Thursday, December 25, 2008

Off at last- Switzerland.

It feels a little surreal. That I'm finally leaving on a trip which I decided upon impulse just 40 days ago. Not that I have any regrets, if anything there is that growing sense of quiet anticipation towards the days ahead. Suffice to say, I doubt my outlook towards travelling in general and as a solo traveller in particular would remain the same after this trip.

So in 30 mins, I'm off to Switzerland that scenic land of snow, cheese, chocolates and watches (as the cousin repeatedly pointed out). I still have that ever-present nagging feeling of having forgotten something (I believe i forgot the frequent flyermiles card but there you have it), am wondering why the luggage seems to weigh a ton and have yet to come up with a complete itinerary. But half the fun is planning and improvising on the go isn't it? (For impulsive nuts like me hur hur)

With temperatures ranging from 0 C to -10 C in the cities and a horrific -15 C to -20 C at the mountains (Junfrau and Schilthorn), I'm mildly worried about freezing over. I love the cold, I've always detested the sweltering strength sapping heat of summer. But that said and done, being mind numbingly cold where the chill (and wind shudders) cuts to the bones isn't much fun either. I'll just have to see how much punishment I can take in Jungfrau, assuming I don't freeze first that is.

Food won't be a problem. Short of spicy, grotesquely exotic and swimming-in-oil food, I'm fine with trying almost all kinds of cuisines. Continental food in particular poses no problems at all, I could probably survive a year without the usual rice-noodle asian staple kind of food. Sure i might miss it from time to time but I won't die without it. Which is more than I can say for some family members (who used to pack belachan before 9/11..) and friends.

So I have no doubt I'll be enjoying the food though I'm equally sure the copious amounts of cream, cheese and meat will be deposited along the girth. Which probably does give me a reason to club in Zurich doesn't it? grins.

It's amusing how frenzied the Mother was. Do you have this? Do you have that? Where are they meeting you? (because she still assumes Annie and Kate are coming along) She'll probably enter into cardiac arrest if she knows the truth. The Sister tried to surreptitiously slip a devotional prayer book into my knapsack which I quickly disposed of. She even gave a little peck on the cheek which was a surprise.

Kinda makes you feel like one of those soldiers off to war the way they reacted even though I'm off for holls. Ah well, maybe I won't come back in one piece but hey I jolly well intend to have a good time damnit.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Rojak la!

Time flies when you least expect it to, which is almost always when you are having fun. The last 5 days have been a whirlwind of frenzied activity, wining, dining, clubbing, chatting and a shit load of shopping.

It seems almost surreal that in 2 days I'll be jetting off to Switzerland (yay!), the prospect of travelling alone to so far away a place exciting yet not without a tinge of apprehension. And I haven't packed zilch to start with, in fact it was only today that I just printed out the maps with directions to get to the different hotels. Yes, so I remain woefully unprepared but I shall psych myself up sometime in the very near future. Now if only I could get someone to pack for me, bah.

The weekend was tiring but eventful, clubbing on consecutive nights till the wee hours of the morning was exhausting though it did afford an excellent workout on the dancefloor. It would have been a mind numbing three nights in a row if not for that wonderful Brain Fuck conversation with D. that went on for 7 hours straight to dawn.

It's always highly refreshing and totally captivating to be able to find another person whom one can converse so freely with. Where conversation flows naturally and seamlessly and neither party has the willpower or desire to end the conversation. And all without the banal de rigeur 'age/stats/race intro?' crap. A brain fuck indeed.

We met just yesterday and even if he wasn't physically attractive, short and stocky (hahaha he'll kill me), he was a huge intellectual turn on. Conversation as usual was entertaining and totally uninhibited, well after a few persistent probes from yours truly. ^^ If nothing, at least we've found a friend cliche though it may sound.

Orchard was packed as usual... All the last minute christmas shopping hasn't been helping at all. Everytime I shop for presents I usually end up getting stuff for myself. Which is good as therapy but bad for the wallet. You know what they say though, it's the festive season and the sales are quite remarkable so I'm just doing my bit to stimulate the economy.

The one buy I'm really pleased with are the boots from Raoul. God knows how damn difficult it is to buy classy boots that can actually be worn to work in Singapore. I've always had a thing for boots, it's not because of the heels but more its sleek sexiness and the inexplicable feeling of empowerment and liberation when one wears them.



And if you dare suggest that the feeling of empowerment can be put down to the added few inches obtained from the heels, I'll squish your superficial balls. Under the heels of my boots of course. *Maniacal laughter* But yes I can fathom why certain females are fixated over stilettos, the higher the better, even though walking becomes a delicate balancing act and their feet probably hurt like hell. Heels and pain seem to go hand in hand.

That said and done, boots only go well with certain outfits and must be matched judiciously. There can always be too much of a good thing. It's all about knowing when to draw the line. Such as wearing boots with berms. Which is just plain wrong in case you can't visualise it for yourself.

Orchard road seems to be teeming with buskers these days, some of which aren't even local. I have to admit some of whom are actually entertaining if not because they are highly peculiar. Like that hippie Japanese band which sat cross legged and chanted hallelujah along to trance inducing music while strumming/ blowing on various instruments. For a moment I thought I was in the 70s'. And one of the guys even looked like Captain Jack Sparrow.... you judge for yourself.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Today

Today is the day I would have hugged someone tight and said, "Happy 7th dear!"

Today is the day I would have thanked that same individual for sticking with me for 7 years.

Today is the day I would have reaffirmed my commitment to the now defunct relationship

Today is the day which would have been special.


Today is the day after last night's havoc dinner and dance with the usual gang at work.

Today is the day I am going clubbing at Play with the Date.

Today is the day I remembered how good it feels to hug someone to sleep.

Today is the day I realised just why you are the last thing on my mind.


Today is a day just like any other day.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Hot n Cold.



There are songs and there are infectious hits that get stuck in your head, your body moving and render the call of the dancefloor irresistable. Katy Perry's Hot n Cold is one of them, bitchy, infectious and damn danceable. In fact, it's pretty hard not to dance to it. Time to sweat it out on the dancefloor at Play again...

Cause you're hot then you're cold. You're yes then you're no. You're in then you're out. You're up then you're down. You're wrong when it's right. It's black and it's white. We fight we break up. We kiss we make up...

Hot n Cold by Katy Perry


You change your mind
Like a girl changes clothes
Yeah, you PMS like a bitch
I would know


And you always think
Always speak cryptically
I should know
That you're no good for me

'Cause you're hot then you're cold
You're yes then you're no
You're in and you're out
You're up and you're down
You're wrong when it's right
It's black and it's white
We fight, we break up
We kiss, we make up


You, you don't really wanna stay, no
You, but you don't really wanna go, oh

'Cause you're hot then you're cold
You're yes then you're no
You're in and you're out
You're up and you're down

We used to be just like twins, so in sync
The same energy now's a dead battery
Used to laugh 'bout nothing
Now you're plain boring
I should know
That you're not gonna change

'Cause you're hot then you're cold
You're yes then you're no
You're in and you're out
You're up and you're down
You're wrong when it's right
It's black and it's white
We fight, we break up
We kiss, we make up

You, you don't really wanna stay, no
You, but you don't really wanna go, oh

You're hot then you're cold
You're yes then you're no
You're in and you're out
You're up and you're down

Someone call the doctor
Got a case of a love bipolar
Stuck on a rollercoaster
Can't get off this ride

You change your mind
Like a girl changes clothes

'Cause you're hot then you're cold
You're yes then you're no
You're in and you're out
You're up and you're down
You're wrong when it's right
It's black and it's white
We fight, we break up
We kiss, we make up

'Cause you're hot then you're cold
You're yes then you're no
You're in and you're out
You're up and you're down
You're wrong when it's right
It's black and it's white
We fight, we break up
We kiss, we make up

You, you don't really wanna stay, no
You, but you don't really wanna go, oh

You're hot then you're cold
You're yes then you're no
You're in and you're out
You're up and you're down

Monday, December 15, 2008

WTB Weekend.

You'll have to forgive me if I keep talking about weekends or my seeming infatuation with them (which I am not denying, and any sane working individual would tell you the same) but considering the fact that the rest of the week is (generally) spent on work which you wouldn't want to talk about (save to rant and rave) you can understand my preoccupation with the Weekend. Yes, the sad life of a grunt in the global economy. But hey job security in a recession helps.

This weekend was (generally) another high and woefully short. Catched up on much needed rest, finished all 32 weepy episodes of the Korean period drama 'The Legend' starring that guy from Winter Sonata. You gotta hand it to the Korean actors (and actresses..blah), they're damn good at tearing up suddenly, eyes brimming with tears at some poignant memory, plus they still look damn good after crying, tear streaked faces and all.

