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Malaysian Alien


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Monday, October 31, 2005
I Blame Myself

My nomadic lifestyle affords me some interesting observations about the differing perceptions of culture and religion. For example, there were many oriental girls adopted into Danish and Swedish households in Copenhagen and Stockholm. Their family members and friends treat them as Swedes/Danes. Never for one second, would they think of these young Asian girls as being different despite them having long, jet black hair and dark brown eyes while the rest of the family had eyes as blue as the skies above.

If you ever to ask any of these girls, adopted from South Korea, Vietnam and Thailand, "What are you?" their firm reply will be, "I am a Swede/Dane." Neither they or anyone else thought otherwise.

Naturally the question of WHO I AM arises whenever I strike a conversation with a new friend. When I say I am a Malaysian, many asked me how it was for me to be a Muslim in Malaysia. If I were to reply that I was Chinese, people will ask me about the political climate in China. For many, you are your citizenship.

Ethnic is in question in Malaysia because of the original right of the Malays. If it was not for the original rights of the Malays, we will never be segregated and divide by our bloodlines, ethnics and religious beliefs. We will simply be known as Malaysians and everyone else who is not a Malaysian, is listed as "Non citizen".

Malaysia was born a free country, of people who loved and defended its nation, its land and its people from the Colonial occupiers. I would like to think that Malaysia was born where every Malaysian is equal, with equal rights and comes under the protection of the nation and the supremecy of the head of state.

(Before I get lambasted for no logical reason, I must mention that I have deep convictions and thoughts on this issue. I must point out that I agree that the Malays should be granted special privileges. I also believe that for Malaysia to compete internationally, we have to prepare for the eventual end of the special privileges, with meritocracy being the preferred choice. Probably should write about this on a later date.)

We, Malaysians are reminded of WHO WE WERE ETHNICALLY each time we fill up an official form. And how is it possible to be otherwise?

The government condones racial discrimination. I say it condones racial discrimination because most of its official forms make it compulsory for us to list our race. As such, it discriminates one Malaysian from another based on race/ethnic and by doing so, it condones. But the government has no other possible choice.

How else are the property developers going to give special discounts to bumiputras to purchase houses, as per instructed by the government? How else are the banks going to grant special soft loans for small farmers to expand/improve their lot in life? How are our local universities going to allocate spaces for the bumis and the non-bumis if we were not segregated and compartmentalized into tiny boxes, “Malay”, “Chinese”, “Indian” and “Dan lain-lain”?

In many other countries, one had to choose from two boxes, namely “Citizen of the country” or “Non citizen”.

And this is sad.

But who are we to blame? Are we going to blame the Malays for pushing the rest of the nation into “Cina”, “India” and “Dan lain-lain” boxes? I personally do not blame the Malays at all.

I respect the Malays because they fought for their political rights. Whoever gains political rights will eventually control the government, who then create laws and regulations. While the rest were caught up trying to buy the latest mobile phone, the fastest car coming out of Europe and the most prestigious address in KL, the Malays are diligently protecting and defending their political rights.

If I can’t blame others, who else can I blame?

I say I have no one else to blame but myself. I blame myself for not protesting when a political figure elected into the Parliament, used a racial remark against another person of a differing race. I blame myself for electing politicians who only looked down to the ground and did not protest against such remarks, especially in a place representing the country, ie. the Parliament.

I am ashamed of myself.

I respect the Malays because they defend and protect what they believe is their rights. They are quick to correct any racial remark was made against a Malay or a Muslim. They will voice their displeasure and discomfort and protect what they feel is right. They constantly raise awareness for issues concerning their race. They have put in their efforts and they reap their rewards accordingly.

I blame myself for not voicing my displeasure at certain remarks made by a small fraction of society. I blame myself for not doing more to share "semangat muhibah" among my friends. I blame myself for not protesting against discriminating and inflamatory articles written by a few people who sowed seeds of dishormony among the people. I blame myself for not sharing with my readers, that this is not about religion or race. I blame myself for not championing good ethics, good faith and respect. I blame myself for not doing more than I am doing.

