doors closed

the soul’s dead now (but not gone). uttering a prayer for him is utterly useless. try chanting and the levitation will take you to him.

Published in: on Thursday, February 26, 2009 at 12:46 am  Comments (6)  
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it’s drawing near

i might be dead soon. the outer layer is struggling to contain the inner being. sometimes death spells the birth of a great chapter in store. this could be it.

Published in: on Tuesday, February 24, 2009 at 12:34 am  Leave a Comment  
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the soul is down

ailment has kept the flesh rotten. medication might just help. don’t count on the soul.

Published in: on Monday, February 23, 2009 at 5:24 pm  Leave a Comment  
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perfect!

this is funny business. i mean, if you had looked at them and observed what they had done, they could have really got into your skin razor-like. what had their mothers taught them when they were young? how could they possibly be human beings? sometimes, i wonder if He really loves them. how could He? they don’t deserve to be loved! i can even state it matter-of-factly that they should go to hell immediately. they should not get another chance. He should be grieved. why should they do this to Him? thankfully, He has me. i’m different from them. i know Him, love Him and follow Him. i have done no wrong and have every right to believe that He’s proud of me. you can even say i am perfect for heaven. look at this tag my buddy made for me. it says, “THE ONLY HUMBLE MAN ON EARTH”. and he insisted i should put it on which i did. why shouldn’t i? it’s the truth. Lord, i thank You!

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Published in: on Sunday, February 22, 2009 at 12:54 am  Leave a Comment  
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curtains

curtains

it was finally over. he moved away and out. it felt numb, but the hurt intensified at my heart. i stared at the windows. i couldn’t decide if there was light stabbing the dark room or darkness swallowing the lit curtains. life could go on but it would be a different one. is there a way to spell bastard backwards?

Published in: on Thursday, February 12, 2009 at 1:20 am  Comments (5)  
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the hands

i look at my hands i don’t wake up every morning or go to bed every night saying i love you to them but my love for them is undeniable yet unspeakable and they are an important part of me of which i can’t live without this can be said of my feet my eyes my nose my ears my head my body in fact every part of me and did i mention my partner

Published in: on Sunday, February 8, 2009 at 12:16 am  Comments (3)  
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light in the soul

dear, dear Vanilla has given me this award. apparently, i have some influence on her. i appreciate her a lot since we met on blogosphere nearly two years ago. thanks, Miss V!

light-in-the-soul

by the way, i’ve been really busy working, reading, familying but not writing. i might be ringing some changes in my life. will see how it goes.

Published in: on Saturday, February 7, 2009 at 12:22 am  Leave a Comment  
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chaos

as i piss and hiss, the stone is no harder than the cone. there is the will and pill of which alex uses to modernise the t-rex. don’t tell me where the hell you are going to. the destination couldn’t be more than a procrastination. we might huff and puff, sure. but remember to pinch the pile and inch a mile, if the square were to tear. questioning is not an option. answering is. abiding by the law is not a choice. breaking it is. check with the libertine or josephine in the monastery. they would disagree to agree.

Published in: on Saturday, January 31, 2009 at 12:48 am  Comments (3)  
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a writing contest

join me in submitting an entry at Jason’s. you can read my piece here. tell me what you think.

Published in: on Sunday, January 11, 2009 at 3:35 pm  Comments (1)  
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Tainted

It would be easy, he swore.

But no, when the crunch came, he melted away like a picnic bar on a tarmac ground under the twelve o’clock sun. His knees were still right on top of Xavier who was choking with tears. His hands were quavering under the weight of the machete. Crucially, his heart was crying for mercy and grace on behalf on this pitiful soul beneath him. His mind concurred after much deliberation. He should let him off, really.

“Please, Alan, please! You know I love you very much! I was wrong, but I love you!” Xavier’s vehement voice pealed for the umpteenth time. As Alan looked into his eyes, he could see the tenderness whispering forgiveness. Really, he should just tear his heart out magnanimously and amen to the bygones. He fought hard to hold back the pain that was to drip through his eyes. This man he had loved so deeply the last twenty years violated the trust he built painstakingly to keep them bonded in sanity. How could he have done that?

“You know I fucking love you too much to let you go! And that’s exactly the same reason why I’m going to fucking let you off!” Alan spoke, in an obvious heartbreaking tone that cut deep. He lowered his arms and tossed the weapon aside. He got off Xavier’s chest, stood slowly and stared at his lover for a few seconds.

“You have fucking broken my heart. I don’t want to see you again,” Alan said, as he moved away. Xavier rolled to one side gently, not wanting to aggravate the multiple injuries he suffered from the fight. He coughed uncomfortably into his hands and saw blood. He hauled himself up and managed to stand, though unsteadily. Alan was already limping some twenty yards away.

Summoning whatever that was left in his body, Xavier began charging towards Alan with the machete he picked up. He was intent in removing the thorn in his flesh now. With the instinct that had served him so well in the past as a cop, Alan somehow sensed Xavier coming at him. He dived to his left and flipped over before flooring the oncoming assailant with a kick. Alan went on top of Xavier for the second time and battered him with his fists repeatedly. Without even an ounce of energy left, Xavier was there for the taking. His injuries had taken their toll on him and he was dying a slow death.

Alan was panting after another round of physical assertion. He stooped low and lay next to his lover’s stationary body. He turned to face him.

“Why, you bastard? Why? Why do you have to make it so easy for me?” Alan whispered. His tears finally flowed. He lifted the machete and severed Xavier’s head. Then, a tune came to his mind, and he began improvising a melody of words.

Look at the beautiful night sky
With the twinkling stars and the elegant moon
It certainly promises much
The cool sea breeze
And the salty smell of humidity
They definitely promise much
How I wish all these had come earlier
You know, we could have really lived happily ever after
We could have realistically grown old together
Pity the human nature is such
That we have our differences
That we could not manage them well enough
Feel the sand around here
The grains are ever so smooth, so fine
Just like how they used to be
Hear the tides rolling in
They sing so merrily in our ears
Bringing back fresh waves of sweet memories
How I wish the human nature is such
Consistent, everlasting and adaptable
That we can be as gay as we want to be
Pity Mother Nature is such
That we’ll always find it a tall order
To keep up with her standard of serendipity
As I observe the contours of your body
As I caress the hardened pounds of muscles
I thank God for the blessings we’d had together
I long to look into your soulful eyes again
I long to kiss your sensual lips again
But I’m not sure if that’s possible now

Alan got onto his feet, one hand with his lover’s head.

It was easy, he swore.

Published in: on Friday, January 9, 2009 at 3:52 pm  Leave a Comment  
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coup

sardines overthrew
caesar with arms of disdain
batteries not built-in

Published in: on Tuesday, January 6, 2009 at 10:31 am  Leave a Comment  
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just when you thought

that this blog has died…guess what! it has risen from its doldrum!

HARPI NUDEAR 2 EBRIWAN!

Published in: on Thursday, January 1, 2009 at 12:08 am  Comments (1)  
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2

i have 2 girls living with me – my wife and my daughter.

there are 2 sides to a coin.

i have 2 eyes, 2 hands, 2 arms, 2 ears, 2 nostrils, 2 legs, 2 feet.

there only 2 places to choose from after life – heaven or hell.

i have experiences in 2 career paths – a teacher and now, a financial services consultant.

we speak of only 2 things – truth and lie.

i used to have 2 dreams – being a pilot and a broadcast journalist.

2 is the smallest and first prime number.

i have had owned 2 cars – a renault express and now, a ford focus.

the Ten Commandments were given in the form of 2 tablets.

i had 2 intimate girlfriends – one became my wife and the other became my ex.

there are 2 natural genders – male or female.

2 things i rely heavily on – The Bible and the dictionary.

a binary star is a stellar system consisting of 2 stars orbiting around their center of mass.

i believe the 2 most important modern invention are the internet and the mobile phone.

everyday, we should look forward to 2 things – tomorrow and sleep.

my 2 favourite tennis players are boris becker and roger federer.

in many sports, there are 2 opposing individuals/teams against each other.

2 things i absolutely despise – terrible motorists and people who don’t give up seats to pregnant ladies.

there are 2 attributes that we can’t boast about – pride and humility.

i am working towards 2 dreams – a CLS coupe and a one-year visit to all the football stadiums in UK.

there are only 2 places we can go to – somewhere or nowhere.

it took me 2 hours to write this post.

this blog just turned 2 last week!

Published in: on Tuesday, December 16, 2008 at 11:59 pm  Comments (4)  
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sorting out

the order of day
is the day of order now
time for renewal

Published in: on Monday, December 15, 2008 at 11:19 pm  Leave a Comment  
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National Novel Writing Month

I’m going to give it a shot. If you have questions about it or need information about it, you can go check it out. 50000 words in 30 days is the minimum, roughly 1667 words a day. No harm working on it. Here we go!

Published in: on Saturday, November 1, 2008 at 11:35 pm  Comments (4)  
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The Tree

I just read this wonderful autobiographical book by John Fowles who perhaps might be better known for his novel The French Lieutenant’s Woman. It is essentially a series of his recollections of his childhood and his work as a writer. He also went at great lengths to discuss how nature, especially the tree, should be perceived from a human point of view. The language he uses here is brilliant and profound, yet precise enough for the reader to comprehend his points.

One thing that struck me most is how Fowles sees nature as a science as well as an art. He believes that the heart of nature lies in our personal nature and its relationship to other nature. Nature is never a collection of items outside us. He also points out that understanding nature cannot be done through painting, photography, words or even science which are inferior substitutes. He wrapped up his unique discussion quite aptly when he mentioned that the two natures, human and non-human, cannot be separated.

Published in: on Friday, October 31, 2008 at 12:32 pm  Leave a Comment  
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He Liked Giving Surprises

It was a calculated risk, but for the sake of little Zhi Wei, it was worth it. Ying Mei, being the big sister, knew it was her obligation to care for and love her brother at any cost. Somehow she always managed to turn that obligation into a privilege, something an ordinary human being rarely does.

Their parents had gone out for a wedding dinner earlier in the evening, and the girl was tasked to take care of her brother and get him to sleep at the scheduled hour. But Zhi Wei wasn’t giving his sister the best of time. He was up and running around, making a lot of noise, much to the annoyance of his sister and possibly their neighbours. It was already two hours past bedtime and the boy was still active and not in bed.

Fortunately, Ying Mei knew her brother well, so she told him that they would wait for their parents to return home at the door. Zhi Wei concurred without second thoughts and sat at the door. Ying Mei felt enormously relieved and joined her brother on the floor.

It dawned upon Ying Mei that her parents had instructed her not to open the door late at night, not when the crime rate within the vicinity had soared to a record high in the last six months. So she suggested to Zhi Wei that they would only open the door when they hear their parents. That would be a pleasant surprise. Zhi Wei beamed. He liked giving surprises.

They waited.

About five minutes later, the children heard some noise outside the door. Ying Mei wasn’t sure if her parents were back. She hesitated a while. It was risky. What if another criminal was lurking outside? But Zhi Wei was getting anxious and insisted in opening the door. Ying Mei relented and opened the door slowly and carefully.

“Hello, Kids! You are still up? Not sleeping yet?” a man spoke. Both children were stunned for a moment but became composed when they saw their neighbour, old Mr Lim with his eldest son, Sean.

“We are waiting for Daddy and Mummy!”

“Oh, how nice. Good night!” Both men walked off.

The children closed the door and waited.

Ying Mei was nodding away in her sleep before her head hit the wall that woke her up. She had dozed off. So did Zhi Wei. She looked at the clock. It was half past eleven. She was about to get Zhi Wei to bed when she heard some noise outside the house. This time there was also the sound of a bunch of keys. It must be her parents. She shook her brother and told him that their parents had returned.

Both of them eagerly opened the door. They were shocked. Floating past them unhurriedly was a headless figure in a red dress, holding a bunch of keys. The children were scared stiff and couldn’t move. The figure turned and ‘faced’ them. Albeit they were drowning in their tears and sweat, they could hear the figure asking them, “Is this my home?”

Published in: on Wednesday, October 29, 2008 at 12:40 am  Leave a Comment  
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The Bus-stop (teaser)

The bus pulled over by the bus-stop. It was the last chartered stop. The door opened and little Tiffiny alighted from the bus. She was humming a tune she just learned from school. She waved goodbye to her friend, Ginny. The bus driver turned the vehicle round and went back the way he came from.

Now Tiffiny was all alone at the bus-stop that was smacked right in the middle of a 27-km two-way road. Parallel to the road on the same side of the bus-stop was a 100-acre farmland with huge plants lined up in an almost regimental fashion. On the opposite side of the road lay a vast amount of beige sand that stretched the entire the coastline of the deep blue sea. There was nothing else in sight.

The girl sat on the bench, still feeling tremendously happy with her first-day experience in school. She couldn’t wait to share her joy with her father. He was coming to fetch her home from the bus-stop before heading for their little cottage at the end of the road. He had checked the bus schedule and knew exactly the time to pick his girl up from the bus-stop.

The five-year-old looked at her watch. It was six in the evening. She pulled out her favourite storybook from her bag and started reading it. She was oblivious to the familiar surrounding environment that was characterised by dead silence and stale air. Her mind was preoccupied with thrill.

Almost 3 km away, the father was cycling on the straight road, whistling a melody. He was busy working as a site supervisor at a construction ground during the day. He was looking forward to seeing Tiffiny, especially it was her first day at school. She was the only one he had in the family after his wife had died from breast cancer. If he had a choice, he would have accompanied his girl in school. His boss had wanted him to be present at work for an emergency meeting in the morning.

Soon, the bus-stop came into sight. His heart pounded pleasingly as he saw Tiffiny. Just as he picked up pace, his bicycle ran over a small stone. He lost his balance and fell off the bicycle. Fortunately, he was not hurt. He hauled the bicycle up and jumped onto it. As he lifted his head, his blood ran cold. His daughter was not at the bus-stop.

(i’m not entirely sure where this is heading, but i knew i had to write it. pardon me if i can’t finish it soon. i might not have the time honestly. you can throw me some ideas if you don’t mind.)

Published in: on Monday, October 20, 2008 at 11:10 pm  Comments (6)  
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thomas

i think i know or i thought i knew but it seems i really don’t know what is going on sometimes perhaps He is trying to test me or fool me am i normal at all why can’t i seem to get things in the right perspectives i’m honestly tempted maybe i should just try it what’s there to worry about but hey he definitely wishes me to try it should i give in to him or abide by His sayings someone or something must help me now

Published in: on Sunday, October 19, 2008 at 12:08 am  Comments (2)  
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Blog Action Day – Poverty

Separate Lives

He slit the skin of the chicken with his teeth as the aroma of the deep fried stank the hall. She thrashed furiously at the spaghetti mixed with sauce and complained that it was the umpteenth plain dinner. You licked the balls on the ice-cream cone before they melted away into the bin. Me? I savoured every grain in my palm with care and thought of paradise. I counted there were six of them.

He put on “The Incredibles” T-shirt and rolled in the mud, screaming “Goal!” She walked out of the retail with another Versace dress paid from her LV bag. You stripped your wardrobe bare, discarding the old and odd ones into the bag for charity, before dollaring it with the new and unodd ones. Me? I had this piece of linen hanging precariously round my groin, hoping that paradise will bring me something to be hung round my shoulders.

He played the toy soldiers and sent them into a house of dolls, sheltering them from the rain of shells. She had a good bath in the Olympic-sized pool before sipping orange juice on the bench made of cotton and leopard skin. You looked out from the window of your 14th floor apartment and wished you had a roomier luxurious studio. Me? I was sitting under the tree with few blades of grass that screened me away from the sun, knowing that paradise will surely be better.

He pressed the same few buttons over and over again, looking excitedly at the display smaller than my tummy. She danced on the tabletop with strange music louder than my tummy’s growl, obviously indulging in some heavenly dreams. You spent hours turning pages of papers under a warm light after kicking a ball with your crazy friends in a rain-soaked field. Me? I only played two games. I stared and I stared. Oh, when angels from paradise came, I walked. And that was really cool.

You know, as I look at him, her and you, I wish we could all swap places and enjoy each other’s life. Perhaps, next time when paradise comes, we can do that?

Shall we discuss?

What is poverty?

How relevant is poverty today?

Reasons for poverty?

Any measures to curb poverty?

Published in: on Wednesday, October 15, 2008 at 8:17 am  Comments (14)  
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Journey to the Child’s Heart

Take the first flight to the Land of Recreation
And learn how to get engaged in leisure grounds

Move up north to River Daft
And cultivate asinine amusement customs

Go on to the Forest of Yarn on foot
And concoct daft anecdotes

Get into a boat and sail to Island of Songs
And croon droll mantra

Fly to the Republic of Chortles
And seek mirth despite the fractious response

Drive twenty miles to Follywood
And star as the self-proclaimed fool

Return to the Fault of Life
And quip at any gaffe

Published in: on Monday, October 13, 2008 at 11:33 pm  Leave a Comment  
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quit

it’s just so hard to swallow the pain so early on. the sparks of the future has probably dissipated. the amount of recovery is infinite. so do me a favour – don’t do me a favour.

Published in: on Friday, October 10, 2008 at 11:06 am  Comments (1)  
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no longer

the phone
on the table
is never quite
the same again.
not after what
the pink watch
has done
just by being.
the crooked line
has straightened
while the grey
has so darkened.

Published in: on Thursday, October 9, 2008 at 11:10 pm  Comments (2)  
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simply lovely


i watched “Once” a few days ago, and i really, really love it…as much as the korean flick “Il Mare“. both are classic romantic tales which appeal to my soul in a beautiful simplistic way. “Once” scores with the wonderfully written and played songs throughout the show that includes the oscar-winning “Falling Slowly” and “If You Want Me”. if you haven’t watched it, go try it…and also the korean one which also possesses an excellent soundtrack.

Published in: on Wednesday, October 1, 2008 at 11:55 pm  Comments (6)  
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Al-Qaeda

Lifted the morning truck
And built a trillion lego bricks
If you ask me what I had done today
I’d say I’d drowned the abyss

Combed the tresses of Obama
And coffeed with a young McCain
If you ask me what I had done today
I’d say I’d consumed the black hole

Nothing is possibly impossible
Not for Alexander, Edison or Armstrong
And certainly not for me
Romance might not be my cup of tea
But I think I know I love you

Whispering honey into your ears
Spreading jam on your toast
If you ask me what I will do tomorrow
I’d say I’d smash Al-Qaeda

Surprising you with a stalk of rose
Giving you a warm embrace
If you ask me what I will do tomorrow
I’d say I’d turn back the clock

Nothing is possibly impossible
Not for Ali, Phelps or Bolt
And certainly not for me
Romance might not be my cup of tea
But I think I know I love you

People say actions speak louder than words
But I’m not an action figure
So don’t expect the expected

Romance might not be my cup of tea
But I think I know I love you

Well, I might just, kiss you

Published in: on Saturday, September 27, 2008 at 11:36 am  Comments (3)  
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fools

fools fools fools fools fools
fools fools fools fools fools fools fools
fools fools fools fools fools

Published in: on Tuesday, September 23, 2008 at 1:04 pm  Comments (3)  
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Mozart (Part 4) … the last one

The boy stared at the body, his vision impaired by his own blood. He did a slow visual scan of the man he used to call Daddy from head to torso to toes and back to torso to……

“That’s not a head!” he mumbled cheerfully. “It’s a potato!” His father had a potato head. Potatoes must be mashed. Almost instantaneously, the boy raised the screwdriver and began pounding on the man’s head.

“Potatoes must be mashed. Potatoes must be mashed. Potatoes must be mashed……” The boy went on to mash the potato completely in some God-given time. When he was done, he leaned back to rest.

“Well done!”

“Thank you, God!”

“Are you ready for the next step?”

“Yes, God. But…”

“But what?”

“Can I see Your face, God?”

“Ha! Why?”

“I’m just curious, God. Hmmm, never mind, God.”

“Since you’ve been such a good boy, I shall grant your wish.”

“Really, God?”

“Yes.”

“Oh…thank You, God!”

“Meet your Maker.” The boy could see someone walking towards him from the darkness of the bedroom. As the figure moved under the lights, he gaped at a little boy who looked just like him.

“Who are you?”

“I am God.”

“You look like me. You are not God.”

“I am God. You are me and I am you.”

“What?”

“I am God. You are God. We both are. In music, there is only one genius – Mozart. In music prophecy, there is only one genius – you and I. You…I…prophesy to kill. Let you…me…continue to draw strength from Mozart’s energy in his music-making when prophesying the death ends of all the naughty people. I will kill all the naughty people like how I killed the undertaker who touched me all over and my father who failed his life. They don’t deserve to live……” It dawned upon the boy that he had been talking to himself, and he was rather bemused.

He stood gingerly as he remembered three names. Tom had beaten him several times, citing fun as the reason. Dick had labelled his mother a witch. Uncle Harry had rolled off his father’s bed naked. He put the headphones to his ears and clicked ‘play’ on his walkman. Mozart made him smile, again.

Published in: on Monday, September 8, 2008 at 11:32 pm  Comments (8)  
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Mozart (Part 3)

The crescendo startled the boy. He opened his eyes and found himself still sitting at the corner of the living room. One bead of perspiration trickled down from his forehead and brushed across his lips. He wetted his lips with his tongue and tasted blood. He wiped his forehead with his hand and saw blood on the palm.

His father was watching Psycho on TV from the couch. Intermittently, the man would turn to glare at him, obviously warning him to do his job well. Quite bizarrely to the boy, the man resembled some food item he had learned from the pack of flash cards his mother had bought him about a year earlier. Potato. Yes, he was thinking of potato. He recalled what his mother had taught him about potatoes. They must be mashed.

A screwdriver darted across the room and hit his shoulder. He looked up. His father was yelling at him, demanding the name of the winning team of the game between Red Sox and Mariners. Then, a voice boomed in the boy’s ears. It was God and He said it was time. The boy removed the headphones and remained calmly seated. He asked his father if he could take him to the restaurant to eat waffle ice-cream. Incensed by the boy’s audacious request, the man picked up a stool and hurled it at him. The stool landed heavily on the boy’s head and it left him with an open wound. As he struggled to sit upright, his whole head was in red.

The man, who must have been shocked by what he had done to his own offspring, acted apologetic. He was adamant that he was not wrong. He told the boy that they could both work closely together to attain huge measure of success. He ambled towards the boy and went down to pick up the stool.

“Now!” God spoke and the boy pulled his father’s hair with his left hand. The man was stunned by his son’s enormous strength and thrashed about to get free. He looked into the boy’s eyes and for the first time in his life, he fully embraced the meaning of fear. The pupils were plain ravenous. The boy seized the screwdriver swiftly with his right hand and pierced through his father’s neck with it. Like a contorting dying cockroach, the man lived out his last moments in tremendous agony, body twitching acrobatically. Soon, he left.

Published in: on Saturday, September 6, 2008 at 11:59 pm  Comments (2)  
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Mozart (Part 2)

That night, the boy was weeping tearlessly in his sleep when a voice spoke to him. He knew that was God who went on advising him on how to capitalise on his gift to further His kingdom. God closed the session by whistling a tune of Requiem and the boy swore his soul was much soothed by his Creator.

Just as God’s serenade faded into the darkness, the father stomped into the room and hoisted the boy from his bed. He commanded him to pull Mozart close to his ears. The little one did as he was told, remembering every word that God had uttered. He was going to get it, he reminded himself. He was going to get it.

The boy clicked ‘play’ and the music rolled. It was Requiem – the trail of hope God had just left behind in thin air. He closed his eyes, and for the first time, he could see. His mother was right ahead in all red. Her lovely tresses fell nicely on her breasts as she lifted her head to look at him. He thought he saw peace in her eyes, but her mouth was full with needles and she was chewing on them. She went on peeling the skin of her left forearm with the apple knife. The boy recognised what a monster depression was.

Before he could call out to his mother, she vanished. Then, a full-length mirror erected in front of him. He could see his own reflection and he looked gay. Quite abruptly, bruises, swells and cuts began to appear on the face and arms of the boy in the mirror, and he was crying. A huge arm of a strangely familiar headless man began to drag the boy in the mirror away.

Again, the boy wanted to shout, and again, he was distracted by what he saw next. His father was standing in the living room, back facing him. He started walking straight ahead and seemed to be talking to someone. As he squatted to pick up a stool, a boy came into sight. The boy saw himself, again, and this time, he was bleeding profusely from the head. His father was about to stand up when the bloody boy grabbed the man’s hair violently with one hand and thrust a screwdriver into his throat with another.

Published in: on Friday, September 5, 2008 at 1:32 am  Comments (3)  
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Mozart (Part 1)

The metre-tall boy picked up the screwdriver and began pounding on the lifeless body of the man repeatedly. He was sort of sniggering. The background music of Hitchcock’s Psycho seemed to give him the momentum to swing his arm.

No, he was no Chucky who was probably still chasing after his eloping bride. He was just a victim of his own success. A prodigy in music prophecy, he was the brainchild of the Almighty’s effort to boost the rootless life of a drunkard. Or at least that was what the latter believed. Day after day after the boy’s mother took her own life from prolonged depression, his father put him on the walkman that spoke nothing but Mozart. His mission was to predict the winning dog on the race track.

It was in fact accidental that the man discovered his son’s gift. Mozart was playing at his wife’s cremation when his boy whispered to him that the undertaker was going to take a tumble into the furnace. In all sanity, he slapped the boy and ordered him to shut up. Ten minutes later, while everyone was wailing or pretending to wail at the sight of the woman on the firebed, the undertaker slipped and fell into the fire. In the midst of the chaos that followed, the man looked at his son in disbelief. He knew God had finally arrived in his life.

The first weeks of the boy’s music prophecy reaped benefits for the parent, much to the boy’s own delight too. He was only four, but he could already feel what pride was. However, he soon found feeding an insatiable drinking beast an order too tall for even a Philistine. That animal started forcing him to spend every second of his 24-hour-a-day life listening to Mozart so that he could help him create his own almanac for the baseball games that coming new season. The man was determined to win every odd for every game and player. Sleep became a luxurious commodity for the little boy. Beatings began to co-exist with Mozart in his life.

Published in: on Tuesday, September 2, 2008 at 1:58 am  Comments (4)  
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Mdm Helen

Working the foul of the day
She calls for the need to pay

Nibbling the juice that burns
She yanks the chance that spurns

Oaring with feathers of lead
She toils to stay in red

Painting the whore with pride
She wills through her bore of tide

Chasing cars of yesteryears
She bellies herself through in tears

Published in: on Thursday, August 14, 2008 at 11:59 pm  Leave a Comment  
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q∞

just what’s difficult and what’s easy…i can’t tell anymore. has that line disappeared? was it there in the first place? or has it always been a dotted one?

Published in: on Wednesday, August 13, 2008 at 12:29 am  Comments (1)  
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Alexander

Crossing Josef with
Ivan’s teatime in Gulag
Worthy Nobexiled

a tribute to Mr Solzhenitsyn who has crossed that path. it was a privilege to have read his work.

His Masterpiece

His Masterpiece

Published in: on Wednesday, August 6, 2008 at 12:32 am  Leave a Comment  
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a new friend

recently, i was introduced to a new friend whom i had already heard of some time ago. I had also seen one of his works many moons ago. i am beginning to learn more about him and so far, it has been a pleasure knowing him.
perhaps, you would like to know him too. go there and there to find out for yourself how intriguing he is.

did i mention that his name is Stanley?

Published in: on Monday, August 4, 2008 at 12:23 am  Leave a Comment  
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how to terminate it all after losing everything on a poker table bolt the access seal the panes neutralize all powers enter the kitchen don’t ruminate pick up the hand towel stuff the mouth with it pull out the chopper don’t contemplate rest the hand on the board raise the chopper don’t deliberate ax the hand if you must bawl through the towel think of the less fortunate folks they are worse off than you locate a chair sit on it close the eyes fantasize and bleed to demise

Published in: on Friday, August 1, 2008 at 11:36 pm  Comments (2)  
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i need paradise

the tang of kiwi
dominated my senses
as i traipsed
the avenue of tenses

i imbibed the vodka
the angels proffered
as they tongued
proverbs in vonlenska

a fire licked me
like a luscious tsunami
with a chill peppermint
and a vogue hint

lionise my clobbered soul, lord
patronise me with your clouting chord.

Published in: on Friday, July 25, 2008 at 7:02 pm  Comments (5)  
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the heart

and i wonder
if the stone
you possess
is transferrable,
‘cos after seeing you
dispel all the fakes
and makes of modern takes,
it sure looks
exceedingly desirable.
is the stone
you have in you
transferrable?
i wonder.

Published in: on Tuesday, July 22, 2008 at 11:38 pm  Comments (4)  
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Running Wind contest

my humble piece at The Clarity of Night. please give me your feedback. thanks!

Published in: on Sunday, July 20, 2008 at 4:10 pm  Leave a Comment  
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I Remember

Never mind the bitter wind that caresses the stripped surface of our bodies. Your arms snaking round my waist from behind are a sweet reminder of our undying love as fragments of our lives invade my state of mind.

I remember the times we spent playing ‘cooking’ in the barnyard when we were five, the punch I got from Dexter for shielding you when we were in elementary school, my first flower – a small dandelion – I gave you on Valentine’s Day in 1951, the first time we held hands, embraced and kissed each other, the first heated argument we had when you saw Jane crying on my shoulders, how we got our only Harley on a shoestring budget, your ‘yes’ when I asked for your hand, the night we lost our virginity to one another, your tears when I left for Vietnam, you carrying Jess in your arms when I returned from the war, how you were my strength when my folks passed on and the many success and failure we had enjoyed together.

These sixty years, we’d had it all. Well, almost…except your wildest dream – both of us riding on our Harley naked…until now.

As we run with our Harley down this memory lane with growth rings on our exposed skins that speak ages, I want you to remember this day. Even if you’re just a lifeless body now, I’ll finish this naked journey with you.

Never mind the cops that are coming after us.

Published in: on Wednesday, July 16, 2008 at 10:05 pm  Comments (2)  
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the struggle that flatters to deceive, that seems so distantly near…

it grips
and trips
i, me, myself.

hate it.

Published in: on Monday, June 30, 2008 at 4:04 pm  Comments (2)  
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Exit

She turned,
Just in time
To meet his eyes.

Teardrops
Could have been
Visible yet.

Childhood
Memories
Cheered hauntingly.

Bath play,
Piggyback,
Merry-go-round.

Funny
How they seemed
So yesterday.

This love
Was shared with
Much abhorrence.

But still,
She won’t trade
Anything else.

The roots
Had dug deep
In the muscles.

When cut,
They hurt with
Shameless muteness.

Lord Time
Had decreed
Their destiny.

Depart,
Both shall do
Both shall remain.

No words,
No cuddle,
And no secrets.

The eyes
Could just scream,
“I love you much!”

Published in: on Wednesday, June 25, 2008 at 11:27 pm  Comments (1)  
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dripping

the text was loud when the sovereign seed, tree and soul delivered the punch that sent the wired one scrambling. the horn was read and the cause for fireworks could never have been underachieved. the route, the one with the narrowest width, is now set for as long as time exists. the sidewalk must be dolled up. the sheep must be led. the journey must and will start. the chosen living dead and dead living must complete the mission hand in hand. the curtain that differentiates has been lifted, but the vision is no clearer than before. in fact, one of them is dripping with an ounce of the thorn that kills. the fist must surely soften the blow, now.

Published in: on Wednesday, June 18, 2008 at 10:29 am  Comments (4)  
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the toast is clear

it has to be Him that she’s saved now. i’m excited by the prospect and the future. i’m happy for her, for me and… let me sleep over it before any sensible rattling.

Published in: on Monday, June 16, 2008 at 11:54 pm  Leave a Comment  
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contentment

you asked me yesterday how many good men i was looking for. i said just one more. and when i found the one today, you asked how many now. i said just one more. tomorrow i will find the one and you are going to ask me the same question. i will say just one more.

Published in: on Saturday, May 10, 2008 at 3:36 pm  Comments (5)  
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the One who never came

The cries were heard
The bliss was communal
The cradle was rocked
The sustenance was wholesome
The T.L.C. was showered
The kinship was established
The future was built
Our lives were complete
Because you came

(this was pretty much written for my minute seven-week-old who had to go.)