It's infectious. I even cried when some main character kicked the bucket. hur hur. I mean it's amazing how long 2 guys can stare at each other, one with a spear thrust through his heart, tears in their eyes replete with loud pants. It would almost be some homoerotic scene if not for the context and the setting. And yes I timed it, it was 3 mins 20 seconds replete with weepy, melodramatic music playing in the background. Amazing, eh?

So anyway, I'd forgotten that hypnotic effect these dramas and serials exert; it takes a monumental effort to stop oneself from popping in one disc after the other, just to see what happens later damnit. It is a rather cheap addiction given the price/entertainment time ratio albeit an unhealthy one. But most addictions aren't healthy anyway so who gives a flying fuck.

The Weekend wasn't all sloth and sleep. I met a very charming guy and I must say I was pleasantly surprised. It's not often that one is able to talk to a gay gay albeit a total stranger for hours on end without broaching the usual subject about sex. Though we did eventually talk about that of course. And you know what they all say, all talk no action is highly unsatisfactory. So of course must follow up la.

Revisited Play after months, music is still generally the same, house from 11ish to midnight, more popular current hits from one to three and the top 40s , late 90s hits from 3 to 4am. The crowd keeps looking younger or maybe i'm just getting older (not that I'm complaining). Though I swear some of the boys there aren't even 18 yet. Like the teen on crack, arms flailing about in all directions as he danced/spasmed to some invisible beat on the stage. Which provided some entertainment.

Though I was annoyed by the drunk shortie who kept popping up between the date and I to 'dirty dance' or to put it more accurately, grope wantonly. I mean sure he was young and probably high but he had halitosis and had the audacity to tweak my nipples that little punk. Which earned him a hard shove in the opposite direction.

Sunday was the time for last minute Christmas shopping for the Christmas dinner with the usual bunch of colleagues at work. The date agreed to come along. We'd agreed on the 'one expensive present instead of a bunch of cheapo presents' arrangement which meant we were assigned to buy for a particular individual, which suits me just fine. Shopping was a 15 minute blitz and I'm rather pleased with the pressies (again..haha).

Stuffed ourselves silly and caught The Day the world stood still at Lido. Bit of an anti-climax IMO, too much like the Day after Tommorow, you know that post-apocalyptic kind of scenario. It's all that pre-occupation with the one big Day, doubt we'll be seeing the end of it anytime soon. He liked it though so that was good.

And just like that the weekend's gone. Vaporous and transient. And you wonder why I'm so fixated on weekends.

I leave you with Suberidai , the ending song from Katekyoshi Hitman Reborn. The song is pretty normal, standard emo-ish fare. It's interesting because of the singer's voice. It's the kind you either love, hate or the type that slowly grows on you. You can't really stay neutral on it.

If I had to describe it on a knee-jerk reaction, I'd probably describe it as the kind of tone you get when you get a baritone to sing and slowly but surely squeeze his balls. And no I assure you S&M is not my cup of tea. But yes, it's the kind of voice that grows on you. Listen and decide for yourself.

Suberidai by Mori Tsubasa




The dancing, fluttering happiness
The trembling warmth

No matter how I struggled
I couldn’t catch it, like always
No matter how hard I sketched
I couldn’t draw it, like always

Yesterday, I understood that
We can’t meet each other again
I understood that
I took two pieces of tissue home with me

The dancing, fluttering happiness
The trembling warmth
“Someday, I promise to make you happy”
The voice that day was just my imagination

By knowing separation, it seems that we can become strong
It’s fine even if we can’t become stronger than thisI
t changed yesterday
The bad things changed yesterday
Just as you said, I’m a bad person

The fluttering hand that was pressed against my hair tenderly
The sparkling ring that was removed from your finger
You laughed a little fakely, didn’t you?I saw it from further than usual
I didn’t say anything

The slide you saw
When your teary eyes averted my gaze in the park
I can’t remember if it was a giraffe or an elephant
Even though I remember thinking“I want to protect you”

The dancing, fluttering happiness
The trembling warmth
“Someday, I promise to make you happy”
The voice that day was just my imagination

Monday, December 8, 2008

Decadent Weekend.

I probably drank, shopped and smoked more this entire long weekend than the whole of last month. Which makes for a very decadent and expensive weekend.

Most of the boozing and smoking happened on Friday when I met up with the usual gang from Army. After dining and the customary reds and sheesha at Pot pourri (the rest had beer..yawn), the Ah Beng declared that he needed to dance in a proper club with the customary hard liqueur and mixers or he would die of boredom. Which we figured he probably already was anyway.

I firmly rejected his suggestion of Kabuki (again) and was amenable to Powerhouse at St James' Power Station, techno night though it was, given my familiarity with that place on a different night of the week. ^^ The queue at Powerhouse was horrendous by the time we arrived at 11pm so the Beng cajoled us into Dragonfly, that cantopop club beside Powerhouse.

I was expecting the worst. Mental images of some cabaret costumed show where dancers prance about the stage belting out Cantonese songs and expecting the crowd to get happy and tipsy to the process. I was pleasantly surprised. Sure enough there was still the cabaret themed live shows which came on at two separate intervals at midnight and sometime at 2? in the morning.

But other than that, the music was great. You know the kind of Top 40 hits, replete with the popular chart toppers from the late 90s that I seriously haven't heard for years. I mean I haven't heard J Lo's Let's Get Loud in a club since the 2003 New Year eve bash at the now defunct Whynot. Perhaps, the more astute or cynical amongst you might point out, I'm really more 'beng' than I care to admit. If loving to groove to Top 40 hits and music with more lyrics than beats instead of the usual House and the generally disseminated songs is an indicator of 'bengness' then I am unabashedly 'Beng'. Well in that aspect at least, I totally fail for the KTV, hokkien vulgarity sprouting bit.

We plowed through 3 bottles of Chivas amongst the 4 of us and grooved till the lights came on at 5am. The night also afforded entertainment of some sort. 2 gay guys in a huge arty farty group near us got drunk and bitchy which ended up in a real fight with glasses zinging to and fro. A short stumpy lady in a frilly dress (whom the Beng aptly terms as Pui Chai - or literally translated as Fat Vegetable) rushed up to me and grabbed my waist and went "Da Jia! Ta men zai da jia!" I had to spend a good minute extricating myself from her persistent embrace.

As a colleague adroitly pointed out, I seem to have the propensity to attract the wrong sort of attention, namely unwanted, unsolicited physical contact with unattractive (and I'm talking unattractive in the objective sense) women. Which often makes me wonder if I'm subconsciously emitting the wrong kind of signals or worse still fat-women-come-hug-me pheromones. Whatever it is, it's a disappointment everytime I'm appreciating a cutie and get accosted by a pui chai. Shrugs, can't have it all I guess.

Shopping was initially driven by necessity( a few winter pieces for the swiss trip) but quickly hijacked by the wholly impulsive urge for retail therapy and the totally unwarranted inclination for gratification. So what started as a simple 'Ok I need a coat' blitzkrieg mission rapidly degenerated into a no-holds barred rampage and I ended up with 4 bags of clothes. 75% of which weren't for the swiss trip. And no, I wasn't doing my Christmas shopping. CS asked the same question (after another impulsive decision to activate them for some late night RA3 gaming) and shot me a dirty look when I answered in the negative.

You know what they say about retail therapy. It's all fine and dandy, inducing a Prozac-esque high till the bill comes. Then you hit rock bottom and it's time for other forms of therapy. Which is why I've resolutely refused to look at this month's credit card's statement. Till I need to clear the credit limit for the Swiss trip of course. Well, all in good time.

In the meantime, I'll be looking forward to the next two weeks where the Family will be on vacation and I'll have the entire bloody house to myself. Not to mention the attendant peace and zen-like serenity. Time to invite a few friends over for dinner or perhaps even the occasional fling for certain nocturnal activities. B L I S S.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Tea for three.

The Triumvirate seldom has the time to meet for a proper unhurried meal and a chit chat session these days. But when we do meet, we usually go all the way.

Tea at Royal Copenhagen, an extremely satisfying dinner at Kuriya, chilling out and drinks at Potpourri. We (or annie in particular) probably traumatised the staff at Kuriya with the random bursts of laughter and the spirited conversation which often induced an inordinate amount of eye-rolling or further convulsing bouts of laughing fits.

