Wednesday, January 31, 2018

COME AS YOU ARE

Today one of my colleagues played emo songs (here I go, so dishonestly, leave a note / when darkness turns to light, it ends tonight) and I thought of Fall Out Boy, I don't know why. I used to listen to them circa Thks Fr th Mmrs/Dance Dance/Sugar, We're Going Down, but haven't really listened to their recent music.

This April I'll be going to see FOB live with my sisters, the three whom I live with, because the youngest loves them. I feel like I'm more of a chaperone, I AM SO OLD. Need to catch up with discography since my high school years of more than a decade ago.

I also had my staff review done today, and of all the things my manager said (lasted about an hour), one of it really struck me as superbly touching. Yay I am so happy and grateful.

I am at the third section of The Road Less Travelled, which talks about the relationship between psychotherapy and religion. It reminds me of when Han (my best friend: sometimes there are just such random people reading this, I wonder if y'all know who all the people in my life are??) asked me last week, whether I was just acting out against my mum with all my newfound "hardcore" atheism.

I suppose perhaps a little bit of it could be me being perverse, but it isn't like every time I say or write something, she hears or reads it, so it's not all for her benefit, or non-benefit. I dunno, my mother did use religion a lot as a screen for being domineering and for having me/us depend on her and to dictate every move, so maybe growing up into my own person and not seeing my mother as all-wise and all-knowing also means I don't see a higher entity as all-wise and all-knowing.

I also really think I'm much better off not believing in any god. Did you know, that at twenty-seven years old, I have only recently started not being scared going to sleep in the complete darkness? I figure that if God doesn't exist, neither do all the weird supernatural beings that exist along with the realm of God, and there is nothing to be scared of in the dark. I only learned that at twenty freaking seven, jesus christ.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

MEOWTH

I dreamt I was in NYC for a while and I called A, asking him to meet, and we did, and we liked each other, just like we do. Or like we did? I don’t know. I miss him. Take your time, Sarah, and let it be. If it will be, it will be. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t. Que sera, Sarah.

Also today I found out there is an Instagram account @lunchcosmetics that parodies Lush posts and it’s super cheesy-weird-lols but also delicious and I’m so here for this and this world is wild and I’m happy to be alive. I think I might be hungry.

Is it finally going to be February in twenty-four hours in Singapore? It is about friggin’ time. That’s been a long time coming. You know what else is a long time coming? Hmmmmmmm....

An even later edit: I just read some articles about Eden Ang being a sexual predator and he’s gone on to deny the claims and say that he’s been maligned, etc. Uh, nope, always knew he felt like an off character. Even when he was playing Moritz in Spring Awakening and Nicole had a sort of thing for him. What year was that? She was most definitely still in her teens and he was already douchey.

Geez, fuckbois of the world. Guess what? Time’s up. Thank goodness for receipts. “Call me daddy” motherfucker I don’t even call my own dad daddy, who dyou think you are pressuring a young girl like that l e l

PETTY

Last night, my real dad asked how I was, and how my uni applications were going. I answered honestly and lengthily but there was no response to my answer. Instead, he launched into a monologue about how the two other women who are the mothers to his four other kids are now almost like sisters. I felt more than a little annoyed, because I didn’t feel like he was concerned about me, he just wanted me to be interested in my four half-siblings. I’m so tired, the onus is really not on me to care because you fathered six kids and cannot care for all of them equally. Sometimes I wish I could be like Melyssa and not talk to him at all. It’s not that I’m not glad for the younger ones that he’s a better dad than he was when he raised me (not very well, if you can’t tell how I yearn for men’s approval) but the very least you could do is not pretend to be interested in my life. Jesus. At least my mum with her misplaced religious worries actually takes care of me and houses me in her apartment. I mean, really, I might share my father’s genes but there’s no freaking love lost there.

ERROR 404

I have a petite colleague, who was just a petite colleague, until recently she told me she’s been reading my Wordpress (technically this entire website is hosted on Blogger but same difference) and suddenly she became much more than just a petite colleague.

I have not much value to my name, nor in my life. I currently sell soap for money, which is quite frankly the basis of my job. I haven’t even got an educational degree, and I haven’t written or done anything worth talking about. I mean, apart from growing up into an atheist in a semi-religious family with one parent that had violence and rage issues who eventually left, and one parent who has misplaced ideas of love that likely trickled down to me, and circumnavigating sexual trauma and harassment just because of how I look, and perhaps dealing with my own miscarriage that left me completely unbalanced for a year or so, I have not done much at all.

If there is one thing I hope people see value in me for, I hope it is that you choose to love. The only thing certain in life is death and that everything will eventually end. If you’re lucky, you have at least another fifty years to go before the end of your life. I hope you love, even with the risk of loss and pain. Love, even if you know it will end. Love, even if it is difficult. Love, even if it leaves you mentally unfit for a period of your life. Love, and then let go. And then love again, and then let go again. Because the things you do for work, they could benefit people through their lives and perhaps beyond their lifetimes and your own lifetime, if you are perhaps a teacher or a doctor or whatever your profession may be, but when you love, you greatly enhance your own life, and that matters as much as anybody else’s life you want to help with.

Monday, January 29, 2018

DON’T THINK TWICE, IT’S ALRIGHT

PSA: When things like this are no longer relevant, perhaps I will not feel overwhelmed by too many things enough that I have to write and talk all the goddamn time because I can't stand being with my own thoughts.

"There's nothing quite like a catchy but fairly mediocre pop track about being in love with the literal physical outline of an unknown woman's body, sung by British everyman and erstwhile Game of Thrones cast member Ed Sheeran, taking the trophy for Best Pop Solo Performance at the Grammys to hammer home the values of the world we currently live in. The category's other contenders — Kelly Clarkson, Lady Gaga, P!nk and Kesha — provided fierce competition not only vocally, but lyrically, touching on themes of political division, strength in the face of heartbreak and how to forgive your rapist."
Right, I am crying, properly bawling now.

