October 2008



This isn’t exactly a brand new song but it hasn’t been recently that I remembered the song and finally downloaded it. Here’s the video from YouTube. Enjoy.


Adele – Chasing Pavements

I’ve made up my mind
Don’t need to think it over
If I’m wrong, I am right
Don’t need to look no further
This ain’t lust, I know this is love

But If I tell the world
I’ll never say enough
Cause it was not said to you
And that’s exactly what I need to do
If I’m in love with you

(Chorus) Should I give up
Or should I just keep chasing pavements
Even if it leads nowhere
Or would it be a waste
Even if I knew my place, should I leave it there
Should I give up
Or should I just keep chasing pavements
Even if it leads nowhere

I’d build myself up
And fly around in circles
Waiting as my heart drops
And my back begins to tingle
Finally could this be it

On my first day of work, my colleagues pushed a suggestion right into my face, which, to tell the truth, I gradually found to be pretty offensive. I used the term “pushed” instead of “made” because it seemed like they almost demanded that I followed their instruction and did what I was told.

Naturally I was displeased, even though I did not, or at least I hoped I had tried successfully not to reveal my emotions.

Now, let me unfold the entire story first which actually is a really short tale: They have difficulty pronouncing my name and want me to get an English name. Wait, in fact, they have even thought of one for me to use. To add to the insult, it is not exactly a pretty name because it is quite common, but I feel immense guilt to say that because a very nice ex-colleague who treated me well has the same name and I like her a lot.

I know that my name is tough to pronounce. I have been having this name for 25 years. Who will know it better than me myself, for goodness sake? It’s a Chinese name, in Hanyu Pinyin, and my mum unknowingly picked two of the possibly most difficult Chinese characters to pronouce. Plenty of people cannot pronounce my name accurately. My non-Chinese ex-colleagues never managed to get it right in the two years I was with my ex-employer. My JC PE teacher who was Indian gave up and called my name by the letters instead. It wasn’t hard considering that my entire name only has a grand total of seven alphabet letters. Suppose that my name is Tan Ah Kow, he would have called me T-A-N-A-H-K-O-W. Except that he could probably have been able to pronouce Tan Ah Kow. My yoga instructor who is also Indian calls me by my full name, and mispronouces it somemore. Occasionally, even some of the Chinese find difficulty calling my name.

So if so many people have a problem pronouncing my name, why am I so reluctant to get an English name?

The truth is that I am a very stubborn person. Obstination is my middle name. Although I would always prefer to say that I am one who sticks to my principles.

I seriously think that there’s ABSOLUTELY NOTHING wrong with my name. In fact, I do feel that it’s a pretty name. I have had people telling me how much they like my name or how nice they think it is. I DO NOT CARE IF YOU THINK OTHERWISE BECAUSE IT IS MY NAME. MINE, AND NOT YOURS. NO ONE SHOULD HAVE ANY BUSINESS MESSING WITH MY NAME. I do not even care about people mispronouncing my name! It’s really alright because I understand that it’s quite tough to get it right. I have actually learnt to respond to all variants which sound like my name all these years. I do not get offended by this, so IF I DO NOT CARE IF YOU GET MY NAME WRONG, YOU CAN CONTINUE GETTING MY NAME WRONG FOR ALL YOU LIKE. I am more offended by people forcing me to get an English name.

My mum is the one who gave me this name. It hasn’t been a random pick out of a book or a result of a consultation with the geomancer. She had given much thought to it and it is a name with a meaning to it. To be honest, she is not fond of English names and of course another reason that she did not give me or my sisters any is because she isn’t English educated to begin with. She couldn’t have thought of names other than, I don’t know, Mary or Jane? When I eventually get my new namecard, I am going to give one each to my parents. Even if I don’t, they are going to pester me for one. What are they going to think when they see an English name, completely foreign to them, beside my name? Other than it is totally unnecessary. Perhaps they may get feel hurt.

However, being the self-centered individual that I am, which is another topic for another time, of course my parents’ opinions do not always matter. Or anyone else’s as a matter of fact. Which brings to the real reason why I am so offended. I have come to realise that what I really do not like is people trying to control my life, telling me what to do with my life. Which part of “my” do they not understand? I feel like telling them all to FUCK OFF. IT IS MY BLOODY LIFE. I CAN DRINK LIKE A FISH, I CAN SMOKE IF I WANT TO, I CAN SLEEP LATE, I CAN EAT LOADS OF JUNK FOOD, I CAN WASTE MY HEALTH AND DESTROY MY LIFE. IF I WANT TO. BECAUSE IT IS MY LIFE. Of course I won’t do all of these unless I’m trying to kill myself but at the moment I’ve no intention to end my life as yet. The point is, unless you are going to pick up the mess in my life, clear the shit you help created because you make me do what you want, instead of what I really want, take your hands off the steering wheel of my life. I can crash if I want to or if I am careless enough. It’s always my own decision to make. I will not crash because of you.

