Intimate.

Have you ever loved someone so much that you let go of him/her for his/her happiness? True love, or something akin to it, is ultimately about self-sacrifice, and not self-fulfillment.




Let me outta here!

Ten minutes into my first time at Bikram "hot" yoga in a heated room, my ears swelled with cotton at an increasingly alarmingly rate. As the instructor's voice became a muffled drone of meaningless syllables, my head threatened to detach itself, cast adrift in its own pool of sweat.

I started to blow out the water in my mouth, but strangely, more water rushed into my mouth and throat. (I had, without realising it, inhaled air prior to exhalation - instead of using the remaining air that was already in my lungs.)

Then, there was that strange tingling in my limbs. I tried to remember what the instructor had said before the class, about breathing consistently and deeply through the nose.

When it was my turn to let water into my mask and then practise clearing it, I couldn't stop inhaling through my nose, and ended up gulping water through my mouth as well. Even after the mask was hurriedly cleared and refitted over my face, the convulsive reflexes of my nose and gasping mouth sent me into new waves of panic.

On the verge of fainting, I started to walk out - but for his reassuring hand on my shoulder, persuading me to stay in the room, sit down and rest, and continue with the posturings only when I was ready.

My heart was threatening to burst, and I signalled to rise, but he kept one hand firmly on me. Moving his head slowly from side to side, little bubbles rising, his other hand orchestrated a steady to and fro motion from the regulator, gesturing for me to focus on breathing through the mouth.

OK, I'm confused. Really. Heh.




Culled

This is damn kok. But damn funny also.


Curiosity killed the cat.

Walking out of The Legends after dinner at Poppi, was intrigued by a prominent white note pasted on the windows of a parked car, and went right up to read it.

"To the owner of the car. Please be careful. There was a snake under your car."

You've never seen me move faster after that. (And we were just wondering why there were ambulance staff attending to someone at the reception area.)

Note to self: Don't be such a "kay poh" next time!

Note to self, again: So I didn't wish for world peace this year - which I did last year, seriously - but it's MY birthday wish, right? And it just seemed a waste to not make a frivolous ME-wish over a decadent dessert of Varlhona chocolate *PANT* and raspberries. Heh.


Killing me softly.

SF: "Reading a book, killing time."

I: "U cant kill time."

SF: "Heh ya. More like time kill us."

I: "Maybe WE are the books, and time is killing us by reading us."

SF: "Nt quite. Time kills us by merely passing."

I: "Or Time writes our stories. So we die when Time runs out of ideas or when it feels the need to be dramatic (i.e. sudden and untimely deaths)."

SF: "Ha ha. If u r lucky it kills u when it runs out of ideas. If nt, u r left hanging on plodding on bc it forgot about you."

Do you ever feel that Time has forgotten about you? And you are left fumbling with a pen, too big for your hands, trying to complete the masterpiece of a genius; your childlike scrawls next to the sublime scripts of the Master.

(Digressing: Talking about handwriting, why is it that doctors with their elegant hands - at least those who do - can't write legibly?)




Sights.

TGIF. The women are in their tight little tops and hip-hugging jeans, offering a glimpse of svelte waist or curvy lower back whenever they reach up or bend down. But it's just a little disconcerting when your male colleague flashes (unintentionally) you his lower back as he bends over. Eh. Does he just have a longer upper torso, or do we shop at the same place too???


The Legendary Girlfriend.

"You might love her, but what about the fact that she doesn't love you? Is love really love if only one person stays true to the cause? That sounds more like infatuation to me. No offence intended."

If a tree falls in a forest and there is nobody there to hear it fall, does it make a sound?

"I choose nothing because there is no guarantee that the grief will go away."

Would you give up the uncertainty of all your desires, all your dreams, and all your hopes, for the certainty of Nothing? Is it really better to know that only, and only, Emptiness awaits the rest of your life? That your fear of an uncertain future should make you long for an existence that has no future. How ironical.




The Legendary Girlfriend.

"I woke up this morning and knew that I loved you more than ever. Sometimes, I get scared that this feeling will slip away into something less than the wonderfulness it is now."