A WILD NEUTRINO APPEARS

You know what we should all aim to be? Tardigrades. Tardigrades are more resistant than cockroaches, they've survived the last five mass extinctions, and they're also known as water bears, and they're even kinda cute. In a weird, gross way. Oh, they remind me of that weird caterpillar from Alice in Wonderland. The one that's always high on hookah or whatever.

So I did not run, nor swim, nor cycle, today. Yet I still had Ben & Jerry's chocolate chip cookie dough ice-cream, as well as strawberries with whipped cream, while watching Cosmos on Netflix. My reasonings are that I have limited time to spend with my grandma (yes I went to the market with her today), whereas even living overseas, I must have some means of cycling/swimming/etc.

Also, I indulged in ice-cream and strawberries and cream for similar lines of thought, to be honest I dunno if I can afford the luxury of ice-cream, et cetera so often if I'm living by myself, especially if I have to convert my savings by 0.76 to their currency. I will be even poorer than I am now, geez.

When we reached the supermart, my grandma proclaimed "macam dah masuk syurga eh" which means "it feels like we've reached Heaven" 'cos the supermarket is airconditioned and we'd been walking for ten minutes in the sun (not technically, because we were walking in shade). Perhaps that explains my propensity for using superlatives, and also my gramma is the cutest.

I wonder if the word for grandmother is cute in every language. I love calling her Nyai, which is like an old Javanese way of saying grandma, and I love how Lin-Manuel calls his grandma abuela, abuela sounds like the ideal word to call a grandma. In Chinese, it is something like "Nai-nai" (I never took Chinese as a subject so I don't know what the hanyu pinyin is) and that sounds really adorable as well.

When my grandma proclaimed the thing about having reached Heaven, I wanted to say I don't believe in heaven, or heaven doesn't exist, but then it might have given her a heart attack, so I refrained. If I ever had grandkids, I wonder what they would say to shock me, what if they say "I don't believe in Netflix" oh bless my dear heart, that would hurt my very existence.

wise men say only fools rush in

but I can't help falling in love with you 

Sunday, January 28, 2018

HALLOWEEN ON CHRISTMAS

don’t waste your time on me
you’re already the voice inside my head

I plan to cycle, run and swim tomorrow and if I do all three, I will have an ice-cream. Otherwise, no ice-cream for me tomorrow! I really want to get my wedding dress but it’s in the US and shipping it here is not worth it, considering, well, considering I don’t think I’m getting married in Singapore. Decisions, decisions.

THE PROPHET

Here are snippets of the poem The Prophet by Khalil Gibran, quoted in The Road Less Travelled. I thought they were meaningful, so I’m bookmarking it here to share it, as well as a mental note to myself to read it in its entirety, sometime.

(Also: I really need replacement earphones soon, ‘cos geez, conversations in the train in Singapore are so mundane and boring, completely unlike in LA - spoken from experience, nor in New York - spoken from reading @overheardnewyork on Instagram.)

The Prophet: —
Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you. 
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you
    cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them
    like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children as living arrows
    are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and
    He bends you with His might that His arrows may go
    swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also
    the bow that is stable.

Another snippet from The Prophet: —
But let there be spaces in your togetherness,
And let the winds of the heavens dance between you. 
Love one another, but make not a bond of love:
Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf
Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of
   you be alone,
Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver
   with the same music. 
Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together yet not too near together:
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s
    shadow.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

SEB’S

Another day of sun, another night of fun. Girls will somehow always pay me more attention than guys do. You strip off all your clothes and lay on your bed, you pry open your laptop, then think “not tonight, I am too tired.” He missed a belt loop discovered only when Phoebe was checking for muscles in spasm. They take their coffee with no sugar, donuts with peanut butter and jelly filling are just for the ‘gram. What would Newton think? What would Jesus do? She wants to learn a new language, not for the sake of knowing a new language to converse in, but to get over the fact that she took Korean lessons with her ex. Mochi is the name of my real-life cat, but one time I played one of my favourite games, Harvest Moon, and I named my dog Wasabi, afterwhich I have always wanted to own a dog in real life and call him or her Wasabi. How do you verify the credibility of an alibi, especially before the advent of closed circuit footage? Piranhas live in freshwater, and I have a phobia of sharks. If the most powerful president in the world is one who has not earned the respect of his own people, what is the actual true worth of people over, say, a pack of wolves or hyenas? We are all made of stars, but some stars will always shine brighter than others, some are invisible and discovered only through their gravitational pull on other entities and some are supermassive black holes. What kind of star are you?

Friday, January 26, 2018

FROZEN THINGS THEY ALL UNFREEZE

and now I taste like all those frozen strawberries
I used to chill your bruising knees

I spent time with my best friend last night, wherein she said sometimes I say things that reek of skinny privilege, like “I look good in everything” when we discussed bridesmaid dresses last week. It’s not like I’m unaware that the fashion industry is completely ridiculous in always sizing down outfits and making more of the smaller sizes so that society is pressured to conform and fit in, I also follow body-positive bloggers and think they are gorgeous whatever size they are, and still, sometimes I say stupid shit like “I look good in everything” and forget to acknowledge that it is because the industry is catered to skinny-ass, curveless people like me.

The Road Less Travelled is indeed my favourite book and one of the things on my bucketlist would be to get everyone I know to read it at least once. There is a section that talks about how love is not a feeling but wilful action, and perhaps 28 is a little late to learn it, perhaps it is just the right time, but every word I read in the book resonates strongly with me.

