Sunday, September 30, 2007

Note to self

1. What's with the fucking 15-page group-based homework fiasco. Find out on Monday!

2. Monday is when the week begins. So, I'm gonna be positive and suck it up. And make the best outta it. I am what I believe, I really am. After all, the very first step of greatness that Spiderman and Superman and Batman took, was to realise that they are superheroes.

3. Take more photos for the blog.

4. And for goodness/goodnesses (which word should I use, really?), blog more.

Pretty Vacant

And you would know from the typos, the haphazard arrangement of points in the iPod Nano review that I've done something naughty.

I drank quite a bit of red wine. You can't really blame me, I do appreciate good red wine and would never let any red wine pass me by.

Oh shush. You and I both know that moderate red wine consumption is going to do my body more good than harm, so stop horsing around with that moral high horse, ok?


What did I do today? Damn, it's all so meaningless I can't even remember!

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Turning Rebellion Into Money

Oh crap.

I've not blogged for days.

It's not exactly that there's nothing happening in my life, but:

1. I'm too lazy to blog about what few things are blogworthy

2. I'm short on photos

3. Most of my life isn't blogworthy

Someone, please. Tell me something fun and blogworthy to do!

Looks like I don't really need to do a full iPod Nano 3G review. But here's some short and sweet notes about it.

It's a cool little thing, and by cool, I mean totally sweet.

1. Back when it was newly-released, everyone gawked at photos online and then promptly did a double take. It looked fat, it looked big and the colours were totally horrible - red that looks like powder pink, all the colours look like they're iPod Little Tikes Edition. And everyone more or less decided that the designers should be lined up against the wall and shot.

Turns out, it was the marketing team that rightfully deserved the firing squad. I'm not kidding when I say they look way smaller in real life. And the colours are more or less similar to the previous generation iPod Nanos, just that the photos screwed up big.

It fits my palm quite snugly, and I'm pretty surprised that it gives my old Sony Walkman flash player a good run for its money when it comes to size. It's fatter, but shorter and way thinner.

2. Cover Flow on both iTunes and iPod rock. But before that, you'd have to spend considerable effort embedding the album artwork into the files using mp3 Tag or similar.

3. Battery life is goooooood. Officially it's 24h, but iLounge got 30 sweet hours outta it.

4. Sound quality? Well, that's the Achilles's Heel about it. It's pretty average for a MP3 player, which means it doesn't sound crystal-clear and thumpy like my old Sony. Anecdotal reports state that the sound quality is pretty on par with the previous generation iPod Nanos, and slightly inferior to the full-sized iPods.

5. Holy cow, it's nice to have 8 whopping gigabytes,

6. iTunes. Love it or hate it, but either way, it takes a whole lotta getting used to. I particularly like the search box in the top right corner. Type the album name, artist name or song name, and the search results appear as you type. Leet. Oh, did I mention Cover Flow rocks? I'm one of the old school guys who still remember albums by the album artwork, so there, it's schweeeet.

7. You need a proprietary cable to connect it to your computer. No run-of-the-mill USB cables. Bah.

8. Comes in a schweeet anodised green (I had actually bought a cover for my Nokia 8250 aeons ago that was a similar matt green) which is, in any case, pretty hard to resist.

9. But all that's said and done, it's really one of only 3 options you can choose from if you want 8GB of flash storage at a decent price.

Meizu m6
China brand, known for its sound quality and low price of less than $300. However, what out me off is the dubious warranty.

There is no official Meizu agent in Singapore, and when I ask about the warranty, it sounds to me like a 'we'll send it to our importer who'll try to butcher this thing by themselves and hope that sparks don't fly.'

Comes in plain black and white, and they're honestly pretty bland and unattractive. And it isn't anodised aluminium with a shiny steel back like the Nano is.

Creative Zen
At exactly $1 pricier than the iPod nano, it has a bigger screen, and supposedly better sound quality. But still, I wasn't impressed auditioning it at the showroom with my own earphones.

What turned me off is that Apple's user interface is way more intuitive - 5 minutes of fiddling and you're good to go - while the Creative lays so many buttons on the audio player it makes a DVD player's remote control look uncluttered. And well, who can resist the sweetness of a click wheel or similar touchpad-like navigation? And it isn't anodised aluminium with a shiny steel back like the Nano is.

But hey, it has a SD card expansion port, that works for up to 4GB, so that's pretty leet by itself.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Appetite For Destruction

Yesterday was a day I'd rather not remember, so. Poof. If I choose not to blog about or recall it, it didn't really exist did it?