I blame myself for not protesting against certain educational institution that “encouraged” non-muslims to wear the Baju Kurung to school or the tudung for convocations. I blame myself for not highlighting my displeasure to the authorities, letting them know that I am not happy that certain people are “encouraging” non-muslims to wear the tudung and the Baju Kurung. I blame myself for not suggesting that these educational institution to “encourage” everyone (Malaysians, immaterial of race or creed) to wear the Punjabi suit on Mondays, the Cheongsam on Tuesdays, the Sari on Wednesdays, the Iban costume on Thursdays and the Baju Kurung on Fridays. I blame myself for not encouraging a Malaysian spirit among those close to my heart.

I blame myself for not protesting when a non-Christian was elected to be the principal of my high school, which is a mission school whose very foundations are built on Christian values. This is not a question of religion, but HISTORY and IDENTITY of the school. Slowly the very things that made this school special - its tradition and values - are eroded but where is my voice?

What will happen if a non-Muslim was elected as a principal as of a Muslim boarding school? Suffice to say, the day is unlikely to come to pass and the Muslims are right in protecting and promoting what is right for them. I blame myself for not sacrificing a small portion of my time to write a letter to education department to voice my displeasure and discomfort that all the little monuments that made my high school unique and different from the other public schools are slowly being taken down. Now my school, which had a long history for producing bright and wholesome students is no different from any other public schools. Where was my voice?

I blame myself for not making my voice count. I blame myself for not starting a campaign to educate Malaysians to elect a political party that protects the rights of Malaysians - not the Malays, not the Chinese, not the Indians, not the “dan lain-lain” but Malaysians. I blame myself for not finding like-minded people, whose aspirations are for a better Malaysia, for a country that is truly Asian, truly Malaysian, to promote love and respect among its people. I blame myself for not spending time talking to the young and telling them that each of us, Malaysian, have a part to play in building a great nation.

I blame myself for not doing more than I am. I blame myself for not being more Malaysian than I am.

I blame myself.

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Friday, October 28, 2005
What Are You Waiting For

Like a cat in heat, stuck in a moving car
A scary conversation, shut my eyes, can't find the brake
What if they say that you're a climber
Naturally, I'm worried if I do it alone
Who really cares, cause it's your life
You never know, it could be great
Take a chance cause you might grow
~ "What Are You Waiting For? by Gwen Stefani

Okay, okay... I promise.. I promise I will stay in the confines of my bedroom till I finish the next chapter. I know it is annoying but I enjoy last minute adrenaline rush.


Tolerance is a Bad BAD Word

This is in response to the comments
made by MENJ and Mahaguru58.

“Tolerance” is a bad, BAD word.

It is like a four letter word with the exception, "tolerance" has nine letters instead.

I should not tolerate the varying cultures and religious beliefs in Malaysia. Why should I? I suggest that school textbooks should stop encouraging students to be “TOLERANT” of each other. Why should I tolerate you because you are different from me? Why should I tolerate you because you pray to a different God? Or that you pray to many Gods or do not believe in God? Why should I tolerate?

The reason I am asking you this is because the word “tolerate” has a negative connotation, implying that I am unhappy with the situation but I put up with it (for whatever reason). I beseech you to clarify this word in the dictionary. I do not want to tolerate you or you or you, just because you are different from me. Conversely I am sure you don't want me to put up with you for whatever logical or illogical reason.

I want to respect you as an individual, celebrate you as a person and accept you as you are. I am sure you want me to respect, celebrate and accept you. Heck, I surely want you to respect, celebrate and accept me. Please don't just put up with me or tolerate my behaviour.

The operative words here are “RESPECT”, “CELEBRATE” and “ACCEPT”. I respect you when we are different. I celebrate the differing cultures and religious beliefs each of us have. I accept you as you are, even when we might not agree on some issues.

I would like to think that at the end of the day, we can shake hands, sincerely be friends and go out for ice coffee by the roadside stall - even though we physically look different, even when we vary in our spiritual beliefs and do not possess common philosophies of life. We should be able to look at each other with love and compassion, respect each other and do not deride or make a mockery of each other. Ever.