Sometimes, you just know, you know.


Sights

A sweet sleeveless pink top - if not for the ribbons sewn to the front of each armpit. (Fortunately, as far as I could tell, the lady shaves.) Some designer out there has a really sick sense of humour.

He was probably about 1.85m; a head (sometimes, two) above most of the lunch crowd in the canteen; a pale face adrift in a sea of bobbing black heads.




Sounds.

The World's Most Scary Sound:

The rustle of wet sand when you spin your wheels, after getting caught in the rain. That just shortened the lifespan of my ABEC7 bearings by another few months. Sheesh.

Five minutes into blading, and a plaintive "excuse me... can you help me", found myself teaching a stranger how to blade, for almost half an hour, while thunder rumbled in the distance. When I managed to do my own thing, it started to rain - after twenty minutes. Mutter.

The World's Most Irritating Sound:

The fat little toadstool pecking at her husband behind me, in the impromptu taxi queue outside East Coast Macdonalds.

"Why are you queuing here... is this a taxi stand... don't see any signs... it's a pick-up point for cars... they're not queuing for taxis..." The toadstool then waddles to the front, standing in the middle of the drivethrough, hoping to grab a cab.

After an unsuccessful wait, she returns. "Why are you STILL queuing here... is this a taxi stand... don't see any signs... it's a pick-up point for cars... they're not queuing for taxis..."

Maybe this will surprise you, but not all Singaporeans need a sign or a $500 fine to behave graciously. Many of us are quite capable of finding our own sense of order amidst potential chaos. (Oh. Hold on to that thought. Just remembered that the lovey-dovey pair in front was Japanese, and one half of the other couple was a Caucasian male.) Instead of pecking away at your husband, in that loud voice clearly meant to be heard, you could have tried politely asking the person in front of you (that would be me *ahem*). Or, if you didn't want to find out that the owner of the sexy back and long hair (that would be me, again *ahem*), who your husband was quietly queuing behind, also had a sweet voice, you could have asked any of the other people in the queue. After all, you sure didn't sound like the shy type.

Eventually, Mrs Toadstool (who by the way, looked like a malcontent) got her husband to leave the queue to join her in the grand waddle up front. But they didn't get lucky. Smirk. As the rain got heavier, I decided to call for a cab, which arrived within a few seconds of confirmation. The cab told me that he was already turning into the drivethrough and managed to hit the buzzer the second time, after missing the first call. Lucky bugger.


Sex and the Lion City.

For a country that's not making enough babies, we sure talk a lot about sex. Or was that just a clever media conspiracy to get us all *ahem* in the mood? Heh.

Which reminds me of Ero Lingerie's "Stop Wearing Bras" ad. OK. So this could possibly save women's lives, but I'm not so sure about the men. All that loss of blood can't be too good, yes? But maybe, the Red Cross, who's short on blood supplies again, is in on this conspiracy too. Laugh!


Words.

Another beautiful piece of work from Neil Gaiman.




Who am I?

Are you a freak? "Your score is 10! Let your freak flag shine, honey! Being "normal" is boring. Don't be ashamed of your eccentric side. It sets you apart from the pack."


Et cetera.

Dropped by the pet shop to pick up health supplements during lunch time, and ended up squatting by the pet enclosure, watching poodle puppies play; so free of care. But puppies grow up too, and develop different temperaments; as do babies. Do you ever miss those days when you had not a care in the world? Or is it just a state of the mind?

Shakespeare Abridged was, for $65, quite disappointing. More slapstick than witty, and the fart and vomit jokes went on for longer than necessary.




Today.

Five minutes away from the climb centre, it started to drizzle. Sigh. The wall doesn't want to be climbed. Sniff.


The Legendary Girlfriend.

"Between grief and nothing, which would you choose?"

Is it better to have loved than never before? Well, I survived. What about you?


Et cetera.

What is it like, to see another side of a person?




I want to feel alive.

From the International Healthcare Journal. March 2004.

