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We are what we think & my blog entries reflect how I think. Have a sip of the poison of my mind.. It's not always lethal.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Gifts From My Customer



One of my customers made my day today by giving me the gifts bought from Hong Kong and Macau you can see above.

It was after work at the end of the day and since I was traveling along the North-East train line, I figured it would be better to stop at Dhoby Ghaut to switch to the bus instead to avoid the bulk of the peak-hour dying-to-go-home crowd.

Besides, taking the double-decker bus that goes straight to my place means having a better chance for me to find a seat so that I can rest, listen to music and crash a bit to gain back some energy I'll use for the things I'll do when I get home, or wherever I'll end up in some place else.

And since the Dhoby Ghaut train station is just in front of Plaza Singapura, I decided to pop over there to visit my customer & friend Joshua who is working there. He just came back from his Hong Kong and Macau trip, which meant that I haven't seen him for some time, so paying him a visit would be nice.

It's not always that I'll manage to catch Joshua everytime I'm there but on this day, I did. So he told me all about his adventures during his trip and he handed me the gifts which he has wrapped so nicely himself. That made my day.

He also told me that he actually wanted to give me a nice beverage he bought from Taiwan but because it took me awhile to make my rounds to his store, he couldn't resist the temptation and drank the beverage himself. Despite that, I'm grateful for his kind thoughts that really count.

I've received other gifts from my other customer friends as well. Let's see: I've been given and shared sweets and tidbits with them, been given healthcare samples when they knew my loved ones were sick, been given a Ribena drink, a box of confectionary, haircare and beauty products and samples and Ann has given me a home-made Chinese dumpling made by her dad which she wrapped up so very nicely for me with her own hands. One of my customers has even passed me cute gifts for my Lioness.

I have really nice customers. They are the major reason why I love my job. Also, I have wonderful, fun-loving colleagues and I consider myself lucky that there are only just one or two assholes in my company. But still, they are not always asses. Thank God for my job and the folks associated with it.

What doesn't seem fair for my customers is that they take the brunt of abuses from some of their own customers, which are the consumers; the folks at the lowest or highest rung of the consumerism ladder depending on which end you're looking at from. My customers are working in the retail scene and that means they encounter all sorts of people; the crazies, the good, the bad, the ugly and the atrocious.

I've heard stories about their nasty encounters and I've even seen with my own eyes a few times my customers having to deal with such people whose verbal abuses and impatience were really quite uncalled for.

What strikes me as amazing is that despite all the crap my customers have to endure sometimes as victims of consumerism, they can still have the grace to treat us sales reps so kindly. I wish that their own customers will just return them their patience, spirit of service, professionalism and helpfulness in kind.

Too bad it just so happens that lots of ungrateful asses and spoiled brats are on the loose out there making life an unnecessary misery for service personnel. It's a societal disease; some people here are afraid to lose out and are always trying to one-up others by being the first in line in everything they do, throwing away social graces and courtesy to the winds in the process.

I wouldn't be surprised if we were to conduct a shit-eating contest here on a national level some day and people fall over one another to be the first in line without even the decency to find out what they are getting themselves into in the pursuit of becoming the head of a queue. Such mentality explains why queue-cutting is so prevalent here which my poor customers have to police often.

Cheap thrill.

Anyway, earlier in the day, one of my other Pharmacist customers working in Nex Mall (who will definitely win hands down if she enters a beauty contest) told me: "I remember sales reps from both ends of the spectrum; the nice ones and the bad nasty ones. Don't worry, you are one of the nicer ones."

You know what? I'm feeling good about that not because I need a boost in ego due to inferior complexity or whatever, but I'm feeling good about that because it makes me feel appreciated in my work.

God bless my kind customers, they are wonderful folks. The next time you visit a Pharmacist, please treat them kindly. You have my gratitude for that and God bless you too, dear gentle reader.

Besides, the way I see it, whether you are nasty or pleasant, you will still get your medicine dispensed to you. Might as well go through the experience in a pleasant manner if the Pharmacist and their staffs are nice to you. Trust me on this: the secret to attaining happiness sometimes is to give it to others.

