Saturday, August 29, 2009

Con clean for nuts.

After enduring a sleepless night of incessant squeaking from the air con unit, I gave up and blew 50 bucks on some air con chemical cleaning kit at the DIY shop today. It started with a mild squeak, the kind of annoying sound that the unit emits once in a while but dies down after an hour or so. An annoying eccentricity I'd always attributed to a filthy and aging air con. Unfortunately, the squeak didn't stop. If anything, it probably became more strident as the night wore on. Plugging my ears with tissue paper barely helped and I vaguely remember dreaming about being trapped in a room full of squeaking kettles during my intermittent sleep.

I know, I'm supposed to be on an extremely tight fiscal budget for the next 3 months (which I still am) but desperate times call for desperate measures. And after 10 hours of near insomnia, i was desperate. Besides, I'm placing it on my dad's account under the pretext of household expenses. So anyway I figured it was probably all that filth clogging up the air con which was to blame. After all, ever since I'd started sleeping with the air con on a daily basis since last year, I'd never cleaned the air con other than scrubbing the filters a couple of times when it was obvious the air flow was indiscernible or the perfunctory weekly vacuuming of the external casing.

Certainly no flushing out of the cooling coils or rotor blades. Naturally, the whole interior was caked in a thick layer of furry grime that looked ominously organic. A state of affairs which persisted due to a combination of inertia and the sense of dread I inevitably experienced whenever the thought of cleaning all that grime crossed my mind. But the squeaking was driving me nuts and figuring it was all the filth, I went ahead and purchased the kit.

I hate having to do household chores or cleaning in particular. But when I have to do so, I want it done fast and with minimal hassle. So when I saw the bold proclamation "Clean your AC in 15 mins only!" on the cleaning fluid bottle, I settled on the air con cleaning kit, even though it looked decidedly bulkier with a 2 litre solution, spray bottle and 'catchment' bag for the dirty fluid and was almost twice the price of the other kit.

Which naturally was crap. After spending a good 10 mins figuring to pry open the air con case to reach the filth within and realising that I had to unscrew the cover, the whole dirty and very messy process took almost 2 hours from start to finish.

So it was with great hope and expectation that I turned on the air con after the messy operation that left dubious black spots splattered nicely across my t shirt. And was rewarded with a blast of cold fresh air and a deafening screech. bah. Time to get the professionals and convince the dad our air con units need maintenance.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Of Dollars and Sense.

Ever since the lube by the bedside incident, I've pretty much grown accustomed to the Mother's occasional off the wall 'Are you Straight' questions. Hardly ever 'Are you gay?' but more often than not 'Are you straight?' because the word gay still remains taboo, though how phrasing it as the latter is any better is beyond me. It's as if by avoiding the word gay, broaching the subject of your son's sexuality suddenly becomes more manageable. But I guess a lot of close-minded parents in denial behave in similar quirky ways.

So anyway I'd grown used to the Mother's clumsy, often painfully awkward (for her) probing of my sexuality, of which half the time she seemed to be convincing herself of my 'heterosexuality'. Such probing usually extended to certain male friends with queries like,"Huh not married yet? (at 35) Is he gay?" Initially, I'd just outright flatly deny my sexuality for reasons I've already explained in detail in earlier entries.

Then as the years went by, I figured why give her that much satisfaction in affirming her fragile self delusion. So I'd just say something vague like 'Can you stop being so spastic?' or 'Are you mad?' to display my annoyance and leave her hanging without the answer she so desperately wanted. Whereupon she'd be unable to progress further, the desire to know warring with the dread of finding out before the whole process gets short circuited with the usual dose of self-delusion.

It was amusing to the extent that humor could be found in such tiresome charades. But the probing seemed to taper off the last couple of years, so it was with some surprise when I was accosted by the Mother yesterday as I was leaving for the office and gym before heading to a colleague's place for BBQ.

"You really should get a girlfriend." the woman went.
I halted in mid-stride, all thoughts of grabbing the gym shoe bag momentarily displaced by the stupidity of the statement, the unconventional prong of attack.
"You heard me. You should have a girlfriend at this age." that indomitable woman replied.
"Excuse me. Why don't I hear you asking XX (the Sister) to get a boyfriend? It's about high time she gets one, being older and all by your impeccable logic." I retorted.
"Stop being funny. I'll pray to God that you get a good, God-fearing girlfriend."

That ludicrous statement didn't even warrant a rebuttal. I think I managed a snort. Seeing that she was not going to illicit any form of reply from yours truly, the Mother hurried down the hallway as I stepped out and continued, "You are straight right? Right?" Which I replied with the perfunctory 'You're mad.'

"You cannot be gay... only sick people are gay... so you must be straight ok?" The illogicality of her quasi-question cum statement was laughable. It's times like those that I'm seriously tempted to tell the Mother that her son is gay just to watch her reaction. The envisaged aftermath always manages to silence me.. for now. Mistaking my silence as acquiescence to her statement, she pressed on, "Don't worry I will pray that God gives you a good girlfriend who loves Him that she might change your ways."

I bit back an epithet and thankfully the cab arrived at that opportune moment so I was spared from further madness. It's been years but I still remain amazed by the depth and tenacity of the Mother's self-delusion. Faith can be a scary thing when applied in all the wrong places. Perhaps next time I'll just bring a guy back home, lock ourselves in my room and tell her we're having holy fellowship.

On to other matters, last month's credit card bill was truly and utterly horrific. It'll take at least 2 months to get back in the black. From now on it's extreme fiscal restraint for the next 3 months, which means no swanky meals, at least 2 bring-from-home-DIY roast beef sandwiches per week and a substantially toned down social life. Sad to say, you usually need money to socialise in Singapore.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Back when tests were still hip..

Handwriting Analysis

What does your handwriting say about YOU?

The results of your analysis say:

You plan ahead, and are interested in beauty, design, outward appearance, and symmetry.
You are a person who thinks before acting, intelligent and thorough.
You are affectionate, passionate, expressive, and future-oriented.
You are not very reserved, impatient, self-confident and fond of action.
You enjoy life in your own way and do not depend on the opinions of others.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

One Month

What a difference one month can make:

To strengthen an incredible friendship, platonic yet true.

There are few things I believe in, loyalty and reciprocity being examples; you happen to be one. Thank you.

To forge a new friendship, fresh yet intense.

The dreams in which we meet pale before a single glimpse of you. Amazing how two individuals worlds apart should feel so close. 夢ぢには あしもやすめず かよへども うつつにひとめ 見しごとはあらず.

To reaffirm current friendships, familiar yet comfortable.

Like comfortable old cushions that are always around but often overlooked, they remain a rustic source of comfort and rapport.

To abnegate a superficial friendship, fun yet worthless.

To 'Look like the innocent flower, but be the serpent under't' is anathema to a friendship. Do not profess to understand what you do not. Do not preach what you do not practice. Hypocrisy- the most abhorrent betrayal.

All in a month.