I have had boyfriends and dates and lovers, for whom I might have had the loving feeling for, and for whom I would have or did make effort to love. I fought fiercely with my family about them, or I reflected upon myself again and again, wondering whether I did something wrong to upset them, or I re-thought my life plan and tried to speed things up to accommodate someone else’s needs, or you get the gist.

With each of these people, I wanted to be loved, and they might have had the loving feeling for me, they may have enjoyed being mutually attracted to me, the endless conversations about TV, or music, or social justice and politics, or cats, or teaching me to drive, or showing me their workplace, or you get the gist. But none of them actually loved me in the sense that they were willing to put in effort into loving me. When love becomes work, none of them wanted it, and according to the book, which I cannot deny, it is because I didn’t put in attention towards myself.

I love people, and I’m always talking about other people, but I haven’t put in the same effort into loving myself and improving myself and making myself the best version of me I can be. People love people who are passionate about things, and it is a weird request to get one man to start loving a girl whose passion has empirically always been other men.

For some reason, yesterday I thought of what my real dad said when I miscarried. He said “I didn’t think you liked kids that much, that always seemed to be Lyssa” and perhaps it was not his intention but what I heard was “you’re better off without it, anyway.” It’s funny how my own parent would assume certain things about me although they had not lived with me and put in no effort into raising me as a person for two entire decades. It is no wonder I don’t know how to choose love for myself, I have not had concrete examples of proper loving relationships from my role models. I am starting from ground zero, but I guess 28 is not too late.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

MMM-BOP

A couple of weeks ago, my family of six went for dinner and conversation got a bit heated. My parents started out by positing that character is genetic, which is why although Melyssa never lived with our dad (hers and mine), there are certain traits he has that she has, as well.

Of course, myself being the argumentative lawyer-wannabe, I said that character has nothing to do with genes, and that it is all entirely learned and emulated. At that point, Mel and I weren’t too friendly with each other yet, but she also said for my parents’ benefit “as a Science student, I can tell you that character and personality are not passed on through genes.”

There are times when our two younger half-sisters, who are half-Chinese and half-Malay, say things that are ludicrous and incredible to hear, that stem from their Chinese privilege (you know how there is white privilege in the Western world, well in Singapore there is Chinese privilege and neither Mel nor I benefit from nor enjoy it, with the exception of through our Chinese stepdad — that then means on Lunar New Year, we also collect red packets of money, HE HE HE).

When this happens, when our two younger teenage sisters say things that remotely flaunt their Chinese privilege, Mel and I stop them and tell them why it isn’t okay to do so, and that their experiences are not necessarily the collective experience of the minority races in Singapore.

My mother is forty-six this year (yeah, she had me when she was eighteen: and yes, Gilmore Girls used to be our favourite mother-daughter bonding show), and you know how they say when you reach forty years old, your opinions and beliefs are set in stone and it is damn near impossible to change your mind about anything?

I hope that when I reach forty, I will still know when to admit I’m wrong, I will still reflect upon ideas and make the right moral judgment about things, I will still be flexible enough to think about the inherent value of anything, from homosexuality to BDSM to open marriages to I dunno, whatever.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

TOSS-UP

i. my life is constantly a battle of The Rembrandts (your job’s a joke, you're broke, your love life's DOA) versus Bon Jovi (words can't say what love can do)

ii.

I think the above is fucking amazing.

iii. I went to the laundromat to do the laundry today (my mother would not let me wash my bag in the washing machine in our place) and now I have clean, dry and most importantly warm bedsheets, towels and bags that I hugged right out of the dryer. I love doing laundry at the laundromat. I think that was one of my favourite things to do in LA. I think it's weird that Singaporeans don't have dryers in their houses, considering the amount of precipitation we get, and that we don't have bathtubs. So practical. Too practical.

iv.
This is true and also, the number of times I've stopped myself from responding in Chinese when they speak to me in Chinese, although I understand and can converse in it: hah, because I don't look "typically Malay", well, not today, Satan.

SOME THINGS

I was telling my colleague Mavis that I’m a bridesmaid for two weddings this year, once for my best friend Atiqah and another for my cousin Hazwani. Both are people I love very dearly, but I was lamenting the fact that they are getting married while I am still single. Mavis then said, “well, you should be happy that you’re a bridesmaid for them, it means that they really cherish you and y’all are close enough for them to share one of their happiest days with you” and I realised, holy crap she just spat some truth bars right there. Two of my most favourite people in this world of seven billion, are getting married and they want me to be a special part of that, and I am so grateful.

I love Hamilton: An American Musical and Lin-Manuel Miranda’s portrayal of Alexander Hamilton and I know, Sarah, I know you love the ideals of freedom and truth and defending to the death the principles you believe in and I know you want every line to be about you but you are not A. Ham. I know you are a surprise bastard child in the traditional sense of the word, and I know sometimes you feel orphaned and you’ve always learned to fend for yourself and you love to read and to write but you are not him. The musical is not about you, and the line “you never learned to take your time” does not have to apply to you. You can and should take your time, in love and in study and at work. Hamilton lived in the 1700s, and their lifespans were not as long as you have it now, so he had to always be hustling, but you don’t. Take time to breathe. It is okay to miss out on some things for the sake of other things. “Look around, look around, at how lucky you are, to be alive right now.” Look how loved you are, look at how you envy the people who can do Math, and dance, and sing and play instruments, and look at how they envy you for being able to write exactly the way you want to. You are as honest as it gets. Use it wisely, don’t write yourself into ruin the way Hamilton did.