And just for the record, I'm not saying my customers are nice because they give me gifts, which is an expression & extension of the fact that they are nice people already to begin with, which fact I've experienced even way before they started blessing me with their gifts.

I wouldn't have changed my perception of them even if they hadn't given me anything and I won't change my perception if they should stop giving me anything, since gifts are not an entitlement to begin with. In their case, it's an expression of their kind generosity.

And a good turn deserves another. So it pleases me to reciprocate & do something for them too in gratitude, be it gifts, giving them a listening ear whenever they need to get something off their chest, serving them as my customers to the best of my ability or just accompanying them and enjoying lunch together.

This is one of the secrets to happiness at work; when you keep the rapport, friendship, empathy & affection flowing with sincerity. There must be sincerity. Without it, everything is just for show and you will never attain the happiness that can only come with it.

And finally, the extra tidbit of the day is; our new dressing table for the master bedroom has arrived:



- De Lion Speaks

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Relapse

I said the stupidest things today; as according to the replies I received that make me wish I could take back some of my words. But I won't even if I could. Stupidity may stem from sincerity sometimes. Sincerity is not meant to be kept anyway. It's meant to be given to someone. Stupidity can also actually be the result of honesty.

Sometimes, it's better to resort to stupidity and get that burden off your chest, even if it means running straight and hard into a wall and getting yourself hurt. Unspoken words that are left unsaid hurt even more in the long run. Regret for things left unsaid is a lifetime of torture for some unfortunate souls.

But I've hit the wall the last time I tried the same thing, after which I've managed to get over it somehow. It was tough. Not just tough but sonofabitch tough that tore me into pieces and caused me many sleepless nights. And yet, I chose to run into the same wall again. Perhaps I was hoping for a different outcome.

It didn't happen. A proverbial slap in the face by the same repeated situation again was what happened. This is a situation that will never change unless I turn my life upside down & topsy-turvy and turn it around 180 degrees.

I can't do that. That would hurt not just me alone.

Hope can make us do crazy things sometimes, despite the futility of how the situation may seem which you can see for yourself if you have the balls to face and acknowledge it. Even if you can't and choose denial instead, that little voice of conscience that everybody has will tug at you somehow.

Going back to the same battle you know you can never win, despite the denials and the rejections, is pure stupidity. Yet, we can be dumber than dumb sometimes. If you prefer a heavier word; suicidal.

Relapses can kill you all over again.

But sometimes, we really have to die more than once just so we can be reborn again if the first few lessons of the same topic fail to penetrate themselves through our hard-headed thick skulls. When we don't get it, it can hit harder the second time & increase in intensity and hurt for any further and stubborn subsequent times.

Everybody hurts. Lots of wounds are actually self-inflicted.

But just like a will, it's better to breathe your last on your death bed with the knowledge that the words meant for the intended recipient that matters have been finalized and communicated, despite the seemingly stupidity of the situation.

Stupidity may ridicule you but regret kills you.

With that, I think I can move on now. One more time. At least I've given myself a chance chances and tried my best. Can't go on hitting the same dead-end wall again and again ad nauseam.

I get it this time. I think I do.

I better do.


- De Lion Speaks

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Writing's On The Wall


Click me to bloat me up

Lots of folks may have fallen through the cracks as the pace of so-called progress leaves them behind. But that doesn't mean they can't reach out from rock bottom with their voices (and sometimes, with their pens & markers too). This is not the worst picture regarding the ugly side of reality here but still, click on the picture to bloat it and take a look at it again:
1) If you feel nothing, you deserve to have your heart fail on you.

2) If you feel sad, you are human.

3) If you feel happy about it, you are a sadist.

4) If you feel elated, see point 3 above & multiply the last word by 3.

5) If you don't know what the message is all about, you need to go out more, open your eyes and see the world outside your ignorance. Crawl out from underneath your rock and go now, shoo. I said NOW for your own sake so that you won't continue to be victimized without even realizing it.

