Friday, July 27, 2007

Mating season

I have spotted an opportunity for baby bunnies to exist. I have seen the flashing neon sign, alternating between "Single & Available" and two hearts overlapping as one. I smell sweet love in the air.

The two suitors don't know it yet, but I have *evil* plans. Recently, I found out that a colleague of mine has a rabbit, and not just a rabbit, a female rabbit! And not just a female rabbit, a FEMALE ANGORA RABBIT!!!!

She's brown like Lump and a cutie (though Rach thinks she's on the hairy side). Look at this picture I stole off the owner and judge for yourself:

Potential girlfriend #1

Her name's Raisin. I like her eyes—they look so much more gentle compared to Lump's 'how-can-I-outsmart-my-owner' look (and is that mauve mascara?). Given a male bunny's natural stamina, I guess he's also distressed that he's still a virgin.

Now I've only got to convince Raisin's owner that both rabbits would totally dig a romantic evening out frollicking in some garden, and that depriving them of that would be a devastatingly cruel act against the laws of love. Hmmmmrrrmph.

Janice is back! But where are the housemates?

"lol", 2001

Janice, a good friend who used to hang with me in Canberra, is back in Singapore after spending some time in the States dancing and making coffee and going for Bible classes. Wheeeee! If you didn't know, Janice is a professionally trained psychologist who prefers working in a cafe and trying out new recipes. She's a good person to talk to, and one of the handful who can stand shopping with me. So she totally rocks. See you soon, Janice!

Since I'm reminiscing my uni days, here is an ex-housemate of mine, Nat, caught reading during the summer hols. She used to blast Britney over her hi-fi and torture the rest of the housemates with it. Hers was an amazing display of consistency, except for the times when she blasted the Backstreet Boys. Then when Jess, my other housemate, tried using Hootie and the Blowfish to out-blast Britney, Nat would retaliate by knocking up the volume even more. Things could get pretty ugly, especially if you had to study with 'Hit Me Baby One More Time' on repeat. Besides that, Nat also dressed a lot in pink. Shocking pink. Tight tops in shocking pink. But what's most shocking is that she was the oldest amongst us at—what, 26 then? Yep.

"Natalie in Summer", 2001

And here's Jess, my musical buddy, singing in the N1 laundry where we used to jam till the grog or our throats ran dry, or until Nat or the weird neighbour from upstairs appeared, yelling at us to shut-up-do-you-know-what-freaking-time-it-is? How I miss those good ol' days.

"Nights at N1", 2001 (My favourite shot of Jess)

Monday, July 23, 2007

3a.m. in a living room on Foch Road

I'm on the last leg of my Singapore trip. The guys are already asleep--William felt sick after walking in the drizzle with me and Cheok didn't have a weekend. He's been working non-stop on a pitch, and tomorrow it's yet another day at work, except that he has a shoot tomorrow, which sounds slightly more relaxed. I would say I'm so glad to be out of advertising, but I just checked my new office email and there are some pretty out-of-this-world deadlines there. They are rather impossible IMHO, taking into account I'm just one person, and I am technically on leave/holiday till Monday. But anyway. Might be forced to do it tomorrow before taking the bus home.

William has just walked past me looking quite green. He's now in the toilet, but I haven't heard major puking yet. Okay, he seems alright. Maybe he's just tired. I did, after all, wake him up at 8.30 this morning to lead the way to the MRT station so that I could meet Felix at Buena Vista and go to church. Church was... rather standard.

There's been a cool breeze blowing since I got back. We're on the 12th floor, with a rather good view of what used to be a red light district haunted by transvestites. There are some dodgey pubs around. Coincidentally, I read an article earlier that said that transsexuals are recognised in Singapore, except that they need to undergo a full sex-change operation. The gender on their birth certs don't get changed too. Some male-to-female transsexuals turn to prostitution because they're out of money and can't find anyone who'd be willing to employ them.

But the streets below us are now empty and quiet--it's friggin Monday tomorrow after all. Somewhere, some construction is going on as I can hear a machine drilling and smell the black oil carried by the night air. The occasional car passes by every minute or so. At this moment, life is slow and I don't want my holiday to end.

The air is brilliant and blowing, and this moment belongs to me, here.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Singapore Pt. II

Singapore is a fine city. In both senses of the word. It's my second visit to Singapore in a year, which makes that a personal record. One day I imagine I might work here, since I know more than five people and therefore shouldn't feel completely lonely, and also because it's a fine city. If you earned the same amount as you did in that country up its border (where I currently reside), all you'd need to do is multiply that by 2.3 and wahlau, you'd be rich! Your parents would be happier with the extra pocket money and so would you. Yes, I might work here one day. (I'd just have to deal with not being able to understand Mandarin-speaking cabbies and waitresses.)