NB: The word "you" in this article refers to you, my readers. "You" does not specifically refer to neither Mahaguru58 nor MENJ although this article stem from their articles.

This article is not directed towards Mahaguru58 or MENJ. It is directed towards you, my dear readers, with the hope of perhaps encouraging you to think for a moment. There is no right or wrong. There is no need to even take sides because this is not a battle against one another - you against me or we against them.

This is an article about learning to love, even when the person is not one like us.

We are grown ups and we can hold differing opinions. At the end of the day, as I have written above, we can have a discussion on any topic, have varying opinions and be able to go out for mamak at the end of the night, laugh and be friends.

Related Links


Thursday, October 27, 2005
Top Three Reasons Why My Dad's Fab

Spending five days stuck to your parents by arms length 24 hours in your late 20s create some classic moments and here is a collection of three, which I aptly named, "Top Three Reasons Why My Dad's Fab".

The very first minute after placing our travel bags in the hotel room, my parents and I went in search of a decent place to have lunch. We walked out of CM Night Bazaar, took a left and there was a restaurant at the junction. My father went in to enquire if they served lunch since it was pass 3:00 p.m.

My mother waited. I waited. Mother fidgeted. If she fidgets, that means I will have to fidget soon, which I did. Mother asked me to go search for my missing dad. Obviously he wasn’t missing since I knew exactly where he was.

In Lim Lena’s kitchen.

Lim who? Lim Lena. That’s the name of the lady boss. My father went in to ask about the opening hours, only to be greeted by a lady in her 50s with a beehive for hair. It was Lim Lena who brought him into her kitchen to show him and subsequently me, what appeared to the biggest looking monster of a fish! It was freaking more than 1 meter long and it was dinner for quite a few tables later that evening.

“Wah si Teochew lang,” said Lim Lena. Her face was made fairer by the thick layer of make-up and her smile outlined with bright red lipstick ala Paloma Picasso.

My father spoke Teochew and he had quite a long conversation with Lim Lena, who then showed him the fresh prawns (never mind I am allergic to all crustaceans), crabs, shell fish etc.

My dad’s fab because he speaks Teochew, Hokkien, Hakka, Cantonese and a smatter of Mandarin, a great command of the English language and fluency in Bahasa Melayu. So don't play-play with this bradder, I tell you.. My father went a step further later in the evening, bargaining with some roadside peddler in Teochew... Wahhhh respecta!

I used to crawl into my parents’ bedroom as a child and even when I am grown, I crawl into their bedroom to sleep whenever I am unwell. It has been years since I slept in their bedroom and the trip to Chiang Mai brought us three together again.

On the first night sharing a bedroom with my parents, everything went well. I watched Thai soaps on TV with my father until I fell asleep. Sometime later, there was noise in the room. I rubbed my eyes and sat up in my little corner of the hotel room.

My father was rolling in his bed, kicking the air. I called out softly, “Papa?” and he woke up. He smiled and recounted his dream to me: he was fighting off monster while trying to protect my mother and I.

“I always dream of fighting with strange animals and monsters,” he said as he positioned his hands in a traditional kungfu stance.

My dad’s fab because he is a ninja, wearing a black mask, bouncing swiftly from rooftop to rooftop, fighting dragons and demons when he is asleep. This happens almost every night without fail. As he sleeps, my father creates an alternate dream world where he is a mission to protect his loved ones (often my mother and sometimes the three of us brats) and he kicks up a storm quite literally with his hands and legs flying all over the bed.

On the third day, at my insistence, my parents signed us up for a full day tour, which included a trip to the Karen hilltribe. I had longed to see these beautiful people most known for their long and graceful necks. Karen girls wear brass coils at approximately 5 years. Three coils are added every few years of their lives until these girls are grown.

The travel guide, Prassat briefed us that the journey would take more than three hours and that we will stop at the famous Golden Triangle, where lunch and a boat ride awaited us. Prassat interrupted the conversation we had with John the New Zealander tourist every so often, to inform us of the current location.

“What’s the meaning of this town?” my father asked Prassat.