6) If you feel angry towards the message, you must be a money-grabbing developer without morals.

7) If you feel angry for the message, you have a sense of justice.

8) If this is nothing but vandalism to you, you may be right. At the same time, you don't understand the desperation of the needy and have no empathy. Even a Court of Law needs to establish some empathy with to-be-convicted criminals so as to understand their motives behind their crimes to make fair judgments.

9) If you've shed a tear, you are compassionate and have a good heart. God bless you and keep your heart strong & healthy.

10) If you think this is not real, then you must be an out-of-touch elite.

And if you are the person who wrote that message, I like your guts.

(Picture from The Online Citizen's Facebook Page)

Gee, I wonder if it's just coincidence that this blog entry shares the same theme as the previous one; they are both about things on the wall. Creepy.


- De Lion Speaks

Saturday, July 23, 2011

The Message On The Wall



Whichever kid who did this on the wall at the void deck under one of the blocks in front of mine deserves a medal. As you can see, he or she even appeals politely for anyone not to tear it down. The smiling faces & the heart brought a smile to my own face as I felt myself getting in touch again with my lost innocence in my own heart. It brightened up my day.

I'd much rather see such endearing things among the blocks in my estate than the occasional loan shark messages or crude vandalism scribblings that proclaim who deserves to end up in hell or something.

'Please Don't Tear Down'? I won't do that. But even if your message gets torn down some day by somebody else (and it will get torn down one day, unfortunately), it will continue to survive in my blog here. But whoever you may be and if you can read this blog entry somehow, someway, someday, be aware that such an act may be considered an act of vandalism even though you may mean well. So exercise prudence and do things on the correct platform, yeah?

Still, may God bless you & may you grow up to be a peacemaker who can make the world a better place. Thanks for making me smile with a glow in my heart. I needed that.

Spread the ♥ and the kawaiiness.


- De Lion Speaks

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Hurtsmile

Extreme has been my favourite band since the 90's. During then, my schoolmate got me into playing the guitar this way: He asked me: "You know Nuno Bettencourt, the guitarist from Extreme?" So I replied: "Extreme? That's the band that played More Than Words, right?" So he said: "Ha, if you think ballads are all they can play, then listen to this.." He popped Extreme's Pornograffitti CD into the player and played 'it('s a monster)'.

My jaw dropped together with the rest of myself since I was floored. That song is so energetic & hard-rocking. And with that, I got hooked with the band, Funk Rock and Nuno's guitar prowess that still stun me to this very day.

Gary Cherone is the vocalist of the band and currently, while Nuno doubles as Rihanna's guitarist, Gary is playing with another band he has put together with his brother Mark who plays the guitar. The band is called 'Hurtsmile'. Don't make the mistake of thinking Extreme is no more though, our boys are still playing and putting another album together.

Here's a video of a new number by Hurtsmile I came across recently. The cliché but factual lyrics aside, I really like the funky groove:



And I really like the name 'Hurtsmile' since it means smiling through pain. And I think Gibson guitars, just like PRS guitars, have a really sick tone. Too bad I don't like the looks of some of their body shapes. And that's with all due respect to guitar players who like them of course. This is just my opinion and so, it means nothing.

Come on, don't call me superficial here since besides tone, I think guitarists can only truly enjoy playing what we like to look at too. And I think this blog entry takes the cake as being the one with the most number of hyperlinks among all the entries here thus far.


- De Lion Speaks

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Hipstamania

I met up with Lim for drinks at the only coffeeshop in Jalan Bahar where we talked mostly about iPhone and iPad stuff as well as indulging in some satire about the local political scene. Feels good taking a piss on subjects that are asking to be pissed on.

Lim is still in the midst of enjoying his 10 days leave, the lucky bastard, while for myself, I received some stressful news this morning regarding blitz works to be thrown into my workload for next week.

