Blog Linking

Anyone like to be blog-linked from mine? I’ve had bad experiences with people who told me their ONLINE, PUBLIC-ADDRESS blogs were PRIVATE and thus they would rather not have the whole world see it.

I have little respect for people who don’t know have enough technological know-how to use a friends-only blog. If you have private thoughts you need to hide, so be it. At least hide them well (I have much experience in this field, it’s easy).

So tell me! Let me link you! Please! So that my other friends can see what other weird people I know and that it’s not entirely my fault that I turned out this way, it’s because of all the strange company I keep and all the strange things they keep thinking of and tell me that make me so strange as well and that I’m not really morally bankrupt it’s the social circle that I keep and that I have friends that are real and not imaginary nor complex and they live and breathe and can talk and keep blogs and are real living people whom you can interact with and leave comments on their blog systems unless they’re using Xanga in which case you need to sign up for a Xanga account which totally sucks so you should’t and anyone who uses Xanga should be shot (gently) and then we can all know each other and we can all be happy happy people!

Remember… silence means consent.

Rant Regarding Relationships

Another late night out with Seet and gang, playing DotA as usual. Somehow on the car we got to the topic of how passive girls are (which always happens because of Seet’s model girlfriends, who tend to be passive) and Nick commented on how unhealthy it was to have a relationship where the two partners are dependant on each other.

Being a science student, of course I couldn’t let him get away with that without some justification. So I asked what was wrong about a relationship like that, and how a relationship with two people who were independant of each other is better. Nick’s example was the pathos associated with people who couldn’t stand on their own, and had to have someone else in their lives to make them feel more complete – my rebuttal was the counterargument that a relationship with two people completely independant of each other add no qualities to the relationship to make it ostensibly any better than a co-dependant one.

We got to my block before I could really get into the meat of the matter, but I do recall saying something about it being more a matter of whether or not you think you SHOULD have a relationship to begin with. I mean that the soppy little girls (and guys) who always talk of finding someone to complete them are, subconciously or otherwise, expecting to belong to a relationship. That hole in their lives they’re waiting for someone to fill is an emotional complex for companionship that they somehow think they are ENTITLED to.

In the case of more “independant” people, I would guess they see a partner as being an enhancement to their lives, meaning they realize they don’t HAVE to have a relationship in their lives, but having one might make it better (or even worse). Love is not an entitlement, but more of a coincidental occurence, perhaps.

Of course, this is all very slipshod argumentation. I have no results to back my statements, which in any case are rather ill-defined. What do I mean by “independant relationships”? What am I thinking of when I say that?

In the context of my social circle, I think I mean most of all emotional independance, in the context of providing intimate emotional support, the kind you can’t get from even close friends or family. I might also mean personality-dependance, where you look for someone to compensate for your own lack in some personality traits (though I myself have never had this problem, it just seems sick). The only example I can think of in my own limited life would be some friend whose girlfriend was this sad little peep who cried when watching horror movies, never initiated conversation and spoke in a whisper most of the time. The friend was outgoing, boisterous and generically of a sunny disposition. We never really knew whether or not to say their were compatible or not, though I fancy he always treated her well.

Most of my friends are or will be middle-upper-working class professionals, with partner-expectations of the same financial capacity, so financial dependance doesn’t really seem much of a problem in my social context. Even the most anachronistically chauvinistic amongst us (you know who you are!) are looking for non-monied marriage. No problems there.

So does what I have argued applied to the kind of dependancies I have thought of? I think it’s rather scary if they do.

Consider if you thought relationships were an entitlement, ie that you are supposed to have one or that there’s something wrong with you if you never have had a romantic interlude. Then consider people who are emotionally/personality dependant on their partners (surely you have seen some?). Are their personal failings because of this expectation? Do they deliberately sabotage themselves so that when they do get into a relationship they can feel it’s worth more somehow?

I turned to my favourite search engine for answers, and dug up some articles on relationships. Here’s one by a trained counsellor, though I find myself unconvinced by her arguments also (due to lack of scientific argument). Here’s an article from the National Mental Health Association about co-dependance as a mental illness(!!!). I think of great significance is their checklist of symptoms to look out for. It’s seems quite easy to agree with it (for me), though I don’t think I am a very dependant person. And here’s another about Victim Behaviour and the Poor Me Syndrome, just to make Nick’s point about unhealthy co-dependance.