You may think that I am making a mountain out of a molehill but I do not want to get an English name just because some people want me to. If I ever am going to get one, it will be because I WANT to. Which I doubt will ever happen because I truly do not see the need. No superior will pass me for a promotion just because they can’t pronouce my name. No one will neglect my work just because of my name.

As Juliet once famously said in the Shakespearean tragedy, “What’s in a name?”, oh Juliet, I fail to see the significance too.

When I first heard this song on radio a few ago, I simply knew that I had to post it.

Beyonce – If I Were A Boy

If I were a boy
Even just for a day
I’d roll outta bed in the morning
And throw on what I wanted then go
Drink beer with the guys
And chase after girls
I’d kick it with who I wanted
And I’d never get confronted for it
Cause they’d stick up for me.

If I were a boy
I think I could understand
How it feels to love a girl
I swear I’d be a better man.
I’d listen to her
Cause I know how it hurts
When you lose the one you wanted
Cause he’s taken you for granted
And everything you had got destroyed

If I were a boy
I would turn off my phone
Tell everyone it’s broken
So they’d think that I was sleeping alone
I’d put myself first
And make the rules as I go
Cause I know that she’d be faithful
Waiting for me to come home (to come home)

It’s a little too late for you to come back
Say its just a mistake
Think I’d forgive you like that
If you thought I would wait for you
You thought wrong

[Male] You know when you act like that
I don’t think you realize how it makes me look
or feel
[Beyonce] Act like what
Why are you so jealous
It’s not like i’m sleeping with the guy
[Male] What
[Beyonce] What
[Male] I said yo
Why are you so jealous
It aint like I’m sleepin with the girl

But you’re just a boy
You don’t understand
Yeah you don’t understand
How it feels to love a girl someday
You wish you were a better man
You don’t listen to her
You don’t care how it hurts
Until you lose the one you wanted
Cause you’ve taken her for granted
And everything you have got destroyed
But you’re just a boy

Ok, I know that the song doesn’t really talk about the girl honestly wanting to be a boy herself. It’s more like lamenting about men, which is *sigh* as usual, hey what’s new, not understanding us women, and saying how she would do much better if she was to be in his shoes. I am not going to discuss this because let’s face it ladies, this is the way it was, still is and will always be!  

But would you want to be one of the opposite sex if you could have the chance? If you could do it without the pain of a sex change, or the possible subsequent ostracization or discrimination by others, would you want it? I have girlfriends who would have preferred to born as boys because they feel that men have easier lives than the fairer sex. Me? I seldom feel this way. Maybe except when I suffer dreadful menstrual cramps. That’s when I will wish that I was a man instead because the chances of a man having the experience and knowing how the painful cramps feel are as high as Bush being elected as the next President of the United States.

The thought of being born with a different set of sex chromosomes as what I currently possess seldom strikes me because firstly, it is a pretty useless thought. Even if you think about it day and night, 24 hours a day, you may grow a moustache but you will never become a man. Even if you do splash all your money on a sex change, let me inform you first from a professional aspect that your newly constructed dick will never ever work in the same way as a natural one will, so please save your money and donate it to my funds for a Kate Spade instead. It will be far more useful. Secondly, I believe that men and women are equal, and if they are, then there is no advantage of any one over the other which explains no need to choose one over the other. This is possibly different from a regular feminist’s point of view where they fight for equal rights for women as I think that we, both sons of Adam and daughters of Eve, if you are religious (well, I ain’t but the phrasing sounds cool), are equal from Day Uno.

Sure, we are as different as we can be from a biological point of view. Socially, we are not any closer than the sky and the earth. Yet I believe that should you minus away all the differences, all beings from Mars and Venus pretty much stand on the same level. It’s just that men and women suffer different forms of injustice in life. For men, there is a lot of stereotyping. Men are supposed to go out and work their asses off to support their families. Men are not supposed to cry. Men are supposed to be strong and tough. Men are not supposed to wear pink and look or behave feminine. Men are supposed to do this and that, and not supposed to do that and this. Women on the other hand face more discrimination. Women cannot do this and that. Even though they may be capable of it, they can be denied of the chance right at the beginning because men do not think that the women can accomplish it.

