My mum is cool

Today, I learnt that my mum used to be a bank teller, like those cool ones you see in catch me if you can or those olden day shows! I mean, how cool is that??! She and her best friend, Helen were Teller 18 and 13 respectively. I think that’s pretty adorable. 

Dialogue:

My mum: Your godma (Helen) and I were the fastest tellers in Bank of America
Me: Ahh, but who was faster?
My mum: Me. 

hahahaha, According to her, Godma Helen was too dedicated to neatness and making sure staplers were aligned the the paper to be faster than her. My godma confirms this as well. My mum says she learn neatness from my godma (which is slightly frightening in my opinion). They also used to have a colleague named Penny, now penny was pregnant and looking for baby names. So what they did was, whoever was in the tourist lane on that day, they would write down names of passports on a separate piece of paper to pass to Penny every day (piece of paper to pass to Penny, say that 5 times fast haha). 

I can just imagine how life was like back then, so easy and carefree, so unsure of their future. Were they imagining their lives when they grew up? What did they want to be? It’s funny to think how their lives turned out and how their lives were interlinked with each other all the way. Did godma think making friends with my mum would bring her closer to meeting her now husband? Or that she would make a career switch with the community my mum was a part of? Or that she would change my mum’s cleaning habits for better (I say, worse but that’s because she is my mother and she makes me clean my room)? Funny how life works out that way. It’s like how I like to dream of my future or put my hopes in a 8-ball, or ask the ipod about my future, or ask my parents what they think of my future. But really, there is no way to tell. There is no certainty, none at all. And that’s pretty scary, to me. But also exciting to see how it all turns out. It’s like you’re reading a book that is interesting and you want to know the end but you can’t just skip to the end because that’s not reading a book, you have to go through the journey to understand the ending. (And then you die but that’s not the point). 

Advertisements

Things anika says,

Anika is my 4 year old godsister, and recently started talking much more. She reads to me and we have the best conversations. She is a real child, just enjoying her life and doing silly stuff. I got her these Hello Kitty stickers (which cost like $7!! are the days of $2 stickers gone?) and she started pasting them in the drawing book I made for her. All of the sudden she looked at me and said, “I’m gonna paste them upside down! hahahahaa UPSIDE DOWN!” And then proceeded to paste all the Hello Kitties upside down as if it was the most amusing thing in the world. Image

Sooner, her mum, Lisa, came by and heard the ruckus. 

Lisa: Anika, are you being silly?                                                                                                       Anika: Noooo.                                                                                                                                       Me: Maybe?                                                                                                                                  Anika: Maybe not.

 How do you compete with such logic? 

Image

Another crazy thing she said yesterday was: 

Anika: My best friend is Sammy, He is a boy.                                                                             Meizhi: Ohhh, is he cuteeee?                                                                                                         Anika: (incredulous) Nooooo! He isn’t a baby!

How can you fault her? She is so utterly innocent. Now, when people say that their 3 year old toddler has a girlfriend, I’m like really? It probably has a different definition for the kids but we adults, think we are so ha ha funny. Sigh. We could learn from the kids a thing or too. 

Weaknesses

What are my weaknesses?

That’s what my dad talked about today. So I wanted to blog about it and write everything down here so that I can think through them and perhaps be a better person in the course of this blog post.

I think one of my weakness is that I’m very proud. I don’t like to appear weak or lose control. Losing control, I feel, makes me look inferior. I always want to be on top, to be right and to be the one with power (be it knowledge or whatever). I don’t like to be wrong, and it’s hard for me to admit I’m wrong. Even when I know I’m wrong, I would never come out and say it. If I’m corrected, I get defensive easily and that could lead to an argument. This is also why I don’t apologise well, even if I’m wrong, and the other party knows I’m wrong, I will skirt the issue until its forgotten and I don’t have to apologise. That’s my way of admitting I was wrong. If you received an apology from me, said to your face, then whatever I did was terrible and apologising was the only way to fix it. It’s pretty rare for me to come to you and say, ‘I’m sorry’. I don’t like doing it. I normally either skirt the issue until you forget and I never have to do it or I text it to you. hahaha that way it makes you feel better but I can detach myself to not feel like I’ve lost or I’m inferior. But I’m trying to change. I really am, I want to realise that I don’t know everything and I need to start to see the knowledge of others and what they can bring to the table. In my prideful journey, I also tend to put down others (perhaps as a way of feeling better about myself). So I want to stop that and see that people all have something to give and everyone has their own journeys and experiences that they learn from and become better and smarter. I want to be more humble.