Kuriya's (at Lido) standard remained impeccable if a little pricey. Kate and I ordered the Nabemono hotpots while Annie went for the humongous Kuriya set dinner which she wasn't able to finish anyway. Tucking into my favourite side dish of baked tofu with mentaiko (spicy cod roe) and cheese, I declared with enforced gaiety "Mm, dick cheese!" whereupon Annie dissolved into another bout of hysterical giggles and Kate turned a strange shade of green and snapped, "Can you stop that! Just the thought of it makes me want to hurl. God, I can almost smell it." Scrounging up her face, she made muffled retching sounds. Which probably worried the very attentive waitress who came along to check if everything was alright.

Drinks sometime thereafter, was at Potpourri, the same gem of a place where Ming celebrated her big 40 as it was nearby and the ambiance was perfect. Quiet but comfortable. I ordered my usual reds, which incidentally is far better than a lot of the reds at a number of watering holes, some of which are way too acidic- almost like vinegar and a sheesha. Annie had a long island tea and Kate, her San Pellogrino.

I must say I'm thoroughly impressed with the sheesha at Potpourri's, an hour later and it was still smoking away unlike the miserable one at that arab street cafe which died out after 15 mins. In fact the harder I sucked, the more bubble-gummy smoke I was rewarded with. (Kinda makes you wish it applied to something else doesn't it?) By the time we left about 80 mins later, it was still going strong, Annie was lobster pink, making funny comments and I was wistfully bemoaning the fact that tomorrow was Wednesday and not Saturday.

All in all, thoroughly enjoyable as usual, though I must say that all this wining and dining is burning a hole in my wallet. Sob.

Suzie's Big 40th Bash.

I don't regret turning up for Suzie's / Ming's splendid bash. True to her roots, the event was well planned and choreographed right till the very last minute, and loads of fun to boot. True enough the initial meeting was a little awkward. Ming was smaller than expected (but larger than life haha) and as the rest of the blogging gang (Wildgoose and SinLady) hadn't shown up yet, Ming introed me to her banking colleagues who had known her for more than 16+ years.

Which was all very nice and swell but we mostly talked shop and when they queried as to the kind of the blog I maintained (cuz Ming mentioned that she knew me via blogging) (was it a cuisine kind of blog?), I just mentioned that it was a personal lifestyle kind of blog and left it at that. They were nice people, married with families. I just didn't think with all the talk about 'are you attached yet? hey you should be what!' that they were quite ready for the 'Actually I'm gay' kind of statement. Which was why I was scanning the crowd for vague signs of Sinlady and Wildgoose as Ming said they would be arriving soon.

The only hint I had was SinLady's hair which I had a vague impression of from the various photos posted on her blog. :) Sure enough, I spotted a refined woman with the same hairdo and a suspected cutesy kind of Wildgoose sometime later, so I made my way and introduced myself while hazarding a guess as to their identities after dinner and a couple of glasses of happy juice.

Which thankfully turned out to be the correct decision. I'm glad I risked the gamble, we had a hearty conversation and a great time thereafter. I wish I could produce/take better pictures, alas photography has never been one of my stronger points. Nevertheless we had a blast of a time, celebrating Ming's birthday and just enjoying each other's company, plus I managed to get Daniel's opinion about pole dancing haha.



Ming's Mum, a former Cantonese opera star performing with great gusto, my horrible photography skills does her no justice :P



Picture of Ming wowing the crowd with her pole-tastic skills. As usual my photography skill sucks but hey you notice that feral gleam in Ming's eyes? haha.



Stephie and Sinlady (J) performing their sexy exotic Egyptian dance on stage :)



From Left to Right: SinLady (J), Mysterious lady ^^, Ming the Birthday Girl, yours truly and Wild Goose (PY).

Cheers to many more happy years of friendship! :)

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Don't Play Play.

If there's one thing I detest more than being played out (and trust me I am pissed when people play me out), it's being played out by unapologetic sods with an attitude to boot. You all know W., that wonderfully smug first ex whose glib tongue belies an ego bigger than the sum of J Lo's and Queen Latifah's butts.

I know. I've ranted about him before. But after six months of relentlessly ignoring his calls and smses, I finally relented and agreed to meet him once. It was to have been last Saturday but after returning quite smashed and considerably broke after dinner and drinks with the gang at work the night before, I called it off. So we arranged to meet again, yesterday. Lunch and perhaps a movie.

You dumb fuck! Didn't you rant and rave about him not too long ago? Or have you forgotten that you bid good riddance to him? Thoughts probably zipping through your mind as you read this.

All of which undeniably true. But you know how it is. We all know what we should do, whether we actually do it though is a different story. You know you should just stick to your dressing less salad to squeeze into that fabulous dress for xx's dinner but you just can't help ordering your tiramisu. Or in Alxx's case, her 4 servings of toffee nut latte. haha. After all, there's always the garter.

So yes I am fully aware. And W.'s not even a palatable let alone delectable temptation. But that's how it was. I digress. So we'd agreed the night before (friday) to meet around 1-2pm for Lunch and a movie. He wanted to drive over to pick me up. (Which I agreed to) And tried to squirrel a treat from me in the process. (Which naturally I refused to)

"Make Sure ah. You're always so busy, you might just end up at work." W. ended off in his usual smugly sarcastic tone.

Next day, Saturday. I got up earlier than usual (ie Noon ^^). Got ready by 1, then waited. And waited. Soon an hour passed and after a couple of SMSes and unanswered phone calls, I decided to take up Alvin's invitation for Red Alert 3 along with CS at Paradiz. As I was leaving the house, that bugger called.

"Lunch now?"
"It's 3 o'clock. We agreed to meet around 1-2 and you didn't even answer your phone."
"Aiya was sleeping wat. Lunch now?"
"Are you mad, I had my lunch already, not going to starve waiting for you. Went drinking last night is it? At least inform me then."
"Ha ha you're as adorable as always."
"...."

So after a couple more lopsided exchanges, we agreed to meet at Paradiz because I curtly informed him that I was already leaving and he insisted on going down to meet me ("I can play RA3 too! You can just say we're classmates."). Call me when you reach then, I informed him. He agreed. And you would have thought that would have been the end of the matter.

Apparently not. When I reached Paradiz it was already 4 plus and Alvin, CS and his gf were already busy annihilating virtual enemies to smithereens (or being annihilated..haha). So we gamed and I expected his call any minute. An hour passed, the Omnia remained dark and silent. Around 5.30 I sent W and sms, "Ok, meet at 6.30pm, town. Call me."

Another hour passed and still no call. By then the other three had been gaming for almost 5 hours and I presumed W. was already on his way down or something so I said my goodbyes and we parted ways. I called thrice. The bugger failed to pick up. Thoroughly annoyed, I shot him a quick sms, "Missing in action again? I'm heading to town. Call me."

By the time I reached Orchard, I was pretty famished and choleric. The massive crowd did not help. And the Omnia still remained dark. Downright annoyed, I texted the sod, "Never answer your phone never even bother to reply and we agreed to meet. If you are coming down let me know I'm at Orchard."

Whereupon I was rewarded with a single pathetic "Can't". Which of course made me ballistic. If he was there that very minute I would have socked/slapped him and kicked his balls for good measure. Assuming he has any. That sorry pathetic cunt.

You agree to meet. No, let me correct that. You WANT to meet and therefore we AGREE to meet. You sleep late. Call and expect people to have lunch with you at 3. Agree to meet again. Fail to show up. Fail to reply to SMSes. Fail to answer any phone calls. And then reply with a single pathetic "Can't" without a single apology or explanation and expect any sane reasonable person to accept it?

Good grief. Just the thought of it is sufficient to send me into an apoplectic rage. Obviously basic courtesy and common sense is something he sorely lacks. But why should I be surprised. It's one thing to play other people out (and that of course has to be distinguished from inevitable situations ie: life-threatening wardrobe malfunctions kind of situations), it's another to do so without being in the least apologetic or having the courtesy to come up with a viable excuse.

No wonder I dropped him like a hot potato. Well good riddance.

*Takes a deep breath* On the other hand, I did manage to get a decent gift for Suzie who's turning 40 tomorrow. Happy Birthday girl! I'm terrible with prezzie shopping be it for birthdays or Christmas. I mean god knows what everyone wants. And besides, you know you won't be pleasing everyone.

