On Hiatus

I haven’t updated my blog for more than a month because I was busy house hunting, settling my school issues, settling my new house’s issues, settling my current apartment’s issues with the current landlord and preparing for the big move to the new house.

In that order.

School’s starting soon, so that means more school preparation. So that means less time updating the blog too. I’m not sure how long I’ll be on hiatus but it’ll probably be another month or so until everything settle down.

But I’ll definitely break the hiatus if something interesting come up. But no commitments here.

Before I forget, HAPPY BELATED CHINESE NEW YEAR! GONG XI FAI CAI! MAY THIS YEAR BE A PROSPEROUS YEAR FOR YOU!

Sorry for the visual assault, but yeah, best wishes for the new year.

Talking about Chinese New Year, I was sitting at a cafe at World Square (recognizable landmark in Sydney, go google it) when a troupe of lion dancers came up to the cafe and performed the traditional lion dance right in front of me.

What did I do? Continue drinking my iced coffee.

After years and years of celebrating Chinese New Year, seeing lion dances and being a lion dancer myself for a short period of time, it does get boring after a while.

But I guessed I was trying too hard to be blasé about the whole lion dance affair. So blasé to the point that I didn’t even whip out my camera.

Whateves.

Anyway, here’s a picture to wish you a Happy Chinese New Year:

 


(Taken from Haikal Ramlee’s blog)

 


Yep, it’s the same picture I used last year. I’m really lazy.

So that’s all, folks. Now here’s some pictures of my rats:

 


Pantalaimon crossing the pole over the valley of carpeted death.

 


That’s Pan full name: Pantalaimon. For those who have no clue, I named him after Lyra’s daemon in Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy.

But I always call him Pan. It’s shorter and easier.

 


Bentley’s favourite place

 


The last picture summed up the entire status of the blog.

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Gong Xi Fa Cai

In the spirit of Chinese New Year, this post will be entirely in red, since the Chinese view red as a colour of prosperity.

Just had a reunion dinner with my relatives and family at my grandparents’ house.

Will be heading back there tomorrow to celebrate the Chinese New Year, and to collect hongbao or ‘red packet money’. It is something I look forward to (collecting money, that is).

So to everyone celebrating Chinese New Year out there, Gong Xi Fa Cai!

And to the couples out there, happy Valentine’s Day.

To those not celebrating Chinese New Year or Valentine’s Day, well, a Gong Xi Fa Cai to you too!

Now I have an excuse to stay up until the wee hours of the morning. Tradition dictates that children should stay up late until the morning of Chinese New Year so that their parents will live long and prosper.

And I have an excuse not to do any housework starting from 12 midnight until after Chinese New Year. Any cleaning will means that I’m ‘sweeping’ out the good luck.

Staying up late, no housework, gorging myself on food and drinks and collecting money from relatives (it’s good to be single sometimes), what’s there not to like?

So I wish you a happy Chinese New Year once again. (Yes, I’m a lucky bastard, it means I get to celebrate New Year twice. So it means I can reset my resolutions).


Gong Xi Fa Cai!

(Taken from HaikalRamlee Blogspot)

Conversations With Rajan Rishyakaran (1986 – 2009)

There are certain individuals who leave a large impact on my life.

Rajan Rishyakarn was one such individual.

For such an influential individual in my life, it is surprising to me that I cannot remember when the first time I met him. All I knew was that I met him through a close friend, Jason Ong, who went to the same university with him. The first time I met him was probably sometime in mid-2007. Even after I met him, we rarely kept in touch (after all, he was only Jason’s friend at that time) and it was only in 2008 when I met up with him more frequently and slowly developed a friendship with him.

I will be frank here. I did not have a very good first impression of Rajan. First, he behaved awkwardly, as if he was unsure about what to say and how to behave within our group. I don’t blame him because Brian (Jason’s younger brother), Zack (my twin) and I were behaving quite boisterously and stuck to ourselves. So I could say that his awkwardness at that time boiled down to his testing of our group dynamics.

I remember the subsequent time I met up with him at a party in Jason’s house. Some people say that first impression plays a large part. But for Rajan, it was different. I remembered he turned up at Jason’s place with a six pack and I saw for the first time how brilliant a conversationist he was. This time the tables turned. Rajan was at ease as the majority of the people were from the university while Brian, Zack and I were unfamiliar with some of the people and mostly stuck to ourselves.

I would say that Brian and Zack were more familiar with Rajan at that time compared to me. Both had more chances to meet up with Rajan while I did not as I was still in the army and did not had much free time. But that night at the party, I started talking to Rajan (the beer he brought helped) and we soon were engrossed in some fascinating conversation. Its a pity I can’t remember what exactly we were talking about.

At that point, our friendship truly began. We exchanged numbers, added each other on Facebook and started long wall-to-wall conversations on Facebook about the most random thing. I would say that at that time, our friendship was mainly based on mundane things like having fun, partying and other things that young men would talk about.

Yet even with those conversations, Rajan came across as a very sharp observer on people and life in general. Many times I find myself at the losing end of the conversation. He was not mean and didn’t meant to be. Neither did he meant to insult. But he did know how to put his points across very convincingly that I can’t help agreeing with him when only a few minutes ago I was disagreeing with him.

Our friendship deepened when I left for Sydney University in mid-2009. At that point, Rajan had just left for India for his internship and I remembered having many conversations with him on MSN. In those MSN conversations, it was when I truly learned about his brilliant personality and sharp mind. The topics ranged from men talk to politics to university life and finally to religion.

