors,
would put on clean clothes
and walk about with their brothers
in the shade, doing nothing.

What I want should not be confused
with total inactivity.
Life is what it is about;
I want no truck with death.

If we were not so single-minded
about keeping our lives moving,
and for once could do nothing,
perhaps a huge silence
might interrupt this sadness
of never understanding ourselves
and of threatening ourselves with death.
Perhaps the earth can teach us
as when everything seems dead
and later proves to be alive.

Now I’ll count up to twelve
and you keep quiet and I will go.

—from Extravagaria (translated by Alastair Reid, pp. 27-29, 1974)

(Source: being.publicradio.org)


Wish I could lay down beside you...
bird cage
reminiscene



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