Another thing is, I’m afraid of what others think. Like constantly. I think about how I’m presented, how I look, how others view me. It’s true, I might seem like a person who doesn’t give a flying shit about anything but I really do. I think about I’m perceived constantly. If I put this up on facebook, how am I viewed as a person by my family, friends? or wearing this makes me look a hipster? Or will I be perceived differently if I change this? This makes it very easy for people to compliment me, I get very happy and very motivated if you compliment me just in the little bit. Sometimes I wished everyone read my blog, then I could more views and more people would understand me. But I’m scared shitless to actually KNOW there are people I know reading this right now. Like my family reading this makes me edit stuff out. I want them to know but I don’t want to know they know cause it makes me write differently, say different things. I really care too much about what others think about me. What I try to do now is that if I catch myself editing or holding back on saying something, I force myself to say it. I tell myself that it will be okay, what I say is who I am and that’s how I’m gonna represent myself. I’ve learnt that I can’t change one someone thinks of me. They can think whatever they want, and it’s probably different from what I perceive myself to be. I don’t live my life to please others. I shouldn’t be, I should be living my life to live my life to the fullest.

I can be very stubborn. But I also realise that my opinions can be influences easily by others. I see myself liking things that my friends like or disliking things when people tell me bad stuff about that. I try to fight against it but it’s difficult not to be influence. For example, my family influences my opinions a lot. Like my brother and his taste in music or suraj and his crazy ideas. I’m not saying I’m a ditto (like in Pokemon), but my opinion can be easily influenced. But when I get stubborn, oh man, I’m as stubborn as a bull. I want let go and I’ll never give way. Even if I’m so wrong. But I have a friend who is now challenging what I say and what I do. It’s refreshing to have a friend who calls you out when you’re wrong and when you say things. I used to believe in many things but he has made me rethink what I say and my beliefs. So now, opinions adopted from others, I have to fight and defend them. It either makes me rethink it or feel stronger about it.

Another thing is I can get very emotional. If you get me very angry or very frustrated or sad, I’m a huge ball of crying, screaming, shouting, irrationality. I’m no good when I’m flustered. When I do lose control, I’m absolutely crazy. When you piss me off, I hold a grudge. I can get pretty intense. hahaha So I guess more control… 🙂

After writing all this down, I feel abit better. But these weaknesses, I definitely have to manage around them. I can’t let it eat me up and be some loose cannon. I shouldn’t bottle it up and make it all explode one day. I have to deal with it as it comes

You know in job interviews, when asked your weaknesses, you are expected to say, oh my, strength is my weakness, I work too hard. HAHAHA but after talking to my dad today, I realise that the opposite is true, your weakness can also be your strength. As you acknowledge your weaknesses, you become humble and you realise that you aren’t the superhero. It makes you appreciate your humanity and the people around you. You depend on people more and you aren’t independent and all powerful. I think that’s so important to learn. That we are human and we have weaknesses. But our weaknesses can make us strong.

Outfit of the day

20130603-151158.jpg

My first #ootd, I don’t normally do this but I just bought the skirt and trenchcoat and I think it’s a pretty awesome combination.

Apparently I’m not supposed to say this but what I love about this outfit is its cost!! I got the skirt at $5, coat at $8 and top at $6 and the necklace was a gift! 🙂 I take pride in getting fantastic outfits at low prices! I like to show people you don’t have to spend $300 to look good! (hahaha I sound like a totally cheeseball)

What’s the difference between flashbacks & memories & throwbacks?

No idea actually.

I went to a funeral recently, (I seem to blog a lot about death…) and I learnt from my mum about her childhood and family history. It made me nostalgic about the past. I sat there reminiscing of my childhood.

Childhood memory 1:

I used to play all the time with my cousin, Xing ping. She was a year older but when I went over to her house, we used to run to her room, take those old mattresses and make houses. If the mattress had one fold, you had the triangle house. If it had two folds, you could make a square house. In our little huts, we also had decorations and blankets. We would create a little village (the two of us reside there, obviously) and we would turn off the lights and go to sleep. Then I always gave the cue, cockadoodledoo!, and we would turn on the lights and wake up! Then we would do whatever people did in the day, water their imaginary garden, go shopping, talk, gossip about pretend people. After a long day (e.g. 10 mins), we would head back to sleep in our little mattress huts. Then, the whole process would start over. This went on for hours and hours. We never got bored. How amazing is that?! The imagination of a kid.

 

Childhood memory 2:

I was eating at a food court this week for lunch and I saw those teppanyaki stalls. I asked my mother and my godbrother if they would like to join me but they all ditched me. So I happily sat there and ate my black pepper beef with beansprouts. And oh man, I remembered a long time ago when my brother and I ran to the teppanyaki in Great World City. We would always eat there together while my family ate at the food court. It was one of the best memories I have of my brother, sitting at that stool and watching this man cook beef right in front of our eyes. I loved it so much.