In the festive season of mooncakes, lanterns, and well, mooning.

Peripheral blood film. Taken with my cameraphone through the microscope.

The microscope lamp.

Through the 10X objective.


Annalakshmi at Chinatown Point. It's a crazy proposition, order what you want, then pay any amount you deem fit, as it's a restaurant that works on trust, and its profits support a number of cultural events and all. It's vegetarian, but the food is good, and those baked floury thingies (forgot the name) are absolute bliss.

Off to Bugis.

Words cannot describe the joy of retail therapy. Mulling over it forever, and finally got it. Put on the condom protector and a hastily cut the screen protector to size (bought a really big 7x7 inch one, cut it to size) then pasting it without caring for the bubbles I'd left. I'd review it in time. Getting the hang of iTunes after lotsa fiddling around, but I doubt it'll be much worse than SonicStage. Both have their frustrating idiosyncrasies.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Mischief, Mayhem, Psychopaths, Cyclepaths

Yay, finished my write-up for Pathology way before I expected to. But that's mainly cause, I'm alone for the weekend again! Decided to soldier through it for the afternoon, and there, I steeled myself and did it with sheer determination.


That's after a harrowing morning cooking both breakfast and lunch. I gotta admit it, Anthony Bourdain's Kitchen Confidential did inspire me a whole hell lot. Cooking the lettuce done just so you still taste the lettuce - not the sauce. Taking the art of cooking seriously.

Breakfast was pancakes made using pancake mix (what a sacrilege!) because I wanted to, have a control to compare how my usual pancakes fare against them. Mom prefers the pancake mix ones cause they're fluffier. But they don't have the buttery taste and the chewiness (more milk, more egg - high protein!) that mine do. And when you leave them to stand, they start to taste a little off, which I know is due to too much alkalinity (too much baking soda).

Lunch, it was a disaster. Note to self - never ad-lib and improvise all the way when I'm just a newbie.

Overcooked chicken breast cooked in a flat tasting tomato paste.

Horribly undercooked calrose rice with too much tomato mixed into it.

Soggy lettuce.

I really need to brush up my standards of cooking real food!


And the evening bike ride was honestly scary.

I don't mind the cars cutting in front of me recklessly, because I know better than to get myself in their way. But all the same, I'd give them a visual display of displeasure.

I don't mind the hot weather.

I don't mind feeling like a pathetic freak hauling myself uphills so slowly I look like I've got a puncture.

But what I mind is when unwitting psychopaths walk on the cyclepaths, without even keeping to one side. And if that isn't bad enough, they never walk straight. Zigzags, spirals, backwards, I've seen it all. But never straight.

A kid zigzaged into my path - despite me blasting the bell really loudly as a warning - and I jam braked (yeah, both my tyres did skid) and I stopped about 50cm in front of the kid, who looked like the proverbial deer in the middle of the road staring at you, the headlights reflecting off its dumb eyes.

The hoi polloi around looked shocked, but I have no idea if their contempt leans towards me, the ignorant kid, or the equally ignorant parents of the kid.

Sped off, as no one was hurt. Didn't wanna get into more trouble. I really should ride on the roads on weekends.

And they say riding a bike is easy to learn.


It wasn't the end. Almost back home, just one right turn, and I'd be on the lane that leads to the bottom of my block of flats.

Out of sheer exhaustion, I made the right turn blindly following a car. And subconsciously, I took the pedastrian crossing traffic lights 10m away as a beckoning sign to speed on - only that it wasn't the traffic light for my turn.

Saw a couple of vehicles accelerating towards me while I hastily cleared the turn.

Fuck. I almost died.

I'm exhausted and I can't deny it.

Thus concludes another near-death experience. Somehow I'm still a little too exhausted to appreciate the scariness of this whole situation. Exhaustion - one lovely sedative indeed.


Tired. Contemplative.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

The Ultimate Plan To Rule All Plans

Woke up moderately early, thankful that my tummy is done with torturing me.

Spending my Saturday morning alone, in front of the computer, forcing myself to do some homework. Only got a few paragraphs done, which was quite sad, considering that it's due on Friday. Damn.

Rearranging my MP3 collection like some pathetic loser, weeding out duplicates, deleting the stuff I don't like.

Going out with mom to help with grocerying and mooncake shopping. Jostling with the middle-aged crowd, staring blankly while they ravage the supermarkets for its special offers.

