Tuesday, August 29, 2006 

"GET IN MY BELLY! baby...the other white meat"

*warning: baby picture alert*

got an email from Ferguson today....pretty much an update on the state of the union back in London. things seems to be going well. him and Christine are expecting number 3. way to keep the production line going man (at this juncture, a bunch of rogue feminists have initiated a plot to bomb my house). but seriously, good for them. it doesn't hurt that his kids are quite possibly the best looking children I've seen in a long time.

I swing your attention to exhibit A. this is Elle at circa age 1 as a flower girl at Brock's wedding. she likes M&Ms and Dora the Explorer. but I hear her favourite thing in the world right now is her "big kid" bike (with training wheels of course). Exhibit B is what she looks like now. she got BIG. man, I still remember that night after a session at the Frog - doing what single guys do best - when Brock confessed that he was going to be a father. all I can say is, I'm completely relieved he didn't take my advice. in fact, and on that note, no one should take my advice coz its usually TERRIBLE.

Exhibit C is Tate. Ted once described him as a "bag of flour" coz he's a huge baby. from what I hear he just likes drooling and crawling around. and I quote, "He is getting huge, his head is officially as big or larger than Elle's now!" I love this picture coz all he's missing is a beer in his hand.

I regret that I'm not a witness to them growing up. in fact, on a larger scale, I regret missing out on good times with the guys. especially now...this is the first summer in a LONG time sans patio & BBQ sessions. man...had some some pretty amazing years...with equally amazing stories. but hey, everyone seems to be pretty successful now which means....potentially a reunion in the not too distant future?? who knows? but I'm pretty sure its going to happen.

B. 

Monday, August 28, 2006 

don't look so damn tragic

gotcha ; ) but seriously now.

*correction to the previous post: I took a 147 (instead of a 146) out for a spin*

not much happened today that warrants a scripted narration. its a monday....need I say more? pretty regular day at the PMO. working on deliverables....fire-fighting...going to meetings....setting up meetings.....heheh, I recall taking an e-learning course on Organization Design and specifically a section that defines structures within various organizations. for instance, a firm like mine falls under the "Matrix" design...and among one of the disadvantages of a matrix design is that it promotes a meeting intensive culture. to that, my responses is "you god damn right".

the only other thing worth briefly mentioning is that I spent a good portion of my time after work first meeting with my realtor....then my lawyer. the plus side? getting quite familiar with legal jargon. the down side? I'd prefer not to. I mean, it just goes to prove my inclination that social values are bass ackwards. I've always maintained that we should swap the salaries of lawyers with that of teachers. I think the later serves a more nobel function for vaster segments of the population.

when I come into power. (that and a complete ban on techno)


on to other things....like outdoor markets/bazaars. was at one yesterday. I've come to the conclusion that bazaars, regardless of time and space, are universal in form and content. I mean, take a scene from a bazaar hundreds or dare I say even thousands of years ago and it pretty much looks the same compared to its modern day incarnations....no matter where you are in the world. there are stalls that sell meat, produce and food, ones that sell household items, clothes, stuff you find in pharmacies and of course....useless crap. I for one find the whole concept quite cool.

oh...exciting news. I've recently discovered a "blockbuster video" store within my neighbourhood (re: walking distance). this is great as 1. I don't like supporting piracy...simply because the picture quality is terrible. and 2. I prefer the idea of renting DVDs (for RM3-5!) coz I'd rather not own a library of films that I might just watch once.

well......got jack shit left to say so I'm signing off.

B

Sunday, August 27, 2006 

because Sundays are meant to be like this

another relatively glorious sunday. I find myself at the Starbucks by the plaza more or less just "soaking in humanity". they're having their regular Sunday outdoor bazaar thing. and I'm well, indulging in the scenery. I also think once this house deal gets wrapped up (which after a meeting with my lawyer, will be a couple of months from now), I'm gonna look into getting a car....because well, what's a yuppie sans fly wheels? ; ) and I'm thinking....I really don't want to go the completely uncreative German (Porche aside...and lets be realistic shall we?) or boy racer rice rocket route.....instead, I wanna go Italian. more specifically, an Alfa Romeo.....GT, which in my opinion....is sex on wheels.