But I’d just like to bring up a point, having watched so many arthouse flicks with dysfunctional families (and having been brought up in an ever so slightly dysfunctional one myself) – after reading all that stuff about the unhealthiness of co-dependance, what have all those articles actually said about this form of behaviour being good or bad about the relationship? I’ll grant that it’s rather obvious to see that being in a co-dependant relationship is bad for the people in it if they are considered individually, but if you read carefully, you’ll see they all say nothing about whether a codependant relationship is really a worse one than one in which the partners are completely indenpendant of any need for each other. If they do allude to it, it is in this way – co-dependance is bad for the people in the relationship individually. They become mentally ill. And mentally ill people cannot possibly have a “healthy” realtionship.

What’s a “healthy relationship”? Is it the same definition of healthy as when used to describe people individually? It lives a long time, has no major illnesses, and doesn’t require artificial aid to survive? Do these apply to your recent romances? Do I want a healthy relationship? Some prescribed goodness in my romance? A tick of confidence from my doctor to say I’m doing just fine? A definition would be nice, so that I know if I’m doing something wrong in my relationships. And I found one here.

It’s frustrating that a happy relationship is always being defined by the processes that create it (supposedly), like being based on respect, having honesty, having trust for each other, etc and not any traits intrinsic to itself. It’s kind of like describing loaves of bread by the virtue of the fact that they were baked in ovens at certain temperatures.

Taken any philosophy modules ever? If you have you’ll be starting to feel a little suspicious by now. It looks like there’s gonna be a circular definition somewhere, and a lot of crass definitions worked out by psychologists more eager to bringing economic and functional well-being to their patients than to provide any real answers.

I think that’s as far as I’d like to think about this topic. Shouldn’t touch with the short end of a long stick unless you’re a qualified counsellor or someone qualified to tell other people how “healthy” their relationships are, I guess.

But personally? I’ll stay fucked up in my fucked-up, co-dependant, cholesterol-laden relationships, thank you very much.

(added later)Oh, wahahaha… turns out Nick was paying attention too. Note that his views are significantly different, but it makes sense ad hominem, I guess, since he’s in a pretty healthy, inter-dependant relationship whereas I’m in the sick perverted one with all the problems and complications. Go figure.

Sin Slum Singapore

If you’ve been living in Singapore then I suppose you’ve heard of the casino issue. The results of our good and kind government’s decision on whether or not to open one will be out next Monday. In case you want more news, you can go to for more information. I had no idea this website was here before, though now that I think about it I suppose it makes good economic sense to be parking on this domain. I’ll bet all other permutations of singapore…casino have been taken as well.

Weijian was on to something, I suppose, especially in Singapore’s limited domain-name space.

Well, I don’t really care about the casino, except for the fact that I’ve been looking for a way to make a quick buck and that’s what it’s supposed to offer (making me one of the 2.9% of people susceptible to pathological gambling problems!), but evidently Singaporeans do. I’m surprised, frankly. I’d thought the promise of economic advancement should have won over most of my countrymen.

I guess I also belong to a social circle that doesn’t rate morals quite so high on our list of priorities in life (short of the odd psychotic christian). Even my more religously-minded friends don’t make much of a fuss about the cess-pit of immorality that will be built.

Having taken too many statistics modules I hardly ever gamble (unless it’s to make someone more drunk or more naked). So no worried for me. If it helps tourism then I’m happy, I guess. I mean, Singapore’s easier to get into than Genting, and though we’re more expensive than Malaysia we also have the more easily accessible airport, touristy attractions and even food that doesn’t have to be halal (sorry Faizal)!

If absolutely nothing else, it also means there’s something to do with my friends late nights. I hope there’ll be cabaret dancing, at least.

One in a Million

… you’re one in a million… once in a lifetime…
(lyrics off some generic love song)

Well now, are we really one in a million? Of course, we all know we are completely and utterly unique, but that hardly translates properly when you’re looking at it form the point of view of being special now, does it?