I am no expert on gender studies, so I am most incapable of explaining further or giving more valid examples. I will admit this, but  that does not mean that my idea is totally absurd. I still believe that I am right in some ways. While many say that it is difficult to be a woman, I do not think that life is any easier for our fellow male Earthlings. Hence I do not desire to be a man. Besides, there can be many advantages to being a girl. Sometimes it is so much easier to get your way out of trouble or get something into your hands just because you are a girl. Furthermore, because some people generally do not expect more from a girl, your outstanding performance will be more likely to shine through and be noticed. It may be neglected on the biased grounds of you carrying tits instead of a dick by some old foggy idiots, but it’s alright because you know that it’s not because you are incapable.

In fact, I wonder whether it is the more difficult circumstances which make women stronger and more powerful, and the comfortable environment of the past traditional patriarchal system in the society is weakening the men on the other hand. I would not doubt this possibility haha. Sounds like Darwinian evolution to me. Although being a man himself, Charles might not have nodded his head in agreement at my proposed hypothesis.

If I could be a man for a day, I wonder what I would do. Visit the Gents? Peep at the men peeing? Listen to what guys really talk about in the loo? Because you know us girls gossip and talk about anything in the washroom. Venture into the men’s changing room at the gym and see what’s going on in there? Party at a local gay bar or club? Or party at the usual straight club and try loads of cheesy pick-up lines at the pretty girls there all night? That last part might actually be really interesting.

Would you want to be a girl or a boy? What would you have done if you could be one of the opposite sex for a day? Have you ever given any thought to this?


Darn, it has been such a tiring week. Firstly, the new office is almost an hour and a half away from home. I need to take the train and then the bus. The journey can kill. Seriously. Secondly, because the journey takes a longer time now, I have to wake up earlier and cannot sleep as much as I need/like. To me, that is equivalent to Hell. I need sleep, I want sleep, I like sleep!!! Thirdly, the air-conditioning of the office is so strong and the air is so dry that I almost die from the intense coldness and my eyes almost shrivel up! It was so painful! *sob* Fourthly, there’s so much new to read and learn that it has been a tad stressful, though I am quite sure that it will be easier once my work really starts (now I’m just sitting in the office every day doing online training, or training by the seniors). Fifthly, I have to get to know people from scratch again. Ok, maybe except for Cyn haha. I’m not friendly by nature, and I tend to appear cold and aloof most of the time (actually I am), so the process can be quite a pain in the ass. But fortunately, time will resolve this, and I’m relieved that my new colleagues are mainly friendly and nice.

Talking about the more pleasant aspects, the new office is really nice. Even though the location of the building sucks. And the occupants suck too. Wait, what occupants? There’re only us and two other companies, and our company occupies the entire floor for the moment. It sucks. Everywhere you walk, it’s company people and more company people. Boring. Opps, I’m supposed to talk about the nice stuff.

That day I spotted an eagle and this flock of over twenty white birds (cockatoos? not too sure) in the sky, which is honestly not unusual since it’s the Kent Ridge area where the biodiversity is fairly rich, and I did not have the time to stop in my track and admire the beauty because I did not want to be late for work. For a moment, that really pierced my heart. I want to be able to stop and smell the flowers! Not literally because I don’t really fancy flowers but more of ferns, but you get my drift. *sigh* I am not really complaining about my new job or regretting my decision, but I suppose that I have traded one thing for another and perhaps I simply need time to get used to the new situation. I do like my new job. I feel that there is enormous room for learning and expansion, and plenty of job satisfaction to come in the future. The office is nice, the staff benefits are fantastic and the people are generally nice. You will probably hear me rave about it in the days to come haha!

One thing which I find it slightly saddening is my lack of time to write. Ok, I do mean blogging, but I treat it as a form of writing as well. I do not think that one’s writing will improve unless one often practises. However, that is not my choice to make, so any blogging will have to be saved to the non-workdays. Sadly, any future update to this blog may become a weekly affair.

Which is why you should be prepared for the next few entries to come in a chain. That is if you have not read them yet and go through the entries in the chronological order instead. 🙂 

Woohoo! Going to a Halloween party at my colleague’s place later! MY FIRST!!!