Published in: on Thursday, April 10, 2008 at 1:48 pm  Comments (1)  
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J.G.

this is definitely one of my all-time favourite musicians not just for his folk tunes with simple melodies, but also for his immense lyrical genius in penning intense feelings about issues in tight little pieces of poetry. this one’s one classic piece of José González from his second outing, In Our Nature.

how low are you willing to go before you reach all your selfish goals punch line after punch line leaving us sore leaving us sore absorbed in your ill hustling feeding a monster just feeding a monster invasion after invasian this means war this means war someday you’ll be up to your knees in the shit you seed all the gullible that you mislead won’t be up for it where to will you relocate now that it’s war now that it’s war

Published in: on Friday, April 4, 2008 at 9:48 am  Comments (1)  
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after eighteen years

santa could not believe his luck
when the purple bells
he had been searching the last eighteen years
dropped right in front of him
while he was chewing his mind on the magazine
as he sat on the loo
that was built on the exact ground
where ten thousand foot soldiers perished in a nuclear attack
which was quite a mishit
on the part of a certain adolf
born of a woman not born of woman.

he picked them up
and fresh memories of
what had happened eighteen years earlier
brought back waves of sorrow
with a tinge of thrill
that could explain why all he could muster there and then
was an ounce of salty tear
from the corner of the left eye
which was the only functional window to the hardened soul
after years of pounding from the loss they labelled inevitable
because of his obstinate attitude and aptitude.

the bells jingled
and he was more than willing
to laugh at his own misfortune
so beautifully wretched
that he could not bear to curse anything or anyone but himself
who had chosen to soften the redness of the sore
that was growing and glowing with honour
from twenty thousand leagues beneath
causing the entire building to rattle with triumph
which was so sorely missed
the last eighteen years of his motherless life on earth.

he gaped

and yawed

and died

a happy lonesome brute.

Published in: on Thursday, April 3, 2008 at 2:53 pm  Comments (1)  
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newsprint

World Congress for Saints group photo

Published in: on Friday, March 7, 2008 at 3:32 pm  Comments (1)  
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Redlight

I had the curious urge,
But all I could do was to scratch it.

The consciousness oozed from the wound.

If the pain was existent, it should be spelt r-a-i-n,
Because it pelted upwards.

That left me home and pried.

Published in: on Wednesday, March 5, 2008 at 12:37 am  Comments (3)  
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“Whispers”

i wrote again.

Published in: on Wednesday, February 27, 2008 at 8:36 am  Comments (5)  
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LG

today, i went.

i met.

Linda Grant from Liverpool.

a few others, including one from Wolverhampton and one from Wales.

we talked.

i had fun.

oh, i also bought and she signed.

i left.

Published in: on Tuesday, February 26, 2008 at 11:43 pm  Leave a Comment  
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still reeling

this is the first time for me, really. so naturally, my entire being isn’t sure how to react. the last two days i’ve been having mixed emotions and my mind’s been thinking a lot. past, present or even future. can’t believe it or can’t accept it, i couldn’t really tell the difference. lots of ‘what if’s have been lingering too. i guess it’s just the irrational behaviour under a rational circumstance. is it just someone passing on? no. or is it someone special passing on? not sure. all these afterthoughts probably don’t mean much now. all i can confess is that i miss her. but then again, i might not have felt it if nothing has happened. so it’s the same own cliché, right? appreciate who you have now before a sudden departure arrives.

any comfort from this? not sure too. oh, perhaps, or most definitely, yes. she’s with Him now.

Lying before me
Is a path so less travelled
I’m waiting for you

Published in: on Friday, February 22, 2008 at 8:31 am  Comments (6)  
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at a loss

i stumbled upon a piece of sad news today. i’ve lost a friend. i didn’t know that she was suffering from an illness, and of course, i wasn’t at her funeral. i feel sad, and bad.

Published in: on Wednesday, February 20, 2008 at 11:50 pm  Comments (5)  
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ash-tray

The canary stopped
Singing songs of Solomon
Rot stripped its heart bare

Published in: on Tuesday, February 19, 2008 at 1:08 am  Comments (5)  
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being excellent

dear Marie gave me the Excellent Blog Award. i thank her for this special gift and for believing in my work here.

Excellent

when i looked at the folks around me, i realised that there are many excellent bloggers with first rate blogs. many of them would have received such an accolade before my votes. hence, i will present this award to the following folks whose prominence might be a little understated:

1. charlieboy
2. han
3. raeofsunshine
4. pj
5. rachel

Published in: on Monday, February 18, 2008 at 8:23 am  Comments (8)  
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hug?

i need a hug…
not a fug!
so off you fug,
if you aint giving me a hug!

(for that sober sullen drunk at the corner of helen’s bar on 14 feb)

Published in: on Thursday, February 14, 2008 at 9:32 am  Comments (5)  
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Salt on Candy

I only asked for a simple story
But you went on and delivered a sermon.

I only needed a small favour
But you let the whole world know how big your help was.

I only wanted to be your Valentine
But you gave me the greatest bunch of flowers that meant nothing.

I only cared about who you were
But you only cared about what you did.

(a simple tribute to V-Day)

Published in: on Tuesday, February 12, 2008 at 11:34 pm  Comments (8)  
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excuse me?

The snake had swallowed
The clump of news that rang loud
Rattle that damned worm!

Published in: on Tuesday, February 5, 2008 at 1:01 am  Comments (4)  
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not easy, but…

a new job – new challenges. i know i can and i will. some sacrifices have to come in. yes, some. putting thoughts in words is not the same again. a revamp is needed, so at least this could continue for many good years ahead.

if you are hoping for more, so am i. please, have patience with me here. i’m working on it.

not easy, but…

Published in: on Monday, January 28, 2008 at 11:24 pm  Comments (4)  
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being friends

Vesper thinks i have been friendly enough for her to give me this “Colours of Friendship” award. i thank her sincerely, and hope she will continue to support me here in my blog. finding friends in the blogosphere is easy, but being friends is hard. and i am learning how to be friends here.

Colours of Friendship

Published in: on Monday, January 21, 2008 at 12:07 am  Comments (2)  
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Truth

Truth is like childbirth – necessary but excruciating.

I really didn’t know what to say when I learned about it. If she regarded me as a spouse, then I must have been an ass to believe her.

How could she hide this from me? How long did she think she could hide? Four days? Four weeks? Forever? It hurt too much. It really did. Four years of marriage wasn’t worth the effort?

You see, she surrendered all her policies without telling me her difficulty in financing the premiums. She could have told me, right? I could have helped a bit, right?

She fainted at work and was taken to the hospital. When I reached there, the doctor had diagnosed breast cancer – the late stage. And that was when her ex-agent met me and told me about her surrender – the truth. I was somewhat devastated, somewhat bitter.

For the next six months, we laboured on with my personal savings. Her treatment exhausted almost my entire coffers – all $200000. She apologised to me three times during this period and each time I had nothing to utter.

14 hours after the third time she apologised, she lost the battle and passed on. She left me with nothing.

Well, not quite. She left me nothing.

And a great lesson.

Published in: on Wednesday, January 16, 2008 at 11:29 pm  Comments (14)  
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MWAH!

Vanilla, about the best encourager in the blogosphere, was at her best encouraging mood again. this time, she gave me the “MWAH!” award. here’s what she wrote:

The purpose of this award is motivated by:

the desire to hand some of that love and kindness back around to those who have been so very, very, very good to me in this bloggy world. My hope is that those who receive this award will pass it on to those who have been very, very, very good to them as well. It’s a big kiss, of the chaste platonic kind, from me to you with the underlying ‘thanks’ message implied. I really do appreciate your support and your friendship and yes, your comments. … Mwah!

MWAH!

i must be doing something right……

Published in: on Wednesday, January 9, 2008 at 11:51 pm  Comments (5)  
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think i should

Circle has come full
On a night of yesteryears
Lucifer buried

Published in: on Monday, January 7, 2008 at 12:27 am  Comments (2)  
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Sudden Death

Last month, I was just talking to Mr Chan at the coffeeshop. He was saying that the government should do something about the high cost of living and the low salary. The next morning, he dropped dead in the bedroom from a heart attack.

Last week, I met Susan at Coffee Bean. We recounted the good old days in high school and how I used to woo her before she left for the states. Two days later, she was run over by a motorcycle.

Yesterday, Jason called me and invited me to his wedding dinner next month. He shared how excited he was about starting his own family unit. I told him he’d make a good husband because he was a very patient guy. Last night, he was stabbed to death in a snatch theft.

Six hours ago, Mum rang me up and said Dad was admitted to hospital. It was just diagnosed that he was at the late stage of liver cancer. Just a few minutes after I had met him at Changi, he passed away.

Just now, an ambulance pulled over by the pavement. The paramedics rolled out the stretcher and I could see a young man with a number tag on his chest lying unconscious. Words spread that he was a seasoned marathon runner who collapsed seconds after completing 21 km.

Now, I am staring at him. He’s being pushed out with the sheet covering his face and his parents crying.

If life is so uncertain, what have I done?

Published in: on Thursday, January 3, 2008 at 12:08 am  Comments (8)  
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2008

the time has come to embark on a new journey. with pen and paper in the form of keys and board, the mind would be sharpened to paint pictures with more than a thousand words. with heart, soul, the same mind and supernatural strength, the services rendered would benefit the multitudes out there. with controlled precision when managing the age-old nemesis called time, scroll after scroll, and tune after tune, and feat after feat would complete canterbury soul. that’s all for the new year.

Published in: on Tuesday, January 1, 2008 at 11:59 pm  Comments (3)  
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Fourteen Minutes (Final Part)

Almost abruptly, the train slowed down. But hardly anyone noticed that as all of them were on the floor in various crouching or squatting positions. Then to everyone’s astonishment, the train dragged to a stop gently. All the passengers on board stood slowly, and looked through the windows. Many people had already gathered at the platform, all of them were law enforcers, rescuers and station staff. They could not believe that they had reached Pretoria and still survived. Someone must have stopped that mad guy at the pilot control.

Moments later, the train doors opened. The obviously relieved passengers began to alight from the train one after another. Selena helped Lee Hoon get up and they both walked slowly out of the train. Azmi held onto Rosnah and stepped out soon after. Teck Meng carried both Raj and Jean in his arms. Both children still looked visibly shaken. All the passengers were evacuated from the station quickly. Three men rushed towards the pilot cabin angrily. Their intent was clear. They wanted to beat the hell out of Fred. But they were stopped by several policemen who had them shipped out too.

As Teck Meng walked away from the train, he saw a posse of armed policemen standing outside the pilot cabin. One of them used a loudhailer to order Fred to surrender. There was no response. Before he could see more, he was already out of the train station.

Everyone was escorted to a temporary assembly area some hundred metres away from the station. Paramedics were already there to receive and attend to them. Selena, Lee Hoon, Teck Meng, Azmi, Rosnah, Raj and Jean were all resting together with different people trying to calm them down with reassurances.

Teck Meng found it funny that these paramedics and counsellors looked more nervous than all these people who had gone through the ordeal with him. It was definitely the most harrowing fourteen minutes of their lives, but somehow all of them managed to force a faint smile when they looked at each other, except the two children.

“I guess we can really count ourselves extremely lucky!” Teck Meng finally spoke. The rest kept quiet, but nodded gently. He knew God had protected him well. Through this, he reaffirmed his faith in Him, and he was glad he had not failed him the last fourteen minutes on the train.

Selena was happy that she had chosen to help another person moments before her supposed death. Through it all, she found new meaning in life. She realised how immature and silly she was when she was contemplating suicide after James had failed her. Life is so much more than that jerk.

Azmi’s and Rosnah’s love for each other had grown stronger throughout this potential disaster. Azmi knew he had to spend more time with his wife, while the latter had decided to follow the doctor’s order.

Raj told Jean that he would love his parents more then. He also said that he would cherish his Playstation 3 even more too. Jean said her parents would be the most important things in her life and she would study well for them.

“Fred Ong Kim Loong, 36, who had threatened to derail an MRT train in fourteen minutes, was found dead in the pilot cabin, moments after stopping the train himself at Pretoria train station. He had apparently stabbed himself in the heart after telling the passengers on board that he ‘had spent his last fourteen minutes wisely’. He had also left a written note behind that read:

I believe I have taught the world a lesson in this one precious episode – live every second of your life in the most meaningful way you are capable of. My secondary school teacher taught me that. And I would like to think that I have done it. I have made every one of you on the train reflect on how you can possibly maximise the remaining time of your life. Fourteen minutes was just a random number. It could have been an hour. It could have been two days. It could have been three minutes. It would not have mattered anyway. Because most of you would still waste your life away until you know your time is up. I’m glad that some people managed to live life meaningfully in those fourteen minutes. To these people, I say I’m proud of you. To the rest of you who have failed, I believe my message is clear to you. You know what to do. There could be another Fred in future. So be prepared.

Fred Ong had been working as a train operator for five years. He’s survived by a wife and two children……” CNA News

Published in: on Wednesday, December 26, 2007 at 12:22 am  Comments (4)  

Fourteen Minutes (Part V)

It was 2.55 p.m. The train seemed to have difficulty maintaining speed, thus the ride was pretty rough for the passengers, some of whom were still desperately trying to find their way out, while others had seemingly given up hope as they settled back into their seats. With so little time left, there was very little they could do to save themselves.

Lee Hoon had finally regained her composure and began talking to Selena.

“I’m Lee Hoon. Thanks for your help…”

“It’s Selena,” the young girl replied.

“Thank you, Selena! I’m really glad that you are here with me. I was from STC as well.”

“Oh, which year did you graduate?” and so they went on chatting away.

Azmi picked up his phone and called his children one by one. He still spoke in his headmaster tone and instructed them what to do after his death. Rosnah took over the phone and told them to take care of themselves, working hard not to cry out.

“I really don’t want to die. I want my mummy!” Jean was crying out loud.

“Me too. I want to go home! Uncle, please help us get out from here! Please!” Raj wailed after that. Teck Meng was clueless. He had never really known how to talk to children, let alone two crying ones.

“Hey! Try this! Close your eyes and say, ‘I trust God to save me!’ Try it,” Teck Meng said. Even he was sure this was a pretty lame effort. But surprisingly, the two children obliged. They closed their eyes and mumbled, “I trust God to save me!”

Suddenly, people in the front were screaming again. The train was approaching Pretoria station – the terminal station. The end of the track was in sight. Almost everyone on the train was bracing themselves for the huge collision ahead. Teck Meng stood and shouted at all of them to pull their bodies close to the metal bars. At least, that was the best they could do now, he thought. Lee Hoon and Selena, Azmi and Rosnah, Teck Meng and the children, all of them cuddled at different spots of the last carriage.

“So this is it, my dearest folks! Have you spent your last fourteen minutes wisely? I bet you have, because I, a lunatic, have done so. Let’s end it here, shall we?” Fred’s haunting voice was loud and clear throughout the unusually quiet train.

Published in: on Sunday, December 23, 2007 at 10:43 pm  Comments (2)  

perhaps white?

you tell me.

you see, my wife and i had always wanted our little girl to quit being pacified by the pacifier just before sleeptime. as much as we tried, we just couldn’t get her to do it. but we did know that at her nanny’s place, Faith could sleep without the pacifier for she had bitten the teat into two pieces some months ago. so we thought we could do something to tarnish the reputation of the pacifier. one evening at bedtime, we told her that the pacifier was being bitten by a cockroach, a creature she very much fears. since then, she never sees or wants to see the pacifier.

are we guilty of misleading?

Published in: on Saturday, December 22, 2007 at 2:10 am  Comments (3)  
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Fourteen Minutes (Part IV)

Selena chose to help Lee Hoon in her last moments of life. Though she felt bitter towards James and the thought of suicide still lingered, she felt that Lee Hoon probably needed her now. She just sat by her and encouraged her to continue breathing slowly.

Lee Hoon, on the other hand, had her mind clouded with negative thoughts. She thought of how her husband would react to the tragic news that his family was gone. She could not believe that the young soul within her womb would not have the opportunity to live life, to see his parents, to know the beautiful world or now the ugly world. She could not stay composed. She appreciated the help from this STC schoolgirl, but remained confused to know what to do next.

Despite feeling gutted about not having the chance to build on the success of his own business and the booming economy, Teck Meng knew that his time was probably up. He uttered a prayer under his breath, thanking God for the blessings he had received, and how he should be joyful that he was going to meet Him soon. He pulled out the Bible from his briefcase and began reading it.

Azmi looked into Rosnah’s eyes and said that he was sorry to have neglected her. He said he loved her and asked her to forgive him. A tearful Rosnah responded by saying that she had never blamed him for anything he had done or failed to do. She said her love for him was unconditional and that there was no need for him to apologise. Both of them remained in each other’s embrace.

Raj and Jean walked over to Teck Meng as the train sped past Tangerine station.

“Uncle, may we borrow your phone? We want to call our parents. We want to tell them we love them…” Raj could not complete his sentence as his emotions overwhelmed him. Jean stuck out her hand. Her face completely washed out with tears. Teck Meng looked at the children and felt this inner sense of warmth glowing from them. He placed his phone on Jean’s palm and said, “You can keep it.” The two children sat beside him and started taking turns to call their parents. They were talking and crying at the same time.

Published in: on Friday, December 21, 2007 at 11:43 am  Leave a Comment  

Fourteen Minutes (Part III)

“…The moment I finish my last word, each of you on board will have fourteen minutes left to live. Let me explain. I’m going to drive the train all the way to the terminal station, and I will not stop. I will push the train all the way to the end of the track and…you should know what happens after that. So with fourteen minutes left in your life, what will each of you do? The time is now 2.46 p.m. and your fourteen minutes starts…now!” Fred ended off loudly and went off air.

Pandemonium began to rise within the whole train. Some people scrambled for the doors and tried to force them open. Others yelled away hopelessly. A couple of big men rushed to the front carriage and banged hard on the pilot cabin door. There were others who tried breaking the window glass with different hard objects. Phone calls were made again to the police and then to the other stations, notably Tangerine and Pretoria. Someone shouted into the phone, “Press the emergency stop button!”

“Are you going to spend your last moments on earth doing all these? Surely you are all in a better position than your dearest captain here that life is more precious than knocking on the doors and windows, or screaming at the top of your lungs, or calling for help! Do something more meaningful with your life now!” Fred boomed over the airwaves.

Lee Hoon’s anxiety had heightened. Selena was attempting to calm her down albeit she was on the verge of a breakdown herself. Azmi pulled Rosnah close. Teck Meng sat down too, looking calmer. Raj and Jean, who had just begun to know what was going on, were crying uncontrollably.

Strangely, these passengers in the last carriage had somehow resigned to the fate that they were going to die, unlike the others in the rest of the train.

Published in: on Tuesday, December 18, 2007 at 11:51 pm  Comments (4)  

Fourteen Minutes (Part II)

Then, someone spoke over the public address system. It was the train operator.

“Time checked, 2.44 p.m. Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen! This is your train captain, Fred, who has the absolute pleasure of ferrying all you dearest passengers from station to station.”

Selena was jolted out of her sorrow. Teck Meng stopped reading his papers and was bemused by this short introduction. Azmi broke away from his daze and listened intently, while Rosnah was still deep in thoughts. Lee Hoon stopped talking to her baby and looked up. Raj and Jean looked curiously at each other. And the other passengers in the other carriages were all stunned at varying degrees.

“I know you are wondering why this sudden introduction. I mean, it was never done before, so I can understand how you feel now, perhaps. Anyway, I’ve got a surprise for all of you,” Fred said and paused.

Selena and Teck Meng looked at each other, silently asking each other what was going on. Rosnah turned and asked her husband what the train operator had said. Lee Hoon began to get flustered. Raj thought aloud, “A surprise? Are they going to give us a cake each?” Jean laughed with him.

“You see, I’ve always been wondering what I would do with my life if I know the exact time when I’m going to die,” Fred said and paused again.

Selena, Teck Meng and Azmi began standing up, all looking tensed suddenly. They peered into the front carriages. Many other passengers were also standing and looking ahead. Rosnah was still asking questions, while Lee Hoon started to take deep breaths. The two children stopped laughing as they observed what the adults were doing.

“And I also wonder what others will plan to do with their lives if they know the exact time of their demises,” Fred said calmly and paused.

Teck Meng began dialling ‘999’ like many others on the train. Selena noticed Lee Hoon and went up to offer her help. Azmi sat beside Rosnah and assured her with his touch. The children were still wondering what was going on. They could hear some passengers shouting from the other carriages. The train then passed Sinai station without stopping.

“Guess what? I know what I would do with my life, now that I know when I’m going to die. And I think I’m going to help you find your answers too…”

Published in: on Saturday, December 15, 2007 at 9:36 am  Comments (4)  

Fourteen Minutes (Part I)

It was 2.42 p.m. At Tamarind station, several passengers boarded the empty last carriage and settled down. Less than a minute later, the train moved off the station and headed east.

Sitting by the window, Selena stared at the passing images as the train moved along the track. She was not sure if life could go on well then. James was a jerk, but her feelings for him were strong. She remembered the first day she met him. She recalled how he had swept her off her feet with the flowers and the cards. And then, there was the first kiss – simple, yet sensational. Everything was beautiful…until she saw him moments earlier. There he was, standing at the platform and hugging another girl. He saw her. She glared at him, looking for his answer. All he gave her was a smirk on his face. Tears rolled down her cheeks and stained her school uniform. Could suicide be a solution? Her eyes still fixed on the images outside.

The future seemed bright. At least that was what the financial report was indicating in the Business Times. Teck Meng was sure that boom time in the market had arrived. He knew he could start flexing his muscles with his stocks and bonds in hand. He picked up his N95 and checked the latest status of his portfolios. Then, he made the call to his agent. Before coming on board the train, he had just clinched yet another deal for his insurance business. Everything was looking up for him. He smiled before turning his head to the right. Then, he saw a schoolgirl and her tears.

Azmi held Rosnah’s hand tightly as both of them were still grappling with the cold hard truth they had received. The doctor’s diagnosis confirmed their fear – she had breast cancer. Azmi’s sense of guilt had just deepened since. He should have spent more time with his wife the last couple of years. He should have been there for her. Linda’s voice was ringing in Rosnah’s ears, “It’s never too early to go for mammography screening, Rosnah.” She wanted to cry out loud, but strangely, she had no tears.

“I’m afraid we might have to remove your breast,” Dr Chan had said. Then, she heard the young man sitting next to her on the left saying, “Yes, Dixon! Sell them for me…all of them. Thanks!”

Lee Hoon’s hands cupped her huge tummy. She could feel him move from within. She had been smiling for a while now, and she didn’t think she could stop. Dennis had told her on the phone that he was returning home earlier than expected from Dubai. He said he missed her much and was really looking forward to seeing her. She wanted to rush home and cooked up a feast for him. She lowered her chin and looked at the bulge on her tummy, “Baby, Daddy’s coming home today. Mummy’s so happy. I’m sure you will be happy when you hear his voice later.” She felt so blessed by God as she pondered over her future. As she looked out of the train window to check her whereabouts, she couldn’t help noticing the glum look on the faces of the middle-aged Malay couple sitting on the opposite side.

Little Raj was playing with his classmate, Jean. They had just completed their remedial lessons with their P3 class, so they thought it was their right to play as much as possible to unwind and to forget about their work stress. Jean was trying to tag Raj and they were running in circles in the scarcely-populated carriage. They were screaming away, oblivious to their surroundings. Then Raj tripped and fell in front of a pregnant lady who promptly helped him up. Without thanking her, he quickly returned to his seat, blaming Jean at the same time for his fall.

Published in: on Friday, December 14, 2007 at 12:39 am  Comments (6)  

pacify her

today,
i asked daddy
for my pai zeh zeh.
he told me i’m a big girl,
i don’t need my pai zeh zeh.
i disagreed. i asked him for my
pai zeh zeh. then he went on asking
me if barney, bj, baby bob, elmo, woody,
buzz lightyear, boo, huckle, nemo have pai
zeh zeh in their mouths, and each time I said,
“no.” then, he went on saying, “you don’t
need pai zeh zeh then.” i still disagree,
though i have to admit i was almost
won over. pai zeh zeh has been
and will always be my prized
possession. no one can
take it away from me.
not my daddy or
my mummy.
period.

Published in: on Monday, December 10, 2007 at 11:51 pm  Comments (16)  
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blow the candles

let’s celebrate!

this blog turns one today! and to mark this occasion, i’ve gathered a group of humble local writers over at “In Conversation“. how’s that for a celebration?

this blog will not be dead as a result. it will be much more alive!

Published in: on Monday, December 10, 2007 at 12:08 am  Comments (11)  
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Versatility

A pointed guru
You can seek if you aren’t wise
Enough to blossom

A childish plaything
To those whose sense of bearing
Is impregnable

A shrewd lifesaver
For men at sea or airborne
In times of peril

A general term
Encompassing compassion
Regardless of use

Published in: on Sunday, December 9, 2007 at 11:23 pm  Comments (2)  
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Jenny

The trees and flowers
The lake and swans
Even Monet
Would have trouble
Painting these

Sitting on the bench
Staring into spaces
Jenny’s wrinkles
Display trains of thoughts
And experiences abound

A-ma! It’s time to go home!
Her grandchildren voice
Go away! I still want to admire this beauty!
She retorts

Char Kway Teow and Kopi-o
Nasi Lemak and Laksa
Surely food paradise here
Is better than
Heaven above

Chewing with the chopsticks
Gulping down the caffeine
Jenny’s appetite
Could’ve put Bourdain
To shame by miles

Ma! It’s time to go home!
Her children voice
Go away! I still want to taste God’s goodness!
She retorts

Teresa and Sok Hong
Fatimah and Ah-pek
Friends that loved
Neighbours that cared
Only memory remains

Standing at the doors
Looking down the lanes
Jenny’s busy mind
Constantly searching for
The distant recollections

Girl! It’s time to go home!
Her parents voice
Go away! I still want to reminiscent the past!
She retorts

The jade and the gold
The hanky and the panky
It would be difficult
For anyone
To grind them to pieces

Lying on the wooden bed
Tearing at counts of blessings
Jenny’s whole being
Is overwhelmed
With familiar emotions

Jenny! It’s time to go home!
Her husband voices
Yes, Dear! I am going home now.
She relents

The peace and comfort
The joy that lasts
Absolutely no one now
Could stop her
From going home

Closing the eyes
Shutting the breaths
Jenny’s soul
Is finally taken away
By her loved ones gone ahead

Published in: on Friday, December 7, 2007 at 10:55 pm  Comments (2)  
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Faces

This morning
I rose in bed
At the poignant tune
Of the robin

Towel over face
I shuddered
At the thought
Of facing me

I did not know
Which face
I should don
For yet another day

On the train
There they were
Faces
Different ones

The lady with mascara
The boy in spectacles
The man with pimples
The baby in deep sleep

Were they
Passing clouds?
Or just
Significant beings?

At the hospital
There they were too
Faces after faces
Very different ones

The doctor with looks
The old man in ICU
The nurse with boobs
The girl in ward 21

Were they
Passing clouds?
Or just
Significant beings?

Back in the closet
He told me again
Those faces I saw
Were masks un-unveiled

I told him
To go away
I did not want
To be swayed

He said he knew
I was desperate
To know
What lay beneath

I always wondered
Behind all the smiles
The sorrows, the angers
What would I see?

Tonight
He told me
To pick one
Again

A dilemma
I wanted to know
Yet
I didn’t want to hurt

Not the paramedic
He’s a nice guy
How could you
Let me choose him?

Mind’s in a whirl
Soul’s in a twirl
Heart’s in a swirl
Body’s in a……

His face was removed
I saw nothing
But flesh and blood
Like the other day

On the train
There they were
Faces
Different ones

The vixen with mascara
The nerd in spectacles
The dude with dimples
The elderly lady in deep sleep

Were they
Passing clouds?
Or just
Significant beings?

For yet another day
I had donned
The face
I did not know

I removed the towel
From my face
And stared
Into the mirror

The melted nose
And mouth
And the lidless eyes
– Gifts from heaven

The midnight news
Bore my face on screen
Hospital janitor
Wanted for murder

Published in: on Wednesday, December 5, 2007 at 11:07 pm  Comments (6)  
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guess my mood

guess my mood

Published in: on Tuesday, December 4, 2007 at 8:09 pm  Comments (6)  

Holly’s Wood

The seed came into her hands and went straight into the mud. Mum said it would grow into a fine tree, and Holly believed her.

So day after day, she would religiously shower a great abundance of water and everlasting love, knowing the seed would grow into the fine tree Mum told her. Water from the canister and love from her lips.

Days turned to weeks; weeks turned to months; and months turned to years. And the seed never grew. Even before Mum passed on in bed that day, she told Holly not to give it up, and that the seed would grow into a fine tree. So she never once relented and kept on in faith what she had been doing over the years. Water from the canister and love from her lips. Years turned to decades; and decades turned to…well…not quite centuries yet. And the seed never grew.

One fine day, Holly came up to me and asked, “Do you believe what Mum had said?” In all honesty, I never once believed, not just because Mum was a great liar, but also, she was a greater mother who would give anything to ensure that my down syndrome sister feel important and useful in this world. “Your purpose in life is to keep that seed growing,” she told Holly.

I looked at her and saw Mum’s image on her wrinkled skin. Seventy years. She had showered the seed with water from the canister and love from her lips for seventy years. Could I just squash her hope with the cold hard truth?

“Yes,” I struggled in uttering that word. She smiled and held my hand, saying, “Me too.”

It was morning when I said, “Take me there.” Holly pushed me to the very spot where she had spent seven decades kneeling and watering. I told her I had a surprise for her and that she had to close her eyes. She giggled and closed her eyes behind those thick glasses. I prayed silently, “God, help me.” I told her to open her eyes which she did almost immediately.

“Look at the tree in front of us. Mum’s right. The seed has grown into a fine tree,” I said, as we both stared at God’s wonderful creation in awe, admiring the beauty in all its glory. I held my sister’s hand tight and breathed my last breath……and Holly lived with her wood happily ever after.

Published in: on Saturday, December 1, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Comments (12)  
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In Memory…

This one’s dedicated to all those who love and care about the five men.

Run

I want to run, run away,
from the light of the shadows
to the shadows of the light.
The world I’m running towards
is the world the world is shunning.
From the lowest rung of this ground,
I long to climb to the highest tier of that.
Don’t mourn my loss,
for it’s a gain to both you and me.
When you open your eyes,
you shut the doors left open.
See that you keep looking up,
so that you stop looking down.
This may be a farewell for now,
but it’s only for a little while.
Before the weight collapses
And the collapse weighs
Just let me run, run away.

You might want to say something here.

Published in: on Wednesday, November 28, 2007 at 12:36 am  Comments (6)  
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Not Me

Am I dreaming? I think so. Or, I should like to think so? Perhaps, I’m no longer sure now. In fact, I don’t think I’m sure now. Is this actually the kind of world I long for? Maybe, just maybe there is another better place out there?

What was it that I truly coveted? Would I have made a wiser choice? Was it a mistake? Turning back time would be an abysmal justification. I might possibly pick the identical course. Yes, I could do it.

Nairobi? Canterbury? Lima? Osaka? Geylang?

If only. If only I could envisage the apocalyptic day of reckoning. Making up my paltry mind would have been a cinch. Or would it?

How much time did I take? 14? 23?

Come to think of it, it didn’t matter where, when, why and how. It was who – you.

It could have been worse, I know.

Published in: on Monday, November 26, 2007 at 11:08 pm  Comments (4)  
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well done!

today, almost 50000 primary 6 pupils received their PSLE results. as expected, the top dog in my school is a certain mr lau who achieved a certain aggregate in 282. the overall top pupil in Singapore is a Malay girl with a score of 294. for those not in the know, such scores are derived using the bell curve for each of the four major subjects. anyway, i’m happy for mr lau, mr chow, ms kwek and ms gan for scoring above 260. and of course, i must also congratulate the rest of my pupils who have made it to secondary school education. after working so hard with all of them, i am proud of what they have achieved, all 84 of them. different pupils and parents came up to me and thanked me. i might have played a part in their results, but i’m pretty sure for the most of it, their effort dominated proceedings. so pupils of 6A and 6B, and the rest of the classes, well done! now i can retire from teaching and move on to the next phase of my life without regrets.

and happy wedding anniversary to the two of us! 🙂

Published in: on Thursday, November 22, 2007 at 10:17 pm  Comments (9)  
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Be Nice

Jennifer and I took Faith to the cinema to watch “Bee Movie“, something we had promised our little girl who is slowly but definitely growing into a big girl. Before we bought the tickets, a young man came to us and offered to buy us the tickets at a discounted price. The usual price for one ticket was $7. But he had a member’s privilege card which could get us one ticket for $5.

Like any ordinary Singaporean, we were skeptical about this. Was this man trying to hoodwink us into something scheming? Why was he so nice to us? He didn’t really push it, but I thanked him and went along with it. He used his card to buy us two tickets at $10. We thanked him again and looked at each other, still questioning his motive.

Minutes later, we met him at the food court. I thanked him again and told him honestly that we were doubting him. He said there were others who did not believe him and refused his offer. I told him perhaps this is a “Singaporean” thing – we are not nice to people and we don’t believe that people can be nice. As I reflect on this incident, I feel ashamed when I think of times when I choose not to be nice to people, and worse still, I doubt people who are nice. The scant consolation could be that there are probably others out there who behave like me.

Well, I have been nice to people the last few years, but believing in people who are nice is something I’m still learning to do. Anyway, I offered to buy Fred (he told me later) a cup of tea. He accepted my offer, but had to rush off for his movie. It was a pity that I could not get hold of his number, for I think he really is a nice guy.