That's the kind of sad thing lonely losers like me do for the weekend. And you know what's worse?

I have no plans for the Sunday. Except to try to get more of the darned homework done.


I'm not going to get used to this. I'm not going to resign myself to fate and decide to give it all up and be alone for life.


So I've - in absolute Otaku-ism - decided to analyse a few dating simulators. If art imitates life, and video games is an art, why not?

True Love: Criteria for dating include: Passion, Appearance, Fatigue, Scholarship, Physical Strength, Art, Money

New York Nights: Beauty, Health, Humour, Culture, Money


Let's make no pretence that people should like other people more than just for a set list of criteria that video games list.

There's no such thing as chemistry. No such thing as finding The One. It's about as visceral as a male tiger fighting on for their reproductive dominance.

In other words, I didn't use to believe in looking fit and good until I tried it at a whim and realised that girls (and even guys) did treat me better, didn't cut off conversations halfway and were more willing to hear what I had to say.

And then I realised that fulfiling the natural animal desires is the way to gain popularity.

I gotta pad up the value they see in me. I gotta exude an air of wealth, intelligence, health, strength, culture and beauty, the very things we are judged upon in a dating simulation video game.

This is not just about dating, but also friendships too. Because the people who have no problems dating are almost invariably the same ones who have lotsa friends.

Modifiable factors:

Problem: Well, it's true. The evidence screams at you from every corner of the shopping mall, from every group of popular people you see in school.

The tall, dark, handsome guy gets all the chicks flocking towards him.

While I'm not exceptionally short, I'm simply not tall enough to turn heads. Neither do I have a healthy shimmering bronze on my skin. Nor half-decent proportions or even a cute face. Those are more or less unmodifiable factors, sadly. I can't afford plastic surgery.

But I guess even then, there's always the hair, the clothing and whatever we use to decorate our lacklustre nude bodies with. After all, even a perfect fir tree needs the trinkets and lights to become a Christmas tree.

Solution: Geeky spectacles. get them outta way like you would to a nasty spider on your face.

Dress better. I'm already halfway through it, overhauling my wardrobe and doing away with clothing that's too plain, too loose or simply too worn out. And replacing it with stuff that looks good on me.

And don't forget colour coordination, because a bright orange tee won't ever go well with, say, forest green shorts and blue shoes. Or a shimmering red tie and a drab blue shirt.

Hair is important. Get it trimmed regularly, so that it doesn't plaster onto the head like a shapeless blob. Use lotsa hair gel or wax. They don't notice unless they touch your hair, and if she's close enough to touch your hair, half the job's already done anyway.

As for the tan? Get out in the son more! Bicycling, running, try to get as much burn-time as much as possible, and wear a sleeveless occasionally to even out the tan lines.

Unfortunately, I do not have the discipline or the wealth to stick to my advice, so that's what I oughta work on - looking nice every day of the week, making sure my hair is done just right, that my clothing coordinate and I'd never let anything too shabby touch my skin.

Problem: Girls love strong, hunky boys. I'm neither strong nor hunky.

Solution: Be strong. Run/cycle once every 2 days with some strength training. Also a corresponding increase in protein intake to build the muscles. Then I'd be strong.

But I gotta looks strong, and that means losing the fat that blurs the contours that demarcate where the muscles are. Ideally, I'd lose about 3kg of weight, so that means I'd have to lose even more than 3kg of fat, then add some kgs of muscle.

I've let myself lapse too much. I'm overweight by Singaporean BMI standards!

I gotta will myself to get that done in the next 5 weeks!

Problem: I don't even know what they look for!

Solution: I need to observe more, the interactions between males and females. Do I flatter them too little? Do I make insufficient eye contact? Do I need to change the way I walk and talk to reflect a greater self confidence? Do I play hard-to-get to make them think I'm busy and important, like some dating gurus would recommend?

I need experimentation.

Problem: No, don't get me wrong. I'm not saying that we should be arty-farty, cultured individuals. I mean, we gotta be informed enough about the culture of people other than us, in order to find common ground.

It surely sucks when one doesn't know a thing about the restaurants/bands/books they talk about. Awkward silences, the feeling that I come from another planet.

Solution: Observe what most Earthlings of my age engage in in their free time. Read about them, experience it sometimes. Not act squeamish in unfamiliar territory. Pretend that I've been listening to those bands they love (but I had never liked) since, erm, forever. I can do it. My skills at petty lies like these sometimes marvel myself.