Prassat explained the name of the town and its origins. My father smiled and proudly told everyone that it was also my Chinese name.

My dad’s fab because he is the only person who feels excited over my Chinese name. And get this, no one paid much attention as he explained the signifance of my Chinese name to the tour guide, the van driver and John, the New Zealander tourist, all while sounding totally excited that Thai town and I shared the same name. My mother was asleep, thus not paying him two seconds of attention. The guide was puzzled and John had a blank on his face.

Even when I pretended not to hear him talk about my name, he said mentioned it THREE TIMES with great pride that only a father can possess in his heart.

It is easy to rewrite this article as "Top Ten Reasons Why My Dad's Fab" but I will have to sit my cute tushy down for the next Nude, Not Naked chapter (which as you noticed, I am cleverly trying to weasel myself out of writing) so why don't you come up with the next seven reasons why YOUR dad's fab?

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Wednesday, October 26, 2005
Of Time and Place

I am back, people!

I am happy, not entirely exhausted, absolutely ecstatic as any girl should be should she have bought so many goodies and as a direct result am now slightly impoverished.

Chiang Mai and its surrounding northern towns are interesting places worthy of a visit. Its people are friendly and sincere in their effort to make every single tourist feel welcomed and comfortable. I shall write more about my visit to Chiang Mai in my following article. Promise!

As you can see, I am all bubbly and happy from my trip. I did not think much about the book nor plot any story lines though. So yeah, I am guilty for not thinking about you guys while I was in Thailand, but can you blame me for it? The Thais are amazing as a nation and I am honored to have known some of them.

I am thankful for all the blessings in my life. Probably I have more than I deserve. Just like Otto, my father was a teacher. Time was aplenty for the family and we spent many weekends and holidays traveling and fishing. Yup, I am one of those girls who can hook a worm on a rod and fish! I slept under open night skies, under trees and out in the open.

Many of Otto’s cultural experiences stemmed from my personal travels. With my family, I’ve been to all the Malaysian states with Sabah being the exception. It is therefore ironic that I am writing about Seven being a Sabahan! Probably I am subconsciously giving myself an excuse to visit Sabah soon. Hahahaha…

I would like to thank my parents for giving me a beautiful childhood. I do not come from a rich family but my childhood is enriched with various fond memories that I treasure dearly. If there is one gift that I inherit and will pass on to my children later in life, it is the gift of family life and travel.

I visited Kenyir Dam when it was still unknown, rode on a boat in Lake Chini, snorkeled and fished in various islands such as Tioman, Perhentian, Pangkor, Langwaki Penang (island state) etc. I went gold mining in some gold mining area in East Coast, went for the Rainforest Music Festival in Kuching last year (a MUST MUST MUST visit) and even up on all hill resorts found on West Peninsula Malaysia.

My favourite childhood holiday spot is Fraser's Hill. Many find the place a little too quiet but I find myself there yearly - even now when I am grown and travelling with my love instead. It was my family's favourite vacation spot and the place where I spent many hours staring out the window sharing silly teenage love crush stories with a childhood girlfriend of mine.

I have had the blessing of residing in Stockholm and London for most part of my European stay. I’ve been to Copenhagen, Helsinki, Malmo, Athens, Aegina (a Greek island), all major towns and cities in Scotland and England from the tip facing the Artic, John O Groats to the southern end at Dover, right over to France and into Belgium.

In moments like this, I know that I am blessed.


Friday, October 21, 2005

I saw a rainbow just earlier today
Lately those rainbows be coming round like everyday
Deep in the struggle I have found the beauty of me
God is watching and the devil finally let me be
Here in this moment to myself
I'm gonna vibe with no one else
There is a conversation I need to have with me
It's just a moment to myself

~ A Moment to Myself, Macy Gray

Dear readers,

I am gonna take a moment to myself. Heading to Chiang Mai early tomorrow morning and only be back home next Wednesday late evening. Let's cross our fingers I will come back with a great chapter or two.

Until then, you guys take good care. Go bounce around the other blogs but heck, come back next week!