Anyway, “Bee Movie” is strictly not suitable for young children because most of them will probably not understand the jokes in the show. My two-and-a-half-year-old daughter said she enjoyed the show. I believed her. And I think she is falling sick. Have to observe her closely.

After passing my exam papers, I’m left with one more next week. Then, I will embark on a new journey.

My pupils’ PSLE results will be released tomorrow. I’m excited, and I believe my pupils’ feelings and emotions are stronger. Keeping all our fingers crossed.

By the way, I’ve finally got my hands on “A Half Life of One” by brilliant Bill, and he is a nice bloke. Looking forward to devouring his words this December.

Published in: on Wednesday, November 21, 2007 at 11:50 pm  Comments (5)  
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buried

buried underneath a pile of sliced bark and words, i’m attempting to stay upbeat, looking up, like john waiting patiently by his daddy, quietly hoping that his wish of getting that prized archie comics would be granted. 23 has probably become an enigma that even a solomon can’t make out, leaving only a trail of ice-cream that inveigles none but the ants into a stampede. yet, somehow, i know that all is fine if i could just wriggle out a squiggle on the map. call that punctured navigation.

Published in: on Monday, November 19, 2007 at 11:56 pm  Comments (2)  
Tags:

se7en

dear Vanilla had tagged me for a meme, and the rules are:

1. Link to the person’s blog who tagged you.
2. Post these rules on your blog.
3. List seven random and/or weird facts about yourself.
4. Tag seven random [?] people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.
5. Let each person know that they have been tagged by posting a comment on their blog.

i’m not one who knows oneself very well, but i’m giving it a go anyway:

a. i don’t brush my teeth after a night’s sleep in the morning. i rinse my mouth, eat my breakfast, then brush my teeth.
b. i will put on my left sock before putting on the right one. but sometimes, i will put on my left shoe after putting on my left sock, before i put on my right sock and shoe.
c. i doodled a lot whenever i attended lessons, workshops, seminars, etc. i must say i could draw some decent comics.
d. i use my left ear during phone calls.
e. unlike many professional football players, i can play football very well with both feet. unlike beckham or giggs, i can bend the football round a wall pretty well with both feet.
f. i can use the mouse with any of my hands.
g. i’m a right-hander.

i shall hand over the baton to the following folks:

*hideKraM
*Louis
*Marie
*Bonnie
*Wilf
*puresunshine
*Seamus

have fun!

Published in: on Friday, November 16, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Comments (7)  

staying afloat

“Restless Dawn”



Jason Evans‘ “Restless Dawn” short fiction contest will close soon over at Clarity of Night. If you are still keen in it, do hurry a bit. I’ve sent in my entry. Do take a look here and give me your priceless comments. I want to improve as a writer, so hearing people out will be useful.

As I enter into my last weeks of the work year, I still have tasks to be completed. Trying to stay afloat in the pool of things in this transitional period. Like I have hinted before, I’m slowly but most definitely moving on to something entirely different in 2008. Very excited about it and will talk about it when the time comes.

Published in: on Wednesday, November 14, 2007 at 2:45 am  Comments (7)  
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A Roar For Powerful Words!

sweet, sweet Vesper believes that my words here are powerful enough for her to give me the award “Roar For Powerful Words” which was initiated by Seamus who also started The Shameless Lions Writing Circle. this is a recognition that tells me that i must be doing something right with my blog here. for this, i sincerely thank Vesper for such a recognition. 🙂

A Roar For Powerful Words



before i give this award to another five bloggers, i have to think of three things that are necessary to make writing good and powerful. here they are:

1. the ability to hook – there are writers who are capable of using the right words and arranging them in the right order in the right structure to generate in readers an addiction.

2. imagery skill – there are those who are so good at creating images with words that it makes you wonder if they already knew how to write when they were still in their mothers’ wombs.

3. the ‘wow’ factor – then there are people who, through their words and stories, just simply ‘wow’ you. it’s like the moment you start reading, you ‘wow’. halfway through your reading, you ‘wow’. at the end of the reading, you ‘wow’. as you think about what you have read, you just ‘wow’, ‘wow’ and ‘wow’.

now, may i present the Roar For Powerful Words award to the following folks, not in order of merit:

* Charlieboy
* Suzan Abrams
* Jason Evans
* Jamaican Dawta
* Gautami Tripathy

congratulations, friends! you can collect your awards here.

Published in: on Sunday, November 11, 2007 at 12:49 am  Comments (11)  
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“Restless Dawn”

talented Mr Evans at Clarity of Night has just opened his 7th short fiction contest. and i’m so looking forward to participating in it for the third time in a row. after achieving an honourable mention the last round, will i do better this time? allow me to sleep on it and dream, please. and if you are interested too, go over there now and see how you can get yourself involved in “Restless Dawn“.

meanwhile, i’ve just passed my third exam in less than two weeks. three more to go.

and this blog will turn one in december. any idea how i can celebrate with you here?

Published in: on Wednesday, November 7, 2007 at 9:34 pm  Comments (6)  
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Bitter Sweet

If love could buy me daylight,
I would gladly fall head over heels over it.
The truth is,
It spends more time robbing me of daylight.
So, don’t blame me for stinking love:
Love is justly blind faith.

Published in: on Monday, November 5, 2007 at 11:58 pm  Comments (10)  
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Mahjong

You know how it feels when people all round you doubt your words, especially your loved ones. Gutted. That’s what I’m feeling right now.

I was just sitting there alone, staring out into the darkness, while everybody else was busy catching up with relatives and old pals from work or school. It was supposed to be a time of mourning, but at the superficial level, people here seemed to be having a whale of their time. From smiles to laughter; from tears of sorrow to tears of joy; from condolences to jokes. This funeral wake was slowly but surely turning into a farce.

Granny whom I so dearly loved was called home to be with the Lord just days before that. Perhaps, it was really the right time for Him to summon her after watching her, for quite a while, succumbing to the worst disease anyone could ever suffer on earth – dementia.

Just the other day, she looked into my eyes and said I really resembled Elmo. Then she woke up one morning and called Pa Ma, both of whom were rather bemused. She went on singing “…she’ll be coming round the mountain when she comes…” throughout that day. Of course, nothing beats that time when she hugged our neighbour, Mr Ong, and said, “I love you!” Apparently, she saw my late Grandpa in our flabbergasted mister handsome.

So, the day must come. She called all of us into the room and insisted that we sat down together with her to have a round of mahjong. We were baffled. She had never played the game before. The closest she had come to the game was those times she spent sitting by my Grandpa’s side while he played. Anyway, we obliged and Pa sat on my right while Ma sat on my left. Granny, who sat at the opposite end, rolled the dice. What happened the next half an hour or so was rather amusing. Granny did not know the rules of mahjong, but she went on telling us how to play the game, her own way. The three of us who could be considered mahjong veterans just tagged along. It was rather fun, except that we never got to win the game. Granny did all the winning, based on her own rules, of course.

Just when we were cheering for Granny for winning the fourteenth consecutive time, she let out a chortle and collapsed onto the floor, hands clutching her chest. We scrambled to our feet and rushed towards her. She never woke up after that.

I could hear the distinct sound of the mahjong tiles on the table not far from me. I looked up and saw Pa with a stick in his mouth talking loudly. He said he was going to win the next game boastfully. His three friends at the table laughed with him as they arranged the tiles neatly before themselves. Pa rolled the dice and another game began. Surprisingly, Ma was not there to watch or play along. She was sitting at the far end with her group of tai-tais. They were speaking very softly to each other, obviously building up their gossip prowess again. I could have joined Pa or Ma, but I had no mood. It wasn’t that I felt terribly sad to lose Granny. Yes, I loved her and I missed her, but I didn’t really feel devastated seeing her gone forever. Not when she kept calling me Nemo in her last days. I just felt that I should give her my utmost respect as a grandson. I might not be crying, but my heart wept bitterly on behalf of Granny. She must be crestfallen to see her son and daughter-in-law enjoying themselves with their companions at the wake.

I stood and ambled towards Granny’s coffin. Through the glass panel, I looked at her sullen face, much aged with wrinkles and faint red spots. She looked calm, and that soothed my heart somewhat. As I was about to walk away, I saw Granny smiling. I was stunned for a moment. My heart skipped a beat. I placed my face nearer to the glass panel and observed. No, there was no smile. Ha, I must be dreaming. I straightened up to get ready to go back home to rest a bit.

Just as I was about to leave the wake, I could hear another set of mahjong tiles being shuffled on the table behind the wall next to Granny’s coffin. Ma must have initiated another round of mahjong with her tai-tais, but why would she want to play the game so close to the coffin?

As I walked towards Ma on the other side of the wall, I could feel a little chill. This weather was getting on my nerves. Hot for five minutes, cold for fifty minutes; and this cycle went on and on. Then, the mahjong table and the group of players came into sight. But what I saw next got me standing there, rooted to the ground. Granny was sitting right there at the far side of the table with three other players. They were all rearranging the mahjong tiles, almost ready to start the game. Granny looked up and our eyes met. There was this strange sense of homeliness and alienation going round in me. I simply did not know what to do next. The moment of silence was interrupted abruptly when Granny opened her mouth and said, “Nemo, come and join us!” Well, she might have died, and her spirit might be haunting me now, but surely her state of dementia remained. I would never ever forget what I was about to see next. As soon as Granny finished talking with the smile I had seen earlier at her coffin, her three mahjong ‘pals’ at the table turned to face me, and none of them had a face.

That totally freaked me out, so I yelled as loud as I could and took off. Pa and Ma might have seen their son running in countless sprint races in school, winning each and every one of them. But I bet they had never seen me run that fast, as I disappeared from the funeral vicinity in under five seconds. They found me some twenty minutes later behind a trash bin on the floor just outside a 7-eleven store, arms over legs, the whole body shaking violently with a trail of white foam from the mouth. I swear that wasn’t vomit.

Guess what? I told Pa and Ma, in the presence of many concerned relatives, about what I had seen earlier when I was finally resting comfortably in my bed. And guess what again? They all laughed out heartily and said I needed a rest. I could not believe them, especially my folks. After watching how I had broken into a canter just an hour earlier and finding me next to a bin in a contorted state, they could actually trivialise my story!

“You sleep tight here, Sumo Lee! I’m going back down there to carry on my winning streak,” Pa said. Every one of them started streaming out of the room one by one, all appeared indifferent. I could hear Ma say, “I don’t think Sumo is taking Mum’s death too well.”

I close my eyes and feel a tinge of disgust. How can they doubt me? But I am too tired and too kind to hold any resentment now. My drooping eyelids are about to shut when I hear someone say, “Nemo, come join us in the living room here. We are short of one player.”

Published in: on Saturday, November 3, 2007 at 1:26 am  Comments (14)  
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don’t tell them

don’t tell them
don’t tell them what they don’t know
don’t tell them what they know
don’t tell them what they want to know
don’t tell them what they don’t want to know

they don’t know at all
they don’t know what they don’t know
they don’t know what they know even
they don’t know what they want to know
they don’t know what they don’t want to know
they simply don’t know

don’t tell them
don’t tell them at all
simply, don’t tell them

you know what i’m telling you
don’t you?

Published in: on Thursday, November 1, 2007 at 4:34 pm  Comments (7)  
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seriously good

go check out the latest music darlings that hail from singapore – the great spy experiment. i’m listening to them right now as i’m typing these words. and i must say they are GOOD! i place them on par with another local favourites, the observatory.

Published in: on Monday, October 29, 2007 at 11:06 pm  Comments (2)  
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3-0

my heart rose from the bed this morning, hungry for success which was laid out blatantly on the table. my head, not one who relishes being left behind, made his mark with a loud explosion which turned heads in the household. sheepish he might look, he went on to glare at my heart.

“what say you, weakling?” he thundered. my heart, chewing the tuna nonchalantly, sniffed the air.

“you smell that? that’s the scent of victory! liverpool shall clobber the gunners 3-0.” and he continued munching his fruits.

“absolutely ghastly! you must be mad! look at the statistics and form book! arsenal are going to triumph 3-0! football is played with brains, not brawn!” my head roared.

“i beg to differ, my lord. football is played with hearts, not heads,” my heart ended with a sneer.

Published in: on Sunday, October 28, 2007 at 6:46 pm  Comments (4)  
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only blue

just the other day, i was exhaling wholeheartedly everything that was up in the mind. never thought i could do it so well, and could never have imagined that i was actually swimming with you in the pool of possibilities. bet you didn’t think that your actions could mean so much the other way round. the expressions and waves of emotions could have fooled anybody, but me. the bliss that enshrouded the deepest and darkest wishes was beyond any form of depiction. fat or slim, i could never tell. i just wanted to stay afloat and touch the warmth ensued from the smallest squared prime hours spent together.

the day after was stranger, ‘cos the heart fondled no more than it was supposed to be. blue ought to be the colour, but no, it did not turn up.

and the day after was perhaps the strangest, ‘cos the inkling and the tinkling wooed me a wee bit, and i could feel the presence of the positive and the negative blue. perplexed i may sound now, but the fault is not mine. blame only blue.

yeah…blame only blue. period.

Published in: on Thursday, October 25, 2007 at 11:53 pm  Comments (11)  
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faith

the rice
that had served
so well
has turned out
to be
our undoing

is there
anything
anything at all
that’s worthy of
your, my, our
faith?
Published in: on Wednesday, October 24, 2007 at 12:31 am  Comments (13)  
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root

can one’s
existence
be rootless?

regard
the world
domicile?

be
the late
basis?
Published in: on Tuesday, October 23, 2007 at 12:36 am  Comments (6)  
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what did you say?

a friend told me recently about his former female boss who worked tirelessly in the banking sector and took home up to 20 grand a month. one day, her son felt ill and she took him to the doctor. the boy was deemed fit for school. so she drove him there. the son felt happy despite feeling a little unwell. he went on to say, “mummy, do you know this is the first time you are taking me to school?” the woman broke down in tears upon hearing her son’s innocent words. the next day, she wrote a letter and resigned from her high-ranking post.

this simple tale has an impact on me. what and how, i can’t describe.

Published in: on Monday, October 22, 2007 at 11:26 pm  Comments (7)  
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I’m sweet!

Lovely Vanilla awarded me the Sweet Award. My pupils will never believe this if I were to tell them about it; not when they see my stern face more often than they drink coke. I’m actually sweet! I want to thank Vanilla a thousand times for making my day.

Sweet Award



It’s difficult to give out this award, ‘cos there are many friends I have here in the blogosphere who are sweet. Can I take the easy way out? The fact that you spend time here reading my blog makes you sweet. So take the badge and put it up on your blog, ‘cos you are just……sweet!

Published in: on Sunday, October 21, 2007 at 11:48 pm  Comments (5)  
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No options

A failed poet
once said,
“If I can’t
write poetry,
then indubitably,
I could only turn to
masticating veal,
swigging rum,
championing debauchery
with Junoesque lasses of Soho
and wagers on table,
all allied facets
of pleasant pleasurables,
liken to painting poetry –
judicious words
from an unfailed poet
in Sir Wormwood.”

To that,
perhaps amen.

Published in: on Thursday, October 18, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Comments (7)  
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A Convenient Truth (my blog action day bit)

15 October 2007

An Eyewitness Police Report

I’m not good with words. But I could try and describe briefly what I saw.

There she was, lying in a pool of blood, behind a dark alley called Slora Orbit. I couldn’t make out how she was dressed for her clothes had been torn apart. She was alive, but she was semiconscious. Under the dim light of my torch, I could see her whole body battered, and bruised marks punctured her already frail frame. It was quite obvious that her modesty had been severely and violently violated. Her breathing was slow but heavy. She was slashed at her lips and there was a gash on the left side of her head. Her left leg was lying in an awkward twist. I think it had been dislocated badly. Her nails on both hands looked partially ripped from the skin. Maybe in her struggle with her attacker, she tried too hard to crawl away on the tarmac. There was an ID card pinned on her chest. Her name was Pearl Entath and she looked beautiful in the photograph. Did I mention that there was a broken knife blade sticking out from her right shoulder?

I was wondering who on earth would do such things to her? But I refused to let her die. As a human, I knew I could not give up hope there and then. I made a quick call to you fellows. Then, I looked around on the ground, thinking that I might stumble upon something that you might call vital evidence. Several moments later, I found another ID card near a garbage bag. I shone my torch on it. It was a photograph of a man named Hening Baums. I guess he’s the man you should be after. Soon after, you all arrived and took over.

I’m writing this report not because I’m after some Noble Piece Prize that you guys usually give out to commend citizens who have performed some heroics. But I believe in humanity and no one has the right to do what had been done to the poor girl. I really think that this vicious attacker should be taken to task or justice for that matter.

Submitted by: Ablet Gorre

Dr Willknow put the paper down next to the report. He brought his right hand to his chin and twiddled his goatee with his thumb and index finger.

“This is the 23rd time Mr Gorre has written the same ‘report’, Dr Willknow,” uttered the matron of the psychiatric hospital.

“I guess some truths are too painful to be spoken, and writing is a form of therapy,” Dr Willknow replied. He picked up the report and read it for the umpteenth time. A minute later, he smiled as he began to see the connections he was reading:

Ablet Gorre, long before his well-reported breakdown, was possibly the first politician to grasp the significance of climate change and to call for a reduction in emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. He was a firm believer that Planet Earth’s downhill glide as a result of constant human violation could be stopped if all Human Beings unite in efforts……

3 words from canterbury soul to all human beings on planet earth:

LESS IS MORE

Published in: on Monday, October 15, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Comments (7)  
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things up the sleeve

first, instead of writing, i have been reading. just done with dorcas fleming, now with gregor samsa. and will move on to kaddish poznan soon. newspapers and blog reading too.

second, facebook is my current squeeze. networking is key here.

third, just started to try out “world in conflict“. again, networking is the agenda.

fourth, a writing competition for my 12-year-olds is on the way. plan to approach some writers here in the blogosphere to be the judges.

fifth, just got involved with “blog action day!”. will post something on 15 about the environment. and yes, writing will resume after that.

Published in: on Saturday, October 13, 2007 at 11:43 pm  Comments (5)  
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Nice

Dear nice Miss Verilion over at nice Paris has nicely given me a very nice award – the “Nice Matters” award.

“Nice Matters” award



I don’t doubt the fact that some nice people around me are nice to me; Miss Verilion being one. But I was nicely taken aback when I saw my nice name being nicely mentioned for one nice reason – being a nice guy who is “just always so nice”. Some of you might nicely think that this is not nicely important. But to me, it is a nice huge encouragement and a nice pat on the back. I never consider myself nice for I nicely know that I can be short-tempered and impatient; two traits I don’t consider nice. So, nicely put, I thank you, Miss Verilion!

It would be a nice disgrace to the nice award if I don’t pass on this award to some nice people around. I would gladly hand this nice award back to Miss Verilion if she hadn’t received it from someone, for she has always been nice to me here.

First up, Miss Vanilla, someone whose positive feedback and constant encouragement never fail to inspire me.

Then, I have Miss Vesper whose niceness can be beyond description at times. And the fact that she is a nice mother makes her extra nice.

Mr Jason Evans is a gentleman who deserves this award. He has been nice enough to hold writing competitions for writers from all walks of life. He has been nice enough to dish out awards and prizes to writers from all walks of life. He has been nice enough to encourage budding writers like me.

I also have two local lads in mind. Mr Louis Loo, my ex-student, has come of age as a young man. He has been a nice pal who was nice enough to spend his time with me and my little one the other evening. And he’s a Liverpool fan too. That is nice.

Miss Joyce Yap whom I met just recently is a young aspiring nice musician who is nice in her own way. Being nicely forthright, nicely honest without inhibition and nicely friendly, she so nicely deserves this award.

Ok, time out for a nice while.

Published in: on Wednesday, October 10, 2007 at 9:05 am  Comments (10)  
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1 down

The EL papers are over now. Mathematics coming up tomorrow. All the best if you are sitting for the test.

Solution to yesterday’s question is ready. Check it out.

Published in: on Wednesday, October 3, 2007 at 9:06 pm  Comments (3)  
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1 more day

Solution to yesterday’s problem is here.

So this is it. One more day to the real exams. And one more problem to solve.

Sam bought 3 times as many toy soldiers as dolls. He spent $1972 altogether. A doll cost $10 more than a toy soldier. The total cost of toy soldiers was $476 more than the total cost of dolls. Find the cost of a doll.

Published in: on Tuesday, October 2, 2007 at 11:22 pm  Comments (2)  
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2 more days

Solution to yesterday’s problem:

P5 & P6 is 25
P4 & P5 is 16
P4 & P6 is 15

Therefore,

Total number of entries is (25 + 16 + 15)/2 = 28

Room for another problem?

Clement and Victor were out for a cycling trip. Clement ran into a tree, damaging his bicycle. They were 16 km from home. They decided that Clement would walk first and Victor would cycle. After sometime, Victor would leave his bicycle on the road and continue walking home, so that Clement would reach the bicycle and continue to cycle home. Clement walked at 4km/h and cycled at 10 km/h, while Victor walked at 5 km/h and cycled at 12 km/h. For what length of time should Victor cycle if they were both to arrive home at the same time?

Published in: on Monday, October 1, 2007 at 10:33 pm  Comments (2)  
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3 more days

Solutions to yesterday’s question can be downloaded here.

Today’s question:

In a writing competition, there were 25 entries from Primary Five and Primary Six. The rest were from Primary Four. If 16 entries were not from Primary Six and 15 entries were not from Primary Five, how many entries were there altogether?

Published in: on Sunday, September 30, 2007 at 11:27 pm  Comments (3)  
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4 more days

This is one Mathematics question for my pupils to attempt before the start of PSLE. If you are not my pupil, please feel free to solve the question too. Post your solutions in the comment space if you wish to. Solutions will be posted tomorrow. Have fun! 🙂

There are 600 children in Group A and 30% of them are boys.
There are 400 children in Group B and 60% of them are boys.
After some children are transferred from Group B to Group A, 40% of the children in Group A and 60% of the children in Group B are boys.
How many children are transferred from Group B to Group A?

Published in: on Saturday, September 29, 2007 at 3:28 pm  Comments (6)  
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the end is near

3 October. That is the beginning of the end. My pupils will start their first Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) paper on that day; the English papers – writing and main paper. After almost an entire year of preparing them for it, this day has arrived and soon the end will commence. I’m quietly confident that my 84 pupils are going to do well at the national exams. After that, they can celebrate their temporary freedom til the results day, while I’m going to prepare myself for a brand new but bold and risky move. And I’m going to write more poems and stories here too.

Published in: on Saturday, September 29, 2007 at 3:04 pm  Comments (1)  
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Changing Course

The Omega marks the Alpha
Sealing with the epilogue
That evokes the bravura
Of trials and tribulations
Of blessings and edifications

Time the commander
Takes charge of his prospect
Diverting route of progress
With ambitious navigation
That leads to the Promised Land

Published in: on Friday, September 28, 2007 at 12:21 am  Comments (6)  
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I’m in a good mood today!

Dear God, I’m in a good mood today! Do you know why? Daddy has finally looked at me today! It was such a magical feeling! And I counted; he looked at me four times!

I woke up this morning, thinking that it was just going to be another day. In fact, the mornings of the last eight years had always been extra ordinary. I could not imagine anything that is more ordinary than my mornings, and I don’t wish to talk about it now.

I just want to bask in the glory of Daddy’s beautiful eyes. It really has been a long time since he looked at me in the eyes. His dark pupils spoke volumes; his long eyelashes curled gracefully; and his soulful eyes warmed my heart. I’m really so happy that he looked at me!

Then, he told me that he was sorry to have treated me that way. He said he regretted saying I was the reason Mummy left him – something which I still don’t understand. Daddy is a man of few words, so he stopped talking after that and walked away.

My heart was still rejoicing when Daddy came back to me with some ointment. He looked at me again and pondered for a moment. His dark pupils spoke volumes; his long eyelashes curled gracefully; and his soulful eyes warmed my heart. I’m really so happy that he looked at me! Then he applied some ointment on the various dark spots all over my body. I can’t remember how these spots came about, but Daddy said that he gave them to me because he loves me. I was on cloud nine when he said that. I felt the pain everytime Daddy rubbed the ointment on the dark spots, but I could feel the tenderness in his hand.

Daddy walked away again. I was already beaming. Maybe tomorrow’s morning will no longer be ordinary anymore. Then, he came back to me and looked at me in the eyes. His dark pupils spoke volumes; his long eyelashes curled gracefully; and his soulful eyes warmed my heart. I’m really so happy that he looked at me! You can never believe what happened next! Daddy took off my clothes and put on a new dress for me! He actually bought me a new dress! This time, I really could not contain myself. I just laughed. I felt beautiful!

Then, Daddy held my hand and led me out of my house! This was the first time I was out of my house! And it was really bright out there! I looked all around me and was nervous yet excited about seeing so many new things. I could not make sense of anything, but I was happy that Daddy was taking me out.

We walked some distance away from our house before coming to a small black chair lying on the ground next to what Daddy called a lamppost. Daddy put the chair up properly and told me to sit on it. I did as told. My heart was pounding fast. Then, he looked at me again! His dark pupils spoke volumes; his long eyelashes curled gracefully; and his soulful eyes warmed my heart. I’m really so happy that he looked at me! He told me to sit there and wait. I did as told. Then, he walked away again.

I saw Daddy walking some distance away before disappearing. I looked around me. I did not know what I was looking at, but I was still very happy. Happy that Daddy has finally looked at me today! Four times he did it!

I’m in a good mood today!

*******************************************************************

Is that a moon up there?

Daddy has finally looked at me today!
*
*
*
*
*
God, what time do you think is Daddy coming back?
*
*
*
*
*
Daddy has finally looked at me today!
*
*
*
*
*
Is that a moon up there?

Published in: on Tuesday, September 25, 2007 at 9:54 pm  Comments (7)  
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me? a writer?

the lovely Vesper has kindly tagged me to do a meme (5 strengths as a writer), and i must admit that i’m a wee bit flabbergasted, ‘cos i don’t think i can call myself a writer yet. i would like to call myself someone who attempts to write and who aspires to be a writer. but thanks to Vesper, i think i’m beginning to believe that perhaps i’m a writer now, probably a part-time amateur. in any case, this meme from her gives me the call for self-assessment. thank you, Vesper! 🙂

1. I have lots of ideas for writing. And these ideas are conceived at different times of my daily lives. I could be eating; I could be watching tv; I could be walking down the stairs; I could be showering; I could be driving; I could be sleeping; I could be working; etc. So I do have a pretty cool number of ideas in my bank. I just need the right time to start expanding these ideas.

2. I write what I want to write, and that is my writing principle. Pleasing someone with my writing or garnering votes for my writing is never on my agenda for writing. Albeit I do wish that my writing pieces could be recognised in competitions, I’ll never compromise my writing principle.

3. Behind me and all my writings, I have a very strong support – my wife. Though she only knew about my writings just months ago, she never fails to encourage me to keep pursuing what i’m looking for in writing.

4. I’m able to contribute to the works of my students in class. Being an English teacher and part-time writer, I can use what I learn and know about writing to coach and guide my students in their writing development. And as I go through the teaching process, I improve as a writer too.

5. I believe that through my writings, I offer other writers a very different perspective of things and of life and of writing. This, I know, is important to all writers.

now, i shall pass the meme baton to Maht, Vanilla, Marie, Nothingman and Debi .

Published in: on Sunday, September 23, 2007 at 1:00 am  Comments (12)  
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Quenched

The throat

Parched under heat
Flaking in layers
Rough gradient
Sore loser

Chilly fever
Smooth slope
Luscious in bite
Lemonade drip by drip

Soothed
Ice age throttled

Published in: on Wednesday, September 19, 2007 at 11:32 pm  Comments (8)  
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Going

I looked at the summit I was about to mount. I knew it was more than daunting. However, I wanted very much to try it for my own purpose and for my folks’ sake. After all, they gave me the belief, the love and the encouragement I so badly needed. It was never an easy climb, considering the fact that no one had ever attempted an ascent up this peak. But I was not going to give up. Not without a mighty fight. Yes, I suffered along the way. Yes, I got knocks and bruises all over. Yet, I pressed on with grit, looking at how people supported my mission. There were times when success was imminent. There was hope that I might just reach my goal. But somehow the journey gradually became more arduous. My body slowly succumbed to the frailties of a typical human body. Even as my loved ones egged me on, I couldn’t help but feel disillusioned. I really could not see my final destination up at the top, and I soon realised that it was naïve of me to believe that I could actually make it. Then, the moment arrived. I was hanging by the cliff after a slip. I managed to cling tightly onto something, yet I knew I was fading. Perhaps, I was not going further this time. I just held firmly and cried bitterly. Everything about the climb was simply too strenuous, too demanding for my useless build. Then, one of them decided to let me go. She told me that maybe the climb was not that worthwhile after all; that maybe it was time to stop my movement upwards. I sobbed and agreed with her. I promised her that I would find a better life elsewhere. I wanted them to promise me that they would lead their lives meaningfully in my absence. We all wept for a few seconds that felt like ages. I mustered my last bit of strength to say, “I love you both!” before I let go eternally.

Published in: on Monday, September 17, 2007 at 12:53 pm  Comments (2)  
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no more pain

Jordan has passed away in the evening after more than a month’s struggle with a weak heart. The docs put him out of sedation and allowed him to wake up to see his family members. Was told that he cried upon waking up. According to our friends, Jordan’s granny asked Jordan if he wanted to go. Despite his young age, it seemed that he was able to understand her and indicated that he wanted to. It’s been a very sad period for his parents and family members and all those who care about him. Let’s pray for Jordan’s family members.

Published in: on Friday, September 14, 2007 at 11:52 pm  Comments (6)  
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update on Jordan

Baby Jordan was bleeding quite badly. Then a ‘balloon’ device was inserted into his body successfully. He is stable now. The exterior artificial heart will be removed tomorrow. Hoping that his heart can function well with the help of the ‘balloon’.

Published in: on Tuesday, September 11, 2007 at 10:25 pm  Comments (2)  
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Alpha

I sat in the dark room, thinking that I was alone and waiting for the master. Lo and behold, his hand slipped into mine. Before I could react, his deep sullen voice echoed softly into my ear, “Take this. It is what you are asking for.” A tiny scroll was conveniently placed on my hand. He disappeared a fraction of a second later.

I stepped out of the room and unrolled the scroll.

The Great Wealth Recipe

The haima of cockerel
On the countenance of slumber
Is like a Mona Lisa
To the imp of prosperity

Fortitude is the key
In the wait of the ghoul
For the juice shall be savoured
And the glorious riches shall be served

I smiled.

Published in: on Saturday, September 8, 2007 at 12:21 am  Comments (1)  
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What’s On His Mind

Is that a dog? Tell me it’s a dog.

Nah! Take a closer look. It’s not a bitch.

I said it’s a dog, not a bitch.

To think that you attended primary school. Bitches are dogs, but not all dogs are bitches.

It’s a dog, right?

Come on, look carefully. It’s a cat, for Pete’s sake!

A cat?

Yeah.

You are lying.

No, I’m not!

Prove it!

Alright, here’s the deal. If I can prove that that is a cat, we’ll eat out tonight.

You know I don’t like eating out.

I know what you don’t like! Is it a deal?

OK! But if that animal is a dog, I’ll blow you tonight.

That’s ghastly! How could you even think of that?

A deal?

A deal.

Show me.

Arrrrr……argf…argf…argf…ARGF!

What are you doing?

I’m barking. If that’s a dog, it’ll come to us. Arrrrr……argf…argf…argf…ARGF!

It’s not coming.

That’s because it is not a dog. It’s a cat! Let me show you. Meee……meow…meow…meow…MEOW!

So you are pretending to be a cat.

I’m not pretending. I’m just mimicking a cat call. Meee……meow…meow…meow…MEOW!

It’s not coming either.

That’s strange.

Hey, look at that! It’s jumping! And it’s…

…flying! I can’t believe this! It’s actually flying!

I don’t mean to be rude, Mr Setag, but I think you’ve got it wrong here. I think that’s a bird!

You know what. I have to agree with you, Mr Setag. It indeed is a bird.

It’s a good thing, isn’t it? Can’t imagine I have to go eating from the trash in the next street. You know I prefer feeding from the rubbish here in our home base.

Yeah. I can’t imagine you blowing my hair straight. You need a hairdryer to do that. And you know I like my messy hair. Like my idol Bob Marley.

Mr Setag laughed. And he laughed again.

From a distance, Dr Willknow finished writing his last sentence after watching Mr Setag for the last half an hour. He was satisfied with the progress his patient had made since his release from the asylum. He picked up his briefcase and walked away from the garbage dump.