So let’s try to see if we can indeed, be one-in-a-million. Though that is itself is probably unimpressive – it means there ate at least 6,000 people on this planet who are like you, and three people in Singapore alone who are too.

To be fair and not use specific events of your life, I will use only attributes that can be found on Singapore’s Department of Statistics:

I am a Chinese mongoloid, making me one-in-six people around the world. However, if we consider that I am a chinese mongoloid living in Singapore, that makes me only one-in-1.2 or so. Hmmm. We take the smaller statistic, considering that I am more concerned with my national significance.

A quick check at the education statistics show that I am, if I manage to graduate, only a pitiful one-out-of-five Singaporeans who do. Assuming that race and education are independant factors (which they are not, but I’m not about to argue that here), that makes me about one-in-six.

Still waaaay off mark.

Okay, I am a Singaporean who has attended an arts performance or exhibition in the past two years (albeit mostly trashy hall plays), which places me in the 27% of Singaporeans who still care about art at all. That makes me about 1/22 of the population, assuming the factors or ethnic race, education and arts-appreciation are independant of each other, which they are assuredly not, but I am too disheartened as it is to argue.

Oh! I forgot I’m male. That doubles my uniqueness immediately, placing me as being 1/44! (remember, that means that out of 44 people in Singapore, 1 will be exactly like me, a male Chinese 20-25 year old graduate Singaporean who patronizes artistic events)

I am also one of the 90% of the people my age group who are still single, making me… 1/48. This exercise seems hopeless.

Ah, religion! I am one of the 18% of Singaporeans my age-group who do not have one. Unfortunate, the godlessness of my generation, else I might have been more special in this respect. Okay, up to 1/266.

I live in a five-room flat with my parents when I’m not in hall. That boosts me up another 23% to 1/1,156.

Ahhh! I am one of 99.198% of Singaporeans who has not met with an crime and reported it this year. I doubt this statistic is of much use in upgrading my specialness level, though… For my brother it would shoot his uniqueness rating up the roof.

Given my subscriptions to CableTV, owning TV license, cinema-attendance, library loaning history and newspaper subscription, I’d say I can increase my uniqueness rating to about 1/1200, a pittance as my habits of public entertainment/information gathering are sadly common.

And… that’s it! The other factors presented in the Department of Statistics are too small for me to even factor into my little report here. Out of every 1,200 Singaporeans my age there will be one who has all the attributes I listed above. Namely, male, chinese, a graduate, single, arts-going, areligous, crime-free, and with my reading/entertainment habits.

Nowhere near one in a million, I’m afraid. I guess this is the danger in letting yourself be labelled into a demographic by any statistician. All the interesting little traits of yours get lost.

America Stands As One

Errr. This music video (Quicktime) displaying America’s theocratic leanings deserves watching. Note that I’m not a fan of American Foreign Policy, but I don’t slam it neither. I just can’t decide if the MTV is supposed to be satirical. I’ve decided it isn’t, but is just so cheesy it borders on unbelieveable.

Dennis Madalone, (I can’t believe the name isn’t satirical) the lead singer and guy-with-long-hair in the video doesn’t have to stand alone, though, had he taken the trouble to look for someone to love him! The Eulenspiegel Society is the oldest and largest BDSM education and support organization in the United States, with year-round events and lots of fun conferences and lectures you can go for if you’re a member. I’m sure he can satisfy his cravings for firemen and army personnel at the NYC FetishMarathon, where he can also learn how to have fun with his dogs, I suppose.

And whilst you’re checking them out, take the Over Masturbation Test at (warning! Idiot Alert!). According to them,

“there is a big change of body chemistry when one excessively pratices masturbation.


Abundant and unusually amount of these hormones and neurotransmitters can cause the brain and adrenal glands to perform excessive dopamine-norepinephrine-epinephrine conversion and turn the brain and body functions to be extremely sympathetic.

I know there’s a change in my body chemistry when I masturbate. Usually the symptoms are a decreased interest in sex. Is that unhealthy?

Not that I need to masturbate daily, of course, but according to the survey as long as I’m ‘Very Healthy’ I can masturbate 50 times a week and still be fine. What a lark! I’d better be going off to complete my schedule then.