Auto Italia was having some sorta test-drive session at the plaza and I took a 146 for a spin. lets just say its gutheral, very snug, and goes like a bat outa hell. and the coolest thing? an upgrade to 17" alloys and accompanying z-rated tires are of no charge (but of course, the sticker price is well, lets just say, not that of a national car). but yeah....its decided.

I know I know...it totally goes against my "no driving in KL" policy but upon further reflection, I'm gonna have to EVENTUALLY get a car. its like when you're single, you can contrive a cornucopia of reasons as to why flying solo is great but when someone EVENTUALLY comes along that lights up your senses....well...your option becomes quite clear. that being said, its not that your rationale for the boons (no pun intended) of singledom is flawed (and in this case, "no driving in KL"), sometimes, a desire-driven good decision is just that. a good decision. like anything in life, there exists inextricable pros and cons of being on either side of the fence but making a decision and doing what promotes self contentment and satisfaction is what its all about innit?

I'm reminded of a recent email I received from Daryl and how he's currently on the horns of a dilemma regarding the decision on whether or not he ought to go to teacher's college. in the email, he iterated a story by Satre that Chuck had passed on to him regarding the act of decision making...and I quote:

"I remember Chuck telling me a story about Satre, who used to tell a story of one of his students who came to him for advice in deciding whether to fight with his country's army on the front lines or take care of his ailing mother.  Years later, Satre met the student and asked his final decision...in the end, he joined the army.  The student asked whether this was the correct decision, and Satre replied that making a decision was the correct decision.
 
Sage advice is always easier dispensed than acted upon....Wish me luck bro" 

my advice to him was that venturing forth into new terrain is never a bad thing. valuable lessons reside in unchartered territory.

at any rate, I made a decision to head out on the town despite being in a relatively ungrounded and wonky disposition coz I knew that social interaction could very likely ameliorate the situation. that, and, it was Joost's final weekend to let loose before he becomes preoccupied with a visiting girlfriend and the move back to wooden shoe country. also present was Tansu....the son of Istanbuli immigrants to Germany. hilarious guy by the way....brought back memories of hanging out with Caglar.....Joost (who has a close friend of Turkish decent) and I agreed that there was something about the Turkish condition that remains constant across the population, and Tansu was further evidence of it. he'd been working here for two years now for Zuellig Pharma as an in-house operations consultant and obviously picked up some of the language. but still, I was thrown off a little when he strung together some basic Mandarin sentences (imagine Mandarin...in a thick german accent *hah!*). but then again, I was the first Chinese person he'd ever seen string together a bunch of Turkish words. coolest thing about this guy was his job title of "Special Projects". I mean, he could actually say when asked to clarify on the specifics of this job, "I could tell you, but then I'd have to kill you" ; )

anyway, the evening started out at the Hilton for a noodle dinner....as we wanted to check out the much-hyped Zeta Bar. 2 things about the experience:

1. Noodles rocked.

2. Zeta Bar didn't. I mean, the place was tres cool but the music (band) was so bloody wrong. think bad Eastern European cruise ship house band.

so we went back to the Loft....always dependable for a good time. just really good music.

came back to Mon't Kiara after with Joost and pretty much just sat at the Starbucks (in fact, the exact seat that I'm in right now) chatting til about 6 in the morning. the tents that you see in the first picture were being set up when we decided to call it a night/day.

life in KL ain't that bad.

b.