Published in: on Wednesday, September 5, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Comments (5)  
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Alice and Dodo

Alice: Are you sure you want to do this?
Dodo: Hmm…I think so. Hey, am I the king?
Alice: Yes.
Dodo: So I can do whatever I want?
Alice: You can do whatever you want.
Dodo: Right! I will do it.
Alice: Are you really sure about it?
Dodo: I think so. I’m the king, right?
Alice: You are the king, yes.
Dodo: So I can do whatever I want.
Alice: Yes, you can.
Dodo: Then I will do it.
Alice: I’m not doubting you. But you really want to do it, don’t you?
Dodo: On second thought……I…think so. Since I am the king, I can do whatever I want to.
Alice: Absolutely.
Dodo: I will do it.
Alice: OK! You do it.
Dodo: You mean you agree that I should do it?
Alice: Yes. Why?
Dodo: Aren’t you going to ask me if I am sure about this?
Alice: I have.
Dodo: Really?
Alice: Yes. Come on, do it!
Dodo: Wait a minute. Is there something fishy here?
Alice: No. Why?
Dodo: Are you hiding something from me?
Alice: No!
Dodo: Hey, I’m not stupid you know!
Alice: I know.
Dodo: Then, tell me.
Alice: Tell you what?
Dodo: I am the king! Tell me the truth!
Alice: What truth?
Dodo: Don’t give me this straight face!
Alice: I’m not.
Dodo: Then, tell me what I want to hear!
Alice: What do you want to hear?
Dodo: The truth!
Alice: I really don’t know what you are talking about!
Dodo: Come on, Alice. You know you can’t hide it from me.
Alice: I really have nothing to hide.
Dodo: Please, Alice. I beg you. Tell me about it.
Alice: Are you going to do it?
Dodo: What? Do what?
Alice: Never mind.
Dodo: What did you say again?
Alice: Now I know.
Dodo: I beg your pardon. What do you know?
Alice: I know what to do next.
Dodo: Oh, really? What is it?
Alice (pointing): Look over there! I think something is coming in from the waters!
Dodo (turning his head): What is it?

With one swing of the machete, Alice removed Dodo’s head from his body.

Alice: Oops! I’m sorry. Aren’t you the king, Your Majesty? Thought you really wanted to do it. But guess it was too much for you. Just have to bear the burden for you.

And that was the last Dodo to have existed on Earth. Bless his soul.

Published in: on Monday, September 3, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Comments (9)  
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Closer

I had a dream last night. I dreamt that you were in paradise, having lots of fun. The ferris wheel was spinning in tune with your whistle. My god, since when you knew how to whistle. You were jumping in the bouncing castle, watching the roller coaster at the same time. I shouted for you, but you could not hear me. Then I just sat there, observing you. You looked truly happy, and I couldn’t stop smiling.

Then, everything stood still, and I opened my eyes. I stared at the ceiling. The sun had already brightened the room. I wished the dream hadn’t ended.

It was another day, and I still hadn’t got a clue how I should live it, just like all other days. I got off the bed and went to the washroom. I sat there, refusing to think about anything. No, I was still thinking about you. The same question came back to haunt me. How could all these happen to you? For the first time in weeks, there were no tears at the thought of it.

I picked up a piece of bread, laid a slice of cheese on it, and began chewing the food. I missed seeing you at the dining table, swallowing your breakfast. Then, I stepped into the kitchen, like all other days. I had decided to keep my faith and start preparing the soup you so loved. Carrots, peas, potatoes and chicken with some leek. It was easy to cook this, and it was never a challenge feeding you with this. I packed the soup and told myself that you would come round to drink it. I got dressed and left the house.

I saw many faces along the way. Behind each face was a tale waiting to be told, I always believed. And I was pretty sure that someone out there could be suffering a similar fate you were in. Not that it would be much of a consolation.

I stood at the door that was left open. I didn’t want to imagine who was with you now.

If I saw the doctor, I would be afraid that he might give me the anticipated tragic news. I was already hit quite badly, and I couldn’t imagine the collapse I’d probably come to when I heard it.

If I saw him, I would be afraid that I would lose control. I would wail like I did the other day and run to him for comfort and reasons to all these. I would put more pressure on him who had never really recovered since the day you were admitted.

I wished I could be alone with you now. But I knew I had to enter the room.

I pushed the door, and I saw you. It was the same you, the same darling to my soul. I really didn’t find you any different from the times we had had together. Yes, you had these multiple number of tubes inserted into various parts of your body. Yes, you had these equipment and machines attached to your body. Yes, you had this set of swollen limbs. Yes, your eyes were shut and your chest rose rapidly with each breath. Yes, you were lying so still that one could mistake you as dead. But, you were still you, the darling to my soul.

Damn it! The same question came back to haunt me. How could all these happen to you? Waves of sorrow were surmounted by my faceless head. Don’t make me feel numb, please. I would rather cry out loud. Why was it that I was not reacting emotionally?

I took a step closer to you, wanting to touch your skin. I wanted to give you warmth, and felt yours at the same time.

Then, I saw him, sprawled on the floor motionless. This was the fourth time. Without much anxiety strangely, I pressed the button.

Now, I knew how I should live my day.

Published in: on Wednesday, August 29, 2007 at 9:05 pm  Comments (3)  
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keep on praying

went down to the hospital to visit Baby Jordan yesterday with my wife. his parents looked fine. they seemed to have grown numb after 16 days. the boy was all tubed up. he’s been sedated to prevent him from pulling off all the tubes. he’s now on an artificial heart. apparently, the left ventricule is not functioning well on its own.

there are two options at the moment, and they are waiting for both to arrive. one, they are bringing in a left ventricular assist device (LVAD) to be inplanted near the heart. this device will help the heart function on its own. this, according to the docs, is just a temporary measure. it is just a bridge to a transplant. in U.S., 6 people had gone through this option. 3 of them had died, and another 3 had gone on to a heart transplant. the second option is a heart transplant. Jordan is waiting for a heart donor. a heart transplant has never happened in Singapore because there are no heart donors so far.

so, the best thing to happen now is that Jordan’s heart will heal on its own. and that, according to the docs, might not happen. other older children had a similar heart problem, but they had gone on to recover within 2 weeks. and Jordan is the first one not to have shown signs of recovery after so long and he is the youngest patient to suffer from this heart condition. at the moment, there are and will be other complications. but the doctors’ primary concern is his heart.

without a doubt, Jordan needs a miracle. he needs another matching heart or he needs his own heart to recover. i believe there’s nothing we can do now but to continue to pray for him.

Published in: on Wednesday, August 29, 2007 at 5:27 am  Comments (7)  
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devil me angel

devil me angel

me: i’ve sinned again.

devil: the only way to rid your transgression is to rid you. give you to me!

me: really?

angel: no! the only way to rid your transgression is to rid God.

me: so there’s nothing in this world that can be labelled as sin? and no guilt?

devil: right!

three of us laugh.

“Boom!”

devil is exterminated once and for all. angel is thrown from the heavens to hell. me? i’m to continue to suffer the consequences of my transgression on earth.

Published in: on Tuesday, August 28, 2007 at 2:12 pm  Comments (2)  
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stop for now

it is just not quite possible for me to count my blessings at the moment when someone i know is suffering. i am weak, i know.

i’ll be visiting the boy later.

Published in: on Tuesday, August 28, 2007 at 12:55 pm  Comments (1)  
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Enough

Look into my eyes.
You know I love you.

How could you doubt me?
Had I not done enough?
I have always believed,
I have never stopped trying.
So, I thought you were with me,
I assumed you would work for it.
How wrong, how naïve,
How disillusioned I have been.
Don’t blame me,
I’m just trying to make things right.
Please forgive me,
I’ll make it all up to you.
I wish this have never happened,
I hope this will stop pretty soon.
I’m doing it not quite
In the name of the Trinity,
But in the name of our love –
Something which I know you still have.

Look into my eyes.
You know I love you.

Published in: on Sunday, August 26, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Comments (3)  
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3 B.A.T. XXI

wireless tech – the way to go in our world and future.

peace – Singapore has been having it for quite some time now. not taking it for granted, i hope this will continue for years to come. and i hope this can be extended to the rest of the world.

prosperity – Singapore has prospered since her beginning. not taking it for granted, i hope this will continue for years to come.

Published in: on Sunday, August 26, 2007 at 11:06 am  Leave a Comment  
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still fighting

the 2-year-old boy did not respond well without the artifical heart. after going through a heart bypass, he went through a second op. things don’t look too well. there’s a hint of pessimism in the family.

the boy hasn’t stopped fighting. so, we will not.

Published in: on Saturday, August 25, 2007 at 11:35 am  Comments (5)  
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3 B.A.T. XX

my physical fitness – i may not run like a hound or lift tons of weight, but at least i could still clear my annual physical fitness test with relative ease.

my army days – when i was in it, i cursed and swore regularly. now that i’m out of it, i can’t imagine what kind of a man i would be without it.

my N.I.E. days – i kind of sailed through the studies. so, pretty forgettable. it was the activities i went through with my friends that have lasting impression. tennis, discos, playing in the band, camping, movies, coffee hangout, cycling, etc.

Published in: on Saturday, August 25, 2007 at 11:21 am  Leave a Comment  
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3 B.A.T. XIX

opportunities at work – these opportunities reaffirmed me that i’m doing well at work.

pupils in school – they are the reason to my profession.

colleagues – there is no ‘i’ in the word ‘team’.

Published in: on Friday, August 24, 2007 at 3:23 pm  Comments (2)  
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pray with us

bad news from a former colleague and a friend last week. her two-year-old son was admitted to hospital due to an extremely weak heart. he is still in ICU now. prior to yesterday, he was supported by an artificial heart. now waiting for his heart to respond without support. he has since shown signs of strength to pull through.

it has been a traumatic experience for both parents who have an elder daughter. friends and colleagues who had visited them were often brought to tears. as parents ourselves, we should understand their feelings, though not completely. haven’t visited them in person and don’t intend to. though we are quite close, not sure if we would know what to say if we are there. heard that they need some financial help, so without hesitation, we gave it to them. we are all praying that the young boy will continue to fight.

knowing what the boy has been going through moved me much. but i was never close to tears. then i heard that the father was more affected than the mother. and the reason made me cry – the boy, in his unstable condition, apparently uttered, “Daddy!”

Published in: on Thursday, August 23, 2007 at 8:34 am  Comments (9)  
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3 B.A.T. XVIII

good health – i’m not fit like a bull, but at least i could still stand and sit and do almost anything i wish to do.

financial situation – i’m not rich at all, but at least i can still support my family and enjoy life.

mental ability – i’m not enstein, but at least i can still educate children, write sensibly and do things that require some basic intelligence.

and i’m not taking the above-mentioned for granted.

Published in: on Thursday, August 23, 2007 at 8:02 am  Leave a Comment  
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true?

The ghost of the past
Often comes haunting just when
You think it’s over

Published in: on Wednesday, August 22, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Comments (1)  
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3 B.A.T. XVII

the air-conditioner – Mr Lee Kuan Yew said it was the greatest invention of mankind. can’t disagree with him.

the stapler – one of the most useful inventions in modern history.

the can opener – a very powerful invention for the kitchen.

Published in: on Wednesday, August 22, 2007 at 8:11 am  Comments (3)  
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Two Minds

the nameless

I seek seclusion
In the middle of all these
Hurly-burly verve

Yet hanker for succour
Amid the hubbub that broke
Out from the nameless

Call for desperate
Measures could not have arrived
More timely than now

Published in: on Tuesday, August 21, 2007 at 10:57 am  Comments (6)  
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3 B.A.T. XVI

Mathematics – used to be my weakest link, but it turned out to be a personal strength, and it had forced me to think intelligently.

Literature – used to be the most hated subject, but it turned out to be my love, all thanks to folks like Shakespeare, Golding, Orwell, etc.

English – used to be an average subject, but it turned out to be my passion and profession.

Published in: on Tuesday, August 21, 2007 at 8:25 am  Leave a Comment  
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the crop of hair

the crop of hair

it had been a symbol of my childhood
it had seen a great deal of actions
it had gone through rain or shine
it had come of age in colours

it did not flinch in anxiety
it did not waver in doubt
it just sat there silently
it just waited patiently

then they came
the scissors
they cut
it’s off

poor
me

Published in: on Sunday, August 19, 2007 at 11:53 pm  Comments (2)  
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3 B.A.T. XV

my eyes – arguably the most important sense organ.

plants – arguably the most important elements in our ecosystem.

Earth – arguably the most important planet in the solar system.

Published in: on Sunday, August 19, 2007 at 10:42 pm  Leave a Comment  
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3 B.A.T. XIV

television – evil to many, but window to much knowledge for me.

my ears – hear ye, hear ye, for thou hast much to say.

toys – what is childhood without them?

Published in: on Saturday, August 18, 2007 at 11:29 pm  Leave a Comment  
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3 B.A.T. XIII

telecommunications – hey, hands up all those who disagree.

remote controls – such pampering…

wordpress – for giving me this chance to continue blogging.

Published in: on Friday, August 17, 2007 at 11:18 pm  Leave a Comment  
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forget Bond, get Bourne!

took some time off in the afternoon to catch a movie with Jennifer after a major national oral examination. ever since Faith came to this world, both of us rarely have the chance to go to the cinemas, something we used to do a lot.

after watching Jason Bourne‘s first two stories, The Bourne Identity and The Bourne Supremacy, in 2002 and 2004 respectively, we had to catch only one movie this time round – The Bourne Ultimatum.

The Bourne Ultimatum

we are not suckers for sequels. in fact, we know that most sequels are badly done. but we both enjoyed Matt Damon‘s portrayal of an amnesiac killer thoroughly in the first two movies, and somehow had ‘fallen in love’ with this character and his story. we could have waited for the release of the dvd, but watching an action movie on a cinema screen is really different, as some of you might agree.

the result? this is probably the best Bourne movie thus far.

i used to like James Bond when i was a kid – i was impressed by the gadgets, the ladies and the suave and good looks of agent 007. but after a series of bad Bond movies the last ten years (i suspect a certain Mr Brosnan is to be blamed), i know i’ll never be foolish enough to fall for Mr Bond and his stories again. Comparing Bond with Bourne is a complete insult to the latter. Bourne is THE SPY!

for those of you who are familiar with Jason Bourne’s story, you would agree that he’s a much more likeable protagonist than 007. Bourne is more human than Bond. he gets hurt, he suffers much, he has emotions and he has feelings. Bond? nah. for those who are not in the know, here goes:

The Bourne Identity – Jason Bourne was a superspy sent to assassinate this African political figure. but he failed his mission and was shot before falling into the sea. he woke up and realised he couldn’t remember anything about himself. but he could still know how to fight and behave like a superspy. his nasty bosses tracked him down and wanted to terminate him. he ended up with a German girl somewhere in Greece after escaping from all the dangers.

The Bourne Supremacy – Jason was still having nightmares of who he really was. apparently he and his girlfriend had moved to India. but sadly, his nasty bosses were still after him. they got one guy to hunt him down. the killer failed, but not before he killed Jason’s girl. so Jason went all out to find out who he was and who the bad guys were. like the first movie, he managed to avoid being killed.

so now, The Bourne Ultimatum – Jason was set to track the real mastermind behind who he was and what he had been trained for. he……go watch it yourself.

what’s so good about the third one then? the fight scenes and the car-chasing and running sequences are all deliberately done with much choppiness. it might look confusing on screen, but i think there’s a sense of realism here. these intentional action sequences make the story so real, so personal. it’s like you can almost feel the pain when Bourne gets hit or when the car flips violently while he holds onto the seatbelt. though some would find it incredible that he can survive all these with relative ease.

this movie isn’t just about actions. you can see how intelligent people are here, especially Bourne. in fact he’s super intelligent. his quick thinking and instant solutions make you wonder why bother sending our kids to school – we should send them to NSA instead. there’s also the constant emotional struggle that Bourne faces. despite his invincibility, he’s not a happy man. he’s someone who’s confused and you can almost cry with him at times because you know his plight, empathise with him and hope that things would turn out well for him.

by the time the story folds at the end, you have this feeling that Jason Bourne could be a real person in this world. credit must go to the entire cast and crew of the movie, especially Paul Greengrass, whose directing blends in well with his storytelling, and Matt Damon, whose eyes and expressions speak much for the tortured soul of his character. for the record, Damon comes out tops in a Forbes list of the most bankable Hollywood actors. i think he’s been underrated for a while now. i’m happy for him.

and of course, there’s this classic Bourne movie track, Extreme Ways by Moby.

i’m a wee bit messy in my ranting here, but my ultimate point is that the Bourne movies are definitely way more meaningful than the Bond movies. go watch Jason then.

am i making sense? time for bed.

Published in: on Friday, August 17, 2007 at 1:08 am  Comments (3)  
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3 B.A.T. XII

friends – for obvious reasons, i should mention ‘friends’. thank you my friends! 🙂

shakespeare – for giving me reasons to study ‘Macbeth’ at ‘O’ levels.

my washing machine – for allowing me to become more lazy.

Published in: on Thursday, August 16, 2007 at 11:35 pm  Leave a Comment  
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The Shift

Could it be that I had failed you so innocuously that you had to fail me? No, it couldn’t be. That cut I gave you would breach the toughest of all defences. How could it be so painless? Something else must have ensued. No, someone else could be the artist behind this picture of chain reaction.

Published in: on Wednesday, August 15, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Comments (2)  
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3 B.A.T. XI

my samsung i600 – my first pda phone. a very capable device that meets my work needs

the fan – my body feels warm easily. without the fan, i wouldn’t survive in Singapore very well.

the internet – need i explain this?

Published in: on Wednesday, August 15, 2007 at 10:15 pm  Leave a Comment  
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3 B.A.T. X

microphone – for making my life and voice healthier despite the constant classroom teaching.

Canterbury – how can i forget this lovely coastal town i visited back in 2000?

my soul – He sowed it and allowed it to grow in mind, spirit, body and strength.

Published in: on Tuesday, August 14, 2007 at 12:20 pm  Comments (4)  
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this pain

look

this pain
you have engraved
in my heart

telling me earlier
would not have
lessened it

it cuts across
like nails on a blackboard
and it pierces deep
like a pencil thrust into an ear

teeth into skin
hands into boiling oil
a chopper into fingers
a dagger into throat

blood
would have soothed this pain
for it could mask it

but
how you have punished me
with this silent killer

i could only wish
that someone would end
this pain
i could only hope
that someone would end
this you

look again

Published in: on Monday, August 13, 2007 at 10:49 pm  Comments (6)  
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3 B.A.T. IX

doctors – without them, i would have died many times.

my mother – for being the only pillar of strength that can ride through anything all these years.

my digital camera – the Fujifilm Z5 has been a very capable compact cam for an amateur like me.

Published in: on Monday, August 13, 2007 at 10:35 pm  Comments (2)  
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3 B.A.T. VIII

my tag heuer watch – a birthday gift from Jennifer and my only ‘masculine’ watch.

the dictionary – without it, i’ll probably be half who i am now. this relationship started all the way back in 1989.

my fingers – they have been serving me faithfully since my birth. i don’t think i can ever thank them enough.

Published in: on Sunday, August 12, 2007 at 11:25 pm  Comments (1)  
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the first seven games

The new English football season has just started, and my beloved Liverpool are due to play Aston Villa away later in the Barclays Premier League. With several expensive new signings on board, much is expected of Rafa and his charges to deliver immediately. I’m personally quite excited by the new-look team but am keeping my fingers crossed, as usual. The past few seasons had promised much at the beginning, but ended up in disappointing fashion. Once bitten twice shy, I’m not going to be fooled by all these pre-season hype.

My head says the new players will take time to gel, and maybe they will take a season or two to finally take the title that has eluded the club since 1990. My heart, of course, will hope that the drought will end come May 2008.

And it is my personal belief that Liverpool’s first seven games will define their league season this time round. That’s 21 points – the number of points they were behind the champions last season. They had always been slow starters the last couple of seasons and in each of those seasons they finished some points off the eventual champions. Jamie Carragher had said that they could not afford to start slowly last season, and the team ended up doing exactly that.

This season, if they want to improve, they will have to start strong. It is heartening to hear that Rafa has actually set a 60-goal target for his four strikers – Torres, Crouch, Kuyt and Voronin. At least we now know that he is thinking of playing attacking football this term.

I really wish that the players will live up to expectations and push Man Utd and Chelsea all the way to the end.

Players to look out for this season: Gerrard, Torres, Babel, Mascherano, Leiva

So, the first game? Liverpool 2 Aston Villa 0.

Published in: on Saturday, August 11, 2007 at 11:57 pm  Comments (5)  
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3 B.A.T. VII

Liverpool – will always be my number 1 football club in the world. yes, they might have broken my heart in recent years, but there have been more to cheer about in their entire history.

the ability to dream – without it, i wouldn’t have played for Liverpool down the left flank; i wouldn’t have earned my first million dollars in five years; i wouldn’t have seen my book topping the charts; i wouldn’t have made music that revolutionised the world; etc.

Fiji – my little miniature Maltese who has always been faithful.

Published in: on Saturday, August 11, 2007 at 11:40 pm  Leave a Comment  
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3 B.A.T. VI

Faith’s art piece – she taught me a few things here: anything is possible; creativity knows no limit or boundary; colours make the world beautiful in different ways.

Faith’s Masterpiece

Football Manager – i’m not a gamer. but i do play one PC game – Football Manager (formerly known as Championship Manager). non-football fans will never understand how much i have learned from playing this game since 1997.

Ford Focus – my current family ride. safe handling and a relatively smoother ride than most japanese makes. 8 out of 10.

our family focus

Published in: on Friday, August 10, 2007 at 10:01 pm  Comments (3)  
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let me introduce…

National Day was celebrated in some style last evening. we were there, not for the parade, but for the fireworks display. man, Marina Bay was packed with tons and tons of people. if you want to have a feel of what’s like for Singaporeans to celebrate National Day, take a look over here.

every year, Singapore celebrates National Day with one theme song and one parade. This year, we celebrated with two theme songs and one parade. of the two, ‘There’s No Place I’d Rather Be‘ and ‘Will You‘, i prefer the former. the words are pretty meaningful and the melody is a typical soulful ballad, all thanks to local musician Jimmy Ye. Kit Chan, our local songbird, sings the ballad with her usual strong vocals that can be emotive at times. what do you think?

over the next few days, i’ll have a few more past years’ National Day theme songs for you to digest and learn more about our people here.

Published in: on Friday, August 10, 2007 at 5:25 pm  Leave a Comment  
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3 B.A.T. V

whoever invented fireworks – for allowing my daughter to enjoy every firework display she had watched so far. one at disneyland and twice at National Day parade.

band of brothers – one of the best war dramas i’ve ever seen on screen.

football – about the most beautiful team sports in the world (though some would disagree).

Published in: on Thursday, August 9, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Comments (2)  
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climate’s changing, but are we doing anything?

just came back from downtown east. three of us had a great time yesterday at wild wild wet and the maze for kids at eXplorerkid. Faith really loved all the water fun and the climbing through the tunnels experience. as i watched her play, my deepest love for her surfaced from within which almost brought tears to my eyes. i almost always have this huge sense of gratitude whenever i look at my girl.

and sometimes, i shudder when i think of the kind of world she’s going to live in for the good part of her entire life. mad cow disease, SARS, dengue fever, H5N1, global warming and its effects, terrorism, etc. my word…..my girl needs to be strong!

i was at the supermarket with my family buying some groceries. as usual, it was packed with people from all walks of life. and like what we have been doing for the last few years, we brought along our own reusable bags as part of our own effort in being environment-friendly. but as i observed the people in the queues at the cashiers’, almost all of them had no reusable bags, ie, they left the supermarket with more plastic bags. some of them even requested for extra bags to contain their ‘heavy’ items. despite the less plastic bag campaign and its awareness programme, people are just not doing it!

i have been telling my kids in school that the effects of climate change (and global warming) are real, and they all agree. i tell them that they have to help to raise this awareness wherever they go. but i wonder how many parents and relatives actually listen to my kids and treat what they say seriously.

i was watching a little of saving gaia on CNA the other day, and was appalled by the type of pollutants present in the polluted air in Jakarta. how can we let this continue to happen?!! people are dying a slow and painful death there! and i know this isn’t just happening in Indonesia.

really, the threats are there for all to see. but people in Singapore here are just not doing enough to suggest that they care about the environment or the world for that matter. maybe because we don’t really feel the impact in a big way yet. do people really have to learn their lessons the hard and harsh way?

as Singapore and her people celebrate her 42nd National Day today, i hope people out there will not forget the fact that not only Singapore needs us. The world needs us too.

when i visited Verilion over at her blog, i read about this climate change camp at heathrow airport. some of these care-for-the-environment people wanted to raise awareness about the amount of carbon dioxide in the air. of course, they met resistance from the authorities. then i read some comments from this gentleman named Calvin Jones. apparently, he is very much involved in anything to do with climate change. i’m really heartened by the fact that there are people out there who bother to fight for gaia. hence, i’ve decided to support Mr Jones by helping him spread his message. do read it. (more…)

Published in: on Thursday, August 9, 2007 at 3:32 pm  Comments (3)  
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3 B.A.T. IV

my laptop – my toshiba A200 has been pretty fantastic. everything i need in a laptop, it has it. for less than 2K, it’s well worth the money.

my hair – short, easy to maintain, and it doesn’t look dated.

1927 – the aussie band back in the 80s. they produced songs like ‘if i could’, ‘that’s when i think of you’, ‘compulsory hero’, etc. i was a huge fan then.

Published in: on Wednesday, August 8, 2007 at 2:53 pm  Comments (1)  
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3 B.A.T. III

music – for speaking to me in many different ways…for inspiring me in almost everything i do…for living within me that i might express myself.

my profession – as a teacher, i have seen myself developing in the areas of public-speaking, self-esteem, leadership, people management, teaching of English and Mathematics, etc. ’nuff said.

the chair – the one i bought from ikea. office-style swivel armchair with comfortable leather beneath. lots of words were generated ‘cos of the coziness from sitting on it.

Published in: on Tuesday, August 7, 2007 at 10:06 pm  Comments (2)  
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The Beast

I was sitting by the beach
Building my sandcastle

When it appeared
And pulled up to me
It bared its ravenous teeth
And sank its claws into my flesh

My head was swimming
As it huffed and puffed
My heart was thumping
As it moved within me

The pain inflicted
Was beyond description
The joy ensued
Was oddly enthralling

Then it froze for a second
And allowed them to swim
While I caught my breath
Like tomorrow’s the last

It wagged its tail
And bounced to safety
Then I tossed and turned
Looking for sanity

I continued sitting by the beach
Building my sandcastle

Published in: on Tuesday, August 7, 2007 at 9:57 pm  Leave a Comment  
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3 B.A.T. II

Miss James – my entry that garnered an honourable mention at Clarity of Night. i enjoyed writing this piece a lot because i wrote it with a pretty light spirit and it took me a very short time to complete it. i kinda like my protagonist here. she had a sad life, yet she took everything rather positively. i hope i can learn from her myself.

the blogosphere – the people around and the opportunities to write have made me a happier person, i dare say. i find life more meaningful in this unique world too.

time – time is so abstract that no one can ever keep it long enough. but i believe that if i can use it well, it will give me chances to make my life more fruitful.

Published in: on Monday, August 6, 2007 at 11:37 pm  Leave a Comment  
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an honourable mention

my story, Miss James, has received an honourable mention over at Jason’s latest writing contest. it’s really a privilege to be rubbing shoulders and sharing honours with some very established writers. this has further reaffirmed my faith in my own writing. i will keep writing. 🙂

Published in: on Monday, August 6, 2007 at 11:20 pm  Comments (4)  
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3 B.A.T.

two more months and i’ll be blogging for a year. have always wanted to do something meaningful to mark my first blogging anniversary. after much thinking in my head, i finally decide to do something. you see, it’s in our human nature to be quick at seeing the negative side of life and thus, making ourselves unhappy by complaining. i’m pretty much guilty here. hence, i want to make that part of my life disappear gradually. i want to learn to be thankful for the big and little things of my life. i want a grateful soul within my puny body. i want to……

from today, i shall share my 3 Blessings even an Arse would be Thankful for each day. and i hope i can spread this ‘being thankful’ spirit around.

3 B.A.T. I:
Jennifer – for being the one and only who has to put up with my s***** temper every now and then. her patience and great support have made me a better man. she’s one very strong life partner.

Faith – for being a lovable and thoughtful daughter who almost always make me feel wonderful to be a father. she’s arguably the smartest two-year-old in the whole world right now.

Singapore – how can i forget my own nation…esp. with our National Day just days away? peace, prosperity, progress……what more can i ask?

folks, if you believe in what i’m doing here, go on, spread the word. find your 3 Blessings even an Arse would be Thankful for each day. And perhaps, you can share them with me too.

Published in: on Sunday, August 5, 2007 at 11:48 pm  Comments (2)  
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so happy i’m in

i’m so happy! Vanilla, whose blog is a must-read in the blogosphere, has given me an award:

thoughtful blogger award

i really can’t thank her enough for it. she has just affirmed me that i must be doing something right here.

and now, it is my honour to present this same award to the following good folks:

Suzan (for her continuous support and encouragement)
Vesper (for her kind words that never fail to lift my spirits)
Seamus (for fathering the shameless circle)
Jason (for ensuring that all comments are positively constructive)
Witnessing Am I (for his lovely writes and kind comments)

the orginal idea of such awards came from here. read about it and perhaps you can start giving out these awards to encourage other bloggers.

Published in: on Friday, August 3, 2007 at 8:21 am  Comments (8)  
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a reason

the lord of the flies
had ghostwritten
the cider house rules
like clockwork orange

Published in: on Wednesday, August 1, 2007 at 11:18 pm  Comments (2)  

great to be back!

guys, i’m back. if you miss me, i thank you!

i want to thank Bucephalus for taking care of this place in my absence. some lovely writings from Bashō! you are good, you beast! and thank you all for giving him your lovely support and encouragement!

my pleasure. will do a better job the next time.

yeah, it was a very busy week with all the work in school, the bonding at home and the writing for competitions.

finally submitted my entries for the Golden Point Award. i took part in both the fiction (maximum 5000 words) and poetry category (5 to 8 poems). spent quite long hours churning out the fiction and understood the real writing process – a definite challenging task. due to competition requirements, i’m not able to share my entries here. the results will only be known by december, so will probably post my entries up come end of the year or in 2008.

winning it? it would be nice, considering the fact that over 500 people took part in the last one in 2005. the important thing is i’m beginning to enjoy writing a lot. should i say i love it. will definitely dedicate more time to write more which implies that i will improve.

jason at clarity of night had another fantastic writing contest again. similar to the last one i took part, a participant is to write a short fiction of up to 250 words based on a theme and a picture. this time, the theme is “Halo” and you can check out the details here.

i submitted my entry entitled “Miss James”. go read it here and give me your comments either here or there.

well, that’s quite an update. will catch up with you at your blogs soon.

and it’s great to be back! 🙂

Published in: on Tuesday, July 31, 2007 at 12:31 pm  Comments (4)  
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a haiku a day VIII

Pretending to drink
sake from my fan,
sprinkled with cherry petals.

Bashō

Published in: on Sunday, July 29, 2007 at 9:34 am  Comments (1)  
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a haiku a day VII

Another haiku?
Yet more cherry blossoms –
not my face.

Bashō

Published in: on Saturday, July 28, 2007 at 2:06 pm  Comments (2)  
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a haiku a day VI

Do not forget the plum,
blooming
in the thicket.

Bashō

Published in: on Friday, July 27, 2007 at 10:15 am  Leave a Comment  
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take five

the deadline’s next tuesday. and i only managed two poems in the middle of some heavy workload. have to submit 5 to 8 poems for the poetry category and a short story of up to 5000 words for the fiction category. will struggle a bit but am confident that they will be churned out in time. winning it is an extra extra bonus. the writing process is what i’m after. wish me luck!

see that my dearest lion has been doing a good job here. thanks, Bucephalus!

you are welcome! leave this place to me! 🙂

Published in: on Thursday, July 26, 2007 at 10:19 am  Comments (4)  
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a haiku a day V

Now cat’s done
mewing, bedroom’s
touched by moonlight.

Bashō

Published in: on Thursday, July 26, 2007 at 10:09 am  Leave a Comment  
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a haiku a day IV

Spring rain –
under trees
a crystal stream

Bashō

Published in: on Wednesday, July 25, 2007 at 8:13 am  Comments (1)  
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a haiku a day III

New Year – the Bashō-Tosei
hermitage
a-buzz with haiku.

Bashō

Published in: on Tuesday, July 24, 2007 at 9:42 am  Comments (1)  
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a haiku a day II

Fields, mountains
of Hubaku, in
nine days – spring.

Bashō

Published in: on Monday, July 23, 2007 at 10:17 am  Leave a Comment  
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a haiku a day

since c.s. is away and has given me every opportunity to post anything, i have decided to post a haiku a day until he returns. (i might still put up something else along the way.) these are translated writings done by one of the great japanese masters, Matsuo Bashō. Lucien Stryk did all the translations. enjoy reading!

In my new robe
this morning –
someone else.