Thursday, October 20, 2005
Lights Will Guide You Home

What can you do when all you can do is shake your head, cry, mourn, hug the person, rock her body steadily, tell her that everything is going to be all right but nothing is all right. And you know and she knows. This is the moment when “love does not conquer all”.

And tears fall, yours and hers, but you have to smile. You sing her your love song, the song you two danced to when you were 28 and she a few years younger. She grips your hands tighter and tigher.

You say you love her and you kiss her forehead. You hold onto her hands tightly, selfishly keeping her with you in this carnal world. She says she loves you and that everything will be all right. You shake your head and cry. And in that one moment, she closes her eyes. You can feel her slipping through your fingers and all is lost.

You lay her down and arrange her hair. You say,”Sayang, let me find your favourite Raya dress.” You wipe all the tears, walk out of the room, look at your aides, the press, family members and well wishers and bravely you say, “She passed on peacefully. I’ll look for her favourite Raya dress.” The room falls into a hush. And you walk away while people move quietly around you.

You comb her hair and kiss her one last time. Everyone’s around and you have lost your private moments with her. You no longer have her although her body laid down on the bed. You feel like shouting to release the pain but you have to be solemn and keep a strong front.

What do you say when you’ve ran out of words? When there are no more tears to cry? What can you do when you will give anything just to smell her again, but nothing you can give will do so? When you hug her body tightly and she still slips away?

When you tried your best but it is not good enough? When your spirit soars but your body is weak? When you fight a hard and long battle but in the end you still lose? When you smile and give your best but today the smile and the best no longer ties you to this world?

What words do you say when it is your last goodbye? When nothing you can say or do matters because you have only a few more minutes to say “I love you”? When “I love you” is no longer enough?

What can you do to stop the raging fire of pain from consuming your heart? When pain surpasses the physical body and morphs into pangs of anger and frustrations, as your hearts are unwilling to let go? You hope and you pray but your prayers are unanswered today.

My deepest condolence to our Prime Minister and his family, on the passing of Datin Seri Endon.


Tuesday, October 18, 2005
If I were XiaXue's Age

If I were XiaXue’s age, I would have retaliated in anger to her bloody nasty post two days back. I would have made nasty comments on her not so intelligent post entitled “I’m hungry” or something like that. She caused yet another furore for writing about the usage of the handicap toilet and her right to use it.

You see, if I were XiaXue’s age, I’d probably write like this:

XiaXue’s stupid. She is an arrogant, self-absorbed, good for nothing other than self praise and self-obsession, self-righteous, don’t think with her brains upstairs bitch. She is not the brightest bauble on the Christmas tree. She is the only one who's thick skin enough to regurgitate rubbish after receiving her whatever award. Given her track record, the award should be taken back.

And In my dictionary, she’s pure crap and she writes crap blah blah blah.

And here are some proof of her crap:-

XiaXue: Woah, woah! HOLD ON DUDE. You mean only handicapped people can use handicapped toilets?

Otto: Yes, darling stumpy legs pudding lard pie - only a handicapped person can use the handicapped toilets. Do you see a man entering a woman’s toilet?

Please read the sign attached on the toilet door. If it says, HANDICAP, it means it is reserved for the handicapped, the same way your ladies’ toilet is reserved for women and gents for men.

XiaXue: How come people have this notion that only the disabled can use facilities for the disabled?

Otto: Because it is understood that the disabled toilet is meant for the disabled, the men’s for men and the ladies’ for ladies, my darling munchkin prune cake.

For a Best Writer whatever, you surely take a long time to understand what even a 4 year old child understands.

XiaXue: So tell me … our government spent millions of taxpayers' money to build so many facilities for the physically disabled, and only they are allowed to use it?

Otto: Yes, you little spoilt monkey of a pumpkin pie. Only the disabled are allowed to use it. If the government can spend millions building facilities (such as a school which failed desperately to educate you because you don’t even recognize and respond appropriately to simple signs) for a person as selfish, careless and insensitive as you, I am sure the government wouldn’t mind spend a tiny fraction to ease the burden of the handicapped.