What I have been doing since getting here on Friday night.
Eating fine food (had Jap and one of those real-meat-with-juices-flowing burgers today), tossing between getting a Macbook or a normal laptop or the office's Dell one, hanging out with my ex-colleagues Cheok and William who have been really angelic, walking in and out of shops, spending a bomb on stationery, shopping, getting fat, learning to surf the web on an iBook and discovering the joys of two-finger page scrolling, oversleeping (woke up at 1.35pm today; how absolutely piggish), and attending the TOMMY EMMANUEL concert at Esplanade.

I'd been wanting to see Tommy in action for some time now, but when I was in Australia for a month last year, he was shuttling in between some weird-named Scandinavian country and another planet. Then this year, while reading Mia Palencia's blog, she happened to mention that she'd been to a Tommy E gig last year. Lo and behold, a whim like a dim sum came ker-plonk into my brain, and so I googled "Tommy Emmanuel" and "tour", and excitedly found out that he was going to be playing in a few months in Singapore!

So who's this Tommy guy actually? Well, he's an oldish chap from Melbourne, Australia with two daughters and a few more kids via World Vision, who also happens to be among one of two(?) Certified Guitar Players in the world. He's most known as a fine fingerstyle player, which is a playing style that combines a moving bassline, rhythm and melody/lead section played at the same time by the same guitar player. He also does rather crazy stuff on the guitar. I mean, he doesn't pick strings with his teeth or salivate all over the strings, but what he does is beat it up real bad till it sounds pretty good. Like today, he used a drum brush to beat the guitar body below the saddle to create a purely rhythm jamming session. The pickup on the first guitar used today is also VERY sensitive, and each time he thumped over the soundhole, a heavy 'boom' akin to a kicked bass drum was produced.

But what THE highlight of the night was for me, by far, a song called 'Initiation', which he wrote after spending time with the Aboriginals in Alice Springs as a lad. I'm not sure of the time span between the inspiration and actualisation of the song, perhaps 30 years as he joked, but what he had wanted to do was to capture the sounds of the Aborigines and produce that on a guitar. Today, he did just that, immaculately, splendidly, magically. Using heavy delay effects and certain other effects (I'm guessing a Phase Shifter though I've never used that effect myself), he created a populated oasis in the middle of an arid bushland, where the calls of the original inhabitants of Australia melded with their droning beats, clucks, atmospherics and waaah-waaaaah didgeridoo sounds. It was the most amazing thing I've seen produced on a guitar, ever. (The Esplanade has wonderful acoustics too, which did wonders to the listening experience.)

With that, I'll end my adventures for today. Tomorrow, if I wake up on time, I'll visit Felix's church with him. Then on to more shopping! :D

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Lump is cute, but have you seen him wet?

When wet, my rabbit looks like a rat.

(This is for those of you who have only seen pictures that depict him as this outrageously cute fluff ball. He IS, but he can also look pretty scrawny. Tee-hee. These were taken at least a year ago, maybe two.)

Monday, July 09, 2007

Anson & Alex do their thang

More fluke shots from Ai Mei and Terence's wedding. Here we have Anson on rhythm guitar and Alex on congas. Motion is natural—my PhotoShop skills ain't that advanced. :)

Saturday, July 07, 2007


Experiments in crazy

Yesterday's wedding rehearsal involved musicians, singers, shofar blowers and dancers. Here is Janet dancing, and me having no freaking clue what's happening with all the light. They do, however, seem intent on dancing with her.

Experiments in candlelight

In the days to come, I'll probably be writing less and shooting more. My new toy has left me as poor as a church mouse, especially once I pay the credit card company for it. But for now, I'm still trying to figure out the mysteries of the camera and photography in general. I wish I were a lot more technical in this area, but all the f/x-number, aperture and whatnot is rather confusing. Still, it's digital and I can afford to push any combo of buttons and just shoot. Whee!

Candles in the Anglican church where Ai Mei and Terence will be wed tomorrow

Friday, July 06, 2007

Made in 1910

My maternal grandma is 97 years old. For someone her age, she's in pretty good shape and fiercely independent, but when you're almost a century old, your body does get worn, and her leg muscles have been grumbling incessantly in recent days.

Despite having known her all my life, I haven't been very civil to her since my rebellious early teens. Now, I am past acting like James Dean but our static relationship has come to be the accepted way of life. The lack of conversation partly explains why my Cantonese sucks so bad. But even if I could speak the language, she's now hard of hearing. I do help her with stuff on occasion and when she asks, showing the care through actions, but I know it's far from ideal.

I don't know how long God's mercy on her will last, but the fact is that she isn't a Christian and doesn't seem close to being one at this point in time. Which leaves me feeling blue, as I recall her sacrifices for me particularly when I was a kid; how she's served and taken care of me. Despite her controlling ways (as the mother of seven, grandmother of 13 and great-grandmother of five), I do, after all, love her.

I took these shots because I needed to preserve her on 'film'—memory is so unreliable.

Poh-poh, June 07