Ever since the coffeeshop changed hands, it's no longer 24-hours. After it closed, we soon got hungry and decided to go have supper at another 24-hours coffeeshop next to block 502 over at Jurong West. I used to stay around the area opposite the block before I bought the apartment I'm now residing at in another nearby estate.

Block 502
I haven't been back to that area in Jurong West for some time already and being the nostalgic fellow, I thought it was a nice idea to do so to see if there were any changes to that place.

Arriving at block 502 in a cab we hailed by the main road at the edge of Jalan Bahar opposite the abandoned Civil Defense camp rumoured to be haunted, I whipped out my phone to take a snap of the area outside DBS bank where we alighted.

Instead of using the normal iPhone camera, I used the camera from the Hipstamatic app instead. Why? Because I played with it earlier and really liked the result of the pic I took:


That's a night scene taken with flash and just default settings. Gotta say I'm pleasantly surprised with the result. The colours & contrast are all funked up and the picture border that makes the edges of the picture look retro and worn is just lovely, me thinks.

Anyway, before I continue, I just wanna say that I know this is old news to you Hipstamaticians out there since the app was out since.. I don't know, not long after the iPhone was invented? So why am I using the app only now?

Well, it just so happens that I have so many apps stored in my iTunes (more accurately, the 'Mobile Applications' folder where apps are stored; this one's for the geeks). You see, if you have too many eggs in your basket, you sometimes tend to forget to hatch some of them.

Looking at a friend's awesome pic taken with the app on Facebook lately and talking to her about it, I decided to dig the neglected app egg out of my basket and pay close attention to it after all these while. An extra camera app in your iPhone is worth two just sitting idle in your iTunes, I guess.

The stall I bought the laksa from

Back on the main track: So we were there at blk 502 for supper. I ordered a bowl of laksa with extra Tau Pok from this stall and since I liked the little Japanese-esque wooden blocks hanging there with the names of every dish sold there etched on them, I took a pic of the stall while the seemingly bored cook was cooking my laksa.

I like what I see after the photo was developed in the app if I ignore my crappy photo-taking skills. I don't recall my hands shaking when I took the pic and I hope you won't feel nauseous looking at it. Try not to puke.

Hanging around the coffeeshop while having drinks after our supper, I took more pics of the surrounding area I used to frequent. Not much has changed except that the Unity store that used to be here and which I used to service (Unity is one of my clients) has been replaced with another store selling different things.

So by now, I think it's pretty obvious that I like the app. Do I have any gripes about it? Sure, no app is perfect and the initial gripe I had with it was that the preview window is too small.

Hipstamatic's interface
I said 'had' because I soon discovered you can enlarge the preview window by double-tapping on it. But upon enlarging it, there doesn't seem to be any way to shrink it back. I tried tapping and double-tapping on it but instead of shrinking, I took accidental photos. Not even pinching the screen in or out will bring it back to its original size. The only way I know to do that is to close the app and relaunch it.

Edit: I tried that again on the 22nd of July and the pinching out suddenly works. Wonder what's up with that. Maybe my fingers have become unsuitable for touch-screens with the calluses from all that guitar playing.

Another thing is that this app captures a smaller area of the scene or object you are trying to photograph as compared to the wider area that can be captured using the normal camera of the iPhone. This explains why the Hipstamatic photos are squarish. And finally, there's the issue with not being able to rotate the camera to face yourself for some self-indulgent camwhoring (on my iPhone 4 which has this function with the normal phone camera).

However, if you have a mirror in front of you, you can use the reflection to help you aim when taking a self-portrait: just look at how the reflected scene within the viewfinder appears in the mirror and use it to help you aim. It might take a few seconds to get the hang of the counter-intuitive way of orientation caused by lateral inversion.

Anyway, besides the default ones, this app comes with additional lenses & films for more effects which you have to pay for. I think they will be worth it provided you know what you are doing and are well-versed with which lens or film does what instead of buying things using trial & error. Oh, and the sound the app makes when you turn on the flash is kinda cool.