 

All this made me think about how grateful I am to be born just in the right time. Being born in the early nineties means that I knew a life before wifi, before internet, before thumbdrives, before smartphones, before facebook, and egad! friendster. A life before youtube, before torrent, before google, and before whatsapp/skype. I still remember the time of desktop computers, dial ups, floppy disks, of climbing trees, of hopscotch, where the coolest thing was a ruler that could contract into a bracelet or a spring for your wallet. A time of book reading, libraries, gumball machines and one dollar toys. How blessed am I!

 

 

An Afterthought: why do all old people smell like moth balls? just a thought.

Graveyards and jealousy

I’ve been having awesome weekends left, right and center. This last weekend, was an extra long one because of Vesak Day (which I still havent figured out celebrates what.) I know I said I don’t talk much about my day-to-day life but this weekend taught me a lot of things that I want to share.

Friday:

I downloaded this app called Carousell, and it connects people who want to sell and people who want to buy. (I just realised that sentence sounded really stupid). Anyway, I was introduced to this app by my friend, yinzhou, like in the beginning of the year. But the I broke my iphone and never had a chance to use it. Anyway, I digress. But I did in fact purchase a lot of things on that app, I bought a new….wait for it…camera!! 😀

Image

It is an Fujifilm Instax 210 which shoots pretty well. I had my doubts about it, espcially it’s performance under low light but I found that if you put the setting to “darken” the photo turns out better! I only realised this after using about one and a half packs of film. I really love this new camera. I love waiting for the photo to turn out and getting used to a new camera. I miss my Lomo LC-Wide which my sister broke snorkelling. So I’m looking forward to making memories with this camera and hopefully not breaking it into pieces (another problem with this camera, or so I have read.) Buying film was a pain the whole week, I simply couldn’t find any! But I found a good shop that sells it at about $14.50 which is still crazy expensive. I really have to ration this bad boys, hahaha

After getting that beauteous camera, I had to rush down from AMK to Harbourfont to meet my SOTA friends, Nabil, Amni, Keng Yang, Yan Lee and Crystle. It was fun, we went to the new Adventure Cove in Singapore which was fully packed. We heard one guy tell his friend that the river was a great place to pee….. which disturbed us pretty much that we found the nearest exit. But we did this obstacle course, which to my newly posted NS men friends, too easy. I forgot what it was like to exercise and get some adrenaline pumping action. I probably should start doing some actual exercise soon…..

Anyway, after a great fun 2 hours there, I explored pirate boats with Crystle & Judith and then I had to rush off to meet my family at the Ritz. Now, the 24th of May was my brother’s birthday, which we all remembered and took advantage for us to get free cake (we are devious bunch, I know.) I probably should mention, my brother is in Boston, striving every day to make his music career. It’s pretty amazing, I’ll show you his new music video in the next post.

Anyway, we had high tea which is basically my favourite meal of the day, hands down. It was the Japanese High Tea with a real Japanese tea ceremony which I loved. After accepting a challenge to eat 11 chocolates and 3 chocolate cookies, I found I was so full. But all was good because in honor of a nice weekend and brother’s birthday, we booked a room at the Ritz. It was a beautiful view and room. We also booked tickets to watch The Great Gatsby. Which was amazing. I love Scott Fitzgerald, and The Great Gatsby. Just amazing. You see, I’m always torned between those books made into movies. There’s no way the movie can replicate the book in totality. The books write using the writers’ and our imagination. They can write stuff like, “his back stiffened” or “his eyes showed the secrets that I was too afraid to learn” but THAT DOESN’T HAPPEN IN REAL LIFE. But I want to see it infront of me. I want to see all that I read before my eyes. I have a pretty wild imagination but it’s different experiencing it with your senses. Now, sure the movie missed out the romance between Nick and Jordan which can be used to juxtapose Gatsby’s and Daisy relationship, and other inconsequential things like the man in the library was at the funeral and he said, “that sad/poor son of a bitch” (or something along those lines). But it was good. And I knew Leonardo Di Caprio could carry that Gatsby air but the surprise was Carey Mulligan. I was so afraid people would like her and mistake her for being a victim. But there was something about her that made people not sympathise with her, which I felt was unbelievable. Also, I secretly started screaming and jumping up and down whenever I heard a line from the book, like “I’m overcome with happiness”,”a pretty little fool”, “Daisy and Tom Buchanan was careless people.” “borne ceaselessly back” and “I love big parties because they are so intimate. There’s no privacy in small parties.”

Saturday: After that, we had dinner and went to sleep. I had those dreams where you think you wake up but you’re actually asleep until you wake up for sure and are supremely confused when the clock had turn back time. After that, we had bak kut teh and went to my grandma’s house to do some overdued, Qing Ming.