Saturday, August 26, 2006 

on habit forming


they say that once you do something 21 times in a row, it becomes a habit. coming from a guy who's developed several over the years (mostly bad ones), you could say I'm a believer in that particular school of thought. I think its the comfort in knowing what to expect that drives us in this aspect. I guess that's where that number 21 comes in...after the 21st time, that little voice in your head goes "hey hey, wait a minute, certainty in reaction....I like that. I'm not going to judge the rightness or wrongness of the act, certainty itself is right." so that's it, my hypothesis is that the human condition finds solace and comfort in the knowing....the routine.....being able to predict outcomes.....

why is that?

on the flip side of things, when it finally hits you that the habit you've formed is indeed counter-productive to you're well-being....why is is so hard to break? and I know for a fact that doing the opposite repetitively 21 times doesn't quite apply.

why is that?

I dunno. but here's what I think the answer could be. it doesn't quite work the same way as the act of trying to break a habit is intimately linked to "positive" memories of initial habit itself. we're automatically drawn back by association. so moral of the story? don't form habits (or more aptly put, nip it in the bud) if you have the slightest inkling that one day, you gonna have to ditch it. its harder than you think ; )

I write this after my 3rd cappuccino in 2 and a half hours. no I've not had 18 prior to this but it IS part of my weekend routine. in fact....its part and parcel of my non-work routine when I'm by myself....the incidence of which, it slowly taking a more prominent portion of my time. this, along with a strong urge to write, probably explains why there have been more posts of late. call it weird, call it a manifestation of lonerism, whatever the case my be....its hella cathartic. hey, I fester in my own thoughts enough as it is, might as well have fun with it and write it down eh?

so from the Marmalade in sunny Kuala Lumpur (its seriously gorgeous today), I share with you my thoughts....and lunch.....


oh yah....and that's the same mac from eons ago. can't seem to bring myself to get another computer. this mighty machine has served my well....better than any PC of mine has ever done. come to think of it, it has been a constant in my life for close to 4 years. its quite possibly the greatest depository of my life's history. unfortunately its losing it structural integrity what with cracks in its frame. I liken it to Jack Nicholson....sharp mind but failing body. hah! : )

you can tell I'm having a bit too much fun with the camera on my treo....especially those of you who have been recipients of my "treo cam" emails. hey, it adds another dimension to the everyday and potentially mundane (not to mention easily usable content for the head space). anyway...expect more of it : )

right....gonna take me a nap.

B.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006 

how many Boons does it take to screw in a light bulb?

see...the problem is, at times, I actually do believe that the world revolves around me. so much so that for huge portions of the time, I'm totally misinterpreting very normal and ordinary human actions as grave personal attacks. I'm not going to sit here and deny that I don't care what people think coz if I'm going to be honest with myself (and others)....they do. furthermore, I think I definately rely on the reactions of others for feelings of self worth. positively problematic. in social psychology its known as an external locus of control. not to be mistaken for the more serious external locusts of control! (oh wow....now that was quite possibly the lamest joke I've ever told in my life).

but back to the issue at hand. is it wrong to over-analyse for purely self-oriented reasons? if so....where does this hallowed ground of an internal locus of control reside? maybe Erikson was right, we do gain meaning and meaningfulness from life as a function of relinquishing our infantile wants for more "other-oriented" actions. in other words, we gain valuable insight and respect for ourselves by looking past ourselves.

but that's the thing....does altruism truly exist? and I guess the more important question is, do I want that or am I ready for it?

I can say this much though.....I find myself caught in a vicious tautological cycle of "if only this happened, I'll be happy" I recently read in a book that "the wealthiest man isn't defined by how much he has but by how little he wants". if that's the case, I've fucked coz I want a hell of a lot. I harken back to the countless chat's with Chuck while working on the thesis. he often said in a playfully sarcastic tone, "afterall, he who dies with the most toys wins". I sincerely hope that statement is false as life has got to be more than the mere collection of stuff (and the ensuing perceived acclaim that comes along with it).

whatever the case may be....gotta do thing for the "right" reasons coz man, I've been absent-minded with my decisions. we'll try to figure out about the "right" portion as I go along. looks like its a work in progress/trial by fire sorta thing. never been a religious guy so I guess that's the other option. furthermore, I prefer the idea of working it out for and by myself.

that's it for now.

b.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006 

umph tsk umph tsk umph tsk

once again, I've really got nothing much to report. but hey, have the sudden urge to write. so while I'm here. I suppose a couple of updates.