So at around 4:40am in the morning, I had to force Lim to tear himself away from his iPhone so that we could share a cab home since I was getting tired and had to get up for work later.

Yeah, I think you'll start seeing more photos taken with the Hipstamatic app in this blog from this point forth, I guess. I'll try not to go overboard with it though, since if you see too much of something cool, it might just lose its cool factor and revert back to being just another egg you dump back into your basket.


- De Lion Speaks

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Wisdom From My Guitar Hero

Gee, and here I was thinking I've seen every single one of Nuno Bettencourt's videos on YouTube when I bumped into this 5 video-parts guitar clinic held by him in Texas way back in 1991. In these videos, not only does he play, he also imparts wisdom & pointers to fingers-busters (also known as guitar players).

Nuno's my guitar hero. Not only do I love his playing because he is one of the best & funkiest guitar players this side of the universe, I also enjoy hearing him talk since he can be so awesomely funny. He is cynical too. If you listen attentively and read between his cynicism and humour, you will realize that the gist of the things he talks about make a heck lot of sense. And factual too.

He doesn't always answer straight to the sharp point, he makes you think and ponder.

And the roars & whines & screaming pinch harmonics as well as the palm-muted growls of the N4 never fail to give my ears an eargasm.

So here are the 5 parts in sequential order:












- De Lion Speaks

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Sun City Thai Disco & An Urban Legend


Click to bloat

That was a smattering of Singlish there. Singlish can get on my nerves sometimes but still, it's the endearing way us locals speak English to one another.

So I had like at least 9 seeds of durian this evening after dinner. Durian is a tropical fruit found in Asia which disgusts the Caucasians but which is a delicacy over here. I prefer them chilled, their soft yellow meat taste best when served cold, according to my tastebuds.

I seldom eat them though, like just once per year because they make the body heaty. One is supposed to down a glass of saline solution after eating them to counter the after-effects but I no longer do that for some reason.

There is this urban legend regarding drinking alcohol after or while eating durian - it's supposed to kill you. I've always wondered if that's really true. I heard some dude actually died from drinking alcohol while having durian but that's the only isolated case I've heard so far.

So according to the text message above, my childhood gaming (and ex-occult + ex-Heavy Metal) buddy I grew up with since our Ghim Moh days asked me if I would like to go have some drinks at the rather new Sun City Thai Disco over at Taman Jurong near our own estate, together with our friend Ben (Lim calls him 'Ah Fat') whom we got to know when he was working at the only coffeeshop in Jalan Bahar we frequent.

Nobody goes to a disco to drink coffee, so I figured that ought to provide an opportunity for me to use myself for the experiment to see if the durian-alcohol urban legend is true or not. Me a Kamikaze nut? Well, you bet. That's the job of us Scorpios and I have to answer the call of duty. The truth is worth dying risking for. Just ignore all these if you're below 18.

Anyway, Lim & Ben came in a cab to pick me up under my block and we arrived at the Thai disco after a short ride.

Lim charged straight to the KTV private rooms section and so we checked those out first. After asking about the room rates and some debate, me & Ben finally persuaded Lim to head over to the open-concept disco instead.

I was there for an experiment and so, it wouldn't make much sense for me to pay too much for a private room. Lim was hesitant because he wanted a private KTV room for easier hanky panky with the hostesses. He didn't mention it that way at all but I wasn't born yesterday. Hey, the man's a single guy and who am I to judge my buddy. But still, who knows, I could have spared my ears from some awful croonings.

Inside the disco
So we settled in the disco. Every occupied table has Thai hostesses accompanying the guys and Lim asked from the female captain for a hostess while Ben & me just shrugged it off. I was busy listening to the Thai music playing while downing some beer from the tower to see if that would make me drop dead or something.

Then when this Thai hostess came over to our table, instead of attending to Lim, she just kept on hanging on to me instead even after I've told her it was Lim who asked for her. She told me her name is BeiBei and she didn't believe me when I replied her question about my age that I'm 38+ (+ meaning crashing towards 39 by the end of this year).

