Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Back To The Future

On one hand, it's such a tool for showing off. Look, I have 275 friends! On the other, it really is nice to see old friends again.

Friendster, Facebook, and the like.

I don't know how I got sucked into Facebook but I've spent a whole precious morning 'reconnecting'. Friends from school, friends from university, friends who know friends who you didn't know were friends, you get the drift.

With the photos so small it's sometimes difficult to indentify if the Tom Brown you went to university with, the player who tried to feel you up once, is the same Tom Brown staring back at you from the screen - the one with the beard, in the in the tails, standing next to the bride.

At first I was a bit worried about approaching people whom I had lost touch with for so many years and ask them to be my friend again. After writing so many "remember me?" messages, I did feel like a silly broken record but what the hell...they did remember me!

I even found an ex boyfriend and my heart lurched a little because we have not kept in touch for over ten years. I wonder if I ought to say hi; our last contact was when he dumped me in a letter for someone else! Would he think I was trying to get back together? Hahahaha...

It's funny how you can spend so many years of your life with a person only to one day be afraid of approaching them again. It's as if the closeness never existed. The friends I made at school and at university were so close that we knew everything about each other. How we ate, how we slept, how witty/slow we were, what our toilet habits were. When we graduated, our different paths in life brought us to opposite ends of the world and our friendships faded in the distance. They feel like strangers now. Actually, they are. Scrolling through their friends lists, I realise how small a part I played in their lives, and theirs in mine.

It really puts into perspective the whole idea of our lives being lived in chapters. That the present doesn't really matter because it will pass eventually. New issues surface, values are reevaluated, new people become meaningful. Things from the past don't become less important, but they become less urgent if you will. There isn't that need to press, push, maintain or hang on for dear life.

My friends from a previous life will always hold a special place in my heart but there is no way intimacy can be re-established to what it was before. But they're still there in the parallel galaxies of Facebook and Friendster, testament to the fact that they did once exist in my history, and still continue to uphold my life as it once was.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Fat Girls Are Hungrier

Especially when they've lost all their weight.

It's like somehow they've found a way to convert all the stores of shiny, blubby, white fat into a bottomless well of motivation and hunger.

They fight harder. They're the ones meticulously picking out the fat in the fried rice, the ones you mistake for demons right at the front of spinning class, the ones who have sworn off puffy sleeves lest they highlight their imaginary fat arms. And the amazing thing is that they do it consistently. Ie. for the rest of their lives. They have taken a vow, a pledge to the inner fat girl to never ever be fat again. Whatever it takes to never ever EVER return to what they were once before.

I have never ever seen so much self control. Not even in a monk who's accidentally swallowed a Viagra pill.

I am amazed at the kind of commitment and dedication. I mean, we can all diet, and we have. Sometimes they last a few a days before we get withdrawal symptoms and reach for the sugar bowl. If we are lucky, a few months, in which case we may lose a couple of pounds but then someone offers us a glistening KFC and in a moment of weakness, we reach out and inhale it. Sometimes even a year if we suffered a major heartbreak and need a new figure to match our new 'outlook' in life but in comes someone new and off we are again, having cake. But to keep at it year in and year out, FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE...well, that's like being married to your diet.

These days, they call it a lifestyle change. You're not on a diet, you have merely changed your eating lifestyle. Oh crap, if you're cutting down sugar, cutting down fat, eating low fat mayo and all the rest of it, it sounds like a damn diet to me!

Apart from vanity, which I think all women are guilty of, I really believe that this will to ward off the fat stems from far deeper. It goes way back to childhood days or teenage years when these girls were big. When boys bypassed them for thinner girls, when parents and relatives made their weight a topic at the dinner table to the laughter and delight of others. When they couldn't finish the race because they were huffing and puffing too much. When they couldn't wear mini skirts and halter necks when everybody else was. When in photos they appeared so big next to the regular-sized person they look like they were superimposed. It does things to your mind and leaves scars that in time, become as much a part of you as your DNA.

The irony is that it's these very memories that sting so much that now serve as the very impetus to keeps these girls going - to run the extra mile, to wait another hour before the next meal, to forego the baby doll no matter how adorable.

What I find commendable is that they've taken the negative and turned it into the positive. And as cliched as that sounds, it's what life is all about isn't it? They're in it for the long run. It's not just some fad diet they embarked on, but a lifelong commitment.

To all the fat girls gone thin, a standing ovation from me. Well done! Fight hunger with hunger!

Note: At the other end of the spectrum, you will find girls like me. The fat girls on the fence. The ones who have not taken the vow but who want to be thin just as much. They also have their fair share of fat memories and scars but somehow just can't find the hunger to fight the hunger. As a result, we yo-you our way through our adult lives, swinging from the end of a self-imposd pendulum as it brings us from fat to chubby to thin and back to chubby and fat again. And so it continues to swing, year in year out. Who would have thought French fries and chocolate cake could cause so much trouble!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007


I wasn't going to share this juicy little secret, especially not on the net, but I am learning the art of detachment from all things material, so here goes.

In Wisma Atria in PJ, you will find a shop called Eye Candy. In there, you will find all sorts of treasure from Diane von Furstenburg wrap dresses; to the sweetest BCBG and Karen Millen babydolls; Ted Baker tops; Seven, True Religion, Rock & Republic jeans; and evening dresses to die for. I have put on hold a Ted Baker dress and a BCBG top. Trying very hard to resist...but they're so PURTEEEEE....!

The best thing of all is that they are real, current or last season only and they are at least 40% off rack prices. Go! Go now!!!