Okay, actually I am not that excited because I will only be going with another colleague and there is no one else there whom we know other than the hostess and her boyfriend. It is already beginning to sound boring. (-.-)

However I could not have rejected the invitation as she booked me way back in August! Surely there is no last minute excuse to back out! Unless I have diarrhoea now. However, I’m not sure if I would want to skip the party because I think that it matters a lot to her that we attend. It is also kind of like a pre-wedding get-to-know-each-other party for her friends. She will be throwing her wedding party at the end of next year where she will only be inviting her close friends as she and her hubby-to-be wish for it to be a more intimate affair. As such, she actually will like her friends to know each other first, and she thought that this will be a good opportunity.

Since I could not miss it, I might as well look forward to it. Because the hostess requests that all her guests dress up, my friend is going as a pretty witch and as for myself, make a guess lor.

The answer is….





I am a PIRATE!!!


Pardon my unflattering grey loose tee and my crazy hair. I was at home. What more could you expect. Anyway I got the entire set at, you will never guess this, NTUC!!! I almost didn’t want to dress up for the party because I was too lazy to venture to town to buy the costume. I was at the supermarket when I spotted this entire rack of crazy costumes and masks!! It was so fun browsing through and trying on the stuff. I took some photos of my sis in the insane hats but they were too damaging to her reputation to post them up haha. I totally didn’t expect NTUC to bring in Halloween stuff since Singaporeans do not really celebrate the festival.

I bought the pirate set because it was one of the most complete sets which came with a hat, eye patch and knife and still cost less than ten bucks. It was simply insane. Of course the materials used were nothing expensive or exquisite, but who cares when these are going straight into my cupboard after tonight! The masks were all fantastically grotesque, but I thought they would be too unpleasantly warm to wear for the entire evening. Besides, there will be children at the party. I won’t want to give them nightmares, will I?

Will I? Hmmm. Haha.  

I am just going to don a vest because pirates for some strange reasons do wear vests, right? I think Jack Sparrow wore one filthy one in the Pirates of Caribbean, although mine will be minus the dirt and it is from Zara. Okay, now that I am looking at this image of Jack Sparrow, I am getting a tad worried. I WILL BE LOOKING NOTHING LIKE HIM! Firstly, I can’t possibly be wearing all that layering! This is SINGAPORE for goodness sake! I had thought about wearing a shirt under the vest but today’s weather has just been sizzling, so I quite gave up the idea and am opting for a plain white tee instead. I do not have boots either but since I won’t be walking around in footwear in my friend’s apartment, I suppose it really doesn’t matter. I can probably make my hair as rowdy and dirty-looking, but I am not going to grow that cute little goatie that he kept and hung tiny bells on!! Not in such a short time! And in fact even if you give me a decade, I won’t have all that facial hair for it ( and thank god! )!

Maybe I will pile on the black eyeliner and walk like I am drunk.

That last part will be a lot easier if there is really alcohol to consume in bulk later but somehow I doubt so. My colleague doesn’t seem to be the type who serves alcohol. Perhaps I should bring my own vodka and add into the fruit punch to do my own mix. Hmm.

Anyway here’s the vest. I bought skeleton button plugs from Mini Toons to go with it! So juvenile, I know, but they do go with the pirate theme, don’t they?!

Ain’t they adorable?


And here’s a lovely witch hat I bought for my friend who could get a witch costume but without the hat. Bizarre.

I bought Halloween-inspired chocolates from Cocoa Trees as a small gift for the hostess:

I know that there are Easter eggs and bunnies among the eerie-looking pieces but just ignore them, ok haha?

Okay, it’s almost time to prepare to go to the party. May update if I have photos!

This Saturday morning, I did not have my usual yoga lesson as my instructor had taken off on a long-awaited vacation to India to spend his Deepavali with his family. Instead I woke up even earlier to have breakfast at Bishan Junction 8 Cafe Cartel with my sisters!

(See the menu here)

The first and only time I had breakfast at Cafe Cartel was probably a month ago with Diz at the Hougang Mall. It was most fabulous!!! I kept raving about it to my sisters after that. As it is only available on weekends and public holidays, I thought what a more perfect timing than to go on this Saturday since I would be free!

We had a great time and a most hearty breakfast. I actually had the same french toast set haha. I can’t help it since I’m not exactly a fan of pancakes, waffles or croissants. French toast seems like the only viable option, and I must say that I enjoyed it thoroughly once again. A yummy Western breakfast like this, complete with English tea, always makes a fantastic start to my day!

Since I was the one who suggested the venue, and because they woke up bright and early for it, and we even had to take a 10-minute bus ride, it was my utmost priority that my sisters loved the food. When asked, my sisters beamed and replied, “Yeah it’s good and even better because it’s FREE!!!”

My greedy sisters. Never to complain as long as it is out of my own pocket and not theirs.

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