Whicg Job Offer Would You Take?

Assuming you were a skilled and brilliant programmer with experience in security issues (ie. you were behind some of the security threats that have plagued the IT world recently), which of the two companies would you join?

1. Microsoft, which cruises for you at a post Black Hat conference party in a gay club and will take you regardless of whether or not you have a degree in Computer Science, or…

2. Centre for Strategic Infocomm Technologies, which visits your university just prior to education and absolutely requires your degree.

What if you were, say, not a brilliant programmer with l33t skillz but rather just your run-of-the-mill guy with a decent Honours degree in Computer Science?

Are we safe?

Oh yes, I do read the Register sometimes. When bored. Like now.

Wherein I Turn Green with Envy and Desire

Okay, this girl from the Science Club decided to quit. Not because she haas problems with her work, not because she dislikes being in Science Club, but rather because she has decided that she has HAD IT with Computational Biology and would rather go off somewhere else to study design.

She sent out emails to all of us (the publications team) to let us know of her choice. I don’t know if I had any part to play in her decision – we had this long talk about how miserable I am doing what I do now and how much I regret not taking up another major instead when we were manning booth at some t-shirt sale thing.

And now I am green with envy and desire, despite the fact that she is all nervous about not being able to make much on a living on design alone.

I have my cake and I suppose I must eat it, but it tastes so bad. Sour, you know?

I want another cake. Can I get another?


In other news, I do have another cake, and this one is just as bad, if not worse. It tastes wonderful, delectable in the extreme. But I can only have the tiniest nibble before it is taken away from me, and I can see nothing that would let me retain it. If you knew there was something wonderful in the closet and that you could hae a tiny little sample, but no more than that, would you at least want to try? Knowing that you would live with your desire forever, unvented, unfulfilled.

An air ticket to Paris costs at least a thousand.

I vaguely remember a friend telling me that if you really need money all you have to do is to keep thinking about how to get it and a solution will come up eventually. Of course, usually it’s not ideal, and you’ll have to compromise your own expectations, but then I’m supposed to be an intelligent adult with good problem-solving skills (though my Computational Quantum lecturer might disagree).

My blog seems to get loaded with poor metaphors, half-hearted descriptions of my own emotional bearings, scattered intentions and soppy sentiments in proportion to the condition of my life. At the moment it’s pretty much FUBAR, so unless I suddenly get shipped off to Ethiopia without food and money (not that you can do much with money in Ethiopia except eat it) I don’t think it can get much worse. So endure! Endure till the day I step out of this shadow of education and into the light of… dull dreary rat-racism! Endure!

Wherein I Comment on Hippo

I don’t usually make fun of people by giving them nicknames, mainly because I think it’s a low-brow, crass form of humour and also due to the plethora of nicknames I myself was given when I was in primary school. However, I use the term of endearment ‘Hippo’ to refer to one enormous girl Nick and I saw at gym on Friday, whom Nik has already named in his own blog.

Now, I know it’s cruel to poke fun of people who are physically unfit or overweight, but you must understand that there was no way I could have treated Hippo as a normal human being in my circumstances. I have not the body beautiful, but I am working towards something that I hope will not leave people who look at my vacation photographs with the beautiful backdrops of sunrises on mountains saying things like “My, aren’t you fat.” I know my goal and I’m getting there. Still, I feel embarrassed stepping into the gym, with it’s beautiful tanned people with their muscles and all that deflate my puny little biceps and $2-a-pop abs. I avoid the mirror and looking at myself in it at all odds. I hide in the corner when I’m resting, in the vain hopes that people will not notice me, the pathetic wannabe with the small quads.

Hippo girl defies all my behavorial traits. We walked in to witness her and her polka-dot stretch pants/shorts (depending on the exercise she was doing). Hippo girl is fat (political correctness is useless in this case). The sight killed our conversation.

Throughout my workout I couldn’t concentrate. Hippo girl had my full and undivided attention, albeit in a somewhat downcast-eyes look-at-her-then-look-away-quickly kind of way. I almost dropped my bicep curl things when I saw her doing leg presses. My abs nearly gave way when I saw her admiring her reflection in the mirrored wall. Ilost all decorum and just stared at her as she did her situps.

through it all, I was amazed at her guts. She betrayed no discomfort at the obvious looks she was getting, not any self-consciousness about her looks. She didn’t run out to salvage her pride when she did her leg-raises, nor was she shy about the preacher curls done using the lightest weights. She was there before we entered, and she was still at it when we left.