1. I really...REALLY dislike techno. call me an old bastard but I've never been able to understand it. for me, this crap is reserved for lame Europeans who know absolutely nothing about the sanctity of music. that being said, there are those that DO appreciate it.

2. I'm in the throes of a condo purchase. so far so good. I actually like dealing with my lawyer (odd statement I know). well, that's not all news to most of you as it remains to be the single most exciting thing in my life at this point in time. great pad, great area code....need I say more? though I think the jury is still out on whether I'm gonna throw a house-warming party. like I explained to Erin today, I liken it to broadcasting your own birthday so people will throw you a party and furnish you with presents. not really my thing I must say. plus, I don't know if I have enough friends for it not to be entirely embarrassing. stay tuned for "house updates"

3. speaking of birthdays, Joost-meister recently held his birthday/farewell party at the Loft. good times were had by all. lets just say there are SEVERAL incriminating pictures that need to be destroyed.....by various parties. that being said, gonna miss the guy. I've always felt that people enter your life for a reason....some for less than savoury reasons ; ) and along those lines, I also believe that people leave your life for a reason. most important life lesson learnt from him, "my friend Enrique always said, every week, do something or go somewhere you've never experienced". So yah, props also go out to Don Herman (Enrique). so yah, gotta plan a trip to amsterdam not before too long.

4. my brother is back in the country. I foresee an re-adjustment period. I'm sure he'll be fine....he's always been the more stable of the Tng brethren.


5. I find Islamic call to prayer oddly calming. might have something to do with that fact that I'm currently posted to an engagement right next to the Lembaga Tabung Haji buiding....which, some of you might know, has an underground mosque right outside with the minaret resembling a huge glass tent. apparently its massive in there but of course, I have no frame of reference for as long as I remain a non-muslim, I'll never know what the inside of a mosque looks like. still man, find it cool that there's a gigantuan underground mosque in the middle of KL. but yah, the call to prayer is cool....anyone thought of adding a slow beat to it a la "Delirium"? somehow I don't see blasphemy of that sort happening.

6. did I mention I hate techno? I guess I should mention that the Thai-themed bar next to starbucks is blarring the stuff. and that's another thing with Thai-themed bars in this country, they are always populated by over-weight and middle-aged brits. I do not get it.

right.....that's all for now.

b

Monday, August 07, 2006 

"everything is perfect....yet everything kinda isn't"-L. Hinder

yeap....one of those days (story of my life actually).

one of those "can complain but what's the point" sorta days. then the guilt of knowing that there's always someone else out there whose worse of than you sets in. but hey, I'm the one who's gonna have to figure this out. so until then, I'm gonna harp on it. gonna demonstrate my wuss cred and quote John Mayer....methinks there's "something's missing".

hmmm, maybe I should simply bitch less. its like what George Carlin says " what's this bullshit about your needs not being met? what the hell is that? to me, that's support group shit...twelve-steppers. fuck, your needs not being met. here's an idea, DROP SOME OF YOUR NEEDS. its a zero-sum game!"

ahh...good old George. he makes me laugh. then again, this is also the guy who said, "Do you care that its Mickey Mouse's birthday? saw in on TV the other day. Fuck Mickey Mouse! Fuck Mickey Mouse with a big rubber dick. I hope Mickey dies......I hope he god damn dies. I hope he gets his hands on some tainted cheese and dies in a back alleyway of a bad neighborhood.....with his hand in Goofy's pants. No wonder people don't take American seriously, we invest time in memorizing the birthday of an imaginary rodent!"

whoa man....I'm really full of useless knowledge.

guess I'm mucking around so much coz in the next few days, I'm going to have to make some pretty HUGE life decisions. will fill you in as they crystalize.

in the meantime, silliness works.

b.