Thursday, April 20, 2006 

Made In Manchester

How do you go from a somebody to a nobody in a matter of 13 hours and 32 minutes?

No, I am not talking about getting burnt in the stock market crash.

No, I am not talking about gambling your life savings away.

And no, I am not talking about losing your loved ones.

How do you go from a somebody to a nobody in a matter of 13 hours and 32 minutes?

How do you do that?


I just went to Manchester.

When people ask me, “How was Manchester?” I will reply, “Cold, like her people.”

Funny how the way I see people of other race and religion is different from how they see me. Racism is soooo last century. But sadly it still exists. Haven't anyone watched Crash?!

I solemnly swear that I will refrain from calling caucasians mat sallehs, gwai loh or gwai por. I will not shorten the word Bangladeshi to Banglas, Indonesians as Indons, Indians as kelings, so on and so forth, harmless as it may seem. It really is not funny when you are at the receiving end, what more if you are in a foreign country.

My first encounter was at the airport. All of my colleagues and clients (caucasians, malay and chinese) made it through the immigration check point effortlessly. It has to happen to me lah.

The immigration officer (I should have taken down his name for future “reference”) eyed me suspiciously and we had 10 minutes of meaningful repartee. I noticed he spoke, he pronounced each vowel with extreme care for my benefit. I can see his tonsils from the way he stretched his lips.

Immigration Officer: Your first time here miss?
Bonnie: No. My second, actually.
IO: Can I see your passport?
B: Of course. *dig, dig*
IO: You are here on holiday or work?
B: Holiday.
IO: Alone?
B: With my friends. *hand gesture to all who were waiting*
IO: How long are you staying?
B: 10 days.
IO: You planning to go back?
B: Of course! I bought my return ticket.
IO: Can I see it?
B: Here you go, you pompous arse. (gotcha! I made the last bit up!)
IO: Did you buy this ticket? Did you pay for it?
B: Abuden? Of course!!!
IO: Where will you be staying?
B: I don’t have the address, but it’s in Manchester lah. *hollers to my colleague, Ms. J.

*1 minute discussion between IO and Ms J. Bonnie meanwhile crosses her arms and rolls her eyes*

IO: Okay. You can go.
B: *$@#&!!!

What do I look like, a chink prostie or a guerilla?! We came in a group of mixed race and religion. Surely that must count for something, no?

Okaaay..I thought maybe I shan’t tar everyone with the same brush although that left me with a nasty taste in the mouth. Maybe that was just one asshole who fought with wifey in the morning hence the first class treatment.

2 days later, Ms. J and I ventured into Old Trafford stadium as she was keen to visit the Manchester United store. As we were chatting and strolling, 3 caucasian dudes walked towards us with a cheeky, “Hi!” I smiled but didn’t say anything in response. They walked past us and retorted with an audible, “You dark skin!”

My smile froze on my cheeks and I didn't know how quite to react. Ms. J continued chatting as she was oblivious of the nasty exchange.


I wondered what triggered off the uncalled-for racist remark.

Was it my clothes? My smile? The unrequited greeting? I wasn't wearing my Sunday best nor was I in the friendliest of moods, but surely that wasn't offensive as heck?

Whatever it was, there were only 2 of us gals against 3 fat arses in a foreign country. So I did a Johnnie Walker - shut my trap and kept walking.

When God showed me the ugly, He also showed me the beautiful.

Those 2 incidents aside, I also encountered some nice people as well. Like the friendly waiter at the Chinese take-out place. And the gentleman who helped me with my luggage on the Virgin train. Or the elderly couple who took pictures of me and my friend, Ms. A. Some treated me with thinly-veiled contempt and others with extreme kindness.

England's quaint little villages can be one of the most beautiful places on earth provided if her people are just as beautiful. I have not seen all of England yet, but I hope someday I will.

So there you go. The good, the bad and the ugly.

Friday, April 14, 2006 

Happily Ever After: A Counter Attack for “Tlue Lomance”

I’m supposed to write a counter attack entry for “Tlue Lomance” (Wed, April 05, 2006) but actually I have totally forgotten about that. What’s new complaining about men being insensitive and not romantic?

But anyway, here I am, writing a suppose counter attack letter to you.

* Romantic: relating to the style of literature, art, and music known as Romanticism.

Obviously, there's another interpretation of this word: adj. Making you feel love and excitement. At first glance, it looks like the main responsibility is on the doer; to make the receiver feel love and romantic. However, when we really study the whole sentence, it contains TWO verbs in it: :Making” & “feel”. In short, being romantic requires two persons, the doer and the receiver. If the receiver had any form of mental block or prejudice, not matter what the doer do or how much effort he puts it (in this case, I’m talking about man), the receiver will not be able to feel.