Unmodifiable factors:

Problem: I don't come across as particularly intelligent. I don't do great things, I don't even do well in school, in a culture where academic achievement is synonymous with intelligence.

Solution: Study harder, you doofus!

And stick to it!

No giving up! An above average grade is a necessity!

Problem: I'm not rich. I can't commit enough time or energy into a part time job.

Solution: Act rich. Go for special offer apparel that looks good, scrimp and save when no one's looking. (e.g. on bus fare; I can walk instead.)

Problem: I don't come from an important family, I don't have any important roles in society or clubs or whatever.

Solution: I don't think there's a way I can help that. Except maybe the dirty old trick of acting busy and making the girls feel like I make time for them despite my fake busy lifestyle.

Sigh. Looking at the solutions I just penned down - the unmodifiable factors are, well, unmodifiable indeed.

At least it's not a total lost cause. I should stop whining and start cracking!

Friday, September 21, 2007

The Vapours - Turning Japanese



It's a blog holiday for me today.

Down with a bad tummyache.

And doing everything in the book to recover as quickly as possible, including:

1. Drinking shitloads of water
2. Eating more salt (hey, that's the basis of ORS therapy)
3. Eating ALOT of food, even though it feels uncomfortable, so that I'd get everything to create the antibodies and repair my intestinal cells. And compensating for the impaired absorption of my probably swollen and sick intestines
4. Imodium
5. Eating yoghurt. Asians will shriek at the idea, but hey, it's proven that the live bacteria help the gut get back to normal as quickly as possible.
6. Avoiding stressful situations such as school

I'll be back, hopefully fine, pretty soon!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

When I Come Around

Boys, get your regular and plentiful sleep mmkay?

Been surviving on rather little sleep, partly from caffeine intoxication, having stuff to do, not being able to sleep and, well, issues.

Sleep is precious. Strangely, the deepest sleep I get is among the drone of the bus engines and the perpetual swaying and creaking of the poorly-damped air suspensions.

Every morning, after another bad night of sleep, I force my body against its will to wash up and dress for school, and when I do eventually find myself a seat on the bus, I'm back to sleep at the snap of a finger.

But it ain't pretty. So. Boys, get your regular fix of sleep, OK?


I'm peeved, the Gahmen decided not to repeal Section 377A just because of the alleged disagreement of the 'Heartlanders', i.e. the coffeeshop aunties and uncles of Hougang and Yishun. Strangely, if they were so vehemently against men having sex with men, then why wasn't their voice ever heard before the sudden announcement by the Gahmen? It sounds suspiciously like a last-ditch attempt to make the decision sound democratic.

After all, don't we have more coffeeshop aunties and uncles than, say, globally aware Internet users?

But whatever, just because there are sizeable populations that like/don't like/condemn something doesn't mean a thing to its morality.

But it's sad, because for those men who truly love other men (believe me, there are quite many of them), they're unrightfully forced to go into hiding, not being able to sexually express themselves.

And even worse, it's an international disgrace.


Sigh. It's a sign that I'm getting desperate when I see tall, rich-looking guys in school being surrounded by a whole entourage of girls. And it's so obvious that they're all after him, cause the eye contact is all on him.

And well, the lesser looking guys, the poorer guys, they hang out with each other.

Everytime I see how shallow people are, I lose a bit of faith in humanity. And in myself.


Blogging from lecture, so sue me.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Groaning and pleading.
Pained and bleeding.

This ache, it won't go.
Doctor won't you numb it?

Doctor, you're the only one.
You have something I want.
I'd give you anything you want.
Please, make your round.

It's getting worse.
I'm in tears.

Doctor, will I live?

Where are you, Doctor?


I can't keep my eyes open in this pain.
No thunderclaps or torrents of rain.
No sirens, no bombs.
Not the death knell.

Of the cardiac monitors,
The oximeters,
The beeping?
The beeping.

Doctor, please. I beg you.

Doctor? Where are you?


I'm dying.

My last wishes, won't someone listen?
Not an iota of concern
For a dying man?

You don't see my pain?
That fresh bloodstain?

Doctor, look at me.

Doctor, don't go, I have something to say.

Doctor! I'm so happy you listen to me.

I need to tell you something.

Doctor, before I die I have a

Picture of You

Anyway, my notebook's fixed, rather swiftly thanks to the efficiency Acer Service Centre. Or maybe not so efficient, as the staff were visibly tied up with paperwork and complicated administrative procedures on their computers.