Now, I am always impressed when people have guts. And I am especially impressed when people can ignore the superficial idiots around them. Hippo girl takes the cake on both counts(though I would advise her against eating it). I would like to know her, if only to ascertain if she indeed possesses the iron will that I suspect she does.

You know you should live with some pride in yourself. But it’s only through examples, I guess, that you learn how to do it.

Bargain Bin Emotions

Guys: Suppose you were going to propose sometime soon (you only lack courage!) and you don’t yet have a ring. You source around for something nice, only to find that that very day there is a sale on a particular type of diamond ring, high in carat but low in style (you vaguely remember she mentioned it looked hideous). The sale is a very attractive one. Do you still buy her a ring like that?

Girls: Would you mind if your ring came from a bargain bin?

Would your partner’s financial output, your own financial capability, age or number of previous partners you have had affect the answer to that question?

Life on Hold

This is probably a bad time in my life to be having a teenage breakdown-in-identity and self-searching of the kind that is only supposed to happen to forteen year-olds. I had thought I was past that age. But it turns out, after all, that I’d been living in a hospital and had never seen the sun.

So the price I have to pay for snobbing my foolish, emotionally-rich friends who wrote cheesy poetry and invested in horrorscope-interpretations to more fully understand themselves is that I am now spending my time staring into space and making all-new discoveries about myself that I had thought had been resolved years ago.

I am as yet unsure if I have opened a can of worms, or if the worms just happened to have been disguised as… wriggling appendages previously.

Okay, the whole architecture thing has been more concretely thought out. According to friends who are working, it is evidently not so easy to go back to studying once you’re in a job… unless like xuelanghu your job sucks and you can’t wait to get out of it. Also, my financing plans have been somewhat deflated by friends who point out that I spend like an insane megalomaniac with a fetish for expensive girls. I, of course, do not have a fetish for expensive girls, but I supplement that with too-many varied-interests and fruit-flavoured condoms instead of the regular ones that do the same thing and cost less. I have also loans to pay, potential costly medical treatment to think about, and an increased upkeep brought about by a sudden decrease in the number of things I can still wear in my wardrobe.

So now what, Alex, now what?

Am I to be bereft of even clutching at straws? I do not want to splutter at the edge of aspiration any further. I want to stand in the warm embrace of ambition, to have the golden light of hope shining down on me.

I wAn tO sToP wRitiNg lIke a foRteEn-year-OlD giRl!(!!)

And life just keeps going on. I can’t even press the pause button to think things through first before I get into anything. I’m committed to just being here, wandering around like some lost sheep (albeit a very fast-moving sheep – I know, it’s a poor metaphor) until I find something to graze on (ummm – another poor metaphor) again. Which is what I’ve been doing most of my life, I suppose, but back then you thought you had all the time in the world. Now the sand is trickling from my fingers and etching lines onto my face (which I must start buyinf anti-aging cream for, they say the best time to start is in your early twenties).

My steps are actually starting to feel more solid now, but that means they’re also starting to hurt.

From pondering the meaning of existence of humans in general, I’ve come to ponder instead the special case when said human is me. It turns out that the answer is no easier to find. And that nothing that works for a general populace can really apply to a specific person. I should have spent my time getting a six-pack instead of thinking about life at all. At least I’d be more popular at parties and have more to talk about (I think; ARE good-looking abs a more interesting conversation topic than existentialism?).

And to add fire to the sludge of my troubles – passion when I need it the least. Sigh. My life is completely out-of-time. How is it that I can only now be doing all these things I should have had happen to me years ago? What was my youth consumed with?

Oh. I know the answer to that – video games. And fantasy novels. And MTG. In general, fun.

Shit. I put life on hold and now it’s back to make unreasonable customer complaints.

Maybe I should just put it back on hold? Can I ? It’s just hitting the button. Just for a while? A few weeks? Months? A little bit longer?