My iPhone’s earphones are spoilt ‘cos something spilt in my bag and wet pretty much all its contents so now I have to get replacement iPhone7 earphones because it has the weird lightning cable connector and not the usual earphone jack. Oh Apple you will be the death of me. When you made my iPhone7 waterproof why did you not do the same for the accompanying earphones? I also have to get a new iPhone charger for Lyssa ‘cos hers is whacked and isn’t charging her phone properly so she has been sharing mine. My iPhone charger that I got from an Apple store at The Grove in LA, one and a half years ago. I don’t remember what happened to my previous charger before that, that I had to get one in LA. Did I lose it? Spoil it? Guess my memory isn’t infallible after all. Huh.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

THE BEACH

This morning has been a little bit of a struggle. I feel like it’s finally time to make use of the fact that my workplace is only ten minutes away from the beach and head there after work tonight. I would like to see the stars and feel the sand and maybe I could use a short cry. If anyone reads this and is open tonight and would also like to be at the beach, lemme know. Otherwise, I’ll go on my own, that’s truly fine.

COGNITIVE DISSONANCE

There are things I witness in my everyday life that do not sit very well with the things I value in my brain and heart and soul. Every time my mum or grandma tells me that my clothes are not what “a sweet girl” would wear, I think maybe I deserved all those times I was mistreated by men, maybe I am giving off the vibes that I am not “a nice girl” and all I want is to be toyed with. Perhaps it is growing up in a household with only girls, but I have never heard my family say to the boys that regardless what a person wears, he is not to touch her if she does not want to, that only yes means yes, that a girl who stays out with him past midnight can still be a good girl, that even as a man, he is not simply reduced to “boys will be boys”, that it is not on the girl, it is never on the girl, for a man who chooses to do something. A few months ago, a Malay Muslim woman was elected as Singapore’s president (although there were no votes, but that’s a whole notha story), and all I can remember is my uncle, with whom I grew up in the same household, saying “is this what we have come to? Is this what we were taught? That women can lead just the same as men?” and that’s when I realised the women’s activist groups I’d been in have been right for so long, that sometimes it is your very own flesh and blood that can be the most toxic, and the fact that you want to distance yourself from people whose values pervade your mental health, is not a bad thing. It is in the fact that the woman who raised me to believe that god makes you a better and more accepting person, then turned around to tell me I have made a grievous, shameful mistake, only because the same god said so, and not based on any logical proof, that I think “when will this fucking end?” If a person’s love for you is conditional upon whether you are a Muslim or share the same religious belief whichever it may be, then is that love, actually?

Monday, January 22, 2018

WHAT DO YOU MEAN
THIS HAPPENED TO ME?

I’LL WRITE MY WAY OUT
(WAIT FOR IT)

This morning (or was it last night, I can’t tell) I saw A post on Instagram that he was putting together the band and recording a demo of the song that he wrote, something he’d been wanting to do for years. I feel very proud of and excited for him. He also really looks like a qtpie in the photo. Ah, I miss him. Today I was whiling away time during my break at work and missing the times we’d talk about the everyday and the extraordinary to each other. It is a good thing his social media is all about as public as my own, so if I see a girlfriend on the horizon I can shut the hell up, lolol. I tried to do the 28 days without looking at his social media, and I managed to do it, but then I went right back to looking at it. He has no girlfriend and his profile is public, it is my prerogative to do whatever I want. Right? We launched Valentine’s items last weekend and I just want to ramble to him re: how pretty they are and how delicious they smell because: I dunno, I just do, I guess.

maybe she’s wrong
and just maybe I’m right

CHASING AMY

I saw a clip of Trump mouthing off on what he thinks are the visa lottery and chain immigration. On the one hand, I am glad I probably don’t hail from a country that he would deem a “shithole”, on the other, I really do want to be in the US so there are certain ideas I probably shouldn’t talk about.

Today my brain is trying to wrap itself around how conservatives are pissy about libs and safe spaces but their entire idea of building walls and keeping out people from non-similar backgrounds is inherently constructing what they think is the safest space for themselves. Death Eaters.

Imagine if I went around calling all white people Death Eaters.

DEPENDENCY

Passive dependency has its genesis in lack of love. The inner feeling of emptiness from which passive dependent people suffer is the direct result of their parents' failure to fulfill their needs for affection, attention and care during their childhood. It was mentioned in the first section that children who are loved and cared for with relative consistency throughout childhood enter adulthood with a deepseated feeling that they are lovable and valuable and therefore will be loved and cared for as long as they remain true to themselves. Children growing up in an atmosphere in which love and care are lacking or given with gross inconsistency enter adulthood with no such sense of inner security. Rather, they have an inner sense of insecurity, a feeling of 'I don't have enough' and a sense that the world is unpredictable and ungiving, as well as a sense of themselves as being questionably lovable and valuable. It is no wonder, then, that they feel the need to scramble for love, care and attention wherever they can find it, and once having found it, cling to it with a desperation that leads them to unloving, manipulative, Machiavellian behaviour that destroys the very relationships they seek to preserve. As also indicated in the previous section, love and discipline go hand in hand, so that unloving, uncaring parents are people lacking in discipline, and when they fail to provide their children with a sense of being loved, they also fail to provide them with the capacity for self-discipline. Thus the excessive dependency of the passive dependent individuals is only the principal manifestation of their personality disorder. Passive dependent people lack self-discipline. They are unwilling or unable to delay gratification of their hunger for attention. In their desperation to form and preserve attachments they throw honesty to the winds. They cling to outworn relationships when they should give them up. Most important, they lack a sense of responsibility for themselves. They passively look to others, frequently even their own children, as the source of their happiness and fulfilment, and therefore when they are not happy or fulfilled they basically feel that others are responsible. Consequently they are endlessly angry, because they endlessly feel let down by others who can never in reality fulfill all their needs or 'make' them happy. I have a colleague who often tells people, 'Look, allowing yourself to be dependent on another person is the worst possible thing you can do to yourself. You would be better off being dependent on heroin. As long as you have a supply of it, heroin will never let you down; if it's there, it will always make you happy. But if you expect another person to make you happy, you'll be endlessly disappointed.' As a matter of fact, it is no accident that the most common disturbance that passive dependent people manifest beyond their relationships to others is dependency on drugs and alcohol. Theirs is the 'addictive personality'. They are addicted to people, sucking on them and gobbling them up, and when people are not available to be sucked and gobbled, they often turn to the bottle or the needle or the pill as a people-substitute. In summary, dependency may appear to be love because it is a force that causes people to fiercely attach themselves to one another. But in actuality it is not love; it is a form of antilove. It has its genesis in a parental failure to love and it perpetuates the failure. It seeks to receive rather than to give. It nourishes infantilism rather than growth. It works to trap and constrict rather than to liberate. Ultimately it destroys rather than builds relationships, and it destroys rather than builds people.
The Road Less Travelled may turn out to be the most important book I have ever read and will ever read and become a favourite. The previous chunk of text seems a little like me in a nutshell, but hey, acceptance is the first step to recovery, right? Also, as long as I don't perpetuate the pattern with kids, I will have done one better.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