Oh I know, gays are supposed to be fabulously fashionable, with an eye for good clothes, girl's best confidantes/sisters and perfect shopping kakis. Shopping for presents should by extension be a real breeze. Well yes, that is the general perception. But just like not every heterosexual male loves soccer or oggles at girls all day, not all gay males are your fashionable fag hag friend.
For me, I hate shopping for presents. So when I do find a present I'm satisfied with, it's a personal accomplishment of sorts. haha

I shall be looking forward to tomorrow's birthday celebrations for Suzie, if anything, it'll be the first time I'll be meeting her, WG and SL for the first time after over a year of slinking about on each others' blog posts. :)

I leave you now with the psychedelic and catchy ending song, Hitohira no Hanabira, from Bleach. It's chirpy and almost para para-esque though I'm certain the animation adds to that effect. ^^

Hitohira no Hanabira by Stereopony





A single flower petal brushes against my skin
I don't want to believe
our romance was a mistake

We've got a bad, bad habit of saying "everything's fine" and bottling it up
I always thought about how i wanted to be with you forever
but we don't see eye to eye
I assumed i could always make you smile
in that soft, gentle way of yours
like when we first met
I want to hold you...

A single flower petal brushes against my skin
I don't want to believe
our romance was a mistake
I thought I loved you
I wanted to hear your voice more and more
and while my hand still reaches yours,
I can't see what your future holds.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Absolutely Fabulous- Charismatic Schmaltz.

Absolutely Fabulous. Aptly sums up this satirical comedy series starring Jennifer Saunders as Edina (Eddy) and Joanna Lumley (Patsy) that takes a long hard look at the lives of a couple of brash, alcohol imbibing mismatches and the motley crew of colourful characters in their lives.

Incisive and irreverent, nothing is taboo in this no holds barred comedy. You laugh yet it makes you think and that I always feel is the best form of comedy.

We've all heard about TV evangelists, schmaltzy glitzy preachers who attempt to reach millions through various forms of media, the most common being the one eye monster. They're slick, smooth, exhort the multitudes to turn to God while raking in the cash. They're also almost always from the more charismatic protestant denominations.

You know the kind of service where your horrified, unsuspecting friend whom you invited whispers, "Are these people having seizures??!"

Absolutely Fabulous nails these elements right down to a pat, even to the casting out of demons portion. Sure the portrayal may be slightly over the top, but I assure you the fervour and fanatical conviction is exactly the same. Watch these two clips and you'll see what I mean. Absolutely hilarious. Enjoy.

Evangelical TV - Starring Mo Gaffney as Bo and Jane Horrocks as Lola




Second Clip of Evangelical TV - So how did Jesus come to you, Lola?



Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Unholy Triumvirate



This is an exposition.. of three guys.

Gay and absolutely fabulous... or so they wished, content instead to howl in laughter at the wickedly satirical television series of the same.

They came from disparate backgrounds.

One precocious and unconventional, that wild streak ever present, subduing parents into resigned acceptance. The other mysterious yet bitchy, eloquent yet dirty, hedonism tempered with pragmatic rationalism. The last inquisitive and wild, luxuriating in quiet defiance at a strait jacketed family, carnal but measured.

Perhaps the fact that they were gay, eschewed the conventional with a propensity to bitch were all they had in common. And all that was needed.

They had their usual share of scandals. One caught naked by his mom in a very inconvenient situation, the other with his infamous lube in the tube incident, the last eloped with the rugby captain for a week before returning to the fold.

Years have passed since. Times have changed. One is now single, getting back to the scene. The other newly attached, settled and 'serene', the last zen about it all. All still fiercely independent.

Relationships are quixotic, resilient yet fragile. Who knows what those fickle winds of change will etch in the shifting sands of time?

Yet for now, the triumvirate still stands. Bitchy, irreverent, diabolical. And for that my friends, partners in crime and fellow sisters, I toast you now.

Viva le sisterhood.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Switzerland, here I cum!



Ah Switzerland, the land of cheese, chocolate and cute guys. Those aren't the main only attractions of course. There's all the glorious scenery, mountains, culture and glorious snow. Those who know me better know I've never been the kind of person who absolutely must travel somewhere every year. I'll be quite happy staying at home too, slacking and chilling out, cognizant of the fact of just how much moola I'm saving by not travelling.

It's not that I dislike travelling mind you, it just never ranked very high up on my list of priorities which often included stuff like get a house, have more sex, get a car, party into the night. Did I mention more sex? Plus the fact that travelling often does involve spending a significant amount of money.

I guess working has changed my perspective somewhat. I'm still equally happy staying at home, luxuriating in the fact that I can wake up at noon and not give a damn about work. But going on a holiday and actually flying somewhere helps one to unwind fully. Even if it is a little pricey.

I'd always wanted to go to Switzerland. The land of the eternally snow-capped Alps, quaint buildings and refreshingly cold weather. Ever since I was a small tyke and the Mother went, "You know you were actually due later but I had them induce an earlier pregnancy so that I could give birth to you and go to Switzerland with your father." Yes and she went ahead for the said trip with my sister in tow while the baby was dumped with granny. So yes, it was what you would also call a childhood goal to 'visit Switzerland one day dammnit'.

But the decision to go to Switzerland was truly a last minute one. Originally Kate and I decided on Tokyo, Japan. Japan is another one of those 'must visit' places. Spend 6 or 7 nights in Tokyo and experience New Year there. However, that soon fell through when I realised just how prohibitively expensive a trip to Tokyo would be with the sky high Yen and the extremely expensive stuff in Tokyo in general.

Plus Kate was dragging her feet on the confirmation of her schedule as to when she could fly there from New York and the thought of spending almost $5,000 on a relatively short trip just to Tokyo wasn't very appealing. After all, cosmopolitan as Tokyo was, I was in the mood for some scenery and life outside the city.

So I figured why not Switzerland. To be honest I knew it wouldn't be cheap, probably another $5,000 but it was the variety, the location and the (slightly) longer duration that clinched it for me. But I knew Kate was dead set against Europe, having to spend a couple of weeks there on a business trip in November, so I would be winging it on my own if I went.

The conclusive 'Ah fuck it I'm going' mentality only set it on Sunday whereupon I decided it's gotta be Switzerland even if it's on my own. What followed was a veritable nightmare of checking and comparing the various airfares, reading the reviews for the various hotels for the least painful (yet acceptable) deals and scouring the numerous websites for best deals on room rates.

In fact, I'd no clear idea of just where I wanted to stay when I started though I promptly settled on Zurich, Interlaken and Bern for the stay. Transportation would be taken care of by the exhaustively comprehensive (and expensive) Swiss Pass which basically allows unlimited rides on all forms of public transport for a certain number of days.

I must say that planning a trip and all the necessary itinerary is damn bloody exhausting. I took an entire day and I only settled the flight package (which incidentally increased by $110 from the time I first checked it out to the time I finally settled on it 8 hours later), deciding on the check in dates and booking the hotels. Nothing planned yet for just what to do on various days, it was exhausting but fun in a way I guess.

I still need to plan just what I intend to do. I kind of have a general idea of what I have in mind, visit the sights and museums at Bern, attempt to ski (and not fail too miserably) at Jungfrau and check out the sights and the famous gay dance/theme/sex? club in Zurich, the gay capital of Switzerland. Especially since the days are short and the weather can be ball-shrinkingly frigid... Zurich is around a freezing -3 c to 5 c end December while Jungfrau is a mind numbing -15 c to -5 c.

Which makes you wonder how they go clubbing or for those themed gay parties where I hear the dress code is rigidly enforced... some of which involving little more than strips of leather and rubber bits with shoes and/or caps. The kind of attire which would probably cause your average parent to hyper-ventilate and suffer a heart attack. I dunno. Come to the club all dressed in their leather bits with only a huge winter coat and risk severe frostbite to their netherbits? Though perhaps with the amount of blood in their netherbits, it's the last body part to suffer from frostbite. It's interesting.

So I'll definitely be checking out Rage though it is not without some trepidation. After all, the well documented wild 'parties' are certainly not something you'll ever see or experience in the local gay clubs. And it's not even a sex club... but apparently it's accepted and almost expected for club goers to shed pieces of their clothing if not all when clubbing. And no, I will be giving Sector C (the themed gay dance floor) within Rage a miss. Not at the expense of my netherbits.

While I was telling a friend it would be nice to have someone come along for the trip even if only to help alleviate the substantial accommodation charges and to help you take photos (of yourself damnit). But you make do with what you have I guess. And this is one trip I am looking forward to, even though I'm going to be positively broke after this.

Now will anyone be in Switzerland from 26 December to 3 January 2009? Drop me a line if you are! Of course it'd help if you're cute, gay and can speak english. Though the last is optional I guess, love (or lust rather) transcends all languages. ^^ And if you're swiss and all of the above, you can even have half of my tiny cozy single bed for free. Hur hur.



N/B: I just checked. The flight package I booked at Zuji.com is no longer available. That so justifies my paying $2139 for a return ticket to Zurich on 17 hours flights! Wooohoo Jet lag here I come.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Hello, 26

Another year, another occasion for reflection. To reflect on things past, and muse about the future. Of things lost and things to be gained. I guess solitude does cause one to be more contemplative.