I think I pissed her off because I couldn't really hear what she was saying to me from all that din, so she had to constantly repeat what she was trying to tell me but she continued to hang around me anyway. So what I did next was to pull Lim outside and told him to get the girl off me since he didn't do anything about it and I was feeling bad about the situation for him and didn't want him to misunderstand that I was trying to snatch the girl he has requested for off him.

Didn't work, she still hung with me even though she had to leave to attend to the other tables occasionally, after which she would come back to me everytime. So I had no choice but just let her sit around since I couldn't just kick her away. At least she was quite decent while talking to me despite the fact that she tried to wrap herself around me a few times.

And just for the record, I'm not gay. I love women and I'm straight and I happen to be married and my wife is a real woman.

Anyway, this other pretty chick who reminded me of one of my prettiest customers kept looking my way and she approached our table after some staring. The female captain told me the girl's from Cambodia. I greeted her courteously Thai-style with clasped hands and a bow but I didn't want to talk to her much, so she left after awhile. Thick-skinned BeiBei was still seating at our table and hostesses usually don't try to cannibalize or snatch game away from one another, even though it wasn't even like BeiBei was having me for a meal.

(Jokes aside, my heart does go out to the hostesses that I find to be really poor things. Which girl in her right mind would be willing to work in such an exploitative trade? Life circumstances must have forced them to do so).

All these were going on while Ben played dice with another Thai girl with a punky hairstyle. Games of dice are a common thing in Thai discos and I never bothered to learn how to play those even when Ben tried to teach me. Besides, I still had an urban legend which validity I needed to verify. Ben is a decent chap because he kept his hands to himself instead of on the girls there.

Miss Cambodia came back later and put a tray of I think Tequila shots on our table and not giving a damn, I downed a few shots, passed some to the guys and BeiBei out of courtesy and had to pay 32 bucks. Lim asked me what in blazes I was doing and said that those shots weren't free. So I told him I thought it was he who ordered them.

Miss Cambodia came back later again with those trays of liquor shots and without knowing exactly why, I downed a few more shots and passed some to the guys and BeiBei again and ended up having to pay a further 24 bucks.

That was when I 'woke up' and hauled the guys outside to discuss about why the heck I had to pay for the second round. You see, I thought we didn't finish the first tray of shots which I've already paid for and so Miss Cambodia brought the remaining shots for us to finish.

The captain came and she and Lim explained to me that those things were charged PER SHOT and it's 8 bucks per shot. Ouch. So in order not to make things difficult, I told the captain I'll pay the $24 dollars with my card but I insisted no more shots be brought to our table since we didn't think they were worth the price; shots come in small glasses no bigger than a toddler's fist and I was still standing sober anyway.

Lim wanted to pay me his share but I declined since he paid for our tower of beer. I think we had two towers in total. Learn a new thing and move on, I guess. At least I've thrown in some liquor to reinforce my experiment to test out that urban legend too. So fuck it, just as well then, I told myself.

Lim dancing to Lady Gaga's 'Poker Face'
As the night drew on, Lim started dancing his head off and that was the first time I've watched my childhood buddy dancing with such fervor and wild abandon and it was funny as hell. He even insisted that we watch, which made it even more hilarious.

I absolutely detest drinking with people who become trouble-makers or who will start boasting and talking big when they become intoxicated. To me, that only shows how lousy such people can hold their alcohol intake and lose their grip on themselves. Boo.

But drinking with Lim is absolute fun everytime since he always becomes an entertaining funny comical clown when the effects of alcohol kick in.


Swinging it like
there's no tomorrow
While I was replying to my friends on Facebook and updating them about my little experiment and letting them know I was still alive, Lim kept tapping on my shoulder so that I would turn around and watch him dance and he would dance harder whenever I took a snapshot of him doing so. Gawd, the man is so freaking funny.

Later, I suddenly noticed that there seemed to be what looked like spilled chunks of beancurd on our table in front of Ben. "Hey, what the fuck are those chunks of beancurd doing on our table?" I asked Ben and he shook his head slowly while answering: "I have no idea, man."