I have Resourceful Mama to thank for sharing her find. Thanks to her, I will have a wardrobe of lovely clothes and plenty of debt.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Old Song, Timeless Lyrics




Only You Cannot Be Replaced
Composer: Nakayama Miho/Useugi Shou/Oda Tetsuro
Lyrics: Canny Leung (梁芷珊)
By: Andy Hui

I've heard of many relationships
Ending without results leaving behind hurt and regret
I've avoided them deliberately
It’s me who cannot believe in true love
But you treated me with sincerity
I was surprised again
Allowing me to give all my love in return
And all my happiness

If today I lose all that I have
I won’t care if I have nothing left
Only you cannot be replaced
You are everything in my life
If I had known that I would be fortunate to love you in this life
I would have worked harder for the future at the start
Actually I know it is once in a lifetime chance
Allow me to be with you in my next life

Who else is like you to appreciate me?
There’s no one else who understands me so well
What else would I need?
I wish for the rest of your life to be handed to me
Allow me to take care of you properly
Please let me understand your needs
So I may give you all my love

If today I lose all that I have
I won’t care if I have nothing left
Only you cannot be replaced
You are everything in my life
If I had known that I would be fortunate to love you in this life
I would have worked harder for the future at the start
Actually I know it is once in a lifetime chance
Allow me to be with you in my next life
Loving each other forever

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Welcome To The Fairytale

PMS is a delibitating illness. It targets your self esteem, shoots down all the hard work you have spent building it and stomps all over your confidence and self image like a barbaric neanderthal.

We can try to fight it off with herbs and pills, in my case red clover blossoms and plenty of calcium. Whilst it does take the edge of the PMS bite, I am learning that it doesn't really tame the beast within. Without anti-PMS herbs = Medusa on a bad sulphur trip. With anti-PMS herbs = Glenn Close boiling rabbits. Ie. not as scary, but still as psycho.

It is a curse, I tell you. At my age and correlating baggage size, PMS begins two weeks before the actual event. That's two whole weeks of griping with emotions, moods, insecurities, unresolved issues and a steady bloating of the belly. Then D-Day announces its arrival with a huge splash of red that despite years of this monthly torture, still never fails to shock when you go to the loo and it glares its angry surprise back at you from your knickers.

Then come the cramps. OK, I must admit, my period pains have noticebly numbed post pregnancy, but still, cramps are cramps - numbed or otherwise - and it makes you want to crawl up in bed (not snuggle) , tenderly nest over a hot water bottle and drift into a semi conscious state of hopelessness and helplessness, ie. hell.

This lasts for another 3-4 days and it is of no help that you have to visit the loo every 3 hours if you are tamponing or have to walk around with a big fake smile on your face so as to not give away that there is a loaf of a pad wedged between your legs as you bleed out.

Finally, as the period wears off, so does this PMS beast and you return to 'normal' before it begins all over again in less than a week's time.

And so, it brings me back to the person who asked me this question when I was a pre-teen, "would you rather have been born a girl or a boy?". With hindsight, I conclude that this person must not only have been of the male gender, he was also mocking me despite my naivete - not only revelling in the fact that we live in a man's world, but rubbing in what he already knew was coming - that I was on the brink of experiencing PMS for a good three weeks every month for the rest of my god-damned life until finally, even menopause is welcomed with open arms.

Have a nice week girls.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Just Get Over It!

I'm a hopeless friend to have around if you've just broken up with someone. I can never find the right balance between being the sympathetic "awww, you poor thing" shoulder to lean on and the short and straight friend that tells it as it is - "pick yourself up and stop being so pathetic".

I do genuinely feel for people who have had their hearts broken. I know what it feels like. It's horrible. Like falling down a black hole and not knowing where you will land. Yes, the 'mourning' period is not nice, with its accompanying thoughts of suicide, lack of will to eat (hang on...that's a good thing, no?) and loss of of motivation to live. Yet, its a necessary step to take in order to get back on our two feet again.

But it's also so horribly annoying. OK, I'm not the most sympathetic person, but really. I mean, especially if we have been hurt before, and we have, why do we simply set ourselves up again? Have we not learned from previous episodes that it hurts and reliving every little detail of what happened over and over again just ain't going to change anything?

Of course, its easier said then done. I'm not the one who's heart is in pieces right now. I have been extremely fortunate to have around me a network of people who have been my safety net at times like these, and their efforts are immensely appreciated. There are some people who are better at cooing and coaxing and others at being blunt. The most effective advice I have ever had after a devastating breakup many years ago was "Just Get Over It".

It was said with a tinge of exasperation and it was exactly what I needed to hear. It woke me up with a jolt. You know, sometimes when you are in shock, all you need is for someone to give you an order? It's that - I needed a direction. Enough talking, enough analysing, enough wondering, enough plotting. This deal is done.

I guess the crux of the matter is this: how long exactly is an appropriate public mourning period? Of course, that depends on the person, the relationship, the time in, you can't say 2 weeks or 2 months or whatever. What I mean is that a part of you will indeed mourn for a long time, however much the relationship meant to you, but you can mourn inside.

When you've exhausted the details and there are no more twists to the plot, enough! I am guilty of long drawn out post break up public mourning and it need not have been so. It was indulgent of me to have carried on doing that to myself. One needs to move on from the frantic need to relive and enter the phase of quiet reflection.

The key to turn that locked door of awakening? It's perspective. Once you put that huge relationship in the long and vast life you have lived and will go on to lead, and then put your life within the context of the world around you, and then put your world into the context of the universe at large, you kind of get the message. The relationship moulded who you are going to be, but it so is not your life!

I don't like seeing weak people. When I see refugees, people abused in their childhood, those living in poverty, and I see survival in their eyes, I think everyone is capable of strength, of great strength. They just don't know it.