The new LCD panel looks better than new. I'm content.


If I were to go on into a pathetic self-pitying tirade again, I'd lose you, my treasured audience.

You're really all that I have. I'm not a popular person, so I don't get blog hits just because of who I am in real life. I don't want to get you down.

All in all, I just wanna feel like I matter, like I play a part in the lives of others, that if I were to die, people won't go, like, 'Who's that?'.

But I have trouble coping with the fact that I'm probably as useless and unimportant as I think.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

I've got pressure, You've got pressure. Why did you have to provoke me?

I've got a seething pressure in my temples. Headache. Feeling weak lately, can't even get up to speed when I go for a run.


Just musing, the medical profession is a really stifling one, where one never gets to express their creative energy. So we have: People like Kua Ee Heok who write to relieve their creative tension. Which puts him in the list of many doctors-turned-writers - Michael Crichton, Robin Cook, and I daresay, Mahathir Mohamad too.

And as many writers have gone through part of medical school, only to leave to express their creativity full-time. J. G. Ballard and Alfian Sa'at are 2 names I can think of right now.

Bryan Holland from The Offspring was once a pre-med student. Bill Murray, too.


It looks like it takes a Herculean effort for a medical doctor to keep the creative juices from clotting up. Many have left in the name of creative expression, and I sure hope I can stay sane being able to express myself creatively while staying on with this path...


Out with QY again! For the infinite+1 time. Cause lecture got cancelled and we're bored people. Damn, I feel bad for taking up so much of his time.

Tried out the new iPod Nano and iPod Classic with my Sennheiser HD497 headphones. And conclusion? The equalizer distorts everything into a dirty muck. Even with equalizer off, it just sounds constricted. Like, the cymbals don't have the bell-like characteristic they usually do, the guitars don't growl, the bass doesn't resonate.

Looks like, I'm giving the iPods a miss.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Athlete - Hurricane

Sadly, the rest of the songs on their new album don't even come close to the radio-friendliness of Hurricane. Though this song really sounds suspiciously like Snow Patrol from the Eyes Open era.

It's tempting to get Athlete's third effort, after having bought the first 2, but I'm not going to waste my money.

I needa vent

Today's pretty OK.

Because yesterday, I learnt to be who I really am. If I don't let the things around me affect me, then they won't. Build up a mental fort, and nothing gets in my way.

I could pretend to be the pained pathetic victim, or I could cut out the things or people or whatever that make me feel like pretending to be one.

Pulling the mental weeds from my mind, it feels good. The best way to be happy is, to understand the thoughts that had made me unhappy, then pare them off one by one. Sometimes it's painful to do that. Sometimes disabling. But like a cancer, if I don't get rid of it early, it'd just grow.

Today, I don't look too shabby. Got my hair done just right, nothing particularly fugly about myself.

Read Kua Ee Heok's An Undefeated Mind in one breath on the bus, and I gotta say, it definitely is more readable than at first glance. It's quite inspiring, the humanity in medicine and psychiatry and stuff. And you can sorta glean from the book, just what exactly makes doctors tick?

Start of a new posting in school, everything's a fresh slate. I feel clean. I feel pure.

School's pretty boring. But having best buddy classmates by me during the lectures, it makes me feel like all those little troubles in life. they don't really matter. And very little is less entertaining than snapping random artyfarty photos when you're bored to tears in a lecture.

And supposedly QY's girlfriend says, I don't look too bad. Dunno to trust that or not, but I guess, maybe hermithood/lonerhood/singleness isn't my destiny after all. Yay.

Things, they sorta fall into place.


But right now I'm really peeved.

My Acer notebook has been developing posterior vitreous detachment symptoms - insidious slow-growing black spots growing on the LCD that seem to come with age.

Time to haul it to the service centre. Sigh.

Why do things always gotta die in my hands?

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Oh Fuck It

Lonerism has its benefits too. Screw the world, I can be myself so as long as I am with myself.

So what if the only person who's willing to hang around with me, is me? At least he's steady, reliable and won't cancel on me without at least a mutual decision.

Went to Orchard alone and really, it ain't too bad.

I can spend a fuckload of time in the library walking in circles, spending my time reading about acoustic baffling and Helmholtz resonators, conjuring up some DIY ideas to improve the acoustics of my room. (Now, how do I attach a behemoth chunk of foam and cloth on the wall where my Simpsons poster used to be?)