"Extreme sports attract for two reasons: biologically - a risky sport can make an athlete feel alive and exhilarated; and psychologically - it can be used as a pathway to self-discovery or a way to 'connect' with a person's inner self, if only because of the possibility of disaster brings an understanding at an intimate level."


Intimate Stranger.

SF: "Eh why you call people weirdo? Drawn to you means weirdo huh? Ha ha ha!"

I: "You dont think weird izit? Come and touch stranger's hand???"

She laughed about it being fate - our paths crossing again. Fate my foot. Was it even the same person??? Have never been good with faces. And she, too, wondered if there was a Part 2 to Part 1. OK. Let's see if Fate would have us on the same trip. Shrug.

Some men lose themselves in beautiful eyes. And some men lose it when they see the Boobsey Twins. Some women like "chubby men with bellies". (Not me! I swear! The EX-communicated was an anomaly against the order of nature. My nature. Heh.) Many things do it for me, but touch and smell send me into a different realm altogether. Hmmm... that makes me another weirdo, doesn't it? Maybe I've just been looking into one too many eyes, and touching too many strange hands and arms over the weekend. Heh. Heh.

When I wrote Skin on Skin, I wondered what it would be like to stumble upon your chance encounter with a stranger on the said stranger's blog. But that would be too uncanny a coincidence, wouldn't it? For now, my weak heart can only deal with possibly meeting a stranger again (and maybe, again), and reading about Re-minisce's own Intimate Stranger.

Well then, do you have an Intimate Stranger story to tell? Let's get something going, shall we? :-)




Today.

Finally got down to making links to the entries.

Three new books to read: Neil Gaiman's American Gods, Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice (SF), and Mike Gayle's My Legendary Girlfriend (Aberwyn).


Intimate Stranger (2).

Even after years of swimming, I still get the occasional panic attack when my nose realises it's not getting air. So, I had loads of fun (so did the instructors who found it funny) choking on chlorinated water and hyperventilating on compressed air. And now I have a headache, and my face is the colour of the otah I had for lunch. Sigh! But, I did learn how to turn off my nose eventually (from one of the younger instructors who thought I was only 21 *grin*) - without panicking! Counting down to the last weekend of the month :-)

Pleasantly surprised that one of the instructors also climbs at the place I go to. Always nice to see a familiar and friendly face, when everyone else is there with friends. Also a reminder to hit the walls again - it's been more than three months.

Resting on the stands during lunch, watching the advanced diving class finish up. My eyes returning often to his face. His finding my returning eyes. Looking. Just looking. Until the face started to intrigue. Something about the eyes. Something. In the eyes. Not the bold look at a stranger for the first time, a stranger who he might never have to meet again. Nothing to lose. But, the tentative look. Familiarity. Searching. Days, weeks, months, times, places, people, possibilities.

Barely audible, fingers tapping on the heavy door of my memories... flitting images... one elusive face among faceless ones... parting train doors... skin on skin. All possibilities ended. Should have. So I thought.

Is that... you?


Intimate Stranger (1).

The intellectual is always showing off,
the lover is always getting lost.
The intellectual runs away.
afraid of drowning;
the whole business of love
is to drown in the sea.
Intellectuals plan their repose;
lovers are ashamed to rest.
The lover is always alone.
even surrounded by people;
like water and oil, he remains apart.
The man who goes to the trouble
of giving advice to a lover
get nothing. He's mocked by passion.
Love is like musk. It attracts attention.
Love is a tree, and the lovers are its shade.

- Rumi (1207 - 1273)

Times like this, I wish there was a universal language for poetry. So much is lost in translation - the nuances of the language and culture, the subtleties of expression (or word play). And liberties have to be taken with structure, which makes the reading awkward. Sometimes, it's like a dream you want to remember, but eludes you each time you come close to touching the poet's soul.


Taste.

Movenpick Chocolate at 0219 hours. Best times for ice cream: late night or breakfast. Followed by coffee. Extremes of cold and heat. Heavenly combination :-)

Ice cream cone. Do you lick or bite... or slurp (raise eyebrow)?




Sight.