I've waited long enough, paid this silent penance for months on end without knowing why or what I'm paying it for. Am I waiting or is it just inertia? Whatever it is, it's time to rouse from this numbing stupor and move on. Especially when the source of it all had no problems doing so in the first place. As they say, why bother.

So yes I know I've said this, it's time to move on. I believe I have in some ways, ask me to describe exactly how and I falter. Perhaps the transition from blinding rage to a bitter aftertaste to an old wound, nearly forgotten save for the occasional throb of pain best describes it.

Moving on. It's always easier said than done. Two simple words. A constant, continuous effort of considerable difficulty. But it's time to move on... for good.

Closer by Inoue Joe



You've got to be extra careful
with the things nearest to you
You know the closer you get to something
the tougher it is to see it

Explain to me this happiness
that you just got to experience.
Or maybe you're so blessed
that you can't even remember?
That you stand here now
That you live and breathe
They're all little miracles
just by themselves

You've got to be extra careful
with the things nearest to you
You know the closer you get to something
the tougher it is to see it


You know the closer you get to something
the tougher it is to see it
And I'll never take it for granted

It's fine to say "Never give up."
and "Keep chasing your dreams."
But the more time you spend talking big
the less you get done.
I'll press that handful of courage against my heart
and with its help, survive another day
And I'll never take it for granted
Let's go

I don't know why but I find this song appealing and meaningful. Perhaps it's just me.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Quiet Time

Have you ever had one of those moments where you become uncommonly contemplative and you just wonder what is it you really want and what you want to do with the rest of your life or what life in general holds for you?

It's one of those moments for me. a rather long moment and the slew of wedding dinners and receptions haven't helped. I've never Liked wedding dinners or receptions.

That sense of inevitable finality one which will remain forever out of reach if not in substance Then in form.

And i marvel at how the blissfully deluded few feel otherwise .

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Curry & Chocolate

Not exactly a very good combination I know but when the craving hits and good company beckons, all sensible culinary caution is thrown to the wind. The weekend has been an expensive yet enjoyable whirlwind flurry of activity. I haven't had such a whale of a time or let my hair down (figuratively speaking) for such a long time now.

Yes I haven't been blogging for a long while due to something called work and Warhammer which between the two of them basically consume 95% of my waking hours. But of course work and gaming isn't very healthy or fulfilling for that matter. Hanging out and some decent heartfelt interaction with real friends helps to put things into perspective and add that zest back into life. The regular lunch outings with the ex-PM and fellow colleagues helped in the sense that it alleviated the otherwise stifling monotony of work life but being able to go on a rampage and not having to talk about boobs and desirable, hot females in general was a very welcome change.

So it was a real blast to hang out with kate and friends, bitching , raving and laughing at stupid things in general, ranting without the need to be 'politically correct', ribbing without the need for recourse. Picture this, a motley crew of four, an experienced, worldly, aunt-aggy kind of diva, one, a jaded yet chatty 'ah-lian' unhappy with her retarded ah beng husband, a solemn but laid back ang-moh just out of a tumultuous relationship with a veritable dominatrix and yours truly, a bitchy, couldn't care less lawyer.

Now consider the various settingsm, moving from one watering hole to the next on a noisy Halloween night before settling for a relatively quiet turkish cafe at arab street puffing on two consecutive sheeshas (turkish water pipes), imbibing two bottles of glorious red wine and puffing away on the 'second' cigarette after deciding the bubble gummy sheeshas were a push over. I haven't laughed or bitched so hard for ages.

We ranted, drank, smoked and laughed till the relatively unearthly hour of three, though anna (the ah lian) and Thomas (the angmoh) felt that the sheeshas were way too mild, preferring instead to puff on their cigarettes while Kate ribbed, sniped and held court as the resident queen. Overall everything was a blast, though I must add that the combined whammy of rich food, two sheeshas, wine and a menthol ciggy was sufficient to induce an interesting semi-high that left me semi drugged the morning after.



A 'happy juice' infused Anna and a headless Kate. 'Grape' Sheesha in the foreground. Cherry was the other one i ordered. But seriously they both tasted exactly the same. Sweet and bubble gummy. Which was where the menthol ciggy came in- cool, pungent and smooth.



A very bad picture of the shy angmoh, intent on his doner kebab. Notice the alcohol glazed gaze of dear old Anna as she smiles at no one in particular.

Then it was wonderful mutton curry cooked by Kate's mother's indian friend at her place today, followed by a sudden, impromptu trip downtown for the Chocolate and Cheese buffet at Marriott with the same gang. Which naturally entailed a lot more spirited conversation and 2 bottles of happy juice.

Booze, great food and excellent company. What more can one ask for? Except maybe for sex. Well all in good time. ^^

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Dinners with the Family.

Tonight was the customary belated birthday dinner. Not for me but the Sister rather. Whom my cousin noted with malicious glee was fast approaching the dreaded "sell-by date". Don't ask me why the average straight male view single women past a certain age as being less desirable simply due to their age. I'm sure I'll take an interesting, reasonable and mature (as in the way he thinks) man past the "sell-by date" over a hot but precocious twink anytime.

But then again men don't seem to have "sell-by dates" and I'm gay so that makes it moot. I digress. So dinner was at Tung Lok Signature at Central, that disgustingly haphazard mall which I never fail to get lost in. Just attempting to navigate the maze of little shops at the basement is a veritable nightmare. Dinner was good but as usual the conversation was highly superficial, a banter I seldom partook in.

In case, you haven't already realised by now (duh) I'm not chummy with the Family. Sad but true. Of course it's always been hard to be close to family who view homosexuals as depraved mentally disturbed individuals who revel in activities as "enjoyable as shoving a straw up your nostril." (Though how that NMP who made that ludicrous comment was any authority on the joys (or lack thereof) of anal sex is quite beyond me)

Anyway it was "Family Time". You know the time where people who have absolutely nothing in common are supposed to grin and suddenly converse with great gusto. Which I fail miserably at. Entertaining clients is one thing, making conversation for the sake of filing up the silence is another. But as usual they were having none of that.

So after having absolutely no headway with the "Why are you playing computer games again? You spent FIVE hours just on that game (Warhammer), no good you know" talk, they went back to the newest pet peeve. My Work. "Are you still doing matrimonial work?"
"Mainly and my old commercial cases."
"No good you know, cannot just do family work, your brain cells will die."
"Oh please what rubbish"
"Well but it's boring right? all the children, fighting couples. It's sinful you know"

Now everytime someone mentions sinful and roll their eyes or make little tut-tutting noises, I automatically tune out. It's the kind of "Must stay married till you die" mentality which pisses me off. Why you mean marriages don't break down? And if they do and parties want to leave, you're going to chain them together physically till one murders the other? It's all very well to have your own moral/religious view. It's another to see to impose your view or what you deem is acceptable on others.

So I took a little perverse pleasure in informing them that, no Matri work wasn't a bore. In fact, matri work (sans the painful and tedious aspect of having to deal with clients and the other parties) is quite interesting. From the salacious (husband ran off with china woman 2 years older than my daughter) to the saucy (wife engaging in cyber-sex with ex-boyfriend over msn) to the downright scandalous (wife caught husband in bed with another man - whoops).

I think I horrified them sufficiently gauging from their scandalised faces and I was able to finish my dessert in peace. But seriously all the "but your work is so sinful" kind of crap is just goddamn annoying. Screw you and your goddamn morals.

On a happier note, I had a good chat with the Punkette at last night's Law Soc Dinner at the Fullerton. Been like 3-4 months since we last talked and it was good catching up. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that she was now doing Matri work too which means I'll be seeing her in Court a lot now.

Work is still piling up, I'm getting the hang of things now and sooner or later I'll need to kick start my non-existent love life. (Perhaps I should be less ambitious and settle for working on my sex life first. Which happens to be non-existent too. Argh. ^^)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

One of those days.

Today was one of those days. You know the kind where you get out from the wrong side of the bed and everything seems to go wrong. Or in my case, failing to get out of bed at all. So I woke up around 11.50am bleary eyed with a bad throat, glanced at the alarm clock and thought "Oh Saturday, another hour then.." and was about to return to lala land when that sudden dreadful feeling of wrongness just swept over me. That Oh shit knee jerk reaction replete with that sinking feeling of inevitable doom.

The transition from sleepy to oh fuck took a sluggish five seconds as I mentally discounted the 'safe' possibilities. (Nightmare. no. Hari Raya. yesterday. Sunday. no.) Then realised to my abject horror that I had a hearing in Court at 10am in the morning. And sure enough the emails and messages flooded in when I turned on my phone. Thankfully, it was just to get dates for the trial so the matter was settled after a few frenzied calls to fellow colleagues and a secretary who kept laughing over the phone (Partying hard last night is it?).