I can spend 15 minutes listening to the sampling booth (Athlete's new album's sorta plain, Queens of Stone Age sounds the same old, Singaporean band The Great Spy Experiment gives the local music scene a good run for its money.) without boring the hell outta the people I'd be with.

Bought Paolo Nutini's These Streets, cause it wasn't in stock the other time I looked for it. Why? They've replaced the old version with one that includes some tracks from a live concert. $18.95

I can spend a shitload of time testing out the sound quality of the new iPods and not look like an ueber geek. They sound quite respectable on my Creative EP630 earphones, with the iPod Classic having more of a natural sound, but both the Classic and Nano still can't beat the tonality and bass of my Sony flash player.

Epicentre Orchard uploads all their test units with full of songs so you're bound to have enough familiar songs to gauge the sound quality. (Which may be a bad thing for iPod sales, considering that sound quality is their weak point.)

And looking at cookbooks without looking like an absolute fruit in front of my friends.

Then going to Borders and reading books on how to date. Oh c'mon I'm desperate. I admit it.

Geekdom. Yay. Geekdom is inherently lonely, and it's ok to be lonely and loserish, so as long as I'm a geek. And I don't even need to care if my hair looks like crap.

But still, no matter how strong I stand on my own, I crave some warm fuzziness. Will you be the one to provide it?

I'm A Loser Baby So Why Don't You Just Kill Me

Fitful sleep. I just don't know why - I've been sleeping for long hours lately, but feeling less and less refreshed every following morning.

The circles around my eyes, they're testament to that.


Last night, I dreamt of having only a few days left to live before disease engulfs me.


Woke up to find dad awake, and not knowing where my mom went. She conveniently didn't tell him about how she's going out on some organised tour of Singapore kinda event, in an act of passive aggression.

They're barely on speaking terms, and they keep on bitching about each other. Family. Breaking up in front of my eyes.

Got on to making breakfast - cause there wasn't any on the table, and I knew dad's too incensed to fix up something suiting a Sunday. A quick survey of the freezer, and cobbled up some French toast.

Dad was bitching about mom in the kitchen right from I started defrosting the frozen bread to finishing the last slice of toast. Both parties, they have lethal missiles they wanna fire at each other, only that they don't have the guts to do it.

And so, poor me has to endure my dad's long showcase of verbal weaponry that he had never managed to use. And when dad is out and mom is at home, I'd then be treated to an equally long showcase of verbal weaponry from her side.

Listening, acting like I empathise with either party, making non-partisan comments, trying to avoid treading on verbal landmines.


I'm alone on a weekend again. Mulling over things in my room, sniffing the dank air that I've been stewing in.

I'm probably the only loser of my age who stays at home alone for the weekends. Except the paraplegics and the folks with severe mental impairment, those too frail to even feed themselves or even enunciate their thoughts, entirely dependent on ventillators and feeding tubes to stay alive.

It's sad that every weekend, I find myself having more in common with the infirm and the dying than my classmates and friends.

Friends? I dunno.

I guess I can't really call them friends, if they would refuse to hang out with me, giving some lame reason that reeks of "you're not that important to me, I'm too polite to say that straight in your face so I'm just going to pretend that I have some commitments I have to attend to". Believe me, I've tried and I've failed.

I'm just not important enough. There must be something about me that's intrinsically repulsive, for no human who tries this hard would fail in other circumstances.

Is it my personality? Probably.

Is it my looks? My mirror agrees. My blemished skin, the disgusting way the parts of my face seem to be pasted on by a 3 year-old, the rolls of fat.

Is it body odour? Halitosis? My gross ignorance of societal norms? The way I speak? The way I walk? Probably everything.

Once again, I find myself having more in common with the infirm and the dying than my classmates and friends. I'm probably as intrinsically repulsive as someone with birth defects, too retarded to be of any use to anyone, with reeking bedsores and disfiguring deformities.


The cars zoom past, probably with happy families heading to the mall for some family time. Or dating couples, his hand on hers. The elderly in the bus heading towards Chinatown, finding comfort in hanging out in the places they grew up in.

I'm stewing along in my room, like a worthless being left to die. A person shouldn't have to endure that much hurt. I'm trapped in my messed-up psyche, my deformed body and my repulsive self. While everyone just leads their own life, happy.


I've heard that euthanasia can be a worthwhile option for the infirm and the dying.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

Had been mulling over plans to make a tasty-yet-healthy cookie using low glycaemic index ingredients, for health, for weight control and for personal pride.