Well, a couple of minutes later, I found out why. I saw Ben just sitting there & vomiting said chunks of beancurd nonchalantly onto the table as though it was a pretty normal everyday thing to do. "Oh fuck, shit ewww.." was all I could manage to say as I dragged him off the table away from the goo.

After cleaning ourselves up in the washroom, we decided to call it a night and went outside to chill for awhile first to shake out that fog in our heads. All the while, Ben was constantly bitching about how that punky girl he played dice with must have spiked his drink.

Yeah right, I was thinking he couldn't hold his alcohol instead and was just trying to save himself from some embarrassment, LoL. I wanted to tell him it's ok if he can't hold liquor well. What's wrong with that anyway? Can't say it's something to be proud of if one can drink an entire reservoir of alcohol anyway. Why is it that guys like to measure their masculinity with how much they can drink? Fuck that. But I just laughed it off. Ben did puke once more out here.

I was talking to Ben when I noticed that Lim had suddenly disappeared. Looking around, I saw him lying sprawled on a couch at the outside area. So I walked over to him while Ben started wandering off randomly to some corner in his stupor. After I've gathered up the flock, Lim decided to go to the McDonald's downstairs to eat something.

Ben - K.O.
I had a quarter pounder meal and Lim had a filet-O-fish meal while Ben was knocked out on the bench. When we finished our meal, I asked Lim: "So what are we gonna do about Ben?" He answered cheekily: "Let's just leave him here. He can go home himself when he wakes up." So I told him no fucking way. How could we just leave our big friend behind after coming here together?

I wondered how Ben would have reacted if he heard Lim saying that. He would probably kill Lim with a bone-crushing mighty bear-hug when he sees him next after this incident. Imagine the 0 hugging the 1 in 10 to death.

This reminded me about the time many years back when my best friend Joe, together with Patrick, brought me to this pub called 'Orange' to celebrate my birthday. I was COMPLETELY gone that night and locked myself in the cubicle in the washroom. I couldn't even move a muscle to react when they banged on the cubicle's door. I couldn't even talk. All I could manage was utter weak and almost inaudible gibberish when I tried to.

Joe & Patrick then got a bouncer to break the door down and they manhandled me back to Joe's house where they and Joe's wife Emilyn nursed me back to sober consciousness. I'll never forget that incident and everytime I recall it, I'll feel really ashamed about it, even now.

You just don't embarrass your buddy by being dragged to his home drunk in front of his wife.

So no, I wasn't just gonna leave Ben behind. After all, I happen to respect men who have enough self-control to keep their hands off hostesses. Would be a nice thing if others do unto you what you would have them do unto you, so you do unto others what you would have them do unto you.

Waking Ben
Lim then began waking Ben up and luckily, he did. Even luckier still, he could walk without us having to support him at all. Small miracles do come in big sizes.

At the taxi stand, this group of Thai girls who just got off work from the disco & KTV walked past us and Lim kept saying 'Arigato' while waving at them and making embracing gestures, beckoning them to come over for a hug. Seems like he got nationalities confused. But the girls were sporting enough to smile and wave back. My friend gets his kicks out of cheap thrills, I suppose.

Lim is a nice guy with a helpful heart, really, he just likes to clown around. If that wasn't the case, I wouldn't be hanging around with him. I choose the friends I hang out with with prejudice but am nice to everyone else. "Walk softly but carry a big stick behind you." Theodore Roosevelt had some wisdom about himself. Yeah, he was a Scorpio :D

Ben asked if he could borrow 10 bucks off us since he wasn't feeling secure about taking a cab with just 10 bucks he had on him and so I lent him the money. He's staying at Choa Chu Kang, so he had to take his own cab.

The 24-hours coffeeshop from out of nowhere
Lim is staying at Jalan Bahar which is just behind my estate and so we both shared a cab. When our cab passed by this 24-hours coffeeshop that suddenly popped into view as we rounded a street corner, we decided to go have some coffee there first since Lim also had to buy some smokes.