At the graveyard, I’m always struck by the history of my family, albeit only on one side. These people were someone’s grandma or mother or aunt. Like my mother’s grandmother, or my mother’s father. They are what my grandma and what my father is to me. And these people have impacted the lives of the people around me. It’s always mind boggling but interesting. We only think about how people are related to us. Oh that’s my granduncle, my great grandmother, my grandfather. We don’t normally think about how that granduncle was the closest sibling my grandmother had or how my mother had her own grandmother. It makes you think about what the siblings did that made them so close or how that grandma treated my mother. I find it fascinating and I think Qing Ming is really important to remember our ancestors and to learn more about your family and just to be a good filial daughter, grand niece or great grand daughter.

Sunday: The night before I got my sister hooked on the app, carousell, and we started buying a bunch of crap. And we decided to meet all the dealers the next day in the afternoon. My sister is going to a wedding in Chicago and she wanted to buy a new dress so we bought a dress…and then another….and then a skirt….and then another dress…. I know we should be ashamed. We are. hahahaha Anyway, we went to pick them up and I showed her how scary it could be (seeing as how, I successfully did a deal for my camera). If you’re alone, that’s scary shit. You don’t know who is coming, and you start thinking to yourself, will it be a girl? will it be a guy?? do i look at him/her/it?! How do I approach them? what if it’s not the right person? What if I get mugged?!?! is it that girl? or that girl? or that one??? Anyway, you can go crazy just panicking in a corner outside Bread Talk. Luckily, all of them came, and they were not psychos like me 🙂

After that, I had a great dim sum lunch and my friend, daren came over to watch pitch perfect which he had never watched! (I blame NS on this one) As usual, Rebel wilson stole the show. I also ate the whole bag of yupi burgers…. which was delicious 😀 I also love Japanese snacks, they have good chocolate. I probably should write another post on the superior taste of Royce chocolate another time. But I digress. After the movie, when daren hid from my mum, (because he claims he is shy, is meeting parents that scary?? I love meeting parents!) but then shyly introduced himself, I went to my friend, Vicky’s show, Fat Kids are Harder to Kidnap: 3D.

This requires a new paragraph.

Fat Kids was good. It was really really good. What was good about it was that it was both fun and entertaining and efficacious. They made me think about life differently and opened my eyes to new things which is more than I can say for other productions I’ve seen. It was a balance that maintained effortlessly. It was a well put together piece. But I hoped for a more focused purpose? I don’t know if that made sense but it made a lot of people laugh but sometimes, some of the ‘plays’ just seemed like ways to show off the various skills of the actors. It doesn’t necessarily mean everything had to have a purpose, I don’t know, when I create theatre, I like there to have a purpose to show the intention. I believe it’s very important in art, art can not be accidental to me. But that’s just me. I thoroughly enjoyed myself and I really enjoyed myself watching Vicky be great. I always knew she had comic genius in her. I’m so glad she is paving the way for theatre students coming out of SOTA. I’m so so so proud of her.

Looking at her perform, made me really really miss theatre. I know I’ve probably said this before but I just wanted to move and to create something. I feel almost like a piece of me is missing. I miss the creation and the focus and intensity that’s required for theatre. I miss the support of my friends, the constant giving and taking and the understanding that was established between us. I mean, every single week for the past five years, I have created and lived and breathe theatre. How can I not miss it? I miss Vicky too 😦 Vicky was the perfect IPP mate for me, we understood each other, I never felt judged or condescended to when I pitch ideas, and we almost never had a fight (we did once, about a charger but that’s cause vic’s crazy OCD and wants to see a green light on her charger all the time…) I could say the dumbest ideas I had to her and she would go with it. And this extended to the whole group, we knew how we worked. We knew who was who and we were never afraid to give ourselves to the art. Together we were fearless and creative. Ah, we had so much fun. I missed them so, and I miss making something worthwhile for society. In some ways, I was jealous of the amazing things victoria was doing. I wanted to be doing them too, I don’t want to sit on the sidelines or the audience area, watching. I want to create. But then again, I’m also afraid. I’m afraid of what I make, afraid it’s not good enough, afraid I forgot how to make theatre, afraid of making theatre with other people. After finding, an almost perfect group to devise, viewpoint, perform with, how could I go and do the same thing with someone else. We had a very specific theatre training and upbringing that kept our basic concept of theatre the same. No fluff, sincere, honest, physical work, intimate spaces, listening to one another, reacting, inside out. We could argue about the practitioners or about the nitty gritty, but the border line was that we knew in our heart that we wanted to create theatre in that way. No matter if it was Nabil’s Brown Theatre, Nick’s Robert Wilson or Bevin’s Grotowski, we all had some basic concept that was like a thread that held us together. I’m afraid to go to another group, and have to adapt to their ideas of theatre and their perceptions of acting. I know it’s selfish of me to want everyone to think the same way, it highly highly improbable. But it’s so much easier. I guess I’m scared of taking the hard way.