MASS CLUCKING

My youngest sister (at least the one in my household, it takes too long to explain all my siblings) is watching an Elders React video on YouTube, and they’re watching the meme of Ugandan Knuckles. One of the elderly men watched a scene that had the closed captions [mass clucking] and he did the clucking sound and he said “I could have helped with this one” and I’m fecking ded, old people can be so precocious. I need some new music, my Spotify is made up of basically Selena Gomez, Lorde, Taylor Swift, the Hamilton soundtrack and mixtape, the La La Land OST and perhaps, Fall Out Boy circa my teenage years. I feel like I should really explore old songs, the other day my colleague played something by Tina Turner and she was positively affronted when I didn’t know what it was.

YOU KNOW I’M SUCH A FOOL FOR YOU

do you have to let it linger?

21/365:

I am on the way to work for a meeting afterwhich I’m back home for my off day. Yesterday while I was walking home from work, at midnight, there was a guy walking at my pace for a while, and in my head, I already thought “geez, not again” because I had been followed home and flashed by some pervert sometime before. I was mustering all my energy to face whatever it was, and turned, and saw it was freaking Perfiq. That’s not his real name but was once upon a time his Instagram handle, which was a perfect pun on his name, because my sister and I thought he was perfect. We used to work with him at the same café, and he always reminded me of Khalis, because Perfiq is also a drummer. He and his girlfriend post drum covers together now, and they’re like couple goals. Apparently Perfiq has been our neighbour all this while and we never knew, and this is amazing news, because he used to be our only eyecandy while we worked together. Man oh man, time flies. Speaking of Khalis, remember the times when he taught me to drum and we would never get anywhere because I would be nervous because I had the longest-standing biggest crush on him? Geez. He never even touched me. He’d seen me getting over my previous boyfriend and it took way too long so he knew if we ever did anything, I would be just as hung up over him so he didn’t. I haven’t seen Khalis since what, August? The first time I’d seen him since the miscarriage and we talked about it as if he was an interviewer, he was still floored. My life is wild. I had a crush on Khalis for what, six years? I only stopped, and I remember this extremely vividly because I said it to a best friend, because he’d put on a little weight, and I’m inherently attracted to very thin men. To be specific, the same size as I am. Any thinner and I’m not attracted to them, any bigger and I think they have more physical power than I do. So basically that’s a delicate balance for a man to navigate. I am a completely superficial disgusting specimen of a person, truly. But you know, I’m human and I don’t think my flaws are any worse than the best of them. Nobody said we have to be saints.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

IN THE MIDDLE OF THE RIDE

This is gonna be a bit of a ramble, because I'm tired. Today has been a bit of a day, the way the past nineteen days have all been "a bit of a day" for some reason. Prepare yourself to follow this rollercoaster of a weird post.

So I found out that I'd dropped my wallet somewhere last night, and it was returned to the shoe cabinet outside our apartment, where my grandma discovered it this morning.

I was so glad it was returned and even gladder to have found that my cards and cash were all intact. I mean, given that it had been returned via cabinet, I wouldn't have known the identity of the person who'd returned it, and so if some money was missing, I would have accepted it. But nope, my forty dollars of bills were still there, and I didn't need to cancel my cards.

(P.S. the person found my address on the reverse of my identity card, for those of you who are not from Singapore / P.P.S. hello hi all of you I miss all of you, I promise to see all your faces soon)

Tbh, I was most worried about the ten-dollar note that I'd gotten and kept for its serial number. IT IS MY LUCKY CHARM and the fact that my wallet was returned to me is complete and legit proof that 2018 is my year, right.

In a completely different tangent, my sister Melyssa and I were not speaking to each other for a couple of months, which sucked. She has her moods when she's depressed, and I had my own moods, and this time it clashed so we just never talked.

Recently, we started talking again and it's always a wonder that we ever stop talking, because she is my best friend, and we understand each other the way only sisters understand each other. Also: we have a joke that when we don't talk to each other, neither of us has friends, because we're each other's only friends.


She sent me a comic strip about the meaninglessness of life that only she and I, of all our family members, would relate to.

So, back to the wallet story, right. I was at work, and I dunno, probably admiring my own Adventure Time boots or something, when a guy and a girl walk up, and I was gonna start talking to them the way Lush staff do, right.

The guy then looks at me, and asks, "are you my neighbour?" and I look at him, and say "I think so" because he definitely looked familiar, although if you asked me to pick him out of a police line-up of similar-looking men, I wouldn't be able to.

He asks, "do you have a pink Kate Spade wallet?" and I said, "yes I do, oh my god, are you..." and he says "yeah, I found it last night" and this time, he and his friend start giving each other looks. She says, "we were just talking about you!" to me, because apparently, my neighbour had found yet another wallet at the mall, and so he was telling her that he'd found my wallet and returned it last night.