So a rough sketch - rolled oats, wholemeal flour and less sugar.

Googled up a recipe from Hershey's. Added chocolate chips, substituted part of the plain flour for wholemeal flour, only using brown sugar and sparingly, left out chopped nuts cause I had none. (N.B. The modifications are more about clearing out the slow-moving stuff in the fridge than about health benefits. Choc chips, well, they're sorta unhealthy.)

Here's to geeky food engineering! (Though not to the extreme pedanticness of Cooking For Engineers.)

Didn't really bother to be precise with the ingredients - cookies have very loose tolerances, so you can bungle up a thing or two and still not cause any major disaster.

Mixed it all up, and oh noes! The batter literally SOLIDIFIED in the mixer. Added a dash of milk, and I'm good to go again!

Verdict? It's not too bad - I could go with even less sugar next time, I figure. However, adding rolled oats meant a grainy texture with bits that get stuck between your teeth. I guess, that's the price to pay for health.

But overall, it's not bad for a maiden try at a recipe, and yeah, I'd do it again!

Friday, September 14, 2007

The Wombats

Usually, I reserve the sacred word for things that make me REALLY angry. Or really frustrated.

Bur sometimes, it's a valid praise. One that I hardly give, for it implies that the item to be praised would have to be as good as what that word originally referred to.

I have to say it. The Wombats are fucking good.

Download their mp3s

Check out Moving to New York and Let's Dance To Joy Division! If you like The Killers, The Kooks, or any band of that sort, you'd fall head over heels with The Wombats.

Regular Radio Hate programming resumes over the weekend.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Take A Picture

When it rains, it pours. And when it pours, you huddle into a truck and cover yourself with a huge blue tarpaulin, hoping that there's enough oxygen for everyone.

School involves long and painful lectures.

And sometimes, needles.

A respite every now and then, that's essential. Screw the timetable!

AMK Hub, that's a crowded warzone. Oh well, it's the company that matters.

Buses too brightly-lit, with too plush a suspension, with too monotonous an engine roar. It takes the bus-iness out of the bus, making it feel like sitting in a boring aeroplane cabin. Comfortable, but just boring.

Scones, muffins, stuff. Square2 Novena. Tasty.

Oh, and phone line's back up again, apparently Singtel came over to do some checks and found the problem to be somewhere outside the HDB block. Or something like that. At least I have teh Interwebs to play with now!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Basket Case

Do you have the time, to listen to me whine, about everything and nothing all at once?

Can't get online properly. Fucking phone line died, bring with it the telephone service and broadband internet.

Crazy administrative issues at school. The red tape in NUS is insane, and it's hard not to see why - page after page of logbooks to fill up on the students' part, clinical attachments mean insane amounts of paperwork and communication breakdowns between departments and all. The students lose out, because they have to join in the pain of the paperwork. And they gotta pay exorbitant school fees so that the staff who're employed just for paperwork get paid.

Oh, I realised that I have a positive intradermal skin test towards malt and sugarcane, I'm prolly allergic to them...

Sleepless, angsty. You don't mess with someone who had been trapped in a traffic jam, drenched in the rain, grappling with administrative shit, having his skin punctured by more than 10 needles, endured a long day of school, been ignored, left alone to his own pathetic painful thoughts, rushing from Bishan to Novena to Orchard to Novena to Bishan to Ang Mo Kio to Bishan all in a day, jostled around by the crowds in Ang Mo Kio Hub only to reach home and realise that dad was too retarded to call the right number to report the telephone line problem so I had to do it myself.

Thank goodness for old pals like Cong, to anchor me to some semblance of a life. Because, otherwise, I'd just be an automation, living through days just to get by with barely the skin of my teeth without even exercising the humanistic part of my mind.

It's a cruel life. And I feel so pissed. I need something warm and fuzzy to look forward to, because mechanical goals - goals like reading my textbook, passing my exams, graduating, stuff like these - are going to make me even more cold, jaded and hard.

Where's my warm and fuzzy thing?

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Damn Dog

It's pretty surreal to revise otolaryngology/ENT surgery/head and neck surgery/whatever fanciful name with a blocked nose, trying to convince myself that my nose doesn't have a deviated septum and that my fingers are just undergoing some fanciful tactile hallucination.

Muscled through a first read of half the textbook in one sitting. Mild cilliary spasm as I type this. I'm weak, old and ailing.