East Coast. Ever notice how the guy blading is rarely ever worse than his female companion? Not many guys can handle looking "bad" beside the date / friend only. Heh. (Exception being the elven folk. But since both are men, that's moot. Heh.)

Stopped to watch two Jack Russell terriers paddle over the waves to retrieve a red ball, and bring it back together. Cute :-)


Doggy tales.

I just found out why Xena smells. Elmo has been drooling on her - in doggy position. Ewwwww!!! I mean, you don't drool on your partner during sex, do you?!?!




Love stories.

He said his 40-ish friend had been single for at least 13 years - until he got attached recently. I wondered aloud what he did during those years. Logical question, no?

The minute I heard my first love story,
I started looking for you, not knowing
how blind that was.

Lovers don't finally meet somewhere,
they're in each other all along.

- Rumi (Translated by Coleman Barks)

Jelaluddin Rumi (1207 - 1273). Simply beautiful.




Today

Crystal Jade Ginseng Chicken BBQ at Ngee Ann City. Love the Korean BBQ meats :-)

You know Spring is here when the fashion shops are overflowing with lace and flowers. My kind of scene :-)


Intimate.

"What if I told you that THIS is really who I am?"


Long time no see.

I remember Space Sally from AJ and NUS. I've always thought her strange - with her awkward accent, affected notions of what she wanted out of life, and desire to be "different". Her heavy eyelids (I assume from the lack of sleep) added to the spaced-out look. Heh. But, I don't remember her ever being unlikeable. I figured she just trying to cope with family problems and a failed relationship, while searching for her purpose in life. After graduation, we bumped into each other occasionally and would do a little catching up; we haven't seen each other in the last few years.

Today, she had a kid with her. And there was something different in her face - she looked, for want of a better term, "settled down." Space Sally no more. And I'm actually happy for her.


Sounds.

Ideas and intellectual property. Interesting how some people are so taken with their ideas, and make a hell lot of noise when someone else "steals" them, that they forget that, sometimes, the real challenge is in realising these ideas, and giving substance to dreams. Otherwise, it's all just NATO.

People don't notice the little mouse in the hole in the wall, which makes it good for eavesdropping on conversations :-)


Cute.


Sight.

It was fascinating watching the youthful (for someone like him) face speak on the latest government initiative - the fluency of his delivery, on and on; the unquestionable confidence in the little man, on and on; the unselfconsciousness; fingers and palm lingering over his mouth while affirming a sensitive point; the tightening of eyes behind his little glasses, the prominent bridge of his neat brows lowered in irritation at the one seated opposite and beside me, who dared a blunt challenge on the said point.


Singaporish

"Those 'irresponsible' people who shun the stork, he said, should realise they would become a liability to the society in future."

Oh yes, so much more responsible to marry the wrong person and have children, and in the process, screw up not only your own life, but also the lives of your partner and children.

What a way to make the world a happier place.

What a moron.




Question.

Anyone plays Ultimate Frisbee here?


Intimate.

"The simplicity of a platonic friendship. Uncomplicated. But never long enough. When an initial attraction starts to develop into an unrequited romantic interest, everything changes. Don't you sometimes wish supposed platonic relationships between men and women came with firewall settings?"


Sight.

In that brief moment when my eyes held his, because our lines of sight just happened to converge at the same moment, unintentional, unexpected - I saw only the largeness of his dark eyes, and the intensity of the man looking out from behind them.

What is it like to find your eyes meeting those of a complete stranger?




Touchy feely.

A: "shopping was good for me... i got to make some clothes there... very nice cloths... got a few cashmere pants and egyptian cotton shirts"

I: "wah cashmere! hey wont it be hot???"

A: "not really, i got them to put a lining in the pants. cashmere and wool should use with lining otherwise u sure melt"

I: "wah quick wear the pants, i wanna FEEL!"

A: "yeah u can feel up my ass when we next meet hehehe at least i dont charge u. friend friend mah so let u eat free tofu"

I just lurrrve having friends like that :-) Don't you? (Of the opposite sex, obviously.) Heh. Heh.




Bedtime stories.