There was an awkward pause of about a gazillion years, in which I wondered "did he Google my name and find out where I work and made all this up because this place is an hour and a half away from our block and I have never seen him outside of our block of apartments and what are the odds that he is here at my workplace the day after he returned my wallet, the odds are very very very stacked against that"

in which time I would guess he was also thinking "I hope she doesn't think I'm stalking her, how the hell am I at her workplace, an hour and a half away from our block of residence, the day after I returned her wallet"

and to end that weird pause, I gave him and his friend Random Act of Kindness items (just items from the inventory that we give to people we like and want to make the days of), and they left and that was a strange, straaaaaaange adventure to my day. I feel like the Adventure Time boots are giving me actual adventures!!!!!!!!!!

In any case, my bathroom cabinet is now a mini Lush store.

I am a little sad that I have accumulated so many bath bombs and bubble bars and do not have a bathtub to use them. Bubble baths are some of my favourite things in life, because I am bourgie af. But tbh I really love baths and Lush and lemme tell you why.

When I first realised that every month my period was giving me little panic attacks, because there was blood and blood at one point meant miscarriage, and I was starting to see my therapist, I also started working at Lush, and every day, despite being overwhelmed by life and needing to get out of bed, once I was at work and smelling all the different scents, I felt so... zen.

I love the smells at work, it means more than just essential oils, they mean a family that accept me no matter what I believe, or what I do with my body, etc etc. It means this company that buys ethically so that people in villages in Ghana have a sustainable income, it means a company that has not ventured into the China market (a very sizeable one, mind you) because China law requires that cosmetics companies test their products on animals, and Lush does not. It means this company that has lovely copy on its packaging, copy that one day I hope to write.

In any case, you know, the only thing I want when I'm an adult living by myself, is a bathtub in my apartment, no matter how small my apartment may be. The fact that I have a bathtub to relieve my stresses at the end of perhaps of every week, will be all I need to tell myself, this was all I wanted, and this means I have made it.

It has been a bit of a week. I think, I am pretty sure Adam and I are creeping on each other, perhaps because we are both middle school kids (I say, as if I know what middle school is) (I don't). Ah well, perhaps if I reach old age one day, all these middle-school-crushes will amuse me. I am twenty-seven, but acting seventeen. Not too bad, I guess. Life has no meaning, anyway, so.

oh no

Monday, January 15, 2018

A LOT LIKE LOVE

You know how they say the more you do something, the easier it becomes. Perhaps there is a little truth in that. In one of the NPR-TED episodes I listened to, a man spoke about how he was so deathly afraid of rejection that he never took the steps to fulfill a childhood dream he’d had. So he went on a journey of rejection, he went 100 days making requests of strangers, things he somewhat knew he would be rejected for, like an unreasonable loan amount, and so on. Day after day, he got a little bit used to it and he also got used to the fact that despite the rejection, he was still living and breathing and he was at the base of it all, actually okay. In fact, not all of his requests were rejected, apparently a few people said yes against his expectations. I did not want to write this, because I have done this so many times before, perhaps too many times before, and it has never amounted to much. But then I think to myself, if I have done it for so many men who only wanted my body without even knowing my full name, why should I not do it for you? Sometimes I want to tell you about Mochi, because you’ve seen her several times and I know you must have some form of attachment to her, if not to me. The other day we mentioned the age discrepancy between my mum and stepdad (she is 7 years older and is effectively a cougar) and my younger half-sisters, said “like you and Adam” and I looked at them, wide-eyed and open-mouthed, asking how they knew. Them: “we saw him on your Instagram, you said he was 26 and that’s younger than you” so I learn that my little tiny sisters, who were babies when I was 13, perhaps know more about me than I give them credit for. Sometimes I want to read your writing, and then I tell myself not to, and then I wonder why. I like your writing, your dark, very black humour, things that make me wonder how dark your thoughts must be, which then makes me wonder why you wouldn’t watch something like Black Mirror. I think about the night I get drunk in front of my colleagues, and tell you I like you so much I cannot quite place any other way to express besides that I love you, and you say it back, with no qualms. I rue the days we cried for and about each other, geez, that was rough. It makes me smile now, somehow, thinking, wow somebody felt as much as I did, how is that even possible. I open my iMovie to edit a video then realise the one you had sent me when you were opening my box is still there, and it makes me feel a lot of things I cannot separate from each other. When the opening riffs or drum notes of any song in the playlist you’d made for me plays on my Spotify, I either skip the song or listen to it endlessly on repeat, wondering whether even the artist has ever felt the way I feel for you. I miss you and your jokes that range from A+++++++++++ to complete-rubbish-Adam-why-do-you-even-try. I miss us and the incessant “the old Taylor/Adam/Sarah can’t come to the phone right now. Why? Oh, ‘cos she’s dead!” Every time my colleagues play Carly Rae Jepsen or Ariana Grande, I wonder what you feel about the particular song. I don’t know why I’m writing this, I truly never do, but if it doesn’t kill me, why the fuck not, right? I hope you’re okay. That’s all.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