XiaXue: Oh, excuse me for going down the slope instead of the stairs, will you? I shouldn't have. MRT lifts - don't use it, cannot use it. Use the escalator instead.

Otto: My cute, little fluffy ball of ignorance, do you see a “HANDICAP” sign attached to the MRT lifts? I’ve checked a few slopes and apparently the handicap sign is also not present.

Have any of you seen any “Handicap” signs near a lift or a slope? No right? No means, they are free for the public to use. And this includes you, my little photoshopped apple struddle cupcakes.

If XiaXue is considered to be among the best writers from Singapore, Singapore will have much to fear for its literacy future. Someone ought to do the nation a favour and shoot her with a BB gun because she’s drastically tarnishing the credibility of Singapore.

Imagine writing a totally ignorant post about HER VISIT TO KUALA LUMPUR and how much she admired her beautiful Changi airport. I wonder if she’s been to either airports and compared the differing standards? Dreadful, dreadful…

I believe that writers write because they have a vision, a world, a story in their minds. It is the first time for me to hear that a writer can’t write because she can’t access her photoshop. Plain ridiculous, what has actual GOOD and SOUND writing got to do with photoshop? Nothing, that’s the answer if you hadn't figured that one out.

If you are a good, credible writer, you can write with a piece of stick, if that’s the only thing that you can use to record your words.

If a XiaXue’s diedhard fan had a BB gun to my head and he forced me to name XiaXue’s talent, I would then say, “Okay lah, she got talents. She can turn a monkey into a pixie. Just see how she photoshopped her photos.”

Okay, to be fair to XiaXue, I must admit that she’s the greatest marketing machine on the blogsphere at the moment. She got free nails, free hairdos etc. Probably she can get a plastic surgeon to correct her body proportion and while we are at it, a brain surgeon to pull her IQ up 50 notches or so.

Only she has the cheek to say that she’s media. If she’s considered a celebrity, then my uncle’s second cousin’s dog’s best friend, Paulie the Monkey is a celebrity too. And Paulie doesn’t even need photoshop to write something decent.

Alas I am a little older and definitely more matured than XiaXue. Along with this maturity, comes a little bit more wisdom. And wisdom taught me that if I can’t say anything nice, I shouldn’t say anything at all, which includes what I imagined I would have replied her if I were her age... so don't pay any attention to what I wrote above, because I am not her age anymore and I don't respond to her postings that way. I just don't bloody visit her blog, that's what I do.

I have been in a rather familiar situation as described by XiaXue, feeling panicky with a bladderful of water and a queue that led all the way to the ladies' main door and longer. However I am yet to use a handicap's toilet although they are frequently empty. Neither do I park in the handicap's parking lots. I am not self-righteous, I dare not say so. To a certain extend, I personally feel that one curses oneself by using the handicap toilet or parking lot. Only the handicap should use these allocated facilities and if we, able bodied, were use them, we are (in an indirect way) admitting to everyone, the public, including oneself that one is handicap.

As for her previous article dated October 16th, I really shouldn’t say anything at all. It is her blog and everyone who goes there to read, did it out of their own free will. I believe that a writer has to be credible and responsible for her writings. A writer should never abuse the privilege to birth forth beautiful words and ideas, so I shall hold my stick and tongue.

Let’s hope that XiaXue will learn to shut her gap when she’s older.

And XiaXue’s diehard fans are right. We do not need to read her blog if we do not like what she says. That’s why I have not read it since I found it to be utter rubbish many moons ago. That is until minishorts linked to XiaXue’s site two days back and cried FOUL. And minishorts was right.

Something stank big time on October 16th.

nb: I personally do not wish to be caught up in the blogolitics. Hence you don't see me linking myself to any other blogs or mentioning/recommending any other blogs. I read more than 10 blogs daily and I like each of them. There are also blogs that I avoid with more passion than a Spanish bull fighter avoiding the bull.

This post is also likely to be taken down after a week or so because I personally do not wish to participate/influence/join anything related to blogs. I want to use my time wisely, use it to concentrate on my stories in Nude, Not Naked. I am not interested in any blogolitics or be famous in the blogworld. I want to be famous in the real world with my first book and that's what I want.