Accustomed to the usual playful growls, jaw snappings and occasional yelp of real pain as the dogs play on my bed, it became strangely quiet after a while. Turning away from my chat session, I found them doing the six-legged deed on my bed!!! Arrrggghhh!!! *throw dogs back into the living room* The thought of waking up in the middle of the night to find that I've rolled onto a wet spot is... just... so... Well, you get the idea. Shudder.


Fluid dynamics.

There's something so deliciously sensuous about water.

As I rested my aching body on the bed, I remembered the liberation of being thrown off balance, suspended in mid-air for those few otherworldly seconds, arms flung wide open, before landing on the soft bed of water (flat on my back), and drifting slowly into its cool embrace. (At the speed we were going, water was, fortunately for me, still "soft". Heh.)

Had the morning off to sleep off the aches from my first time at wakeboarding on Sunday - F.U.N. :-) And waking up to the soft rustle of rain was a bonus :-))


Random thoughts

We have an entire generation of young people growing up pierced and/or tattooed.


The Singaporean Woman's Pledge.

We, the women of Singapore,
pledge our wombs to the national hen house,
regardless of our own selfish desires,
to marry any man whose balls are working,
based on incompatibility, (later still can divorce what, you dunno meh)
so as to get a house and tax breaks, then we can make
babies for our nation.

With this pledge, I give up my SDU (Selfish, Dysfunctional and Unpatriotic) membership, to answer the call from the Government to perform "National Service". And I urge all women, whether you are single, in a relationship, married, once-divorced, twice-divorced, or thrice-divorced, to join me in serving the National Hen House.

What do you mean you don't have time because you work really long hours just to maintain your current standard of living and pay off the two lifetime loans you took up for your upmarket condominium and SLX? (Next time, just sell your soul to the Devil - it's "cheaper", and collection is only upon death.) Get a maid - foreign talent's the way to go; take it from the Government.

And what's this about not having enough quality time with your children so that you can bring them up to be responsible and mature citizens? Don't be ridiculous. Children will be children. Just let your devil's spawn, oops, I mean angelic baby *heehee* be free to get in touch with his inner monster, eh, child:

[1] Don't tell your child not to stand on the seats in the MRT trains in his dirty walking shoes - the considerate passenger who takes the seat next, understands the growing needs of your child and will clean up after him.

[2] Don't tell your child not to hump, pardon my language, climb, the poles. The Government always knew there was a bartop / pole dancer in everyone of us.

[3] Don't tell your child not to swing from the hand rings, grinning and whooping like a monkey. Your child is just getting in touch with his primate ancestry. This is a GOOD thing, because the Government says Singaporeans should be like monkeys.

Erm, please excuse me while I scratch my armpits.

(Disclaimer: The author pleads temporary insanity from the deluge of newspaper articles and ministerial exhortations for women to procreate, and will not be responsible for the above contents.)




Is anyone home?

Caller: "Hello."

I: "XXX Company. Good morning."

Caller: "Hello?"

I: (OK, start talking. Time's a-ticking.)

Caller: "Hello???"

I: "XXX Company. Good morning." (Repeat corporate greeting while rolling eyes. One of THOSE callers again.)

Caller: "I want to... blah blah..."

I: (You know, I'm keeping quiet, because I'm concentrating on LISTENING to you, so that I can give you the answers that you want, and I don't have to ask you to repeat yourself later.)

Caller: (Stops in the middle of a sentence.) "Hello??? Can you hear me???"

I: "Yesss..." (This is usually the part where little spittles of foam start to form at the sides of my mouth.)

Caller: "And I... blah blah..."

I: (I'm still here. Still LISTENING. Haven't quietly left my table to make myself a cup of coffee while you're still talking, in case you're wondering.)

Caller: (Stops in the middle of a sentence. AGAIN.) "Hello???"

I: "I'm sorry. Can you repeat that again?" (See, you made me lose my concentration. And now we have to start all over again. I can't listen and talk at the same time. And one more thing, have you seen a shrink about your anxiety attacks that you have been talking to yourself?)


Today's reads.