Published in: on Sunday, July 22, 2007 at 12:12 pm  Leave a Comment  
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time to write

like i’ve mentioned before, work has been bugging me. little room and time for creativity in writing. and the window for submissions for the Golden Point Award is closing soon. all i have so far is some vague outline. albeit this competition is an extremely tall order, i still very much want to participate in it. therefore, i’ve decided to take a backseat here for awhile until i complete my writing entries for the competition. bucephalus will take care of things in my absence. he will have the freedom to post whatever he deems relevant. please give him your full support, the way you give it to me. if he does well, give him a rub on the back. if he messes things up, reserve your gripes till i return. see you soon, folks!

Bucephalus

“i will do my best, master c.s.!”

Published in: on Thursday, July 19, 2007 at 11:31 pm  Comments (5)  
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simplicity

the bud
the bud
is growing.
nip it.
no,
tit it
before
the dawn settles.

simplicity is a rare commodity in the modern human race. few would stop and ponder over it. few would want to have anything to do with it. we were meant to enjoy it, but the world is ever evolving rapidly that we see it superfluous. why should we need it, some say, if the world can offer us so much more? times have changed, some say, so move with times and ignore it. without it, complacency and arrogance have taken root, leading to the evil complexity exposing its snares, a situation which most could not recognise or reconcile. seriously, complexity has become more rampant. times of wretchedness are looming large. if only we could all pause and observe and think. simplicity might just save the day.

Published in: on Wednesday, July 18, 2007 at 8:37 am  Comments (5)  
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must be kidding me…

thanks to Vanilla, i got to this webpage and posted my best photo for scan. the result? 7 out of 10 times, i look like Beyonce. hahaha! she will cry when she sees this.

Published in: on Tuesday, July 17, 2007 at 9:58 am  Comments (11)  
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mooo…

mooo…

cow on holy trail
takes on path of redemption
narcissistic fool!

Published in: on Monday, July 16, 2007 at 11:29 pm  Leave a Comment  
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three quickies

three and a half bloggers met in new york. one was a guru to the other. two from the old school. two connected through thin air. and the half’s a third of one. short, yet unique.

weariness is an understatement. love keeps the soul going. a transformer is in store.

a new life awaits. and i am so damn looking forward to it. although the ghost of uncertainty still haunts.

Published in: on Sunday, July 15, 2007 at 11:56 pm  Comments (4)  
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don’t think i should believe this

the sound and the fury

You’re The Sound and the Fury!
by William Faulkner

Strong-willed but deeply confused, you are trying to come to grips with a major crisis in your life. You can see many different perspectives on the issue, but you’re mostly overwhelmed with despair at what you’ve lost. People often have a hard time understanding you, but they have some vague sense that you must be brilliant anyway. Ultimately, you signify nothing.

try the quiz if you are interested, but don’t look too much into it.

Published in: on Saturday, July 14, 2007 at 12:45 am  Comments (3)  
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Bucephalus has done it!

the shameless lions writing circle awards had just been given out. and yes, my beloved adopted lion, Bucephalus, has won the best-looking lion award! though he’s placed 4th, he’s beaten 44 other lions in looks! way to go, Bucephalus! wait, he’s going to say something…

“MEEEOWWW! thank you master c.s., for picking me! i have always wanted to say this, but was never given a chance. thank you members of the jury for believing that i might just pip brat pitt in the looks department! and thank you all for supporting me! from now on, i shall start learning from my master, and hopefully i will churn out some decent writing pieces half as good as my master’s. let me start with this poem:

hear ye o hear ye!
bucephalus is here!
to deliver and conquer!
to undivide and raise the tide!
so be fearful, yet respectful!
for this is only the beginning!

MEEEOWWW!”

well done, Bucephalus!

certainly you have not heard the last of him.

Published in: on Friday, July 13, 2007 at 3:22 pm  Comments (4)  
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Lake, Castle, Cloud

He gazed at the cloud. The one that had always been there for him every morning. Its lofty position had never been swayed. Not even the strongest of storms could move it an inch. He was certain that God had specially created that cloud just for him. He smiled regrettably. He was going to miss it much.

He looked at all around him: the four walls and the ceiling and the floor, and the little window, and of course, the door. Others labelled this place the cell. He preferred it to be called his castle. A place where he could stand tall amongst the rest. A fortress against all odds of life. A shelter where he could be forgotten. He was certain that God had specially created this castle just for him. He grinned lamentably. He was going to miss it much.

He felt the breeze moving through the grills. It gently slapped on his face. It smelled really good. It carried with it the aroma of the charming lake. He could almost always feel the vibes of the lives beneath the surface of the glistening waters. He was certain that God had specially created the lake just for him. He tittered remorsefully. He was going to miss it much.

The door opened. Everything happened swiftly from there.

He stood. He walked. He did not turn round to take a last look at them. They were of the past. He was looking into the future. The promise of life would be fulfilled soon. He was ready.

Closed.

Tied.

Released.

Opened.

(a simple tribute to Mr Nabokov)

Published in: on Wednesday, July 11, 2007 at 10:21 am  Comments (4)  
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hanging on

c.s. hanging on…pray for him…

i’m on the edge.

no. i’m not on the edge.

i’m off the edge.

i’m barely hanging on.

you cannot imagine how much is in my hands now.

pray with me, will you?

Published in: on Monday, July 9, 2007 at 6:24 pm  Comments (10)  
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the paper i picked up today

the paper i picked up today
it moved me a little

doubts about what i do
it kept feeding them

the world seemed blind
surely i’m not

i could crush and toss it aside
but its veins rained on me

stories unfolded one by one
thomas revealed two by two

it seemed completely right
for condemnation to take charge

i spoke forth in fear
for the goodness of all

let the cubs and kittens rule
the fate of future state

dust and ashes wept agreeably
in the hope of peace

i moved it a little
the paper i picked up today

Published in: on Friday, July 6, 2007 at 8:15 am  Comments (17)  
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what do you see?

what do you see?

here’s my take:

a life bedazzled,
wasted away
on the point
of aimlessness.

how about:

an abyss
for the sick and lost
with a 20-point
directional scale

folks, have a go, will ya?

what a contribution from this tag team:

Circle of life
wheels within wheels
on target
bull’s eye

Shot fired
life arrested
a static goal
why?

Published in: on Wednesday, July 4, 2007 at 11:25 am  Comments (5)  
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never better

cold coffee has just logged in on the msn chat

shining star says:
tiring day?

cold coffee says:
yeah, a little. you?

shining star says:
never better.

cold coffee says:
i thought we had a great chat the other night.

shining star says:
i agree.

cold coffee says:
we talked so much about football, about our dreams to play for spurs.

shining star says:
yeah.

cold coffee says:
i really think defoe should go since barbatov is staying and bent is coming.

shining star says:
we’d talked about this.

cold coffee says:
yes, sorry. just that my perspective on this is rather strong.

shining star says:
no apologies, please.

cold coffee says:
what are you doing now?

shining star says:
chatting with you.

cold coffee says:
ok…before that?

shining star says:
waiting for you.

(more…)

Published in: on Tuesday, July 3, 2007 at 1:48 am  Comments (4)  
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red

red

he stood there

looking aggressive

his anger crystal clear

almost embarrassing

the evil of love

had left him humiliated

the rising impatience

threatened more hostilities

i had to
take an offensive stance
i had to
counter with violence
    i had to
    i had to
i had
      i
Published in: on Saturday, June 30, 2007 at 4:48 pm  Comments (5)  
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the first one

pleasantly surprised. i am a co-winner at minx’s competition. i thought mutley’s piece was really good. never expected me to share the honours with him.

i have to thank the wonderful minx for giving me this recognition. i would surely go on to write more (trash and non-trash). thanks, minx!

for those who have not read my winning piece, please scroll down and look for it.

Published in: on Sunday, June 24, 2007 at 11:30 pm  Comments (14)  
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yet another

the marvelous minx has a little competition up and running at the moment. and it will close in another couple of hours’ time. she asked anyone interested to write anything (prose or poem) of not more than 500 words based on any of the three paintings by jack vettriano.

i never thought of not participating. but only managed to write one decent piece today. this is the picture i have chosen followed by my prose, which can also be found here. enjoy!

The screen had been telling a promising story.

Door Left Open
Aubrey puffed the cigarette. She refused to cry. The emotions from within could still be contained. She knew she had done the right thing. As much as she cherished her girl, she had to do it.

Alan put his hand on her shoulder. His touch reaffirmed their faith in each other. He knew he was right. There could not be another way out. As much as he cherished his girl, they had to do it.

The screen had been telling a promising story. Images of her eclipsed the dark side of the house. The playground, the barn, the pony ride, the swimming pool, the birthday cake… Her life could have gone on to a fireworks display.

“……happy birthday to Adele! happy birthday to you!” the cheers and applause preceded the end of the movie clip.

“It’s time now,” Alan kissed her on the cheek. “I’ll wait for you.” He disappeared through the door.

Aubrey finished her last bit and put the stub away. Then, it came. The sorrow from deep down surfaced tremendously and took over her entire being. She wept, her hands on her face. She went on for about five minutes, absolutely losing control.

Then, all of a sudden, the tears stopped completely. She removed her hands from the face that was scarred with trails of her mascara.

She stood and moved towards the long flight of stairs. She scaled it slowly, and came to her door. It was left open. She pushed it away and walked to the bed. Alan was there, head hung low. He was sobbing. Aubrey put her hands on his shoulders and pulled herself close.

“I’m sorry, Adele! I’m really sorry!” he couldn’t help but utter, visibly shaken. She was the composed one now. Perhaps, she had dried up all her grief. She took her husband’s hand and placed it on the girl’s face with hers. It was already cold by then. Obviously the drug had worked. She was gone.

They stayed there for quite awhile.

They took one last look at their motionless girl. No more goodbyes, no more pain. They left and came to their lounge. Aubrey sat on the bar stool. Alan went behind the counter and uncovered it from a locked box.

“I love you!” he said, looking at her.

“I love you too!” she answered, eyes closed.

He put it on her head. He pulled the trigger, and she was gone.

He placed it on his and pulled. He was gone too.

The sunlit rays filtered through the curtains and woke her up. She just had a long, wonderful dream. The little girl stretched her tiny body. Then, she was up. She saw the door that was left open. She yelled in excitement and ran through it, the pacifier still in her mouth.

“Mummy! Daddy!” she shouted as she searched. Then, she saw it… through the balcony. The morning sky was bathed in a golden hue. She just stood there, admiring God’s gorgeous backdrop. She smiled.

Published in: on Friday, June 22, 2007 at 10:17 pm  Comments (4)  
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the soul’s eight

ocean’s eleven, twelve and thirteen
five people you meet in heaven
nineteen minutes
fantastic four

it seems like numbers have been pretty prominent in names and titles.

why don’t i have my own “the soul’s eight”?

Verilion in paris
Atyllah the mighty hen
Vesper the chick with a quill
Maht at the Moon Topples
Seamus the chief of the circle
Skint the master writer
Minx the shrewd wordsmith
Suzan at writing passions

ok. if your name’s here, that means you are one whom i would like to meet in person, if there is a chance. and how about you guys? who in the blogosphere would you like to meet?

Published in: on Friday, June 22, 2007 at 1:34 pm  Comments (15)  
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expecting…really?

no. i’m not capable of expecting. i’m a male.

yes, i’m expecting a lot of things in my life.

after a rather short break, school will start next week. even before that, my work has begun this week. challenges, expectations on me, things are happening and they are fast and furious, if i may loosely borrow that tag.

i don’t think i am looking forward to work. i thought i might get into it initially and perhaps, i might enjoy doing it and get ready to soar to greater heights. but now, i’m not so sure. there are times when i wish i could be doing something else, honestly.

don’t get me wrong. this job used to have only one primary purpose, and i like achieving that primary purpose. but as the world is constantly changing, this job has evolved too. now it has two primary purposes (others like to put it, one primary purpose and one secondary purpose). the added purpose had made this job tougher than it used to be.

i’ve been on this job for the last ten years of my life. i’ve got lots of ups and downs in my career. the last two years are supposedly on my ‘up’ side. and with a new position this year, things should look rosy in the next couple of years. i’m probably on the verge of climbing up the ladder.

but somehow, i’m beginning to have doubts. i don’t doubt my abilities (yes, thick-skinned, i know). but i doubt that i will enjoy doing what i’m expected to do in the next few years. as i look at my life and all around me, i can’t help but feel that life is really too precious to be wasted doing what i don’t quite enjoy. (the world is increasingly becoming a threatening place to live in, you know what i mean?) there is my family for me to love and be loved; there are friends to catch up with; there are books to read; there is music for me to appreciate; there are many more things for me to try, experience, enjoy and cherish. should i be off soon?

at the moment, i don’t know. i wish to believe that i have time to think about it. but i know time is moving constantly. and i know that i might not even have the time to think if i were to perish in the next few seconds. will i have any regets then? yes, if you ask me now. i’ll have plenty to regret if i’m gone from the face of the earth.

am i selfish to bear such thoughts?

Published in: on Thursday, June 21, 2007 at 3:27 pm  Comments (7)  
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the wall

there it is
another wall
nothing’s amiss
just standing tall

been through this
at the last fall
east coast’s bliss
with the maiden’s ball

love paralysis
enhanced desperate call
to find the basis
for a brand new mall

candies with kiss
displayed in the hall
emotions that hiss
moved the heart of gall

probe, test the oasis
bite, taste the softest of all

drip

crack

drop

gone

wish

Published in: on Thursday, June 21, 2007 at 2:11 pm  Leave a Comment  
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The Bell

I
stop short
of trying hard
to turn my life
the way I intend it
after much thinking and ranting
obviously aware of consequences
that might haunt
a pathetic
me
Published in: on Sunday, June 17, 2007 at 11:58 am  Comments (11)  
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The Fountain of Youth

Yesterday I discovered that there is a fountain of youth in me
And I had not realised that it’s been there for quite a while
Maybe it was never really there earlier
Perhaps it started off as a puny spark in my life
But most definitely it had slowly gained ground
And evolved into the something that is of great stature now
    Oh my, oh my
    How could I have missed it for so long?
    It has grown within me for my taking
    Patiently waiting for me to take complete control
    Only a celestial communication could actually make me
    Appreciate the presence of the fountain of youth
Now that I’ve found it
I never ever want to let it go
I fancy maximising its potential
And ensure that reaping off its benefits
Is as simple as ABC or 1-2-3
Embracing and beholding this rare gemstone
    Hold on a minute or two
    Am I seeing things?
    Is this actually what I covet?
    Can I be fooling myself or am I being fooled?
    This enigma of the fountain
    Does it really bring me youth?
Published in: on Saturday, June 16, 2007 at 2:51 pm  Comments (7)  
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a gift…sort of…

it’s my birthday today and i’m not exactly excited. but my loved ones want to cheer me up. thanks!

and i’ve written a short fiction for myself as a gift, maybe.

It Happens

The alarm sounded. I got up and threw myself off the bed. Sidestepping the red round chair in the dark, I fetched myself a cup of soya milk from the fridge. I switched on the lights and settled at the dining table to eat some bread. I picked up the newspaper by the side and started reading it. Another fatal car accident no thanks to one idiotic drunk driver. Jan got up moments later and walked past me. She went in to take a shower. I finished my last bit and cleaned up the cup. I took the towel and walked to the bathroom. She got out of it and left the room. I stepped into it and removed my robes. I turned on the tap. The water travelled down the tube, ran through the holes and laid its hands on me. The heat refreshed me somewhat. I soaped myself and was planning ahead. Then it happened.

The pain shot through my heart and I gasped. I dropped to the ground and crouched in agony. I couldn’t muster any strength to yell. The pain was simply too excruciating. After all these years of warning, no one had advised me intelligently to deal with it. Now, I was faced with it in the most severe circumstance. I struggled for air and felt myself ripping the flesh off my chest with my left hand. Then, I stopped breathing and collapsed. It took only 28 seconds.

************************************************************************

I rinsed myself with the last drops and turned off the tap. I wiped myself dry and put on my hair gel. I stepped out of the showers and went to my closet. I ran my fingers through the wardrobe and picked up the one long-sleeved Domanchi. I dressed myself up in the next few moments. I took one last look into the mirror and felt myself looking good. I walked to the cot and talked to my little girl. She was irritated for a while, obviously unwilling to rise. Jan came in, ready to go. I picked Faye up and put her on my shoulder. We put on our shoes and left the house. We walked to the lift lobby, talking about the day ahead. My girl was still sleeping. The lift came. It was littered with dog’s urine. Another irresponsible owner. We shook our heads. At the ground floor, we began walking towards the car. Then it happened.

Just as I stepped off the building, I was struck on the head. Faye and I fell to the ground. Her back landed rather heavily. She was startled and cried loudly. Jan rushed to us in great horror. I lay sprawling on the ground, trying to look for the culprit in a semi-conscious state. I could see my blood everywhere; on the ground and on me. I saw it. A shattered flower pot. I thought my head was in pain. I thought it was bleeding profusely. I saw Jan in tears. She was quite clearly disoriented. She was carrying the wailing Faye and weeping uncontrollably, not knowing what to do. I felt really dizzy. The spell lasted about a minute or two. Then, I was gone.

************************************************************************

The three of us stood by the car. Jan and I put our bags into the boot. I then got into the rear seat and buckled myself up with my still sleeping girl. Jan started the engine and stepped on the accelerator. The car inched its way out of the lot and moved onto the main road. The Morning Show was on. Gwen and FT were rattling on about who would win the Singapore Idol. Minutes later we arrived at the nanny’s place. She carried my girl off my shoulder and we bade her farewell. Our cute little one was still sleeping soundly. She must have been dreaming much. We walked back to our car and left for school. On our way there, I looked up to the heavens. The clouds were beginning to form and the golden hue of the rising sun was tainting the sky. It was beautiful. I then thought about work. I wasn’t really looking forward to it. Jan was about to make a right turn at the junction. I looked at all the oncoming cars. Most of them were speeding. I guessed everybody was in a hurry getting to work. Then it happened.

This black Mercedes was coming on real fast. It did not look right. In fact, it was too fast and it had gone off track. Oh my god! It was coming right at us! The Mercedes rammed into the bonnet of our Ford!……I couldn’t quite remember what had actually happened. But my lower half of the body was caught in the middle of the wreckage. I thought I saw blood all over. Jan had managed to get out of the car. She was crying for help. I was just staring at her, unable to do anything else. The pain was beyond description. It was…it was…it was numb. It took me only about three minutes to realise I was going. I told Jan to take good care of our girl. I told her I loved her. She wept and told me to hang on. I told her I loved her again. And I said something like, “Believe in Jesus…” Then I closed my eyes.

************************************************************************

Jan stopped the car in the lot and shut down the engine. Both of us got off the car and walked into our respective offices. I had tons of work waiting for me to clear. Being a department head had brought me a lot more burden. I didn’t hate my work but I couldn’t exactly say I enjoyed doing it either. But for the sake of my own promotional prospects, I just had to give it a shot. So it went on. The day, I mean. From the office to the classrooms; from the paper work to all the students’ assignments. Work seemed to make time an even rarer commodity. Before I could come to my senses, it was already five in the evening. Jan had gone to fetch our girl home. They would be arriving in ten minutes’ time to take me home. I cleared up my things on the table. I switched off my notebook and went underneath the table, intending to switch off the main power. Then it happened.

As my bare index finger touched the socket, a huge electric shock wave ran through my entire body. I really did not know what hit me then. My body twitched violently for about 12 seconds. Then, all my hopes of spending another great evening with my family and retiring at 65 with great wealth had gone up in smoke……literally.

************************************************************************

My little one called out for me outside my workstation. I could hear her footsteps. I hid behind my chair and called out her name. She walked slowly towards my chair. I burst out smiling and she screamed with joy. I gave her a huge hug and asked her if she had been a good girl. She said yes as Jan appeared from behind. I picked up my bag and we all took off. We got into our car and left for my in-laws’ place where we usually had our dinner on weekdays. Dinner was rather sumptuous, as usual. And my baby girl was already feeding herself. Quite messy, I must say. I was still chewing on my fish when I smiled at her. Then it happened.

I felt something hard and sharp in my throat. I knew something was wrong. I tried spitting out whatever was in my mouth. The rest looked on, shocked. Jan asked me what was wrong. I pointed to my throat but couldn’t utter a word. I knew I was choked by a bone, but I never imagined that it was this painful. What freaked me (and the rest) out was the fact that I was bleeding from my mouth. The rest of them held me by the arms but was obviously unsure of what to do. Faye was still sitting on her chair, staring at me curiously. Someone actually remembered calling for the ambulance. Everything took off from there rapidly. Before I knew it, I was on the way to hospital. Jan was by my side. The paramedics were doing something to me. I could hear faintly the words “blood vessels…”. I looked at the teary-faced Jan. I knew hope was slim at best. I wanted to keep awake. But my eyelids were just too heavy. She had just seen the last of me.

************************************************************************

After a much satisfying dinner, the whole family sat on the couch in front of the TV. My little one was playing with her kitchen set toys. She loved playing cooking, just like many other young girls. I was watching “Shrek 2”. It was still hilarious to me. Jan was talking to her parents. It was a rather comfortable evening. About half an hour later, we decided to leave for home. We got the youngest one to pack her toys and told her that we were going. She hurriedly kept her toys and followed us out of the door. We took turns to carry her home. She was rather demanding. Just like most evenings, we showered the baby before washing up. Jan tucked her to bed while I cleared up some of my work. Then I flipped through the papers and saw yet another tragic news. How could this have happened? This was the third case in a month. I had to agree that humans are all vulnerable. Our life is too fragile to be wasted. I decided to turn in too. I jumped onto bed and kissed my wife and my already asleep child. We switched off the lights and lay in bed. I closed my eyes, still thinking about how I should be spending my time wisely with my family. I must cherish them. My day at work had worn me out almost completely. I finally surrendered and dozed off. Then it happened.

I never woke up.

happy birthday, cs!

Published in: on Wednesday, June 13, 2007 at 1:48 am  Comments (16)  
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it might just happen, anytime

death is something totally unavoidable. we all know that. hence, some people fear it. they fear losing everything they have built or gained. they fear losing their loved ones. they fear…there could be a thousand and one reasons why they fear death.

if you ask me, honestly, there is only one reason why i fear death – not having the time to complete what i wish to accomplish. and i’m talking about many things to do here. like, getting my loved ones to believe in Him; writing my will so that my loved ones would at least gain some; telling the world that i’m really, really a pretty nice guy; playing in a band again; reading all the books that are left on the shelves, listening to all my acquired songs and music attentively; expressing my genuine care and concern to those who wish to be heard and comforted; travelling far, far away from here, visiting all the english football stadiums, watching my girl grow up and old, reliving my life again, etc, etc, etc.

when i read the newspapers daily, i see countless deaths being reported. i often think it might happen to me next. don’t get me wrong. i’m not freaking out. it’s just that i’m beginning to live my life as if i’m gone soon. i try to maximise all that i have so that my life will be meaningful and not wasted. not sure if i’m too extreme here. but so far, so good.

Published in: on Tuesday, June 12, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Leave a Comment  
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sense and senses

have you ever met someone (in person or not) whom you hardly know and yet somehow feel connected with him/her? it seems like you have known him/her long enough for you to be able to communicate with him/her. you think you could understand this person and the needs. and this person has exactly the same sentiments towards you. this sense of belonging, i reckon, often emerges because gaps exist in our lives. i strongly believe that every one of us, no matter how successful we are, has some gaps in our lives that yearn to be filled. hence, when someone comes along in our lives, this sense of belonging surfaces. perhaps, this also reflects our lack of contentment in our own lives, a phenomenon that often occurs.

so what do we do when this someone appears? do we start building a relationship? do we maintain communicating with this person at the acquaintance level? or do we even bother doing anything?

it’s the wee hours in the morning and i’m no longer sure if i’m sane when writing this post.

a haiku to sum up my babbling…

beneath the colours
lies an affection that stirs
a magnum opus?

Published in: on Monday, June 11, 2007 at 1:42 am  Comments (8)  
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enjoyable, yet disturbed

had a rather great time in hong kong, though the weather was generally hot. all the shopping, walking, family bonding, partying at disneyland, etc. Faith’s really grown a lot. we all cherished our time spent with her during this vacation. the only problem we had with her was she wanted to be carried most of the time. guess she wanted to build the hercules in the two of us. 🙂

went to shenzhen (china) on wednesday for a day’s tour. other than the fact that we were ‘conned’ into various ‘unchartered’ locations, i must mention that this trip and my stay in hong kong had offered me some sights that made me think. you see, the backdrop of hong kong (and shenzhen) is often made up of short, old, run-down houses and tall, modern, well-built skyscrapers. this contrast of old and new, poor and rich, couldn’t be described in any way. and this contrast could be seen amongst the people on the streets too. one scene in shenzhen, in particular, will stay in my mind for quite a while. as we were walking up an overhead bridge, we saw this woman carrying a sleeping baby and sitting on the floor. she was picking and eating some discarded rice from an overturned garbage bin. i did not feel for her, to be honest. but my heart ached when i saw the baby. perhaps i have a girl myself and i know the needs of a child. i couldn’t imagine how this mother could meet her baby’s needs. i really felt and still feel sad for the young life. 😦

equality in the human race is just a myth. this, i acknowledge. but what can we do to minimise this inequality? we have people finding food from bins. we have p hilton getting away with a mysterious medical condition. we have african children walking around carrying fatal viruses. we have others splurging on lavish wedding celebrations. we…?

but of course, i’m probably looking at what’s obvious to the eyes. perhaps, deep inside every heart there is a soul that can be satisfied easily. all this soul needs is a rare gem called…

Contentment

Hell to those who despise
For they know not what we need
We may not have them all
But we do have each other
Which means so much more
Than what this freaking world
Could barely offer

You are all i care
You are all i have
You are all i need
And that’s fucking so enough

contentment

    and this is what i seriously need to cultivate in my own life.

Published in: on Sunday, June 10, 2007 at 2:10 am  Comments (3)  
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vacation

will leave for hong kong in a few hours’ time with my family. will probably have no chance to blog. see you all in a while. 🙂

Published in: on Sunday, June 3, 2007 at 9:44 pm  Comments (6)  
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never again

just bought another gadget. a new samsung pda phone named i600. blame it on nokia. you see, i sent my nokia phone (5300) for repair (i don’t want to elaborate on the problem of which i wasn’t at fault). but the after-sales service was really bad. it took them more than 2 weeks to fix my phone. and i had to call personally to check the repair status. (and there were more frustrations with their service…don’t want to talk about it anymore.) i picked up my repaired nokia and went somewhere half an hour later to have it traded for my samsung phone. i told myself no more nokia for the rest of my life.

still exploring my new samsung. hope that it will serve me well.

Published in: on Sunday, June 3, 2007 at 12:51 am  Comments (4)  
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remembering those who suffered

the blood that splattered
speaks for the crux that matters –
oozed kinship atter

Published in: on Saturday, June 2, 2007 at 1:29 am  Leave a Comment  

wonderment

i’m sitting here wondering what’s my purpose of blogging. is it just an opportunity to pen my thoughts and writings before they disappear from my mind completely? am i really trying to become THE writer in due course? or is this slowly becoming a silent killing addiction that is masking extremely well something detrimental lying beneath? surely it can’t be that doubting thomas’ spirit is playing tricks on my mind. and i want to believe that what i’m doing here does carry some weight in both my life and others’ lives. now i’m not even sure if i’m talking sense here. in any case, i’ll still continue blogging despite my wonderment.

Published in: on Friday, June 1, 2007 at 9:34 am  Comments (5)  
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Sunrise

sunrise

Sunrise
That was all I asked for
You told me I would get it

First day
You said you had a gruelling night
Second day
You said you had forgotten about it
Third day
You said the weather forecast wasn’t good

It went on and on and on
And that day never came

Differences were there for all to see
But I chose to hang on
I chose to have faith
I chose to believe

Sunrise
That was all I asked for
You told me I would get it

Fourth day
You said you were on duty
Fifth day
You said your health had failed
Sixth day
I said forget it

Once bitten twice shy
Only a fool like me was blind

Similarities were there for all to see
Now I chose to take off
I chose to have faith
I chose to believe

Sunrise
That is all I ask for
He tells me I will get it

First day
We enjoy sunrise

And I wonder
Will you ever have sunrise?

Published in: on Thursday, May 31, 2007 at 2:59 pm  Comments (2)  
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they, you and i

you were there
with me on the way up
you were talking
when I planted it
they came together
it was only awhile
but they were great
they felt really sensational
you were stunned
speechless for a moment
did I confess it?
i could no longer be sure
did you bear the same?
you could no longer be sure

you were there
ever charming from a distance
you were talking
when i could just observe
we never really came together
it was quite awhile
they looked great
they seemed really luscious
i was close to being stunned
speechless for a moment
did I wish it?
i could no longer be sure
did you bear the same?
you could no longer be sure

all i know
that the one next to me
will never be you

Published in: on Wednesday, May 30, 2007 at 5:08 pm  Comments (9)  
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the girl at the window

mum,
who’s that girl
at the window?
i don’t like the way
she looks at me.
i’m trying hard
to concentrate here.
am I doing
something wrong here?
please, mum,
tell her to go away.
the girl at the window,
she’s scaring
the wits out of me.

son,
who’s that girl
at the window?
i don’t like the way
she looks at you either.
concentrate and
don’t be bothered yet.
no, you are not doing
something wrong here.
please, son,
chew up the man’s brain now.
the girl at the window,
we’re going
to finish her up after this.

Published in: on Tuesday, May 29, 2007 at 9:49 pm  Comments (7)  
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what canterbury soul needs (no jokes, please)

following the footsteps of goodthomas, minx, maht, i’ve done a google search on “canterbury soul needs”. This is fun. Here are the results:

Canterbury Soul needs to suck it up and give the ball to Yao.
(Hey, I don’t like doing favours, besides, it’s not my fault Yao couldn’t reach the ball. He’s a bloody giant, you know.)

Canterbury Soul needs his dvds, pills.
(If only someone gives me more money to get those Grace Kelly dvds. And no, I don’t need pills. I need bills to wither my wealth. Damn it!)

Canterbury Soul needs to beef up his wardrobe.
(This is so true. Whenever I put on my smart long-sleeves at school, they always ask why. I tell them I have nothing else to pick in the mornings.)

Canterbury Soul needs to go away for a long time.
(Not so true. I love my wife and daughter too much to leave. Unless I can take them to the world of Barnia, as according to my students’ imagination, where its citizens, aptly named Barneys, greet you, “Bood borning! Bow bo bou bo?” and swear with words like, “Boh bhit! Bi brewed bit bup bagain!”)

Canterbury Soul needs to sharpen his game a la paris hilton
(What game? Taping myself in bed? Recording an album when I can’t sing? Posing for Guess? Come on, what’s so great about her that I have to follow her suit? Her final destination is almost like mine. Just that I’m going up and she’s…?)

Canterbury Soul needs to do to regain his form tonight.
(I struggled a bit last night…and it took me awhile before releasing my full load. Yes, I need to get it right tonight before I even dream of beating Nadal on clay. What? I thought we are talking about tennis?)

Canterbury Soul needs to eventually reach 8 apg in order to keep his teammates involved as he should.
(No idea what this is. But I know there is no ‘i’ in the word ‘team’.)

Canterbury Soul needs his teammates in order to be successful.
(What did I say earlier?)

Canterbury Soul needs to continue making strides in helping his team win.
(Ditto.)

Canterbury Soul needs to complete lines 1, 13-19. and 21 on the front of form 503 to claim his refund.
(What a ****! So much trouble for the puny amount of 20 cents doesn’t speak well for the ministry for good-for-something politicians.)

Canterbury Soul needs surgery to repair a herniated disc and will miss the rest of the season.
(Thank goodness, this isn’t happening to me really. The doctors have confirmed that my condition is much less serious. Just a non-permanent brain damage.)

Canterbury Soul needs to go to confession.
(I have tons of confessions. Which one to start with? Ok, I confess I had dreamt of being the no.1 blogger of all time.)

Canterbury Soul needs a head coach for varsity softball and assistant coaches for varsity boys and girls basketball, boys water polo and girls tennis.
(I need a billionaire sponsor for my academy of sports, seriously. Mr Gates, are you interested?)

Canterbury Soul needs to go.
(Where to?)

Canterbury Soul needs to go because trust me, he will not accept his diminished role without some level of negativity.
(Oh, have I been replaced here at “doors left open”?)

Canterbury Soul needs to be gone too.
(Does the world really want me gone completely?)

Canterbury Soul needs to hire a public relations rep as soon as possible.
(Looking at the way I communicate with fellow bloggers, I have to strongly agree.)

Canterbury Soul needs to grow up.
(I swear I’m not under 18.)

Canterbury Soul needs both funds as well as national exposure.
(Will anyone sponsor me to but my blog on TV?)

Canterbury Soul needs to put he’s ego aside.
(I always thank God I’m a humble person. Don’t believe me? Check my name tag on my chest: “The Most Humble Man on Earth”. I have no ego.)