Ran like 6km at least today. In the sweltering heat. You see, I need the tan, to erase my old tanlines. And I need to burn off all the crud that I've eaten the past week, and the fulfilment of my vanity, et cetra.

The friendly neighbourhood Valium addict. I'm jealous.


School tomorrow, dammit.

Had Enough

Before the entry proper, here's today's breakfast:

Bread and butter pudding with ham.

Soaked the bread slices overnight in the egg/milk mixture this time round, for better consistency. Sadly, the recipe I used didn't really lend itself well for a a ham version (despite more eggs/less sugar). Still decent though.


Sleepless night again. And those voices are back with a vengeance. Actually they're sorta humorous sometimes, so it's no sign of impending doom, ain't it?


I don't even know why I'm just sometimes sleepless. Demons in the head? Caffeine in the blood? I just can't find a trend. Maybe if I look back into the day...

Cue: Memento-styled vignettes.


It's true. I drank a slightly larger load of caffeine in the evening, trying out the freshly-opened pack of coffee.


And earlier in the day? Oh, I was at the supermarket, grocerying with my parents. We work in a 3-man team:

Mom - the decision maker and chief shopper
Dad - the scout, who goes around the supermarket looking at interesting stuff, often at the DIY and health food section
Me - the cart driver from hell, whose Daytona/Gran Turismo/Mario Kart skills are finally being put to real-life use

I officially conclude that Bishan NTUC is a way better place to shop than NTUC Xtra in Ang Mo Kio.

1. They have a way better yoghurt selection
2. They have a way better cheese selection
3. The staff at the deli are friendlier
4. The aisles are wider and less crowded
5. They have a better selection of, well, almost every food product - even speciality Japanese/Australian/American stuff

Well then, isn't it a little hard to believe, that a smaller NTUC has a greater variety of food products than a muich bigger one? If you look into it, you'd notice that NTUC Xtra loses much of its floor space to clothing, toys, electricals, etc, leaving only a modest amount to supermarket-y kinda stuff. And even in the supermarket-y area, they stock large quantities of the same product - giving the false impression that they have a great variety of stuff.

In addition, they're sorta new, so they don't really know what sells and what doesn't. Which ends up with much of the floor space being clogged up by products that don't sell. It's also not surprising that Ang Mo Kio's population is older and therefore more traditional, less willing to try out new and unusual food products.

I've been jostling with the crowds in AMK for nothing!


Taught my mom a few advanced shopping cart techniques - 3-point-turns in narrow aisles, dealing with the overhang (the axis of turning is way behind the front of the cart) in tight corners, oversteer (you slide the rear of the cart in the opposite direction to make a tight turn).

No photos, because I only have 2 hands, both of which were occupied most of the time.

Remind me why I shouldn't drive a car on the roads of Singapore.


Before that, my family went to visit a relative at the hospital. He's doing fine in terms of health, but well, issues and stuff...

It's sorta sad. And awkward. Thank goodness I brought along my DS and played Picross on it to death in a bid to distract myself.

It's a retarded game, but oh well, when you gotta play a game while still being able respond to random snatches of conversation, Picross is it.


Uploaded some new stuff onto my DS before leaving for the hospital. Picross, Cake Mania (Can you believe it? Mom is addicted to the PC version and is goading me on to play it. It's absurd.), Taiko Drumming (it suxxors compared to all other credible rhythm games, don't even bother) New York Times Crossword and Boogle.

Cake Mania's just weird. You bake cakes, add toppings, decorations and stuff according to the customers' demands and serve them in time. Numbingly addictive.

It gets tricky at times though and you'll have to optimise your workflow (yay, corporate catchphrases) in order to get through the levels. Such as, baking the next cake while you're adding the topping to the previous, and doing things out-of-sequence to minimise walking time.

Updated the R4DS firmware (I'm a compulsive BIOS/firmware/etc updater.) and put in the new version of DSOrganize which does web browsing a little better (yay, bookmark and homepage capabilities!) but still can't log into Wireless@SG.


Lazy morning. Made HUGE pancakes. As in, frying-pan sized. This time with 50% wholemeal flour for a healthy version, which tasted strangely like All Bran pancakes. Parents didn't like it.

But, it's healthy! It's worth it!

Mental note to grab a box of instant pancake mix in order to remind myself how the commercial stuff tastes, so that I can either 1. pimp up my own recipe to emulate the fluffiness or 2. take pride in the fact that my very own pancakes pwn the instant stuff upside down.