"...both men and women were willing to take more pain from a woman than from a man... The stereotype we have of women is that they are nurturing, caring, sensitive, that they have empathy... We feel safer with them."

Evil little smile.




I hate spam.

Stupid viagra ads and stupid bigdicklongdicklikeicare spams. Accidentally deleted an email from Daisy W before I realised the "Il Mare" subject header. So, Daisy W, if you are reading this, and you're not trying to sell me bigger boobs or set me up with a blind date ;-) please resend that email which I didn't even get a chance to open :-P

Sheesh, hope I've not deleted more genuine emails before this!


Bastards and bitches.

While everyone understands the maxim that it takes two for a relationship to work, when does it become a vicious cycle of cause and effect? For example: ...blame is put on just the guys. Even if a husband strays, I think the wife plays a part. NO way she's passive and totally innocent." And what about the woman who has an extramarital affair because of a husband who works late and comes home too tired for the family?

"An eye for eye only ends up making the whole world blind."
- Mahatma Ghandi (1869-1948)

When we allow our interactions with other people and the world to be reduced to simple cause and effect, are we doing justice to our human potential and capacity to think and reflect, and to a certain extent, even change the circumstances we were born into or presented with? Surely, this is what distinguishes us from other animals?

"The mind is its own place, and in itself, can make heaven of Hell, and a hell of Heaven."
- John Milton (1608-1674)

Cause and effect. Or are people just eager to assign blame to assuage their own guilt?




MOTD

If you can't view the comments, try clicking on "Check master server comments." (Roll eyes.)


Consumerism:

Finally switched to a french press (for one) to replace the old coffee-maker (for five!), and because I was sick of 3-in-1 cow crap; though I would have really liked this.

Just made myself some decent coffee with Movenpick's blend. Ahhh... heaven :-)


Durian-flavoured chocolate shaped like a slug:

Are you a durian? Touch-me-not thorns on the outside, but soft and creamy inside.

Or chocolate? Sweet and creamy on the outside, but nutty inside.

Or uncomplicated woman-woman? "Nua" (mush) on the outside, and still "nua" inside. Someone describes his dream woman as "languid". I call her, quite simply, The Slug.


Et cetera:

You can always tell the ones who have been roughed up by women, from the woman-bashing and diarrhetic rants. When men get hurt, they are not so different from women after all.

Looked at Primitive Art's celtic butterflies. Two weeks for the scabs to shed. Checking out Alive next. Still thinking, anyway.

The happy little man came into the room to introduce himself, hand outstretched. Being the well brought up child I am, raised to stand in the presence of elders, I unfolded myself from my seat for the introductory handshake. There was a second of hesitation as he found himself readjusting his line of sight - higher up.

Attended the introduction talk last night and will start my Scuba Diver Course proper tomorrow evening - two theory classes, followed by two pool sessions, and then the open dive at Dayang or Tioman. Will probably do the latter over my birthday, away from home, and among strangers. First time for everything, yes?




Hormonal imbalances:

Hammie once said that having female colleageus made the workplace more "interesting", and gave him something to look forward to everyday in an otherwise all-male office. Methinks the same can be said about a mostly all-female work environment - though one has to be careful about being too friendly with the new creature, lest the other animals, especially the one-legged ones, get all green-eyed.


Lord of the Freaks AKA Michael in 2015:


All the world's a stage:

Definitely getting tickets - The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged).

Maybe - Such Sweet Sorrow.




Intimate:

"On the one hand, you find my sass a turn-on. On the other, you whine when you cannot keep up. Make up your mind. Man-woman types have no patience for the kuniang-man."


The 76th Academy Awards:

LOTR!!!

Adrien Brody :-)~~~

Johnny Depp :-D~~~~~~


Sounds:

"If he doesn't respond by middle of this week, give me a TINKLE."

Does your phone TINKLE? I can't help but think of the toilet each time someone says that.


Today's reads:

If he seriously thought that academic excellence made him a more "worthy" candidate for a profession that prides itself on compassion and nobility, then it's no wonder that he was "booted out rather unceremoniously."