Canterbury Soul needs emergency medical treatment.
(Looking at the amount of trash written here, I think I need it now.)

Canterbury Soul needs more room.
(This really is subjective. I don’t know how to respond here.)

Canterbury Soul needs to take more of a leadership role.
(I plan to take Bucephalus and lead my army of words to conquer Asia first!)

Canterbury Soul needs Margot because, as Margot herself has accurately observed, he could not find another wife if Margot were to leave him.
(Margot, you are so damned wrong. I’ve gone on to find another three wives.)

Canterbury Soul needs help for 40 homeless cats.
(Quick someone! Before I put them all in Bucephalus’ den.)

Published in: on Monday, May 28, 2007 at 1:42 pm  Comments (6)  
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the original

i made a blunder when writing the poem for Bucephalus. Seamus had actually set a 48-word limit to the poem or prose for each lion. i missed that part and went on writing one with over 150 words. i then spent some time editing the original and came up with the 48-word piece now published on the sidebar. brevity is a virtue i don’t have, so it was tough.

but Seamus was encouraging. he said i should publish my original piece for my lion, recognising the fact that the effort should not be wasted. i agreed and here’s the first one (if you are interested):

Bucephalus

The greatest animal of antiquity
Could only serve and die for
The greatest ruler of mankind
Alexander the Great

Dead and buried
At Jalalpur Sharif
The gods of the heavens
Have eternal designs
No man would grasp
As they stirred
The soul and spirit
Who had battled, trampled, bitten
Foes of the sovereign Macedon
And has it resided
In the regal body
Of the bona fide king of animals –

A lion
That reflects strength in unity
Power in community
Through the faces of all on earth

Fear no more of
Thy shadow and nemesis
For thou has yet
Another grand master
In the mould
Of a certain Canterbury Soul
Whose daily rewards for thee
Are immense and sure –
Poetry in the morn
Caress beneath the mane
Fruits that gratifies
Protection guarded with honour

So, go forth and fight with the Soul
Serving faithfully
Preparing to die valiantly
Just as thou had done at Hydaspes

notice the changes made. quite drastic…and the meaning’s different. i like both, each with its own purpose.

i’ve done my part for my lion and the circle. i certainly hope Bucephalus will continue to shine here and in the circle.

how about you? have you adopted a lion? 🙂

Published in: on Monday, May 28, 2007 at 9:12 am  Comments (2)  
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Lion Adopted

Seamus at Shameless Words has invited people to adopt one of his 48 lions. He has stated his purpose very clearly. I have chosen one unique-looking lion and named it “Bucephalus” for obvious reasons. As required by Seamus, I have put up the lion’s photograph and written a poem inspired by the beast (refer to the sidebar, just in case). Go visit Shameless Words if you are as intrigued as I was.

Published in: on Saturday, May 26, 2007 at 11:28 pm  Comments (6)  
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students’ support

i have several students who love to write. two of them have started to post their writings on blog sites after some encouragement. perhaps you can go visit them and give them your comments on their writings. they are only 12-year-old kids, so don’t be too harsh on them. their language might not be fantastic yet, but we should applaud them for having the love for writing. Here they are:

gan zi qing @ http://shadowstrlke.spaces.live.com/

edwin @ http://readmycompo.blogspot.com/

Published in: on Thursday, May 24, 2007 at 5:47 am  Comments (2)  
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Meme of Eight

I’ve been tagged. Jason has kindly tagged me to share 8 random facts of myself. I’ll do it here, hoping that you guys out there will get to know me a little more. But before presenting the facts, here are the rules for the meme:

1. Each player starts with 8 random facts/habits about themselves.

2. People who are tagged write their own blog post about their 8 things and post these rules.

3. At the end choose 8 people to get tagged and list their names.

4. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged and to read your blog.

Brevity is a virtue which I barely possess. So pardon me, please.

Names

When we bought our miniature Maltese a few years back, we promptly named her Fiji. F and J are the initials of our names respectively.

We also agreed that we would name our offspring according to the initials of our names. Hence our firstborn is Faith. The second one would start with J. Have toyed with Justyn or Jeremiah (the weeping prophet) if it’s a boy. No idea for a girl yet.

Actually when I was still studying many years ago, I thought of having a daughter named Isabel and a son named Oliver.

The Feather

My mother told me that when I was little I was always forbidden to enter the kitchen. Maybe she didn’t want me to learn her butcher skills. But I never obeyed her which left her with serious migraine. But one fine day, she realised that I had not entered the kitchen the whole morning. After doing some forensic work in and out of the kitchen, she discovered my nemesis – a chicken feather (from the feather duster). It had been lying right on the path to the kitchen. Then, she experimented with the feather the next day. It worked. I shunned the kitchen. Life became a bed of roses for her ever since.

Yo-yo and the Miracle

My secondary school education (aged 13 to 16) was similar to that of the swing of a yo-yo in terms of academic results. After acing Mathematics at primary school, I went on to flunk it in my first year in secondary school – 33/100. By the end of year 1, I had bounced back meekly. Year 2 was first a success, then a failure due to complacency. Year 3 started disastrously and the failing grades went on till Year 4, the graduating year (GCE ‘O’ levels). By the middle of the last year, I had flunk most of my subjects with a total aggregate of 32 (the passing mark was 20). After that fateful period, I decided to pull up my socks and work out my miracle. And it came…I managed to climb out of the bottomless pit and achieve distinctions in several subjects, including Mathematics. I think I aced the ‘O’ levels.

Tear-Jerkers

I admit. I’m a sucker for tear-jerking movies. Movies that have made me weep uncontrollably. Some examples are “Beaches”, “Patch Adams” and even “Titanic” (pathetic, I know…I watched it 4 times in the theatres). But I have to mention one of my all-time favourites – a Korean romance called “Il Mare” (something which Hollywood went on to adapt shamelessly in the mould of “The Lake House”). If you haven’t watched it, I strongly recommend it. The love birds fell in love with each other without really seeing each other (something like “Sleepless in Seattle”). The music score is quite fantastic too.

Army Daze

Serving the army is a form of National Service in Singapore. And that is mandatory for all Singaporean males. Well, I must say I had a colourful army life. It started with some basic military training with the infantry unit. I was almost drafted into the brigade scouts company after that. Fortunately the Air Force took me for some flying experience programme. Most of my time was spent at a recruitment centre doing clerical work. The Air Force gave me an invitation to join them as a pilot trainee which I stupidly rejected. I was sent to a combat engineer unit. It turned out to be hellish! When in hell, I applied to be a pilot trainee. After my commanders’ training in hell, I duly joined the Air Force as a pilot trainee. I actually flew some propeller planes, totalling my flight hours to some 10 hours! Then, I failed my first flight exam, and was sent back to the combat engineers. With my rank, I was able to perform the role of recruit instructor. I shouted at the army recruits, ordered them to run and do push-ups, with the noble intention of disciplining. With that, I ended my two-and-a-half years of National Service. Now I’m still an active soldier who is only called upon once a year, performing the role of a Platoon Sergeant.

Cars

I like cars. But I’m not a freak or fanatic. Still, I have some dream cars. And, no, they are the Pagani Zondas, the Ferraris or the Lamborghinis. I’m a teacher. I don’t belong to the super rich group.

But some cars I would love to put my hands on include the BMW 7-series, the Mercedes S-Class (perhaps AMG), the Mazda RX-8, the Lexus RX-400, etc.

I used to own a mini-van in a Renault Express. Now I’m driving a Ford Focus saloon. After reading so much of pollution and global warming, I think my next car would be a hybrid one – Honda Civic hybrid or Toyota Prius.

Business Opportunities

I still dream of being my own boss. These are some business ideas:

A shop that sells music records/CDs and books
A tuition centre
An I.T. solutions company
Renting out sleeping space in shopping malls for tired shoppers to take power naps (the Japs and Americans are doing it.)
A business that sells anything that ladies love to buy (this sounds very profitable!)

I think the last option looks the best bet. Ladies don’t mind spending. Am I right?

Music

I have always loved music, and ever since I was 17, I have loved making music too. At 17, I bought my first Yamaha guitar and started playing it. My guitar skills picked up rapidly and before long, I was playing in worship services with Campus Crusade for Christ and churches. I also wrote my own songs (about 31 pieces now).

Some nine years ago, I joined my friend in starting our own band – Water & Wine. We performed at gigs all over the country. I got to play rhythm, bass and lead. I was on vocals for some songs and did backups too. We even got to record one song on a compilation CD. It was quite cool.

After that, my music exploration stops. Finding time to do it has been a challenge. Once in a while, I’ll pick up my guitar and reminisce my glorious days. Sometimes I will also bluff my way through the piano in the school’s music room.

The best that I can do now is to listen to and appreciate music.

Well, I hope I haven’t bored you to tears yet. Any comment about the above-mentioned facts is welcomed.

And now I’m going to tag the following folks for being such…… :

1. Atyllah (before she leaves, or has she? Hey, come back!)
2. Louis
3. Seamus
4. Romance Writer
5. Cave Blogem
6. Wild Guppy
7. Reader’s Words
8. Patty

Published in: on Tuesday, May 22, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Comments (5)  
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which words do i own?

Cave Blogem over at Pretty Good on Paper had done several analysis on words used in the blogging community. I had volunteered my blog and he had kindly done some study on my humble lodge here. Amazingly he discovered that I had managed to churn out some 682 new words to his database so far. How he did his analysis or study, I can never fully comprehend. But I have already thanked him profusely for the hard work done.

From his sample of words (and blogs), these are words which only I have used so far:

me only

And here’s how they are compared to his sample of blogs:

comparison

He even has his Haiku-generating algorithm. The words are mine, according to him. The arrangement is supposedly almost purely mechanical.

Woeful on the oak,
germs of a paroxysm
recover midfield.

Cave Blogem

If you would like to be a volunteer for his study, please go over there and let him know. I’m sure he’ll be glad to help you.

By the way, Atyllah the Hen is leaving Earth. I think I am sad about it. So if you feel the same way, please go persuade her and tell her that we, the weaklings on Earth, need her mighty power to sustain us. Go, quick!

Published in: on Monday, May 21, 2007 at 9:51 pm  Leave a Comment  
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rather tight and dry

had been rather busy the last couple of days. at work, marking pupils’ exam scripts. left me rather dry at night (most of my writings were born and bred during these hours). so the brain cells couldn’t generate enough to write creatively. this weekend had been spent doing some more marking, and more importantly, relaxing with my two ladies. finally got my laptop – a brand new toshiba A200. watched the boring FA Cup final and Spiderman 2 on TV the last two evenings. absolutely no room for writing. tomorrow’s the beginning of the last work week before the 4-week vacation. plenty to look forward to: rest, play, more work, family time, Hong Kong trip, blogging, etc.

Published in: on Sunday, May 20, 2007 at 10:08 pm  Comments (5)  
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my second entry

Maht over at The Moon Topples had his second fiction-writing competition based on the theme “Growth”. Again, I submitted an entry shamelessly(borrowed from Seamus), hoping to gain more. Again, not totally satisfied with what I wrote, but thought it could be a very brief extract of something longer. Of course, I did not win anything. But I’m really glad that there are such opportunities for unpublished or novice writers like yours truly. The winning entries there are excellent. Go there and enjoy reading. Here’s mine:

The Mission

For the first time in twelve years, Farah could wake up from her slumber seeing the morning sun. She thought she was dreaming initially. She could still distinguish colours. The sky had finally cleared. It looked flawlessly blue. When was the last time I saw blue, she wondered with a faint smile. She checked the monitor that read “31 Jan 2674, 7:06 a.m., Marina, Singapore Sector”.

She pushed the green button. “Sustainability module disarmed,” a voice dictated. She pushed the yellow button. The capsule opened. She raised herself slowly from a horizontal posture and sat. Then with a rather mighty effort, she stood up.

The smell of fresh air exhilarated her and she gave her body a huge stretch. For a minute or two, she just stood there absorbing the rare snowless moment, eyes closed. The heat from the Sun not only warmed her physically, it actually spoke to her heart and soul. There is hope after all, she thought.

Farah opened her eyes and made a visual 360º scan round her capsule. Barring the thick layers of snow, nothing had changed a bit. The Sheares Bridge still stood mightily tall about a mile away. The Esplanade’s unique spiky rooftop still looked comical despite the snowcap it sported. The casino skyscrapers still dominated the whole landscape with their sheer size and millions of glass panes that reflected the sunlight brilliantly.

Then it dawned on her she was standing right in the middle of the snow-caked Singapore River. The storm must have taken her all the way here. She looked around again. She was alone.

She remembered the drill. She stooped and pulled out The Hub from a side compartment of the capsule. She pressed the power button on The Hub. Then, she held it with both her hands and stretched her arms. A purple laser beam scanned her eyes. “Farah Abdullah, T43556777G, female, aged 74. Please proceed,” read the monitor on The Hub. She then positioned The Hub directly above her head. “Scanning brain chip in progress, please do not remove The Hub,” a voice echoed. Seconds later, she could hear The Hub again, “Brain chip scanned. Message sent. Community activated. Please proceed to build community.”

Farah removed The Hub from her head, and kept it in a sling bag. She had the mission in mind. She was not looking forward to it, but she had to do it for the sake of mankind. She stepped out of the capsule and began trudging through the snow on the river.

Barely a minute later, she heard several beeps from The Hub. She took it out and stared at the monitor.

“Lee Teck Hong, T99574112Z, male, aged 17. Location: Raffles, Singapore Sector.”

“Charles Rajandren, T25872144A, aged 24. Location: Bangalore, India Sector.”

“Marco Paldini, T09866352C, aged 80. Location: Naples, Italy Sector.”

“Kevin Jones, T23234098M, aged 45. Location: New York, American Sector.”

Her heart sank when she read the next line, “No other surviving males within The Hub’s radar. Please proceed to build community.”

Published in: on Wednesday, May 16, 2007 at 4:42 pm  Comments (16)  
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my take on telling tales

the wonderful minx posted about telling tales and ended with, “Now my tale is done for today, what about yours?”.

so i thought i’ll have my take on that:

unleavened lives dwell
til the day words interweave
and dictate our play

how’s that?

Published in: on Monday, May 14, 2007 at 4:54 pm  Comments (7)  
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lost or found

caught in the middle
of the dry spell that bound tight
harbinger of flood?

Published in: on Sunday, May 13, 2007 at 11:30 pm  Comments (4)  
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Flip

We are on the edge
Neither of us dares to choose
Let the flip of the coin decide
First flip yours, second flip mine

Eyes closed, fingers crossed
Up, up and away
Palm enclosure
Head it is –

Adversity begets the supremacy of Man

Go on
Live your life

Eyes closed, fingers crossed
Up, up and away
Palm enclosure
Tail it is –

Life is so immaterial that death becomes material

Go on
Lose my life

Guess this is it
Parting has never been easier

Published in: on Thursday, May 10, 2007 at 10:57 pm  Comments (7)  
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baggage

baggage

Published in: on Wednesday, May 9, 2007 at 10:34 pm  Comments (3)  
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Heist

Warmth skinned from within
As heaved through the feminine lodge
Solace and darkness so yearned
At fresh flesh genesis fleeced

Frowned upon palpable silence
Under barrages of soul bellow
Innocence’s divine origin
Now ever deflowered ’cross ages

Visions oh so chaste
By minutes gates of foul exposed
Tongues of cherubic nature shunned
To wag the wag’s the pun

Socks worked for agape
Unto self could sure be done
Wise fools’ calculated acumen
In lust trust then shall build

Fruits from trinity raided
With weapon o’ mess destruction dubbed time

Published in: on Tuesday, May 8, 2007 at 11:48 pm  Leave a Comment  
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There, There

You can impugn my parents. They gave me the name. But it is a name I’m proud of. It offers me a sense of purpose in life. Confidence is never off my books, and I know I have the looks to supplement it.

“Casanova, eat your breakfast now!” Mum yelled from the kitchen.

“No thanks! I’m running late!” I picked up my Alfred Dunhill suitcase and left quickly.

Life is so magnificent. My loaded parents who run a software engineering firm love me with lots of cash. Promotion at my journalism work is imminent too. The last I heard I am on the way up to VPship. And of course, there are the Melanies and Penelopes and Rachels and Nicoles on weekends at Café del Mar. Money, career, girls……all are under my control. If there is one thing that’s missing, it has to be a driving license – something which I have been trying to acquire the last five years. A driving license coupled with a Ferrari will surely enhance my high society life.

The bus-stop was packed with working professionals, students, etc. I conducted a visual scan around. No, none attractive. Then, the bus arrived. I went with the crowd and boarded it. The commuters were packed like sardines. As I squeezed my way in, I saw her.

She of very pretty eyes, like those you would see in a manga comic. Her straight long hair fell gracefully on her shoulders. Her sharp nose and luscious lips justified the tag ‘beauty’ which was written all over her. Her stylish Calvin Klein outfit screamed for attention. Her bosoms looked full from where I was. And she had this pair of really slim, tender-looking legs. The best part had to be her smile which happened to be directed at me.

I stood next to her. I was hoping that the old man sitting next to her would get off soon. This gorgeous lady looked too rare a gem to be missed. The bus picked up speed as I tried hard to stay balanced amongst the standing crowd. I glanced at her and caught her looking at me. She was smiling very sweetly.

My ego heightened. My confidence grew. I believed I had her attention. I had sent her heart fluttering. If looks could kill, she would have died in my hands there and then. I lowered my head and looked at her. There she was, peeking at me again. This time, her honey-like grin was wider.

There, there. Go easy, I thought. I knew she was mine. I was waiting for the right moment to……

“Excuse me,” she stood, clearly about to alight from the bus. I scrambled to my senses, and realised that time was running out. I must ask for her number. I looked at her and smiled. She was still smiling. I knew I already had her.

“Mister, I don’t mean to be rude. But you forgot to zip your pants,” she spoke gently before walking off the bus.

Published in: on Sunday, May 6, 2007 at 10:31 pm  Comments (5)  
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cold coffee

the coffee you made me tonight was cold, really cold

the bleak weather that commenced the twilight of celebration
the unrequited calls that heralded the destiny by dinnertime
the sporadic ripostes that pervaded the tête-à-tête
the desolate gaze that was revealed in the eyes of intimacy
the vociferous hush that sustained itself athwart the table
the callous intention that turned out well expectedly
the sorrowful torrents that matched the storm stride for stride
the desultory oaths that was crafted in the vacuity of love
the deceitful psyche that could veil all transgressions
the nefarious benevolence that metamorphosed wrath into exoneration
the fecund blade that propagated the kernels of condemnation
the final embrace that was cherished in the wee hours of life

the coffee you made me tonight was cold, really cold

Published in: on Saturday, May 5, 2007 at 1:16 am  Comments (4)  
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powerful

i was going through some Holy Sonnets by John Donne, and i felt ministered. i feel that i have to share this particular one with a powerful message here:

Batter my heart, three-person'd God; for you
As yet but knock; breathe, shine, and seek to mend;
That I may rise, and stand, o'erthrow me, and bend
Your force, to break, blow, burn, and make me new.
I, like an usurp'd town, to another due,
Labour to admit you, but Oh, to no end.
Reason, your viceroy in me, me should defend,
But is captived, and proves weak or untrue.
Yet dearly I love you, and would be loved fain,
But am betroth'd unto your enemy;
Divorce me, untie, or break that knot again,
Take me to you, imprison me, for I,
Except you enthrall me, never shall be free,
Nor ever chaste, except you ravish me.

i don’t think i’ll ever reach Donne’s level in poetry. but i’m glad to have the chance to read his work.

more about John Donne below:

http://www.luminarium.org/sevenlit/donne/
http://www.online-literature.com/donne/
http://www.island-of-freedom.com/DONNE.HTM

Published in: on Wednesday, May 2, 2007 at 10:27 am  Comments (2)  
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greece is the word

as if to give my little girl an early birthday present, my beloved Liverpool had just beaten Chelsea 4-1 on penalties in the Champions League semi-final. ahhh…memories of 2005 come flooding back now. will celebrate my girl’s 2nd birthday on 25th this month…and will probably celebrate Liverpool’s triumph in the final at athens. savoury, savoury!

Published in: on Wednesday, May 2, 2007 at 5:32 am  Comments (4)  
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liked the experience and more coming up

the clarity of night contest was over a few days back. you would probably know by now that my first entry didn’t win anything as expected since it was my first venture into serious fiction. but i think i’ve won some friends. and most importantly, i’ve won some experiences. i really enjoy writing lately. and i enjoy sharing my writing with people who enjoy reading. hopefully my pieces have intrigued and will continue to intrigue them.

anyway, “Moebius” will remain one of my favourite compositions. not just the theme, but also the way i paced the events unconventionally. below are some positive and not-so-positive comments left for “Moebius” over at clarity. i’m flattered by the positive ones and delighted by the ‘confusions’ i’ve caused.

Joni said...

Umm, sorry, you've lost me.

Can someone explain it to me?

I'm usually pretty down with abstract, but this one really isn't connecting.

DonnaG said...

Somebody dreaming about suicide? Shades of "Groundhog Day". Sorry, author, this one leaves me feeling kinda lost.

Scott said...

I was hoping to have it explained in the comments myself. I'm a little lost too.

Nope. Read it again and still don't get it. Is this poetry. At first I thought it was someone in prison, escaping, just below a grate that takes a gargantuan effort to life. Probably too literal. Sorry, I just don't get it.

Nothingman said...

Sweet...interesting read. :)

I get you man, i get you ;)

N

Scott said...

I should have phrased my comments differently. What I should have asked for was some help to understand. The writing is wonderful, and like poetry, evokes images, even if I don't understand the message. Sorry I wasn't more supportive.

Joni said...

I apologize as well if my comment seemed negative.

I'm intrigued by the words and was hoping someone would help me put together any obvious connections my brain wasn't making.

The writing itself is very good and definite points for originality.

heather said...

i too am lost. but i enjoy it for some reason. i keep coming back to this to re-read it, even thought of it at work tonight. the thing of it is, is that i know it's there just below the surface, i just can't see it cause of the ripples. (the meaning that is)

Minx said...

I liked this treatment CS, it has captured those final, distracted, tortured moments of this person's suicide.

I thank the higher powers that we do not all write in exactly the same way, that we are still free to explore our varied styles and examine our individual interpretations freely. The writing world would be a very dull place without explorers!

September said...

interesting piece, canterbury soul. suicide. very disturbing. you got that across quite well.

jason evans said...

For me, it felt like whirling thoughts trying to pump someone up to commit suicide. It seems to leave open whether the protagonist actually does it. "...dishes and make my wishes" is oddly alluring.

High marks for pacing and entertainment value.

anyway, i have another chance to show my prowess in writing at Maht’s place. His second competition has just started. i’m excited about writing another piece of fiction that will hopefully generate more interests or perhaps controversy. 😉 wish me luck!

Published in: on Tuesday, May 1, 2007 at 1:35 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Songs of the Father and His Son

love

David

Beholden with deep gratitude
Not knowing the grounds
Of which this grace came to being
An austere life devoid of fanfare
Hallowed nuptials with a gorgeous nymph
Wishing an epoch of gaiety
Along came an unblemished progeny
A gratification that surpasses my own love

Solomon

Yielded by the heavens
Farmed by the man and woman of old
Pure in the heart
Virtuous in the mind
Nothing in the avenue
To barricade the tender devotion
Reserved for the one
Whose embrace tightens my soul

Published in: on Tuesday, May 1, 2007 at 12:07 pm  Comments (4)  
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The Apostles

The Apostles

The nub of the life
Likens utter compliance
One hegemony

Published in: on Monday, April 30, 2007 at 10:24 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Double Doses

“Hi!” he said with a certain intensity.

“Hi!” she uttered, feeling a little nervous.

“Thought I just come by to visit you,” he said, almost losing control.

“Sure. Come on in,” she beamed. She opened the door, paving his way.

He stepped into the house, heaving a silent sigh of relief. Her home was simple, but classy. There was no mess to look at. Everything was in perfect order. Almost, except for a pair of Armani pants hung over a dining chair.

“Can I get you something to drink? Earl grey, perhaps?” she asked in a tone that hinted joy. She disappeared into the kitchen.

“That’ll be fine. Thank you!” he replied, clearly distracted by the pants. He sat on the leather couch, looking a wee bit confused. Wasn’t she supposed to be single? He knew she had a divorce some years back. Her social circle had been pretty confined since. He really never expected a man in her house.

She walked out from the kitchen, holding a silver tray. A teapot with two teacups were placed neatly on it. She sat next to him on the couch. He looked flustered and excited at the same time.

“Am I disturbing you?” he finally blurted out. His heart was beating rapidly, expecting the worst. His eyes still on the dining chair.

“I beg your pardon?” she said. Then she realised it. “Oh…not at all. My boyfriend’s out for the day.”

His fear had been confirmed. His mind was in a swirl. His visions blurred. He had lost her.

“Oh…I think…I should leave now,” he could not put his words together. He wasn’t sure if it was the right response. She appeared surprised.

“No, please don’t leave,” she said, looking anxious. Her hand reached for his. “I like you. I need you to stay.”

He was stunned. Is this some kind of a joke, he thought. She was holding his hand firmly. At that moment, he could feel a very strong sense of love and belonging. Her hand felt extremely warm. He was melting away fast. He looked at her in the eyes. Her soul bared naked at the pupils. He had loved her since the first time he met her.

It was at a teachers’ conference where they both represented their respective schools. They were introduced to each other. Over the course of the three days, they very much stayed together. Over lunch and tea-breaks, and the R & R party. They chatted a lot, very much like they had known each other for years. He was already looking at his soul-mate. At least that was what he had believed.

The urge was coming. He wanted to pull her close and kiss her lips. He wanted to hold her tight and whisper into her ear, “I love you!” He was already losing his mind. To hell with the boyfriend. She needed me. Maybe he had not been treating her seriously enough. Maybe he hadn’t loved her enough. Maybe he had been just like the jerk she got a divorce with. Maybe……It was time for him to confess his love for her.

“Zach, I have something to tell you,” she spoke, thrilled yet calm. “I just discovered that I’m your sister.”

He was dumbfounded.

“Yes, I’m your sister!”

His mind drew a blank.

“Here’s the P.I. report……”

He just sat there.

Published in: on Sunday, April 29, 2007 at 11:29 pm  Comments (8)  
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Promising

Look at the beautiful night sky
With the twinkling stars and the elegant moon
It certainly promises much
The cool sea breeze
And the salty smell of humidity
They definitely promise much

How I wish all these had come earlier
You know, we could have really lived happily ever after
We could have realistically grown old together
Pity the human nature is such
That we have our differences
That we could not manage them well enough

Feel the sand around here
The grains are ever so smooth, so fine
Just like how they used to be
Hear the tides rolling in
They sing so merrily in our ears
Bringing back fresh waves of sweet memories

How I wish the human nature is such
Consistent, everlasting and adaptable
That we can be as gay as we want to be
Pity Mother Nature is such
That we’ll always find it a tall order
To keep up with her standard of serendipity

As I observe the contours of your body
As I caress the hardened pounds of muscles
I thank God for the blessings we’d had together
I long to look into your soulful eyes again
I long to kiss your sensual lips again
But I’m just too afraid to face you

She’s calling me now
She’s telling me that there is hope
She’s begging me to turn myself in
Life’s like that, she says
Ups and downs, loss and gain
Health and sickness, life and death

He looked at the beautiful night sky again. With the twinkling stars and the elegant moon, it looked promising. Life could still go on. Do it, she said. He reached for his cellular and made the call. Then, he picked up his lover’s head and stood by the body. He closed his eyes and absorbed her singing voice. He was looking forward to his new life.

The first car arrived. Two of them walked cautiously towards him with their pistols in their hands. He offered no resistance. He was taken into the car as others began their work. With the window halfway up, he could hear one speak to another. “One male body. Still searching for his head.”

Published in: on Saturday, April 28, 2007 at 5:09 pm  Comments (4)  
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my first entry

Jason Evans opened a fiction-writing contest that challenges us to write something of 250 words based on the theme “Endless Hour” and this picture.

Endless Hours

I knew I had to take part in it though I’ve not written many fictions. It’s not so much about the prizes, but the exposure and the learning experience, and hopefully the feedback I get from people round the world. Spent about one and a half hours working on my first competitive entry. Can’t say I’m totally satisfied with it, but quietly delighted that I have written this one, exactly 250.

Moebius

It’s 10.33 a.m.

I saunter into the kitchen. I stand up.

The end.

It is finished. I’m liberated, irrevocably.

It has been a protracted decision to do it; utterly iniquitous to myself. Vertigo has no meaning now. Sensation is found wanting at my limps. This is it.

In a fraction of a second, I am on top. 40 months of weight-training has primed me for this. I tighten my grasp on the grills.

Please, Lord, help me with my final impetus. I stare at the dishes and make my wishes. I’m now literally on my knees, if you can still spot them. I snigger again. Again the nerve tries to wreck me with pain. The skin just tears. Not as smooth, ’cos it has the v-edges. I pick up another piece and slit across the right one.

I chortle and cast it aside. The nerve tries to wreck me with the weapon, pain. The cut is clean albeit the trace of fluid has flourished. This piece’s appetite has been whetted over a long period and it shows. Almost instantly, my hand swiftly severs the left one.

I need to draw strength from you, Lord, please. I stare at the dishes and make my wishes again. The mind is acting up again. I pick up the pieces and begin to quiver. Please, Lord, give me the courage to complete my task. I stare at the dishes and make my wishes.

I saunter into the kitchen. I stand up.

It’s 10.33 a.m.

Published in: on Wednesday, April 25, 2007 at 12:35 am  Comments (7)  
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she?

woe to me
for i do not comprehend my puny mind
which thought it had all but figured out
knowing right from wrong

love and hate
admiration and disgust
seem to be tiny shades of each other
grey is the colour that dominates

she’s the chief
someone my brain chooses to love and hate
someone my brain loses sanity over
surely me not to be blamed

i yearn for her
yet love to shun her
i’m attracted to her charm
yet puked at her looks

crossroads of nerves
bundles of verves

Published in: on Tuesday, April 24, 2007 at 9:51 am  Comments (3)  
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The Game Plan

Maintain the closure
On sullied garments.
Intersperse sweltering pick-me-up
Onto the foundation of the laundry silo
For it ameliorates absorb pong.

Sort the laundry
Before sluicing
Alleviates attire bear longer.
Secede the frail,
Towels and divan linen or denims
From customary freight.

Curtail attrition
On fashion
By cleansing
And desiccating them
Inside out.

Seal all zippers,
Buttons and bond cords
Prior to swabbing.
This curbs dresses
From receiving kinks in sync.

When rinsing
Dazzling-coloured costume
For the fundamental measure,
Shampoo in frosty tides
And affix half a goblet of salt
That facilitates
Establish the insignia
To the recurring cycle.

When drying,
Ensure pins and lines
Are virtuous
To avert infamy
On outfit.
Steep dowels
In sultry lathered fluid
To eradicate filth and muck.

Situate a diminutive dish
In laundry locale
To amass ancient history
From receptacles.

Published in: on Saturday, April 21, 2007 at 12:26 am  Comments (3)  
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six sentences

I came across this unique blog recently. There, you are invited to write anything in six sentences. There is a huge collection of six-sentence pieces of which many are excellent. Your humble servant here took a shot at writing one too, and it has just been published. Do go there and take a look, and perhaps, you could give me your comments on my not-so-clever piece.

Published in: on Thursday, April 19, 2007 at 10:51 pm  Comments (2)  
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back on track

my lady and i had gone to see a specialist on thyroid. as long as we manage the condition well, having a second child is not a problem. the only problem is that this condition can be inherited. at least, it’s not a major illness. it can be controlled in several ways. one good thing came out of this condition though: my lady has slimmed down.

i’m glad to be back blogging. feel kind of rusty though. the brain hasn’t worked creatively yet. it has been busy at work almost to full-load. so it’ll take quite sometime before i could churn out another couple of masterpieces here.

have been working about 12 hours a day from Mondays to Fridays. tiring but satisfying too. not sure if this is really what i want in the long run. time spent with family, especially the little one, has been compromised somewhat during the weekdays. so really cherish my weekends now.

as for the 14-minute question, i’m still working on it.

Published in: on Tuesday, April 17, 2007 at 10:48 pm  Comments (5)  
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The King and I

Solomon’s fallen
For all his foolish brilliance
Where is my solace?

Published in: on Monday, April 16, 2007 at 12:19 am  Comments (3)  
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a question

after learning about my lady’s condition(which apparently is hereditary) and getting inspired by my “14 minutes” post, i asked a question, “What would I do if I’m left with only 14 minutes to live?” i shall hibernate and think about it.

The vulnerability of human beings is subtly revealing itself so much that it is no longer a joke. C.S.