Ring a bell, all you women out there? * evil laughter*

Besides that, there’s the question of who should play the role of doer and receiver. Women constantly complain men (at least most of them) not being romantic. They always can point out thousands of reasons and example to stand their point:

Man is NOT romantic when:
They don’t buy gifts and flower.

Man is NOT romantic when:
They don’t set up romantic plans and activities to do together.

Man is NOT romantic when:
They don’t express their love the way woman likes it (verbal etc)

Man is NOT romantic when:…….

(There’re tons of them and is not necessary to list them down; anyone can ask any woman and she will give you a two-hour session listing them down for you)

So when men, as the doer, do not do these stuff that classified and “romantic”, it makes them not romantic and insensitive. The question is, does it make the receiver romantic when she didn’t receive the romantic act? Or does it, make the receiver ROMANTIC when she receive?

Ah-huh, don't tell me that crap like: this is the divine obligation of men. Well women can ask that during the era when they were not allowed to study, when they were not allowed to step outside the house before marriage, when they were not allowed to have they own social life after marriage etc etc. Time has changed. Women have become independent now. With all the privileges they gained over this hundred year, they should know they might lost some that they used to have.

No, I am not saying women do not deserve all these romantic act from men. They do, and of all beings in this world, only women deserve to be treated the best way a man can treat another person. My point is: do not take this for granted. Anything good happens is a bonus.

Just like why you don't complain about not winning the lottery ticket.

As for Bonnie and Clyde, hey I admit the two books ain't the standard for current type of romantic norm, but they're carefully picked (And not cheap too! Oh, me being cheapo again….) Remember the situation back then? Your career and your depression and stress? Is the thoughts that counts.

Okay, I am offbeat and those books are definitely a miss shot. But I always thank God for letting me to have a wife who’s equally offbeat. Hehe, don't pretend. With your collection of serial killer dvds and obsession for animal inner organ as food, I know God have sent me the perfect partner.

I am not Casanova, nor Don Juan nor Lothario.

But I am a damn lucky one. For, outta 500 million human beings out there, I am deeply in love with the one who happens to be in love with me too.

I love the way you smile, the way you dance, and the way to hug me.

I, too, love the way you pigged yourself on chicken intestine, love the way you fart in the blanket, and the way you try to hide your burp.

Just like Princess Fiona, Shrek is the perfect one. And the other way round.

I love you.

Saturday, April 08, 2006 

Manifesto of Boredomism

Do you realized that when we are bored, or at least not paying attention to what we are doing, we will start to scribble?

This is what I call the art of Boredomism.

This kind of drawing doesn't need an intention or a motive. It's just a honest record of our mind map.

It's simple: Everyone can do it. All you need to do is not to think of anything by purpose, let your mind be in a vacuum kinda condition. The hand will automatically start jotting down what's in your mind, at least not your conscious mind.

It's a true reflection of what's in your head, might not be any sort of idea or thinking, might be just you marking down your emotion. Don't throw it away, look at it carefully and you might even discover something that you didn't realize: the dark side or the unseen side of you.

Well, it might not be as simple: the keyword is not to think anything. No intention and no motive. Just let your hand to jot down your mind.

It might contain a lot of information to people who can read it; or it might just be a total piece of junk. Depends on how you see it. If you do not know what to do with it, mail it to me.

See what we interpret is the same as what you think about yourself.


Ass Wipe.......

I seldom get emotional during work. I really do.

But I did today. After putting down the phone, while driving Bonnie to work, I just couldn't help it and made hell lot of complain to her.

What actually can really get into my nerve? I am a sales and face many people everyday. Amongst them there's no short of ones who are unreasonable or who are aggressive in their choice of words. I can remain calm almost all time.

I ponder over it and realised that the main thing that got me angry or upset is........... (Drum rolling) the increasing amount of people who lack the courage to bear responsibility; or worse, the interest to solve problems.

All these jokers want is just to cover their own asses; doesn't matter what kinda damages will be done to their suppliers or even their own company.

I have this client from Australia (whish I print their packaging for their overseas market) that now they want to launch their line of products into Malaysia. They have appointed an advertising agency to do both above and below the line work. This agency has their own design house to spacially cater the packaging work.

As the appointed printer, I'd done whatever needed to be done: mockup with actual material, sampling the finishing quality, digital reading and approval of paper thickness and stiffness, Delta-e reading for ink density and reflective, etc etc...... I, together with the actual material mocjup, have passed them the diecut layout printed by CAD software.