This post is as rare as the lunar eclipse last night... that girl serious needed a stick...



Sunday, October 16, 2005
Let Go

"Just relax and let go." he said.

I was no more than seven years old when I was floating in a swimming pool. My only lifeline was my father, who kept me afloat with his hands supporting my body.

"Just relax and let go." my father assured me. He gave a knowing smile.

I looked into the late evening sky. It was beautiful, stunning blue with a tinge of yellow. A flock of birds flying home were the only dark cloud in the sky. Water was gently washing the sides of my face, never submerging in it but enough to keep my ears under the water. Everything sounded funny when echoed by the pool of water. A boy jumping into the water did not sound the same as it did on dry land. I grabbed my father's hands. He smiled.

"Just relax and let go." my father said to me.

With those words, he let me go. I was floating on my own. He took my hands off his and let them go. I struggled and reached out for my father's hands. He walked further and further away.

"Relax Otto, just relax. Do not struggle." That was all my father said. He must have repeated it many times and for all those times he repeated those words, I paddled and tried to stay afloat. The more I tried, the harder I paddled, the further I sank.

"Just relax and let go." my father said to me again. He was near but not near enough for me to hold onto.

At that one moment in my life, I stopped struggling. I stopped paddling, stopped everything. I laid out flat, surrendered and relaxed. Just let everything go.

In that one moment, my body instantly floated upwards and I saw stars twinkling. The moon was hanging in the heavens and all I could see was the majestic sky.

I learnt a life lesson that moment. Life gets easier if we release ourselves and be free. Let go, stop struggling and we will find peace and a little place in heaven.

Dear readers, my father taught me a life lesson that evening when he let me go and in turn asked me to let go. What began as an innocent evening outing between a father and his daughter, turned maddening when I was struggling and gasping for air and my father having faith in me that I would listen to his words 'Just relax and let go".

Now many, many years on, that evening was the greatest lesson that I can remember my father teaching me.

Often time we struggled hard to etch a living and to make meaning of our lives. We drag our feet day in and day out, fighting hard to keep ourselves afloat in our emotional and physical lives. The more we fight, the harder we struggle, the more we question and the more bitter we get.

It is the moment when we let go that we are free. I have been hammering my head for the last few days, trying to figure out the next chapter in Nude, Not Naked... and the more I do it, the more clouded my mind is. So I resign to the fact that I am not able to come up with a new chapter every 3 days. I am human afterall. I however promise, something will crop up by the next few days and I shall leave you guys something to read before my trip to Chiang Mai.

So the next time you struggle, my dear readers, remember to just relax and let go.


Wednesday, October 12, 2005
I Think of You Each Day

Dear readers,

I wake up each morning and wonder to myself, "So what story are you going to spin today for your dear readers?". I do this while rolling in my duvet. This is a similarity I share with my story's key character, Otto.

Often I think up new experiences for Otto, birthing her to life and giving her emotions. I do this while driving, walking from Point A to Point B, working and even while I am socialising with my friends. I often talk to you, my dear readers, as I go through my day.

The whole writing process is similar to spinning wool into something colorful and beautiful, keeping our bodies warm during cold months. I peddle ideas in my head, toss them about, add new threads, snip away bad ends and take great care to ensure that everything doesn't end up in a knot.

Today is one of those unusual days when I am in a knot. I have given myself today as the dateline for the next installment for Nude, Not Naked. You will understand once the next chapter is released, hopefully by tomorrow, if I sit my ass still on the chair to write the ending out.

So this is just a short HOLLA from me to you, my dear readers. Enjoy the ride!

p.s: Do drop me a line or two at I am curious what you think of the story so far. Thanks well in advance, baby.


Monday, October 10, 2005
Of Toy Boys and ROMs (Rich Old Men)

When I was a wee younger than today, I was attracting ROMs (Rich Old Men) like bee to honey. Most of them enjoyed a few quiet conversations with yours truly. Probably they found me amusing on the basis of my youthful follies. I was naïve and idealistic about life.