Apart from a couple of emails from spastic clients who demanded to know when their pleadings/matters would be addressed since it had been 'some time' since they instructed us (2-3 days ftw) and an irritating old man who plonked himself down at the same table while I was enjoying my frog porridge and rambled on and on about the state of the opposition in Singapore (stuff it old man I'm trying to eat); the day was largely uneventful.

I guess it's just the few frantic "oh shit oh shit" minutes when you wake up in the morning and realise to your horror that you should be somewhere else that very minute. I always find it perverse how the usual routine of getting jarred awake by the alarm gets short circuited in the rare (thankfully) occasions the oh shit situations happen. And the alarm is always off and I have no recollection of turning it off. Bugger.

I leave you with the utterly sappy and mushy 'Fairy Tale' by Michael Wong, which J. just had to send me the link with the result that it was stuck in my head for the better part of a week. Not that I'll be singing this song anytime soon, if at all.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Warhammer Online: Not WoW.

I was nodding off while drafting the 25 page long and still counting affidavit when a colleague walked in and glancing at the posters I'd pasted on the otherwise dreary office wall (since they game with the game and I knew if I brought it home, it'd end up gathering dust somewhere) went "Oh cool. Warhammer online. Isn't that like World of Warcraft?"

Which was probably like the 101th person who's asked me that since I started playing the game in preview weekend. Sure enough, the basic running around and game play is the same so much so that players transferring from WoW to WAR will be right at home with the controls and UI.

But the content though is a whole different ball game and IMO more interactive with more things to do and see than WoW. And that has been the general consensus thus far amongst the WAR-WoW. Though like they say a picture says a thousand words. Nothing ever beats playing the actual game though.

Semantha's adventures in the land of WAR.

One aspect which is so different and refreshing about WAR is the open group concept and the ability to participate in the numerous Public Quests happening simultaneously across the different zones. Add the pvp (RvR) concept in and you get to slug it out on constantly changing battlegrounds (not the instanced BGs in WoW) throughout the zones. Raiding and defending keeps with both NPCs and enemy players to deal with is a real blast.



Raiding a keep controlled by the forces of Order to reclaim it for Destruction. The interactive element starts from the very beginning. I ran off to purchase a Chaos light battering ram to assist in ramming down the door of the keep after despatching the hot oil cauldron above. Cauldron destroyed and door battered, we charge in ready for battle.

Our first two waves got repulsed by a nightmarish and well organised group of order players who kept us on the stairs for the most part of half an hour till the keep door reset. No!!




Then it was off to purchase more Boom Boom. A hellblaster this time and was thrilled everytime I blew up an Order player who happened to be too still for too long.



Victory screen shot after capturing the keep. woot.

For the BG lovers, there's still the timed scenario kind of RvR (PvP) action. Nothing like slicing enemies to bits. Assuming you don't get hacked/balsted to death first.



Nothing like being in the midst of the action.



More RvR scenario action. (Arathi Basin anyone?)

And of course there's always the public quests with the influence rewards and the chance to get some nifty stuff if you complete all the stages in the quest.



Dancing blades: Slicing up some stunties.

And at Rank 20, you get to purchase your mount. Dark Elves have the coolest looking ones on the destruction side, a T-rex (not barney the dino) (as opposed to boars, wolves and a dark horse)



Semantha the Thai princess on her T-Rex. ^^

On the Contrary.

Shirley, Shirley, quite contrary,
How does your boyfriend fare?
He lives in my head and has a 5 inch dick,
So I don't really know or care.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Aunt Aggy.

Having done matri for almost 5 months now, I’ve gotten used to the strange kinds of calls I get from clients. From the usual ‘My husband ah, is too much. Today ah, you know ah, he suddenly discontinue my daughter’s giro school account. This man is too much! I want to put him in jail.’ To the more frenzied ‘My husband/wife ran away with the kids!’

You would think ‘matrimonial matters’ is a catch all aunt aggy phrase for ‘call the lawyer when any thing crops up’. But I’ve never gotten the ‘I think my son is gay. Help!’ kind of call. Until Friday that is. The client, one of the more inquisitive ones (till she sees the bill), called again sounding more than a little frazzled. To be fair, her call wasn’t entirely off topic, it related indirectly to a tit for tat PPO application her husband had filed against his teenage son in retaliation for a PPO the client had applied for on behalf of her son, a handsome 17 year old chap, after he was set upon by a rabid father.

Client sounded more frazzled than usual. “Er I don’t know how to say this but the computer repair man came over the other day to repair my son’s computer and he found some er strange photos which he passed to me.” ” I looked at them and they were really strange but maybe is nothing you know.” Which naturally piqued my interest.

“What kind of photos were they?” Another Pause. “Er its really quite disturbing and when I saw one of them I really had a heart attack. There was this photo where he was holding something in his hand and putting his mouth around it and he was looking at the photo and…..” That definitely got my attention. “What thing?”
“ It turned out to be a hotdog but the way he was putting it in his mouth and not biting it, for a moment I really thought he was doing something else…” Her voice died off. I knew she was a staunch Christian so I just couldn’t help probing further. “So you thought he was giving a blowjob to another guy did you?” “Ah!” She exploded, “I really thought he was.. gay.” With the deep concern and mild consternation one would reserve for a family member or close friend who suddenly ended up at IMH. ”He looked like he was doing it you know. I was so scared but there was another photo which zoomed out and showed the background. So ya it wasn’t that thing but still I had a shock when I saw it.”

Whereupon I informed her that the ’hotdog’ prank was an old one, albeit done by cheeky horny straight boys easily amused by anything that looks remotely phallic and can be portrayed in a sexual matter. The Crush in jc even did stuff like going down on other guys crotches and blowing on them whereupon he would proudly declare that he had just given a 'blowjob'.

She sounded relieved at first “Yes boys at this age are just naughty, nothing wrong, right?” Wrong I thought, mentally adding up my sexcapades at the not so virginial age of 17. But the hotdog prank has been around forever and I saw no reason to agitate her further if that was all it was. But it wasn't.

The doubt quickly crept back into her voice.“Er but there's something that really worries me you know. I prayed about it but I don't know what to do. So I thought I should ask you in case his father finds out.” The irony of it all. Panicky devout Christian mother asking her gay matri lawyer for advice on potentially gay son. But a job is a job and charging a client to play aunt aggy isn't too bad.

Without waiting for me to continue, she went on, frantic and breathless, “ But I saw this other photo. And this one really really really gave me a shock. My son was kissing another boy and they were smiling at the camera. And it was in his room! And that boy just came over the other day!” At which stage she sounded like she was hyperventilating and semi hysterical, so it was time to use the “Rein in distraught, emotional client' SOP. “They're just playing around right right?” She queried.

“ Well boys at that age tend to be rather playful... Was it like a simple peck on the cheek or a full kiss?” “They were kissing with their lips locked, full kiss, I was so shocked, I still am. Is he gay? Is he? Oh god.” she wailed. Tempted as I was to give her a earful on so what if your son is gay, I resisted. Professional decorum must be maintained at all times. Which was the same reason why I didn't say well I could conduct a closed door interview session with your son just to ascertain whether he's gay, you know guy to guy talk (or guy on guy action rather hur hur) and uttered a sympathetic and purely professional 'oh dear'.

Distraught client once again sought confirmation on what she wanted to hear, that her precious boy was just being precocious and is in reality as straight as an arrow. An assurance I refused to give and indeed took a little perverse pleasure in informing her in no uncertain terms that her son might very well be gay. Two straight guys do not 'liplock' and smile at the camera unless they're actors and paid big bucks to do so or stone drunk and on a dare. 'But the guy didn't stay overnight, he only came in the afternoon and left later.'

I figured the ' They don't need to wait till night to have sex you know' retort would be too much for her to bear. It's amazing how genuinely distraught and prejudicial some parents get when they learn their child isn't straight. I guess ultimately that is the litmus test after all you know people who are fine with other strangers or even friends who happen to be gay but god forbid their children to ever disclose they're gay. The schizophrenic dichotomy akin to the perennial debate over the we have the law (S377A , Penal Code) but choose not to enforce it conundrum(or enforce it when 'deemed' to be necessary).

Parents' concerns are understandable in the sense that most parents would like to have their children grow up and have a family etc but at the end of the day treating your child as if he/she has a mental problem simply because of his/her orientation doesn't help the kid at all, much less endear him or her to them. Not to mention the boatload of ludicrous pre-conceived notions about homosexuality and what it entails.