At the coffeeshop, there was this man who spoke to us who was obviously not right in the head but he was harmless. He sat opposite us and Lim popped a smoke and offered him a cigarette.

Inside the cab
After we were done at the coffeeshop, we managed to hail another cab without having to wait for one (which was surprising, considering how remote that place is) and headed home.

Lim dropped me off at Boon Lay Place where I bought a packet of coffee before walking back to my block where I'll enjoy the beverage while surfing the Net downstairs first before going up to my apartment, as is customary for me everytime when I come back from outside after midnight.

This time, I walked home while entertaining myself with the thought that I've debunked a myth and survived the ordeal (I wasn't even feeling sick or anything) and earned some bragging rights about it, even though it's something silly with actually nothing to brag about.




- De Lion Speaks

Monday, July 11, 2011

The Graphic Novel Me

Now I know how I'd look like in a graphic novel thanks to the ComicBooth 4 app by CobbySoft Media.















So go ahead and comicalize yourself.

And by the way, there is no such word as 'comicalize' in the dictionary. I invented it for the sake of this blog entry, bite me.


- De Lion Speaks

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Mother Nature Resides In The West


What's cool about staying in the wild wild west while the folks staying in the east think they have it better & all modern is that us staying in the west are still in touch with Nature.

Polluting the air with our factories isn't just the sole & only thing us west folks are all about, you know?


- De Lion Speaks

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Distance Cannot Impede Inspiration

My goodness, something happened today that blew my mind and I had to pick up the blown pieces off the floor and put them back in into my consciousness.

There is a famous Taiwanese girl by the name of 陳曼青 (Blue Vela, also known as Vela Blue, 小藍) who busks in Taipei as well as performing in Taiwan's variety shows and music competitions. She mostly plays the drums but she can also sing & play the synthesizer. The last time when I went to Taipei, I bumped into her and watched her play in real-life. Watching her play always makes me feel like picking up my guitar to practice. Drums are different instruments from guitars but her musicianship & mastery of her instruments are infectious elements that flow across boundaries. I think that in itself can even influence other non-musical areas of life & undertakings.

What I'm trying to say is that she inspires me.

So I was browsing through Facebook when I suddenly chanced upon her Facebook page. So it goes without saying that I requested to be added to her Facebook friends list.


And then it happened. Later in the day, I received the notification that she has accepted my friend request and she liked that link to my blog I've hyperlinked above regarding my last trip to Taipei when I bumped into her.

I left her a friendly message of encouragement in my friend request just so she would know I ain't some stalker creep and she replied to that message:


A simple 'Thank You' and a cute ^^ emoticon which brightened up my day with the knowledge that I now have the connection to one of the few people in life who inspire me.

I'm feeling quite surreal about this and it took a moment to sink into my mind that somebody who is so musically-talented at such a young age whom I admire half the world away now has a connection with me and we can now communicate with each other, rendering the vast distance between us across the oceans to be nothing but just a mouse-click away.


And speaking of communication, the pic on the left shows the very first post I wrote on her wall and her kind reply. I'm still feeling surreal about the entire situation as I read her reply. I think I should ask her about her practice regimes and gain some pointers about how one masters one's musical instrument while having to earn one's keep and struggle with the mundane demands of life.

I am grateful for the Internet in this case despite the fact that it's supposed to piss me off most times. Without it, I can never establish the connection and learn from people who inspire me and be doomed to wonder in my little well how the rest of the world and the people I care about out there are doing.

And a couple days later, we became friends on YouTube.

曼青, 谢谢妳。我会加油的 ^^


- De Lion Speaks

Monday, July 4, 2011

Helping Miss Psychedelic

I helped Miss Psychedelic today regarding information about card readers she's thinking of getting. If you can see the censored parts in our text messages below, it means you're under 18:


And later, that was followed by:


She's welcome. What are buddies for, right?


- De Lion Speaks