THINGS I AM GLAD FOR

i. the weather is cold enough so that the fan doesn’t have to be switched on for me to sleep soundly through the night
ii. the water heater works well such that I can have a steaming hot shower even in Singapore’s version of sweater weather
iii. Mochi surviving a fall and still being herself, meowing incessantly and greedily to be fed more shrimp and shredded beef from my bowl of noodles
iv. one of my best friends being a doctor and helping me out of one of my worst periods of depression that one night last year
v. one of my friends who isn’t even a doctor, who wouldn’t go drinking with me, because I was on anti-anxiety medication, and alcohol is a depressant, and they don’t mix well together
vi. some of my best friends who will not give up on me and looking after me, no matter what kind of trouble I get myself into
vii. I have learned to avoid trouble of my own accord
viii. I am on talking terms with all my family members
ix. feeling hungry more often now that it’s always cold, so I get to eat more, but having a high enough metabolism so that I don’t feel the need to work it off, not that I would mind a little more weight
x. Netflix, especially the shows that are downloadable to my phone so I can watch on-the-go
xi. New Year’s Day by Taylor Swift. I have eight songs from reputation downloaded to my Spotify. I know she has trash politics, and I shouldn’t be listening to her, but maybe I am a trash person or maybe I just like her songs even if they’re trashy, and I have made my peace with it
xii. I’m blogging and have been consistently blogging on my phone, what a time to be alive
xiii. having a ten-dollar bill (I would call it a Hamilton but it’s a Singaporean note) that has a string of my favourite numbers consecutively as its serial number, that I got a few days ago, which is irrefutable proof 😛 that this year will be a good year, for me
xiv. the backpack that I got for school, matches my sneakers perfectly, hehehe, and that my laptop fits into the bag (you can’t ever be sure when you order shit online, until it arrives)
xv. the stash of bath items that I got from work to have bubble baths anytime I get the chance to use a bathtub this year
xvi. ice-cream: I mean, srsly, I think I would not trust anyone who doesn’t like ice-cream
xvii. my hair is growing really well and healthily and I love it, my hair always does seem to be a representation of my person

Saturday, January 13, 2018

BRKLYN HGHTS

wonderbread

i. Today there were hordes of whypipo in the store for some reason, four of the girls had locs and loads of them were wearing loose elephant-print pants. Yknow, like the kind you get in Thailand. White people who aren’t self-aware are the actual worst. 

ii. #Oprah2020

iii. I started watching The End of the F***ing World (it’s stylised that way, I don’t censor my fucks in front of anyone because the way I see it — it’s better for kids to hear you say fuck than for you to be polite while communicating racist and bigoted values, so fuck off) and I quite like it. Two more episodes to go, it’s a little reminiscent of Warm Bodies so far.

Friday, January 12, 2018

FRIDAY

I like my manager a lot. Today, I was singing along to the PA system and she asked “Sarah can you sing?” I said I couldn’t and then she said “I can, ‘cos I’m Filipino so it’s a given. Filipinos can sing.” I knew she was kidding ‘cos she’d told me previously that she was the only Filipino who doesn’t have the ability to sing and also ‘cos I’ve actually heard her singing. It is like mine. Then she asked me to reaffirm again tonight, “Sarah, can I sing?” So I stared at her and said “yes” to which she said “good, ‘cos you’re still under probation.” HAHAHAHAHA I love her so much.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER

So today, I went to the market with my grandma and she started sniffling 'cos of Mochi's health expenses, etc. My grandma is a qtpie but she is so emotional and that's why I turned out this way, probably.

When we got home, Mel and I got into a bit of a hooha because she is a dingus but I hope we never forget what happened today because she is a dingus. When will they ever learn???

Mochi refuses to wear her cone and keeps making the most pitiful mews when you put it on, or she just knocks herself into every single surface trying to get it off, so it's either she dies from injuring herself further or from infecting her wounds by licking them/biting off her bandage. No big deal, Moch Moch. No big deal. o<-<

It's been really rainy so I took it as a sign to wear my hoodie dress and Marceline boots. They have furry tongues, because Marceline is a vampire queen and vampires turn into bats and bats are furry and you get it.

I had a brilliant dinner with Reen, Tim and Yuriko. I laughed so hard at the things they said, especially "no-leg-day-kinda-guy" oh geez. Also Yuriko and Tim were telling us all the Japanese things Japanese people say and do, and we contemplated the things that would be said to me if I went to teach English in Japan. I like Yuriko a lot, I don't remember really talking much to her before they got married, but now I realise she's really funny too. I love seeing them as a couple, geez what a weird feeling.

For dessert, we had mochi donut with soft-serve ice-cream, and mochi donut means donut made of glutinous flour, and it was amazing, and I definitely want to have it again, because the soft-serve is cookie butter flavour, which is like Speculoos, or like those Lotus biscuits served with coffee, like caramelly, and like oh my god this was good.

Reen passed me clothes, as she is wont to do. She also passed me lingerie in a bright pink colour that I LOVE, a colour that I somehow don't have yet????? The last time she got me lingerie, it was yellow. Reen is the best.

I love clothes but there are some clothes I love more than others. For example, I love boots, and dresses with pockets, but hooded dresses (the ultimate rarity) are the best, because then you don't ever have to bring around an umbrella or cap???? Which is like??? A lifesaver????

And then above all is lingerie. I love lingerie, it's hilarious. My best friends got me lingerie for my 25th birthday and I think it's because they know I'm most comfortable with my own body, so they'd rather get it for me and know that I'll wear it instead of buying it for themselves and never wear them.

I was taking the train home with Yuriko and Tim, and I saw Pamela's boyfriend Peh, and said hi to him. He asked about Mochi, I guess because Pamela had told him. I also love seeing Peh and Pamela together YAS real-life couple friend ships are the best ships to ship.

Tim, Yuriko and I alighted the train together, then Tim said "is that Pamela from SilkAir's boyfriend?" and I said "wait how do you know Pamela from SilkAir??" and then he asked me to guess, and eventually I recalled that he, Reen and Pamela had met at my 25th birthday picnic, and that was nice, because I guess seeing Peh is sort of secondhand seeing another best friend of mine in a day.

This year I turn 28 and it is going to be a good year. I can feel it in my bones. Actually, what I feel in my bones is ache because my joints get weird when it rains. However, I do feel it in my heart. I'm gonna have a 28th birthday dinner, and it might be the last time I do a gathering with my favourite people in Singapore in a long time. 