NOW, they requested the diecut in ai format! With all the things I'd done and handed over to them, they ask me to pass them a soft copy of diecut layout in ai format? I have it in CAD format but as I have told them, if I direct convert the file to Ilustrator, there's still a chance that the meassurement might vary or change. The best bet is to follow the actual size printout and construct it in Illustrator.

However, they refuse to do it themselves: In between lines, they are saying, " If anything goes wrong, it is YOUR shit and not ours."

Time is scarse. I told them we do not have the expertise in constructing in ai format. I have to hire some design house and reconstruct it following the printout and that might take up even longer time. Well, I said this with a bit of sacarsm.


At that point of time, I almost wanted to ask them should I hire THEIR design house to construct the ai file so I can pass it back to them?

The design came from Australian client in softcopy, and now they want the printer to provide the softcopy of diecut to them. So I guess for the thousands of Ringgit design fees, what they have to do is just type in the Malay wordings on the packaging. Damn! I want to do that too! Just put in 2 ai file, one from Australian client and one from the printer, and type a few Malay wording and, Woala! few thousand bucks in the pocket!

The agency is big, so probably the top guy wont know, or wont be bother with this matter. However, if anything goes wrong and the launch is delay, probably the client will feel it first. In the end, it's their own company that suffers.

Yeah yeah yeah, but these buggers wont give a damn whether it's good or not to their company; they are not interested in solving problems, all their care is not to make any mistake and by end of the month they still get their salary. All faults are by the suppliers.

Selfish assholes!

I don't mind problem. It happens all the time. The bad thing is when there's one where you can see it, but nobody is ineterested in solving it.

Think I will send them a thousand buck worth of toilet roll next year for their annual dinner.

Maybe I do not have to, they are experts in wiping their own asses!


Last Time Never Study

I read Chinese; I write, speak and even think in Chinese.

This shouldn't be a problem. I am a Chinese.

But, still, there's a problem. I am living in a world which 80% of the others do not understand Chinese.

I can write a letter, a thesis paper, or even a business proposal; but i can't write entertaining and casual reading material, just like bonnie does.

I write in Chinese; poetry, storiy, even lyrics, but just have problem putting them in English character.

I wrote the brokeback mountain in chinese, which I think is a pretty good piece of work, but when I translate it in English, it's become a tasteless chewing gum. Something I rather not share, and even if I did, nobody shud be interested in.

Over years of formal education, I learn to read, write and speak in English. However, due to lack of interest, I seldom read English book.

My volcab abd style of writing is so limited to my work.

I am so impress with the way Bonnie writes. Admire is the word. And when compare them to my own writing...... for example what u r reading now.

Can anything be more dry than this?

Last time never study, now cannot Lan Si lor.......

Wednesday, April 05, 2006 

Tlue Lomance

I think it's time we divulge more info about our lives as a couple. Otherwise, why have a couple blog eh?

Today I wanna talk about Clyde.

I have known Clyde for 17 years and during the initial years when we were both still booming with raging hormones and pimply breakouts, I thought of him as a romantic dude. We would write to each other and he would compliment each message with a little sketch and poem. Deep la konon. Heh.

There was a few years gap when we did not keep in touch and when we finally got around to doing so, the romantic side of him dissipated.

But apparently he begs to differ. His version of romance nowadays seem...erm... a tad offbeat to me.

I remember one unforgettable Valentine's day, he gave me 2 books as a gift. Don't get me wrong. There's absolutely nothing wrong with receiving books as a gift. Really. Not a problem even if it's on birthdays, Valentine's day, Christmas or anniversaries. I love books.

Unless the books in question bears some 'controversial' titles.

How controversial is controversial?

I am not talking about religion here. Or politics. Or philosophy.

I am talking about receiving a book on Valentine's Day titled "How To Make Friends."

And oh, it gets better.

The 2nd book was "How To Control Your Mood Swings."

That, people, is what I meant by ‘controversial.’

Asking for trouble, wasn't he?

I didn't know quite how to react but damn, that's the last thing I would do. If a fight was what he wanted, I ain't giving him none. Nope, no ballistic reaction. I put out my erupting volcano, gave a sweet smile and a coy “Aw, you shouldn’t have.”

But he did.

And I made sure he won’t stop hearing about this for years to come.

And now the world hears about this as well.

*evil laughter*

Now, now, darlin, I am not doing this out of spite but since I am going to be out of the country for a week, have a good laugh remembering this and be good, y'hear. Maybe this post will inspire a counter-attack entry from you.

Can't wait. ;-D

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