Published in: on Thursday, April 5, 2007 at 10:11 pm  Comments (6)  
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it is

Thyroid, it is. Though expected after much research ourselves, she still cried. Not so much that she will suffer, but she’s concerned that it might affect our plan for a second child. Doc assured us that if the condition is managed properly, conceiving is not a problem. But first we requested to see a specialist who will probably work with our gynae and advise us if having another child is fine. It might take a year or two of medication, or even more. About 50% of the patient could recover early. A number of uncertainties if you ask me. We’ll wait till Monday when we see the specialist.

Not in the mood to write here now. Will take a short break from blogging.

Thank you all for your warm support! I never thought I could have a circle of friends in the community here.

Will catch up soon!

Really, thank you!

Published in: on Thursday, April 5, 2007 at 5:10 pm  Comments (3)  
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keeping our fingers crossed

my lady went for a blood test today. the doc suspected a thyroid problem. will only know the result tomorrow morning. we hope it’s negative.

Published in: on Wednesday, April 4, 2007 at 10:23 am  Comments (6)  
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Mask

Humor ’tis been taught
An armor that masks sorrow
Tumor old man laughs

(a feeble attempt inspired by Maht and his haiku)

Published in: on Tuesday, April 3, 2007 at 9:48 am  Comments (5)  
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14 minutes

8.59 p.m.
Tonight, I really had a wonderful time spent with you.

I’m not very good with words. I just know that my feelings for you have grown stronger by the seconds. As I walked you home, I wanted to tell you how I sincerely feel for you and how much I want to be with you.

But summoning my courage has proven more arduous than anything else I’ve done. I was too weak to do it.

I could only bid you farewell.

9.06 p.m.
Now, I want to make it right. I wish to have another opportunity to try again. I’m nervous, but hopeful and excited. Yes, I think I must be honest with you.

9.11 p.m.

12th minute

I wanted to make it right.

I wished to have another opportunity to try again.

I was nervous, but hopeful and excited.

Yes, I thought I ought to be honest with you.

9.13 p.m.
Now I understand what it means to “seize the moment”.

Now, I could only bid you farewell.

Published in: on Monday, April 2, 2007 at 10:55 pm  Comments (10)  
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The Paroxysm of Rage and Laughter

paroxysm.jpg
Troubles indeed
Self-control has lost its navigation
Sensibility has been thoroughly
Vanquished and undone
By a certain Mr Circumstances
Whose circumcision has rendered him
Resume the tyranny of time and space
Poor, poor old master
Resigning to have his fate
Condemned to eternity
Not knowing which outburst to abide by
Anger, amusement, fury, hilarity
Laughter, mirth, rage, wrath
If only mortal could innovate
If only divine could intervene
This paroxysm might just cease, perchance

Published in: on Sunday, April 1, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Comments (2)  
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till life do us part

your words convinced me
your love warmed me
your actions melted me
your sacrifices nailed me
you were meant for me
    so, it really puzzles me
    why you didn’t do it, for me
    why you didn’t put in effort, for me
    why you didn’t trust your faith, for me
    why you didn’t insist on showing the way, for me
well, i guess this is it
you have crossed the path
i’m left behind
you have reached the destiny
i’m stuck to doom
    pardon me for asking
    did we say, “till life do us part”?
Published in: on Saturday, March 31, 2007 at 11:57 pm  Comments (2)  
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lessons

two lessons i learnt this week:

lesson no. 1

Sometimes,
It isn’t what we can do
That creates an impression.
It is what we can’t do
That does the job.

half-full or half-empty?

lesson no. 2

We spend most of our time
Thinking of what we could have done
Instead of what we actually have done.

Death……Life

Dewdrops of grief and glee
The path to Normandy
Sizzling ashes of glory

40 torrential days and nights
Hub of the soul that bites
Wishes deprived of rights

Dagger of slain Duncan
War cry, trumpets and siren
Rays of light that darken

Terminal point of more returns
Desperation crashes and burns
Probe to call nature’s turns

Weight perceived as dodo’s bill
Posts signed with comic chill
ABC of nought or nil

Fluid form of healing stone
Rests that tag and hone
Novocaine that huffs the tone

Sand that dunes the face
Tinted grey of cells that pace
Long lost gods of Hercules’ grace

Laps that round and bound
Tasks of hound and pound
Rats with sound of ground

The passion of criminal act
Certainties to a soulful pact
Upstarts that rise to fact

Kimberly’s vow to last the trip
Sir Paul sworn to bud the nip
Father of love could taste a sip

Youthful does that prance
Hot-blooded stamens that chance
Budding essence that looks askance

Innocence diminishing with time
World of wonders not all but a dime
Image of him who speaks in mime

Published in: on Tuesday, March 27, 2007 at 11:44 pm  Comments (4)  
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in the mood for more

he did it again. bright eyes a.k.a. conor oberst made me tear again with his heart-wrenching number “poison oak”…

the sound of loneliness makes me happier…


(video from theaals)

Poison Oak

Poison oak, some boyhood bravery
When a telephone was a tin can on a string
And I fell asleep with you still talking to me
You said you weren't afraid to die

In polaroids you were dressed in women's clothes
Were you made ashamed, why'd you lock them in a drawer?
I don't think that I ever loved you more

Then when you turned away
When you slammed the door
When you stole the car
And drove towards Mexico
And you wrote bad checks
Just to fill your arm
I was young enough, I still believed in war

Well, let the poets cry themselves to sleep
And all their tearful words will turn back into steam

But me I'm a single cell
On a serpents tongue
There's a muddy field where a garden was
And I'm glad you got away
But I'm still stuck out here
My clothes are soaking wet
From your brother's tears

And I never thought this life was possible
You're the yellow bird that I've been waiting for

The end of paralysis
I was a statuette
Now I'm drunk as hell on a piano bench
And when I press the keys
It all gets reversed
The sound of loneliness makes me happier

i’m really melancholic at this moment. i’m in the mood for tears. any other songs you could recommend now?

Published in: on Monday, March 26, 2007 at 6:26 pm  Leave a Comment  
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The Real Need

Perhaps
A wider mind
A greater capacity
A larger library
A bigger world
Will do the trick
For us to enjoy them
To the fullest
But I suspect
We need
A timeless life
To do the same trick
Perhaps

(inspired by Susan’s insatiable appetite)

Published in: on Saturday, March 24, 2007 at 1:11 am  Comments (11)  
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block blocked

the block
that blocks
the block’s attempt
to blog
must be blocked
or the block’s attempt
to blog
will be blocked
thus blocking
the block’s desire
to share
but the fact that
the block’s blog
now looks blocked
shows that the block
is suffering from a block
as the block has no answer
to the block

(utterly woeful, i know)

Published in: on Thursday, March 22, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Comments (4)  
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obsessive-compulsive disorder?

i was having a meeting with my colleagues and leader this afternoon. someone mentioned something about compulsive disorder in one student. the rest started joking about their different mild compulsive disorder. intrigued, i searched for ‘compulsive disorder’ on the net. found that there is really such a condition except that it is properly termed ‘obsessive-compulsive disorder‘ or ocd (remember jack nicholson’s role in ‘as good as it gets’?). after reading about it, discovered that this is a rather common condition. then i realise that i, too, have some traits of ocd. perhaps the rest of you also have some similar traits which we can know here. send me a mail if you have some interesting or unique traits, and with your permission, i can publish them here.

allow me to start (albeit mine are probably very trivial and mild):

canterbury soul
* minutes after lying in bed, will get up to check if the main door is locked
* after walking some distance from my car, will walk back to check if the car doors are locked
* will wash my hands after touching every thing (big or small) deemed unclean (and yes, i wash my hands after putting on my shoes)

jadepark
Oh I am totally OCD–phobia of germs, phobia of touching shopping carts and handrails and handholds on the subway. I don’t like when people sneeze, and I also pick my hands and feet on a regular basis. It’s awful! I’m sure there’s more that I do.

susan abraham
Yes, I admit…I admit. Me too…
But not at the moment…
Before yes, once or twice. A phase.
Thank God, it wasn’t constant.
Checking for running water from taps…or lights.
At night, in bed.
Did I turn off the tap? Did I turn off the lights? That kind of thing.

verilion
I have a reusable bag that I bought from my local supermarket. After using it I fold it carefully and put it back in the little pouch it comes with. As I did this absently one day I watched as my colleagues eyes bugged out and became flabbergasted before one finally burst out: “What the fuck are you doing?” Who knows what other crazy little things I do without thinking about it. Although I do wear matching underwear ALL the time. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that though. OCD is called TOC in France.

marie
I’m the same. I go to bed and then have to get up again to check if I’ve switched off everything and that the doors are all locked. As for germs, I have to wash my hands as soon as I get home. Imagine all those germs you can catch on public transport! I also wipe the bottom of my shoes with anti-bacterial wipes.

gingermiss offers some important lessons of ocd. Please read…

(more…)

Published in: on Wednesday, March 21, 2007 at 6:27 pm  Comments (5)  
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on all ears

what have I been listening to recently? almost lost count of them. here are my most recent more than decent spins which I splurged on (in alphabetical order):

1. the devil and god raging inside me ~ brand new (a rather refreshing look at rock…caught them at a listening post at hmv)

2. digital ash in a digital urn & noise floor ~ bright eyes (always a talented lyrical songster…one of my favs)

3. the crane wife ~ the decemberists (you can only like them after listening to them more than five times…excellent!)

4. ys ~ joanna newsom (much talked about and many people’s album of the year…had to agree with them after getting hooked by this very unique lady)

5. veneer ~ josé gonzález (had been waiting for this for a long time after hearing him with zero 7…finally got it at a premium price at hmv…masterfully good music)

6. these streets ~ paolo nutini (a new kid with some catchy tunes…again knew him through hmv)

7. throw down your arms ~ sinead o’connor (irish lass whose genre seems to have taken a turn…reggae?)

8. seven swans ~ sufjan stevens (after listening to his much-touted illinois, decided to grab all his albums…’tis the second one…another fantastic release)

Published in: on Tuesday, March 20, 2007 at 11:47 pm  Comments (5)  
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Self-Pity

Tonight
I had wished to cry myself to sleep

I felt wonderfully sad
So I thought why not tear my sleep

How brilliantly foolish I was
To think ’twas easy to shed tears before sleep

I had to toil languidly
Hoping to have my desire satisfied at sleep

But my successful failure
Questioned the degree of my woe prior to my sleep

Self-pity I’m not
Now I’ll be tragically delirious to get some sleep

Tonight
I had wished to cry myself to sleep

Published in: on Monday, March 19, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Leave a Comment  
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in me

there is a giant in me
bidding his time
to reveal all his prowess

there is a dwarf in me
fearing his time
to expose all his vulnerabilities

Published in: on Sunday, March 18, 2007 at 11:51 pm  Comments (3)  
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ditch it? no way!

I was rather surprised when I came across this article. I know that English Language has undergone changes in the modern world. But never in my right frame of mind would I discard or disregard the dictionary. To me, it has been my personal friend and teacher. Without it, I would never be the present me. It hones my language capabilities. It defines who I am.

Ditch the dictionary: British think-tank
LONDON: The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) should no longer be the main authority on the English language because it does not keep pace with today's rapid linguistic changes, a report said on Thursday.

Left-wing think-tank Demos said the OED should be replaced by a website --democtionary.org -- that would allow English-speaking members of the public from Britain and abroad to contribute their own words and definitions.

The report's co-author, Sam Jones, said an online dictionary similar to the user-generated Internet encyclopaedia Wikipedia was needed to track the pace of language change and the influence of non-native speakers on it.

"English can no longer be seen as a single language, but more as a family of languages," he said. "Each of these reflects the different ways people experience the world.

"Such variation is now as much part of the English language as is grammar and word order. The problem is that it is rarely seen as such.

"As the world becomes more and more connected, accommodating different forms of English will be crucial to building the cultural literacy we need."

He added: "(The website) would be a more valid reflection of the English language than that of the Oxford English Dictionary."

The OED, which is compiled by a team of lexicographers with contributions from "readers" around the world, has been "the last word on words" for more than a century and is one of the greatest works of scholarship.

The latest print version covers 20 volumes, has 21,730 pages and 291,500 entries from across the English-speaking world, plus etymologies, pronunciations and spelling variations.

Chief editor John Simpson welcomed Demos's contribution, but denied the OED was a prescriptive rather than a descriptive reference work.

"Demos are trading on a rather outdated caricature of the Oxford English Dictionary. We don't regulate English -- we describe it," he said.

"Nowadays the OED is online, accessed regularly all over the world, and its entries trace many varieties of English that now form the language.

"As it happens, our latest update today includes our entry for wiki, but for 150 years the OED has been based on a collaborative model of gathering information from readers everywhere.

"In addition, we search huge databanks recording a cross-section of the many forms of English used today." - AFP/ir

source: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_world/view/264195/1/.html

In lending my undying support, I’ve written a little something dedicated to the dear Mr Dictionary:

A Tribute to the Lexicon

Oh how I yowl for
The entity that has
Millions of souls bow
In meekness
And in awe
Of its opulence
That speaks more hushed
Than a mute

He doesn’t warrant
The call to dig the grave
For his demise
Considering the exceptional work
He has accomplished
Since the days of the soothsayers
Who wouldn’t even dare
Casting his death in stone back then

Lexis foul or fair
He educates
Edifies
And offers raison d’être
Living lives meaningfully
Which makes lexicography
An extremely worthwhile basis
Of the glorious pursuit

Woe to those whose shallow minds
Are only deep enough
To stir up unrest
Amongst the imps of Formicidae
Woe to those whose blunt tongues
Are only sharp enough
To pierce through
The hearts of the Emblems and Purebloods

Oh how I moan for His Majesty

Published in: on Thursday, March 15, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Comments (4)  
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Helena’s Note

I was naïve
To think that I’d be cherished
I was foolish
To believe that I was the special one
I thought
I was brought into this world
As a result of a conscientious effort of love
I’d never imagine
That I was a reluctant and unexpected mistake
I could never tell
That grudges and resentment and worse would follow
That my name was conveniently given
Because the spot where you and you whored
Was under the neon sign ‘Helena’s Bar’

Of course I was too infantile to comprehend
The stress, the mental abuse and the physical torture
You and you contributed
All I could do was cry instinctively after every hurt
But when I began to make sense of this world
You and you added on to my already battered soul and bruised body
You labelled me the seed of the bastard
You called me the wasted product of the slut
You and you took turns to inflict psychological and corporeal wounds
And the only thing I could do each time was to weep
Was I capable of other things?

I honestly attempted seeing the positives of life
I genuinely trusted the friendly souls in my circle
(Of which you and you were never in)
I quietly admired the relationships fostered
I rather bitterly envied the beautiful experiences witnessed
I was beginning to realise
That the world out there is worth waiting for
That the people out there are worth living for
That perhaps I could count on the person God
That painstakingly I must grow up

However
You and you intervened again
Except that this time
You and you went beyond all that you had done
You and you decided on my destiny
I guess I’d owed both of you too much
To delay my payment

Now
I’ve paid the price
Not my choice
But your choice
And your choice
Which leaves me with only one question

You
The bastard whose desire couldn’t be contained
All you needed was a shot to impress
But it turned out to be a shot that killed yourself
I became your thorn in the throat constantly
Your target of explicit langauge
And your object of itch
Have you ever loved me?

You
The slut whose invitation to all couldn’t be resisted
All you wanted was attention and love
But what you got was attention and lust
I became your pain in the ass continuously
Your punchbag of fury and frustration
And your article of shame
Have you ever loved me?

I was commanded to honour you and you
Honour you and you I shall
But I always wanted to know
Have you ever loved me?
It is just a simple question
I guess I won’t know the answer, will I?

Published in: on Wednesday, March 14, 2007 at 12:59 am  Comments (3)  
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one-minute-wonders

Matthew has a unique blog that accedes to anybody’s request for a self-portrait. Here’s his take on mine, “an agile, quick and smart animal with a penchant for big mansions”.

an agile, quick and smart animal with a penchant for big mansions

Thanks, Matt!

Published in: on Tuesday, March 13, 2007 at 4:32 pm  Comments (3)  
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above

    above it all
    asian allure
    modern lines
    classic curves
    infinite possibilities
    eclectic reinvention
    sophiscated sensuality
    extravagance and performance
    cook up an italian dream
    dance with imagination
    make the difference
    live with passion
    find sanctuary
    look east
    cut above the rest
Published in: on Monday, March 12, 2007 at 11:53 pm  Comments (2)  
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The Hill Song

Downhill
Had none to build
None liked to blend
Really ugly?
Pecked at will
Chortled at bill
So forlorn, so despondent
Done wrong?
Cold treatment’s mere understatement
What’s vertical, what’s horizontal?
What ought to be altered?
    Uphill
    Dry spell passes without fanfare
    Grasping in next to no time
    Dawdling transformation but surely
    That magical moment
    Soaring loftily
    Physical repugnance no more!
    Being beautiful being
    Cloud nine colonisation
    Revolutionised life!
    At long last!
Published in: on Monday, March 12, 2007 at 12:57 am  Comments (2)  
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Ironies

If we can run away from the truth,
We can’t be too far from the lie.
If we can be right choosing right from wrong,
We can’t be wrong choosing wrong from right.
If we can say love makes the world,
We can also say love breaks the world.
If we can be rich poor souls,
We can also be poor rich souls.
If we can be strong enough to accept the ironies of life,
We can be weak enough to ignore the ironies of life.

Published in: on Friday, March 9, 2007 at 1:18 am  Comments (4)  
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poor girl

Faith has fallen sick. After a rather nasty fall which had her lip cut (leading to two ulcers) last Friday, she now has a runny nose and teary eyes, and a little phlegm in the throat. Jennifer took a day’s leave to take Faith to the doctor who found a little ear infection as well. Our girl has succumbed to a virus. When I saw her after work, she was still energetic despite all the discomfort. But my heart ached (still aching) when I saw her sniffing her nose and rubbing the thick tear stains from her eyes. I really pray that the medication that she’s on now will work wonders fast. Pray with me, won’t you?

Published in: on Wednesday, March 7, 2007 at 11:04 pm  Comments (2)  
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work, sanity

work makes sanity
work breaks sanity

sanity makes work
sanity breaks work

work is sanity

sanity isn’t work

work?

sanity?

embrace both?
or cast one aside?

Published in: on Wednesday, March 7, 2007 at 7:54 am  Leave a Comment  
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Heaven

Heavens, haloes, harps
Angels with wings in white robes
If this is what I get eternally
I’ll call for a revolution
When I get there

Cash, cars, condominiums
Chicks with boots in 3-piece suits
If this is what I get eternally
I’ll ram my automobile into all rogues and jerks
Just to get there

Fury, flaming furnace
Demons with pitchforks in charred skins
If this is what I get eternally
I’ll look up to Him, read His word, utter prayers
’Cos I don’t wanna get there

Crowns, crowns, crowns
Selfless souls with agape love in His image
If this is what I get eternally
I’ll have faith in Him and live His purpose
Knowing I’ll get there

Talk is cheap
Deed is deep
My choice?

Published in: on Sunday, March 4, 2007 at 11:38 am  Comments (3)  
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i’m thankful

dear friend,

i’m writing this to you because i’m thankful
and i can’t wait to share my joy with you

i’m thankful to my beloved homeland
i’ll always be
for the national security we have
for the vast riches given to us
for the fact that we belong to the most powerful nation on earth
i’m even more thankful for the education i was put through
because without it, i’ll never know simple but cold, hard facts such as these:

utah is one heck of a country that is on par with ugoslavia and utopia
those guys from jerusalem shared the same religion as the saudis
we beat the shit out of those japanese in the vietnam war
and fidel castro? he is the bloke who won the latin idol 30 years ago
a triangle has 4 sides
we are powerful enough to supply our money to the folks in england and their queen
north korea is 15 times bigger than their southern neighbours
the possessed girl in ‘exorcist’ has a brother who is the primer minister of u.k.
john glenn landed on the moon first
there is only one kidney in a human body
everyone on earth is fearing that the 4th world war might come soon
star wars is an epic movie made based on real events
judo and wrestling made hiroshima and nagasaki famous
west bank is in new york
there are ten eiffel towers in the captial city of france
everybody knows that yasser arafat is the president of al-qaeda

impressive, right?!

anyway, i was flabbergasted to meet mr howard on the streets the other day
i even took a picture with him and i can call him my mate from downunder
oh…and that coffee anan? it tasted fabulous at united nations cafe…go try it yourself

last but not least, i’m thankful for my leader
i’ll always support anything he says
including going to war against a tiny nation in central asia
and invading one italian-speaking country in our continued effort against terrorism
he says these are efforts to keep my country free
he’s from texas, he must be right

aren’t you happy for me?

regards,
the honest citizen

ps: one question that still baffles me though…which state does kentucky fried chicken come from? help me, please.

(inspired by a serious survey.)

Published in: on Friday, March 2, 2007 at 11:59 pm  Leave a Comment  
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or well he might have said these

These are my top 10 quotes from one of my favourite writers, George Orwell. If there are mis-quotes, please notify me.

• Four legs good, two legs bad.

• At 50, everyone has the face he deserves.

• War is war. The only good human being is a dead one.

• The essence of being human is that one does not seek perfection.

• All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.

• During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.

• There are some ideas so wrong that only a very intelligent person could believe in them.

• If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.

• Each generation imagines itself to be more intelligent than the one that went before it, and wiser than the one that comes after it.

• Man is the only creature that consumes without producing. He does not give milk, he does not lay eggs, he is too weak to pull the plough, he cannot run fast enough to catch rabbits. Yet he is lord of all the animals.

Published in: on Thursday, March 1, 2007 at 5:13 pm  Comments (2)  
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To Hell And Back

Watch the old cock pecking the motherly fowl
Live in trepidation of the shadows that loom
Stomach the agony of the nakedness’ prowl
Blight at vicars who offspring in the room

Devastating corollary of the peril taken too far
Heartbreaking moments on the day the lovebirds sing
Mesmerizing close shave with angels of the tsar
Exasperating fruits of labour that are not but a fling

Drill through the brute vigor of the regiment
Healing wounds fixed with an exorbitant popsicle
Take umbrage at the swing of glee and resentment
Finalising episodes of yet another hellish chronicle

Now is the time of respite and tranquillity
But the promise of tribulation sets the path of greater hostility

Published in: on Tuesday, February 27, 2007 at 10:28 am  Comments (3)  
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The Greatest Bliss

It’s cooler than Coke
It’s warmer than Love
It’s more pleasing than Sex
It’s more soothing than Music
It’s tastier than Tiramisu
It’s pricier than Lamborghini
It’s more desirable than Diamonds
It’s more vital than Religions and Politics
It’s not Fame
It’s not Power
It’s what Money can’t buy
It’s what Man can’t live without

It’s the Greatest Bliss cherished, treasured, relished by the privileged few
It’s Sleep…

Published in: on Monday, February 26, 2007 at 10:26 pm  Comments (3)  
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Nought

I lost my barren soul
Owing to the fact that
My immaculate mind was empty
As a result of
Soporific lessons of life
Which promised much
But delivered none.
Gutted.

Published in: on Friday, February 23, 2007 at 1:58 pm  Comments (3)  
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FAITHfulness

The Chinese New Year break is over. But I had a good time with my family. Had been indulging in some serious FAITHfulness. Took lots of pictures of her. She’s grown a lot. Always count her twice when I count my blessings.

trying a new dress

she and her bear

smiling for the New Year

she looks great in cheongsam

with hair accessories

going nuts

through the tunnel

I love her very much! And, I love her mother too.

Published in: on Tuesday, February 20, 2007 at 10:25 pm  Comments (4)  
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Dying Again

Feline grace undeserved
Almost a definite doubt
Physical passing on only but once
Yet manna comes in the other realm
Opportunities to die living or live dying again and again……
In hope that self-reacontrolisation will surface
Leading to a kicking glorious destiny
Wretchedly the feeble mind falls short incessantly
Losing grasp of the wilful flesoulh
Merrily singing the poignant tune of the robins
Whilst aching through the benign vicious cycles
The ladder up the Tower of Babel
Might justify the conundrum of living happily
Falling down the bottomless pit
No longer an idiosyncrasy
What’s there to live
When dying again bounces to rise?
Call it a day and lie still
Before the false pretence cuts deeper

(pardon the fresh p*ss*m*sm)

Published in: on Monday, February 19, 2007 at 2:40 pm  Comments (5)  

The Only Act that Keeps Repeating Despite the Grave Consequences

I just shut the door
That was left open, again
Unpardonable

(a new haiku profoundly orchestrated)

Published in: on Sunday, February 18, 2007 at 1:09 am  Comments (6)  

do i

do
I
really
know
who
I
am
do
I
know
who
I
really
am
do
I
know
who
I
am
really

seriously these words haunt me at different points of my life and they just did it again seriously

Published in: on Thursday, February 15, 2007 at 11:23 pm  Comments (6)  
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making sense

skimming ulysses
plagiarising shakespeare
weeping through clockwork orange
governing edgarallanpoe’s temper
falling for big brother in 1984
guffawing with emily dickinson
celebrating valentine’s day
    they all don’t make sense
      (newly written for v-day protest initiated by minx)
Published in: on Wednesday, February 14, 2007 at 12:00 am  Comments (8)  
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only she

I was spending another short but great evening with my daughter. Just the two of us. As I watched her draw, sing, dance and bounce; as I showered her, cuddled her and dressed her up, I couldn’t help but feel a great sense of gratitude. What have I done to deserve this little girl? Despite the rebel in me and my foolhardy deeds, this beautiful soul in front of me is here to make me proud. I don’t deserve her. But she’s here to teach me precious lessons. Probably her greatest lesson for me is taught through her name – Faith.

Published in: on Sunday, February 11, 2007 at 10:54 pm  Comments (2)  
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who are we?

holy innocents
cocooned in angelic skins
innocuous

screwtape’s charges
peeling in layers
damnable

hideous ageds
melted to core
wasted

soul
beautiful

(inspired by Skint)

Published in: on Saturday, February 10, 2007 at 12:36 am  Comments (4)  
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succumbed

After weeks of working in a small air-conditioned room with six other sick colleagues, I have finally fallen ill.

It all started on Sunday night when I felt my body warm. My temperature was a little high. I took two pills and went to bed early. On Monday, I felt fresh and was ready to work the whole day which I did. Worked ended at around 6.45 p.m. Got home, had dinner and spent some time with my wife and daughter. Then, I carried on working till after midnight. I went to bed shortly after.

I woke up on Tuesday feeling soreness at my throat. The sign was there. I went to work and had one and half hours of English lesson with my class. Returned to my workstation and started marking my pupils’ assignments. That was when I first experienced a series of headaches. Then came a few minutes of breathing difficulty. I could also feel my body temperature rising and bones aching all over. I knew I was in trouble. Nevertheless, I carried on teaching and even attended a briefing session in town for two and a half hours in the afternoon. The whole afternoon was terrible. No appetite, headache, fever, weak body, etc. I managed to drive home safely, thank God!

Back home, swallowed two pills and took a nap after discovering that my fever had gone up to 38 degrees. Felt better after the sleep. Went to have dinner. Wanted to consult the doctor. But goodness me, the clinic was crowded! Gave up and headed home. Took another two pills and turned in early. I was still harbouring hopes of going back to work today.

Woke up this morning, feeling fine. But somehow I knew I was not strong enough to go to work. Informed my colleague that I would take one day off. After breakfast, I left for the clinic. Dr Jasper Yang was as friendly as ever. He prescribed some medicine and even gave me a two-day medical certificate.

Now, back home, still waiting for the right time to take the medicine. I guess I must have overworked a little in the last few weeks. Always trying to clear as much work as possible. Perhaps, I should change my mentality. Since I know work is never ending, I think I should balance my life more. Now, I have decided that work should remain in school. Family life and rest should take precedence at home. Hope that I can follow these principles.

Published in: on Wednesday, February 7, 2007 at 10:18 am  Comments (1)  
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and she smiled

Congratulations, Team Singapore! Well done! Fantastic achievement! Thanks for making us proud by winning the ASEAN Cup for the third time! Now, Asia, here we come!

Accolades after accolades kept pouring in since the Lions beat Thailand 3-2 on aggregate in the football final. It’s no wonder. This is about the only tournament we have experienced reaching the top so far. I’m happy for the team. I’m happy for the coach. I’m happy for Khairul Amri. And I’m happy for Noh Alam Shah. I think the Lions have been playing what I would call ‘effective football’. Not pretty, but effective. Loads of soaking…varying degrees of high balls…good knock-ons…striking the killer blows at the right time.

However, I call for a reality check. The matter of fact is Singapore football team lacks the qualities and finesse needed to succeed at a higher level. And such elements must only be honed at a young age. Knowing how our system works, it is extremely challenging for Singapore football to be treated seriously at schools level. Education is still the utmost important part of the children’s lives (whether they like it or not). This means that no kid is able to train football full-time, unlike in other countries. The lack of full-time training speaks volume of the kind of players we have locally. Yes, we can compete. Yes, we can conquer South-East Asia. But that’s the furthest we can go, I reckon.

We don’t have to look far to prove my point. Look at the title-winning squad now. Precious, Itimi, Jiayi, Daniel and Mustafic are all foreign-imports. And all are first-team players. If we are not going to depend on our younger kids to carry the torch because they need to concentrate in a sound education, then we have to look abroad to bring in talents. The truth is painful, but must be mentioned. Our kids do not have the time and energy to be trained full-time to be our future heroes in the world of football.

As we looked back at how Singapore had won their third crown, thus sharing the same honour with Thailand for winning it thrice, one must say that they didn’t really win it convincingly. Barring the 11-0 annihilation of the pitiful Laos, Singapore drew almost all their matches against the top sides. 0-0 with Vietnam, 2-2 with Indonesia, 1-1 twice with Malaysia and 1-1 with Thailand in the final. It’s not exaggerating to say that Singapore did not really dominate their opponents in these matches. Even that 2-1 win against Thailand at the National Stadium would not have been made possible if not for the referee’s blunder. In the second leg tie in Bangkok, Singapore were struggling against a rampant Thai side. Somehow I can’t help but feel that Lady Luck was really working her wonders for Singapore in that match. In fact, I think she was smiling all the way for Singapore from the moment the first ball was kicked to the lifting of the trophy by the Singapore skipper. I think she’s still smiling. Thanks, Lady Luck!

However, I don’t want to take the credit off the Singapore players. Though some players were disappointing, most of them really worked their socks off for each other in the team. Noh Alam Shah has come of age by claiming two individual awards. He has really been THE ONE for Singapore. Mustafic’s job in midfield has been highly potent. Jiayi’s physical presence and play bear some resemblance to a certain Xabi Alonso. Khairul Amri’s speed and work rate have contributed much to the team’s success. Ridhuan’s never-say-die attitude gives his team-mates confidence. And coach Raddy must be applauded for moulding a team of fighters. Team Singapore, well done!

But this team of fighters need more than a willing spirit to go further, unless, of course, she chooses to continue to smile with them.

Published in: on Monday, February 5, 2007 at 11:50 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Woman

I am Woman
I’m no good, that’s what I’ve been told
Darkness falls upon the land
Stirs darkly the day of owls

My child arrived just the other day
Between the deep blue sea and the coastal cove
The sun peeking out from amongst the fluffy clouds

The past and the future are the jaws of a steel vice

(during sniknej lesson)

Published in: on Friday, February 2, 2007 at 8:00 am  Comments (1)  
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I should like to

I should like to……

play down the left flank of the star-studded Liverpool team
mesmerize defenders with my pace and skills.

stand on stage with my guitar and voice
lift the hearts out of the screaming girls.

extend my outstretched arms
and feed the millions in poverty.

fly across planet Earth
and see the world I long to see.

change the hearts of people
and get rid of selfishness totally.

(done at sulpamard)

Published in: on Friday, February 2, 2007 at 7:52 am  Leave a Comment  
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a senseless poem

wonderful sheep quickly runs beautiful moments
blue princess silently skips ugly love
spiky principal comfortably sings strange sweetness
long peacock rudely talks enormous understanding
wavy screw sweetly lectures clever confidence
short catapult cunningly jumps mean salary

(generated by a team years back)

Published in: on Thursday, February 1, 2007 at 12:13 am  Comments (1)  
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transfer deadline

Today is the transfer deadline. Some clubs will rush into a buying frenzy and end up getting half-past-six players for exorbitant fees. Of course, some well-publicised transfer saga might end up a nought. The last I heard, my beloved Liverpool are going after Javier Mascherano. Hmm…seriously, I doubt he can survive the English League.

Hence, I have decided to take the Anfield hot seat and make my own decision in who I should bring to the club. The following players would be on my last-minute shopping list if the Dubai owners provide the financial arms. Call my list audacious or impossible or ridiculous; it is a list, I believe, that will cause much excitement among the fans.

William Gallas – The ever versatile and highly dependable defender who has the knack of scoring against Liverpool. His positioning and reading of the game is among the best in the business. His competitive nature will give him an edge over opposing attackers. He can cover Finnan on the right, Riise on the left or partner Carragher in the centre of defence. Arsenal might not release him. But with the cash dangling like carrots, they could let him go. Gallas himself will move because he wants yet another new challenge in his career.