At this point of time in my life, I started looking up to Rajan as my mentor. Not because of his great conversational skills (something that he always downplay) but because of what I considered as his wisdom, genius and brilliance.

What stuck with me was one particular MSN conversation I had with him in November 2009. Somehow we started talking about family relations and it was when Rajan really spilled his guts to me about his relations with his family. He didn’t really say anything bad about his family except about the usual frustration he felt, the typical frustration that everyone feels, including me. It was then I learned that even mentors, such as Rajan, do have a vulnerable side to themselves.

Of course, not all conversations with Rajan were on serious matter. Many, in fact almost all conversations I had with him were always humourous and filled with his witty anecdotes and quotes. Conversations with Rajan were not a one-way affairs, they were always two-way affairs, each partner contributing and building up the relationship.

I remembered his excitement when he emailed me about visiting Australia in June/July 2010. I was actually looking forward to his coming visit to Sydney and discussed with him at length about the places he should see when he was around Sydney. Unfortunately, that would never happen.

Rajan was also the influence in my joining the debate team at Sydney Uni. He used to joked that I had to do it so that he could live through vicariously through me. Although I told him about my subsequent failure and how I was never going to embarrass myself again (i.e. not join the Debating team), Rajan didn’t criticize me. Yes, he did joked and teased me but he also offer advice and encouragement. See the earlier post here.

By the time of November 2009, I treated Rajan as a mentor, and I admit, treated him as a personal hero. Here was a person who was not afraid to speak his views on politics, push peoples’ buttons on religious matters and explore issues that no one give a damn too. Here was some one that was not afraid to come across as an intellectual. Yes, Rajan was an intellectual, but he was always a humble and very down-to-earth individual. In fact, if there was one fault of his, it was his tendency to play down his strengths.

I remembered my last meeting up with Rajan two weeks ago. I had a few drinks and borrowed the novel “Slumdog Millionaire” (Or known as “Q & A”). Actually, to be more accurate, I met up with him for drinks and to get some episodes of the series “Bones”. It was Rajan who remembered that I wanted to read the novel and loaned it to me. I still have the book with me. At that point of time, Rajan was undergoing great stress as he was facing unfair eviction from the hostel by the university board. Yet, he extended an invitation to me knowing that I just got back from Sydney.

Lastly, I wrote a short story that I wanted to show Rajan. Many people know my aspirations to be a writer but it was Rajan who shaped my outlook on political and intellectual matters. Furthermore, the story contained many snippets of our conversation we had together. It is a great sense of loss I feel that I would not be able to present my stories to Rajan.

Rajan was an person who left a large impact in my life, and no doubt in other peoples lives. I will miss him dearly.

Rest in peace, Rajan. The world has just lost a great person in you.

On Hiatus.

I will be on hiatus from my blog for some indefinite time. I’m not sure how long it will be, probably a week, two weeks, a month or two, but I’ll definitely start blogging again.

The reason for this hiatus is writing exhaustion. First off, I’m not the kind of writer that can blog about every single details in my life. It’s exhausting for me and its boring for you, the readers. Would you like to read the same shit again and again?

I’m more of quality over quantity person. So I don’t care if my blog have very few posts as long as the posts are interesting.

Trust me, I am working on a few long overdue posts and just a quick peek, they are: my trip to Blue Mountains, my journey through Movember, my cousin’s wedding and ZoukOut. And some post regarding a bank interrogation.

The second reason is that I’m currently working on a short story. I’m writing for a school Writer’s Society’s Literary Magazine and its my first ‘proper’ writing endeavor since ThearteWorks’ 24 Hours Playwriting Competition in August 2008. I haven’t been writing much (I was very profilic in my tweens but got lazy.) and I’m trying to get my groove back.

The third reason is that I’ll be away for much of December. I’m going away on two trips so I’ll have less time to blog. But at least I’ll have more interesting stuff to write about. So its a win-win situation for you and me.

So just check back on my blog every now and then for new updates.

And while you’re at it, leave some comments.

And find something else to entertain yourself.

I’ve recently became a fan of Trance music since ZoukOut. Thanks to my friends and of course, the DJ Armin van Buuren, I’ve been listening to Trance music the past few days. I’ve never knew why people like Trance music until my baptism of fire at ZoukOut under Armin.

So here’s a Trance music to entertain you guys. This music is considered Hard Trance and listening to the bass and beats is awesome. Warning: your eardrums might burst.

For those of you who are wondering what ZoukOut is, it is an annual music festival held in Singapore. It’s organized by a Singaporean club called Zouk and the festival is held at the Siloso Beach in Sentosa, hence the name ZoukOut. This year was my second time at ZoukOut and it was way, way better than my first time. You can check out their website @ http://www.zoukout.com/

An Extremely Fucked Up Fan Fiction

This is why I love the Internet so much. It proves that it can still provide me with weird, out-of-this-world, completely, totally, unbelievable entertainment.

I have to say that this writer is pure genius, albeit a twisted, sick, genius.

I’m not sure whether to laugh or to stay stunned. Or do both.

I found this by chance (I’m serious!) through three degrees of separation:

Squid and Hogwarts porn

STOP! Before you access the site above, read the following below. You’ll appreciate the fan fiction more than ever.

First, I went onto this guy’s blog through WordPress home page: “Fucked Up Fanfic

This guy’s blog provided a very short blurb and my curiosity aroused, I clicked on the link he provided: “Fucked Up Fanfic First Encounter

I could not believe my eyes.

I read it once, then twice, then I stopped to close my jaws. I mean, is this for real????

Finally, I went to this website where they provided a full commentary, which is the first site I mentioned.

I’m still stunned.