They asked of my life and what I am doing. Where on earth am I at the moment and what are my dreams. Every so often, they kept in touch through the phone. They called to enquire if I found what I was looking and whether I achieved all I wanted.

I must, at this juncture, add that these men and I share a phone friendship. I might have met them a few times through functions and then on, maintain a phone friendship with them. They call whenever they are free. I will reply, if I am free of any social obligations. They would cut the conversations short, if they knew I had company. They respected my space and time.

They could be Datuks or whatsonot-Tuk-s but in my phonebook, they are called by their first names. I think it takes quite a few ounce of guts to do so and women who are able to pull this off with confidence are intriguing to ROMs. This is a top tip for those girls out looking for sugar daddies.

Also - I hang up if I am busy, which could have made them even more curious about what I did with my personal life. These men enjoy listening to my whimsical journey to adulthood and womanhood.

How I am trying to juggle my career, studies, travel, hobbies, business plans and social life.

How I am trying to make sense of this world.

Am I going to be a traditional woman, following my man wherever he goes?

Am I going to find my own place on this great blue watery planet?

Will my idealistic ways win the world? Will the world wear me out wrinkly?

It is important to note that these men are mere acquaintances catching up. They are respectful and never once show their seedy side. They are never cheeky or gatal. No hanky panky friendships here. Probably because I put them in their places – a place far, far away from my life and they know it.

The tides have changed recently and I am being flooded by toy boys, barely scrapping the voting age in Malaysia. I sat in Star Bucks on Friday afternoon after being grilled like a sausage during a job interview. Two bloody hours long, in a face off with four ladies. DAMN! So after the two hour long session, I sat my pink blouse, black linen trousers, black pearls and matching black pointy heels self in a tiny corner and relaxed.

In the span of two hours sitting alone in a tiny corner of Star Bucks, two different college boys approached me for a short piece of conversation. Damn malu, I tell you. How to tell them nicely that Aunty Otto is a little too old for them ah?? How to tell?

We’ll skip the first guy who came and introduced himself. We’ll talk about the second guy. I like my men tall, slender, tan with a hint of macho facial hair. And this potential toy boy had me ticking all the right boxes faster than an insurance salesman filling in a client's personal details.

He was tall (DAMN!), gorgeous eyes (double DAMN!), facial hair (don’t know how to describe), slender (Mmmmm!) and tan. He was a college student, having arrived from Saudi Arabia a month ago.

He came over with the “Excuse me, I came here to apologize. I’ve been staring probably a little too hard and it might have made you feel a little uncomfortable. Blah Blah Blah movie. Blah Blah Blah song. Blah Blah Blah.”

“Can I have your number?” He asked.

“No, you can’t.” I replied.

He had a puzzled look on his face. I imagine far too many girls are saying "Yes, yes. Oh yesssssssss...!".

“If you’d like, you can leave your number with me.” I said.

We chatted for a few minutes. He was new to Malaysia, having arrived a month ago. Studying IT, enjoys hanging around cafes, surfing the internet, completing assignment in Star Bucks. He left the table after scribbling down his phone number.

Dear readers, I have devised the perfect technique to evade personal questions aimed at myself.

I am not comfortable giving out my mobile number to strangers (even if they are recognizable strangers) in bars/pubs/cafes/etc, I’ll tell them men honestly that I am not comfortable giving out my numbers and give them the option of leaving theirs, if they so wished.

This gives me the choice of either calling them or not. Honestly I think this is a better option for girls everywhere. Do not ever feel pressured to give out more details than you are comfortable with. You don’t know what sick fucks are out there, my Little Red Riding Hoods…

If the man is a gentleman, he’ll respect your wishes, smile and leave you his number.

If the man gives you a negative reaction, be it he gives you the “you think you what? XiaXue ah? Britney Spears ah? Why so haulian?” stare or even persistently ask for you number, you will thank your lucky stars for having just gotten rid of another rotten apple.

But back to my topic of the day "Toy Boys and ROMs". Girls out there, what is your choice?

Who would you rather be? Demi Moore or Anna Nicole Smith? Answer this question and in return, may I tempt you with a story of toy boys and ROMs at a later date?


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