In other news, between the different classes played and the hours spent on Warhammer, I've finally decided on starting a Dark Elf Disciple of Khaine character as my first character when headstart starts in a little under 9 hours.

Apart from the lithe and aesthetically pleasing body and movements, there is something particularly vicious about a Dark Elf Disciple. From the wicked curved swords to the way they carve up enemies like Thanksgiving turkey to the utter disdain they have for their opponents. Vemyra (the Disciple character I played) occasionally uttered 'Scum' in a voice dripping with contempt when she dispatched a mob or a enemy order player or screeched , “How dare you!” when taking a beating from a particulaly annoying mob or player.

It's a game with character, now an additional avenue of destressing includes picturing particularly annoying client's at the receiving end of Vemyra's blades. ^^

Sunday, September 7, 2008

A Tale of Two Worlds

Weekends are precious, especially so when one is working and doesn't have the luxury or privilege of cutting classes during the week to do as one pleases. No more sleep-ins, no more leisurely sojourns in town with friends, no more gaming till the wee hours of the morning (for weekdays at least).

This weekend was really packed but ultimately very satisfying. Yesterday was Granny's 89th birthday and as I've mentioned before that is one woman I love to bits. They rented a chalet at east coast and we decided to skip the hassle of organising (and clearing up)a BBQ and decided to cater instead. And of course going to East Coast Park naturally means one has to cycle. Besides, they have such good plans these days, 6 bucks to rent a decent bike for two hours.

Went off with the Sister and my younger cousin and decided to give the new Coastal Park connector which connects the different coastal parks (duh) a try. I must confess that coastal network is certainly a good idea, you see more scenery and cycle to places you'd never usually cycle to. The distance from the rental station to Changi beach via the network was 17km and the bicycle kiosk even had an innovative, hire your bike here, return it over there system. We would probably have cycled all the way if not for the fact that dinner was at the chalet.

Cycling for two whole hours straight was a tad tiring but we got to see lots of things you'd usually never see in the often overcrowded east coast park. Like rows of lush casuarina trees lining the canal swollen with malachite green salt cum fresh water. The trees swaying slowly in the bracing wind. And of course like any other hard exercise, you feel shag but good.

The real world, nature and fresh air is all very good. It awakens the senses and revitalises the mind, body and soul (God i sound like some bad pick up line for an organic product). But the attraction and allure of the cyber world of fantasy is a heady drug. And this weekend's highlight was Warhammer Online's open beta.

I was pleasantly surprised to find that the servers were already up after a short patch and was all fired up to venture into the World of Warhammer (lol) especially after reading about all the extensive changes and balances they had made since the closed beta. Even if it was already 1.00am when I logged on. I decided to go for a female Magus from the Chaos faction instead of the nubile Dark Elf sorceress .

For one, the Chaos faction was still the most attractive to me and second, the Magus had been balanced (ie more damage) and it's an interesting class. If I had to compare it to classes in World of Warcraft, I would have to say the Magus in Warhammer is a combination of WoW's Warlock and Mage. The Magus gets 3 different Demons ( all stationary though) and gets to blast things while riding on a nifty looking disc. Some abilities even sound suspiciously familiar (Seed of Corruption?). So after customising my Magus to look like a butch vamp who decided to go goth, Ivara ventured forth, eager for death and destruction.

The game did not disappoint at all. True to form, unlike WoW, where it is a level grind to hit the level cap and then run all the end game content, in Warhammer, you get to experience the full aspect of the game from the very beginning. One of my first few quests sent me on a RvR scenario which pitted fellow Destruction players against Order players from various realms (servers) in a Arathi Basin kind of control the base, rape your opponent gang bang. But better.



Then came the quests which were intuitive and easy to follow and finish. I found the mobs spawned way too fast though. On the bright side, unlike in WoW, one can get XP for simple things like talking to a NPC or just looting a dead body.



And soon a nifty new robe and Ivara's very first pet. A Pink Horror. Yes it's Pink and it looks Horrible. But it's her little demonic turret.



Then out of town to embark on new quests and lo and behold, Ivara's very first Public Quest awaits her. Basically, it consists of a 3 stage encounter (for the lower levels) where the objectives get progressively harder. Everyone in the area can group up and all damage done is contributed to the final loot roll at the end. And if you get the necessary points you can collect some nifty stuff from the Rally Master in town.



And based on your contributions to the Quest (ie: either by damage or healing), you get assigned a certain bonus to your base roll chance and the rest is up to luck. Thankfully, Ivara had first for both the contributions and the roll. Which meaant decent loot.^^



Then it was off to the next town and round of quests. And just out of town, guess what. Another Public Quest (PQ). This second PQ unfortunately was a lot tougher than the first one even with a team and a couple of healers. Ivara was squished many times and earned titles like Ow my Eye and Victimized. But she did her fair share of damage which of course was reflected in the loot rolls. hur hur.




By then Ivara reached level 6 or Rank 6 rather and she got her second pet, a Blue Horror. Which is blue and horrible and spews blue vomit at nearby enemies or lobs medium range fireballs.



By then it was about 6.50am and I had to go for the weekly sunday ritual *grumble Grumble*. So it was off to bed but not before parking Ivara, new loot in hand, in town.



Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning has lived up to its hype thus far. Perhaps one of the few things that may need to be improved is the crafting system. But really, I'm surprised at how well it's pulled it off thus far. And if it can keep up with the anticipated server strain when the game actually launches, I won't be surprised if people jump ship from WoW to Warhammer Online. I'm sad to say but WoW is pretty boring compared to Warhammer.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Waaargh!

So the move wasn't too bad after all. Granted the place is smaller and everything's more compact but the view is great and sharing a room isn't too bad after all. Unfortunately, there's something a little off with the air, I think they have a term for it, old office syndrome or some crap like that. So basically a large number of peeps are down with some sort of respiratory ailment, be it the common cold or a rasping hacking cough.

Personally, my nose felt like it'd been stuffed with wads of soggy tissue leaving one with no option but to breath in raspy gasps through the mouth. Which just gives one a bad throat from breathing in all that air. Naturally when all that happens, you call in sick.

Which gave me time to sleep in, wake up at noon and generally bum around after seeing the doctor for the mandatory course of medicine. Decongestants are such a wonder, it's hard to fathom sometimes just how people survived in the past without modern medicine.

I restarted Wow again on a whim while waiting for the open beta for the eagerly anticipated Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning to commence this weekend. I pretty much only pvp on WoW these days, the high end raiding content is out of reach due to both time and the job, so WoW (for the mage at least) is still limited to PvP.

It gets a little boring if you're in the grinding honour points kind of mood but if it's just the occasional Battleground, it's still fun. Playing Errath took a little getting used to again, which means i kept getting massacred for the first couple of BGs. But these kind of things are intuitive and I was able to pick it up again quite quickly.

There's been loads of changes since I last played but if there's one thing still certain, the mage pvp spec is still undeniably frost. In the sense of survivability, sheer combat control and steady damage. Plus if you're a groupie kind of player like yours truly, you'll find the frost mage really excels at control and sneaking in the occasional pot shots while ensuring you stay alive to get as many kills as possible.

Taking advantage of the terrain and unleashing torrents of freezing fully upgraded blizzards on bunched up enemies which dramatically slows them with the occasional chance to freeze the poor sods is another highlight. And of course as a frostie, you die a lot less than your squishier fire and burst damage arcane brethren. Some damage traded for survivability and CC with your very own pet. Not bad at all, if you consider staying alive = more kills= more honour= often top fragger. So yes WoW is still entertaining... for now.

3 more days to open Beta and 8 more days till the head start for Warhammer Online and I am so looking forward to it. Warhammer Online promises to be a whole lot more exciting than WoW with the chance to participate in public quests or pvp in the realm v realm or just raid the opposing faction's fortress and cities.

For those who love unmitigated war and outright slaughter without neglecting the PVE aspect of the game, Warhammer looks set to be the game. Not to mention the fact that unlike WoW where the whole idea is to level grind till the level cap and do all the high end content, in Warhammer, one experiences the entire game and varied content from the start.

I'm still undecided on which class I'll like to play for the Destruction faction. After all being so used to the 'glass cannon' concept of WoW's mage I may probably just end up as a Dark Elf Sorceress. After all the idea of bending magic ruthlessly to one's will and harnessing great power at the potential expense of imploding from all that power is highly attractive. So three more days till a nubile half naked Sorceress unleashing dark destruction on the forces of Order makes her debut.