If all I receive for my 28th are Victoria's Secret lingerie sets, I think it would be a success. My size is UK 8, #justsaying HAHAHAHAH okbye I love y'all I'm super happy.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

WIRE MESH

I just got a call from the vet saying that Mochi is looking bright as a button and trying to use her broken leg already. She fell from six storeys and survived with one broken leg. Cats are amazing creatures.

I’m still lowkey pissed that she stupidly lost her balance and fell from the window ledge, if she did. That’s ruling out if she actually jumped at a bird or whatever stimulus.

We’re gonna mesh our windows, and Mochi’s leg will be in a cast for four to six weeks. Poor girl. We all feel bad for rebuking her whenever she was too playful before this. Well anyway to keep her from being bored we might have little cat playdates for her soon. I hope it goes well.

She hasn’t really had much interaction with other cats. But when our part-time cat, the stray from the void deck, comes up for food, Mochi seems more curious than anything. The stray doesn’t like Mochi though, perhaps because we give her shelter and not him. I’m sorry bro, y’all had different lots in life and the social mobility in cats has a different hierarchy than for humans.

Tuesday, January 09, 2018

LETTERS TO ANONYMITY

always somebody you're willing to fight
to be right

your lies are bullets
your mouth's a gun
no war in anger was ever won

put out the fire before igniting
next time you're fighting
kill em with kindness

i. I think you misread some of the things I've written recently. I haven't directed anything towards you, whether conscious or unconsciously, since we stopped properly talking to each other. You used to be one of my best friends, and I one of yours, but in the past year, I realised that at some core parts of ourselves, we would not accept each other for some of our beliefs, the more I changed. You seemed to not accept me for pushing away and rejecting some of the things that are integral to your existence, especially given the fact that I was also born into the same circumstance, and I think trying to keep up our friendship was exhausting to the both of us. I am deeply grateful for the many years we had some of the best times together, and the many times we had each other's backs, but I think we both agree this friendship is better as a fond memory, and I wish you all the best in your future.

ii. I am sorry for what happened to you and what she did. From the time we spent together, I can tell you are a kind man, and you honestly don't deserve to be lied to, not that anyone does. Thank you for the times we watched and listened to and consumed media together, for the brilliant first date, for cooking our Christmas Eve meal together, for some semblance of something real I hadn't had for such a long while. We met each other at perhaps an inopportune timing, and we are both still raw and hurt from the massive piles of manipulation that have been heaped upon us. I hope you heal as smoothly and completely before you expect to, and because of you, I know in my heart that I can be anything, because I am everything that there has been in the universe.

iii. Half a year ago, when, as was your pattern of coming back every two months, you approached me, I was oblivious as usual, rambling about you on Instagram or whatnot. Today is where it ends. I kept saying you were an open and honest person, but then again, you came back to me when you didn't have to and shouldn't have. You knew I would always be happy when you gave me the light of day, and you used it at your will. When you were caught in between, you offered no explanation to me and simply disappeared. You never properly apologised for your part in what you did, for not being safe although as a structures engineer, you should probably know the importance of protection and safeguards. I made excuses for you for months, and I waited and waited for you to say sorry properly, probably because of the severity of what you'd done with me, and your goddamn DNA was in me for a time. I saw and spoke about only all the good things that you'd done for me, because that is the person I am, but you were a solid class-A insensitive fuccboi. I am done with you, and we can both be relieved for this. You gave me a month of great times, but fifteen months of commiserating is about all I can afford you. I no longer want you to reappear ever again. I deserve better.

Monday, January 08, 2018

MOCHI

We have a cat whom we call Mochi. We live in a sixth-storey apartment. Today, Mochi fell (or jumped?) from the window. She was in shock when we found her but there weren’t any visible signs of bleeding. We tried to feed her water but then it came out bloody, so we think there is internal bleeding. We got to the vet, and they say there are signs of diarrhoea and they’re waiting for the painkillers they gave her to set in before they try an X-Ray. Wow, 2018, that was fast. My sisters and I were crying when we found her. I don’t know why I’m typing like this. It was so painful seeing her in shock like that, silly cat.

Sunday, January 07, 2018

COMPLICATED UPFRONT

One of my good guy friends, G (his name is Guillaume but I’m the only person who calls him G because it is easier than mispronouncing his name), whom I have never met because he lives in Paris, described me once as “complicated upfront” and I never really appreciated it fully until now.

I am prone to think that I am one of the most complicated people with a complicated life, because I am open and honest about it, but more and more, I think everyone has their share of complications. I used to feel, I dunno, inferior? Incompetent? Unhappy with myself?

Occasionally, though, I think at least I own up to my insecurities, at least I am honest about every thought and feeling and intention I have. At least I don’t say one thing, but mean another, from my apparent actions.

How sad. How so very sad.

This train smells like a musty carpet.

On a non-related note, the wedding dress I have liked and wanted for about 13 months (I first saw it on a TV show episode in Nov 2016 when one of the characters — who is now gay — was getting married to her boyfriend) is being resold and it’s very affordable for a gorgeous wedding gown. I even estimated the shipping costs and it doesn’t seem too bad.

I know for sure I want to wear that if I get married, but that’s an extremely long shot, especially given the fact that I’m single. But oh my God when I have my eyes set on an outfit, I must usually have it. Why do I like clothes so much? I am a horrible person. No I am not. I am a normal person. I love dresses, so the fuck what?

I didn’t watch the previous Star Wars film before The Last Jedi, so this was the first I was seeing Kylo Ren, and geez I dunno why I think he’s so appealing. Is it the conflicted, tormented soul, choosing between the dark side and the light? Is it the scar that runs across his face?