Kevin Nolan – Forget Mascherano. Nolan’s dare-devil spirits put him miles ahead. What’s more…he’s a Liverpool fan. His robust play and powerful drive forward resembles a certain Gerrard. Though he might not be in the same class as the latter, he could provide competition in the holding midfield role currently rotated between Alonso and Momo. After all these years of being in a nearly-continental club in Bolton, Nolan would perhaps jump at this chance of playing Champions League football with the Reds. Bolton? The cash from the Middle East might be too much to resist.

Matthew Taylor – If you look at the current Liverpool squad, we have a number of left wingers. However, I never really think that they are good enough to cause havoc. Riise should stay at left-back; Garcia’s inconsistency outnumbers his moments of brilliance; Gonzalez is actually not as fast as what all the hype had pointed; Kewell’s injury problems could force him out of the game; and Zenden? We need new blood on the left. Look no further than Matt Taylor who had already scored a couple of stunning goals this season. Some people are saying he could be the solution to England’s left midfield problem. And I have to say, “Amen!” to that. This fellow is a fighter who is quite skilful actually. He may not be very fast, but he can certainly cause problems in the opposition defence with his skills. The south coast club have to admit that after all these years with them, Taylor’s time to move on is now.

Robbie Keane – Once the most expensive teenager, Keane’s career has nosedived somewhat a little. From a sensational move to Inter to a miserable spell at Leeds, Keane’s ability to sparkle a moment of magic in a match was often underestimated, underutilized and under wraps. Even now at Spurs, he’s not the first choice. Well, Liverpool could use him with Crouch as one pair of strikers (Kuyt and Bellamy being the other). Keane’s skills are never in question and he really does know where the goal is. He needs to be playing competitively and consistently to start striking fear into the hearts of defences. He will not mind moving to Merseyside to get regular playtime and Spurs sure do not treat him serious enough to want to keep him. So, what are we waiting for?

Shaun Wright-Phillips – Liverpool need another quality right winger to compete with Pennant. I look around the League and I must say that I have to choose Wright-Phillips because of two reasons. First, he can be a real threat when he’s given regular football. Second, I cast a pity vote for him. He’s not gonna be cheap because Roman wants his money back. But with Dubai as our backing, I say let’s go for him.

You would notice by now that these are all Premiership players. The fact is only players who start the careers at the Premiership can survive the Premiership. Don’t think of bringing in players from overseas. Very few of them succeed. Ask Andriy to verify my statement. And as a Reds fan, I really fancy the above-mentioned players to contribute much to the future success of Liverpool Football Club. We just need the Dubai cash and my wisdom to bring them in. Rafa, are you listening? The rest of you, what say you?

(PS: By the way, I take Singapore and Thailand to draw 1-1.)

Published in: on Wednesday, January 31, 2007 at 4:50 pm  Leave a Comment  
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the kallang roar

The Kallang Roar!

It was back! It was back to push the Lions to a hard-fought win over our northern neighbours.

And yes! I remember those good old days!

I had been to the National Stadium several times to support the Lions during the Malaysia Cup days. Each time, I thoroughly enjoyed the occasion. The atmosphere was electrifying with the Kallang Roar – the fans stomping their feet, the vulgarities and insults directed at the referees, the goal celebrations we shared with one another and the passion for football. It had also always been pleasing to know that whenever I was present at the stadium, the Lions never lost a game. I can only remember the 8-1 demolition of Brunei and a certain 1-1 draw between our Singapore ‘Dream Team’ and arch rivals Selangor; and there were a 3-0, a 7-0, etc. Putting such scores aside, it is no exaggeration to say that the Kallang Roar could actually bring the whole nation together.

If I want to witness national togetherness at a grand scale, the Kallang Roar is the answer. I would rather spend my time watching football with fellow Singaporeans at the National Stadium than participate at the National Day Parade. The truth is I felt a strong sense of patriotism whenever I watched football with fellow fans supporting the Lions. If there were a Singapore goal, we would jump for joy together, embracing each other regardless of race and religion and gender and age. The bond amongst the Singapore fans was always amazing. It was like we all had known each other for years. We could talk, cheer and jeer together. I could see these clearly all the time. If the referee made the wrong decision, we would echo one another when we hurl insults at the referee, “REFEREE KAYU!!!” All these elements of the Kallang Roar were never present when I was at the stadium watching the National Day Parade. I believe such spirits could never be seen at the NDP.

It’s a pity that we are not going to see such scenes anymore soon. Probably for most Singapore fans, Wednesday’s 1st leg tie with Thailand will be the last chance to savour and relive this national togetherness. The Kallang Roar will probably make its last presence felt on that day. I will not be there. But I believe all those who, like me, had wonderful memories of Kallang and the national togetherness will seek to bring out the Kallang Roar in us wherever we are on that day. May this roar inspire the Lions to a memorable victory over the Thais.

Hail the Kallang Roar!

Published in: on Monday, January 29, 2007 at 11:01 pm  Comments (2)  
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it’s all in the mind

It’s all in the mind.

You are sinking in the sea. Waves after waves come crashing onto you. The remnants of the plane floating around keep pushing you towards the fire. The sub-zero temperature of the water threatens to kill you. The open wounds on your body inflict further pain through your mind. The dead bodies discourage and demoralise you. The raging storm pours menacingly from the heavens. Your body and strength are on the verge of total collapse.

What do you do?
Give up?
Struggle to stay afloat?
Stay calm, summon your will and look for an opening to survival?

The flesh may be weak.
But it has to do the willing spirit’s bidding.
And the willing spirit gains strength from the mind.

It’s all in the mind.

Published in: on Friday, January 26, 2007 at 8:20 am  Leave a Comment  
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my wishes

An age-old question: What are your wishes?

Let me attempt to answer it.

I wish I have more than 24 hours a day, so that I could spend more time at work and definitely more time with my wife and daughter.

I wish I could have the most powerful notebook that costs just a fraction of a thousand dollars.

I wish I have all the money in the world to travel round the world with my family.

I wish I could just stop working and replace the working time with books and music and movies.

I wish I have the luxury to go shopping as much as I want without burning my pockets.

I wish……a little self-centred, perhaps……

I wish that Singaporeans will be more gracious and considerate (stop littering, stop smoking in public, start giving up seats to the needy, etc.)

I wish parents will treat education seriously and start supporting their children in this area.

I wish all terrible vicious cycles could cease once and for all.

I wish that love and peace can exist everywhere.

Sometimes, I wish serious judgement will fall upon those who never put others before self.

Finally, I wish I had stopped wasting time writing these senseless impossibilities.

Sigh! Stress……perhaps……perhaps……per……haps……

Published in: on Monday, January 22, 2007 at 5:30 pm  Comments (1)  
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the crazy world of football

Liverpool take on Chelsea at Anfield today, and I can’t believe that many people are backing the home team to win against the defending champions. As a Reds fan for the last donkey years, I know too well that expectations had been turned into disappointments far too often in the last decade. This season alone, this trend had happened a few times. Just when you expected Liverpool to ride on their good form and continue their streak, they would come crashing down with a disastrous defeat. Think 3-0 to Everton, 2-0 to Bolton, 1-0 to Blackburn and the back-to-back disgrace to Arsenal.

Yes, my beloved Liverpool are the best form team in the League. Yes, they are unbeaten at home in the League. Yes, they have conceded one solitary goal at home in the League. Everything seems to point to a Liverpool win. Now, here’s the predictable danger. When you expect them to win, they go on to lose. Let’s not forget that Rafa has yet to win any League games against Chelsea (and Man U and Arsenal for that matter). So, even though my heart says Liverpool will win, my head says Chelsea will win by two.

Then, there is this Lucas Neill. Who does he think he is? A top-notch player? I was already quite shocked to hear Rafa’s interest in him. To me, he could be a waste of money. Yet, he dared to reject Liverpool over West Ham so that he could take home £50,000 every week! What a total absurdity! In my living memory, only a world class (or continental class at least) player could demand such a fee. Neill is only, at best, an average player. This is really nuts!

Who could ever forget West Ham’s sensational signing of the two promising Argentineans, Tevez and Mascherano? What on Earth were they thinking when they signed for the Hammers? Joining a world class team? As we all know by now, Pardew was given the boot and West Ham are seriously in trouble of getting relegated. If nothing goes right for them this season, this is going to be one of the most glaring bloopers that ever happen to a top-flight team and two so-called world class talents. What a joke! (Mind me; Rafa’s trying to sign Mascherano. I shudder…)

Of course, there is this someone called D Beckham who has just signed for an MLS team after being left out in the cold during the entire Ice Age. The probably henpecked football celebrity, deemed to be past his prime, will actually be paid a staggering £500,000 per week! What are the bosses of LA Galaxy thinking? Publicity? Fame? The desire to win the League? Or the wishful thinking of dominating world football (or soccer they call it)? Not even Ronaldinho would dare ask Barcelona for such a pay cheque. He would probably be too embarrassed to even think about it.

Really, this funny thing called football? It can be quite crazy at times (perhaps, most of the time in future).

Published in: on Saturday, January 20, 2007 at 4:38 pm  Comments (1)  
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win again? doesn’t matter…

Singapore football team crushed Laos 11-0 in the ASEAN Championship, much to the delight of those supporters who still faithfully back their national team even after a spate of dismal results recently. Congratulations to the boys! As long as I have lived on Earth, I’ve never seen Singapore winning by such a big margin in an international tournament. But honestly speaking, I’m not really totally bothered, and I don’t think they will win the tournament for the third time.

Yes, they are the defending champions. Yes, Noh Alam Shah scored 7 goals. Yes, they might still beat Indonesia to top the group. But no, I don’t think they can overcome Thailand. As a matter of fact, Laos were a poor, poor team. Their coach had already thrown in the towel before the match by declaring Singapore a much stronger team. He even predicted goals galore. He also highlighted the fact that his team are made up of students who treat soccer as a leisure activity. This mentality probably had an effect on the players even before the ball was kicked. They knew they would lose big. Their hearts and minds and souls and strengths were not present even before the game commenced. All Singapore had to do was to take advantage of the situation, and the Lions were rather ruthless at that.

They attacked with confidence, passed the ball well and scored some good goals. Credit must be given to the Singapore team for working hard to slaughter their opponents. But really, Laos also put in effort in making the hosts look good. Let’s not get carried away and think that Singapore are going to win the tournament again. Indonesia might still surprise if the Lions are not careful. And don’t forget that Singapore struggled a bit against Vietnam in their first match.

However, I do think that if Singapore play to their strengths, they are good enough for the final. And that’s where they will probably be stopped in their tracks by Thailand.

My head says Thailand, and you would expect me to say my heart says Singapore. No, my heart says it doesn’t matter at all.

Published in: on Monday, January 15, 2007 at 11:35 pm  Leave a Comment  
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possession vs clinical finishing

After all these years of watching and playing football, I have to admit that possession in football does not equate to winning matches. Clinical finishing has always been the key to winning matches. Any fool can tell you this too. So why is it that some footballing brains are not ticking? Footballers and coaches alike, some of them are guilty of this. Don’t strive to keep possession of the ball, but excel at clinical finishing. This is what I would tell my players if I’m a coach. Am I right? Possibly. Probably.

Let’s recall the match between Liverpool and Arsenal. Amount of possession Liverpool had was 62%. Arsenal only had 38%. The Reds had 16 shots, while the visitors had 5 only. Final score? Liverpool 1 Arsenal 3. The same story happened at Ewood Park last month when Liverpool lost 1-0 after dominating the game in terms of possession. Come on, Guys! You have to be clinical in your finishing! What matters most in football is scoring goals, isn’t it?

Liverpool, for all their credentials as traditional powerhouses, are seriously lacking in the department of scoring. There have been times when they were made to look good, like their 4-0 win at Wigan. But honestly speaking, they are simply not good enough at the moment. They have got several strikers, but none can score consistently. The same can be said of their midfielders. Gerrard has not been the scoring phenomenon of last season. Their defenders? Carragher just scored his first in 7 years! If they struggle for periods to score in a match, I cannot find one inspirational player who can pop out to score at will.

Maybe, they must seriously scout for one clinical striker. Maybe, give Kuyt some more time and he will be one. Maybe, someone from the youth setup could be the clinical one. Maybe, the training sessions should focus on scoring goals. Maybe, I can be their coach……Maybe……

I think I’ve said enough. As a Liverpool fan, I wish them all the best in……scoring goals.

It’s never the amount of possession that counts…count the goals, Folks!

Published in: on Tuesday, January 9, 2007 at 6:19 pm  Comments (1)  
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ready to drop

tired , weary , exhausted , worn-out , drained , bushed , all-in , dead beat , sleepy , fatigued , somnolent , beat , pooped , done in , dog-tired , depleted , washed-out , sapped , lethargic , ready to drop……

exactly how i’m feeling right now……

Published in: on Monday, January 8, 2007 at 10:27 pm  Comments (1)  
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a different ball game

After three working days, I’m already feeling the heat of being in a leadership role. Had been staying late at work everyday, and I felt like I hadn’t achieved much. When I asked the senior members, they said it’s normal. There are tons of things to do for the department. There are also two English classes to handle. Then, there is still the family to look after. Good grief! And I’m not even a full-fledged leader yet!

To give myself an idea how big my role is after three days, I listed my tasks…and not surprisingly, this is what I saw and is stilling seeing:

1. Set department targets
2. Confirm setters list
3. Meet committee members
4. Plan P & D festival
5. Call skrowudu
6. P5 & P6 writing wos
7. Get volunteers for observation
8. Research

• Managing LE department
• Managing AH pupils
• Advance LE lessons
• Courses for pupils
• Venue for borderless classroom

9. CAN – Lit and Drama
10.Talk to colleagues to compile compo errors
11.Submit evasude forms for pupils’ course
12.Explore dael portal
13.Submit zib-g – P1-P4 readers, P5, P6 lit resources
14.Develop P6 lesson plans
15.Develop roving news team

I counted fifteen and stopped. And this is never going to end.

Albeit my work is a different ball game altogether, I’m willing to challenge myself. Keep me in your prayers if you believe in them.

Published in: on Sunday, January 7, 2007 at 1:07 am  Leave a Comment  
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beaten

It was a typical lazy afternoon. David was asleep in his cot. Mum was doing some household chores in the kitchen. Me? I was playing with my toys.

The boredom inevitably set in. The quietness somehow encouraged me to do something different. I climbed up and sat by the bedroom window. I stared down the block. Wow, this is high, I thought. 11th floor, mind you. Eyes still searching for something interesting, I was fiddling with the basket of clothing by the window. They all belonged to my brother and me.

Then, the devil spoke. He sounded brilliant, I thought. The persuasion began to take effect and gradually, the temptation set in. Don’t hesitate…just do it, I thought again.

The hand picked up the first piece. The movement was then swift. Now, the hand was outside the window. The fingers finally relented too. David’s shirt was on its way down to the ground. The mind was highly amused. How could this be fun? But it was indeed fun! The hand picked up the second piece and moved out of the window promptly. The fingers released the item and my shirt was gone. HAHA! This was exciting. Then, the mind, the hand and the fingers collaborated in tossing the pieces of clothing out of the window one by one. The experience was beyond description.

Mum started calling for me. I did not respond. I was too busy. Never had so much pleasure.

The activity was intense. I would never have imagined that it could be so enjoyable. Shirts, trousers, mittens, socks, etc. All of them were not spared.

Mum called for me again. I was too engrossed to respond again. Such joy!

More than half the basket was already gone. Mission half-accomplished. He told me to finish the job. I was convinced I had a destiny. I carried on.

Mum called for me once more. The climax had heightened. Nothing could stop me from completing my task. Nothing could…

“What are you doing?” shouted Mum as she stepped in. Her jaws dropped, eyes stared in disbelief. My mind went blank. I did not know how to answer her question. The next thing I knew, I was whacked with a hanger many times. The devil? Nowhere in sight! That despicable bloke had left me in the lurch!

The pain on my limbs was new to me. I had never got beaten until that day. All I could do was to cry incessantly. Plenty of reprimanding to endure too.

Moments later, I was ordered to follow her out of our home. We went to retrieve what were lost. We had to go floor by floor to knock on our neighbours’ doors. At the end of the search, we managed to get back 80% of our clothes. More scoldings followed.

The poor four-year-old had his first taste of getting beaten that day.

Published in: on Wednesday, January 3, 2007 at 11:28 pm  Leave a Comment  
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25.05.2005

This is one date that I will definitely remember very well for the rest of my life.

In the wee hours that morning, Jennifer’s water bag broke. Time to rush to Thomson Medical Centre. We were excited, anxious yet calm about it. in the lift…on the way to our car… I drove her safely to our destination. She was escorted up while I went through the paper work.

In the delivery room, she went through waves after waves of contraction. I was by her side, feeling rather useless. All I could do was to comfort her. Seconds turned to minutes which turned to hours. To me it was a long wait. But I think to her it was eternity. Her pain was intense even with the mask over her.

Then the time had to come. Lawrence ambled in. In less than half an hour, the baby was delivered. Time was 7.38 a.m. My little Faith was there in front of me.

fresh from womb

By evening, all were taken care of. I was busy taking pictures of the baby. Jennifer looked weary, but she was relieved and happy. I told her I would come early next morning.

sleeping well

on my lap

eyes open

Back home, I turned in early, not because I was really tired. I wanted to have ample sleep before waking up at 3 to watch the Champions League final between my beloved Liverpool and Milan. I slept well, probably because of the joy of being a father.

In fact, I slept too well. When I woke up, the match had gone into half-time. When I saw the highlights of the first half, I could not believe my eyes. Liverpool 0 Milan 3! Lost, gone, dead and buried. I shut my eyes, hoping that I could continue my sweet dreams and forget the heart-breaking scoreline.

Rotten luck! I woke up suddenly to witness the first 5 minutes of the second half. Never mind, I should continue to watch the game for entertainment sake. And since I called myself a loyal Liverpool supporter, I must as well…

Then, the incredible happened (something which the whole world of football would know by now). My dearest Liverpool fought back and scored three goals by the 90th minute. The rest……hit the post……Riise missed……Dudek wobbled……Shevchenko missed……Gerrard lifted the cup!

gerrard felled

alonso scored

great save!

run…celebrate…

Liverpool, winners Champions League 2005

On the day when Faith was brought to Earth by her sensational parents, Milan was brought down to Earth by a sensational Liverpool FC.

How can I forget this day?

(Ps: one disappointment though: Bo Bice lost the American Idol final.)

Published in: on Tuesday, January 2, 2007 at 10:48 pm  Comments (2)  
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new beginning

2007 promises to be an exciting year for me. Expectations are high and I’m keeping my fingers crossed on what are to come.

Family has to be a priority. Jennifer and I are into our 5th year of marriage. Faith is turning two. So lots of family bonding to be enhanced.

Work is going to be challenging. Taking on a leadership role is not going to be easy. But I’m looking forward to exercising my leadership skills and management intelligence.

Hopefully I can spend more time reading this year. Have always enjoyed reading, but always struggled to be disciplined enough to read. Things could be better soon.

Blogging is another avenue for me to spend time thinking and reflecting. This should help develop my life further. I’m hoping that I could also spend some time writing more and making music more this year.

I guess I’m not ambitious. These things should be sufficient to keep me busy in 2007. Hope that it’s going to be another successful year.

Published in: on Monday, January 1, 2007 at 11:50 pm  Comments (1)  
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a very short holiday

Since I’ve been so busy during this vacation period, I could not afford to go overseas for holidays. Moreover, Faith’s still too young to travel far. But still managed to book a night’s stay at Marina Mandarin on Christmas’ eve. Check-in was delayed by the hotel, so they allowed us to stay til 2.00 p.m. the next day. Spent some time at Marina Square. Got back late in the evening. After putting Baby to sleep, Jennifer and I joined the countdown to Christmas at the corridor. Took some pictures and recorded short clips. After reviewing the pictures taken, our verdict is out: our Nikon machine must be replaced soon. Went to the swimming pool the next day. Then, after some loitering at the shopping centre, we checked out. A very short holiday experience. Similar to our Marriott and Downtown East one night stands in June and August respectively. But far from our fantastic experience in Switzerland in 2004 and Ritz-Carlton a few years back. Plan to go somewhere further in 2007. Australia, perhaps.
atrium lounge (view from 12th floor)
moments before midnight, party-goers gathered in anticipation

balloons
all hung up, ready for midnight release

suntec convention hall

pan pac and conrad hotels

self-explanatory

Merry Christmas!
balloons released…crowd went wild…balloons popped…

boxing day morning

atrium lounge boxing day
hotel staff were efficient in cleaning the party mess

Published in: on Tuesday, December 26, 2006 at 11:01 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Ordinary

People said that Christmas’ just a season of
Greeting cards, turkey dishes, well wishes
But I didn’t think that was just about it
Always felt this peace, this joy move within my heart
Such a lovely Christmas!
Or is this just an ordinary Christmas?

Then I saw the story of this young child
They called Prince of Peace, Counsellor, Emmanuel
And I knew this child wasn’t just one little life
He was much more than what I could see in his eyes
Such a lovely child!
He’s not just an ordinary child!

And I found this everlasting friendship
When the little child grew and walked into my life
He gives me peace, joy, hope and love
That mean so much more I can ever have from a friend
Such a lovely friend!
He’s not just an ordinary friend!

I’ve found the reason for Christmas
He came to live and die for me
Out of love, out of love
Out of love, out of love

Christmas isn’t just a simple story
With Santa Claus, jingle bells, “Merry Christmas!”
It’s ’bout having this great gift from above
Priceless, worthy, made ready for you
Such a lovely gift!
It’s not just an ordinary gift!

Christmas is one true Friend!
One true Friend is one best gift!

(23.12.1998)

Published in: on Monday, December 25, 2006 at 11:24 pm  Leave a Comment  
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one-after-another

one-after-another
one-after-another
how many one-after-anothers do I have to experience?
can I be strong?
will I be vigilant?
am I the problem?
or are they tests of my faithfulness?
if indeed they are, I might have failed.
or have I?

experience and maturity, you would expect,
should have seen me through this
quite laughably I found myself stagnant
I’m just a toddler, perhaps
I’m still developing, I suppose
I’m ever learning, for Pete’s sake
everyone’s learning all the time

excuses, excuses, excuses
enough of such woeful reasons

time to acknowledge my root
to question my integrity
to check my so-called progress
to measure my superficial success
deep down below
yet obviously shallow
the solution is crystal clear
it’s my choice
turn my back against the guiding tower
pretending losing my windows
or walk the narrow path
where no one dares to trudge
turn the tide
or ride with it

the devil versus the angel
the eternal matchup
could well impact my destiny

salvation to be completed?
or yet another one-after-another?

(fresh)

Published in: on Thursday, December 21, 2006 at 12:50 am  Leave a Comment  
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See

Let not the beautiful flowers lead you into believing that the moon on the other side is rounder.
Stand tall and be aware that whatever is beneath your breath, you owe to Mother Nature (or perhaps The Creator).
Sitting back and remembering your roots do not quite complement each other.
For you have to put the right foot forward to appreciate all that you possess.
Let not the corner of your weak mind impede you from the ascension when you finally see the world from where you should have long time ago.

(signed on 4.12.2006)

Published in: on Tuesday, December 19, 2006 at 12:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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Could I

Climbing out
Head searching
Stumbling across
Limbs wrenching
Standing in bewilderment
Mind aching
Looking in awe
Heart spinning

Should I have hoped for more?
Would I have wished for more?
Could I have asked for more?

Labouring on
Eyes sniffing
Enduring pain
Nose straining
Talking through
Ears speaking
Believing what’s up
Mouth crying

Should I have hoped for more?
Would I have wished for more?
Could I have asked for more?

Stop and look
Seeing what I see?
Seeing what I want to see?
Is it reality?
Is it illusion?
Do I have it?
Am I imagining I have it?
Stop and look

Should I have done more?
Would I have done more?
Could I have done more?

Do I have the makings of a fool?
Am I just an ordinary folk?
Should I?
Would I?
Could I?

(on the anniversary 2006)

Published in: on Monday, December 18, 2006 at 12:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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Ode to the Folks Whose Departure is Imminent

It is never easy
making sense of this world,
taking the initial steps,
uttering gibberish,
trusting the anonymous souls,
calling out the first names,
moving on with ease,
recognizing the familiar faces,
socializing a good mix,
loving the blood relations in return,
learning the alphabets,
acquiring different new skills,
manipulating numbers and dollars and sense,
building relationships,
climbing the academy charts,
maintaining bonding and ties,
surviving the rat race within the system,
managing emotions and feelings,
winning against all odds,
facing an early closure to part 1 of the life,
pouring the hearts out to the dearest,
clinging on to what’s left behind,
bidding farewell,
marching onto the next phase.
Never easy.

(noted on 18.11.2006)

Published in: on Sunday, December 17, 2006 at 12:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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Changed

You came
almost pure
almost innocent
almost without blemish
There you stood
looking naïve
looking young
looking adorable
You learned
always earnest
always teachable
always hungry for more
No one
could halt your steps
could quell your desire
could dampen your spirits

You grew
ever changing
ever distracted
ever influenced
The passion
gradually replaced
gradually sacrificed
gradually dissipated
There you looked
subtly distanced
subtly rebellious
subtly crying out loud
To you, no one
will ever believe in you
will ever appreciate you
will ever understand you

You left
very much broken
very much broken
very much broken

(baked in 18.11.2006)

Published in: on Saturday, December 16, 2006 at 12:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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Innocence

Innocence is some God-given gift that can only be enjoyed when you have absolutely no idea what the world is all about.
Innocence can also be a state of mind that leads you to thinking that every thing in this world is all but straight as you see.
Innocence might be defined as a one-time experience whereby you are free of worries and deep thoughts.
Innocence is definitely something that you will never ever possess again once you reach a certain level of maturity.
Innocence comes at birth but it’s there for everyone to lose without much effort.
Innocence. Cherish it before the break of dawn.

(rubbished out on 15.11.2006)

Published in: on Friday, December 15, 2006 at 12:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday!
Seventeen years away from this day
You were born again
Ignorant of loss or gain
Lost your way in the labyrinth of ups and downs
Thought you’d live your life with shrugs and frowns

On with the next wave of life
You found the most precious lessons in life
Grew from strength to strength
Confidence and hope abound in great length
Then came the time of trials that tested
Which you passed well and rested

Secular emotions seeped through invitingly
And you believed life would develop excitingly
Like a huge hammer that crushes your bones
Those who loved had fallen like hailstones
Deep, deep wounds that failed to recover
Had left a trail the fiend couldn’t wait to discover

Time had slowly healed the ache
With yet another worldly break
Off you went to start anew
Knowing well that chances could be few
Though the bed seems so full of roses
You can’t help but feel you need his doses

Owing to your progeny’s need
An opportunity arises so timely indeed
Now it’s time for some mind precision
There’s certainly no room for indecision
Rejoice; remember; reflect through the day
Happy Birthday!

(penned 2.11.2006)

Published in: on Thursday, December 14, 2006 at 12:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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Pride/Arrogance

I’ve got everything they don’t have.
God favours me, so I…
Have extra fats, extra oil,
Extra skin, extra flesh.
All contributing to extra pounds.
Look at my magnificent physique.
My sheer size casts fear amongst all of them.
Look at my eyes – sleek and cunning
Look at my nose – well-endowed and keen
Look at my cheeks – riding high with pride
Look at my chins – double glory, double arrogance
My thick limbs way surpass any other forms of human
My perfect bottoms summon advantages wherever I reside.
And the rest is plain history – my clothes, my shoes, my kingsized bed, etc.,etc,.etc.
I am more than a complete all-rounder
I am an icon for human beauty.

(2003 again)

Published in: on Wednesday, December 13, 2006 at 12:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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12 Years of Christmas

1st birthday, I wish I could have more movement, more milk & more motherly love.
2nd birthday, I wish I could have toys that challenge my limbs, esp the hands.
3rd birthday, I wish they would stop making me learn alphabets & give me time to watch TV.
4th birthday, I wish they would not make me learn piano & attend Maths lesson.
5th birthday, I wish I would not cry when I am in school.
6th birthday, I wish I would have courage & independence in school.
7th birthday, I wish Tom could be my best friend forever.
8th birthday, I wish Mrs Goh would come to past by tripping over a rock.
9th birthday, I wish Science never exist.
10th birthday, I wish Science & Maths never exist.
11th birthday, I wish to find my myself in EM2, at least.
12th birthday, I wish my parents stop placing high expectations on me.
I wish……I never jump…………

(from 2003)

Published in: on Tuesday, December 12, 2006 at 12:00 am  Comments (1)  
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a simple mind

Living life to the fullest with
One whom you cherish, sharing
Visions and dreams,
Everyone’s need.

Never before have I felt this way. The touch and the warmth that come with it, the feelings that runs through me and the way I am used. For so long, I have been feeling lonely. I have been made to feel unimportant and useless. To say that I have been mistreated is an utter understatement. I have been raped. Mishandled, thrown around with grease all over me. Made to feel thoroughly filthy. I honestly thought my days were miserable. Or did I even have days?

But (and that’s a big BUT), he sees me differently. From the moment he puts a hold on me, I know life is going to be beautiful after all. Somehow he has communicated the message that I am vital to his life. The tightness of his grip and his leaning body. Both make me feel very much wanted. It’s like he can count on me totally. All of a sudden, my ego has heightened, my morale boosted and my confidence…well, let’s just say it has skyrocketed! What’s more, all these lead myself into believing that I am invincible. By the power of the sky and Earth I have been created. The attributes in me are just so unmatchable. Streams of thoughts about how good I am keep flooding my mind.

Quite abruptly, my foolhardy mind is disturbed when I hear him utter, “I’ll…I’ll…buy this staff.” I feel like I have been knocked into my senses on the head. All my, what seem to be frivolous, thoughts, now, have vanished in a matter of seconds. I have been brought back to reality again. It’s like a child being awakened from his sweet dreams. I must accept the cold, hard fact. I am only a wooden stick. Staff, people call me. An item that only old folks utilise. “This piece of junk? It merely costs one cent,” another man says.

A junk. A stick. An old man wood. What more names can I get from people? Why are they calling me multiple names? I have a name. Staff is my name. But what can I do? Moments ago I felt invincible. Now, back to square one. Feeling ineffective and chagrin fills my heart. I am a nobody. Period.

“I’ll take this staff,” says the old man.

The next thing I know, I am held in his hands and slowly we walk out together. To speak the truth, I am walking with a heavy heart. Not that this is something new. I have been feeling desolate all my life anyway. The only difference is, this time I feel worse. Especially after my two-second triumphant thoughts. As for the man, he just trudges along very slowly, using me as a support.

Walking with him is rather slow. Step by step, I take him along on the walkway. He’s a strong man, I can tell you, just from his desperate hold on me. But he’s weak in his legs. The way he walks is comparable to an artist painting his picture painstakingly. Careful, precise, slow. I can hear his breathing. Not rapid but draggy. He’s also singing too. I can’t really figure out what he is singing. But it goes something like “I’ve been working on the rail road……” He sounds joyful. Or should I say there is an element of pride in his mood. Despite my pathetic state of life and state of mind (or at least that’s what I think), my spirits is somehow being lifted up, albeit it doesn’t change the opinion of myself. I still sucks. But the old man and his grip and his feelings and his moods and his song have an impact on me. A positive impact. Let’s be frank, I have hope in him.

The song goes on “Dinah blow your horn, Dinah blow your horn……” In what seems like ages, I have only moved twenty-three steps. I can hear that we are merely a stone’s throw away from the shop.

(penned in 2003)

Published in: on Monday, December 11, 2006 at 12:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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back in 2003…

The ingenuity of the human heart has been betrayed by the genuity of the human actions time and time again.

Never mind the errors
that make themselves
a nuisance to those
around daily, persistently
and obstinately.
If you say ignorance is bliss,
I’d say forgiveness is blessed.

Lethargic
My body & my soul
Yearn for something more
Refreshed, renewed
Aptly put it.
28 days later
Energetic
My body & my soul
Empowered, inspired
Aptly put it.

Cast your shadow
over the hapless lizard
and cause fear in it.
Cast your shadow
over the studious girl
and cause anger in her.
Cast your shadow
over your beloved’s tombstone
and cause sorrow in you.
Cast your shadow
over the ragged thug
and cause joy in him.

The word ‘trash’ is
often, unfortunately, silently
succumbed to subjectivity.
The vast majority perceives
‘trash’ as things that are
rubbish, useless, nonsense,
utterly woeful, completely junkie.
But it would be wrong to reject
any claim that ‘trash’ can lead to
usefulness, salvation, aid, advantage, benefit.
There’s no absolute truth in
semantics and linguistics.
Both are results of a human brain
that errs too much to be called
full-proof and reliable.
To you, I might be writing ‘trash’,
first definition.
To me, I am writing ‘trash’,
second definition.

Published in: on Sunday, December 10, 2006 at 12:00 am  Comments (2)  
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