And no, it had nothing to do with that sizzling scene between the female Dark Elf Sorceress and her nemesis female High Elf Sword Master in the new Warhammer trailer below. Don't mind me but it appears that some implication of hot girl on girl action especially if the said girls are sworn enemies always sells. But Warhammer is not your average MMORPG in that way. 3 More Days.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning

It looks promising. Certainly promising enough to give MMORPGs (Massively Multiple Online Role Playing Game) another shot after a hiatus of a year and a half from WoW, discounting the brief month long stint I returned to WoW for a short while, earlier this year. So I went ahead and pre-ordered it. Even if it was a hefty $129. For one, Warhammer promises to be more varied and less gear oriented than WoW which unfortunately requires one to be in a guild and a serious raider to get the top end gear and maximise your character's full potential.

Not something I have the time or energy for with my current job cum profession and the demands on my time. Grinding for money in real life is tiring enough, having to come back and grind for gear on a game isn't exactly my cup of tea. It's funny how one's perspectives change when one starts working. But for better or worse, it does. So gone are the days and/or nights when I could stay up for 10 hours straight grinding instances or battlegrounds just to get a particular piece of phat lewt. After all, real moola beats bits of pixel anytime.

But Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning promises to be fun and unhurried, no need to join guilds and show up daily at strange times for co-ordinated raids. Just some fun with friends. In terms of variety, there's more classes, all of which are specific to the different races in the two conflicting factions, Order and Destruction.

I did the little quiz which purports to match one with the race best suited for one based on one's answers, even though I was already set on a particular race or two. And the answer wasn't in the least surprising. Nothing like wanton destruction and bloody mayhem to get the blood going.

Chaos Badge- Prima Games Warhammer Online Class Quiz

Monday, August 25, 2008

Of Demons and Fairies

When one watches anime, you don't expect stellar plots or character development. You expect to be entertained either via slapstick jokes or flashy totally out of this world maneuvers or tricks that preferably lead to multiple explosions and entire buildings being levelled. And the respective characters always emerging relatively unscathed other than a few scrapes and superficial cuts who then proceed to level the rest of the city, base, etc. Either that or they're horribly wounded but still find the strength to pull off a spectacular KO move that usually destroys everything in sight.

Anyone who has watched a decent amount of anime, at least of the shounen variety, will be able to confirm the aforesaid. Sure you get the usual 'I'm strong cause I fight for my nakama (friend)' theme and the occasional relationship between different characters where love inevitably blossoms. But nothing more substantial and often nothing very realistic. Though then again many of the activities we do, anime watching included, is often a welcome escape from reality.

You don't expect anti-heroes, a gripping plot and characters who while strong remain vulnerable in that they remain plagued by their inner demons. Or a believable plot where characters are killed or obliterated on an wholly unexpected basis. Code Geass and the sequel, Code Geass R2 - Lelouch of the Rebellion has all that.

In a way, Code Geass is probably in terms of suspense, plot and character development, hands down the best anime I've watched so far. Death note coming in a close second. The characters are not your typical heroes, everyone has their inner demon or motives which drives and torments them. The interaction of the main character, Lelouch, his persona as Zero and his interaction with the characters sets the groundwork for this series which is as captivating as it is unpredictable.

Code Geass is a mecha type of anime, I've never been the mecha sort of anime fan, preferring by far the flashier abilities/magic/jutsu kind of anime which tends towards fantasy. But I never regretted trying out Geass, I'm still not a mecha fan but Geass is just on a whole different level.

I shall be sad after it ends in 5 episodes.

On the manga front, I've demolished Ubel Blatt and started on Fairy Tail which looked very promising and hasn't disappointed so far. Style wise, it's rather similar to One Piece, it even has the occasional over the top slap stick moment but it's flashier and revolves around magic.

Pity it hasn't been adapted into an anime series yet. I like the drawing style which again reminds me of One Piece, cute guys (with the kind of killer abs you'd only find in manga) and hot girls who are highly expressive. A couple of whom (the girls) are dominatrix who make She-Ra look like little Miss Muffet.



Which is probably how most hen pecked husbands view their wives. Though I suspect there's an inner Valkyrie in everyone of us.

On an wholly unrelated note before I run off to catch this week's Geass, I realised to my mild consternation that my dad has taken to watching weepy Korean love dramas with startling alacrity. Which might possibly explain his entirely off the cuff remark when the mother was proclaiming how one could spot young couples a mile off from their 'lovey-dovey ways'; "but old couples can also be lovey dovey what". Dead silence.

Oh that poor man.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Move

If there's one thing I dislike more than packing, it's moving. Especially when it involves having to uproot oneself from a relatively spacious and decently pleasant surroundings and move to decidedly cramped quarters. Not to mention the fact that it also involves a lot of packing.

We're moving office, the top management says it isn't a downgrade but no matter how you look at it, it is a downgrade. Cramped quarters. Check. Further away from mrt. Check. Old building. Check. Single to shared room. Check. I could go on but at the end of the day we're moving and we're stuck there for the next couple of years or so. No point griping about the inevitable.

Moving office along with the furniture is highly disruptive, which does not bode well when you have a crazy amount of work to be done and a number of upcoming trials and hearings. The doors were the first to go, to be reused for the 'new' workplace. It was a little surreal to be able to stare right across the corridor and into a partner's room. So much so that a colleague joked that for once the firm's 'open door' policy was truly being practiced.

The cupboards and pedestals will be carted out on Monday with the workstations and computers the day before the actual move. In the meantime, all the files have been packed into boxes which means piles of boxes all over the office and the need to dig through boxes for files that we are still working on. Which is a pain in the ass and I'm not talking about the pleasurable kind that involves romping in bed with a hottie. So the entire place is mess, the seccies are still packing while it's supposed to be business as usual. All in all not a very conducive working environment.

On an wholly unrelated note, I've started reading Ubel Blatt , since I've run out of manga to read and waiting for the weekly dosage of Naruto, Bleach, D Gray man, Hitman Reborn and the monthly ones of Claymore and Full Metal Alchemist can be more than a little tiresome. Ubel Blatt is slightly different from the rest so far in that it's catered for men (seinen) rather than for the usual male teenager (Shounen) and there's a whole lot more boobs and gore (because boys will always be boys).

'Pornographic' wouldn't be too much of an exaggeration. But apart from the occasional explicit sex scene and the very graphic gore (more so than claymore), the manga has a decent plot even if it does have a little too many boobs and taut nipples for my liking. The plot certainly fleshes out what would have been mindless slaughter. Though sometimes, some brainless gut spilling gore is appreciated. Especially when one mentally envisages certain individuals at the receiving end.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Back to Reality.

5 days later and it's back to sobering reality, the mundane hustle and bustle of hectic life, of deadlines to meet and affidavits to rush. Back to the wearisome rat race but the one that brings in the bacon, pays the bills and lets one go for such blissful escapades temporal though it may be.

Bangkok certainly lives up to its reputation of cheap and good. The shopping, especially if one is a hard nosed bargain hunter, is good, the food, even better. Where else can you have a complete meal of roast duck, rice, veggies and a drink for 50 bhat (slightly over $2)? And the sheer variety of food and snacks, all of which were ridiculously cheap by local (Singapore) standards, available at the multitude of food stores lining the road proved to be a culinary temptation i was unable to resist.

But short of a brief stomachache on Sunday (which I attribute to the glorious phad thai, tasty but oily with bits of what I took to be char siew but later realised to my abject horror was hardened fat of some sort) and perhaps a few extra kilos, I emerged unscathed from the relentless culinary expedition. Which in a way I guess, is rather surprising, given the stuff I ate. Bugs were however still a big no no.

On the limo ride back to the airport, the sky was overcast, clouds looming omniously, I fancied a hint of rain in the air just before stepping in. Similar to when I first arrived. And that fleeting sense of Deja Vu, that all good things must come to an end just like this short reprieve. Bangkok was good and I shall be back someday. Soon.



First day - on the way from the airport.



The Room- better than I expected.



Where I had most of my Breakfast 'in bed'.



One of the few road side snacks I remembered to take a shot of before demolishing. This one was some grilled spareribs with rice. I just did an awful lot of pointing.



Another lovely tidbit, they were selling this at Siam Paragon, some crisp pancake with doughy batter and corn in the middle. It's not like the crip pancake with cream and coconut. Whatever it was,it was great.



Dick's Cafe. An oasis in the hustle and bustle of neon lights.



Dinner at the still very Decent Fuji Restaurant. Negitoro (chopped up fatty tuna)don, lightly grilled fatty salmon (which was damn good) and some enoki with pork rolls. All for 420 bhat inclusive of green tea. $17 bucks for a decent jap meal like that in a restaurant. Not something you'll ever find here.



On the way back.



Heading back to Singapore. Sun setting over the fluffy cloudscape.